Archive for Peter Jackson

CABIN FEVER REVIEW :: HORROR :: 064

Posted in Comedy, Horror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 06/29/2018 by joycereview

Cabin Fever (2002)

This review is not so simple to make. To movie critics, it is my opinion that this genre, “horror-comedy”, is the most troublesome to dissect. Take for example the amazing and hysterical, Cabin In The Woods (2012)- clearly a comedy. Evil Dead (1981) and Evil Dead 2 (1987) were horror films that introduced audiences to the not-so-serious, “campy” horror flick that some people try to successfully make. Obviously when juggling the weight of two genres, you may miss on both fronts.

Plot
A group of five college graduates; Paul (Rider Strong), Karen (Jordan Ladd), Marcy (Cerina Vincent), Jeff (Joey Kern) and Bert (James DeBello) rent a cabin in the woods and things go south when they begin to fall victim to a flesh-eating virus.

Eli Roth’s Cabin Fever (2002), now a cult classic, is certainly a film I enjoyed elements of and while some scenes and acting were cringe-worthy, it often feels like many of these were on purpose. Can you fault something performed or delivered poorly if it’s done on purpose? (See, The Room)

For instance, some of the dialogue is so bad it’s good. As a teenager in the 90s, the time period that this story takes place in, it paints a very realistic picture of the way kids talk.

Paul: “Why would you want to kill squirrels?”
Bert: “cus’ they’re gay.”
Karen: “Bert, don’t be a $&#ing retard.”

Sex…
Thank you Eli Roth and Cerina Vincent for adding the two sex scenes and the bath scene that are quite the stable of horror movies. And quite realistic too! Not only would this be what would really happen, but is what attracts many teenage horror fans – let’s be honest. As chauvinistic as it is, the “the nude girl” is kind of a staple and the “treat” to the viewer’s “trick or treat” night. Some people would learn from this… like Michael Bay walking away from Friday the 13th (2009) because there was “too much sex.” BTW, thank you (Winston-Salem native) Julianna Guill!

Gas Station scenes…
Perhaps the clichés of all clichés in the horror genre (besides teenagers in the woods) would have to be an eerie gas station stop. This movie was no exception and one of the highlights of the film. I won’t spoil it for you here… but watch for it!

In any respect, Cabin Fever is beloved by many, especially “splatter” B-film lovers. Director Peter Jackson liked it so much that he held three showings for his crew while filming Lord of The Rings. While it would be fun to watch with a group of friends, I doubt I’d watch it more than once. However, would I add it to my list of must-own horror flicks … this, most definitely!

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________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________Be sure to follow me on Instagram, as every 3rd picture will feature a brand new Joyce Review. Also, let me know in the comment section if there is a particular film you’d like me to review. But first… let me know what you thought of Cabin Fever (2002)

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DISTRICT 9 :: ACTION :: 031

Posted in Action, Drama, Sci-Fi with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 12/31/2009 by joycereview

I’ll certainly be standing at the gun barrel for my review of this film, but let me spell it out for you if you are using this review as a nudge towards “should I stay or should I go?”

I’m very old-school when it comes to science fiction.  I treasure story-line and style in my sci-fi flicks like I treasure Texas Pete hot sauce in my morning eggs.  If an alien is to be the center-point of any story, they best be either scary (H.R. Giger’s Alien), interesting/realistic (Roswell), cute (E.T.) or a combination or these, to keep my interest.  It could be an obvious sock-puppet-alien, but if the story is intriguing and is shot in a stylistic fashion, I just might, one day, own it on dvd or (the testament for a truly epic filmblu-ray.

THE BEAR BONES

Twenty-eight years ago, an alien spacecraft hovered above the city.  Military raided the ship and found ill and malnutritioned aliens aboard.  They were given refuge at a camp on the outskirts of Johannesburg, South Africa, known as District 9.  The year is 2010 and District 9 has deteriorated into a militarized slum and it is the job of the munitions corporation, MNU (Multi-National United) and operations manager Wikus van der Merwe to evict the alien tenants.  However, during the operation somethings goes wrong and Wikus must save his own skin… and rescue his new-found brothers.

Before I begin to rip District 9 a new alien butt-hole, I have to begin by saying that there is a deeper layer to this film that many of us North American’s (for the most part) cannot appreciate.  If you don’t know about Apartheid in South Africa, please read A Subtle Knife’s article, “Becoming the Alien: Apartheid, Racism and District 9.”  And although I appreciate this aspect of the film, my critical conscience will not allow this film to escape on the basis of it’s social, historical and political underlining.

As I sit here writing, I am being uber-nerdish.  Moving my fanny to-and-fro to the Star Wars IV Cantina song, I am thinking just what could have made this movie a Joyce Review success?  My answer:

  1. Don’t lie to me via the movie’s trailer. The one I saw was short and sweet.  The government had an alien in what looked like an interrogation room.  The alien, so disgusting he was cute, said, “shrump, sher, chularp, twanp.”  Translation: “We just want to go home.”  (awww!) Instantly my heart hurt for the poor gargantuan cockroach and thought this was going to be a fascinating movie with the aliens being held hostage – not that they were so pathetically weak and stupid they couldn’t get back and repair their ship.
  2. Make the Multi-National United actually consist of united, multi-nationals.  If aliens make themselves known, and there is money to be made and research to be had… you better bet your sweet behind that America will be present (not to mention the UK, Germany, France and Russia).
  3. Build a friggin’ wall! Confining a couple million aliens to a refugee camp will take more than a metal fence and barbed wire.  At one point in the film, Wikus actually sneaks into District 9 by crawling under the fence!  Oh, you poor aliens.  You can build and hide secret, underground, laboratories but you can’t arouse a single en-force mutiny or break out?
  4. Create realistic tensions. Racism amongst humans is absurd, but when you have aliens as ugly, irrational and temperamental as this, absurd becomes understandable.  If we know the capabilities of their weaponry, wouldn’t we be a little more kind to them, since we know that a) there may be more of them somewhere; b) they could find a way to leave; c) since they can be hostile, and are quite strong they could cause a rebellion; or d) find a way to leave and return to destroy us?  It is for the same reason we don’t intentionally anger our dentist.  Yes some can be sadists, bent on causing pain to us lesser mortals… but they are usually more intelligent than you or me and does us a decent service.  My feeling is that the world would have seen them as a great nuisance and threat, and would come to the consensus of termination/extermination.

District 9 did satisfy me in a couple of aspects.  It took itself lightly (for the most part) and gave the audience a likable protagonist in Wikus Van De Merwe.  Who wouldn’t enjoy a South African version of Martin Short and Steve Carell?  Personally, I would have liked more backstory.  Had the aliens been able to communicate anything to us other then their love for cat food… maybe it would have earned another bear print (but maybe not)?  Are they scientists, soldiers, or explorers?  Do they have a leader? Do they have similar anatomy/physiology as humans or are they just as we see them, armored Jar-Jar Binkses with octopus lips?  District 9 was entertaining but did not make its way into my top 10 alien films, and is quite far down on my list of sci-fi favorites.  I think I’ll re-watch Blade Runner now.

Just how wrong do you think I am?  Drop your comments below!

and remember…..

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