Monday, December 24, 2018

"The Whole West End Is Crammed with Santa Clauses” - Don't Open Till Christmas (1984)

In the spirit of the holidays of your universe and mine, let's examine a film that seriously explores one of the many winter solstice holidays: Edmund Purdom's (and apparently other directors') 1984 slasher film Don't Open Till Christmas.

Many of your universe's esteemed critics take the same attitude toward this film as the film's slasher takes toward the holidays: They selfishly want to ruin them. For example, reviewer Rainey-Dawn believes that the film is "drab, flat trash." Reviewer dagonseve writes dismissively, "I found it difficult to reasonably describe the film's premise on account of how humorous and well stupid, it is." Reviewer gridoon2018 writes, "The production quality / plot "logic" / acting are on a high school play level, and the identity of the masked killer is batantly obvious." (I must point out this reviewer's misuse of the word "blatant," as the identity was not obvious to me.)

Monday, December 17, 2018

"I Think I'll Just Worry About It Tomorrow" - Blood Shack (1971)

It should come as no surprise that we are fans of minimalist horror cinema at Senseless Cinema, and one of the finest examples of minimalism ever committed to film is Ray Dennis Steckler's Blood Shack (1971). This is a film which truly capitalizes on its title, including both blood and a shack, but does away with other distracting elements that make some horror films overly busy and complicated.

Of course, many of your universe's critics, for whatever reasons, do not have a positive view of minimalism. Reviewer BA_Harrison writes, "Not to put too fine a point upon it, it's crap!" Reviewer MartinHafer writes, "his film looks almost like a home movie. The camera work looks almost like it was done with a Super 8mm camera, the narration sounded like it was done in a tunnel and some of the director's family were in it because real actors cost money." Reviewer tocado5585 writes, "The acting is horrible and the setting looks like some makeshift buildings were put up in the middle of nowhere just for the sake of filming this. The murder scenes in this were like watching a Saturday Night Live skit."

The reference to Saturday Night Live is beyond the pale, and tocado5585 should be ashamed. Let us consider in detail Mr. Steckler's Blood Shack and see that it could hardly be further removed from a Saturday Night Live skit...

Monday, December 10, 2018

"An Autopsy Doesn't Do Anything for Their Looks" - Enter the Devil (1972)

On our tour of unheralded classics now moves to Southwest Texas and 1972's Enter the Devil, a chilling film that revolves around a Satanist (or possibly Christian) cult that makes nightly human sacrifices outside a sparsely populated desert town.

Reviews of Enter the Devil from your universe, surprisingly, are not entirely negative. Reviewer coventry writes, "The pacing of 'Enter the Devil' is very slow, with one too many romantic sub plots and some bizarre (and unsuccessful) attempts inserting humor." Reviewer tvm-LiveForever calls the film a "just very average movie." Reviewer oslog says, "the movie is incredibly low budget and it shows through and through." Let us look at the film in more detail. Please read on...

Monday, December 3, 2018

"I Thought Maybe You Were Stashing a Broad" - Twice Dead (1988)

Let's now discuss the classic exploration of doomed love and self-fulfilling prophecies, Twice Dead (1988), the first of many horror films to feature famed actor Todd Bridges.

Your universe's critics have been characteristically obtuse about Twice Dead. For example, reviewer AaronCapenBanner writes, "Film itself is shoddy, with a derivative, unappealing story about a vengeful ghost and a biker gang...and is directed without distinction, and looks amateurish. Dull and uninteresting film is a complete bust, with a lousy and unoriginal ending." Reviewer exocrine writes, "This movie is so horrid it is hard to put into words." Reviewer skutter-2 writes, "As a whole the movie doesn't work and the story and tone are all over the place." However, even a cursory exploration of the themes of Twice Dead will show that it is a top-notch haunted house film. Please read on...