In this article, you will see three horror movies review 2006 movies. However, you will find a lot of information regarding these three movies, Norman’s room, Slither, and The Vampire version
Short Film Review Norman’s Room
There’s not a whole lot you can write in a review of a one minute short. Normally I wouldn’t even try to bring attention to it. But F. Javier Gutierrez, a filmmaker from Spain, has a special talent – he can bring a very bizarre story to life in such a way that seems almost surreal. Normans Room is a psychedelic, almost hypnotic glance into Alfred Hitchcock’s Norman Bates, as he skulks about in his room, listening to the mentally induced babble of his literally psycho alter-ego, his mother.
This short is filmed in black and white, as was the original motion picture Psycho. The story opens, and everything is upside down. As it is, we are looking through the eyes of poor ol Norman, getting an idea of what it might have been like to BE him. Lost – not only in his own mind – but in this tragic house he has been born into. Almost as if he were laying upside down on a top bunk, with his head draped over the side, the point of view slowly turns upright, perhaps as Norman gets to his feet. On the other hand, this could also imply the upside-down state of his mind regarding reality. The entire short is filmed in one shot – which slowly begins to focus on the painting across the room. Slowly he approaches it, as in the background, a sound clip is playing – its Norman pretending to be his mother – and it sort of hovers throughout the movie as an insight into his psychotic, mental state of complete illusion.
An ever zooming shot gets closer and closer to the painting by the second, lulling the viewer into a minor trance. When the picture is fully zoomed, we see the artwork on the wall removed, only to reveal a hole busted through the plaster. If you remember Psycho, youll recall just how much Norman just loved them. This hole is peering into a bathroom. Inside the bathroom is a murder scene, most likely the infamous shower scene we all remember so well. The view is restricted, and there is blood on the floor. A cadaver’s arm is outstretched, reaching for the curtain it had gripped in its last moments of life.
Soon Norman closes his eyes to a mental screech in his head, and the short is finished. Most of the one-minute shorts I have seen are more mood pieces than anything else. This was one of the better that I have seen thus far. It actually takes some seconds to put together all the elements and conclude what the short is implying. But the chemistry of it all as its computed by your mind is on a level that shares your senses, imagination, and memory in perfect balance. Like a canvas splattered with various indistinct shapes and colors, what is not obvious becomes dreamlike, and as an art-critic might see beauty and art in such bits of abstractness, I walked away from Normans Room with the same impression.
Final analysis: This is a one minute piece of horror art, more than it a short story. F. Javier Gutierrez has a knack for taking a story and portraying it on the screen like a psychedelic, reality obscured bad dream. This is a great piece of work that should be compiled in a collection of quality horror, like Fangorias Blood Drive series. His work transcends the typical foreign-film weirdness and comes across crystal clear. Currently, Gutierrez is working on his first Spanish feature film Mute, which is in development under Vaca Films. His previous work, Brasil, is another short (about 20 minutes), that has won some notoriety around the international festival circuit – more recently winning Best Editing at Screamfest 2005 (an award typically given to feature films). Look for a review on Brasil in the coming days. Anyone further interested can click over to his websitewhere there is plenty of other detailed info on his past and future works.
Film Review Slither
As I sat on the bus headed for the screening of the film I couldn’t help but wonder if James Gunn could really deliver a balls-out original horror film. He has had a hard time getting any respect from the horror community. His idea of fast zombies in the Dawn remake has been a sore spot for fans since day one and then he followed it up with Scooby Doo. Not a couple of things that really earned him much respect for the majority of some horror fans.
The previews and promos for Slither have looked great and having heard the cast and crew sing its praises (like they would do anything but) my interest was now peaked even more. Time to put up or shut up and show the film to 300 horror geeks and see what happens.
James Gunn and members of the cast are in attendance as was Lloyd Kaufman, James’s old boss. So you’ve got 300 skeptical horror geeks, the cast of your film and your old boss, a tough audience to impress.
Lets cut to the chase, shall we? SLITHER is flat out the best horror films I have seen since Shaun of the Dead. There, take that.
Uncompromising, hilarious and gross SLITHER goes to a place that we really don’t see anymore, funny creative horror. I like the way Gunn thinks, he thinks like a horror fan. He is not afraid to go for the throat when needed and he is equally unafraid to lay back and let a strong performance make a statement on its own.
Spoilers lie ahead so if you want to remain in the dark about facts of the film, stop now.
SLITHER tells the tale of a small town that is overtaken by a horde of space slugs. That’s really all there is to it. A meteor crashes; a sluggy thing creeps out and hides in the woods until stumble upon by one Michael Rooker who turns in one of his best performances in years. What follows is a series of events involving these slugs and the hosts which house them. The town sheriff, wonderfully portrayed by Nathan Fillion of Serenity fame, chases these things around all the while quipping off one-liners that are nothing short of brilliant. Very witty, sharp-tongued humor that is edgy yet wonderfully simplistic at its core. It really is a beauty to behold.
Also, I just have to mention the wonderful visual effects in the film. Although CGI is used there is a wonderful representation of good old fashioned physical effects in SLITHER. The makeup wore by Michael Rooker for the better part of the film is one of the best monster makeups in years. This film is destined to become an instant classic; they’ll hold reunion conventions for this one in 15 years, trust me.
As I was writing this look at the film the official assets for the film arrived in my inbox so here is what Universal has sent out to promote the film. This is the films official synopsis:
Slither is an edgy blend of heart-stopping terror, wry humor and surprising humanity from genre-bending screenwriter James Gunn, whose Dawn of the Dead became one of 2004’s most surprising hits.
The sleepy town of Wheelsy could be any small town in America–somewhat quaint and gentle, peopled with friendly folks who mind their own business. But just beneath the surface charm, something unnamed and evil has arrived…and is growing. No one seems to notice as telephone poles become clogged with missing pet flyers, or when one of the town’s richest citizens, Grant Grant (Michael Rooker), begins to act strangely. But when farmers’ livestock turn up horribly mutilated and a young woman goes missing, Sheriff Bill Pardy (Nathan Fillion) and his team, aided by Grant’s wife Starla (Elizabeth Banks), uncover the dark force laying siege to their town…and come face-to-face with an older-than-time organism intent on absorbing and devouring all life on Earth.
Slither is the feature film directing debut of screenwriter James Gunn (the recent hit re-envisioning of Dawn of the Dead) and stars Nathan Fillion, Elizabeth Banks, Gregg Henry, and Michael Rooker. It is also written by Gunn. Slither–a Universal Pictures and Gold Circle Films presentation of a Strike Entertainment Production–is produced by Paul Brooks and Eric Newman.
The films official site is just chock full of great stuff. Click here to go there now.
Universal also sent over a bunch of pics, please enjoy them below.
Dvd Review Darkness The Vampire Version
In 1993, we saw independent filmmaker, Leif Jonker release his film, Darkness. Now, Jonker not only directed this film, but he also wrote, produced, had a hand in the original music, edited the film, did special makeup effects and did sound as well! The film cast is, as far as I can tell, complete unknowns, but includes; Gary Miller (Tobe), Michael Gisick (Greg), Randall Aviks (Liven), Cena Donham (Kelly), Steve Brown (Jodie), Lisa Franz (Dianne), Bill Hooper (Glenn), Christopher Owen Michael (Steve) and Jake Euker (John).
Tobe (Miller) either works at or just happens to be in a convenience store when John (Euker) comes storming into the store screaming that everyone must leave, that ‘He’ is coming. A female cop attempts to calm John down, but he grabs her gun and announces that it’s too late…..we’re already dead and proceeds to blow his brains out. As the cop and customers and workers stand in shock, John suddenly jumps up, grabs the cop and tells her it’s bleeding time and pumps a few shots into her guts and then begins munching on her body. It isn’t long before Tobe is the sole survivor and sets out to the trailer park where his family lives, only to find them dead….he carries his Mom and sister into his car and as he drives down the road, both suddenly come to, which leaves Tobe a complete mess, screaming and crying as he escapes his dead/murderous family. Tobe realizes that his town has been ravaged by Levin (Aviks) a vampire of sorts who plans to destroy the town and its inhabitants along with his minions. Tobe joins forces with some teens who have just returned from a rock concert in an effort to destroy the evil that has taken over their town.
Darkness: The Vampire Version was shot on Super 8 and is presented here in anamorphic widescreen (1.78:1) and has quite a bit of grain, but that is to be expected with what it was filmed on. Daytime scenes don’t look bad, but nighttime scenes suffer and look very dark, almost to the point of guessing what might be happening at times. Another minor complaint might be that at times, the gallons of blood being spilled look quite pink! Audio options are in English only (Dolby Digital 2.0) with no subtitles being offered at all. Bonus features are abundant and include:
- Commentary Tracks
- Track 2/Cast & Crew–Gary Miller, Mike Gisick, Cena Donham, Lisa Franz, Jake Euker, Veronica Dennen, Randall Aviks, Cara Miller and Leif Jonker
- Track 3/Music & FX Track–Michael Curtis, Leif Jonker and Gary Miller
- Track 4/Director Track–Leif Jonker
- Vampire Boot Camp–Documentary With Cast & Crew Interviews (Approximately 30 Minutes)
- Apostasy–Live Performance Music Video For ‘World of Sin’ (Approximately 4 Minutes)
- Trailers–Two Darkness Trailers and Two 60-Second Promotional Teaser Trailers For the Darkness Trilogy (Approximately 10 Minutes)
- Behind the Scenes–Climactic Meltdown SPFX–Video Footage of the Filming of Four Exploding Heads For the Meltdown (Approximately 22 Minutes)
- Extended Meltdown–From the First Rough-Cut Assembly (Approximately 5Minutes)
- Remastering Demo–(Approximately 2 Minutes)
- Photo Gallery–With Original End Credit Song ‘Darkness’ By Knight (Approximately 4 Minutes)
- Darkness The 86-minute original release version, unaltered and unedited, sourced directly from the 1 video master
- Photo Archive Comprehensive 50-minute gallery of over 1000 images documenting the production and life of the film, all accompanied by excerpts of the original music score for Darkness
- Highlights from film festival screenings of Darkness
- A brief tour of the production studio
- Deths Oogly Hed Television interview segment with director Leif Jonker
- Alternate/deleted scenes
- Alternate trailers
Alternate audio track available over the entire BONUS MATERIALS on both discs featuring alternate music and sound as well as commentary from Leif Jonker and others
Let’s face it, you usually don’t go into a film like this for the stellar acting, great story or huge budget…..you go into a film like this for the blood, guts, and gore! Darkness: The Vampire Version is low on plot and acting abilities, but high on the blood meter. From the opening scene until the end of the film, the blood flows quite freely and if the blood isn’t flowing, the shortcomings of the acting and plot are glaringly apparent! Not to worry, though, you have few minutes in this film where someone isn’t being ripped to shred, squirting blood all over the place or being shown up close in a convulsing death scene. The ‘meltdown’ scene is probably a gore-lover’s dream come true and adds a couple of jaw-dropping moments. Kind of a neat idea for a film, though, a sort of cross between a vampire and a zombie film, it’s just a shame the story wasn’t a big stronger. From what I understand, this is a re-release of the film and had until this time, only been available on DVD in Germany and Japan and from the sequences shown before the film begins, this edition appears to be a vast improvement over the earlier two releases. Barrel Entertainment, the fine crew that gave us Special Editions of both Nekromantik films, along with Roger Watkin’s Last House on Dead End Street, have really outdone themselves with this DVD release. Certainly not to be recommended to fans of horror films with a solid story to back up the effects, but if you’re a fan who enjoys a very ‘moist’ and bloody film, then I’d certainly not hesitate in recommending this film.
Buy Darkness: The Vampire Version on DVD at Amazon.com