Last year I said that The Blair Witch Project is a great film, and I will always stand by that statement. Sure, it unleashed a plague of cheap found footage garbage, but can you really blame the good thing for all the cheap knockoffs that follow? Speaking of cheap knockoffs, this year we're talking about Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2, a mistake on just about every level. Sure, that sounds a bit unfair, but how else am I supposed to feel about a movie called "Book of Shadows" that doesn't ever feature--or even reference or mention--a spooky and/or witchy book? So the title is a lie, right out the gate? Fan-fuckin-tastic.
The Lodge was one of the movies that I was super excited to watch and it just... somehow passed me by. No local theaters were showing it back in early 2019 and by the time I got the motivation to travel to see it, it had disappeared from all theaters. So this one has been on my to-watch list for a while, and I figured a month dedicated to horror movies would be the perfect time! Which makes it such a shame that I really didn't like it.
The Hellbound Halloween continues! It's a reference to The Hellbound Heart, the story by Mr. Clive Barker that Hellraiser is based on, by the way. This is the last film in the franchise that Barker had a direct hand in, which is a little concerning since it's only the second film. Yup, from here on out the quality steadily decreases--although I remember Hellraiser: Inferno being decent--until we hit the bottom of the barrel with the last two. But that's something we'll touch on later in the month; right now let's end Julia's reign of evil!
Once upon a time, I started a movie blog. The twist of the story is that what I created was not this Chwineka Watches, but a different, earlier blog whose name escapes me at the moment (probably also Chwineka Watches). The reviews were more longform, with posts being around 4000 words and featured several screenshots that had quirky captions because I was obviously inspired by Cracked Dot Com. One of the movies I reviewed at the time was Otto; or, Up with Dead People, a film about a gay zombie, something I'm redoing here as part of Pride Month. Looking back years later on that early review is weird to me now, because I can see how my opinions and thought processes have changed over time. Lemme explain.
Here we finally are, the last arc in the first season of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, AKA When They Cry. Or is it series, since the next series/season has a different subtitle, title song, and end credits song? I'm honestly not sure, just like I'm honestly not sure what's really going on in this series. But not necessarily in a bad way? That's the intent, what with it being a mystery series and all, but damn, it would be nice to get some actual answers. Good thing this is a so-called answer arc! So let's jump into Atonement and finish off the first season. Series. Whatever.
The first four chapters in Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, AKA When They Cry, are referred to as "question arcs." I think it's a great name because I have a whole bunch of questions as to what the fuck is going on. But now we've entered the so-called "answers arcs." I went into the Eye Opening arc completely unprepared for what I was about to see and learn, thinking it was going to follow the pattern I had assumed was there based on the question arcs. Is every question answered? Absolutely not, but I learned enough new things that I realized I've been working on some faulty logic about what's really going on here. This arc is six episodes, so this'll run a little long!
When we last left Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, AKA When They Cry, three of the five main characters were dead. Keiichi murdered Rena and Mion in self-defense, but the drug they injected him with made him rip out his own throat, eventually dying from blood loss. So... what now? Do we continue the story with the survivors, Rika and Satoko? Does detective Oishi take a main role in investigating the strange and possibly supernatural happenings at Hinamizawa? Nope! We're going to pretend the first arc never happened! Let's get weird and homicidal (again) as we look at the second story arc, Cotton Drifting.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe really tries to cover as many genres as it can, all while still sticking with a superhero aesthetic. For example, Captain America: The First Avenger is a war drama, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a political thriller, and Guardians of the Galaxy is a space comedy. So really, it's not that big a surprise that Ant-Man would be a heist movie. And despite some behind the scenes shakeups, this is a comedy that has that that Mr. Edgar Wright humor all over it.
Let's try something a little different. Disney+'s release schedule for new shows is pretty tight, with episodes releasing weekly followed by a making-of documentary and kicking off with a new series the week after. For the time being I'm going to skip the Star Wars shows, but that still means that the majority of these Saturday posts will be tied up with the MCU, not leaving much time for anything else. Well, I'm instituting a new policy for the blog: when I'm in the middle of reviewing the latest MCU show on Saturdays, a completely different show's posts will go up as a bonus on Sundays. Does this mean that the last half of the month will have a post every single day thanks to MCU March? Yup! Will I regret this? Probably! But enough of that, let's talk about child murder.
Time once again to pull from the list of movies I've referenced but haven't reviewed, so let's roll the equivalent of a 297-sided die! Yes, the number has grown from last time (The Phantom) because I cannot help myself. Anyway... #96! Hm, that's the first of a trilogy and it would flow better if I did all three movies next week, so let's roll again. #87! And that is... oh. Oh my. This is going to be a weird one.