Saturday, May 22, 2021

Review: Zack Snyder's Army of the Dead

 



Review: Army of the Dead (2021)

By William Pattison

For Horror Bob’s Blog

 

What do you get when you team up Quentin Tarantino, James Cameron, and John Carpenter to make a zombie movie? Well, the closest thing you will ever get is Zack Snyder’s truly epic zombiefest Army of The Dead.

               Army of the Dead tells the story of a group of mercenaries who are sent into Las Vegas, which has been turned into a zombie containment zone after a zombie outbreak. The reason these eight people are sent into zombie central is that a billionaire Japanese businessman named Bly Tanaka, played by Hiroyuki Sanada (Mortal Combat).

               Tanaka wants the group to travel through the zombie-infested waste of Las Vegas to get into a vault in one of the casinos that holds pallets of stacked hundred dollar bills. The only problem, besides the city full of man-eating zombies was that the government was going to blow the city up with a tactical nuclear missile in three days.

               With the help of a blond-haired female coyote named Lilly the crew which features Dave Bautista (Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers Infinity War, Avengers Endgame) as Scott Ward, Ella Purnell as Scott’s daughter Kate Ward, Omari Hardwick as Vanderohe, Theo Rossi as Burt Cummings, Matthias Schweighöfer as safecracker Dieter, Garret Dillahunt as Martin, and of course Tig Notaro (Star Trek Discovery) as the snarky ace chopper pilot Marianne Peters take on this near-impossible heist.

               All I can say is this film is mind-blowing, but what can you expect from the brilliant director that brought us such mind-blowing films as Watchmen, Sin City, 300, Sucker Punch, Man of Steel, Superman Versus Batman: Dawn of Justice, and of course Justice League The Snyder Cut. I’ve seen so many incredible classic zombie films over the years, like Dawn of the Dead, Day of the Dead, and Zombieland just to name a few and I see this film joining the list of classics.

               Snyder is a master of shooting gory violence and turning it into art. The film is full of incredible shots of zombies doing what zombies do and badass characters doing what they do. On top of that this film has a music track that will be a pleasure to get a copy of when or if it comes out. This film was a joy for me to watch, much like the Korean zombie film Peninsula was.

               I know a lot of people on social media have been whining about how long this film was, it was two and a half hours long. For me, that is a treat because it means the filmmaker is giving your money’s worth. Shit people, he gives us five different types of zombies including the intelligent overlord zombies. He also gives us a zombie tiger named Valentine and a zombie horse. Frankly, stop bitching bitches! You should be thanking Zack Snyder and praising him. If you haven’t seen this film yet I only got this to say… Either got to NetFlix or go to your local theatre and SEE THE FUCKING FILM. It is awesome! I can not recommend it more…

Keep on Creepin’, Horror Bob’s Blog…


Sunday, December 6, 2020

Review: Castle Freak 2020



Review: Castle Freak 2020

By William Pattison

For Horror Bob’s Blog

 

Ok, people, this time I’m going to be reviewing the “reimagining” of the Stuart Gordon classic horror film, Castle Freak by filmmaker Tate Steinsiek and screenwriter Kathy Charles through Fangoria Films. You’ll see the significance of this later in the review…

    This reimagined version of Castle Freak tells the story of Rebecca Whateley and her dysfunctional boyfriend John. At the beginning of the film, we see how John because he is a nasty male cause an accident that takes Rebecca’s vision. Then the story jumps to a time later and we see Rebecca and John in a car driving in the Albanian countryside. It seems that Rebecca’s absentee mother has died and left Rebecca a castle. Of course, she also left her a little bonus that is creeping around in the walls, the Castle Freak. Now, Rebecca, John, and a bunch of her friends that we meet at the beginning of the film must solve Rebecca’s family mystery before her hidden guest rips its way through her friends to get to her.

    Now, people, I have to say I have a love/hate relationship with remakes / “reimaginings”. Some have surprised me, some have made me want to punch the wall and scream with rage. Guess which this is?

     Seriously, other than for a chance for Charles Band to sell off the right to his fan favorites to get financing to make a few more Full Moon films, much like Lloyd Kauffman did with Toxic Avenger, there is no reason to remake Castle Freak. Stuart Gordon’s original still stands the test of time and is still one of the three films he has done I consider a classic.

     But, of course, in this world of SJWs and toxic feminism, no classic is safe, especially if it has anything to do with H.P. Lovecraft. If you don’t know, reader, the original Castle Freak was inspired by the H.P. Lovecraft short story The Outsider (not to be mistaken for the Stephen King novel of the same name.) Though in fact Stuart Gordon didn’t really add any Lovecraftian references in his film. Unfortunately, in this “reimagined” version Kathy Charles has jammed this film with references to Lovecraft that the main storyline is drowned and neutered. This film is so badly written that suddenly cultists who worship The Elder Gods show up out of the ether. And of course, they had to change the sex of the Castle Freak and change it’s back story completely because a tortured Frankenstein-like character that the audience can pity is just stupid. Right Kathy Charles? Nope, let it be the vanguard of the coming of The Ancient Ones. Shit, why not even bring in a cameo of Herbert West (spoiler) to make this turd complete.

     Honestly, people, Stuart Gordon is rolling in his grave and it is thanks to that hive of SJW and feminist bias Fangoria. These assholes greenlit this crapfest. I could see Rebekah McKendry pushing the heads of Fangoria to back this. It has the McKendry shit stain on it. I still can’t believe they rehired her after she and Christopher Alexander killed Fangoria before. Are these idiots or not!

     Anyway, in conclusion, don’t waste your time with this filth. Grab your copy of Castle Freak or find it streaming and watch the Stuart Gordon masterpiece, the one, and only Castle Freak.

Keep on Creepin’, Horror Bob’s Blog


 

Sunday, November 8, 2020

Review: Detective K: The Secret of the Living Dead




Review: Detective K: The Secret of the Living Dead

By William Pattison

For Horror Bob’s Blog

 

Detective K is back, not to be mistaken for the big budgeted blockbuster Korean detective Detective D. Detective K is a far lower budget version of D and a lot more comical. Along with his loyal associate, Seo pil, K goes on adventures and solves mysteries in ancient Korea. In this installment in the series K must solve a mystery involving vampires. People are dying. They are being turned into vampires and immediately destroyed. While investigating K and his associate meet a mysterious woman who can’t remember her past and is more than she seems. Soon K finds himself in the middle of a situation dealing with treason against the crown and revenge from beyond the grave.

I have to say I loved this film. Yes, it’s not a huge budget spectacular like the films of my favorite Korean detective Detective D. But this film had a really well done storyline and interesting characters. It also had a lot of slapstick comedy which made up for the epic feel of the Detective D films.

Actor Myung-Min Kim is excellent as K. I can present himself as intelligent in one scene then go completely tongue in cheek in another without batting an eye. Also, Dal-su Oh, who everyone remembers from the film Old Boy is comedic genius as K’s loyal associate Seo pil. And, of course, Ji-Won Kim is wonderful as the mystery lady.

One thing I really enjoyed was that this film didn’t over do the vampires. The vampires rarely show their teeth and there is next to no neck biting. There is a lot of vampire destruction and that is handled very well. The FX in this film look top notch but don’t take over the show. The fighting is done very well, so for those looking for that will not be disappointed. Unfortunately, this film does not come in an American dub so you will have to deal with subtitles.

All in all, I have to say that this film was really enjoyable. If you are looking for scare you will be disappointed, but for action, comedy, and just plain thrills this film delivers. I can highly recommend Detective K: The Sectert of the Living Dead. Enjoy….

Keep on Creepin’, Horror Bob’s Blog


 

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Book Review: The Witch and the Prince By Christopher Highland



Book Review: The Witch and the Prince By Christopher Highland

Reviewed by William Pattison

For Horror Bob’s Blog

 

Ok. So, this review is actually meaningless as a review for the simple fact that I’m the publisher of said book and thus cannot actually review it. But the author, Christopher Highland, who is also my apprentice, insisted I review it and threatened to hold his breath until I agreed…and I don’t want to see a red-faced Harry Potter look-a-like pass out. That is the thing of nightmares. Thus, onward I go…I’ve only done one other book review, The Scarlet Gospels, so hopefully this turns out ok. Damnit, Christopher, I’m a movie reviewer, not a literary expert!!! Wish me luck...

The Witch and the Prince tells the story of Michael. Michael is one of those young people who is horribly ignored by those around him. Don’t get me wrong he does have friends, but they are more just people he hangs with who constantly forget to make him aware when they are heading out of the school during lunch hour. At home Michael has to pretty much take care of himself, which usually means making a meal out of the scraps in the refrigerator. His parents are almost never home and when they are there they are always fighting. As for his sister, she is usually gone as well and when she is at home she is in her own shallow world…

But then something happens to change Michael’s world, he knocks a baseball through the window of the one house people avoid in his neighborhood. It is an old supposedly deserted house. Yet, Michael fights off his fear and goes in to get his baseball. Once inside he finds that it is far from empty as he had assumed. Down the main staircase strides an old and regal woman who introduces herself as Rose. Rose decides that Michael must do a bunch of chores for her in trade for the broken window. After that, she will return his ball to him. Michael agrees, but he doesn’t realize all that he’s about to experience because Rose is in fact an ancient witch from the Fay realm and she has much more in store for Michael than mere helping her to cook and clean…Nope, Michael is about to take a journey between realms that will change the path of his life.

Ok, so there is a short synopsis with as few spoilers as I can give. Now onto the review…

This is definitely a Cinderella story right down to the Ball, but in this case, it is the Prom. Michael’s story and his world is the center of this story. In fact, there are only a few scenes that actually take place in the Fay realm, so don’t expect this to be a Narnia, NeverEnding Story, or even Pan’s Labyrinth, though that story is very main character-centered. If I was to compare this story to another I would say more Radio Flyer or more so would be Isabelle Holland’s The Man Without a Face. Why I say more The Man Without a Face is because in that book the disfigured ex-teacher becomes the main character’s mentor and changes the kid’s life, like what happens with Michael and Rose. With Radio Flyer there are a lot of fantasy elements but the main story is told with brutal honesty, which is something I do see in Mr. Highland’s story. Still, the fantasy aspects are there but Mr. Highland uses them as a counterpoint to events that happen in Michael’s world. For instance, there is a scene where Michael goes to Thanksgiving dinner at his grandparent’s house. Mr. Highland shows how this family event comes off forced and full of false fellowship. Whereas, he counters this with Michael going to a celebration dinner with Rose in a cabin in the Fay realm with elves, goblins, fairies, and a giant. In this scene, the fellowship is honest and real and Michael is treated with much more regard and respect. Rose even asks him to make a toast, something that would never happen with his family.

This book definitely feels like a book from another age, a simpler more human age. This is mostly due to the fact that Christopher Highland is in love with the English language. This book is full of flowing visuals and poetic flare that you don’t see in this time of rapid pacing, melodrama, and music video clip visuals. This book was written by a person who cultured himself in classic literature rather than modern media with its TV and video style of storytelling. Also, Mr. Highland decided to write this story in present tense rather than past tense. For myself, I am more used to present tense being used for scripts, which I consider blueprints of films and plays rather than books. It took me a few chapters to get past this but I figured I should mention this for those who might be tense sensitive.

So, in the end, if you are a person who loves books with a literary flair, strong characterization, that uses both fantasy and the real world elements to deal with real-life issues. If this sounds good to you then The Witch and the Prince is the book for you…

Keep on Creepin’, Horror Bob’s Blog


 

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Penny Dreadful: City of Angels Review




Penny Dreadful: City of Angels Review

By William Pattison

For Horror Bob’s Blog

Penny Dreadful: City of Angels takes place in 1938 Los Angeles. It is a time and place deeply infused with social and political tension. When a grisly murder shocks the city, Detective Tiago Vega, the first Mexican police detective in the LA police force, and his partner Lewis Michener become embroiled in an epic story that reflects the rich history of Los Angeles: from the building of the city's first freeways and its deep traditions of Mexican-American folklore, to the dangerous espionage actions of the Third Reich and the rise of radio evangelism. Before long, Tiago and his family are grappling with powerful forces that threaten to tear them apart. Meanwhile, a supernatural force who can shapeshift and break into separate pieces manipulate events around the city and push things into conflict and death, while its opposite looks on and refuses to take action to stop it.
 I thought this series was ok, only ok. They kind of went the way of the film China Town this time but missing the aspects that made that film so stunning. I would have enjoyed it more if they had handled the show like the first Penny Dreadful. You know, maybe have Sam Spade as a detective in it and a secret organization that is trying to stop the supernatural evil that is manipulating events. The series does have secret organizations in it but these are Jewish people trying to stop the secret Nazi organization that is trying to take over the government of LA. Still, It has been an interesting story about 1930s Los Angeles and the political and racial tensions of those times reflecting on current issues we are dealing with today. But, that is its biggest issue with me. I thought it was way too on the nose. People want their horror series to be entertaining and a way to get away from the real world. They don't want a dab of supernatural with a face load of politics and WOKE overtones.
I'll wait and see what season 2 brings. It had better not be more of the same. If they up the horror elements more I'll be happy. If not I'll have to consider if this series is worth my time. It really hasn't grabbed me like the earlier one did. I, and I expect most of the audience, wanted a pulp fiction story with a lot of horror in it. John Logan is a great writer but he needs to know his audience better. I still will recommend this series with the caveat that this is no Penny Dreadful.

Keep on Creepin', Horror Bob's Blog

Monday, May 18, 2020

Unearthed Tombs: An Analysis of Poltergeist, and Poltergeist II



Unearthed Tombs:
An Analysis of Poltergeist and Poletergeist II
 By
 Christopher Highland
For Horror Bob's Blog

    I have said that I don’t buy what was explained in Poltergeist, but there are reasons for that. There are puzzle pieces that are either not seen, or intentionally left out. Whether these pieces I will bring up have been noticed by those involved in the films, or anyone else, I know not. But, these are films that do what a select few of horror films of the 1980s, or any other time, manage to do. They scare.  
     They cut across all manners of taste, perceptions, thresholds, and do more than what most horror films do, which is merely entertain. Not only do they scare, but they cut across various contexts as to why they scare.  
    These films have depths that most horror films do not. They are horror films with clues and subtleties that give them layers and angles that most would not imagine, no matter how much one would go over them with a fine-toothed comb. A distinction among mediocrity, those who worked on such a film should be honored if a horror film falls into this category, whether such depth is known to the crew or not.
   I have mentioned that there are specific reasons why these two films scare, terrify, or at the very least, fill one with trepidation. I will explain not only that, but how and why events in these films happen the way they do, and also the way they could.  I will also explain the real motive for the villain, which is hinted at, but never rightfully explained.
   These are films I have put out of my mind for decades due to the level of fear they brought me.  After experience has let me see them with new eyes, tumblers and gears within my mind suddenly clicked into place, and I noticed what others are not aware of.  There is much buried treasure to be had, if one knows where, and how, to look.  After all, these films have many hearts.
   One aspect of these films I will discuss throughout will be metaphysics, which is a paramount factor in key plot points, and why they happen the way they do.  It even ties in to the villain’s motive.  Now, in order for all this to be understood, it’s important to re-examine certain scenes. Firstly, the construction of the pool wakes up the spirits buried underneath, causing problems with tv’s within the house and neighbors. This also allows for the spirits to enact their playful nature by moving members of the family along the floor, and moving the chairs. Keep in mind at this point that they are not under any influence or control of “The Beast”, for he had not woken up yet.
   When the villain does wake up, he takes control by splitting his power three-ways. First, with the animation and manipulation of the tree; attempted eating or swallowing alive of Robbie by the tree, second with the kidnapping of Carol Anne, and third, with the tornado.  All this caused the beast to expend a great amount of energy, leaving him exhausted and the other spirits in control for the most part, yet now under his influence.   
  The villain is now forced to appear to Carol Anne as a child, at least for the time being, keeping her with him until his strength can fully return.
  Remember it was the wish of the spirits to cross over, which was explained.  It was not explained what the ultimate goal of “The Beast”, although it was alluded to and left up to the imagination.  Given how much energy he uses within the course of the film is quite telling.
   The spirits moving objects around in the bedroom while under the influence of the villain does cost him some energy, but not too much.  It’s the same as putting a car in cruise control, or resting one’s foot on the gas pedal.
   When the spirits are seen walking down the stairs, this also costs him energy. Given there is no malevolence of any kind on the part of the spirits or “The Beast”, it is at the time where he is at his weakest, allowing himself to be seen on film.
   Also, when Marty hallucinates in the bathroom, this takes some energy to occur, although the villain does not have that much at this point. He has just enough to pull this off. This scene would have gone differently if he had more energy.   Furthermore, it is the general consensus that “The Beast” bit Marty in the film, and not one of the other spirits. This gives further depth to the bathroom scene. There is enough energy to spare for Marty to be lifted up into the air, which is detailed in a deleted scene, and bit, but not enough to take over his body and make him tear into himself for real; not enough for the complexity needed to take over his mind fully: just enough to hallucinate it.
   Now, when Tangina comes into the picture, this causes a shift in “The Beast”’s power. Her presence causes it to be swept aside and held at bay, scaled down. This allows her to go into Carol Anne's bedroom with no danger abounding. Seeing the situation for what it is, and what is needed, the rescue is able to occur, although “The Beast” is able to slip his bonds and frighten the father, causing him to let go of the rope.
   When the spirits leave the house and pass into the dimensional vortex, leaving the control of “The Beast”, his power bounces back from being restrained, being able to fool Tangina. Over the course of a day, his power  has built up to a point where he can easily attempt a second kidnapping involving Carol Anne and Robbie, along with warping reality in the hallway by making it appear longer, appearing in front of the bedroom door as a demonic sentinel, and making coffins and bodies rise up from the ground.
   When the house is finally sucked into the dimensional vortex at the end of the finale of the film, it is quite telling. It is telling that even within the finale there is a build-up to his power. He could not have sucked in the house when he wanted to; say, at the start of the finale when the mother is lifted onto the ceiling. It built up during the hallway, when it is perceived to be longer. It built up further for the second attempted kidnapping, and “The Beast” appearing as a sentinel in front of the bedroom door. 
   It built up further when the corpses and coffins rose from the ground. It came to a crescendo with the house being sucked into the dimensional vortex.  If he had the amount of power he wanted, when he wanted it, he could have easily kidnapped Robbie and Carol Anne, and most likely the mother. He could have waited for the father and Dana to come back, and had them sucked into the vortex, along with the house.
   Now, what I have said so far may be thought of as enough to clash with what was explained in the film. But, not quite. It was never explained that the excavation of the pool was what woke up the spirits in the first place. It was never explained to the paranormal investigators, or Tangina, that this was the case, nor were they aware that the family’s house was brand new. It was also never explained to them that the spirits’ bodies were still buried on the house’s property.   
   The only one who would know or suspect would be Tangina, but as much as says in the film, there’s also much in what she does not say.
   The amount of energy “The Beast” generates throughout the film is also telling. Within the context of the film, and although it is the wish of the spirits, and not the villain, to cross over, this alone suggests his motive , his ultimate objective, is on a grand scale.  For no one deals with energy on that grand a scale unless their goal is on an equally grand scale, or much grander scale, which the use of energy in the film is highly suggestive of.
                                                  ***
   There is a theme that runs concurrent throughout the film. It is much more evident in the second film than the first film. All the ways this theme manifests itself is not always obvious to the audience, and may not be obvious to the films’ crew, but as I have said before, it does exist therein.  It is a theme that cuts across, and cuts to the quick. It works consciously, and subliminally.  Timeless, effective, it can be used in all sorts of ways. It is the theme of being buried alive.
   First, it has come to my attention that there are faces which can be seen within the tree when Robbie is climbing it if one looks closely.  Faces of spirits buried within said tree, one might say.
  Speaking of the tree, it comes alive and either tries to eat, or swallow Robbie into its trunk. This is not very far away at all when it comes to being buried alive. Rather, almost the same thing. Also, the tree’s limbs grab hold of Robbie and try to drag him into the ground. Of course, the other evidence of the theme within the film may not be quite as obvious.
   Another part of the film that falls into this theme is the bathroom scene, where Marty hallucinates. Originally, I didn’t think it had anything to with the theme, but after thinking about it from every which way that I can, I have found that it does. The skeletal features of the face when delved into, combined with the clawing action of the hands, hints of the spirits’ bodies trying to claw their way out of their graves. It also strongly hints that there is something buried within the property. This scene also foreshadows the finale with the coffins and bodies rising up from the ground.  
   Naturally, of course, the pool scene, along with the coffin rising from the ground, is the most obvious evidence for the theme existing within the film. Even though “The Beast” at this point is causing the coffins and bodies to rise, and though the construction of the pool woke them up in the first place, their rising up is highly suggestive of some life stirring within their bones. 
   Also, the difficulty the mother has in trying to escape the makeshift pool is highly suggestive of being buried alive as she fights her way past the bodies and claws her way out as her hands keep slipping in the mud.
                                               ***
   Poltergeist II, on the other hand, is a whole other beast altogether.   Some have said that it copies many things from the original film, and in some ways it does, but as a sequel, what it does achieve well is that it is scarier than the first film. Of course, there are not merely aesthetic reasons for that, but also scientific. The time between the continuity of the two films has nothing to do with this, however. At the end of the first film, the villain has grown in power. He has managed to take hold of his flock again and absorb them into himself, making him even stronger.
   This has allowed for him to follow his prey from California to Arizona. But, as much power as he has now, it is not enough for him to walk in and take Carol Anne when he wants to.  Her Grandmother’s existence forms a psychic barrier of protection, but once she dies, that barrier is gone, and the villain, now known as Rev. Henry Kane, manages to slip the power of his flock into the house.
   Coming in through her toy phone, the spirits are now Kane’s right hand, infesting the house the family now lives in. Though, he cannot come inside yet.  It is at this point when the family tries to leave, the Indian, “Taylor”, shows up.  But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Before this happens, Kane shows up in human form at the local outdoor mall, appearing only to the family and no one else.  Making sure only the family sees him shows his growth in power.
   When the family returns after trying to leave, the spirits are nowhere to be found, but that is only a short-lived respite. Kane show up again, at the family’s home, and does his best to convince them to let him inside. All the while, the mother has visions of Kane, due to his close proximity. His powers have grown which allow for him to nearly mesmerize the father to let him in, but Carol Anne breaks Kane’s concentration. For all his power at this point, he is still at his weakest when he appears human.
   Since he cannot merely walk in and take Carol Anne, he does his best to wear the family down psychologically. The mother has a dream that turns into a nightmare that shows her walking in the backyard and corpses reach up from the ground and pull her in with them.  In a deleted scene, and which is also featured in the novelization, Carol Anne has a dream/nightmare where Kane appears to her and reaches into his chest and pulls out his heart.
   Rev. Henry Kane transcending the dreamscape on two occasions to give two characters nightmares, and himself appearing in one of them, is further evidence of his growth in power.
   He then further attacks by influencing his flock to attack Robbie by making his braces come alive in the bathroom and cocoon him on the ceiling, acting as a diversion the same way the tree attacking in the first film was also a diversion. Taylor guarded Carol Anne this time, preventing Kane from taking her, showing that he was for all his power, he was not all-powerful. 
   I must address another deleted scene that occurs when Tangina shows up again to help. This is when the father, and Taylor, go off in the Arizona desert, and Taylor gives him the smoke spirit to help him. 
Kane shows up in human form while they are gone and confronts the mother and Tangina, whom he recognizes. This is another instance showing his limitations when he appears human. 
   Kane finally manages to gain access to the house in the cleverest way. Taking advantage of Steven’s, the father’s, drinking as he does one night outside, Kane takes possession of the worm inside the tequila bottle from which Steven drinks.  After swallowing the worm, Kane proceeds to possess Steven’s body and thus enter the house.
   Confronting the mother, arguing, and attempting to rape her, she tells him desperately that she loves him. Unable to stand a genuine, pure sign of love, Kane is disgusted.  It breaks his concentration and hold over Steven’s body and is forcibly expelled. It oozes under the bed, forming a demonic amoeba, and quickly grows into a skeletal worm creature.
   Being able to take possession of living people, and non-living things such as the worm in the tequila bottle, not only shows Kane’s growth in power, but clever resourcefulness, ingenuity, as well as desperation.
   After gaining access to the house, it attacks Steven, but now in the form of a Medusa-like creature, grabbing him by the neck with claw-like appendages. It is here that the smoke spirit comes out of Steven’s mouth and acts as the equivalent of mace sprayed in the face to Kane. Another instance of Kane not being all-powerful. 
   The family escapes the house and decides to fight Kane on his home turf, going back to where their old house disappeared from.  Going down into the caves underneath the property, and finding the skeletons of Kane’s flock, and of Kane himself, the mother and Carol Anne are easily kidnapped by Kane and taken to the other side; the dimension he currently inhabits. 
   The ease and swiftness in which he kidnaps them is further proof of his growth in power. But, the ultimate proof is when the father and son go after them. After appearing as the medusa-like creature
again in the dimensional void, it is here that the faces of the spirits of Kane’s flock can be seen in the creature’s abdomen. These spirits that have been absorbed by Kane are proof positive not only of his growth in power, but also his lust for ever-increasing power.
   It is also proof as to why Kane was after Carol Anne in the first place.
   His attempted possession and absorption of Carol Anne into his abdomen is proof that with his level of power that that moment, if he achieved this act, his level of power would have been tipped over the edge. It is an edge from which his power would have soared to unimaginable levels. If he did achieve this possession, he would have been able to transcend many barriers that make up the physical world and spiritual world, such as time, space, and many dimensions. 
   His lust for power would have drawn him to seek out key figures in various points in time, unique beings throughout the universe, and beings of matter or anti-matter in dimensions. Seeking beings of high intelligence and psychic perception would cause his power to grow exponentially. It would also cause him to remake whatever world, dimension, or time, in his own image, for it would be irresistible to him.
     It is the only path he could have been on. The levels and type of power he used, and the growth of power caused by possessing his flock. From the first moment of the kidnapping in the first film to the final attempted possession in the second film, it is this grand jump in power in which he initially covets.
                                             ***
   I have mentioned before the buried alive theme exists within the first film. It is more obvious in the second film, and in some instances, maybe even less obvious for some. The skeletons found at the beginning and at the end of the film, in the cave, ties in with the flashback vision the mother has of Kane leading his flock into the underground cave, sealing it up, and not letting them leave. Also the nightmare the mother has where she is pulled into the ground by corpses.
   When Robbie is attacked in the bathroom and his braces come alive and cocoon him on the ceiling is another example.The Kane worm possession infecting Steven does not appear to fall into this theme, but looking at it from a rather roundabout manner, from how Kane takes over Steven’s body and mind, to how the worm exits his body, I believe it technically counts.
   Lastly, the medusa form in which Kane appears in at the end of the film; The faces of the souls of his flock that appear in his abdomen; the souls that he has buried within himself, and which he tries to do the same to Carol Anne.
                                                 ***
   Before I conclude, I want to bring you to attention of the influence of H.P. Lovecraft within the two films. I am not an expert of his work, nor do I prefer it among others of the horror genre, but the general otherworldliness, and the tentacles coming out of the vortex towards the end of the first film, and the physical nature of Rev. Henry Kane’s medusa form at the end of the second film, would seem to be enough to support this. I’m sure a true expert on Lovecraft can point out all the ways he has influenced
the film better than I could.
   In the grand scheme of things, horror films entertain for the most part.  Even in the heyday of eighties, when the cinematic genre was at its peak in every way possible, only a handful managed to truly terrify, then, and now.  Sometimes there are puzzles within these films, waiting for the right person to solve them.  I hope I have brought to your attention things you may not have thought of regarding these films, as well as a new understanding.

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Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Review: Justice League Dark: Apokolips War




By William Pattison
For Horror Bob's Blog

I just finished watching the latest DC animated film, Justice League Dark: Apokolips War. I was thoroughly impressed by this feature. It was the animated approximation of both Infinity War and Endgame combined. I loved the fact that they had The Justice League, Justice League Dark, Teen Titans, Suicide Squad, and even Swamp Thing and The Demon in this film. And of course, the icing on the cake was once again Matt Ryan returned as John Constantine and played a major part in this story. If you are a DC fan you will love this. I highly recommend this film...

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