Sunday, May 29, 2022

Only the Devil Can Get You Out


Hey, hey, Horror Nuts! Welcome to another edition of WTFHM!

As I understand it, the housing market has been crazy lately.  Like, finding a house to live in at a good price is quite a task. Why, one might be tempted to buy a house with some questionable history if they were desperate enough.

I'm saying, bleeding walls and portals to Hell aren't everyone's jam. If you're into that sort of thing, you should probably at least be experienced in demonic shit before you make any commitments.

Case in point: This week's movie!

The Cellar starring Elisha Cuthbert, Eoin Macken, Dylan Fitzmaurice Brady, Abby Fitz, and Aaron Monaghan

So...super short synop:

Once upon a time, the worst parents in the world buy an old creepy house at an auction. On their first night there, the parents go to work and leave the kids in the house by themselves. Daughter(Fitz) promptly falls into another dimension in the cellar.

Mom(Cuthbert) spends the remaining hour of this movie trying to figure out where her daughter went and how that relates to all the weird shit in the house. You know, like math equations.

She talks to a lot of people who basically tell her what she already knows and eventually gets chased by a demon and ends up in a creepy Hell dimension herself, along with her family.

The end.

Basically, yeah. 

I feel like this movie just pissed all over the whole mathematical horror sub-subgenre (assuming that is a thing). You see, what, I guess, summons the demons that eventually take the family to hell is a math equation that's carved into the basement and also, plays on a victrola.

They never really address the victrola either. It's just kind of there until the plot needs a little more tension and someone plays the record on it. See, because, just like in Evil Dead when someone says cursed math problems out loud, it summons demons.

And it's not like I didn't try with this movie!

Look, I ignored the fact that every time Elisha Cuthbert came within five feet of an Irish person, her accent changed. I also ignored the fact that Abbie Fitz couldn't decide which accent to use. I EVEN ignored the fact that every lead that our protag found basically did nothing but confirm what she already knew.

What I can't handle is giving us a math problem and not telling us WHY it's a portal to hell. I mean, there was a hamfisted attempt at it, but we never really understand the connection. At a certain point, mom goes to see a professor at a college who is, what I imagine, Doc Brown from Back to the Future must have been like when he was young.

And that was a storyline and a half, lemme tell you. Apparently, this professor, Dr. Fournet(Monaghan) was just an average dude until he was in a car accident and now he's a math genius because that's how brains work???

This is the sort of thing that doesn't really bother me except when it would actually add to the plot if we knew. This filmmaker went through all the effort to create an entirely unnecessary character just to tell us, "Yeah. It's a math portal to hell."

Honestly, the best part of the movie was the last thirty minutes. We get to see a giant demon, which was neat. And the concept of hell being stuck in a big DMV line while counting was kind of inventive.

But really it felt like this plot was built like a house that was made rooms first and then walls. But then the walls are made of sand. And it rains.

Big ole Bronx Cheer for this movie.

Next week! The Twin or maybe something else. We'll see how I'm feeling next week!

See you next week!


Sunday, May 22, 2022

OMG, I Am OBSESSED With Your Hair


Hey, hey, Horror Nuts! Welcome to another edition of WTFHM!

So, as you may have guessed from the sign on the way in, I'm not going to be reviewing Dr. Strange 2 in this post.  Why, you ask? Well, for a couple of reasons. For one, I know every single one of y'all are Marvel fans. 

Don't try to deny it.  Everybody BUT me is into Marvel movies and, real talk, I'm just a small fish in a big pond. I need all the readers I can get. Picture me, spoiling a damn Marvel movie. I'll get, like, two readers this week and you know it.

Second, while Dr. Strange 2 had a lot of horror elements to it (and it was directed by one of my favorite directors of all time - Sam Raimi), I can't call it horror or even a thriller. It's a Marvel movie with all its Marvel-flavored trappings. If my blog was WTFMM, then, yeah. 

But it's not. So...

This week's movie!

The Stylist starring Najarra Townsend, Jennifer Seward, Brea Grant, Davis DeRock, Sarah McGuire, and Millie Milan.

So, this is Claire(Townsend). She's a hairstylist. She likes drinking Starbucks coffee every morning and wearing reasonably stylish clothes (albeit with a hint of Wednesday Addams) and she has a tiny chihuahua for a pet...

She also likes scalping her clients and wearing their hair in the privacy of her own candlelit cellar.

One day, while living her creepy, kookie life, one of her clients, Olivia(Grant) asks her to do her hair for her wedding. After thinking about it for half a day, Claire agrees.

So, Claire does Olivia's hair and does such a good job of it, that Olivia invites her over for wine and pizza. She even models her wedding dress for her.

Olivia even decides to invite her out to her bachelorette party and, as often happens when you're a Single White Female type murdery girl, Claire immediately thinks that they're besties and we're treated to about an hour and a half of Claire systemically losing her damn mind.

A Bachelorette Party which, by the way, goes really bad for Claire when she overhears two of Olivia's friends say what we're all thinking at about this point. "Who invited the weird hairdresser?" I mean, for all intents and purposes, Claire isn't her friend or coworker or anything, really. She's doing her hair for her wedding. It'd be like me inviting my therapist to my birthday party.

So, the day of the wedding comes and by this time, the following events have occurred:
  • Claire's boarded up and unboarded up her real human hair hidey-hole
  • She secretly records Olivia's conversations and listens to them on repeat
  • She breaks into Olivia's house, wears her nightgown and masturbates in said nightgown
  • She kills a barista while trying to take her scalp
  • She kills another woman while successfully taking her scalp, and then wears it while watching cartoons in the woman's living room.


And finally, after having her little spiral, she shows up to the wedding to do Olivia's hair. After she's done with her hair and everyone leaves for the wedding, Claire decides there's only one way for her and Olivia to be one with one another.

Yup. She walks down the aisle in Olivia's place...wearing her scalp.

Girl, I don't even know. 

And I want to give this one some credit or at least an A for effort because the filmmaker clearly went to the Brian De Palma School for Filming Alfred Hitchcock movies, but uggghhhh...

I mean, let's overlook the very strange fact that this is a killer who's been scalping women for some time by the looks of her trophy collection and yet has no clue about how to not get caught. There are moments where I was just...annoyed by her instead of whatever other emotion the filmmaker was trying to elicit from the audience.

Fear, maybe?  I don't know. The story was kind of all over the place with no explanations or rhyme or reason. And the worst part is that by the time the ending comes, you've already guessed that's where this story was going like, 5-10 scenes back.

Trash. Hot Garbage, I tell you.

Brian De Palma would be ashamed.

Anyway, next week's movie!  Advertisements for Cellar have been popping up for me lately, so I guess I'll check that one out.  

See you next week!

-- O~

Sunday, May 15, 2022



Hey, hey, Horror Nuts! Welcome to another edition of WTFHM!

Have you ever actually read a real fairy tale, yo?

Like, I know we all grew up on Disney's version of everything and as adults, I think I can be fairly sure that if you're reading this, you're probably aware that actual fairy tales were pretty gruesome.

As if the idea of a witch eating a couple of fat children wasn't terrifying enough. I'm not sure what possessed ancient parents to sit around a campfire and tell gory stories to children, honestly. How much did children misbehave in ancient times that we didn't even think of just putting them in time-out until the 20th century?

Anyway. This week's movie!

You Won't Be Alone starring Noomi Rapace, Alice Englert, Annamaria Marinca, Sara Klimoska, Carlotto Cotta, and Felix Maritaud.

Okay, so once upon a time in Macedonia, a young mother is visited by a witch that goes by the name Old Maid Maria(Marinca). The mother begs the witch to spare her child's life and in exchange, when the child turns sixteen, the witch can come and take her.

The witch says, "Bet, but I'm taking her voice because she needs to be marked so that you don't break your word." 

The mom hides her in a cave in the hopes that she can keep her baby away from Maria. Unfortunately, one day Maria comes, kills the mother, and takes the, now teenage, girl(Klimoska) away.

Okay, so, Maria makes the girl a witch as well and the two are traveling together. The girl, as it turns out, is not so cool with how Maria is living, so Maria tells her to kick rocks if she doesn't like it.

She does and comes upon a woman giving birth in a field. Fascinated by the whole thing, she goes into the village and checks out the baby.  The baby's mom catches her and gets herself expired in the struggle.

At this point, she gets the brilliant idea to pose as the baby's mom and live as her, which she does pretty successfully until her "husband" tries to have sex with her. She kills him, then decides to be a dog.

And she's a dog until she sees a dude having horny times with his friends and decides she wants to be him. And she's him until she sees the body of a young girl and decides to be the young girl, where she stays for a while.

Yeah, yeah.  Stay with me, though.

She lives as the girl until the girl is an adult. She, then, falls in love, gets married, has a kid, and, generally, has a pretty sweet life for a woman living in old-timey Macedonia.

That is until Old Maid Maria steps in.

See, Old Maid Maria has been keeping tabs on her all this time. And upon seeing the girl actually figure out happiness, she decides to take a big dump on everything the girl has built.

First, she disguises herself as a boar and kills her husband. Then, after her baby is born, she shows up to her house and goes, "You really thought you had this whole thing worked out, huh?" and promptly slits her baby's throat.

But wait, you forget, Old Maid Maria taught the girl witch stuff and the girl promptly uses that knowledge to bring her daughter back by making her a witch. Old Maid Maria is astonished by her display of sacrifice and the girl rips out Old Maid Maria's guts, killing her.

Yup. That's it. That's the story, younglings.  I don't know what you learned from it, but I learned that people suck and when people suck, they sometimes make sucky monsters that might, one day, make you a monster, too. But that's okay because even if you're a monster, you can find happiness. 

Surprisingly, I am giving this one a jewel...

...but not because this was a good horror movie. It was just a good movie. On my horror scale, even with the gore, it's a pretty solid tier one. It appealed to my sense of storytelling, however, so, yeah. A jewel it gets.

Don't tell your kids this story, though. I think that constitutes abuse these days.

Anyway, next week's movie!  I've been told that the new Doctor Strange movie is supposed to be a horror movie, so maybe I'll review that if it's true.  If not, I'll just pick something from Shudder.

See you next week!



Sunday, May 1, 2022

Texas Pornstar Massacre


Hey, hey, Horror Nuts! Welcome to another edition of WTFHM!

Okay, stop me if you've heard this one.

A bunch of porn stars go to a farm. How many will it take to screw in a lightbulb before the horny old people murder them all?

Confused? Well...yeah. But that's fine. Not every joke needs to be fully explained and apparently the same is true for movies! Case in point:

X starring Mia Goth, Jenny Ortega, Kid Cudi, Martin Henderson, Stephen Ure, Brittany Snow, and Owen Campbell.

So, once upon a 1979, Producer Wayne(Henderson) finds an old farmhouse owned by an elderly couple for cheap and decides that this would be the best place to do the ultimate porn film.

Course, that all works out fine until the old couple starts murdering them because the wife has a bad case of super horny. And since that kind of makes this a slasher movie, it's time the WTFHM slasher movie rating system! Blood, Boobs, Body Count, and Bad Acting.

Blood: A

So, there are buckets of blood in this one...but it takes a minute to get there. To say this movie is a slow burn is an understatement in that it takes more than half the movie to get us to the first death. Once the ball starts rolling however, the blood is pretty much flying everywhere.

Boobs: A++

I mean, I really don't know what y'all was expecting here. All jokes aside, I'd have been disappointed if there weren't any boobs in a movie that spends more than half its time on the porn stars.

We even get some junk in the of those junks is dead, but still. 

Body Count: B

I mean, when the cast is composed of about nine people and eight of them die. I'd say that rates about average for a slasher movie. The original Texas Chainsaw Massacre only had five, so while this one was under ten, it still isn't bad.

Bad acting: F

Yeah, everybody killed it in this one. Including and especially Mia Goth. She plays Wayne's girlfriend and the coke-snorting porn star that you will be convinced is going to end up the first to die. 

Which leads me to the spoiler part of this blog (so, you might want to stop here if you don't want any spoilers. It'll be worth coming back to this part once you've seen the movie).

So, first thing's first. This one is a Ti West joint. He's the director behind such horror flicks as V/H/S and The Innkeepers (the second one I reviewed a while back). Anyways, I've seen more than a few films directed by him, and overall, I've had mixed feelings about his stuff.

I have to say, though, X is surprisingly well thought out in its execution. For one, casting Mia Goth as both Maxine the porn star and Pearl the horny/murdery old lady was a smart move. She basically plays the character's past and future and I am here for it.

Also, can we talk about the negation of the whole "Final Girl" trope by making the last survivor Maxine instead of the baby-faced Lorraine (Ortega)?  The joy in my cold black heart, y'all...

X easily gets a jewel from me.

It's a good movie. And I hear a prequel is coming, too. :)

Next week's movie!!! Think I'll check out You Won't Be Alone. Hopefully, we can keep the jewels coming!

See you next week!