ActionDramaExploitationFilmReviews

Women of Mafia 2 (aka Mafia Women 2) (2019, Poland) Review

Women of Mafia 2 (aka Mafia Women 2) (2019, Poland) Review

Fans of writer-director Patryk Vega’s Mafia Women, rejoice! There’s a sequel to the film I called “unbelievably bad” in this very space, and it’s titled, appropriately, Women of Mafia 2 (or Mafia Women 2, depending on your Polish-to-English translation). You’ll be pleased to know that Women of Mafia 2 has quite a lot in common with the first film, including graphic violence, frontal nudity, and a script so nonsensical that the writing must have been outsourced to the proverbial primate with a typewriter, minus the infinite timeline.

“Starting today we have sex with whoever we want!”

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Women of Mafia (aka Mafia Women) (2018, Poland) Review

Women of Mafia (aka Mafia Women) (2018, Poland) Review

While you don’t need to take a ball-peen hammer to the forehead to enjoy Patryk Vega’s film Mafia Women (aka Women of Mafia), it sure would help. The movie’s biggest failure is the unbelievably bad plot, which would be laughable if so much money hadn’t been spent trying to turn such a cinematic sow’s ear into the semblance of a silk purse. The only reason why certain characters survived the events of the film was because everyone around them made so many stupid, unintelligible decisions…

“Marie Curie discovered radium and polonium, and you think women can’t make drugs?”

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Red Christmas (2016, Australia) Review

Red Christmas (2016, Australia) Review

There’s an old joke that goes something like, “If God can do anything, can He create a rock so heavy that even He couldn’t lift it?” Adapted to the cinema, the question becomes, “Can you make a slasher flick so bad that even Dee Wallace couldn’t save it?”

Yes. Yes, you can. Red Christmas is that movie. There are such things as good slasher flicks. Maybe they’ve got some funny lines, some memorable kills, or a distinctly horrific antagonist. Unfortunately, Red Christmas has none of those things…

“This Christmas, the only thing under the tree is terror.”

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Botoks (aka Botoxx) (2017, Poland) Review

Botoks (aka Botoxx) (2017, Poland) Review

Botoks is unafraid to address controversial subjects like abortion, though it does so in a way that might charitably be described as clumsy. For example, an OB-GYN doctor manipulates the system to allow a woman to abort her 22-week-old baby, and the wriggling, mewling child, having survived the procedure, is placed on a metal tray in an empty room to die. This is considered Standard Operating Procedure, apparently. Later in the movie, when the doctor herself gets pregnant, she has a change of heart and refuses to perform any more abortions. She then gets fired by her amoral male boss.

“What the fuck is going on in this hospital?”

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Volumes of Blood (2015, USA) Review

Volumes of Blood (2015, USA) Review

Volumes of Blood is a horror anthology movie featuring five short films, each helmed by a different director. The overarching story focuses on a college study group in a public library trying to create a new urban legend as part of a class project. As in just about every anthology, some of the stories were better than others, owing to variances in acting, cinematography, and screenplay. Yes, it’s a low-budget film, but that’s not where it falls short: what failed the movie was the writing.

Nevertheless, it’s an entertaining film, one worth your time.

“Some libraries make a killing!”

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Quiet Places: A Novella of Cosmic Folk Horror by Jasper Bark (2017, UK) Review

Quiet Places by Jasper Bark (2017)

When you pick up Jasper Bark’s short novel Quiet Places, know that you’ll be holding a stick of dynamite in your hands. It’s got a slow-burning fuse, but when it goes off, you will be completely blown away. Billed as cosmic folk horror, a classification of genre fiction heretofore reserved for this book alone, so far as I can tell, Quiet Places tells the story of Sally, her lover David, and the Scottish town of Dunballan.

“Then there were the bodies she had to pull from crashed cars, and the corpses that had fallen from ladders, or scaffolding. They had to be disposed of and there was never enough time to do that…”

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Atmo HorroX (2016, Canada) Review

Atmo HorroX (2016)

Does comparing Pat Tremblay’s Atmo HorroX to John Boorman’s classic Zardoz elevate one, diminish the other, or condemn both? Both films are psychedelic, trippy, and include protagonists that wander around in outlandish costumes that show rather more skin than most of us would like to see. Both are infused with timely messages, expressed through grotesquerie. Despite the dubious value of the venture, reams could be written deconstructing both films. If nothing else, we know that movies like Atmo HorroX are extremely rare…

“Engineering the strings of your mind puzzle.”

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An Interview with Director Marko Mäkilaakso, It Came from the Desert

An Interview with Director Marko Mäkilaakso, It Came from the Desert

Marko Mäkilaakso, director and co-writer of the sci-fi comedy/horror film It Came from the Desert, was kind enough to let us ask him some questions about his movie, his background, and his thoughts about horror and filmmaking.

It Came from the Desert is inspired by the films I grew up with and love. It’s actually the most perfect film to show who I am as director. That’s why this is my most personal film.”

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It Came from the Desert (2017, Finland / UK / Canada) Review

It Came from the Desert (2017)

Marko Mäkilaakso’s movie It Came from the Desert evokes the creature features of the 1950s by way of the late 80s, making it a cheesy, nostalgia-packed thrill ride from start to finish. Inspired by the 1989 video game by Cinemaware, it never once takes itself too seriously, and keeps you watching with clever effects, over-the-top action sequences, and a number of hysterically funny lines that are sure to offend. What more could you ask from a monster movie?

“Okay, listen we need your help. We’re trapped by this giant ant… A giant freakin’ ant!”

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The Order of the Dragon by Phil Hore (2016, Australia) Review

The Order of the Dragon by Phil Hore

The first in a trilogy of novels by Australian author Phil Hore, The Order of the Dragon introduces us to two very different characters: the learned, dryly humorous Amun Galeus, and his hulking friend Sebastian Vulk. While this might sound like standard bickering buddies fare, the novel doesn’t descend into cliché: it’s a fun, pulp horror piece that starts off slow, but once it hits its stride, rockets like a freight train.

“My name is Amun Galeas and it is hard for me to fathom that I now live in an age of instant communication. But then again, I’ve said similar things about many an age for as long as I can remember…”

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