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Sunday, October 19, 2014

The ABC's of Death 2 (2014) Horror Anthology

ABC's of Death 2 (2014) - Mood so much of movie reviewing relies on writing a snapshot of not only the film but of the writers mood during the viewing. Should we put some information up front, today "I sat in horrible traffic so this review may reflect my frustration"? Then we each have our structural biases, I for one grew up watching monster movies and to this day I love a good monster movie. On the other hand I never relished slasher movies and prefer a good Giallo to a slasher any day of the week. Sure we often watch a film at least a couple times before writing and that must even out some of the emotional bias. At least it gives a blend of the biases from the two viewings. We can further mitigate the effects of mood by focusing on structure. Are the characters well defined? Act the acts clear and with the proper transaction? Is the acting believable? Does the music help or hinder the viewers ability to lose himself in the film? Ultimately its about how well did the picture take you into the world and hold you there while the story was being told. It means that a film, not recognized as great movie, can be an enjoyable experience that allows the viewer to forget that traffic jam and be somewhere else for a couple hours. Allows the emotional roller-coaster that is a horror movies to wash through and entertain.
   Its difficult to review anthologies without multiple watches of the film the imagery goes by fast in a lot of cases and there are so many different ideas. Sure some of the 26 pieces are memorable and others forgettable but so much depends on the mood at the time of watching that the degree can change from one viewing to the next. So thinking about my mood which was pretty good, I think it is easiest to describe which of the sections caught my attention and held it until they are done. Without first looking up who wrote and directed each section Let me give my impression of the ones I was struck by, A, G, I, K, M, O, S, V, W, X, and Y. That is half and there was some ideas in others I liked. Like T where actress @LittleMissRisk  Tristan Risk as a tentacled monster getting her revenge on the misogynistic film crew exploiting her for their own pleasure. Written and Directed by the Twisted Sisters themselves Jen and Sylvia Soska. But it was one note although a decent note. Also B where the piece did not particularly hold me but the effect of the torn apart body was really good.
 A - Amateur Directed by E.L.Katz and written by David Chirchirillo has this cool how an assassin imagines a job going to go and then the reality of how it actually goes, with a nice twist in the end.
G - Grandad Directed and Written by Jim Hosking was a creepily funny relationship between a Grandfather and his unappreciative grandson.
I - Invisible written and directed by Erik Matti I was caught by the complete sets, even though the story itself feels a bit too familiar. The lengths greed drive people. This one looked really good and the effects were great.
K- Knell Written and Directed by Kristina Buozyte and Bruno Samper Wonderfully effective in its mood, true horror pacing with the turn of everyone staring back from their windows wonderfully frightful. If only they had not gone for the less than effective special effect in the sky.
M - Masticate Written and directed by Robert Boocheck, although almost not on the list, the juxtaposition between the music and images on the screen really worked well.
O - Ochlocracy (Mob Rule) Written and directed by Hajime Ohata. After the walking dead take over the world there are people who did not turn who must be held responsible for there crimes. Well done and amusing.
S - Split - Written and Directed by Juan Martinez Moreno great use of technology in the story and split screen filming make for a nasty little revenge tail.
V - Vacation Directed by Jerome Sable, co-written with Nicholas Musurca was a shocking and wonderfully violent little tale of why you should choose your friends wisely.
W - Wish Directed by Stephen Kostanski and written by Jeremy Gillespie it is a fantasy piece done like a kids commercial for a action figure play set but when the playing kids are transported into the play set things suddenly don't see so childish.
X - Xylophone Written and Directed by Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo, A baby sitter takes up music driven by a little girl who just has to keep pounding on that damn xylophone. Gruesome and effective it may be predictable but so satisfying.
Y -  Youth written and directed by Soichi Umezawa A complete story is a short is always refreshing, as well as the mix of fantasy and reality for the young woman in the story.
  Overall I think this collection is a step up from the first although both have their high points. Soresport Movies can certainly recommend this one for what it is an anthology of shorts. You know what you are getting into so have at it.

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