October Horrorshow: The Rizen: Possession, aka The Facility

An older, rarely-used maxim here at Missile Test is that we have never met a movie we wouldn’t watch…for at least fifteen minutes. It’s a test. Sometimes a movie is so bad early on, so clear that it’s an unwatchable mess, that fifteen minutes is all it takes for one to know it’s not worth spending any more time with. I managed to make it through an hour of this piece of shit before abandoning it, but that was only because of my own stubbornness. This awful movie failed the fifteen-minute test.

From writer/director Matt Mitchell, The Rizen: Possession is the sequel to his 2017 film, The Rizen. I haven’t seen that flick, so the fact that Possession is an incomprehensible mess might be due to missing some important backstory. However, no sequel should be so opaque that viewers who haven’t seen what came before would be hopelessly lost. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: The Rizen: Possession, aka The Facility”

October Horrorshow: Derelict

The abandoned South Fremantle Power Station outside of Perth, Western Australia, makes the old urbexer in me salivate. It’s a beautiful location on the outside, although inside it’s hollowed out and covered in sloppy graffiti. It was locations like this that made me get into urbex in the first place. The industrial giants of the past are true brick and stone monuments to the 20th century, and have since been subject to the ruthless cost-cutting of capitalism. It’s a set of architectural styles that will likely never appear again, as buildings and materials keep getting cheaper. Indeed, South Fremantle Power Station was closed in the 1980s, yet there it is, still standing, decades after all maintenance ceased. They built the place thirty years tougher than it needed to be, and counting. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Derelict”

October Horrorshow: Entity

Entity, the 2012 horror film from writer/director/producer Steve Stone, threatens to be a found footage flick early on. Thankfully, it’s not. Back when it was made, found footage horror films seemed to come out once or twice a week. But, even though Stone only flirts with the technique, he chose to use its tropes heavily.

The film opens with security footage shot in the green tint of night vision, so familiar from its overuse in found footage horror. The shot is of a spartan room in what looks like an insane asylum. There is an iron bed with thin mattress, a sink, a bucket, and a huddled figure who won’t look at the camera. Over the course of this sequence experienced horror fans will witness trick after trick that was used to better effect in earlier films. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Entity”

October Horrorshow: Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum

Horror junkies have been blessed by video on demand. Online streaming services have become a glut of horror films, as small, independent creators have been able to get their work out there for people to see. It’s been great for foreign horror flicks, as they have also been gaining prominence on streaming services, probably because they’re affordable to license. South Korea has been well-represented the last few years, with Train to Busan being the standout. Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum also hails from the ROK, and fits in well with the frenetic style that has come to typify South Korean horror. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum”

October Horrorshow: Exeter

It is a film like Exeter that makes me question this little film criticism hobby of mine. This movie is a bottom-feeding piece of shit, and no one should need any Johnny Come Lately critic to tell them so. It was released direct-to-video and has a Rotten Tomatoes rating below 30%. What more can I add? Not much, to be frank. But this film has done something meaningful when it comes to the Horrorshow. This will be the last low-budget shitfest that I found on Netflix that I will be reviewing. Netflix is a fine service...for television. But when it comes to film, Netflix is a showcase for the worst films Hollywood and elsewhere has to offer. It’s in Netflix’s interest to keep licensing fees for the movies it carries as low as possible. Producers of top-grossing films, which are still making money in direct sales, have no incentive to move their films onto something like Netflix or Amazon Prime until the money stream slows. That means that quality is subjugated to affordability, and we viewers get shit like Exeter. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: Exeter”

October Horrorshow: As Above, So Below

It has begun! October is here. And with it comes the October Horrorshow here at Missile Test. All month long the site will be dedicated to horror film reviews. The good, the bad, the putrid — it doesn’t matter. As long as there’s blood, I’ll watch it. First up is some found footage.

Oh, no. Found footage? Again?! If I were emperor of the world, I would not ban found footage horror flicks outright, but I would require a special permit to make them. The only way to get such a permit would be through a personal interview with me. The only way to get a personal interview with me to discuss a found footage project would be to approach my palace as a supplicant...on hands and knees. From the moment prospective filmmakers land at the airport or arrive at the train station, or however they get into the city, they cannot be upright. They have to crawl all the way to my throne room. Then, as they grovel at my feet while addressing me using all my different names and titles, they must stretch out their left hand, so that my palace guard might lop off their pinky and present it to me as tribute. Then, and only then, will I even consider listening to a pitch for a found footage horror flick. But most important and most decisive, I think, for the filmmakers is this: if you make a found footage horror flick, I get gross points. I’m not Clooney. I’m not expecting 20 against 20, but there will be pain. Physical pain, emotional pain, fiduciary pain. These are the tolls I would exact from anyone looking to make a found footage horror flick. If they truly believe found footage is still the way to go after all that, then the filmmakers get my official imprimatur. Continue readingOctober Horrorshow: As Above, So Below”