Week 1: 31 Nights of Horror

31noh

For the month of October, I’ve decided to express my thoughts on my yearly “31 Nights of Horror” in place of the “Book vs Movie” posts. Book vs Movie will return in December.

So far, I’ve watched five out of thirty-one movies. Below is what I watched and what I thought of them. There may be slight spoilers, but I’ve tried to ensure that I kept things brief and major spoiler-free.

Picture Source: www.dvdactive.com
Picture Source: http://www.dvdactive.com

1. Evil Dead (2013)

Directed by: Fede Alvarez
Screenplay by: Fede Alvarez & Rodo Sayagues
Produced by: Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell, & Robert Tapert.
Starring: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Jessica Lucas, Lou Taylor Pucci, & Elizabeth Blackmore.

Five friends head to a remote cabin, where the discovery of a Book of the Dead leads them to unwittingly summon up demons living in the nearby woods. The evil presence possesses them until only one is left to fight for survival.

Evil Dead is a reboot of the original movie, The Evil Dead, which came out in 1981. The original movie was directed by Sam Raimi and starred Bruce Campbell. The movie spawned two sequels, The Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness.

I first watched this movie in theaters and really enjoyed it. I’d seen all of the original movies a few years ago and really liked them. This movie and those have similiar storylines, but the style and characters are different. While the original was more campy and humorous, the 2013 movie was more of a serious, scary horror.

I enjoy both for what they are and don’t really understand all the hate toward this movie. I think all of the Evil Dead movies are great, probably because Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell were responsible for playing a part in all of them.

45-evil-dead-redband-trailer-2

I liked Evil Dead (2013) because it was a good horror movie, made me jump a few times, had likable characters (namely Mia and David), had a fantastic soundtrack, and nice visual effects. The story wasn’t really anything special, but it worked well with the rest of the elements. The only thing that really annoyed me in this movie was Eric–I found him to be annoying. I couldn’t help laughing at all the blood, though. If you thought the originals were bloody, you have no idea what you’re in for.

The second viewing wasn’t quite as enjoyable as the first, but I still liked it. I’ll probably end up watching this a few more times in my lifetime, along with the originals.

My Rating: 8 out of 10 stars

Picture Source: prideofchucky.proboards.com
Picture Source: prideofchucky.proboards.com

2. Curse of Chucky (2013)

Directed by: Don Mancini
Screenplay by: Don Mancini
Produced by: David Kirschner & Don Mancini.
Starring: Brad Dourif, Fiona Dourif, & Danielle Bisutti.

After her mother’s mysterious death, Nica begins to suspect that the talking, red-haired doll her visiting niece has been playing with may be the key to recent bloodshed and chaos.

Curse of Chucky is the sixth movie in the Child’s Play series, which began in the 1980s. Child’s Play has always been one of my favorite horror series, from the time when I was a child. Chucky has both scared and entertained me all of my life. I loved the original and the sequel the best, but the other movies that followed weren’t too bad, even though the last two movies before Curse were more of a comedy. I was really excited for Curse to come out.

Picture Source: imdb.com
Picture Source: imdb.com

Even though Curse wasn’t too terrible for being the sixth movie in the series, I have to say that I am disappointed. Maybe I was expecting too much. I know that this was a lower budget, direct-to-DVD film, but I still expected better.

The plot disappointed me (there were so many ways they could have went with this but didn’t), I hated/didn’t care about pretty much all of the characters, hated the way Chucky looked after he came to life, and was very disappointed in the reasoning for Chucky’s “revenge” in this. I could have bought the reason but it didn’t seem well portrayed.

It wasn’t completely bad, though. I really enjoyed the first half of the film, but it seemed to go downhill after Chucky began to make his move. I appreciated that this tried to be more of an actual horror film, it had a pretty terrific soundtrack, and the doll itself is creepy like it was in the original. If you decide to watch this, make sure to stay tuned after the credits end. There is a wonderful surprise for fans of the series and it made this better for me. Curse is probably my least liked of the Chucky films. However, this one had a lot of potential so it gives me hope. Hopefully any reboots or further sequels will be better.

My Rating: 5.5 out of 10 stars

Picture Source: Wikipedia.com
Picture Source: Wikipedia.com

3. Scary Movie 5 (2013)

Directed by: Malcolm D. Lee
Screenplay by: David Zucker & Pat Proft.
Produced by: David Zucker & Phil Dornfeld.
Starring: Simon Rex, Ashley Tisdale, & Charlie Sheen.

A couple begin to experience some unusual activity after bringing their lost nieces and nephew home. With the help of home-surveillance cameras, they learn they’re being stalked by a nefarious demon.

Being no stranger to the Scary Movie series, I honestly wasn’t expecting a lot from this one, especially when I saw the ratings. But I decided that since I’d seen the previous four, I might as well watch this one as well.

Picture Source: horror.about.com
Picture Source: horror.about.com

I was actually surprised by this one because I ended up liking it better than some of the other movies in the series. This one mostly parodied Evil Dead, Mama, Paranormal Activity, Black Swan, Inception, and Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It wasn’t a terrific movie, but it’s a Scary Movie so you should already know it won’t be anything special. But it entertained and gave me some laughs, which is exactly what these movies are about!

My Rating: 6 out of 10 stars

Picture Source: imdb.com
Picture Source: imdb.com

4. Halloween: Resurrection (2002)

Directed by: Rick Rosenthal
Screenplay by: Larry Brand and Sean Hood. (Based on characters by John Carpenter)
Produced by: Michael Leahy and Paul Freeman.
Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Busta Rhymes, & Brad Loree.

Serial Killer Michael Myers is not finished with Laurie Strode, and their rivalry finally comes to an end. But is this the last we see of Myers? Freddie Harris and Nora Winston are reality programmers at DangerTainment, and are planning to send a group of 6 thrill-seeking teenagers into the childhood home of Myers. Cameras are placed all over the house and no one can get out of the house… and then Michael arrives home!

I only watched this one because it was the only movie in the original Halloween series that I hadn’t seen. Due to the low ratings on IMDB.com, I wasn’t really expecting much but I wanted to finish the series.

Picture Source: www.dailyraider.com
Picture Source: http://www.dailyraider.com

I actually didn’t think this one was all that bad. Maybe I’m too used to campy horror movies. It’s probably not a movie I would seek out to watch again, but it’s not one I would avoid like the plague, either. It wasn’t great, but it entertained me well enough. I liked it better than the Curse of Michael Myers, aka the sixth movie in the series. I think the best part of this movie is the beginning scene.

My Rating: 6 out of 10 stars.

Picture Source: imdb.com
Picture Source: imdb.com

5. ParaNorman (2012)

Directed by: Chris Butler & Sam Fell.
Screenplay by: Chris Butler
Produced by: Travis Knight & Arianne Sutner.
Starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Anna Kendrick, & Christopher Mintz-Plasse.

A misunderstood boy takes on ghosts, zombies and grown-ups to save his town from a centuries-old curse.

I’ve been wanting to see this one since it first came out. No matter how old I get, I’ll always have a love for animated films.

Picture Source: www.engadget.com
Picture Source: http://www.engadget.com

ParaNorman was pretty good. It was cute, funny, and had an interesting story. Fans of movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas should dig this one. The graphics were also well done and I liked how the people themselves seemed to look realistic (and not like Barbies like some films tend to do). This is one that I would probably watch again. It has a nice moral at the end as well, especially for kids who tend to be different from their peers.

My Rating: 7.5 out of 10 stars.

26 movies to go! So far I’m really enjoying my 31 Nights of Horror for the month of October, even with the disappointment of the Chucky movie. I can’t wait to see the rest of the movies on my list. What did you think of these movies? And if you’re watching scary/Halloween movies this month, what’s on your list?

jncname

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