Beetlejuice (1988) – review

DTV – italian audio track

Long story short: a young married couple die, and their ghosts are trapped inside their home with new tenants.

Tim Burton’s touch is visible since first shots: alive colors for the living world, dead ones for the afterlife, then continues with incredible things like house exterior, ghost strange faces, crazy locations…

It is also an occasion to watch again young versions of actors like Alec Baldwin and Winona Ryder (still a teenager)…

Story is nice, acting is good, music is great, SFX – even if not on par with nowadays ones – are good, thinking no CGI is used.

Any fantasy movie lovers will like it, as comedy fans too!

My vote: 7/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0094721

Lucy (2014) – review

WEBdl – italian audio track

Long story short: a woman accidentaly receives an extremely high dose of a new drug, and then develops incredible powers.

Another visionary work of Luc Besson; it remembered me a bit The Fifth Element, and it’s not a bad thing, at the contrary!

Drug, increased brain capabilities, fast car chase in Paris, korean gangsters and french cops shooting each others, a lot of kills and blood… these are only few elements of this movie!

Story is very interesting and fresh, Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman are great, music is convincing and SFX are astonishing!

A fast ride that will please every action movie fan!

My vote: 7.5/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2872732

Decay (2012) – review

WEBdl – english audio track with italian subs

Long story short: there is an accident at CERN, and everybody near the LHC turned to zombies.

Folks, RUN AWAY from this movie. Right now! There is no reason you spend one and half hour of your life to watch this, because no one will give it back to you!

Actors are more or less like wood sticks – except wood sticks has more personality, acting is atrocious, music is non-existant, locations are really poor, like the few sfx…

I give it 2 just because I liked zombie movies, and the whole CERN and LHC idea – the main thing that lead me to watch this mess…

My vote: 2/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2523692

The Terminator (1984) – review

Laserdisc – italian audio track
Long story short: a cyborg comes from the future to kill the mother of the resistance leader.

I needed to check the quality of the audio of this old italian PAL laserdisc,  so I thought: “Hey, I watched it a lot of time ago, so let’s watch it again…”

No need to write something more about the story, as I’m quite sure anybody on this planet who loves sci-fi has seen it – multiple times… but I should write something, so here I am!

Acting is quite good, and I loved the fact there are many Cameron’s preferred actors; Schwarzy, Lance Henriksen, Michael Biehn and Bill Paxton (as the punk leader). OK, not Academy Award lever, I should admit, but not bad at all!

Music is good, and follow the pace of the story, that was very original at the time; SFX makes you smile if compared to nowaday’s ones, but think it was the top notch at the time, and I still love the non-CGI effects, so…

At the end, a milestone in the sci-fi panorama; the last few ones remained on this world who hasn’t watched it yet, should buy a copy and watch it… NOW!

My vote: 7.5/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0088247

L’arrivo di Wang (2011) – review

English title: The arrival of Wang

DVB – original italian audio track

Long story short: an interpeter got a new urgent work, where she have to translate from Chinese some strange question posed to a mysterious Mr. Wang

I missed the film at the time, and when I noted it on the TV, I said myself: “You HAVE to watch it! After all, is one of the very few sci-fi movies made in Italy!”

So, I watched it, and I must say it’s not bad at all! At the contrary, it’s quite good; the idea is not usual, acting is very good – and I’m lucky to hear the original voices, that are really convincing, don’t know about the English dubbing; SFX is not top notch but, again, it’s an Italian small sci-fi production, not a multi-million dollar Hollywood one, so it’s more than what you could expect from it, and also from many cheap american sci-fi flicks of the latest decade.

Dialog is central in this film, as almost all the first half of it is around the interrogation of Mr. Wang by a man that is presumably from an Italian secret agency – even if no one has clearly stated it. There is tension, drama, and even a touch of dark irony at the end – that I will not reveal it, to not ruin your vision!

Reccomended to all sci-fi lovers, in particular the ones who can live without a lot of action.

My vote: 7/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1712502

88 minutes (2007) – review

DVB – italian audio track

Long story short: nine years ago, a serial killer was imprisoned; now, a new murder happens with the same modus operandi…

Last night I was still awake (as many other nights) so I decided to watch TV, and stumbled upon this movie; it was passed under my radar at the time…

Well, a very good, psychological thriller with a perfect Al Pacino fitting the main character really well, supported by a lot of other good actors; story is good, even if a bit forced, and the end was uxepected (strangely, to me at least, where I almost always spot the guilty in the first half time of the movie…)

Music is good, locations in Seattle are convincing, and the whole lot works very well; reccomended to any thriller fan, in particular to the ones who love machiavellian movies!

My vote: 7.5/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0411061

Lucky Luke (2009) – review

DVB – italian audio track

Long story short: direct transposition of a famous french comic; a cowboy saves a small city without killing anyone… until now…

A good comic-to-film version – the only things missing are the Daltons and the stupid dog, even if I must admit I’m happy about the fact the latter is not here…

This is a mix of drama and comedy, located in the old Far West; locations are good, ideas are quite fresh, music fits well, SFX are more than adequate; actors did a good job, too.

The only thing I didn’t like are the French writings (often with the English translation near them) on the wall, signs etc… I understand this is a French movie, after all, but, as it’s located in the U.S.A., a better choice would be to use subtitles… apart that, it’s a mildly entertaining movie, with some laughter here and there; I loved the cinematography, that in few instances reminded me Bunraku somehow, and it was always over the top, to subtly remember the viewers they are watching a movie based on a comic.

Greatly reccomended to any comic lover (anime fans may not enjoy it too much) and of course to the kids of all age!

My vote: 7/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1235536

Monsters (2010) – review

DVB – italian audio track

Long story short: a fotoreporter should bring back home his boss’ daugther, crossing the zone infested by huge alien creatures.

I love aliens, creatures, monsters, so I was forced to watch it again; and, as the first time, I liked it, even more thinking about the fact its budget was around $800,000 – they made a very good use of it, instead burning millions for useless blockbusters…

Wonderful photography, gorgeous landscapes and right locations, perfect music, good acting, believeable CGI effects (apart few instances) made this ultra low budget movie looks like a multimillion Hollywood sci-fi flick; this is an example to follow!

Every sci-fi lovers should watch it, but beware: despite the title, you will see few monsters, and for few minutes during the whole film, but it’s the only fault is has, and it’s forgiveable, given the money they spent for this.

For all non-sci-fi fans: it’s a drama with some extraterrestrial life, so you could check it and be surprised how good it is, even if you don’t like monsters…

My vote:8/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1470827

Cujo (1983) – review

DVB – italian audio track

Long story short: a St. Bernard dog went crazy after he contracted the rabies, and entrap a mother and her son inside her car.

I saw this movie almost 30 years ago, and forgot anything about it apart the dog… so, I decided to rewatch it, to discover why I liked it so much at the time; well, simply because it’s a good movie!

OK, to tell the truth, I was 100% sure it was an horror movie, but definitely is not; yes, it’s terrifing, but because it could happen in real life, and to me, this is more terrifing than any hypotetical scenario seen in an horror film.

Acting is average, but there is an outstanding performer: the dog – or, better, the dogs – who impersonated Cujo… apart few shots when you could clearly state that he’s playing, thanks to his tail, the other times he’s so frightening and menacing… music is often boring and flat, special effects are good, in particular the dog’s point of view.

All in all, a good drama movie for everyone who likes to watch a “based on a true story” film – even if this is not the case – but with some blood as a bonus!

P.S. The director is not among the most known, but he directed another small jem: Wedlock; sadly, this is (still?) not available in HD…

My vote: 6.5/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0085382

Død Snø 2 (2014) – review

WebDL – norwegian & english audio track + italian subtitles

Long story short: after a platoon of nazi zombies almost killed a man, he drive away, thinking to be safe, but it can’t be more far from the truth…

I saw Død Snø some months ago, and I laughed a lot; it was since maybe Braindead (that accidentaly appears on a printed T-Shirt of one of the characters) that I had so much fun watching an horror-comedy, a not so easy to find genre indeed…

So, I was eagerly awaiting Død Snø 2 – a.k.a. Dead Snow: Red VS Dead – and I chose to not read ANYTHING about it, to be surprised at the moment of the first view, in a good or bad way… luckily, I was really happy to discover that this movie is stronger and funnier than its predecessor!

Usually I don’t spend much time for a brief synopsis – you could always read IMDB of one of the other million reviews in the wild – but I want to do for this movie, to give you an idea of what kind of weird one it is…

Near the end of Død Snø, Martin was forced to chop his own right arm to avoid the spread of the zombie infection; after that, he run away from the nazi zombie platoon to save his life; Død Snø 2 starts where the first movie ends; while Martin is driving away, Herzog, the nazi commander, grab himself on the car door; a truck smash him out, leaving one of Herzog’s arms inside the car; then Martin has a car accident, finds himself in a hospital, and discovers that doctors reattached his arm to the body… the bad thing is that this is not Martin’s arm, but Herzog’s!

From that point, anything happen; zombie arm with its own will, a so-called Zombie Squad – three American teenagers – fly to Norway to help Martin; zombie platoon remember their original mission was to kill every inhabitants of a small village, to stop them our heros should awake a soviet platoon killed by the nazis during WWII, turning them in zombies, too… it seems an intricated story at first, but really it is not; it flows from the start to the end in a so good way; I had so much fun, and found myself laugh loud a lot when some surreal things happen…

At the end, story is really good; acting is convincing and dialogs are strange and amusing; makeup is better than the first film, and they used a real tank, too… so, what do you want more from an horror comedy?

An absolute little masterpiece mix of black comedy and horror; a “must see” for anyone who think Braindead is a masterpiece itself; reccomended of course to any zombie aficionados and horror fan that are capable to elevate their suspension of disbilief to a totally new level… “Zombies? OK, I can get it, but… nazi zombies? Are you kidding?!?”

My vote:8/10

IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2832470