Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Civilian 2018 Wrap-Up and Year-End Stats!

Aaaaaaaaand we're back!

Having addressed the horror genre in the previous entry (hey, this is HORROR 101 after all), it’s time to give the Civilian flicks their moment in the sun. As always, all titles listed were encountered for the first time from January 1 to December 31, 2018 (i.e. no repeat viewings were eligible), with top picks denoted with an asterisk. (*)

As mentioned in the horror wrap-up post, I didn't spend a lot of effort keeping up with the current output - I only indulged in two or three cineplex binge-trip theater-hop voyages, with most of the current crop viewed in the latter half of the year once they’d hit home video. I also will admit to spending a fair amount of time revisiting films that I hadn’t seen in a while to see if my opinions had changed (or hey, just for fun - what a concept!)

I am also happy to report that after two years of less-than-ideal stats, I managed to climb back into the 300+ Club (not really a club) and, as you’ll see below, I devoted a healthy amount of time to several actor/director projects over the course of the year. In addition to another successful Scare-A-Thon/October Challenge, I decided to re-introduce the notion of a November Turkey Hunt, tracking down the best of the worst, tallying 30 Gobblers (plus a few fence-sitters) when all was said and done.

Many thanks to everyone for their support and feedback and conversation over the years. We'll see what 2019, the last year of the “teens,” has in store!

Let the OCD madness begin!!!


Avengers: Infinity War
Black Panther
Eighth Grade
First Reformed
Game Night (*)
Leave No Trace
Mission: Impossible – Fallout (*)
Sorry to Bother You
Thoroughbreds (*)
Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Monday, January 7, 2019

Dr. AC's 2018 Horror Wrap-Up Extravaganza!

Clearly it's been a very productive year....

Howdy, folks!

I’m not even going to waste your time with the usual apology/justification this time around for not having seen all the latest and greatest, brightest and bloodiest objects that 2018 had to offer. That said, I’m pretty happy with the amount of newer flicks that passed my peepers, as well as the revisits I was fortunate enough to engage in either for review or recreational purposes.

To compensate, this year I’ve extended my field of view for recent fright films to include the past two (2) years since I was playing quite a bit of catch-up during the early months of 2018. (Hey, as I’ve said many a time before – we’re all on our own path. What’s important is that we keep walking it.)

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Fool's Views (12/16 - 12/31)

"I can't feel my legs, my vision is blurry, and I can't use my words."
"Oh, that's right, it's January..."

And that, my friends, is that.

Ended the year in fine fashion, clocking an additional 25 films during the final two weeks, including bagging my last letter of the alphabet (“Y” for YellowBrickRoad) and the missing pieces in the chronology sweepstakes (1949, 1951, 1952, 1969, 1979), as well as a last-minute Share the Scare with the gang, adding another half-dozen flickers to the grand totals.

I won’t spend a lot of time chatting here – as per usual, it’s time to get to the Year-End Recap Madness – and as you’ll soon discover, you have some reading to do, Faithful AC-olytes! Let’s get to it, shall we?

As always, feel free to leave your two cents worth – we’ll make sure you get some change back.


Saturday, January 5, 2019

REVENGE (2017) movie review

Revenge (2017) d. Coralie Fargeat (France/Belgium)

Can a rape/revenge film be equal parts brutal, ridiculous, and thought-provoking? The answer appears to be yes, as writer/director Fargeat’s debut feature ably demonstrates. Sassy and sexy Jen (Matilda Lutz) shows up at handsome, rich, and married businessman Richard’s (Kevin Janssens) secluded love hut in the desert (accessible only by helicopter) for a weekend of dancin’ and romancin’, only to be surprised by his two hunting pals (Vincent Colombe, Guillaume Bouchede) who show up early. They take a shine to the nubile one and while their host dashes into town to secure the licenses, Jen is assaulted; when Richard returns, she tells him and he attempts to buy her off. She refuses the hush money and threatens to tell his wife if he doesn’t send her home, whereupon he attacks her and leaves her for dead.

Friday, January 4, 2019

YELLOWBRICKROAD (2010) movie review

YellowBrickRoad (2010) d. Jesse Holland / Andy Mitton (USA)

The writing/directing team of Holland & Mitton conjure an incredibly rich scenario, then people it with an exemplary array of characters such that the first 45 minutes of this well-crafted yarn were literally spent on the edge of my seat. The wonderfully simple premise – a group of researchers seeking to unravel the mystery of a New Hampshire village’s population who, one quiet day in 1940, simply wandered out of town and disappeared forever – is so well cultivated, with creepy, organic atmosphere to spare, one feels like applauding each passing scene for its chutzpah and execution. (The high point is a mid-film gore set-piece aka “the leg scene” that had me squirming and muttering, “Holy crap, ain’t never seen that before... and I’m not sure I needed to.”)