A Quiet Place delivers horror with heart

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, APRIL 6, 2018 By Steve Newton In A Quiet Place, Lee Abbott—played by director, co-writer, and executive producer John Krasinski—has it rough. He lives in a post-apocalyptic world teeming with fierce alien monsters that hunt humans through sound. The slightest noise will have them racing towards you out of nowhere, and … Continue reading A Quiet Place delivers horror with heart

Jigsaw’s killer twist takes torture porn up a notch

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 27, 2017 By Steve Newton Back in October of 2010, after six straight years of hugely successful Saw films coming out on the Friday before Halloween, the seventh and "final" entry in the series, Saw 3D, was released. It made money--eventually raking in $136-million worldwide on a $17-million budget--but also garnered the worst … Continue reading Jigsaw’s killer twist takes torture porn up a notch

The Girl With All the Gifts takes a tender turn with zombies

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 22, 2017 By Steve Newton If you’re not a fan of flesh-eater flicks by now, you surely won’t be after seeing The Girl With All the Gifts. Following one of those pesky zombie holocausts, a group of undead/human-hybrid kids is kept in a grungy military prison/school in rural England, where … Continue reading The Girl With All the Gifts takes a tender turn with zombies

Rings makes hairball-horror history

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 3, 2017 By Steve Newton Rings is the first horror flick I've seen since Cheeto Mussolini and his treacherous gang of fear-mongering scuzzballs got access to the nuclear codes, so, relatively speaking, how fucking scary could it be? Not very. You may recall director Gore Verbinski's original The Ring of … Continue reading Rings makes hairball-horror history

Shut In delivers one big twist and a storm of horror clichés

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 11, 2016 By Steve Newton Naomi Watts has won some and lost some as far as her lead roles in horror flicks go. She hit a home run in Gore Verbinski's 2002 remake of the Japanese spooker The Ring, but didn't fare so well amidst Daniel Craig and the ghostly goings-on … Continue reading Shut In delivers one big twist and a storm of horror clichés

Lights Out ain’t The Babadook, people

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JULY 22, 1016 By Steve Newton Lights Out is a new horror flick about a murderous ghoul that you can only see--and get terrorized by--when the lights are out and its silhouette is visible. Illumination renders the thing harmless, so there's a helluva lot of victims-to-be sprinting for lightswitches and fumbling … Continue reading Lights Out ain’t The Babadook, people

The Shallows is harrowing and ridiculous, just like Jaws

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JUNE 23, 2016 By Steve Newton As a horror director, Jaume Collet-Serra has had his ups and downs. He impressed with his feverishly twisted 2005 debut House of Wax, then lost all credibility with the godawful Orphan four years later. It seems like the third time is the charm, though, as Collet-Serra totally … Continue reading The Shallows is harrowing and ridiculous, just like Jaws

The Conjuring 2 is so long it hurts

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JUNE 10, 2016 By Steve Newton My biggest beef with The Conjuring 2 isn't that it's an overbaked and predictable possessed-kid-in-a-haunted-house flick. Or that it's one of those "based on a true story" projects that you just know is all fiction. The worst thing about it by far is its running time. Why … Continue reading The Conjuring 2 is so long it hurts

The Witch has a goat and a lot of yak

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 17, 2016 By Steve Newton The Witch is a smartly shot, well-acted, atmospheric fright flick that aims to shed light on humanity’s dark history of religious persecution and paranoia. There’s just way too much talking goin’ on, is all. It opens with patriarch William (Ralph Ineson) being exiled from his … Continue reading The Witch has a goat and a lot of yak

The Forest is long on jump scares, short on suspense

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JAN. 7, 2016 By Steve Newton The first scary movie out of the gate last year was the Jennifer Lopez thriller The Boy Next Door, which didn't bode well for Hollywood horror in 2015. This year the first Tinseltown fright flick to hit theatres is The Forest, which--while vastly superior to that bogus … Continue reading The Forest is long on jump scares, short on suspense

Victor Frankenstein breathes new life into Mary Shelley’s classic monster tale

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 25, 2015 By Steve Newton Horror fans who suffered through last year’s abysmal I, Frankenstein—not to mention Dracula Untold, Godzilla, and WolfCop—could be forgiven for giving up on old-school movie monsters. But Victor Frankenstein makes up for all of those, breathing new life into Mary Shelley’s classic tale of mortal man overreaching his bounds. Daniel … Continue reading Victor Frankenstein breathes new life into Mary Shelley’s classic monster tale

Jason Bateman discovers his dark side in The Gift

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT. COM, AUG. 5, 2015 By Steve Newton If you thought Jason Bateman could only play affable sad-sacks, prepare for a nice surprise with The Gift. The actor best known for his gentle portrayal of the put-upon Michael Bluth in Arrested Development discovers his dark side in a big way in this unsettling revenge thriller … Continue reading Jason Bateman discovers his dark side in The Gift

Horns is one of the most engrossing horror flicks ever made in Vancouver

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 21, 2014 Who knew that a scary movie based on the bizarre idea of a mortal man growing devil horns could prove so damn captivating? Horns is right up there with The Cabin in the Woods as among the most engrossing horror flicks ever made in and around Vancouver. The film opens with young … Continue reading Horns is one of the most engrossing horror flicks ever made in Vancouver

Dracula Untold is patently ridiculous, and not in a good way

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 10, 2014 By Steve Newton Dracula Untold is so patently ridiculous that it’s hard to even fathom how it came to be. Did some billionaire producer on meth sit through a Lord of the Rings marathon and declare: “That would be so much better with vampires!”? After a rambling prologue describing … Continue reading Dracula Untold is patently ridiculous, and not in a good way

Meat Loaf’s bug-eyed antics make Stage Fright less painful to endure

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, MAY 7, 2014 As far as movies go, the horror-musical is a strange bird. How many horror freaks want a film’s unstoppable killer to break out in song seconds before committing his evil deed? That ruins the suspense. And how many Broadway devotees want to follow a viewing of Cats with a midnight … Continue reading Meat Loaf’s bug-eyed antics make Stage Fright less painful to endure

Horror review: I, Frankenstein

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JAN. 24, 2014 As anyone who's ever read Mary Shelley's Frankenstein knows, the biggest obstacle to successfully creating life from death is that pesky part about the soul missing. You can transplant as many stolen hearts and brains as you want, but without a soul your stitched-up fellow's still gonna be a monstrous … Continue reading Horror review: I, Frankenstein