Tag Archive | SamNeill

In The Mouth Of Madness Movie Review

By: Justin Hopkins

**SPOILER WARNING**

  As another day at home passes, another movie comes up to cross of the list. Following in the footsteps of my review of Prince Of Darkness. We get to movie three of John Carpenter’s Apocalyptic Trilogy, In The Mouth Of Madness. I wasn’t sure what to think when turn on this flick. Knowing very little about it, but after seeing Sam Neel in Event Horizon. Was more than willing to watch him in another horror movie. With it now officially crossed off the list. Let’s dive in and discuss shall we.

The movie kicks off with our main character, John Trent being forcibly admitted to an Insane Asylum. Where after a brief moment of trying to plead his sanity. Experiences a graphic hallucination. When Dr. Wrenn comes to see him, we find him drawing crosses on every inch on his padded cell, his body and clothes and he does not want to leave anymore. After a brief conversation, we learn that he is an Insurance Investigator and that this all started with the disappearance of Sutter Cain. We start the flashback with him tearing apart a man trying to pull an insurance scam. While he is having lunch with a man named Robbie, who is about to talk to him about the Arcane Case, when they are attacked by a crazy man with an Ax. All around his eyes are red and mutated with two pupils squished together. That night, we learn that people are rioting all over the globe. Demanding copies of Sutter Cain’s book. The next day while he is meeting with Arcane. We learn that Sutter Cain has gone missing and that they want his new book. Due to the fact he is world’s highest grossing bookseller, and that the man who tried to kill him the day before, was Sutter’s Agent. Who was the only one who knew how to get ahold of Sutter and read bits of the new book. Sutter’s work has had an almost psychotic effect on some of it’s readers you see.  John doesn’t buy any of this. Believing it to be a mixture of a set-up on their end and mass hysteria over just the latest pop craze. Nevertheless, he picks up some of the books to aide in his investigation, and has a dream sequence of an assault he sees earlier. Where a cop is beating on a young man, only this time, the cop is a monster, and John is trapped between him and a group lead by the agent. Who tells him he can see him, before the mob turns on the agent. Shaken by the dream, he throws himself into his investigation with vigor, and he discovers clues to Sutters location, using images cut from the covers of his books. Coming up with a town in New Hampshire, that he believes is ” Hobbs End.” After calling out the Agent, asking one last time if this was a hoax or not. He heads off to find the town, with assistant Linda Styles. Where after a hit and run that where the biker left before help, but putting a freight into Linda, and a chilling sequence of events that leads them into the town. Where Styles picks up on things around town that was written in his books, and that the events happening are the same from his newest book and John trying to tell her how crazy that is, and this is a good spot to move on.

This story is wonderfully written. Everything that is seen at the start paying off in a big way as the movie goes along. A tremendous example of Dramatic Irony from Linda, when she says, when the insane outnumber the sane, he’d find himself locked away in a padded room. We already know they are leading up to him being locked away and leaves us waiting to see how twisted of a situation this must lead to to put him there and a great mystery unfolding around, and not quite sure how it will conclude and chilling twist at the end. That was there from the start. Which makes a second watch all the more enjoyable.

Much like any Carpenter Film, the gore is on point as usual. There weren’t as many people dying to see like we normally get. The Gore mainly coming from prosthetics. Such as the cop, hordes of infected, and the creepy kids, who were absolutely chilling. I especially love the fact that they never really reuse the same morphed eyes. The cop having red and white pinwheels, and the little girl’s. Even the young man outside of the bookstore. Which made each seem special in their own way. The body contortions of Linda’s crab walking was unnerving. Then you got the actual tentacled, slimy grotesque monster. The lighting and way they came across was excellent. Not looking to cartoonish and just beautifully handled. Huge round of applause to everyone who worked on special effects.

I never talk enough about background settings and they do that so well here to. The town looked like any normal, small town along a highway. Which really added to the isolation feeling. The long, dark corridor he was chased through looked amazing. Looked and felt like it would just go on forever. The church was always framed in a way to give it both a sense of prestige and menace.

Casting was near perfect here. Sam Neill brought John Trent to life, and was a treat to watch as he slowly descended into madness. Seeing desperation as he tried to hold on to rational thought. Never wanting to sway from a reasonable explanation. Still calling Sutter a hack horror writer when he was almost at his lowest. Jurgen Prochnow did great as Sutter. The back and forth between him and Sam were entertaining and the enjoyment he got from what he was about to happen carried heavy through him. I do kind of wish we got more of the human side from Julie Carmen’s Linda. She was great at her crazy side, but think more could have been done while she was human. Small and only nitpick I have with the movie.

Normally, would talk about the ending, but don’t want to give away anything about it to anyone who hasn’t seen it. Despite my spoiler warning at the top. If you haven’t checked it out, would strongly suggest you give it a watch. Great film for anytime. Final Grade- S

I hope you enjoyed reading and as always…

Thank You For Reading.

Event Horizon Movie Review

By: Justin Hopkins

**SPOILER WARNING**

  So, I was struggling a bit. Choosing which movie I wanted to review for this Classic 13. Would pick one, I was so sure about, only to change my mind at the last moment. Even started watching one and turned it off after a minute. Just nothing seemed to feel right, until I spotted Event Horizon. A movie a Co-Worker of mine stressed how great this was and called it, “Hellraiser in space.”  Have to say, after watching it. He wasn’t that far off, except this may be in fact, better than Hellraiser.  So, lets go amongst the stars, and go through the psychological horrors held within Event Horizon.

The movie opens with a bit of information on where Mankind is on space exploration. 2015 colonized the moon. By 2032 began mining on Mars and in 2040, The research Vessel went to explore the far reaches of the solar system, only to disappear beyond Neptune and we open in 2047. A rescue crew and Dr. Weirs are heading to Neptune tol address an immediate situation. Once they get closer to Neptune, Dr. Weirs makes them aware of the situation and what the Event Horizon actually was, and that was finding a way to travel ” Faster than light.” By using a gravity drive, the ship would fold time and space, so that it’s location and destination would be one in the same. Allowing it to punch through and appear where it was going in seconds. We find out later on, that it achieves this affect, by using a man made Black Hole. It all appeared to go exactly according to plan, but never returned till now and they are going to find out what happened. When they arrived, they couldn’t detect any signs off life, and a Miller, Stark, Mr. Justin, and Cooper go in to investigate, and while checking out the room the Gravity Drive. He gets sucked inside. Sending out a massive shockwave that damages the Lewis and Clark ship. Forcing everyone to evacuate onto the Event Horizon. With twenty hours of oxygen, they not only have to try and get the ship fixed, but figure out what happened on the ship, as more and more start to hallucinate and paranoia begins to sweep over, and that is where I am going to leave it.

I almost don’t even know where to begin throwing positives. Philip Eisner, seems like a good place. The Writer, who brought this psychological masterpiece together. It is one thing to scare someone, but this movie gets into your head. The way it tortures everyone with their greatest regrets, failures, and desires even. Way it haunts peters and teases her with her son and his condition. Miller is a caring leader, but strict, and the ships hurls the reason why he is so strict at him, and poor baby bear (Justin) And everything in this movie has some sort of meaning, and that is so much more powerful than just building emotion. It makes repeat watching even more fun. I am watching it while I type this and picked up to things that I overlooked the first time, because I knew more. That is just beautiful. Standing ovation for Philip Eisner.

Giant kudos goes out to Paul Anderson and everyone who worked behind the scenes as well. The shots and lighting were great. The scene where they are first inside. Flashing of lightning illuminating the gory walls waiting to be discovered. The atmosphere is intense. When you are looking at the Event Horizon, in the dark and dim lights. You see all these regular instruments, that take on an evil, and scary form. You had these floating balls of coolant that were such a fun addition to have floating around the glorious room that housed the Gravity Drive. The sets were great and shots made them that much better. The CG involved, is not bad for a nineties movie. Don’t know much about space, but they don’t do anything to outrages to the point of dumb, and the carnage candy is awesome. Especially the death of D.J and again where Justin getting sent out into space.

I don’t even think I can give a nod to one actor over another here. They were all so good. You had Laurence Fishburne, as Captain Miller, who you don’t really like, but he has a reason for being so strict and his sole reason for being is his crews safety. Than you have Sam Neill as Dr. Weir. This is the first movie I have watched of his that is not Jurassic Park, and definitely want to watch more. While he may not have started out as the bad guy, by the time he gets there. Is such a good bad guy. Could talk about the chemistry these two have been great, but that’s the truth between everyone. Kathleen Quinlan, Joely Richardson, Jack Noseworthy, Jason Isaacs, Sean Pertwee, and the “lifesaver” Richard T. Jones. Absolute All-Stars, each and everyone.

Negative wise… Guess you can say some of the space CGI is a bit dated, but I have seen so much worse in recent years than what we get here. So, minor nitpick I can see someone might have. Doesn’t really bother me to much, but one big one, is something we don’t have, and that is the full 130 minute cut of the film. It was cut down due to how gruesome some of it was and whatnot, but when they went back and wanted to use it. It was not well achieved, and most of which is simply lost. Obviously, this isn’t going toward my final thought on the film, and I don’t have anything negative to say about the film itself. Just something depressing I found out about the movie.

In closing, if you haven’t had a chance to check out this classic film. I couldn’t suggest it enough. Mastercraft in Psychological Horror, and shows that you don’t need jumpscares to scare your audience. Just a showcase of talented people, crafting a story, with some talented actors bringing it all to life. Final Grade – S

Hope you enjoyed and as always…

Thank you for reading.

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