Worse Than Expected:
XX was an anthology film that I recently checked out on Netflix. I don’t know why I thought this anthology was going to be good. I guess it was the concept. The perspective shift to female protagonists in films created by females was intriguing. However, I quickly realized that they weren’t as original as they were marketed to be. Aside from one good gore scene per segment, the films did nothing to intrigue me. All of the segments had weak endings and most of the plots were executed in a tongue in cheek manner that was just silly…even when it wasn’t purposeful. In the end, there are still far worse films on Netflix. I guess I just expected this to be slightly above average, instead of slightly below.
Better Than Expected:
Tales of Halloween has had some hype around it in the Facebook groups that I’ve been watching. Despite the expectations, I was still wary walking into this film. I saw it as merely another anthology that was going to bore me to death. I have come to find that anthology films just drag for me. I feel like a format meant for short attention spans has the opposite effect on me. I know why they’re being mad from a budget standpointe, I just can’t sit through them. Thankfully enough, Tales of Halloween was just long (or short) enough to keep me happy. I can’t sit through the ABC’s of Death, so maybe I max out at ten segments. Ok, there are films with four segments that I can’t sit through, so I guess it just depends on the quality. All in all, this film has a great lineup of directors. It has brutal effects throughout and some dark storylines. It has comedic aspects, but doesn’t go to Tales from the Crypt lengths for humor. I definitely think this one is worth checking out on Netflix. I will probably end up with a physical copy some day.
Director to Watch:
Gerald’s Game came to Netflix without much warning. Mike Flanagan seems like he’s got a nice little deal going with Netflix. A few years back, I raved about his straight to Netflix film Absentia, and now he is becoming their go-to horror director. I’m glad to see that his vision is being recognized, or maybe just that I was right. Anyway, Gerald’s Game is pretty good. While I’m not a huge fan of the leading cast members, I like what they did with a script that doesn’t rely on much more than a single bedroom setting. As far as the direction and plot go, it seems like a difficult script to film. Thanks to Flanagan, nice gore, and a wild ending, this film manages to hold the viewer tight. It is a claustrophobic and surprisingly effective horror film from a talented young director that all horror fans should check out.