There is something to the aesthetic of Where the Woods End, the thriller short subject from director Felix Ahrens. It is sleek and gritty all at once. A glorious crane shot of the titular woods opens the short, panning across the lush, unassuming setting.
Where the Woods End is a taut psychological thriller that follows the growing internal torment of police officer Elke (Henrike von Kuick) after she Continue reading Where the Woods End (Am Ende Der Wald) (2016) Short Film Review
A happily married couple (Regina Hall and Morris Chestnut) are looking for a surrogate to carry their child. The young woman they choose (Jaz Sinclair) is sweet, kind-eyed, and 100% on-board. However, she is looking for more than a simple payment.
As simple as the tactics used are, the film takes its time to establish sympathy for the relationship of our protagonists, and it does this well. You’d be surprised how Continue reading When the Bough Breaks (2016) Movie Review
Don’t Breathe opens on an extreme long shot pushing in on a woman being dragged down the street by her hair in broad daylight. The woman is Rocky (Jane Levy), one third of a lowly thieving group. Some time before this inaugural shot, the trio decide to pull a seemingly simple heist on the house of a blind man (Stephen Lang) whose daughter was killed in a hit and run. Of course, nothing is ever as simple as it appears.
The camera work in the film is appealing, almost surprisingly so. Long shots and agile movement contradict genre norms, at least through Continue reading Don’t Breathe (2016) Movie Review
Stock company IBIS Clear Capital loses $800 million dollars when a trading algorithm “glitches” inexplicably. Lee Gates (George Clooney) hosts a gimmicky, Mad Money-style stock show that gets hijacked by a gunman (Jack O’Connell) as a result of this stock collapse. Our hijacking criminal is trying to reveal the real criminals: the Wall Street bigwigs. How topical.
The film is littered with logical pitfalls and narrative conveniences, but we can let these slide, because Continue reading Money Monster (2016) Movie Review
Sound is a vital part of any horror film. Perhaps the most vital. What happens, then, when you insert a protagonist into a horror-thriller narrative who is deaf. This is exactly the case with Hush, which pits novelist Maddie Young (Kate Siegal), who lives conveniently in the middle of the woods with few people within screaming distance (if she could scream, that is, as she is also mute), against a masked intruder (John Gallagher Jr.).
This premise, in its early stages of execution, makes for a very Continue reading Hush (2016) Movie Review
Two couples move in to a quaint duplex and, coincidentally, both are expecting. Kate and Justin (Clemence Poesy and Stephen Campbell Moore) are unassuming and innocently critical. Theresa and Jon (Laura Birn and David Morrissey) are welcoming and intolerably tidy. Their lives initially appear like mirrors with only the slightest light refracted, but the light starts to bend more and more when they sit down for dinner together. And this light can only hope to continue bending away from center as the film progresses.
The first act, culminating in this dinner scene, is structured with precision. The editing may be standard shot-reverse shots, but the compositions are Continue reading The Ones Below (2016) Movie Review