Kageoween: Halloween Kills Review (Mostly Spoiler free)

INTRODUCTION: Welcome back to another edition of Kageoween! This year, we’re taking a look at Halloween 2-2, aka Halloween Kills or Halloween 2020-21.

Is this the horror movie of our nightmares or another dashed potential at the film series?

PLOT: It’s technically November 1st, probably, but Halloween is still continuing to be a horrific nightmare, thanks to the escape of Michael Myers, only hours earlier.  

CHARACTERS: Mostly characters from the last outing or in Antony Michael Hall’s case, an updated actor to an old role. None of them are really better developed in this one, but they don’t really need to be.

STYLE: Very great visuals, especially when they go back to 1978 for a very special surprise, which will make you explode with joy as a fan.

ACTING: Very good! Not a single weak ass mutha’ fucker, even the extras brought their A game.

DIALOGUE: Clunky at moments, but otherwise fine. This movie would have been great even with dialogue.

FX: Retro, but good. Nothing is going to stand out to you.

MUSIC: It’s Halloween! It’s that same one fuckin’ song and the occasional eerie Myer’s screech/beat, but it is fuckin’ effective as all hell, so who cares?

SUBTEXT: None that I could discern at present.

CONCLUSION:

The critic consensus isn’t good, but fuck them, am I right? This movie just proves that this Halloween is following typical three act structure and this is The Empire Strikes Back of Halloween movies. Oh sure, it has a few weak moments when it comes to potential recons, that don’t really make sense, given that Halloween (2018) picks up right after Michael is shot by Loomis in Halloween (1978) but they’re not committed enough to those for it to have really matter, at least not in this flick. Yes, it’s a movie devoid of anything but senseless killing and in that, we find brilliance, because this movie is really Michael’s voice, in that he speaks through his actions, leading up to what should be a amazing third act in Halloween Ends (2022) Ultimately, this movie didn’t need to be anything but carnage candy and it satisfies. Now only time will tell if the series will end on a high note. It has me already looking forward to next Halloween.

4 out of 5 stars.

Kageoween: The Haunting of Bly Manor

INTRODUCTION: So, I’ve just finished The Haunting of Bly Manor, a sequel season, to an anthology series of haunted houses, all of which, are apparently mansions. Presumably because the ghost of the mansions are subtext for white guilt because Ole Mike here is more successful than you and feels bad about it. I digress though. This is an adaptation of an old gothic horror novella from 1898, one of which I will now make sure to read. Is this “show” worth it though?

STORY/PLOT: An au pair takes a job at a haunted mansion, how original of Netflix, uh? They really pushed the boundaries of a narrative here.

CHARACTERS: Not bad for horror, but could of been better overall. I know he gets praised for developing characters in horror better than horror normally does, but I feel like his development is equal to that of a prepubescent child with hard nipples from the winter chill as opposed to a fully developed adult woman, but for horror, I’ll take whatever I can get. It isn’t always easy to develop characters well anyways.

Once again I find myself dismayed at the LGBTQ representation being the equal to that of a fratboy having fantasies. I mean, I haven’t hand a chance to know every lesbian in my lifetime, but I do know drunken benders that lead to lesbianism, do not seem to be the major narrative in a lot of gay love stories. It’s more dishearten, given he has his wife play another Lesbian character, whom identifies as Bi, so Mike should know better, but atlas, I will have to put up with shitty characters that don’t even have build to them being lesbians, it’s just trust onto us. I mean, he is only 8 years old than I, but is lesbianism really a shock and awe moment? Kind of behind the 8 ball on this one.

ACTING: Mostly shit, except for two actors. The cook and the guy who played the farther in the The Haunting of Hill House.

STYLE/VISUALS: Kind of reminiscent of early 2000’s dramas for me, like The Practice or Boston Legal. Since this story is based in the 1980’s, it works, but still nothing exciting.

WRITING: Very good.

DIALOUGE: I get it’s England, but a lot of it is fuckin’ cringe.

TENSION: Quite splendid for this show. Sadly it was a big let down to nothing of worth at the end. Once again he added in a scare that I didn’t expect and I’m not afraid to admit it. I lothe the heavy reliance on jump scares though.

MUSIC: Forgettable at best. This show’s tension at it’s highest when there isn’t a score anyways, so.

SUBTEXT: Not a lot, but for me it seems to be about legacies and the impression one makes on others, family and friends being the most important, so that one isn’t forgotten about.

CONCLUSION: While the mid-season twist were perfectly predictable, I like the first 5 episodes even better than I the original. Sadly it wears out its welcome by episode 8 and 9 seems like a tedious epilogue that wasn’t needed. My thoughts are the complete opposite with The Haunting of Hill House, which was boring up until the end. I was afraid this was going to go Deus Ex Machina, but that would of been welcome to the let down of an ending we did get. Episode 8 was so out of place, it really seemed tacked on, when it could of been at the beginning of the season and while a diversion from the narrative, it was somewhat integral to see where the story was heading. It’s just one more let down though, but I’ve wasted my time on worse.

3 out of 5 stars.

EDIT: ADDED WRITING AND DIALOUGE BLOCKS. 18 OCT 2020 AT 2:15 PM

Kageoween: Hubbie Halloween

INTRODUCTION: Adam Sandler and Happy Madison did it again and I do not mean making a great movie. Props to the most meta movie comment ever when a teacher Cleopatra, when prompted to help Sandler’s Character, says “No, he overstayed his welcome!”.

PLOT: A stupid but “lovable” shlub, is hated by his hometown and ends up in the midst of a murder mystery.

CHARACTERS: It’s a Sandler movie, it’s shallow as fuck stock characters. Fuck him and fuck Netflix too!

STYLE: This shit would of been straight to DVD when I was a child, so it looks good from that Standpoint but not really something that would be visually stunning in a theater.

WRITING: Typical Sandler movie with the same bullshit juvenilia that plagues all his movies now a days.

MUSIC: *Shrug*

SUBTEXT: Presumably it’s more schadenfreude from Sandler, the textbook simpleton, who was most likely disliked as a child due to being a moron and who “grew up” to “make something” of himself, so he likes to constantly write the same story and shove it in people’s face.

CONCLUSION: This is all the same beats as Happy Gilmore or Billy Madison. It’s a guy, who would be living in a half way home if someone cared enough about them to get them some help, but as usual, the dumbass somehow saves the day or gets the girl. You know, shit that doesn’t actually happen in real life, given that Sandler and his characters are possibly legally retarded, so the hot girl boning him is the adult equivalent of pedophilia. These movies where cute when you were a child, but they’re sad and pathetic now. If wanted to see middle aged losers who couldn’t cut it in the real world and couldn’t grow up because adulting is “too hard”, I could look on YouTube and find half a dozen Millennial Neckbeards that fit the profile. Adam is the young boomer, proto-millennial who couldn’t grow up back in the 90’s and still cannot. When you factor in his core audience is the same, you get a movie that is not needed. In an alternative world, where Adam Sandler’s audience grew up and he didn’t, those intellectually obtuse neckbeards would be watching these dated, but new “classic” Sandler flix with kids of their own. So while they would still be trite, at least they would serve a function. If Adam really wanted to impress me with a new movie, he would take his formula and combine it with Uwe Boll’s Rampage, it would be more in line with the majority of his former audience and he could call it InCel. It would make a fortune.

EDIT: If anyone would actually like to see a movie that is Billy Madison+Rampage, let me know in the comments and I’ll launch a kickstarter to direct it.

Kageoween: Found Footage 3D in 2D Review.

INTRODUCTION: These movies, as of late, seem to be making a lier out of me. I know I said I hate these films, but Found Footage 3D is another exception to this rule. I don’t know why it has taken the better part of two decades to produce some quality found footage films, but they’re here now and it might be a good thing. At least this one was pretty epic, besides HellHouse LLC trilogy.

SYNOPSIS: Group of people, go off into the woods, like every damn movie, albeit this one with some meta aspects to it, making it “different”.

CHARACTERS: Well done! Granted, none are overly remarkable, but they draw you in and keep you glued into the edge of you seat. I found myself caring at the end, which is a rarity for me.

ACTING: Very, very good! None are well known that I am aware of and all of them put their best foot forward. That, or my standards are getting lower the older I get.

KILLS: Fuckin’ wicked! Oh good, they’re good stuff. Seriously, the ending is amazing!

DIALOGUE: Fantastic! I love the Evil Dead homage along with a great line, pointing out how these films tend to suck. Brilliant!

PACING: Fantastic! Moves at a great pace and keeps you enthralled until the end.

SUBTEXT: none of note. It’s not really a thinker, but it doesn’t need to be. You really just enjoy it and a popcorn flick is always alright.

CONCLUSION:
This one took a tired old cliché and didn’t turn it on its head, but made it tolerable and enjoyable. Found Footage 3D is how these films should have been produced years ago and it is nice to see that people are taking the genre as more than just a cash grab as it has been for years and they’re making haters of the genre like myself, eat crow for the fact that they can be fun, even with an overblown formula. This one is well worth the check out.

4 out of 5.

Kageoween: I Chuckie, a review of the 2019 remake.

INTRODUCTION: I was excited to see that Child’s Play was getting the reboot treatment. I was never the biggest fan of the series, but up to three was good. There is an argument to be made for Bride of Chucky but I was pretty much out at that. The concept was kind of hoakie, but it worked in its time frame, remember, it came out in 1988 and every movie had characters with weird backstories. This one removes the weird voodoo in exchange for a more realistic take. Was it better off?

SYNOPSIS: A company like Apple produces an Amazon like Alexa, but in the form of a doll. The doll goes rouge due to a disgruntled employee having shut off the safety precautions. All hell breaks loose.

CHARACTERS: Pretty shallow to say the least. They could have developed them more, or at least the main characters. Overall, very weak, but so wasn’t the original Child’s Play.

ACTING: Fantastic! Not a weak actor among them all. They all did superb.

DIALOGUE: Not a single bit of cringe! It was excellent and at times very comical.

KILLS: Weak and not very inventive. We have seen most of these things before and it was tame.

PACING:It tried to be an old school story driven movie, but the pacing wasn’t right for it. It didn’t build tension correctly and that is a shame, because I would have loved more build and tension.

SUBTEXT: If we ignore the overt text that is the dangers of AI, Child’s Play at its core is really about being involved in your child’s life more and not allowing negative things to influence them, as Chuckie was. Everything he learns, he picks up from others and I think that is a worthwhile takeaway.

CONCLUSION:
The story could have been better and Andy’s hearing aid could have been a much bigger plot point. It was a missed opportunity to make him seem crazy, so by the end, he would have been redeemed in a most stellar fashion. The modernization was much needed and a fantastic break away from the old. While not an amazing film, a sequel could be beneficial and wouldn’t be minded. I loved the Isaac Asimov homage of the three rules that cannot be broken and there are a few other reference, like RoboCop that are within. Even with the comedy, this movie just could not get me to like it. Objectively speaking, not bad, just slightly flawed. Subjectively speaking, I really hope if they do make another they expound on this one with more developed characters, better kills, a better story and more tension.

Overall
3/5

Kageoween: I’m Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells

INTRODUCTION
     What you get when you cross Goosebumps with Dexter? You get Dan Well’s I’m Not a Serial Killer.

     You may have heard of this book, a movie was made back in 2016, staring Christopher Lloyd. It was an independent film and currently watchable on Youtube for 2.99 if you want to give it a go. I haven’t seen it yet and probably won’t, because of this book.

     For better or worse, here we go…

STORY
     A young man is haunted and tormented by his thoughts of being a serial killer, his parents are split up, his sister is living her life, he is a pariah, he has one friend, he is obsessed with serial killers and he is friends with a kindly old couple. Everything is mostly normal in John Wayne Cleaver’s world, minus the fact that a serial killer is on the loose!

CHARACTERS
     The characters are a lot shallower than an actual psychopath, let me just say that.

     John Cleaver, because I refuse to say his full banal name, is the most developed character of them all, but still a shallow puddle of a character. I could identify with some of his personality, because I enjoyed horror growing up, I wrote horror growing up and also read a lot about serial killers myself. I also was a fan of Marilyn Manson, among other out there musicians, I loved the Undertaker as a wrestler, I had toy caskets and I absolutely loved villains like Freddy Kruger, Michael Myers, Jason Vorhees, Darth Vader, The Emperor, Lex Luthor and also Hannibal Lector, the reason I got into psychology to begin with, as some of my personal favorites. My parents never ran a funeral home, though. Yes, the idea does tend to occur to you, with all the love for the macabre that one isn’t quite right in the head and you might be very strange human indeed. I mean, who watches the opening scene to Children of The Corn and wants to see more? I did, but that’s beside the point. Regardless, John Cleaver is more than normal, he just obsesses over small things like being a killer because he is an INFJ or possibly an autistic, not because he is a killer, because a serial killer wouldn’t care if he or she was one. You could argue he is an unreliable narrator, I mean, it is 2017 America within the book and the damn town has payphones. Regardless, if he is supposed to be interesting, he could struggle a bit more with right and wrong and the plight of possibility, this doesn’t even scratch the surface. I know because I’ve created stories like this, which has infinity more depth than Dan Wells has created.

     The Mom is the second best developed character who apparently is an empath, albeit, expressed piss poorly. She cares about her kids but cannot understand the weirdness with John. She causes a lot of fights and we get to understand some of the rest from John’s exposition. How much of that is trustful when he is running around saying he is a serial killer, is beyond me, though.

     That is pretty much it for developed characters. Other barley worthwhile to note characters are the aunt, sister, his friend who uses 90’s slang in 2017, his love interest, The obvious Serial Killer, who is obvious and his elderly neighbors. Oh yeah, and his shitty psychologist that diagnosis John wrong and doesn’t seem like a real psychologist.

PROSE
     Barebones, wonky and uneven throughout the whole book. Most the book is built developing his character and not well, over building suspense Dan really shows a talent for not knowing what he is doing here. He describes no one. I first thought, maybe that is showing he is devoid of a personal bent, but nope, he can describe hair and clothes piss poorly and doesn’t care to develop other characters through showing. Clearly Dan isn’t a people person and that is fine, but could you at least be inductive enough to realize that and make up for it? I used to write a similar style, but mine was because I knew that the audience, was most likely going to come up with their own version anyways, so let them. I do my best not to do that now a days and I think Dan should learn to as well, since we don’t need group of people, looking like they walked out of Pink Floyd’s The Wall.

     Never mind the fact it has awkward segways, no tension until the end, right up to a piss poor “climax”

SUBTEXT
     There isn’t any in this book outside of what it is like to live with autism, since John, regardless of his semi typical nature, seems to have a lot of the hallmarks of an autistic.

CONCLUSION
     This book seems like it was written in the 1990’s and was shelved or shopped around until it was published in 2010, when Dan finally found a blind editor, or was able to bypass one, and push this book through. The fact is, it is highly dated and this book doesn’t work in a post columbine world. This kid could and would have been red flagged anytime pass 1999. Just look at what happened to Parkland, a weird kid shot up his school, but he was red flagged innumerable times, the FBI was just too inept to take the kids threat seriously, yet Dan’s character just waltzes around, sending up “signals”, whilst everyone around acts as if their fucks have taken the day off. Factor in the aspect of it being derivative of other, better, more successful works and it makes this book seem even weaker in comparison.

     Still, the best thing I could say about this is that it reminded me of all those, in some cases bad, young adult books I used to read back in the day, like Goosebumps or Fear Street and for that, I will give it an extra star, but the rest of it isn’t worth the time and effort.

     If you want a nostalgia pop, this is right for you, no matter how badly. If you want a good book, skip this!

     2 ½ out of 5 stars