Blu-ray Review: The ‘Burbs (1989)

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The 'Burbs BR CoverDistributor: Arrow Video

BBFC Classification: 12

Director: Joe Dante

Starring: Tom Hanks, Carrie Fisher, Corey Feldman, Bruce Dern, Wendy Schaal, Rick Ducommun, Henry Gibson, Courtney Gains, Corey Feldman, Dick Miller, Robert Picardo

Playing on the themes of suburban paranoia that seemed to permeate a lot of dark comedy films that emerged in the late ’80s/early ’90s, The ‘Burbs sees ‘normal’ suburbanite Ray Peterson (Tom Hanks – Forrest Gump/Big) and his fellow neighbours Art Weingartner (Rick Ducommun – Groundhog Day), Ricky Butler (Corey Feldman – The Lost Boys) and the military-obsessed Lieutenant Mark Rumsfield (Bruce Dern – Django Unchained) wondering about the mysterious new arrivals in their street, the Klopeks. Never seen Continue reading

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Blu-ray Review: Runaway Train (1985)

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Runaway Train BR CoverDistributor: Arrow Video

BBFC Classification: 15

Director: Andrei Konchalovsky

Starring: Jon Voight, Eric Roberts, Rebecca De Mornay, Danny Trejo, Edward Bunker, T.K. Carter, John P. Ryan, Kyle T. Heffner, Kenneth McMillan

Despite being made in the mid-1980s Runaway Train has the feel of a ’70s action film, the kind where the lead characters were real men on real adventures and the testosterone levels went through the roof, the sort of tough movies that Clint Eastwood, Steve McQueen and Charles Bronson made their reputations with.

Runaway Train stars Jon Voight (Deliverance/Heat) and Eric Roberts (The Dark Knight/The Expendables) as Oscar ‘Manny’ Manheim and Buck McGeehy respectively, prisoners at Stonehaven Continue reading

DVD Review: Dark Skies (2013)

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Dark Skies DVD CoverDistributor: eOne Films

BBFC Classification: 15

Director: Scott Stewart

Starring: Keri Russell, Jake Brennan, Josh Hamilton, J.K. Simmons, Kadan Rockett

‘From the producers of Sinister and Insidious…’ says the press release for Dark Skies; throw Paranormal Activity into that particular melting pot and you’ll either go “Ooh, that sounds scary” or it will induce a stress-related nosebleed and you’ll feel inclined to purge yourself with some serious video nasty action. Mmm… video nasties!

Daniel Barrett (Josh Hamilton – The Bourne Identity) and his wife Lucy (Keri Russell – Mission: Impossible III) live in suburbia with their two young sons Jesse and Sam. The struggles of everyday life Continue reading

DVD Review: The Innkeepers (2011)

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The Innkeepers DVD CoverDistributor: Metrodome Distribution

BBFC Classification: 15

Director: Ti West

Starring: Sara Paxton, Pat Healy, Kelly McGillis, Jake Ryan, George Riddle

For fans of what one may call ‘proper’ horror movies, director Ti West’s 2009 retro-shocker The House of the Devil was something of a revelation. A slow-burner in the proper sense of the word, the film took inspiration from the best of classic Hammer by way of Rosemary’s Baby, The Amityville Horror and The Exorcist and proved that gratuitous CGI gore, cheap jump scares and a faceless cast are no match for pacing, escalation, a knack for storytelling and stylistic flair. The Innkeepers is West’s follow-up and sees the Continue reading

Blu-ray Review: Dressed To Kill (1980)

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Dressed To Kill BR CoverDistributor: Arrow Video

BBFC Classification: 18

Director: Brian De Palma

Starring: Michael Caine, Angie Dickinson, Nancy Allen, Keith Gordon, Dennis Franz, Ken Baker, Susanna Clemm

Brian De Palma is a director who often gets criticised for using several of Alfred Hitchcock’s tricks in his films, and to his credit he acknowledges Hitchcock’s influence and freely admits using Hitchcock’s “film language” – as he puts it – to make his movies. Probably more than any of his other films, Dressed To Kill is so reminiscent of the legendary director’s ‘language’ – particularly Psycho – that it only needs Anthony Perkins to show up and Continue reading