Saturday, March 25, 2017

Devil in the woods (2012) (also known as The Barrens)

I watched this film this week. It felt like it was a made for TV movie. The story was about a family going on a camping vacation to heal itself from a trauma of a natural mother dying and being replaced with a new woman. An older teenage daughter interested in smoking and boys and a much young brother who is sad about the loss of his dog who has gone missing. It's a bit of a long drawn out film with the father's behaviour becoming an increasing cause for concern. This is meshed with a story about a devil in the woods. The father thinks the story is real and everyone else doesn't, except one of the forest rangers.
Well, things don't start out vey well and then they get worse. It seems the father was bitten by the family dog and he may have contacted rabies. You'll have to watch the film to decide if he did or not. I thought the acting was good but there just wasn't enough in it to make me scared.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Storm Doris

Storm Doris hit the UK on Thursday 23rd February. One of the reasons I haven't been posting much in this blog has been that ever since then I've been busy with arranging repairs to the garden fence and roof of my house. We also had to postpone the delivery of a dishwasher (which has now gladly arrived and been installed). Getting the garden fences done has given me renewed interest in the garden though. So on Sunday I spent most of the day putting down a new logroll fence in the corner where the cats crap. Instead of it being a zigzag of wonky little fences it is now a semi-circle of loveliness. Storm Doris did cost me a lot of money on getting my main garden fences replaced though and I also couldn't get home when it hit, as I was working away at the time and all the trains were cancelled.

The Photography Show 2017

For 4 days starting last weekend the NEC is host to The Photography Show 2017. It is the first time I've been to the event and I enjoyed it. The only down side to my day was that MCM Comicon was on in the same venue and I didn't see any advertising before I bought my ticket, otherwise I would have bought my son a ticket for MCM while I attended the Photography Show. Next time I will know better. There were a few crossover moments though, with a procession of stormtroopers and other Star Wars characters walking through the show. I missed those as well!
It was my first visit to the show and I didn't spend vast sums of money fortunately. I did buy what I set out to get though, which was a reflector for portraits and a studio tent for product photography. I had a look at a few other stalls and during the morning I attended a Beginner's Masterclass, which had some good talks.

Catacombs 2007

I watched this film recently. I started watching it rather half-heartedly as I was doing something else. The film did not grip me very much and it was over a week later when I felt like returning to it, to finish it off. The story is set in Paris' underground catacombs. Some kind of party event is going on down there illegally and a group of friends decide to explore the catacombs on there own. One member of the group is an American who has only just arrived in Paris.
Much of the film is focused on this one girl as she runs through dark tunnels screaming. It's not particularly original or interesting. Neither is it scary. I didn't like this film very much and felt it was a chore to sit through the whole thing.


Sunday, March 05, 2017

Gantz (anime) 2004

So this week I have been mainly watching the complete anime collection of Gantz, which I recently purchased from CEX down in Brighton during the half term holidays. I had previously bought 3 volumes of the manga Gantz because they were cheap at the time being second hand but all in good condition. I really like the characters and the story of Gantz. It features a collection of people who are about to die under various circumstances who are transferred to a room that has a view of the Tokyo skyline and a large black ball. Inside the ball are suits and weapons and a bald guy who wears an oxygen mask and who never opens his eyes or communicates. Nobody knows what Gantz is and it is not explained. Through the course of the series and transferring knowledge from one group of people - or I should say survivors - to the next we learn a little more each time.
The suits offer protection and give strength but they can be damaged and can fail. Gantz tells the people that their lives are now his and that they have to kill aliens in combat in order to be allowed to return to their lives. They return home after each round but are called back for successive rounds. They have an hour to kill the aliens and those who survive score points and the ones who earn 100 points will be allowed to leave. The weapons they are given are of different types: there is an X-Ray gun, a sniper rifle, shotguns, pistols and a trap gun. They fire light and have a delayed response. The main characters at the start are Kei Kurono, Kato Matsuri and Kei Kishimoto: two young men and a young woman. There is a love triangle between the three of them: Kurono is immediately attracted to Kishimoto but she is infatuated with Kato. In another plot twist, Kishimoto moves in with Kurono and this only serves to further confuse him.
It is an interesting storyline because it's not clear what is going to happen next and how it will end. I understand that the anime goes a different direction than the manga, so I look forward to the manga written by Hiroya Oku. The manga finished in 2013, after starting in 2000.

Husk (2011)

I saw Husk this week. It's a story about a group of friends driving somewhere across America to have a holiday I think. They are in the middle of nowhere when they have a car accident. On either side of the road are tall corn stalks so they can't see very much. One of the guys is missing when they awake after the car crash. It's the usual horror fair, instead of sticking together they split up or form factions that turn against each other. There are scarecrow/zombie characters as one by one the friends are murdered and in turn become zombies themselves. I didn't think it was scary at all and the story was fairly bland. The movie was professionally shot and put together though so they made an effort, I think it's standard TV film fodder rather than anything worth watching again, so on that basis I can only recommend it as worthy of a single watch.