Director & Writer: Jonathan Levine; based on the book by Isaac Marion
Cast: Nicholas Hoult as R, Teresa Palmer as Julie, Analeigh Tipton as Nora, John Malkovich as Gen. Grigio, Rob Corddry as M, Dave Franco as Perry
Running time: 1 hour 37 minutes
IMDB page: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1588173/
Plot: In the aftermath of the apocalypse, a young zombie called R falls in love with human survivor Julie, awakening his own humanity and that of his fellow “corpses”
If you randomly edited The Walking Dead, Twilight and (500) Days of Summer together, then squinted really hard, you might approximate the experience of watching Warm Bodies. Its singular weirdness makes it stand out among the usual generic offerings that crowd the multiplex this time of year (quick – who can tell the difference between the new Stallone movie and the new Schwarzenegger movie?).
Thanks to my friend Dan Lybarger for the name (learn more here)
What It Is
Robin Hardy’s long-awaited follow-up to his 1973 cult classic The Wicker Man. This time, naive Christian missionaries from Texas travel to a Scottish village, where they’re invited to be the “Laddie” and the “May Queen” in a local festival. You know the rest.
Why I Saw It
My love for the original, coupled with my boiling hatred for the Neil LaBute/Nicolas Cage remake, made me curious to see what Hardy would bring to his classic 37 years later. Also, Christopher Lee is in it. You won’t believe what I’ve watched just to see him.
What I Learned
- Robin Hardy’s grasp of American culture comes from a mix of Michele Bachmann ads and Petticoat Junction. I’m not convinced he’s ever been here.
- Having “a voice like an angel” apparently means being flat, breathy and completely lacking in stage presence.
- Hiring unkown actors for your lead roles only works if they can act.
- Even in a cameo, Christopher Lee owns everything he does.
- Pasty, flabby Brits should keep their clothes on.
- Honeysuckle Weeks is an actress, not a Harry Potter character.
- If you are famous and travel to Scotland, no one will notice if you don’t come back.
- People who haven’t seen The Wicker Man might actually have it ruined for them by these crappy remakes and sequels.
If you’ve known me for more than, say, 5 minutes, you know I’m a devoted Joss Whedon fan. Since they won’t let us line up for The Avengers yet, I recently joined some friends to see The Cabin in the Woods, the long-delayed horror film Whedon co-wrote with director (and Buffyverse alum) Drew Goddard. Which brings me to my new – and hopefully ongoing – feature, The Critical List.
WARNING – CABIN IN THE WOODS SPOILERS AHEAD!! IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN IT, YOU PROBABLY WON’T KNOW WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT! SO GO SEE IT!! THIS’LL BE HERE WHEN YOU GET BACK!
Director: James Watkins
Writer: Jane Goldman; based on the 1983 novel by Susan Hill
Cast: Daniel Radcliffe as Arthur Kipps, Ciaran Hinds as Samuel Daily, Janet McTeer as Mrs. Daily
Running time: 1 hour 35 minutes
IMDB page: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1596365/
Plot: In 1910s England, lawyer Arthur Kipps travels to a remote village to handle a client’s papers. He soon encounters the spectral “woman in black,” whose appearances portend disaster.
I love ghost stories. They combine my nerdy enjoyment of historical research with my geeky enjoyment of creepy, gothic decay. I’ll even watch those stupid “ghost hunter” shows just to see the cool places they explore, even if the only spirits they encounter are the ones in their imaginations.