• Youth Without Youth

    Youth Without Youth

    ★★★★

    Sprawling and ambitious mesh of fantasy and romance, with splashes of horror and noir, that embraces language and collision between hidden ancient history and crypto-futurism. A beautiful looking film that stretches Tim Roth in this existential take on memory and love. Part Robert Altman’s Images: fragments of memory and dream intertwine, allowing us to never truly believe in either. Part Coppola’s own Dracula: eternal love, reincarnation and an ancient sense of humanity torn away but here replaced by deep yearning for meaning rather than love itself.

  • Women Hell Song

    Women Hell Song

    ★★★★

    Equally deeply upsetting and beautiful, this tale of revenge was my first Japanese Pink film and not entirely suitable for a Sunday afternoon if I’m honest. The sexual violence is disturbing, but the transition between black and white to colour for the explicit scenes gives it a strange, dreamlike quality.

  • Cecil B. Demented

    Cecil B. Demented

    ★★★½

    Brutal and highly prescient takedown of both modern film bros and the lack of imagination of major studios through the proliferation of sequels and adaptations.

  • Shiva Baby

    Shiva Baby

    ★★★★

    A funeral provides awkward encounters for Danielle, a young bisexual Jewish woman. Adolescence, inadequacies, well-kept secrets and denial and sexual desire simmer and bubble over in anxiety-inducing, grand chaotic tension and abject horror all
    played out over (mostly) one location, heightened by purposeful editing and violent, stabbing strings. Strong performances, juicy dialogue and set pieces and a strong female voice and sexual validation.

  • Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice

    Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice

    ★★★

    What it loses in the sun-soaked, desolate streets of the previous instalment, it gains in jettisoning the incredibly anti-climatic ending of the first and continuing in highly entertaining geriatricide. A wicked witch of the west reference and granny being launched into a window by a big truck are two particular highlights. That and I’ll now always refer to banging as “vigourous sinning.”

  • The Mummy's Ghost

    The Mummy's Ghost

    ★★½

    Another Mummy film shuffles in and out, barely registering anything in its audience. Lon Chaney’s Mummy shambles around in a fairly non-threatening manner, and it’s quite indebted to Bride of Frankenstein, not least in the look of Kharis’ wife-to-be. It’s short, and still spends time unnecessarily recapping the previous film over and over, this time through a university lecturer who is speaking to us at the same time as his class in some on-the-nose exposition. 
    Is it a Word War…

  • The Invisible Man's Revenge

    The Invisible Man's Revenge

    ★★½

    The effects are ok but the plot is dull and drags. The Invisible Man series is all over the place, from adaptation to spy to screwball, and this one does nothing to steady the ship.

  • Xtro

    Xtro

    ★★★★

    Horny E.T., surreal fantasies, and gloopy body-horror. 
    The practical effects are ace: all slimy and raw, gooey and tangible, with some disgusting looking set pieces. It’s been a long time since I last saw this, and whilst I remembered some of those stand-out scenes, I’d forgotten how bleak it is.

  • Death Ship

    Death Ship

    ★★★

    Supernatural chiller that had a clear influence on the Final Destination series, Christine and The Boat, and possibly that bit in Father Ted where Ted sees that other priest’s Nazi memorabilia room. 
    Possessed by the ghosts of Nazi, a lone ship circles the ocean, crashing into a cruise liner. It’s not particularly bloody, but does remain quite tense throughout, through disorientating camera angles, warbling synths and ominous whistling of pistons and clanking of engines in close-up.

  • The Sorcerers

    The Sorcerers

    ★★★★

    Science and psychedelia encourage murder and envy in Michael Reeve’s swinging sixties sci-fi horror. 

    It looks fantastic. There’s a clear juxtaposition between the wild London that dances and writhes in ecstatic colour and frisson, and Boris Karloff’s Marcus Monserrat, Doctor of hypnosis and wife, Estelle Monserrat (Catherine Lacey): time having moved past them, leaving them behind, alone save for each other. 

    A suitably mad looking scientific invention provides the two with a chance to feel young again, feeing every touch and…

  • Saint Maud

    Saint Maud

    ★★★★½

    Frightening and powerful portrayal of faith, with elements of body and psychological horror. Mesmerising, haunting and genuinely awe-inspiring in its questioning of belief, divine purpose and reality.

  • Escape Plan

    Escape Plan

    ★★★

    Sam Neil is also in this.