Halloween Marathon: Scooby Doo & Looney Tunes Double Feature

After the Alvin & the Chipmunks double feature, I decided that I needed to add in some horror animation. Whats a horror marathon without appealing to all age groups, right? Of course, my inspiration could only happy when I saw that Netflix had a few more of these full-length animated Halloween specials.

SCOOBY-DOO ON ZOMBIE ISLAND (1998)

Director: Hiroshi Aoyama, Kazumi Fukushimi, Jim Stenstrum

scooby doo on zombie island

The gang reunite and visit Moonscar island, a place with a dark secret. Daphne wants more than just a guy in a costume, and they get more than they bargained for.- IMDB

This is my first time ever watching any Scooby-Doo.  It was never very apparent in my childhood and I think I only learned about it in my teens.  I’m not even sure when the show itself came out.  Either way, I felt like it would be a good time to give this a shot.

Scooby-Doo is a little harder for me to like.  The story itself is actually pretty good except the group itself takes a little time to acquaint with. However, they do have their charm once it gets going.  They each balance each other and the story of Zombie Island being on Moonscar Island has a nice approach to it.  It was a pretty clever way that they did it. Except it makes me wonder what age group they were aiming for with this because with animated zombies and ghost hauntings, I can imagine being a little scared if I was a kid.  It might also be that reason that I found this highly entertaining after I got used to the group and it wasn’t hard to before things got shady at Moonscar Island.

Its a pretty nice animation to check out.  Not too long and gives you a good share of zombies, ghosts and dives into the supernatural world.  Perfect for a light Halloween animation :)

LOONEY TUNES: DAFFY DUCK’S QUACKBUSTERS (1988)

Directors: Greg Ford, Friz Freleng

daffy duck's quackbusters

Daffy Duck opens a detective agency for the supernatural along side his Looney Toon buddies.-IMDB

Unlike Scooby-Doo, Looney Tunes has been part of my childhood.  Sylvester, Tweety, Porky Pig, Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck is always fun to watch.  It probably shows when I just bought a Merry Melodies T-shirt from Uniqlo this summer on my trip to Hong Kong.

Sure, its aged because its from 1988 but its still a lot of innocent fun.  The crew is always silly because they reflect how they are pretty oblivious to whats around them. Its pretty much set up with shorts to start it off with Daffy Duck and then leads into segments of little stories with Daffy Duck and how he opens the detective agency and then hires Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig to be his paranormalist partners.  Sylvester’s segments were fantastic.  There’s a part with Bugs Bunny that is pretty entertaining when he ventures into Hotel Translyvania.

Its not really from nowadays and its not really through and through as entertaining as I felt it was when I was a little girl but nostalgia has a funny way of making these things still fun to watch :)

 Are you a fan of Looney Tunes and/or Scooby-Doo? Did you grow up with them? Have you seen these full-length features?

**We’ll be heading back into full-on horror/psychological thrillers right into Halloween, even having posts going up on the weekend.  I have a bit of catching up to do on top of watching the last 4 Friday the 13ths also.  Lets finish this up in Halloween Horror style :)**

Halloween Marathon: Hansel & Gretel (Video 2013)

First of all, I’d like to apologize for the next B-Horror that I ended up skipping with the same votes as this one.  Its because I realized its part of this 1313 series and I felt like I should probably see other ones.  Its kind of a weird thing I have with trying to watch things in order.  So I decided to watch this one instead.  Also, you’ll see that I’ve chosen less B-horror because Friday the 13th franchise is already a rather low-budget sort of thing and could easily pass for this (at least I think it does without looking deeper into the budget and whatnot because its really not my thing).

So, here we are: Hansel & Gretel.  Not the Witch Hunter one with Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton.  I already reviewed that one last year right HERE. This one is from Asylum and is not set in the past but its very much in the present.  What intrigued me was that its directed by Anthony Ferrantes which is also the director of Sharknado :)

hansel and gretel posterDirector: Anthony C. Ferrantes

Cast: Dee Wallace, Stephanie Greco, Brent Lydic, Jasper Cole, Sara Fletcher, Clark Perry, Steve Hanks

The modern retelling of Hansel and Gretel.  Gretel (Stepanie Greco) works at a The Gingerbread House and after a disagreement with her brother Hansel (Brent Lydic), she goes to look for him in the woods where they used to go with their deceased mother.  Once there, she finds Hansel hurt and takes him to a nearby cabin which turns out to be owned by her boss, Lilith (Dee Wallace).  They end up being held captive and trying to find a way out.

hansel and gretel

 

What is there to say about Hansel and Gretel? If you carry Sharknado’s expectations into Hansel and Gretel, you will most likely be disappointed.  Its far from being as fun as watching sharks twirling in the sky along with a gun-wielding man shooting in the sky to protect his family.  I didn’t loathe this movie.  It wasn’t boring, even if it was about to hit that area.  Its super predictable, as you’d expect from Asylum.  The story is been there done that anyways.  Still, I felt oddly indifferent at the end.  I didn’t hate it but I didn’t like it either.  I guess I liked parts of it? Where do I start?

hansel and gretel

Hansel and Gretel is a good place to begin.  I actually wanted to punch Hansel in the face at the beginning because I really didn’t know if he was a teenager or some university student or something like that. Gretel seemed like such a do-gooder also because she worked hard.  Either way, Hansel was just whiny and a glutton because he ate sweets all the time.  I mean, I emphasize sweets because the movie emphasizes that also.  Like I get this is a Hansel and Gretel movie and in the actual fairy tale, Hansel is the one that falls for the witch’s tricks and gets pumped fat and almost gets killed.  At least thats what I remember.  Its just so in your face about it.  But thats okay, its Asylum and they do that.  He’s just so intolerable as a character and then in the middle he turns right around and turns into the most useful person in the world because he knows how to pick locks (despite being clumsy) and he stays calm and collected (for the most part) and he gets all down to business.  I totally liked that Hansel more but correlation and continuity, whatever you call it, the character didn’t develop, he just flipped.  Maybe thats what danger is supposed to do to you?

If anyone is convincing (most of the time), its this lady below, Dee Wallace playing the “witch”. She was pretty batshit crazy and on top of that, she was really creepy.  I could believe that she was a witch without her ever shifting form.  Sure, the script doesn’t give a whole lot of scares but when she was on screen, especially the sudden burst of anger.  That was pretty creepy.  Hansel and Gretel

There was one thing that I have to mention.  Hitting the middle when all hell breaks loose and Hansel and Gretel know whats going on and they try to break out and all that happens afterwards, there’s some pretty cringe-worthy scenes.  Maybe they look fake, maybe they don’t.  It was just super disgusting. There was one part I had to look away because it just made me mega nauseous.  I usually have pretty good tolerance with this sort of thing but this time, I just had to turn away in those few parts when they were making a getaway inside the house.  I’m still debating whether that part was necessary or it was just added for the sake of making it nauseating.

As I write this I realize how to describe this.  It was inconsistent.  The characters had sudden flip in personality (like Hansel’s example) and the style went from somewhat tame to revolting.  It was just like a switch went on and they just realized that they had to change the pace suddenly so there was no transition.  Oh right, and the ending was so obvious too.  It was a really cheap attempt to add a twist.  Honestly, I’m not saying I hated or liked this.  That would imply that I actually cared and I don’t really care that much. Trust me, I’m not being harsh because my expectations are always low when it comes to Asylum productions.

Have you seen Asylum’s version of Hansel and Gretel? 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Refraction

For this photo challenge, show us what “refraction” means to you. It could be an image taken in a reflective surface, it could be light bent from behind an object, or it could mean remedial math homework: the choice is completely up to you. I’m looking forward to seeing how you interpret “refraction.”- The Daily Post

Seeing as I never got that post up on the Lantern Festival/Garden of Lights at Botanical Gardens.  I will continue to use those pictures for this challenge :)

Botanical Gardens

Japanese Pavillon

Botanical Gardens

Japanese Pavillion

Botanical Gardens

Japanese Pavillion

Botanical Gardens

Water Garden

Botanical Gardens

The Great Pumpkin Ball

My guess is that the first one portrays refraction the best but then if its off a reflective surface well, all of these have some form of reflection and diverting light in some extent :)

Halloween Marathon: Friday the 13th Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Moving right along, I’m starting to think this franchise is going to go downhill when I saw the name: Jason Takes Manhattan.  There is going to be a lot of ever weirder and harder to believe stuff than telekinetic powers and rising from the dead. Anyways, I really have nothing else to say about this so lets check it out ;)

jason takes manhattanDirector: Rob Hedden

Cast: Jensen Daggett, Tiffany Paulsen, Todd Caldecott, Kane Hodder, Barbara Bingham, Peter Mark Richman, Kelly Hu

A small cruise ship carrying a graduating class leaves for Manhattan for their grad trip.  Jason ends up hanging on and boarding this ship unknowingly.  While one of the girls, Rennie that decided to go.  Rennie is raised by her uncle and has a profound fear of water because she believes that some little kid tried to drown her (or she saw drown) when she was young. Jason slowly goes after them one by one.  Question is: who will survive this?

Okay, confession time.  I was nodding off halfway through this one and then only caught glimpses of the ending portion.  I have a general idea of what happens but the first half wasn’t good enough to make me want to redo this.

Jason Takes Manhattan Renee and Sean

Because of that confession, maybe some facts aren’t complete.  Thats okay because there are no spoilers.  Except Jason Takes Manhattan is false because by the time I was nodding off, they were just getting on a boat (I guess this is kind of a spoiler) and escaping the cruise ship.  Relentless as Jason is, of course, he follows them and they, by some odd chance, land in Manhattan.  This one has SO MANY plot holes.  The acting, especially with Uncle Charles, was just an unexplicable amount of bad.  I think I rolled my eyes so much and laughed at the movie and that probably was why I was so tired.

jason takes manhattan

Jason is played by the same dude, a pretty menacing man called Kane Hodder.  The only continuity of this is here.  BUT, somehow sitting in the bottom of the lake after the last one, instead of rotting more, (if thats possible anymore for him), he acquired gloves.  Thats just the start of it not making any sense whatsoever.  Let me point out that I usually get sold on plot holes easily but seriously, this one was just so out there.  I mean, apparently humans are flammable.  Not exactly sure thats possible unless our veins are pumped with gasoline suddenly.  Some teen gets thrown on the electric board and he went on fire immediately.  This director apparently likes fire going off for no logical reason.  And then, the kid I mentioned up there that drowned or tried to drown Rennie was apparently Jason but he’s not disfigured anymore.  Question marks are floating around my head.  And the “final kill” for Jason is kind of laughable. I mean, the effects are really even worse than the previous ones and those are older.  I think my boyfriend had it spot-on: low budget.

jason takes manhattan

So far, its sounding pretty negative.  In the heart of finding something redeemable, the picture up there on the right should be someone you recognize.  At least, I did.  Thats Kelly Hu, in a much younger role in a really meh movie but if you don’t recognize her, she is also in one of the shows I am currently obsessed with.  ARROW :) She’s China White *gasp*. Still, she was one of the sillier kills and  not all that logical.  Hey, its the role, not her, right?

Overall, Jason Takes Manhattan was pretty blah. I’m pretty sure I won’t see this again. Definitely my least favorite of the franchise so far.  If its going down in quality in such an exponential pace, I’m a little worried about what’ll happen in the next one.  I really do.  Plot holes, ridiculous acting, illogical effect: this one has it all.  I really hope that it gets better because with that ending, I have no idea how it’ll continue.  Even the ending made no sense….

Time to end this review and move on to the next movie…

Thoughts on Jason Takes Manhattan? Anyone like this? If you do, please enlighten me on what made you like it? 

Halloween Marathon: Friday the 13th The New Blood (1988)

A lot of you didn’t fail me when you told me that Part 6 was one of the best movies in Friday the 13th.  Apparently, its supposed to fall apart of this one also? Excuse me when I’m trying to not think about that.  Especially when my boyfriend couldn’t even remember if he liked this one or not.

Still, fingers crossed that it’ll be decent.  I already don’t hold particularly high expectations as this was done almost the same years as I’ve been alive.

Friday the 13th Part 7 The new BloodDirector: John Carl Buechler

Cast: Lar Park-Lincoln, Kevin Spirtas, Susan Jennifer Sullivan, Susan Blu, Terry Kiser, Heidi Kozak, Kane Hodder

Tina (Lar Park-Lincoln) returns to her childhood summer home with her mother and her psychiatrist where she believes she caused the death of her father because of her uncontrolled telekinesis when she was a little girl.  Next door, the house is rented by a group of young adults/teens (or whatever age group they are) want to throw a surprise party for a guy that never shows up (and you know why already, right?). Tina has these fits as she’s undergoing therapy and mistakenly uses it to release the dormant Jason Voorhees trapped since the previous movie.  Coming back rotten and even more supernatural than the last one, he continues his killing spree as he chases and tries to kill everyone. Will Tina’s telekinesis be enough to fight against Jason?

friday the 13th the new blood

The New Blood started off a little weird and sketchy if I’m being honest.  Then it kind of has some bad acting, which is okay because its pretty much expected after six movies (and even during those ones).  The whole telekinetic thing was really a completely funky tangent to use.  There were also some technicalities that didn’t really make sense like the ending.  Still, I can’t help but think that this was still pretty entertaining.

Friday the 13th The New Blood

Jason keeps a lot of good details.  I mean, he’s been rotting at the bottom of Crystal Lake so he shows obvious signs of that from the tattered clothes and rotting hands and you can even see the exposed bones.  Then if you remember the ending of the last one where he has the motor chop his face or neck (or somewhere around there), the mask carries on with that.  On top of that, Jason Voorhees is a freaking supernatural zombie to the max now and he actually is a pretty menacing size.

Friday the 13th The New Blood

Despite not totally buying the whole telekinetic business and the ending was really stretching it, the process of watching this was pretty good.  The kills are pretty cool, the characters are alright and you know what really made me realize how I was pulled into this? When a character totally pissed me off (the dude up there) and I kept cheering on for Jason to show up and chop him up.  Sounds mean? If you’ve seen this, you know he truly does deserve it.

Overall, Part 7 isn’t quite as impressive as how I felt about Part 2, 4, 6 but its still a relatively good one.  The telekinesis thing really ended up working out and the main character(although she was pretty stupid and made some pretty stupid choices) was pretty good.  Her out of control powers gave this a special twist.  The entertaining factor can definitely be found in bits and part of this one and it was a lot better than I expected.  All this is a plus to this series.  I’m going to accept decent viewing experience to be good at this point because the expectations are starting to waiver a little.

Have you seen Part 7 The New Blood? I really think the appreciation for this one could go both ways so did you like it or not? 

Halloween Marathon: Alvin & the Chipmunks Double Feature

After seeing Cara at Silver Screen Serenade with her intense movie marathon and making her list of family-friendly Halloween movie (check it out Part 1 and Part 2), I’ve already reviewed a good bunch of that list and it made me realize that I needed a little non-intense Halloween portion so I started watching Alvin and the Chipmunks double feature on Netflix.

Lets do a little double feature segment to take a little breather before heading back into little more intense stuff :)

ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS MEET FRANKENSTEIN (VIDEO 1999)

ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS MEET FRANKENSTEIN

Director: Kathi Castillo

The Chipmunks are working a show at the Majestic Movie Studios when they wander off and get locked in. They soon realize that the park unexpected hired Dr. Frankenstein and to spook up the Frankenstein castle attraction, his plans are to create the monster.  As the boys try to escape from this danger, they have this wild adventure.

I fully understand that Alvin and the Chipmunks are not targeted for me but then I’m trying to finish watching all the seasons of The Magic School Bus on Netflix before it expires in November so I guess I have my nostalgic moments as well.  This is exactly where that is.  Alvin and the Chipmunks are extremely fun to watch.  I mean, I’ve seen the live/CGI version and other than the first one, the sequels aren’t really that great.  It has some fun chipmunk style music that has some feet tapping qualities but this one really reminded me what watching Alvin on TV felt like.  I had more fun than I probably should have had.  I really think thats what counts :) It took a pretty dark story and changed it to something really fun to watch.  You know that its never going to be creepy scary or anything.  Even the scary parts get a little goofy but thats the charm of it. Did I mention it was a full length feature? Not those 20 minute side stories that are put out nowadays.

ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS MEET THE WOLFMAN (TV 2000)

alvin chipmunks wolfman

Director: Kathi Castillo

Another full length movie like the Frankenstein one.  Alvin believes that the new next door neighbor is a werewolf.  After he causes chaos at the school play rehearsals, Dave tries to take away his monsters obsession by removing all monster-related things in his life.  The play is now replaced by the bullied Theodore and sharing his role is Simon.  When Theodore comes home one day, bitten by a big dog, he transforms into a werewolf pup gradually and this changes him as his confidence increases and he turns into something even worse than Alvin was.  How do they change Theodore back to his old self?

I love Theodore the most in the Chipmunks.  I love watching monsters and this one even includes the Chipettes (which is pretty cool).  They have some cute music and the characters always are fun to watch.  I feel its a little less entertaining than the Frankenstein one.  It still is pretty lovable to watch but its not quite as complete.  Maybe its because I watched this back to back with the other one, I feel less excited than the previous.  I just thought as predictable as these are, this one really didn’t offer quite as much fun.

Alvin and the chipmunks do have a special place in my heart.  So, it was worth it to go down this nostalgic road to revisit an actual animated full length feature with them and not the updated CGI version :)

Are you a fan of Alvin and the Chipmunks? 

Horror Movie Survival Kit

What would  you want handy if you were part of a horror movie?

Do you ever wonder that when you turn on that horror movie or in the process of watching it?  Do you ever think to yourself what would have helped in that moment to get to the end credits alive?

Halloween is the time for horror movies.  As I go through my Halloween horror month and head into the second half of the month of the movie marathon life, I can think of all those movies I’ve seen (whether Friday the 13th or not) of what would be so useful to get through a monster attack, zombie apocalypse, chased down by a crazy slasher in the middle of nowhere (or ever somewhere civilized).

There seems to always be a formula of how the setting is and what happens.  How would you approach it?

Man Crates Gifts for Men is a company that focuses on gifts for men and their community manager reached out and told me about their campaign called the Horror Movie Survival Kit. The concept is simple.  If you were stuck in a horror movie, what would you want as your Horror Movie Survival Kit in your personalized crate.  There is no number limit of items.

I thought this campaign is a really fun idea.  After giving it some thought, I thought about portability, usefulness and durability (especially in the case of a zombie apocalypse or being in the middle of nowhere).

Here’s my list:

1. RECHARGEABLE FLASHLIGHT

rechargeable flashlight

Flashlights are the one thing I always would want in a horror movies because they are just so damn dark.  ALL THE TIME! How would you like to have a flashlight to see further ahead and know whats there before you step into that dark room while escaping or at least using it to quickly find your path and see if you are walking into another corpse or obstacle on the ground.  Its usefulness is unquestionable except, I don’t want to deal with batteries because you know in that crucial moment, those batteries are going to run out and instead of fumbling for some in the millions of pockets, I’d rather give that flashlight a few shakes so that it’ll recharge again.  Its relatively quiet and kind of quick.  I’d say thats already a better alternative.

2. HIKING SHOES

Just an example :)

Just an example :)

Goodness knows where this horror movie is but at least with nice sturdy shoes, it’ll have the grip to climb stuff quickly and run through forests and all that tough work.  If it was at a party or a beach thing, at least its not running in heels or flip-flops.  I guarantee you that its a shortcut for falling flat on your face and whoever and whatever is chasing you is going to attack.  No way I’m letting that happen!

3. WEAPONS(Portable Machete/Guns/Extra Ammunition)

I’m pretty sure this goes without saying that whatever situation, you need some form of weapons. I couldn’t decide between guns (because I’ve never shot one) but then its a movie, realistically speaking, it’ll work out somehow.

300px-Para-Ordnance_Nite-Tac

At least its something.  Extra ammunition goes without saying.  If you asked me what guns exactly, give me Resident Evil Alice’s Double Shotguns or those Silver Nite-Tac ones and I’m a happy camper.  As for the machete, just portable one is fine, like smaller than the big ones. Something I can tuck away and access easily but not hurt when running.  That sounds like a pretty good plan.

4. FIRST AID KIT

Portable first aid kit

There is no way to avoid getting hurt in a horror movie.  So, disinfectants at the minimum is needed regardless of alcohol or hydrogen peroxide, along with band-aids, Polysporin (if possible) or maybe add in a few painkillers.  I think this sounds pretty reasonable.  On the downtime, it would be useful to have this.  I don’t go anywhere without band-aids and I’m not in a horror movie, just saying ;)

5. NON-PERISHABLES & WATER BOTTLE

nonperishables

Unless you are in a slasher flick, where its usually a one night do or die deal, most of time its a relatively stretched out battle.  I’ll need to keep replenished and hydrated.  I’m hoping that water hasn’t been contaminated whatever scenario I’m trapped in because I’d keep that bottle near by. I just hope that it doesn’t get too heavy.  And well, at least a little bit of food to stay decently nourished.  Its either that or getting some Centrum but pills tend to be heavy and noisy when carrying it around.

Other than that…

The best recipe for getting out of a horror movie alive comes in the form of something I can’t pack in a crate but rather in my mind and its called common sense and quick reflexes.  I need to remember to keep that in check even in panic because you don’t want to be that person that just freezes when some crazy man comes at you with some scary weapon.  Or stop or not shoot them a second time or in the case of Jason Voorhees, chop off his head so he doesn’t come back alive for 11 movies.

I’m not very unique in what I need because I really think sometimes simplicity is the way to go.

Now its your turn.  What would you bring in your horror movie survival kit/crate?