Double Feature: Bone Tomahawk (2015) & Dredd (2012)

Bone Tomahawk

We are finally digging into our own movie collection and watching films that have remained unwatched for too long. We are slowly going to start tackling this pile in between Netflix and the random cheap rentals. Its been a little while since I saw these two movies and the pairing is kind of an odd double feature but still, I’ve heard great things for both films.

Let’s check it out!

BONE TOMAHAWK (2015)

Bone Tomahawk

Director (and writer): S. Craig Zahler

Cast: Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Fox, Richard Jenkins, Lili Simmons, David Arquette

In the dying days of the old west, an elderly sheriff and his posse set out to rescue their town’s doctor from cannibalistic cave dwellers. – IMDB

Part Western, part psychological thriller, part horror; Bone Tomahawk is a mix genre that uses a setting to propel its story forward. Its slow-paced and intriguing, keeping it mysterious and suspenseful as well. At the same time, there is an underlying feeling of danger in the vastness of the desert that it takes place in the majority of the time as the sheriff and his crew traverse to encounter an unknown group of enemies. While the enemies in question are different, its hard to not compare a bit of the story to the likes of The Burrowers (review), which is also a Western set film except faced with mysterious creatures than cannibalistic cave dwellers. It had a lot of the similar elements from the prejudice towards the Indians and the whole trek to do find something and the missing persons sort of deal but Bone Tomahawk is executed much better. To be honest, who these cave dwellers are is the main suspense so maybe the description itself has already broken a bit of the intrigue the film wants to deliver. Maybe…I don’t know…Its always the issue of how much is too much is said when we look specifically at psychological horror films.

One of the best elements of the film, especially when looking at psychological thrillers are the characters involved. In their own quiet way, each of them add a little something to balance out the dynamic and competency of the group. If you just look at the cast, you can see that it is a really strong cast. The main group on this rescue comprised of Kurt Russell’s Sheriff Hunt, his elderly deputy played by Richard Jenkins, injured rancher Arthur whose wife was taken played by Patrick Wilson and a gunslinger played by Matthew Fox. Its because of the focus on each of these characters in their own extent and having their own place that make them each stand out in their own manner and feel like they belong to where they were especially in a journey that approaches danger. Talking about danger, the cave dwellers are done fantastically. They are brutal and intense.

Bone Tomahawk is one of those films that is executed really well because of the atmosphere and the setting and that meshes well with the story told here. The characters and all those elements boost it high but it does have the Western slow-paced which might make it a bit harder to get into at first as it builds up its story, mystery and characters.

DREDD (2012)

Dredd

Director: Pete Travis

Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Lena Headey, Tamer Burjaq, Warrick Grier, Wood Harris, Rakie Ayola, Jason Cope, Domhnall Gleeson

In a violent, futuristic city where the police have the authority to act as judge, jury and executioner, a cop teams with a trainee to take down a gang that deals the reality-altering drug, SLO-MO. – IMDB

I’ve never seen the original Judge Dredd or anything along those lines so this is a completely new experience of the world and the character itself. I’m not a huge fan of people doing the whole Christian Bale’s Batman low-tone voice. I don’t find that more empowering to the character orΒ  make them stronger, so suffice to say that took a little getting used to for me. However, setting all that aside, Dredd is a really fun time. Seeing as it was released after The Raid: Redemption, it easy to compare the similar concept of fighting up a tower to the ultimate boss. There are thugs and obstacles in the way. Within the heights of one building, it managed to create a lot of layers. These layers dive into learning more about the world created here and living standards, the life-altering drug SLO-MO and its effects, the big boss ruling the society of this building, as well as our main cop characters, Dredd and his trainee Anderson.

Suffice to say that Dredd and Anderson do bring a lot of the action and cleverness to the film. Their characters bond over the course of the film even in their differences and through learning from each other. Anderson is different because of her psychic abilities that allow her to mind control a little. It adds to their journey but also at times has its hindrances. As great as it is to learn about these two, Lena Headey appears in Dredd as the big bad villain, Ma-Ma, a fierce woman boss of this building who is brutal and unforgiving. She keeps her anger hidden under a calm appearance..most of the time and there is this deadly and unsettling vibe to her throughout because she retains a lot of the mystery as how she became who she is now. Lena Headey always seems to be found in these movies here and there, really bringing in some intriguing characters to say the least. Perhaps someone to visit and revisit her roles, especially after her success as Game of Thrones, Cersei Lancaster.

Dredd is a pleasant surprise and exceeded my expectations. Its set in an intriguing, if not more dangerous and gloomy futuristic world. At the same time, it was also great to see another beginning role of Domhnall Gleeson as the Clan Techie here which has a small role but a fairly entertaining one to watch.

That’s it for this double feature!
Have you seen Bone Tomahawk and/or Dredd? What are your thoughts?

What’s Up – Week 3: Time for some Movies…

What's Up

Welcome everyone to the next What’s Up! Halfway through the first month of the year and its starting to feel like the destiny of this segment is going to be slightly like a roller coaster ride with a week of progress and a week of what’s in progress. However, I’m pretty happy with this week. Reading went well, movies went relatively already, gaming had some moving forward and TV series had a few wrap-ups as well.

Let’s see what went on last week!

READING

Always and Forever, Lara Jean

  • The End (A Series of Unfortunate Events #13) Review
  • Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before #3)

Currently reading: The Girl From Everywhere

This week has been great in terms of reading. I finished off the last few percent leftover from the previous week for A Series of Unfortunate Events series and then went ahead to read the third and final book in All The Boys I’ve Loved Before called Always and Forever, Lara Jean. Both are some really good reads.

PLAYING

mortal kombat x

  • Tsioque

Currently playing: Mortal Kombat X

We finished off Tsioque last week and the edit is going to take a little whilr as we did get stuck a few times. However, both the story and the game design itself is pretty entertaining and clever. I am about 3 games behind (counting this one) in game reviews so it will happen soon. However, with the Mortal Kombat 11 reveal last week, we decided to do our next feature review on Mortal Kombat X which I never finished the campaign. It might be short but I am not a skilled fighting game player so it may take longer.

WATCHING

bird box

  • Bird Box
  • American Ultra
  • Dredd (2012)
  • Blade II
  • Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

As for movies, we did pretty well. Blade 2 is for the next Movies and Tea recording while Jumaniji: Welcome to the Jungle was a cheap rental I got during Boxing Day on the Play store. My husband’s been bothering me about watching Dredd so we finally did and it reminded me a lot of The Raid: Redemption but then this came first so he said maybe the latter is inspired by that movie structure. I don’t know but don’t think so. Its just similar. On that note, we are working through all the unwatched films in out movie collection for both my husband and I to break away from Netflix a little. So theres all that to expect. On the Netflix front, I loved Birdbox and will pair it with A Quiet Place for a double feature and finally caught up with American Ultra. I am currently debating a Kristen Stewart roles ranked list at some point so I might watch more of her films. I am starting to think Twilight is her lowpoint and she is better in other roles.

BINGING

my amazing boyfriend

  • My Amazing Boyfriend (2016)
  • Ugly Delicious (Season 1) – rewatch

Currently binging: Who’s the Murderer (Season 4), My Little One (Season 2), Meteor Garden (2018 rewatch), The Singer 2019

TV binges are not moving along fast enough. They are turning out to be the most time consuming segment but I love watching TV series so its staying. I finished rewatching Ugly Delicious and I do have something to bring up in the review which is a question that I have been pondering over this rewatch. I also finished My Amazing Boyfriend, a 2016 Chinese Drama headed for a sequel but retaining the entire cast except the main leads. I will talk about that in the TV binge. However, this is a fun one. It had a lot of funny moments and the chemistry between the leads are pretty good as well. As for the currently watching, I don’t really have anything new that I’m watching. Who’s the Murderer wraps up on Friday so that’s another one to add to the pile of TV binges to work on. πŸ˜‰

Its been a pretty productive week overall!
Watching movies became a big part of progress however everything moved along pretty well also.
Lots of upcoming reviews to work on. πŸ™‚