Written by Scott Edwards
Many people believe that going camping is relaxing and a good way to reconnect with nature. While I share those views, I also know how much trouble you can get into if you veer too far away from the assigned camping locations. With dangers that you possibly never thought about when entering the camp site, the responsible rangers make sure you know what you can be in for. With so many unknowns in the woods, it is better to be safe than sorry, and if you are told to be careful of anything, you better pay attention, because they are telling you that for a reason.
With his new assignment for the day, Ranger Michael Kelly is ready to show Allison Corwin the sights around the park. With little to nothing going on and campers all around, it should be an easy assignment and since she is pretty as well, Kelly wants to turn up the charm. But their time together gets interrupted when reports of a bear attack come over the wire and the two head out to check it out. With two girls being torn limb from limb, Kelly knows that a warning needs to be sent out, but is stopped when the park supervisor does not want to hurt the park's profit margin.
Needing to find the bear that attacked the poor girls, Kelly takes to the skies with pilot Don Stober to get a bird’s eye view of the park. Not able to pinpoint where the bear might be making its home, the two see something on the ground that might be what they are looking for, but find out quickly that it is not. Arthur Scott is searching for his own clues about what kind of bear would be attacking and eating humans, as the normal brown and black bears in the hills do nothing of the sort. Using his scientific method, Scott is able to pinpoint that the bear is a grizzly and must be standing over fifteen feet tall. Thinking that the rich man is out of his mind, the group head back home for the day, only to find out that another attack has taken place at the waterfall.
As a forth attack takes place at a popular camp site, Kelly demands that the park be shut down, but his supervisor once again is hesitant. Getting local hunters on the case, Kelly is dumbfounded and wants the drunk men out of his park. But since the hunters are the best bet at getting the bear before anyone else gets hurt, they are allowed to stay and take shots at whatever comes their way, as long as it is a bear. Getting his own men together to stage a hunt for the massive beast, one of the rangers is sad to report that the bear has been spotted by one of the hunters and he is in the hospital. With time ticking before the next attack, Kelly and his crew are looking for a way to put the bear down before things get worse, but the grizzly cannot be stopped.
Talk about a bear with a one track mind. After he gets a taste for women, he never wants to go back. With the only victims that the bear eats being women, the jokes are made about it having good taste and I am sorry, but I could not stop laughing. Let me tell you, they don’t make movies like this anymore and when they try, they fall drastically short of what this movie accomplished. The cast really had to deliver to make this movie watchable and I am happy to say that they did. With some flying limbs, plenty of blood, bullshit being said once, a maverick ranger and the man behind the curtain really calling the shots, you get to see a bear attack movie like never before. I just hope that nobody gets to see it in real life, because a massive bear is one thing, but stopping it is something completely different. Stay Scared.
Written by Scott Edwards
Planning trips with your friends can be one of the hardest things to do, especially when you all work different schedules. Finding a time that works for everyone is only one of the problems, as timing can change for any member of the trip, along with them changing their minds about the trip. But once you are able to get everyone on the same page and have the convenience of an RV that can take you anywhere, you and your friends cannot be stopped. Finding a location that is out of the way and is far from the normal crowds usually makes for the best type of trip if you are looking for peace and quiet and once you find that perfect spot, make sure not to share it with anybody else, since others are looking for the same thing.
Taking a little trip while the camp grounds are still empty, Matt, Lilly, Molly, Joe and June are ready to have the time of their lives. Just wanting to get away from the mundane groove of real life, they pack up Matt’s RV and are looking for a place to lie their heads for the night. But there is something strange happening with the radio that neither Matt or Joe can understand and only being able to get one station that fades in and out, the two are trying to figure out what is going on. Turning off the radio, it keeps turning back on by itself and making a strange sound.
While looking out of the window, June is able to spot something else that is strange when seeing a group of lights flying above the Phoenix sky. Getting everyone else in the RV to take a look, they all have questions as to what it might be, but when Matt focuses on the lights more than his driving, the group is in for trouble. Not seeing a broken down truck on the side of the dirt road, Matt is forced to swerve to avoid it and crashes into a tree. Thinking everyone is all right, Matt confronts the other driver, but when he gets back to the RV he sees the damage that was really done as Joe has a knife stuck in his shoulder.
Seeing that the group is in some sort of trouble, Richard offers his assistance in helping since he knows a little bit about patching up people in the field. Being able to secure the knife in place with crazy glue and duct tape, he believes that Joe will be fine, but makes sure that everyone knows that he should be taken to a hospital as soon as possible. But that is easier said than done as the RV will not start and tensions start to run high within the group. While trying to get his RV running again, Matt sees movement in the bushes and briefly investigates, but little does he know what is lurking in the wooded area. While stories are told, nobody notices what is happening to Joe as he continues to bleed out and there is nothing that the group can do to stop it. Wanting to keep an eye on Richard, Matt suggests that the two men go for help and the group soon finds out what is hiding in the darkness as Richard returns to the RV alone, covered in blood.
One of the most famous UFO stories is brought to life in this movie and it is not in a found footage fashion, so I have to like it. With the strange lights fading from the sky, the group has no idea what is hunting them in the woods, but Richard has a pretty good idea after he comes face to face with one of the strange invaders. When trying to convince everyone about what he has seen, the group splits up since they are seeing different things all around them. The group dynamic is great is this movie, and while the storyline gets a little lost at times, the aliens are spotted on more than one occasion to help move it along. With some blood, strange movement in the woods, missing and reappearing people and plenty of organic life on a spaceship, it is an interesting ride that not only frightens, but helps to make you care about who or what could be lurking in the skies. Stay Scared.
Written by John Edward Betancourt
THIS IS THE EMERGENCY SPOILER ALERT SYSTEM...YOU ARE ADVISED TO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK...
It's been quite the season of Fear the Walking Dead thus far. Gone, seemingly forever, are the brooding stories this series featured in year's past, replaced instead with a heavier focus on action and adventure and tense moments and well...it's really been quite the success. An air of danger permeates every single episode now and it's made a couple of stories this season downright exhausting to watch. However, despite this bold new direction for the show...there is one element when it comes to this show that I was hoping to see reappear at some point, it's focus on social commentary.
After all, the finest zombie stories out there say something about our world and our society, in either heavy handed or simplistic fashion and up until this season, Fear put a solid focus on that brand of storytelling. However, making note of the lack of it in season three is not meant to be a knock against the show. It truly needed a shot in the arm and action and splatter are equally as important in stories such as this, but I have been wondering in the back of my mind, just how awesome it would be to see a little social commentary finds its way into season three and last night's episode, 'Drowning in Water, Burning in Flame' delivered just that, a gripping and adventurous story that also examined our need for revenge, and the distinct need for purpose at the end of the world.
But let's take a look at the revenge parable in this story first, because this episode explored its dynamics in fascinating fashion by way of Madison and Daniel Salazar. Now Madison's story was far more traditional by design because she was on a quest, with the always charming Troy Otto, to find out who shot down the helicopter and murdered her husband and her story served as a reminder that sometimes, an eye for eye brings us peace in our mind, and for Madison, it was imperative at this point to find that kind of peace. Of course, what she found on her quest was far more disturbing, since now we know a rival faction, composed of Native Americans, went after the chopper to send a message to the Ottos to leave their land so it can be reclaimed by this group. But the fact that the story didn't offer up a 'this is right' or 'this is wrong' message to go with her story was intriguing since to a certain extent...we have all been where she's been.
That same lack of moral expectations was also present in Daniel's story. Since his idea of revenge was to take Strand out for a little journey, with a gun pointed at Victor of course, back to the hotel to find Ofelia. Of course, the audience already knows she's not there, and deep down I think Daniel did as well, but his notion of revenge was to straight up teach Strand a lesson he will never forget. Because as Victor is wont to do, he stuck to his lie, he sold it until the bitter end and while it's sad to see that the hotel has fallen to the dead, those walking corpses helped to force Strand tell the truth for a change, which allowed for Daniel to leave Strand on his own, adding another lesson to this part of the story, in that...no one really cares anymore about Victor's deal making skill set...it's the end of the world and mankind has to uncover a new set of skills when it comes to survival.
Which of course brings us to the other message this episode explored in detail...the need to find purpose at the end of the world. Because clearly, Strand is struggling with such a notion and so did the rest of the Clark family. After all, for the first time since they left Los Angeles, they've had time to breathe and time to process their pain and both brother and sister found themselves at a crossroads. Alicia perhaps saw the tougher path ahead of her because the life she left behind meant more to her than merely surviving for the sake of survival and she spent the entire episode trying to find a purpose or a direction, drifting between drinking with her new buddies and searching desperately for an emotional anchor by way of a hookup with Jake Otto. Granted while the physical intimacy may have been nothing more than release for her, Jake did have wise words to offer her in the wake of their fling and it seems in the end, she's learning to live life and survive at the same time.
Oddly enough, for the first time ever we saw Nick interested in the notion of settling down in this community with Lucia and much of his journey was encouraged by Jeremiah Otto. It would seem Nick and this older gentlemen share a kindred spirit since both of them are addicts who escaped the clutches of their respective poisons and Jeremiah used that spirit to show Nick that sometimes settling down and appreciating what is present before him is not a bad thing and the simple logic he sent Nick's way helped the young man do his best to get Lucia to stay at Broke Jaw Ranch with him and potentially build a life together for a change and while Lucia had none of this and went back to Mexico without Nick, it was quite nice to see the young man grow in a way we've never seen before and even honor his father in the process.
Yet while this sounds suspiciously like a classic episode of the series, have no fear...there was plenty of horror to be found as well. The opening moments of the show with Russell and his zombified wife Martha was both revolting and comical as Martha tried to eat him sans false teeth before Russell shared one last dance with his beloved before putting a bullet in both their brains and what the rival group did with Jeremiah's first survey team was downright disturbing because really...who takes the time to cut away a man's skull and feed his brain to the crows? Our new villain, that's who and their decision to do something like that...was utterly chilling and uncomfortable to say the least. But what matters more, is the fact that the show found a nice way to balance the scares and discomfort with a smarter script and I do hope this trend of combining both elements, continues.
If anything, this was quite the nice little transitional episode. It could have gone the slow route, and provided us a break from the usual carnage but instead, it made us think, it creeped us out and most importantly it set the stage for quite the showdown between the Broke Jaw Ranch and their newfound enemies and when all is said done...I really enjoyed this episode. It was cool to see the story not hand us a scolding or spoon feed us obvious answers to life's little problems, instead it took the time to show how some people deal with them in their own special way, and that's a nice change of pace for this series. Either way, looks like it won't be long before this little conflict spills over into something worse and hopefully the people of Broke Jaw can come together to save what they have...unless of course Troy ruins it...because that guy, is a mess. Until next time.
Written by Scott Edwards
Trying to get your friends to do something new may be difficult, but is so worth it in the long run. When you have something that you love doing and they have never been privy to it, getting them to step out of their comfort zone just a little bit can make all the difference in the world for them. You never know if they will like it or not, but if you have known them for years on end, you have a pretty good idea if it is right for them. Making something new to bond over in the long run can only add to the strength of the relationship and that is something that is always a plus.
Ryan has come up with a great idea to use his camera, by filming his best friend Brett on his first ever camping trip. Not being too psyched about this trip, Brett agrees to go on it, since he is promised that it will be fun. Picking up Ryan’s girlfriend Abi and her friend Ashley, the group is almost ready to make their way into the hills, but there is just one more stop that they need to make. Getting to use their friend’s RV for the trip, things are starting to look up for Brett at least with the option of not having to go to the bathroom in the woods and being to take a hot shower, although that is not Ryan’s thoughts at all.
Parking the RV and making their way up the trail, Ryan spots the best spot for the group to set up camp and everyone seems to be great with it. When the sun goes down however, things start to get a little strange as the group starts to hear something wailing in the distance. Not being able to figure out what the sound is, theories span from a person to a coyote, but no one knows for sure. The strange sound dies down but their imaginations do not as they go out for a hike and stumble upon a massive ravine that Ryan and Abi climb down into, while not seeing something strange moving in the distance. Keeping on higher ground, Brett and Ashley are freaked out about what they saw and the group makes their way back to camp for another night.
Shortly after the group of friends relax, they are greeted by an outsider that has little to offer other than questions. After leaving, the group hears the sounds again, but now something or someone is in camp with them and shaking the tents. Knowing that it has to be someone messing around with them, Ryan takes his camera and investigates, but only finding writing on the trees, he is not able to find out who is behind the strange sounds. Laying low for a little while, the camp is threatened again and this time it is enough for Brett and the girls who head back to the RV for a good night’s sleep, but there is something most definitely following them as even their camper is getting pushed around. The group has no idea who or what is in the woods, but when the boys go missing and the girls meet at least one of their tormentors head on, it is only the beginning in a race out of the woods to find help and freedom and safety.
Another one of those found footage movies that seems to be the rage for horror in the past couple years. Each one has their little nuances and focuses on something different than the others, so they are not all exactly the same. One thing that I took away from this was the change in Ryan when he gets fed up talking about his best friend missing. It seems like before this point, he was the happy go lucky friend who wants nothing more than to have a good time, but he will not be forced into worrying about something that he does not see as an issue. I liked the group's dynamic, especially when they are all fed up with one thing or another, it made for a little more fun before the woods came alive and they discovered they were being hunted by a furry beast. I don’t want to jump into the ending since it will give away a fun little surprise about the movie, but there are guns and plenty of blood during the finale, just in case you did not get enough before the sun went down. Stay Scared.
Written by John Edward Betancourt
THIS IS THE EMERGENCY SPOILER ALERT SYSTEM...YOU ARE ADVISED TO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK...
As the television landscape continues to grow and evolve, a new trend has emerged...the T.V. series based off of a major motion picture. Granted this is nothing new to the business, but as of late they seem to be popping up left and right. Fox introduced Lethal Weapon to the small screen in the last year and their cable spinoff FX has seen plenty of success with Fargo, so it only makes sense for Spike to jump into the foray, and expand upon a modern horror classic by providing us with their own unique adaptation of The Mist.
Now this is an adaptation that immediately caught my eye simply due to the fact that I'm a huge fan of the source material; the Stephen King novella, and of the 2007 Frank Darabont film adaptation, and considering how perfect and distinctly different those two variations of the story turned out to be, I sat down to watch the 'Pilot' episode of this series, with a myriad of mixed emotions. On the plus side, I certainly had no problem embracing a wild redesign of the story since the film changed up plenty from the written form of the story, but at the same time, my chief concern when I settled in to watch this, was whether or not this new iteration would follow in the footsteps of its predecessors and deliver a visceral and terrifying experience.
Which means it is time to get down to the million dollar question when it comes to this show, is it a tour de force of terror that holds a flame to the source material? Well...unfortunately, the only appropriate answer to that question, is that only time will tell. Because it's clear now that this version of The Mist wants to accomplish some wildly different things storytelling wise. It truly wants to be a solid character drama, as evidenced by the vast amount of time we spend meeting the main characters and dealing with their respective and at times, disturbing plights before the titular Mist descends upon the small town of Bridgeville, Maine and what is incredibly fascinating about going in this character driven direction, is the fact that the show has only introduced us to a handful of good natured characters, making one wonder if the series is going to focus on redemption as well down the line.
In addition to starting off in a slower and more methodical fashion storytelling wise, I also noticed as the hour played out...that social commentary, a staple of science fiction and horror is going to be prevalent here as well, since the show put a heavy focus on the generational divide that America seems to be currently going through when it comes to morals and values courtesy of Eve's storyline and while that may seem tame when compared to other works in the genre, that was just the beginning. Because in addition to that overreaching theme, the show also explored police brutality and cruelty, teen sex and sexual assault and treating members of the LGBTQ community with the respect they deserve and throwing that many themes into the mix undoubtedly means these storylines are going to rear their head once more as the season progresses along.
When all is said and done however, I'm legitimately intrigued by this new series. There is some serious potential here to take to us some incredibly dark places with just the character's storylines alone, and once fear settles in things could take a turn for the morbidly fascinating. Plus, it does look like it can deliver when it comes to the gross out factor because the effects are simply notch. Regardless, I'm definitely pressing on. I have to see how this new approach pans out for the series, and that's what makes this pilot a rousing success...it's done just enough to draw us in and make us wonder what possibilities await us and if the powers that be behind the scenes are reeling us in like a proverbial spider into their web, we are going to be in for some horrifying and magnificent treats down the road. Until next time.
Written by Scott Edwards
There are people that want to let their elders pass on without being a part of their lives, then there are those who will do anything to keep them ticking for as long as they can. While I am part of the latter group, I can see why there are those folks that don’t want to care about the older generation, since in their minds they are outdated and are tired of listening to the same old stories. It is hard to imagine that anyone would want to let their golden generation pass on without a thought, but with the times changing and needing to take many hours out of the work week to teach them how to use a VCR (yes, I had to do this and I am that old) or any new devices that are coming out, it seems like a waste to them. But you never know when the magical button in their minds will click on the new technology and soon they will know more about it than you do.
With her husband going missing, Maude Chalmers is in need of money to continue living her days in her home and her granddaughter has come up with the perfect option. Converting her funeral home into a Bed and Breakfast, Maude is not too happy to have strangers in her house, but it will be the only way to make ends meet. Having her granddaughter Heather coming to help, at least there will be one good thing that comes out of it, since the girl will be able to take care of more than just the guests. But there are already problems brewing at the Chalmers household as the truck is in disrepair and Maude is not able to make it to the bus station to pick up Heather.
Being resourceful, Heather is able to catch a ride into town with her new friend Rick and starts to hear about the distrust that he has for her grandmother’s home. Not getting too deep into the conversation since they just met, Heather is happy to see her grandma and ready to make a million dollars over her summer there will all of the guests that they are going to receive. When Harry Browning and his lady friend Florie make it to the house, Maude is starting to regret her decision and does not want sinners in her home under any circumstances. Trying to rid herself of the two who are fornicating outside of marriage, Maude asks the couple to check out, but Harry will not and has decided that he and Florie will stay until the weekend is finished.
Around town, young deputy Joe Yates is starting to get a bad feeling in his stomach as people are going missing. Being told to ignore it by the chief, Joe finds the abandoned car of a real estate developer buried in a pile of hay, three weeks since the man went missing. Knowing that there is something strange happening in his town, Joe starts to do a little investigating of his own to find out where and when the missing folks were last seen and all signs point towards the Chalmers new tourist home. Asking Maude his questions, Joe is satisfied with what she has to say and promises to stay on the case of her missing husband, but there is something else happening in the home that nobody ever expected.
Staying busy during the days, Heather has been spotted by Rick who wants to get to know her a little better and with him being a fine boy, she agrees to help out with what he needs as well. Getting some alone time, Rick is able to tell his new friend what her grandfather was like and it is far from what she imagined. Being a stubborn old man who did not take kindly to the neighborhood kids looking in on his undertaking work, he would threaten to lock the kids in with the dead bodies. Not believing that her grandfather could be anything other than kind, Heather disregards the conversation, but when she starts hearing her grandmother in the basement talking to somebody, she needs to start believing since there is evil in the house and she might be the only one who can help release it.
Looking back at some of these older horror flicks, I am finding a new respect for them that I never thought possible. Keeping the audience in suspense while setting up the story for the epic reveal of who the killer is has been lost for the new generation, and that is a shame. What I really liked best about this movie is the relationship that Heather and her grandmother Maude develop in such a short time and while trying to keep her granddaughter from doing something that she would frown upon, Maude falls short and there is only one punishment that is fitting when all is said and done. One of the characters that did not make it into the review was Billy, the slow handyman who is able to keep things running around the house. It was apparent that he would be tormented throughout and while he only wanted to help, he would have to toughen up with the insults coming his way and do the right thing in his mind. With a silent killer, people living in sin, car crashes, a nosey cop, young love story and people going missing, this is a good 'who done it' type of story that will leave you wondering if all people would be capable of losing their minds so badly to drive them to kill. Stay Scared.
Written by Scott Edwards
Finding a diamond in the rough is something that all employers wish for. Looking below the surface of someone to see what potential they can possess is something that not everybody can see from just meeting them, but allowing them to strive at their job is more than enough to get the feeling. Watching as their new hire is able to pick up things that has taken other employees much more time to progress at, they can see that they made the right decision. You can find these people in the most unlikely of places, so if you are looking for some great talent, it is best to keep your eyes open.
Working at the circus is all the no named hunchback has known for all of his life. Wanting to be more when not being beat up by his fellow employees, he reads his books on medicine in his free time, but does not know if and when it will ever come in handy. But one thing that he does know is his love for trapeze artist Lorelei who is always nice to him on and off the stage. Watching as Lorelei does her routine, the hunchback sees his fears come into full effect as she falls lifelessly to the dirt floor and sees that the doctor that joined the crowd on the floor has no idea how to save her. Being able to visualize the injury in his head, the hunchback is able to adjust her bones, giving the young woman a fighting chance at surviving and impresses at least one onlooker as she is whisked off to the hospital.
Victor Frankenstein has seen many things in his life, but what this young performer has just done has him astonished. Returning to the circus after hours and seeing the young man locked away in a cage, he knows that there is something much better that awaits him. Causing a ruckus, Victor is able to free the young man and the two retreat to his humble abode as Victor has plans for him. Draining his back and giving the young man a back brace to straighten him out, Victor also has a name for his new comrade, Igor, to replace his never present flat mate. With a new outlook on life and his first time ever being out of the circus, Igor is ready to start living and helping in whichever way he can for his new found freedom, but little does he know what the young doctor is doing or what he will be asked to complete.
Being privy to things he has never known before, Igor gets to see what Victor has been working on in his basement when not in class. With a small demonstration of bringing the dead back to life, Igor is able to point out the mistakes in the experiment and becomes the cornerstone to Victor’s grand design. Not knowing completely what he is building, Igor is able to use electricity to help reanimate dead organs, but when his questions get to be too much for Victor, he is taken out for a night on the town. Not being comfortable in public, Igor sees a face from the past when Lorelei graces the crowd with her presence. Being able to connect with her puts a calm on him that he has never felt before, but it is short lived when the drunken Victor interrupts their reunion. Needing to get Igor’s head right, Victor takes him back to the flat to finally show him what all of his work has been put towards and even though he may not agree with his doctor’s methods to madness, there is no mistaking his mind is blown when a rotten chimpanzee is brought back to life on the operating table, but that is merely the beginning...
I must admit that I liked this movie more than I thought I would because it is purely based on the characters. Being told from Igor’s point of view, you get to see how Victor Frankenstein descends into madness when he is able to bring life back to the dead. With secrets not being told throughout, Igor is able to put the pieces together as to why things are happening, and he only hopes to bring them to light before his savior is thrown into prison, or killed by an overzealous inspector that believes that his work is that of the Devil. Watching as each of the characters grow in their own way and seeing how it effects the final result of the story, especially when Igor is left to rot, is just great and I wish there was more. With a circus, past love, reanimated chimp, massive electricity charges, whiskey (lots of whiskey) and a dream that can be brought to life, it is a pretty good retelling of a classic story that has haunted generations and it could possibly get more people into the fan base. And it is important to remember that Frankenstein is a monster, but not the one that is created. Stay Scared.
Written by Scott Edwards
There are no secrets in small towns and that might be one of the biggest appeals of living in one. Knowing everything that is going on at all times adds a sense of security that you cannot find in the big city. But that can also be felt as a bad thing for some people as they value their privacy and if there is not enough room to breathe without someone else being in your business, well, it might be time to move on.
Ghost Hunters are always looking to find their next hot spot and there is one in a small town in Maine that will fill that void. Julian and his team, made up of his classmates, are ready to go and check out the former Clausen House, but they are waiting on the final member of the team to show up. Because Cassie is running late for the first time in forever and is keeping a secret of what is really happening at home. None of that seems to matter however, as the team is ready to hit the ferry and get all set up in the supposed haunted house to find evidence of a spirit, along with saving a marriage that is falling apart because of it.
Arriving at the house and finding all of the doors are locked, Julian and team make their way to the real estate agent's office to get a key. Sitting and chatting for a bit and covering all of the things that have happened in the house over the years, like the original Captain Clausen murders, the house being burnt to the ground and being rebuilt years later and now the haunting stories, the team should have everything that they need to prove or disprove if there is indeed a ghost in the house. During set up, Danno continues to repeat the stories that Cassie was telling about the house, about hearing footsteps and a piano playing during the night. But when he starts to hear these things first hand, he is faced with the spirit of someone that he could never have expected.
Team Leader Brock sees that his friend is curled up in the corner and cannot figure out what happened to frighten him so badly, but before he is able to get Danno to safety, he becomes the next victim, yet Brock will be afraid of nothing in the house…his house. As the sun is already set, the team does not have time to finishing setting up for the night so they decide to turn in. But while they are sleeping the power goes out and Professor Bourne trips and falls down the stairs in the darkness. Thinking little about if anyone else could be in the house with them, Julian finds out that they are not alone and the rest of their night will be a fight for their life.
I really wanted to see how the storyline played out in this movie, as the premise seemed pretty cool, investigating a haunting that inspired a classic television show, how could you not want to know more? While the old series is referenced during the movie, it was not something that I have heard of, so there was a little payoff at the end when you get to see some clips. I really liked the character interaction with all of the group, and the Cassie story was extremely touching as her problems at home have become violent and she does not know what to do. Although some of the pacing falls off the page for a while and some of the editing choices make you wonder what they were thinking, the story is sound and I don’t feel like I got cheated for watching it. With some storytelling, a broken home, a leg dragging ghost, and a slew of past hookups, it is a decent watch that if you like storytelling, will leave you wanting more. Stay Scared.
Written by John Edward Betancourt
THIS IS THE EMERGENCY SPOILER ALERT SYSTEM...YOU ARE ADVISED TO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK...
As Fear the Walking Dead continues to reinvent itself in an effort to become a powerhouse dark venture, much like its sister show has turned out to be, the series found itself at quite the crossroads at the end of last week. Because by revealing that Daniel Salazar was alive and well, we knew full well that the next episode was going to be all about him and how he escaped that fire, putting the show in a tough place because it risked outright copying The Walking Dead.
After all we've seen the 'how so and so survived' storyline before in season six of The Walking Dead when we found out how Glenn Rhee escaped a pack of walkers in 'Heads Up', so naturally it would be silly if Fear delivered unto us a similar story, and nothing more. But thankfully, last night's episode, '100' did not fall into that trap, and while it definitely had its moments of familiarity, this story went above and beyond, giving Daniel Salazar a depth we've never seen before and something that he has been in desperate need of on the show, redemption.
Now, how exactly he managed to escape the Abigail Compound as it burned to the ground we will never quite know, in fact...neither does Daniel for that matter. He simply knows that he awoke, slightly ablaze and high tailed it out of there and in a harrowing sequence of events, we were quickly reminded that the speed with how the world ended made supplies scarce and survival difficult as Daniel struggles to find water and food and the harsh reality that he may never find such important basics helped us see a side of Daniel we've never seen before...because he was completely and utterly afraid early on in this story. He knew the odds, he knew the dead would likely find him and to see such a strong character in pain and in utter terror was downright stunning.
Thankfully however, an act of kindness from a man named Efrain got Daniel everything he needed. There was water to drink and food to eat in Efrain's out of the way sanctuary and he even received critical medical care from a woman named Lola, and while all of this seems like familiar territory, once Daniel healed...we ventured somewhere new. Because faced with the realization that his steel trap mind failed him at the Abigail Compound and with his past still weighing heavy on his soul, we once again saw something new in Daniel...remorse, and seeing as to how Efrain was playing preacher with the dead, absolving them of their sins, Daniel asked for the same level of salvation so he could venture back out into the world and find his daughter with a clean conscience.
Efrain thankfully was happy to oblige, but Daniel's mission to find his daughter took quite the wild turn. Because after an attack in a storm drain by physically superior walkers, and what appears to be Divine intervention, a weak and still healing Daniel collapsed as the storm above him broke and awoke down river at the dam that we were introduced to last week, and in order to remain safe from Dante's wrath, Daniel takes an impromptu job there and tries to maintain a low profile. But an altercation reveals his past life to Dante, who quickly recruits dear Daniel into his personal security squad to help shore up the water he is losing in town and well...the entire sequence that follows was extremely hard to watch.
Because Daniel more or less embodied the whole mantra of being set in one's ways since returning to his enforcer lifestyle was akin to slipping on a pair of comfortable shoes. It was as if he never left his old life behind and he did many great things for Dante, including helping to break Efrain and Lola when his intentions were otherwise and truly...it seemed as though Daniel had given up all hope in this world. Without his daughter or wife present in his life anymore, in his mind, what else was there to live for, so why not go back to the old ways? After all, his brutal skill set had brought him this far, and the blood on his hands was never going away, so a few more drops would mean nothing in the grand scheme of things, right?
However, it was obvious that there was still some good left within his heart. He did attempt to warn Lola that Dante would stop at nothing to uncover her and Efrain's work to steal water and he did show genuine desire to see them safe, but truly the only way to show that there was any humanity or kindness left within his soul was to save them from certain doom and at the last possible minute, Daniel did just that. He put down Dante and his thugs and freed Lola, Efrain and Strain for that matter and upon saving their lives, he offered his own to Lola in return and she was happy to show the man the mercy he has so desperately been seeking...
When all is said and done however, this turned out to be quite the beautiful tale of redemption. Daniel Salazar is a fan favorite, and a wonderful character to have on the show, so it was such a relief to not only see that he survived the Abigail Compound, but that he finally may have made peace when it comes to the demons that haunt him and hopefully said peace allows for him to find a little faith in regards to Ofelia's chances of survival and he can start the search to find her and put together what little of his family he has left. Either way, this was a wonderful episode, one that was dark and powerful and bold, and kudos to the show for keeping the world authentic by having a majority of the characters this week speak in their native language of Spanish as necessary, and now that Daniel's troubles are behind us, hopefully the entire group can eventually be reunited and we can see all these characters enjoy a fresh start in a strange new world. Until next time.
Written by Scott Edwards
There are so many cities in the world that depend on public transportation and thank goodness for that because it seems like wherever you go, there is traffic everywhere. Even though I am not a huge train rider these days, since if I want to stop and pick something up, my car is the best solution, so many others are able to make it work. As most cities are trying to expand their reach with public transportation, there are also great deals that you can get for being a part of it. But I always have a fear when it comes down to the trains and buses, because despite all of the benefits that they provide, there can also be one bad egg on them that makes the experience unpleasant enough to keep people from using it ever again.
Freelance photographer Leon is having a hard time making the money that he should be, but things might be starting to look up for him when he gets a meeting with one of the most powerful gallery owners out there, Susan Hoff. Getting into one of her shows has been a long time dream for Leon and when his girlfriend Maya is able to score him an introduction, Leon is blown away. But when he tries to explain that he is looking for the heart of the city, it becomes clear that his photos are falling short and he needs to get more instantaneous and emotional moments captured on film. Knowing what needs to be done, Leon heads out on a night shoot and finds a couple of gangsters that appear to be up to no good. Following them into the subway and seeing them harassing a woman, Leon gets his shots of hatred, but also keeps the woman from succumbing to their demands.
Showing his new pictures to Susan Hoff, Leon is promised a space in the next show if he can deliver a few more pictures like that. Being excited beyond belief, there is something hurting inside of him as well when he finds out that the woman he saved has gone missing. Trying to give the police his statement, the detective does not seem to care too much and is more worried about why Leon was taking pictures of the woman after she was on her way. Trying to put the suspicion behind him, Leon heads out for another night shoot and spots a tall stranger that seems to have a story to tell. Following the beast of a man, Leon is discovered and given a slap on the wrist, but that will not keep him from getting the emotion in a shot that he wants.
Following the man again, Leon discovers that the man is a butcher and is able to catch a shot of him at work, but the man does not take too kindly to what has been done. Running for his life, Leon has his shots, but also a target on his chest when he discovers that this man might be involved in the subway disappearances. Tracing missing persons back three years in the city, where the bodies have never been found, Leon reads a story from over a hundred years ago about a butcher that was killing people to make a living. With the butcher now following him, Leon needs to find proof that he is the one behind the disappearances and is able to hop the train to see the butcher at work. Seeing up close and personal the treatment of his victims, Leon is given safe passage once again, but without his camera to show to the police as proof, it is his word against another and that will not be enough for anything to happen. Starting to believe what her boyfriend is telling her, Maya discovers what the monster butcher is keeping hidden from the world, but after being spotted, she is now on the list as well. With only one way to stop the butcher, Leon is armed and ready to hop the train once again, but when seeing his girlfriend is on board and is about to become the next victim, he will have to call on everything that he can to keep her from the same fate that so many others have fallen to.
I remember watching this movie years ago and was happy to see it pop up in my queue, I missed it so much. I love the struggling artist aspect of the story, as it seems to be the same even nowadays, since things are tough out there. Then the butcher, who has powers all of his own and turns the midnight train into nothing more than a meat train, with corpses that are delivered to someone unseen. The kills in this movie, while not overly inventive, show the strength of the evil butcher, but also how vulnerable he is when things get out of hand. With plenty of meat carving, blood, mallet kills, battles against evil and nightmares that explain what is happening, this is just a fun slasher flick that does not keep you longing for much more when the clock strikes midnight. Stay Scared.