Hatchet II (2010)

Hatchet II

A survivor of the first Hatchet has the urge to immediately return to the New Orleans swamp-forest–where maniac semi-spirit Victor Crowley dwells–to retrieve remains of her relatives that were slayed by Crowley. Meanwhile a shady business man (you know him as Candyman) and his crew join the search with ulterior motives in Hatchet II.

This is a rare time¬†when the quotes on the cover are on point. Hatchet II¬†takes gore to an outrageous level. The victims are decapitated, impaled or literally torn apart in all kinds of interesting ways. A sensitive backstory about Crowley connects to the first film, which was an overly aware horror-comedy. Amazingly, the follow-up liberates itself from the nonsense of Hatchet and establishes a meaningful presence within modern day slasher horror. [rating: $9] –Kenyon

The Crazies (2010)

After an infected corpse just happens to parachute into a marsh and small town’s water source, the U.S military seizes the population of Ogden, Iowa. Unfortunately for them, the quarantine system fails and everything goes straight to hell.

Impossible timing in the Crazies is a rule. For example, the deputy shoots through a second story window to stop an “infected” from killing his friend without a second more to loose. There is a little melodrama, and a little is too much for this remake of the 1973 film from George Romero. This version should have spent more time on the aspects of the virus itself and less on whether or not the lead female is pregnant. So therefore i cannot comprehend why this got so many positive reviews. On the bright side, the Crazies is convincingly gruesome, like when the hero gets a knife through his hand and while still stuck in hand puts it into an infected’s neck. You know it! [rating:$6]

Trollhunter (Norway, 2010)

The trouble with many of these found footages (Grave Encounters, et al) is caused by lack of believability. Found footage relies on that to be convincing. Convincing that it’s REAL. Otherwise, there’s really no point in making a found footage film. This requires a very natural feeling from the “actors” and, with any kind of film, LOGIC.

The opening of Trollhunter proclaims blah blah blah…and “they determined this to be authentic”. What the? Yea, an authentic COMEDY. Take for example this phone call by the trollhunter, who is knowingly overheard by a young film crew following him: “a blood sample? Hmmm, that’s going to be tough”. Later, he pulls out an oversized, comical syringe. Then there is the three-headed troll which trollhunter explains uses its extra heads to scare away other trolls. Still determined to get all the dirt on the trolls, the eager documentary trio show little concern about their own well-being. This catches up to them when they go in a cave found to be a troll “lair”.

While the trolls range from impressive to hokey to video game style, the trollhunter himself is the stand-out character (as it turns out, the actor playing him is a controversial comedian). From when he tells the film crew to cover themselves with troll stench to when he is actually battling the trolls with a giant flash bulb, the hunter is a curious character. A third-person filming perspective and deeper insight would have given Trollhunter–the character and film itself–the depth it deserves. [rating: $5] –Kenyon