The Fourth Annual Fast and Fentress Fright Fest

haunted house

The leaves are changing, the air is cooling, and Fast and Fentress is back with another series of horror movie reviews!  For the entirety of October, I’ll be posting as many horror reviews as I can, with movies that span decades, countries, and subgenres.  As always, the only requirement for inclusion is that I haven’t seen the movie before.  Later today, I’ll post the first of these reviews, for last year’s horror-comedy Mom and Dad.  So stay tuned; I’ve got some killer takes.

The Nun

the nun

The Nun has been enjoying a robust showing at the box office, and it’s easy to see why.  It’s backed by the sizable support of the ever-expanding The Conjuring franchise, and it was released with a savvy sense of timing; late enough into September to whet the seasonal appetite for horror, but early enough to get ahead of the incoming torrents of competitors.  But if the past few years have taught us anything, it’s that good marketing is not a substitute for quality, especially in a series as inconsistent as this one. Continue reading

Eighth Grade

eighth-grade-3

As an incurable horror movie fan, I have no problem watching torture, disembowelments, and all other manner of grotesqueries.  But no amount of gore could prepare me for the emotional meat grinder that is Eighth Grade.  Bo Burnham’s directorial debut is at times nothing less than an endurance test, and I mean that as the best of compliments. Continue reading

A Quiet Place

A quiet place

During his heyday, Alfred Hitchcock coined the term “the ice box scene,” which refers to a movie scene whose plot issues become apparent to the audience sometime after the fact.  A Quiet Place could be described as the ice box movie – thoroughly watchable in the moment, but logically wanting when given any serious thought.  Continue reading

Annihilation

annihilation

Annihilation is a hard movie to categorize; not because defies genre categories, but because it samples so many of them.  Like the strange creatures that inhabit its world, it’s a hybrid; blending together science-fiction, drama, and horror to potent effect.  The structure of its first-act setup is pure adventure, beginning with the return of Lena’s (Natalie Portman) husband Kane (Oscar Isaac) long after he went missing on a classified government mission.  It’s immediately clear that something is very wrong with him, both physically and mentally.  When Lena tries to get her husband to the hospital, the government swoops in and abducts them both to a secret location, where they isolate her and reveal what’s responsible for his condition.  Continue reading