Jan 1, 2014

Monthly Movie Recap December 2013

Happy New Year! Break any resolutions yet?
I managed to fit in a few more holiday horror flicks before the year's end. I can't believe there are still some out there that I haven't seen yet!

What have you been watching? I'm always up for recommendations!
As always, title links will take you to Amazon where you can buy the movie if you like and help support the site (ie: me).

I Got Next (2011)
A documentary following some of the top Street Fighter players. I used to play SFII back in the day but was never anywhere near the level of these guys. It's not King of Kong, there's no real rivalry drama, but it can be interesting at times especially in the final rounds.

Cool: It's nice to see in the tournaments that even though the players are rivals there's no hate
Lame: Can get a little boring as there isn't much of a narrative
Rating: 6/10

I Am Street Fighter (2012)
Where the previous film was focused on the competitive players, this doc is more about the people who love the game and the buildup to Street Fighter 4's release. There is a little crossover with some of the players from I Got Next so it was neat having seen these one after another. There's also interviews with some of the people that worked on the game series, even the woman that created the sound effects.

Cool: This one is a lot more fun seeing how different people are into the game; Great music; The full movie is on YouTube (see above video)
Lame: Nothing
Rating: 7.5/10

The Conjuring (2013)
I'm torn on this one. I did really enjoy the 70s atmosphere and practical effects. And even though it delivers the creepy, sometimes it feels more "been there, done that" than it should. I know it's based on a true story but when Paranormal Activity has already done some of the scares, you can't help but think if it while watching.

Cool: Creepy ass doll; I was actually more invested in the investigators than the family they're helping
Lame: The use of the score. I really feel when things are happening, the score should be minimal to bring you more into the movie and the horror going on.
Rating: 7.5/10, might have been higher if I hadn't seen Paranormal Activity

Frozen (2013)
I think Disney took some chances with not sticking to the typical fairy tale/princess formula and it paid off big!

Cool: The movie is gorgeous from the icy effects to the set design and costumes.
Lame: Don't get fooled by marketing! The reindeer and snowman have minor parts, it's not as kiddie as it looks in the ads.
Rating: 8/10

Dear Dracula (2012)
This is more of a TV special than movie but I'm including it because I hadn't heard of it before and wanted to make people aware of it. It's a cute Halloween show suitable for the kids.
Rating: 7/10

Critters (1986-1992)
I'm lumping the whole series together. Believe it or not, I'd never seen a Critters movie until now! I really like the first two with the second edging out the first as my favorite. I think C2 is that perfect kind of movie you discover as a young teen. It's got a tiny bit of toplessness, sci-fi aliens, comedy and some gore. C3 was ok, I like that they confined it to a single building. And C4...I don't know what happened to the series here. This one was boring.

Ratings (in release order): 6.5, 7, 6, 3

Insidious (2011)
I was a little worried about this one as I thought it was going to be just another Paranormal Activity/Conjuring type of flick. Thankfully, I was wrong! They took it in a completely different direction than I was expecting and it was amazing.

Cool: The paranormal investigator guys; The whole "going to get the kid" sequence
Lame: You'll inevitably compare this to Poltergeist 
Rating: 8/10

Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)
Picks up minutes (maybe even seconds) after the first movie. Can't really say too much about it because it's so interwoven with the first one. I was surprised to find out none of this was planned out while they did the first one. I say it's a safe bet if you enjoyed the first one, you'll like this one as long as you don't try to think to much about why the spooks do what they do.

Cool: the Black Bride; If the first was Poltergeist, this one is Back to the Future 2
Lame: The main baddie from the first is almost nowhere to be seen
Rating: 7/10

Killer Holiday (2013)
I have a weird compulsion to see movies that happen at a carnival or amusement park. It's not often these movies are great and Killer Holiday keeps the tradition. The plot synopsis claims "a startling motive is revealed" but after watching it, I couldn't tell you exactly what it is. There are some good things, but it's not the plot or the acting.

Cool: The amusement park
Lame: This movie has possibly the biggest douche of a killer in cinema history, he's like the Criss Angel of slashers; The metal soundtrack/score doesn't fit the characters at all
Rating: 4/10, Redbox it if you must

A Cadaver Christmas (2011)
For a low budget indie zombie flick, this isn't half bad. It's funny and there's some decent gore.

Cool: The lead guy could be the next Bruce Campbell, he's got the jawline and attitude!
Lame: Not sure if the drunk guy is really drunk or mentally challenged
Rating: 5/10

Two Front Teeth (2006)
One of the oddest Christmas horror/comedies I've seen. This movie should be destined for cult status. It's awesomely bad! There are so many Christmas lyric references worked into the script I lost count.

Cool:  Evil, cannibalistic elves; Vatican sanctioned ninja nuns
Lame: The final fight is epic and laughable at the same time
Rating: 5/10

Jedi Junkies (2010)
I like these documentaries about fandom when they're done well and don't make us look like a bunch of people that have no life other than the movies we love. This one focuses on a couple of interesting groups of fans. Some teach lightsaber combat, some make fan films and one guy even crafts unique lightsaber hilts in steel.

Rating: 6/10

Month Total
 New: 15; Rewatch:0

Year To-Date Final Total
New: 94, Rewatch: 4

and just for fun...
2012 Year To-Date Final Total
New: 141, Rewatch: 16


  1. Nice little line up. I do need to see Frozen still. Since you have a compulsion for carnival/ amusement park movies - may I suggest "Something Wicked This Way Comes" if you haven't seen it? It doesn't take place entirely at a carnival... but when it does it's pretty creepy. Def fav of mine as a kid.

    1. Oh yes, big fan of Something Wicked! I remember recording it from cable way back when. That's probably what started my compulsion. :)

  2. I didn't know those Street Fighter movies had made it out i may have to watch them. I used to hang around a group of SF players that actually went to tournaments and were all really good players. I enjoyed playing the original SFII and Alpha 2 but these guys were really some the best in my area at that time and would stomp a mud hole in my lol. So i think these movies would be a fun watch.

    1. Yeah, that second one is on YouTube in its entirety, which is where I watched it. There is footage of an amazing come back in one of the matches.