THE CANNIBAL CLUB (2018)

Written & Directed By: Guto Parente

Cinematography: Lucas Barbi

Editor: Ricardo Pretti & Luiz Pretti 

Cast: Tavinho Teixeira, Ana Luisa Rios, Pedro Domingues, Jose Maria Alves, Wallen Abreu 

Otavio and Gilda are a very wealthy couple of the Brazilian elite who have the habit of eating their employees. Otavio owns a private security company and is a notable member of The Cannibal Club. When Gilda accidentally discovers a secret from Borges, a powerful congressman and the Club’s leader, her and her husband’s lives are in danger.


This film is a contained, nasty darkly comedic thriller. That comes across more as a class struggle movie. Rather than an out and out horror.

As the cannibals in the movie are the rock and successful who feast on their fellow man for pleasure and after they fulfill the riches needs. That to certain respect leave the poor coming across fetishized as pieces of meat to be abused yet that they are always hungry for.

Wish the film was a bit bigger In Scope as it already feels like a conspiracy satire on the rich. As they feed off of the poor literally. 

Though that is a theme That stays in the background of a more singular problem in the movie for the main characters. As they soon find themselves on the outs of their group and are wondering what to do to survive. 

This is introduced after we see the way they live their lives and basically the husband is a cuckold who gets off on watching other men pleasure his wife and then at the last minute justifying his killing as revenge. As he and his wife ritually then chop up and devour their prey.

The film starts off and plays rather provocatively and try to raise the stakes little by little, never quite coming alive and never matches its own outspokenness from the opening scenes.

One wishes it could Have gone a lot further with its Premise through works great get it chooses to stay simple and introduces aspects that never quite are answered or addressed. Kind of like the first HOSTEL movie then the sequel that kind of explained the business operation. 

Ana Luiza Rios plays the wife and throughout she has many faces to showcase and play. So that she truly comes across as a true femme fatale.

The film contains more spec scenes than expected as of course it would be used to seduce their victims and leave them open to being overpowered and vulnerable.

The film does get graphic. Though it is a bit refreshing in a modern thriller to see sex and nudity that almost feels like the moral lesson of the FRIDAY THE 13TH movies. So that there is as much sex and nudity as gore. Well really still a bit more violence.

It might be wrong to call the film fun but it seems to take a certain joy and excitement in exploring others misfortunes

In the end, the film feels like a dark realistic fairy tale with no supernatural elements. Though it does feel like an extended TALES FROM THE CRYPT episode. 

GRADE: B

WHY DON’T YOU JUST DIE! (2018)

Written, Directed & Edited By: Kirill Sokolov
Cinematography: Dimitry Ulyikaev

Cast: Aleksandr Kiznetsov, Vitaliy Khaev, Evgenia Kregzhde, Milhail Gorevoy, Elena Scevchenko

Andrei, a detective and the world’s most horrible father, brings together a terrible group of people in his apartment: his resentful actress daughter, an angry thug, and a cheated cop. Each one of them has a reason to want revenge..


This is a twisted macabre funny grotesque crime comedy. That stays thoroughly inventive throughout.

The story grows as the film goes along as at first it just starts off with a grand scene where we don’t necessarily know the character’s motivation but as in each scene something new is revealed we flashback to find out how it was needed up there or why certain characters are introduced.

At a certain point motivations are predictable but that still doesn’t Take away any of the intrigue and fun.

Though not as good this film will remind audiences of EVIL DEAD 2 and to a degree SUPERMAN RETURNS for the amount of cruelty and abuse one of the characters throughout the film yet still Manages to survive and also the level of violence of the earlier mentioned film. You could also see this as a feature length version of one of the rooms from the anthology FOUR ROOMS. As it is goofy Strange, violent and funny. As well  as off kilter 

As there is tons of blood she’s throughout this film but though it is a dark comedy it always seems to keep an energetic spirit throughout. Where you actually start to care about the characters no matter how dastardly. 

As wild as this film is it plays almost like a love action cartoon. The filM feels like an early coen brothers comedy. Down More as a horror film And the writing not as sharp, but even more violent.

The film goes by quickly. Though it certainly isn’t forgettable. Even as most of the film takes place mostly inside of a spacious apartment. It only travels outside of it in flashbacks.

GRADE: B

HOLIDAY (2018)

Directed by: Isabella Eklof 
Written by: Johanne Algren & Isabella Eklof 
Cinematography: Nadim Carlsen
Editor: Olivia Neergaard-Holm

Cast: Victoria Carmen Sonne, Lai Yde, Thjis Romer, Yuval Segal, Adam lld Rohweder, Morten Hemmingsen

Young and beautiful Sascha discovers her dream life of luxury, recklessness and fun comes at a price when she is welcomed into the “family” of her drug lord boyfriend at his holiday villa in the port city of Bodrum on the Turkish Riveria. Physical and psychological violence are a way of life for this gangster family, but when the velvet veneer is stripped raw to the bone, Sascha’s eye drifts towards the “normal” life she is leaving behind–is it possible she could still be accepted by polite society?


This film feels like a Study or gazes more an examination. As we watch the main character on vacation with her boyfriend who seems to be a gangster of some sort. Who is mostly low keys she seems to be his moll and the film mainly stays with her except for a scene or two. 

The film seems to want to present and show how Women always having to be nice and look pretty to be noticed and fit in. Also to be taken care of.

This is a movie that Is either a love or hate film. No real middle ground as it is a polarizing film.

Not much happens. It’s not even really episodic more days in the lives. Where you begin to examine any event big or small looking for clues as to where it is going or to reveal more about the characters.

At times the film feels tedious. There are only so many angles of her good looks, body, and tropical landscapes to look at 

We more watch things from her experience so while they might be laid out they are never quite explained. The film doesn’t even really come off as a character study. 

As her character seems more innocent and naive. As she is roughed up and usually upset yet seems to enjoy all the indulgences and does nothing to rebel or stand up for herself.

Though the film tries to present her constantly as desirable and a bombshell anytime sex comes into the equation the camera pulls away as sex seems to be usually taken or is more violent. So that when she is about to be revealed the film chooses to move on. Sort of like her blocking it out of her mind. 

later found out this is only when watching the film on TUBI. As they decided to cut the films sex scenes) which actually makes it seem more profound and reasonable in that version.

Which might get on the audience’s nerves. At the amount of abuse, she seems to take, and never strikes back out of revenge. Which is where you are hoping the film is going to.

Her boyfriend/boss takes members of his family kids and maybe even wife as well as members of his crew. While she comes off more as an assistant though really his girlfriend.

The rape scene is disgusting and shocking and Was actually cut out of the version I Saw and when I watched the uncut version. It’s like a horror scene that does affect the rest of the movie. Even if the film and character want to treat it more as an everyday occurrence. What is worse is that family members seem to be coming down to see about the noise and once they do see just retreat back up and is never spoken of nor does anyone try to help her. Which shows whole shocking this is everyday behavior for him And maybe what those around him have come to expect 

When a story seems to be starting it does so subtlety. Like when she seems to strike up a flirtatious friendship with a guy. Who is clearly into her. Who comes across as normal and middle class and seems like he might be able to be her escape. Her boyfriend gets jealous but also seems turned on. As someone else desiring her and not knowing what kind of trouble he might be in as the boyfriend is obviously an alpha and wants to assert his power and influence by inviting the guy over then embarrassing her by molesting her and threatening him. While not the worse he does to her during the movie. This is another in a long line of degradations. Where we feel like the suitor disgusted and don’t understand her at all and she actually begins to disgust him.

When she does finally take out her anger towards the end. It seems more misplaced even though insulted and the person speaks to her plainly out of anger. She attacks with a random act of violence that seems off but definitely has been waiting to be unleashed. As it is ok for her boyfriend who she believes loves her to degrade her in all sorts of ways but a stranger disrespecting her verbally is too much.

That turn at the end. When she even goes to a police station shows she wants to do the right thing. Maybe to just escape what she seems trapped into, but even then she doesn’t have the strength or bravery to speak and for it. Which is her character’s problem throughout. 

In the end taking responsibility and working would disturb her comfort and gifts. Just as her the film seems to stay aloof and at a distance. As the film never passes judgment on any of the characters. Nor does it ever get emotional. 

The end seems to show she has become just as corrupted as the company she keeps, with a perfect ending theme song to describe the situation she has found herself in. 

It feels like the film was aiming for controversy though would help if it was more structured into an ongoing story rather than a study where not much happens except for a graphic rape scene and ends up provocative though with no depth. 

You keep wondering where is the film going or hopefully some kind of revenge will Happen. Unfortunately, the film never quite rises and Delivers the promise that we were hoping for.

The film does show the price that is paid for that beauty and all the dirty things done to achieve and maintain it.

Never choosing to show any acts of brutality in close up until the end. Where by that time each main character has done an unforgivable act of violence. 

It’s an interesting film showing privilege and entitlement and taking abuse just for the riches to a degree and when push comes to shove when offered an escape chooses to want to keep her status even if rough to a degree. 

The film could have had something to say if it had made more decisions and gave the lead character, character. Her third act changes the whole welcome feels unearned. As if the movie realized it needs a catharsis or something to happen. As it just seems to continuously show older rich men abusing young scantily clad women. Having power over them they that they use these women with money and by the end of the film. The film seems to choose to agree with it. As we know this goes on in real life and the film chooses to show one particular situation. Which is still shocking considering the movie is directed by a female. 

GRADE: C+

TALES FROM THE HOOD 2 (2018)

talesfromthehood2

Written & Directed By: Rusty Cundief & Darin Scott
Cinematography: Keith L. Smith
Editor: Miriam L. Preissel & John Quinn 


Cast: Keith David, Bryan Batt, Lou Beatty Jr, Alexandra Deberry, Kendrick Cross, Bill Martin Williams, Andy Cohen 


Horror is back in the hood! The sequel to the ground-breaking original film Tales From the Hood reunites Executive Producer Spike Lee and Writers/Directors/Producers Rusty Cundieff and Darin Scott for an all-new gripping, horrifying and oftentimes devilishly comical anthology. Keith David stars as a contemporary Mr. Simms to tell bloodcurdling stories about lust, greed, pride and politics through tales with demonic dolls, possessed psychics, vengeful vixens and historical ghosts. Mr. Simms’s haunting stories will make you laugh…while you scream.

Continue reading “TALES FROM THE HOOD 2 (2018)”

IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK (2018)

if-beale-street-could-talk

Written & Directed By: Barry Jenkins
Based on the Novel By: James Baldwin
Cinematography: James Laxton
Editor: Joi McMillon & Nat Sanders
Music By: Nicholas Britell 


Cast: Stephen James, KiKi Layne, Regina King, Michael Beach, Teyonah Parris, Colman Domingo, Aunjaune Ellis, Diego Luna, Dave Franco, Brian Tyree Henry, Ed Skrein, Emily Rios, Finn Wittrock, Ebony Obsidian 


African-American teen sweethearts Fonny and Tish are ripped apart when Fonny is wrongly arrested for the rape of a Puerto Rican woman because of the machinations of a racist cop. While seeking justice for Fonny, a pregnant Tish relies on her Harlem community, including her sister, mother Sharon and future mother-in-law.

Continue reading “IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK (2018)”

HOLD THE DARK (2018)

holdthedark1

Directed By: Jeremy Saulnier
Written By: Macon Blair
Based On The Book By: William Giraldi
Cinematography: Magnus Nordenhof Jonck
Editor: Julia Bloch 


Cast: Jeffrey Wright, James Badge Dale, Alexander Skarsgard, Riley Keough, Beckham crawford, Anabel Kutay, Julian Black Antelope 


Retired naturalist and wolf expert Russell Core journeys to the edge of civilization in northern Alaska at the pleading of Medora Slone, a young mother whose son was killed by a pack of wolves. As Core attempts to help Medora track down the wolves who took her son, a strange and dangerous relationship develops between the two lonely souls. But when Medora’s husband Vernon returns home from the Iraq War, the news of his child’s death ignites a violent chain of events. As local cop Donald Marium races to stop Vernon’s vengeful rampage, Core is forced on a perilous odyssey into the heart of darkness.

Continue reading “HOLD THE DARK (2018)”

TRUTH OR DARE (2018)

truthordare (1)

Directed By: Jeff Wadlow
Written By: Michael Reisz, Jillian Jacobs, Chris Roach & Jeff Wadlow
Story By: Michael Reisz
Cinematography: Jacques Jouffret
Editor: Sean Albertson 


Cast: Lucy Hale, Tyler Posey, Sophia Ali, Violett Beane, Hayden Szeto, Nolan Gerard Funk, Aurora Perrineau, Sam Lerner, Thom Choi 

Olivia Barron, her best friend Markie Cameron, Markie’s boyfriend Lucas Moreno, along with Penelope Amari and her boyfriend Tyson Curran, and Brad Chang go on a trip to Rosarito, Mexico. In Mexico, Olivia runs into fellow student Ronnie who proceeds to harass her until a man intervenes on her behalf. The man introduces himself as Carter and eventually convinces her and her friends to join him for drinks at the ruins of a mission. There, Carter initiates a game of Truth or Dare with Olivia and her friends, plus Ronnie, who followed the group. Eventually, the game ends when Carter reveals that he deceived Olivia as a means of tricking her and her friends to the mission to offer them in his place in the supernatural game of Truth or Dare. As Carter leaves, he explains to Olivia that the game will follow them and they must not refuse it.

Continue reading “TRUTH OR DARE (2018)”

TYREL (2018)

tyrel

Written & Directed By: Sebastian Silva 

Cinematography: Alexis Zabe 

Editor: Jennifer Lame & Sofia Subercaseaux 

Cast: Jason Mitchell, Christopher Abbott, Caleb Landry Jones, Michael Cera, Michael Zegen, Reg E. Cathey, Ann Dowd, Roddy Bottum, Nicolas Arze 


Tyler, a sole black man, attends an otherwise all-white weekend of drunken bro debauchery on a birthday trip to a cabin in the Catskills.

Continue reading “TYREL (2018)”

LORO (2018)

loro1

Story & Directed By: Paolo Sorrentino
Written By: Paolo Sorrentino & Umberto Contarello
Cinematography: Luca Bigazzi
Editor: Cristiano Travaglioli 


Cast: Tom Servillo, Elena Sofia Ricci, Riccardo Scamarico, Kasia Smutniak, Euridice Axen, Alice Pagani, Fabrizio Bentivoglio 


During a tumultuous period in the career of Silvio Berlusconi, as his marriage to second wife Veronica Lario fractures, LORO speculates on what may or may not have taken place behind closed doors, depicting a wide variety of characters from multiple levels of society and their attempts to either ingratiate or distance themselves from him.

 

Continue reading “LORO (2018)”

PLEDGE (2018)

pledge2

Directed By: Daniel Robbins
Written By: Zachary Weiner
Cinematography: William Babcock
Editor: Nik Voytas 


Cast: Zachery Byrd, Philip Andre Botello, Zack Weiner, Aaron Dalla Villa, Cameron Cowperthwaite, Joe Gallagher, Melanie Rothman, Erica Boozer 


A group of college freshmen pledge an exclusive fraternity but soon realize there’s more at stake than they could have ever imagined. A film that feels like it could and should have been made in the 1980’s as that was when that culture was big especially in the movies. Not to mention it carries that tradition and vibe.

Continue reading “PLEDGE (2018)”