The Menu

“The Menu” is a 2022 horror/thriller starring Ralph Fiennes (Skyfall), Anya Taylor-Joy (Last Night in Soho), Nicholas Hoult (Warm Bodies), John Leguizamo (Romeo + Juliet), and Hong Chau (Big Little Lies).

A young couple goes to an island for very exclusive dinner that is over 1200 a head created by a world-renowned chef. Little do they know, everyone is there for a certain reason, and the chef plans on making this his final menu. Every little detail is meticulously planned out, every deadly detail.

I’m a big fan of Anya Taylor-Joy she always plays a great role in her movies, and her starring in another horror, I knew this was a must-see movie. Ralph Fiennes also plays the perfect role of a detail-oriented perfectionist chef who has slowly gone mad by society and has finally reached his limit. This movie was different than I was expecting, it was still a great movie, just different. Not quite as fast paced as I was thinking it would be. It was a little more artsy than I was expecting. It reminded me of an artsier version of a M. Night Shyamalan movie. I also enjoyed how everything was targeted at the rich vs. the working class in society. I give this one a 7.5/10.

Advertisement

Vengeance

“Vengeance” is a 2022 Drama/Comedy starring B.J. Novak (The Office), Boyd Holbrook (Logan), Ashton Kutcher (The Butterfly Effect), Issa Rae (The Lovebirds), Louanne Stephens (Longmire), and Zach Villa (American Horror Story).

A playboy from NY City, who jumps from woman to woman, is trying to make it in the podcast scene. He receives a phone call from a woman’s brother, who he hooked up with a few times, telling him his girlfriend is dead. The woman’s family thinks he is her boyfriend and wants him to attend her funeral in Texas. When he’s down there the brother convinces him, she was murdered, and he agrees to help find the killer thinking he has found a subject for the perfect podcast.

I was surprised how good this movie was. It’s really well written, and you find yourself wrapped up in the story as B.J. Novak tries to find out what happened to the girl. It’s a little predictable as you know he’s going to go from self-absorbed dick to caring about more than just himself as he gets wrapped up with her slightly dysfunctional family. It doesn’t matter though because even though you know it’s going to happen it’s written well, and brings a good balance of being heart felt, comedy, and drama. This is also B.J. Novak’s directorial debut for a film, and it’s a great debut. The only qualm I have with the movie is the ending, I felt it a little anticlimactic and lacking, still it’s a great movie and worth watching. You can currently catch it in some theaters, and on Peacock. I give it an 8/10.

Halloween Ends

“Halloween Ends” is the latest (2022) and hopefully final installment in the horror series “Halloween” and it’s the third one in the most recent “Halloween” trilogy. This one stars Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween), Andi Matichak (Halloween), Rohan Campbell (Virgin River), Will Patton (Yellowstone), and Michael Barbieri (Spider-Man: Homecoming).

It has been four years after the events of “Halloween Kills” and Michael Myers hasn’t been seen since. A new killer emerges who idolizes Michael Myers and unleashes the evil that is Michael Myers. Laurie (Curtis) must now stop the new killer and hopefully once and for all put an end to Michael Myers.

Out of the recent trilogy this one is the best, the last one wasn’t bad. It gave a lot of nods to the original films, but my big issue with the last one was Michael Myers himself. The guy has to be in his 70’s and they can’t take him down? Enough is enough, it’s beating a dead horse at this point. The cool spin with this one is Michael Myers isn’t the main focal point but a much younger killer all together, with his own troubled back story. Laurie and Michael still have their showdown, and the ending is very fitting. As far as I understand it’s the end of Jamie Lee Curtis with the “Halloween” franchise. Which it is time, we all know remakes will still be made, especially since it still brings in money. Hopefully though, we’re done with senior citizen Michael Myers. Overall, it’s worth watching. I give it a 7.5/10.

The Munsters (2022)

“The Munsters” is a 2022 Rob Zombie reboot comedy of the classic 60’s sitcom with the same name. The movie stars Sheri Moon Zombie (The Devil’s Rejects), Jeff Daniel Phillips (3 from Hell), Daniel Roebuck (3 from Hell), Richard Brake (31), Jorge Garcia (Lost), and Thomas Boykin (3 from Hell).

This is a prequel to the Sitcom. It shows life before Lily and Herman, how they got together, and how Herman came into existence. It also follows their move from Transylvania to America.

I was excited for this one ever since it was first announced, I have loved The Munsters since I was a kid. It was before my time, but as a kid I would watch classics like The Munsters, Leave it to Beaver, Green Acres, Twilight Zone, Andy Griffith, and The Beverly Hillbillies. Rob Zombie is notorious for using the same actors and actresses in every movie especially with his wife Sheri Moon. This one isn’t any different as he uses Phillips, Roebuck, Brake, and Boykin who have all been in previous movies of his. So how did the reboot stack up, and how did his repeat actors do?

Simple, if you loved The Munsters like I do, you’re going to love this film. Zombie does a great job of capturing the essence of the 60’s and The Munsters. Not to mention the actors Phillips and Roebuck do a great job playing Herman and the Count, but the real star is Moon Zombie. She does such a great job as Lily, she even has her mannerisms down to a t. It’s perfect. Now if you haven’t seen the sitcom or not really a fan of it, you’re not going to like this movie. You’ll think it’s dumb, silly, and campy, which it kind of is, but that’s how the sitcom is too, and Zombie does such an amazing job of capturing that. Another cool little tidbit, Pat Priest and Butch Patrick have small roles in this film. They played Marilyn and Eddie in the original show. For me, as a fan it’s a must watch and I give it an 8/10. You can catch it on Netflix.

The Curse of Bridge Hollow

“The Curse of Bridge Hollow” is Netflix’s newest Halloween themed movie. It’s a 2022 family/comedy starring Marlon Wayans (White Chicks), Priah Ferguson (Stranger Things), Kelly Rowland (Empire), John Michael Higgins (Pitch Perfect), Lauren Lapkus (The Wrong Missy), and Rob Riggle (Holey Moley).

A teenage girl (Ferguson), her mom (Rowland), and her dad (Wayans) move to a small town from the city around Halloween time. The small town is all about Halloween and all the houses deck out their yards in decorations. The girl accidently unleashes an ancient spirit who brings all the yard decorations in town to life. She now must team up with her dad, who doesn’t believe in the paranormal but only science, to stop the curse before it’s too late.

I like Priah Ferguson, she’s great in “Stranger Things”, and I also like Marlon Wayans, he’s a very funny dude. It also looks like it would be good, an original concept. However, it’s not funny and just seems to be a rip off of “Goosebumps” with Jack Black but not near as good. It didn’t seem to know its target audience. It’s labeled a family film, but it appears to be too scary for kids, maybe not older kids, but not scary enough to be a horror. It also drops a couple of random curse words that don’t seem to be family friendly but again too dumb/not scary to be for adults either. It just falls in that weird void. Instead of battling R.L. Stein’s monsters in “Goosebumps” they run around defeating yard decorations while maintaining too not being funny. It sets up for a sequel at the end, but I hope Netflix spares us from that atrocity. I would give this one a pass this Halloween. I give it a 5/10.

Last Seen Alive

“Last Seen Alive” is a 2022 Netflix original thriller/action starring Gerard Butler (The Bounty Hunter), Jaimie Alexander (Thor), Russell Hornsby (Fences), Ethan Embry (Sweet Home Alabama), and Michael Irby (Mayans M.C.)

A married couple who are going through a rough patch are on their way to the wife’s parents for her to stay and think things over. They stop at a gas station and the wife (Alexander) goes in to buy some water and snacks, but she never comes back out. Now a desperate husband (Butler) will do whatever it takes to find his wife.

Gerard Butler is a great actor and he’s proven himself as an action star over the years. So, he does a great job in this as the desperate husband trying to track down his wife. I found it a little shallow in terms of the story. It’s a good story and it’s action packed but I felt like it lacked depth, they could have gone more into why she was missing versus just scratching the surface. It’s still a good action-packed watch. I give it a 7.5/10.

Magic

Going to go old school with this one. “Magic” is a 1978 horror/drama starring Anthony Hopkins (The Silence of the Lambs), Ann-Margret (Grumpy Old Men), Burgess Meredith (Rocky), and Ed Lauter (Not Another Teen Movie).

A ventriloquist (Hopkins) who’s on the fast track to stardom goes into hiding when he’s required to take a medical test for a big contract. He’s afraid the doctors will find out he’s crazy and can’t control his ventriloquist dummy. While in hiding he rekindles a spark with an old crush who happens to be married. Things start to snowball downhill very fast while there.

I wouldn’t necessarily classify this one as a horror, maybe a thriller. It’s a horror in the same sense of the movie “Psycho” is. It’s a slow burn, it doesn’t have the jump scenes, mass killings, or gore. It’s also really similar to “Psycho” in the aspect of the schizophrenia angle with a good twist ending. Hopkins could be Norman Bates brother in this. It boasts a legendary cast with Hopkins, Margret, and Meredith. I always get excited when I see Burgess Meredith in a different role, I didn’t know he was in. This is a great watch if you haven’t seen it and in perfect time for Halloween. You can catch it on Tubi. I give it an 8/10.

Smile

“Smile” is a 2022 horror starring Sosie Bacon (13 Reasons Why), Kyle Gallner (Outsiders), and Kal Penn (Harold & Kumar go to White castle).

An ER therapist (Bacon) witnesses one of her patients kill themselves in a brutal fashion in front of her after the patient claimed she was being hunted/forced by a supernatural/demonic force. It creates a pattern, whoever witness the suicide will face the same fate a week later if not sooner. Now Dr. Rose Cotter (Bacon) must find a way to break the pattern before she faces the same fate while she slowly spirals into insanity.

This movie is insane. It takes a look at the fragility of the mind and mental illness while Sosie Bacon’s life starts to spiral out of control. She begins to not be able to decipher reality from nightmare. This movie is not predictable, it’s creepy, and it will have you leaving the theater saying holy crap, and probably a feeling of unease. There are very few movies that leave me mind blown, but this is one of them. Sosie Bacon plays an amazing role, and she deserves some sort of an award for it. This is a must watch for any horror fan, it will go down as the best horror film of 2022. I give it a 10/10.

Gatlopp: Hell of a Game

“Gatlopp: Hell of a Game” is a 2022 comedy/horror starring Jim Mahoney (The Orville), Emmy Raver-Lampman (The Umbrella Academy), Jon Bass (Sword of Trust), Sarunas J. Jackson (Games People Play).

Four good friends get back together as adults for a fun night after one of them is going through a divorce. It’s a night filled with drinking, and they decided to play a board game that is a drinking game. The game turns out to be paranormal and they must do exactly as it says or suffer dire consequences. One of them must win the game before sunrise or they will be forced to play it for all eternity.

I wouldn’t exactly classify this one as a horror but more of a dark comedy. It doesn’t have any big names in it, but they all play a good part, and the acting is solid. It’s like a messed up adult version of Jumanji that makes them expose their deepest and darkest secrets that they’ve kept from each other. Ultimately it brings them closer, so it has a good message. True friendship can overcome and endure all. It’s a little cheesier and more lighthearted than it sounded like it would be, but it’s a good watch. You can watch it on Tubi. I give it a 6.5/10.

End of the Road

“End of the Road” is a 2022 Netflix original thriller starring Queen Latifah (Set It Off), Ludacris (2 Fast 2 Furious), and Beau Bridges (My Name is Earl).

A mom, her brother, and two kids are moving to Texas after the passing of her husband to try to start a new life. While staying overnight in a seedy motel on their way to Texas, they hear a gunshot go off in the room beside theirs. When they rush over, they find a dead man and duffel bag full of money. The brother takes the duffel bag of money to give them a better life. Now they’re caught up in a dangerous game with a dangerous man who wants his money back.

I love Queen Latifah and Ludacris both, and the plot sounded pretty good. The acting’s good but it’s predictable. I called who “Mr. Cross” was early on in the film, and some off the scenes are laughable. Like for Instance where Queen Latifah has her hands zip tied together but still manages to beat up a group of white supremacists. Not very believable. It’s not a bad movie just not a thriller. I give 6/10.