1 BR

“1 BR” is a 2020 thriller/drama starring Nicole Brydon Bloom (The Affair), Giles Matthey (Ford V Ferrari), Taylor Nichols (Criminal Minds), Celeste Sully (Dukkha), and Namoi Grossman (American Horror Story).

Sarah (Bloom) is a young girl who moves out to L.A. trying to make it by making costumes. She finds a one-bedroom apartment that seems perfect, with a real sense of community. She quickly discovers her neighbors aren’t all that they seem, and something much sinister lies beneath.

Nicole Brydon Bloom plays a good lead, and I like the story, it’s very unique. There are a few moments that make you say WTF, that also mixes in some gore. Overall, it’s a psychological thriller, and it sets up for a great ending that you probably don’t see coming. I give it a 7/10.

John Carpenter’s Vampires

“Jon Carpenter’s Vampires” is a 1998 Action/Horror movie based off the book “Vampires” by John Steakley. It stars James Woods (Family Guy), Daniel Baldwin (Cold Case), Sheryl Lee (Twin Peaks), Thomas Ian Griffith (One Tree Hill), and Tim Guinee (Hell on Wheels).

Jack Crow (Woods) is a vampire hunter, and when his crew is attacked and killed by a master vampire, he seeks revenge. He is aided by a priest, his right-hand man, and a prostitute who was bitten by the master vampire. He must hunt down and kill the master vampire before he obtains a relic that allows vampires to walk in sunlight.

This movie hasn’t received a whole lot of love, and it’s fairly unknown. John Carpenter is a great horror director as he is the one who directs the “Halloween” series. I came across this on Netflix and decided to give it a try. First off it is cheesy, it stars B list celebrities, and they are hunting vampires with giant pistols and machine guns. Not to mention James Woods the entire movie is wearing dark sunglasses and a black leather jacket, even though they’re in the desert. So, yes, it’s cheesy. Sounds awful, right? Strangely, it’s the total opposite, it’s awesome. Watching vampires get pumped full of lead by B list celebrities and cheesy dialogue is one of the most 90 things I can think of. It’s fun, exciting, and I enjoyed it so much I ordered the book to read. This is a hidden vampire movie gem. I give it an 8/10.

The Princess

“The Princess” is a 2022 Hulu exclusive action movie starring Joey King (The Act), Veronica Ngo (The Old Guard), Dominic Cooper (Captain America: The First Avenger), and Olga Kurylenko (Seven Psychopaths).

The kingdom needs an heir to the throne, so the king arranges for his daughter to get married. When the princess won’t marry her arranged husband, he sneaks into the kingdom and takes it by force. The princess is locked away in the high tower, she must fight her way down and take back the kingdom.

It is action packed and blood soaked from start to finish. It’s a John Wick style movie but with a female lead where multitudes of people come after her and she essentially kills them all while making her way down the levels of the castle. Joey King is a great actress and overall, it’s a pretty solid movie. It’s not quite as good as John Wick, but it’s still good plus, it’s a pretty original concept. Sure, it has its cheesy parts, and unbelievable parts, but what type of movie like this doesn’t? Overall, it’s worth the watch, I give it a 7/10.

The Outsider

“The Outsider” is a 2018 Netflix original crime drama/ thriller starring Jared Leto (Morbius), Tadanobu Asano (Battleship), Shioli Kutsuna (Deadpool 2), and Min Tanaka (47 Ronin).

An American soldier is in a Japanese prison following WWII. He saves a fellow inmates life, and in return the inmate helps him get out of prison and welcomes him into his gang, the Yakuza.

The Yakuza are a Japanese gang who are ruthless and blood thirsty. This movie does a good job portraying that. I’m typically not a big fan of Jared Leto, I find him weird, and bad at portraying emotion. Most of his movies fall flat because of it. However, his character is trying to survive as an outsider in the Yakuza. So, he needs to be cold hearted, his non emotional self, works out for this role. It’s perfect for him. The movie is dark, gritty and full of drama. If you like gangster style movies, it’s definitely worth checking out. I give it an 8/10.

The Black Phone

“The Black Phone” is a 2022 horror movie based off Joe Hill’s short story. It stars Ethane Hawke (Training Day), Mason Thames (For All Mankind), Madeleine McGraw (American Sniper), and Jeremy Davies (Twister).

Denver 1978, a man known as the grabber is going around and abducting kids. 13-year-old Finney Shaw is his latest victim. An old disconnected black phone and a small mattress is the only things in the soundproof basement he is kept in. The victims before him who were taken and killed by the grabber call Finney through the black phone to try and help Finney survive and escape.

I’ve been excited to see this one since I saw the first trailer for it. It was different than I was expecting. It was more of a crime thriller mixed with some paranormal element’s vs a horror movie. Don’t get me wrong, it is filled with its fair share of creepy parts and jump scares though. It does a great job of keeping you on the edge of your seat and your heart pounding, just a little different than I was expecting. Hawke, Thames, and McGraw all play wonderful roles. It’s scary, creepy, nail biting, and heart felt all rolled into one. It’s definitely worth seeing. I give it a 9/10.

We Die Young

“We Die Young” is a 2019 crime/drama starring Jean-Claude Van Damme (Kickboxer), David Castaneda (The Umbrella Acadamy), Elijah Rodriguez (The Book of Life), Nicholas Sean Johnny (Barry), and Charlie MacGechan (The Girl from the Song).

A young boy is determined to get himself and his little brother out of the hood and not let his younger brother follow in his footsteps. When a simple run of delivering two bricks goes bad, they end up finding help from an unlikely source, a war vet who suffered a terrible accident while deployed leaving him mute, and now suffers from PTSD.

This one doesn’t have much love on IMDb 5.2/10 stars. Looking at it from Jean-Claude Van Damme’s perspective I get it. His character doesn’t say a single word, which would be okay if it added to the story, but it doesn’t. There’s very little action from him, you could take his character out, and it’s the same movie. So, pretty much his character is pointless and doesn’t add anything to the movie. So, it the movie good? Yes, and the reason why, is because of the other actors, especially David Castaneda. He nails the gang leader roll, crazy eyes and all. It’s a gritty gang movie, with a couple of twists you won’t see coming. Overall, it’s worth the watch. I give it an 8.5/10. It’s currently streaming on Netflix.

Choose or Die

“Choose or Die” is a 2022 Netflix original horror/thriller starring Lola Evans (The 100), Asa Butterfield (Hugo), Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes), and Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street).

A young girl who is trying to make her way out of the slums by coding programs runs across an old computer game with her friend. Once she plays it, she unknowingly gets trapped into playing a game that has dire consquences.

This a truth or dare style horror movie when you have two choices, and each round gets worse and worse with plenty of carnage along the way. I enjoy these type of horror movies, especially if they’re done well and not too cheesy. This one doesn’t have great ratings, but I found it surprisingly good. It didn’t go into much detail how the curse worked, or exactly how it all started, it just covered enough to make sense, they didn’t try to go too far and muddle everything up. Also, it has a pretty unique “final boss” sequence. Just don’t get too excited about Freddy Krueger himself being in it, Englund just does a voice cameo for the game itself. To me the movie works, I give it an 8.5/10, it’s a nice hidden horror gem.

The Bob’s Burgers Movie

“The Bob’s Burgers Movie” is a 2022 animation comedy movie from the show “Bob’s Burgers”. It brings in its main cast including H. Jon Benjamin, Kristen Schaal, Dan Mintz, John Roberts, Eugene Mirman, Kevin Kline, Zach Galifianakis, and Larry Murphy while also giving David Wain a new character.

This is the biggest Belcher’s adventure yet. It’s summertime the kids are out of school and looking forward to a great summer. When a sink hole opens up in front of the restaurant it may end up closing the restaurant for good. Even worse skeletal remains are found in the sink hole and their landlord is arrested for the crime. The Belcher kids are determined to prove his innocence and save the family restaurant.

If you’re fan of the show, you’ll love the movie, simple as that. It’s pretty much just an extended episode of Bob’s Burgers with a few musical numbers thrown in. It’s funny, entertaining and just an overall fun watch. I give it an 8/10.

Battle Royale (2000)

“Battle Royale” is a 2000 Japanese horror starring Tatsuya Fujiwara (Death Note), Aki Maeda (The Cat Returns), Taro Yamamoto (Moon Child), and Takeshi Kitano (The Blindswordsman: Zatoichi).

In the future the Japanese government holds a three-day tournament where a school class fights to the death, only one must be left at the end of the three days or all survivors will be killed. This year the government captures a 9th grade class of 42 students to compete.

This one is pretty highly rated on IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, and Metacritic. I also read a list saying this is the best battle royal style movie, think “Hunger games”, “The Condemned”, etc… Cool thing also, this is the first movie to do this, “Hunger Games” came much later, and people even claim, “Hunger Games” is a blatant plagiarism of “Battle Royale.” So, I definitely wanted to watch this one. I’m probably in the minority on this one, but I thought it was just okay. I like the plot and it adds uniqueness like each participant gets a different weapon. Some are good, like a machine gun and bow while others are bad like a pot lid or binoculars. Funny thing though, the pot lid did come in handy. Also, I’m not a fan of dub and subbed movies they never match up, and the dubbing never seems to match the acting, which isn’t the movies’ fault, but still bugs me. The production quality also looks like it’s from the 80’s not 2000. It’s a long one too, a little over two hours, which with 42 kids fighting for their lives it does take a lot of time to show each death. Which I give them credit, there is a lot of unique deaths, it just becomes hard to keep track with the individual stories, friendships, and love interests that come into play. Overall, it’s cool this kicked off the whole battle royal sub-genre, but I give it a 5.5/10. If you do want to check it out, it’s free on Amazon Prime.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

This is the newest MCU movie and is the second standalone Doctor Strange movie, it stars Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange), Elizabeth Olsen (Wanda Vision), Benedict Wong (Doctor Strange), Xochitl Gomez (The Baby-Sitters Club), and Rachel McAdams (Wedding Crashers).

A girl who has the ability to travel through the multiverse winds up in Doctor Strange’s universe. She is on the run from someone trying to hunt her down and steal her powers, Doctor Strange must now put his life on the line to protect the girl. The enemy is closer than what he realizes.

This one picks up right after “Spider-Man: No Way Home” where he just gone done dabbling in the multiverse. No way home opened up a lot of doors by dabbling in the multiverse, and Doctor Strange takes the ball and runs with it here. One thing I love about the MCU movies is how they’re all connected and post endgame/infinity war, it always reference’s it and Thanos, I always get a kick out of it. I knew Wanda aka The Scarlet Witch was in it, it also teased to be star packed, including to be rumored were Blade, Ghost Hunter, Deadpool, Wolverine and others. Which we don’t get any of these. We do get a brief cameo from Professor Xavier, and John Krasinski as Mister Fantastic, so that was a cool little easter egg but that’s all we got. There’s no shortage of action, it’s just Wanda going at it against Doctor Strange and Wong. So it’s different than what I was thinking. It’s still a solid movie though. I give it a 7/10.