Movie Review: The Crazies (2010)

Howdy there, more Month of Spooks content comin’ your way right now! So what’s on the menu tonight? A remake of an older flick? Alrighty then!

Ladies and gentlemen… “The Crazies”.

Ogden Marsh is a quaint little township in Iowa, a place where EVERYBODY KNOWS YORU NAAAAAME… sorry. But yeah, it’s a nice place. That however changes soon when a mysterious virus starts spreading throughout, infecting the people living there, turning them into vicious killers. And we follow the town’s Sheriff (Timothy Olyphant) as he tries to survive with his wife (Radha Mitchell) and a few other people. “The Crazies” is a tale of survival and not losing your humanity and insert other mid-apocalypse buzzwords. And by that mildly snarky line you can probably figure out my thoughts on the narrative of this movie. It’s fine. I never found myself bored by it, I was interested in seeing where it would go. But in the end I will forget this experience sooner than I really want to. It’s a decent survival thriller that never truly makes me feel engaged. It’s more a passive acceptance of its dry and self-serious narrative.

The characters in this are whatever, serving the story just fine. First up we have Timothy Olyphant (fuck yeah) as David, the Sheriff of Ogden Marsh. He knows to be tough when needed, but is generally a kind dude for the most part. He’s probably the most interesting character here, as we follow him and his perspective on this whole ordeal. And Olyphant is great in the role… as he always is. I just think he’s kinda neat, ‘kay? Next we have Radha Mitchell who plays Judy, David’s wife. I like Radha Mitchell, I think she’s a good actress. And I guess she does the best she can with this material, even though she doesn’t get much of a nuanced character. She can basically best be relegated to “wife” in this. We also get supporting work from people like Danielle Panabaker, Joe Anderson, Brett Rickaby, and more, all doing pretty well in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Mark Isham, and I think he did an alright job with it. Some tracks are basic loud horror noises and some are basic mellow drama stuff. The music does its job just fine in conveying certain emotions, even if they don’t always translate to emotional reactions from me.

Based on the 1973 George Romero movie of the same name, “The Crazies” was directed by Breck Eisner who I think did a good job here. He knows how to create some decent intensity in certain scenes. While the story felt fairly unmemorable, some of the creatively macabre scenes that Eisner shot will stick with me a bit more. This goes for Maxime Alexandre’s cinematography, which I think is great.

This movie has been decently well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 70% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 56/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6.5/10.

While I don’t think “The Crazies” is one of the horrors I’ve ever watched, it’s certainly an alright way to spend a slow evening. It has an average story, okay characters, great performances, okay music, and really good directing/cinematography. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for the remake of “The Crazies” is a 6.31/10. So while quite flawed, it’s still worth a rental.

My review of “The Crazies” is now completed.

No, you’re the one with a man crush on Timothy Olyphant… He said, speaking to his reflection.

Movie Review: The Voices (2015)

I’ve already talked about how important mental health is in the opening paragraph of my review of “The Accountant” (*cough* shameless plug *cough*), so I won’t go on about that for too long here. That said, MENTAL HEALTH IS FUCKING IMPORTANT.

Ladies and gentlemen, can you also hear… “The Voices”?

Jerry (Ryan Reynolds) is a troubled young man who just wants to live a normal life, but that is hard when his pets talk to him (yes, you read that right). And after his crush (Gemma Arterton) stands him up after he asked her out, things take a dark and weird turn. So now we have our weird thriller that is also a dark comedy. And I gotta say that I really enjoyed the plot of this movie. Now, it’s a very weird one because it goes in a couple of directions that I didn’t really expect, which I really liked. It managed to catch me off guard quite a lot, managing to create not only odd and funny moments, but also suspenseful and dramatic ones too. Now, the tone of this movie is a little all over the place with this movie which will put some people off, but for me it actually kind of work within the context of the story and the main character. So yeah, I really enjoyed the plot of this movie.

The characters in this movie are all unique, interesting, and quite fun. Jerry can seem like your average, likable guy at first, but as the plot moves along we get to know him a bit more, and we find out just how troubled he is. And Ryan Reynolds is fucking fantastic in the role, perfectly balancing the funny and the tense/dramatic aspects of the character. Gemma Arterton plays his workplace crush who basically helps get the main plot going, and she’s good in the role. Anna Kendrick plays another one of Jerry’s colleagues and she’s really good in the role. Jacki Weaver plays Jerry’s psychiatrist, Dr. Warren, and she’s great in the role. And let’s just get through this quickly: Ella Smith, Paul Chahidi, Stanley Townsend, Adi Shankar, and Sam Spruell all do very well here. Now, I wanted to rush through those guys because I wanted to talk about two of the most interesting characters in the movie: Jerry’s pets (yes, you read that right). I did already mention that they talk to him, and what I like about that is they’re given interesting personalities too. The dog, Bosco, is Jerry’s moral compass and always tries to talk Jerry into being a good boy. And the cat, Mr. Whiskers… well, he’s just a huge asshole, always trying to make Jerry be a bad guy. Really, this movie is filled with interesting characters and solid performances.

The score for the movie was composed by Olivier Bernet and it’s really good. Sure, a lot of it sounds similar to a lot of other horror/thriller scores, but I think it still works for the movie. There are of course also less serious tracks in here too for certain moments in the film, and they all work very well too. There’s also one licensed track that they use in the movie. I’m not gonna say what song it is or how they use it, but let’s just say that it’s very unexpected and just awesome.

This movie was directed by Marjane Satrapi and I think she did a great job here. She manages to create a lot of suspense here, while also managing to create a fun mood for the lighter scenes. Also, I didn’t expect a lot in terms of cinematography with this movie, but holy shit am I glad to have been proven wrong… this movie looks great! And since I’ve mentioned a few times how this is a dark comedy, how is the actual humor in the movie? Well, I thought it was hilarious… but that’s mainly because of my love for dark and off-kilter humor. I laughed a lot… maybe I’m just a bad person, who the fuck knows?

This movie has been decently well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 73% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 58/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,4/10.

“The Voices” isn’t for everyone, but as someone that likes dark, weird, and off-kilter comedies, I thought it was great. It has a really good plot, really good characters, great performances, really good music, really good directing, and great humor. Time for my final score. *Meow*. My final score for “The Voices” is a 9,56/10. This of course means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “The Voices” is now completed.

SEE… I TOLD YOU CATS ARE ASSHOLES!