A few more quickie reviews – because the summer is long, hot, and way too busy, amiright? So here’s what’s good.
The Blackcoat’s Daughter (a.k.a. February) (2016). This film about creepy girls at a creepy boarding school sounded absolutely tailor-made for me – and in a lot of ways, it was. After all, is there anything better than a creepy boarding school story? Nope. I really enjoyed the leisurely, atmospheric way the story was told (it truly dripped atmosphere, so, score), though at times it was just a tiny bit too leisurely for my taste. However, I think future viewings will only yield more and more, so this film is a win in my book.
The Ones Below (2016). A horror film about mothers, parenting, and paranoia. This had a lot of Rosemary’s Baby vibes, in a very good way, but still managed to be its own film (unlike, for example, Mickey Keating’s recent Darling, which was stylish but far too imitative of the movies it was inspired by).
Even Lambs Have Teeth (2016). Y’all… I kind of loved this. It’s a little sleazy, a little bit of a mixed bag – and I loved it. It takes the rape revenge subgenre and makes it fun. Is it weird that I just said that?
The Shallows (2016). I had (definitely unreasonably) high hopes for this one, and I was sorely disappointed. That might be unfair of me, because this film did pretty much exactly what I imagine it set out to do. As a lover of single-setting horror movies, though, this one fell short of a lot of the ones I’ve loved in the past (Black Water, Frozen, The Ruins). It doesn’t help that I have a strong aversion to Blake Lively’s acting (but a simultaneous obsession with her Instagram… who can figure).
In the Deep (2016). It’s hard to set an entire movie underwater, so I give this one points for doing so fairly admirably. This was fun and suspenseful, and gosh darn it if Mandy Moore isn’t adorable and a really likable heroine. I doubt I’ll see it again, but it was a fun movie to watch during the summer nonetheless.
Rebirth (2016). This Netflix original was a bit of a letdown. It started out strong with plenty of paranoia, but it never really evolved into anything more than those first few scenes at the Rebirth compound. I wish there had been more to it.
The Purge: Election Year (2016). I maintain that the original Purge is the greatest Purge. The sequels are just mediocre action movies. (Not to mention the most interesting character in Election Year was killed off way too soon.)
Urge (2016). This movie was slightly better than The Loft, which it reminded me of for some reason. But that’s not an endorsement.
What've you been watching these days? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter!