Life

When the credits began to roll on Life, the group to my left groaned, audibly annoyed by what transpired. The group in front of me immediately began complaining: “That’s it?” Meanwhile, you couldn’t strip the big, goofy grin off my face if you tried. This (admittedly anecdotal) experience revealed that the ending of Daniel Espinosa‘s new science fiction horror movie is going to divide some people. For some, it’s an abrupt sucker punch to the stomach. For others, it’s the nerviest, wildest part of a pretty good movie that needed more of that wicked energy before the final 15 minutes.

Those final scenes aren’t just the best part of the movie – they transform the film into a modern companion piece for a very specific kind of movie. So let’s talk about the Life ending. Spoilers ahead, of course.

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life review

Once upon a time, Life would have been made for a sack of pennies on a set made out of cardboard and released as the bottom half of a double bill alongside whatever Roger Corman was making that year. Take away the modern window dressing and you’re left with one the great B-movie templates: there is a spaceship and there is a monster on the spaceship and everything does not go well on that spaceship.

Life takes that template and pretties it up. There are movie stars and expensive special effects and a thick layer of Hollywood gloss, but the finished film cannot hide its origins: this is schlock in an Armani suit, junkfood beneath filet mignon. And that’s perfectly fine.

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Wish Upon Trailer

The cautionary advice of “be careful what you wish for” has been the center of endless tales of horror. Every now and then, it gets a rather literal depiction, which is exactly what Wish Upon looks to be bringing to the table this summer.

Joey King stars in the horror thriller about a bullied teenage girl named Clare who is given an ornate music box that somehow grants her seven wishes. A new trailer shows us what happens when she wishes that the girl responsible for making her life a living hell in high school would “just go rot,” but we already saw that in the original trailer. What’s new is a bit of background on the box which shows that it has quite the history of ruining the lives of those who had it in their possession.

Watch the new Wish Upon trailer below. Read More »

life

(Welcome to The Best Movies You’ve Never Seen, a series that takes a look at slightly more obscure, under-the-radar, or simply under-appreciated movies. In this edition: the best science fiction horror movies you’ve never seen.)

This coming weekend’s going to be a busy one at the box-office, with three new wide releases aimed at completely different audiences (not to mention a strong hold at the top spot by this past weekend’s monstrous debut of Beauty and the Beast). Two TV shows that are totally still relevant in today’s popular culture are getting the big-screen treatment with the adult-oriented CHiPs and the kid-friendly Power Rangers, but it’s the third film I’m interested in here.

Life is an R-rated, space-set thriller about astronauts who cross paths with a previously undiscovered life form and find themselves in grave danger after one of the geniuses touches it. The science fiction and horror genres go together like chocolate and, I don’t know, something else you like to put in your mouth, and the onscreen pairing of the two has resulted in a seemingly endless supply of filmic entertainment. Some of the best are also among the best-known, including Alien, The Thing, and The Terminator (it’s a slasher movie!). Recent years have given us more niche but still popular fare like Pitch Black, Event Horizon, and Attack the Block.

Rather than talk about the films you already know and love though I’m hoping to introduce you to a few that are maybe a bit more obscure, but still well worth your attention. Below are some great (in their own way) sci-fi/horror titles that, like Life, take place off Earth and/or involve aliens. While some may be familiar, I’m hoping you’re inspired to seek out the others.

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BODY PARTS.Still.8

When the gang over at How Did This Get Made? gave me the heads up that we were covering Body Parts — a 1991 movie whose premise is as silly as it is strange — I was expecting something schlocky. And while the movie itself isn’t my cup of tea (full disclosure: no horror film is), I was surprised to find a film that had such a unique voice. There’s a craft to Body Parts, and a compelling, noir-ish sensibility.

I mention all this because it made me really eager to speak with the film’s director, Eric Red; to find out what kind of a storyteller would make a movie like this.

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it gutter scene image

Andrés Muschietti‘s adaptation It has to impress on several fronts. It has to please the fans of Stephen King‘s original book, which may be the best horror novel ever written. It has to grab those who were traumatized by the TV miniseries adaptation from the early ’90s. It has to be an effective horror movie for those completely unfamiliar with this story. So yeah: no pressure. 

New Line has released a new image from the film and it’s from a moment that will be very familiar to fans of the book and viewers of the original miniseries. Heck, even the newbies may know a thing or two about this one, as it’s probably the most famous scene in It.

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Alien Covenant poster

“The path to paradise begins in hell,” the Alien: Covenant trailer ominously declares as the crew members on the colony ship Covenent prepare to get slaughtered. The new poster for Ridley Scott‘s second Alien prequel certainly hits that theme on the nose, with a dark, disturbing poster reminiscent of Renaissance paintings of angels and demons. Let’s check out that poster. And while we’re at it, let’s also explore its obvious influences.

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Ben Pearson’s Favorite Movies of All Time

Ben Pearson's Favorite Movies of All Time

What’s up, /Film readers? My name is Ben Pearson, and I’m new here. Talking about movies is clearly a huge part of what we do on the site, so a fitting way for me to introduce myself is to present you with my 15 favorite films of all time so you can either appreciate or scoff at my choices. Let’s get started Read More »

raw barf bags

The critically acclaimed cannibal coming-of-age movie Raw became one of the genre darlings of the film festival circuit last year. It has also become infamous for causing audience members to faint, with its scenes of gore reportedly inducing spells of nausea and vomiting.

But one Los Angeles theater has the remedy to that: barf bags.

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death note trailer

After making terrific horror movies like You’re Next and The Guest, director Adam Wingard was supposed to break out in a big way last year with the very fun Blair Witch, a film that didn’t manage to find its feet at the box office. However, it looks like that big breaking-out just got delayed to 2017, because the trailer for his new Netflix movie, Death Note, has arrived and it looks like something that will turn a lot of heads.

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