The Lamb’s October 2020 MOTM (Round 1 of 3) – Horror Special – My Rankings


As a frequent and steady contributor to The Large Ass Movie Blog, (The LAMB), I always try to get more people involved with the site.

Every Month, the site runs a poll based on the list of films submitted by LAMB members for the prestigious ability of being named as the Movie of the Month that will be discussed on the LAMBCAST podcast during that given month.

I decided that each month I will watch each of the films chosen and give my rankings of those films in order to decide which film I should vote for and in doing so, maybe help some of you also decide which film to vote for.

The voting for Round 1 is only open until Tues the 15th of Sep, so make sure to get your vote in soon.

This month, there were 10 Contenders suggested so here they are:

  • The ‘Burbs (1989) [David Brook, Blueprint: Review]
  • Candyman (1992) [Lisa Leeahey, The Critical Critics]
  • Ernest Scared Stupid (1991) [Mark Hofmeyer, Movies, Films & Flix]
  • A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) [Amanda Kirkham, Hollywood Consumer]
  • Host (2020) [Jason Soto, Whatever With Jason Soto]
  • Insidious (2010) [Damien Riley, Riley on Film]
  • Just Before Dawn (1981) [Aaron Neuwirth, The Code is Zeek]
  • Mandy (2018) [Meg Hyland, Meg’s Movie Alphabet]
  • Night of the Demon (1957) [Brian Eggert, Deep Focus Review]
  • Trick R Treat (2007) [Heather Baxendale, MILFcast]

Unlike other months this month’s poll is being done a bit differently and it will be determined via a small weekly tournament (Bracket style), so I will be posting each subsequent round separately.

For the first round, we have 4 matchups (two – 3 film matchups and two – 2 film matchups).

Check out my thoughts about the films chosen for this round’s matchups.

 

Matchup #1

A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) – Interesting premise that just doesn’t work well enough. The story tries too hard to be mysterious about the plot but it just doesn’t come across as feeling realistic. None of the characters are developed at all and in a horror film, it’s important to care about the characters so that the viewer has someone to root for who might survive the carnage. Being a low budget film, many of the shots are done from angles to make us believe things are happening and they just don’t manage to make it look realistic or genuine enough. (5/10)

Trick R Treat (2007) – Interesting idea that works because it is quite cleverly planned out, The various stories all seem to be completely unconnected, but the film does a nice job finding ways to have each of the stories cross paths with one another while also finding creative ways to continue some of the other stories even after they seem to be finished. The young kid as the connecting thread between the four stories is the weakest part of it all, but it is understandable why they needed such a connector. It’s not much of a surprise that this film has reached cult status even though it is far from perfect. (6/10)

Insidious (2010) – Interesting horror film that is able to mix supernatural and paranormal events together really well. The cats is great with Wilson, Byrne and Hershey doing nice jobs with their roles. Shaye and her entourage steal every scene they are in because they manage to keep things so much fun. They do a great job explaining the new concepts that are discussed here.  The way they describe ‘the further’ can allow it to be both within the supernatural and sci fi realms which adds so much to things here. (7/10)

 

My pick –  Insidious

Matchup #2

The ‘Burbs (1989) – Wacky idea that only works part of the time. Hanks, Ducommun and Dern work well together to make this crazy to the extreme. Fisher is unfortunately wasted in her role.  Feldman is great in his role as a sorta narrator or play by play man. The main problem is that after 30 minutes, it’s quite easy to lose interest and not care at all about what will happen to any of the characters.  Hanks does a fine job as always, but there is no way one would be able to guess by his performance that he was just 4 years away from his first Oscar win. (5/10)

Mandy (2018) – Crazy, psychedelic revenge flick that fails to endear the characters to us. The film is shot in a very dark hue that makes it even more different to try and feel any connection with the characters. Cage grunts his way thru the film which is too gory and too long for its own good. The supporting cast also doesn’t help make this any better because Roache plays his character over the top as he proves the maniacal nature of his character. The mix of animation and live action towards the end makes things even less interesting to watch because of how it is all presented. (2/10)

 

My pick – The ‘Burbs

 

Matchup #3

Just Before Dawn (1981) – Typical slasher film that has very little exposition and plot. The main purpose of watching this movie is to try and see how each kill happens and to try and ascertain who will be the next victim. None of the characters are developed at al and they all are equally served as canon fodder. The forest views are enjoyable to watch when they aren’t plastered with blood. The film has a few small twists that help make it slightly more enjoyable, but overall, there is nothing really unique about this film. (4/10)

Candyman (1992) – Not a very scary film, yet they find ways to deal with the supernatural and psychological effects of folk tales really well. Madsen is great in the lead role and makes things quite believable as she tries to research how people deal with thee kind of tales despite them not being real. Loved the way that the movie references other horror films. The story is a bit too inconsistent in the way things play out but that has to do with the way that they mix together the real world and the supernatural one. The supporting cast is also great with Berkeley playing a professor of the occult who is quite familiar with these kind of myths. The story is a bit too gory at certain points especially the scenes dealing with bees. (6/10)

 

My pick – Candyman

Matchup #4

Ernest Scared Stupid (1991) – Absolutely horrible film that doesn’t make any sense at all. Varney is perfect in this terrible role that he became popular for. The story is quite silly and even kids wouldn’t really enjoy what they try to do here. The special effects are quite primitive and help make this look so fake. Stay away unless you lose a bet or are extremely inebriated. (1/10)

Host (2020) – Really clever and original idea that works really well. They found a great way to create a new kind of film based on connections via zoom. Like most horror films, this one doesn’t explain things in a detailed way, yet they still find a way to keep it interesting. The use of Zoom is utilized really well here which adds to the whole idea and premise. None of the actors are familiar which also adds to the suspense of it all because they all seem like a real group of friends instead of actors. The short run time of just under an hour is perfect for creating such a story. (8/10)

Night of the Demon (1957) – Really interesting psychological horror that does a great job of keeping things feeling very realistic. The special effects are quite primitive and they should have kept more to the imagination as they do in certain scenes where we just see smoke. The dialogue is great and the debates between the characters are quite effective in showing how much of a fine line there is between reality and mysticism. Andrews is great in the lead and helps keep things moving along as the pace of things rapidly rises. The film has some great twists and turns that helps enhance things so much. The supporting cast helps keep things intriguing to watch unfold. (8/10)

 

My Pick – Host

 

To vote, click here

 

Good luck to one and all, c ya next week for the next round!!!

2 thoughts on “The Lamb’s October 2020 MOTM (Round 1 of 3) – Horror Special – My Rankings

  1. Pingback: The Lamb’s October 2020 MOTM (Round 2 of 3) – Horror Special – My Rankings | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: The Lamb’s October 2020 MOTM (Round 3 of 3) – Horror Special – My Rankings | MovieRob

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