Review: Inferno

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Argento is not my favourite director. His reckless disregard for a coherent script has dragged more than one interesting movie down a few notches. The most tantalizing of his efforts involve his Three Mothers series and its triumvirate of ancient witches causing havoc since the Middle Ages.

Inferno is my favourite of the three movies. It has all the elements necessary to draw the viewer in: an ancient cult, arcane knowledge hidden in musty books, an old …

IFPReview: Inferno

Review: The Ruins (film)

By Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I’m going to be blunt here, so if you’re spoiler-phobic, you’d better step away right now: I’ve never been afraid of killer plants. God knows they’ve had their share of appearances in horror literature and movies like The Day of the Triffids (1962), Little Shop of Horrors (the musical and Corman version) and The Happening (2008), but for the most part, they leave me cold. Add to that a cast of young students and it’s not a …

IFPReview: The Ruins (film)

Guy Fawkes Day Review: V for Vendetta

By Paula R. Stiles

Remember, Remember the Fifth of November
The gunpowder treason and plot
I see no reason why the gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.

This verse refers to a man, Guy Fawkes, whose name has lived on in infamy (and also fame) since he was arrested in 1605 on this day for treason. The celebration, “Guy Fawkes Day (Bonfire Night)“, has been named after him. Fawkes was an Englishman who was part of The Gunpowder …

IFPGuy Fawkes Day Review: V for Vendetta

Review: Drag Me to Hell

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

There are two important lessons to be gleaned from Drag Me to Hell: 1) Social-climbers deserve death and 2) Gypsies are disgusting, awful people.

Drag Me to Hell tells the story of a formerly fat, formerly farm-bound girl who has made it to the big city and is hoping for a big promotion at the bank where she works in order to validate herself as girlfriend material for her rich boyfriend and his obnoxious parents. One …

IFPReview: Drag Me to Hell

Review: Paranormal Week: Paranormal Activity

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I never liked The Blair Witch Project. When I saw it on screen, it was nauseating for all the wrong reasons. Struck with a bad case of motion sickness, I walked out of Blair Witch, grinding my teeth against the buddies that had dragged me to a non-scary, hype-bloated movie that got its audiences by claiming to be based on a true story (just like The Amityville Horror). So, heading towards Paranormal Activity, …

IFPReview: Paranormal Week: Paranormal Activity

Review: The Dunwich Horror (The SyFy Channel, October 18, 2009)

By Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The problem with Lovecraft is that it’s hard to maintain the suspense of his stories on screen. A lot of his work was thin on plot and thick on atmosphere, which means filling two hours worth of entertainment involves a lot of padding. The Dunwich Horror is one of his longer and more easily adaptable stories because of its length and plot.

That didn’t stop the makers of this new adaptation of Dunwich from producing a bizarre …

IFPReview: The Dunwich Horror (The SyFy Channel, October 18, 2009)

Review: Templar Week: Fallen Knight

By Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Fallen Knight (1998), which is also known as The Minion, bears several similarities to Demon Knight (1995): there’s a hero trying to keep a precious key which could unlock the gates of Hell from the hand of a tenacious demonic foe, as well as a female sidekick. Unfortunately, Demon Knight was fun to watch. Fallen Knight is a boring, cheap, jumbled mess.

Dolph Lundgren plays a modern-day Templar knight in New York who has to drive …

IFPReview: Templar Week: Fallen Knight

Review: Templar Week: Demon Knight

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The TV show Tales from the Crypt was hit or miss depending on the episode. There were some big turkeys there. But when it got it right, you were in for a fiendishly fun ride. Demon Knight (1995) has all the good parts of the TV episodes expanded to a full-motion picture format.

The plot has our hero fighting hordes of demons with a Grail relic containing the Blood of Christ in an effort to stop the …

IFPReview: Templar Week: Demon Knight

Review: Templar Week: Tombs of the Blind Dead

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

There are two great things about Tombs of the Blind Dead: the shots of the monastery Santa María de Valdeiglesias (it’s not the Cernon, despite what the credits say) and the horses. Unfortunately, these are stacked against a whole lot of cons which include the laughable dialogue, poor script and crummy camera work.

I originally remembered this Spanish-Portugal production as being shot in Italian, which had me squinting for the first few minutes trying to figure …

IFPReview: Templar Week: Tombs of the Blind Dead

Review: Templar Week: The Hypothesis of the Stolen Painting

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Da Vinci Code and The Ninth Gate eat your heart out. L’hypothèse du tableau volé (The Hypothesis of the Stolen Painting) (1979) is the daddy of the esoteric-mystery sub-genre. This short, black-and-white experimental French film, loosely inspired by the work of Pierre Klossowski, feels like a cross between Peter Greenway and Luis Buñuel. If all this makes it sound like a hard lump to swallow, sit your butt down and listen because L’hypothèse du

IFPReview: Templar Week: The Hypothesis of the Stolen Painting

Review: Dead Snow

By Silvia Moreno-Garcia

OK, here’s an easy test to figure out if you should watch Dead Snow, which just premiered in Canada: if you think undead Nazis chasing people through Norway is tasteless, stay home. If you think undead Nazis chasing people through Norway sounds like a hell of an idea, purchase your tickets pronto.

Dead Snow tells the bloody, gory tale of a group of students who decide to take a mountain vacation. Predictably, they are annoying little …

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Review: Jennifer’s Body

by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I wasn’t sure what to expect going into a screening of Jennifer’s Body. The trying-too-hard-to-be-cool artificial dialogue of Juno grew grating by the second half of the movie and I did not know if I could stomach something similar again. Fortunately, the obnoxious dialogue works well within the format of an 80s B-horror movie and that’s exactly what this movie feels like: a B-movie. And that is the problem, and the glory, with Jennifer’s Body.…

IFPReview: Jennifer’s Body