Thursday, October 31, 2019

Films That I Saw: October 2019

Impeachment is coming and it is kind of exciting but I’m also wary of what is to come. Still, there is a lot of things that are happening around the world as things in Britain are a mess while the idea that ISIS is done for some reason doesn’t feel right. Even as El Pendejo claims victory yet I’m always thinking that it’s not over yet as there’s some bad shit that is to come. It’s gotten weird as I’ve been focused mainly on helping my mom take care of my nephew in the day time and do other things while I’ve been able to sort of get back on board in watching films again regularly. At the same time, I’ve just started work on a big project that I will unveil in a few days as it started off as a response over comments made by a few revered filmmakers on the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

In the month of October, I saw a total of 31 films in 16 first-timers and 15 re-watches as it is an improvement of sorts over the past few months as I was able to see a lot of films this month as the highlight of the month has been my Blind Spot assignment in My Neighbor Totoro. Here are my top 10 first-timers that I saw for October 2019:

1. The House That Jack Built

2. Bad Times at the El Royale

3. Diego Maradona

4. Kuroneko

5. The Lighthouse

6. The 39 Steps

7. Halloween

8. The Face of Another

9. Pitfall

10. Joker

Monthly Mini-Reviews

Night School

Kevin Hart is usually a miss for me on a lot of films including this one where he spends a lot of the time whining, screaming loud, and trying to be the center of attention which is essentially a lot of what he does as a midget. Yet, the film manages to be watchable thanks in part to its ensemble cast including Rob Riggle, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Keith David, and Anne Winters. The film’s MVP is Tiffany Haddish who proves that not only is she funny but she is also a great straight woman who knows when to be funny but also knows how to be serious as the film would’ve been a disaster without her.

Happy Death Day 2U

I like sequels that don’t take themselves seriously as this film did that and more with its premise of re-living one’s death every day as it does explain how Jessica Rothe’s character was able to re-live her death day in the previous film. The sequel is emphasized more on comedy than its predecessor yet it also manages to do more with the ensemble as Phi Vu and Rachel Matthews in their respective roles with the latter as Danielle being a standout in how funny she is. It’s also got character development and moments that are playful and fun as it’s definitely worth watching and proof of how to do horror-comedy right.

Finding Dory

I had hope to see this much later but during a day where my mom and I were taking care of my nephew, we ended up watching this film in its entirety on the Disney Channel and it was really awesome. It’s a film that is an exploration of family where Dory begins to have memories about her own parents as she is eager to find them with Marlin and Nemo helping her out. It is a gorgeous film but it’s also really touching which is often expected from Pixar. My mother liked it yet my nephew was enamored with the imagery of it.

Top 10 Re-Watches:

1. In the Mood for Love

2. The Babadook

3. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

4. Hail, Caesar!

5. Nowhere Boy

6. Toy Story of Terror!

7. Happy Death Day

8. Harlem Nights

9. Addams Family Values

10. Tales from the Hood

Well, that is all for October. Next month, I will be getting back to regular movie-watching based on the never-ending DVR list including a film by Alfred Hitchcock I hadn’t had the time to watch as a late entry to the world of horror. Along with possible theatrical viewings for Parasite, Jojo Rabbit, and Knives Out, I hope to also watch films that are coming out on Netflix and other things in my laptop that I haven’t watched. I will also make an announcement of my MCU project which has already gotten started as I’ve written some stuff for the first part already. Until then, this is thevoid99 signing off and hope everyone has a Happy Halloween…

© thevoid99 2019

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

The House That Jack Built

Written and directed by Lars von Trier from an idea by von Trier and Jenle Hallund, The House That Jack Built is the story of the life of a serial killer in the course of 12 years as he kills various people from the 1970s to the 1980s in the state of Washington. The film is a psychological horror film that explores a man’s love of killing people through five moments in his life as he sees his killings as works of art as the titular character is portrayed by Matt Dillon. Also starring Bruno Ganz, Uma Thurman, Riley Keough, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Sofie Grabol, and Jeremy Davies. The House That Jack Built is a discomforting yet intense film from Lars von Trier.

Set in the 1970s and 1980s in the state of Washington through five events and an epilogue, the film is the simple story of the life of a failed architect who becomes a serial killer as he would kill a lot of people during the course of his life. It’s a film that explores a man’s life through the people he killed with many of the victims being women as he would talk about his exploits to another man off screen as well as view his murders as art. Lars von Trier’s screenplay is told through five chapters as it relates to life of its titular character (Matt Dillon) as he would have these off-screen conversations with a man named Verge (Bruno Ganz) such as the first time he killed someone to how his murders would get more sophisticated during the years as he becomes less compulsive and more refined. It also showcases his growing sense of disdain towards aspects of humanity as well as seeing his killings as works of art where he is determined to be more artistic. Yet, he would also cope in trying to create a house for himself as another form of artistic expression.

The direction of von Trier is stylish in its approach to telling a man’s life story yet it draws upon many ideas of artistry with inter-cut images of stock footage and such to play into Jack’s psyche and pursuit of artistic glory. Shot on various locations in Sweden and parts of Denmark including Copenhagen, the film does play into this small town world where Jack drives a shiny red-colored van as von Trier would shoot much of the film on different formats with much of the narrative presented in the 2:39:1 aspect ratio with some stock footage shot in the 1:37:1 full-frame aspect ratio. Much of von Trier’s usage of close-ups and medium shots are presented with hand-held cameras to get a sense into Jack’s own emotions as well as those he terrorizes during the course of the film. There are some wide shots as a few of them pay homage to Carl Theodor Dreyer’s film Master of the House in a sequence where Jack carries a body to his home in a darkly-comical speedy presentation. The direction also has von Trier borrow images from not just various pieces of art including footage from shorts and such along with von Trier’s own films but also paintings, sculptures, and designs of houses, churches, and other places to play into Jack’s fascination with art.

Even as it play into Jack’s obsession in creating the perfect house with the best materials he can find as his frustrations for perfection only fuels his desire to kill. The violence in the film is emphasized more on impact rather than gore and anything outrageous as von Trier shows these acts of violence to play into Jack’s obsession with its culture and how much control he can bring while becoming more sadistic in his pursuit of artistic triumphs. The film’s final incident and its epilogue play into Jack’s obsession as well as this individual he had been talking to throughout the film off-screen in Verge. The final incident would also reveal a room that Jack had been trying to get into in the ice locker he owned where he would store many of his victims as it would play into Jack’s desire of his own dream house but also a chilling epilogue that is more about Jack’s fate and the decision he makes as a man. Overall, von Trier creates a disturbing yet evocative film about the life of a serial killer and his pursuit of artistic glory.

Cinematographer Manuel Alberto Claro does brilliant work with the film’s cinematography as its usage of colors and low-key lights for scenes at the night and in some of the interior scenes add to the stark visual tone of the film. Editors Molly Malene Stensgaard and Jacob Secher Schulsinger do excellent work with the editing with its usage of jump-cuts, montages, and other stylish cuts to play into Jack’s journey. Production designer Simone Grau Roney and art director Cecilia Hellner do fantastic work with the apartment that Jack lives in as well as the ice house that he owns with boxes of frozen pizzas where he would store the body while von Trier would serve as art director for the film’s final scene. Costume designer Manon Rasmussen does nice work with the costumes as it is largely straightforward in what Jack wears with the exception of a red bathrobe he would wear late in the film.

Prosthetics makeup effects designer Love Larson does terrific work with the look of the corpses that Jack has collected in his storage ice room. Visual effects supervisors Pierre Buffin and Peter Hjorth do amazing work with the visual effects for some sequences during the epilogue that includes recreations of a few paintings. Sound designer Kristian Eidnes Andersen does superb work with the sound where it emphasizes on natural elements and sparse textures to play into the realism of the film. The film’s music by Victor Reyes is wonderful for its low-key approach to ambient music which is only used sparingly for its climatic epilogue while music supervisor Mikkel Maltha provide a music soundtrack that adds a lot of punch to Jack’s journey from classical pieces by Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi, and Richard Wagner as a Bach piece is performed by Glenn Gould with the rest of the soundtrack features Louis Armstrong’s rendition of St. James Infirmary Blues, a cover of Ray Charles’ Hit the Road Jack by David Johansen in his Buster Poindexter persona, and David Bowie’s Fame.

The casting by Des Hamilton, Avy Kaufman, and Lara Manwaring is marvelous as it feature some notable small roles from Osy Ikhile as a victim of Jack’s late in the film, David Bailie as a friend of Jack’s in S.P., Jeremy Davies as an ammunitions salesman in Al, Jack McKenzie as a blacksmith in Sonny, Emil Tholstrup as a young Jack, Marijana Jankovic and Carina Skenhede as a couple of victims of Jack’s, Rocco and Cohen Day in their respective roles as the boys Grumpy and George, and Edward Spleers as a policeman during the film’s second incident. In the performances of some of the women that Jack would encounter, Uma Thurman as the annoying hitchhiking lady, Siobhan Fallon Hogan as a widowed neighbor, Sofie Grabol as a mother of two boys, and Riley Keough as a young girlfriend of Jack’s in Simple are excellent in their roles as the women in Jack’s life who would play into his evolution as a serial killer and his growing fascination in being an artist.

Bruno Ganz is phenomenal as Verge as this mysterious man who appears off-screen for much of the film as he converses with Jack about his killings and such where he is appalled by his actions but also intrigued as his appearance in the film’s final moments reveal something much bigger as someone who observes all of Jack’s exploits. Finally, there’s Matt Dillon in an incredible performance as the titular character as this architect whose desire to create a home for himself is troubled by his desire for perfection as his frustrations with humanity leads him to killing people where he sees it as an expression of art where Dillon displays some charm but also a manic energy into his role as it is a career-defining performance for Dillon.

The House That Jack Built is a spectacular film from Lars von Trier that features a sensational performance from Matt Dillon. Along with its ensemble cast that includes a great supporting performance from Bruno Ganz as well as its ravishing visuals, offbeat music soundtrack, and study of humanity, murder, and art. It’s a film that is definitely not for the faint of heart as it shows von Trier at his most carnal but also with a level of restraint into the acts of violence as well as studying the mind of a man who kills for the pleasure of it as well as to fill the void of his own artistic satisfaction. In the end, The House That Jack Built is a tremendous film from Lars von Trier.

Lars von Trier Films: The Element of Crime - Epidemic - Medea (1988 TV film) - Europa - The Kingdom I - Breaking the Waves - The Kingdom II - Dogme #2: Idioterne - Dancer in the Dark - Dogville - The Five Obstructions - Manderlay - The Boss of It All - Antichrist - Dimension (2010 short) - Melancholia - Nymphomaniac - The Kingdom: Exodus - (Etudes)

Related: Favorite Films #3: Breaking the Waves - The Auteurs #7: Lars von Trier

© thevoid99 2019

Sunday, October 27, 2019

The Lighthouse (2019 film)

Directed by Robert Eggers and written by Robert and Max Eggers, The Lighthouse is the story of two lighthouse keepers who tend to a lighthouse in the late 19th Century as their life of solitude becomes troubled as they endure their own demons. The film is a psychological horror film that explore the world that two men live in as they deal with their own issues as well as their state of mind as they start to unravel. Starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson. The Lighthouse is an intoxicating yet haunting film from Robert Eggers.

Set on an isolated island in the U.S. in the late 19th Century, the film is about two men running a lighthouse as they live and work in a solitude environment that eventually gets to them as their four-week tenure is extended further by a storm and other disturbing events. It’s a film that doesn’t have much plot as it play into two men working at a lighthouse as they deal with the job at hand amidst horrendous weather conditions and other strange things. The film’s screenplay by Robert and Max Eggers opens with the arrival of Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson) and his supervisor in Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe) as the latter had ran the lighthouse before as Winslow learns that Wake’s previous assistant had gone mad. Winslow accepts the job for pay as he learns to deal with Wake yet he would start to see strange things including a mermaid (Valeriia Karaman) while he also witnesses Wake behaving strangely as well. The tension between Winslow and Wake would come ahead yet would either be soothed or intensified through alcohol.

Robert Eggers’ direction definitely recall films of the past in not just its visuals and its usage of the 1:19:1 aspect ratio that is more akin to the cinematic style of 1920s/1930s cinema. Shot on location in Nova Scotia, Eggers does use some wide shots to get a scope of the locations as well as the sea to play into its air of isolation yet much of the direction is emphasized on close-ups and medium shots with some intricate camera movements throughout the film. Eggers’ usage of the close-ups doesn’t just play into some of the emotional moments of the film but also in some of the dramatic tension and suspense as it relates to the moments in and out of the lighthouse as well as what Winslow sees on the island. There are also these offbeat moments in the film as it relates to Winslow’s encounter with a seagull as Wake states that killing one would bring a curse to the island.

While there are moments of the film that do slow things down as it involve scenes of no dialogue, it does play into not just some of the tension that occur but also into the surreal moments of the film. Notably in what Winslow sees in the film as there are also these intimate yet lively moments of Winslow and Wake as they get drunk and sing sea chanteys while going into conversation about themselves and such. Even as it goes into the third act as Winslow copes with what he’s encountered as well as it play into what he is seeing is real or maybe in his head. Even as Wake becomes more upset over what Winslow had brought to the island as Eggers’ direction does intensify while he creates these gorgeous compositions that add a lot of intrigue into what Wake does at the top of the lighthouse which he always closes. Eggers’ visuals would showcase some of the mystery of that lighthouse as along with the island are characters of the film as it would play into everything Winslow and Wake have been fascinated by. Overall, Eggers crafts a terrifying yet rapturous film about two men working and living in a lighthouse on an isolated island.

Cinematographer Jarin Blaschke does incredible work with the film’s black-and-white photography with its usage of lighting for some interior scenes at night along with the way the rocks and muddy roads look as it is a highlight of the film. Editor Louise Ford does excellent work with the editing as its usage of rhythmic cuts help play into the drama and suspense along with the few bits of humor as a lot of it is straightforward. Production designer Craig Lathrop, with set decorator Ian Greig and art director Matt Likely, does brilliant work with the look of the lighthouse and the houses around the lighthouse as well as the interiors in how small their bedroom is and how shambolic the home looks from inside. Costume designer Linda Muir does fantastic work with the costumes as it is largely low-key into the uniforms that the men wear as well as the shambolic look it would have.

Special makeup effects artists Shane Shisheboran and Vague Vartanian do terrific work with the look of the mermaid as well as a few things that Winslow would see. Visual effects supervisors Eran Dinur, Luc Julien, Marc Massicotte, Eric Pascarelli, Vico Sharabani, and Asaf Yeger do superb work with the visual effects as it relates to some of the film’s surreal moments as well as some minimal work in the look of the seagulls flying above. Sound designers Mariusz Glabinski and Damian Volpe is amazing for the way a foghorn would sound from afar as well as the sounds of the seagulls and the sea as it helps bring in this tense and eerie atmosphere of the film. The film’s music by Mark Korven is phenomenal for its ominous and chilling score that is filled with heavy bass in the strings and in some of the instrumentation as it helps with the atmospheric tone of the film while its soundtrack feature traditional sea chanteys.

The casting by Kharmel Cochrane is wonderful as it feature a few actors who make appearances from afar with Valeriia Karaman as the mermaid. The performances of Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson in their respective roles as Thomas Wake and Ephraim Winslow are sensational in displaying the manic energy and paranoia they both endure with Dafoe being more of an authority figure who farts a lot and tells a lot of stories while Pattinson is the one doing more of the physical duties who becomes frustrated on many levels including sexually as he would masturbate to a mermaid figurine. Dafoe and Pattinson have great rapport with one another as they deal with their own differences in age and work methods as well as be two men trapped in this island and tending to a lighthouse with mysterious things surrounding it and from within.

The Lighthouse is a spectacular film from Robert Eggers that features two great leading performances from Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson. Along with its gorgeous black-and-white visuals, evocative music score, eerie sound design, and its chilling premise. It’s a film that explore the idea of two men in an island running a lighthouse as they deal with bad weather, personalities, and all sorts of shit as they also encounter things that are hard to describe. In the end, The Lighthouse is a phenomenal film from Robert Eggers.

Robert Eggers Films: The VVitch - The Northman

© thevoid99 2019

Friday, October 25, 2019

2019 Blind Spot Series: My Neighbor Totoro

Written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, Tonari no Totoro (My Neighbor Totoro) is the story of two young girls who befriend a mysterious wood spirit during the post-war years. The film is an animated fantasy film that explore two girls who meet a creature as they discover a world of adventure and hope. Featuring the voices of Chika Sakamoto, Noriko Hada, and Hitoshi Takagi. Tonari no Totoro is a majestic and enchanting film from Hayao Miyazaki.

Set in the late 1950s in Japan, the film revolves around two young girls who move into a rural area of Japan with their father as they befriend a mysterious wood creature who can bring magic as they’re only seen by children. It’s a film that play into these two girls who are awaiting for the return of their mother who is recovering from a long-term illness as they adjust to their new surroundings but also meet this creature and the world he lives in. Hayao Miyazaki’s screenplay doesn’t have much of a plot as it’s more about these two girls who are living in their new surroundings and try to make the best of it as well as lament over their mother’s absence. The youngest in Mei (Chika Sakamoto) would see a small creature that would turn invisible but then would appear as she would follow that and a creature that’s a tad bigger into the woods with this big tree at the center of it. There she meets this gigantic creature she would call Totoro as she tells her older sister Satsuki (Noriko Hada) as she would meet the creature and be amazed by its powers.

Miyazaki’s direction is full of beauty in its presentation of not just the world of rural Japan but also this fantasy world of forests and creatures. With the aid of supervising animator Yoshiharo Sato, Miyazaki creates a world that mixes fantasy and reality as if they’re the same though it’s only seen through the eyes of these two young girls. The look of the landscapes as well as the tree in the middle of this small town add to the wondrous look of the film as it play into the mystical elements of the world that includes a cat bus that Totoro and his family would ride on sometimes. With the help of art director Kazuo Oga and cinematographer Hisao Shirai in creating certain looks into the lighting and in the landscape, Miyazaki brings a lot of attention to detail in his hand-drawn, two-dimensional animation style as showcases some of the emotions of the characters as well as the look of the creatures including soot-like creatures and Totoro himself.

Miyazaki also play into these mysterious moments as it relates to the girls’ relationship with Totoro but also coping with some growing pains as it relates to their mother’s absence and their father having to go to city university for work. The usage of the wide shots play into this growing uncertainty for the two girls while the medium shots and close-ups play into their interaction with Totoro and his family as well as other characters including Kanta Ogaki (Toshiyuki Amagasa) who seems to have a crush on Satsuki. The film’s third act does play into this air of dread and harsh realities as it would allow Satsuki to go to Totoro for help as it would play into not just this air of fantasy and intrigue but also in how it would deal with reality. Overall, Miyazaki crafts a riveting yet exhilarating film about two young girls befriending a mysterious yet whimsical forest creature.

Editor Takeshi Seyama does excellent work with the editing as it is largely straightforward to play into the air of excitement in the world of fantasy as well as knowing where to slow things down for the dramatic moments. Sound mixer Shuji Inoue does amazing work with the sound in some of the sound effects that are created as well as the way wind and rain would sound. The film’s music by Joe Hisaishi is incredible for its soaring and majestic orchestral score that feature some low-key synthesizers in the background along with usage of woodwinds arrangements to play into the music that Totoro and his friends play while its music soundtrack features a few songs sung by Azumi Inoue.

The film’s superb voice cast feature some notable small roles from Masashi Horose and Hiroko Maruyama as Kanta’s parents, Naoki Tatsuta as cat-like purrs of the cat bus, Tanie Kitabayashi as Kanta’s grandmother who would take care of Mei whenever Satsuki would go to school, Toshiyuki Amagasa as a neighbor boy in Kanta who dislikes Satsuki though it’s really a front for the fact that he likes her, and Sumi Shimamoto as Mei and Satsuki’s mother who is recovering at a hospital. Shigesato Itoi is terrific as Mei and Satsuki’s father as a man trying to get his daughters adjust to their new home while being away for work and to check on his wife. In the voice of the titular character, Hitoshi Takagi provides some unique sounds for the character as he never speaks yet his grin and growls do provide a lot of personality to the character. Finally, there’s the duo of Noriko Hidaka and Chika Sakamoto in brilliant voice performance in their respective roles as the sisters Satsuki and Mei as two young girls who are trying to adjust to their new situation as well as befriend this mysterious creature as they have an air of energy and excitement in their voices that carry the air of innocence.

Tonari no Totoro is a magnificent film from Hayao Miyazaki. Featuring a great voice cast, gorgeous visuals, a touching story, a whimsical mix of fantasy and reality, and a soaring music score and soundtrack. It is definitely a film of wonders and magic that manages to do so much in the realm of animated films as well as provide a lot of innocence to the world of fantasy. In the end, Tonari no Totoro is an outstanding film from Hayao Miyazaki.

Hayao Miyazaki Films: (The Castle of Cagliostro) – (Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind) – (Castle in the Sky) – Kiki’s Delivery Service – (Porco Rosso) – (Princess Mononoke) – Spirited Away - (Howl’s Moving Castle) – (Ponyo) – The Wind Rises - (The Boy and the Heron)

© thevoid99 2019

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks (Halloween Edition): Ritual

For the 43rd week of 2019 as part of Wandering Through the Shelves' Thursday Movie Picks. We continue the Halloween-based theme by focusing on rituals as it play into all sorts of things whether it’s witchcraft or something involving the occult. It is among one of the finest subjects in the world of horror as it is told in many different areas and settings. Here are my three picks as it’s all based on films relating to witchcraft rituals that have been released in the past 5 years:

1. The VVitch

Robert Eggers’ debut film set in early 17th Century New England play into the mysterious world of witches though it’s about a family unraveling following the disappearance of a baby. It’s a chilling film that explores a young woman who is coming into womanhood yet is being suspected for the reason of her newborn baby brother’s disappearance as she believes that there’s witches near the woods trying to create something just as her family are clinging to beliefs that would be their undoing.

2. The Neon Demon

Nicholas Winding Refn’s 2016 film set in the world of modeling as it explores a world that is cutthroat and dangerous as a young woman is trying to make it yet her exquisite beauty becomes the envy of some. It’s a film that is very stylized in its look and tone yet it is also this study of what some will do as well as how far this young woman would go unaware that she’s become a target for others. Especially as she deals with the fact that she is growing up too fast and is unprepared for what she is about to face.

3. Suspiria

Luca Guadagnino’s remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 film is definitely one of the most polarizing films in recent years yet it is a rare remake that manages to be something of its own as it’s not just about a secret society inside this ballet studio. It’s also about a moment in time where a generation of Germans deal with the sins of the past during the late 1970s as a group of witches running the ballet studio ponder what to do next. Even as they discover the gifts of an American ballet student who is either aware or unaware of her gifts just as an old psychiatrist is learning about what is happening at this studio.

© thevoid99 2019

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Diego Maradona (2019 film)

Written and directed by Asif Kapadia, Diego Maradona is a documentary film about one of the greatest football (soccer for Americans) players that ever lived with the focus on his time playing for S.S.C. Napoli from 1984 to 1991 at a time when he was considered a god and then vilified through scandal and heartbreak. The film explores a man from the poorest area in Buenos Aires who would find a home in Naples for a time as he brought hope to the troubled city only to become a pariah in this classic rise-and-fall tale of the Argentinian player. The result is a rapturous and somber film from Asif Kapadia.

In the world of sports, there are certain icons that people can remember. In boxing, it’s Muhammad Ali. In baseball, Babe Ruth. In basketball, Michael Jordan. In American football, Joe Namath. These are name that are icons of their respective sports as other names can be put into the picture while in the world of football (soccer), there are numerous names that people will think. One of the most common names people will cite for an icon in soccer is Pele but others will cite Diego Armando Maradona as the icon of the sports. The Argentinian player was known for his dribbling, passing, and other styles of playing while using his small height at 5 feet and 5 inches to outsmart and outplay his opponents. From starting out with the Argentinos Juniors club for five years at the age 15 to being part of Boca Juniors in the 1981 to 1982 season and his work in the 1980s and early 1990s. There was no player that more revered but also more hated than Maradona.

The film focuses mainly his time playing with S.S.C. Napoli after an uneventful tenure with Barcelona, despite being the highest-paid player of his time for 5 million pounds ($7.6 million), from 1982 to 1984 as he was ravaged by injuries, setbacks, and fights with other players including a brawl at the 1984 Copa del Rey in front of King Juan Carlos and 100,000 fans during a game between Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao. He would be transferred to S.S.C. Napoli for a record 6.9 million pounds ($10.48 million) where from 1984 to 1991, he was their star player as he would bring two league championships in the 1986-1987 season and in 1989-1990 season plus Coppa Italia in 1987, the UEFA Cup in 1989, and the Italian Supercup in 1990.

Shown mainly through archival and rare home movie footage provided by Maradona’s ex-wife Claudia Villafane as she along with one of Maradona’s sisters, journalists, sports writers, and Maradona himself would provide commentary about Maradona’s time in Naples which was considered the worst city in all of Europe in the 1980s. Yet, Maradona had a connection with the city as he was born in one of the worst areas in Buenos Aires as he was fourth child in a family that included three older sisters and two younger brothers to follow. In Naples which was a town in Southern Italy that received a lot of verbal abuse from towns from the north of the country was in dire straits economic and socially as Maradona’s arrival gave them hope. While that period of 1984 to 1991 would also have Maradona participate in two World Cups in 1986 and 1990 for Argentina who would win the Cup in ’86 as the Argentina-England quarterfinal game is discussed including the controversial “Hand of God” goal that Maradona did. Much of what writer/director Asif Kapadia explores is Maradona’s time in Naples as well as that international period as he was revered as an icon while was considered a God in Naples.

The usage of news footage, TV appearances, and other rare footage showcase the world that Maradona was in as he was someone who wanted to make sure that his own family lived well as well as be a people’s champion. Kapadia’s direction allows Maradona to make comments about his own accomplishments and flaws as a man as well as discuss his association with the local mafia family in Naples as well as the fact that he borne an illegitimate son in late 1986 which he denied until the mid-2000s. Maradona would admit to having affairs with other women while he was in a relationship and marriage to Villafane until their divorce in 2004 while Villafane knew about those affairs but didn’t care about since he always came home to her. Then there’s Maradona’s drug use as Maradona admitted to using cocaine during his time in Naples though it began when he was in Barcelona as he had it in control until 1990.

With the help of editor Chris King and sound editors Stephen Griffiths and Andy Shelley compiling all of the archival footage and audio interviews, Kapadia showcases the many trials and tribulations that Maradona endured but also his successes including his downfall in 1991 when his cocaine abuse caught up with him while getting the severe backlash following his performance at the 1990 World Cup when Argentina beat Italy in the semifinals during the penalty kick round as he went from beloved to the most hated man in the country. The usage of news footage, newspaper clippings, and other material showcase not just play into Maradona’s fall from grace but also the physical and emotional decline he would endure as Kapadia doesn’t touch upon his post-Napoli career that included a brief time at the 1994 World Cup where he was suspended due to a failed drug test. Yet, its epilogue plays more into an interview he did in the late 2000s as he had become obese and a shell of his former self as he would continue to struggle with his addiction to drugs.

Visual effects supervisor Dominic Thomson would provide some visuals to some of the news clippings along with some exterior shots of some of the locations. The film’s music by Antonio Pinto is terrific for its somber orchestral score that has elements of ambient music as it play into the many triumphs and failures of Maradona while music supervisor Iain Cooke provide a soundtrack of music in those times including Italian disco and European pop music that was popular around Maradona’s time in Italy.

Diego Maradona is a sensational film from Asif Kapadia. For anyone that loves soccer as well as Maradona should see this film while anyone not familiar with the sport or Maradona should seek this as an interesting subject matter of someone who was gifted only to succumb by temptation and his own faults as a man. Even as the amount of footage that is shown about the man himself showcases why he remains so revered for his playing as well as someone still trying to find himself. In the end, Diego Maradona is an incredible film from Asif Kapadia.

Asif Kapadia Films: (The Sheep Thief) – (The Warrior (2001 film)) – (The Return (2006 film)) – (Far North) – Senna - Amy (2015 film) - (Ali and Nino)

© thevoid99 2019

Monday, October 21, 2019


Based on a Japanese folktale, Kuroneko (The Black Cat) is the story of a woman and her daughter-in-law whose death has them become spirits seeking revenge on soldiers during a civil war during Heian period of Japan. Written for the screen and directed by Kaneto Shindo, the film is a ghost story inspired by Japanese fables and folk stories as it play into the journey of a samurai warrior who might’ve been involved in the deaths of two women during this civil war. Starring Kichiemon Nakamura, Nobuko Otawa, and Kiwako Taichi. Kuroneko is an astonishing yet haunting film from Kaneto Shindo.

Set during the final years of the 12th Century in the Heian period in Japan, the film revolves around two women who were raped and killed by samurai soldiers during a civil war as they are revived by a black cat as ghosts to haunt and kill samurai warriors. It’s a film with simple premise as it play into the sins of men who would do atrocious things to women as Kaneto Shindo’s screenplay explore the world of the samurai and their claims to help people yet they would take advantage of the poor and hungry including these two women whom they would leave for dead and burn down their home.

Yone (Nobuko Otawa) and her daughter-in-law Shige (Kiwako Taichi) would spend much of their afterlife haunting and drinking the blood of samurai warriors as they would enchant them to their mysterious home as well as seduce them until they kill them. The wave of deaths gets the attention of the emperor as well as a governor in Minamoto no Raiko (Kei Sato) who hires a samurai warrior in Hachi (Kichiemon Nakamura) to deal with the ghosts. Yet, Hachi’s encounter with the ghosts would only add more problems as Hachi himself becomes compromised in his mission.

Shindo’s direction is visually intoxicating for the presentation he creates that relates to the world of ghosts and vengeance that Yone and Shige would carry as it relates to a vow they’ve made with forces in the afterlife. Shot largely in a studio set with some locations in forests in Kyoto, the film does play into this world that is unruly and filled with a lot of power play in terms of social status. Shindo’s usage of the wide shots include some gorgeous tracking shots of samurai warriors trekking towards this house that is surrounded with bamboo and wood as it adds to the surreal tone of the film. The usage of medium shots and close-ups help add to the film’s wondrous visual style as Shindo’s compositions and camera movements add to the drama and suspense that occur in the film. Even in scenes where Hachi meets the ghosts as it creates conflict in his mission as he would come to terms with himself and what he lost in the madness of war. Notably in the third act as he copes with loss but also what these ghosts really are and their intentions as well as a conflict with the ghosts themselves in relation to who they were. Overall, Shindo creates a harrowing yet ravishing film about two women who haunt samurai warriors in an act of revenge.

Cinematographers Norimichi Igawa and Kiyomi Kuroda do brilliant work with the film’s cinematography with its usage of shades and shadows for some of the daytime exterior scenes but also a lot of stylish lighting for the scenes at the home of the ghosts as well as the governor’s home. Editor Hisao Enoki does excellent work with the editing as it help play into the suspense and horror with a few jump-cuts in bits of the film as much of it is straightforward. Production designers Takashi Marumo and Norimichi Ikawa do amazing work with the look of the governor’s palace as well as the mysterious home of the ghosts including the house they used to live in.

The makeup work of Shigeo Kobayashi is terrific to play into the look of the ghosts and some of the mysterious things they sport when they fly in the air. The sound work of Tetsuya Ohashi is incredible for its immense approach to sound including in the mixing of winds, sword swings, and other aspects of the forests as it is a highlight of the film. The film’s music by Hikaru Hayashi is phenomenal for its usage of low-key yet eerie percussive-based music with elements of strings that help add to the drama and suspense as it is another highlight of the film.

The film’s wonderful cast feature some notable small roles from Rokko Toura as a warlord Hachi kills, Kei Sato as a governor asking Hachi to find the ghosts and kill them, Taiji Tonoyama as a farmer Hachi knows as he asks about his old home, and Yoshinobu Ogawa as a samurai warrior who would become a victim of the ghosts. Kiwako Taichi is excellent as Shige as a young woman who was waiting for her husband to return as she is one of two ghosts who kills the samurai warrior as she finds herself drawn to Hachi. Kichiemon Nakamura is brilliant as Hachi as a samurai warrior who is forced into war as he would later become this revered warrior as he is given the task to kill the ghosts only to cope with loss as well as the ghosts themselves. Finally, there’s Nobuko Otawa in an amazing performance as Yone as Shige’s mother-in-law who also becomes a ghost following their rape and murder as she makes a vow to the gods of the afterlife to kill and drink the blood of the samurai as she later copes with what she’s become upon meeting Hachi.

Kuroneko is a phenomenal film from Kaneto Shindo. Featuring a great cast, evocative visuals, compelling themes on vengeance and loss, amazing set designs, an eerie soundtrack, and a haunting score by Hikaru Hayashi. It’s a horror-drama that explore regrets, loss, and vengeance as well as some of the fallacies of war as a samurai warrior copes with his part in a war as well as those who don’t benefit from victory. In the end, Kuroneko is a spectacular film from Kaneto Shindo.

Kaneto Shindo Films: (Story of a Beloved Wife) – (Avalanche) – (Children of Hiroshima) – (Epitome) – (Life of a Woman) – (Dobu) – (Wolf (1955 film)) – (Shirogane Shinju) – (Ruri no Kishi) – (An Actress) – (Umi no yarodomo) – (Sorrow is Only for Women) – (Lucky Dragon No. 5) – (Hanayome-san wa sekai-ichi) – (The Naked Island) – (Ningen) – (Mother (1963 film)) – Onibaba - (Akuto) – (Lost Sex) – (Heat Wave Island) – (Live Today, Die Tomorrow!) – (Kenji Mizoguchi: The Life of a Film Director) – (The Life of Chikuzan) – (Edo Porn) – (Burakkubodo) – (Tree Without Leaves) – (A Last Note) – (Will to Live) – (By Player) – (Owl (2003 film)) – (Postcard (2010 film))

© thevoid99 2019

Friday, October 18, 2019

The 39 Steps (1935 film)

Based on the novel by John Buchan, The 39 Steps is the story of an ordinary man who accidentally discovers a secret spy organization trying to steal British military secrets as he goes on the run after being accused of killing another spy. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock and screenplay by Charles Bennett and Ian Hay, the film is a spy thriller that pay into a man who finds himself at the wrong place and at the wrong time as he tries to clear his name while dealing with other problems. Starring Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Lucie Mannheim, and Godfrey Tearle. The 39 Steps is a riveting and exhilarating film from Alfred Hitchcock.

After an assassination attempt goes awry during a stage performance, a man finds himself being a suspect of a murder related to the attempted assassination where he learns about a secret spy organization trying to obtain British military secrets as he goes on the run. The film is about a man who helps a woman who is revealed to be a counter-spy as she is trying discover secrets relating to British military information that a spy organization known as the 39 Steps is trying to obtain. Later that night, she has been stabbed in the back with the man being a suspect as he goes on the run to Scotland to a small town to find out is the 39 Steps and what do they want. The film’s screenplay by Charles Bennett and Ian Hay is simple in its structure and journey for its protagonist Richard Hannay (Robert Donat), who is a Canadian visitor, attending a show in London involving a man of superlative powers known as Mr. Memory (Wylie Watson) where this assassination attempt happens and he meets this spy named Annabella Smith (Lucie Mannheim).

Smith was the target as she and Hannay would hide in a hotel as she would tell him crucial information before her murder as he would catch a ride to Scotland hoping to go to a small town that she mentioned. Hannay would try to avoid authorities as he becomes a suspect while he would meet a beautiful woman in Pamela (Madeleine Carroll) whom he would kiss as a way to hide as he wouldn’t see her until days later. Upon arriving in Scotland and hiding in a few places as well as meet a mysterious man in Professor Jordan (Godfrey Tearle) who would create more trouble for Hannay until Pamela sees Hannay at a political rally where Pamela finds herself involved with Hannay’s troubles.

Alfred Hitchcock’s direction is engrossing for the way he explores a man at the wrong place and at the wrong time as he goes on the run. Shot on various locations in London as well as parts of Scotland and in studio backlots, the film definitely has Hitchcock creating visual traits and such that would later become part of his trademark in the years to come as it help play into the suspense and stakes of what Hannay endures. While Hitchcock would use wide shots to establish some of the locations, much of his direction is intimate in its approach to close-ups and medium shots whenever Hitchcock would have characters interact with one another. Notably as Hitchcock would play into a few things that add to the suspense such as Hannay hiding on the edge of a bridge or using a man’s bible as protection knowing he can’t trust anyone. Hitchcock would also create that sense of intrigue in the film’s second half when Hannay is on the run as he encounters men he knows are after him for their own reasons where he brings Pamela for the ride despite the fact that they don’t know each other.

The way Hitchcock develops their relationship doesn’t just add to the drama but also this growing trust between the two with Pamela being suspicious about Hannay’s claims yet she would realize that something is off about the men going after Hannay. The direction also has Hitchcock taking some bold steps into utilizing sex appeal which was daring for its time as it play into Hannay’s attraction towards Pamela later in the film as she would also struggle with her own feelings for him. The film’s climax doesn’t just mirror what happened in the beginning but it would play into everything that was supposed to happen in the beginning of the film as it all play into deceit, lies, and espionage as it would take an ordinary man to stop all of that from happening. Overall, Hitchcock crafts a gripping and intoxicating film about a man who finds himself involved in a conspiracy by a secret network of spies.

Cinematographer Bernard Knowles does excellent work with the film’s black-and-white photography as it add a lot of mood to the interior/exterior scenes at night as well as for some low-key lighting for scenes in the daytime. Editor Derek N. Twist does brilliant work with the editing as it help play into the suspense while letting shots linger to establish the conversations and the characters while knowing when not to cut. Art director Oscar Friedrich Werndoff does fantastic work with the look of the places that Hannay goes into including the music hall where the film’s opening scene happens as well as an inn where he and Pamela would hide out at.

The wardrobe by Marianne is terrific for the design of the suits that the men wear while Joe Strassner creates the dresses that Pamela and Annabella would wear. Sound recordist Peter Birch does superb work with the sound as it captures the atmosphere of the crowds for the film’s opening sequence and in other parts as well as the sounds of winds during some of the quieter moments in the film. The film’s music direction by Louis Levy, with uncredited work by Jack Beaver, is wonderful as it features an array of music pieces that include some orchestral material as well as the music of the times including theatre music that was being played in those times.

The film’s amazing cast feature some notable small roles from Peggy Simpson as maid for an inn, Frank Cellier as a local Scottish sheriff, Helen Haye as Professor Jordan’s wife, John Laurie as a crofter, Peggy Ashcroft as the crofter’s wife who helps Hannay with fleeing the authorities, Gus McNaughton and Jerry Verno as a couple of salesmen Hannay meets on a train, and Wylie Watson as a stage performer known as Mr. Memory. Lucie Mannheim is superb as the counterspy Annabella Smith as a target who is carrying crucial information that could impact Britain as she turns to Hannay for help. Godfrey Tearle is fantastic as Professor Jordan as a mysterious man Hannay meets in Scotland who might know something about the 39 Steps as he is also a man of immense ambiguity while carrying himself as a man of importance.

Madeleine Carroll is excellent as Pamela as a woman who is used as a prop of escape for Hannay only to see him at a political rally where she gets him captured only to get herself in trouble where she would eventually help out Hannay and uncover the truth. Finally, there’s Robert Donat in a brilliant performance as Richard Hannay as a Canadian traveler who finds himself the target of knowing more than he should’ve known as he goes on the run while trying to deal with the situation he’s in as it has elements of humor as well as some grounded realism into how he copes with what is happening to him.

The 39 Steps is a phenomenal film from Alfred Hitchcock. Featuring a great cast, a suspenseful story of espionage and intrigue, a wonderful music soundtrack, and gorgeous visuals. The film is definitely a thriller that knows how to set things up and let the audience peel things slowly while following a man on the run as he is accused of murder and deceit. In the end, The 39 Steps is a sensational film from Alfred Hitchcock.

Alfred Hitchcock Films: (Number 13) - (The Pleasure Garden) - (The Blackguard) - (The Mountain Eagle) - (The Lodger) - (A Story of the London Fog) - (The Ring) - (Downhill) - (The Farmer’s Wife) - (Easy Virtue) - (Champagne) - (The Manxman) - (Blackmail) - (Juno and the Paycock) - (Murder!) - (The Skin Game) - (Mary) - (Lord Camber’s Ladies) - (Rich and Strange) - (Number Seventeen) - (Waltzes from Vienna) - (The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934 film)) - (Secret Agent) - (Sabotage) - (Young and Innocent) – The Lady Vanishes - (Jamaica Inn) – (Rebecca) – (Foreign Correspondent) – (Mr. & Mrs. Smith) – Suspicion - (Saboteur) – (Shadow of a Doubt) – Lifeboat - Bon Voyage - (Spellbound) – (Notorious) – (The Paradine Cage) – Rope - (Under Capricorn) – (Stage Fright) – Strangers on a Train - I Confess - Dial M for Murder - Rear Window - To Catch a Thief - (The Trouble with Harry) – The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956 film) – (The Wrong Man) – Vertigo - North by Northwest - Psycho - The Birds - Marnie - (Torn Curtain) – (Topaz) – (Frenzy) – (Family Plot)

© thevoid99 2019

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Bad Times at the El Royale

Written and directed by Drew Goddard, Bad Times at the El Royale is the story of seven strangers who stay at a hotel at the California-Nevada border in 1969 where strange things occur as it all lead to their own secrets. The film is a neo-noir thriller that explore a single night in this mysterious hotel as it also involved a major incident that occurred a decade earlier. Starring Jeff Bridges, Dakota Johnson, Cynthia Erivo, Jon Hamm, Cailee Spaeny, Lewis Pullman, and Chris Hemsworth. Bad Times at the El Royale is a gripping and haunting film from Drew Goddard.

Set in one day at the El Royale hotel on the California-Nevada border in 1969, the film revolves around a group of people who arrive at the hotel as they each carry a secret as they stay for the night where things would get stranger and terrifying as it goes on. It’s a film with a simple premise that play into these visitors and why they’re in this hotel as Drew Goddard’s script showcases the life of these inhabitants in small sections of the film. Among these visitors includes a Catholic priest in Father Daniel Flynn (Jeff Bridges), a singer in Darlene Sweet (Cynthia Erivo), a hippie in Emily Summerspring (Dakota Johnson), and a salesman in Laramie Seymour Sullivan (Jon Hamm). The hotel’s lone employee in Miles Miller (Lewis Pullman) is also a mysterious figure as he seeks to have a conversation with Father Flynn unaware of Father Flynn’s intentions at the hotel nor the intentions of the other guests. Emily has a hostage named Rose (Cailee Spaeny) while Father Flynn is trying to find something in one of the rooms in the Nevada section of the hotel. Darlene is on her way to Reno for a job while Sullivan is at the hotel for reasons that doesn’t involve sales.

Goddard’s script would give the four principle characters a segment of their own with everyone but Sullivan having their stories told in flashbacks as it relates to their motivations and why they’re at the hotel while Miles himself is someone that is troubled as his own story isn’t unveiled until its third act. Emily’s story does involve a reason why she kidnapped Rose as it relates to this charismatic cult figure in Billy Lee (Chris Hemsworth) who would become a prominent figure for the film’s third act. Especially as it play into secrets of the hotel as well as the inhabitants who all have something to hide.

Goddard’s direction does bear elements of style as it play into this air of intrigue into this hotel on the California-Nevada border as if it was a place of style and glamour but there’s something about it that is off. Shot mainly in Burnaby near Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada with additional locations shot in Vancouver, the film play into this world in the middle of this state border as the hotel itself is a character with its stylish rooms and a lobby that features a bar on the California side and a casino on the Nevada side. Goddard’s usage of the wide and medium shots does take great coverage of the interiors of the hotel lobby as well as the secret hallways that feature a two-way mirror for each apartment that inhabitants aren’t aware of. The usage of close-ups and medium shots would play into some of the conversations between characters as well as long takes for a conversation to happen as it is Goddard breaking away from some of the conventional elements of scenes where he lets the camera just linger and capture the moment.

Goddard’s direction also play up this air of intrigue but also this growing air of tension that is to emerge where the secrets of the El Royale starts to emerge with its two-way mirrors as well as what happened a decade earlier where a man (Nick Offerman) had hidden something in a room as it would relate to what Father Flynn is trying to find. Yet, he is hampered by the fact that he is already showing signs of dementia as the second act has him and Darlene learn about each other as well as the former’s involvement what happened a decade ago. The film’s third act that involves Billy Lee definitely adds to the suspense and drama where Goddard maintains this uneasy atmosphere that emerges where it has elements of dark comedy where Lee bears a lot of the characteristics of someone like Charles Manson. Goddard has the camera maintain Lee’s presence but also the inhabitants who realize that this is someone of a greater evil yet Lee believes there is no such thing as right and wrong as it just adds to the tension throughout the film. Overall, Goddard crafts an unsettling yet riveting film about a dark night in 1969 at a hotel on the California-Nevada border.

Cinematographer Seamus McGarvey does brilliant work with the film’s cinematography with its usage of lights for the rainy exterior scenes at night as well as the way the hotel rooms are lit from the inside and in the secret hallway as well as the look of the lobby. Editor Lisa Lassek does excellent work with the editing with its emphasis on rhythmic cuts to help build up the suspense as well as knowing when not to cut during a monologue or a conversation. Production designer Martin Whist, with set decorator Hamish Purdy and supervising art director Michael Diner, does amazing work with the look of the hotel rooms and the hotel itself as it is a character in the film with its major differences depending on what state the characters are on. Costume designer Danny Glicker does fantastic work with the costumes as it each play into the personalities of the characters and where they come from during a turbulent time in 1969.

Special makeup effects designer Toby Lindala does terrific work with the makeup in the look of Miles upon a troubling encounter as well as the look of a few characters to play into the times. Special effects supervisor Joel Whist, along with visual effects supervisors David W. Allen and Oliver Atherton, does some nice work with the visual effects as it is mainly bits of set dressing for the 1959 flashback scene as well as a few bits inside the hotel. Sound designers Casey Genton and Julian Slater do superb work with the sound in the way rooms sound as well as scenes of Darlene singing in her room and the way music is presented in the lobby. The film’s music by Michael Giacchino is incredible for its low-key yet eerie orchestral score that help play into the suspense and drama with its string arrangements and emphasis on building up the suspense with low yet heavy strings. The film’s music soundtrack features songs sung by Cynthia Erivo as well as music from the Box Tops, Deep Purple, the Four Preps, Edwin Starr, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, the Crystals, the Four Tops, the Mamas & the Papas, and the American Bread to play into the period of the late 1960s.

The casting by Carmen Cuba is wonderful as it feature some notable small roles from Charles Halford as a convict that Father Flynn knew, Mark O’Brien as a bank robber, Shea Whigham as a prison doctor, Xavier Dolan as a record producer Darlene refuses to sleep with, and Nick Offerman as a bank robber in 1959 who hides the money. Cailee Spaeny is terrific as Rose as a young girl infatuated with Billy Lee as she seems to be entranced by his teachings much to the dismay of Emily. Lewis Pullman is superb as Miles as the hotel clerk who is harboring secrets of his own as he tries to run the hotel while wanting some guidance from Father Flynn. Jon Hamm is excellent as Laramie Seymour Sullivan as a salesman who is in town yet has other motives as it relates to things in the hotel. Dakota Johnson is fantastic as Emily Summerspring as a hippie who has taken a young girl as a hostage as it relates to a cult leader she dislikes as she presents herself as someone who doesn’t like anyone as it’s a front for why she kidnapped this young girl whom she’s concerned about.

Cynthia Erivo is brilliant as Darlene Sweet as a soul singer whose career to be a solo singer goes wrong as she is on her way to Reno for a job as she contends with the chaos at the hotel as well as trying to figure out what Father Flynn is doing. Jeff Bridges is amazing as Father Daniel Flynn as a Catholic priest who has arrived to this hotel on his way back home where he is ambiguous in his motives for being at the hotel yet he is revealed to be someone that is trying to find something but also is dealing with memory loss as well as other issues that makes him an ambiguous but a person with good intentions. Finally, there’s Chris Hemsworth in a phenomenal performance as Billy Lee as this Charles Manson-like cult leader who doesn’t appear often in the film as he would play a big role in its third act where he has this presence that is discomforting yet entrancing while is filled with so much charisma that he just completely steals the film from everyone as the sight of him dancing to Deep Purple’s cover of Hush is probably one of the sexiest moments captured on film.

Bad Times at the El Royale is a tremendous film from Drew Goddard. Featuring an incredible ensemble cast, a chilling premise set in a remote location, interesting character studies, gorgeous visuals, a mesmerizing music score by Michael Giacchino, and a killer music soundtrack. The film is definitely a neo-noir inspired suspense-drama that explore a group of people in a hotel on the California-Nevada border who endure a hellish rainy night that would bring a lot of trouble and terror with the latter in the form of a Charles Manson-like cult leader. In the end, Bad Times at the El Royale is an outstanding film from Drew Goddard.

Drew Goddard Films: The Cabin in the Woods

© thevoid99 2019