While last month’s media collection was mainly about games, April 2018 offered more movies, but also a few other surprises.
Of course games weren’t neglected, and even if it’s been a constant pain in my backside to contact customer service to ask where my magazines are, they more or less show up later than sooner. I’ve been thinking about canceling my next subscriptions, but as the Retrogamer magazine starts to offer exclusive cover art for those who have a subscription, I’ll probably stay with them… waiting for them to arrive from Vienna, Hungary or wherever the company sends their UK magazines to Germany. Replacements will become common procedure as well…
Fortunately this doesn’t happen with the LEGO magazine that is the only constant each month, even though I still don’t know where that quadjumper comes from. I guess I’m not up to date with the Star Wars lore anymore.
Despite spending quite some time with the digital media (plus books and music), I also like to travel, and Castle Neuschwanstein is definitely great to visit, probably because of my affection for The Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery. So this cool book that features many pages in 3D is a welcome addition thanks to my girlfriend.
Speaking of 3D, more movies arrived, and this special edition of Coco is lovely with its postcards. The movie itself is also fun, even though I’d prefer Grim Fandango: Remastered for its story and characters. Vaiana on the other hand was a pleasant surprise because of its departure from what Disney usually does. Featuring Dwayne Johnson as a voice actor and also having the best portrayal of a stupid chicken ever sealed the deal for me.
Even more 3D movies were added, some I’ve already watched: the surprisingly dark Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children that might have rushed through the story of the book, but was entertaining enough; and the very flawed Assassin’s Creed adaptation, which might have to do with my reservations about Fassbender after the Alien: Covenant disaster or that the storyline was nonsense. But maybe the 3D will make up for it in the future? Madagascar 3 was already mad in 2D, so this was a no-brainer to buy again, and the rest… I’ll just have to see.
These horror movies might not be in 3D, but the lenticular box was. The titles themselves were a mixed bag: the overrated Get Out, the underrated The Visit, the overlong Split, and the surprisingly cool Unfriended (or Unknown User in German). The latter I didn’t expect to be this good. Sure, the characters are as annoying as the screaming, but I haven’t watched a movie that used the social media/chat systems as a narrative device. Too bad that the German version had everything translated with texts even in the English version… Still, cyber mobbing hasn’t been dealt with in such a way before.
Even more horror presented itself in the (again) overrated Don’t Breathe, the quite effective Shallows I’d prefer over Jaws, the dated (especially in the acting department) but still fun Shocker, and the entertaining Life which might not win the prize for most original concept, but isn’t as bad as some make it out to be. Most definitely better than what Ridley Scott has come up lately with his nonsensical Alien movies.
Classic horror movies don’t necessarily mean good ones, especially when it comes to slashers. Sometimes they end up to be unintentionally funny like Mountaintop Massacre, a bit boring and unspectacular like Just Before Dawn and Happy Hell Night or simply ridiculously gory (but not necessarily good) like Luther. Only Hide and Go Shriek was more to my liking for its higher body count and easier to relate to characters, even if it wasn’t anything special.
Sometimes covers can be more eye-catching and interesting than the actual movies, as can be seen with the Slasher Classics and the 88 Films Vaults. Pigs is nowhere near as brutal and only mildly disturbing, but rather slow, while Creepozoids is only for wasting a weekend’s afternoon or evening, as it’s even slower with only a few fun parts.
I’m not sure about these Italian “classics”, but fingers crossed that they somehow deliver on their cover’s promises. Anything but boredom, please! Maybe some unintentional laughs, that would be nice, thank you very much. If there is some actual suspense and atmosphere, by all means bring it on!
There was a time when I found Asian movies a lot of fun and simply different from everything else. Nowadays I’m not so sure about the quality anymore (see The Villainess in the Netflix watchlist: May 2018). But classic Asian movies that would influence other filmmakers should be great, right? Well, at least The Flying Guillotine had something going for it, but not a lot, as it dragged on for a bit. At least it was better than the wannabe Swamp Thing imitator The Oily Maniac, even if it had some laugh-out-funny moments later on and an almost Terminator 2 special effect before Cameron did it. Last but not least there’s The Brave Archer that was just too long and despite an interesting finale didn’t know when to stop. The Shaw Brothers movies seem to be considered classics, but for my taste I’d rather go for something more in the line of The Raid or Headshot. At least the cover artwork was very well-done, making these purchases good collector items.
Even more classic horror with some cool artworks. Haven’t watched these yet, but I’m looking forward to see Anthony Daniels (C-3PO from Star Wars!) in that bike exorcism flick.
More cult movies. Even though I’m not sure about the Roman musical, Split Second was quite fun, especially with Rutger Hauer’s one-liners.
I watched all these very different movies and was left with mixed feelings. The Evil Within featured some of the most disturbing but also artful nightmare sequences, but suffered from a rather pedestrian plot. Gun Woman had a great premise, but took way too long to get to the bloody parts. Mutant Chronicles wasn’t a very good movie, but the videogamey violence made up for its narrative shortcomings. Blood Creek probably failed more due to its seriousness and Fassbender as the main villain, which is a shame, because the gory action on display was pretty good.
Japanese movies I still have to watch, although I had Tokyo Fist on DVD. I can’t remember much of it, but The Story of Yonosuke should be good, as the director’s The Woodsman & The Rain was my highlight of the Nippon Connection 2012 in Frankfurt on Day 3.
After already being blown away by Catfight on Netflix in July 2017, I had to buy this very cool UK BD release which didn’t only include a Kill Bill style artwork, but also a very thick booklet with all sorts of concept art.
More UK-exclusive releases of movies one can watch again and again due to their uniqueness.
Animated movies are always nice, and I’ve yet to see these.
Sometimes one needs some rude humor to forget about everyday’s problems, even if it means that they can be a parody of life… or the education system.
These are classic titles I used to watch back in the days, and even if Nightwatch isn’t the most suspenseful, Amsterdamned is still a lot of fun, especially if you know that the cop is played by the same actor of the Flodders comedies featured in the November 2017 media collection.
Speaking of crude humor, Sausage Party is my surprise hit in the animated movies department. Full of great ideas and obviously lots of swearing, it provided so many funny scenes I haven’t experienced in a long time. Still have to check out the punk rock dad documentary, though.
One doesn’t always have to have horror, action or comedy, as some dramas might also be life-changing or give you a new perspective on things. It’s been quite some time since I saw The Million Dollar Hotel, but it was a memorable experience. So let’s see how it fares after all these years and what Big Eyes is all about.
Last but not least I ordered many, maybe too many, T-shirts from Qwertee, but as these were on sale and had great designs, I couldn’t resist.
It was quite an expensive month, despite all the bargains, but it was also a month full of new experiences I got excited about. So let’s see what this month brings… next month!
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