Early Review: Zoombies 2 (2019)

Zombie animals rise up yet again in a new animal preserve, threatening those who work there, and the world!

REVIEW: The first Zoombies is one of my personal favorite Asylum movies, right behind Age of Dinosaurs, Triassic World, and 6-Headed Shark Attack, so suffice to say I was pretty excited when Asylum sent me a screener copy of Zoombies 2 to review, which up until about a week ago I didn't even know was coming out.

For the most part, this movie is entirely stand alone from the first movie, save for one short scene towards the end that ties it directly in (I won't spoil that scene here, but it was definitely an unexpected and fun one). This movie takes place at a entirely different animal preserve from the first, and deals with poachers that break in to hunt the animals, except one of the poison darts they use isn't poison but the formula discovered in the first movie, unleashing the animal zombie virus upon this place, causing the surviving poachers and park sta…

Leprechaun Returns (2018)

The Leprechaun from the original movie returns when a group of sorority girls unwillingly awakens him when they begin renovations on the farm house.

REVIEW:I was weary of Leprechaun Returns upon the initial trailer. After all, Warwick Davis, the actor who played the Leprechaun in every other movie (minus the 100% unrelated Leprechaun Origins) was not returning for this one (although his reasoning is totally understandable) and on top of that it was being made by the SyFy Channel, and although I love their cheesy summer B-Movies, they aren't exactly who I think of when I think of resurrecting a beloved horror franchise and having it be worth it (their Pumpkinhead sequels, anyone? Urgh).

However, I really had nothing to worry about as this turned out to easily be one of the best entries in the series, if not the best. Leprechaun has always been a franchise where the idea itself was better than any of the actual movies. The first movie is so-so at best, with Leprechaun 2 and 3 …

Ice Sharks (2016)

A group of scientists at a research facility based on Antarctica battle a breed of sharks that have invaded Antarctic waters.

Ice Sharks, from 2016, is another of the more really fun 'The Asylum' movies, and one of the rare ones I hadn't seen before, so it was a pleasant surprise that I enjoyed it as much as I did and had me questioning myself on how I could have gone so long without checking it out.

I loved that the action took place out in the middle of the arctic on a sinking research platform, it was a nice change from the usual ‘summer coastal town’ setting that most of these types of movies are set at, and even though the CGI was spotty in a few places, that’s to be expected from The Asylum. What surprised me is that the CGI actually looked pretty damn decent a lot of the time other than those few moments.

It also included a really good pace filled with lots of different and fun (also occasionally gory!) attack and chase scenes, never feelin…

Escape Room (2019)

Six strangers find themselves in a maze of deadly mystery rooms, and must use their wits to survive each one.

I had very little interest in Escape Room to begin with, just based off the fact that it was a PG-13 horror movie, being released in the movie death grounds of January, and the trailer did nothing at all for me.

Well, to my surprise it actually turned out pretty decent. I mean most everything about it was pretty paint by numbers, sure. It was obvious which characters would survive and which wouldn't, it was obvious who would turn against the rest, it was even mostly obvious what order each of them would die in. Yet, the movie was still surprisingly entertaining. 

Each of the characters remained interesting and were all acted quite well, and each of the trap rooms were visually interesting and unique from one another (the upside down pool bar was my personal favorite), and it was actually fun trying to figure out the clues to each escape room right alongs…

Arachnia (2003)

When a small plane carrying a group of science students and their professor crash lands in the middle of nowhere, the survivors go to a nearby farmhouse to look for help but soon find themselves besieged by giant mutant spiders.

I grew up watching all these 1990s/early 2000s SyFy Channel-level creature feature movies and Arachnia, from 2003, was one I remembered loving a lot when I was younger.

Well how times have changed. I decided to revisit this one recently for the first time since high school, since it was on Amazon Prime Video, and boy oh boy, was it a rough viewing. 

The acting was atrocious, even by the low bar of standards for these types of movies, and the characters were all annoyingly horrible people - There isn't one single character that was enjoyable to watch here or that you feel you could root for, which just makes it all the more frustrating when it takes forever for the giant mutant killer spiders to start attacking and you have to spend so muc…

Curse of the Mayans/Xibalba (2017)

Dr. Alan Green, an American Archeologist, leads Danielle Noble and her team of cave divers on an expedition searching for the ancient long-lost Mayan Hall of Records. Instead of finding glory, they find Hell hidden in the underwater caves of Xibalba.

Curse of the Mayans, also known as Xibalba, actually turned out quite a bit better than I was expecting. It's still not great overall, don't get me wrong, but it wasn't the dumpster fire I was expecting it to be, and I actually found large portions of it rather enjoyable.

This movie's strongest aspect, and one that surprised me so much for a B-Movie like this, is the characters. All of these characters are fun in their own ways, even the douchy asshole ones, and they're surprisingly acted quite well. With this being a joint American/Mexican production, we have characters that speak only American, characters that speak only Spanish, and then we also have characters that go back and forth be…

Slaughterhouse Rulez (2018)

An illustrious British boarding school becomes a bloody battleground when a mysterious sinkhole appears at a nearby fracking site, unleashing unspeakable horror.

As a huge fan of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz (and to a lesser degree At Worlds' End), to say I was excited for Slaughterhouse Rulez, a brand new horror comedy that has both Simon Pegg and Nick Frost in it, would be an understatement.

Sadly, both of them only play minor roles (and both of which are annoyingly unfunny roles) and they don't even end up sharing any screentme together, minus one 20-second moment. To make matters worse, the director is clearly trying to go for that specific Edgar Wright-style of comedy and tone throughout the movie but constantly fails on almost every level. I failed to laugh once and I chuckled maybe twice during the entire affair.

Add to that, we get TONS of unneeded backstory and information on the school this takes place at and several of the characters residing …

End of the World (2018)

As mass of solar storms causes tsunamis, volcanoes, and flooding, a city-dwelling family attempts to flee to the relative safety of a group of high-elevation caves several miles away. 

REVIEW: There's two things that Asylum pumps out faster than you can blink - mockbusters and Natural Disaster movies, with the generically-titled End of the World being the latest of the latter.

If you've seen one Asylum-made Natural Disaster movie you've pretty much seen them all, as they're all essentially the exact same movie just with different actors and a few minor details different - a family that doesn't quite all get along, of which one member is a scientist warning about the impending disaster with nobody listening to them, have to make their way through destroyed cities to reunite with one another, with disasters happening every few minutes, and then eventually get to a safe zone. They are pretty much all literally the exact same.

Luckily this is one of the ones with bett…

Early Review: Hornet (2018)

An alien race, intent on decimating mankind and repopulating the Earth, brainwashes humans to carry out acts of destruction. With the military powerless, humanity's only hope lies in an untested, hi-tech mech-bot.

REVIEW: Hornet is an upcoming movie by The Asylum due out on December 18th, obviously made to be a mockbuster on the Transformers: Bumblebee movie. Amazon Prime Video in Canada has been releasing almost the entire Asylum catalog on their service bit by bit over the last week (so, pretty much early Christmas to someone like me!) and among the ones uploaded, much to my surprise, was an early release for Hornet!

The plot is simple enough, although a tad bit unbelievable (then again, which Asylum movie isn't? Hahaha). When aliens invade the Earth and start brainwashing people into a mindless rage zombie-like state, it's up to a group of University students to use their secret project - a fully-working semi-self-conscious giant robot called Hornet - to help save the …

Blood Fest (2018)

Fans flock to a festival celebrating the most iconic horror movies, only to discover that the charismatic showman behind the event has a diabolical agenda. As festival attendees start dying off, three teenagers - more schooled in horror-film cliches than practical knowledge about neutralizing psycho killers - must band together and battle through various madmen and monstrosities to survive.

REVIEW: Blood Fest is a new horror movie brought to us by Rooster Teeth of Red vs Blue fame, that follows a group of friends that attend a horror convention, only to have the entire thing be a trap set by a madman to kill as many people as possible in as many different horror settings as possible.

I mean, yeah, the plot doesn't really make much sense if you give it any real thought, especially the mechanics behind it all, and there's a plot twist in regards to it that you can see coming from a mile away and that makes even less sense than the rest of it. Also, many of the scenes re…

Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell (2018)

Burt Gummer, dying from Graboid poison, and his son Travis must go to a remote arctic research station in Canada's Nunavut Territory, in order to go up against a new batch of Graboids to save Burt's life.

REVIEW: The Tremors franchise is one of my all-time favorite movie franchises, right behind Jurassic Park and Star Wars, and is easily my favorite B-Movie franchise. I reviewed all of the other Tremors movies earlier in the year (Tremors, Tremors 2: Aftershocks, Tremors 3: Back to Perfection, Tremors 4: The Legend Begins, Tremors 5: Bloodlines, and even the short-lived TV series), so I figured it was long overdue to finally get a review out of this year's newest sequel, Tremors 6: A Cold Day in Hell.

Sadly, this is an entry I honestly have no idea how I feel about it.

On the one hand, I loved all the callbacks to previous movies and previous characters - The town of Perfection shows up (albeit, only by showing us one single building that looks far more desolate and alon…

Nazi Overlord (2018)

Against the background of the D-Day invasion, a US military unit must rescue a brilliant British scientist, who is held captive by the most dangerous SS guards deep in enemy territory, however the mission turns ugly when the Allied soldiers battle with horrific experiments created by the Nazis.

REVIEW: Nazi Overlord is The Asylum's newest release, obviously mockbusting (as they do so well) on the recent theatrical horror movie Overlord.

The first hour of this movie is a chore to get through. Some of the acting is ok as far as Asylum's work goes but some of it is also downright brutal, and nothing interesting really happens for that first hour outside of a couple quick moments, which makes spending all that meandering time with some of these actors all the worse. The first hour could have easily been covered in a 20-30 minute time span and the pacing would have felt much better for it, and it would have given us more than a scant 20-odd minutes on the actual advertised …

The Marine 6: Close Quarters (2018)

Jake Carter returns yet again and together with another former Marine, Luke Trapper, they must join forces to rescue a kidnapped girl from a gang of international criminals.

REVIEW: I actually enjoy all these low budget Direct-to-Video Marine sequels (Most more than the original movie even), so I always like it when a new one suddenly gets released out of nowhere like this.

Sadly, The Marine 6: Close Quarters is easily the weakest of the bunch. It's directed by the same guy that directed the previous movie, The Marine 5: Battlefield, which was my least favorite until this one came around so at this point I think this director is just not suited for this series very well. It's not all on him though. The Miz just looks bored during the entire thing and has no onscreen personality to speak of, which is strange because he was fantastic in the previous three movies (even Battlefield). On top of that, the action and fight scenes feel quite sluggish and very choreographed, where…

Halloween (2018)

Laurie Strode confronts her long-time foe Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night four decades ago.

REVIEW:As a huge fan of the Halloween franchise since I first started getting into horror in the late 90s, I was looking forward to this revival movie. Sure, I may find the Nightmare on Elm Street movies and Friday the 13th movies more 'fun', but Halloween was always my personal favorite horror franchise as a teen. I knew I wasn't going to be overly disappointed because, quite simply, even with a worst-case scenario there was no way it could be as bad as some of the worst entries in the series previously (Halloween: Resurrection and Rob Zombie's Halloween II), and even those ones I managed to find some redeeming qualities.

Luckily I loved the hell out of this. No, it's not perfect. I do have a handful of issues with it, although only one is a major issue (and it's a spoiler), the re…

Slender Man (2018)

In a small town in Massachusetts, a group of friends, fascinated by the internet lore of the Slender Man, attempt to prove that he doesn't actually exist - until one of them mysteriously goes missing.

REVIEW: I have to admit that for the first 20 minutes or so of Slender Man, I was honestly really digging it. It was shot great with some really nice visual shots, it had an amazing sense of atmosphere, and the characters (at this point) were all likeable.

But then the rest of the movie happened and every single bit of that went out the window. The acting got abysmal, as if the actors were reading off cue cards just off the screen, nobody at all was likeable and it seemed like the scriptwriter went out of his way to make these characters as unlikable as possible, the dialogue they had to work with didn't even make sense half the time, and all of the interesting visual shots and atmosphere seemed to be left behind and exchanged for cheap laughable CGI jump …