June 30th, 2016

Scary Books

Movie Reviews: The Haunting in Connecticut + Dead Silence + Shag

The Haunting in Connecticut (2009)
Based on a true story, sure. Virginia Madsen is the mother of a sick son. She, he and her clan rent an old funeral home to live in to be closer to his treatment centre. The son wants to sleep in the old embalming room. Revoltingly evil spirits lurk. There are dreams and visions and an excuse to dismiss them. Madsen’s husband used to be a drunk and a liar, which is not important.. This was terrible.

Dead Silence (1991)
Lisanne Falk is one of three students who go on holiday only to hit and kill a hitchhiker in the desert. They cover it up, badly. Several future big names co-star. This was good.

Shag (1989)
Girls go to Myrtle Beach to party in 1963. Bridget Fonda is in this. This bores.

Versailles 1x05 + My Dirty Little Secret (2013 - ?) 3x10 + The Living And The Dead 1x01 Reviewed

Versailles 1x05
There are far bigger consequences as Philippe has changed in incredibly ugly ways due to the war. There is erotic intrigue. Philippe has PTSD - does Louis care? No. There is bad acting and Louis is smug. He pulls faces and is blatantly hostile. Philippe ignores his wife and has no moral tone.

Louis’ defining trait is that he is an arse. There is bad first aid. Madame de Montespan is to ‘persuade’ the Duke de Cassel to come to court. He abused her as a child it seems. Louis is pernicious. Some nobles aren’t who they claim to be. There is dramatic flinching and Fabian is a fear machine. Louis has the dissenting Duke’s house burnt down. Now the man has no proof of his lineage and no money and so is arrested. This was mediocre.

Best Lines:
“Joan of Arc might disagree with you.”

“I am bored. Decidedly so.”

“Who would that be? He?”

“What else are we going to do all day?”

Who Wants To Murder A Millionaire
This true crime series has bad acting and a bad voice-over. In 1978, a patriarch into hard work and living modestly was murdered. The voice-over annoys me. This is the murder case covered in the Lee Remick ‘Nutcracker’ miniseries. This was unwatchable and not overly analytical.

Best Line:
“Families like this.”

The Living And The Dead (2016) 1x01
BBC1’s new drama splats onto the screen. It is 1894 and there is a case of possession or something in a small farming village. Colin Morgan stars as Nathan the son of the big house who returns home with his mouthy new wife. Farm workers wear smocks and wield scythes. Very pagan rituals take place. Nathan’s wife drinks, is into photography, speaking her mind and the coming thing. Nathan’s mother broods and dies.

Did the phrase recession exist in 1894? The wife buys a traction engine aka a tractor and makes herself at home in the big house/farm. Modernisation is anathema to the workers. Unease is not induced. Nathan has given up being a shrink for some reason. Nathan’s wife has bizarre cultural attitudes. Harriet the possessed girl has a destructive purpose. Did the phrase alcoholic exist in 1894? What happened to Nathan’s son Gabriel by his dead first wife?

The current wife has intellectual snobbery. Nathan seems lonely and disconnected. She’s not conciliatory. Ominous music plays as growly voiced Harriet causes mayhem. There is a mysterious phonograph and the wife does boudoir photography. Nathan has a doctrinate disbelief in ghosts.

The farm workers disapprove of things. The wife thinks she’s disproportionately important. The abstract intellectual concept of this show makes no sense. People have no moral outlook. There are strange and old rural traditions. There are unknown group intentions, sheep, laundry by hand, attempted murder and a diagnosis of DID in 1894.

This is plagued with overacting, silly voices and melodrama. This was a dumb hateful narrative. Nobody has any consideration; they’re all confrontational with brutish connotations. This was written with smug hilarity and was execrable. However the shots of the snow globe and the ending scene of Nathan seeing a woman in modern dress looking at an ipad made me decide to give it another chance.

Best Lines:
“That’s what we told ourselves.”

“You’ll never bury me.”

“Where is he now?”
“In hell.”

“The old certainties are gone.”

“Get her out of our lives.”

“Was that strictly necessary?”

“He didn’t love you.”

“I don’t need to know.”
To Light The Way To Bed

Trailers, Quotes and Stuff

‘The Shallows’ trailer
At a remote beach, a surfer is menaced by a great white. There is bad cgi and a voice-over about self-reliance. Maybe.

‘Star Trek Beyond’ trailer
Simon Pegg looks OLD. There is an annoying song and that damn motorbike. Maybe.

‘Flipazoo’ ad

‘The Legend of Tarzan’ TV spot

‘The Living And The Dead’ 1x02 promo
Anyone else thinking of the final scene of ‘St Elsewhere’?

Best Line:
“What lies beneath should be left beneath.”

‘All The Way’ promo

‘Wasted’ promo

‘Outlander’ promo
She’s still a ho.

I’m done with ‘The Catch’.

The new ‘Star Trek’ novel covers SUCK.

‘Daily Mail’ Quotes:
“Wicked interloper.”

“Throwing the tree - complete with decorations - into the garden before storming off in the torrential rain.”

“All gone so wrong - again.”


“Rudely ignored.”

“Unrelenting stress.”


‘Dr Phil’ Quotes:
“Getting into street fights.”


“Mouthy and rude.”

“Leave my tramp.”

“Life learned advice.”

“Behaved his way right out the door.”

“Keep your drama over there.”

“Can’t wait for her to die.”

“Very mentally abusive.”

“Start being appreciative.”

“Always in the way.”

“Attacking me with her harsh words.”

“Are you grateful for that?”

“I’ll be breaking your front windows.”

“A dumb whore.”

“That didn’t go well.”

“Solely responsible.”

“A clear choice in front of you.”

“Entitled expectation.”

“Stopped stealing.”

“A whole new communication plan.”

‘Gator a-go-go’ Quotes:
“I see fish with nipples.”

“A classic newspaper photo three decades ago of mermaids on strike in full uniform, picketing along the side of the highway.”

“I don’t want to sleep on toilets.”

“Jump to the mistaken conclusion that I’m simply another jabbering street loon.”

“Lost the patient and her future.”

‘Teen Titans’ Quotes:
“Little twinkle-star.”

“Invaded our home.”

“Enchanted pie.”

“I was walking past a dark alley at night.”

‘The Irish Times’ Quotes:
“Writing in his column for L’Equipe (it came as a surprise to us, too.)”

“Allies morph into enemies.”

‘My Super Sweet 16’ Quotes:
“Oil means shoes.”

“We can’t land the helicopter.”

“The deer room.”

“I’m not a redneck or anything.”

‘Monkey Life’ Quotes:
“Illegal beach chimp.”

“Thereafter under the stairs.”

‘Broad City’ Quote:
“Use a bridge. Selfish.”

Katherine Swynford’ Quotes:
“All shame of man and fear of God.”

“His unspeakable concubine.”

“Made himself abominable.”

“Repudiated their marriage, immured Blanche in a dungeon, and continued his long standing liaison with his mistress,”

“His powerful mistress Leonor de Guzman, who Pedro had executed as soon as his father succumbed to the Black Death in 1350.”

‘The Simpsons’ Quote:
“Fly away ghostie! Go back to your haunted cornfield!”

On ‘Neighbours’: Paige is selfish. More evidence of the cruel, twisted influences of Brad and Lauren. With nauseating inevitability Father John plans to leave the church for Paige of the cold welcome. Steph and Brennan have rancour. Angus has gone, yay! Amy was a sex worker and fears murmurs of criticism.

On ‘Hollyoaks’: Reenie is hauled off by the cops. Celine and Mercedes uncover Cleo’s secret email. Cleo screams and screeches and needs a slap. Pete and Cleo’s secret email account is called The Secret Garden. Ick. Pete paints himself as the victim of a drunk and her brood of burdensome kids. Cleo is all wailing and gnashing - she has no subtlety or shading. She’s just awful.

Pete answers every slander and looks to be excused, again. Cleo has intense hostility and is fractious. She is morally indistinguishable from Pete. Get rid of her. She induces a curious chill and has become the show’s most hated character. She’s culpable. Why isn’t Porsche mentioned? Pete and his vile ways paints himself as a victim of a stalker with a crush and zany misunderstandings. He’s not particularly remorseful, nor is Cleo. This is relentless and tedious.

Cleo is an imposition on viewers. TPTB have made every mistake imaginable dragging this crap out. Cleo hates her family and loves Pete, she can’t sustain a narrative. Didn’t ‘Eastenders’ do this plot already? Cleo has a psycho-meltdown and is difficult to comprehend. Myra tells Cleo the truth and the intentionally malicious Cleo changes her mind. TPTB take artistic licence with the law.

Trust shattering revelations emerge. Celine wears tacky earrings. Cleo screams. The jury convicts Pete in record time. There are dramatic pauses and Kai Owen chews the scenery as Pete is sent down.

Best Lines:
“As soon as Pete gets off. I’m leaving!”

“A liar on an epic scale.”

“I loved the McQueen family too much.”

“We love each other. Why can’t anyone else see that?”

“Why was it a secret?”

“Fun to have a secret.”

“Very capable of lying.”



“Look what you’ve done to me.”

Book Reviews: The Girls + Wanted! + 4 others

The Girls by Emma Cline
In this massively hyped novel, Evie recalls 1969 and how she was an unhappy 14 year old. Then she saw Suzanne and her acquaintances - dirty street girls who adore their ‘guru’ Russell who lives at a ranch in the hills. This is evidently based on the Charles Manson case. It is strikingly realised tale of teen alienation and how due to Evie lacking shrewd judgement she was into a darkly complicated cult. Evie recalls in worn tones how her hippie mother seemed to radiate hostility and disinterest and how her new friends gave her deep satisfaction and how Russell had a powerful fascination. But it is Suzanne who reduces her to stammering awe.

Evie feels free with people who live with no moral underpinnings as their ignored children run wild. Evie can’t or rather won’t see how dark, filthy and full of downright lies the place is. She’s too drawn to the mesmeric Suzanne. Cline is an excellent chronicler of the ethereal depths of female misery.

A very unpleasant atmosphere is building around Russell as is the scale of rage until thwarted and unrequited emotions explode. Evie was thrust not unwillingly into a world where her understanding and the lack of it and her negative self image allowed her to make irretrievable mistakes. This was excellent but with one error: ‘The Man From UNCLE’ had been cancelled by 1969 and I don’t think it got US repeats until the 1980s.

Best Lines:
“They didn’t have very far to fall.”

“Everything tinted with mild decay.”

“A situation so obviously bad.”

“Slight drift of unease.”

“Their shared disgust.”

“This is an awful place.”

“They aren’t nice.”

“Days crumbled away like debris from a cliff face.”

Wanted! By Caroline B. Cooney
This dated 1997 YA mystery is from the author of many a naff Point Horror novel and the superior ‘Losing Christina’ trilogy. Alice’s father tells her to get two of his computer disks and drive his corvette to a milkshake stand. But then he is murdered and someone has forged a badly spelled, grammatically incorrect email confession from Alice. Everyone believes she is guilty and like a teen female version of ‘The Fugitive’ - Alice must run to prove her innocence.

Alice is not ultra-practical and does many a stupid thing. Will her slightly assertive efforts stop the uncertainty around her name? Alice uncovers a tale of warped moral outlooks, adults who react with withering scorn to the truth, dated technology and while this was not a lived, authentic experience it was good. Alice’s mother is useless. To remind us that it is 1997 E-Mail is important. A mall is run through and a charge card is used. As are phone books. There is no 24 hour news.

Computer disks are an important plot. Coke is drunk out of a paper cup. Doom is played. Public phones are used. What is a phone charge number? WTF is Ruby Tuesday’s? What is a credit card phone call? The police are idiots and the baddie is obvious and the wrap-up is quick. This has harsh accusations, false claims and a girl not positioned to respond.

Best Lines:
“She may be on crack.”

“Dad got bored shifting.”

“We’re not going to make up stories about strange men.”

“My own mother is not on my side.”

“The speaker was disgusted with the concept of trying harder.”

“They were watching General Hospital, which was impossible at this hour. Must be a tape and a VCR.”

“But moochers (and liars) probably did not have the right to adjust volume.”

“She must give them nothing to notice.”

“For a minute this seemed rational.”

“But this looked demented.”

“She must do something intelligent.”

“An apartment complex designed for people whose marriages died -”

“An unpopular, unsuccessful, low-end model.”

The Ripper aka The Cemetery by D.E. Athkins
This 1992 Point Horror wasn’t that good.

The Snowman by R.L. Stine
This Point Horror was ugh.

The Perfume by Caroline B. Cooney
This 1992 tale is about a perfume that induces DID and family drama or something.

Twins by Caroline B. Cooney
Mary Lee steals her dead identical twin sister’s life only to discover that Madrigal wasn’t who she thought. Bad.