Sony have brought out three low-budget pictures as their 'Halloween Horrors' package and they range from the intellectually stimulating to the outright brain-numbing. They're available now on DVD & download. Let's start with the good one, shall we?
By far the best of Sony's October batch is this, an interesting and intelligent look at how aliens might try and communicate with us. Heavy on the maths and the dialogue, this feels like a decent television play (or perhaps an extended episode of the X Files - it's even got Gillian Anderson in it). If you're okay with just the tiniest glimpse of a flying saucer, lots of chat about mathematical sequences, and a climax that's essentially a chap standing in a field in the rain I'd certainly recommend this one as it's surprisingly cerebral and certainly felt worth the 89 minute running time.
Those of you who offer up a prayer every night that what you really want to see is Natalie Dormer having sex in the toilets with an ex Dr Who will think they've died and gone to heaven.The rest of us will assume we have just died and entered some kind of weird purgatory in which we have to watch this derivative piece filmed pretty much on a single set and involving a "scientific" team trying to find a cure for another one of the those pesky zombie viruses of which there must now be as many variants as E Coli. Stanley Tucci is some kind of lead zombie and is John Bradley (Samwell Tarly from GAME OF THRONES) really the most expensive actor in this? I hope that doesn't give away what happens to him early on.
Lake Placid: Legacy
Or LAKE PLACID 6 for anyone who is counting or cares. This one has a group of eco-warriors being dared to come to an isolated island by a rival, who is already there. It's surprising they take him so seriously as he seems to have prepared for his exploration of this allegedly hostile environment by dressing as an extra from Happy Days. No sooner have they arrived than they are menaced by an unseen giant crocodile / dinosaur mutation which looks absolutely terrible when we finally get to see it. Joe Pantoliano gets dragged on (literally) to explain why the dinocroc is there. There's also a handy digger lying around for JCB enthusiasts that gets to take part in the CRATER LAKE MONSTER inspired (but again perhaps not) climax. It's going on my Top 10 List of monster movies that feature diggers, but probably not very near the top.
My Top 10 List of Monster Films With Diggers In Them will be coming soon, but not as soon as my Top Ten Movies Featuring Frogs. You have been warned.