Ch-ch-ch-changes! I was tripped up this year by my job. Last Spring, I changed to a 30/week shift that has me working 2 12-hour shifts on the weekend and one 6 hour shift on Tuesday. I get paid for 40 hours and have enough paid leave that I can usually be off if I have something to do on a weekend.
Unless a co-worker beats me to it. And one did.
BUT, the Universe conspired to allow me to see independent horror films in spite of that. For the first time ever, they are running most of the films in one of the 3 available theaters during the weekdays before they take over the entire building.
So, on Tuesday we saw The Human Race, The Returned, and Open Grave.
The Human Race was the least impressive of these 3. Christopher and I both thought it should have stopped when the last guy stepped onto the grass, even though the final bit had some great special effects.
The Returned is a love story with incidental zombies. There are actually very few zombies seen in it, which annoyed some people who left early. (They complained about that to Melissa, the ticket taker, who told us about it later. We compared notes with her all week.)
We liked it. In our discussion afterward, we all were of the opinion that asking your loved one to kill you, if you are contaminated with zombie cooties, isn’t fair to them. You should do it yourself and spare them that.
I really liked Open Grave. It had some classic horror cliches, but they weren’t heavy handed. For instance, the blonde does trip when running from zombies in the woods. BUT, she trips over a stick, not her own feet, and that whole scene explains the bodies tied to trees all over the place. And that makes sense in the context of the rest of the story. As a matter of fact, when you know the whole story, with the exception of the military action toward the end, it all makes sense in that “reality.”
On Wednesday, my son and I saw The Last Days. The plot line on this one didn’t have any huge surprises, but it was well made. There is bit where the main characters talk about where the planetwide agoraphobia came from, but it is never actually explained and that’s fine. You don’t need to know.
On Thursday, Carolyn and I saw Grand Piano. It was good but there was far too much leaving the stage in the middle of a performance.
And on Friday, Christopher and I saw Revolution of the Foreign Invaders, a collection of shorts, before Carolyn joined us for The Visitant, a decent ghost story that didn’t have the ending I anticipated.
Christopher saw The Shower afterward, catching a ride home with a friend. I don’t care for slasher films, so I skipped this one. My son thought it was the best thing he saw.
These are the shorts in Revolution of the Foreign Invaders:
Would you like to die the same way as your favorite movie star? Would you like to imitate the death of some memorable movie scene? Euthanas Inc. is for those who want to put a legitimately spectacular end to their lives. (I voted for this one as my favorite. The description isn’t very accurate. In a world where euthanasia is an acceptable choice (think Vonnegeut’s Ethical Suicide Parlors) an old woman has become inconvenient to her family. She’s not ready to go.)
Joseph Wood is an astronaut set to go where no man has ever gone before in the Universe in Hibernation. (Thought this was awful. Trying to be 2001 and not succeeding.)
Marta returns to her mom’s house to spend some days with her little sister in Madrid in Don’t Look Here. (Ending was very weak.)
Maid of Horror is the blood-soaked story of Emma, an overlooked Maid of Honor, who would kill to get her fairytale ending. (I don’t even remember this one.)
Driving through New York City for Christmas Eve dinner, Steve’s car breaks down and he accidentally stumbles upon a crime scene. Mistaken for the notorious cleaner, Mr. Bear, Steve has to face a difficult choice: dismember and get rid of some bodies or become a corpse himself. (This was hilarious. Nearly got my vote. It did win the Audience Choice award.)
Have you ever shared a dream with someone else? A young man’s world changes when the love of his life she comes in to the real world to rescue him in REM. (This one was trying to be Inception and wasn’t.)
A simple iPhone enables people to look into another dimension where murder and mayhem are commonplace and the evildoers may be themselves in Nexo. (This was jumbled and didn’t work for me.)
A young man jumps off a roof and inadvertently cheats death in The Revenant. (The story was entertaining. Special effects are, clearly, a new thing for the filmmakers.)