Favorite films

  • Fright Night
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
  • Dracula: Prince of Darkness
  • Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead

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  • National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

    ★★★★

  • Prisoners of the Ghostland

    ★★★½

  • Archenemy

    ★★★½

  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife

    ★★★

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  • The Satanic Rites of Dracula

    The Satanic Rites of Dracula

    ★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    "And that's a wrap on Christopher Lee!"

    This was Christopher Lee's last Hammer Dracula movie. It's far from the best. I'm not even sure it's the best vampire movie of 1973 (Vampire Circus and Scream Blacula Scream also came out that year). It's not awful ... Lee tried his best to be venomous and Peter Cushing (who still had one more Van Helsing outing after this one, The Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires) was fine. But the classic Hammer…

  • Unstrap Me

    Unstrap Me

    Old and square Uncle Bojo pursues various young women. That's the whole of the plot, but it doesn't begin to cover the screen time. There's significant travelogue footage of a town in New York state, a visit to the local zoo, an epic mini-documentary of a real but minor artist who was filling his house with plaster casts of people (the filmmakers also distributed this segment separately from Unstrap Me), and a wildly unexpected field-trip / change of course late…

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  • National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

    National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

    ★★★★

    Christmas Vacation stands out among the Vacation movies because here Clark is more sincere than selfish. He really wants his family to have a great Christmas; his failures come from ineptitude rather than ego. Contrary to expectations, CV is actually a fun Christmas feel-good film.

  • Prisoners of the Ghostland

    Prisoners of the Ghostland

    ★★★½

    This film works for me, but I recently watched it with a group of friends. When I told them I liked this movie a lot, they started questioning my taste and sanity. It's clearly not for everyone.

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  • Blood Immortal

    Blood Immortal

    ★★★½

    This movie is told in chapters. Is it praise to say that the first chapter is so good that I wanted more from that thread, or too diminishing to say that, implying that what follows instead in the later chapters is a little less interesting? The later chapters aren't boring in any way (well, maybe they are if you're not into academic discussions of economics, but I suppose I am). But the movie has an agenda well beyond horror. It…

  • Miranda Veil

    Miranda Veil

    ★★★★½

    A fledgling serial killer is finally ready to take his first victim, but she just won't die no matter what either of them does, to the shock of them both. That's the first-act setup. The rest of the movie follows how this plays out.

    The acting is great. The actress playing the victim manages to sell her reaction to the impossible predicament she finds herself in (yesterday living a normal young life, this morning about to be murdered, and now…