Category Archives: New Zealand Cinema

Blood Punch

Blood Punch 1

Groundhog Day takes a wild, meth-induced bloody ride in Blood Punch (my new favorite movie), a horror comedy written by Ethan Pines. This film starts out hard and never lets up – bringing us hilarity and death, murder and mayhem, sex and blood, meth and peyote, carnage and deserts, snarkiness and more snark – this is indie horror filmmaking at its finest. Seriously. Why wasn’t I in this movie?? (Oh yeah. Current status: somewhere in the woods of Alabama, far from civilization…*sighs*) You guys are gonna LOVE this one though (specially you, E.!).

So what we have is this:

A young man is lured into a dangerous love triangle that begins to take a series of shocking and grisly supernatural turns.

(Although for those more on the squeamish side, it’s really not as grisly as they make it sound. There’s tons of death but the majority of it isn’t graphic. That said, for those who enjoy blood soaked…um, bloodiness(?)…there’s a great scene featuring that which I particularly enjoyed. 😉 )

BloodPunch_fire

Milton is this super smart dude who got busted cooking meth and is in drug court ordered rehab. There he meets Skyler (whom I now aspire to be like) – an incredibly snarky, kinda bitchy, but ultimately sexy gal – who desperately needs him to help her and her boyfriend out with a meth cooking job. A BIG one. If he agrees, he gets to break out of rehab that night and gets a sweet payday on top of it – all for a one day job. Tiny little catch…Skyler’s boyfriend is a psychopath. No really. Dude is the devil himself (as Skyler says). An entirely terrifying yet strangely charming (at times) psychopathic devil. Lemme tell you, Ari Boyland walks a very fine line here playing Russell, and he tiptoes across that edge like a BOSS. Since this IS a horror movie, Milton takes the gig only to find out just how truly sadistic Russell is and how caught up in Russell’s web Skyler is. And then from there, things just get…well, hilariously bad.

One of the great things about this film is HOW we’re seeing things play out – via flashback. Not just any ordinary flashback though. Nope, Milton wakes up one morning to find a video message from himself in the bathtub explaining the whole situation. It’s truly fabulous. As are the various ways that people get killed off in this film. I mean, if you live to die another day, again and again and again and again…like, really how many ways are there to kill someone? These guys are determined to find out and some ways are truly inventive. So to sum up – 3 kids (okay, college kids but still) trying to work out why they’re repeatedly dying, repeatedly killing each other, trying to escape, and all while sitting on one freaking HUGE pile of meth. Oh, and there might be a romantic squabble or two in there. Super easy sitch to control. It’ll be fine. They got this.

Blood Punch 2

Milo Cawthorne as Milton is great. He’s the perfect blend of confused, edgy, pissed off, longing, scared that’s required here, and is funny as hell. He and Olivia Tennet as Skyler have excellent chemistry, playing off each other extremely well, with their quip delivery on fleek. SO MUCH SNARK. It was like I died and went to heaven. *sighs* Olivia also had the job of making a not so likable character, a sympathetic one, which she did with great aplomb. There were times I wanted to hate her but I could only just say, “You’re a jerk and I’m not talking to you right now. So there.” and then made up with her, like, two minutes later. That was REALLY annoying in that one part when she did that one thing that was just all UGH, you know? 😉

Random aside: Apparently, the majority of these actors were all on some Power Rangers show (RPM??). I’m too old to have gone through a Power Rangers phase but ya know, if you’re not old and decrepit like myself and were totes into PR, then you get the added bonus of nostalgia. Just FYI. 🙂

Guys, this movie is kickawesome. We need more well made, SMART movies like this one, especially in this genre. If you wanna check it out (and you know you wanna – right, E.?), the link’s up there at the top. You can also check ’em out on Facebook if you wanna get in touch. Ugh. So fucking good. I’d hate for you to miss out…

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Devil’s Rock

devilsrock

Has anyone else seen this??  You’ve all probably already reviewed The Devil’s Rock and I just totally missed it in my busyness.  E, have YOU seen this??  Cause I think you would really dig it, like TOTES!

According to Netflix, this was a horror flick (and I mean, c’mon look at that cover!) but I wouldn’t categorize it as horror at all.  I’m of the opinion that just because there’s a demon in a movie, that doesn’t make it horror but maybe that’s just me.  I think I’d call this one more a “war drama with supernatural elements”.  Oh, and don’t let that cover fool you into thinking this is some wicked cool Nazi exploitation type film either because I kinda thought there would be an Isla, She Wolf of the SS vibe happening but that’s nowhere to be found.  All that aside, I dug this.  Not the kind of dig that would make me watch it again but the kind that makes me go “Oh yay, I’m glad I didn’t turn that off after the first 20 minutes like I seriously considered!”.

Meet Helena.

Meet Helena.

Our story starts on the eve of D-Day when two New Zealand soldiers arrive on Forau Island.  After navigating a beach planted with mines and tank traps, they are distracted by the sound of screams and gunfire.  They approach a German fortification to increasing sounds of distress.  Also this whole navigation takes TWENTY MINUTES.  Just wanna throw that out there.  I don’t mind a slow burn at all but this is the point where I almost stopped watching.  There wasn’t a lot of character building going on in this time really, very minute as there was almost no dialogue, and not being a fan of war movies this had me concerned I’d opened up the wrong movie on Netflix.  But let’s continue shall we?

Soldiers kill a Nazi and head into the fortress only to find a whole bunch of other Nazis dead in varying degrees of gore not to mention a little book of black magic.  One soldier dies while the other is captured by the only Nazi left alive in the building and, after he is tortured for a bit, our soldier discovers that the Nazis called forth a demon, a shapeshifter, to use against the Allies. DAMN.

Say hello to...oh wait...still Helena!

Say hello to…oh wait…still Helena!

Now our Nazi is pleading with our soldier to help him banish the demon before it’s too late and our soldier is being tempted by the demon who has taken the form of his dead wife, Helena.  What’s a soldier to do??  I say watch The Devil’s Rock and find out!

Although not what I was expecting going in, this is a nice drama with sufficient gore and not a bad build up of tension.  I was surprised at the lack of cheese factor (there was only one instance where I giggled inappropriately) and surprised (in the good way) by just how much I enjoyed this.  Rainy day or looking for something other than a supernatural haunted house movie?  Give this one a go.

Editor’s Note:  Please excuse any spelling/grammar/mistakes of any kind as I’m functioning on 4 hours of sleep.

Black Sheep

Not to be confused with the Chris Farley movie, Black Sheep (Unrated) is quite possibly the comedy of the year (that year being 2007).  Horror movie or not, the hilarity in this one does not stop and it’s oh so quotable which I just love in a movie.  One of my most favorite exchanges here:

“You fucker!”

“Actually, it was more like a sperm sample…”

“You wanker!”

*giggles*  It’s fun to try to work that into conversation.

Sheep are not as cute and cuddly as you think, oh no!

Hailing from New Zealand and bringing us some fresh new territory in the form of were-sheep, this is a cautionary tale against genetic engineering.  Our hero (who incidentally after growing up on a sheep farm, has a phobia of sheep) returns home to sell his part of the farm to his brother who has been raising sheep on it this whole time.  Unfortunately (or rather, fortunately for us), it turns out that his brother (who is oh so deliciously evil and slimy) has been doing experiments on the sheep, trying to create a perfect specimen.  Of course the experiments go horribly wrong and the next thing you know you’ve got sheep attacking and eating humans who then turn into gigantic sheep themselves.

 

Aw, c’mon, I just wanna give ya a little nibble!

I know, I know, it sounds incredibly cheesy (and I guess it is a little) but more importantly it’s HILARIOUS.  And disgusting.  There are some definite gory blood and guts shots so this isn’t so much for the weak stomached crowd.

See? Just a nibble…

If you’re looking for a bit of a different horror comedy, definitely check this one out!