My Soul to Take (2010)

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Years ago the town of Rivereton, Massachusetts was stalked by a serial killer known as The Ripper. At the start of the movie you see that the Ripper was a family man with several personalities. When he is put to rest it is thought that his souls or personalities inhabit the bodies of seven children who are born the same night he dies. Years later the kids gather together on the anniversary of the Ripper’s death to make sure he doesn’t come back. It’s seen as a silly ritual but soon takes on a more serious tone when one by one, the teenagers are slain.

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Bug (Max Thieriot) is seen as the most vulnerable of the group. He is mercilessly bullied by Brandon (Nick Lashaway) and his own sister Fang (Emily Meade). He is chosen on the night to be the one that banishes the Ripper back in to the river. However he panics and doesn’t go through with it. He thinks it’s his fault that people are dying and that the Ripper has returned. He teams up with his friend Alex (John Magaro) to find out the truth about the Ripper and to discover who exactly is committing these murders in the Ripper’s name.

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I really enjoyed this movie. It feels like the sort of enjoyable movies Wes Craven used to do back in the 80’s. I think part of my enjoyment came from the fact that this movie got panned by critics and some movie goers alike. So my expectations were low. I stumbled across it on Netflix and I enjoyed the hell out of it. It’s a great popcorn flick, with some good scares and great gore. Max Thierot is brilliant as the naive Bug, who steps up when the time comes.

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I really recommend it. It’s worth watching and not listening to the nay sayers. Watching this made me realise that Wes Craven still has the talent when he puts his mind to it. He needs to stop doing the Scream movies and instead put his talents to use in nurturing stories like this. Very good.

4/5

JM

MP1107D My Soul To Take DVD

Absentia (2011)

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Well this was a strange one. The story begins with Tricia (Courtney Bell) wandering around town posting flyers regarding her husband who has been missing for seven years. When she returns home she finds that her sister, Callie (Katie Parker) has returned from her travels to stay with Tricia. Callie has issues of her own which soon becomes apparent, haven’t been dealt with. Tricia is still having a hard time regarding her missing husband Daniel (Morgan Peter Brown). She is pregnant by another man and is trying to move on with her life. The only real thing she has left to do regarding her missing husband is to declare him death in absentia. Which is when the trouble starts.

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Tricia begins to have terrifying visions of Daniel. Her psychiatrist believes them to be linked to the fact that she is declaring him death in absentia, and also to the fact she is moving on with her life. Callie also begins to see strange things, all linked to a mysterious tunnel opposite Tricia’s house. I don’t really want to say any more as it would spoil the story.

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The acting is good for a movie that has been made on a tight budget, the effects are reasonable enough and there is a poignant cameo from the always brilliant Doug Jones. I didn’t like the film myself. That has no bearing on the actors who all do an admirable job. I think my feelings stem from the impression laid upon me due to the piss poor marketing. The cover, of which I haven’t used at the bottom of this page, gives a misleading view of this movie. It gives the impression that this is a film chock full of gore and scares. It isn’t. It has the odd jump scare which is effective, but as another reviewer buddy of mine Andy Catsu mentions (http://thegoresplatteredcorner.com/2014/07/05/dr-catsu-reviews-absentia-2011-uk-blu-ray/), it deals with other serious issues. I didn’t get that impression from the movie myself. Not because they weren’t present, but because the marketing just didn’t even give a hint that this was that type of movie, so I just wasn’t giving it my full attention. That’s down to me, and I’m sure my view will change on repeated viewings.

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I was also very careful about what images I attached to this review. Firstly so I don’t make the same fuck up that the marketing folks did and give you a different impression of this movie, but also so I didn’t really give too much away. Like I said the acting is good and the storyline is interesting enough. Should my views change I will come back and update this review. Enjoy.

3/5

JM

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Braquo (TV series) (2009-)

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Wow! What an absolute stunning piece of television this. I could literally use every superlative in the English language to lavish praise on this show, and it still wouldn’t be enough. Jean Hugues-Anglade plays Eddy Caplan, the leader of a group of Parisian police officers, who have no qualms about stepping over the line when it is required.

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They spring into action when their colleague Max commits suicide after being mercilessly persecuted by Internal Affairs, which is headed by the slimy and borderline socio-pathic  Roland Vogel (Geoffroy Thiebaut). The team seek to do whatever it takes in clearing Max’s name, even murder. They are a team held together by a strong bond, and clearly have morals of which they never waver. They all have flaws, some which threaten to bring them down on occasion, but it’s their togetherness which carries them through.

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The action is nothing short of breathtaking. It is visceral stuff, and doesn’t skimp on the gore or sex. The acting is top notch from everyone, there is not one character I would say that lets the side down. The story-lines are equally gripping, showing that sometimes the police and criminals are more alike than either would care to admit.

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The creator of the show, Olivier Marchal, is a former police officer, so the attention to detail is second to none. It’s this meticulousness which really gets across the shows quality. I really cannot recommend this series enough. I did start watching it when it was showing on FOX. I am now on season 3 which was graciously provided by the wonderful folks over at http://www.arrowfilms.co.uk. Season 1 and 2 are available to buy now and season 3 is available to pre-order now, due for release on July 21st. It is a show I highly recommend. If you are a fan of The Wire or The Shield, then you will absolutely love Braquo.

5/5

JM

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