Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski (TheDudeLebowski65)Private Residence, Man
Jeff's Recent Reviews
Mario Bava's feature length debut Black Sunday is a stunning gothic horror film that still manages to terrify decades after its release. Beautifully shot, Bava's film possesses atmosphere that elevates the tension on-screen. This is a fine horror film, and a stunning debut by one of Italy's most iconic masters of horror. Black Sunday is simple in its storytelling, and works on so many levels. Films like Black Sunday are much better than most because they use atmosphere to effective buildup the terror, instead of focusing on jump scares like we see in many of today's horror films. Black Sunday is also a very well acted film with a magnetic performance by actress Barbara Steele. Mario Bava would later helm other great horror films, but Black Sunday still reigns as one of his finest. Bava has been called a pioneer in Italian horror, and with this impressive first feature, he crafts a terrific atmospheric horror tale that is absolutely terrifying due to the way it was filmed. I've said it before, atmosphere is key to creating effective terror and with Black Sunday we get just that. It's a subtle, yet truly terrifying film that ranks among the finest of Italian horror films. The fact that the film uses simple elements to create a truly memorable film is proof that when a filmmaker uses few elements at his disposal, then he's able to make something truly memorable and highly entertaining from start to finish. If you love classic horror films, then give Black Sunday a viewing, for its short run time, it truly grabs your attention from beginning to end, and with some great performances, well paced direction from Mario Bava, this is a definite genre classic that no horror fan should miss.
Sequel to Major League is a pretty good follow up to the original, but it's not as great as the first. Most of the original cast return with a few changes, most notably this replacement of Wesley Snipes. The film has some good gags, but it's hard to beat, considering that the first was terrific; however the filmmakers and cast manage to make this one amusing and entertaining. The film does manage to take elements of the first, and puts and the filmmakers put a somewhat interesting new twist to the story. I enjoyed this sequel, but I also felt that they could have put more effort into making a terrific sequel. Considering that this is a sequel to a comedy, Major League II is better than most sequels, as most fail to capture the fun of the original. Here we get an amusing, entertaining movie, and it is a funny film, but it's not as great as the original film either. This is worth seeing if you're a fan of the first film, and it manages to be a worthwhile film to watch. The film may reuse some ideas, but it's as bad as many other follow ups either. Major League uses a familiar formula, and it's a satisfying film even if it's not that original. Some of the jokes are good here, but like I said before they could have been better. For a sequel, this is a good attempt, and it was an interesting idea as well. With most of the cast returning to reprise their roles, it makes this one much better than you might think.
Jeff's Favorite Movies
John Carpenter's 1978 masterpiece is a milestone in horror. The movie's plot is very simple, but very effective. Michael Myers is a terrific villain stalking young women on Halloween night. The movie is complemented with a great cast with such actors as Jamie Lee Curtis and Donald Pleasence . This is by far my all time favorite movie and with solid directing and a great story line, this film should be viewed by every die hard horror fan. One of the best things about Halloween is the fact that it uses suspense to steadily build the horror. This is a film that doesn't have any gore and John Carpenter uses Alfred Hitchcock trick to create the tension. Halloween is one of the first slasher flicks; there have been two other films before it, Black Christmas, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, both excellent horror films. However Halloween is much different, the virtual absence of violence and blood in the film is what separates this slasher film from all the other that came before or after it. Halloween is a film in the same style of Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. In total there is maybe less than 10 minutes of on screen violence. For me, that's one of the reasons that Halloween is one of my favorite films, because it's a horror film that uses suspense very well. Usually in a slasher film you'll have a masked killer leaving a bloody trail of gore. There's nothing wrong with that, but I'm the type of horror fan that likes to have a lot of suspense, and thrills with the killing. Not saying that I hate the slasher genre, in fact I love it. But I absolutely adore Halloween for its sheer knack building the suspense, and creating effective scares. This one great film to watch on Halloween. Every cast member delivers strong performances, especially Donald Pleasence as Dr. Sam Loomis. Halloween is by far the best Slasher film ever made, and is a definite classic of the genre.
Fright Night has the reputation of being one of the best vampire films of the 1980?s, maybe of the genre. Long before The Lost Boys, Near Dark and The Hunger, there was Fright Night. A little horror gem with such a simple story that it makes it that more enjoyable. Fact is, is that Fright Night strips away anything really original or unique, however, director Tom Holland pulls it off with great precision. What makes Fright Night a lot of fun, is the characters, the story, Brad Fiedel's incredible soundtrack and Nostalgia of the 1980?s. I mean these were the years where vampire films mattered. Vampires were evil and charming. Fright Nigh delivers all that. Many people have said that this film looks dated. I reply, "so what?" the film manages to still be entertaining and fun after all these, and that's what counts in the end. Hell, mostly every film made in the 80?s are starting to show their age. Doesn't mean they still can't be fun. Fright Night is one of my personal favorite vampire films for that matter. Not only that, but its one of the best horror films of the 1980?s. Seeing this for the first time, I was blown away. Tom Holland's direction on this flick is super, the writing brilliant, the characters enjoyable to watch on the screen. This is one vampire flick that deserves to be treasured. Fright Night is a fun ride throughout. There's a great blend of comedy and horror that's sure to satisfy. Amanda Bearse, Roddy Mcdowall, William Ragsdale all deliver in this fine vampire film. But obviously the best performance of all is Chris Sarandon as Jerry Dandridge. This is a phenomenal Horror yarn that you shouldn't miss. To those that say that they don't want to watch Fright Night because it's a "cult" film, you're probably an idiotic person who wants to watch Twilight instead.To those who say that the film looks dated, well nearly every film of the 80?s looks dated, so tough luck. Oh well, at least fans of the film aren't missing out, because revisiting this again and again, makes it worthwhile and makes us fans remember that vampires were once evil creatures of the night.