Review: Drag Me To Hell (2009)

This article was published on the original Sorry I’m on 17/08/09.

Drag Me To Hell

Sam Raimi returns from the multi-picture Spider-Man juggernaut to return to self-penned (with brother Ivan) horror/slapstick amalgamation Drag Me to Hell, in a style not seen from the director since 1993’s Army of Darkness – the third in the Evil Dead trilogy.

Drag Me to Hell sees Christine Brown (Lohman), a loans officer of the proverbial mild-mannered variety, longing for a promotion to assistant manager at her branch – a position which co-worker Stu Rubin (Reggie Lee, whose middle name should be awesome) is also gunning for. To impress her boss and to prove that she can make the tough calls, she denies old gypsy woman Mrs. Ganush (Raver) a third extension of her mortgage and thus sealing her fate as the curse of the Lamia is placed on Christine by the scorned Ganush – a curse which will plague and torment Christine for three days until finally dragging her straight to Hell (It’s not just a clever title). With her cynical boyfriend by her side (Long), Christine must seek the aid of psychics Rham Jas and Shaun San Dena – the latter which has encountered the Lamia before – to help abolish the evil spirit before it is too late.


Retro Review: John Carpenter’s They Live (1988)

This article was published on the original Sorry I’m on 22/07/09.

They Live

An unemployed drifter on the move, George Nada (Piper) finds work labouring in an LA construction site as well as discovering some lodging at a local shantytown. Soon Nada discovers that a nearby church is a front for a mysterious rebel group which possess motives of unknown nature. When the shantytown and the rebel front is bombarded and destroyed by police, Nada finds something that the insurgent group was stockpiling – rad 80’s sunglasses. These sunglasses, however, hold much darker secrets – they allow the wearer the see the world as it truly is – full of subliminal advertising aimed at controlling humans, and all at the hand of aliens living among us! A paranoid Nada is now on an unstoppable path for answers: he’s here to kick ass and chew bubblegum, and unfortunately for the ghoul-like aliens, he’s all out of bubblegum.

No-one does 80’s style B-movie classics quite like John Carpenter. A Sorry I’m favourite, Carpenter here, as always, has a message to deliver – this one about corruption, commercialism and 80’s style excess. His throwbacks to 1950’s paranoia themed movies, such as Invasion of the Body Snatchers, are evident – even down to the out-and-out cheesy special effects (Go, flying saucer, go!). Sublimely slow paced and low-key, They Live is probably Carpenter’s most intelligently written observation of the times (still relevant, perhaps?), but don’t let that fool you – this movie has enough silly B-movie shenanigans to make a truly entertaining feature. What may said shenanigans be, you ask? Well…

– One liner’s? Hell yeah.

– Killer, low budget action set pieces? Umm, yup.

– Piper giving the finger to the aliens in one final act of defiance? It’s right here.

– And the final coup de grace of awesome, when Nada’s only ally (perennial bad-ass Keith David) won’t wear the sunglasses, what happens? A five and a half minute fistfight, that’s what. Awesome. Definitely a moment of filmic significance, even parodied on South Park’s Cripple Fight episode, blow for blow.


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