The Pale Blue Eye (2022) – Meh-dgar Allen Poe

Released: 6th January
Seen: 8th January

The Pale Blue Eye Info

Last year I reviewed a little film called Raven’s Hollow which asked the question “What if Edgar Allen Poe tried to solve a murder that would feel right at home in an Edgar Allen Poe story?” and it was quite OK, it was a good movie that did pretty much what you would hope a film might do with that basis and that was about it. Indeed in general the best thing that can be said about it is that apparently, it might’ve started a mild trend of films where Edgar Allen Poe has to deal with the messed up shit that is found in Edgar Allen Poe stories, which could be a fun genre to play in and while The Pale Blue Eye is certainly trying to do something interesting with the idea, it doesn’t quite do it right.

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The Outfit (2022) – See My Vest

Released: 18th August
Seen: 16th November

The Outfit Info

There really is nothing quite like a gangster film, it’s such a fascinating underground world that can often lead to a story full of intrigue, backstabbing and murder if done right. Of course, the problem is that there have been so many truly great films in this genre that it’s hard to do something to stand out. You could go the Guy Ritchie route with something like The Gentlemen and make a big broad comedy full of fast quipping characters, a ton of extravagant action scenes and just blow the budget on going all out or you could take the route The Outfit takes and be a little quieter, calculated and generally intriguing.

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Smile (2022) – It’s Smile Time!

Released: 29th September
Seen: 16th November

2022 is turning out to be a fantastic year for horror, every month just seems to have another great horror flick for fans of the genre to enjoy. Not only has Horror as a genre been doing great, but the kind of horror that’s striking it big is so varied. Films like Terrifier 2, Barbarian, Scream, Hellraiser, Bodies Bodies Bodies, Nope and X are just a handful of horror titles that’ve come out this year and turned this into one of those years that horror fans will mark as a turning point for the genre. Smile is just another film to throw on the pile that we will point to in years to come when proclaiming 2022 to be one of the best years for horror in quite a long time.

Also, time to issue a content warning, this film deals heavily with ideas of suicide and mental illness and those will need to be discussed so consider this your trigger warning.

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Grimcutty (2022) – Meme To Death

Released: 10th October
Seen: 2nd November

Grimcutty Info

One of the wild things about horror films is how quickly they can jump on something new and find the terror in it, take the mundane and make it into the malicious. Recent years have shown a lot of ways this can be done, from something as simple as an app being turned into an instrument of foretold death in Countdown to a pair of jeans turning into sentient killers in Slaxx and even if the films aren’t great, they can at least be interesting on some level… and then there’s Grimcutty, a film that takes the concept of a killer meme and turns it into boring sludge that isn’t interesting even if you squint.

Oh, and trigger warning for discussions of suicide because that’s a major theme of this film and it’s impossible not to talk about it on some level.

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Hellraiser (2022) – Raises Hell

Released: 8th October
Seen: 9th October

Hellraiser Image

The Hellraiser franchise is one of the weirder major entries in the horror genre. Built around the idea of mixing sexuality and torture long before the phrase ‘torture porn’ was created as a pejorative for the more extreme kinds of horror, Hellraiser was always a series that sat just on the edge of the mainstream. You certainly knew about it thanks to the iconic image of Pinhead but it’s such a wild set of movies that even some horror fans might have issues with it (and also it kind of infamously started sucking around the 4th-5th movie, depending on which fan you ask). It’s also been the major horror franchise that’s avoided being rebooted longer than pretty much everything else… until now. It also is on the shortlist of “80s horror reboots that don’t suck”, a prestigious list if ever there was one.

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Nope (2022) – Maybe

Released: 11th August
Seen: 14th August

Nope Info

In 2017 Jordan Peele staked his claim as a modern horror master with his directorial debut Get Out. To this day that film is one of the best films that this reviewer has had the pleasure of watching. It was terrifying and had something important to say and did it flawlessly. It’s a go-to example of a perfect film and very little has beaten it. It’s the kind of film that makes you excited to see what a director does next, and sure enough, when Peele dropped Us onto an unsuspecting public it was proof that he had something special. 

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Deep Water (2022) – It’s Drowning

Released: 18th March
Seen: 1st April

The name Adrian Lynne might not be one of the most well-known directors but his impact on the film industry is undeniable. Adrian Lynne was the director of such films as 9 ½ Weeks, Indecent Proposal and Fatal Attraction, three of the biggest erotic drama/thrillers of the late 80s and early 90s. This was the period of film history when making sexy adult dramas was big business.

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The Night (2021) – A Blatant ‘The Shining’ Double

NOTE: Here is my review from Soda & Telepaths that was posted back on February 2nd, 2020

Driving home from a night with some friends, Babak (Shahab Hosseini) and Neda (Niousha Noor) become too tired to finish the trip home and so, with their young infant in tow, the couple decides to take a room at the Hotel Normandie for the night so they can sleep off the exhaustion and alcohol. However, the Hotel Normandie is not as peaceful as they would hope and soon their night becomes overrun by assorted strange things that seek to drive them apart and force them to reveal the dark secrets that have caused a rift in their relationship to begin with. 

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Brazen (2022) – Lifeless

Released: 13th January
Seen: 23rd January

Brazen Info

Normally I wouldn’t expect to be dealing with this until June, that’s the pattern that Netflix has created with their release of Lifetime Wannabes like Hostage House, Dangerous Lies and Secret Obsession. I was meant to have a few months before I had to deal with this bullshit, there was meant to be time to mentally prepare for the onslaught of bad plotting and bad acting one expects from this “midday movie made on a budget of couch cushion change by a writer who had 5 hours to complete the entire script” but nope, 2022 sucks and therefore we have to deal with Brazen now because why not?

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