Thursday, October 18, 2018

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: Low Life

The sordid lives of an addict, an ex-con, and a luchador collide when an organ harvesting caper goes very, very wrong.

7 of 8 viewers "Liked" "Low Life" (2018, USA)
Creature reviews have been minimally altered in an attempt to maintain their voice:

Lord Battle - "When a movie poster prominently features a luchador, I think two things: how much I hated Nacho Libre and how much I love Santo. Early into Low Life, we are introduced to El Monstruo who instantly reads like a clone of the Mexican folk hero. Much like Santo, Monstruo is a larger than life character who the camera loves and audiences root for, although unlike El Santo or "The Saint", El Monstruo's or "The Monster's" rapport with the audience is quickly challenged as we see him lose his cool at a quinceanera, get disrespected while taking a photo with a fan, and stand by as a young lady is forced into prostitution. The end result is the complete humanization of a comic-sized character, it's brilliant! Low Life operates at this pace throughout the film, constantly challenging social, racial, and film stereotypes. If Hitchcock didn't teach you to never judge a book by its cover, Ryan Prowes's indie masterpiece will." - 5 Stars

Wandering Panda - " Okay, I have no idea where to start with this review!! But I definitely enjoyed this film. It's made of multiple mini-stories that collide into one that makes me smile thinking about. Low Life has a strong cast and I'm interested in knowing more about them. Even the father of the quinceanera girl is interesting. The 3 standouts for me are El Monstro, Teddy, and the swastika tattooed white boy!! This guy made the movie for me! Low Life is very easy to follow which makes it a fun watch. The humor doesn't hurt it either. We saw this film with one of its makers, Benji Carver, which gave it a charged energy. Low Life needs to be watched ASAP and if you can buy the movie it's worth it!!" - 4.5 Stars

The Impostor - "Low Life definitely exceeded my expectations. I had no idea what I was expecting from only seeing the cover. El Monstro is both brutal and comedic, and a fun character to watch. I loved how each character gets time to shine. I started off disliking most of them but I was won over with the intertwined way the stories were told. Low Life is very underrated and I wish I heard about it sooner. The kills and gore are a highlight. Overall fun and engaging film, I look forward to buying it on bluray." - 4.5 Stars

Grey Ranger - "A fine, fine time. A visceral and funny midnight movie that tweaks stereotypes and engages contemporary political realities. Definitely works its parallel timelines and ties it all up with a climax that's as satisfyingly bloody as it is achingly moving." - 4 Stars

Huntress - "Watching Low Life in a group was an interesting and almost necessary experience because there's nothing like The Impostor's applause or Wandering Panda's gasp to lighten the mood after a dark moment or brutal kill. This movie is loaded with both! Surprisingly, there is also a plentiful amount of appropriately dark humor throughout and the tone shifts seamlessly all across the emotional spectrum. The fractured storytelling reminded me of Pulp Fiction but I liked Low Life much more." - 4 Stars

Math Mage - "A comedy so bleak that nothing can escape its gravitational pull. Well constructed non linear narrative remains engaging without being confusing. Excellent gore and realistic violence combined with clever dialog and well-integrated myth-making. (I don't know if El Monstro was a real thing outside this movie and I don't need to know because all pertinent info is embedded in the narrative)." - 4.5 Stars

Eddie the Gamer Ghoul - "Dis felt reminiscent ta Shawn of da Dead in how they took a serious situation an' added humour. All in all a great movie, da start was a little slow but picked up quickly an' da gore was better den most. Now I wanna go play Guacamelee damn it." - 4 Stars

Clark Little - Fell Asleep - Default 2 Stars

The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

"It only seemed fitting that I was exploring the cemetery gardens and gravestones of Colma before I walked into The Overlook Theatre’s DIY Den of Lions. Russell aka Lord Battle or in my phone, Lord Chaos, as we witnessed the previous Sunday’s screening experience at the Alamo Drafthouse, introduced me quickly to a scattered group of dark shadowy viewers whose eyes were focused on the singular light projected screen. The movie they were watching, a Christian found footage horror movie called The Lock-In, played off of a YouTube link. Russell whispered in my ear, “We’re watching a religious movie.” I thought, I had either entered into the best horror viewing room this side of the bay area or the newest Manson family revival just in time for the 50 anniversary of Helter Skelter. Luckily, yours truly was armed with a copy of the baddest-most-wildest movie, these dark shadowy viewers and most of America had not yet seen today, I’m talking about LOWLIFE. It’s the modern day answer to all our Repo Man, Pulp Fiction, and pro-wrestling needs--Yes, I’m bias because I had the privilege to help build sets and handle the props, “the big guns” on Lowlife, it has become my filmmaking bible on how you and your friends gotta get together and make a feature movie, by any means necessary. Just as I was about to bring out my BluRay copy to fend off all who deemed me worthy or not, Russell had brought his own copy too. I guess good does exist in this bloody dark hearted world. We laughed, we cried, we cheered for characters El Monstruo, Randy, Keith, and Crystal as they come together to fight the power of the evil drug lord scumbag Teddy! *No Spoiler Alerts* And Clark fell asleep in his bean bag chair. I hear this is a thing. All in all, the black hole sunset on this day in the west, it was a good day to end in the bay. "

Bloody Best,

The Overlook Theatre materialized in a residence for a screening on 10/4/2018
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Bluray Tuesday Featuring: Unfriended Dark Web, Buy Bust, Ant Man & The Wasp

October 16th 2018

New week and new blurays to add to our growing collections. First up this week, from Marvel and Disney, is Ant Man & The Wasp, the sequel to 2015's Ant Man. Best Buy will carry an exclusive steelbook packaging and Target an exclusive digibook packaging. I thought this was a pretty good sequel. It's fun and light-hearted and I feel that's what was needed after the depressing Avengers: Infinity War. Next up this week is another sequel, Unfriended: Dark Web. If you missed our review of this check it out here. Well Go USA releases action thriller Buy Bust this week, and it's one I'm looking forward to checking out soon. Down a Dark Hall and Cold Skin are other horror thrillers that are hitting shelves today that both have interesting premises. For the first time on Bluray this week is Kazaam starring Shaq. Kazaam is one I enjoyed as a kid but realized as an adult that it's not the best film. Rounding out the week is 12 Monkeys from Arrow Video, Ash Vs Evil Dead complete series, and the original 50's version of Invasion of The Body Snatchers. So what will you buy, rent or skip this week? Let us know in the comments. Until next week!

Ant Man & The Wasp: Best Buy - $22.99
4K: Best Buy - $29.99

Scott Lang is grappling with the consequences of his choices as both a superhero and a father. Approached by Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym, Lang must once again don the Ant-Man suit and fight alongside the Wasp. The urgent mission soon leads to secret revelations from the past as the dynamic duo finds itself in an epic battle against a powerful new enemy.

Ant-Man and the Wasp (Blu-ray) 

Ant-Man and the Wasp 4K (Blu-ray) 

Steelbook: Best Buy - $34.99

Ant-Man and the Wasp 4K (Blu-ray)
Temporary cover art 

Digibook: Target - $32.99

Ant-Man and the Wasp 4K (Blu-ray)
Temporary cover art 

Unfriended: Dark Web: Amazon - $19.99

A teen comes into possession of a new laptop and soon discovers that the previous owner is not only watching him, but will also do anything to get it back.

Unfriended: Dark Web (Blu-ray) 

Buy Bust: Amazon - $17.99

An anti-drug enforcement agency stages a massive drug bust on a slum in Manila, only to get ambushed by a merciless drug lord and his henchmen, and dragging angry civilians in the process.

BuyBust (Blu-ray) 

The House on Sorority Row: Amazon - $18.99

After a prank goes horribly wrong, a group of sorority sisters are stalked and murdered one by one.
The House on Sorority Row (Blu-ray) 

The Ghost of Sierra de Cobre: Amazon - $18.99

Terrified of being buried alive by mistake, a woman puts a phone in her crypt to be able to call home if she needs help. She dies and nothing happens. One day, the phone suddenly rings. Paranormal investigator Nelson Orion is brought in.

The Ghost of Sierra de Cobre (Blu-ray) 

Down a Dark Hall: Amazon - $14.99

Kit Gordy, a new student at the exclusive Blackwood Boarding School, confronts the institution's supernatural occurrences and dark powers of its headmistress.

Down a Dark Hall (Blu-ray) 

Reprisal: Amazon - $14.99

A veteran looks to raise money for his son's healthcare by teaming up with another vet to track down criminals.

Reprisal (Blu-ray) 

Arizona: Amazon - $14.99
4K: Amazon - $18.99

Set in the midst of the 2009 housing crisis, this darkly comedic story follows Cassie Fowler, a single mom and struggling realtor whose life goes off the rails when she witnesses a murder.

Arizona (Blu-ray) 

Arizona 4K (Blu-ray)
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Whitney: Amazon - $17.99

An in-depth look at the life and music of Whitney Houston.

Whitney (Blu-ray) 

Cold Skin: Amazon - $15.99

A young man who arrives at a remote island finds himself trapped in a battle for his life.
Cold Skin (Blu-ray) 

Kazaam: Amazon - $17.99

After 5000 long years of captivity, Kazaam is set free to grant three wishes to a new master.

Kazaam (Blu-ray) 

Cut and Run: Amazon - $18.99

A cameraman and a reporter head into the jungle searching for the missing son of a TV producer hoping to find a big story. What they get caught up in is a drug war which threatens to take their own lives.
Cut and Run (Blu-ray) 

Ash Vs Evil Dead (Complete Series): Amazon - $44.99

Ash has spent the last 30 years avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the Evil Dead until a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind and Ash becomes mankind's only hope.

Ash vs Evil Dead: The Complete Collection (Blu-ray) 

Giftset: Best Buy - $49.99

Ash vs Evil Dead: The Complete Collection (Blu-ray)
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Invasion of The Body Snatchers(1956): Amazon - $25.99

Mistaken for insane, a man arrives in San Francisco to inform the world that strange aliens have arrived on earth to overtake human life.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Blu-ray) 

12 Monkeys: Amazon - $25.99

The year is 2035, and humanity subsists in a desolate netherworld after the eradication of 99 percent of the Earth's population, a holocaust which left the planet's surface uninhabitable, and the destiny of humanity uncertain. A desperate group of scientists secure a reluctant volunteer, Cole, for a dangerous assignment: he will time travel to the year 1996, where they hope he can help unravel the mystery of the apocalypse and save the future.

12 Monkeys (Blu-ray) 

Trilogy of Terror: Amazon - $18.99

Three tales: In "Julie," an aggressive college student seduces and ultimately blackmails his seemingly shy English professor. In "Millicent and Therese," two polar-opposite sisters become increasingly hellbent on the undoing of one another. And in "Amelia," a woman falls prey to a murderous Zuni fetish doll.

Trilogy of Terror (Blu-ray)
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Halloween 3 Season of the Witch (Steelbook): Amazon - $29.99

After the mysterious death of a toyshop owner, a doctor and the man's daughter investigate the Irish-dominated Northern California community of Santa Mira, a company town owned by the Silver Shamrock Novelty corporation.

Halloween III: Season of the Witch (Blu-ray)
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 - The Impostor

Monday, October 15, 2018

Screenings in the Bay (Monday to Sunday): Halloween, Zombie 3, Necromancy, SpookFest

I hope everyone has their Halloween costumes planned, because October is slipping right through our fingers and Halloween will be here before we know it! And I'm not talking about the huge movie that's coming out this week either... 😏

Yes, the week is here, which means those of us who were not lucky enough to catch one of the early screenings will be able to watch the 2018 Halloween on the big screen in just three days!! Tickets are on sale now, so I suggest getting those soon. And to celebrate the occasion, the Clay Theatre is making this week's Midnight Madness the original 1978 Halloween for two nights in a row. It only struck me today how weird it will be, a couple years from now, to think that the new sequel to Halloween... is also called Halloween.

Also this week, the Super Shangri-La Show returns to the Balboa Theatre to continue in this past weekend's witchy film festival with Warlock Wednesday, celebrating the witch's male counterpart with an awesome double feature starting at 7:30pm. The next day, the Roxie Theatre will have another installation of their annual SpookFest, which consists of 13 spooky horror shorts. And the Friday after that, the Castro presents another great double feature!


Opening This Week

Early Screenings Thursday 18th (1hr 46min)
Opens Friday 19th
Horror (Rotten Tomatoes)
It's been 40 years since Laurie Strode survived a vicious attack from crazed killer Michael Myers on Halloween night. Locked up in an institution, Myers manages to escape when his bus transfer goes horribly wrong. Laurie now faces a terrifying showdown when the masked madman returns to Haddonfield, Ill. -- but this time, she's ready for him.

Opens Thursday 18th @ 6pm (1hr 21min)
Animation/ Family (Rotten Tomatoes)
It is Hallowaiian on the Big Island of Hawaii, so excitement and mischief are in the air. Three young friends, Kai, Eddie and Leilani uncover a mysterious idol in a secret cave whilst catching some waves at sunset. They quickly uncover that they've unleashed an ancient evil upon the island in the form of a giant pineapple headed monster. The kids find help in some mystical friends and discover that in order to vanquish the evil, Kai must uncover his heritage, and believe the ancient stories of his ancestors.

Terror Tuesday

Tuesday 16th @ 10:25pm (1hr 24min)
Action/ Horror/ Sci-Fi (IMDB)
When a terrorist's body, infected with a stolen chemical, is cremated by the US military, a virus is unintentionally released into the atmosphere over a small island.

Weird Wednesday

Wednesday 17th @ 10:25pm (1hr 30min)
Comedy/ Drama/ Fantasy (Rotten Tomatoes)
An otherwise boring and unpopular Louise is enamored with Brad, the star of the high-school football team, but her feelings are not reciprocated. One week before her birthday, she visits a psychic and is told she has latent, genetically predisposed witch abilities that will blossom on her sixteenth birthday. Soon she finds the information to be true and uses her powers to gain the typical teen goals: popularity, revenge on cruel teachers and other meanies, and high-school football star Brad...

Super Shangri-La Show Presents

Necromancy (1972)
Wednesday 17th @ 7:30pm (1hr 23min)
Horror (IMDB)
A wicked necromancer controls an entire town, forcing its residents to make the special "toys" he needs to cast his evil spells. This horror outing follows what happens when the dastardly wizard, hoping to revivify his dead son by stealing the soul of another, sets his sights on the wife of his new employee.


Simon, King of the Witches (1971)
Wednesday 17th @ 9pm (1hr 39min)
Horror (IMDB)
Simon, a young man with magic powers, invokes the help of the evil forces in order to take revenge on a man who cheated him with a bad cheque.

Haunted Double Feature

Sunday 21st @ 2pm (1hr 12min)
Horror/ Documentary (Google)
California's Sonoma County has a fascinating history that stretches back more than a century. Most everyone knows it for the acres of vineyards that make up part of the region's award-winning wine production. Sonoma County wines are known the world over. But until now, its ghosts have been kept a secret. Their stories, revealed here for the first time, paint a unique portrait of the area and its colorful residents. Wailing women, dark shadows, ladies in white -- it's a secret no more: Sonoma County is haunted.


Sunday 21st @ 3:30pm (1hr 21min)
Horror/ Documentary (Google)
For more than a century, the natural beauty of Northern California's wine country has drawn people from across the globe. But among the hardworking residents who made their homes there more than a century ago lurked a seedy and dangerous element: gamblers, thieves, prostitutes, murderers -- even pirates. Death or ruin traveled with them. And long after committing their untoward deeds, the spirits of many remain there roaming the hillsides, frightening current residents and turning this otherwise serene area into Haunted Wine Country. Paranormal experts, authors, historians, ghost hunters and gifted psychics recount the area's ghostly tales and describe their personal experiences.

Double Feature

Alien (1979)
Friday 19th @ 7:15pm (1hr 57min)
Horror/ Sci-Fi (IMDB)
After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.


Heavy Metal (1981)
Friday 19th @ 9:25pm (1hr 26min)
Animation/ Adventure/ Fantasy (IMDB)
Based on the popular magazine of the same name, this animated cult film interweaves six visionary stories of science fiction and fantasy. The soundtrack includes such rock superstars as Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult, Cheap Trick, Devo, Donald Fagen, Grand Funk Railroad, Sammy Hagar, Journey, Nazareth and Stevie Nicks.

Midnight Madness

Friday 19th & Saturday 20th & 11:55pm (1hr 50min)
Slasher/ Thriller (Google)
On a cold Halloween night in 1963, six year old Michael Myers brutally murdered his 17-year-old sister, Judith. He was sentenced and locked away for 15 years. But on October 30, 1978, while being transferred for a court date, a 21-year-old Michael Myers steals a car and escapes Smith's Grove. He returns to his quiet hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois, where he looks for his next victims.

Saturday 20th @ 10pm (1hr 51min)
The sleepy little town of Woodsboro just woke up screaming. There's a killer in their midst who's seen a few too many scary movies. Suddenly, nobody is safe, as the psychopath stalks victims, taunts them with trivia questions, then rips them to bloody shreds. It could be anybody... Sidney, the quiet high school beauty with an ugly past... Billy, her faithful boyfriend with a frustrated sex life... Tatum, her cute best friend with a answer for everything... Casey, the lovely blonde who knows her thrillers... Geeky Randy, the scary movie fanatic... Stuart, the wild partier... Gale, the overeager TV reporter... even Dewey, the syrupy-sweet police officer. The only hope is to stay one step ahead of this crazed slasher--know your trivia. The clues are there; are you good enought to see them?

Thursday 18th @ 7pm & 9:15pm (2hrs)
Horror/ Short Film
SPOOKFEST returns to the Roxie with 13 new, independent short films that showcase the “monsters among us,” in all their ghastly manifestations. This year, the theater transforms into a full-on haunted house, kicking off each screening with a costume contest, and concluding with the audience-voted OSCARE Awards, presented by our ghoulish hosts. It’s one hell of a monster mash!


Friday, October 12, 2018

Screenings in the Bay (Friday to Sunday): Sorceress Sabbath Witchcraft Film Festival, Night of the Living Dead, Sinister Creature Con

We stand at the eve of a VERY eventful week so get ready to make some tough decisions. 

Saturday and Sunday the next season of Sinister Creature Con will be at the Scottish Rite Center in Sacramento, and you can bet a certain Overlook Hour host will be in attendance. And if you plan to join him (and some of the other Overlook creatures) you can get discounted tickets on Groupon before they're all gone!

Tomorrow the Super Shangri-La Show's Sorceress Sabbath Witchcraft Film Festival will be at the Balboa Theatre, but tonight they're warming up at the Empress Garden with a preparty filled with card readings, live music, and visuals. Get all the details on their Facebook. And be sure to come back to the Balboa on Sunday for the first installment of 16 Millimurder which will be hosted by out friend Harry Nordlinger. The movie will be Night of the Living Dead and will kick off at 7:30.

Opening This Week

Opens Friday 12th (1hr 30min)
Comedy/ Horror (IMDB)
While collecting junk one day, best friends Sonny and Sam meet Slappy, a mischievous talking dummy from an unpublished "Goosebumps" book by R.L. Stine. Hoping to start his own family, Slappy kidnaps Sonny's mother and brings all of his ghoulish friends back to life -- just in time for Halloween. As the sleepy town becomes overrun with monsters, witches and other mysterious creatures, Sonny joins forces with his sister, Sam and a kindly neighbor to save mom and foil Slappy's wicked plan.

Limited Theatres/VOD Friday 12th (1hr 38min)
Thriller (IMDB)
Bella Thorne stars in this spellbinding and romantic supernatural thriller. Ten years after an apocalyptic event left the world haunted by ghosts, Roni (Thorne) receives a threatening message from beyond the grave. Joining forces with a mysterious classmate, Kirk, Roni descends into a shadow world that blurs the bounds of the living and the dead-and begins a desperate race against time to stop a cunning killer.

The Super Shangri-La Show Presents

Saturday 13th @ 11:50
The Super Shangri-La Show presents a Day and Late Evening of Witches! 
9 Films and Special Guests!

16 Millimurder Presents

Sunday 14th @ 7:30pm (1hr 36min)
Horror (IMDB)
There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these flesh eating monsters.

Screening in 16mm

November Fire Records Presents

I Believe in Halloween (2018)
Screening All Weekend (1hr)
Documentary (IMDB)
"It was a dark and stormy night." That's how it begins, right? A good Halloween story has those elements, the basics. "I Believe in Halloween" is just that, from interviews with kids telling us what Halloween means to them and fun music videos, to vintage footage and photos, antique postcards, advertisements, decorations, and costumes. This celebration of Halloween is complete with a toe-tapping soundtrack of nine classic Halloween songs that Bryan Kehoe and HobGoblin recreated. Your jack o' lanterns will be grinning. No tricks, all treats! Come enjoy a nostalgic, dark and stormy trip through what makes Halloween the greatest holiday ever!

Double Feature

Dial M for Murder in 3-D (1954)
Saturday 13th @ 3:15pm & 7pm (1hr 45min)
Drama/ Thriller (Google)
"An ex-tennis pro carries out a plot to murder his wife. When things go wrong, he improvises a brilliant plan B."


Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)
Saturday 13th @ 5:15pm & 9pm (1hr 29min)
Drama/ Horror/ Mystery (Rotten Tomatoes)
Adapted from a radio play, this thriller is about a rich invalid who overhears two men plotting a murder through a crossed telephone line. During the course of the conversation, she discovers that one of the voices belongs to her husband. Soon, she realizes that she is the planned victim.