As we enter Week Whatever of self-isolation, we’ve become all too familiar with advertisements featuring soft, maudlin piano keys plinking beneath self-important, grandiose statements made by overly-earnest narrators talking about how we’re home alone … together.
More importantly, you can get 20 percent off of ColourPop’s makeup selection, free delivery on soul crushing fast food, and BOGO deals on rare ’80s gems while being home alone, together. Speaking of gems, I’ve found a few more options on various streaming services.
(By the way, Home Alone Together would be a great Home Alone rebootquel where a middle-aged Kevin McCallister neglects his entire family and decides to stay on vacation while making half-hearted attempts at zooming with his dottering parents, despondent wife, and resentful kids.)
For the Weekend
This low-budget indie begins with an unfortunate soul possibly meeting her end while searching for a signal on her phone. From there we meet a gang of friends on their way to a birthday Airbnb type of situation out in the middle of nowhere so they can reconnect. It may not surprise you to hear that these five friends have varying degrees of tension going on. What begins as an awkward, funny Big Chill flick doesn’t stay that way for the “mom,” the dork, the douche, the drama queen, and the irritable birthday boy. We also meet the owner of the rental space. He’s one of those smiling, kindly types who seems a little bit spooky at the same time. From there the vibe evolves from the uncomfortable awkward social tension to an altogether different kind of tension akin to thrillers. This was a nice find thanks to some naturalistic performances and a deft, unpredictable script.
This film begins with two 1992 teen pervs watching a couple hump away. Their overly-devout boss leaves his five movie cinema employees to close up for the night. Later on, a crazy old coot wanders about one of the theaters and soon stumbles across an unmarked reel of film. They watch it. A sex demon pops out. Before long, secrets are revealed, nude hallucinations happen, viscera flies, and male genitalia explodes graphically. I should mention that this film was produced by every horror nerd’s favorite, Fangoria magazine. I had been looking forward to this film since it gained notice at film festivals last year. My expectations were abnormally high. I loved the premise but wish they had done more with it. That being said, I think those who don’t walk in with lofty grindhouse-sized expectations may get a kick out of this brisk horror-comedy. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what else director Keola Racela has in store.
Speaking of Fangoria, Charles Band is a name that once dominated the pages of the magazine. The man responsible for Troll, Ghoulies, Evil Bong, and Laserblast recently released this dubious gem. At barely 60 minutes, the film stars Cody Renee Cameron as Bambi, Robin Sydney as Kendra, and the cast of Zombie Strippers and Bruno Mattei’s trashy Hell of the Living Dead. Bambi and Kendra chat on the phone about zombies created by the coronavirus intercut with real news footage and footage from those two zombie films with the dialogue re-dubbed with funny dialogue a la Kung Pow! Enter The Fist meets Family Guy reference jokes. You’ll be happy to know that Band already has a sequel, Barbie and Kendra Save the Tiger King, on the way.
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