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Awix (3067 KP) rated Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992) in Movies

May 27, 2020 (Updated Aug 2, 2020)  
Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992)
Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992)
1992 | Horror
Second Hellraiser sequel and the first no-two-ways-about-it lousy one. Chief bondage demon Pinhead has been stripped of the limitations constraining his unpleasant recreational activities, which he likes, but also turned into a piece of interior decoration, which he doesn't. He endeavours to get himself released while a plucky young journalist tries to figure out why people keep turning up skinned or lacerated by flying chains.

A Hellraiser movie made with an American sensibility and for a mainstream American audience - one almost gets the sense the writers think they're making a Nightmare on Elm Street movie. The first half, with Pinhead stuck in a pillar, is not too bad, but they have to let him out eventually at which point the film's IQ and sense of restraint both vanish. Too much lazy gore and silly action (rubbish Cenobites wandering around New York City fighting the police). Doug Bradley just about saves the movie from being completely worthless, as he manages to chew the scenery even while being part of it; Terry Farrell was better in Star Trek. The occasional interesting idea or image but the film's main achievement is making the first two look better than they actually are.
The Grudge (2020)
The Grudge (2020)
2020 | Horror
Thankfully doesn't skimp out on the gore (some real solicitously nasty, gushy butchery on display - it's far and away the star of the show) but misses out on nearly everything else that made this concept so watchable. A bunch of people sitting around and sulking about stupid bullshit the entire time, who gives a rat's ass? Doesn't help that the demon design is pure crap and not a single actor - save for the always superlative Lin Shaye (who is seriously one of the best new horror actors in the game right now) - even wants to be here to begin with; and it shows in these fucking intolerably drab performances. The structure is actually kind of neat, though it peddles all but nothing. In fact the whole product has a clever method of execution but shits the bed on actually doing anything with it. Also its unintentionally funny in the worst possible way, these tropes are so tired (blink and you miss them predictable jump 'scares', dumbass characters, competent but uninspired visuals, morose and generic police procedural elements being poorly mixed into a much more interesting horror story, etc.) beyond belief. Barely 93 minutes and feels like forever, has okay moments but *not* worth the sit.
Phantoms (1998)
Phantoms (1998)
1998 | Horror, Mystery
Peter O'Toole was the bomb in ๐˜—๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ๐˜ฎ๐˜ด, yo. Features elements of a horror movie but fails to actually make a horror movie out of them - spends most of its runtime focusing on the bracing thrills of walking around slowly and looking at stuff, and the heart-clenching horrors of sitting in some lab talking about chemicals and stuff. Dean Koontz is the Dan Brown of horror, ineptly weaving together such laughably idiotic historical appeals (forced to be played straight) for people who don't know they aren't cultured and then doing nothing with them. Also Rose McGowan is either genuinely crap here or she just doesn't care. The sci-fi violence/gore is honestly quite vicious and damn cool for what this is, and there is a noticeable amount of enjoyable stupidity to be had (terrified Affleck pleading for his life to a golden retriever, O'Toole screaming about how some ancient extraterrestrial-demon shapeshifting oil killed the dinosaurs, etc) but it's too slapdash for its own good. Gets right into it then takes multiple breaks to sit on its ass, not awful but also not worth any sort of time, tbh. The Blob for those thirsty for cardboard vapidity. *Please* just watch ๐˜๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ช๐˜ด๐˜ฉ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ 7๐˜ต๐˜ฉ ๐˜š๐˜ต๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฆ๐˜ต instead.
Prophecy (Demon Guard #1)
Prophecy (Demon Guard #1)
Cheree Alsop | 2020 | Science Fiction/Fantasy, Young Adult (YA)
10.0 (1 Ratings)
Book Rating
Cheree Alsop has long been a favourite author of mine and I was delighted to find out she had started another series, Demon Guard. PROPHECY is the first book and we are introduced to a twenty-two year old man, Raith, who is older than he should be due to his experiences. He nearly loses his life trying to rescue someone who didn't need rescuing. His life is saved and new abilities are awakened.

This was a brilliant way to start a new series. Both Raith and Nox are instantly relatable and you understand why they both have rescuer complexes. The supporting characters are a fantastic addition but, for me, it is the relationship between Raith and Nox where the book shines.

It isn't often I give book one in a series 5-stars but there is just no other option for this book. With action, sorrow, hope, and NOX!!!! how could I not? This is a world to sink into and I really can't wait to read more. Absolutely recommended by me.

* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *

Archaeolibrarian - I Dig Good Books!
How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord
How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord
2015 | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
6.5 (4 Ratings)
TV Show Rating
Catching and Action-Packed!
TRIGGER WARNINGS: memory loss, anger issues, agoraphobia, graphic injuries, fat-shaming, body-shaming, forced marriage, incest, manipulation, toxic relationship, mind control, misogynistic language, slavery, torture, violence, executions

I was generally worried at whether this show was going to be good or if it was going to be one of those trashy anime's that are just 'alright'. I randomly put it on as I had just finished my hundredth re-watch of Vampire Knight and was shocked. This was crafted into a rather enjoyable story that had an amazing cast of main characters. There was silliness, softcore (ecchi) content, action, and adventure.

Throughout the show, there are scenes that are deemed inappropriate and the first episode contains one of those "whoa there" scenes. I wouldn't recommend watching if you don't want somewhat sexual scenes littered throughout the show. Besides those moments, How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord is pretty fun and an enjoyable series that fits with the genre of the show.

How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord captures the whole overpowered main character but balances it with a main character that has limits to his power. There is also the whole sense of danger to those that are close to the main character. The story is told really well and wraps up nicely, leaving the ending open so that if more seasons do end up getting made it would work perfectly with continuing the story on. But if this was the end, then it ended on a good note.

You won't see much of the modern world in the show except for the very beginning. The setting is set in a parallel fantasy world (isekai) where the main character is instantly sucked into a world similar to the game that he was playing. There isn't much connection between the game world and the modern world, but it really isn't an issue as it happened early on in the show.

The show itself is about the main character, who plays an all-mighty powerful Demon Lord in a game in the modern world, but then gets physically summoned into this parallel fantasy world. The twist: the main character is actually stuck in the body of his character Diablo. The story follows a pretty typical plotline where the main character adapts to being in a new body, a new world, how he deals with his surroundings, and how he tackles the issues that arise.

The biggest plot point revolves around the two summoners: Rem and Shera. Each had their own reason for summoning Diablo and he even gets involved with those same issues, seeking to help them. It's insinuated incredibly well that these two young women are main characters alongside Diablo, but some issues arise. Like the slave collars that are around the women's necks should have been around Diablo's neck. The issues that these young women have are as weighty as the salve collars. Slavery is apparently legal in this world, but Diablo doesn't abuse his power and actually allows the women to do as they please, even going as far as forming a bond with both of them.

Overall, I enjoyed watching the story unfold and seeing the producers establish the difference between the modern world and the game that Diablo was experiencing. And even seeing Diablo overpower so many of the opponents he encountered throughout the world. I was entertained throughout every episode and ended up binging this in an entire night!

Generally, when you have a show like this, the characters have to carry a ton to really make the show good. In How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord, they do an exceptional job at portraying that. Diablo is a pretty solid main character, even being likable! The problem with action-packed shows like this with an overly powerful main character is that the character isn't likable and that makes the show rather boring. With this show, you do not get that vibe one bit. Diablo actually works because he's a generally nice guy at heart, never resorting to using his powers right away or even stop caring about whether or not he kills someone. His strength is evenly matched with his lack of communication and his heavy social anxiety. I mean, you get inside his head quite often and he uses both his brains and brawn to help in a rough spot, instead of just randomly firing about as most power main characters do. This really adds to the appeal of Diablo.

The other two main characters, Rem and Shera are two girls with their own reasons for summoning a powerful demon to aid them. Both are entertaining and even have their own backstories that really add to the story. Rem's backstory is a bit more emotional compared to Shera's but the watcher is able to emphasize with both excruciatingly well. Especially when all three main characters develop a sturdy friendship and gain the trust of the others. Shera is the glue that holds both Rem and Diablo together when they start doubting themselves.

There are a wide variety of antagonists and side characters that don't get a ton of focus, but they do help push the main cast and story along. These antagonists have their own goals and that causes serious conflict with the goals Diablo, Rem, and Shera have/want to do. But then there are also the side characters that are actually on the side of the three mains and do play important roles in various points of the story.

The art and visual effects were well down and it wasn't the same graphic scenes and spells as most anime's do. For instance, Diablo doesn't just spam the same spell over and over (like I do when I'm playing a game because I'm a button smasher haha) instead, he uses different attacks and spells for each occasion. The show doesn't shower blood around like it's rain *cough cough Game of Thrones cough cough*, but it does a good enough job letting the watcher know when someone gets hurt/ dies.

My final thoughts:
Overall, this was a well-done show that held the action and made the characters very likable, without rushing the story. There is comedy, action, magic, and a bit of a push on the boundary with softcore (ecchi) content but you get a good sense from the main characters and story that it's defiantly worth checking out.
The Gate (1987)
The Gate (1987)
1987 | Horror
Gremlins meets Explorers in some good 80's fun!
After a lightning storm, a major tree get uprooted in the suburban back yard of Glen and his sometimes nice big sister, Al. Glen and his best friend Terry proceed to investigate and discover some cool geode stones. At the same time, Glen and Al's parents are going away and leaving the teen and pre-teens home alone (doesn't this always happen in 80's movies).

All seems well enough until the boys split the geode and it spurts out some ancient writing that Glen reads aloud. Al decides to have a party while her parents are away (go figure) where Glen is levitated during a mini seance. Terry discovers during one of his headbanging sessions some of these events coincidentally are said to open a demonic gate where strange creatures can emerge, torment those they find and ravage the Earth.

The three protagonists decide to try and close the "gate" by reading ancient text and Bible verses. This proves successful and small, feisty demons begin to appear and creep into their house. After several run ins, more unusual things start happening within the home, possibly as a precursor for something even bigger on the horizon.

The teens must formulate a plan to dispose of their new house-guests before it is too late!

Funny that Glen is played by a very young Stephen Dorff in his very first role. He reminds me of a young Ethan Hawke in Explorers as his nerd friend Terry reminds me of River Phoenix in the same film.

The movie is cheesy with dated special and optical effects that modern audiences might get annoyed by or find lame and of poor quality. The small demons are more funny than they are scary, but I still enjoyed seeing them on screen. I actually thought it was stop motion animation similar to a Ray Harryhausen film like Clash of the Titans, but they were actually actors in demon costumes and then shot in forced perspective to make them seem smaller.

The movie is only 85 minutes and the plot does take a little while to get going. The first half of the movie is more like every 80's movie you have ever seen with dated hairstyles, clothing and dialogue, but once the demon stuff manifests it becomes more interesting.

Even though PG-13 with some semi scary moments, the movie does seem the style of Gremlins meaning maybe aiming more for a younger audience rather than being excessively disgusting or graphic.

Hopefully you can put aside the elements I mentioned that aren't up to today's standards and enjoy the cute, interesting story this film inhabits. I surely did.