Tag Archive: Monsters


pac rimStarring: Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Burn Gorman & Ron Perlman
Written by Travis Beacham & Guillermo del Toro
Directed by Guillermo del Toro

The human race must save itself from extinction by using giant mechanical robots to battle monstrous creatures that are rising up out of the ocean.


Giant robots fight
giant monsters. Who needs those
stupid Transformers?

Grade: B+


c2103
By Daniel J. Hoag
Pacific Rim is now playing in theaters nationwide.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1663662/?ref_=sr_1

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monsters UStarring: Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Helen Mirren, Sean Hayes, Dave Foley, Charlie Day, Alfred Molina, Nathan Fillion & Aubrey Plaza
Written by Robert L. Baird & Daniel Gerson & Dan Scanlon
Directed by Dan Scanlon

Before they were the greatest team at Monsters Inc., Mike and Sully were college rivals looking to prove which one of them was better at scaring.


See, kids: Pixar says
you DON’T need to finish school
to follow your dreams!

Grade: B+


c2013
By Daniel J. Hoag
Monsters University is now playing in theaters nationwide.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1453405/?ref_=sr_1

hotel tStarring: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Fran Drescher, Steve Buscemi & Molly Shannon, David Spade
Screenplay by Peter Baynham and Robert Smigel
Directed by Genndy Tartakovsky

Dracula opens a monsters-only resort, but finds his world upended when a human finds his way in and falls for his daughter.


This Hotel should be
condemned and all residents
deserve to be staked.

Grade: D+


c2013
By Daniel J. Hoag
Hotel Transylvania is available on Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0837562/?ref_=sr_1

Starring: Adelaide Clemens, Sean Bean, Kit Harington, Carrie-Anne Moss & Malcolm McDowell
Written and directed by Michael J. Bassett

When her father is kidnapped, a teenager must confront the truth about her past and journey to the nightmarish town of Silent Hill to rescue him.


Grotesque creatures scare,
but you’ll run screaming from the
acting, dialogue.

Grade: C+


c2012
By Daniel J. Hoag
Silent Hill: Revelation is now playing in theaters nationwide.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0938330/

Along with death and taxes, another certainty in life seems to be that as Halloween draws near, there will be at least one horror film franchise that spawns its umpteenth sequel. This season, it’s the Resident Evil brand that returns from the grave (see also: the upcoming Paranormal Activity 4) with the fifth installment in the mutant zombie apocalypse series. So it seems only natural that The Haiku Review should take look back at the videogame-inspired films and mutate a few syllables into something that resembles criticsm. Continue reading

Starring: Quvenzhané Wallis & Dwight Henry
Written by Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin
Directed by Benh Zeitlin

In her Louisiana Delta community known as The Bathtub, six-year-old Hushpuppy faces her father’s ailing health, devastating environmental conditions, and the threatening approach of an army of prehistoric creatures called aurochs.


A stark, stunning realm
This is where the Wild things are
A young star is born

Grade: A


c2012
By Daniel J. Hoag
Beasts of the Southern Wild is now playing in select cities.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2125435/

Haiku Review: V/H/S (2012)

Starring: Calvin Reeder, Joe Sykes & Jas Sams
Directed by: Radio Silence, David Bruckner, Glenn McQuaid, Joe Swanberg, Ti West & Adam Wingard

A group of criminals break into a house to steal a VHS tape that allegedly has something valuable on it and discover a collection of tapes that each contains different horrific footage.


Like an old cassette,
the quality of these films
fluctuates wildly.

Grade: B-


c2012
By Daniel J. Hoag
V/H/S opens in select cities on 10/5/12.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2105044/
TCFF 12-12

Starring: Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Dimitri Diatchenko, Olivia Taylor Dudley, Devin Kelley & Jesse McCartney
Screenplay by Oren Peli
Directed by Bradley Parker

When a group of tourists visit an abandoned village near the site of the Chernobyl disaster, they find themselves trapped and attacked by a terrifying threat.


Chernobyl’s now had
two tragedies befall it.
Bad taste trumps promise.

Grade: C


c2012
By Daniel J. Hoag
Chernobyl Diaries is now playing in theaters nationwide.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1991245/

Welcome to the latest edition of the Haiku Review’s Remake Spotlight, which focuses on the recently-released 2011 version of The Thing and John Carpenter’s 1982 installment (which was itself a remake of the 1951 horror film The Thing from Another World). Technically, the newest Thing is a prequel, since it’s set prior to events of Carpenter’s, but considering it follows the exact same formula as its predecessor and doesn’t even have a different name or a titular qualifier, we’ll just call it a “premake.” So read on to find which film is the real Thing and which deserves the flamethrower? Continue reading

(Blu) Haiku Review: Apollo 18 (2011)

Starring: Warren Christie, Lloyd Owen & Ryan Robbins
Written by Brian Miller
Directed by Gonzalo López-Gallego

This “found footage” film captures the ill-fated secret mission of two astronauts sent to the moon in 1974.


As mortifying
as the tragic Challenger
disaster. (Too soon?)

Grade: D-


c2011
By Daniel J. Hoag
Apollo 18 is available on Blu-ray and DVD on 12/27/11.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1772240/