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The Good and The Bad – April 20, 2009

Cannibals and Nazis and development hell, oh my!  This week: A welcome cameo, a comic-book movie that makes sense and some terrible ideas that promise to become expensive mistakes. Movies I’m looking forward to come first, followed by snarky sarcasm. If you’re considering going straight to the snark, you’re among friends.

Think our rankings are off base, out of touch or hopelessly lame? Speak up here!


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The Good
Rank Movie
1 I-Frankenstein75x75.jpg I, Frankenstein
Underworld co-creator Kevin Grevioux is developing his comic, which puts classic movie monsters in film noir settings, for the big screen. There’s nothing about this premise I don’t love… think Van Helsing done right.
2 dead-snow75x75.jpg Dead Snow
Jaws have been dropping at the nazi-zombies-attack-ski-lodge trailer for months. Circle June 12 on your calendar: That’s when IFC puts the Norwegian shocker into limited release. All together now: Ein! Zwei! Die!
3 offspring75x75.jpg Offspring
The third movie adapted from a novel by horror master Jack Ketchum, and the first to feature a Ketchum screenplay. Since The Lost and The Girl Next Door were pretty good, hopes are high for this one.
4 thecrazies-75x75.jpg The Crazies
Hooray! Original cast member Lynn Lowry (Shivers, Cat People, I Drink Your Blood) has a cameo in the remake of George Romero’s 1973 movie. It may not be his best, but those who like it, love it.
5 wrong_turn375x75.jpg Wrong Turn 3
DVD sequels don’t usually merit prime placement, but substituting escaped cons for teeny-bopper victims is inspired. Who’s worse: Inbred, backwoods cannibals or fugitive felons? Tough call, which is kind of cool.

And now, the bad news…


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The Bad
Rank Movie
-1 DragMeToHell75x75.jpg Drag Me to Hell
After seeing two cuts, the MPAA awarded Sam Raimi’s newest movie a PG-13 rating. I can’t say whether or not it’s good, but I can say that no homage to ’80s gore movies should be family-friendly.
-2 juon75x75.jpg Ju-On: The Grudge
Not to be bested by the Saw franchise, which is getting the video game treatment, Grudge director Takashi Shimizu is developing Feel for the kid-centric Wii platform. But it’s set in the “Grudge Universe.” Hello?
-3 thanksgiving75x75.jpg Thanksgiving
The Grindhouse trailer is easily the best thing Eli Roth has ever done, probably because he had neither the time nor the budget to screw it up. Now he’s making the feature itself. I think I’m booked opening weekend.
-4 twilight2-75x75.jpg New Moon
Twihards can thank Dakota Fanning for keeping it off the very bottom of the list; she might even be creepy enough to give the mopey franchise an iota of edge. BTW: Those MySpace casting calls scream scam
-5 town_creek75x75.jpg Creek
Joel Schumacher (who did make The Lost Boys) shot this occult Nazi movie in 2007; Lionsgate won’t give it a release date. Some footage showed up online;  Lionsgate took it down. Not a vote of confidence.

Let me guess. You’re reading this because you’re a big fan of Sam Raimi. Or Eli Roth, God help you. And you’re mad about the bad things I said. Don’t just sit there and fume! Let me know in the comments. They’re right… down… there…

David Wellington is a horror novelist whose latest book is Vampire Zero. He lives in New York City with his wife Elisabeth and his dog Mary, named after Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein.

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