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When I say Lovecraft, plenty of you horror movie monsters sigh and the others just look confused. You see Lovecraftian horror has a hard time making it into movies, and even harder time making into GOOD movies. That’s where The Void comes in, this is a modern and extremely competent film that hits all the right notes for lovers of Cosmic horror and the fear that comes with being a very tiny speck in the sights of great and powerful god-like beings who don’t care about us. 

Directed by Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski, who also wrote it, The Void tells the story of a group of people who all happen to be in a hospital at the end of its service following some heavy fire damage. There’s the cop (Aaron Poole) who finds what he suspects to just be a tweaker lost on the road, a grandfather and his pregnant young granddaughter. Then there’s the staff, two nurses and an old doctor who are left to skeleton crew the place and move over the patient files. All hell breaks loose when a crazed man and his mute son turn up with the intention of killing the stray drug addict and trailing after them, a cultist army in suspicious white robes.

Axes Speak Louder Than Words!

While avoiding the cliched attempts to force tension and the boring exposition of lesser titles in the genre, The Void decides to just throw you into the confusing, labyrinthian interior of the hospital and just let the terror happen organically. Why did person X become a terrifying faceless tentacle mouthed flesh mound? We don’t know because the characters don’t. There are no professors from Miskatonic U. to explain the ancient and unfathomable powers at work. Just one guy who knows that another person (No Spoilers) is into weird stuff. As a Lovecraft lover, I found this to be key in the storytelling, Madness needs no explanation. Aaron Poole exemplifies this convincingly portraying fear and confusion in equal measures, Daniel Fathers adding a strong hint of determined madness as an emotionally scarred father with no time or desire to explain his motives.



There’s no shortage of body horror and gore in this wonderful flick either. It starts slow and painful, with one character getting a cruel cultist knife pushed into his flesh excruciatingly slowly, ramps up in the middle with some rather Hellraiser/Silent Hill-esque victims and ends with full-on chopping and shooting chunks off of fleshy monsters reborn from the exploding of another characters abdomen.

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Movies n TV

A Murder of Woes



There’s an old saying by Mickey Spillane about writing a novel. The first chapter sells the novel. The last chapter sells its sequel. If we look at the first season of Wednesday as a novel, then the first chapter didn’t do its job very well. It wasn’t really until the third episode that the series took off. 

Now we’ve reached the last episode. Did it do its job? Did it sell the sequel? Let’s find out. 

We start this episode with Wednesday and the Nightshades catching Tyler and trying to prove that he’s the Hyde. Wednesday goes overboard and ends up getting expelled. Since Galpin doesn’t press charges for literally torturing his son, this seems like she’s getting off easy. 

Just before Wednesday can be sent home, Eugene wakes up. And, of course, he has the vital clue that reveals who has been controlling the Hyde.


Wednesday goes to confront Professor Thornhill, but she gets the upper hand. And turns out Wednesday is the key to bringing Crackstone back from the dead. 

William Houston in Wednesday

Of course, we finally see the prophetic drawing in real life. And just as I think we could all predict, it wasn’t an image of Wednesday destroying the school. It was of her saving the school. 

Not that she does it alone. Everyone has their part to play in the final battle. Bianca and Xavier battle him with Wednesday. Enid, who’s finally come into her werewolf powers, battles the Hyde in the woods. Even Eugene has a moment of heroism. 

The only ones who don’t get a moment to be a hero are the adults. They are either dead, the villains in disguise, or just too late. This does bring one question to mind. Are there only two teachers in this whole damn school? 

All joking aside, I liked that the kids saved the day without any adults. This is a motif that is expected in kid’s shows. And remember, this is a show for kids. If Gomez and Morticia had swooped in at the last moment, or even if Uncle Fester had shown up and exploded Crackstone with his weird lightning power, this wouldn’t have been as satisfying. We needed the kids to be the heroes.

Georgie Farmer, Joy Sunday, Naomi J. Ogawa, Johnna Dias-Watson, Oliver Watson in Wednesday

We also needed Wednesday to learn a lesson about working with people. We needed her to rely on her friends to stop Crackstone. We also needed her to prove that, despite her behavior, she cares about her friends. If you haven’t seen this episode yet, I won’t ruin it for you. But there is a moment between Enid and Wednesday near the end that healed a little bit of my bitter heart. 

I have to say, the pacing was all off in this episode. This was an issue that most of the season had. The scenes fit together like a water-damaged puzzle. You’re still getting the picture, but it’s not exactly smooth. The location and scenes jumped without reason. This worked against the viewer, pulling us out of the story. 


I also felt like one vital question wasn’t answered. We see Sheriff Galpin with Tyler in the woods. And maybe I’m the only one who cares about this. But we don’t see him with Wednesday again. And I want to know where he stands. I want to know if he blames her. 

Aside from this, it’s a satisfying ending. The monster is caught, for now. The villains are defeated. We know who the monster was, who killed the mayor, and who was trying to kill Wednesday. But we don’t know everything.

We don’t know what happened with Bianca and her mother. 

We don’t know how Enid’s family responded to her finally wolfing out. 

We don’t know what’s going to happen to Nevermore Academy without Principal Weems. 


And one new question has presented itself. We don’t know who’s sending Wednesday threatening texts on the brand-new cell phone Xavier gave her. 

So in this way, the last chapter does its job. It leaves us with questions that can only be answered by its sequel. 

More importantly, we care to have the questions answered. Because we care to see what’s going to happen to Wednesday, Enid, Xavier, Eugene, and Bianca. This first season made these characters endearing. And I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next for them. 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

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Movies n TV

If You Don’t Woe Me by Now



This is the second to last episode of Tim Burton’s Wednesday. And it’s kind of exactly what I expected it to be. But is that a bad thing? Let’s find out.

(Missed my last review? Click here to read it now.)

We begin at the funeral of the unfortunate Mayor Noble. While Wednesday seems to have been an invited guest, someone else in attendance isn’t. 

Uncle Fester, played by Fred Armisen. 

Fred Armisen as Uncle Fester in Wednesday.

His visit couldn’t have come at a better time for Wednesday, as almost all of her friends aren’t talking to her. When Thing is brutally attacked, it’s even better luck that Uncle Fester is around. 

This attack on Thing spurs Wednesday to speed up her search. With her uncle’s help, she breaks into the Nightshade library and finds that the monster attacking people is called a Hyde. A creature that can only be called upon by someone else. 

This means that instead of one killer, we are looking for two. And Wednesday is pretty sure she knows who the killers are. 

But of course, she’s still an idiot teenager, so she goes right ahead and confronts one of them, Dr. Kinbott, by herself. This has results that surprise no one. 

After this, Wednesday learns her lesson and gets Sheriff Galpin involved to catch her suspected monster. Their relationship seems to be getting better after he caught her and Tyler in the Crackstone tomb watching Legally Blond and didn’t rebuke them. Maybe he’s softened on the idea of Wednesday dating his son. 

Or maybe he wanted to use her to get around needing a search warrant for Xander’s art studio. Because why follow the law when you can risk the life of a teenager by sending her in to start grabbing up evidence in a flagrant disregard for the safety and rights of two kids? 


Because that’s exactly what happened. Honestly, poor Xavier has gone through so much trying to be friends with Wednesday. 

When you’re a fan of a certain genre, you’ll find yourself recognizing the beats of a story before they even happen. For instance, a murder mystery will often have a moment, right near the climax of the story, where it seems like the case is solved. 

Gwendoline Christie and Jenna Ortega in Wednesday

This was that episode. It appears like the case is solved, but it’s all a little too easy. And too early in the episode. Now, I don’t consider this a bad thing. It’s an expectation of the genre. Especially because this is a show for a young audience who might never have seen this before. And in this case, just because I saw it coming didn’t mean it wasn’t satisfying. 

This one was satisfying because of the implications. The real monster is revealed now. And if you’ve figured out who it is, you understand how difficult a job Wednesday is going to have to prove it. 

One thing I like about Wednesday is that there is no dishonesty in this child. If she thinks something, it comes right out. So of course she had no problem confronting her therapist as soon as she started putting the pieces together. Of course, the flip side of that coin is that she expects other people to behave like her. To be honest, at least some of the time. To attack from behind, and attack people other than herself to get her point across. Because, sadly, good people tend to judge others in the ways they would behave. 

I loved the addition of Fred Armisen as Uncle Fester. And I wasn’t expecting him to do a good job, honestly. I’m quite used to Christopher Lloyd as Fester, so this was kind of shocking. But as always, he was great. He brought a sense of levity and joyous foolishness that this character should always have.


All in all, this was a great episode. My biggest criticism is that the twist ending isn’t as unpredictable as one might like. When you’ve been a selfish prick to everyone around you, and all of your friends are done with your shit, but one person is still fine with it, that person might just have some ulterior motives. 

There’s just one episode left, and I’m excited to see how the story wraps up. I have high hopes for it. And I’m just thankful that the season has exceeded the rather dismal expectations I had for it at the beginning. 

3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

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Movies n TV

The Beach House, a Film Review

The Beach House (2019) is a body horror film directed and written by Jeffrey A. Brown starring Liana Liberato, Noah Le Gros, and Jake Weber.



The Beach House (2020) is a body horror film directed and written by Jeffrey A. Brown. This film stars Liana Liberato, Noah Le Gros, Jake Weber, and Maryann Nagel. As of this review, this film is only available on Shudder.

Desperate to rekindle their strained love, Emily (Liana Liberato) and Randall (Noah Le Gros) escape to a beach getaway. They soon learn to find that family friends of Randall’s father, Mitch (Jake Weber), and Jane (Maryann Nagel), also had a similar idea. After getting used to each other, a mysterious fog engulfs the town. Unfortunately, they realize too late the danger they find themselves in.

A woman with her mouth agape. Behind her is a dark background. Next to her reads, "The Beach House." Below is a scenic beach with a mountain in the distance.
The Beach House Alternative Cover Art

What I Like

Body horror gets under my skin, and The Beach House certainly lives up to the standard. There’s something magical about creatures terraforming your body to their preferred environment, turning humans into nothing more than conscious prisoners in their own flesh. While I wouldn’t consider this film the most traumatic or unsettling example, it utilizes wonderfully grotesque scenes.

Aside from the body horror, the film drops a few Cosmic Horror–or Lovecraftian–vibes that go together perfectly. Another favored genre of mine, this combination ensures the odds are overwhelmingly against our human leads.

Beyond the grotesque, visuals might not overwhelm but certainly succeed in their goal. Several scenes provide an intentionally tranquil experience that contrasts with the grotesques and improves their effectiveness.


In terms of performance, each actor hits their mark. While some roles require less effort, each contributes to the plot as intended. The standout performance goes to Liana Liberato’s Emily, who acts as co-lead. She simply has the most to work with and lives up to the part.

White background, rubber stamp with disclaimer pressed against the white background.
Disclaimer Kimberley Web Design

Tired Tropes and Trigger Warnings

As “body horror” should indicate, this film will hit hard for the more squeamish viewer. While horror by nature has some amount of grotesque, body horror brings that grotesque to the next level. While I don’t particularly find The Beach House hitting harder than its competition, it certainly respects its chosen genre.

Woman looks shocked or horrified. Bushes or trees make up the background.
Liana Liberato as Emily

What I Dislike or Considerations

A few scenic montages may hit or miss depending on your interpretation. While I have my own theories, that speculation goes beyond the scope of this review. Many of these scenes overlap more philosophical conversations and musings that may annoy or add layers. This strategy seems a common practice in Cosmic Horror, which forces characters to rationalize the irrational.

It’s hard for me to understand how secretive or known this event is supposed to be in the film’s world. Individuals know something outside of the town, with evidence implying governmental knowledge. This information creates a contrivance–perhaps, even a plot hole–because the characters had to reach this isolated town without any opposition.

One of the visuals didn’t exactly grab me. While I won’t go into too much detail, an effect looked too visually similar to a common animal that barely survives rain. It’s hard to be threatened by that. It also doesn’t exactly match up with some of the other visuals. Even the creatures that look similar to it still look different enough to provide a more alien assumption.

There are moments when the infected chase our main characters by crawling at them. While the context works, with injured characters helping to sell them, I can’t help but find these scenes amusing as opposed to frightening. Yes, it’s certainly visually different from the plethora of zombies out there, but it’s also less frightening than zombies that leisurely walk to their targets.

Final Thoughts

The Beach House combines cosmic and body horror to create an uncomfortable film that tests its characters. For those who enjoy these genres, it will certainly entertain you, but I doubt it will frighten you. I imagine the mood to watch it again might strike me, but I’m not entirely certain it will stand the test of time. 3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

If this movie suits your fancy and you want more, Honeymoon seems an appropriate recommendation.


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