Worth the Watch: Cult of Chucky (2017)

Even though I’d never seen a Child’s Play movie before today, I was terrified of Chucky as a kid – mostly because of the image I’d see on the front of the VHS boxes in the horror movie section of the video store, every time we’d take the family trip to pick out some movies to rent. (We usually went with The Princess Bride.)

So, Cult of Chucky was an appropriate place for me to start, really. It’s all about 80s nostalgia. And it’s a LOT of fun. The ending especially gets many thumbs up.


Yes! There’s a lot of gore. There’s a theme throughout the movie of torture – specifically of people being paralyzed but conscious, unable to stop the horror as they watch it approaching. It’s not only Chucky who’s menacing helpless victims, either…


Yes. Chucky has some funny lines, and the kills and gore are of the fun sort, if you’re into that stuff. Which, as you’re reading this blog, I assume you are.


Yes? This was unexpected, but there are some really cool shots through the film. And Mancini plays with the color red on a level of visual impressionism that I certainly didn’t expect from my first Chucky movie.


Also, guess what?? This horror movie passes both the Bechdel *and* the DuVernay test. Plus it’s not totally heteronormative, either! Does that make up for the horribly inaccurate depictions of mental illness and its treatment? Probably not, but the movie’s about a murderous doll after all, and the relative diversity in cast and story add to Cult of Chucky’s freshness.

Worth the Watch: The Wailing (2016)

Scary: Yes

There are moments of suspense, jump scares, absurdity morphing into horror… The Wailing has it all in the scare department.

Art: Yes

The cinematography is beautiful, although at times a tad dark. Dark as in, I had trouble seeing what was in the shot. But it was still beautiful.

The acting is excellent too, especially Kim Hwan-hee as Hyo-jin and Kwak Do-won as Jong-Goo.

Fun: Yes

Despite the long run time (2:36), I never felt like I was watching filler or wished they would hurry up and end things. The Wailing is a truly *good* film, regardless of genre. And while there are certainly moments of humor, I’d say this is more of a satisfying horror film than a fun one.

Watch it on Netflix? Yes


The Hole (2009)

“The hole has been there since the world’s first scream.”

Fun: 7 / 10

Most of the scares are of the “made ya jump” sort, and the movie is short on pure horror. There are some funny little touches, one involving a talking Cartman doll. And Bruce Dern is in it, playing an eccentric old guy, so that’s about five fun points right there.

Fun points deducted for the “this is so stupid, no one would do this” moments, which include older brother Dane leaving younger brother Lucas alone at their clearly haunted house way, way too often.

No spoilers, but the ending bumped the fun factor up a few points.

Art: 5 / 10

The dialogue is not terrible. Bruce Dern gets most of the best lines, and does them justice, of course.

Chris Massoglia, who plays Dane, is pretty one-note sullen, but that’s how teenage boys are, I guess? Nathan Gamble, who plays Lucas, was impressive.

Scares: 4 / 10

Not that scary, but it’s not trying to be. Think Gremlins 2, which Dante directed.

Dante also directed Gremlins 1, but that movie is scary.

Exploitation: 0 / 10

No genre to see here, folks.

Bechdel test: Pass (barely)

The mother, Susan, and the girl next door, Julie, have a brief exchange about whether Julie wants a snack.

DuVernay test: Fail (major)

There’s an Asian cop with a few lines.

Netflix rec for:

People who want a few scares without too much gore or violence. Parents who want to watch a “scary movie” with their kids, basically.

This comes off Netflix on 11/25/16, so hurry up, Dad!

No Netflix rec for:

Abusive fathers or people with a serious case of coulrophobia.