Movies For Halloween: HBO Documentary Edition

October 2, 2015

There are three types of people in this world; Those who by the grace of God can afford HBO, people who are crafty enough to steal HBO, and people who are really missing out. If you are one of the first two, these are two documentaries that are on HBO.

The Jinx:The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst (2015)

 

My friend and fellow Off the Edge collaborator/HBO fanboy, Peter, came over to my place one day to have an HBO Chromecasting session. He raved about this six part Documentary series called The Jinx and suggested we star watching it. I was a little reluctant to start a six hour long Documentary, but Peter was convincing. We ended up finishing it within 24 hours.

The Jinx is a Documentary that fell into place by fortune. Andrew Jarecki directed a movie All Good Things in 2010. It was based on the story of a suspected murderer named Robert Durst. Robert Durst is a member of the Durst family, one of the richest families in Manhattan. They own the real estate for a good portion of lower Manhattan including but not limited to, the fucking Freedom Tower. My point is, they are super wealthy. Durst saw All Good Things and contacted Jarecki with the desire to tell his side of the story.

The Jinx tells the story of the murders and disappearances of people that all have one thing in common; Robert Durst. It chronicles several different cases involving Robert Durst as a suspect. I don’t want to say much more then that because the way the story unfolds throughout the series is downright shocking. This is one of the most chilling documentaries I have ever seen. The interviews with none other than Robert Durst himself are riveting and will make the hair stand on end the way a really great true crime story will. The Jinx isn’t necessarily horror but it does give a great look into the life of a real life  monster, It is definitely worth the six hours it will take you to watch it.

10/10

 

Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (2015)

Ok,this one is not horror or related to horror in any way. I felt compelled to mention it because it did two things for me; it made me live in actual fear of Scientology, and it renewed my fear of religion in general. This film is basically the definitive piece on Scientology. It tells you everything you need to know to completely understand the modern debacle that is Scientology. It provides a condensed history of the organization and an introduction to Dianetics, which is the principle belief of Scientology. It contains tell all interviews with former high ranking members of the church, which highlight the abuses and misdoing of the church as a whole. Going Clear is a fantastic documentary that I found to be very unsettling and downright creepy. It is definitely a must see.

10/10

-DJ


The Green Inferno (Eli Roth, 2015)

October 1, 2015

I can’t say that I am a huge fan of Eli Roth. I did like Hostel (2005) but I really despised Hostel: Part II (2007), so I wasn’t really sure what to expect going into this film. I decided I needed to see it just to see what all the buzz was about. Much like past Roth films it was criticized for being over the top in violence and gore. I went in with a pretty open mind. I gotta say I do enjoy a good splatterfest from time to time.

The Green Inferno definitely delivers on gore, like all things with Greg Nicotero’s name attached to it. The gore effects were downright beautiful, if you find that sort of thing beautiful. Nicotero once again shows us that he is the best in the business for gore effects. I gotta give credit where it is due and commend the special effects. That being said there isn’t much more for you other than that. The movie lacks almost everything else. The characters are one dimensional, and the story is in parts downright silly.(I’m talking diarrhea gags and one of the dumbest marijuana jokes I have ever seen.)  I had a really hard time trying to decide if this movie needed to take itself more seriously or less seriously. If it were either of those it could have been a lot better. A lot of folks will say “come on man, it’s an exploitation piece, what do you expect?” To those people I say “fuck you dude, movies are supposed to be first and foremost stories.” If I’m being honest I really didn’t find this movie scary or even suspenseful. By the end of this movie I was really just waiting for it to be over. I had no emotional attachment to any of the characters and didn’t really care what happened to any of them. This movie is highly influenced by Cannibal Holocaust (1980) which if you are an avid reader of the blog you will know I really fucking hate that movie. If Eli Roth set out to give us another film like that he totally succeeded. He made a really gross shitty movie with an even shittier ending, just like Cannibal Holocaust. So good job there Mr. Roth, mission accomplished.

If you are looking for a movie to watch with your friends and be completely disgusted by violence and gore, it might be worth the watch. It could be called a novelty at best. If you’re like me and like a little bit of substance in your films (yes, even in horror) this film probably isn’t worth your time or money.

4/10 

-DJ