Friday, September 9, 2011

Batch o’ Hatch: Wisdom Teeth Removal Isn’t Very Smart, Plus Three Mini Reviews

Wisdom Teeth!

I recently had five teeth removed – four wisdom teeth and a bum molar (this would explain why you’ve been missing my insightful, entertaining posts – or not). The first few days were a blur, but shortly after that I was in some of the worst pain of my life. Here’s a list of films that I watched that helped me through:
  1. Dracula 2000 - Barely remember this one, thanks to the meds. Not worth it.
  2. Blade Runner – Still an awesome classic. Very interested in Ridley Scott’s sequel/reboot. 
  3. Aliens – I wonder how Prometheus is going to do…
  4. A Nightmare on Elm Street 2 – Inferior sequel but still pretty good. The underlying “gay” themes are …interesting.
  5. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 – The best Nightmare sequel. And the only one with nudity?
  6. The Mummy – One of my favorite horror films and one of the few films I could probably watch every single day. What a horrible set of sequels, though.
  7. Evil Dead II – What a gem. Of course there’s a reboot coming.
  8. Leprechaun - Slept through most of this – but wow what a cheesy flick.
  9. The Monster Squad – I never saw this as a kid and in fact only first saw it a few years ago. It’s growing on me.
  10. The Thing – In my top five in terms of horror. Word is the prequel just won’t have the same magic.
  11. The Fog – Underrated horror flick! Carpenter is a horror god.
  12. Poltergeist – The only true family/horror genre mashup?
  13. Minority Report – Probably the best futuristic film ever made. Spielberg put together a team that worked out how every aspect of our lives will change in the future. Or close to it.
  14. Ghostbusters 2 – Just not the same as the original. Would have watched that but I want to save it for October.
  15.  The Reef – An intense shark attack film. Thanks to Nick for the suggestion.
  16. The Beach – I slept through this for the most part – I would wake up during the strangest scenes.
  17. The Hunt for Red October – Fell asleep. Still haven’t really seen this.
  18. Phantoms – This one scared me when I was a kid. Liev Schreiber is a creep.
  19. Mimic – This really isn’t as good as I want it to be. Del Toro is still an awesome director. Hurry up with At The Mountains of Madness!
  20. Tangled – What? I grew up with Disney films. I’m a sucker for a good rousing cartoon.

So anyway, if you’re thinking of getting your wisdom teeth out but they’re not bothering you – leave ‘em in! Unless you want to watch a ton of movies and eat mounds of applesauce and cottage cheese.

On to the mini reviews! They’re all of found footage films.

Mini Review #1: Grave Encounters

We’ve talked about Grave Encounters before – it’s a found footage horror film about a Ghost Hunters–esque team of TV paranormal investigators that travel to an abandoned psychiatric hospital. Once they’re locked in, real ghosts come out to play.

Grave Encounters didn’t raise the bar for horror or found footage, but I think for me it takes its place next to The Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity in the hall of great FF films. It was done competently and there are plenty of scares. The horror builds and builds until it’s relentless. The ending seemed a bit unnecessary. Directed by…The Vicious Brothers. Interesting name.

Mini Review #2: Apollo 18

A big question popped into my head shortly into this film – what are we as an audience willing to put up with in terms of quality in a found footage film? The video from Apollo 18 - a film about three astronauts on a secret mission to the moon that run into trouble – is so grainy and blurry at times that it was a pain to watch. The footage is supposed to be from the ‘70s, so there’s a reason for it, but I couldn’t help but be annoyed.

The film was generally a let down. I favor a film where the scares are built up to, where the filmmakers invest in scaring you and there’s a general sense of creepiness. 18 definitely had a creepy factor, but most of the scares were “gotcha” scares. There’s a subplot in the film that I wish had been the film’s main plot. The whole movie was a bit of a missed opportunity.

Mini Review #3: REC 2

If you liked the original REC, a film set in Spain about a news crew and some firefighters that get stuck in an apartment while an infection breaks out around them, you might not like the sequel. It’s sort of the Alien/Aliens rule here – the original film follows a generally regular group of people fighting some sort of danger, while the sequel features a law enforcement/military group fighting that same danger.

 A swat team goes into the same infected building after the events of the first film and discover that – SPOILER – the “infection” in the original has turned out to be demonic possession. This revelation didn’t really bother me, however, the fact that this sequel sort of re-explained events that happened in the original to fit the new plot did. What’s obvious is that the “infected” folks in the apartment are actually possessed, but another detail is that the night vision that was used in the first film actually reveals the supernatural that you can’t see with the naked eye. This is all a stretch from the first film obviously, but despite that and slightly odd pacing/storytelling I enjoyed the film. It had some great scares. If you’ve seen the ending of the original you’ll know what I mean. There are two sequels coming, so get to watching this film and it’s prequel.


  1. Haha! What a coincidence, I just watched Tangled last night - still amazing.
    I thought Apollo 18 didn't look promising when I saw the trailer (and that's saying a lot from me, I'm the biggest wimp there is!) but its a shame really. Found footage films can be really, really cool.
    The Fog...I have a feeling I've seen it, but it was years ago and on a crappy, burnt DVD...should double check. And Red October is one of my favourite films - watch it again and stay awake! lol

  2. Thanks for the comment, Ruth! You definitely need to check out The Fog. I'll watch Red October in return.

  3. Ahh, yeah. There's no point in exerting effort after getting those wisdom teeth removed. The pain can be downright nasty if you stress yourself out and get dry socket.

    Blade Runner rocks!

  4. @Diana Dickert - Probably the worst pain I've ever been in. Blade Runner should be required viewing post wisdom tooth removal. Thanks for reading!

  5. My brother had his wisdom teeth removed when he was 16, took the pain medication for 2 days, and was back to normal by the 3rd. I think the experience can vary a lot, but with proper care it should be a fairly tame experience, and a lot less painful than letting their roots grow in before they get infected, and possibly hitting a nerve or the sinus cavity (your case?) Either way, nice list.