Review: The Fear – C.L. Taylor

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review. 

SYNOPSIS: When Lou Wandsworth ran away to France with her teacher Mike Hughes, she thought he was the love of her life. But Mike wasn’t what he seemed and he left her life in pieces.

Now 32, Lou discovers that he is involved with teenager Chloe Meadows. Determined to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself, she returns home to confront him for the damage he’s caused.

But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as Lou tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that she could once again become his prey… – via Goodreads

You know, it rarely happens that a book makes me uncomfortable when I read it, but this was one of those that did. It just… I didn’t like that. It was weird. This book gives you a look see at how the victims of a paedophile feel about him and what is happening to them, and it makes me both sick and mad. Ugh.

Now let me get straight into the book – the story flips between Lou’s present and her past, so you get a look at her as she is now, scarred and emotionally broken, and then to the past, when she was kidnapped and groomed by a paedophile of note. Ugh. My stomach rolled reading about how she was so in love with him and how he understood her and loved her like nobody else, and to read how he preyed on her was absolutely horrifying.

I think with that being said, there will be triggers for some people, that’s for sure. I was both frustrated and disgusted reading this, and intrigued in other places (not the parts about the feelings of the victims that were preyed on, but the aftermath, and then there is the odd section featuring Wendy). I thought that it the story actually comes together quite well, and while making you queasy, keeps you interested enough to continue and see what happens.

There were so many unsavoury characters peppered throughout this book, but there were also some really nice ones, so the balance struck is decent. I don’t foresee myself rushing out to reread The Fear, and it is not necessarily a book that would be easy to recommend, but it isn’t a terrible read, but also didn’t strike the highs I was hoping for.

JB & The Chop Do: Saw III (2006)

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JB AND THE CHOP PRESENT SAW

Peeps! We are back for some more torture porn, set-your-teeth-on-edge gore, nastiness, a flimsy plot, characters becoming consistent that we don’t like, and some weird puppet Billy riding around all over the show. Again. What can I say? People have a darker side that calls out, and Lionsgate responded to the people, called out to their crudeness and the irdisgusting side, the gruesome and the macabre, and the people lapped it up, regardless of how good or bad the said film in the brutal franchise was. What did the Chop and I think? Was it worth all the hype it got back in the day???

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SYNOPSIS: Jigsaw kidnaps a doctor to keep him alive while he watches his new apprentice put an unlucky citizen through a brutal test. – via IMDB

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Saw III, ah, yes. I remember when this made its way to the cinema near me, nobody would let me purchase a ticket because I was too young. However, I was also resourceful and mischievous and on a mission, and no ticket sales jockey was going to deny me seeing this film. Not after the bold claims coming in from overseas about how disgusting this film was, and how it had Americans puking everywhere and all sorts.

Anyway, sneaking into this movie with a bottle (or two) of really cheap, really crap wine, I was ready for whatever they had to bring. Needless to say, I got fucking wasted watching this in the relatively deserted cinema, and didn’t remember anything about this movie. Heck, I saw it years later and only certain things I recalled. Before watching it now? I couldn’t remember jack squat about it o.O

First thoughts? An hour and fifty three minutes?! For what purpose?! Oh, I see why – they want to drag out every possible heinous scene. The movie took like twenty minutes to go somewhere that wasn’t watching the two detectives and their respective torture. No time was wasted in bringing the nasty and the gruesome forth for the viewer. Icky, icky, icky.

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Dual plot-lines running for this story, both just there to fill time. Oh wait… yes, there’s a third one. Are we really supposed to feel sorry for Amanda and Jigsaw? Are you fucking kidding me??? Who in their right minds would pity either? Psychopaths man, really.

Saw III spends immense time on a fucking sick, twisted, brutal head/brain/skull saw surgery part – it went on forever and was so evidently just there for the grossness of it. For reals people.

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The movie tries so hard to make this a complicated story, which is quite embarrassing. Linking back to the first is all good and well, but this whole movie just felt like filler stuff. All of it. It was gruesome filler crap. YUCK. TWO HOURS OF YUCK, NO LESS.

BLOOD. GUTS. GORE. GRUESOME. SICK. NASTY. TWISTED. DISGUSTING.

Alright, all movies have flaws, we know this. Some are too glaring though. A prime example? The old judge? In that sif pig pit? How the fuck is he DRY and CLEAN when he is eventually rescued by Jeff, traipsing around looking for revenge everywhere? Ugh. Also, his inner “turmoil” over whether to save each victim he encountered or not took way too long, and their deaths were so not surprising.

This movie, for some completely insane reason, managed to work in some jealousy plot. When Amanda got all cuckoo about anyone being near Jigsaw? My eyes just went a-rolli’. What the hell was that even all about?!

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The detectives from last movies were brought in here (I literally think it was just to tie up loose ends from the previous movies) and they were rushed through here, which was so silly. CHECK FOR ANOTER TOTALLY SUPERFLUOUS PLOT LINE!

When I think of Saw III, all I can think about is how much time is spent lingering on gore. This movie could have easily been like twenty or even thirty minutes shorter, and I think it would have been infinitely less annoying that way. It was a movie that was way too ambitious, way too flawed, incredibly gross, and an exceptionally hollow experience. It so desperately wants to be smart, but it falls way short of being anything other than two hours of grotesque traps, blood, guts, and gore.

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chop saw

When I was taking notes for this piece (I have to do that now since writing time is so hard to come by) I wrote down things like:

  • who wears hoodies that way
  • how do they get in to so many public places with those pig costumes
  • i don’t get why they killed the copy lady – what was her ‘redemption’?
  • amanda’s hair sure changes a lot
  • Is that the guy from braveheart???

And towards the end of this movie I thought I would just come out here and give a one sentence essay about this:

THIS MOVIE IS FUCKING GROSS

But then I figured JB would hate me and my life would be worth nothing so I kept thinking about how to go about this. Then I saw what JB had started and she wasn’t shying away from some gnarliness so here we go…

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Aside from the fact that I counted THREE storylines going on here (the man, the woman and Amanda), despite the fact that there are probably six dozen too many jump-cuts and flashbacks and despite that it’s way too dark a lot of the times, I was enjoying it until they put that guy in the pit and then obliterated a dozen of rotting, maggoty pigs all over him. BARF. I get it but:

  • was that fucking necessary
  • who has THAT MANY rotting, maggoty pigs hanging around
  • when braveheart guy pulls him  out of the pit, in the next scene his striped shirt is fucking CLEAN?? Give me a break.

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By the way, I just finished watching the U.S. remake of a British TV show called Mad Dogs. In it, this Belizian lady says that her father was strangled with barbed wire but, since she’s Belizian it comes out as “barb-ed” wire. I liked it so much that now I say things like that so when I mentioned his striped shirt, in my head I said “stripe-ed”. But don’t worry, I only talk like that in my head and sometimes to Mrs THE IPC. Back to the movie!

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As it is stated above, shortly after that fucking pig scene, not pig-fucking scene mind you – there is an EXTENSIVE sequence where this doctor drills into Jigsaw’s head. It was also totally fucking disgusting and pointless and didn’t fit anywhere into the “torture porn” that these movies were labeled by the media.

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Then I realized I had another HOUR of this thing to go and wondered publicly why these movies are so fucking long. For real, I went down to the new hippie grocery store and started pestering everyone who was entering or leaving. “Why are the Saw movies so fucking long??” I pleaded. “Who thought two hours of screaming and broken bones were a good idea??” I begged.  “How does my hand on your inner thigh feel??” I probed.

After these two pieces of nastiness and realizing that I was in this for another hour or so, my mood began to sour and I just wanted this to be over. For the record, over the next long and relatively boring 60 minutes of listening to Jigsaw whisper and  Amanda scream, they twisted someone to death and then blew someone’s head to smithereens.

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I’m not sure if they were trying to tell more of a story this time around or what but it was definitely fucking sick. And not “sick” in the way kids today use the word sick. I did really like when they did they ‘intro’ for the big toilet thing which was the first movie but other than that there wasn’t anything too special about this other than it made my stomach sick and made want to retch. This will NOT go down as one of my favorite movies.

Anyway, while I am trying to finish this up and having a cocktail, I drew up this VERY FANCY grid about what I remember regarding the various ripped and shredded body parts. I know this list isn’t totally inclusive so anyone could remind me what I’m missing that would be great. I also wonder if I will keep this up or just get drunk and forget I ever made it.

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Rapid Review: Starry Eyes (2014)

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starry eyes poster

“Ambition: The blackest of human desires. Everyone has it, but how many act on it?”
– The Producer

SYNOPSIS: A hopeful young starlet uncovers the ominous origins of the Hollywood elite and enters into a deadly agreement in exchange for fame and fortune. – via IMDB

starry eyes gross
GRADE 6Alright, let me get this out right now so that we are not misunderstood. I liked this movie okay, but I certainly didn’t love it to death. Sorry Eric and RyanBut I liked it well enough, and I thought that it was shot and put together really well but I had some issues with the pacing throughout the movie. Starry Eyes was far longer than it had any need to be. I must say that the effects and makeup were just great – so disgusting! Ew! Also, the change that Sarah underwent was phenomenal, and the movie got really dark when taking us through that change. Yucky, is all that I can say, and that is where the makeup and effects get their major praise. Fabianne Therese portrayed Erin really well, and I can tell you with sincerity that I absolutely could not stand her. She was a bitch and a worthless “friend”, who was selfish, greedy, nasty and rude and I didn’t like her, not one little bit. Starry Eyes did not really focus much on character development outside of Sarah, which is a pity seeing as a more realistic dynamic between the friends could have done wonders for the film. Alexandra Essoe did give a brilliant performance though, I really liked her. I must comment on the piano-based score for this, which was just exactly what it needed to be, and certainly lent a whimsical feeling to the film. There are things the film did right, and a lot that just didn’t quite work out so well for me, unfortunately, and is forgettable in the long run for a lot of reasons. Starry Eyes felt like it dragged a lot in places (as I said, far longer than it needed to be). There isn’t actually really much more that I can say about this, aside from the fact that it is a decent watch.