Synopsis: A young woman, while attempting to save her father during a Category 5 hurricane, finds herself trapped in a flooding house and must fight for her life against alligators.
Release Date: July 12, 2019
Thoughts: It’s not hard for me to figure out where my love of creature features began. Ever since I saw Jaws as a kid I’ve been enthralled by monsters on land, under the sea, and in space. From nature run amok atrocities to alien lifeforms, I’m pretty lenient on films that pit men and women against some beast with really sharp teeth. We’ve been pretty starved for these mid-budgeted movies (at least in theaters) with tastes shifting to blockbuster entertainment for the masses but this July sees the release of Crawl and it looks schlocky and fun. While, as usual, the trailer gives away more than I’d like, there’s more than enough here to get me interested in what other scares director Alexandre Aja (Horns) has in store. Also…while I’m not freaked out by spiders, snakes, or sharks, I am legit frightened by alligators and crocodiles so this is going to be sweaty palm experience for me.
Synopsis: A psychologist begins working with a young boy who has suffered a near-fatal fall and finds himself drawn into a mystery that tests the boundaries of fantasy and reality.
Release Date: September 2, 2016
Thoughts: French director Alexandre Aja is known for his more, ahem, extreme work (High Tension, Mirrors, Piranha 3D, Horns), so I was more than a little surprised his name was attached to this big-screen adaptation of Liz Jensen’s 2005 novel. I mean, there doesn’t seem to be any opportunity for characters to be dispatched of in a most grisly fashion but perhaps The 9th Life of Louis Drax is an attempt to show Aja’s softer side. Focused on a comatose boy and the secret as to why he’s in his current state, this September release might be a nice return for the carefully constructed mystery genre that’s been dormant for far too long in my book. Starring Jamie Dornan (Fifty Shades of Grey), Sarah Gadon (Dracula Untold), Aaron Paul (Need for Speed), Barbara Hershey (Insidious: Chapter 2), and Oliver Platt (Flatliners), if Aja can withhold the bloodletting and let the story take center stage he may just have a winner on his hands.
Synopsis: In the aftermath of his girlfriend’s mysterious death, a young man awakens to strange horns sprouting from his temples.
Release Date: October 31, 2014
Thoughts: I’ve said it before in my reviews of his recent work but I find it quite admirable at how out of his Harry Potter comfort zone Daniel Radcliffe is willing to go to prove that he’s more than the boy wizard. Though he reaches for the stars, too often I find him lacking but when he fails it’s never a total wash as the work itself has more interest that what his performance brings to the project. With Horns, Radcliffe (What If) is under the direction of Alexandre Aja (Piranha 3D) a director known for pushing some American boundaries when it comes to the horror genre. Much of this comes down to graphic violence but there’s a sliver of social commentary in even the gravest of Aja’s works. Co-starring Juno Temple (Cracks), this horror-comedy might not make Radcliffe more lovable but could work in favor of the actor shedding his wizard cloaks for good.