AFTERLYFE Movie Review

I haven’t posted a review in a while but when I heard of this short movie, I just had to do one. From Wagyu Films comes their first officially released movie and whilst it’s a short it’s bloody good.

What is it?

AFTERLYFE is a horror movie that pulls no punches and in its 20 minute run down has more scares and excellent world building than most of the crap coming out of Hollywood these days.

Created by a small studio and on a low budget the movie does an impressive job of both looking like a much bigger budget production and fully immersing in the viewer.

A Short Movie with a Tall Reach

It doesn’t pull any punches; its short run time doesn’t allow for that and that is one of its strengths. It wastes no time diving into the action by setting up the scene that is both mysterious and immediately scary.

With all that’s being on regarding the Covid pandemic, the opening shot of a man waking up inside a body bag in a dark hospital room with an oxygen mask on his face taps into the fears over the virus. It also gives the movie a 28 Day Later vibe which I absolutely love.

It’s creepy AF

Our as yet unnamed protagonist frees himself from the body bag to discover that there are people in similar bags all around him. The lightning is excellent as the man leaves his room and begins to explore the oppressively dark hospital.

As he ventures down a corridor, he sees other rooms containing other ‘patients. In one room he encounters a man covered in bandages who gives a disturbing performance as someone who is absolutely petrified.

This is where I have to mention the music in this movie. It’s subtle and creepy rising and ebbing in perfect unison with the tension on screen. The tension builds and a female voice cuts into the eerie quiet, that made me jump. The hero finds a walkie talkie and asks the woman questions about his situation, her answers are vague adding to the sense of uneasiness. We learn that the hero had been in a car accident, but the woman says, ‘this isn’t a hospital’. A WTF moment if ever there was one.

The script is great with the exchanges between the man and woman in particular believable and unnerving. The horror aspect itself is done better than some big budget movies with a particular scene of ‘something’ stalking the dark corridors genuinely creeping me out. It definitely succeeds in its attempts to scare and does it in a way that doesn’t rely on obvious jump scares and over the top gore.

A scene where the hero encounters another ‘survivor’ who is armed is perfect as it subverts much of the audiences’ expectations as we realise this isn’t just another zombie survival movie. In fact, that scene flips things on its head entirely to the point where I then felt concern for the ‘survivor’ more than the protagonist. Needless to say, the thing we saw earlier stalking the corridors makes another appearance and its suitably horrific.

To say any more about the plot would ruin the twist and shocking revelations, in short, the writing was great. There was only one point where I could see the twist coming, which as any writer trying to throw an audience off the scent of a big reveal can attest is incredibly hard to pull off.

If this review has piqued your interest, then watch it below!

Is it worth a watch?

Yes! For a debut movie Afterlyfe is excellent and I can’t wait to see more from Wagyu studios. They plan to release more short horror movies as well as a full length movie called Patriarch that looks very promising.

Final Verdict – 9/10

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Excellent Reviews for Voyage for the Sundered Crown

Voyage for the Sundered Crown has been out for almost 1 month already and it’s been getting some excellent feedback! A huge thank you to everyone that has been kind enough to post a review. Here’s just a few below. Oh, and get your copy of the book from Amazon or other retailers. The book is also now available in paperback format which you get HERE

I’ve recently been working on some new maps for the world in which my fantasy books are set. The map above is Esperia, the setting for the Sundered Crown Saga and the Empowered Ones. I have a tonne of ideas for more tales and stories in this world and I am planning an entirely new series set on the continent of Somnio. Take a guess as to the theme (there’s a clue in Voyage for the Sundered Crown). My ultimate aim is to eventually do a massive cross over but that’s a long ways away. 

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Cyberpunk 2077 Review (Xbox One version)- Cyberbug more like

You were the chosen one CDPR

You might have seen the headlines in the gaming press about the response to Cyberpunk 2077’s launch, how CD Project Red (the creators of in my opinion the best game of the previous generation in the form of the Witcher 3) basically lied to consumers over the state of the game on Xbox One and Playstation 4. Well, I am sad to say that all of the outrage is well placed.

The fact that CDPR refused to allow reviewers to show footage of the game recorded by themselves and how not one reviewer could review the console versions, alarm bells should have been ringing.

The shitty practices by CDPR regarding the launch have now placed them in the same categories of loathed companies such as EA and Activision. After all their talk of hailing themselves as the consumers champion they turned out to be nothing but frauds.

Now, that is not to say they cannot turn this reputation around, but sadly the damage has been done, and quite frankly, they deserve everything they get.

Cyberpunk? More like Cyberbugged

So, let us get into the game. The saddest thing is that there is clearly a good plot to the game. The characters are interesting, and it sets the tone up well for an action techno thriller, but unfortunately that is about the only good thing I can say about it.

What kills the game is the bugs. Some are hilarious, some are downright disturbing and the rest, well, this game should never have been allowed to be sold in its current state. Even with the latest patch the game crashes constantly and the immersion is ruined by glitches and bugs.

At one point I had to restart the entire thing due to a bug where I was unable to use any weapons. Not something you want in a game that often sees you forced into combat situations.

Check out this video for just some of the worst bugs that have been recorded. Personally, I’ve experienced a variation of all of them.

I’ve experienced all of these!

It’s all smoke and mirrors

The bugs are terrible and the performance on the Xbox One is laughable. When you compare it to games like Red Dead Redemption or GTA5, Cyberpunk 2077 is awful in comparison. I’ve seen the argument that players on the older consoles deserve these issues due to them not upgrading to the next gen or investing in a PC, to them I say, ‘No idiots. This game was advertised as a game for the Xbox One and PS4. Therefore it should run on them to an acceptable standard.’

I also have issue with how this game was marketed. In the ads and trailers it was portrayed that the player could live another life in Night City and yet when you actually get into the game the world is lifeless and dead.

There are hardly any pedestrians on the streets of what is supposed to be a mega city. The roads are devoid of traffic and as for other activities outside of the main story and boring mercenary jobs there is nothing to do.

The driving is terrible, you cannot customise anything save your character right at the start of the game, you cannot customise cars as was hinted at, you cannot engage in side activities or even interact much with the world around you.

Older games have achieved the living world vibe far better than this one. Heck even the world of the Fallout games feels like a bustling living breathing worlds in comparison and they are set in a literal apocalypse.

The shooting and combat is average at best and while the guns sound great the actual fighting is often janky with terrible frame rates. The enemy A.I is virtually non-existent, and I have lost count of the number of times I’ve seen enemies fall through the floor or just T-pose while I shoot them. Also, the decision to make enemies into bullet sponges is an odd choice and a mechanic that I have always hated in video games.

Hugely disappointing

Unless CDPR give Cyberpunk 2077 a massive overhaul that fixes the bugs, improves performance, and breathes some actual life into the game world I’m afraid to say it just isn’t worth playing at the moment.

It’s a videogame that tries it’s hand at many things and fails at all of them. It cannot compete with older games like Deus Ex for combat and stealth, it cannot compete with GTA when it comes to creating urban settings and it fails as an immersive Role Playing Game.

In short, Cyberpunk 2077 is a massive disappointment and a depressing end to an already shitty year.

If only this was true…

Final Verdict: 4/10

Ghosts of War Movie Review

I’ve not done a movie review since Rise of Skywalker way back in January thanks to Covid-19 shutting the cinemas, but last night I watched a movie that stunned me at just how shit it was. So much so that I felt compelled to write a review.

I’ll just get straight to the point. Ghosts of War is possibly one of the worst movies I have ever seen.

Promising Premise

As with most low budget horror movies (if you can call this horror, I don’t think the creators could decide on what it is) the premise is quite promising. Set in World War Two a group of US soldiers are assigned to protect a manor house in the French countryside.

This is also where we get our first glimpse at the terrible special effects when two US bombers fly overhead. They’re so laughably CGI it instantly takes you out of the scene.

The Nazis are on the run but are still a menace to the region. The manor house is located on a strategically important road which is why the US forces are so keen to prevent it from falling into enemy hands.

The movie begins by introducing our heroes. A rag tag bunch of men who do the usual poorly scripted military chat about their lives at home, hobbies etc… then as they’re walking across a field, they hear a car approaching. It’s full of those pesky Jerries. They set an ambush and promptly blow it up killing most of the occupants inside.

This film is a War Crime

This is when alarm bells began ringing for me. Our ‘brave’ heroes then promptly commit atrocities and outright murder the survivors with one of them challenging a surviving German officer to a bout of fisticuffs. The German gains the upper hand and then the US officer promptly shoots the guy in the head.

Did the writers of this movie realise that the outright murder of surrendered prisoners is a crime? Did they think this make the audience like the characters? If they did then they were massively mistaken. The US soldiers now just come across as thugs and murderers no better than the Nazis they are fighting. Great job guys!

The Manor of terribad sfx

They reach the suitably creepy manor and are greeted by another squad of US soldiers who were babysitting the place and who’d been waiting for relief. This new bunch act all sketchy and we immediately know something is off as they’ve all been sleeping in the main hall and not taken advantage of the manors many bedrooms. They don’t tell the new arrivals that anything is amiss and promptly depart leaving the new guys a bit confused.

As with every bad horror movie the team promptly split up and go their separate ways as they explore the mansion. Now this is where the film was actually ok. The scares were pretty good and suitably creepy. Figures in the background, strange noises, and shadows. It builds up the tension well. As time goes on more and more bizarre events occur and then the plot goes down the path to loony town.

WTF is happening?

So as the movie progresses we learn that the ghosts haunting the house are those of an Afghan family that was killed by Nazis for harbouring Jews (…this literally makes not a lick of sense, but don’t worry all is soon revealed)

One by one the ghosts start killing the team until it’s the turn of the lead character, who wait for it, wakes up in a hospital bed in the present day. Wait, what…

If you’ve ever played the Assassins Creed video games, it’s obvious that the writers based this whacko sci-fi twist on them. The captain wakes up, confused and Billy Zane tells him that he was in fact wounded in Afghanistan and that he was put into a WW2 simulation to keep the brain alive.

At this point me and the wife were laughing at just how bat shit the plot had become. Turns out the captain and his team were all in Afghanistan and were tasked with saving a family of informants from ISIS. They fail and ISIS kills said family in the same way the ghosts from WW2 were killed. A firefight ensues and then out of nowhere a random Afghan woman blows them all up. Despite the US soldiers being blown to pieces and barely alive, the woman is somehow able to cast a curse on them before she croaks it.

Now, this is where this film goes really batshit crazy. We jump back to the captain who is now explaining everything to the audience (seriously if you ever have to explain everything back to the audience you’ve done a piss poor job of writing). Except, somehow thanks to the curse the ghosts of the simulation break into the real world and start causing havoc. Then the movie just ends with a black screen. Quite possibly making it the dumbest ending to any movie ever.


Netflix movies are a bit of a running joke, but nothing could have prepared me for just how terrible this movie is. A promising start gives way to terrible special effects, a non-sensical hard left into bizarre science fiction territory and writing that is so bad I was left laughing hysterically for about an hour afterwards.


Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker *Spoiler Review*

Never has a movie split the Star Wars fandom more than episode 9. After the train wreck and utter disrespect for the franchise seen in The Last Jedi, I went into this one expecting the absolute worst.

Blame Disney

Now, before I tell you my view on the movie, I just want to point out that the blame for how this entire trilogy turned out, falls squarely on the shoulders of Disney, Kathleen Kennedy, and that little twerp Rian Johnson.

It is clear from episode 9 that JJ Abrams did have a story planned for these characters, but thanks to the quite frankly bizarre decision to give full creative freedom to three different directors, each with their own unique visions of what the movies should be, it was always going to end up a disjointed mess.

Abrams did well in setting up some tantalising mysteries in Force Awakens, but then along came Johnson and The Last Jedi, and those threads were disrespected and tossed aside leaving nothing for episode 9. I said in my review of that movie that the ending felt more like a conclusion to the series rather than a second part.

Salvaging the trilogy?

I went alone to the cinema to see this movie (after the last one my wife refused to go) and went in with very very low expectations. As soon as the opening crawl began to go up the screen I initially thought WTF but then I remembered that this had to be its own thing, a sort of stand-alone as it was the only direction it could have gone. All those thinking Palpatine returning is stupid should know that this very thing happened in the old expanded universe. Instantly I thought to myself ‘Why did Disney ditch the old Expanded Universe if they were going to steal and copy parts of it?’

Anyway, we jump straight into an action scene which only further highlights that the folks in charge of these movies A- did not really know what they were doing and B- know nothing of the established Star Wars lore. Po and Finn are on the run after picking up a message from a First Order spy and rather than just outrunning or blasting their pursuers embark on Hyperspace skipping which just like the Holdo manoeuvre in the previous film ditches established lore on how FTL works in the Star Wars Universe. He ‘skips’ the Falcon without any planning or navigation several times, including into the atmosphere of planets, the middle of an asteroid field and some alien city, all without causing horrific damage or crashing into anything. (sigh)

Guess who’s Back…

Anyhow, the plot progresses by showing Kylo meeting with Palpatine. Now, it’s not explained at all but I’m guessing from his appearance this is a clone of the Emperor as it looks nothing like the one we saw in Return of the Jedi and more like a weird cross between the Palpatine of the original trilogy and some messed up zombie dude. This is where we encounter one of the many plot problems, in that NOTHING is explained. Did Palpatine always have a clone waiting in reserve in case he died? We do get a resolution to just who and what Snoke was. A clone created by Palpatine. It does not explain why there is more than one Snoke clone, which we clearly see in various forms floating about in vats.

I do not want to go through every scene as this will take forever, but the plot involves our heroes chasing down some do-hickey that points the way to where Palpatine is hiding. Kylo Ren is sent by Palpatine to kill Rey to put an end to the Jedi (why just Rey and not Leia too?). The plot then devolves into a hectic run through several locations, a few scrapes with the First Order and possibly one of the worst scenes in the entire franchise.

They Fly Now?

Why, why, why do our heroes shout this in surprise? During a pursuit, some stormtroopers launched themselves into the air using jetpacks and our heroes act as though they have never seen this before. To me, this scene just proves this movie was written by people who do not know anything about Star Wars. Jet troopers have always been in Star Wars. In the books, games, and animated shows there are loads of them. Hell, even in Return of the Jedi we see Boba Fett using one. As I sat there watching this scene, I rolled my eyes and gritted my teeth. What the f**k have you done Kathleen Kennedy!

Don’t think too hard

It seems to be a thing in Hollywood these days that writers are well, a bit shit. One scene makes absolutely no sense. They retrieve an ancient Sith dagger that then leads them to Endor and the wreckage of the Death Star. Question: How did the ancient Sith know the Death Star would be built? How did the person who made the dagger know exactly how the wreckage would land so that someone could use it to find a room that somehow miraculously survived a cataclysmic explosion and over 30 years in a violent sea? Ugh.

Rey gets inside the wreckage and finds said room where for some reason she is accosted by a vision of her as a Sith. She defeats that and then finds the device needed to find Palpatine.

Then comes a lightsaber duel between Kylo and Rey which is very well shot and dramatic thanks to the waves crashing over them. It is in this scene that for some reason Leia uses the force to I guess distract Kylo and then she promptly dies. (What is it with these movies? You get a bit tired and then just suddenly die). Rey stabs Kylo but then realises that it was wrong to try and kill him. She heals him with the Force (Yes this is a power that has been seen many times in the lore) and flees after learning that she is the granddaughter of Palpatine.

Kylo is redeemed following a chat with his dead dad and he sets off to help Rey kill the Emperor. Meanwhile, Rey for some reason goes back to the planet we last saw in the Last Jedi and we meet the ghost of Luke Skywalker. Now, I liked this scene as JJ went some way to try and redeem the character following his absolute butchering at the hands of Johnson. We learn that Leia was a full Jedi, and that she had even made her own Lightsaber.

I want to see this movie! Not this garbage

We are then treated to a flashback scene (my favourite in the whole movie) that uses CGI to show us a young Luke and Leia sparring together. As I watched it, I could not help but feel that this was the movie I wanted to see. With the technology now available I just wish that they could have adapted Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn Trilogy using the original characters.

Anyway, back to this movie and well, things happen. Now that I have had time to digest it there is just so many plot holes and stupid choices that I can’t bring myself to go through them all. The space battle is bland, with it’s only saving grace being the brief cameo made by Wedge Antilles and Lando being back in the Millennium Falcon. There is a ridiculously stupid charge on a Star Destroyer by space horse things that makes no sense, and oh yeah, about 60,000 ships arrive to take on the Emperor’s fleet of death star laser wielding destroyers despite in the last movie no one came to help.

And Yet…

Despite all of these very valid criticisms of this movie, I didn’t leave the cinema furious like I did after Last Jedi. I did enjoy it despite the plot holes, the bizarre creative choices and I think I did because this movie ‘felt’ like a Star Wars movie.

If anything after watching this film my hatred for episode 8 has intensified. That movie left JJ with little to work with. I feel as though what we see in Rise of Skywalker is the best and only way to bring this wasted opportunity of a trilogy to a close. It tries to fix the problems created by the second movie and delivers plenty of fan service.

Now that these movies are over, I just hope Disney has learnt its lesson. Give us a Knights of the Old Republic Trilogy and plan it properly. Use the writers who worked on the games if you must. It could be epic.

My overall rating – 5/10

Avengers Endgame Review

So here we are, ten years and over 20 movies later the story began in Iron Man comes to a close in Avengers Endgame. Was it an ending worthy of the build-up? Were character arcs satisfactorily closed? Read on to find out.

Did it live up to expectations?

The amount of hype surrounding this movie was off the chart thanks to 2018s fantastic Infinity War and I’m please to say that the Russo brothers pulled off what could have been an absolute disaster.

The action scenes, the sfx and most importantly the writing was superb. It was laugh out loud funny, it was a tear jerker and some scenes were incredibly tense and uplifting. Some scenes made me want to cheer at how fantastic they were.

This is a spoiler free review so I won’t cover much of the plot itself but what I can say is that the story took me in a direction that I didn’t fully predict. Within the first 20 minutes the plot took a turn that was completely out of left field but it was an excellent twist.

The character development for each of the survivors from the previous movie is excellent and the movie takes its time to ensure that everyone gets a fair shake.

Of course, the two front runners of the film are Tony Stark’s Iron Man and Steve Roger’s Captain America.

We’ve followed these two characters through multiple movies, an epic falling out and now we see just how desperate they’ve become following their failures in Infinity War.

Thor too is treated amazingly well and the way he’s portrayed in this movie will surprise some fans. It makes him and all the characters in fact more human than they’ve ever been before. The God of Thunder is living with loss and what he sees as his personal failure for not preventing Thanos from carrying out his plan.

The movie also raises some profound questions too, such as how would the world respond to 50% of the population suddenly being eradicated from existence. In this film, the answer is really not that well.

The Avengers of course live up to their name and seek to avenge their loss by coming up with an ingenious plan that I won’t ruin here.

The final act is simply incredible and is everything a long time Marvel fan has been waiting years for. It doesn’t disappoint and is simply epic in both scale and action. It puts the audience through the ringer with some excellent fights and some genuinely edge of your seat moments. Characters die, they struggle but most importantly they are done justice.

Overall Score 9/10


The action is superb

All the characters stories are handled well

Special effects are excellent and surpass those in infinity war


There are some slow moments

The way Hulk is handled, I personally wasn’t a fan

If you’ve not watched all of the previous movies then you’ll probably not understand everything that is going on or get the in jokes.

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Captain Marvel Movie Review

First off, don’t listen to all the ridiculous chatter surrounding this movie. Both extreme sides of the political spectrum have tried to hijack this movie to spout their own ridiculous messages.

Let’s get the political BS out of the way

Instead go into it like you would any other movie. I went into the cinema expecting some feminist ranting nonsense, instead I got a worthwhile addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And to those moaning about the feminist messages that do make an appearance, what the hell are you so insecure about?

The messages in this movie are no different to those found in similar ones and if I had a daughter, I’d be more than happy for her to get the message this movie puts across.

What I took away from it, was that Captain Marvel was no Mary Sue type character (unlike Rey in Star Wars, but that’s a whole different kettle of fish), she suffers and only through sheer will and persistence does she attain the powers she ends the movie with.

Persistence, getting back up when other people put you down or after a failure, standing up to bullies, all are worthwhile messages that both girls and boys should heed.

Is it any good?

So now that stuff is out of the way let’s get into whether it’s a good movie. In the most part I’d say yeah it is. The story is nothing too original and if you’ve seen the Green Lantern you may think that Captain Marvel’s story is strikingly similar. Both fighter pilots that come into contact with an alien and get incredible powers etc, etc… but unlike Green Lantern this movie has Samuel Jackson as Nick Fury coming along for the ride.

The CGI work done on Samuel L Jackson and Clark Gregg as Agent Coulson to make them look like they did back in the 90s is incredible. A part of me wishes they used such technology on the original Star Wars cast to truly carry on Luke’s story but alas it wasn’t to be.

The relationship between Samuel L Jackson and Brie Larrson is probably the highlight of the film and you can tell that the two actors had fun making it. A lot’s been said about Larrson being a stiff dour figure in this movie but what did they expect? Captain Marvel is a military figure, trained by an alien race of super stoic warriors, it’s understandable that she wouldn’t be cracking wise constantly (although she gets plenty of sarcastic lines through and you can tell she’s doing her hardest not to be mischievous). It’ll be interesting to see how her character will change when she makes her appearance in Avengers: End Game.

The action scenes were pretty good and a lot more exciting and better handled than those in Black Panther. The cat that many other reviewers are raving about was ok, it wasn’t all that original but it added some comedic value.  It was an odd decision by Marvel to introduce another new character to the superhero pantheon and to some it may be a bit jarring to go back to an origin type movie after ten years of the MCU.

Overall, Captain Marvel was a good movie. It wasn’t amazing and it wasn’t rubbish. It was good and I feel it was a worthwhile watch and a nice bit of filler for Avengers: End Game.

Score: 7/10

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Review: Outlaw King

So, Netflix’s attempt at an historical epic is now available to watch and on a rainy grim night me and the wife settled in to watch The Outlaw King, the untold story of Robert the Bruce.

First off let’s get the good news out of the way. It’s no Braveheart, a movie that plays fast and loose with real history to the point that it’s insulting. There’s no tartan in sight either which is a surprise but a pleasant welcome as it shows the film makers were more interested in historical accuracy than Mel Gibson ever was.

Chris Pine does a ok job as Robert Bruce but I felt as though a man who did so much against such odds would have had far more of a personality. He does a passable job and even his faux Scots accent is passable. The acting throughout is adequate but there’s the problem. Aside from Robert’s wife, every character is instantly forgettable.

The English as to be expected are portrayed as villains as per usual but again at least there not done in such a pantomime way that Braveheart handled it. Prince Edward’s character however annoyed me a lot. In real life, yes, the guy was a bad king who was eventually murdered by his nobles but in this movie, he comes across as a lunatic who kills for no reason other than ‘I’m the baddy so I kill people’. One scene where he literally disembowels a man was way over the top and I seriously doubt a prince would have got his hands dirty like that.

The trailer for this movie suggested that we’d be getting plenty of Medieval battles and we certainly do. The violence is high to the point where I was expecting to see a chap with a super soaker spraying blood everywhere and boy does the blood spray (to the point where it gets a bit daft).

The final battle is done well save for the movie makers playing fast and lose with history in a big way. Damnit Hollywood why change things when the real-life events where far more fascinating and exciting than any script could hope to be!

The costumes were excellent however and for the most part historically accurate. The combat too was done well save for the usual Hollywood nonsense of fire arrows and chucking swords at people.

Overall the movie was distinctly average, and the pacing was all over the shop in places. It also ended on weird spot that surprised me. If you’re expecting a recreation of the Battle of Bannockburn your going to be hugely let-down.

Outlaw King is a bit of a meh movie. There are some good scenes in it and the cinematography is excellent throughout it’s just that the script is a tad dull and poorly paced.

I give it a 6/10.

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Review: The Haunting of Hill House

Hi everyone, it’s been a while since my last blog post. A combination of being busy at work (always a good thing!), getting man flu (boo) and facing down the dreaded writer’s block being the main reasons.

In this post, I thought I’d share my thoughts on the Netflix series: The Haunting of House Hill. Now my wife is a massive horror fan, me not so much. It’s not that I don’t like them because they’re scary but often because the writing of horror movies is often terrible and very predictable. Often Hollywood takes one of two routes, either they go all out gore or just plain dumb. So many movies begin well and suitably creepy but then decide to reveal the ‘ghost, monster or whatever else it is and the horror just falls away to be replaced by hilarious situations (looking at you Conjuring).

When we decided to give The Haunting of Hill House a watch I wasn’t expecting much at all but I am pleased to report that this series is excellent. The writing is filled with twists and turns, the acting is done brilliantly by the entire cast (both the children and adults alike) and for once in a horror, I didn’t see the ending coming.

Is it scary?

From the very first episode, the series is genuinely creepy and at times really scary. It has plenty of jump scares but it is also very subtle with the horror too. Sometimes you see figures in the background of a scene, faces in a mirror, shadows moving along walls. In some scenes that on the surface seemed entirely normal my wife actually cried out at spotting something lurking in the distance and when you do spot it you will feel the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.

At the heart of the plot is a family drama and an excellent one at that. I won’t spoil anything but be prepared to be at first confused due to all the time jumps but by the end, it all pays off in an excellent way.

The first few episodes follow the experiences of each of the children and the parents of both their time growing up in the haunted house as well as the impacts it has had on them into adulthood. Even the most seemingly stable of the children grow up to have demons of their own and the show portrays this brilliantly.

The story doesn’t descend into gory or supernatural stupidity like most movies or shows but instead, every single one of the ghostly experiences happens for a real reason and reasons that you can relate too and understand.

Perhaps one of the creepiest examples of this is when the eldest son is talking to his dad about the experiences he had in the house. For most of his adult life, he was adamant he hadn’t experienced anything supernatural until his father calls him out on something seemingly minor. The son tells a story of walking through the house that at the time was full of workmen and says he had avoided a man working on the old grandfather clock. Except, there was never anyone hired to work on the clock, his father says. It was a ghost! This scene is done in such a way that I could believe it 100%.

Overall, The Haunting of Hill House is an excellent horror series and one that is genuinely creepy. However, once you get to the final episode and begin to understand what is occurring the sense of fear disappears. As with anything the fear of the unknown is the biggest fear we all have. Once we see the face of that fear it loses its power over us and in the case of this show the same occurs. Despite the final episode, those that come before are full of genuine scares and I’m not ashamed to admit that I too was hiding behind a cushion a few times!

Overall score – 8/10

An excellent series with great acting and is actually scary…well until the final episode.

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Movie Review: Avengers Infinity War

Well, here we are. Ten years after the first Iron Man film teased an expanded universe and 19 movies later we have Infinity War and wow. Marvel knocked it out of the park.

This is a spoiler-free review, so I won’t cover the many, many surprises and at times shocking moments but let me say, be prepared for the unexpected.

Thanos, the mad Titan, is the tits

A lot has been said about Thanos and how he’s been teased as the big bad ever since the first Avengers movie. He does not disappoint and is a prime example of well-written and massively threatening villain. The Marvel movies weakest parts have often been the bad guys, Thanos addresses this and then some.

He is a villain that has a motivation that I think many can relate to and he sincerely believes that what he’s doing is the right thing. He is a masterclass in excellent writing (unlike that garbage in The Last Jedi, yes, I’m still bitter.) Marvel luckily didn’t ruin my love for these movies as Lucasfilm did.

The huge cast of characters are handled excellently, and every single one gets a chance to shine, and no one gets left out except for a valid reason. The action is an incredible spectacle, but my favourite would have to be the second fight. When the heroes arrive, and the music played I had goosebumps and wanted to fist punch the air.

I can’t really get into the individual character story arcs without giving anything away, but I’ll say of the overall plot is that it took me by surprise. There are some seriously harrowing moments, plenty of laughs and some complete shocks. That ending! I can’t believe Disney allowed Marvel to go down that path but massive kudos to them for doing so. It was a brave decision, and it pays off both satisfyingly and leaves you wanting more!

Now, this is not a perfect movie. I had some issues with some of the CGI. In some places, it looked a tad ropey and was used a bit too often in certain scenes. Another gripe I had was the huge battle in Wakanda. It was a great spectacle don’t get me wrong, but it just felt a little bit of a sideshow to other events. A minor gripe on my part and one I doubt many will share.

There are also one or two points that may annoy a few people. To avoid spoilers, I can’t say what they are, but one of them involves Star-Lord and a certain actor from Game of Thrones, who whilst being amusing didn’t quite fit in.

Overall, Infinity War was well worth the wait and the build-up. It also further shows DC how to build a shared universe properly and makes Justice League look amateur hour in comparison.


Score: 9/10


Fantastic story that will shock and surprise you

Amazing action scenes

That ending!



Some ropey CGI in places

A few niggles with one or two scenes

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