Geek Proud, GeekOut.

Film

Top 10 – Series That Ended Too Soon

GeekOut Top 10s

Be it due to a lack of viewers, funding, time, or the failings of misguided network executives who need to take a long hard look in the mirror while they slowly starve to death, unable to pull away from the shameful spiral that they’ve plunged themselves into by killing, not just a TV show, but a dream!…

Where was I going with this?

Oh yeah! Sometimes TV shows, film franchises, and game series get cancelled before they reach a satisfactory conclusion, or are forced to rush to a disappointing finale that leaves the fans feeling cheated. Here’s some of our favourites, the Top 10 series that ended too soon. (more…)


Review – Thor: Ragnarok

Does anyone know how many films we’re at now? We’re coming up on ten years of the MCU and it’s been a hurricane of films, TV shows, shorts, games, tie-ins in the actual comics, and desperate, laughable attempts from other companies to try and recreate the Marvel/Disney success that it’s no longer funny when they try. Does it still need discussing?

Well yes. Because as hard as direct rival DC/Warner tries to fight back with their dark and gritty universe built on the back of Nolan’s success with the Batman trilogy, Marvel seems to be reactionarily becoming more comical with their titles. Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man, and now Thor have added three of the funniest films to be released this year, and under the “Super-Hero” genre rather than typical comedy. Perhaps it’s just the appeal to the geekier sense of humour that drags me in, or maybe it’s that we’ve become so comfortable laughing alongside some of these characters after years spent in their company.

Thor: Ragnarok is inextricable from the rest of the MCU films, it cannot stand alone but it does not need to do so. Let’s take a look at why… (more…)


Top 10 – Plots To Overthrow Authority

GeekOut Top 10s

For better or for worse, authorities are there to enforce rules upon us all. They tell us that we must comply, or we must pick up that can and put it in the bin. They tell us that we’d best do as they say, or they’ll lock us up, or worse, kill us. Regardless of how you feel about this, authorities have a simple goal: To lead people, through either inspiration or fear.

Well, we don’t fear them here, as we are taking a look at our Top 10 Plots To Overthrow Authority. Before we delve deep into these schemes, it’s worth pointing out that ‘authority’ does not have to be a government, or royalty. It can be anything that’s in charge of anything, but it has to have some form of governing body. (more…)


Review – Drag Me To Hell

In 2009, Sam Raimi released the horror film he wrote with brother Ivan before taking to work on the Spider-Man franchise…

Did you ever see a horror film that made you howl with laughter but still left you creeped out? Because that’s Drag Me To Hell!

Oh, and the Evil Dead series. In short, if you enjoy your horror with a healthy dose of comedy then Sam Raimi is your man. In this he tells the tale of loan officer cursed by an old gypsy woman with a spooky eye, to be hunted by a demon for the terrible crime of not giving her a third extension on her loan. What follows will make you laugh until you vomit and/or the other way around. (more…)


Top 10 – Necromancers

GeekOut Top 10s

“A Necromancer! I hoped I’d never have to lay my eyes on one of your kind again” – Gheed.

Yes, the Necromancer is a powerful spellcaster who is capable of bringing the dead back to life. With a penchant for the macabre, these dark magicians are able to manipulate bone, flesh and even go so far as to cause disease and further. Typically though, we’re going for those who bring the dead back to life. As such, we’re not focusing on disease or any of those aspects of this dark art.

So buckle up and get ready, for it’s time that we count down our Top 10 Necromancers. (more…)


Short Horror

Sketch comedy has been a staple form of the genre for a long time, because it’s very easy to tell a joke and even easier to do so in a visual media with physical comedy, tangible characters, and short narratives. Short-form horror is not quite so easy. It’s a genre that benefits from time, and rising tensions, expectations, and breaks that escalate to a final conclusion. Is a sketch-horror format possible?

In fact horror and comedy both rely on the tension-break cycle, where set up and punchline serve the same functions as tension and release of horror. We’re starting to see an emergent wave of short-form horror online, in shorts such as Lights Out or Thresher, and we’re seeing more and more films that are a compilation of shorter horror films showcasing different writers and directors, like V/H/S, Trick ‘r’ Treat, or XX. In fact it’s a format that stretches as far back as cinema itself, and the surge of anthology has risen proportionate to the increasing volumes of films as a whole, but the internet is making it easier and easier for horror shorts to be seen.

Anthology horror continues the campfire story traditions, the old oral tradition of passing on dark myths and urban legends. Horror passed through the pulp-fiction years, the short, rapidly produced horror printed on cheap paper and created by a stable of writers working to deadlines, of which Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard were some of the major players. We now have creepypasta, the creative explosion of horror – good and bad – that has filled the internet with a fresh stock of bogeymen unique to our modern sensibilities.

Pulp horror was a television staple in the days of the Twilight Zone, ten seasons, one film, two reboots and nearly seventy years of history on screen, the single episode stories offering macabre twists and morals that force us to take perspective on our own lives. Today’s equivalent might be Black Mirror, a far less family friendly equivalent that makes a fearful thing of modern technology rather than applying a supernatural twist.

You can also see the short-form horror as a one-liner, a simple search for “two sentence horror stories” will yield some gems that give you a shudder. They follow a basic premise, establish normalcy, and subvert it:

“I can’t sleep” she whispered, crawling into bed with me. I woke up cold, clutching the dress she was buried in.

It tells so much in such a confined space, a tale of love and loss, but hints at something more dreadful and impossible. Ok, so it’s not as potent as an hour and a half film or a good book, but you might as well say that you’d rather go see a stand-up comedian than hear a knock-knock joke.

Which begs the question, can a sketch-horror series have the same potency with fear as a sketch-comedy show can have with humour? Anthology horror films prove fairly conclusively that multiple stories can join into an enjoyable experience, and horror shorts such as those on YouTube and the two-sentence stories are excellent examples of how fear and disquiet can be created in a very short space of time. Now build those into a half hour collection, with recurring characters, common themes, and framing devices.

This has been another article of me pitching ideas into the empty space in the hopes that someone with the resources and skills necessary finds it and makes it a reality. I hope you have enjoyed my analysis into the hypothetical.


Top 10 – Severed Heads

GeekOut Top 10s

Next on the chopping block, a Top 10 that springs to mind when thinking of Hallowe’en. It was necks to impossible to pick from our examples, but we made some real headway and have ranked some examples that are truly head and shoulders above the rest and it’s heads, it’s severed, decapitated, removed from the body heads. You already knew that from the title, no need for the puns, after all if you read the title…

You’re already ahead of the punchline. (more…)


Top 10 – Teleporting Characters

GeekOut Top 10s

The power of teleportation is a skill which few possess; a skill of true concentration and energy. The characters we’ll be chatting about in today’s list are all masters of their craft, able to teleport seemingly with ease. It’s as if moving their, or another whole mass, is just like breathing to you or I. Whatever you think of these characters, it’s certain that these are our favourite zone-phasers.

Don’t blink, or you’ll miss this week’s Top 10 Teleporting Characters!

(more…)


Review – A Cure For Wellness

It’s an enjoyable thing to review a film that you neither like nor dislike occasionally. You grow tired of the constant compliments or unmerciful dissection, and to find a film that is both good and bad across multiple elements is a perverse delight. Let me start by saying that I enjoyed A Cure For Wellness, but I think my issues with it may stem from having spent a long time critiquing films that predates my time here at GeekOut.

From Gore Verbinski, the man who gave us the best Pirates of the Carribean films, Rango, and The Lone Ranger (can’t all be good I suppose), A Cure For Wellness follows the journey of an upcoming young business executive, one of those nondescript business business men who do business busily, and apparently quite illegally. Having recently been promoted for closing an account with a shady deal, he’s tasked with hunting down a former colleague on whom the company intents to pin the blame; said colleague having written a defamatory letter and vanished to a health spa in Switzerland. Creepiness ensues. (more…)


Top 10 – Mechas

GeekOut Top 10s

Mechs are big. Mechs are hulking. Mechs are armoured up and they protect the person who controls them as much as they can, whilst wreaking undeniable damage. Mechanised vehicles, Autobots and other mechanical behemoths are included within this week’s Top 10 list. We’re not including every machine, but it has to be motorised, it has to have some form of offense and it has to look pretty spectacular.

All in all, this list is going to be a-mech-zing! I’ll show myself out. (more…)