On Curse of Chucky review

How great is video on demand? I had the pleasure of watching Curse of Chucky on Tuesday in the comfort of my own home.

If you’re unfamiliar with the franchise, a serial killer inhabits a plastic doll’s body. Chucky is pint-sized, likes to swear, and play games with his victims. In this one, he’s mailed to a young woman in a wheelchair with a dysfunctional family. Sprinkle in a flashback and an intense chili scene, and you have a recipe for a great horror flick.

Cons: I didn’t want the movie to end. Without getting too spoilery, there’s a scene after the credits that felt like it should be a whole new movie. There were a few plot holes which could be addressed in another sequel. A few CGI shots looked a little fake, but most of the effects were practical and looked awesome.

Pros: Acting, writing, directing (two of which were handled by series creator Don Mancini). This movie looks fantastic. They really knew how to stretch their budget. Nica is played to perfection by Fiona Dourif, the daughter of Brad “Chucky” Dourif. She has a bright career ahead of her. Each Chucky movie has its own unique feel which makes them feel fresh each time out. There are some great nods to the previous films. There’s a lot of time spent with the human victims, which is great for a slasher, especially the sixth entry in a series. Too often by this time, horror movies don’t bother with character development, but there’s a great amount here.

Overall, I’m going with 5 out of 5 stars.  See this movie, people, buy the DVD or bluray (I’m looking forward to the six film set coming out next month). It’s the only way we can get another Chucky movie made this decade. If the fans support the series, then Don Mancini will support the fans.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross wishing you happy viewing.

On Lizzie film review

I often extol Netflix’s virtues, but the downside is there’s some really not-good content on there as well. I feel bad bashing other people’s work. Anyway, the horror movie Lizzie really irked me.

Basically, this messed up chick lives with her boyfriend, sees a psychologist (the always great Corbin Bernsen who should have been used more) and is troubled by ghosts of the Lizzie Borden murders.

Cons: They didn’t live in the real Borden home, so why are the ghosts bothering them? (The real home is a fun bed and breakfast by the way.) It’s a low budget movie, but that’s fine. I’m really bothered by the ending. Heavy spoilers here: They make it seem as if Lizzie Borden’s father Andrew (played by Gary Busey) was a rapist and her stepmother was a ghoul. You know what? Don’t take real historical people who have been studied and make a movie where you make them look insane? I’ve studied the Borden murders some, and Andrew and his second wife Abbie were by all accounts lovely people. He was a little stingy, but otherwise well-liked. It’s like making a movie about Ted Bundy and saying his victims were killed in self defense because they were thieving murderers. As a writer, I’ve used historical aspects in stories before, but I do my research. And if an idea I have clearly doesn’t gel with the truth, then I scrap it, or brainstorm a better idea.

Pros: Decent idea, some okay acting and filming. The troubled relationship seemed real in a disturbing way, which worked well. There’s probably more but I just couldn’t get over the cons.

Overall, I’d go with one star.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross saying do your homework.

On One Frightful Date review

Here’s a clip of a great 4.5 out of 5 hearts review I got for my short M/M YA ebook One Frightful Date:

“This is my introduction to this author, but I look forward to reading more since, as a short story, I felt pulled in right from the start!  I would recommend if for mystery fans, young adult and general romance fans.”

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Check out the rest of the review at Hearts on Fire Reviews. or even better yet, buy your own copy of the ebook at Amazon.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross shamelessly wishing you happy reading.

On a free book giveaway

Head over to the Goodreads page for Ask Me No Questions, an erotic M/M murder mystery, and enter a free paperback giveaway from my publisher, JMS Books. Contest ends September 30.

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Blurb: Dylan Lakewood never imagined anyone would hit on him at his job working at the local shopping mall taking surveys for random products. But then he meets Trenton, a tall skater boy who puts the moves on him. Trenton introduces him to his shy friend, Bennett, who just happens to be on the run from the police, who think he murdered a college jock.

When Dylan agrees to hide Bennett, he unwittingly pits himself against a killer desperate to keep a hundred thousand dollar secret.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross wishing you good luck and happy reading.

On The Invisible Gay contract

Hi all. I wanted to share my latest book contract signing news. Just today, I got the contract for my wonderful publisher JMS Books to publish my 23,000 word M/M erotic novella The Invisible Gay.

This is a fun, sexy, voyeuristic, retelling of HG Wells’ classic The Invisible Man set on a modern college campus. This was a lot of fun to write, and I can’t wait for its release in January. Much more coming soon.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross wishing you happy reading.

On The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations

I really enjoyed the first Butterfly Effect (probably because I was 20 when it came out) and vaguely remember disliking the sequel. Well, I just finished the third one because it was free on Netflix, and I enjoyed it for what it is.

If you’re unfamiliar with the premise, this guy can just freeze himself in a bathtub and then spend a little time in his body in the past. There’s no explanation or anything, and of course each time he tries to change the past it has tons of consequences. In this outing, our protagonist is up against a serial killer whose victims seem to change depending on random changes in the past.

Cons: The time travel idea is fun, but can we get some explanation of how it’s done? Some character motivations were confusing once the time line changed. At one point, I wasn’t sure if we were still in the recent past or the present. There’s a pot growing mentor who doesn’t get any explanation. I liked the character and the possibility that he was the killer (not spoiling it either way), but where did he come from/how does he know so much about time travel?

Pros: Better sequel than the last one. Having a clear antagonist gave the film a much needed focal point. I honestly could see it going in several different ways, and was mostly pleased with the outcome and surprises. As a lover of slasher movies, I appreciate the almost slasher aspect to this one. There’s a nice use of the Detroit locale that adds to the story.

Overall, I’ll go with 2 stars out of 4. For a direct to video third entry in a shaky series, not too bad. Maybe I’ll give part 2 another try one of these days.

On It’s A Disaster

I watched the independent comedy It’s A Disaster the other night because David Cross co-stars in it. See this movie. And for those of you unfamiliar, an indie comedy means the characters have depth and the plot isn’t completely formulaic.

Julia Stiles and David Cross play a couple who’s only been together for a little while when they attend a couples brunch that consists of her friends. Everyone of the four couples (except Cross) has a great long history together and just as we start to dive into that, a terrorist attack strikes and the characters realize they only have a few hours to live.

Cons: I liked the characters so much, I was sad their world was ending. I would have preferred more time with some of the characters and less with others, but such a minor complaint.

Pros: Writing, acting, dark dark humor. Besides Cross and Stiles, America Ferrera is delightful as a doctor who’s completely different from her Ugly Betty persona.

Overall: 3.75 out of 4. You have to be in the right mood for this, but it’s well worth it. I don’t often think “what would I do if I were in this situation” when I watch a movie, but I sure did here.

This is Elliot Arthur Cross wishing you happy viewing.