I missed doing a Halloween movie lead-up to the holiday last year, and finally got a start on watching some horror movies this year before getting side-tracked. However, I'll have a few reviews below. I also went back to do some more anime introductions, but noticed I was jumping from the "C"s to the "M"s; so I'm going through the Right Stuf catalogue to see what I'm forgetting.
Maine State Senate candidate comes under fire for playing World of Warcraft. Well, sort of. This story was all over Twitter and Facebook a couple of weeks ago. The narrative applied to the story was that stupid Maine Republicans were claiming the Democrat candidate was less-qualified because she played World of Warcraft (which in-and-of-itself is a bit stupid). However, subsequent updates to the story have illustrated that by her own admission, the candidate has devoted an extensive amount of time to the game in addition to describing herself as "lazy". She also praised the MMORPG for allowing her to "kill stuff without going to jail", the kind of sentiment that video game defenders are constantly defending and explaining. Of course, Republicans are routinely attacked for similar statements related to target shooting or hunting, so it's somewhat hypocritical to try to defend her with the "it's just a game!" explanation. Anyway, as a long-time computer gamer, my knee-jerk reaction was to defend the WoW player against, stupid anti-technology politicians; but after looking into the story I think the Maine GOP actually makes good point: In terms of work ethic and public relations, the Democrat candidate may not be a good choice for the job.
Also, two bad judicial decisions affecting technology. The first decision recognizes that the North Carolina state government has the invested power to force bloggers to edit content which falls under the purvue of licensed professions. In this particular case, the state government is requiring a blogger to edit content regarding a diet he claims he used to help his diabetes. The government says they don't approve of the diet and the blogger therefore can't blog about it. However, the lawsuits will continue, as the blogger's current suit was denied on grounds of standing. The blogger has not yet been harmed by North Carolina's requirement and therefore can't sue (yet). The second decision is bit more concerning at the moment, as the Americans With Disabilities act has been construed by a judge to apply the Netflix's movie database. Therefore, Netflix has agreed via settlement to provide Closed Captioning on all streaming movies by 2014. Netflix, a private company that provides a paid service, was determined by the judge in the class action lawsuit to be a "public service", by some contrivance enabling him to reach one arm far up his own a**. Troubling.
Ghost Hunt. A thirteen-episode anime series based on some light novels. I was hoping this would make an interesting horror series, but Ghost Hunt ended up being much lighter than I expected but entertaining nonetheless. There are a few creepy moments and the animation quality is so-so. The series one big bonus is that the thirteen episodes actually comprise only a handful of stories that run seamlessly from episode to episode. So you're actually getting several movie-length stories instead of a tv series, which lends at least a couple of the storylines some additional weight.
Grave Encounters: A surprisingly effective and entertaining reality-tv-based horror movie. An obvious ripoff, Grave Encounters actually maintained a good pace, had good acting and sfx, and made the most of a highly-derivative setup. Recommended.
The Human Centipede 2: No link. While the original managed (at least according to some people, including myself) a certain level of tension, a small amount of horror, and an impressive performance by Dieter Laser, the sequel has nothing. Laurence R. Harvey does his damnedest, to no avail. Peeking into the nature of his villain, Martin, seems to be the one recommendable aspect of the sequel; but this course is abandoned half-way though the story. The viewer is left in the final half hour with a goofy, grotesque comedy of incompetence that manages to completely fail. At everything.
White: Another Korean girl-haunting movie. Very effective and entertaining, but a little light on the horror elements compared to other films of this meta-genre. However, the story is complex and enjoyable, even if it doesn't actually make sense in the end.
Ju-on 2: Sequel to the original Ju-on (obviously). Starts slow, but will have your skin crawling by the end. Tells five or so (can't remember) interconnected stories that don't seem to actually connect at first. However, even by the end of the movie I can't figure out the beginning. It's possible it doesn't actually signify. Hmm.
Apartment 143: A ripoff of Paranormal Activity, crossed with The Exorcist and any paranormal investigator movie. Nothing outstanding, but better than you would think. Not a waste of time.
YellowBrickRoad: Still not sure what this movie was *about*. Really good setup, but predictable and, seemingly, pointless.
I watched a few other movies, but I'm not interested in commenting on or recommending any of them. I may save them up for another "What I'm NOT watching" post.