Masters of Terror 2017: John Carpenter's Filmography

This book contains the synopses and reviews of the darkest films in John Carpenter’s filmography. The listings are ranked from best to worst.

Await Further Instructions

A family's Christmas takes a strange turn when they become trapped inside and begin receiving mysterious instructions through the television.

 

United Kingdom
2018
Feature Film
Realism: 
Supernatural
Festivity: 
Christmas
Sadist: 
Torturer
Relative: 
Father
Offspring
Sibling
Trickster: 
Gamemaster
Object: 
Television
5.04
TV is bad for you!
6
3.04
7.04
6
2
4
3
Pace
Plot
Effects
A few minutes into this movie, I knew where it was coming from. It had Saw written all over it and it wasn’t even subtle about it. This is a “what if” situation. What if Saw took place on Christmas? What if the threat was supernatural? That’s not much of a twist, though. We find out in the first half, because this little game just doesn’t make sense without a villain from another dimension.
When the protagonists found out they were locked in, I didn’t feel their concern. And, when they started eating their Christmas supper like nothing serious had happened, and as if their lives weren’t jeopardized, the film lost me. The characters just didn’t give a fuck until blood started shedding. How could they sleep like babies and eat like kings? This script is problematic.
The character arcs are so extreme we can’t keep up with the drama. Most go from “no fucks given” to full-on psychosis. The film has a spiritual angle, but it contrasts with the ludicrous fact that the characters are receiving order from a television. Yes, it’s as dumb as it sounds. Loved the ending, on the other hand! I wish it wasn’t crammed in the last ten minutes.
Checklist of Terror 2019: Plausible Menace

Plausible threats, as opposed to supernatural or surreal ones, encompass all menaces whose existence can be or has been proven by science. Here’s a ranked watchlist of 413 plausible horror movies reviewed by film critic Steve Hutchison. How many have you seen?

Checklist of Terror 2019: Supernatural Menace

Supernatural threats, as opposed to plausible or surreal ones, encompass all menaces whose existence cannot be or hasn’t been proven by science. Here’s a ranked watchlist of 1272 supernatural horror movies reviewed by film critic Steve Hutchison. How many have you seen?

Decades of Terror 2019: 1990's Psychological Horror

Steve Hutchison reviews 100 amazing psychological horror films from the 1990’s. Each film is analyzed and discussed with a synopsis and a rating. The movies are ranked from best to worst. How many have you seen?

Decades of Terror 2019: 1980's Psychological Horror

Steve Hutchison reviews 100 amazing psychological horror films from the 1980’s. Each film is analyzed and discussed with a synopsis and a rating. The movies are ranked from best to worst. How many have you seen?

Guess the Horror Movie: 400 Pixelated Puzzles

This book contains 400 puzzles. Guess the name of each horror film based on the pixelated picture, its released year, and its synopsis. Write the title in the boxes below the clues. Puzzles tend to get more difficult as you progress. Answers can be found in the last pages.