Michael Dougherty

Michael Dougherty

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Krampus Review

Good

Based on ancient mythology, this Christmas horror movie has a gleefully nasty attitude that makes it entertaining even if it isn't properly frightening. This is mainly because the marauding monsters remain sketchy at best, never developing anything more than a superficial sense of dread. But the ace cast is terrific at engaging the audience,and the filmmakers keep viewers gripped as they play merrily with cliches from both horror and holiday movies.

It opens on a recognisably stressed-out Christmas season, as Tom and Sarah (Adam Scott and Toni Collette) feel their relationship straining under the pressure of work and holiday plans. They and their teen kids Beth and Max (Stefania LaVie Owen and Emjay Anthony) are dreading the arrival of their Aunt Linda and Uncle Howard (Allison Tolman and David Koechner) and their boorish kids. Then the drunken Aunt Dorothy (Conchata Ferrell) turns up unannounced. Tom's German mother (Krista Stadler) watches all of this with a silent, knowing dread. But the real threat is outside the house, as a vicious ice storm settles in, knocking out the power and unleashing a ferocious Anti-Santa and his evil gang of elves and killer toys.

The film is strikingly well shot and edited, as director Michael Dougherty orchestrates the comedy, drama and action to focus on the gifted actors. While the design and in-camera effects are clever, much of the digital effects work is ropey, giving the movie a cartoonish sheen. And the monsters themselves are eerily expressionless: ghoulish puppets with immobile faces. So they're extremely creepy, but not particularly menacing, because they have no personalities at all. Thankfully, Scott, Collette, Koechner and Tolman are experts at sliding effortlessly between comedy, drama and terror. And young Anthony gives the film a blast of resonance as Max, a boy still young enough to believe in Santa who thinks he has brought all of this violence down on his family.

Continue reading: Krampus Review

Producer Alex Garcia , Director Michael Dougherty - Los Angeles premiere of 'Krampus' at the ArcLight Cinemas Hollywood - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Monday 30th November 2015

Michael Dougherty and Producer Alex Garcia
Michael Dougherty and Producer Alex Garcia
Michael Dougherty
Michael Dougherty
Michael Dougherty
Michael Dougherty

Krampus Trailer


For a lot of kids, the Christmas holidays is their favourite time of year, all the family is together, Christmas day usually brings gifts from Santa and the thought of time off school all amount to smiles in most homes. Max's family is one of those who've got together for the holidays and you'd think that he'd be a happy boy, but when he has a change of heart about the Christmas period, he accidentally evokes the wrath of an ancient force who punishes ungrateful people over the Christmas period - the complete opposite to that of the children loving, gift giving, Saint Nicholas.

Max and his family must team together to find a way to survive the Christmas period without Krampus and his little helpers destroying their entire family.

You better watch out, You better not cry, You better not pout, I'm telling you why: Krampus is coming to town.

Michael Dougherty, Mathew Landford and Ernie Monne - Michael Dougherty, Mathew Landford and Ernie Monne Summerland, California - 'The Pearl of Havana - A Cuban Fantasy' held at the Nesbitt Estate and Polo Field, an event to raise money for single parent families with catastrophically ill children in crisis Saturday 20th October 2007

Michael Dougherty, Mathew Landford and Ernie Monne

Superman Returns Review


Very Good

You are bound to leave Superman Returns buzzing about "the scene." It's our first real glimpse in the film of the Man of Steel in action, the first genuine indication that the spandex-clad savior has, indeed, returned.

Here's setting for the scene: Intrepid Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth), now a Pulitzer Prize winner, is covering a groundbreaking, mid-air shuttle launch. The spacecraft is poised to detach from a jumbo jet miles over the East coast and continue its jaunt through the stratosphere. But a massive power outage caused by Lex Luthor (Kevin Spacey) prevents a smooth transition, so Superman (newcomer Brandon Routh) must quickly separate the speeding crafts, catapult the rocket through the stars, then rush back to earth to catch the now-burning airliner before it lands on the pitcher's mound of a populated baseball diamond.

Continue reading: Superman Returns Review

Urban Legends: Bloody Mary Review


Weak
The Urban Legend series ran out of urban legends to play with about midway through the second film, but that hasn't stopped them from wrapping up the thing with a lame, yet not wholly unwatchable, third film.

A gang of nobodies populates the movie, which is only tenuously related to the prior two films. Here, the story is all about Bloody Mary (whose legend was critical to the first film), a spirit who would appear if her name was chanted three (or five) times while staring into a mirror. Urban Legends 3 tells us Mary's backstory: In 1969, she was drugged and inadvertently killed by her highschool dance date, and her body was locked in a trunk inside the high school.

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X2: X-Men United Review


Very Good
The mutants are back in town in the first big sequel of 2003 -- a year that promises at least a half-dozen Brand Name Sequels (nearly all of which, surprisingly, I'm anxious to see). X2 probably won't be the best of the bunch, but it certainly isn't the worst. Like the original X-Men, the sequel is a lot of good, clean fun, full of vibrancy and memorable comic book antics, but ultimately it's a bit of a letdown due to too many squandered opportunities and an exhausting running time.

X2 picks up an indeterminate amount of time after the original ended. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman, looking strangely clean cut) is still trying to figure out his past. Magneto (Ian McKellan) is trapped in his plastic prison. And Jean Gray (Famke Janssen) is having bad dreams about something wicked coming on the horizon.

Continue reading: X2: X-Men United Review

Michael Dougherty

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Michael Dougherty Movies

Krampus Movie Review

Krampus Movie Review

Based on ancient mythology, this Christmas horror movie has a gleefully nasty attitude that makes...

Krampus Trailer

Krampus Trailer

For a lot of kids, the Christmas holidays is their favourite time of year, all...

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Superman Returns Movie Review

Superman Returns Movie Review

You are bound to leave Superman Returns buzzing about "the scene." It's our first real...

X2: X-Men United Movie Review

X2: X-Men United Movie Review

The mutants are back in town in the first big sequel of 2003 -- a...

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