REVIEW: Maniacal third act makes ‘Malignant’ worth watching

“Malignant” may not be the scariest movie of the year, or of the past few years, but what it leads up to certainly makes it a memorable horror experience.

The flick follows the story of Madison (Annabelle Walis), a woman with an unclear past who lives in Seattle with her Husband. It’s clear from the get-go that their marriage is strained and the film opens with them having a fight.

That night, Madison’s husband is murdered and she has a vision of it happening. From that day on, more murders begin taking place and each time Madison has horrible visions of it taking place. As this happens, Madison begins to dig more into her past to see what the connection is.

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REVIEW: Poor ending negates potential of ‘Night House’

There are some movies where the execution of an ending can be so integral that it can make or break the feature.

That’s the case with “The Night House,” and not in a good way.

Rebecca Hall plays Beth in this thriller, a high school teacher who recently lost her husband to suicide. Beth is trying to move on from the tragedy, but she continues to reside at the home her husband, Owen (Evan Jonigkeit), built on the lake, which leaves her with constant reminders.

Those reminders begin to manifest as visions for Beth, who begins to see frightening things related to her late husband in the midnight hours. Because of what she sees in the night, she begins looking into whether her husband had a secret life or not.

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REVIEW: Compelling and creepy ‘Candyman’ is a success

Sometimes, modern horror sequels to older properties can be massive disappointments, such as 2013’s “Texas Chainsaw.”

Fortunately, that’s not the case with the new “Candyman,” penned by Jordan Peele.

This film serves as a sequel to the original “Candyman” from 1992. This time around, the protagonist is Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), an artist living in Chicago with his girlfriend Brianna (Teyonah Parris). Finding himself in artist block territory lately, McCoy decides to visit a northern Chicago housing project for inspiration.

While there, he meets a local named William (Colman Domingo), who tells McCoy the legend of the Candyman spirit. The legend ends up being a spark for McCoy who begins making art based on Candyman. However, his spark of creativity ends up reigniting the old Candyman spirit itself.

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REVIEW: ‘Stillwater’ stalls due to poor narrative choices

Films inspired by a true story often take artistic liberties, which is perfectly fine. They better be well executed, though.

In this case, “Stillwater” was inspired by the story of Amanda Knox, an American woman falsely convicted on the charge of murdering a fellow exchange student in Italy. Abigail Breslin portrays Allison in “Stillwater,” an American woman in France who’s been in prison for four years.

Allison was convicted of murdering her roommate and classmate from a French university, although she maintains her innocence. Also convinced of her innocence is her dad, Bill (Matt Damon). The movie picks up with Bill visiting Allison in jail. During his stay, he learns there might be more evidence to prove her innocence and decides to stay, in case a development happens.

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REVIEW: While flawed, ‘Gunpowder Milkshake’ gives audiences a fun experience

The title “Gunpowder Milkshake” makes sense, because like the cold drink, it’s an enjoyable summer treat.

Karen Gillan stars as Sam in “Milkshake,” a young woman who works as an assassin for a mysterious agency known only as The Firm. The agency is helmed by a man named Nathan (Paul Giamatti), who sends Sam out on her assignments.

While her latest mission seems straightforward, though, it turns out to be anything but. Caught in a conflict between two violent faction related to Sam’s assignment is a young girl named Emily (Chloe Coleman). Sam decides to get involved and protect Emily, but it only complicates things as hitmen are sent after her. In response, she looks to get help from her past.

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REVIEW: ‘Old’ is a middling Shyamalan offering

M. Night Shyamalan is back with another thriller, this time based on a graphic novel.

“Old” is Shyamalan’s adaptation of the novel “Sandcastle.” The film follows several people who’re together on a private beach owned by a resort on a tropical island.

While the cast is large, the movie mainly centers on one family, consisting of Guy (Gael Garcia Bernal), his wife Prisca (Vicky Krieps), and their children Trent (Alex Wolff) and Maddox (Thomasin McKenzie). At first, it seems to be a relaxing getaway, but things turn south fast. After a series of events, the group learns that the area they’re at makes people age at an accelerated rate.

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REVIEW: Avoid the ‘Escape Room’ sequel

This sequel may feature “champions,” but the film itself isn’t a winner.

The movie takes place not long after the first picture, with survivors of the past escape room game Ben (Logan Miller) and Zoey (Taylor Russell) seeking to take down the group responsible for the torture set-ups. Their mission brings them to New York City, where they end up being lured into another escape room set-up.

There, they meet with others who’ve made it through the escape rooms, Brianna (Indya Moore), Nathan (Thomas Cocquerel), Rachel (Holland Roden) and Theo (Carlito Olivero). Having made it out before, the players are more familiar with how the game works, but it doesn’t make it any easier with the rooms continuing to have deadly components.

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REVIEW: ‘Till Death’ delivers with superb suspense

Director S.K. Dale makes his feature film debut with “Till Death,” and it’s a great first effort.

Megan Fox stars as Emma in “Till Death,” a woman whose marriage to her husband Mark (Eoin Macken) has been deteriorating. On their anniversary, though, it seems like Mark wants to patch things up. Unfortunately, the morning after, it turns out not to be the case.

Mark handcuffs himself to Emma and because of skeletons in his closet, shoots himself. It turns out this is the first part of a larger revenge plot against Emma for an affair. Now, Emma must survive against two hired men trying to get Mark’s fortune, one of whom she knows from an incident in her past.

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REVIEW: ‘Forever Purge’ fails to outshine predecessors

This movie’s characters throw punches at each other while the script throws hamfisted commentary haymakers at the audience.

“The Forever Purge” opens by basically throwing what happened in “The Purge Election Year” out the window, as the New Founding Founders of America were voted back into office and started the annual event again. This time around, the “Purge” saga follows two couples. One is Dylan (Josh Lucas) and his pregnant wife Cassidy (Cassidy Freeman).The other is Adela (Ana de la Reguera) and Juan (Tenoch Huera), with the latter having a job at Dylan’s father’s (Will Patton) ranch.

As what’s become usual, the Purge comes and goes with both families hunkering down. However, the killing doesn’t end there. It soon becomes clear that there’s a coordinated effort by extremists to keep the Purge going for as long as it needs to in order to tear the existing country apart. Now, the two families are forced to work together to survive.

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REVIEW: The Devil went down to ‘Conjuring’ and it wasn’t a good time

The totally not con-artist Warrens are back in another movie about a demonic possession that really happened and wasn’t made up.

Yes, there was a lot of sarcasm in that lede.

The eighth film in the “Conjuring” cinematic universe takes place in 1981 with Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) assisting in an exorcism of a young boy. In the process of the exorcism, the demon possessing the boy is transferred to a man assisting in the situation, Arne (Ruairi O’Connor).

During the altercation, Ed suffers a heart attack and is taken to a hospital. When he recovers, he warns of Arne’s possible possession, but it’s too late. Arne commits murder on his landlord and is arrested by the police. Facing a potential death penalty sentence, the Warrens begin an investigation into the possession to try to prove in court that it was a demon that caused the murder.

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