Fantastic Fest has come to Austin and like every other film festival in the world, it has its fair share of good and bad movies. With day one officially behind us, the reception has been somewhat ambivalent. We’ve taken out the time to round up the first critical reviews from the event that debuted Solomon Kane, Paranormal Activity, and Gentlemen Broncos.
Check out who was good, who was bad, and who was blah…
The Good One One: Solomon Kane
- “Solomon Kane is unremittingly dark: it’s scary, dirty and violent through and through. At the same time, however, it’s got a really charming innocence, a freedom from gimmick or the need to cast splashy stars.” (Movies Online)
- ” It is a killer period superhero flick that, despite the absence of major backing, harbors aspirations of a big studio film. The production value here is phenomenal. The sets are not only beautiful, but they add a sense of scale to the world of the film. ” (Film School Rejects)
The In-Between One: Paranormal Activity
- “Unlike Blair Witch, Paranormal Activity doesn’t feel DIY amateur where the gimmick is always apparent, and unlike Cloverfield it isn’t the same Hollywood movie you’ve seen time and again except with a gimmick trying to make it seem new. In this film, it isn’t a gimmick. Paranormal Activity understands the strengths and utilities afforded to the mock home-video subgenre, and it uses them to an astoundingly effective degree.” (Film School Rejects)
- Paranormal Activity exhibits something many fright flicks don’t — goose-bump inducing, gore-free scares.” (Los Angeles Times)
The Bad One: Gentlemen Broncos
- “There is nothing inherently wrong with the plot, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with its three biggest cast members, yet the end product is the film equivalent of a 13-year old’s robotripping fever-dream about cyborg Battle Stags (deers with rocket launchers on their sides), creepy “Guardian Angels” (Mike White), terrible science-fantasy writers…” (Cinematical)
- “It’s [not] a completely terrible movie. If this was a movie about [Dr. Ronald Chevalier's] trials and tribulations on the sci-fi lecture circuit, it might have been better.” (Screenrant)
It seems like the goofy film, Gentleman Broncos doesn’t bring anything new to the table, but both Solomon Kane and Paranormal Activity seem to have generated some pretty good buzz. Don’t forget this is just day one, and Fantastic Fest isn’t over until September 29th so there are more films in store. Stay tuned.
Which film are you the most excited to see for yourself?