Hellmouth Movie Review

Strange Films

Hellmouth 2014

Hellmouth, Strange Films 2014

Director Joe Geddes teams up with Pontypool writer and lead actor Stephen McHattie for visually stunning spooky adventure about a terminally ill grave digger who travels to hell to rescue the beautiful woman he falls in love with.

This highly-stylized CGI endeavor pays homage to 1950’s horror and sci-fi cinema, but lacks the campy fun of any such movies. Truth is this is more of an offbeat fantasy drama than horror and it takes itself quite seriously, which would have been fine if the story had made any sense. Despite the eye-popping visuals, the movie slogs along without actually going anywhere, which is a real shame for Stephen McHattie, who does a fine job playing Charlie Baker, a graveyard caretaker suffering from episodic pran disease (brain clunk). In addition to his head pounding pain, CharlieΒ endures daily harassment from local children and starts to notice some bizarre vandalism happening in the cemetery. Problem is Charlie can’t be sure if this isn’t all an illusion. Charlie is tired of looking after the dead and wants to move to Florida, but after a visit from his employer, Charlie learns he’ll have to delay retirement for reasons not entirely clear and inherits a box with a mysterious map, which he can’t stand more than 10 feet away from. While on an afternoon drive, he meets an alluring woman named Fay, who is running away from an unseen force. The two quickly fall in love and Hell doesn’t seem to like it very much. Fay disappears just as quickly as she showed up.Β 

Hellmouth, Strange Films 2014

The movie then introduces a subplot involving a squirrelly policeman on the hunt for two dangerous escaped criminals from the local insane asylum. The copper tells Charlie several small and strange tales of the cemetery’s more notorious residents. These small stories are perhaps the most interesting part of the whole movie. Unfortunately, the escaped criminals storyline goes nowhere fast, and soon after, Charlier Baker uses the mystery map to find his way into Hell, where he battle the forces of evil to win back his beloved Fay.

Hellmouth, Strange Films 2014

Unfortunately, the Sin City-style visuals and amazing set design are not enough to carry this one. I didn’t really have any problem with any of the other actors, particularly Julian Richings, who I felt was criminally underused here, but the characters needed more fleshing out and more clarity to their relevance to the main story. The end is one big beautiful muddled mess.

Hellmouth, Strange Films 2014

Horror fans won’t find any scares here, but for those who want weirdness and to witness some really cool visuals, this one’s for you.

Friday Fright Nightcaps-White Wine Peach Sangria

I would like to get back on some type of schedule. It’s easier said than done sometimes, but in effort to do so, I’m reviving Friday Fright Nightcaps to coincide with our monthly theme. This May is Cemetery Appreciation Month and our theme celebrates cemetery life, so I put together a classy, refreshing drink, perfect for springtime and a tribute to the afterlife.

White Wine Peach Sangria

Ingredients:

750 ml. White wine (Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, etc.,)
12 oz. Peach Vodka (New Amsterdam)
Fresh Fruit

First, cut up some fresh fruit. I used peaches, blackberries, red raspberries, apples, and strawberries. Any fruit will do. Next, pour entire contents of wine bottle into a pitcher. Lastly, add 12 oz or about half a bottle of Peach Vodka. I choose to use New Amsterdam brand, but you can use whichever brand you choose. Stir well and refrigerate for about 12-24 hours. Serve chilled.

White Wine Peach Sangria

Monthly Haiku Corner – May

Happy May! We’re halfway to Halloween. Hang in there just a few more months, my friends.

In honor of May being Cemetery Appreciation Month, this month’s theme will be cemetery life.

sunny days ahead
freshly dug forever homes
cemetery life