Tag Archives: Wild West

When A Horse’s “Spirit” Goes from “Untamed” to Trained

4 Sep

Spirit: Untamed | JB Hi-FiBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

DreamWorks Entertainment
Available on Streaming Platforms, Home Video
Amazon USA Purchase Link

DreamWorks Spirit has a sequel, and viewers don’t need to know the Netflix series or past iterations to enjoy the latest release. The CGI animated update certainly reveals how this franchise has evolved with the times. It’s a different beast when compared to Stallion of the Cimarron (2002). They are all set in the Wild West–even though many years have passed between story to story. This latest focuses on the girl attempting to tame a horse, who conveniently shows his independence, and establishes a relationship with.

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[Fantasia 2021] I Want to Break Free! Prisoners of Ghostland

13 Aug

Prisoners of the Ghostland (2021)Playing
Aug 20, 9:45 PM
Cinéma Impérial
Montreal, Quebec
Tickets available to purchase online here.

Online Screening on 
Aug 23, 2021, 7:00 PM
Geolocked to Canada and tickets can be bought here.

Also coming to theatres and VOD Sept 17, 2021

Nick Cage will always be Nick Cage. He’s quite the “national treasure” in that regard. He’s a very versatile actor and I really have to wonder if he’s ever declined a role. These days, we’ve seen him as a butcher, baker, and candlestick mak—ok, perhaps not. The films of 2021 have made him a chef–and he’s an onary one in Pig–and Willy’s Wonderland. It’s amazing in how he carries this film without really speaking a lot.

In his latest, Prisoners of Ghostland, he’s a bank robber turned soft. He gets caught, and Cage’s character is given a chance at freedom if he can locate Bernice (Sofia Boutella). She ran away from her tormentor, The Governor (Bill Moseley) who rules Samurai Town. She went into hiding the neighbouring territory, Ghostland. This wasteland is where many refugees like to hide.

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Barely Scratching the Surface on the “Skinwalker”

18 Jul

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

October Coast
Now Available on VOD & DVD

It’s rare to get a movie about the Weird West these days. When it concerns Skinwalkers, also the title, I couldn’t help but want to look at Robert Conway’s film. His take in what the Indian legends of these shapeshifters are about is easier to understand, but it has nothing to do with recent investigations of a certain highly secure ranch. I secretly wanted his work to connect to the latest folklore, but alas no signs of aliens from Mars are spotted here.

Instead, we have a very traditional horror tale set in the yesteryears of American colonization. Two cowboys disturb a grave and the chaos that erupts is true to form. The items they stole are haunted, and are a beacon for the spirit to follow. This director also tosses in a few moments in how locals treat the indigenous tribes. And when the dead want justice, there’s certainly hell to pay. If only a voice for the tribal children lost in the residential schools in Canada also existed….

The film begins by showing two cowboys (Nathaniel Burns and Conway) not knowing any better about the stuff they found. Instead of a creature completely ethereal trying to be reasonable with these grave-robbers, it’s simply out for blood. Real-life interpretations of the Skinwalker say it can take on the shape of anyone. So why couldn’t it become someone these robbers know and try to be reasonable? Ghosts are rarely that in entertainment, but when considering the human mind can’t comprehend the paranormal, their flight instead of fight response is normal.

I like the setup and there’s an air of trying to be authentic, but there are times the dialogue doesn’t always measure up. In what is basically a zombie film, anything that’s authentically characteristic about the folklore of the Skinwalkers is not there. Maybe this filmmaker should’ve spent more time reading Louis L’amour than going for a Wild Wild West (the TV series) meets Evil Dead.

3 Stars out of 5

PIXAR’s Onward and Upwards Ho!

16 Mar

Image result for onward posterBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Spoiler Alert

Fans of TSR’s Dungeons and Dragons will certainly get a kick out of Disney*PIXAR’S Onward. Not only are all the references straight out of the monster manual, I acknowledge the acquisition from Wizards of the Coast–but they are not the true creators of this role playing game system. After saving this property from TSR’s failing infrastructure, they simply fixed it up. That being said, the world building and revolution that creators Dan Scanlon, Jason Headley and Keith Bunin crafted up is one I’d love to revisit!

Once upon a time, in a world far, far away was a world of magic. Sadly, it disappeared in favour of technological progress. Apparently it took place faster than anyone can realize–perhaps the only failing of this film–and pretty soon fairies, dwarves, elves, centaurs and many more had to embrace change. If they don’t stay progressive, any species I have not mentioned will be left behind. Onward is hardly subtle in this theme of forgetting the fast, and it establishes how this realm has become much like human society, dependent on technology to get by.

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When Boot Hill Wouldn’t Do … Eminence Hill VOD Review

4 Nov

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Uncork’d Entertainment

VOD & DVD Release Date:
November 5, 2019

Robert Conway’s skill in the horror genre is served well in Eminence Hill. This film title sounds like it should be a video game but instead, it’s a feature film that got limited theatrical screenings before coming out on VOD (Google Play and iTunes) and DVD tomorrow. Unlike Silent Hill, the horror elements are very light. It’s subdued enough to a degree where Rod Serling would approve–if made into a Twilight Zone episode. When considering a format, a lot would have to be cut to fit into the time slot and that would help with this film’s pacing.

When Royce’s (Clint James) gang finds themselves in a self-serving community trying to recapture Ruth (Anna Harr), a girl they kidnapped, life isn’t going to be easy for the outlaws in a tale set in the wild west. She finds herself at a hidden community, and these homesteaders seem innocent enough. Their ‘pious’ life hides something else.

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