The Green Hornet

Director: Michel Gondry (2011)
Starring: Seth Rogen, Jay Chou, Christoph Waltz, Cameron Diaz
Find it: IMDB

Not the unmitigated disaster that its troubled production history would have one imagine, The Green Hornet is like Pineapple Express filtered through Kick-Ass and Rush Hour. It stars Seth Rogen as Britt Reid, a rich playboy who, in a bid to make something of his life, becomes vigilante. Enter The Green Hornet. It's a good job that he has Kato (Chou) on his side, since Rogen is more useless here than he's ever been. He tones down the Rogenisms somewhat, but is still essentially playing, well, Seth Rogen. Reid thinks that he's the big cheese, but really it's Kato doing all of the hard work. The Green Hornet is a buddy comedy in which one of the buddies actually despises the other and the hero is really, really useless.

Despite Rogen and Chou's affability and charisma (Chou is stilted, but it works), the movie is essentially owned by Christoph Waltz's bad guy, Chudnofsky. It's a loony role literally written for Nicolas Cage, but Waltz fills it with his inimitable sense of palpable menace and actorly gravitas. Neurotic and suffering a midlife crisis, Chudnofsky isn't the dime-a-dozen gangster villain he easily could have been and is as fun to watch as Jack Nicholson's Joker.

A fun cameo at the start of the movie sets up Chudnofsky and the rest of things to come. Chubby Edward Furlong pops up for about five minutes. A "gay fart gun" gets a few good laughs, the phrase "disco Santa Claus" gets a good airing, and there's the funniest fight scene since Pineapple Express.

But. It's a bloated movie. Gondry's direction lacks its usual flare. Cameron Diaz's presence is inexplicable, since she does nothing. She's like Iron Man's Pepper Potts, only shorn of Gwyneth Paltrow's odd likeability in the role. She compares unfavourably to Gwyneth Paltrow, which says it all really. It takes too long to finish, with one Lord Of The Rings wrap-up after the other. Some of the jokes fall flat and there's an overreliance on Kato's 'Katovision'. And let's not even mention the 3D, which isn't.

There are faults, then. But then, I can't bring myself to not enjoy The Green Hornet, flabby and shabby as it occasionally might be.

Dante's Inferno

Director: Vincent Cook, Mike Disa, et al (2010)
Starring: Graham McTavish, Vanessa Branch, Steve Blum, Mark Hamill
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

At last stepping out from the shadow of God Of War and doing something of its own initiative (although Dead Space did it first), Dante stars in his first full-length animated feature. Dante's Inferno adapts the videogame and (very liberally) bits of the poem to chronicle Dante's journeys through the Circles Of Hell. Although he dies considerably less than when he did controlled by my thumbs and doesn't have to look at walkthrough guides to work out the puzzles.

If you've played Dante's Inferno, then watching the movie feels somewhat odd. Where the Dead Space thing served as a prequel to Isaac's adventures, Dante's Inferno merely tells a story we've already seen. Firsthand. You'll watch as Dante returns home from the crusades to find the love of his life dead. You'll see him descend to Hell and do battle with all manner of demons, parasites and horrible things. As he battled Minos, I kept expecting button prompts to flash up as Real Time Events. Although I don't remember running away from all of those unbaptised babies. The funnest thing about the videogame was absolving Hell's atheists and evildoers and punishing the wrongly imprisoned. Yes, even videogame me is a bastard.

As Dante jumps from Circle to Circle (in a manner of speaking. This isn't a platformer) the animation switches to a new director. It works well, keeping the movie from becoming too stale and ensuring that there's a style to suit most tastes. I wasn't a fan of the slender, feminine looking Dante but another, gruffer looking chap was soon along to fill the gap. It doesn't jar as much as one might think it does and quite suits the story's style. Kudos, by the by, to the IMDB for listing Virgil Alghieri as chief writer.

Like the videogame itself, Dante's Inferno will win no prizes for originality. It follows the plot of the game pretty stringently (save for a few nice surprises and a cameo from Hitler) and never really feels like a stand-alone feature in its own right. It's perfectly accessible to non-gamers, but fans of classic literature will be sorely disappointed.


Director: Vincenzo Natali (2009)
Starring: Adrien Brody, Sarah Polley, Delphine Chaneac
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Like a modern day Frankenstein crossed with Species (only better), Splice sees a husband & wife pair of scientists cross human with animal DNA to create a brand new species. Despite the fact that it's evolved from a slug, they make it wear a dress, call it Dren and make it live in a shed. And because the movie has vaguely erotic aspirations, everyone is sexy. Clive (Brody) and Elsa (Polley) have cool haircuts and dress like rockstars, whilst Dren (Chaneac) grows up to look a bit like Winona Ryder. If Brody spent less time straightening his hair and more time researching his experiments, maybe things wouldn't go as wrong as they do in Splice.

Splice is a refreshing change from recent horror movies in that the bodycount is relatively low, there's no torture and there's at least an attempt to create empathy in the characters. The story chugs along nicely with enough creepy interludes and interesting creature designs to distract from the implausability of an actual scientific institute called 'NERD'. In the Frankenstein tradition, Dren is a sympathetic monster; as sinned upon as she is a sinner. You can feel it building towards a tragic climax and despite a little predictability, Splice doesn't disappoint.

That said, I wasn't really a fan of the characterisation, particularly where Sarah Polley's Elsa is involved. The archetypal broody woman bit feels unnecessary and some of her actions come as hard to swallow come the final quarter. Brody fares a little better as his arc attempts to make him less of an arse, but viewers might end up sympathising more with 'the monster' than Clive and Elsa. What sort of a name is Clive, anyway??* He even has a brother called Gavin. Remember when I said everyone is sexy? In every way except for the names, that is. I have grandparents with sexier names than Clive and Elsa.

Splice is a fun, inventive blend of sci-fi and horror that manages to revive the mad scientist genre without entirely revolutionising it. The scariest thing about Splice? How much I ended up fancying Dren. Yes, even after the final twist.

* Thanks to Jenn from Cavalcade Of Perversions for pointing out that the names come from Bride Of Frankenstein. Note to self: do your research.

Shutter Island

Director: Martin Scorsese (2010)
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Kingsley, Mark Ruffalo
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Marty Scorsese does horror. This is Shutter Island's biggest selling point. Well, for horror fans it is, anyway. And despite protestations to the otherwise, it has enough creepy goings-on to justify reviewing on this site. Based on the rather good novel by Dennis Lehane, Shutter Island sees US Marshals Teddy Daniels (DiCaprio) and Chuck (Ruffalo) investigate the disappearance of a patient at a remote lunatic asylum. With a secretive Ben Kingsley running the place, there's bound to be a little more going on than meets the eye. Especially when one considers that Teddy has a few issues of his own. Mostly involving his dead wife. But a different dead wife to the one he had in Inception.

If you've read the book, then you know exactly how Shutter Island is going to play out. I spoiled the movie a little bit for myself by reading it beforehand. Pretty much every scene from the novel is played out by the movie, complete with bits of dialogue repeated verbatim. If you've read the book, don't go in expecting any surprises. I think that was probably a spoiler, but then if you've read the book, you already spoiled it for yourself, silly person. With the twist revealed, Shutter Island is never going to be as good as it could have been for you. Console yourself with the fact that you read books and get to be extra smug by saying things like, "ya, I read the book. I already knew what was going to happen."

Despite that fact, I love the movie - so much so that I'd call it one of my favourites of 2010. The cinematography and setting is incredible. It's a quite beautiful movie, from the gloomy Gothicism of the hospital to the natural forestry and rockery of the island itself. It's also quite amusing that Shutter Island's dream sequences seem to rival those of Inception without even really trying.

Enjoyable as it is, Shutter Island is a divisive piece. DiCaprio's choice of ties are horrible. Some of the scenes play like a sort of comedy and the dialogue appears stunted. Ruffalo seems to be a little on the wooden side. It's perhaps one of Scorsese's lesser pieces but - at least for me - one of his most enjoyable.


Director: Alexandre Bustillo, Julien Maury (2007)
Starring: Beatrice Dalle, Alysson Paradis, Tahar Rahim
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

A ferocious French horror I'd been meaning to catch up on for a while now, Inside pits a grumpy pregnant woman against an older lady and a pair of scissors. But nothing I'd heard about the flick could prepare for the shocking ride that is Inside. The violence, whilst not quite as cruel, is as cringeworthy as anything this side of Martyrs, and completely kicks the overrated Switchblade Romance's pretentious arse. Once the Halloween-esque setup is done, the gore and nastiness is nonstop right up until the end. And don't go in expecting punches to be pulled simply because the protagonist is pregnant. Poor Sarah (Paradis) is put through the wringer so completely that you'll beg for the relative calm of Hostel.

So it's a horrible movie - amongst the worst I've seen. And despite the fact that the whole thing takes place in Sarah's suburban home, there's an abundance of bodies waiting to be poked by La femme's (Dalle) scissors. Some will find this just too much, so I'd advise caution when approaching Inside. The subject matter and its portrayal are not to be taken lightly. Much of it makes for uncomfortable viewing. If you can get past that, then there's much of interest to be found Inside. But no, it's not recommended for expectant mothers. Not at all.

The Killer Inside Me

Director: Michael Winterbottom (2010)
Starring: Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba, Kate Hudson
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

AKA The Horseshit Inside My DVD Player. In turns critically acclaimed and reviled, The Killer Inside Me is basically Dexter bereft of all the good qualities that make Dexter enjoyable. The allegedly talented Affleck brother plays Lou Ford, a small-town Deputy and serial killer. Like the thematically sort of similar Dexter Morgan, Lou is a mild-mannered, unassuming and friendly fellow. He spends his days working with the police (occasionally investigating his own crimes) and even manages to have friends and a hot girlfriend, despite struggling with terrible urges to do equally terrible things. Only Lou doesn't really struggle with his urges. He succumbs to the lot and is a far less interesting character for it. He's an unlikeable, unsympathetic idiot with no class or intelligence. And he has a really irritating voice. And looks kind of like Ben Affleck.

Most of my complaints are, I suppose, intentional on the movie's part. For all of Michael C. Hall's likeability, it's easy to forget that you're not supposed to root for the bad guy. Lou Ford is a more realistic serial killer. Lou is what serial killers are really like. Irritating and a little bit camp. It's exactly like Jim Thompson's novel, which is equally unlikeable and almost as banal.

Everyone other than Affleck is fine. Jessica Alba and Kate Hudson are rewarded with thankless roles (I think Alba's nude body double probably gets more screentime than she does) whilst Mentalist Simon Baker, Bill Pullman and Ned Beatty aren't given nearly enough to do, despite being far more interesting/better than the lead character/actor. The music is nice, Winterbottom's direction is competent. And, if you can get past the movie's mysoginy and banality, some of the grittier scenes pack a certain punch (no pun intended). All this, of course, depends on your level of tolerance for women being hit repeatedly in the face.

Like its central character, The Killer Inside Me is ultimately not a very interesting movie. It justifies its existence by the horrible things it does, but mostly just comes across as smug, needlessly cruel, facile and downright unlikeable.

Case 39

Director: Christian Alvart (2009)
Starring: Renee Zellweger, Jodelle Ferland, Ian McShane
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Shockingly not shit and not at all what I thought it would be, Case 39 pits Bridget Jones against a magic child in a spooky thriller that, in terms of quality and content, is somewhere inbetween The Unborn and Drag Me To Hell. Zellweger plays social worker Emily, so taken with abused charge Lilith (Ferland) that she's driven to adopt the mite. It turns out that the brat might have been abused for good reason though, as bad things soon start to happen. Bad things include Doug Bradley and Ian McShane being hassled by animals and poor Renee forced to run down rainy streets in nowt but her underwear. It may interest you to know that she isn't wearing her big Bridget Jones pants in this movie.

As big studio horror movies go, it's a better, darker piece than you might expect and is ably supported by the ever reliable Bradley and McShane (who are to this movie what Gary Oldman and Idris Elba were to The Unborn). Zellweger is fine. It's a better film than that Chainsaw Massacre she screwed up, anyway. Once it kicks off (with a child and a gas oven, no less), Case 39 provides plenty of creepy scenes, some good kill sequences and an enjoyable showdown between mother and demonic child. That said, I did find myself feeling more sorry for the 'evil' brat than I did Whiny Zellweger. After all, it seems like Lilith just wants to be loved (she says as much too). A child is for life, not just Christmas. Even the demonic ones.

Motel Hell

Director: Kevin Connor (1980)
Starring: Rory Calhoun, Paul Linke, Nancy Parsons, Nina Axelrod
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Totally true fact: I will watch any horror movie in which an aggressor wears a pig's head or carries a chainsaw. This may lead to me watching a lot of crappy movies (ahem, hello Saw franchise) but there can occasionally be gold in them thar hills. Case in point, Motel Hell. It combines my inexplicable fetish for chainsaws and people wearing bits of pig on their heads to make a demented, oddly watchable backwoods horror movie that even manages to rise above being the Texas Chain Saw Massacre rip-off that it so obviously is.

Farmer Vincent (Calhoun) and sister Ida (Parsons) live on a farm next to the eponymous Motel Hell(o), which they also own and run. But Vincent's cheerful disposition and smiley demeanour do not belie his true nature. For in his spare time, he enjoys killing people and harvesting their bodies to create his special 'smoked meats' which he then sells to the motel's guests. As a byproduct of Vincent's murderous, cannibalistic activities, into Motel Hell(o) runs Terry (Axelrod), unaware that Vincent has recently harvested her poor boyfriend for dinner. Terry soon begins to fall for Vincent, making the man's sister strangely jealous. Will Terry discover Vincent's dark secrets? Will she even care?

Motel Hell is a very silly movie, often to its own detriment. It brings to mind a more watchable version of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: Next Generation. It could do with taking itself a little more seriously at times, but some of the humour does bring a smile to the face. I particularly enjoyed seeing Vincent's victims planted like vegetables, and Rory Calhoun does a great job playing the villain. Could have done without the dense cop character though, and the romantic aspect is balls-out stupid. But Motel Hell makes up for some of its silliness with a fun chainsaw related showdown at the end and just enough gore to paint over the cracks. Plus: a man wearing a pig mask carrying a chainsaw. Nuff said.


Director: Neil Marshall (2010)
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Dominic West, Olga Kurylenko
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Like 300 but with Romans instead of Spartans and a lot less speed ramping or homophobia. It does share a couple of that movie's actors in Michael Fassbender and Dominic West, and also probably a little racism (although the Romans do deserve everything they get). Centurion is primarily a men-on-a-mission movie, with a squad of Roman soldiers trapped behind enemy lines in Pict-infested Scotland. It shares a lot with all of director Neil Marshall's previous movies - primarily the camaraderie of Dog Soldiers and the urgency of Doomsday. If only he'd included a little of The Descent's heart, we'd be onto a winner.

But then The Descent is my hands-down favourite movie of the past ten years, so it might be a little unfair to let Centurion shoulder such expectations. Taken on its own merits, Centurion is a very good movie, chock full of excellent performances and impressively gory fight scenes. The cast are headed up by Michael Fassbender and Dominic West, who are reliably good as ever. Bond girl Olga Kurylenko is on lead villain duties, whilst there's a whole host of semi-famous Brit faces rounding things off. Doctor Who's Noel Clarke, an ex-Eastender and Four Lions' Riz Ahmed seem out of place, but David Morrissey and Liam Cunningham keep things respectably gruff and actorly.

The pace is quick and snappy, with Marshall offing characters with enough regularity to keep his audience interested and engaged. The Romans' motives and some of their actions make it hard for one to root for their survival, but by trapping them behind enemy lines, Marshall strips them of politics and the comfort of their army: they're just a small group of men, vastly outnumbered and trapped behind enemy lines. Enemy lines in Scotland, no less. Anyone with even a perfunctory knowledge of Scotland should know how terrifying that concept is. Trapped in Scotland, with the terrible weather (whilst topless, in Fassbender's case), where comedians make jokes about disabled babies and civilians kick the shit out of already flaming terrorists. Marshall's vision of Scotland in Centurion is like how 300 would have been if the Spartans had been dumped in modern-day Afghanistan with drawings of the prophet Muhammad stuck to their foreheads. Frank Miller could never have made Centurion because, simply put, the Romans get their shit thoroughly handed to them on a plate. But you don't really mind watching that, because the Romans deserve it.

There are historical inconsistencies and it feels somewhat vacuous, but overall Centurion is a strong, thoroughly enjoyable movie, masterfully delivered by one of England's best new directors.

The Frightened Woman

Director: Piero Schivazappa (1969)
Starring: Philippe Leroy, Dagmar Lassander, Lorenza Guerrieri
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

As the cover image above might suggest, The Frightened Woman is a movie so indelibly 1960s that it should be in a museum. Everything from the soundtrack to the costumes (check out that catsuit) right down to its flame-haired lead actress practically scream Austin Powers and free love. And then there's the extremely dodgy sexual politics which are as potentially offensive as they are ridiculous. It's an oddly compelling movie, if you can ignore the faults and some of the sillier bollocks. The dwarf, I thought, was particularly unnecessary.

Millionaire philanthrophist Dr. Sayer (Leroy) is a troubled man. Rather than become the crazed crimefighter sort of troubled millionaire, he opts to spend his weekends playing kinky S&M games with prostitutes. When one of his hooker pals calls in sick, Sayer has little option but to kidnap nearby journalist Maria (Lassander). Well, aside from going S&M cold turkey. He drugs Maria, takes her off to his country mansion and subjects her to his stupidest fantasies.

But it's okay because she secretly enjoys it a little bit. Yes really, or at least that's what the movie suggests at first. This first half of the movie plays out in a sleazy and misogynistic manner; glamourising Sayer's tortures and not really ever condemning him. As Maria seems to 'come around' to Sayer's way of thinking, it leaves a sour aftertaste. But to be fair, he does look like Daniel Craig and parade around in his underpants a lot, so you can see why a woman might be persuaded to stick around. Even at the risk of, y'know, being tortured to death.

Beware, here be spoilers. But then there comes an odd twist to the tale. As the Doctor goes to kill his pretty victim, he realises that he doesn't have it in him. Maria is spared, and the pair fall in love. He lightens up a bit and she teaches him the ways of consensual, conservative love. And yet here, as the movie becomes thematically more interesting, it turns downright dull everywhere else. There's a dwarf, a bit of footsie, a knight, some silly 1960s dancing, some swimming, a great big snappy vagina door and a fucking fashion montage. Which would all be fine if it didn't last about forty minutes and wasn't so terribly naff. It makes Adam West's Batman look subtle.

Sayer's redemptive arc and a final twist dents The Frightened Woman's misogyny and explains a couple of plot holes. It even allows itself a few feminist aspirations, in a misguided kind of way. If I Spit On Your Grave can get itself hailed as a feminist masterpiece, The Frightened Woman certainly isn't too far beyond the pale. It's far from transgressive, but at least makes an effort. It's a ridiculous movie and is too self-indulgent at times, but the strangeness and pervasively perverse atmosphere make up for its numerous faults.

The Chaser

Director: Hong-jin Na (2008)
Starring: Yun-seok Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Yeong-hie Seo
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Very rarely will you get a title as apt as The Chaser. After watching its increasingly bedraggled and put-upon protagonist hoof himself around the backstreets of Seoul, Korea, I felt like I'd ran a marathon myself. It's like watching an episode of 24, except not in real time and with an angry pimp instead of Jack Bauer. The aforementioned pimp is Jung-ho, and he's angry because his girls keep disappearing. He assumes that they've either quit or been sold. The reality is something far worse. One of Jung-ho's regulars is a serial killer, a fact he only finds out after he sends a girl round. The pressure is on for Jung-ho to rescue his Ho and dish out some pimp justice before it's too late. It's an exhausting movie, almost as much so for the viewer as it is Jung-ho.

It's more than just a simple cat-and-mouse thriller though, as there's plenty going on. The Chaser is as redemptive as Abel Ferrera's Bad Liutenant and as much a police procedural as a season of Dexter (although the ineptitude of Seoul's police force puts even Miami PD's collection of serial killers, nutjobs and sleazers to shame). It's really quite funny too, with a bleak, absurdist humour at play during some of the earlier to middle scenes. And it's plenty gory, featuring multiple and sustained beatings, bludgeonings and batterings. There's a Saw-esque torture toilet, a dog getting smacked with a spade and even a shitflinging or two. The movie more than makes up for its considerable running time by having things constantly happen, always adding another twist to the tale.

There's no denying that it does ramble on a bit though, and one character's suffering does seem a tad too much. Also, the final scenes are marred by dingy cinematography. There are a few too many times where the movie seems to borrow a little too much from a certain Oldboy, with its antiheroic lead character and use of a hammer as the killer's weapon. The Chaser is too good for such things, and really doesn't need the comparison. Still, such complaints are only nitpicks. This is a movie well worth Chasing down.

Video Nasties: The Definitive Guide

Director: Jake West (2010)
Starring: Neil Marshall, Christopher Smith, Kim Newman, Emily Booth
Find it: Amazon

A literal must-have for any self-respecting fan of horror. Video Nasties: The Definitive Guide documents the history of the titular 'video nasty' - a mass hysteria which took over 1980s' Britain and saw such gems as The Burning, Cannibal Holocaust and The Last House On The Left go banned and, in some cases, their distributors prosecuted. A beautifully presented 3-disc set, it contains director Jake West's compelling documentary and over 8 hours of trailers and discussions. Also, the adorable Emily Booth in various states of undress. Video Nasties presents a compelling argument as to why The Daily Mail (website NSFW*) should fuck off.

Amongst the horror afficionados doing the talking head thing are directors Neil Marshall (The Descent), Christopher Smith (Creep) and testimony from a certain Ruggero Deodato, who seems somewhat nonplussed as to why his cannibal movie managed to get itself banned. Critic Kim Newman and writer/actor/director Andy Nyman are amongst the various scholars and critics of Nasty gathered to discuss the movies' merits and occasionally considerable faults. To the film's credit, it balances the argument with reasoning from the Tories, police officers and do-gooders who wanted the nasties banned in the first place. A bit too much archive footage of Mary Whitehouse's pickled-egg-sucking face for my liking.

As a documentary, Video Nasties is enlightening, passionate about its subject, intelligent, clear-headed (unlike the movies' opponents) and even handed. Some of its contents might be old news to some horror fans, and it might not be quite so effective to viewers outside of the UK. The doc's admittedly a bit short, but the set is worth collecting for the bonus discs alone: there are trailers for all 39 of the official nasties, plus another disc with the 35 that didn't quite make the cut. It even comes with a set of postcards emblazoned with some beautifully gory video art. I can't praise Video Nasties enough. Essential viewing for anyone with more than a passing interest in the history of horror cinema and censorship.

* Because your colleagues will all think you're a racist imbecile.

Jingle Bells, Batman Smells (like shitty kids' cologne)

What do you wager The Goddamn Batman smells like? My first guess would have been sweat, energy drinks and shark-repellent Bat spray. Turns out I'm wrong, if his Dark Knight eau de toilette (probably French for toilet water) is anything to go by. It's little wonder that Rachel Dawes wanted fuck all to do with him in The Dark Knight, since his choice of personal fragrance leaves much to be desired. If this is the sort of shit that Wayne Enterprises is putting out now, well I'm not surprised Dark Knight's biggest competitors are Eau De Fear Gas and Eau De Smilex. I found Dark Knight in this shop, packaged inbetween some Incredible Hulk bath towels and a Scooby Doo cologne:

Literally anything for 99p. This is truly the golden age of consumerism

The 99p Store(s). For ninety nine pennies you can own a squirty toilette spray with a comic book/cartoon character on it. Also of interest - 18 condoms, Indiana Jones colouring books, rusks, a cup of pick n' mix, cup a' soup, microwaveable burgers, crappy STD DVDs, even crappier softcore porn, shaving razors, tennis rackets for your Nintendo Wii, energy drinks, batteries, chewing gum, chapsticks and even tampons. With as little as £10, a man can feel like a billionaire in the 99p Store(s). Anyway, as both a massive nerd and a fan of smelling nice, you can imagine my delight at finding Dark Knight. I think this exact panel from The Widening Gyre went through my mind:

Yes, you too can stink like shitty Kevin Smith dialogue.

She is really saying that Batman gave her eleven orgasms. And yes, my mind assumed that wearing Dark Knight would give me the ability to satisfy women too. It doesn't exactly say that, but he bumf on the packaging reads that Dark Knight smells "like fruit" and contains cinnamon and water. Can't say I'd pictured Batman smelling at all fruity or of cinnamon and water, but hey, maybe that's why all the ladies like him. I was also a little disappointed by the lack of a real glass bottle inside. There's just a little plastic squirty bottle with a picture of Batman on it. Still, ever the optimist, I gave it a go.

Also vomit inducing: my face. Sorry about that

At first, Dark Knight is pleasantly sweet and fruity. Not at all bad. A bit like water and cinnamon. And then it kicks in and it is all bad and it doesn't let up. Dark Knight smells like sweet piss. Dark Knight made me smell like a paedophile. It made my shirt smell so bad that I had to walk around for 3 hours in -2 temperature wearing a t-shirt. Dark Knight smells - well, like you'd imagine how Chris O' Donnell's Robin might have smelled, or, at a push, like Adam West's boudoir. Dark Knight is Joel Schumacher's favourite cologne. Grant Morrisson was probably definitely high on the fumes of Dark Knight when he wrote Batman RIP and that time travel thing that I don't understand. It makes even less sense that they put the Christian Bale iteration of Batman on the bottle. If Christian Bale smelled like that shit, nobody would take him seriously, sound man or otherwise. Dark Knight is literally the second-worst thing I have ever stunk of. Just behind that one time in a nightclub when I vomited all over myself. It's not even suitable for children. If my child wore Dark Knight, I'd lock him in a fucking shed. Because I'm not done thinking up punchlines yet: Dark Knight makes comic book fanboys smell worse than they already do.

The true origin of The Joker: dropped into a vat of that shit.

If you really hate yourself, the Ozone layer and those around you that much, you can find Dark Knight in a 99p Store near you. Or on ebay. Or a post-Christmas dustbin.

Someone, I think, is telling porkies. No prize for spotting the lie in the below headline:

Actually, yes, there is a prize: a bottle of Dark Knight Eau De Toilette. Because I certainly don't want mine. Anyway, in summary, Dark Knight stinks. It stinks not just literally, but also figuratively and meta-figuratively (no, I'm not sure if that's a thing either). Good luck with giving anyone eleven orgasms whilst wearing that arsewash. I can't even get my cat to come near me, let alone a bloody Catwoman.

My favourite movies of 2010

Happy New Year, blogosphere. Because I'm unimaginitive and lazy and hungover, here's The Horror Review Hole's official ten favourite movies of 2010. It's not all horror and I have terrible taste and there's some stuff I never got to see. I'm sorry, by the way. The Human Centipede is on this list. I seem to remember liking Daybreakers at the time, but in retrospect, it's not very good, is it? Actually, neither was the movie that kicks off this list. If only I'd seen Splice or Predators. I suspect this thing would have been a helluva lot easier to write.

10. The Expendables: For all of its not-good-ness, it has Stallone going toe-to-toe with Stone Cold Steve Austin and Jet Li kerfuffling with Dolph Lundgren. Also, Terry Crews. (Reviewed here)

9. The Crazies: Not quite as good on repeat viewings, but still a pretty effective zombie horror thriller thing with some good jump moments and lots of Timothy Olyphant. (Reviewed here and here)

8. The Human Centipede: I think I remember saying somewhere that 2010 was the year of The Human Centipede, so I suppose it has to be on this list really, doesn't it? (Look here)

7. The Taint: An incredible tour-de-force of violence, gore, spunk and everything that makes horror good. (It's over here)

6. Scott Pilgrim vs The World: A fun, funny, funky film with lashings of wit, charm, romance and great performances from some unlikely sources. The second most heartwarming thing you'll see all year.

5. The Disappearance Of Alice Creed: Made in 2009 but released (in the UK) in April '10. An extremely tense, uncompromising thriller with an impressive performance from Gemma Arterton at its heart. Almost makes up for Prince Of Persia. (Find Alice Creed here)

4. Inception: Christopher Nolan's Matrix mindfuck movie.

3. Shutter Island: Leonardo's second entry on this list. I guess Mister Titanic must be becoming good in his dotage. Scorsese does horror. Nuff said. The book's pretty good too.

2. A Town Called Panic: No Toy Story 3 here, no Sir Bob. A Town Called Panic is a low-budget little French feature which sees a Cowboy, an Indian and a Horse attempt to recover their stolen house from undersea thieves. Their journey takes them from Arctic Tundras to the centre of the Earth. The most heartwarming thing you'll see all year and quite simply all-around brilliant.

1. Kick-Ass: Kick ass. (Kick some more ass here and here)

Happy New Year all, and thanks for reading.