Review Round-up: Armed Response, Union Furnace, and Jeepers Creepers 3

We Take a Look at Three Recent Genre Releases

Your ghoulish friend Matt here to give you a rundown of a couple of viewing options for you for this Halloween season. Maybe you need to catch up on your 31 nights of Halloween or maybe you just want to continue watching horror movies like you do year round, like me. Here are some candidates of movies currently available, or upcoming, for your home viewing pleasure.


From Into the Blue director, and Christine survivor, John Stockwell comes a new Wesley Snipes action/horror vehicle, Armed Response. The film follows a group of “highly trained operatives” as they go down to explore an empty military base after its master computer shuts down. Naturally, they experience spooky phenomena as they find out what happened to the team that was formerly housed there. If this plot sounds generic to you, then you kind of get the idea of the film as well. Armed Response doesn’t bring anything new to the subgenre of haunted military compounds and the teams that investigate them. The film is shot like a TV movie and feels like one from frame one. Wesley Snipes comes in and out of the movie as he collects his paycheck, not given much to do. I will say, though, Anne Heche is in every scene in this movie and she kills it. She’s giving it 100%, and quite frankly, she’s a badass in the film. I was disappointed because I’m a fan of Stockwell’s ultra stylish work like Blue Crush and Turistas. Nothing was sleak here and nothing was new. It takes about an hour of this 90 minute movie for things to get spooky, and once they did, I still wasn’t interested. All that said, you can do a lot worse that this tread into familiar territory. This could be a fun one to throw on while you have some buds over while you chat over the whole thing.


Armed Response is available on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD now.


Oh, Union Furnace, I wanted to like you so much, but I just couldn’t get into the film. This follows a car thief who gets caught up in an underground game of death and the wills to live. With borrowed elements from the Saw and Purge movies before it, Furnace is another indie that doesn’t really add anything new to the subgenre its playing in. The killers wear animal masks and torture our group of hapless victims, one of which is Keith David (!), and that fills about 90 minutes of the runtime. This film has been pretty highly regarded in the indie horror community, but I really don’t tend to like torture films. This film spends most of it’s runtime focused on the torture, but where I thought the film soared, was at the beginning of the film. As we meet our lead character, played by co-writer Mike Dwyer, we focus on the down and out town of Union Furnace, Ohio. The scenery and locales are great in these early scenes before we dive into the underground basements where the rest of the film is centered. If you like the rougher, torture-type, horror, you’ll probably dig this film’s games of death. If you don’t really dig on those, this one might not be for you.


Union Furnace is available on DVD now.


It’s so hard to write about the Jeepers Creepers movies without mentioning real life creeper Victor Salva. See Salva is a convicted child molester who got off easy and now gets to make movies for a living. It’s not easy to like this guy or to separate him from his work. That said, I actually like the first two Jeepers Creepers films, which I saw before knowing anything about Salva’s background. Separating him as far from the work as we can (which he makes very difficult when he has a character make a child molestation joke in the film), let’s take a look at the latest film in the Creeper franchise. Well, some of it really works. The Creeper villain looks as great as ever and there’s tons of gore to around. Plus, some of the film is shot like big-budget movie from the 2000s. So the cinematography is top notch here. The film also has a dorky charm that feels like it fell straight out of 2003. After all that, though, the film falls flat. The story, which takes place in between the first two films (who asked for that story?), remains pointless. The cameo at the end sets up the movie we all really wanted to see. The CGI in the film is also some of the worst I’ve ever seen in a film of this caliber. Some of these effects wouldn’t even be passable in 2001. They will really take you out of the movie. You could do a lot worse than this unnecessary sequel, but it’s a good “wait for the pizza” movie if you like the franchise.


Jeepers Creepers 3 will air on Syfy on Saturday, October 28th.

Written by Matt Storc

(Chicago Events Coordinator) Matt Storc is a screenwriter and director from the great city of Chicago. He enjoys sharing movies with people almost as much as he enjoys making them. He also does a killer rendition of the other guy's part in Shaggy's "It Wasn't Me" at karaoke."

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