Review of Fantasy Island & Invisible Man
By: Moviegoer Grim

Hey boys and girls! Welcome to this month's movie reviews and wow, what happened to your world in the last month—holy cow! But, lucky for me I was able to hit the movie theater before things went crazy. Until a new reviewer is found, I am going to attempt to bring you new flicks that are still on the big screen (or small screen, I see a lot of companies are pushing movies straight to streaming because of the pandemic), either way the consumption I shall do my best to bring you something fresh and piping hot! So. This month armed only with a king size popcorn (extra, extra butter) and an equal sized soda pop, I tackled a double feature of the horror genre.

First on the list was the theatrical remake of the 70s and 80s television show with the same name Fantasy Island. Now, I am old enough to remember waiting for new episodes to come out on the ABC Network back in the eighties, and when I heard that Bloomhouse was making a flick based on the ideology of the original, I did the worst thing a reviewer could do—I got excited.

What is this bad boy about, well I am glad you asked!

In this version five unknown people are told they won the Fantasy Island contest, a place where all their personal fantasies come to life. They are greeted by the Island's caretakers, yep you guessed it, Mister Roake. Now, allow me to digress for a moment from the storyline, but I want to talk about the actor who portrayed Roak. Michael Peña was cast to play this role, and while I felt that he did a good job with the material he was given, he was miles away from the mysterious Mister Roake originally introduced by Ricardo Montalban! "Khaaaaaaan!" With Peña, I was waiting for him to bust into some sort of comedy, like a Luis character from Ant–Man.

Right, back to the review…where did I leave off? Yes, right! So stepbrothers JD and Brax are quickly sent off to their fantasies, now, for some reason it was made a point for everyone to know that Brax was gay—I figured this would come back at some point in the story, but it did not which made me wonder why spend that much time in a character build up for now purpose, perhaps it got left on the cutting–room floor and while I am thinking about it, it was never explained as to why the other three guest had to wait the following day for their fantasies to begin.

All right, now we are rolling! There is Mister Patrick Sullivan whose fantasy is to be enlist in a war in honor of his fallen father…yeah, let that sink in for a bit. Then there's little Melanie who is there so she can get revenge on a high school bully, I know metal right? Wait. She's like in her late twenties or early thirties. Meh… Next! Contest winner number five is Gwen, who is on the island because she did not accept a marriage proposal from years ago and because she thought life would be better with a partner, she decides that maybe that marriage things isn't so bad after all.

So, there is all your key players, there is one that I am leaving out only because I'm still not one hundred percent as two how to list her. You will have to watch the movie to fully understand. Well, it's produced by Bloomhouse, that and the fact that I already called it a horror flick in the beginning, things don't go the way the original would have seen it play out. I am not going to give the end away, but I will say that when you completely figure out who the antagonist is, well, it pissed me off! They revealed who it was halfway through the movie then, said, "Never mind, we are only joking," to comeback at the end and say "Nope, we lied and wasted your entire time because you already knew the bad guy!" COME ON! So, for Bloomhouse's adaption of Fantasy Island I sparingly award it two "I should have waited for RedBox instead of dropping ten bucks on it" stars. Meh…

Now the next film we cover in this very long–winded movie review this month, is another remake of James Whale's 1933 classic, The Invisible Man! Anyone who actually knows me outside of The World of Myth would get how annoyed I was when I heard that after almost ONE HUNDRED YEARS, they were going to remake The Invisible Man. I have a VHS of the 1933 masterpiece laying around here somewhere, it would be safe to say that walking into this flick that my expectations were rather low.

Do you see a theme to this month's review…?

In this modern day version of The Invisible Man is actually less about the man and more about the woman, as we have the main protagonist, Cecilia Kass an architect who is very traumatized by her brutal and abusive boyfriend, she finds the courage to sneak away from his seaside mansion (Yeah, we are still talking about Invisible Man). Doctor Griffin is still in the movie, but he is the antagonist and is known as Adrian Griffin a brilliant optics engineer.

So, he was a serious psychopath who mentally and physically abused her and one night she bailed. Adrian swore no place, no matter how far Cecilia was, she would never be safe! That would be put to the test as her sister arranges refuge with a friend, James Lanier a single father and gun toting police officer.

During her time there Cecilia learn that Adrian killed himself and is given five million dollars as stated in his will. It is in that time that for the first time (during the flick anyway), she feels free! But again, this is a Bloomhouse adaption, so Kass isn't going to get a happy ending so easily and eerie things start happening to her—and concludes that she is being haunted by the ghost of her former lunatic lover!

The following was my favorite sequence in the film as Cecelia becomes unbelievably paranoid and watches every step, not only by herself but from her friends and family. That is until she begins to lose her grip on reality, but Kass must find out before she too is dead is whether Adrian was in fact dead and her mind is the enemy or did he figure out a way to cheat death and return to haunt her?

There were quite a few ups and down in this film, as the beginning thirty minutes was slow building a solid background, creating a connection with the viewer and Cecelia, but I would say the final forty minutes was worth admission alone as parts felt like it was a toned done pull from 2003's High Tension.

While I will say that the producers and writers lost their way in making a "Remake" for the 1933 masterpiece, I will also say in the same breath that overall it was a very, very good movie. Okay, so this is how I am going to rate this, three and a half stars for fantastic acting, amazing story line!

All right, gang! That is it for me this month, comeback next time and see what new flicks I have lined up for you! Stay safe and wash your hands!

See you next month, Folks!

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