• A Review Page For Those Movies You Watch At Home!

    Couch Potato Movie Reviews is, obviously, a blog that exclusively reviews movies. What makes this blog different is the fact that all of the films we are reviewing are all movies that are available on home movie rental companies such as Redbox, Netflix, Blockbuster, and your quickly disappearing neighborhood rental store. This blog is designed to take a more detailed look at those movies that either were sent straight to DVD, received a very limited release in the theaters, or were distributed through the art house or film festival circuit. We will also review those big Hollywood films, but only after they are available for home viewing.

    All the reviews are written by fans of the great art of film making rather than some newspaper reviewer or stuffy film student. We don’t know everything about film but we do know what we like, and we are more than happy to share our opinions with you. What you do with those opinions are totally up to you, although comments are welcome and encouraged.

    Each film review has a one to five star rating at the end of the critique. Here is what those star ratings mean for you couch potatoes:

    * * * * * : Five stars: go and buy this one, don’t just rent it!

    * * * * : Four stars: put this at the top of your rental list.

    * * * : Three stars: average, not bad just not great either.

    * * : Two stars: only rent if you have to see everything.

    * : One star: don’t waste your time with this.

The Landlord

TITLE: The Landlord

YEAR: 2009

GENRE: Horror and Comedy

Independent horror films can be a crapshoot when it comes to ideas and overall quality. On the one hand, some indie fims become the stuff of genius and become classics such as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday The 13th, and Halloween. In most cases though they become unremarkable and end up on the proverbial trash heap of the forgettable cinematic world. The Landlord is going to end up on that undistinguished list as this effort is not up to snuff when it comes to quality indie horror.

Meet Tyler, a nice guy who happens to be a landlord with a building to fill with tenants. He keeps bringing in the tenants, but has to continually replace them. Why? Because two demons who live on the property keep killing and eating them! Tyler deals with his evil spirit infestation by cleaning up the blood and guts leftover from the laughter and a healthy dose of drinking at the local bar. Pleas to the demons to leave the apartment go unheard and Tyler is forced to tolerate the unwanted guests until a new tenant arrives. Tyler is enamored with the woman, and knows he must save her from the demons and finally send the foul souls back to hell where they belong.

The Landlord is, like many independent films, a mixed bag. The production values are not very good even for independent film, the special effects are low budget even for the 1980’s, and the makeup is definitely low budget. The script at times can be funny and I like the fact that the main demon is so at home in the apartment that he wears Hawaiian shirts. This shows that the director is winking at the viewer in sharing that he understands the jokes and is not taking the subject matter too seriously. Despite the occasional laugh, the story has several plot holes and really does not bring the viewer into the story. My attention tended to drift while watching The Landlord and at the finale I really did not care too much about the end result.

One aspect director/producer Emil Hyde does understand with making a film is the promotion end of the equation; he traveled around to numerous conventions to promote The Landlord, had it showcased at several horror film festivals, and received more positive reviews in GoreZone and Fangoria magazines. I just did not see The Landlord as interesting, dramatic, humorous, or scary enough to raise it above many other independent horror offerings filling up the Netflix lists. I am sure that Mr. Hyde (pun unintended) will succeed in making additional films because of his promotional skills and sheer tenacity, and maybe one day we will look back at The Landlord and get a good chuckle when seeing how far he has come. In the meantuime, The Landlord is mostly for the horror fan who has to see everything, quality and creativity be damned. Like a lousy tenant who does not pay rent, The Landlord overstays its welcome.

* *

–Mark

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