Sick Sense Reviews

Sick Sense Reviews – Annihilation (2018)


Director: Alex Garland
Starring: Natalie Portman, Tessa Thompson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, Tuva Novotny, Oscar Isaac
Vomit Incidence: Two – bloody and noisy

After her soldier husband returns from a secret mission near to death a biologist signs up for a dangerous foray into an unstable environmental anomaly hoping to find answers which could save him.

OK, first things first, A LOT has been said about this film only getting a Netflix release in the UK, rather than a cinema one as in the US. So bloody what? Some of us much prefer the comfort of our own sofas and relish the lack of human contact we normally would have to endure on a trip to the cinema. Yay for Netflix I say!

But is it any good? Actually it really is. Not that I was too worried, Alex Garland has a pretty decent track record and Natalie Portman is usually a good indicator of quality material (Thor 2 notwithstanding). The film is part sci-fi, part horror and features all female leads which is fantastic to see, even if one of them seems to have overdosed on mood-stabilisers for some reason.


Gritty female Ghostbusters reboot gets the go-ahead.

I can’t divulge too many plot details for fear of spoiling it for you but if you’re of a nervous disposition then you may want to hide behind a cushion when the bear turns up (another benefit of Netflix film releases – can’t really hide behind cushions in the cinema). You also might want to have the headache tablets ready for the end of the film, it is truly beautiful but utterly mind-boggling.

Emetophobes be warned, the vomiting occurs within the first 30 minutes of the film. Watch out for Oscar Isaac after he has a drink of water and the Natalie Portman waking up from her sedation. You have been warned. Also if you’re not a big fan of wiggly viscera and people with half a face, this may not be the ideal movie for you.

Vomiting and migraines aside, this is an imaginative and thoughtful sci-fi movie and the visuals are absolutely stunning. The ending might be a little confusing and leave us with more questions than answers but then sometimes that can be a good thing. More films from Mr Garland please – whatever format they are released in they are first class.


Film rating: 8/10 (loses a point for a slow first 20 minutes)

NB OCD: 5/10 – Vomiting is bad enough but bloody vomit – that’s just plain unnecessary. 



Sick Sense Reviews

Sick Sense Reviews – Veronica (2017)


Director: Paco Plaza
Starring: Sandra Escacena, Bruna Gonzalez, Claudia Placer, Ivan Chavero
Vomit incidence: One, minor

A teenage girl already charged with looking after her three younger siblings makes life infinitely worse for herself when she attempts to contact her dead father via Ouija board. During a solar eclipse. Duh.

You can probably tell from the above précis that I have seen A LOT of films where someone (usually a teenage girl) thinks that contacting dead people using a glass and some cardboard is a great idea. It honestly never is.

This Spanish horror film, despite the marketing campaign suggesting that people have been so terrified they have had to switch off, really isn’t scary at all. The cast is uniformly excellent (especially the young siblings) and the ideas are solid but there’s nothing here we haven’t seen before. OK, there’s the solar eclipse angle but, apart from providing some initial spookiness, this is never really explored. Even ‘Sister Death’ the obligatory blind psychic nun (every movie should have one) doesn’t really have much input.


Malevolent spirits can be picky eaters 

The very minor vomit incidence occurs when the malevolent spirit decides that Veronica shouldn’t be eating meatballs. Sadly this is one of the better scenes so you will either have to steel yourself or miss out. Sorry guys but I survived it, you will too.

I know I’ve been a bit churlish about Veronica in this review but it’s not a bad movie. The spirit is suitably menacing and the actors do a great job of making you care; you really do feel for Veronica by the end. But if you’re looking for a scary movie you’re probably best off watching The Ritual instead. Sorry Vero.


Film rating: 7/10 – lose one point for allowing a four year old with the attention span of a lettuce to draw the all-important protection symbols on the walls.

NB OCD: 2/10 – Unpleasant but endurable tomato sauce regurgitation