Boo! Did I scare you? I didn’t think so.

As you already know, Halloween is taking place next Friday. Some people like celebrating with unfortunate costumes, whereas others are more inclined to enjoy all sorts of cavity-causing treats. In the spirit of ghouls, ghosts, and goblins, I’m dedicating this series of movie reviews to some of the more frightening films that I have seen lately. Or at least they’re trying to be scary in some way.

As you prepare for a spooky night on October 31st, feel free to head to your local video store to rent a DVD. Pop some popcorn, turn off the lights, and prepare to be frightened.

The Reaping
As I mentioned in one of my earlier reviews, I have a strange attraction to the occult. When I heard about The Reaping, I was immediately captivated by its promised depiction of biblical plagues. It also helps that the movie stars the Oscar Award-winning Hilary Swank. Unfortunately, The Reaping falls well short of my expectations. It wasn’t scary, it wasn’t insightful, and the plot twist is too predictable. The special effects, like the locust swarm, were pretty neat, but that’s about it. That said, the DVD is still worth renting, if only for one of the bonus features included on the disc. It describes possible scientific explanations for the plagues described in the Bible.

Resident Evil: Extinction
Not so interested in a story and just want some mindless violence? If you’ve watched the first two Resident Evil movies, then you’ll pretty much know what to expect when it comes to Resident Evil: Extinction. Milla Jovovich reprises her role as Alice and she goes around kicking some zombie butt. The experience is somewhat similar to I Am Legend, but without the legendary acting of Will Smith. Expect some blood and some gore, but the action won’t be extreme enough to satiate a true gore-fest enthusiast’s thirst for violence.

Rocky Balboa
What could possibly be scarier that biblical plagues and flesh-eating zombies? Sylvester Stallone in the director’s chair, of course! Although he was able to get in fantastic physical shape for this boxing revival movie, Sly leaves much to be desired in this flick that just drags on and on. I continually got the sense that Rocky Balboa was trying far too hard, not only to pull at my heartstrings, but also to force idealistic morals down our throats. It’s way too sappy and remarkably too nostalgic. You can tell that Rocky Balboa was made for diehard Rocky fans and pretty well no one else. If you want cheese and whine, Balboa’s got you covered, complete with sad, sad music.