ARROW IN THE HEAD REVIEWS

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The Collection (2013)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Marcus Dunstan

Starring:
Josh Stewart/Arkin
Emma Fitzpatrick/Elena
Lee Tergesen/Lucello
Erin Way/Abby
8 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
Following the grisly events of the first film, The Collector has become more ambitious when it comes to bagging his victims via elaborate traps. He's thinking even BIGGER now! It's up to his old nemesis Arkin (Josh Stewart), some dudes with guns and hot new victim Elena (Emma Fitzpatrick) to nip him in the bud.
THE LOWDOWN
When THE COLLECTOR was released in 2009, it wasn't gunned out in my parts and it took eons to come out on DVD. By the time I tapped it (and l dug it, I’d give it a 3 on 4), it was late in the game and I didn’t bother reviewing it (it’s a treat for me after all them years of reviewing movies, to sometimes watch one and not have to write about it afterward). In 2012, the same ordeal went down with the sequel THE COLLECTION. It came out limited in theaters (not in my neck of hell) and on VOD (I still don’t play that game when it comes to movies, I know I am gonna have to change my ways sooner than later) and I missed out again. It finally was released on DVD in March of 2013 and it took me till now to find a store that carried it. NOTE: The Collector movies deserve better distribution than this limited/vod spiel. Come on! END OF NOTE. So yeah I finally took on this sadistic beast and had a freaking blast and a half with it!

THE COLLECTION did what all good sequels should do; up the ante on what was established in the original. And in my world one of the best ways to go about that when it comes to the horror genre is to double down on the gore, expand on the storyline and bring in some artillery if appropriate within the type of movie it is (a la ALIENS) and thankfully that’s exactly what THE COLLECTION did! There was more blood and guts in the opening of this follow up than there was in the bulk of the first movie! Right there, after that epic scene of human laundry, I knew I was in good hands and yup, the flick didn’t let me down! The Collection simply didn't f*ck around. It crashed in hard right off the bat, bombarded me with eye popping bloodshed, suspense laced sequences, and surprises. It didn’t let me go till the end credits. I so grooved to this one's narrative structure. It was simple and the whole of it was driven forward by action. No time for a pee break here, it was on! On an aesthetic level, I couldn’t have been happier! The flick looked morbidly sweet with stylish and dread fill cinematography on hand to coat the disturbing imagery right! On his end director Marcus Dunstan went bucks nut with the fly camera movements, stylish angles and the money shots (all about that’s slow-mo bit with The Collector, his machine gun and his dogs...oh yeah)! The editing was tight as well, the soundtrack (by SAW alumni Charlie Clouser) was mucho engaging (must get it) and the sound design was simply brilliant (loved the use of the blade resonating sound).

The production designs were aces too!. The Collector’s lair was a sight to behold and then some! Think a house of horrors with every single ghastly thing you can think of put on display for good measure. I was smiling gleefully as the film took me through its grim surrounding, going further and further with the atrocities aka Collector made art! Somebody hook me up with his interior decorator por favore! The same quality applied to the cast. Emma Fitzpatrick made for a likable (and yes eye-stroking) hero girl, the great Lee Tergesen was on hand to man up the joint and Josh Stewart simply owned it once again as Arkin, the anti-hero from the original back for more punishment. I esteemed what they did with his role and the arc that he traveled. His mano et mano moments with the psycho were priceless and in one instance it refreshingly went against the norm. Topple on top of all them goodies: all kinds of inventive traps, some turns I didn’t see coming, The Collector still making for an unsettling baddie, a last act that went all out in the mayhem and madness departments and a ballsy epilogue that greased me right and you get one badass ride! A sequel that bettered the original in my opinion!

Any beefs? Some but nothing to stuff your mom about. I picked up on some minor plot holes (like being that Arkin knew how to get to the Collector’s pad, why didn’t he tell the cops?) but straight up, I didn't give a shite, I had no problem suspending disbelief to enjoy the ride (the whole premise needs suspension of disbelief, so you go in ready to do so, or don't bother). In this particular case, for all I know Arkin had his own agenda as to WHY he didn't tell the cops. They should have clarified it though. And was it me or sometimes it felt like they were stretching shit out (via lots of walking around in dark corridors) to pad the already thin clock time (end credits kicked in at 74 minutes or so)? Lastly I randomly had trouble discerning the action going down onscreen (middle block of the movie). Dark setting plus quick cuts equals my duh brain too slow to compute.

On that, I had a party in my seat with The Collection! When I yell out “f*ck yeah” and “yeah bitch” alone in my pad while watching a movie that means it's doing all kinds of right! Ya dig your gore-rides clip paced, bold and messy? Hop on the Collector’s train! All aboard!

GORE
This movie was ALL ABOUT graphic gore and I don't want to spoil the surprises for ya! I'll say: hook in mouth, fun with spikes and and exploding head. The rest, you'll have to see for yourself. BTW, one gore-less moment made me cringe like a beeyatch, can you guess which one?
T & A
I think I saw some bare melons in the opening rave bit...I think. Far from Madeline Zima's crazy nude scene in the original. Some yummy screen grabs from that bit for ya here! 
BOTTOM LINE
What can I say, THE COLLECTION could pretty much do no wrong in my book for the type of horror fiesta that it was! Kinetically shot, fast paced with a badass score, solid acting, a mean as f*ck streak and gore galore... GREAT TIMES! Yeah suspension of disbelief had to be applied (no problem there for me), there was some stretching in the middle and some of the action was hard too discern (dark and quick cuts) but hey, I had lots of fun! All good. I am definitely up for another entry in this franchise! It's still got lots of fuel in its tank! With this entry The Collector has made Jigsaw his bitch! Keep em coming!
BULL'S EYE

Great man and character actor Christopher McDonald had a small role as Mr. Peters.

The Collector was initially pitched as a prequel to SAW. Thank Crom that didn't happen!

You can see a VERY COOL alternate end credit scroll here

Strikeback
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5:08PM on 05/15/2013
I've seen The Collector and was definitely bothered by the huge huge plot hole as how the hell did he have time to set up all those elaborate traps. Beyond that I definitely dug it. I saw this at Wal-Mart and will probably pick it up once the price drops.
I've seen The Collector and was definitely bothered by the huge huge plot hole as how the hell did he have time to set up all those elaborate traps. Beyond that I definitely dug it. I saw this at Wal-Mart and will probably pick it up once the price drops.
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+5
1:49PM on 05/15/2013
Agree completely My Man !! One of the best Genre sequels ever !!
Agree completely My Man !! One of the best Genre sequels ever !!
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1:01PM on 05/15/2013

Agreed

Very much enjoyed the film, but the recasting of the Collector kind of bothered me. In the Collector he was a smaller more spider-like character and in this he looked like a more husky guy. A great ride though.
Very much enjoyed the film, but the recasting of the Collector kind of bothered me. In the Collector he was a smaller more spider-like character and in this he looked like a more husky guy. A great ride though.
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10:39AM on 05/15/2013
That alternate end credits scroll should have made it to the final cut. Anyhow, I like The Collector better. Not that The Collection is bad. It is good (with all the creative traps) but it doesn't have the chill and thrill that makes The Collector great.
That alternate end credits scroll should have made it to the final cut. Anyhow, I like The Collector better. Not that The Collection is bad. It is good (with all the creative traps) but it doesn't have the chill and thrill that makes The Collector great.
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