The Cohen Case Files: Invasion of Privacy (1996)

Screenplay by Larry Cohen While watching Invasion of Privacy, I had a striking realization that in retrospect, is so obvious, I feel like an idiot for not noticing it sooner: Despite his running obsessions with religion and corporate/government abuse of power, the main theme that threads through Larry Cohen’s work—both as a writer/director and screenwriter […]

The Cohen Case Files: It’s Alive III: Island of the Alive (1987)

Based on Characters Created by, Written, Executive Produced, and Directed by Larry Cohen Considering the fact that I regard the original It’s Alive as one of my favorite films of all time, it would be very easy for me to hate It’s Alive III: Island of the Alive. Even viewers who do not care about […]

The Cohen Case Files: It Lives Again [aka It’s Alive 2: It Lives Again] (1978)

Based on Characters Created for the Screen, Written, Produced, and Directed by Larry Cohen NOTE: This review will contain spoilers for It’s Alive, the film to which It Lives Again is a sequel. Please watch It’s Alive before reading this review. Given that It’s Alive is not only Larry Cohen’s masterpiece, but arguably also one […]

The Cohen Case Files: Perfect Strangers (1984)

Executive Produced (uncredited), Written, and Directed by Larry Cohen While watching Perfect Strangers, Larry Cohen’s train wreck of a romantic thriller, I was reminded of a snippet of Roger Ebert’s review of Death to Smoochy, which I quoted in my Movie Defender piece on that misunderstood film: “Only enormously talented people could have made Death […]

The Cohen Case Files: Phone Booth (2002)

Written by Larry Cohen Joel Schumacher just couldn’t get out of the way. Given a fairly interesting story and mostly tight screenplay, Phone Booth could have been a tense, sweaty little thriller. Instead, with Schumacher at the helm, the film feels at times like an homage to the more ADD-afflicted films of Tony Scott and […]

The Cohen Case Files: Messages Deleted (2009)

Written by Larry Cohen As the direct-to-DVD market proliferated in the ‘90s and into this century, it was only a matter of time before a Larry Cohen script was given the slapdash, bare bones treatment and dropped into the nearest bargain bin (of course, I am ignoring films like Uncle Sam that Cohen had a […]

The Cohen Case Files: It’s Alive [Remake] (2008)

Based on the 1974 film written and directed by Larry Cohen, Screenplay co-written by Larry Cohen When I started this blog, I made a promise in the first post: I know for certain that two recurring items will make appearances: First, I plan to watch and write about all the films of the immensely talented […]

The Cohen Case Files: It’s Alive (1974)

Written, Produced, and Directed by Larry Cohen Larry Cohen has the ability to take himself seriously at times.  For most filmmakers who traffic in genre pictures and satire, this can be a recipe for disaster.  In Cohen’s case, this led to arguably his two best films: God Told Me To and It’s Alive.  Where God […]

The Cohen Case Files: The Stuff (1985)

Executive Produced, Written, and Directed by Larry Cohen Sometimes Larry Cohen’s penchant for genre films mixed with social satire leads him into situations where those elements fail to gel.  Such is the case with The Stuff.  But despite the fact that the film doesn’t fully work as a satisfying whole, it’s still very entertaining and well […]

The Cohen Case Files: Special Effects (1984)

Written and Directed by Larry Cohen I first saw Special Effects in the early ‘90s when I was still discovering my affection for Larry Cohen’s films. At the time, I had only seen the “big” Cohen films (It’s Alive, Q). I found the film to be interesting, but something felt off about the tone that […]