This Day in Horror

30 January 2013

Of Silence 2012 - REVIEW


What would you do if you lost the person who was most important to you in the world?  Would you move on?  Would you act normal like nothing happened?  Or would you slowly start to slip in to insanity?  I know it's kind of a dark way to look at things, but it could happen to anyone.  A movie that exploits everyone's fears of what would happen if you world fell apart.

Colby (Jeremiah Sayys) returns home from a trip and is trying to figure out how he is going to deal with the loss of his wife.  Colby is obviously overcome with grief, but also guilt.  Colby feels he had something to do with her death.  Colby's family tries to comfort him and cheer him up, but their efforts are not helping.  He is taking a turn for the worse as he starts to hear and see things.  Colby is slipping into the darkness of his mind, or is it reality could these things be real?

Of Silence is a little different from the horror movies I normally watch.  The dark and dreary tone is commonplace in the face of horror, but there is something different about this one.  The tone is even more dark than the main character's demeanor   There is a great sadness throughout and it really adds to the realistic aspect of this film.  This is something that could happen to anyone.  They lose their husband or wife and do not know how to cope with it.  That to me is a truly scary aspect of this film.

I thought this was very well done.  The tone is set early on in the movie.  One thing that really stands out is the performance by Jeremiah Sayys.  He really sold the grieving husband and making the audience believe he really lost his whole world.  The rest of the cast did an outstanding job as well, but Jeremiah stands out as the title character and really did a great job as the star and the director.  I am really big on what kind of soundtrack was used.  Sometimes the sound can really make or break a film specially independent films.  I think this one passes.  A good soundtrack, not great but good.  The quality is there though and that's what is most important.

I gladly give this movie a nod in the right direction.  The only complaint I have is that it does seem a little depressing at times.  The storyline is really not the cheeriest but that's horror.  When I watch a movie I really don't want to feel like I'm depressed or feel sorry for a character as bad as I did for Colby.  This is not straight up horror though more on the thriller end of the genre.  Even with the sometimes too dreary story I really do think it is a good movie and should be recognized as such.  Would not be surprised to hear that this won some awards at film festivals in the near future if it hasn't already.  Stay twisted everyone!




29 January 2013

Bad Kids Go to Hell 2013 - REVIEW

You know that old saying, "Looks can be deceiving"? I think that can apply in almost any aspect of life. Someone puts a great plate of food in front of you and you think it HAS to taste good, then when you taste it, it's utterly disgusting. You meet a person and for all intents and purposes, they look like they'd have to be a decent human being, then you find out that they're detestable to say the least. Or, you watch a movie trailer and think, it's gotta be impeccably done, then it's not. And of course the opposite is always true. So, which category does Bad Kids Go to Hell fall in? I'll get to that...

Six prep school kids from Crestview Academy, home to the spoiled offspring of society's elite, find themselves stuck in detention on a frightfully dark and stormy Saturday afternoon. During their 8 hour incarceration, each of the six kids falls victim to a horrible "accident" until only one of them remains. As each of these spoiled rich kids bites the dust, the story takes on a series twists and turns. Is one of the kids secretly evening the school's social playing field? Or have the ghosts of prestigious Crestview Academy finally come to punish the school's worst (and seemingly untouchable) brats? One thing is for sure...Daddy's money can't save them now.

When you promote your film as "The Breakfast Club meets The Grudge" you're gonna end up with some pretty big shoes to fill. Yes, that juxtaposition alone is enough to entice an audience, but you're opening yourself up to some major criticism. I mean you're talking about one of the greatest most beloved films of the 80's! Superb acting, phenomenal writing and a killer soundtrack. In comparison, BKGtH doesn't even come close to measuring up. The acting was, for the most part satisfactory. Not one person or character really stood out for me. Judd Nelson makes an appearance as uptight Headmaster Nash and even his performance was... less than gratifying. The main problem is that the characters written simply weren't desirable enough to make them likeable in any way. Without a character to root for, the film simply becomes placid and monotonous.

These days I tend to blank out when the description of a film starts with "A group of teenagers" or "Six prep school kids" or "Five friends set off on". While it's a successful scenario, especially for the teenage crowd, most seem to fall flat. Where BKGtH goes wrong is it's pacing. There is so much going on in such a short amount of time that the whole film seems hurried and could in turn leave an audience indifferent and feeling like they've missed something. Inevitably it ends up being a jumbled, overly done mess that needed more time to be properly developed. I am a fan of independent films and I can appreciate the effort and time that goes into them but the constraints that come with having a small budget don't excuse any of the mistakes that ultimately make this one to skip.


The Descent: Part 2 2009 - REVIEW



First off, I know that "The Descent: Part 2" as been out for a while now, but I will totally explain WHY I haven't bothered to watch it until now. So, here we go.

To say I loved the first one, is an understatement. I think it's one of the best horror films of the past 10 years. So, I, personally, was livid as a fan, when I found out that they made a sequel. This is because the directors-cut of The Descent, is really how it should have ended. So, I refused to watch it... until now.

Before we get into my thoughts on the sequel, here's the official gist on the film: Distraught, confused, and half-wild with fear, Sarah Carter (Shauna Macdonald) emerges alone from the Appalachian cave system where she encountered unspeakable terrors. Unable to plausibly explain to the authorities what happened - or why she's covered in her friends' blood - Sarah is forced back to the subterranean depths, Sheriff Vaines (Gavan O'Herlihy), to help locate her five missing companions. As the rescue party drives deeper into uncharted caverns, nightmarish visions of the recent past begin to haunt Sarah and she starts to realize the full horror and futility of the mission. Subjected to the suspicion and mistrust of the group and confronted once more by the inbred, feral and savagely ruthless Crawlers, Sarah must draw on all her inner reserves of strength and courage in a desperate final struggle for deliverance and redemption.

Now, let's get the facts about this film out of the way, so we can move on to the interesting stuff i.e., my opinion. From a visual standpoint, the film, once again, is beautiful, via "DP" Sam McCurdy. The feeling of claustrophobia is all too present, plenty of aerial shots of a gorgeous and vast "Appalachian forest". The soundtrack is once again truly perfect, via David Julyan.

Now that I got that out of the way, all I can say is... Jesus H. Werewolf. The sequel is shit! Let us ignore the fact that its almost exactly like the first film. Let us ignore the fact that characters, who should be DEAD, are still roaming around the caves, battling it out with the "cavelings" or "mutant bat people". Let us ignore the fact that a trail, that a dog finds in the beginning of the film, that is picked up from Sarah's clothes, leads to an old mining shaft ( something that was NEVER referenced or even shown or even a part of the first film. ) Lets ignore all those facts and simply ask... the old man, at the end, what in the hell was that all about? They might as well had Gallagher come running up with his over-sized melon smasher and do a 5 minute routine. Cause that would have made just as much fucking sense.

Oh, here's a subplot that we have, that we thought we would throw at you, which makes no fucking sense, because we didn't spend any real time with anything relevant to his character. No motivation for this random character was ever presented. We're just going to throw it at you at the very end and then say "See ya!".

When it comes to the question of if you should see this film or not, I would simply say, viewer beware. For me, being a huge fan of the first film, it felt sacrilegious to watch a sequel. As it turned out, my feelings or concern were right. I mean, for some films, I take sequels very seriously. I have still, up to this day, never watched "Blues Brothers 2000". I simply won't do it. Am I over thinking films? Am I taking things way too seriously? Who knows.

Bottom line, if you are a real fan of "The Descent" and the directors cut ending, and still haven't seen this one... take my word for it... this sequel, will most likely not set well with you.

Reviewed by: Brandon Blake


Horror in the Hammer Announces World Premiere of Bloodsucka Jones

HAMILTON, ON., Jan. 29, 2013 – Horror in the Hammer is proud to present the world premiere of horror/comedy BLOODSUCKA JONES as part of the 2013 Fright Night Theatre screening program. In conjunction with the world premiere screening, Horror in the Hammer is releasing exclusive, original poster artwork by Canadian artist Patrick Carson Sparrow.

BLOODSUCKA JONES, written and directed by Justin Armao, will premiere on Friday, February 8 at 8:00 p.m. at The Staircase Café Theatre in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Synopsis:
When David's new girlfriend turns out to be a vampire, he enlists the help of the 10th best vampire hunter in his zip code and international badass Bloodsucka Jones to fight off an army of evil preppy vampires. Prepare for gorgeous girls, graphic violence, Kung Fu, blood, boobs, babes, death, destruction, hugs, kisses, and gratuitous everything!


Starring: Preston Gant, Maria Canapino and Justin Armao

View the trailer: http://youtu.be/PqYMNp9ciLk

Horror in the Hammer’s mandate for Fright Night Theatre is to entertain film audiences with a monthly showcase of shocking, scary, schlocky, and scintillating independent and mainstream horror films.

“Our goal with Fright Night Theatre is to honor independent Canadian and international talent,” says Aaron Allen, director of Horror in the Hammer. “We want to help give unique independent films such as Bloodsucka Jones more exposure and a voice in a difficult marketplace. We are passionate about bringing back the communal sense of fun, unpredictability, and showmanship that have been lost at the major corporate cinemas that now dominate our communities. Fright Night Theatre is not just a scary night at the movies – it’s a celebration of fringe filmmaking, controversial cinema, tongue-in-cheek B movies, and the art of the macabre.”

 To celebrate the screening, Horror in the Hammer commissioned artist Patrick Carson Sparrow (http://patricksparrow.tumblr.com) to design new artwork for the film, exclusive to Horror in the Hammer. As part of Horror in the Hammer’s program to support independent art, 20% of every poster sale goes directly to the artist.

FRIGHT NIGHT THEATRE: Bloodsucka Jones (WORLD PREMIERE)
DATE: February 8, 2013
TIME: 8:00pm
LOCATION: 27 Dundurn Street North, Hamilton, Ontario L8R 3C9
ADMISSION: $10 at the door.
EXCLUSIVE COMMEMORATIVE POSTERS: $5.00 each

Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/469271433131894 Find out more at www.horrorinthehammer.com.


About Fright Night Theatre
Since June 2009, Fright Night Theatre has been bringing horror to the big screen in Hamilton, ON. Each month, Horror in the Hammer and host Jay Winger present a monthly movie screening of independent and mainstream horror movies and shorts. 
Fright Night Theatre is a volunteer-driven and non-profit screening program that combines the most engaging elements of a film festival with the intimate and interactive atmosphere of grassroots revival cinema.  Fright Night Theatre maintains a year-long call for submissions inviting Canadian and International filmmakers and distributors to submit feature and short films (both current and classic) in the horror, cult, and exploitation genres.
Recent films selected for Fright Night Theatre include Fondue (World Premiere 2013), Hooked (World Premiere 2013), A Cadaver Christmas (2012), Father’s Day (2011), Nazis at the Center of the Earth (2012), Dear God, No! (2011), Absentia (2011), Neverlost (2011), and The Collapsed (2011). 
 
About Horror in the Hammer
Founded in 2008, Horror in the Hammer is a volunteer-driven, non-profit network of horror fans and artists who sponsor and host horror-themed events in Hamilton, Ontario and beyond. Each year, Horror in the Hammer organizes monthly Fright Night Theatre screenings and the annual Hamilton Zombie Walk & Charity Food Drive. Horror in the Hammer also organizes local charity events and co-sponsors musical performances and art shows. 
 
About Hamilton
Located less than an hour southwest of Toronto, Hamilton is the industrialized center of the Golden Horseshoe on the west end of Lake Ontario. Affectionately called “The Hammer” and known for its historic steel industry, Hamilton’s diverse environment and population has led to a resurgence in arts and culture. Growth in the arts and culture sector and an ongoing revitalization of the downtown core has turned Hamilton into a film industry hotspot attracting dozens of film and television productions each year. Hamilton is also the site of a local arts revival in the form of art galleries, monthly art crawls, craft and local food markets, music and film festivals, and the availability of film and med

Producer Andrea Albin to Bring Muscle Wolf Productions to the Small Screen


Fatality Films is at it again. Andrea Albin has officially signed on with reality powerhouse Authentic Entertainment to develop and produce a reality show centered on the indie-group Muscle Wolf Productions. Details behind the show are under wraps.

Muscle Wolf Productions was founded by Marv Blauvelt and features fellow genre actors Jared Degado, Paul and Jameson Barbosa, Marko Adams, Angela Denton and Jessica Cameron.

Authentic Entertainment has been behind such hits as ACE OF CAKES, TODDLERS AND TIARAS, and the hit spin off HERE COMES HONEY BOO BOO. Fatality Films, Albin’s producing venture with horror legend Scott Spiegel, is currently in pre-production on several features and television projects.

Pain is Beautiful Gets Los Angeles Premiere

Los Angeles, California – The serial killer horror feature Pain is Beautiful will have its premiere in Los Angeles and you are invited! Journalists are welcome to attend this event at The Downtown Independent theatre, in the heart of the City of Angels. Seating is limited, so those wishing to attend are encouraged to respond quickly to the email provided as this event is sure to fill to capacity.

Pain is Beautiful involves a tormented man. William Hendricks is a person whose senses have turned on him. He cannot feel pleasure, nor pain. Hendricks attempts to overcome his disability by studying what pain truly is. He captures a series of unwary victims, each of whom he experiments on in a deadly fashion. Few will survive their encounter with this depraved character, who feels pain by inflicting it on others. Pain is Beautiful is an unconventional film that will flip the serial killer genre on its head.

As well, this film hosts a well known cast, many horror fans will know. Director and writer Tim Sullivan (2001 Maniacs: Field of Screams) stars, along with Ivet Corvea (Nude Nuns with Big Guns) and genre favorite Elissa Dowling. All of these cast members will tangle with director Chris Staviski as the killer, Hendricks!

*The premiere date is Monday, February 4th at 9:00pm. Location details are provided below and attendance is free for those in the media. Tickets are provided on a first come, first served basis.

Director: Chris Staviski
Writers: Chris Staviski and Lee Woodford
Cast: Ivet Corvea, Elissa Dowling, Tim Sullivan, Jessica Sonneborn, Mike Pfaff, Lynn Ayala, Brian McCulley and DeeDee Bigelow

Synopsis: “William is a heavily scarred loner who was born with a rare disorder called CIPA, Congenital Insensitivity to Pain. He feels no pain and no pleasure. After years of wondering what pain feels like, he decides to go to extreme measures to feel anything. He recruits victims to help him understand what others take for granted. This story will take the audience on an emotional roller coaster ride as William questions if Pain is Beautiful.”

The film’s fan page is here.
The theatre location is here.

Monstermatt Patterson to be Featured in Steampunk Originals Vol. 2

Looks like Twisted Central favorite, Monstermatt Patterson will be featured in the Arcana Comics anthology, Steampunk Originals: Vol.2, as a writer and illustrator!!

His story, "Caught in a Jam" is illustrated by George Ford. A short story about a man named Grantham and his bad turn with a spot of coffee.

Monstermatt illustrates Mike Schneider's Faux Funnies strip, "Pneumatic Sheep," where a boy finds a terrifying answer to a question, asked in the night.

Look for a 2013 release by Arcana Comics.

Rare Behind the Scenes Footage from Necronos Released

While the Rohnstock brothers. Marc and Lars, in Germany are working on their new feature film "The Curse of Doctor Wolfenstein" they have decided to release a 20 min. behind-the-scenes documentary on their last film "Necronos", which is now available in most of the world, most recently it was released in the US by Troma Entertainment.

The clips shows the cast and crew such as Timo Fuchs, Manoush, Mario Zimmerschitt, Thomas Kercmar, Tanja Karius, Franz Zimmerschitt, Patrick Bender, Alaxander Andreszka, Sandra Fleckenstein, Toni Reckert, Saskia Neumueller, Denissa Schmidt, Kim Sønderholm, Chris Vasquez and a lot of others having a lot of fun plus it reveals a lot of secrets and tricks behind the films extremely gory sequences.

Warning: The clip contains brief nudity and gory detalis and is not for the squeemish!



New Trailer for The Walking Dead's Third Season


There are only a few weeks left until The Walking Dead returns to television. What can fans expect when Season 3 resumes? In this new 60-second trailer, the Governor promises his fight with Rick will "come down to the last man," Carl questions his father's leadership and Andrea hazards the Governor's wrath by visiting the prison. In short: A lot. Want a sneak peek? Watch the trailer featuring the song "Lead Me Home" by Jamie N Commons now!



Source: AMCtv.com

25 January 2013

Bad Kids Go to Hell Now Available on VOD

Matthew Spradling's indie horror comedy Bad Kids Go to Hell is now available On Demand. The film stars Judd Nelson, Ben Browder and Amanda Alch and centers around six prep school kids from Crestview Academy, home to the spoiled offspring of society's elite, who find themselves stuck in detention on a frightfully dark and stormy Saturday afternoon. During their 8-hour detention, each of the six kids falls victim to a horrible "accident" until only one of them remains.

Check out the clip below to get you going then head over to the website for where to watch it!! 


Kill for Me Gets a DVD Release Date

College roommates bond over a shared violent past and a future which holds deadly consequences in the new thriller KILL FOR ME, available February 12th on DVD with UltraViolet™ from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Katie Cassidy (TV’s “Arrow”) and Tracy Spiridakos, star of NBC’s new hit “Revolution”, lead a hot, young cast in this suspenseful tale of two young women who bond over their struggles with bad men and realize how far they would need to go to protect each other. Directed by Michael Greenspan (Wrecked), and co-starring Ryan Robbins (TV's "Falling Skies”) and Donal Logue (Shark Night 3D), the DVD will include a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film, featuring interviews with the cast and crew.

KILL FOR ME was written by Christopher Dodd & Michael Greenspan and Christian Forte. It was produced by Kyle Mann. It has a run time of approximately 96 minutes and is rated R for violence, language and some sexuality.

Synopsis:
While trying to move on from an abusive ex-boyfriend, Amanda (Cassidy) looks for a roommate to help pay the rent. Hailey (Spiridakos) just moved to college to get away from her own abusive past. Now roommates, both girls find comfort in their friendship and make a pact to help each other overcome their pasts… no matter what the cost. When Amanda’s abusive ex-boyfriend catches up with her, a riveting roller coaster of suspense and twists is set in motion. In order to survive, the two girls face their harrowing past together. But as Hailey’s past becomes more transparent, it’s difficult to decipher who is the victim and who is the cold-blooded killer.

Source: Dread Central

24 January 2013

Interview with John D LeMay From Friday the 13th The Series



Today I had the pleasure to sit down and talk with John D LeMay. John played Ryan Dallion on Friday the 13th The Series. Ryan also returned to the Friday franchise and played Steven Freeman in 1993's Jason Goes to Hell. Aside from the Friday franchise John has also has done work in theatre.



TC: How did you get the part of Ryan?

JDL: I had been in Los Angeles for a couple of years, lucky to have gotten an agent through my Chicago representation. I had been doing a lot of auditions, a lot of callbacks, and Friday was one of them. The callbacks were at the Paramount lot which was so cool. That's were I worked with two women auditioning for the female lead, Robey and and another Canadian actress named Star. I found out I got the part after getting a call for a wardrobe fitting. Thinking that was wierd I called my agent and he confirmed that I got the part. It usually happens the other way around. In less than a week I was living in Toronto Canada.




TC: When you were filming the pilot episode did you think it was going to be a hit?

JDL: Well, my experience up to that point had been supporting roles and guest star stints on various established shows. I had no clue as to what made a show successful. All I knew I is that I would be in Toronto for at least 13 episodes to start.


TC: How many days did it take to film one episode?

JDL: It took about 7 to 8 days to film one episode, with a couple of days of overlap, filming the current episode and also “pick-up” shots from the previous weeks filming. The pilot episode was the 4th episode that we filmed. That gave us time to get up to speed as an ensemble and a production. They wanted to be able to put their best foot forward with the pilot.



TC: Where Louise Robey, and Chris Wiggins easy to work with?

JDL: They were both great! Chris in particular. He was such a seasoned veteran and he really showed me the ropes. He was really a true pro. Robey was really in to the business side of it and the promotion aspect of the show. I don’t know where she got the energy...It was hard enough for me to concentrate on the acting.


TC: Do you have a favorite episode?

JDL: Having recently revisited the series, since it came out on DVD, (I had to buy them on Amazon, by the way) I now have tons of favorites. I really love season 1. Cupid's Quiver was the first one we shot and I loved it. It was directed by Atom Egoyan and i really enjoyed working with him. Shadow Boxer was another one that I loved. In Shadow Boxer I got to stretch a lot as an actor. I was possessed by the gloves in one of the scenes and got to act that out which was fun. Faith Healer was great and it was fun working with Horror legend David Cronenberg. I remember the climax of that episode was kind of embarrassing. Robey and I showed up on some kids bikes. I remember Robey and I thinking “really? bikes?”. We were use to that monster mercedes by that point, and felt pulling up on the bikes felt a bit silly. The Baron's Bride was awesome with the black and white when we went back in time. I have fond memories of The Poisoned Pen and Pipe dream as my Dad was and extra in both those episodes. Eye of Death was a memorable episode. Wanting to speed up the shoot for all involved, I agreed to do a stunt in one take. I was handcuffed and on the back of a horse that Robey was driving and on the first take was promptly bucked onto the frozen tundra. No way to brace my fall, I suffered a huge bruise all the way up my hip. Lesson learned.



TC: Do you regret leaving after the 2nd season?

JDL: The decision to leave the show was made by the guy I was then, and the guy I was then felt the need to move on. I really regretted leaving the group of people I was working with. Everyone was so tremendous, it was a family. I had grown tremendously as an actor and human being while working on the show. I acquired many valuable tools and skills that I use to this day. However, I also learned that, as a series star, I could redress perceived injustices on behalf of myself or the crew by making demands. Temper tantrums and bad behavior never really felt authentic and I began to feel uncomfortable in my own skin.



TC: Did you believe the show was a success at the time?

JDL: They kept telling us it was, and then extending the order for more shows and seasons, so you figure you must be doing something right. Outside of that, I really did not have a sense at the time. Star Trek the Next Generation and Friday the Series were the first syndicated shows and the way they sold it was "do you want Star Trek?" "Well if you do then you have to take Friday the Series too!" We road in on that shows coattails. But I think our show was able to nevertheless distinguish itself. We had some great episodes and some not so great episodes, but overall the production team should be proud of what we were able to achieve week in and week out. It got taken off the air when stations across the country had decided that a highly rated show at 10pm could do even better at 8pm. Mistake.



TC: The character of Ryan developed quite a bit and matured throughout the first season. What do you attribute to that?

JDL: I really always took my Q's from the script. Additionally, it didn’t take Ryan long to learn the tremendous responsibility he had inherited along with the cursed antiques. Not to mention the fact that the writers kept giving me girlfriends that would invariably die. That will mature you.



TC: Do you still stay in contact with your costars?

JDL: I talked to both Chris and Robey about a year ago. I am friends with Robey on Facebook as well. I also stay in contact with a few of the production folks. Every once in a while I will run into a Canadian actor who appeared on the show, now living in Los Angeles.



TC: How did you feel about coming back to do Friday the 13th: Jason goes to Hell?

JDL: I was hanging out with a friend Sam Mahoney, (he had been an Assistant Director on some episodes of the Series in Toronto) and he was prepping “Jason Goes to Hell” with director Adam Marcus in Los Angeles when the actor they had planned to use for the part, dropped out. I didn't have to audition. I needed the money.



TC: Are you currently working on any projects? Anything that you have worked on recently you would like to mention?

JDL: I am conceptualizing a horror short with some colleagues that will hopefully be a kind of love letter to my fans. Presently I am performing in a critically acclaimed production at Open Fist Theater, “Footenotes”. Extend through February, it is Directed by Scott Paulin, (remember him from “The Quilt Of Hathor”) the evening consists of 26 actors, 12 pieces of furniture and 2 one acts written by Horton Foote. I even get to sing some old Stanley Brothers gospel tunes in it. It is perhaps one of my favorite experiences as an actor to date.



TC: Are you opposed to doing anymore conventions in the future? Perhaps some kind of Series reunion?

JDL: It is always a pleasure to meet the fans. I have had a blast at the 2 conventions that I have done. The fans know the shows better than I do. Its fun to find out what they have latched onto over the years. I would really love to do a reunion that would be so much fun to see Robey and Chris again.



Check out John on his website: johndlemay.com

Vamp U 2013 - REVIEW

You know those nasty little previews at the beginning of every DVD/Blu-ray? The ones most people will fast forward through? Don't worry, I'm guilty of doing it myself sometimes. Have you ever tried to do it with a Disney film?!? It's like trying to crack some kind of ancient code or something! My point is, IF that's the kind of thing you normally do, you should reconsider. Especially if it's one from an independent company because most of the time you will come across one that you've never heard of that puts up a trailer that really peaks your interest. Just give it a try next time you pop that movie in the old player ;)

Wayne Gretzky (Adam Johnson), no relation, is the coolest history teacher on campus. So cool in fact that his nickname is "The Great One". Just so happens, he's also a vampire. A rather harmless vampire because you see, 300 years ago he accidentally killed the love of his life, Mary (Julie Gonzalo) and since then, it's left him with a little problem... he's impotent. That's right, his teeth won't grow. He's unable to "vamp out" no matter how hard he tries. That is until he meets college freshman, Chris (also Julie Gonzalo) who is the spitting image of his dear Mary. They begin a torrid love affair until one fateful day when Wayne vamps out and bites her. Not enough to kill her but more than enough to turn her. Now, along with a couple of bumbling students (Matt Mattson and Maclain Nelson) who innocently happened along his secret, they devise a plan to stop her before she either turns or eats the entire campus.

This film has two major elements going for it... one is the writing and the other is the cast. It's been a while since I've seen a film where the cast played SO WELL off each other. Johnson is phenomenal as the dysfunctional vampire trying hard to work through his "issue" with the school psychologist played by the hilarious Gary Cole. Once he starts vamping out again, he spends quite a bit of time trying to hide it which leads to one amusing moment after another. I can't say enough about this group as a whole that would do them justice. But the the biggest laughs come from  Mattson who had me cracking up within the first few minutes of the film. He stands out in his supporting role and manages to dominate every scene he's in. Admittedly though, he wouldn't be as funny if he didn't have Nelson next to him. The comedic timing between these two was priceless and if you're unable to find them funny.... you must be dead inside.

Written and directed by Nelson and Matt Jespersen, Vamp U is packed full of vampiry fun. I found myself laughing out loud through out the whole film. One word.... guitar. The dialogue is well written with some off handed nods to iconic shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and one liners that will most likely leave you giggling like a little kid. Of course it's not a perfect film, the ending was a little abrupt and there were a couple of sub-plots I would've liked to have seen explored a little more but it's clear that Nelson and Jespersen have a firm grip on film making. They took great care in developing their characters and building a solid horror/comedy. Speaking of horror, I do feel obligated to tell you that there is not much in the way of horror here but that doesn't take away from the fact that it's a lighthearted and entertaining film that will hopefully garner much praise. I would recommend this over and over to anyone looking for a charming little independent film that more than hits it's mark.

Look for it on VOD & Digital 2/12/13 and on DVD 3/12/13




22 January 2013

New Trailer for Anthology Voices from the Grave - PRESS RELEASE



Howling author Gary Brandners, Installment Invitation finally gets a teaser trailer!
From the upcoming Horror anthology Voices from the Grave Produced By Richard Stoudt & Laurence Holloway!

Trailer here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=NUytExUXkp4

IMDB Link:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2619106/

Synopsis:

From Filmmakers Richard Stoudt and Laurence C. Holloway comes a terrifying film experience called “Voices from the Grave”. Three tales of terror, including one story adapted from the work of master horror writer Gary Brandner author of “The Howling”, to make your flesh creep and your heart race!
Deadly spirits, back from the grave with vengeance in mind give fuel to these tales of supernatural horror.
“Invitation” based on a short story by Gary Brandner, tells the
creepy tale of Len Krager, a life loser who attends a party he’ll never forget! “All Hallows’ Eve” is an exercise in suspense and atmosphere set on an eventful Halloween night. Robert Mundy is bitter since the accidental death of his brother on Halloween night. This Halloween night will be different as a vengeful ghost will seek retribution. Ghostly road hazards endanger a young used car owner in the turbo-charged yarn “Re-Possessed”, a spine tingling ‘vehicle’ for absolute fright. Jeff purchases a killer car for a killer deal……not knowing the car wants his body and soul!

A true exercise in style and terror, ‘Voices from the Grave’ will thrill any horror film fan.

"Ombis" Gets a Distribution Deal - PRESS RELEASE



DefTone Pictures Studios has a signed Distribution deal with Phoenix Group Releasing for Alien Invasion film Ombis

DefTone Pictures Studios Inc has signed a distribution deal with Phoenix Group Releasing to release upcoming science fiction horror film entitled Ombis. Ombis is directed by Adam R Steigert and stars Richard Satterwhite, Jason John Beebe, Sarah Manzella, Michael Sciabarrasi, Kathy Murphy, Alexander Sloan Mcbryde, and introduces Rich Winiatowski and Aryn Fitzgerald.
Ombis’ story focuses on peaceful, rustic Metzburgh which is a former industrial town whose glory days are long past after the collapse of Metzburgh Grain. Mark Lowe (Jason John Beebe) and his ex-girlfriend Lucy Greenheart (Sarah Manzella) are stuck in a lovers quarrel when a meteorite crash lands in the quiet community. Glen (Robert Bozek ), an ex-employee of the grain silos who became homeless after the collapse of the mills, stumbles upon the fiery crash. Unaware that his find could be dangerous, he gets too close and a chemical poison sprays out of the meteorite, enveloping him. The chemical agent known as Ombis begins to turn his insides into a slimly substance. Unable to stop the spread of the infection, the townsfolk begin to be overrun by the virus and the collateral damage begins to add up. A special containment team shows up to try and keep order and contain the plague. The human struggle of the residents of Metzburgh and their fight for survival then begins as the village is overrun with the alien invasion and the mutated humans that it creates.

Currently DefTone Pictures Studios Inc and Phoenix Group Releasing aren’t publishing a release date for the film. However, they are in talks to release the film domestically and to the foreign market in the middle of the 2013. This bumps up DefTone Pictures Studios Inc’s original release date of October 13, 2013 which the studio set in 2011 prior to the Phoenix Group Releasing acquiring the Ombis for distribution. Phoenix Group Releasing shares a direct relationship with Broadcast Cable/Sat operators for PPV/VOD in North America that covers more than 80 million homes and are very active in major markets such as AFM, MIPCOM, CANNES and NAPTE, as well as screening invitations to more than 1,000 film and programming buyers around the world. So the chances that the epic alien invasions begin in 2013 are only going to be that much easier!

Until the release date has been confirmed by DefTone Pictures Studios Inc and Phoenix Group Releasing enjoy this newly released clip from the film which DefTone Pictures Studios Inc stated they would release as part of their continuing campaign to release the film to the public.
Links:

www.Ombismovie.com
www.phoenixgroupreleasing.com
www.deftonepicturesstudios.com

DeInstitutionalized LLC Releases the First Trailer for Supernatural Thriller A House is Not a Home



DeInstitutionalized LLC has released the first trailer for the supernatural thriller A House is Not a Home. In the clip, the principal actors can be seen, dealing with an unseen and malevolent force. Actor Bill Cobbs (A Night at the Museum) plays a real estate agent, who sells the Williams family a haunted home. Gerald Webb is Ben Williams. He is a man struggling to keep his family together under chaotic conditions. Meanwhile, actor Eddie Steeples plays an expert on the occult, who attempts to rid the home of an ancient spirit, while Richard Grieco lurks in the shadows. All of these actors and characters will come together in an exciting and action-packed supernatural thriller, which brings something unexpected for horror and thriller fans in its final reels.




A House is Not a Home is now in post-production. This title will now work to find distribution, with a release date soon to be announced.

Director: Christopher Douglas-Olen Ray 

Director of Photography: Alexander Yellen
Producers: Gerald Webb and Christopher Ray
Co-producer: Richard Grieco
Cast: Bill Cobbs, Eddie Steeples, Richard Grieco, and Melvin Gregg

Synopsis: “A House Is Not A Home: Ben (Webb) and Linda Williams move the family into a dream home in a last ditch effort to save their troubled marriage. Despite their good intentions, they cannot shake the feeling that they are being watched by something. Their unimaginable fears are realized when things inside the house take a supernatural and sinister turn. Ben and his family flee for their lives, but it is too late. The house isn't finished with them, trapping the family in its labyrinth. The Williams must come together as never before to fight for their family, their lives and to escape.”

  
Company Bio: DeInstituionalized LLC is a production company that was developed by producers Christopher Olen Ray and Gerald Webb. Both producers are working to create diversity in their casting and production choices. DeInstitutionalized will continue to produce the best in exciting genres as this company breaks through stereotypes and Hollywood molds to bring entertaining film products to film fans.

More on DeInstitutionalized can be found at the production company’s website:
www.DeInstitutionalizedFilms.com

The Dark Cinema Releases First Trailer

For a while now, we have been telling you about a new half-hour anthology show featuring short horror/thriller/sci-fi films from around the globe. Not only will the series highlight Independent films but it will be hosted by Twisted Central favorite and Indie horror icon Bill Oberst Jr.. Well, now we finally get a taste of what's to come with the release of their first trailer! I'm super excited about this and can't wait for it to air!! Check it out and be sure to visit their Facebook page to keep up with all the cool happenings!!


Sneak Peeks, Clips and Interviews From Face Off, Total Blackout and More

Syfy sent us a whole boat load of sneak peeks and bonus clips to share with you!

First off... catch a sneak peek of the new episode of Face Off when contestants are asked to create their own DC Comics superhero, with the help of Jim Lee. Afterwards, you can catch a sneak peek of Total Blackout where contestants were asked to guess the weight of an object just by touching it and, as always, have a little difficulty.

Face Off—Airs Tuesdays at 9/8c.
Heroic Proportions – Sneak Peek SUMMARY: The artists must create their own DC Comics superhero with aid by comic giants like Jim Lee. One contestant has some difficulty with his mold and switches to Plan B.



The Long Goodbye: Troy – Bonus Clip from Syfy Sync 
SUMMARY: Want to say goodbye to Troy? Tell him what you thought of his work? Give him words of encouragement? Leave your message for Troy in the comment section of this video. Your statement could end up in our pop-up video, ‘The Long Goodbye: Troy.’



Total Blackout—Airs Tuesdays at 10/9c.
Tub of Terror – Sneak Peek SUMMARY: Take a glimpse into tonight’s episode of Total Blackout when guests are asked to guess the weight of an object they can only touch.



Broken Glass & Hot Coals – Bonus Scene
SUMMARY: Watch bonus scenes from last week’s episode when teams reached into tanks to guess what objects were.



Also check out these clips for Syfy’s Original Wednesdays. Tomorrow night, Ghost Hunters and Ghost Mine are scaring up some interesting phenomenon that you can’t miss. You’ll also find an interview clip below with Ghost Hunters’ investigator Adam Barry who answered questions of yours from Facebook. 

Ghost Hunters – Airs on Wednesdays at 9/8c.
Ghost Mission – Next Episode Clip
SUMMARY:
This mission will make you believe.



Adam Barry Facebook Q&A – Interview Clip
SUMMARY: Investigator Adam Barry answers your questions from Facebook about ghosts, what it’s like on an investigation and how they advise folks who may encounter the paranormal.



Ghost Mine – Airs on Wednesdays at 10/9c.
Disturbance at the Inn – Next Episode Clip
SUMMARY: After a chilling encounter with the "tommyknockers" causes one miner to flee, things take a terrifying turn at the Inn housing the miners' families when an encounter with a mysterious entity is made.

Mama 2013 - REVIEW

So, Tamar and I traveled over to the local Regal tonight to catch the new film "Mama". Now, first things first, I fell for the whole attaching someone's name to it gimmick. By that I mean, I, for whatever reason, I thought Guillermo del Toro was responsible for this film. Being a huge fan of his work, I was stoked to see another ghost story from him. Come to find out, I simply wasn't paying any attention. He is "Executive Producer" of the film.

With that being said, "Mama" is the story of Annabel (Jessica Chastain) and Lucas (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) who are faced with the challenge of raising his young nieces, Victoria and Lilly, after they are abandoned, by their Father, in the forest for 5 years. Once they are finally found, they are "wild", especially Lilly. However, who is it that has been raising them for 5 years? It ain't the TV!

What I enjoyed about the film the most, was the beginning of the film, when we are introduced to young Victoria and Lilly. Their innocence, which is portrayed so very well by the young girl who plays Victoria (Morgan McGarry), comes across insanely natural. Having a daughter myself, I automatically thought about her and how she would feel, if she was in that situation.

As for the rest of the film, the storyline is not truly unique. Yet, the cinematography makes up for it. There really are no weak links in the cast. They each hold their own, and push the story forward. I, personally, feel that the lack of horror experience, when it comes to the writers (Neil Cross, Andrés Muschietti, Barbara Muschietti) and the director (Andrés Muschietti), is really what kept this from being such a better film. But, hey, who am I to say. Anyway, If you are considering seeing this or the new Texas Chainsaw... I would say... go see "Mama".

Reviewed by: Brandon Blake

Hypothermia 2010 - REVIEW


The term "Creature Feature" can be traced way back in the annals of film history. It's a generic title used to describe a horror sub-genre and can most effectively be attributed to the Japanese "giant monster" movies from the 60's and 70's. Since then others have jumped on the creature bandwagon, including the Syfy channel. Admittedly, that's one of my soft spots though. I could veg out on Syfy originals all weekend without ever batting an eye.

Ray Pelletier (Michael Rooker) just wants to have a peaceful weekend getaway with his family. Their usual spot... Shadow Lake where they spend most of their time relaxing and ice fishing. Now, those aren't really two things that, in my opinion, really go together but ya know.... to each his own. Not long into their day on the ice, the quiet is shattered with the arrival of the overly obnoxious Steve Cote (Don Wood) and his son Stevie Jr. (Greg Finley), who blaze onto the ice dragging their high-tech mobile fish house (RV) behind them. After a series of strange events i.e. a huge fish getting away and them seeing something under the ice, Cote decides to show off his extravagant fishing hole by inviting the family back to his fish house for dinner. Things take a turn for the worse when Stevie Jr. is pulled under the ice by an unseen force. The two feuding families must band together to survive what's beneath the ice.

As you might expect, the performances in this one are way above par. After watching Rooker as Merle Dixon in The Walking Dead for so long, it's hard to imagine him as the laid back family man type but, as usual, he plays it well. Blanche Baker rounded out the mother/father duo with believability. Together they made you wish your parents were this cool and laid back. Amy Chang and Benjamin Forester made a cute college age couple intent on changing the world for those less fortunate. Chang's skills were under utilized here. She has the potential to do so much more if given the right avenue to do it. I don't recall seeing anything else from Forester but he did manage to keep up with rest of the cast. Wood is the character you love to hate. The character that has so much testosterone you expect him at any minute to start walking around pissing on everything to mark his territory. The manliest of men and he plays it frighteningly well. Finley plays Stevie Jr., the polar opposite of his despotic father who really wants nothing more than to please him. It's a big change from his stint as Jack Pappas on The Secret Life of the American Teenager but at least he's branching out.

With the cast attached to this film, you'd be likely to hinge your bets that this would be a solid, fun filled film that just didn't get enough recognition... but you'd be wrong. There are so many awesome elements to this film that should've made it great but somewhere in between conceptualization and completion, it all got lost and what ends up on screen is really nothing more than a Syfy original that completely missed the mark. Writer/director James Felix McKenney tries too hard to resurrect the days of old. It's not enough anymore to just throw an obscure, unfamiliar beast at your audience and expect them to buy it. Most are gonna want some kind of explanation. What is it? Where did it come from? How are they gonna kill it? None of these questions are answered. And since the whole film revolves around this "beast" I must tell you that NEVER have I been so annoyed with a movie monster in my life. Further proof that McKenney tried to bring back that nostalgia of the "creature feature" and failed. In fact, I had a little chuckle when I first saw it because no way was I really seeing what I was seeing... ya get me?? This creature ends up being some kind of weird cross between the Land of the Lost Sleestaks and a mutated piranha.

If all that doesn't throw you off and you're curious enough to make it till the bitter end... I'm just gonna go ahead and apologize now. I'm sorry that this film has let you down, not only with a laughable antagonist, but also for a story that lacks even the basic, fundamentals of horror. There's no built up. It's clear from 30 or so minutes in that most of these characters will meet their demise. I'm sorry that this dialogue is drab at best. I'm sorry that most of you will write this creature off as some guy in a latex suit with a giant head, plastic teeth and bat wings. I'm sorry that this vast location wasn't used to it's potential and I'm sorry that the ending was so horribly unsatisfying. I don't apologize very often so just take it and walk away. If by some chance you're just dying to take in a Glass Eye Pix production, may I suggest Stake Land? Granted I haven't seen every film they've put out but Stake Land rates heads and tails higher than the others.


20 January 2013

Child's Play 1988 - REVIEW


Long before Chucky had a bride, and a son he was a real person and serial killer.  The Lakeshore Stangler is what he was nicknamed by the media in Chicago.  There is always something to be said about the original in a series.  After this installment they moved away from the creepy atmosphere and more to the humor and just straight up slasher.   I do enjoy all the sequels actually and am really excited for The Curse of Chucky do out sometime at the end of the year.

The Lakeshore Strangler, Charles Lee Ray (Brad Dourif), is on the run from the police.  The strangler's getaway van with is partner Eddie Caputo (Neil Giuntoli) in it speeds off leaving him behind.  Charles ends up going into a toy store to hide out from the police officer following him Mike Norris (Chris Sarandon).  Charles is shot and realizes that he is dying.  In a last stitch effort he pulls down a Good Guy doll and recites his Voodoo ritual transferring his soul into the doll.  Charles dies and the case is closed until a Mother desperate to get her son Andy (Alex Vincent) a Good Guy doll finds a peddler in an alley selling one.  She buys it without hesitation and gives it to Andy for his Birthday.  Soon the doll starts to talk to Andy and tells him who he really is in an attempt to transfer into the boy.  The innocent doll has not turned to a cold blooded killer and Andy is suspected of making the whole thing up.  Soon everyone will know the truth while little Chucky starts his rampage on an unsuspecting family in order to live again.

When this movie came out in 1988 I have to admit it did frighten me a bit.  After watching it a few times it did become less scary and more of just a great movie I loved to watch.  One of the best things about this movie I have always liked is the cast.  The part of Chucky, well the voice anyway, could have not been more perfect than Brad Douriff.  Also Alex Vincent was a very young and talented actor, even though aside from Child's Play he has not done anything else until recently.

The soundtrack to Child's Play really sets the tone and is very dark and creepy.  I would probably have to say one of my favorite soundtracks from an 80's slasher.  The building they used in shooting for Andy's home was the famous Brewster Apartments in Chicago, Il.  It really can be seen as Maggie (Dinah Manoff) falls out of the window.  It's such a nice view on the way down.

The original is definitely my favorite of the series with part 2 running a close second.  After the original two movies the series really started to tail off.  Part 3 was really bad, and had horrible acting I might add.  Bride and Son went away from the main story line and went off on it's own a bit to more of a comedy than a horror. The original is really a gem of 80's horror.  Till this 1988 there had been few doll killers to grace the big screne.  There have been plenty since after the success of Chucky.  Child's Play was probably the main reason I never got a My Buddy and Me doll in fear it just might take over my soul and try to kill me.  You have to admit though it was a pretty clever rip off of sorts.

I recently watched an episode of Pawn stars and they took in a few props from the movie.  The knife that chucky uses, the voodoo doll, and also the little Good Guy Hammer.  I would really like to go out to Las Vegas and purchase these for my collection but in excess of 2000.00 is a little out of my price range.  From time to time on Ebay I see the Good Guy box with the image of a doll inside go up, but again obsene amounts of money are asked for these.  I mean come on it's a fuckin cardboard box with a image of a doll inside.  Stay twisted everyone!