Make-up jobs to remember
Blastr.com counts down the most memorable horror movie villains (and their make-up) Read full article here.
Freddy Krueger - A Nightmare on Elm Street
Pinhead - Hellraiser
Samara - The Ring
Frankenstein's monster - Frankenstein
Leatherface - The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
The Reaper - Jeepers Creepers
Graf Orlok - Nosferatu
Mrs. Garnush - Drag Me to Hell
Matt Cordell - Maniac Cop
Pluto - The Hills Have Eyes
Pennywise - Stephen King's IT
The Phantom - The Phantom of the Opera
Evil Ash - Army of Darkness
10 Overlooked Horror Films
The CBC website has a really fascinating article celebrating 10 overlooked horror films that the writers promise will "deliver a good fright on a cold dark night". Check out the list and let us know what you think.
House Playing This Weekend at RPL Film Theatre
In Japanese with English subtitles
Get your seats early for this retro cult treat directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi!
''Delirious, deranged, gonzo or just gone, baby, gone - no single adjective or even a pileup does justice to ''House,'' a 1977 Japanese haunted-house freakout. Directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi, this energetic exemplar of pulp surrealism began surfacing in the United States last year, playing at events like the New York Asian Film Festival. A midnight movie in lysergic spirit and vibe, this was a film made for late-night screening and screaming. The yelps you'll hear and possibly emit, though, will be of surprise and delight, not terror. ''House,'' which turns on a misbegotten, increasingly violent trip taken by seven teenage girls, is not in the least scary, despite its body count and gore. If the hairs on your neck snap to attention, it will be only because of Mr. Obayashi's flamboyant visual style, his comic flights of fancy and genre manipulations. This might be about a haunted house, but it's the film that is more truly possessed: in one scene a piano bites off the fingers of a musician tickling its keys; in another a severed head tries to take a bite out of a girl's rear, snapping at the derriere as if it were an apple. Later a roomful of futons goes on the attack. ''House'' was Mr. Obayashi's first feature, and at times it feels as if he threw everything - every movie he had ever seen, every idea he had ever entertained - at the screen, using the horror genre as a big box into which he could combine the bits and pieces he wanted to sample from avant-garde cinema, Looney Tunes cartoons, schlock Italian horror and martial arts movies.''New York Times
Check the Movie Theatre Calendar for showtimes.
A horror remake I'm dying to see
When I was a kid, one of the scariest movies I remember watching was a made-for-TV production called Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (1973), starring Kim Darby and Jim Hutton. In it, a couple inherits this house that's inhabited by these little demonic creatures who torment the wife so much that everyone around her thinks she is losing her mind. I hardly remember anything about it other than it scared the wits out of me, and one scene where the "creatures" drag the woman kicking and screaming up into the chimney.
I'm sure if I watched it now, it would seem pretty tame, and perhaps a lot cheesy, but I bet that one scene I remember would still raise the hairs on the back of my neck. And it looks like uber-director-writer-genius Guillermo Del Toro feels the same way because he has co-written the screenplay for a re-make directed by Troy Nixey (Del Toro's young up and coming protegee).
For better or worse, it seems 2010 is going to be a banner year for remakes, including the highly anticipated A Nightmare on Elm Street coming in April.
Check out this article on Sci-Fi Wire: What works, what sucks and what's coming for 11 horror remakes!
Find these originals available at RPL!
A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
The Brood (1979)
Fright Night (1985)
Paranormal Activity "too scary" for Italian moviegoers
According to Sci-Fi Wire, the Italian government is considering restricting the blockbuster horror hit Paranormal Activity because it's "too scary".
The article goes on to describe that: "some Italian moviegoers have actually suffered panic attacks after watching the documentary-style movie, sparking protests by children's and consumer groups."
I find it hard to believe that Italian movie-goers should be so .... ahem.... sensitive shall we say. After all, Italy is the birthplace of zombie gore godfather, Lucio Fulci, and slasher maestro Dario Argento.
For the record, I really enjoyed Paranormal Activity. It was supremely creepy -- so little actually happens, but my stomach was in knots the entire time -- the knockings, thumps and bumps are adrenaline inducing. Because action is minimal, the few violent, thrashing scenes that occur are quite a rush!
But is it a ban-worthy experience? No, not in the least. Like The Blair Witch Project, what you imagine is much worse than what you actually see. Now The Exorcist -- there's a movie that remains truly horrifying and disturbing on so many levels. I still think no one under 18 should see this movie.
Supernatural Season 6 confirmed
The boys will be back! According to SciFi Wire, the CW series Supernatural is returning this fall with Season 6 - but without series creator Eric Kripke.
Plot Summary: The series begins as two brothers travel America's back roads in a '68 Chevy Impala. They are searching for a missing father who raised them to hunt and destroy every evil supernatural incarnation they encounter. On the top of their hit-list is the Yellow-Eyed Demon that killed their mother 22 years previously. As the series progresses the brothers discover they have a much larger role to play that involves the end of the world.
Not a fan yet? Find Supernatural in the RPL Catalogue:
Supernatural: The complete 1st season (DVD)
Supernatural: The complete 2nd season (DVD)
Supernatural: The complete 3rd season (DVD)
Supernatural: The complete 4th season (DVD)
A sequel you don't want to miss!
Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations (2009)
Summary: Sam has an extraordinary talent. He has the ability to travel through time. He can use his gift to help the police solve cases, but he must never intervene with the past as it could alter the present in horrific ways. When a woman from Sam's past begs him to help find her sister's killer, Sam breaks his own rule, causing all hell to break loose.
The Cryptkeeper says: I tend not to get too excited about the inevitable multiple sequels the horror genre spawns ad nauseum. Did we really need a Jason Vorhees in space movie? -- I believe that made it Friday the 13th part 10 -- and Hollywood is draining every last bit of originality and purpose out of the SAW franchise this October with SAW VII. Where does it end? Most often in dreadful, lazy movie-making. But every now and then a real diamond appears amongst the dreck.
The original Butterfly Effect released in 2004 and starring Ashton Kutcher is an awesome movie. Ashton Kutcher successfully breaks out of his moronic Michael Kelso / Punk'd persona to turn in a mesmerizing and unforgettable performance. I for one did not think he had it in him. Kutcher plays Evan Treborn, a young man struggling to suppress traumatic childhood events. His recovery of certain memories leads him to believe he can make things better by righting past wrongs -- a dangerous assumption. By altering certain significant details from the past, Evan discovers life changes for everyone in the present, and not always for the better. The more Evan tries to fix things, the more broken they become. The supporting cast is superb, particularly Amy Smart who plays Evan's lifelong love interest, Kayleigh. I've seen this movie several times now, and I take something new away with every viewing. Intense and bittersweet with a heartbreaking ending.
Butterfly Effect 2 (2006) is awful, disappointing on so many levels compared to the original that there is really nothing more to say.
Now along comes part 3, and I thought to myself, "are they mad? what could they possibly offer here other than a great big giant bowl of waste of my time?" I'm glad I watch movies anyway even though I'm positive I'm going to hate them, because sometimes I'm completely wrong and delightfully surprised. Butterfly Effect 3 is a much darker and gruesome departure from the original. It's a gritty who-dun-it police procedural with a time travel twist that works on so many levels. While part of a franchise, it is a stand alone film, and it's not necessary that you see the original before sitting down to watch this one. It's not a classic or anything (or even as good as the original), but well-deserving of 90 minutes of your time.
Eden Lake has finally arrived!
Note: There was a delay in getting this movie in, so some of you have probably been on the wait list for a long while. But the wait is finally over!
Eden Lake (UK 2008) New!
Written and Directed by James Watkins
***WARNING!!!! Contains graphic horror violence***
When a young couple goes to a remote wooded lake for a romantic getaway, their quiet weekend is shattered by an aggressive group of local kids. Rowdiness quickly turns to rage as the teens terrorize the couple in unimaginable ways, and a weekend outing becomes a bloody battle for survival.
The Cryptkeeper's review:
I watched this movie on a whim, hadn't even heard of it ... and I'm still shaking. Seriously, I'm truly traumatized. This movie is so graphic, so brutally realistic, that I felt like I'd been punched in the gut. And it's not like it's so original -- young, pretty couple in love venture out into nature to take in some R&R and cross paths with a gang of young "toughs" and the situation rapidly escalates into bloody confrontation.
Couples in peril at the hands of vicious tormentors is hardly new. I thought Vacancy was decent, and I felt The Strangers upped the ante on the home invasion scenario. The French flick Them was even better in some respects. But nothing in any of those movies prepared me for the unflinching sensory assault of Eden Lake. Ferocious and relentless, not to mention my absolute worst nightmare come true.
Like the recent controversial French-Canadian horror movie, Martyrs, Eden Lake will not just haunt you, but hurt you. Don't say I didn't warn you! Grade: A+
See previous blog post: Abandon all hope ye who enter here
Scream Awards 2009 ... and the winners are ...
Check out all the nominees and winners here!
Honoring the Best in Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Comics and Horror
Best Horror Movie:
1) Dead Snow
2) Drag Me to Hell WINNER!
3) Friday the 13th (remake)
4) Let the Right One In (Sweden)
5) My Bloody Valentine 3D
Best Foreign Movie:
1) Dead Snow (Norway)
2) Eden Lake (England)
3) Let the Right One In (Sweden) WINNER!
4) Martyrs (France)
5) Pontypool (Canada)
6) Timecrimes (Spain)
2009 was a pretty ho-hum affair in Hollywood, including way too many sequels (Saw 6, The Final Destination, H2, Grudge 3) and poorly rendered re-makes -- Last House on the Left, Friday the 13th, My Bloody Valentine) -- just to name a few.
Outside of Hollywood however, some really great films were made, and I can't think of a year when so many stellar horror flicks were released. Sam Raimi's triumphant return to horror was the best thing to happen in Hollywood, but if you want to see some harrowing horror that's original, beautiful and traumatizing, check out the nominations above, especially Eden Lake and Let the Right One In.
Coming Soon on DVD!
Drag Me to Hell (2009)
Sam Raimi's horror hiatus has been way too long, but finally he has come home to the genre (and fans) who love him best. And I for one am doing my happy dance! All I can say is, welcome back Sam!!
Christine Brown has a good job, a great boyfriend, and a bright future.... But in three days, she's going to hell
My Bloody Valentine (2009)
Fairly ho-hum re-make of a 1980's slasher flick. The one thing about this picture that is NOT ho-hum is Jensen Ackles. Be still my heart! If you're a fan, you won't want to miss this.
Summary: Ten years ago, Harry Warden murdered twenty-two people with a pickaxe. Tom returns to his hometown on the anniversary of the Valentine's night massacre. Instead of a homecoming, however, Tom finds himself suspected of committing the murders instead of Harry.
The Final Destination (2009)
I'm a huge fan of the original Final Destination released back in 2000. Since then, the franchise has kinda gone down-hill, but every sequel has its moments, and this "final" one (yeah, right) is no exception. If you have the technology, you can watch this one in 3-D and really appreciate all of the impaling/gouging/crushing up close and personal.
Halloween 2 (2009)
Rob Zombie returns with his vision of the Michael Myers' saga. I think Zombie is cool and this latest remake is totally a "Zombie production" in the sense that it is so very different from John Carpenter's version. According to [BC] over at Horror Movie a Day: " It’s got the degenerate rednecks, the weird humor, the uncommercial ending, the rockabilly and classic rock music... everything." So if you're looking for something that dares to be more than just a hatchet, bored, re-make you might want to check this one out.
Paranormal Activity (2009)
Sleeper hit of the century! Originally released in 2007, a brilliantly successful marketing campaign ensured this movie went into theatrical wide-release this past summer. The film has been cited as the most profitable ever made. Roger Ebert describes it as "an ingenious little horror film, so well made it's truly scary, that arrives claiming it's the real thing."
Saw VI (2009)
Yet another horror franchise that just does not want to quit. I am a huge fan of the original SAW (2004). I thought it was awesome, and that twist at the end worked for me. I did not see it coming and anyone who says they did is lying! Since then, the subsequent sequels have been hit or miss, and I always get mixed up on which ones I liked and which ones I didn't. I haven't seen part VI yet, but definitely plan on watching it. That's the thing with franchises -- once you see one, you kind of feel compelled to see them all. At least I do. Even Jason X (2001) and Freddy vs. Jason (2003). Shudder.
:: Next Page >>