Digital Review: The Dark Tapes (2017)

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Distributor: Epic Pictures (US)/Thunder Road Inc. (UK)

Directors: Michael McQuown & Vincent J. Guastini

Starring: Emilia Ares Zoryan, Danielle Baez, Katelyn Bailey, David Banks, Jonathan Biver, Layne Castro, Sara Castro, Heather Compton, Michael Cotter, Sherry Dargahi, Trey Everett, Denise Faro, Brittany Fisheli, Jo Galloway, Mary Rachel Gardner

The latest entry into the found footage game, The Dark Tapes, was written by Michael McQuown and directed by McQuown and Vincent J. Guastini and the one unique thing this movie has going for it is that it is also an anthology. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a huge fan of found footage and anthology movies so this ticks two of my favorites boxes. Wraparound stories can be essential to the movie and can be funny like in Body Bags or of a more serious nature like in Continue reading

Digital Review: The Void (2016)

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The Void PosterDistributor: Signature Entertainment

BBFC Classification: 18

Directors: Jeremy Gillespie & Steven Kostanski

Starring: Aaron Poole, Ellen Wong, Art Hindle, Kathleen Munroe, Kenneth Welsh, James Millington, Grace Munro, Stephanie Belding, Mik Byskov, Daniel Fathers

This morning I read an article written by movie director Harrison Smith (Camp Dread/The Fields/Death House) bemoaning the “dumbing down of horror” for moviegoing audiences. I agree with Smith’s assessment, particularly in that horror movies need to make you think; sure, popcorn movies are good but we also need movies that work on another level. If one subscribes to the premise that cinema is art, isn’t that art meant to invoke an emotional response that is unique to the viewer? If we believe this then horror movies should also do the same. By accident, fluke, serendipity or whatever Continue reading

Blu-ray Review: C.H.U.D. (1984)

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Distributor: Arrow Video

MPAA Classification: R

Director: Douglas Cheek

Starring: John Heard, Daniel Stern, Christopher Curry, Kim Greist

C.H.U.D. (Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers) is a near-perfect encapsulation of pure ’80s cheese, overacting, practical monsters, evil government agencies and off-the-rails monster story, and in late 2016 the US got a Blu-ray release from the wonderful folks at Arrow Video. The disc is packed Continue reading

Blu-ray Review: Killer Klowns From Outer Space (1988)

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Killer Klowns From Outer Space BR CoverDistributor: Arrow Video

BBFC Classification: 15

Director: Stephen Chiodo

Starring: Grant Cramer, Suzanne Snyder, John Allen Nelson, John Vernon, Royal Dano

When going into Killer Klowns From Outer Space it is necessary to be aware of two things – a) the title really does say it all so don’t be surprised when that is all you get, and b) the film is basically a showreel for the Chiodo Brothers and their particular brand of filmmaking and special effects tomfoolery. Armed with this information Killer Klowns From Outer Space is a whole heap of fun and pretty much beyond any major criticism, despite the film not exactly setting the world on fire when it was originally Continue reading

Digital Review: JeruZalem (2016)

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JERUZALEM_DVD

Distributor: Solo Media/Matchbox Films

BBFC Classification: 15

Director: The Paz Brothers

Starring: Yael Grobglas, Yen Tumarkin, Danielle Jadelyn, Tom Graziani

 

JeruZalem is an interesting and eclectic mix of religion and zombie/monster horror shot in the found footage style. This style tends to spark apathy in many viewers of the horror genre but add in that it is shot through the perspective of smart glasses and I can hear the collective eye roll of horror fans worldwide. Hold that eye roll at least for a bit because directors Doron and Yoav Paz have managed to capture something unique with this one. Of course there is some shaky camera syndrome and pacing issues, specially in the third act, but overall this is an innovative and well-crafted Continue reading