Directed by Ben Blaine, Chris Blaine
If you were to read a brief synopsis of Nina Forever before fully experiencing Chris and Ben Blaine’s macabre, witty debut, you’d be forgiven for confusing it with one or two other films that have broached the “awkward undead” sub-genre recently. Whilst Joe Dante’s Burying the Ex and Jeff Baena’s Life After Beth took a slightly different approach to the setup – gunning for wholesome comedy rather than deep, evocative drama – one particular horror trope is consistent throughout all three projects: In the wonderful world of horror, loved ones returning from beyond the grave very rarely means jolly times are a-comin’.
If I was going to be haunted by somebody at the most inopportune moments, I’d probably choose my best mate to do it, but even that scenario hasn’t worked out too well if you look back at historical horror characters. I mean, as cool as Griffin Dunne’s decomposing Jack was in An American Werewolf in London, it proved a bit of a downer for poor ol’ David Naughton, having him pop up to deliver his dire predictions of doom – it’s enough to annihilate any lycanthrope’s libido. So, if your bosom buddy can’t make such a paranormal experience less uncomfortable, what chance your mangled ex-missus?!
Nineteen-year-old Holly (Hardingham) works in a supermarket while studying to be a paramedic and falls for shelf-stacker Rob (Barry), survivor of a failed suicide attempt following the death of his girlfriend. After a few successful dates, their first go in the sack is cut short when Rob’s dead ex, Nina (O’Shaughnessy), emerges from the bedsheets – limbs gnarled and broken, tongue razor-sharp – leaving physical and mental stains on everything and everyone she touches. In time Nina becomes a greater presence in Holly’s psyche than in Rob’s, obsessing over how she falls short of the phantom (desperate to leave “vanilla” behind) rather than concentrating on what she has to offer.
As Rob and Holly attempt to struggle on and accommodate the most fucked up of love triangles, Nina Forever excels by reveling in its own ludicrousness and provides some blacker-than-black amusing moments without ever becoming silly – a pitfall that’s tough to avoid when you consider its premise. Instead, we’re presented with a beautiful, bleeding tale of grief, love, infatuation and the inability to let go of the past. Metaphors of tentative feet traversing manic motorways and shattered glass will live long in the memory.
Nina Forever is made all the more impressive by our three main leads: O’Shaughnessy as the hilariously disturbing titular character, her bloody mattress birth like something from a Clive Barker novel, Cian Barry tragic as pain-stricken Rob, and showstopper Hardingham – whose innocence will drag you in, only for her sex appeal to blow you away. That being said, the scenes involving Nina’s parents (David Troughton and Elizabeth Elvin) remain my personal high points; having remained friends with Rob, the pair spend their time dishing out Sunday roasts and writing jarring erotic fiction to fill a loveless, aching void. Troughton’s emotional collapse in a restaurant is on par with any of the best scenes I’ve witnessed in years.
The Blu-ray/DVD special features are listed below; however, they were unavailable for review.
Startlingly distinctive despite the obvious comparisons, perfectly ambiguous, unsettling, funny, poignant and downright sexy, Nina Forever is brilliant; and The Blaine brothers deserve all the praise aimed their way for making such a ridiculous concept so profound and effective.
- A Look Behind Nina Forever
- Things That Are Not There
- Things That Were Not There
We were cackling in excitement with today’s news that TNT was teaming with M. Night Shyamalan to revive “Tales From the Crypt.”
That is until we heard some disconcerting Intel.
While we haven’t confirmed this, our trustworthy insider tells us that the new incarnation of “Tales From the Crypt” will not feature the Crypt Keeper that was voiced by John Kassir because HBO owns the rights. In fact, Kassir himself tweeted, “…Crypt Keeper as we know him is more popular than ever & it’d be a sham/shame not to have him host the show,” furthering suspicions that this is how the series will play out.
Instead, the new show will be highlighted by an old man with a cane, wearing a hood, and keeping warm by a fireplace. This is more in tune with the original EC comic (see below), and even resembles the Old Witch quite a bit.
The Crypt Keeper that we all know and love was created for the HBO series, and has become the spirit of the franchise, but reinventing him isn’t necessarily sacrilegious. With that said, I’m not exactly sure I want to see a fresh take on the character. We saw what happened with Freddy Krueger.
Anyways, here’s where it gets extra meh.
The original plan, whether it’s changed or not, was to film it “American Horror Story”-style, and have 13 episodes of one storyline per season.
Oh, it gets worse. Not only will there be no weekly “anthology” story, but we’re told the first season has nothing to do with the actual comics. Not to mention it’s scripted by the writers behind the awful “Hemlock Grove.”
And if you’re curious, what we heard is that it will be about voodoo in New Orleans (“True Blood” and “American Horror Story” have both tackled this).
So, get ready for the return of “Tales From the Crypt” in name only. I’m preparing myself for disappointment so the shock won’t kill me come the series premiere.
I'll go on record, "Crypt Keeper as we know him is more popular than ever & it'd be a sham/shame not to have him host the show!!!!!
— John Kassir (@JohnKassir) January 7, 2016
Sad news to report as it’s been confirmed that animator Robert Balser has passed away at 88, according to AWN. His wife explains that he passed away from respiratory failure complications at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles.
Balser was known for being the animation director for The Beatles’ film The Yellow Submarine but I knew him for being the director of the “Den” segment in the 1981 sci-fi/horror animated film Heavy Metal. I grew up with that movie and I know that it helped shape my understanding of how appearances can be deceiving. After all, a cartoon that wasn’t meant for children? That was an alien thought to me until I sat down with this movie. Furthermore, the “Den” segment spoke to me on a personal level as it showed a bullied weakling becoming someone important, someone valued. While I’m not as muscular as Den turned out to be, it’s still a rather inspiring story of courage and personal growth.
Rest in peace, Mr. Balser. Thanks for the memories.
A teaser trailer for the season finale of FX’s “American Horror Story” has been released and demands that, “The killing must stop!” You can see the trailer below and watch the final episode, which will air next Wednesday, the 13th.
The fifth season of “American Horror Story”, dubbed “Hotel”, followed Lady Gaga as “The Countess”, the owner and proprietor of the Cortez Hotel. Mirroring the H.H. Holmes situation of Chicago during the World Fair, The Countess uses the hotel as her own personal abattoir, slaying any she desires and drinking their blood to maintain her youthful beauty.
The series has already confirmed a sixth season, which will premiere later this year.
One of my favorite horror movies of all-time is Robert Zemeckis’ Death Becomes Her, which was the highest grossing “zombie” film until Brad Pitt’s World War Z came along.
Now, thanks to Shout Factory!, this hilarious “Tales From the Crypt”-esque horror film is getting a Blu-ray release.
It’s now available for pre-order with a release set for April 26th.
The pic stars three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep, Oscar winner Goldie Hawn and Golden Globe winner Bruce Willis in Robert Zemeckis’ outrageously entertaining comedy about greed, vanity, sex, immortality, life… and death.
“When a woman (Streep) learns of an immortality treatment, she sees it as a way to outdo her long-time rival (Hawn).”
“Does it feel like it’s coming from inside you?” “No, it feels like it’s coming from behind me.”
Warner Bros. Pictures just dropped the first full teaser trailer for James Wan’s The Conjuring 2 and it landed like an atomic bomb of scares.
Seriously, I don’t think I’m overhyping this one bit, but this trailer has got to be one of the most frightening I have ever seen. Ever. All-time. (Yes, scarier than the flash trailer for The Exorcist.) And if a trailer is the judge of how much cool content is in a movie, well, Conjuring 2 just might end up being one of the most terrifying ever.
Rarely do a give a trailer much weight, but it’s hard to ignore the impact of this titan that has more scares than pretty much every horror movie in 2015 combined. In fact, I think it embarrasses Annabelle, the Conjuring spinoff that was NOT directed by our horror lord and master, James Wan.
Too much? Overly dramatic? Nope. I stand behind this shit. I am blown away in a frantic frenzy of needing to call everyone I know and scream, “DID YOU SEE IT?” “What?” “THE CONJURING 2 TRAILER, DID. YOU. SEE. IT?” “No?” “WUT THE FUCCCCK. DROP EVERYTHING!”
The best I can do right now to vent out my excitement is to pull some of the great moments and share them with you below.Did you see this Freddy Krueger-esque ghost!? The trailer ends with a legit, authentic jump-scare! Look, it’s Madison Wolfe trapped on a ceiling in what looks like a scene out of Candyman. A ghost just told Janet (Wolfe) that it wants to hurt Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga). What the hell is touching this old man’s shoulder?! Crosses in this room flip upside down (or right-side up?) There are multiple flashes of terror. I’m still screaming!
The SXSW Film Festival begins this coming March, and they’re already teasing out some HUGE premieres.
Not only will they World Premiere Pee-wee’s Big Holiday, directed by John Lee and produced by Judd Apatow and Paul Reubens featuring Pee-wee Herman on a new adventure, but they announced two genre titles that are going to get me on a plane out to Austin, Texas from March 11-20.
First, pictured above is Irene Taylor Brodsky’s Beware the Slenderman, based on the iconic character that started on Creepy Pasta years ago.
In the film, “In this horrifyingly modern fairytale lurks an online Boogeyman and two 12-year-old girls who would kill for him. The entrance to the internet quickly leads to its darkest basement. How responsible are our children for what they find there?”
AMC has also decided to premiere the pilot of Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg’s “Preacher” series, which hits the cabler later this year.
“‘Preacher’ is a supernatural, twisted and darkly comedic drama that follows a West Texas preacher named Jesse Custer, who – along with his ex-girlfriend Tulip and an Irish vagabond named Cassidy – is thrust into a crazy world, much bigger than he is.”
Dominic Cooper, Ruth Negga, Joseph Gilgun, Ian Colletti, W. Earl Brown, and Lucy Griffiths all star.
Check out this new still!
Granted I haven’t seen the film yet – I sort of don’t want to – but I liked the original Martyrs because it had a purpose. Pascal Laugier’s 2009 French horror film challenged religion, and played a cathartic role in his real life loss.
Anchor Bay’s remake, in limited theaters and on Digital HD January 22, 2016, looks like nothing more than painful torture (for the characters and the viewer), even though in Kalyn’s review she stated that it “fails to lack the same punch as the original.” The clip, below, looks like it’s trying really hard to show us horror fans how edgy it is. I guess we’ll find out soon enough…
The Goetz Brothers (Scenic Route) directed the U.S. version that will also arrive on VOD, DVD and Blu-ray February 2, 2016
Martyrs stars Bailey Noble, who played Adilyn Bellefleur on “True Blood”, with “Pretty Little Liars” star Troian Bellisario. Kate Burton (Stay, Big Trouble in Little China) and Blake Robbins (Rubber).
“Ten-year-old Lucie flees from the isolated warehouse where she has been held prisoner. Deeply traumatized, she is plagued by awful night terrors at the orphanage that takes her in. Her only comfort comes from Anna, a girl her own age. Nearly a decade later and still haunted by demons, Lucie finally tracks down the family that tortured her. As she and Anna move closer to the agonizing truth, they find themselves trapped in a nightmare – if they cannot escape, a martyr’s fate awaits them…”
Mark L. Smith (Vacancy, The Hole, The Revenant) penned the Martyrs screenplay.
It’s been announced by THR that Guillermo del Toro is in talks to direct the remake of the 1966 sci-fi adventure film Fantastic Voyage. The project is being produced by 20th Century Fox and Lightstorm Entertainment (James Cameron’s company). Del Toro hasn’t worked with Cameron since the cancelled At The Mountains of Madness, so it’ll be exciting if these two get this project off the ground! Additionally, the film will reunite del Toro with screenwriter David S. Goyer, who penned Blade II.
Before we get too invested in this remake, the project has been in “developmental hell” for many years, cycling through multiple directors as well as a gamut of screenwriters and stars. Cameron himself has been interested in the project since 1997 and it’s said that he wants to use the same kind of 3D technology that was used on Avatar for this film.
The 1966 film was directed by Richard Fleischer and starred Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch, and Donald Pleasance, who horror fans know from Halloween and Escape from New York.
Praise be, for He has generously gifted us with another story trailer for Dying Light: The Following. We don’t deserve to be showered with such golden gifts, yet He, in his endless benevolence, continues to reward our faith in Him with holy offerings so that we can return His unconditional love through the blood of our enemies. Praise be, praise be.
Dying Light: The Following releases on Feb 9 for PC, PS4 and Xbox One.
Resident Evil cosplay came full circle earlier this week when actor Julia Voth decided to bring a certain S.T.A.R.S. officer to life. This may be the pinnacle of Jill Valentine cosplay, folks. Voth, as you may already know, is the real human being who portrayed Capcom’s leading lady in the GameCube remake of the original Resident Evil.
I believe what we’re witnessing here is a genuine Ouroboros. It’s not the same Uroboros that Wesker kept droning on about until he took a rocket to the face, but I’ll take Voth’s Valentine over a legion of leech monsters any day. Have a look at her in the gallery below.
The idea came from a fan who asked Voth to cosplay as the character she helped make iconic, even going so far as to give her a custom S.T.A.R.S beret. “I got to harness her energy and finally embody who I felt she was,” Voth told IGN.
In just a few weeks, we’ll be getting a double dose of old school survival horror when the Resident Evil 0 remaster arrives on January 19, along with the Origins Collection. Head over here for every horror game that’s expected this month.
Iconic musician David Bowie has released a stunning video for his track “Lazarus”, which comes from the upcoming album Blackstar. Featuring David Lynch-esque visuals, the video, which was directed by Johan Renck, shows Bowie laying in bed wearing eye restraints that have buttons sewn on where the eyes should be. Then, it shows him dancing in a very odd pattern before showing him at a desk writing something unknown to us viewers, all while moving with wildly exaggerated motions.
The music itself is fantastic. It’s got this seductively erotic and pulsating groove that creates a sensation of yearning and longing. It’s one of those songs that you want to hear over and over, letting it envelop and drown you in its emotions.
Blackstar comes out tomorrow and can be pre-ordered via iTunes.
The full trailer for James Wan’s The Conjuring 2 has materialized right before our eyes, and holy shit is it scary!
In the sequel to the smash hit, “Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) travel to 1977 England to help single mom Peggy Hodgson and her four children, particularly daughter Janet (played by Madison Wolfe).”
This teaser trailer is long, and frightening, and full of insane shit that has me convinced this is going to be one of the most terrifying movies ever made. Enough talk, watch, WATCH!
In theaters June 10, 2016, The Conjuring 2 said to open with The Amityville Horror case. After, the sequel will tell of the infamous “Enfield Poltergeist,” which took place at a council house in Brimsdown village, borough of Enfield, England during the late 1970s.
Rounding out the cast are Frances O’Connor (“The Missing”) as the single mom, with newcomers Lauren Esposito, Patrick McAuley and Benjamin Haigh as her children; Maria Doyle Kennedy (“Orphan Black”); Simon Delaney (“Roy”); Franka Potente (“The Bridge”); and Simon McBurney (Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation).
In addition to directing the film, Wan wrote the screenplay with Carey and Chad Hayes, and David Leslie Johnson.
Jake Gyllenhaal’s production company Nine Stories Prods. is developing an anthology series from A+E Studios for A&E Network, reports Variety.
The limited series will explore major American cult personas, and the first season is planned to revolve around the terrifying Jim Jones story, which we’ve detailed here with an accompanying documentary.
The Jim Jones story — which would set the stage for the inaugural season, should the project get greenlit — would focus on his cult, The Peoples Temple of the Disciples of Christ, and chronicle Jones’ path from social leader to deranged spiritual dictator to a group of followers who eventually were involved in the biggest single loss of American life in a deliberate act until the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001. The Jones-led California-based congregation made headlines, shocking the world, when the group moved to Guyana where they created the eponymous infamous Jonestown commune, which in 1978, was the site of the mass murder and suicide via apparent cyanide poisoning, organized by Jones. The event left more than 900 people dead, including over 300 children, U.S. congressman Leo Ryan and many journalists.
Gyllenhaal’s development project was announced by Elaine Frontain Bryant, exec vice president and head of programming for A&E at the Television Critics Association press tour on Wednesday in Pasadena, Calif.
Gyllenhaal is attached as an exec producer, along with his Nine Stories producing partner Riva Marker.
Ti West’s The Sacrament was inspired by the Jim Jones-led massacre.
Emmy Winner Bradley Whitford, pictured above right in Lionsgate’s The Cabin in the Woods, has signed on as co-lead in Get Out, directed by “Key & Peele” co-creator and co-star Jordan Peele, reports Deadline.
The horror-thriller centers on a young African American man who visits his white girlfriend’s family estate.
Whitford will star along with Catherine Keener, Allison Williams, Daniel Kaluuya, Caleb Landry Jones and Lil Rel Howery.
Peele is directing from his own script.
Thrash metal titans Megadeth have released a stream of “Dystopia”, the title track from their upcoming 15th studio album. You can listen to the song below.
We have a review coming for Dystopia courtesy of our own Mr. Disgusting. Talking about the title track, he calls it, “…an epic album highlight.” The review is coming the week of the album’s release, so keep your eyes peeled and your necks relaxed for maximum head banging!
Megadeth will be touring in support of their new album Dystopia, which comes out January 22nd, 2016. All dates can be seen below.
While there are a few films that got me into horror, nothing had a greater impact than HBO’s “Tales From the Crypt,” their anthology television series, hosted by the Crypt Keeper, adapted from various EC Comics stories.
While we still don’t have Blu-ray or HD releases of the series that ran from 1989-96, and spawned two movies, TNT is looking at reviving the franchise with horror maestro M. Night Shyamalan – yes, the director best known for The Sixth Sense and the more recent The Visit and “Wayward Pines” (both of which were awesome).
TNT has ordered a two-hour horror block curated by Shyamalan and led by “Tales From the Crypt,” reports TheWrap.
What exactly does this mean? Well, here’s some info.
While details about the programming block are scarce, the two hours are set to consist of short- and long-form storytelling. The “Tales From the Crypt” segment will be based on the original and feature new stories — all exec produced by Shyamalan and his Binding Edge Pictures partner, Ashwin Rajan. The night is expected to include such elements as “Tales” stories, a serialized one-hour anthology that could potentially be several episodes at the end of a season as well as other yet-to-be determined content.
Set to launch in the fall, TNT is expected to announce additional series to be featured in the horror block in the coming months!
“I couldn’t be more excited to be teaming up with Kevin Reilly, Sarah Aubrey and the entire TNT team in this unique endeavor. To be part of such a beloved brand like ‘Tales From the Crypt,’ something I grew up watching, and to also have the chance to push the boundaries of genre television as a whole, is an inspiring opportunity that I can’t wait to dive into,” stated Shyamalan.
The TNT entry marks the latest incarnation of horror anthology “Tales”. The series originated as a 1950s EC Comics series created by William Gaines. In addition to Shyamalan and Rajan, James D. Stern (Looper, Freeheld) will exec produce via his Endgame Entertainment. Aloris Entertainment’s John Santilli (The English Teacher) and Dan McKinnon (Missing William) will also executive produce. The original comics spawned multiple seasons of the cult classic for HBO and became a worldwide brand.
Yesterday we brought news that Rob Zombie’s upcoming horror film 31 received an R-rating after being hit with the dreaded NC-17 not once but twice. Many people saw it as a victory of horror triumphing but that’s not how things work. Zombie himself stated that edits would need to be made to try and fit the MPAAs strict guidelines, which means we wouldn’t get to see his ultimate vision.
However, when it comes to home video, that’s another story entirely. Zombie today unveiled the poster for 31 on his Facebook page, which obviously drew a lot of attention and praise. But one user asked a very important question: “Will we ever see Zombie cuts of the movies you have had to cut down to get an R Rating?”
Thankfully, Zombie responded and made it very clear that we’ll be seeing the uncut version of 31 on DVD, which I’m assuming also includes Blu-ray (why wouldn’t it?).
We should remember that Zombie’s “director’s cut” editions of both Halloween and H2 were drastically different films from their theatrical releases. Seeing an uncut version of 31 could mean a totally different viewing experience, which is always something to look forward to! It’s just a shame that we won’t get to see the uncut version on the big screen…
In 31, “Five friends are kidnapped on the day before Halloween and are held hostage in a terrifying place named Murder World. While trapped, they must play a violent game called 31, in which the mission is to survive 12 hours against a gang of evil clowns.“
31, which makes its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, stars Sheri Moon Zombie, Malcolm McDowell, Richard Brake, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Jeff Daniel Phillips, and even Meg Foster.
Is anyone even aware that the sci-fi action/thriller The 5th Wave, which follows Chloë Grace Moritz as Cassie on her journeys after a devastating alien attack, is hitting theaters on January 22nd? I swear nobody is talking about it, and I rarely see any advertising for it.
Anyways, we have a bunch of images from the film that’s based upon the young adult novel by Rick Yancey.
“In the new film The 5th Wave, four waves of increasingly deadly attacks have left most of Earth decimated. Against a backdrop of fear and distrust, Cassie (Moritz) is on the run, desperately trying to save her younger brother. As she prepares for the inevitable and lethal 5th wave, Cassie teams up with a young man who may become her final hope – if she can only trust him.”
The 5th Wave stars Chloë Grace-Moretz (Carrie), Liev Schreiber (Scream 2), Nick Robinson, Maika Monroe (It Follows), Maria Bello (The Dark), and Ron Livingston (The Conjuring).
Going on vacation is expensive, and some of us aren’t lucky enough to live in California, Florida, Japan, or even Paris.
The next best – and depressing – thing that can be done is watching videos on YouTube. It’s nothing like physically experiencing a ride, which all have their own unique scents and emotional peaks, but it’s better than nothing, I suppose.
Sometimes I like to browse YouTube for ride-throughs of attractions in other countries because, well, I’m never going. It’s cool to see what’s unique and different to another land, but again, it’s not even close to the real thing.
But things are changing. Technology is evolving. Everything is always getting better. Take 4 and 5K for example. Videos look nasty, especially if you have the correct television or monitor.
I just got a 4K computer screen and the first test was watching this excellent new video taken by SoCal Attractions 360.
What you’ll experience below is a 4K ride-through of Walt Disney World’s “Haunted Mansion” attraction in low light. While there’s no Hat Ghost here, you’re still going to witness the best video ever taken inside the ride, which boast 999 happy haunts.
Seriously, this video is insane, and is so damn good that on a large enough screen you may actually feel as if you’re on the ride. I can’t wait to see what it will look like in 5K, not to mention all of the other attractions to to hit the web in super high resolution. Oh 2016, how I love you.