In a rather interesting piece of news, goth princess Amy Lee of the alt-hard rock outfit Evanescence is releasing an album of new original children’s music via Amazon Original. The 12-track album, titled Dream Too Much, will be released on September 30th for free streaming to Amazon Prime members and will also be available to purchase for those who don’t have Prime.
Lee explains, “This album is very personal to me. My husband and I had our first baby in 2014 and he has been the center of the inspiration for this children’s album. Every song on this album has a story – whether it’s an original for our son based on his favorite things or a song my dad used to sing to me when I was a little girl.”
“Amy Lee’s versatility as an award-winning rock vocalist gave us an opportunity to rethink traditional children’s music and create an album that can be enjoyed by every member of the family,” says Steve Boom, VP of Digital Music for Amazon.
FX is really thinking outside of the box for their promotion of the upcoming third season of “The Strain“. They showed off what the game would look like as a video game, they’ve released a rap song, there’s a coloring book AND they’re playing around with national monuments.
Their new gimmick today is a promotional video that tries to recruit viewers into voluntarily choosing to become a strigoi. Basically, it all sounds good on paper. No diseases, living in dark, cool, quarters, no genitalia…
Wait, a minute. What was that last part?
The transformation has begun.
It can no longer be denied — New York City is rapidly falling to an evil epidemic, and no one is coming to its rescue. Its citizens must fight or die.
Dr. Ephraim Goodweather and his unlikely allies tried to take down the embodiment of this evil — the Master — and failed. Now Eph and Dr. Nora Martinez concentrate on creating a biological weapon to wipe out the creatures, while Abraham Setrakian searches for an ancient book he hopes will reveal the strigoi’s entire history…and possibly a way to kill them. Meanwhile, the Master is out for revenge, unleashing new and even more terrifying breeds of bloodthirsty creatures. They need to find a way to defeat him before the infection spreads too far and becomes irreparable…before they become monsters themselves.
The ensemble cast stars Corey Stoll, David Bradley, Kevin Durand, Jonathan Hyde, Richard Sammel, Natalie Brown, Miguel Gomez, Max Charles, Ruta Gedmintas, Rupert Penry-Jones, Samantha Mathis and Joaquín Cosío.
“The Strain” hails from Showrunner/Executive Producer/Director/Writer Carlton Cuse along with Co-Creators/Executive Producers/Writers Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. Gary Ungar, J. Miles Dale, Bradley Thompson, David Weddle and Regina Corrado also serve as Executive Producers. The Strain is produced by FX Productions.
Back when Criterion announced their September titles I was pretty sure that was going to be their peak for the year. It’s an incredibly strong lineup, one that is nearly impossible to top and yet here we are. Criterion has released their November lineup and it’s pretty absurd. All five titles in the lineup are fantastic, but I’m just focusing on three – Lone Wolf and Cub, Akira Kurosawa’s Dreams and One-Eyed Jacks. All of these are must-have. Check out the full details below!
LONE WOLF AND CUB
Based on the best-selling manga series, the six intensely kinetic Lone Wolf and Cub films elevated chanbara to bloody, new heights. The shogun’s executioner, Itto Ogami (Tomisaburo Wakayama), takes to wandering the countryside as an assassin-along with his infant son Daigoro (Akihiro Tomikawa) and an infinitely weaponized perambulator-helping those he encounters while seeking vengeance for his murdered wife. Delivering stylish thrills and a body count that defies belief, Lone Wolf and Cub is beloved for its brilliantly choreographed and unbelievably violent action sequences as well as for its tender depiction of the bonds between parent and child.
1972-74 * 506 minutes * Color * Monaural * In Japanese with English subtitles * 2.40:1 aspect ratio
SPECIAL EDITION BOX SET FEATURES
- New 2K digital restorations of all six films, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-rays
- High-definition presentation of Shogun Assassin, the 1980 English-dubbed reedit of the first two Lone Wolf and Cub films
- New interview with Kazuo Koike, writer of the Lone Wolf and Cub manga series and screenwriter on five of the films
- Lame d’un père, l’âme d’un sabre, a 2005 documentary about the making of the series
- New interview in which Sensei Yoshimitsu Katsuse discusses and demonstrates the real Suio-ryu sword techniques that inspired those in the manga and films
- New interview with biographer Kazuma Nozawa about filmmaker Kenji Misumi, director of four of the six Lone Wolf and Cub films
- Silent documentary from 1937 about the making of samurai swords, with an optional new ambient score by Ryan Francis
- New English subtitle translations
- PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay and film synopses by Japanese pop culture writer Patrick Macias
AKIRA KUROSAWA’S DREAMS
Unfolding in a series of mythic vignettes, this late work by Akira Kurosawa (Seven Samurai, Ran) brings eight of the beloved director’s own nighttime visions, informed by tales from Japanese folklore, to cinematic life. In a visually sumptuous journey through the master’s unconscious, tales of childlike wonder give way to apocalyptic visions: a young boy stumbles on a fox wedding in a forest; a soldier confronts the ghosts of the war dead; a power-plant meltdown smothers a seaside landscape in radioactive fumes. Interspersed with reflections on the redemptive power of art, including a richly textured tribute to Vincent van Gogh (played by Martin Scorsese), Akira Kurosawa’s Dreams is both a showcase for its maker’s imagination at its most unbridled and a deeply personal lament for a world at the mercy of human ignorance.
1990 * 120 minutes * Color * 2.0 surround * In Japanese with English subtitles * 1.85:1 aspect ratio
SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES
- New, restored 4K digital transfer, supervised by cinematographer Masaharu Ueda, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
- New audio commentary featuring film scholar Stephen Prince
- Making of “Dreams” (1990), a 150-minute documentary shot on-set and directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi
- New interview with assistant director Takashi Koizumi
- New interview with production manager Teruyo Nogami
- Kurosawa’s Way (2011), a fifty-minute documentary by director Akira Kurosawa’s longtime translator Catherine Cadou, featuring interviews with filmmakers Theodoros Angelopoulos, Bernardo Bertolucci, Clint Eastwood, Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Bong Joon-ho, Abbas Kiarostami, Hayao Miyazaki, Martin Scorsese, Julie Taymor, Shin’ya Tsukamoto, and John Woo
- New English subtitle translation
- PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Bilge Ebiri and Kurosawa’s script for a never-filmed ninth dream, introduced by Nogami
A western like no other, One-Eyed Jacks combines the mythological scope of that most American of film genres with the searing naturalism of a performance by Marlon Brando (On the Waterfront, The Fugitive Kind), all suffused with Freudian overtones and male anxiety. In his only directing stint, Brando captures the rugged landscapes of California’s Central Coast and Mexico’s Sonoran Desert in gorgeous widescreen, Technicolor images, and elicits from his fellow actors (including Karl Malden and Pina Pellicer) nuanced improvisational depictions of conflicted characters. Though overwhelmed by its director’s perfectionism and plagued by production setbacks and studio re-editing, One-Eyed Jacks stands as one of Brando’s great achievements, thanks above all to his tortured turn as Rio, a bank robber bent on revenge against his one-time partner in crime, the aptly named Dad Longworth (Malden). Brooding and romantic, Rio marks the last, and perhaps the most tender, of the iconic outsiders Brando imbued with such remarkable intensity throughout his career.
1961 * 141 minutes * Color * Monaural * 1.85:1 aspect ratio
SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES
- New 4K digital restoration, undertaken with the support of The Film Foundation and supervised by filmmakers Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
- New introduction by Scorsese
- Excerpts from voice-recordings director and star Marlon Brando made during the film’s production
- New video essays on the film’s production history and its potent combination of the stage and screen icon Brando with the classic Hollywood western
PLUS: An essay by film critic Howard Hampton
NECA has released images of of their upcoming 2-pack figure set dubbed “Rescuing Newt”. The set includes Ellen Ripley and Newt from Aliens, specifically the part where Ripley goes after Newt, who has just been taken by a Xenomorph to get “impregnated”.
Here’s the really cool part, and I’m going to quote NECA’s words because their passion and excitement is just what is needed, “That iconic image of Ripley rescuing Newt appears on the front flap of the deluxe packaging; open the flap and the figures are posed in the box just as they appear on the poster.”
Here are the specifications:
Ripley stands approximately 7” tall and features a new head sculpt and new deco, both exclusive to this set. She comes with a flamethrower accessory that has a special “fire effect” attachment. Newt stands approximately 5” tall. Both feature authorized likenesses and have over 25 points of articulation for dramatic poses.
You can see images of the figures and the packaging below.
Anytime I talk or write about a horror film from that 90’s I feel like I have to defend that era of genre films. For whatever reason the collective we have come together and decided that a decade’s worth of horror is garbage. The more we look back and re-visit those films, the more I think we realize the decade was actually pretty good to horror fans. Our very own Daniel Baldwin is currently in the midst of Exhumed & Exonerated: The ‘90s Horror Project, a wonderful series shedding light on the lesser loved, but still very good horror movies of the 90’s. I’m not making my way through a specific decade the way Daniel is, but I am going through a bunch of Blu-rays. Every so often, and seemingly more frequently lately, these Blu-rays take me back to the 90’s. Today my journey goes back to 1996 with a trashy piece of werewolf fare known as Bad Moon.
Before actually diving into my review I think it’s worth noting that I had never even heard of Bad Moon, let alone actually seen it. This viewing was my first, meaning everything within the film was completely new to me. And that basically means there’s no nostalgia factor tied into this review.
The film opens with a sex scene in a tent with Ted (Michael Paré) and his girlfriend Marjorie (Johanna Lebovitz). It’s kind of a shocking sex scene as these two are full-blown going at it. This is like late night Cinemax stuff, which is basically borderline soft-core porn minus the borderline. As they start to pick up the intensity a werewolf jumps up rips through their tent and easily pulls Marjorie off of Ted and begins to shred her to pieces. Ted attempts to save her but is slashed across the shoulder and knocked back. While Ted struggles to get to his shotgun the werewolf continues to eat away at Marjorie. Eventually Ted grabs the gun and blows the werewolf’s head off, but at that point it’s too late for Marjorie.
This is quite the opening. We go from a hot and heavy sex scene to an incredibly graphic werewolf attack. This. Is. Bloody. The practical effects in this scene are terrific. Everything looks great. It’s a gory, bloody death and you see a werewolf’s head explode. Nothing is left to the imagination. The werewolf looks a little cheesy, but overall it’s pretty impressive. This scene was quite shocking though. I certainly didn’t expect it to open up like this, but I dug it.
The film then jumps ahead and we meet Janet (Mariel Hemingway) and her young son Brett (Mason Gamble). While outside one day playing with their dog, Thor, a passerby approaches Brett and asks if his mother is home. This stranger purposely agitates Brett’s dog and then pretends to be bitten and threatens Janet with a lawsuit. Janet quickly shuts him down advising that she’s a lawyer. The stranger than angrily wanders off.
This scene totally attempts to trick the audience. The stranger provokes Brett’s dog but even before it gets to that point the dog lets it be known that he does not approve of this guy. Given that this scene takes place immediately after a werewolf attack it plants the idea in your head that maybe this stranger is a werewolf. He’s not but it does make you think that for a bit.
Janet and Brett head out to visit Janet’s brother who turns out to be Ted. Ted is living in a trailer not too far away and we learn that he just recently returned home to this trailer. Janet asks about Marjorie and rather they saying she died in a crazy werewolf attack, because that would be crazy, Ted simply says they broke up. Janet can tell something doesn’t seem quite right with Ted and invites him to move his trailer over to their property and live with them. Ted resists at first but eventually decides to take Janet up on her offer.
Due to the attack at the top of the film Ted is now a werewolf. So while Ted agrees to live with his sister he makes it very clear that he will be spending his evenings alone in his trailer. In reality Ted is heading out to the woods to tie himself up to a tree with hopes that doing so will prevent him from attacking anyone. Ted spends his days researching werewolves desperately trying to find a way to reverse this curse.
Bad Moon is so bizarre. It’s almost like two different movies mashed up as one. The middle portion of the movie is like a family drama that you may see on Lifetime or ABC Family or something along those lines. You have a sister and a brother both going through difficult times in their lives attempting to re-connect and assemble some kind of family unit. All of this family drama is bookended by incredibly graphic violence. The werewolf stuff really goes for it. There’s absolutely no playing it safe.
It terms of story there actually isn’t much that happens. Ted becomes a werewolf, tries to figure out how to reverse it and eventually he’s unable to fight it. Even during the days when he’s just a normal dude the werewolf side of him starts to take over. He becomes meaner and it impacts his relationship with his sister and nephew. While Janet is unable to determine what exactly is bothering Ted, Thor knows and will do anything to protect the family. So the film plays with some interesting dynamics into how it affects his family life, but overall there really isn’t much that happens.
This is a pretty basic and straight forward werewolf movie. And that’s fine because it succeeds with what you want in a trashy werewolf movie. You have some werewolf transformations, you get some violent attacks and you’re good. Just don’t expect anything groundbreaking and you can have a lot of fun with Bad Moon.
The new Blu-ray from Scream Factory looks and sounds fantastic. There’s an HD version of the theatrical cut plus a new director’s approved cut of the film. Both of which look great. Each cut has its own commentary, director Eric Red on the director’s cut and then Red is joined by Paré on the theatrical cut. In addition to the commentaries there are some storyboard sequences, an unrated opening sequence from the director’s first cut of the film (different than both cuts on the Blu-ray) sourced from VHS and a pretty good making-of feature entitled ‘Nature of the Beast.’ The making-of features quite a few interviews with different players from the cast and crew, the most interesting I found to be Steven Johnson on the special make-up effects used in the film.
Bad Moon doesn’t raise the bar on werewolf films but it gets the job done. Plus it’s another solid example of why 90’s horror is far better than people seem to think.
Bad Moon is now available on Blu-ray from Scream Factory.
I’m not sure I’d go as far as to say we’re in the midst of a werewolf renaissance, but the last number of years have seen an uptick in werewolf movies. While not all the films have been great, I certainly welcome any and all werewolf movies into my life. Bubba the Redneck Werewolf was completed two years back but is finally joining this mini werewolf craze on Blu-ray, DVD and VOD October 11 courtesy of MVD Entertainment Group. The below trailer is my first introduction to Bubba, but it appears he’s a 20 year-old comic book character. This looks absurd, for sure, but this looks like it could be a lot of fun. I definitely appreciate the Drive-by Truckers-like song in the trailer. It provides a nice touch. More details and the official press release below the trailer.
Originally published in 1996 by Brass Ball Comics and later by Creature Entertainment, the cult classic comic is a favorite among collectors. Created by Mitch Hyman, who also serves as the film’s executive producer, the original idea of Bubba came from a Halloween costume. “I was invited as an adult to a Halloween party”, said Hyman. “I figured out how to make myself a wolf man. But the hair was so expensive and hard to work with for me at the time. I then figured out that I could get around it by putting on my 1980s trucker’s ball cap and add a pair of overalls. I knew was always clothed. This allowed me to use the hair I did have for the hands and facial appliance and make it work. So the prototype for Bubba was born!” Despite the ridiculous costume of convenience, the idea was born and Bubba made his first appearance in a CFD comics anthology series as a “scarier than hell werewolf”. Over time, Hyman embraced the absurdity of the character after he was presented with the idea of turning “Bubba” into an animated series. “I thought it would be fun to see how Bubba could be more benign. I re-vamped him and took him back to his first origin as a dog catcher, but now he was up against corporate pirates doing animal testing.” And thus the comedy-horror-sci-fi mash up of the character was born and remains to this day.
2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the comic book release and producers Will Phillips and Brendan Jackson Rogers couldn’t be more excited. “Making Bubba The Redneck Werewolf was an awesome opportunity to bring such wacky characters to life! I was a huge fan of the comics and jumped on the opportunity to be a part of the team.” Brendan Jackson Rogers agreed. “Filming was a blast. We were very fortunate to have a great cast and crew and our makeup and special effects team was second to none.” When asked about the comics Brendan continued his enthusiasm, for the property, “The fact that there is so much material from the comics to pull from is awesome. Bubba is literally already a franchise. I personally would love to see Bubba battle other classic monsters (vampires, mummies, Frankenstein’s monster, etc), but to give each of these monsters a southern twist.”
Cinema Factory Inc. presents Terror Toons 3, a shocking, gore-filled genre film, which will be available on iTunes August 26th.
A twisted & disturbing tale starring the “Godfather of Gore” Herschell Gordon Lewis (Blood Feast, Two Thousand Maniacs, Wizard of Gore) and directed by his protégé Joe Castro (The Summer of Massacre, Terror Toons 1 & 2), the film is “not for the weak at heart or those with a sensitive stomach.”
Check out this exclusive splatter trailer that’s loaded with all sorts of insanity.
“Two sisters, Cindy (Beverly Lynne) and Candy (Lizzy Bordon) fight to save the world from destruction by the hands of the insane Dr. Carnage and his henchman, Max Assassin, once again! Meanwhile, corrupt, homicidal cops unjustly serve some law to a group of young teenagers as they fight for their lives in this twisted, gory story. With so many twists and turns, that only Castro can direct, this story is truly wild and completely unpredictable, bizarre, horrifying, and blood-soaked on an entirely new level.”
Special appearances by Brinke Stevens (Teenage Exorcist, Scream Queen Hot Tub Party), Schroeder (Cult Movies Magazine), Robert Rhine (Girls and Corpses Magazine) and Mike Mendez (Big Ass Spider!, Tales of Halloween).
The opening title sequence for Netflix’s “Stranger Things” is so cool, a short documentary on how it was created was made (see below). Combined with the music of Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein, the opening minute is so fascinating that many people claim they don’t skip as they love it so much.
But don’t you wish you could create your own “Stranger Things”-esque title card? Y’know, maybe use it as a wallpaper or a Facebook Header image? Well, my dear readers, have no fear because makeitstranger.com is here to offer you just that! Simply type in whatever phrase you want (alas, no spaces allowed), and then hit ‘Strangify’ and you’re all set to go!
Below are a few examples I pulled off the top of my head. If you want to create your own, just click the link above and have fun!
Swiss Army Man allegedly set a record for the number of walkouts when it premiered at Sundance. Our very own Fred Topel was not one to walk out. In fact he went as far as to say this is what he loves movies for. Don’t believe me? Read his review. I haven’t seen the film yet, but it’s be very high up on my list of films to see soon. Now that Lionsgate has announced a Blu-ray and DVD release date of October 4th, I know just when I’ll be seeing it. Now if you’ll excuse me I need to count down the days until October 4th.
Hank (Paul Dano) is stranded on a deserted island, having given up all hope of ever making it home again. But one day everything changes when a corpse named Manny (Daniel Radcliffe) washes up onshore. The two become fast friends, and ultimately go on an epic adventure that will bring Hank back to the woman of his dreams.
BLU-RAY/DVD SPECIAL FEATURES
·Q&A with Filmmakers
·“Swiss Army Man: Behind the Scenes” Featurette
·“Making of Manny” Featurette
Halloween costume goals abound in “Stranger Things”.
As reflected by all the incredible “Stranger Things” fan art we recently showed you, the fanbase for Netflix’s latest hit series is already massive, which is pretty crazy considering the show only hit the streaming service one month ago. The entire world, it seems, is obsessed with everything about the Duffer Brothers’ eight-episode love letter to ’80s nostalgia, and we’ve got a strong feeling that Halloween 2016 is going to be dominated by costumes of already beloved characters like Eleven, Mike, Dustin, and of course, the so-called Demogorgon.
But why wait until Halloween?!
At conventions across the country, as well as here on the internet, fans have already begun whipping up and showing off their best Stranger Things cosplay, and that makes us smile so wide that it honestly kind of hurts. Both children and adults alike have been celebrating Halloween early with their kickass Stranger Things costumes, and we wanted to show off our favorites.
If you’ve come across any that we missed, be sure to let us know!
Image Credit: Aileen Cosplay
Image Credit: Aileen Cosplay
Image Credit: Aileen Cosplay
Image Credit: Aileen Cosplay
Image Credit: Aileen Cosplay
Image Credit: Graveyard Sister
Image Credit: Chaotic Victory
Image Credit: Courtney Doom
Image Credit: Coyote King
Image Credit: Goggles94
Image Credit: Imgur
Image Credit: Trash Mud Quinn
Image Credit: Sassy Little Bee
And just for fun… Barbie as Barb!
Image Credit: A Doll World After All
Several days ago, we posted about Romanian metal band Negură Bunget‘s new album ZI, which is the second album in their “Transylvanian Trilogy”. Coming out September 30th via Prophecy Productions, the album is the follow-up to 2015’s Tau.
Direct from the official press release, the band has, “…further immersed itself in the traditions and practices of local Transylvanian inhabitants, exploring their connection with nature, and the way this relationship has shaped spiritual horizons. Within this framework, ‘ZI’ closely examines the core of the most important traditions and rituals connected with the well-being of this community. Life events such as funeral ceremonies, soil tillage, and human growth and evolution (i.e. youth to teen to man to warrior, through to outcast) are spotlighted, in what is undoubtedly some of the most heady, thinking-man’s metal produced in recent memory.”
To give you a taste of what’s to come, we’ve got the exclusive video premiere for the opening track “Tul-ni-ca-rind”, which slowly builds through beautiful folk into an aggressive attack of chaos and majesty.
You can pre-order the album via Prophecy.
Drummer Gabriel ‘Negru’ Mafa tells Bloody-Disgusting:
‘Tul-ni-ca-rind’ is a song about sending a message; a message between places, between worlds, between different states of conscience. It all starts from a traditional Romanian instrument called tulnic (horn), which is still being used in the traditional communities as a signaling tool, but also quite a lot as part of funeral ceremonies.
Based on this tradition, and on the overall local funeral ceremonies, where there’s a complex connection between the world of the living and the one of the dead, with actions reflecting between worlds, we developed the song as a kind of language between the natural and spiritual dimension, between ceremonies, rituals and silence.
Most of our songs can hardly be explained, and this one makes no exception. Although it starts from some concrete elements, ‘Tul-ni-ca-rind’ moves a lot further into unknown and mystery, where death is not the end, but merely a transition into another dimension.
2.) Gradina Stelelor
3.) Brazda Da Foc
4.) Baciu Mosneag
5.) Stanciu Gruiul
6.) Marea Cea Mare
The Metal Gear franchise began back in 1987 with the Konami NES game that was directed and designed by Hideo Kojima, a man who has become an icon in the video game world. Adding stealth to the action/adventure genre, the series quickly became the inspiration for countless clones, all who tried to emulate the series’ unique mannerisms but, for many fans, never really matching up. Even with some stumbles here and there, fans are in agreement that the storyline presented throughout the games is complex, thrilling, and wholly engaging.
Now, before I get into Metal Gear Survive, the first post-Kojima Konami entry in the series, I think we need to remember a few events. Back in March of 2015, there were reports that Kojima was leaving Konami and that the fate of his current title Silent Hills was uncertain. Then there was the kerfuffle at the 2015 The Games Awards, where Konami didn’t let Kojima accept his awards. This drew huge amounts of ire and severely damaged Konami’s reputation. Finally, Kojima’s split with Konami became official at the end of last year when he announced that he would be forming his own studio. It is there that he’s working on Death Stranding, which will be, “…a new “genre”.” With that, we’re now up-to-date on the current history of Konami and Kojima.
Okay, with all of that out of the way, let’s talk about the trailer for Metal Gear Survive. The game is being called a, “…co-op survival game set in an alternate universe,” and it seemingly involves zombies, or some sort of similar monstrous denizen. Due to this shift in tone, it seems that fans are not taking kindly to this development. In fact, the reaction is outright hostile.
Remember how Ghostbusters had that crazy like/dislike ratio where the dislikes MASSIVELY outweighed the likes? Yeah, the same thing is happening here. As of this post, the likes are at just over 4,000 while the dislikes are clobbering them at over 26,600.
One commenter stated, “Im [sic] honestly just confused as to who this game was made for and how it makes literally any sense at all.” Another joked, “the new resident evil looks pretty crazy“. Yet another pointed out that in the beginning of the trailer, Snake and the crew on the helicopter were, “…getting the hell away from the sinking ship that is Konami“.
Personally, I think the trailer looks gorgeous and there are some interesting mechanics going on. However, putting it in the Metal Gear universe is a bold move that, for all I can tell, is simply meant to sell more copies. Obviously, it’s better to add to an existing popular franchise than to take a risk with a brand new IP but that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.
Check out the trailer below and let me know what you think!
If you caught tonight’s season (or possibly series) finale of MTV’s Scream, then you now know that the person who has been tormenting our attractive cast of teenagers all season was none other than Kieran Wilcox (Amadeus Serafini), who has been dating lead character Emma Duval for the past two seasons. Bloody Disgusting had a chance to chat with Serafini* about Kieran’s major revelation, potential plot threads for season three and the rumored Halloween special.
One thing viewers may not realize about television production is that the actors are usually only given a few episodes to learn about major plot twists in the shows they star in. For example, Amelia Rose Blair (Piper) didn’t find out she was the killer until the last day of shooting episode 6 of the 10-episode first season. Serafini was given significantly less time. “I didn’t find out I was the killer until about a week or two before shooting the finale,” he said. “It was before our table read for the episode that I was told I was the killer and then everyone else in the cast found out at the table read.” This of course means that it was never Serafini in the Brandon James mask. “It was the stunt guy.” he said. “It wasn’t me!”
This is an interesting conundrum that the people behind the show put themselves in. On one hand, do they tell the actor ahead of time and risk said actor integrating some killer traits into their performance? Or do they hide the fact from the actor until the 11th hour to maintain an air of mystery. There are pros and cons to both options. As many viewers know, Kieran’s identity as the killer wasn’t exactly a well-kept secret (check out these photos that were released in the days leading up to the finale), so leaving the actor out of the loop may have been all for naught.
Serafini and the rest of the cast didn’t seem to know what to think. “Honestly I didn’t know who Piper’s accomplice might be,” Serafini said. “We all went over it so many times. There were so many different iterations and script changes. As actors we had a lot of different versions bumping around in our brains, but nothing that truly implicated anyone specifically. Eli and Stavo seemed suspect, but they were being made creepy in an exaggerated way.” He is right in that regard. Scream tried so hard to make you think Stavo was the killer that it would have been incredibly underwhelming had he been revealed to be the killer. Some may say the same thing about Kieran’s reveal, but I maintain that Scream did such a good job at making everyone look like a suspect that the phrase “It was so obvious” would have been tossed around no matter which character turned out to be the killer. Hell, people even thought that the series was going to pull a High Tension and make Emma the killer!
You may recall that Kieran was one of the prime suspects in the first season of the show, at least until Piper was unmasked. Many fans (myself included) did think that Kieran was the killer. “I thought I might have been too,” Serafini said. “And then it was Piper and I just assumed that I was doomed after that.” When asked if he thinks it was he or Piper who killed his dad, Serafini quipped, “I think Kieran did it.” Unless we get a third season with some flashbacks, it’s doubtful we’ll ever know for sure.
What sets the finale apart from the first season finale (and even the Scream films) is that the killer lives to see another day. Emma spares Kieran’s life and he gets sent to jail, where a phone call from the real (and very much alive) Brandon James is waiting for him. While a third season is not confirmed, I asked Serafini what he thought might be in store for Kieran in the potential third season. “I don’t know what’s going to happen to him. I imagine he will be locked up all season. I think Season 3 would be nice in that we may be able to see some flashbacks showing how Kieran was involved in some of the earlier murders.”
As I mentioned in my review of the episode, the finale had many homages to the Scream films. One particular line Serafini delivered is an homage to one of my personal favorites from the red-headed stepchild in the series: Scream 3. In the finale, Kieran says the following to Emma about Eli: “He was obsessed with that girl and now he’s obsessed with you!” This is, of course, a direct reference to Parker Posey’s infamous line from the second sequel. It’s a subtle nod to the film, but it gets the job done. “I’m so glad you picked up on that,” Serafini said. “The writers have worked really hard to incorporate little homages throughout the whole season.”
I concluded the interview by bringing up the rumor that has spread like wildfire over the past week or so on public forums (seriously, I’ve gotten several Tweets and Instagram messages from fans asking about it because it’s all over Reddit). This is the rumor that there will be a two-part Halloween special airing in October.* Unfortunately, Serafini confirms that it is just a rumor. “I don’t know anything about it,” he said. “Nobody knows anything. There might be information later on, but I’m telling you that nobody knows anything.” Of course, he could be sworn to secrecy. My theory is that it is happening and will serve as a series finale for Scream, but that’s just my prediction.
*UPDATE: The Halloween special was confirmed after the finale aired last night. This interview took place on Monday. So don’t I feel silly for buying into Serafini’s lies?
What were your thoughts on the second season finale of MTV’s Scream? Did you think the season was better than the first? Or do you think the series should die a painful death? Let us know in the comments below!
Woolley was an early contributor to the industrial music group Die Warzau, which featured Chris Vrenna (ex-Nine Inch Nails, Tweaker), and he joined Nine Inch Nails in 1991 to join the group for Lollapalooza’s first year. He remained with the group through 1994, when the band was touring in support of The Downward Spiral.
Van Buren writes, “James worked hard and played hard with NIN. He brought coolness to playing keyboards, which isn’t as easy to do as playing guitar or drums. Those years were truly magical and quite an adventure.”
As much as she recognizes how important those years were to Woolley, she also makes it clear that his love for family was his priority. “Though our marriage ended, James always stayed close to his children. He loved being a father. Because of significant neck and spine injuries, he wasn’t capable of doing a lot of physical activities with them, but he loved sitting down to paint, or teach piano, or just look at nature. He passed his amazing musical and artistic talents to all three children.”
No cause of death is known as of now. We send our condolences to his friends and family in this difficult time.
“Ash vs Evil Dead,” the 10-episode half-hour STARZ Original series, is the long-awaited follow-up to the classic horror film The Evil Dead. The series is executive produced by Sam Raimi (The Evil Dead, The Grudge), Rob Tapert (The Evil Dead, The Grudge), and Bruce Campbell (“Burn Notice,” Oz the Great and Powerful, The Evil Dead, Evil Dead II, Army of Darkness), the original filmmakers, and Craig DiGregorio who serves as executive producer and showrunner. It arrives on Blu-ray and DVD August 23, 2016.
Bloody Disgusting is giving away an “Ash vs Evil Dead” prize pack, with the Grand Prize winner taking home a t-shirt, hat, lunchbox, book, an Axe pen, button, shotgun shell shot glass, chainsaw wine stopper, and a copy of the Blu-ray. (4) runner up prizes will score the Blu-ray and chainsaw wine stopper.
TO ENTER: Put ASH VS EVIL DEAD in the subject line and then send your FULL NAME and ADDRESS to firstname.lastname@example.org. Winners chosen at random. No PO Boxes. U.S. only.
“Campbell reprises his role as Ash, the stock boy, aging lothario and chainsaw-handed monster hunter who has spent the last 30 years avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the Evil Dead. When a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind, Ash is finally forced to face his demons – personal and literal. Destiny, it turns out, has no plans to release the unlikely hero from its “Evil” grip. ”
The cast also includes Lucy Lawless as Ruby (“Parks and Recreation,” “Spartacus” franchise, “Battlestar Galactica,” “Xena: Warrior Princess”), a mysterious figure who believes Ash is the cause of the Evil outbreaks, Ray Santiago as Pablo Simon Bolivar (In Time, “Raising Hope,” “Dexter,” Meet the Fockers), an idealistic immigrant who becomes Ash’s loyal sidekick, Dana DeLorenzo as Kelly Maxwell (“Impress Me,” A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas), a moody wild child trying to outrun her past and Jill Marie Jones as Amanda Fisher (“Sleepy Hollow,” “Girlfriends”), a disgraced Michigan State Trooper set to find our anti-hero Ash and prove his responsibility in the grisly murder of her partner.
IFC Midnight has taken U.S. rights to director Anne Hamilton’s feature debut, American Fable, which debuted at SXSW in March, writes THR .
Here’s what Trace wrote about the film out of the SXSW premiere:
My day job overtook my morning again, but mid-afternoon saw me at a screening for Anne Hamiton’s debut feature ‘American Fable’. I liked it well enough, but it didn’t leave much of an impression. It clearly drew a lot of inspiration from Guillermo del Toro’s ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’, as it tells the tale of an 11-year-old girl named Gitty who discovers that her father is hiding a wealthy man in her family’s silo in order to save their struggling farm, she is forced to choose between saving the man’s life or protecting her family from the consequences of their actions. It’s a 3/5 for me (beautifully shot with some strong performances, but the script leaves a lot to be desired), but it didn’t really have any horror elements so I opted not to review it.
American Fable is set in the 1980s rural Midwest where an imaginative girl named Gitty is forced to choose between protecting her family’s secret and saving a man’s life. Newcomer Peyton Kennedy plays Gitty, and the film also stars Kip Pardue, Richard Schiff, Gavin Macintosh, Rusty Schwimmer, Zuleikha Robinson and Marci Miller.
IFC Midnight plans to release the fairytale thriller in winter 2017.
“For my first feature, I wanted to pay tribute to where I grew up and the films I loved as a kid,” Hamilton said Tuesday in a statement. “This movie has been a labor of love, and I’m delighted that it has found a home with IFC Midnight because they showed a deep appreciation of the visuals of the storytelling. I can’t wait for people to see American Fable on the big screen.”
Kishori Rajan and Hamilton produced, while Kevin Harrington executive produced.
The latest BTS video for Sony’s upcoming horror/thriller Don’t Breathe focuses on something that is very near and dear to my heart: the sound design and music. Using interviews with writer/director Fede Alvarez and composer Roque Banos, we get a glimpse into what it takes to create the unsettling score, which uses non-traditional instruments to make it seem like “…the house was singing.” It’s a fascinating video and at less than two minutes I highly recommend giving it a watch because it’s definitely got no spoilers and it tackles something that is going to be an integral part of the experience.
“Three teens who get away with perfectly planned home robberies have set their sights on one last payout that will get them out of crime forever. Their target: a reclusive blind man with millions of dollars in hiding. But as soon as they break into his home, the tables are turned and they find themselves trapped and fighting for survival against a psychopath with secrets of his own.”
Don’t Breathe stars Jane Levy, Daniel Zovatto, Stephen Lang, and Dylan Minnette. It was written by Fede Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues with Alvarez directing. The film is produced by Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert for Ghost House Pictures. J.R. Young, Nathan Kahane, Joe Drake and Erin Westerman executive produce.
Don’t Breathe opens on August 26th.
“Hello Kieran. Who told you you could wear my mask?”
– Brandon James
After all that, it was Kieran. He was Piper’s accomplice in the first season and he was the sole killer this season. About 90% of you in the comments were right. I chose not to believe it because it seemed too obvious (especially when MTV releases images like this one ahead of the finale’s release), but I was wrong. While the end result may have been a bit predictable, the episode as a whole was much better than most of the episodes in the latter half of the season and was on par with last year’s finale.
It would be easy to say that Kieran’s reveal was disappointing, but the truth is that Scream made it so that any character could have reasonably been the killer (with the exception of maybe Brooke and/or Noah). Because of this, the reveal was bound to be disappointing no matter what. Think about it: had Gustavo, Eli, Emma, Audrey, Aunt Tina, Ms. Lang, Acosta, or even Maggie been the killer, would anyone be saying “I didn’t see that coming.”? Okay maybe Maggie would have been a surprise, but the point is that even though Kieran’s reveal could be seen as predictable it would have been equally as predictable had it been any other character. That is the problem inherent to the whodunit sub-genre though. When you think about it, it actually is sort of clever because it almost makes you want to go back and watch Amadeus Serrafini’s scenes from the first season to see how he behaves around all of the other characters (especially his dad). Maybe that’s why Kieran has always been so dull and lifeless for the past two seasons. He was trying to stay under the radar. As bland as Serrafini has been for these two seasons, he did a commendable job channeling his inner Skeet Ulrich for his unmasking.
Whether or not the explanation holds up is up to the viewer. We are meant to believe that Kieran and Piper dating before he came to town and that Eli (RIP) knew he was crazy the whole time (maybe not a killer, but certainly crazy). There are plenty of questions one may have about it. For example, why didn’t Eli ever tell Emma about all of the shit that Kieran pulled back home? We he worried that she wouldn’t believe him? At the very least it would have planted the seed in her head that would force her to start looking into him, but that’s neither here nor there at this point.
The most exciting prospect of Kieran being the killer isn’t what takes place in “When a Stranger Calls”, but rather what it means for the show going forward (if it goes forward). Having Emma spare his life and send him to prison is one of the boldest (and smartest) moves the series has ever done. First, it adds an extra dimension that Kieran that the character so desperately needed. Since he’s still alive, Serrafini will finally get the opportunity to show off the acting chops that Scream‘s writers have prevented him from showing in the past. Second, it actually makes you root for Emma. Sidney Prescott killed (or had a hand in killing) every single Ghost Face that came after her. She never spared one. It’s not that she should have, but having Scream: The Series’s final girl make a different decision with her Ghost Face is the most compelling thing Emma has ever done. Her journey has been a rocky one this season and her sparing Kieran was her way of showing she was moving on.
There was so much that happened before the reveal though, as we got a major set piece in the middle of the episode The entire sequence inside the movie theater was Scream at its best. We saw its five main characters working together, barricading themselves in the theater in order to catch the killer, not realizing it was one of their own. Of course, it would have helped matters if they didn’t keep splitting up like the Scooby Gang (Seriously, have they never seen a horror movie? Noah should know better.), but it was a great scene nonetheless full of suspense and (here’s the key here) fun. Too often Scream takes itself so seriously that it’s a breath of fresh air when it just has fun with its premise. Scream‘s main weakness is that it falls too often on the melodramatic side of the dramatic spectrum, but it takes itself far too seriously for that to work. If it were a better show this would be alright, but the fact of the matter is that Scream is a teen soap opera. It doesn’t need to be brooding. It needs to be entertaining. This entire sequence was golden. It even nailed the suspense and shock of the situation. I can’t be the only one who gasped out loud when Brooke got stabbed, right?
We also got some actual emotion from Santiago Segura’s Gustavo. ‘Stavo (yes, I’ll finally start calling him that), has been nothing more than a red herring all season. It was painfully obvious that he was never going to be the killer because there were too many signs saying that he was the killer. Watching him break down while Brooke was in surgery was something that needed to happen to his character, especially if he is going to be sticking around next season, especially since it looks like Acosta adopted Brooke.
“When a Stranger Calls” is not a perfect episode of television. No one would accuse any episode of Scream of being perfect, but it is Scream at its best so far. The initial reveal of Kieran may be disappointing at first, and that is understandable. I took a few days to let it sit with me before I wrote this review. I watched the episode again to let it sink in. If anything, this episode shows such promise for where the writers could take Season 3 (if we get one) with the return of Brandon James. Let’s just hope they don’t botch that plot development liked the botched Audrey’s this season. Bring on Season 3! #RenewMTVScream
- My interview with Amadeus Serafini (Kieran) will be posted tomorrow morning. Be sure to check back for it!
- Tons of references to the Scream films tonight. A few of my favorites:
- Kieran being the killer is an homage to Billy being the killer in Scream (Kieran’s hair even looked like Billy’s hair).
- “Piper taught me that killing people is way more fun than therapy” is mighty similar to this line from Bitch # 1 in Scream.
- The car crash in the beginning featured a shot of the cop car scraping a barrier just like the cop car in Scream 2 scraped another car.
- Kieran’s line “He was obsessed with that girl and now he’s obsessed with you!” is highly reminiscent of this Parker Posey line in Scream 3.
- The entire bit with Brooke not letting Gustavo into the theater mirrored the scene where Kirby wouldn’t let Charlie in the house in Scream 4. It even borrowed some dialogue and blocking from that scene.
- I may be one or two off, but I believe the body count this season was 7 (Jake, Eddie the hotel clerk, Branson, Zoe, Mayor Maddox, the cop driving Audrey and Emma, and Eli).
- If that cop would have just driven straight into the killer all of their problems would have been solved. That would have been a nice twist, wouldn’t it?
- Is it just me, or does it sound like the killer has some nasal congestion issues sometimes?
- Ms. Lang was pretty pointless, wasn’t she? Maybe she’ll stick around next season and give us Scream’s version of Scream 2‘s post-fame Gale Weathers. We did see her writing her book, after all.
- Noah is a boxers guy. Who knew?
- “Mmmmm if it isn’t daddy’s little girl.”
- “You know half of those are fake, right?” “Yeah, well, the other half are real.”
- “Hey, I heard Brooke’s hurt. She okay?” – SOUND MORE DISTRESSED WHEN YOU ASK SOMETHING LIKE THAT STAVO.
- Emma is a terrible shot. Kieran’s body practically took up the entire stairway and she didn’t hit him once.
- Plenty of plot holes in the Kieran reveal, but I want to know why he didn’t just shoot Audrey. He had multiple opportunities to after his cover was blown.
- Here is a summary of all of my episode grades for Season 2 of Scream. Perhaps I was too forgiving of all of its flaws (and there are many), but at the end of the day I do enjoy the series for what it is. It averages out to a 3.25/5, so I’ll round it up to a 3.5.
- That’s it for Season 2 of Scream everyone! It’s been a rocky road, but I’ve had a lot of fun with this season. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my reviews as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them.
Earlier this week was the 13th anniversary of Ronnie Yu’s Freddy vs Jason, the film that pitted two horror giants against each other. The movie, while seen as hokey to some, is a movie I absolutely adore. It was everything I was looking for in a film like this. I didn’t expect subtlety nor did I expect an intricately woven storyline that was full of lore. What it DID offer was a bunch of kills and, ultimately, two icons going toe-to-toe in a wildly entertaining fight sequence.
But even I can admit that being enemies for so long must get exhausting for the two. After all, there comes a time when you just have to put aside your differences and find your common interests, of which both Freddy and Jason have many. Both had rough childhoods, both are disfigured, and both love killing teenagers. To paraphrase Step Brothers, they should just become best friends.
A.V. Club found artist Rafael Koff, who obviously feels the same way as he drew some adorable illustrations of Freddy and Jason spending time together as best friends. Sometimes the past needs to be forgotten and a new foundation put into the ground. These two are just going to have to lay it down amongst all the bodies they’ve amassed, which is rather beautiful in its own way.
Sludge rock band Helms Alee have released a new track from their upcoming album Stillicide. Dubbed “Galloping Mind Fuk”, the song is a sub-3 minute blast of intense musicality that the band is known for. There’s also a fucking SICK syncopated lyrical presentation from band members Dana James and Hozoji Margullis, the latter of whom we interviewed recently.
I’ve made my love of the band known ever since I was turned onto their 2014 album Sleepwalking Sailors, which is still one of the best albums I’ve heard this decade. The band’s blend of intensely thick and aggressive distortion with some stunning technicality and melody makes them truly stand out amongst their peers. I’m extremely eager for their new album!
Check out the new track below, courtesy of MetalInjection.net. Oh, and to keep you entertained, I’ve also included the two other tracks from Stillicide that have been released. Enjoy!
HELMS ALEE with MELVINS unless noted *
Aug 16 Lawrence, KS – The Bottleneck
Aug 17 St. Louis, MO – The Firebird
Aug 18 Louisville, KY – Headliners Music Hall
Aug 19 Indianapolis, IN – The Vogue Theatre
Aug 20 Grand Rapids, MI – The Pyramid Scheme
Aug 22 Columbus, OH – A&R Music Bar
Aug 23 Pittsburgh, PA – Rex Theater
Aug 24 Buffalo, NY – Iron Works –
Aug 26 Syracuse, NY – The Westcott Theater
Aug 27 Northampton, MA – Pearl Street
Aug 28 Hamden, CT – The Ballroom at The Outer Space
Aug 29 Providence, RI – Fete Ballroom
Aug 31 Baltimore, MD – Ottobar
Sep 01 Carrboro, NC – Cat’s Cradle
Sep 02 Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter *
Sep 05 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club
Sep 06 Charlotte, NC – Amos’ Southend
Sep 07 Charleston, SC – Music Farm
Sep 08 Jacksonville, FL – Jack Rabbits
Sep 10 Baton Rouge, LA – Spanish Moon
Sep 11 Jackson, MS – Duling Hall
Sep 12 Memphis, TN – Hi-Tone
Sep 13 Little Rock, AR – Metroplex
Sep 14 Tulsa, OK – Cain’s Ballroom
Sep 15 Oklahoma City, OK – The ACM @ UCO Performance Lab
Sep 16 Norman, OK – Opolis
Sep 17 Austin, TX – The Sidewinder
Sep 18 San Antonio, TX – Paper Tiger
Sep 20 El Paso, TX – Lowbrow Palace
Sep 21 Tucson, AZ – Club Congress
HELMS ALEE with RUSSIAN CIRCLES
Sep 23-24 Cincinnati, OH @ Midpoint Music Fest
Sep 25 Detroit, MI – El Club
Sep 26 Toronto, ON – Lee’s Palace
Sep 28 Cambridge, MA – The Sinclair
Sep 29 Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer
Sep 30 Brooklyn, NY – Warsaw
Oct 01 Washington, DC – Rock & Roll Hotel
Oct 02 Durham, NC – Motorco Music Hall
Oct 04 Atlanta, GA – Aisle 5
Oct 05 Birmingham, AL – Saturn
Oct 06 Baton Rouge, LA – Spanish Moon
Oct 07 Houston, TX – Warehouse Live Studio
Oct 08 Austin, TX – Barracuda
Oct 09 Dallas, TX – RBC
Oct 11 Phoenix, AZ – Last Exit
Oct 12 Los Angeles, CA – Complex
Oct 13 San Francisco, CA – Hemlock Tavern
Nov 22 Portland, OR – Lola’s
Nov 23 Seattle, WA – The Crocodile