The found footage fear-fest Delivery: The Beast Within (review) (or Delivery, as it was known in the UK) is getting set to haunt you on home video, and we have an exclusive clip to get you ready!
Delivery: The Beast Within terrifies on DVD and digital HD September 30 from Cinedigm and The Collective.
Blending found footage and reality show genres, the nightmarish feature that is “so intense, so frightening, and so real” (Ain’t It Cool News) marks the directorial debut of Brian Netto, who also co-wrote the film with producer Adam Schindler, and is “bolstered by outstanding performances by its two leads” (IndieWire), Laurel Vail and Danny Barclay.
Delivery: The Beast Within follows Kyle (Barclay) and Rachel Massy (Vail), a young couple who agree to document their first pregnancy for a new reality show. The family begins to unravel when the cameras capture a series of unexplained events, leading Rachel to believe that a malicious spirit has possessed their unborn child. After production is abandoned, a first-hand account of the tragic, and possibly supernatural, story is told through the show’s unaired footage and testimonials from friends, family, and crew members.
Delivery: The Beast Within tells the story of Kyle and Rachel Massy, a young couple who agree to document their first pregnancy for a popular reality show. During the production, following a series of disturbing paranormal events, Rachel begins to believe that a powerful force of evil has possessed their unborn child. Set against the backdrop of never-before-seen footage deemed too shocking for air, Rachel and Kyle’s family and friends recount the terrifying ordeal that’s remained a carefully guarded secret – until now.
- “The Birth of Delivery” – Nine-minute making-of featurette
- Audio Commentary with Actors Laurel Vail and Danny Barclay, Producer Adam Schindler, and Director Brian Netto
- Audio Commentary with Composer Daniel Cossu, Supervising Sound Editor Darin Heinis, Producer Adam Schindler, and Director Brian Netto
The post Exclusive Delivery: The Beast Within Clip Delivered! appeared first on Dread Central.
Directed by Marc Carrete
Distributed by IFC Midnight
I had almost given up hope on the interminable sinking ship of “possession and exorcism” films that have surrounded the horror aficionado as of the last few years and have begun to strangle us with their less-than-frightening depictions of Satanic overtakings (yawn). In my completely dysfunctional opinion, The Exorcist is and forever will be the benchmark for possession films, no argument about it, and any other movie that attempts to piggyback its creative refinement is sorely mistaken.
With that being said, let’s move on to a film that has (slightly) restored my faith in the demonic soul-stealing category of movie-making.
Director Marc Carrete, who before had only worked on short films, now takes the full-feature jump into the deep end with Asmodexia, a film about a man (Marco) named Eloy de Palma, who back in the day used to preside over an oddball sect-like group of holy worshipers and now travels around Barcelona, Spain, with his granddaughter, Alba (Pons), attempting to rid different helpless souls of the Satanic evil that has overcome them. He believes this to be the work of the Devil himself, and the afflicted are merely those who have not given their all to the man upstairs. While many of his works are successful to some degree, he relies heavily on the aid of his granddaughter, as she seems to have a special gift for dealing with these tormented individuals.
All of the previously mentioned instances are also set against the backdrop of the predicted (however failed) Mayan apocalypse of 2012, and it looks as if the possession problem has manifested into a sort of virus, literally affecting people down the line for miles and miles. The area, which normally has cooler than cool temps at the particular time of year (December), is heating up at a record pace, seemingly frying everyone in sight, whether it be on a street corner or in the bowels of a mental institution. As the end of days draws closer, the threat of a complete uprising of infernal entities is beginning to seem like a reality, and Eloy uses tactics that he’d thought he’d never have to employ in order to cease the sinister ushering in of a new day.
The film at times gets stuck in the mud, and its plot has the tendency to stray into uncharted (and confusing) territory, but it’s not long before we are dawn to a conclusion that will shock and surprise many of its watchers. It’s not an overly scary movie – there are some decent makeup jobs that warrant a little shake – but the premise will chill you to the bone. When all is said and done and the credits have rolled, Asmodexia completes its rather short 81-minute jaunt like a professional and delivers the goods for fans of apocalyptic-themed photoplay.
Guzheng player Michelle Kwan has uploaded a video that shows her covering Metallica‘s infamous track “One”, which comes from their 1988 album …And Justice For All. The cover is pretty amazing, especially when she cranks on the distortion and rips through the guitar solo.
We featured Michelle in the past with her cover of Guns N Roses‘ “Sweet Child O’ Mine”, which you can check out here.
Looking at the video, it makes me wish that relatively unheard instruments were used more frequently in popular music. It would add such a level of depth and uniqueness. Alas, we have the same tones and sounds over and over again.
Anyways, enough of me being maudlin. Check out this great cover below!
Australian dark synth group The Night Terrors were recently commissioned to compose an album using the southern hemisphere’s largest grand pipe organ. The result is Pavor Nocturnus, an album that will be released this Halloween via Twisted Nerve Australia (pre-order here).
A composition for Grand Organ, Theremin, analogue electronics and percussion is an inferno of haunting Theremin-led post-prog and dark cosmic dance. Quiet drops of sepulchral voltage and cacophonous whirls of intricate acoustic phenomena intermingle to prise open the maddening space between sentience and expiration. The Night Terrors create a euphorically terrifying dream sequence, just perfect for Halloween. Their most frightening and beautiful recording to date.
Below is a video of their track “Megafauna”, which showcases just how massively large the pipe organ is. Seriously, it’s a monstrosity, a looming piece of pipes and machinery that evokes some truly spine-tingling sounds.
The band also conducted a short interview with Noisey.
Have you got your tickets for the Titty Twister? Whaddya mean “no”?!? Well, you just might have some soon as to celebrate the release of From Dusk Till Dawn Season One, out on DVD across the UK on 22nd September 2014, we have a copy up for grabs!
From Dusk Till Dawn Season One has more excitement and a compelling back story as the show takes us up-close and personal with the vicious vampires from the 1996 film and ramps up the gore and tension whilst keeping the darkly comical tone set by the Rodriguez/Tarantino original.
Cult-classic From Dusk Till Dawn comes to the small screen with bigger action, more gore and an expanded look at the film’s characters as they embark on a frightening journey into the depths of the Titty Twister.
To be in with a chance of winning, just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org including your FULL NAME AND POSTAL ADDRESS. We’ll take care of the rest, so you can sit back and dream of all the different kinds of… well, y’know… that the Titty Twister has to offer!
Please note that this competition is open only to UK residents and will end at 12:01 AM PT, 8 October 2014.
From Dusk Till Dawn Season One is centered around bank robber, Seth Gecko (Cotrona) and his violent, unpredictable brother, Richard “Richie” Gecko (Holtz), who are wanted by the FBI and Texas Rangers Earl McGraw (Johnson) with his deputy Freddie Gonzalez (Garcia) after a bank heist leaves several people dead.
While on the run to Mexico, Seth and Richie encounter former pastor Jacob Fuller (Patrick) and his family, whom they take hostage. Using the family RV to cross the border, chaos ensues when the group detours to a strip club that is populated by vampires. They are forced to fight until dawn in order to get out alive.
The series deepens the tone and expands the storyline of the film, adds new characters and backstories, and explores the Mesoamerican mythology behind the creatures inside the club.
The post UK Readers: Win From Dusk Till Dawn Season 1 on DVD! appeared first on Dread Central.
Directed by Greg Nicotero, Guy Ferland, Dan Sackheim, Tricia Brock and others.
Distributed by Entertainment One
As the dust settles around what was formerly Season 3’s Woodbury, our gang of prison-dwelling protagonists begin the fourth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead working hard to keep their community ticking over as efficiently as possible. While Daryl (Reedus) leads the occasional runs into nearby zombie-infested towns in search of provisions, Carol (Melissa McBride) teaches the children the finer points of literature and, when the other adults’ backs are turned, how to correctly handle blades. Meanwhile, a mentally and emotionally shattered Rick tends to the livestock and vegetable patches – forgoing his previous imposed position as leader of the group in an attempt to lighten the load and preserve the man he once was. Also reduced to a shadow of his former self is David Morrissey’s Governor, now wandering the wastelands as a solo drifter, until a chance encounter with a family and their young daughter appears to offer him a link to his pre-despot former self.
As a series, The Walking Dead has long been accused by many of being overly ponderous, slow and unfulfilling. Those lodging complaints of such a fashion are unlikely to be particularly welcoming of season four’s beginning, which certainly takes it time to establish (or re-establish) characters who are almost constantly in a state of change. It’s fully necessary, though, in order to properly consider the inevitable impact of the consistent barrage of terrible moral decisions, outward (and inward) challenges and inescapable suffering foisted unto the living in a world now ruled by the dead. These changes must be slow, calculated and well measured if they’re to appear in any way realistic – and this is just one area in which The Walking Dead‘s writing excels, especially in this season.
Yes, it does drag its heels occasionally with some episodes becoming mired in reflective dialogue – but without heading into spoiler territory for those that haven’t been keeping up on television and wish to wait for a boxed-set feat, season four packs in some of the most devastating scenarios that Rick and his group have had to face thus far. This is a series – both in comic book and live-action form – known for its uncompromising treatment of those who live within it, and the world they inhabit has rarely been more brutal than what we see here. Those initial, quieter episodes do manage to pack in enough drama to satisfy but they’re building up to something big. Something huge, vicious and downright soul-destroying that occurs halfway through and sees the final half of the season deal with the fallout: quieter moments that move from the world of extreme violent action/reaction and into the realm of deeply personal devastation for the now-fractured group. Here is a season filled with hurtful revelations, forgiveness, rage, disconnection and the kind of needless death and destruction that arises from human nature – good intentions provoking tragedy, or ill ones provoking outright chaos. Carl is still an annoying little shit, though.
In terms of the cast, Andrew Lincoln takes it all out in this particular season – Rick is put through the wringer big time and by the time he comes out, all bets are off for this man. If there’s one thing you can be certain of when the final moments come to a close, it’s that nothing for Rick is ever going to be the same. One of the most intimately effective episodes, The Grove, sees a powerhouse turn for Melissa McBride alongside Chad L. Coleman as Tyreese – though the child actors accompanying them simply can’t hold their own against such an effective force. It would be somewhat excessive to go through and pick on every single cast member for their own standout moments, but let’s just say that nearly each and every one of the major players is swinging for the fences right here, from start to finish.
The Walking Dead remains a dependably ballsy show; one that constantly takes risks – whether that be in choices of narrative direction or simply the amount of explicit gore it can display on television – and for the most part gets away with them. It’s what makes it so irresistibly compelling, unpredictable and hard-hitting. No matter how far off the track it seems to be heading, it always manages to find its way back thanks to some excellent writing, top-notch direction and a cast willing to put everything and then some into what they’re doing. Is it a model of perfection? No – but it’ll have you up, down, left, right and then spun round and knocked flat on your ass just when it feels like it. And this season is a shining example of what it can do.
In terms of special features on Entertainment One’s UK DVD release, episodes 1, 5, 8, 12 and 14 all sport full-length commentaries with various cast members, writers, producers and directors. They’re all more than worth a listen due to offering up a wide variety of perspectives and opinions. Episode 12, entitled ‘Still’, actually has two available commentaries – the standout being one including actor Norman Reedus and writer Angela Kang, who share a fantastic chemistry throughout.
On the final disc, there’s a whole mess of extras including smaller parts such ‘Herschel’, which sees cast and crew delivering their own takes on Scott Wilson’s excellent portrayal of such a pivotal character, and ‘A Journey Back to Brutality’ in which Andrew Lincoln dissects Rick’s inevitable adaptation to this brutal new world despite his own emotional protestations. ‘Society, Science & Survival’ is probably the only real piece of fluff to be found, giving a brief look at a real-life University course that uses The Walking Dead to investigate various angles of scientific and social theory.
Everything here is pretty great, including a semi-roundtable chat with various folks at effects wizards KNB; a comparison of some elements of the show with their comic book counterpart, and a discussion regarding the character of The Governor. The standout pieces are ‘Inside the Walking Dead’, an 85-minute behind-the-scenes feature jam packed with cast interviews that covers the season arc from beginning to end, episode by episode. Backing that up is a 75-minute ‘Making of’, which covers more on-set action and, pleasingly, delves more heavily into the various visual effects on display. It balances the preceding feature out perfectly, making for almost 3 hours of consistently engaging content, before you even count the rest.
Now that’s a package to be proud of. Entertainment One: take a bow.
The post Walking Dead, The: The Complete Fourth Season (UK Blu-ray / DVD) appeared first on Dread Central.
Valve recently gave Steam a snazzy new look and a number of new features, including Curators. Curators were introduced to solve a problem that always reared its big, ugly head every time you visit Steam with the intention of buying a game, but with no specific title in mind.
Sifting through its intimidating database that’s practically brimming with video games of wildly inconsistent qualities can be a daunting task for anyone.
That’s why I’m doing the grunt work for you.
In order to save you a little time, I’ve established an official Bloody Disgusting Curator page that you should most definitely follow, because doing so will get you an ever-growing list of the greatest, scariest, most creative, unique and otherwise unforgettable AAA and indie horror games on Steam.
Once you’ve followed our Curator page, I’d also like to invite your to join our brand new Steam group. I hear it’s what all the cool kids are doing.
We don’t yet offer laminated membership badges, but joining may lead to some interesting conversations with like-minded, horror-loving folks like me and the rest of the BD crowd. I’ve even started a forum so you can recommend horror games for me to play on our YouTube channel.
See you on Steam!
Insidious‘ Patrick Wilson, pictured above, and “Lost” vet Matthew Fox, below, have signed on to star opposite Kurt Russell and Richard Jenkins in Caliber Media’s ultraviolent Western Bone Tomahawk, THR says.
“Bone Tomahawk revolves around four men attempting to rescue a group of captives from a band of cannibalistic troglodytes that live beyond the edge of civilization.”
Wilson will play Arthur O’Dwyer, a cowboy whose rise to the foreman position of a cattle outfit is interrupted by an unfortunate accident that reshapes his life in unforeseen ways. Fox will play John Brooder, whose dark inclinations have put him and his polished weapons at the very edge of the western frontier.
S. Craig Zahler is directing from a screenplay he wrote.
Everyone from “Games of Thrones” is getting major roles, and now the new Queen, Natalie Dormer, has been set to star in Patient Zero, the Screen Gems action thriller that Stefan Ruzowitzky will direct from a script written by Mike Le.
“Patient Zero focuses on an unprecedented global pandemic that causes the evolution of a new species. An aggressive form of rabies turns the infected into predators, addicted to violence. An inexplicably gifted human survivor with the ability to speak the new mutant language leads a hunt for Patient Zero and hope for a cure.”
Explains Deadline, Dormer has been building feature credits that include The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts 1 & 2, Rush and Captain America: The First Avenger.
The Babadook is knocking at your door, opening here in the States on November 28. Now, a U.S. trailer has been released that hopes to complete with the frightening UK trailers. This movie looks insane! Will you let the Babadook in?
Written and directed by Jennifer Kent, the film has terrified audiences since it premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival (read our review).
In it, “Six years after the violent death of her husband, Amelia (Essie Davis) is at a loss. She struggles to discipline her ‘out of control’ 6-year-old, Samuel (Noah Wiseman), a son she finds impossible to love. Samuel’s dreams are plagued by a sinister monster he believes is coming to kill them both.
When a disturbing storybook called ‘The Babadook’ turns up at their house, Samuel is convinced that ‘The Babadook’ is the creature he’s been dreaming about. His hallucinations spiral out of control and as he becomes more unpredictable and violent, Amelia is genuinely frightened by her son’s behaviour.
But when Amelia begins to see glimpses of a sinister presence all around her, it slowly dawns on her that the thing Samuel has been warning her about may be real.”
Bizarrely similar to a scene in The Babadook, this new clip from Asmodexia, the feature debut of Marc Carrete (short films “Mal cuerpo” and “Castidermia”), shows the film’s demon child.
IFC Midnight has slated it for release on VOD September 26. Asmodexia unspools over five days in the lives of an exorcist and his granddaughter, working in the Barcelona area.
“Eloy de Palma is an exorcist pastor roaming the darkest corners of the country with his granddaughter Alba. Their mission is to help those possessed by The Evil One, an infection of the soul that is spreading fast, especially among the most vulnerable members of society: children, mental patients, and drug addicts. There is also a mysterious cult following them, making it more difficult to help those in need. Each exorcism is tougher than the one before, and every battle with Evil reveals a piece of young Alba’s forgotten past – an enigma that if unconcealed could change the world as we know it.”
The PS3 and Xbox 360 may be standing on the precipice of becoming just another chapter in the history of this exciting world of bytes and sprites, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t more games coming to the aging platforms. Yesterday was a particularly good day to be a horror fan who owns a last-gen console, as it brought with it both Slender: The Arrival (PS3 and Xbox 360) and the Anna: Extended Edition (Xbox 360).
If you asked me what my favorite horror movie of 2014 would be way back at the beginning of the year there is no way I could have predicted it would turn out to be The Babadook (review). What an incredibly spooky surprise!
IFC Midnight just dropped a new trailer for the flick that they will be releasing on November 28th. Look for it in limited theatres and on VOD. You don’t wanna miss this one.
Written and directed by Jennifer Kent, the film stars Essie Davis, Noah Wiseman, Daniel Henshall, Hayley McElhinney, Barbara West, and Ben Winspear.
Six years after the violent death of her husband, Amelia (Essie Davis) is at a loss. She struggles to discipline her ‘out of control’ 6-year-old, Samuel (Noah Wiseman), a son she finds impossible to love. Samuel’s dreams are plagued by a monster he believes is coming to kill them both. When a disturbing storybook called ‘The Babadook’ turns up at their house, Samuel is convinced that the Babadook is the creature he’s been dreaming about. His hallucinations spiral out of control; he becomes more unpredictable and violent. Amelia, genuinely frightened by her son’s behavior, is forced to medicate him. But when Amelia begins to see glimpses of a sinister presence all around her, it slowly dawns on her that the thing Samuel has been warning her about may be real.
Created explicitly for Film4 FrightFest the first of 4 variant posters for Adam Green’s latest directorial feature film, Digging Up the Marrow, was unveiled to a hungry audience which gobbled them up faster than Victor Crowley could nail you with a magic belt sander. At this past weekend’s MondoCon variant 2 was unveiled and we have a look right here for ya!
Like what you see? Of course you do. The mere fact that you’re reading this website proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that you have taste and moxie! Even better you can score this baby RIGHT NOW by heading over to the ArieScope website which also has a few of the original variant just waiting for you to dig into!
Tell ‘em Creepy sent ya and Green will personally make sure your poster is completely fucked up during shipping!
Green also stars in the documentary film, which he made with artist Alex Pardee along with Ray Wise, Tom Holland, Kane Hodder, Mick Garris, and a host of other familiar faces. In Digging Up the Marrow an exploration of genre-based monster art takes an odd turn when the filmmakers are contacted by a man who claims he can prove that monsters are indeed real.
The post Monstrous Look at New Digging Up the Marrow Variant Poster appeared first on Dread Central.
Get your parkas and boots ready, because the post-apocalyptic survival sim The Long Dark has hit Steam Early Access. For $20, players can freely explore the game’s highly-anticipated “Survival Sandbox” mode, which allows players a glimpse into what the team at Hinterland Games has in mind for the full, upcoming release.
The Long Dark takes place in what the team calls a “post-digital” world and pushes players to survive in the extreme cold of the Canadian wilderness, kind of like a brutal, heavily-stylized Jack London short story.
Bush pilot Will Mackenzie has to make an emergency landing in a vast, excruciatingly cold landscape. A “geomagnetic disaster” has occurred, knocking out all forms of power and rendering communication as humanity knows it entirely moot, including all form of electricity.
Being in the Northern Wilderness without supplies and environmentally-appropriate threads, players must find immediate and resourceful methods for short-term (and eventually, long-term) survival. Intrepid gamers can wander the rocky, snow-covered landscape in search of food, warmth, and protection, and it never becomes dull. The art style is provocative and subtly done, truly one of the best-looking games I’ve played all year.
The Long Dark isn’t merely a walk in the woods, however, because it maintains a pretty rigorous set of statistics as well. The gauges, statistics, and meters keep players on their toes, pushing them to keep moving, foraging in the unforgiving environment for items to stave off hunger, thirst, exhaustion, and cold, among other things. Get too low on any one of those elements, and Will reminds you that it might be a good idea to pack it in and start a fire or take a nap (which is how the game saves).
The game has no traditional HUD, but tapping Tab brings up a user display that presents information for the various elements mentioned above, and then some. Not only is the player’s level of cold charted, but the changing weather conditions are also on exhibition to cause added anxiety. If you’re as panicky a survivalist as I am, then all the information can easily be reduced to “Welp, I guess I’m dying again, aren’t I?”
Story Mode will introduce some actual narrative elements, but playing in the Sandbox is just that, a largely free experience. Every time players die — and it will take some time to learn the systems well enough to get beyond the first day — they are placed in a new area of the map, at a different time of day. Once, I found myself in the woods in the middle of the night.
Surrounded by wolves, without a lamp.
As someone who writes about video games on a semi-regular basis, I find it generally very difficult to endorse an incomplete game, but The Long Dark’s Sandbox mode is well worth the $20 point of entry, not to mention the fact that the team only plans on being in Early Access for 2-3 months, depending on the community’s feedback.
It’s a beautiful, lush environment, and the mechanics make traveling about and trying not to die plenty of fun.
Also, the game will be changing quite a bit, and Hinterland Studios says explicitly that the price point will likely increase once the game is out of Alpha. The game is available for Mac and PC.
Known to horror fans for creating the graphic novel-turned-horror franchise 30 Days of Night, Steve Niles has also created a slew of other comic properties, one of which is the three-issue miniseries Breath of Bones. A while back Comic Book Resources nailed down a concept trailer for what a big screen adaptation would look like, and we figured it’d be cool to share now!
The story of a Jewish golem, the tale is soon making the jump to the big screen, and a director has just been announced. Read on!
Andrew Adamson (Shrek, The Chronicles of Narnia) is attached to helm the adaptation of the acclaimed Dark Horse Comics miniseries, written by Niles and Matt Santoro. Artist Dave Wachter received a 2012 Russ Manning Award nomination for his gorgeous work.
Breath of Bones is set during World War II and tells of a British plane that crashes into a Jewish village. The crash brings Nazi attention, forcing the villagers to defend themselves, with one rabbi and his grandson building a golem creature and bringing him to monstrous life.
Mike Richardson and Keith Goldberg of Dark Horse are producing the adaptation with Adamson and his producing partner at Strange Weather Aron Warner. Jeff Fierson from Strange Weather will executive produce.
The post See Steve Niles’ Golem Attack the Big Screen in Breath of Bones Concept Trailer appeared first on Dread Central.
Some quick casting news has come in for the upcoming flick Patient Zero as Deadline is reporting that “Game of Thrones” star Natalie Dormer has been set to appear in the Screen Gems action thriller that Stefan Ruzowitzky will direct from a script written by Mike Le.
Patient Zero focuses on an unprecedented global pandemic that causes the evolution of a new species. An aggressive form of rabies turns the infected into predators, addicted to violence. An inexplicably gifted human survivor with the ability to speak the new mutant language leads a hunt for Patient Zero and hope for a cure.
More on this one soon!
Geoff Shaw drew the cover plus the interior art for Judd Winick’s story, described as an “action-packed modern day myth.”
On the surface it seems like your average all-American tourist trap, but this snow-covered town hides a burning secret.
After centuries of lying buried within the depths of an icy mountain, the world’s last dragon egg finally hatches – endangering modern life as we know it. Now an unlikely group of dangerously unqualified, ordinary citizens must band together, battling the elements – and each other – to slay this menacing creature.
Issue #2 (of 5) releases in October.
The post Get a Peek Inside Judd Winick’s A Town Called Dragon Issue #1 appeared first on Dread Central.
Directed by Juanfer Andrés and Esteban Roel
Álex de la Iglesia (The Last Circus, Witching and Bitching) presents this neurotic tale about a shy dressmaker and the younger sister that loves to hate her, but first-time directors Juanfer Andrés and Esteban Roel steer away from the infectious mania seen in Iglesia’s work to offer up a much quieter, more gradual descent into the macabre. Buttressed by a great central performance and flourishes of dark humor, one of the latest offerings from Spain’s growing horror collective, Shrew’s Nest, is a clear standout at Fantastic Fest this year.
As the film opens, Montse (Macarena Gómez) – a demure amateur seamstress – seems quite harmless as she fits wealthy benefactress Doña Puri. Poor Montse suffers from fits of anxiety, but she assures Donã Puri that the “medicine” she’s been supplying has been helping to take the edge off. Seemingly cursed with a debilitating affliction and afraid to step out and start a clothing business of her own, Montse passes on that fear to her little sister (Nadia de Santiago), who, strangely, is only referred to as “la nina” throughout the story. (You’ll have to watch to learn if she ever reveals her true name).
Early on, it’s revealed that Montse suffers from an acute form of agoraphobia that prohibits her from stepping foot outside of their sheltered, 1950’s apartment until her disease (and her faith) are tested when an upstairs neighbor – a dashing Spaniard named Carlos (Hugo Silva) – takes a spill down the stairs, severely injuring his leg. He cries out, and Montse reluctantly unbolts the door and drags him into the spare bedroom where Carlos is about to endure an unexpectedly long stay. As the days go by, Montse turns into a kind of mad nurse, imprisoning Carlos (much like Annie Wilkes did to author Paul Sheldon), mixing water with her “medicine” to keep Carlos in a dazed combination of pain and appreciation. Alarmed at the events unfolding, Montse’s little sister sneaks in to warn Carlos that he’s actually being drugged with morphine and that their caretaker doesn’t intend to be rid of his company any time soon.
Haunted by the memory of her father (Luis Tosar from Sleep Tight), who chastises her character even in death, Macareno Gómez’s depiction of Montse carefully constructs a tragic emotional core, building on top of a cracked foundation destined to crumble and eventually collapse under the weight of her dark family past and her growing desperation in the present. Gómez’s performance nicely complements a well-paced story and honors a script that recognizes that its lead must be likable before the audience can both root for others to escape and secretly wish for Montse to prevail.
With a successful background in comedy, Gómez uses the decisive shift into a horror thriller during the climax of Shrew’s Nest to inject some amusement through quirks of personality that reflect Montse’s own disbelief at just how far events have escalated by final day’s end. It’s been “hectic,” Montse says, but effects veteran Pepe Quetglas (Pan’s Labyrinth) makes sure that the insanity bubbling up within Montse is equaled by his team’s twisted sensibility and his own gore-filled imagination. The explosiveness of the violence – in its setup, delivery, and reveal – transforms the uninspired interior of the lifeless flat into a funhouse of death that may prove too dangerous for anyone to ever escape.
The shrew, or shrew-rat as its described, has a tendency to burrow and, if cornered, prove venomous. The story that’s unveiled in Shrew’s Nest follows that kind of behavior in following a likable, delicate, frightened woman who is driven to commit acts of terror, only to wind up having to face her own personal horrors in the process. Driven by Goméz’s electric portrayal, Shrew’s Nest reveals how trauma turns to compulsion and how desperation can cause someone to resort to violence rather than hide in absolute darkness.
Since its release five long years ago, Valve’s addictive co-op shooter Left 4 Dead 2 has been censored and rated MA15+, once Australia’s highest rating for a video game. Under the new system, the game has had its silly censorship removed and it’s been given a new rating of R18+ — the ESRB equivalent of an M (Mature) rating.
If you’re an Aussie who’s been waiting for your fine country to get with the times, you can grab the uncensored version of the game on the Steam store. If you already own a copy, Valve has a free patch available to restore Left 4 Dead 2 to its gory glory.
For the curious, below you’ll find a video that highlights the changes between the original and censored version of the game.