Fan Remakes ‘BioShock’ Intro in CryEngine 3

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 17:15

It’s really only a matter of time before we get a remake or remaster — preferably the former — of the original BioShock. The game’s a classic, and it’s one I’d happily return to should it ever return in a shinier, more attractive package. Giving us a taste of what a remake might look like is gametime414, who went ahead and recreated the game’s opening minutes in CryEngine 3.

Anyone who’s played the game likely remembers exploring the lighthouse before taking the bathysphere to the hidden underwater city of Rapture. It’s a memorable introduction to an unforgettable game. Let’s relive some of that together.

Categories: Horror News

Joe Dante’s ‘Burying the Ex’ Trailer Looks Like All Sorts of Crazy Fun!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 17:11

It was announced the other day that Gremlins, The Hole and The Howling director Joe Dante’s latest horror pic, Burying the Ex, will be releasing on June 19th, 2015 though Image/RLJ.

This afternoon we finally landed an international sales trailer for the horror comedy that stars Fright Night‘s Anton Yelchin, Texas Chainsaw 3D‘s Alexandra Daddario, and The Apparition‘s Ashley Greene.

Also see: “Top 5 Joe Dante Movies”.

Dante previous directed The Hole, which is actually a really great children’s horror film. Burying the Ex looks like a continuation of his super fun horror movies, and also appears to be in the spirit of one of my all-time favs…Robert Zemeckis’ classic Death Becomes Her.

Check out our report from the set here.

“Burying the Ex follows Max (Yelchin), an all-around nice guy, and his overbearing but incredibly beautiful girlfriend, Evelyn (Greene). Their relationship takes a nosedive after they decide to move in together and Evelyn turns out to be a controlling, manipulative nightmare. Max knows it’s time to call it quits, but there’s just one problem: he’s terrified of breaking up with her. Fate steps in when Evelyn is involved in a freak accident and dies, leaving Max single and ready to mingle. Max eventually meets Olivia (Daddario), a cute and spirited girl who just might be his soul mate, only to learn that Evelyn has risen from her grave and is determined to get her boyfriend back…even if that means turning him into one of the undead.

Check out a clip from the movie here.


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Categories: Horror News

Witchgrinder Stream Vampire-Themed Track “Bloodlust”

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 17:04

Australian industrial thrash metal band Witchgrinder has released a stream of their track “Bloodlust”, which is heavily themed after vampire films from the 80′s. The band themselves, “…take their cues from 80’s and 90′s era of metal and some industrial sounds with their songs firmly placed in the classic horror/sci-fi stories genre.

Vocalist/guitarist/programmer Travis Everett states:

They crave it and must drink it to survive. I find something somewhat appealing and sexy about this. That is where the inspiration came to write this track. My love of watching old 80s vampire horror movies growing up as a child. But this is no Twilight love story. This is straight out blood and gore.

You can purchase the track via Bandcamp.

Categories: Horror News

80′s Horror Adapted Into Children’s Books!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 17:01

Have you ever wondered what it would be like if your favorite 80′s horror films where adapted into children’s books?

Andrew Peña of BuzzFeed wondered the same thing, and used his artistic talents to realize such absurdity.

Below you’ll find a series of covers, with my personal favorite being “Goodnight Freddy”, an adaptation of Wes Craven’s A Nightmare On Elm Street that Peña describes as “the perfect bedtime story for your little one who is afraid to go to sleep.”

Another classic is The Fly adaptation, “What’s Happening to My Body”, which is “An excellent book for any boy who is experiencing changes in their appearance,” says Peña. “It also teaches about self esteem and confidence when it comes to girls.”

Which is your favorite?

All images owned by Andrew Peña and BuzzFeed.

Categories: Horror News

‘Cooties’ Opens the Stanley Film Festival!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:49

The Stanley Film Festival, produced by the Denver Film Society, announced today that Lionsgate Premiere’s Cooties (read our review) will open the festival on Thursday, April 30, 2015!

From the minds of Leigh Whannell (co-creator of Saw and Insidious) and Ian Brennan (co-creator of “Glee”), Cooties is a horror comedy with unexpected laughs and unapologetic thrills. When a cafeteria food virus turns elementary school children into little killer savages, a group of misfit teachers must band together to escape the playground carnage.

The film stars Elijah Wood (The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings), Rainn Wilson (The Office), and Alison Pill (The Newsroom) as teachers who fight to survive the mayhem while hilariously bickering in an uncomfortable love triangle on the worst Monday of their lives.

The film will play at the Concert Hall on the Stanley Hotel campus Thursday, April 30, with Elijah Wood (Open Windows), Alison Pill (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World), Leigh Whannell (Insidious: Chapter 2) and Directors Jonathan Millot and Cary Murnion in attendance. Immediately following the film, guests will be treated to a “School Cafeteria” themed party in the McGregor Ballroom. Local bands Snake Rattle Rattle Snake and Bad Luck City will provide the soundtrack for the evening.

The Sundance hit Cooties will be one of the debut releases of the newly-launched Lionsgate Premiere label, which will release the film on September 18th in select theaters and on demand.

Get tickets here.

Categories: Horror News

Undead Labs Reveals ‘State of Decay’ Xbox One Achievements

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:47

For achievement addicts, the release of the Xbox One must’ve been an exciting time. The arbitrary 400 point limit Microsoft put on arcade games was made into a thing of the past, and no we have games like the Master Chief Collection, which comes with 5,000 points. The current-gen debut of developer Undead Labs’ zombie survival game won’t even come close to matching that, but it will bring with it a solid 1,500 worth of points for achievement hunters to try and unlock.

The developer recently posted the full list of achievements for the State of Decay: Year-One Survival Edition, which you can study up on below before it arrives on the Xbox One on April 28.

Original Game
Cannibal Family Picnic (10) — Got to the Mt. Tanner Ranger Station.
Holy Rolling (20) — Escaped Mt. Tanner and found the survivors at the church.
Survivor (50) — Escaped Trumbull County.
It Was Just a Police Action (20) — Found out what the Army was up to.
Home on the Grange (20) — Played matchmaker for Quentin and Becca.
Arrested Developments (20) — Saw things through at the courthouse.
Gun Thugs (20) — Helped the Wilkersons resolve their differences.
Pest Control (30) — Destroyed 5 infestations in one day.
Watch the Birdie! (20) — Distracted zombies to complete an objective.
I Can See My House From Here (20) — Completed a survey activity.
Land Usage (30) — Built one of every type of facility.
Home Improvement (20) — Built a facility.
I’ll Be There For You (20) — Earned 500 Fame.
Mercy Shot (20) — Killed a member of your community to prevent them from turning.
Come and Knock On Our Door (20) — Convinced another enclave to join your community.
Manifest Destiny (30) — Built 8 outposts.
Everywhere You Look (30) — Got 15 people in your community.
Movin’ On Up! (30) — Relocated your home base.
Rule #1 (25) — Maxed out a community member’s Cardio skill.
Trust Me, I’m an Expert (30) — Earned a skill specialization for one of your community members.
Horde Hoard (30) — Destroyed 10 hordes in one day.
Ya Always Were An A-Hole Gorman (20) — Sacrificed your life in a blaze of glory.
Torn Apart (20) — Got killed by zombies.
Get Yo’ Freak On (20) — Killed one of each freak zombie type.
The Bruce (30) — Killed 3 zombies with an exploding propane tank.
Double Dead (30) — Performed a hand to hand double kill special attack.
Gotta Enjoy the Little Things (10) — Used a car door to kill a zombie.
Get Outta My Dreams (30) — Killed one of each freak zombie type with your car.
Vehicular Zombicide (30) — Ran over 250 zombies.
Badass (50) — Completed 50 missions or activities with the same character.
Get Over Here (20) — Invited a community member to follow you.
Serial Monogamist (30) — Invited a community member to follow you 10 times.
Order at DZ (20) — Intercepted a mysterious supply drop.
Letters from Cleo (30) — Intercepted 5 mysterious supply drops.
Rule #2 (25) — Maxed out a community member’s Shooting skill.
Rule #18 (25) — Maxed out a community member’s Fighting skill.
Rule #31 (25) — Maxed out a community member’s Wits skill.
Apples and Beans (20) — Fixed delicious snacks 5 times.
Powder and Primer (20) — Crafted ammunition 5 times.
Watch the World Burn (30) — Killed 25 zombies with incendiary shotguns.

Breakdown
The Sacrifice (10) — Went out in a Blaze of Glory at Breakdown Level 1 or Higher.
The Dead Man (10) — Destroyed 5 Bloaters at Breakdown Level 2 or Higher.
The Judge (10) — Performed 50 Zombie Executions at Breakdown Level 3 or Higher.
The Survivor (10) — Collected 150 Resources at Breakdown Level 4 or Higher.
The Mercenary (10) — Destroyed 5 Juggernauts at Breakdown Level 5 or Higher.
The Ninja (10) — Executed 50 Stealth Kills at Breakdown Level 5 or Higher.
The Scientist (30) — Reached Breakdown Level 6.
The Rescuer (50) — Unlocked All Heroes.
The Friend (10) — Reached Breakdown Level 2.
The Convict (15) — Reached Breakdown Level 3.
The Gunner (20) — Reached Breakdown Level 4.
The Veteran (25) — Reached Breakdown Level 5.
The Scholar (10) — Completed All Research Projects at Breakdown Level 1 or Higher.
The Phoenix (10) — Burned 100 Zombies with Fire at Breakdown Level 2 or Higher.
The Fighter (10) — Destroyed 5 Ferals at Breakdown Level 3 or Higher.
The Sniper (10) — Earned 25 Headshot Streaks at Breakdown Level 4 or Higher.

Lifeline
Wired for War (20) — Killed 100 zombies with Drone Strikes.
Rucks in Trucks (10) — Delivered 6 rucksacks to your base in the back of a single vehicle.
Under Siege (20) — Survived 10 sieges on your base in a single playthrough.
Maverick (10) — Survived 2 minutes within a Danger Zone.
Flugtag (10) — Sent an energy drink flying.
Freak Hunt (10) — Completed all hunting missions with Sasquatch.
War Never Changes (25) — Survived detonating a nuclear device in Danforth.
Last Voice of Danforth (25) — Escaped Danforth with Vienna Cho in your community.
The Doctor (15) — Brought Thomas Horn to the Landing Zone, at least.
The Surgeon (15) — Successfully extracted Julene Horn.
The Bureaucrat (15) — Successfully extracted Michele Martin.
The Examiner (15) — Successfully extracted Timothy Hall.
The Scion (15) — Successfully extracted Hadley Westen.
The Colleague (15) — Successfully extracted Dan Bogatz.
The Protégée (15) — Successfully extracted Madison Grant.
The Operator (15) — Brought Eldridge to Black Friday, but he won’t leave.

Categories: Horror News

The Future Belongs to the ‘Mad Max’ (Poster)

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:41

Warner Bros. shared this new one-sheet for their post-apocalyptic thriller Mad Max: Fury Road, in theaters May 15, 2015.

Mad Max: Fury Road stars Charlize Theron (Prometheus) as Imperator Furiosa, and includes Tom Hardy, Nicholas Hoult (X-Men: Days of Future Past), Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (Transformers: Dark of the Moon), Zoë Kravitz (Divergent) and Josh Helman (Jack Reacher).

“Mad Max: Fury Road is the fourth film of George Miller‘s Road Warrior/Mad Max franchise co-written and directed by Miller. The post-apocalyptic action film is set in the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and most everyone is crazed fighting for the necessities of life.

Within this world of fire and blood exist two rebels on the run who just might be able to restore order… There’s Max (Hardy), a man of action and a man of few words, who seeks peace of mind following the loss of his wife and child in the aftermath of the chaos.

And… Furiosa (Theron), a woman of action and a woman who believes her path to survival may be achieved if she can make it across the desert back to her childhood homeland.

Categories: Horror News

Charlize Theron Heads to’Dark Places’ In This First Clip!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:37

While there’s no U.S. release, the Charlize Theron-starrer Dark Places opens in France on April 8th.

In the film, Charlize Theron is all grown up, but begins to investigate the murder of her family that she witnessed as a child. The first clip takes us into an underworld where the investigations will begin.

It was recently announced that A24 and DirecTV acquired all U.S rights to Dark Places, based on the novel by “Gone Girl” author Gillian Flynn.

Theron plays a survivor of the brutal killing of her family as a child who’s forced to confront the events of that day by a secret society obsessed with solving crimes.

It also stars Chloe Grace Moretz, Nicholas Hoult, Christina Hendricks, Tye Sheridan and Corey Stoll, and was directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner from his adaptation.

Check out the trailer and a ton of images here:

Categories: Horror News

Salem Casts a Spell with this Preview of Episode 2.02 – Blood Kiss

Dread Central - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:36

So, Heathens, did you all catch last night’s return of “Salem” on WGN America? If not, shame on you, but you’re in luck because the network is running an encore tonight at 10PM ET/7PM PT.

For the rest of us, here’s a look ahead to next week’s Episode 2.02, “Blood Kiss.”

The series stars Janet Montgomery, Shane West, Seth Gabel, Ashley Madekwe, Tamzin Merchant, Elise Eberle, and Iddo Goldberg.  Season 2 guest stars include Lucy Lawless, Stuart Townsend, Joe Doyle, and Oliver Bell as Mary’s long-lost son.

“Salem” Episode 2.02 – “Blood Kiss” (air date 4/12/15)
Mary (Montgomery) initiates the second act of the Grand Rite; Alden (West) returns to Salem.

For more info follow “Salem” on Twitter and YouTube (@SalemWGNA), and also be sure to “like” the series on Facebook.

The post Salem Casts a Spell with this Preview of Episode 2.02 – Blood Kiss appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

Trailer For Killer Wasp Horror, ‘Stung’! (Tribeca)

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:26

Having its World Premiere at the upcoming Tribeca Film Festival is Stung, a new horror about a giant wasp.

Now, ahead of the premiere, the first official trailer flies in from the story of a two catering staff at a fancy garden party who battle a mutated species of wasp.

For catering staffers Paul and Julia, Mrs. Perch’s fancy garden party at her remote country villa is nothing out of the ordinary. A mishap with toxic plant fertilizer leads to the most unwelcome of dinner guests: giant killer wasps. Director Benni Diez takes audiences on a thrilling, gory rollercoaster ride from campy to creepy, in this delightful and dreadful creature-feature.

Matt O’Leary (Frailty, Death Sentence), Jessica Cook, Peter Stormare and Lance Henriksen (Aliens) all star in the horror comedy.

Benni Diez directs, and Christian Becker and Benjamin Munz of Munich and Berlin-based Rat Pack Filmproduction produce.


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Categories: Horror News

Don’t Be Squeamish, it’s Just a ‘Mortal Kombat X’ Launch Trailer

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 16:13

With the launch of Mortal Kombat X a little over a week away, developer NetherRealm has gifted us with two full bloody minutes of people and assorted people-esque figures beating the shit out of each other while System of a Down’s “Chop Suey!” plays, because that sentence represents the essence of Mortal Kombat, and if you don’t like it, you can go play literally anything else.

Meanwhile, I’ll be practicing my spine-ripping skills so I can finally teach my prepubescent dickhead cousin a lesson. I’ve been waiting for my rematch ever since he handily trounced me in MK9.

Mortal Kombat X arrives on PC, PS4 and Xbox One on April 14.

Categories: Horror News

Drafthouse Receives ‘The Invitation’ Out of SXSW

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 15:17

Drafthouse Films has acquired Karyn Kusama’s taut thriller, The Invitation out of last month’s SXSW Film Festival.

The pic stars Logan Marshall-Green (Prometheus), Tammy Blanchard, Michiel Huisman, Emayatzy Corinealdi, and Lindsay Burdge.

In it, “Will and Eden were once a loving couple. After a tragedy took their son, Eden disappeared. Two years later, out of the blue, she returns with a new husband… and as a different person, eerily changed and eager to reunite with her ex and those she left behind. Over the course of a dinner party in the house that was once his, the haunted Will is gripped by mounting evidence that Eden and her new friends have a mysterious and terrifying agenda. But can we trust Will’s hold on reality? Or will he be the unwitting catalyst of the doom he senses?

Check out more images:

Categories: Horror News

[Review] Home Invasion Thriller ‘Hangman’ Underwhelms

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 14:28

As horror enthusiasts, what really scares us anymore? We’re not phased by much. But I’ll tell you what still scares the hell outta me: home invasions. As a grown ass man with a front door I have to double check at night, nothing turns my stomach as the thought of someone forcing themselves into my home and ruining my life. So good thing I watched Adam Mason’s Hangman, a fairly entertaining but ultimately underwhelming thriller.

Law & Order hunk Jeremy Sisto stars as patriarch Aaron, a middle class family man whose beautiful wife Beth (Kate Ashfield) is convinced that despite a seemingly harmless break-in, something isn’t right in their McMansion. Mason gives us a front row seat as the invader sets up cameras and stalks the ever loving hell out of Aaron’s family. We see their lives unfurl through the lens of the killer, which although technically found-footage, feels organic to the story more than most entries in the subgenre. There’s an intentional voyeuristic aspect of it all as we watch Aaron and Beth’s marriage begin to crumble under the pressure of their post-break-in insecurities. The killer is always watching them from his makeshift home theater he’s constructed in their attic and manipulating them in clever ways.

There are some genuinely unnerving scenes in Hangman. The killer hocks a loogie in the family’s orange juice and we see them drink it the next morning. Watching him scurry out of his hiding spot every time the family was out or asleep was a good, creepy image as well. But overall the moments meant to frighten fall flat. A major part of that is due to the fact that we really know nothing about the family. Since we don’t know anything about them, there’s no emotional resonance or suspense when they’re in danger. We should care, but how can we? The killer manipulates them to turn against each other all too easily and while it’s uncomfortable to watch them argue, it never really makes an impact on the viewer.

We see through the killer’s eyes for much of the film, which has been done successfully before (Franck Khalfoun’s recent Maniac remake comes to mind). Unfortunately Hangman’s killer, played by Eric Michael Cole, isn’t very interesting to hang out with. Every once in a while he sobs or hits himself so we know how he’s a tormented soul. My, what big inner demons you have! It’s all superficial though. I wish the killer did more wily shit like when he spit in their juice. Like if he used their toothbrushes to clean the toilet, that would’ve been more engaging than watching him whimper while jerking off in the attic.

Mason obviously knows how to craft a competent film. Hangman looks better than most found footage films. But the lack of characters to attach ourselves to, the drab killer, and the predictability really hamper what could’ve been an interesting little film.

Categories: Horror News

Exclusive Look at ‘Private Number’, Starring Tom Sizemore and Judd Nelson

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 14:01

Bloody Disgusting has your exclusive first look at Private Number, starring Tom Sizemore (Natural Born Killers, Black Hawk Down), Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club), Nicholle Tom (“The Nanny”) and Hal Ozsan (“Dawson’s Creek”).

Below are a series of images from LazRael Lison’s thriller in limited theaters on on VOD platforms May 1st, 2015

A series of sinister phone calls haunt an ex-alcoholic writer as he struggles to finish a novel. Efforts to trace the calls result in dead ends, leaving the author with no choice but to solve the mystery himself. As he pieces together scant information he discovers the local police are hiding details about a horrific serial killer. In his obsessive search for answers, he loses his grip on reality, and spirals downward into a maelstrom of violence and terror.

Categories: Horror News

NCAA Championship Game Theme Edited to ‘The Shining’

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 13:20

CBS annually destroys the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship Game with a montage edited to the god-awful tune of David Barrett’s “One Shining Moment”.

Andrew Unterman linked us to his clever video montage (made with his friend Jason) that instead plays the song over a montage from Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.

While the joke is only funny for the length of time it takes to hit the “play” button, it’s still a great Shining montage that I thought you guys would get a kick out of.

It is indeed “One Shining Moment”.

Categories: Horror News

Final Trailer Assembles For “Avengers: Age Of Ultron”

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 12:50

In advance of the gigantic May 1st opening of “Avengers: Age of Ultron” Marvel Studios has released the final trailer. It features plenty of new action, and a little hint at the new roles each character is playing in the team since we’ve last seen them. CBR features the debut of this new trailer.

When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to the Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure.

Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Stellan Skarsgård with James Spader and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury

Avengers: Age of Ultron opens on May 1st, 2015.

Categories: Horror News

Green Lantern To Boldly Go Meet Star Trek This July

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 12:40

This past weekend at Wondercon, IDW Publishing and DC Comics announced a crossover many lightyears in the making: Star Trek Meets Green Lantern. The news should come as no surprise, as the crossover makes total sense, it’s just mind blowing it took this long to go down. The two properties represent ripe science fiction worlds that are perfect for crossover, and despite existing in very different corners of the universe a unifying story thread could create a compelling chapter in the mythos of both.

In brightest day, in blackest night. Two iconic franchises will meet this summer in a legendary crossover event with the release of a six-part comic book miniseries, STAR TREK/GREEN LANTERN: THE SPECTRUM WAR. Both Star Trekand Green Lantern are known for their strong cast of interstellar characters and when they come together for the first time this July, fans new and old are sure to experience a galaxy-sized thrill.

STAR TREK/GREEN LANTERN: THE SPECTRUM WAR is six-part monthly mini-series and will be written by veteran Star Trekcomic writer Mike Johnson with interior art by Angel Hernandez (INFINITE CRISIS: FIGHT FOR THE MULTIVERSE, ARROW). STAR TREK/GREEN LANTERN: THE SPECTRUM WAR #1 will be available in stores and online in July, boasting covers fromGabriel Rodriguez, Francesco Francavilla, Elsa Charretier, and Garry Brown. Following issues will feature covers from an amazing lineup that includes Declan ShalveyMarc Laming, and more!

“We’ve looked forward to bringing these two iconic universes together for a long time,” said Greg Goldstein, IDW President and COO. “Star Trek and Green Lantern both share so many of the same science-fiction adventure themes and ideals, that a galaxy-spanning crossover like this is simply…logical.”

“Green Lantern is one of the most popular, storied characters in the history of comic books and a modern DC Comics icon.

An entire universe of Green Lanterns and other supporting characters have grown out from his original adventures in the 1940’s, and this series really showcases the intergalactic scope of the franchise,” said Bob Harras, Editor-in-Chief of DC Comics.

A pop culture mainstay for almost 50 years, Star Trek’s fan base continues to grow exponentially with the new feature films in 2009 and 2013. Now all Star Trek fans can watch their favorite U.S.S. Enterprise crew members meet Hal Jordan and the entire Green Lantern Corps in an adventure that spans space, time and all the colors of the spectrum. Set in Star Trek’s 23rd Century, the balance of the universe will be tested when the Green Lantern Corps’ Power Rings come into the possession of certain Star Trek characters while a dark and powerful evil looms around every corner.  Only the combined power of the Green Lantern Corp and the Federation stand any chance of stopping those who worship evil’s might.

Categories: Horror News

[Review] ‘The Dead Lands’ Brutalizes Amidst the Beauty of New Zealand

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 12:28

Like many indigenous peoples, New Zealand’s Maori don’t receive a lot of attention internationally. Toa Frasier looked to change that with his 2014 film The Dead Lands, which had it’s world premiere at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival. And even though it wasn’t nominated, The Dead Lands was also on the list of entries for Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards. Calling to mind Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto, The Dead Lands swaps out the Maya for Maori pre-colonial tribal warfare. But does Frasier do more with the film than that?

While observing a peacekeeping mission between two clans, sixteen-year-old Hongi (James Rolleston), the son of tribal chieftain Tane (George Henare), witnesses a deliberate desecration of ancestral remains by Wirepa (Te Kohe Tuhaka). After confronting Wirepa, Hongi is accused of trying to renew hostilities. Later that night, Hongi’s people are massacred by Wirepa and his group. Left for dead, Hongi survives and must now avenge his people in order to bring peace and honour to the dead. Outnumbered and no warrior himself, Hongi travels to the forbidden Dead Lands in search of The Warrior (Lawrence Makoare) for help in his quest.

Probably one of the first things that will grab viewers is the downright gorgeous cinematography by Leon Narbey. Fans of Peter Jackson’s work on the Lord Of The Rings films know just how beautiful New Zealand can be, and with The Dead Lands, it’s again on display. Even during the more tense moments of Hongi’s quest, the New Zealand landscape never ceases to amaze. Of course, the other component of this film is it’s action. Being that this is the first film to feature the Maori martial art of Mau rakau, it instantly sets it apart from other action fare. And while it’s not a constant balls-to-the-wall barrage, the rapid-fire cutting of the almost in-your-face fight sequences more than make up for it with a frenetic energy that delivers on a visceral level. Plus, who doesn’t love the Maori haka dances? The wide-eyed gazes and the bulging tongues of the combatants is always a sight to see.

To go along with the action, the quality of the acting is definitely up there. The performances, however, take a backseat to the Maori language, which is a major component to the acting, if not the film itself. Not only is the language a key portion of their warrior culture (there’s that haka dance again), it also immediately lends authenticity and credibility to the film. With that aside, Makoare is a standout as The Warrior. Perpetually an imposing screen presence, Makoare also exhibits an intimate range as well, waxing philosophy on his past with Hongi. Even as he’s casually slicing up a corpse for dinner. As for Hongi, Rolleston puts in a great “coming-of-age” performance as Hongi grows and matures into a warrior. Tuhaka is also great as the film’s antagonist, sporting good looks with an arrogant pride that has you wanting him to meet his fate in the worst way possible.

As far as flaws go (even though it really isn’t a flaw), the film defies the typical action film mould, opting to have more of a deeper story than something you’d normally expect. As such, those looking for a pure action film that doesn’t involve the maturing of a man who has been thrust into the role of avenger will find the quieter moments frustrating. Also, the film’s ending does lend itself to an anti-war message, though it lacks a certain resonance after the majority of the film was focused on cracking skulls and revenge.

Still, The Dead Lands provides not only some great action and introduction of the Maori to many international filmgoers, but also shines a light on the Maori pre-colonial history, even if this is a fictionalized account. The stunning New Zealand landscape is on display once again, and the reliance on Maori language and Mau rakau certainly makes the film stand out even more. Action film aficionados looking for more fare outside the often-tiring conformities of Hollywood should definitely check this one out.

Categories: Horror News

[TV Review] “Salem” Episode 2.01: ‘Cry Havoc’

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 11:09

The first season of WGN’s Salem had a bit of a rocky start. I admit that I watched the first three episodes and gave up because I found the show to be a little boring. I finally caved a few months ago and binge-watched the rest on Netflix and I’m incredibly glad I did. Salem finally embraced its soapy ridiculousness and went balls to the wall insane in it’s second half. Now we have been gifted with a second season, so lets dive right in to how it has started.

First of all, it has been 3 days since the events of the finale, and the Grand Rite that Mary performed at the end of last season worked. The town of Salem is slowly being taken over by the plague (starting with the people in the hilariously named “Knocker’s Hole”), but apparently it will take a month (er, a season) for it to take full effect. Alright. It sort of makes the stakes of the season 1 finale seem nonexistent, but I’ll take it. If anything we did get some pretty great practical effects when the girls face started peeling off in the opening scene. Also, we get our beloved Isaac the Fornicator back. He’s ridden with pox but he’s not dead yet!

Mary Sibley (Janet Montgomery) has been keeping herself busy with her son, but Tituba takes him back to the elder witch’s every night. I’m still not sure about how I feel about John Jr. as a plot device (he seems like he could become a problem rather quickly), but I’ll withhold judgment for a few episodes. Also in Mary’s inner circle is the new Doctor in town (Stuart Townsend). He’s a survivor of the pox who aims to cure Salem of the plague.

Let’s talk about the gory set pieces from the night. First, Mercy cuts off a mans penis and turns it into a crow(?!). That is some crazy shit. But then we also have Mary going to a seer (that’s what I’ve decided I’m going to call him) so she can find Alden. He pulls out his eyes and places them in her hands so she see his location, but she is tricked into seeing his funeral (spoiler: he’s not dead). Lastly, we have Mercy’s butchering of the elder witches. After stabbing them (a lot) Mercy and her followers hang them up in the town square by their own intestines. WGN is clearly trying to test the limits of what they can get away with on basic (and I mean basic) cable. I like it. More of this please.

Speaking of Mercy, she is still crazy in the woods and super bummed that Mary won’t accept her as her equal. I’m guessing Mary is really regretting not killing Mercy last season. Anne, on the other hand, does garner Mary’s attention. Anne is (understandably) feeling guilty about murdering her parents last season, and Mary wants to help her learn to control her powers. Anne was one of the weakest parts of last season for me (she’s such a wet blanket), but this could prove to be an interesting path to take her one. Again, it’s too early to tell if it will pay off, but I have my fingers crossed.

Cotton (Seth Gabel) is stuck in Boston, doing Cotton-y things like having lots and lots of sex. When he’s not having sex, he’s suffering a guilty conscience after murdering his father Increase (I still can’t believe that was his name) in last season’s finale.

Through Cotton’s scenes we get the biggest reveal of the episode, though, as a man comes to interrogate him about his father’s whereabouts. As it turns out, this man merely serves to introduce us to the totally awesome Lucy Lawless! After questioning Cotton, this man runs back to a ship at Boston harbor and inside we meet Lawless’ Countess Palatine Ingrid von Marburg (to be referenced as Countess Marburg here on out because that is a mouthful). The man is her henchman, and after she finds out that Increase if officially dead, she kills the poor sap by teleporting her bath water into his throat, choking him to death.

Countess Marburg’s mission isn’t clear yet, but since her scene ends with her deciding to head to Salem, one can only assume that her and Mary will cross paths. Is she a villain or will she be on Mary’s side? I’m intrigued.

The only character who still isn’t doing much for me is John Alden. I like Shane West a lot (he was great on the CW’s Nikita), but Alden is an incredibly boring character. Every time he popped up in the premiere it was like he couldn’t be gone soon enough. Now Alden is on a mission to destroy all the witches in Salem because he feels betrayed after Mary stood him up last season. I get it, she’s a witch and worships the devil. But I find it a little hard to believe that he wouldn’t even try to rationalize his feelings since she is apparently the love of his life, but whatever. Now he’s hanging out with the Native Americans and by episode’s end has taken part in a ritual that will help him kill all of the witches, but it is made clear that he won’t leave Salem alive once it is done (how much do you want to bet he doesn’t die by the end of the season?).

I thought this was a fantastic episode to start off Salem’s second season. It had some batshit insane witch action and provided plenty of questions for the rest of the season. I think the season’s subtitle of “Witch Wars” will prove to inject a spark into the series that was missing from the first half of last season. Also, Lucy Lawless.

Random Notes

  • Welcome to Bloody-Disgusting’s weekly reviews of Salem everyone! I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy writing them. Next week’s review will be shorter (and less recap-y), I promise. Premiere reviews just have a lot of catch-up!
  • Mary refers to the elder witches as “decrepit old shits in the woods.”
  • Ashley Madekwe (Tituba) has completely dropped her accent. As annoying as this is, I’m sort of okay with it because it dropped in and out so much last season that she needed to make up her mind.
  • “Rest assured your traitorous little bitch, once they’ve tasted it, you will choke on it.” For being set in the 1600s, Salem has some great zingers.
  • That portrait of Increase Mather is TERRIFYING.
  • Seriously though, I feel like 75% of Cotton’s scenes in the first season were scenes of him having sex. That doesn’t seem to be changing this season.
  • One good thing to come out of Alden’s scenes: he finally got a haircut.
  • Have I mentioned that I love Lucy Lawless? I’ve seen a little bit of Xena but she was the best part of Spartacus. If you’ve never seen it, do yourself a favor and watch it ASAP. It’s on Netflix! Just get past the pilot because it’s the worst episode of the series.
Categories: Horror News

“The Walking Dead” Featured on “SNL” with Norman Reedus!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 04/06/2015 - 11:06

From this past weekend’s “Saturday Night Live”, watch as Weekend Update’s resident young person (Pete Davidson) reviews the finale of AMC’s “The Walking Dead”.

During the “review”, Davidson shares his fears about the zombie apocalypse, mainly that he’ll be mistaken for a zombie.

After making a joke or ten about watching the show high, “The Walking Dead’s” Norman Reedus makes an appearance (in costume as Daryl Dixon), pulling Davidson aside for some of his weed. There’s also a funny Boondocks Saints reference.

Check it below…

Categories: Horror News