Directed by Gary Shore
Situated somewhere in the no-vampire’s land of Gothic romantic saga and PG-13 supernatural horror, Dracula Untold is a story that’s actually been told many, many, many times. Its blueprint seems most strongly etched in the 1993 Francis Ford Coppola version – at least, the origin story bits do. The flashbacks of battles, the moments of immortal angst, and even the bride’s far fall into the ravine are all pretty palpably lifted from the visuals of that film.
But we also get some cool twists, like Vlad dissolving into a murder of crows whenever he needs to fly. Or is it bats? I must say, the CGI is pretty shaky and things are dark. Fortunately, the computer-generated crock is shored up by otherwise lovely cinematography that’s brought to us by actual 35mm film.
Here’s what’s at stake in this version: It’s the 15th century and Vlad Tepes (Luke Evans) — aka The Prince of Wallachia, aka The Impaler — is living happily with his sexy blonde wife, Mirena (Sarah Gadon), and an adoring prepubescent son, Ingeras (Art Parkinson). Things are going great until the almighty Turks demand that Wallachia give up 1,000 of their young boys – including Ingeras — to fight as bodyguards to the Sultan Mehmet (Dominic Cooper). This, Vlad cannot abide.
So to stave off the terrible Turks, Vlad strikes a Faustian bargain with a local cave-dwelling demon (Charles Dance). Vlad is given invincible power for three days and… a craving for human blood he’s powerless against. But, says the demon, if he can somehow refrain from bloodsucking for three days, Vlad’s a victor and a free man. If not, then he changes places with the cave-dwelling demon and takes up the torch of awful immortality (not unlike the fable of the Grim Reaper – one person holds the position, until the next one can be fooled or cajoled into taking it).
There are many visually dazzling moments, but that a movie does not make. Luckily, most of those are bound together with the occasional morsel of emotional resonance (one does believe Vlad really loves his wife and son – the family has chemistry) and suspense (there’s a gripping scene between Vlad and Mehmet, in which Mehmet has discovered Vlad’s weakness and taunts him with it).
Clocking in at 90 minutes, Dracula Untold lasts just long enough to not overstay its welcome. Thin plot aside, the actors are all well cast, each of them looking as though they’ve just stepped out of a Late Renaissance painting. The craggy faces and lived-in expressions of Evans, Cooper, and Dance are especially convincing and bring to mind a time when men in vampire movies were not all blonde and sparkly. What’s more, the attention to detail in their armor, weaponry, and accoutrement is impressive and appreciated.
It’s good, but hardly destined for classic status, nor is it library-worthy. But if you’re looking for just a quick, fun, and forgettable vampire bite, then Dracula Untold doesn’t disappoint. At least it has more blood and gore than the R-rated Annabelle.
October is upon us, and the annual Rock and Shock convention is quickly closing in with a dizzying cast of horror all-stars ready to greet you; vendors, games, contests, and kids’ activities available all day, every day, from every corner of the show; and a packed schedule of Q&A’s with horror insiders alongside a must-see lineup of films representing local and international talent, film festival favorites, and a cult classic returning from beyond!
Today we have the full rundown of this year’s film screenings so you can start making your schedule and not miss a thing. The event kicks off Friday, October 17th, and runs through Sunday, the 19th.
Related Story: Rock and Shock Draws Near! Full Details!
A Challenge in the Haunted Asylum: (Short) Three arrogant teens get more than they bargained for when they follow three girls into an abandoned insane asylum. Directed by Frederica Carlino.
Almost Mercy: (Sneak Preview) The latest release from Woodhaven Films and Director Tom DeNucci, releases in 2015 – Jackson and Emily aren’t like the other kids. Two burgeoning sociopaths on the brink of total meltdown. Ticking time bombs seeking revenge. Who will unravel first? Starring Kane Hodder, Bill Moseley and Tommy Dreamer. Introduction by Writer and Director Tom DeNucci!
Blood and Guts: Celebrating the art and pure awesomeness of monster makeup and gore effects, Scott Ian has teamed up with the Nerdist Channel to bring you “Blood and Guts,” showcasing a behind-the-scenes look at how some of the greatest FX artists of today pull off their amazing work. Introduction by Director Jack Bennett!
Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead: Martin (Vegar Hoel) hasn’t had the best vacation. He accidentally killed his girlfriend with an axe. He cut his own arm off with a chainsaw. And his friends STILL got devoured by a battalion of Nazi Zombies. This morning, he woke up in a hospital bed with a new arm – but it’s a super-powered Zombie arm that wants to kill him, and anything else it can reach. Martin’s PISSED. And with the help of his new Zombie Squad pals (Martin Starr, Jocelyn DeBoer, Ingrid Haas), he’s gonna deliver some payback to Colonel Herzog and his precious Nazi gold – by raising an undead army of his own. Intoduction by Derek Mears!
Dead Therapy: (Short) What would happen to the survivors in the aftermath of a zombie outbreak? Apparently, they go to therapy. A look into what happens after the “Resurrection Event”.
Fodder: (Short) In a post-apocalyptic world, humanity’s survival lies with Trelas, a secret military research facility. Buried deep underground, Trelas is developing a new weapon against the undead, or is it for the undead? But, just how effective their new efforts are lies with Gloria. Freshly captured, and just as mysterious a figure as her surroundings, she’s about to make the ultimate sacrifice: her flesh and blood. Directed by David Dollard.
Killer Mermaid: Two young American women go on a Mediterranean vacation and uncover the watery lair of a killer mermaid hidden beneath an abandoned military fortress. What was once a carefree adventure becomes a deadly fight for survival. Introduction by Kristina Klebe!
Penance: (Short) Confessionals are places of sanctuary and solace. But one woman has something else on her mind to divulge. Directed by Nick Principe; Introduction by Nick Principe!
Picket: (Short) A cult leader gets more than she bargained for when she makes a deal with a corrupt lobbyist. Directed by Izzy Lee.
Play Time: (Short) The winning submission for the Bloody Cuts – Who’s There Film Challenge (2013), starring Anjella Mackintosh and Belle Mary Hithersay. Packed with atmosphere and succeeding in delivering genuine creeps where most big budget films fail, all in under 4 minutes! Directed by Ryan Thompson.
Nightbreed: The Director’s Cut: Boone (Craig Sheffer) may be a troubled young man, but his troubles are just beginning. Set up as the fall guy in a string of slasher murders, he decides he’ll hide by crossing the threshold that separates “us” from “them” and sneak into the forbidden subterranean realm of Midian. Boone will live among the monsters. Hellraiser creator Clive Barker writes (adapting his novel Cabal) and directs this vivid leap into horror that asks: in the battle of man vs. monster, who’s really the monster? The answer supplies flesh-crawling suspense, sudden fear, a colorful Danny Elfman score and a creepy array of shape-shifting beings. They are the Nightbreed, denizens of a world beyond death, beyond the imagination, perhaps beyond anything you’ve seen. Screening courtesy of Scream Factory. The Blu-ray & DVD release of Nightbreed: The Director’s Cut is available on 10/28.
Sick At Heart: (Short) All relationships have problems. For Matt and his wife, those problems are insurmountable. They’ll have one last dinner and say goodbye…forever. Starkly quiet, delightfully quirky and fantastically morbid. Directed by Jarret Blinkhorn.
Silk: (Short) After acquiring a jar of rare silk from the vast desert expanse of Afghanistan, a CIA field operative becomes impregnated by the desert spider hidden inside. Directed by Rob Himebaugh.
Summer of Blood: Writer/director Onur Tukel turns in a hilarious performance as the monumentally lazy, socially oblivious and commitment-shy Erik Sparrow, who is dumped by his career-woman girlfriend (Anna Margaret Hollyman, White Reindeer) when he rejects her rather charitable marriage proposal. Feeling lost, he turns to a disastrous string of online dates that successively eat away at his already-deteriorating confidence until a lanky vampire turns him into an undead lady-killer. Soon, Eric is prowling the streets of Brooklyn in search of anything to satisfy both his maniacal sex drive and his hunger for blood. A collision of absurd, self-deprecating wit and existential curiosity, Summer of Blood is a hilarious horror-comedy with a clever bite all its own.
The Creed: (Short) Horror strikes when a young woman accidentally wins a pair of tickets for an embarrassing band’s concert. When Linda realizes she can’t destroy the tickets without them coming back to haunt her, she’ll soon have to face her past and confront her deepest fears in order to survive The Creed. Inspired by Stephen King film adaptations and late night horror television for children, The Creed is a horror comedy that confronts horrible adolescent tastes long thought buried. Directed by Kevin James.
The Killer and I: Horror can be hilarious! The World Premiere of the reality web series following the crazy adventures of Kane Hodder and Mike Aloisi. Introduction by Kane Hodder and Mike Aloisi!
The Last Showing: Writer-director Phil Hawkins tells the story of a young couple, Martin (Finn Jones) and Allie (Emily Berrington), who have a night out at their local cinema. They become unwitting stars of their own horror story at the hands of Stuart (Robert Englund), a disturbed projectionist. Trapping them in the cinema complex, Stuart uses hidden cameras to play his two victims off against one another, directing them to a finale where there can only be one survivor.
Web of Deceit: (Short) Charlotte has been working double shifts just to make ends meet. Meanwhile, her jobless husband spends all of his time trolling the internet looking for casual encounters to fulfill his perverse fantasies. In the end, his lies will come back to bite him as he becomes entangled in Charlotte’s own web of deceit. Directed by Michael Kyne.
WolfCop: Officer Lou Garou isn’t the best cop in small-town Woodhaven – in fact, he’s probably the worst. He mostly just looks to avoid anything that could possibly interfere with his goal of getting wasted. One evening during the night shift, Lou investigates a mysterious disturbance at the edge of town and wakes up with a pentagram carved in his chest, heightened senses and body hair that’s growing at an alarming rate. To solve the mystery of his transformation, he’ll have to take on a case no normal cop would be able to solve, but this half-man, half-beast is not just a cop…he’s a WOLFCOP. Directed by Lowell Dean.
Wolves: Cayden Richards, 18, has it all: Captain of the high school football team; straight-A student; gorgeous girlfriend. But when he wakes one dark night to find his parents brutally murdered, he is horrified to realize that he is turning into an animal: a wild, savage wolf. Cayden runs, determined to find out what is happening to him. His quest leads him to the strange, isolated town of Lupine Ridge, where two clans of wolves are on the brink of war. David Hayter (X-Men, X2 writer) makes his directorial debut. Starring Lucas Till (X-Men: First Class), Jason Momoa (“Game of Thrones”) and Stephen McHattie.
Three days of movies! Three days of bands that will melt your ears off! Three days of horror fun with all your favorite people! Don’t miss this show!
Visit RockandShock.com for further info, schedules, and tickets.
The post Rock and Shock 2014 Film Festival Lineup Announced appeared first on Dread Central.
Electronica legends Depeche Mode have announced that they will be releasing a live DVD/CD entitled Live In Berlin on November 17th via Columbia Records. Directed by Anton Corbijn, who has directed multiple videos for the group as well as for bands such as Metallica and U2, the DVD features two hours worth of never before released footage.
The concerts were filmed on location at the O2 World Berlin on November 25th and 27th as the band was on their world tour celebrating the release of last year’s Delta Machine. The tour saw them play to over 2.4 million people in 32 countries.
A second DVD will include Alive In Berlin, which features the full show inter-spliced with behind-the-scenes footage and interviews.
Alive in Berlin is a record of Depeche Mode visiting Berlin for two concerts and the impact it has on fans following the band. Berlin has a special place in the hearts of Depeche Mode. Likewise, Depeche Mode has a strong following in the German capital and the film tries to capture the highlights of these concerts as well as that special connection through interviews with fans and bands alike.
Head on below for the full specs of the release. Also, make sure to check out my review of their Delta Machine show in Detroit last year right.
Live In Berlin DVD
Welcome To My World
Walking In My Shoes
Should Be Higher
Policy Of Truth
The Child Inside
But Not Tonight
Soothe My Soul
A Pain That I’m Used To
A Question Of Time
Enjoy The Silence
Shake The Disease
Just Can’t Get Enough
I Feel You
Never Let Me Down Again
Alive In Berlin DVD
Full live show + 15 interview pieces
Bordello Acoustic Session: Condemnation and Judas
Live In Berlin Soundtrack (2 CDs)
1. Welcome To My World
3. Walking In My Shoes
5. Black Celebration
6. Should Be Higher
7. Policy Of Truth
8. The Child Inside
9. But Not Tonight
11. Soothe My Soul
1. A Pain That I’m Used To
2. A Question Of Time
3. Enjoy The Silence
4. Personal Jesus
5. Shake The Disease
7. Just Can’t Get Enough
8. I Feel You
9. Never Let Me Down
Delta Machine 5.1 Audio (Blu Ray CD – Deluxe Edition only)
1. Welcome To My World
4. Secret To The End
5. My Little Universe
8. The Child Inside
9. Soft Touch/Raw Nerve
10. Should Be Higher
12. Soothe My Soul
14. Long Time Lie
15. Happens All The Time
17. All That’s Mine
Renew your faith in “Found Footage”
By Zack Andrews & Bobby Roe
Horror already has an advantage over any other genre: you don’t need an A-List star to have a successful movie. Now because of “found footage” you don’t need a studio sized budget either. But have we pushed this 1-2 punch too far? Let’s nip this in the bud right now: people are tired of found footage. The subgenre is watered down, and it’s been abused…maybe even raped. Shooting in this style is a cheap way to make a movie that fits nicely into the low budget horror model.
I know we may come off as Cine-ics, but we’re actually believers. So don’t lose hope in the first person perspective just yet. Story is story and shouldn’t be dictated by camera style. There are many movies out there that have properly used this technique, and it enhanced the overall visceral experience.
Hopefully our execution in The Houses October Built (in theaters, on VOD and iTunes this Friday, October 10th) keeps or renews your faith. We shot this way to keep true to the organic feel of the movie. We used real scare actors and real haunted houses. It would have been a disservice to film it any other way. We’re not saying a movie centered around Halloween haunted houses HAS to be found footage, but a movie that’s actually based in reality…well POV was the only way to get the audience to walk through the haunts and be on the journey with us. Our eyes are now your eyes, and you’re with us in the dark surrounded by all those clowns, too.
Here is a list of found footage movies from the pioneers that started it all to present day interpretations that we believe used the style innovatively to tell a compelling story:
Cannibal Holocaust (1980)
This was before them all. They used real natives and went into the heart of darkness for their story. What is staged is for you to decide. Ruggero Deodato, the film’s director, was arrested after the premiere because people thought the murders on screen really happened. And, frankly, after seeing the film, I don’t know if I blame the authorities back then for coming to that conclusion.
The Last Broadcast (1998)
Not saying the movie is by any means perfect. The end falls apart. That said, the filmmakers tried something new and bold. We bring them up because they were nine months before Blair Witch, but disappeared into the ether. This was actually the first movie to be digitally streamed to theaters. If you want to dig deeper, read the chapter on this film in the book Brand Hijack. It’s very interesting and controversial.
Paranormal Activity (2007)
It’s easy to pass over because of the financial success, but PA was a game changer. Specifically, the use of the home camera and the time-lapse made this “ghost” movie feel very authentic. Oren Peli never took it too far which allowed the audience to live through the moment with Katie and Micah. The use of shadows and sounds helped you immerse yourself in some apparition ambience that challenged and frightened your imagination.
Welcome to the Jungle (2007)
Definitely influenced by Cannibal Holocaust, it’s directed by Jonthan Hensleigh (writer of Jumanji, Die Hard: With a Vengeance). The problem with many of these movies is not letting them breathe. For the story to unfold and feel real, moments should be captured that may not necessarily drive the story, but they remind you real life is taking place. WTTJ did this effectively and let the characters develop; because you need to care about someone before you watch them die.
The Poughkeepsie Tapes (2007)
The rawness of this film sticks with you. A serial killer documenting and stalking his prey. The tapes themselves seem to each have a life of their own. As we discussed before in allowing a scene to breathe, this film allows the killer to flesh out all of his weird and demented fantasies.
Lake Mungo (2008)
An Australian made movie, which really capitalizes on the found footage idea. Probably one of the best looking films in the genre as well. The filmmakers really captured an authentic missing persons story that will keep you guessing until the end.
This anthology is the definition of found footage. Literally hundreds of found VHS tapes give every reason in the world to have POV. Regardless of the content of these tapes, from psychotic to supernatural, the movie stays grounded, gritty, and feels like you could find really these tapes in some guy’s basement.
The Remaining (2014)
We haven’t seen it yet, but as fans of “The Leftovers,” the idea of people documenting firsthand the Rapture is very topical and a smart way into the genre.
Lastly and the most effective use of actual found footage:
Dear Zachery: A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)
Disclaimer: This is not a horror film. It’s definitely more doc, but the reveal is definitely worthy of putting this in a suspense category. Dear Zachery really shows how impactful found footage can be. It’s a composite of home movies that tells a story you have to see to believe. Try not to read a synopsis before viewing. We don’t want to give too much away, but we can’t stress enough how powerful this movie is.
Let’s face it. Commercially, found footage movies began with Blair Witch and died with Paranormal Activity. That is to say these movies were probably the first and last times the audience really believed the movie could have possibly been made from literal found footage. So presently, the phrase “found footage” is a misnomer. Now, it should more accurately be called “1st person POV” (although it definitely doesn’t have the alliteration nor the ring of the phrase “found footage”). With that in mind, we chose to shoot The Houses October Built this way, not because we think you will believe someone found our tapes, but rather to give you the perspective and experience only first person camera can do. As we mentioned before, would you rather watch someone walk through a haunted house or be the person walking through?
The Houses October Built
Halloween maze fun turns into slasher horror?
The super fun and unique The Houses October Built is getting a limited theatrical run through Image and RLJ Entertainment October 10, and it may just be the perfect Halloween-time indie to seek out.
“Beneath the fake blood and cheap masks of countless haunted house attractions across the country, there are whispers of truly terrifying alternatives. Looking to find an authentic, blood-curdling good fright for Halloween, five friends set off on a road trip in an RV to track down these underground Haunts. Just when their search seems to reach a dead end, strange and disturbing things start happening and it becomes clear that the Haunt has come to them…”
Bobby Roe directs this new spin on found-footage that stars Brandy Schaefer, Zack Andrews, Bobby Roe, Mikey Roe and Jeff Larson.
Another Chilean horror film is on the horizon for fans of the survival sub-genre, and we have your very first look at it right here. Read on for all the details you need to know about Path (aka Sendero) along with the teaser trailer and more.
From the Press Release
Chilean survival/horror film Path is to be released during the first half of 2015 in international film festivals and is currently in the post-production stage. The film is produced by Border Motion Cinema and directed by Lucio A. Rojas.
Path tells the story of Ana, a young woman who has just won a scholarship to graduate school abroad. To celebrate, she goes with some friends to a cabin located in a rural area of Chile. After helping a badly injured woman on the road, the group is kidnapped by a family who follows the orders of a power group in the region. To survive and escape, they will have to resort to betrayal among themselves in an atmosphere of violence, abuse, and sadism.
The film stars Andrea García Huidobro, Diego Casanueva, Sofía García, Javiera Hernández, Felipe Contreras, Arielli Gutiérrez, Guillermo Alfaro, Daniel Antivilo, and Thomas Vidiella.
Path is Lucio Rojas’ third film and was inspired by a case of rural violence that occurred in the mid-80s in a city in southern Chile.
There’s never been a better time to be a fan of R.L. Stine’s mega-popular Goosebumps franchise than now, as next summer marks the release of a long-awaited feature film adaptation of the most iconic tales from the books.
But fans of the series don’t have to wait for the fun to begin, because Stine and Scholastic are kicking off the celebration early with all sorts of Halloween events that are sure to make you feel like a kid again.
Check out the full slate of upcoming events below, which includes the release of a brand new book and a full scale social media takeover!
From the Press Release:
Ghouls and boys of all ages will celebrate Halloween with a host of frighteningly fun new Goosebumps™ activities and events! To help fans everywhere get into the spirit, Goosebumps author – and ultimate master of scares! – R.L. Stine will host his third Scholastic social media takeover on Thursday, October 30. And to further bewitch fans, Scholastic will unleash a revamped Goosebumps website, social media pages and brand-new book as well as host a special event featuring R.L. Stine at The Scholastic Store in Manhattan, and more!
“Through our new website, a movie coming in summer 2015, new books and live events, we continue to excite and engage our young fan base as well as our loyal millennial Goosebumps fans,” said Deborah A. Forte, President of Scholastic Media.
On October 30 from 2–3:30pm EST, R.L. Stine will be “trick or tweeting” with fans through social media in a can’t-miss live chat. Stine will share jokes, trivia, videos and images, plus answer questions from participants, who will also have a chance to win collectible Goosebumps prizes. Creatures from coast-to-coast can join in the conversation by using #31DaysofGoosebumps to post on the Scholastic accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram, or via the Goosebumps Facebook page and newly launched Goosebumps Tumblr, Twitter and Instagram feeds. It’s sure to be a scream!
Additional ways for fans to get Goosebumps:
Online: Fans can visit the interactive new mobile-friendly Goosebumps website, www.scholastic.com/goosebumps, to play engaging games and activities such as “Monster Blood” and “Which Monster Are You?”; check-out the author events calendar and news spotlight; discuss all things Goosebumps in a community forum; and review a full list of books and TV episodes, so they’ll be sure never to miss a new title or show!
In New York City: R.L. Stine himself will treat kids and families to a Halloween-themed afternoon, as he reads and signs some of the best-loved Goosebumps books at The Scholastic Store on Saturday, October 18, at 2pm EST!
With a new book: Young monsters can sink their teeth into “12 Screams of Christmas,” a special edition book and the latest title in the Goosebumps: Most Wanted series that follows the brand’s most infamous characters!
Through iTunes and Netflix: Families can now catch all 74 edge-of-your-seat Goosebumps episodes on iTunes and Netflix, this Halloween and anytime!
On TV: Kids can tune-in to the Goosebumps TV series for ghastly laughs on The Hub Network!
And things will get even spookier in Times Square, when R.L. Stine and Scholastic Media President Deborah Forte ring the bell for the close of the NASDAQ stock market on Halloween, Friday, October 31, at 4pm EST.
The thrills-filled Goosebumps TV series, based on the popular Scholastic books written by R.L. Stine, follows the stories of children who find themselves in extraordinary situations, serving up plenty of humor and safe scares.
The much-anticipated Goosebumps feature film, starring Jack Black, will be released from Sony Pictures Entertainment in August 2015. The movie is produced by Deborah Forte and Neal H. Moritz.
The post Goosebumps Celebrating Halloween with New Book and Special Events appeared first on Dread Central.
More revenge is on the menu in the new flick Autumn Blood, and we have your details hot, ready, and full of heavily armed psychopaths. Dig it!
Markus Blunder directs. Sophie Lowe, Peter Stormare, Gustaf Skarsgård, Samuel Vauramo, and Maximilian Harnisch star.
Look for it on DVD October 21.
Two young orphans in the Australian Tirolian Mountains come under siege by a vicious band of hunters. Frightened of being separated by child services following the death of their mother, a self-sufficient 16-year-old girl (Sophie Lowe) and her 10-year-old brother (Maximilian Harnisch) – who hasn’t spoken a word since seeing his father killed by the mayor (Peter Stormare) – strive to live off the land in peace. Their innocence is shattered, however, when a group of hunters led by the mayor’s son brutalizes and rapes the free-spirited girl. Later, when a well-meaning social services worker arrives too late to protect the terrorized siblings, the girl and her brother prepare to take a stand against their ruthless attackers.
Whether you loved Annabelle (review) or you hated it, there’s no denying that the titular character – first seen in The Conjuring and based on a real ‘haunted’ doll – is pretty damn creepy. With long pigtails, rosy red cheeks and a sinister smile, Annabelle is hands down one of the most nightmarish pint-sized terrors the genre has ever birthed.
Nightmarish. Yea. That’s a word that doesn’t even begin to describe the video we’ve just dug up, wherein a male makeup artist uses his tools of the trade to literally transform into the Annabelle doll, right before your eyes. You have been warned.
Like David Naughton’s transformation in An American Werewolf in London, this one is both horrifying and awe-inspiring, as it’s truly amazing how doll-like the artist becomes, with a few strokes of the makeup brush.
London-based artist Charlie Short is the man behind the makeup, going by the name PinkStylist over on YouTube. Check out the full transformational tutorial below, which somehow manages to make Annabelle even creepier than she already was!
The post Want Nightmares? Watch Male Makeup Artist Transform Into Annabelle appeared first on Dread Central.
From Blair Witch director Eduardo Sanchez, Exists pits a group of twenty-somethings against the legendary Bigfoot. We have a brand new clip that drops you right in the middle of an attack where said Sasquatch is going absolutely crazy!
“For five friends, it was a chance for a summer getaway— a weekend of camping in the Texas Big Thicket. But visions of a carefree vacation are shattered with an accident on a dark and desolate country road. In the wake of the accident, a bloodcurdling force of nature is unleashed—something not exactly human, but not completely animal— an urban legend come to terrifying life…and seeking murderous revenge.“
The film stars Chris Osborn, Dora Madison Burge, Roger Edwards, Samuel Davis, Denise Williamson and Brian Steele and is produced by Jane Fleming, Mark Ordesky, Robin Cowie and J. Andrew Jenkins.
Exists hits theaters and iTunes on October 24.
Directed by Bobby Roe
Let me be clear. I am sick to death of found footage movies. The subgenre has been weakened, overdone, and generally speaking, I can’t imagine anyone looking for more footage as all the interesting stuff has already been found. Or so I thought… Just when it seemed I was out, something came along and pulled me back in: the truly frightening The Houses October Built.
In it our characters, who play themselves, are about as fed up with homogenized haunted attractions as I am with first-person movies. Rather then spend their Halloween season headed to the usual haunts, they decide to take a trip to the not as well known towns who host their own spook houses each year. Our group, made up of a pair of brothers along with several life-long friends, are in search of the most extreme haunts imaginable. One in particular hits their radar that’s supposed to be the apex of scares. The only problem? No one knows where it is or whom to ask for directions. This isn’t something that’s advertised. It’s only known through word of mouth.
Once on the road, our protagonists hit up several haunted attractions, each one spookier than the next, and while there they start their pursuit of the holy grail of haunts by asking around each town. Finally they get a lead and lo and behold end up there. The only hitch? They might never leave.
Filmed in actual haunted attractions, each with their own scare-actors, The Houses October Built masterfully captures the look and feel of both the industry and the season with eerie sights and jump-scares aplenty. The film’s characters are ridiculously natural, and their relationships and reactions are both fun and frightening. You really feel as if you’re there with the gang having a blast. This illusion is pulled off flawlessly, and I don’t think any other style of filmmaking could have done such a service to this particular movie. I will say this though… if you’re not a fan of shaky-cam, you may want to steer clear as there’s a lot of it, but if you don’t mind or can just deal, there’s quite an experience to be had here.
As with every other found footage film, you’re going to have to suspend logic every now and again. That’s always a painful task because you want things to make perfect sense, but here you’ve just gotta accept that the camera is rolling and take the ride. Believe me, it’s worth it!
By the time we get to the finale, we’ve been thoroughly assaulted with nightmarish imagery that leads to a third act that’s home to some of the most intense situations we’ve seen in some time. It’s frighteningly real and leads you to wonder exactly how all of this happened and who was behind what. There’s much discussion to be had by the time that the credits roll, and that’s the hallmark of a great film.
Tis the season, kids, and this is a great Halloween-time tale of absolute terror. Revel in it!
“Now Woody, he’s been my pal for as long as I can remember. He’s brave, like a cowboy should be. And kind, and smart. But the thing that makes Woody special, is he’ll never give up on you… ever. He’ll be there for you, no matter what.”
There’s a new trailer mashup that’s sort of a bit lazy and thrown together as click bait (well, it worked didn’t it?). On the heels of the success of Annabelle, this new mashup combines the haunted doll movie with Pixar’s Toy Story.
The faux trailer for Woody is clever in theory, but doesn’t work until the last gag, which is why I decided to share this Halloween Treat with ya!
Norwegian director Roar Uthaug, best known for Cold Prey and Escape, is preparing Scandinavia’s first disaster movie, The Wave (Bølgen).
The film, writes ScreenDaily, budgeted at $7.9m (NOK50m), will depict a tsunami that is predicted to hit Norway at some point in the future.
There was a previous instance in 1934 when 2 million cubic metres of rock fell into Norway’s Tafiord, triggering a 85-metre wave, which left 40 people dead.
Currently, a 700-metre crevice in the Åkneset Fjell, aka the Fjell of Death, expands by 10-15cm annually. This will eventually result in a rockslide, creating a tsunami in the fjord and destroying everything in its path before it reaches land in Geiranger.
Filming on Norwegian locations and in Romanian studios, the cast include Kristoffer Joner, Ane Dahl Torp, Eili Harboe and Jonas Hoff Oftebro.
The script, about an experienced geologist (Joner) who finds himself separated from his family 10 minutes before he knows the disaster will take place, has been written by John Kåre Raake and Harald Rosenløw-Eeg.
The Wave will be released in August 2015 by Nordisk Film Distribusjon.
Apparently Universal is cleaning house of old Blumhouse films as they’ve dumped not only Mockingbird direct-to-VOD, but now Stephen King’s Mercy. Yes, both can be rented or purchased on various VOD platforms, right now with absolutely zero press. This makes you wonder if we’ll finally see Blumhouse’s Area 51, on shelves since pretty much a year after Paranormal Activity released (although, that’s released through Paramount Pictures)…
Anyways, we now have the trailer for Mercy, directed by Haunting in Connecticut‘s (yuck) Peter Cornwell. It looks sort of like an Evil Dead ripoff, without all the cool deadites.
In Mercy, “Two young boys (“The Walking Dead’s” Chandler Riggs and Super 8‘s Joel Courtney) who move with their mother to take care of their dying grandmother at her decrepit farmhouse. When they suspect that the elderly woman they love has encountered a dark spirit, they fear she might not be the only one who won’t make it through the summer alive. Once George (Riggs) and Buddy McCoy (Courtney) arrive at their Gramma Mercy’s (Shirley Knight), what they find inside her 150-year-old home is nothing short of terrifying. As the brothers experience deeply disturbing phenomena they believe to be the work of an ancient witch, they must fight for their lives and overcome the evil forces threatening their family.”
The film stars Dylan McDermott, Frances O’Connor, Chandler Riggs, Joel Courtney, Shirley Knight, and Chris Browning.
Ever since we were teased with a “BioShock” movie, I’ve been dying for Gore Verbinski to return to horror. His The Ring remake is of huge inspiration for me, and is part of the genesis of the V/H/S films.
Verbinski is getting paranoid with comedian Steve Carell in an untitled thriller that New Regency will put in production in March. But that’s not all, Deadline reports that the plan is for Verbinski to follow this one by shooting back-to-back projects for New Regency. Those films will be A Cure For Wellness, an elevated horror film written by Revolutionary Road scribe Justin Haythe, and the comedy Passengers.
Verbinski, who signed the deal in April, is coming off The Lone Ranger and before that the Oscar-winning Rango and the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films.
With the amazing announcement that Showtime has secured a third season of the cult murder mystery TV show Twin Peaks, I thought I would bring back this old interview where composer Angelo Badalamenti discussed how he sat with creator David Lynch and came up with the infamous “Love Theme” that has haunted and entranced listeners for almost 25 years.
What I love about this clip is how passionately Badalamenti recalls the exact circumstances when this piece was composed. His story conveys a deep appreciation of the power of music and how it can be used to enhance what is happening on the screen.
Much of the audio was used as the introduction to this free electronic mix.
With Magnet Releasing and Drafthouse Films’ ABCs of Death 2 now on various VOD platforms, Bloody Disgusting caught up with Dennison Ramalho, who directed one of my favorite of the 26 short films.
In his “J is for Jesus,” a man is kidnapped by his own father and given an exorcism to cleanse his soul only to learn he’s not the demon.
We talked to Ramalho about the genesis of his short, his hatred of religion, and whether or not he fears backlash for spiritual horror fans.
BD: You surprisingly share a very similar view on religion we me, I was wondering what promoted such, hatred?
Dennison Ramalho: “Most religions use fear as a prime tactic. I was raised in a churchgoing environment and saw how huge of a toll the maintenance of dogma made lives horrible for many people around me. So far, that’s ok. Some people choose that lifestyle, all difficulties included. But then things get hairy when extremists articulate themselves in whatever manner — from “politics-politics” to “sexual politics” to “home politics”, and so on… — to impose their beliefs and lifestyle on others using, guess what? Yes. FEAR TACTICS. And LIES. In comes the fear of Hell, the fear of being morally or mentally anomalous, the fear of not having acceptable moral good-standing… That’s where I tell (extreme) religion to fuck off, and make movies against it. To expose all that cruelty. It’s not about spirituality anymore. It’s about mind control, and it’s unacceptable. Brazil is a particularly cruel country when it comes to not being religious, or being gay, or being a humanist or a free-thinker. It’s a mostly-conservative society pretending to be cool and progressive. It’s not my first movie on the subject, btw.”
BD: Are you afraid of any sort of backlash from religious folk?
Dennison Ramalho: I’m damn hungry for it!
BD: Can you talk about the genesis of the short, and the affects of social commentary on film?
Dennison Ramalho: “I can talk about the genesis of the short. About the affects of social commentary on film, well… I don’t feel I know, historically that much about it. Suffice to say Romero is my great idol on this strategy, in all his zombie films. He uses Horror and Death as metaphors of ethical subjects going rotten in American Society. I try to do the same. In my previous short film (NINJAS, 2010) I unleashed a vicious attack against the Brazilian Military Police, showing them as the sadistic monsters they really are. As for the genesis of the short, I created a number of possible stories for the anthology. Some of them with my dear friend, Screenwriter Jeff Bühler (of INSANITARIUM and MIDNIGHT MEAT TRAIN fame). I was pretty outraged at a few evangelical politicians in Brazil at the time (basically media preachers who used their popularity to become congressmen). These fellas proposed a project of law that revoked a decision of the Superior Federal Council of Psychiatry, which banned the treatment of homosexuality in Brazil as a mental disease. In other words, if that law passed (which it didn’t!) gay people would be legally considered mentally-ill and, thus, eligible for psychiatric treatment — a human rights catastrophe!”
BD: Religion and horror always seem to hit the spot, it’s like peanut butter and jelly, can you speak more to this…
Dennison Ramalho: “As I said: it’s all about fear of a deep Evil lurking right around the corner, or inside your mind. Religion, with ethical and compassionate approaches, always zealed for the human soul. Then fanaticism took over, and turned this zeal into hysterical dictatorial lust — you see it from ISIS beheadings to my neighborhood’s chapter of the Assembly of God. But in movies the uses of the religion-horror combo are not that immoral. After all, the Devil — you beautiful! — was always there as a villain to inspire stories about possessions, the Occult, etc. But in movies there is pure evil — and I don’t believe in pure evil in real life. Even Satan was an angel once, after all… However, it’s one thing is to invent a black-metal demon named Baghuul for your movie, or come up with Satan, the absolute evil one, possessing little girls. The other thing is to use Fiction and the mass-media to demonize minorities, which is what these fuckers do. Well, this little movie is my personal answer to that.”
“ABCs of Death 2 is the follow-up to the most ambitious anthology film ever conceived with productions spanning from Nigeria to UK to Brazil and everywhere in between. It features segments directed by over two dozen of the world’s leading talents in contemporary genre film. The film is comprised of twenty-six individual chapters, each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet. The directors were then given free rein in choosing a word to create a story involving death. Provocative, shocking, funny and at times confrontational, ABC’s of Death 2 is another global celebration of next generation genre filmmaking.”
Bloody Disgusting was excited to share with you the first ever review of Mockingbird, directed by The Strangers‘ Bryan Bertino.
The direct-to-video Blumhouse production is now on VOD platforms, which means we now have a trailer for the found-footage thriller starring Todd Stashwick (“Justified,” “Heroes”), Audrey Marie Anderson, and Alexa Lydon.
“Three individuals each receive an anonymous, unmarked video camera and a horrific ultimatum to continue filming… or die. Experience the terror through the eyes of these unsuspecting victims, with a chain of found-footage events so real and absolutely dreadful, you’ll have to watch it again to believe it.”
Some interesting news for fans of the US version of The Ring has come in… Gore Verbinski is directing a trio of new films for New Regency, including one “elevated” horror project plus a “paranoid thriller” starring Steve Carrell. The other’s a comedy, but two out of three ain’t bad!
Per Deadline, first out of the gate is the Carrell vehicle, still untitled but written by Steve Conrad (The Pursuit of Happyness, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty).
Verbinski will then helm A Cure for Wellness, penned by Revolutionary Road writer Justin Haythe. (If you’re curious about the final project, it’s Passengers, also scripted by Conrad, said to be a “large-scale action comedy.”)
We’ll have more on A Cure for Wellness for sure and possibly on Carrell’s thriller depending on how it shakes out genre-wise so stay tuned!
The post Gore Verbinski Directing A Cure For Wellness and Untitled Steve Carrell Thriller for New Regency appeared first on Dread Central.
Some FX stills from Wolves have arrived, and they warm our hearts in the most practical of ways. Ya see? Practical werewolf effects. That so hard, Hollywood?
Directed by David Hayter, Wolves stars Lucas Till, Stephen McHattie, John Pyper-Ferguson, Merritt Patterson, and Jason Momoa. Look for it Thursday, October 16th, on Video on Demand and Friday, November 14th, in select cities nationwide.
Popular high school student Cayden Richards wakes from a horrific nightmare, only to realize that he’s living it. He is changing into something vicious, unpredictable, and wild. Forced to hit the road after the brutal murder of his parents, Cayden tries to hunt down the truth of what he is. In the remote mountain town of Lupine Ridge, he discovers others like himself – including the beautiful Angelina, a young woman caught between two ancient clans of “wolves.” And when he finally discovers the shocking truth behind his ancestry, Cayden realizes there is only one way to save the woman he loves… a grisly fight to the death against forces more savage than he could have ever imagined.
So what if the Sin City sequel was around a decade too late? The point is it eventually ended up in theatres and it’s now making its way to home video. Read on for the skinny!
From the Press Release
Anchor Bay Entertainment and The Weinstein Company are proud to announce today the home entertainment release of FRANK MILLER’S SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR. The action-packed sequel, directed by acclaimed filmmakers Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez and starring Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Josh Brolin, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Rosario Dawson, Bruce Willis, Eva Green, Powers Boothe, Dennis Haysbert, Ray Liotta, and Jeremy Piven, is headed to retail on November 18th. The 3D Blu-ray™ combo pack, available for a suggested retail price of $39.99, includes Blu-ray 3D™, Blu-ray™, DVD and UV. The DVD is retailed at $29.98.
FRANK MILLER’S SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR is rated R for strong brutal stylized violence throughout, sexual content, nudity, and brief drug use. Fans will be rewarded with eye-popping special features that include never-before-seen Robert Rodriguez-approved exclusives such as ‘The Movie In High-Speed Green Screen—All Green Screen Version’, ‘Makeup Effects Of Sin City With Greg Nicotero’, ‘Stunts Of Sin City With Jeff Dashnaw’, and ‘Character Profiles’.”
In FRANK MILLER’S SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR, scandal, murder, betrayal and mystery surround the lives of those swept up in a crime-filled underworld. Co-directors Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller reunite to bring Miller’s visually stunning “Sin City” graphic novels back to the screen in the follow-up to the groundbreaking film, FRANK MILLER’S SIN CITY (2005). Weaving together two of Miller’s classic stories with new tales, the town’s most hard boiled citizens cross paths with some of its more reviled inhabitants.
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