‘Dollhouse’ is Like a Stephen King Fever Dream

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 12:00

Today I’d like to introduce you to an eerie little game called Dollhouse. I stumbled across it while perusing the latest additions to Steam Greenlight, which I sometimes do even though I have a tendency to spend way too much time exploring the stranger titles Greenlight has to offer.

Dollhouse is essentially an amalgam of things that I love. Its Steam page mentions Stephen King as a source of inspiration, its world is randomly generated for every playthrough and its non-linear narrative ensures the story will unfold differently each time.

There’s nothing wrong with a developer that’s willing to borrow their ideas so long as they’re also willing to give their own twist on those ideas. For example, the characters in Dollhouse have the ability to temporarily see through the eyes of the enemy. That’s clearly from Siren, only in this game, “sight-jacking” a baddie also lets that baddie see where you are.

Categories: Horror News

[Preview '15] Lin Shaye Haunted In New ‘Insidious: Chapter 3′ Still

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 11:52

Focus Features released a new image from the forthcoming Insidious: Chapter 3 that features franchise star Lin Shaye being haunted by a demon (played by J. LaRose).

Leigh Whannell, co-creator of the terrifying horror franchise, directs the third film.

The full cast of Insidious: Chapter 3 includes Dermot Mulroney (August: Osage County) and Stefanie Scott (Jem and the Holograms) starring alongside Lin Shaye, Angus Sampson, and Mr. Whannell, with the latter trio reprising their roles from the first two movies in the franchise.

This chilling prequel, set before the haunting of the Lambert family, reveals how gifted psychic Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) reluctantly agrees to use her ability to contact the dead in order to help a teenage girl (Stefanie Scott) who has been targeted by a dangerous supernatural entity.

Focus Features will release Insidious: Chapter 3 domestically nationwide on June 5, 2015.

Categories: Horror News

Chainsaws and Missing Limbs In New ‘Max Mad: Road Fury’ Photos

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 11:44

A bunch of publicist photos have leaked from Warner Bros. post-apocalyptic thriller Mad Max: Fury Road. Am I crazy or is Charlize Theron missing an arm?

In theaters May 15,2015, Mad Max: Fury Road stars Charlize Theron (Prometheus) as Imperator Furiosa, and includes 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

[Preview '15] Here’s a T-800 From ‘Terminator Genisys’

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 11:40

Paramount Pictures has unleashed a new shot of a T-800 in their forthcoming Terminator Genisys, in theaters July 1, 2015.

Alan Taylor shot the film in New Orleans. It stars Emilia Clarke (as Sarah Conner), Jai Courtney (as Kyle Reese) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (as a T-800), with Jason Clarke (as John Conner), Byung-hun Lee, Matt Smith, Aaron V. Williamson, Dayo Okeniyi and J.K. Simmons.

Check out the full trailer here. A new Super Bowl TV Spot is forthcoming.

Categories: Horror News

‘Silent Hill: Downpour’ Has Vanished from Xbox Live

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 11:00

A couple readers have pointed out the recent disappearance of Silent Hill: Downpour from the Xbox Live store. I was able to confirm it’s no longer available where I am, and that Silent Hill: Homecoming and the Silent Hill HD Collection haven’t vanished with it, but the reason for its sudden removal is still a mystery.

My guess is this is just another example of a license expiring. That sometimes happens around this time of the year.

I’ve reached out to Konami for a comment, I’ll update this story if/when I hear back.

Categories: Horror News

Dear Desolate “Live Free Or Die” Video Premiere (Exclusive)

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 11:00

We’ve teamed up with Raleigh, NC nu-metalcore band Dear Desolate to bring you the exclusive music video premiere of “Live Free Or Die”, the band’s brand new single. The video mixes performance footage that refuses to show the band members’ faces and footage of vocalist Chris Walsh standing face-to-face with a priest, arguing back and forth while a black substance creeps across Walsh’s body, threatening to infect the priest.

Dear Desolate released a free EP in late 2013 entitled The Fiction Diary, which you can snag via Bandcamp.

You can download “Live Free Or Die” using a “Name Your Price” model over at Bandcamp.

Dear Desolate online:

Categories: Horror News

[Review] ‘REC 4: Apocalypse’ Is a Disappointing End to a Once Promising Franchise

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 10:03

The REC series has certainly gone through some interesting changes across its four films. It has morphed from a zombie film to a demonic possession film to a slapstick comedy and now to an evil parasite/scientist film. To say that the differences between each film in the series remind me of how different each film is in the Alien franchise would be an understatement (I even consider both Alien 3 and REC 3: Genesis to be good films, but terrible sequels). So here we are with REC 4: Apocalypse, the supposed end to the franchise that started out with a bang and ends with a whimper. Warning: spoilers for the previous films in the franchise will be discussed in the following review.

REC 4 opens immediately following the events of REC 2 (and REC 3 as well, I suppose) as we see GEO soldiers Guzmán (Paco Manzanedo) and Lucas (Críspulo Cabezas) enter the infamous apartment building only to find Ángela (a very welcome return from Manuela Velasco) wandering the halls. From there, the film cuts to Ángela waking up strapped to a gurney on a ship that doubles as a government research facility. Upon Ángela’s release from confinement, she re-teams with Guzmán and we are introduced to head honcho Dr. Ricarte (Héctor Colomé), computer whiz Nic (Ismael Fritschi) and an elderly woman (María Alfonsa Rosso) who is the sole survivor of the events of the third film (even though, to my knowledge, we never met her in that film). After a while (a good 30 minutes) an infected monkey is loosed on the ship and it becomes a fight for survival as we follow the passengers’ attempt to extinguish the virus (parasite? demon?) once and for all.

First for the good: it is very refreshing to have Velasco back as our heroine Ángela, who was sorely missing from the third installment. She gives us someone to care about (even though the final moments of the second film would suggest otherwise) in a sea of characters that, unfortunately are relegated to paper-thin stereotypes (cop, mad scientist, nerd, etc.). The film veers away from the comedy of the previous film as well, with a welcome return to the serious tone of the first two installments. Also great is the practical effects team. The make-up effects are top notch on the infected and there are some truly gruesome images on display here.

The direction is also pretty solid, as Jaume Balagueró has proven before that he is more than capable of directing a solid thriller. There are some fairly memorable scenes that he constructs with prowess, including a scene early on with a monkey that has to be an homage to the kitchen scene from Gremlins. The climax of REC 4 is also sufficiently thrilling, with a countdown in effect to ratchet up the tension a la the ending of a Resident Evil game.

Unfortunately, that’s where the good ends with REC 4. The rest of the movie is just not that thrilling and, if I’m being honest, it’s kind of dull. It isn’t until the final 20 or so minutes that I really became involved with what was happening on screen. Once we are introduced to the boat, the narrative just kind of stalls. Sure, there are things happening, like Nic attempting to recover all of the footage from Angela’s camera and an infected monkey getting loose and Dr. Ricarte trying to find a vaccine, but none of it is that particularly compelling.You would think that setting the film on a boat would give it a sense of claustrophobia but it just doesn’t really work.

While there are some stunning practical effects, there is also some godawful CGI sprinkled in as well. Most of this involved the monkey (the first time we see it crawling on the wall it looks like a cartoon), but there is quite a bit of CGI gore in there as well. Most of it is excess blood splatter, but it’s still noticeably fake and the film would have been better off without it.

The REC series seemed to have lost its way beginning with the third installment. It just doesn’t know what it wants to be. I’m all for breaking the mold and trying a different route, but REC 4 completely disregards the religious and demonic aspects of the first three films and makes this one strictly about a killer parasite looking for the best host. On top of that, REC 3 is deemed even more unnecessary (even though I do enjoy it, as weird a departure as it is) by the fact that, if it wasn’t for Rosso’s character and one or two references to a wedding, it isn’t even referenced. It doesn’t make sense in the continuity of the franchise, and it’s disappointing that these things were not touched on more in REC 4. 

Also, this is a huge nitpick and not really relevant to the quality of the film but I just had to throw it out there: is it very wise for characters to be slicing into infected flesh with chainsaws and boat motors with their mouths wide open? I get that Balagueró was going for an Evil Dead vibe but since this film decided to take a more serious tone it just seems impractical. It takes me out of the movie almost as much as seeing a (555) area code does. End rant.

I love REC and REC 2, and I find REC 3 to be an enjoyably silly film, if a little underwhelming. REC 4, while it has moments of inspiration, is an unfortunately disappointing end to this once promising franchise. It has been said that this is the final film in the franchise, and maybe that’s for the best. I wouldn’t mind a fifth film to course-correct, though. Based on the final shot, another sequel wouldn’t be completely out of the question. Who knows what direction they would take this waning franchise next though?

Categories: Horror News

‘Resident Evil 4′ HD Project Releases Village Update

bloody disgusting - Tue, 01/06/2015 - 10:00

If video games were people, Resident Evil 4 would resemble one of those leathery-faced elective surgery addicts. This game has been tweaked, remastered and ported more times than I have the energy to count right now, and I’m sure it’s latest HD re-release on Steam won’t be the last.

Capcom has given Resident Evil 4 a considerable amount of attention since its release in 2005, but the value of each iteration has left many fans disappointed. The RE4 HD Project aims to change that by bringing the community together so this game — one of the all-time greats — can get the makeover it deserves. Their labor is even beginning to bear fruit.

Last month, they released the Village portion of the game, which they say covers the first third of the game, along with a video for easy comparing of the original game with the fan remaster.

If you have a PC copy of Resident Evil 4 you’d like to upgrade, this pack can be downloaded here.

Categories: Horror News

‘Alien: Isolation’ Season Pass is Half-Off On Xbox Live

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 23:52

Sega has just dropped the price of the Alien: Isolation season pass to $15 (reg. $30) on the Xbox 360 and Xbox One, but not for very long. The deal expires this Wednesday (Jan 7), so there isn’t a lot of time to take advantage of it.

Purchasing the season pass will unlock all five DLC packs as they become available. So far, Corporate Lockdown and Trauma have released, with Safe Haven, Lost Contact and The Trigger scheduled to drop by March 15.

Categories: Horror News

CNN Would Air This During the Real Apocalypse. No, Seriously.

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 22:00

Ever since George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead people have wondered how major news outlets would cover a real apocalypse.

Now, a long-rumored Doomsday video has leaked out of CNN’s archives, and shows us all what’s on the schedule for your final television broadcast. A super lame marching band of sorts. Yup, this was Ted Turner’s grand vision all of those years ago.

As explained by Jalopnik.com:

“Thirty-four years ago, at the launch of Ted Turner’s Cable News Network, the founder made a grandiose and specific promise about his newly created round-the-clock operation. “Barring satellite problems, we won’t be signing off until the world ends,” Turner declared. And in anticipation, he prepared a final video segment for the apocalypse:

We’ll be on, and we will cover the end of the world, live, and that will be our last event. We’ll play the National Anthem only one time, on the first of June [the day CNN launched], and when the end of the world comes, we’ll play ‘Nearer My God To Thee’ before we sign off.

Via the same source, below is the never-before-seen video the last living CNN employee will be required to play.

It lives on CNN’s MIRA archive system, under the name TURNER DOOMSDAY VIDEO. Reflecting its status as an artifact, not to be used except in the ultimate emergency, it’s in standard definition, with an aspect ratio of 4:3, perfect for the cathode-ray tube televisions of the 1980s.”

You’ll find much more at the above link. Here’s the morbid video, which isn’t out of the norm for major news outlets. Most pre-write obits for celebs years before their passing.

Categories: Horror News

New ‘Yoga Hosers’ Image With Johnny Depp and Kevin Smith’s Daughters

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 21:20

Can you guess who’s whose daughter?

Having recently wrapped production, here’s another look at Kevin Smith’s Yoga Hosers, which stars Johnny Depp as a Quebec police detective who is enlisted by two convenience store clerks — played by Smith’s and Depp’s daughters, Harley Quinn Smith and Lily-Rose Depp, both 15.

Those of you unfortunate enough to see the trash heap known as Tusk will have seen Harley Quinn and Lily-Rose as clerks in a cameo. The duo have to deal with Justin Long’s rude character before his eventual run-in with Michael Parks. The scene is being spun off into a feature with the two daughters who put on a poor performance in Tusk. Now, they must carry a feature alongside Depp, who also put forth the worst performance of his career in Smith’s toothy horror film.

The movie, also written by Smith, centers on two teenage yoga nuts who have an after-school job at a Manitoba convenience store called Eh-2-Zed. When an ancient evil rises from beneath Canada’s crust and threatens their big invitation to a 12th-grade party, the Colleens join forces with a legendary man hunter from Montreal named Guy Lapointe (Depp) to fight for their lives with “all seven chakras, one Warrior Pose at a time,” according to the producers.

Yoga Hosers also stars Tusk alums Michael Parks, Justin Long, Haley Joel Osment, Genesis Rodriguez, Ralph Garman and Harley Morenstein. New to the cast are Tony Hale, Natasha Lyonne, Austin Butler, Adam Brody, Tyler Posey and Jason Mewes.

Categories: Horror News

Evil Rises On the Poster for ‘The Lazarus Effect’

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 21:14

Earlier we shared the first ever image of Olivia Wilde in Relativity Studios’ newly titled The Lazarus Effect, which now hits theaters on February 27, 2015.

Now, check out the film’s first poster, which debuts ahead of the trailer that’s now playing in theaters.

Mark Duplass (Creep) also stars with Evan Peters and Donald Glover.

Said to be in the vein of Flatliners, the pic is “about a group of medical students who discover a way to bring dead patients back to life.

David Gelb directed the script by Luke Dawson (Shutter) and Jeremy Slater (the new The Fantastic Four).

Categories: Horror News

[FEAR Awards] The Most Original Horror Games of 2014!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 20:00

They say everything’s been done already. All of the original ideas have been spent, all that’s left is how adept aspiring filmmakers, authors and game designers are at borrowing those ideas and either making them seem new or finding a way to weave those ideas into their work in a way that’s clever or novel enough for us not to care that it’s been done before.

When it comes to video games, it’s common for developers to take proven ideas and mechanics and incorporate them into their own games. This is why Resident Evil 4 inspired a myriad developers to make third person over-the-shoulder games like Gears of War, and it’s why Slender: The Eight Pages essentially created the Slender Man subgenre in 2012.

It’s not easy being innovative or unique, but that didn’t stop game developers from bringing us at least five games that were original or feigned originality. Vote for the one you feel was the most successful in the poll below!

Take Our Poll

Greatest Gore | Scariest Game | Best Monster | Best Multiplayer | Most Original
Best DLC | Best New IP | Most Disappointing | Best Indie | Horror Game of the Year

For the unfamiliar, The FEAR Awards is your chance to pick the best and worst horror games of the year. I’ll reveal a new category and its respective nominees every day until Jan 10. From there, voting will remain open until Jan 15, followed by a reveal of all of the winners on Jan 16.

Categories: Horror News

Naughty Dog Prefers This Humorous Rewrite of ‘The Last of Us’ Ending

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 19:20

There aren’t many games that I’d be afraid to mess with, but The Last of Us would definitely rank among them, right alongside Half-Life 2, Mass Effect and all but the last 20 minutes of BioShock. These aren’t flawless games, but they do represent some of the greatest writing that’s come out of this industry, even if a few of them weren’t quite able to nail that ending.

Endings can be tricky. The goal is to wrap things up in a satisfying way, without it coming across unfinished, rushed, cheesy, or any number of other adjective no writer wants to hear about their work. BioShock was near-perfection until that final boss fight, and Mass Effect had consistently great writing until the third game nearly ruined it.

The Last of Us had stellar writing that didn’t fizzle out before the end credits could start rolling. It was emotional, like the rest of the game, and even a little ambiguous. I enjoyed the ending Naughty Dog came up with, but there’s always room for improvement, and that’s exactly what Erevador did when he took to NeoGAF to share his own ending.

Ellie and Joel are driving away from the hospital. He has saved her, and murdered the fireflies.

In the rearview mirror, Joel sees a car approaching. He lightly hits the gas pedal, trying to put a little distance between him and the car that follows. The car keeps gaining on him, it pulls up beside him.

Joel looks out the window and sees the last person he wants to see right now.

It is Vin Diesel. A relic from Joel’s dark drift racing past.

Vin gives Joel a look that only says one thing. This challenge is on baby.

Joel knows what he must do, Ellie has never seen him like this. The blood of a racer courses through his veins.

“I know you can do this Joel. The blood of a racer courses through your veins.”

With Ellie’s encouragement, Joel slams on the gas. He races Vin Diesel. Joel is faster than Vin Diesel. In fact, he is better than Vin Diesel in lots of ways.

He wins the race.

Ellie and Joel embrace, victorious. He holds her close, and whispers in her ear.

“You know, Elllie, we really are 2 fast 2 furious.”

They cry.

Impressive, no? Naughty Dog Creative Director Neil Druckmann seems to think so, and he wrote the original ending.

So good. This neogaf alt ending to The Last of Us puts the original ending to shame: http://t.co/214k8tL7QW pic.twitter.com/lrwIKx5IWU

— Neil Druckmann (@Neil_Druckmann) January 3, 2015

Categories: Horror News

Poster Gets ‘The Last Word’

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 16:54

Thanks to Fabien M. comes the first sales poster for The Last Word, a paranormal thriller directed by Simon Rumley (Red White & Blue),

Bitch Slap‘s Erin Cummings, pictured, stars with Sean Patrick Flanery (Saw 3D: The Final Chapter) and Mike Doyle.

Based on true events, “Word centers on the strange and tragic aftermath endured by the participants in the trial of a young man in Texas who was wrongly convicted and executed for the rape and murder of a nun.” In the Ben Ketai-written movie, “a convicted man is executed for his crimes, but not before cursing those who sent him to his death. Soon enough, the people involved in the case, from witnesses to jurors, begin dying. When one juror’s son’s life in threatened, the man sets out to prove that the wrong person was convicted and reverse the curse.

The film was shot in Shreveport, La. last year.

Categories: Horror News

‘NightCry’ Monster Art from Pyramid Head Creator Masahiro Ito

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 16:33

Last week brought the surprise re-reveal of NightCry (formerly known as Project Scissors), the spiritual successor to the Clock Tower series. The project has some big names attached to it, including Clock Tower series creator Hifumi Kono and director Takashi Shimizu (Ju-On, The Grudge), who directed its live-action teaser.

Making everything better is famed creature artist, Masahiro Ito. This is the guy behind Pyramid Head’s design, so I’m really looking forward to seeing his take on the series’ comically large shears-wielding antagonist in NightCry.

Below you’ll find a picture of Ito with some concept art that was posted on the game’s Twitter page prior to its announcement last week. What do you think?

Categories: Horror News

BD Playlist: Pat Torfe Vol. 2

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 15:00

I just took a five-day weekend for some much needed recuperation. It’s been a long 2014 but I’m ready to face 2015 and kick its ass! But for that to happen, I’m gonna need a soundtrack to back me up on my endeavors. Thanks to our very own Pat Torfe, I’ve got a serious foundation for that playlist.

Pat has put together this week’s BD Playlist and it’s packed to the brim with classic heavy metal goodness. You’re not going to find anything modern here. This is all the stuff that has inspired countless bands because it’s the real deal! Raise up your horns and rock on!

Categories: Horror News

[Preview '15] Olivia Wilde Gets Wicked Scary In ‘The Lazarus Effect’

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 14:38

As part of our ongoing 2015 preview, Relativity Studios has released your first ever look at Olivia Wilde in the newly titled The Lazarus Effect, which now hits theaters on February 27, 2015.

Mark Duplass (Creep) also stars with Evan Peters and Donald Glover.

Said to be in the vein of Flatliners, the pic is “about a group of medical students who discover a way to bring dead patients back to life.

David Gelb directed the script by Luke Dawson (Shutter) and Jeremy Slater (the new The Fantastic Four).

A trailer is now playing in theaters, so expect it to be online very soon.

Categories: Horror News

Rammstein Vocalist Creates New Side Project With Pain Mainman

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 14:22

Till Lindemann, the vocalist of German industrial metal band Rammstein, has joined forces with Peter Tagtgren, the mainman behind Hypocrisy and Pain, to create a new project under the moniker Lindemann. The band has created a Facebook page, although it is pretty bare of any information, aside from the posted photo.

Rammstein’s last album was 2009′s Liebe Ist Für Alle Da (review). Meanwhile, guitarist Richard Kruspe just released Silent So Long, the sophomore album with his band Emigrate.

Categories: Horror News

[Review] ‘The Woman in Black 2′ Offers Nothing New, But Is Better Than Its Predecessor!

bloody disgusting - Mon, 01/05/2015 - 14:03

The Woman in Black was an enormous hit for Hammer Films back when it was released in 2012, so it only makes sense that The Woman in Black 2 would be released eventually. The original was a visually appealing, haunting ghost story that was unfortunately dreadfully boring and relied much too heavily on jump scares. The Woman in Black 2, with the new (unnecessary) subtitle Angel of Death, still retains the original’s reliance on jump scares but is a much more involving story that at least manages to keep you activated throughout its run time.

Set roughly 40 years after the original around the London Blitz, The Woman in Black 2 follows a completely new set of characters. Eve Parkins (Phoebe Fox, who looks like a cross between Rose Byrne and Eva Green) is a schoolteacher evacuating her students with Headmistress Hogg (Helen McCrory, aka Draco Malfoy’s mother) to the small town of Crythin Gifford, where they hide out at the home of the titular villainess. As anyone who saw the first movie is likely to know, this is essentially providing a buffet for the child-murdering ghost, because she’s still pissed off at the world and doesn’t want anyone to have a child.

Soon enough, she sets her sights on Edward, a child who was recently orphaned by the war and thus has the most grief to feed off of, and uses him to prey on the other children. Eve catches on pretty quickly and, when she’s not distracted by a boring romantic subplot with war pilot Harry (Jeremy Irvine), begins sleuthing around to figure out just what it is the specter wants.

The Woman is Black 2 is not a bad movie, it’s just mediocre. Part of the issue is that for much of the first half of the film, the characters are trying to find out what the audience already knows from having seen the first film. Luckily, the new cast and time period are a bit refreshing, so it’s not like we’re just watching a remake of the first film; but it doesn’t completely redeem the film for that misstep.

The reliance on jump scares is disappointing, even if it is expected in a PG-13 horror film. Countless times we are put in moments of silence only to have the music suddenly crescendo or a crow hit a window or (and the film foes this a lot) suddenly find ourselves facing the image of the ghost’s screaming face. There were two jump scares that I found particularly effective and not cheap at all and quite shocking (though neither of these scares involved music, which I think makes those scares seem less cheap).

Like I mentioned before, there is a subplot involving Eve’s romance with the pilot. It gets abandoned about halfway through the film but while it is present it bogs the film down. Of course there is also an issue with characters (the headmistress and the air raid warden) not believing Eve about the ghost, even after two (TWO!) children have died. It doesn’t make much sense and the film would have been stronger if the “I should have believed you” moment had happened way earlier (or, you know, if they just would have believed Eve in the first place).

The film does have plenty of things going for it, though. Like the first film, it is beautifully shot and looks gorgeous. There are several shots in the film that I would love to have framed on my wall (or even use as my desktop background). Cinematographer George Steel does an amazing job of emulating the style of the original. I also commend the film (and the original) for being ballsy enough to kill children. The images of their corpses once their bodies are found are suitably disturbing and pushes the PG-13 rating to its limit.

The film is at its best (and creepiest) when it is at its most minimalist. Seeing an image of the woman in black in the corner or in the woods is still a disturbing sight to behold, and a hole in the ceiling is used to great effect in several scenes (especially when a ghost crawls out of it in one instance). If the film used more of those moments, rather than beating us over the head with loud noises it would have been more successful.

The Woman in Black 2 also has what The Woman in Black was sorely lacking: a climax. Where the original film just sort of kept spinning its wheels before its ending, The Woman in Black 2 actually provides a genuine conflict and leads to a satisfying climax and somewhat satisfying conclusion (I have a bit of an issue with the resolution, but I won’t nitpick). It’s sufficiently creepy and the stakes actually feel high since a child is actually in danger, as opposed to the original where they were just trying to figure everything out before Radcliffe’s character’s son to arrived.

All in all, I would call The Woman in Black 2 a (very) minor success for Hammer Films. It is a better film than the original and the pros do (just barely) outweigh the cons. I still don’t really see the point of making this a franchise, but if the final shot of the movie is anything to go by, I’m sure there will be more in the future.

Categories: Horror News