Get CUT! on Friday the 13th

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 14:00

Friday the 13th is on its way… no, not the movie; the actual date… and if you’re in or near Los Angeles, you’ll be able to see at least one psychopath get messy on the big screen. Read on for a look at CUT!

From the Press Release:
Psycho Rock Productions and Dog House Post are proud to announce the “Friday the 13th” opening and week-long engagement of CUT! at the Arena Cinema Hollywood.

CUT!, a twisted psychological thriller which won BEST FILM, BEST DIRECTOR, BEST LEADING ACTOR, and the AWARD of MERIT for AUDIO at the 2014 Independent Film and Television Festival, was named by Movie Rankings as one of the TOP 5 HORROR MOVIES of 2014. The film stars David Banks, Dahlia Salem, Sam Scarber, Allen Maldonado, and Suze Lanier-Bramlett. It was directed by David Rountree.

In CUT! the apparent is never the truth as an ex-con and aspirant filmmaker set out to manufacture a film by scaring people for real; however, when it goes too far and someone actually dies, the pair decide that killing for real on film is the only way to make a truly terrifying movie.

Suze Lanier-Bramlett co-stars in this movie as a follow-up to her smash hit, original cult classics The Hills Have Eyes 1 and 2. This is also a breakthrough performance for comedic actor David Banks, who won Best Leading Actor for his role as the eccentric serial killer Lane Hayes.

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Categories: Horror News

The Walking Dead – Watch the Opening Scene from this Weekend’s Mid-Season Return

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 13:36

Finally, after weeks and weeks of waiting, the mid-season return of “The Walking Dead” takes place on Sunday; and to reward our patience, AMC has released the opening scene of Episode 5.09, “What Happened and What’s Going On.” Check it out right here, and start counting down the days and hours!

“The Walking Dead” Episode 5.09 – “What Happened and What’s Going On” (airs 2/8/15)
After all the recent trials the group has faced, a slight detour might prove to be the solution they’ve been looking for.

To stay up-to-the-minute on all things walker related, follow @WalkingDead_AMC on Twitter and visit “The Walking Dead” on Facebook. For more info be sure to hit up the official “The Walking Dead” page on



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Categories: Horror News

New Godzilla Screens Heat Up Your PlayStation 4

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 13:15

Know what we want immediately? The Godzilla video game for the PlayStation 4. Unfortunately we’re gonna have to wait until August 31, 2015, when it arrives on next gen and the PlayStation 3. Still, we have some new screens to tide you over.

Godzilla comes from leading video game publisher and developer BANDAI NAMCO Games America Inc. Developed by Japanese video game studio NATSUME ATARI, Godzilla places players in control of one of the most famous and destructive monsters in entertainment history. As Godzilla, players will trample and lay waste to cities and environments with the goal of taking out each area’s Energy Generator while collecting as much G-Energy as possible. The G-Energy can then be used to power-up Godzilla, increasing both his physical size as well as his offensive and defensive skills.

The game will also allow players to utilize a dynamic Movie-Style Camera Angle System, delivering the most epic camera angles from which to destroy both a multitude of locations as well as classic enemies such as Mothra, King Ghidorah, and Mechagodzilla.

“Godzilla has had a long history and is one of Japan’s most famous pop culture exports that have entertained millions of people for generations in the West,” said Chris Gilbert, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at BANDAI NAMCO Games America Inc. “We’re excited to continue this great history by bringing the Godzilla video game for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 to excited fans. Let the countdown to monstrous destruction and epic battles begin!”

Godzilla will feature multiple game modes including: Mission Mode where players will wreak mayhem through more than 20 different stages of play; a Diorama Mode that allows players to place Godzilla in different settings to capture epic photos; and a King of Monsters Mode where Godzilla must fight his way through the franchises most famous enemies to reach the top of the monster hierarchy and claim the throne as the true King of Monsters.

Currently rated “RP” for Rating Pending by the ESRB, Godzilla will be available in the Americas for the PlayStation®4 system and PlayStation®3 system in summer 2015.

The post New Godzilla Screens Heat Up Your PlayStation 4 appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

Tales of Halloween Interview Spotlight: Andrew Kasch and John Skipp

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 13:00

Horror hits like V/H/S and The ABCs of Death have proven that the anthology film format has been revived, and so a new omnibus is afoot for 2015 – assembling the likes of Neil Marshall (The Descent), Darren Bousman (The Devil’s Carnival), and Lucky McKee (The Call) behind their collective cameras.

Epic Pictures Group financed and produced Tales of Halloween, which brings together ten segments from different directors into one unified series of stories, all set in an Anytown, USA, suburb terrorized by ghouls, ghosts, and slashers on one, er, epic Halloween night.

We had a chance to chat with co-directors Andrew Kasch and John Skipp to get the skinny on their super-special segment in the spooky series…

Dread Central: What’s the name of your story, who wrote it, and who is in it?

Andrew Kasch: Our segment is called “This Means War,” and it was an idea I conceived when we were throwing out various pitches. I’m a massive fan of haunted attractions and really wanted to do something in that world. Our first pitch was set in a Christian fundamentalist Hell House, which scared people for a variety of reasons. So we ran with the idea of dueling suburban home haunters, and Skipp came up with the brilliant notion of having it be a generational “old vs. new” clash of horror styles – so we have Dana Gould playing the classy Universal/silent film lover and James Duval as the Rob Zombie gore-loving metalhead.

John Skipp: I rode into horror as part of the splatterpunk wave of the 80s and was immediately swept up in the “loud vs. quiet horror” debate. Which always cracked me up because – while I’m a big fan of deliberately shocking content and overt, crazy-ass imagery – I also love the artistry of atmosphere and mood, subtlety, and suspense in the classic works.

So I came up with Boris and Dante: two guys at very opposite ends of the spectrum, whose yard displays exemplify those extremes. Boris (Dana) does his yard up almost entirely in black-and-white mode, with German expressionist trees and a graveyard/mausoleum set; whereas, Dante (Jimmy) has an explosion of garish color washing over his ramshackle gorehound assembly of mutilated bodies and hot chicks and such.

To me, these are two great tastes that taste great together. And having them fight to the death over which one is “better” struck us as a hilarious way to address this huge rift in the horror community in a way that’s both lampooning and loving. In that sense, we’re trying to do what GALAXYQUEST did with the Star Trek community: showing the absurdity, while embracing the contradictions and having a laugh at ourselves in the process. All in the spirit of fun.

DC: How were you approached to do this project, and what about it made you say ‘Yes’?

AK: The whole thing happened during a dead-celebrity party several of us were at. Axelle, Gierasch, and I were talking about always wanting to do an anthology film, and Axelle tossed out the idea of something Halloween-themed. The three of us met the next morning for coffee and jotted down a wishlist of filmmaker friends. Once our pal Mike Mendez brought on Epic Pictures, it all just snowballed from there. The idea of working with so many people who I respect and the fact that we were given carte blanche to run wild was hugely appealing. The challenge was pulling off an ambitious script on a small budget and two-day shooting schedule, which was pretty grueling.   

JS: I totally rode in on Andrew’s tail feathers with this. We’re always dying to create cool new cinematic weirdness. So when the opportunity came up, we jumped.

DC: What were some of the guidelines given to you by producers? What was the most challenging aspect?

AK: The big thing that I think everyone wanted to do was build in connective tissue for the film, which meant throwing in a lot of fun bits with reoccurring characters so that it all feels like one big cohesive movie. For example, you’ll see several main characters from other segments in the background of our scenes. It makes the movie one giant fun Easter Egg hunt!  

JS: I ain’t gonna lie. This whole thing has been a tussle from beginning to end, which is what you get with this many master chefs in the kitchen. I’m pretty sure I wrote eight thousand drafts of a 10-page script before Andrew jumped in and helped smooth it all out. But I like what we got and love what we shot.

DC: Dip into your story a little bit, and tell us what we can expect…

AK: We wanted our segment to be fast and fun, while lovingly poking fun at the extreme parts of horror fandom. We’re all opinionated genre geeks who live and breathe this stuff, so crafting a movie where two eccentric fans declare war on each other over their tastes was a chance to take our daily Facebook and Twitter debates to the next level. And our hope is that all horror fans can relate and identify with these guys on some level… cause at the end of the day, they’re both doing it for the love of the game. 

JS: Yep! Past that, I think people will have fun with how much we whipped this all into a fucking frenzy. Dana and Jimmy are amazing. Absolutely love what they did. And once the crowd starts gathering to watch these two goofballs slam into each other, the energy blasts off the screen. We had, like, SIXTY PEOPLE lined up on the sidewalk in this nice suburban neighborhood, alternately cheering and cringing at the mayhem unspooling, giving the whole thing a weirdly epic feel far exceeding our modest budget.

And for people who care about oddball cameos, we got oodles. Lombardo Boyar (BIG ASS SPIDER!) is, as always, one trillion percent hilarious. Elissa Dowling (CHEAP THRILLS) is, as always, both hotter and cooler than hell. Felissa Rose (SLEEPAWAY CAMP) screams like nobody’s business. Ricky Grove (ARMY OF DARKNESS) tries to call the cops. Adam Green (HATCHET) plays the vomiting cop. Caroline Williams (TEXAS CHAINSAW 2) cheers wildly. And rising star Graham Denman (THE DIVINE TRAGEDIES) and Thomas Blake (POINT BREAK LIVE) utterly kill as Dante’s roadies.

Speaking of L.A. theater, we’ve got the stars of both of the greatest H.P. Lovecraft plays ever staged on Earth: Graham Skipper (RE-ANIMATOR: THE MUSICAL) and Frank Blocker (THE CALL OF CTHULHU).

On the literary end, our frequent genius collaborator Cody Goodfellow (REPO SHARK), the brilliant Laura Lee Bahr (HAUNT), and Lisa Morton – president of the HWA (Horror Writers’ Association) and an awesome writer herself – staked out their claim. Our STAY AT HOME DAD star, Alisha Seaton, is there. You won’t see Andy Merrill (the voice of Adult Swim’s THE BRAK SHOW), but he’s there. As is cult director Charles Pinion (RED SPIRIT LAKE) and Brian Bubonic of L.A.’s outsider art-fave, The Hyaena Gallery. The list goes on and on.

Bottom line, though: I think what horror fans will dig most is watching Boris and Dante kick the shit out of each other. Everything else is gravy.

DC: What are some of the upsides of an anthology, as opposed to a feature length one-plot film?

AK: The upside is that you get to cut right to the core of a story without the fat. Way too many horror films don’t have enough ideas to sustain a feature runtime, but when you can make the same statement in a short format, it can be tremendously effective. 

JS: I’ve always loved anthologies. Have edited a shitload of ‘em in book form. And what I love most is the diversity of angles of attack. You get a bunch of artists staring at the same thing – in this case, Halloween – and riffing with all their heart and skill at something they care about deeply. It’s the juxtaposition that knocks me out. The fly’s eye view.

Every single writer/director on this thing took their own take on the subject. The result, I suspect, will be a panorama. And I’m deeply excited to see it all cut together into one giant love letter to the horror field and cinema at large.

DC: What’s your favorite Halloween movie?

AK: Aside from the obvious (John Carpenter), I adore Michael Dougherty’s Trick ‘r Treat. 

JS: Mine is Creepshow, flat-out. It’s the only one I watch religiously, every year. The stories don’t take place on the holiday proper, but the setup with the pumpkin in the window totally places us there. And honestly, I’m hoping that Tales of Halloween is gonna become a party favorite for years to come. The movie I’d annually watch, as a tradition, even if I wasn’t part of it. That’s what we’re all shooting for. And dearly hope people love it as much as we do.

DC: What was your favorite Halloween costume as a kid? Do you dress up as an adult on the night of 10/31?

AK: I went as a battle-scarred Terminator one year and really freaked out the neighbors. And I haven’t stopped dressing up for Halloween. This year, I was Will Graham from “Hannibal,” and my best friend, Buz, was the Stagman. We were such a cute couple!

JS: Honestly? I loved being a zombie back in the 70s, long before it was popular, mostly because constantly refreshing my head wound with blood kept it nice and shiny. But my favorite Halloween costume ever was going in bloody Goth leather drag, as a grown-up, taking my kids out trick-or-treating. The fact that nobody knew I was a man until I said, in basso-profundo, “THANK YOU VERY MUCH!” at the end was hilarious.

You learn a lot about your neighbors that way!

Andrew Kasch and John Skipp

Tales of Halloween will showcase the following ten short stories:

  • “TRICK” Directed by Adam Gierasch
  • “BAD SEED” Directed by Neil Marshall
  • “GRIMM GRINNING GHOST” Directed by Axelle Carolyn
  • “THE WEAK AND THE WICKED” Directed by Paul Solet
  • “FRIDAY THE 31st” Directed by Mike Mendez
  • “THE RANSOM OF RUSTY REX” Directed by Ryan Schifrin
  • “THIS MEANS WAR” Directed by Andrew Kasch and John Skipp
  • “THE NIGHT BILLY RAISED HELL” Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman
  • “SWEET TOOTH” Directed by Dave Parker
  • “DING DONG” Directed by Lucky McKee

The film has an ensemble cast including Pat Healy, Barry Bostwick, Noah Segan, Booboo Stewart, Greg Grunberg, Clare Kramer, Alex Essoe, Lin Shaye, Dana Gould, James Duval, Elissa Dowling, Grace Phipps, Pollyana McIntosh, Marc Senter, Tiffany Shepis, John F. Beach, Trent Haaga, Casey Ruggieri, Kristina Klebe, Cerina Vincent, John Savage, Keir Gilchrist, Nick Principe, Amanda Moyer, Jennifer Wenger, Sam Witwer, Jose Pablo Cantillo, Ben Woolf, Caroline Williams, Robert Rusler, Cameron Easton, Austin Falk, Madison Iseman, Daniel Dimaggio, Natalie Castillo, Ben Stillwell, and Hunter Smit.

Cameos include Joe Dante, John Landis, Adam Green, Adam Pascal, Adrianne Curry, Mick Garris, Lombardo Boyer, Graham Skipper, Stuart Gordon, Greg Mclean, Spooky Dan Walker, and Adrienne Barbeau.

Axelle Carolyn created the concept and brought the filmmakers together for this unique production. Tales of Halloween is being produced by Patrick Ewald and Shaked Berenson of Epic Pictures Group along with Mike Mendez and Axelle Carolyn. Composers Frank Ilfman (Big Bad Wolves) and Joseph Bishara (The Conjuring) are both attached to the project.

Ten stories are woven together by their shared theme of Halloween night in an American suburb, where ghouls, imps, aliens, and axe murderers appear for one night only to terrorize unsuspecting residents.

The post Tales of Halloween Interview Spotlight: Andrew Kasch and John Skipp appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

[TV] Watch the Opening of “The Walking Dead” Mid-Season Premiere!

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:54

Excited for this Sunday’s return of “The Walking Dead” on AMC?

Get your fill right now with the opening 2-minutes, which opens with infinite sadness.

After the tragic events of the mid-season finale–as well as losing the possibility of a cure in Washington, DC–Rick Grimes’ band of survivors find themselves on the road, surviving day to day and trying to hold on to their shredded humanity and dwindling hope.

Stripped of security and without a direction for the future, some of the group near their breaking point, some find themselves hardened and cold and some just try to grasp on to what little they have left.

Though they are still breathing, the line between Rick’s group and the dead is starting to blur.

Could there be anything at this point that brings them back to life?

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Categories: Horror News

Unboxing Day: Terminator Series 1: Endoskeleton Assault Exclusive 7″ Action Figure 2-Pack

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:30

Continuing our new commitment to begin unboxing some collectibles for you guys to check out, we’ve got something really cool for you today. Just like Somerset and Mills’ special delivery to an open field… you’ll never know “what’s in the box” next!

Up now is a look at NECA Toys’ Terminator Series 1: Endoskeleton Assault Exclusive 7″ Action Figure 2-Pack.

Inspired by the classic video game Robocop vs. The Terminator! Released in late 1993 for the popular 16-bit home console, the game answered the burning question of sci-fi fans worldwide: Which man/machine would win in a fight? The “future of law enforcement” or the actual future?

This special 2-pack includes blue and red versions of the Terminator Endoskeleton with paint deco that re-creates the video game shading. Both figures are exclusive to this set and come complete with plasma rifles.

The post Unboxing Day: Terminator Series 1: Endoskeleton Assault Exclusive 7″ Action Figure 2-Pack appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

[TV] “Scream” Series Script Pages Posted Online

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:28

Talk about balls. Bleeding Cool has posted actual pages from the “Scream” pilot presentation that’s being launched over ay MTV.

In an attempt to keep the script out of the hands of sites like the aforementioned, the title is “Red Roses”, penned by Jill Blotevogel.

Starring Willa Fitzgerald, Taylor-Klaus, Bobby Campo, Connor Weil and Joel Gretsch, the site says the slasher TV series is for the social media generation. And while “Scream” was about phones, this series is about smartphones.

The site also confirms that the opening scene echoes Wes Craven’s groundbreaking and original Scream – and that this television series truly is a reboot (doesn’t that sort of makes it a parody of itself?)

Just as with ‘Scream’, it begins with a murder of a young woman, as well as her boyfriend, in a game by a serial killer, playing with his victim as a cat with a mouse. Just as in ‘Scream’, these women are not defenseless, but ultimately their attempts at survival are useless.

The TV show is a reboot. There are, in the pilot, no references to Westboro, or the characters from the ‘Scream’ movie franchise that I can see. This is new blood, as it were. Even that mask that both determined the iconography of the movie, and its title, based on Munsch’s Scream painting, appears to have gone.

Sadly, they explain that it even appears that the movie’s twist is being set up here, for the new generation, and that it looks as if they’re just stretching out what worked as a movie into several hours. Yikes.

Categories: Horror News

Danny Trejo Fights ‘The Burning Dead’ (Trailer)

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:17

Director Rene Perez’s The Burning Dead (formerly Volcano Zombies), starring action superstar Danny Trejo (Machete), arrives March 3rd on digital and VOD from Uncork’d Entertainment. The DVD sears home video a month later, April 7th.

Written and produced by Jeff Miller and Jason Ancona, The Burning Dead pits a horde of lava-filled zombies against a sheriff charged with the plight to rescue an estranged family from a volcano eruption. Trejo plays Night Wolf, a Native American warrior who knows way too much about the curse that unearthed the coffin dodgers.

The Burning Dead also features Tom Downey (AXE GIANT, SORORITY PARTY MASSACRE), Moniqua Plante (“Nashville”), Robert F. Lyons (DARK NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW, 10 TO MIDNIGHT), Nicole Cummins (LOGAN), Kevin Norman (“Melissa & Joey”), Kyle T. Heffner (RUNAWAY TRAIN, “Bizarro George” from “Seinfeld”), Julia Lehman (CHEERLEADER MASSACRE 2), Tom Nagel (HILLSIDE CANNIBALS), Jenny Lin (PIRANHACONDA), Robert Amstler (ALIEN SHOWDOWN), and Morgan Lester (JOHN CARTER).

The Burning Dead filmed in several locations over three states, including around active volcanoes in Lassen Volcanic National Park, California.

Special features on the DVD will include a commentary track; Michael Kallio’s “Danny Trejo vs. The Burning Dead,” an interview with Trejo; and the film’s trailers.

Categories: Horror News

’39′: The Gary Sherman Movie You’ll Never See

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:17

For the younger readers, Gary Sherman is the director behind Raw Meat, Poltergeist III and the classic Dead & Buried.

He’s also the director of 39: A Film by Carroll McKane, a horror film that you will probably never see.

In 39, starring Martin Cummins, Catherine Glynn and Lawrence MacGowan, “Carroll McKane’s DVcams have recorded the deaths of his 36 past victims. His killing room, a makeshift studio, is the set for the murders of two more victims and the torture of a forensic psychiatrist, destined to be his biographer and the killer of his final victim… number 39.

I’ve seen the movie (it’s okay), as have handful of festival goers who attended either Hollywood’s Screamfest Horror Film Festival or the Montreal-based Fantasia Film Festival back in 2006.

Sherman is a fellow Chicago-native who both lives and teaches (Columbia College) here in the city. He also filmed 39 in Chicago. I actually have heard stories from behind-the-scenes about why you’ll never see 39, but am sworn to secrecy. Instead, I’ll let Sherman’s alleged account that he made the movie for himself (source missing) stand as the historical truth, even though Jinga Films was hired to sell the film back in 2007 (and retitled it to 39: Epitaph for a Serial Killer).

“I’m very excited about it. I’m very proud of it. It’s a very, very different film,” Sherman told Reel Chicago when he wrapped production in 2005. “Everyone who’s seen it in its unfinished form has been blown away by it. They’ve either hated it or loved it. There’s no chance of coming in between. It’s a very polarizing film.”

He asserts: “Everybody who sees it says it’s the most disturbing film they’ve ever seen.”

Too bad you’ll never see it, although you can enjoy this old trailer and viral from 2006!

Categories: Horror News

Atlanta to Be Quarantined in Cordon

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:15

Another pilot is coming from The CW, and it looks to be one of disastrous proportions. Like literally! Yep, Armageddon will once again put mankind at death’s door with “Cordon.”

According to Deadline “The Vampire Diaries” and “The Originals”‘ showrunner Julie Plec and director David Nutter will be bringing the series to our televisions. Based upon the original Belgian series created by Carl Joos for Eyeworks, “Cordon” is in the vein of “Under the Dome.”

Related Story: The Vampire Diaries Exec Producer Julie Plec Directing Episode 6.15 – Let Her Go

When a deadly epidemic breaks out in Atlanta, a large city quarantine is quickly enforced, leaving those stuck on the inside to fight for their lives. Loved ones are tragically torn apart, and the society that grows inside the cordon reveals both the devolution of humanity and the birth of unlikely heroes.

Plec wrote the script with Nutter, helmer of the pilots for The CW’s “Arrow” and “The Flash,” directing. The two executive produce for Warner Bros. TV, where they are based; My So-Called Company; and Eyeworks.

The post Atlanta to Be Quarantined in Cordon appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

10,000 People Really Like the ‘Carrie’ Remake

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:06

There’s only one Carrie, and that’s Brian De Palma’s 1976 classic starring Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, and Amy Irving.

And while I enjoy Chloë Grace Moretz, I don’t really recognize the 2013 re-remake as anything but a studio cash-grab. I get it, and that’s totally cool, but to obsess over the film like it’s some sort of modern classic is gut-wrenching to an old-school horror fanatic. Or maybe I’m just getting old? You tell me…

Ever since we posted about the extended cut of Evil Dead airing in the UK, I’ve been harassed with e-mails annoying the fuck out of me to push their petition that demands the release of the extended cut of Carrie, directed by Kimberly Peirce.

10,000 people signed it. That means there are 10,000 passionate fans that truly, with all of their hearts, want to see the deleted scenes from Peirce’s adaptation of the Stephen King novella.

So, while I’m annoyed beyond belief, I know what it’s like to feel that emotional about something. And even though I personally could care less to ever see the movie again, I would like to see these fans – who also have been calling for supporters to harass the studio – get what their bloody hearts desire.

You can join their goal of hitting 20,000 sigs. Why 20,000? I have absolutely no idea.


Categories: Horror News

‘Monstrum’ Early Access Review: This is My Glowstick

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:00

I’ve always loved monsters. I would draw them all the time during class when I was young, starting when I was 6 or 7 years-old, and I’d continue to spend my more tedious classes. I doubt I retained a single lesson taught to me by frustrated math teachers, partly because my mind has never been too fond of numbers and the endless number of ways they can go together, but also because I was always far too busy trying to get the eyes just right, or the teeth.

I’ve held a deep appreciation for the sorts of creatures that lurk in horror movies, scary video games and nightmares. I remember spending hours trying to figure out xenomorph anatomy so I could transcribe it to a page after I watched Alien. I was never successful, but I was also barely 7 years-old.

Drawing a xenomorph isn’t easy. I doubt that even 26 year-old me could do it.

All this is but a long-winded way of saying I can appreciate a well-designed monster. This fascination for nightmare creatures is what initially drew me to Monstrum, an indie survival horror game developed by Team Junkfish.

Because I’ve been able to play this game a couple times now, I’ve had the unique opportunity to see it evolve over a span of about five months. It’s changed a lot since I first played it last June, and it’ll continue to improve while on Steam. Such is the nature of Early Access games.

Monstrum is another scavenger hunt game. It’s like a blending of Slender and Outlast, as you’re tasked with exploring a seemingly empty cargo ship in search of the tools required to fix a damaged life raft. This raft is the only means of escape for this survivor, and that means the game is going to throw everything it’s got to keep that goal from being achieved.

Starting with monsters.

I won’t soon forget my first run-in with old Jack-o-Lantern Face. It was memorable even if it hadn’t been immortalized on YouTube. Unfortunately, like so many other modern indie horror games, combat is never an option.

There’s no choosing between fight or flight, it’s always flight. Then hide. Then pray the creature that’s hunting you didn’t catch you running into the room you only just now realized contains only one hiding spot and it’s the one you’re in.

These monsters can rip the doors off lockers, by the way.

The cargo ship is a maze, and that makes finding the items you need to escape incredibly difficult. Scouring every room that peppers the labyrinthine series of corridors that make up this gargantuan ship would take time even if you knew your way around it. Relying on memory is about as viable an option as trying to put up a fight, since the environments are procedurally generated.

The randomized levels add to the game’s replay value, as well as keep players with exceptional memories from getting too familiar with the ship’s layout. It’s just one example of how the roguelike genre has influenced Monstrum — the others being permadeath, no option to patch up injuries and a somewhat unforgiving difficulty.

The few resources you do have are there to help you find the things you need to escape. Glowsticks and a flashlight make lighting up any hidden items easy, though I’d recommend putting them away when you’re hiding from one of the game’s monsters. I learned the consequences of not doing that the hard way.

There’s an overwhelming silence that makes this game more unnerving than it would be if there were NPCs to interact with. Your character’s only real interaction with others is via notes that have been strewn about the environment, each offering bits of information that can be gleaned and combined to form an idea of what happened to everyone before this place became a ghost ship.

Team Junkfish did a fantastic job in making the ship itself feel like a character. It rocks and moans as it endures the incredibly slow death that befalls ships that get lost at sea. It’ll die long after its few remaining inhabitants do, and not until after its witnessed you die a thousand brutal deaths.

Death has always played a pivotal role in both survival horror games and roguelikes, and Monstrum is no exception.

I didn’t mind dying because it was almost always preceeded by an intense chase scene in which I’d run screaming from one of the game’s three monsters. Each creature is entirely unlike the next, but I’ll refrain from explaining how so as not to ruin any revelations you might have.

I’ve played a number of unfinished games during the six years I’ve spent covering this industry, including a handful on Steam’s Early Access program. Some, like Darkwood and The Forest were far from finished, but far enough along to make any jank I might encounter easy to forgive. Others, like Frozen State and Nether, had potential, but they would’ve benefitted from a few extra months of polish before hitting Steam.

Monstrum falls firmly into the former category. It has some graphical issues, the controls could use some refinement and the AI pathing can lead to some confusing encounters, but it’s more polished than most.

The Final Word: Even in its unfinished state, Monstrum is more polished than most Early Access games are when they first hit Steam. It’s also highly replayable, thanks to its procedurally generated environments, and scary enough that you shouldn’t be surprised when it begins to seep into your nightmares.

Monstrum is available now on Steam at the temporarily discounted price of $14.93 (17% off). The sale ends on Feb 5, when it will return to its $17.99 price tag.

Categories: Horror News

Poker Night – Win a Signed One-Sheet

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 12:00

With Poker Night (review) getting set to hit Blu-ray and DVD on February 10th, we now have your chance to score an exclusive poster signed by director Greg Francis, star Ron Perlman, and composer Scott Glasgow.

To enter for your chance to win, just send an email to including your FULL NAME AND MAILING ADDRESS. We’ll take care of the rest.

This contest will end at 12:01 AM PT on February 9th.

Ron Perlman, Giancarlo Esposito, Beau Mirchoff, Titus Welliver, Michael Eklund, Ron Eldard, and Corey Large star.

In this twisted thriller, a young detective is caught in a sadistic game of cat-and-mouse when he is kidnapped and tormented by a masked serial killer. In order to survive, the rookie must use the wisdom imparted to him by senior detectives on their regular poker night.

The post Poker Night – Win a Signed One-Sheet appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

Trailer For ‘III’ Features Stunning Visuals!

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:31

Thanks to Fabien M. we have the trailer (with English subtitles) for III, directed by Pavel Khvaleev. You literally must watch the footage that has some of the most astounding DP work I’ve seen in a long time.

During the outbreak of a mysterious deadly epidemic devastating a rural European village, sisters Ayia and Mirra promise their dying mother to look after each other to the end of their lives.
When Mirra, the younger sister falls victim to the epidemic, Ayia in desperation realizes that conventional medicine will not save her sister.

At the local priest’s house Ayia discovers a collection of Shamanic books containing a series of mystic drawings which she deciphers as a ritual for spiritual healing which she believes will save her sister.

The Shamanic cure involves a complete immersion into the patient’s mind, a journey into the deepest most hidden depths of their subconscious where terrifying monsters and demons.
Will Ayia cope when she faces the obscure depths of her sister’s subconscious where terrifying monster may lay in waiting?

The closer to the bottom of the ocean, the darker it gets…

Categories: Horror News

Keep Calm and Check Out This Survivors Eye Candy

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:30

A new zombie-infection flick is on its way to the world in the form of Survivors, and right now we have some artwork and stills for you to chew on. Dig in!

From the Press Release:
How far would you go to survive? It’s the question at the heart of the upcoming 2015 horror movie Survivors, directed by Adam J. Spinks (Extinction), as these five new stills reveal!

“When we were making the movie, we focused on the need to communicate with other people and our need to relate to them… what are we if we’re left alone?” says director Spinks. “ I wanted to explore that from a realistic perspective.”

Survivors stars Joanne Gale (Red Dwarf, Run FatBoy Run), Simon Burbage (Extinction, Hollyoaks, Pulp: The Movie), Adrian Annis (Art of Darkness, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows), David Anderson (3some, How To Live Yours), and Vanessa Mayfield (The One That Got Away).

Survivors is produced by award-winning filmmaker Michael Beddoes with a screenplay by Adam J. Spinks and Laurence Timms. The first full-length trailer for the film is expected to land in March 2015 ahead of an autumn release.

The dead will rise and the infection will spread in Initiative Motion Pictures and Organised Chaos TV and Film’s Survivors. From director Adam J. Spinks comes a story about the depth of courage in the face of an enemy unleashed by our own scientific arrogance.

The post Keep Calm and Check Out This Survivors Eye Candy appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

‘The Dead’ Director’s ‘Never Let Go’ Teaser Lacks Trailer Moments…

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:26

Ahead of the EFM in Berlin, Bloody Disgusting has the teaser trailer for The Dead director Howard J Ford’s latest feature, Never Let Go. Surprisingly, there aren’t any really good trailer moments, which makes me a bit concerned as to how exciting the full feature will be…

Shot under wraps in Morocco, Spain US and the UK, the action thriller “follows the harrowing journey of Lisa, a single mother (played by Angela Dixon) whose daughter is abducted whilst on holiday. In a desperate race against time Lisa will stop at nothing to find her missing child. Also starring is Bafta award winning actress Lisa Eichhorn.

“Having nearly lost my own child whilst on holiday in Malta, I have experienced briefly first hand that feeling of all-encompassing dread as you fear the absolute worst,” said Ford. “I became intrigued by this overpowering state that I was in where I would have done absolutely anything morally right or wrong to get back my son and wanted to try and capture that feeling on film. Also, women can endure things physically and mentally that us men could never go through and I wanted to explore this inner strength surfacing and the most impossible of situations.”

Categories: Horror News

Stephen King Short Story One for the Road Heading to the Screen

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:15

Word of another Stephen King-penned tale that’s being turned into a film has landed in our inbox so read on for the first details and artwork for the long-form short One for the Road.

From the Press Release:
Maine-based production companies Bonfire Films and Dark Farm Films have teamed up to bring the work of author Stephen King back to his home state. This year the two companies will adapt King’s short story “One for the Road,” filming it in the areas that King intended the dark tale to unfold: the Maine towns of Falmouth, Windham, and Cumberland, better known to the literary world as Jerusalem’s Lot (Salem’s Lot).

Corey Norman, director of the wildly successful independent feature The Hanover House, is set to direct the long-form short film, while Jenny Anastasoff of the Damnationland hit Sui Generis and Haley Norman of The Hanover House are set to produce. Being huge King fans, the group hope to create a true love letter to the work of the author, while showcasing the state that has brought them so much inspiration. Look for the film when it hits festivals later this year.

Based on the short story by Stephen King, One for the Road follows two aging Mainers, Booth and Herb “Tookey” Tooklander, as they attempted to rescue the family of a motorist whose vehicle had become stranded in a ferocious blizzard. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the car just happens to be stranded in Salem’s Lot.

The post Stephen King Short Story One for the Road Heading to the Screen appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News

Dreadlords “Dreadlords Cometh” Video Premiere (Exclusive)

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:00

Bloody-Disgusting has teamed up with macabre blues band Dreadlords to bring you the exclusive music video premiere for “Dreadlords Cometh”. The track comes from the band’s newly released album Death Angel, which was released via Not Just Religious Music.

The video mixes performance footage with scenes of riots and violence, all overlaid with the lo-fi, almost noise metal-esque drones of the music. It sounds like music barely escaping a static cloud on an old radio as a pastor preaches about fire and brimstone, warning everyone against the damnations that lead to hell.

You can order Death Angel via the band’s Bandcamp page.

Dreadlords online:
Official Website
Not Just Religious Music
NJRM Facebook
NJRM Bandcamp

Categories: Horror News

Over An Hour of Footage from the ‘Resident Evil 2′ Fan Remake

bloody disgusting - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:00

Of the dozens of games that make up the Resident Evil franchise, Resident Evil 2 may be the clear favorite. This survival horror classic is easily one of the greatest horror sequels of all time and it’s certainly the most deserving of a remake, even if Capcom hasn’t made revisiting it a priority — yet. This has led some fans to make their own attempts to update the game.

Among them is YouTuber Rod Lima, who’s been quietly working on a full remake of the game in Unreal Engine 3 for some time. Quite a lot of progress has been made since I last covered it, much of which can be seen in the hour and a half of new footage Lima recently published online.

Categories: Horror News

Exclusive: Starry Eyes’ Alex Essoe Talks Hollywood, Transformation, and Inspirational Fingernails

Dread Central - Tue, 02/03/2015 - 11:00

The beautiful and talented Alex Essoe is the breakout star of Starry Eyes. We at Dread Central were so impressed with her work that we just had to sit down and talk with her about her performance so we recently tracked her down to get the skinny on the film.

Since Starry Eyes hits DVD and Blu-ray TODAY, February 3rd, what better time than now to post the results?

Alex(andra) Essoe led off the interview with a real shocker. When asked if Starry Eyes (review here) was her first lead in a feature horror film, she replied, “This is my first lead in anything,” making her performance that much more impressive.

She went on to give a quick description of Starry Eyes for those who didn’t get to see the movie during its festival run. “Oh my goodness. Well, there are plenty of chills and thrills!” Essoe said. “In a nutshell, without giving too much away, it’s essentially about a struggling actress who unwittingly sells her soul to a demonic cult that is masquerading as a big budget movie production studio.”

We asked Essoe to compare the casting directors she’s worked with in her professional life to the ultra-creepy one played by horror veteran Maria Olsen in Starry Eyes. “It really depends,” Essoe said. “I’ve had some casting directors be extremely patient and nurturing and they really give you their undivided attention, and I’ve had casting directors stop filming before I’m even done with the scene.”

One of the more memorable early moments in the movie involves Essoe’s character, Sarah, being asked to throw a fit in front of the casting director and her assistant. It involved her screaming and writhing on the floor. Essoe described what it was like to shoot that particular scene.

“It was really fun,” she said. “It was exhausting. One of the most interesting things to me about acting is the opportunity to explore the unknown as far as human neuroses and demons and all of that. So it was really nice to have an opportunity to get completely lost and to take the reins off and just slip into the abyss and whatever you find there. That’s what it is. That’s the most rewarding part of it for me.”

The damaged psyche of Sarah has a huge part to play in the events that happen to her in Starry Eyes. Essoe discussed the deconstruction of the girl. “I had to be very specific about what Sarah wants, and I found the more fragile I made her and the more insecure and unhinged, the easier it was to inform the other choices she made and where she goes.”

“She’s very much a lone wolf,” Essoe added.  “She doesn’t really belong anywhere and she doesn’t feel like she belongs anywhere, which is funny, because she’s given opportunities to break that habit with the people around her. They send out these little life rafts to her, and she rejects them because she’s already got this opinion of herself and she has this very romanticized ideal that ‘I’ll finally be happy and fulfilled if this specific thing happens.’ So because she’s such a slave to that ideal, once it’s offered to her, she’s already decided that nothing else will validate her existence except for that. So having that, it was easy to transition to the more devious parts of her. There is a devious side to her and other aspects to her personality. Her quietness and her shyness is more passive-aggressive than it is innocent.”

Throughout Starry Eyes Essoe is asked to do some pretty intense things. We curiously asked if she ever got close to feeling something was too much for her. “No. The more they threw at me, the more I wanted to do it,” Essoe said. “I was just like, ‘Whatever… Let’s just go full-tilt. Let’s see how far down the rabbit hole we can go with this.’ There was never a time where I was like, ‘That’s the line! Sorry, not doing that.’ Because the writing is so good, everything that happens to her is justified and it fits the story, and even the most extreme violence doesn’t feel gratuitous because she really believes that this is her chance to be somebody instead of who she is, which she despises.”

Upon watching Starry Eyes, it’s quite clear that there is a distinct allusion to life as an actor in Hollywood. We asked Essoe to discuss if it’s a fair representation of the life of a thespian. “For all of its extremes, there are a lot of very stark truths to it,” Essoe said. “The everyday struggle of an actor is depicted really well because you get rejected far more than you’re accepted. Rejection and derision and not being taken seriously and that whole ‘Oh, you’re an actor?’ and that look you get when you tell people what you do for a living. That’s all part of it. In that regard I think it’s very realistic. I haven’t encountered the same challenges that Sarah had vis-à-vis the casting couch and having to deal with predators. I haven’t heard of that really happening anymore, but maybe I’m just lucky. It’s more just the slog and the self-doubt and constantly questioning if this is what you really want to do. That, I feel, is well represented.”

For much of the second half of the movie, Essoe is covered in varying degrees of prosthetics and make-up. She talked about working with the effects. “It harkens to that eternal argument of: Do you develop a character from the inside out or the outside in?” Essoe explained. “I happen to think both are equally important. There is something about who Sarah is at the end of the movie (without giving too much away). I did a lot of preparation for it and rehearsed, but once those (costume) fingernails were on, I don’t know what it was, but that one small detail formed the entire trajectory of that chapter of the movie. The prosthetics, especially since they’re so good… when I looked at myself, it was easy for me to believe that that’s what’s happening to me. And that’s important. You have to believe what’s happening to you, or no one else will.” And FYI, Essoe did not shave her head for the role. That being said, kudos to the F/X team because that was one goddamn impressive bald cap!

One look at Essoe in her role as Sarah, especially in the hot pants uniform of the Big Taters restaurant she works in when not auditioning, shows the actress keeps herself in amazing shape. We asked if she did anything extra to prepare for the role physically. “I didn’t,” said Essoe. “I didn’t necessarily want to be in peak physical condition because I wanted it to wear on me and I wanted to be exhausted and I wanted to empty the tanks. So I kept all the physicality within the actual shooting, and outside of that, I was mostly a body at rest.”

So she didn’t feel the need to spend any extra time preparing her body for the role, but she certainly took a very professional approach and prepared herself mentally for the challenge. “I take a very pragmatic approach to character and story; I wanted to see a beginning, a middle, and an end,” Essoe said. “You create a mask for yourself, and then you forget about it when you get to set. You trust that it’s there, and you find new things and incorporate those. I wouldn’t say it was difficult necessarily on the day because I had already done my homework beforehand. And I love that stuff. I love the theme of transformation, and I love incorporating physicality and metamorphosis. Maybe it would be hard if I didn’t enjoy it so much.”

In addition to Essoe, the cast includes Noah Segan (Looper, Brick, The Picture of Dorian Gray), Pat Healy (The Innkeepers, Cheap Thrills, Compliance), and Amanda Fuller (The Brittany Murphy Story, Cheap Thrills).

From the producer of Cheap Thrills and Jodorowsky’s Dune, Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch’s Starry Eyes is an occult tale of ambition, possession, and the true cost of fame. Special features on the Blu-ray and DVD include commentary with writer-directors Kolsch and Widmyer (who previously teamed on Absence) and producer Travis Stevens; 10 deleted scenes; a music video by the film’s composer, Jonathan Snipes; Alex Essoe’s audition video; a behind-the-scenes photo gallery; and the theatrical trailer.

Determined to make it as an actress in Hollywood, Sarah Walker (Alex Essoe) spends her days working a dead-end job, enduring petty friendships with other struggling artists and competing actors, and going on countless casting calls in hopes of catching her big break. After a series of strange auditions, Sarah lands the leading role in a film from a mysterious production company. But this opportunity comes with some bizarre conditions that will transform her both mentally and physically into something beautiful… and altogether terrifying.

The post Exclusive: Starry Eyes’ Alex Essoe Talks Hollywood, Transformation, and Inspirational Fingernails appeared first on Dread Central.

Categories: Horror News