Netflix, Redbox and other VOD outlets are killing entertainment, as it’s not about quality, but about quantity (units sold).
WWE Studios is already the worst at producing horror movies (Leprechaun: Origins is the latest fatality), and now they’re teaming with Gene Simmons of KISS to make one. Why? Not because Simmons is a horror expert, and not because WWE knows anything about the genre, but because with the wrestling audience and KISS fans they can sell a shit load of crappy movies.
Simmons, who is openly a money grubbing sellout, has formed Erebus Pictures with WWE Studios to finance and produce movies, says Variety.
The first production in a 3-picture deal (guaranteed to end after that) is Temple, written by Matt Savelloni.
“It follows a team of trained operatives who find themselves trapped inside an isolated military compound after its artificial intelligence is suddenly shut down — and then begin to experience strange and horrific phenomena.”
Again, this deal is about selling movies, not about art, which is why I guarantee these films are going to be trash. How confident am I? If I like Temple – and I’m an extremely honest guy who can admit when I’m wrong – I will print this article out, and take a video of me eating it. Literally, I’ll eat my words.
Even Simmons’ quote is weird, as it sounds as if he’s not even a horror fan*: “The horror genre continues to fascinate me as it proves to be endlessly thrilling and engaging for audiences.” So, the genre is fascinating because it’s thrilling and engaging for audiences, not Simmons. Why is he projecting outward? It’s a weird quote, if you ask me.
The kicker comes from Michael Luisi, president of WWE Studios, who swears this is a passion project.
“Horror films fall into a genre that thrives on genuine passion, and I believe this partnership truly capitalizes on that sentiment and supports our vision.”
Bloody readers may slam me in the comment section below, but I’ll be right. And if not, you can loop a video of me dipping this article in some salsa and forcing it down my throat.
*It should be noted that Simmons’ “Demon” persona was inspired by old horror comics, and he’s said he’s a fan of monsters movies and Godzilla in the past.
We have the first poster and image gallery for No Escape, an action thriller starring Owen Wilson, Lake Bell and Pierce Brosnan.
In theaters September 2, 2015, “The story centers on an American businessman (Wilson) as he and his family settle into their new home in Southeast Asia. Suddenly finding themselves in the middle of a violent political uprising (i.e., a coup), they must frantically look for a safe escape as rebels mercilessly attack the city.”
Devil, The Poughkeepsie Tapes and As Above/So Below‘s John Erick Dowdle directed the movie and co-wrote it with his brother, Drew Dowdle.
Bloody-Disgusting has exclusively learned that composer Frederik Wiedmann has been confirmed as the composer of the upcoming horror thriller Shut In. The film, which is in post-production, was directed by Adam Schindler and produced by Steven Schneider (Insidious, Paranormal Activity).
The film’s description from IMDb reads:
Anna [Beth Riesgraf] suffers from agoraphobia so crippling that when a trio of criminals break into her house, she cannot bring herself to flee. But what the intruders don’t realize is that agoraphobia is not her only psychosis.
Weidmann’s previous compositions include Return To House On Haunted Hill, Hostel III, Mirrors 2, and Hellraiser: Revelations, among others.
As uncomfortable as it eventually became watching a beloved series like Resident Evil stumble these past few years, there’s something to be said about its willingness to adapt. Unless there’s a massive dip in sales, it’s rare for a popular franchise like this to try something different. Capcom has had a worldwide presence for decades, so it’s easy to forget they’re still very much a Japanese institution, and with that comes a strict adherence to traditions.
This stubbornness can make inspiring change a deeply frustrating thing, but Resident Evil Revelations 2 is proof that it’s possible. We only need to be loud enough.
Revelations 2 continues the progress started by the ridiculously good Resident Evil remaster by inching the franchise even closer to its roots. Resident Evil is gradually re-adopting the concepts that were responsible for its early success as its publisher has begun the long process of realigning it with what fans of the genre want.
Horror is more popular now that it has been in some time, and you only need to look at its cyclical nature over the last two decades to realize there’s a solid chance the momentum it’s built up over the last few years won’t last much longer. That is, thankfully, a problem for our future selves to cry about, so let’s instead talk about Revelations 2.
Since its solid debut, we’ve enjoyed a weekly drip-feed of content that’s managed to build one of the more intriguing stories in the series’ history. The writing is more good than bad, and with it, Capcom has gone a long way in remedying a problem that’s lingered since 1996.
I had given up on expecting anything more than B-movie writing in Resident Evil. These low expectations made Revelations 2 taste all the sweeter, because it’s successful in ways that these games haven’t been in quite some time. It’s still far from perfect, but the more competent storytelling gives me hope that they’ll find a better hook for Resident Evil 7 than the series of explosions that made up the last three games.
Capcom’s decision to take the episodic approach with this had the potential to backfire. Had they been okay with only copying the formula Telltale made popular with their episodic games like The Walking Dead, even the most stunning of cliffhanger endings would not have been enough to carry interest from the first episode to the fourth.
The decision to release all four episodes a week apart kept this from becoming a problem, and it also made sure people with terrible memories, like me, were never given enough time to forget what happened in the last episode. This approach kept Resident Evil fresh in our minds until the next episode was ready to pick up where the last one left off. It was the video game equivalent of a TV mini-series, and it’s my hope that more developers of episodic titles will learn from this.
The renewed focus on several survival horror staples also made this a more effective horror game. Actual strategy is required whether you’re playing as Claire or the moderately more capable Barry.
This means conserving resources, and since that can only be achieved through the liberal use of each character’s partner — who comes with a nifty ability that lets them seek out and highlight precious hidden items — a feature that might not have been fully utilized otherwise becomes a real life-saver.
Resident Evil isn’t necessarily known for having a particularly competent AI, and Revelations 2 doesn’t even try to fix that. This might’ve been a serious issue, but it’s rarely more than a nuisance since the supporting cast are basically Genesis devices — the gadget that located hidden items in the first Revelations — who can also clumsily bludgeon some fools when the situation grows dire. Capcom essentially hid the bad AI by making them more useful to the player. It’s crude, but it works.
Puzzles and atmosphere also make their mostly triumphant return. The key word there is mostly, because while I did enjoy many of the puzzles, they’re a mixed bag until later into the season where they get more clever. The atmosphere is also considerably spookier than recent Resident Evil games, even though it suffers from a lack of inspiration. Or, maybe it’s too much inspiration that’s the problem, since Capcom’s idea of what’s scary seems to have been inspired by The Evil Within.
As important as the story is here, a considerable investment has been made to make sure players would have something to do between the release of new episodes. Ever since Resident Evil 4 first introduced the wave survival mode Mercenaries, Capcom hasn’t stopped improving on it. Clearing arenas of their monster hordes solo or with a friend has always been addictive, but some clever tweeks make its latest incarnation way more enjoyable.
The basics are still here, they’ve just been given an RPG twist. You choose your character and the load-out you’ll use to mow down copious amounts of ugly monster butts before choosing a mission. Each mission takes an environment from the campaign and populates it with familiar foes and a time limit. Once the time is up, the XP that’s rewarded following each monster massacre can be used to improve your character and their arsenal before you move on to conquer the next.
General skill and resourcefulness are as important as they ever were, and the inclusion of weapon mods and character skills will make sure players who aren’t particularly gifted at monster genocide still feel like they’re making progress. Getting rid of characters with predetermined load-outs to make room for the array of customization options also lets us form a more personal connection to the mode, and that feeling of actual visible progress is a great incentive to maintain interest.
Online co-op seems like a natural fit for all of this game, but that may be a feature Capcom is save for the totally hypothetical sequel. For now, the campaign is limited to couch co-op while the Raid mode is playable both locally and online. (Note: online co-op is currently only available on consoles. It won’t be an option on PC until the feature is added on March 31.)
As a first stab at experimenting with episodic delivery, this is a success. It does a lot of things right, and it’s just clever and refreshing enough for me to be willing to forgive its few frustrations. Capcom has the beginning of something special on their hands, and the sooner they realize it, the sooner we can start referring to this game as the first season of many.
The Final Word: Resident Evil Revelations 2 has a stereotypical understanding of what’s scary, but its surprisingly solid storytelling and a fantastically meaty Raid mode make this one a must-buy.
Superheaven has announced their upcoming album titled Ours Is Chrome due out May 4th on SideOneDummy Records. It will be the follow up to 2013′s Jar. Along with that the band has announced a North American tour with Diamond Youth and Rozwell Kid beginning May 15th in New York City. And finally to top it all off the band has also released a video for their first single off the album titled “I’ve Been Bored”.
Pre-order Ours Is Chrome here.
In the upcoming darkly comedic thriller from Aussie director Kriv Stenders, Luke Hemsworth plays Dylan, a good guy caught in a bad situation. He falls for Alice, a sweet girl that lives in his small town, despite her being taken her sleazy, abusive boyfriend Jack. When Nathan starts to finally catch on to what’s happening, he orders a hit on his wife, leaving Dylan with no choice but to take up arms and avenge his love, leaving his naive self behind to become the kind of man that’s capable of taking lives. Full of interesting twists and turns, Kill Me Three Times is one of the most entertaining films in recent memory.
A few days ago, I was lucky enough to sit down and have a talk with Luke Hemsworth about his latest project. In the interview, Luke talks about what it’s like working with Alice Braga, what it’s like to work with firearms, and his love of surfing.
Kalyn Corrigan: How did you come to join this film? Were you approached by the director, or did your agent ask you to audition? What was the process like?
Luke Hemsworth: Uh, both actually. I spoke to Kriv and had a great little Skype chat with Kriv about the project and what we thought about it and kinda fell in love with him. And it didn’t really work for a little while and then I came back to do some chemistry reads with Alice and I’ve never met Alice before, but my brothers both had so it was kind of uh, there was a familiarity there, which was really easy. The chemistry was great, it was very relaxed and it felt right.
KC: Did she join first or did you?
LH: She’d been attached right from the start, I think. Maybe a year or two, they were trying to get the project up and running. Actually, when we met again she said our chemistry felt you know good and a little bit better than the others, so that was nice.
KC: Was that chemistry instant, or was it something that grew over the course of filming?
LH: I think both. I think there’s an instant chemistry. I think there’s always like, like the psychology of dogs. When you meet someone, there’s an initial reaction and then as you get to know them, things change, things deepen, or they go the other way. You can always kind of tell in those first few moments whether or not you’re gonna get along, and we got along, and then we became great friends.
KC: What kind of affect do you think that had on the film?
LH: I think a huge effect. I think it just makes everything so much easier when you spend so much time together waiting and talking and going through things and helping each other with scenes, and it just creates an underlying tone which can otherwise not be there. It definitely helped me.
KC: What was your relationship like with the rest of your costars? I know you worked with Callan Mulvey previously.
LH: Yeah, great, I love Cal. We’re still good friends to this day, we actually went to his, well, I didn’t go, but the rest of my family went to his son’s play recently. I loved the cast, we had a great relationship with Simon, Sullivan I’m still friends with as well. And Bryan Brown, I kind of felt like he was a member of my family, like he was my uncle or something. There was instantly an affinity there, yeah, odd and awesome at the same time. You spend your life looking at these people, emulating them, and all of a sudden you’re talking to them, and performing with them, and it’s a wonderful honor.
KC: I know that for some of your more recent work, you worked in America and in the U.K. so how nice was it to go back to Australia, and work with an Australian director?
LH: Oh, it’s amazing, yeah I love it. There’s a level of ease that comes with working in Australia that can be missed working in other places. Yeah, it’s just, that place, I felt a really kind of close connection to that land. I took my surf board, and I was out on the surf. I spent a lot of time surfing and exploring the countryside.
KC: Do you spend a lot of time surfing?
LH: Yeah, yeah, we always have. Up in the little surfing community, mom and dad still have a place there, and it’s something that’s always been a huge part of my life. I think it’s the one thing that keeps me calm. It makes me a better person, surfing, I think. It’s a great outlet.
KC: Yeah, like kind of cathartic?
LH: It’s very, very cathartic. That one thing, if you find that one thing you can do and think about nothing else, then that’s the key.
KC: Yeah. So I guess it’s a little bit easier to do that in Australia than it would be here?
LH: Yes and no, there’s great surf here, it can be a little bit more fickle. You have to chase it a little bit more and dodge the crowds, but there’s wonderful surf here.
KC: Did you have much experience with guns before this film?
LH: Um, very very little. I did a project with Cal, the Bikie Wars: Brothers in Arms and that was the first time I handled a gun, I think, and it was a big pump action shotgun.
LH: Yeah, and the subject matter was very touchy, but I think there’s a part of me who as a kid, who, you know, you love movies and you see those slow-mo action shots with bullets spinning out and we got to do that and that was great. But there’s another part of me that’s kind of really fearful of guns and getting too comfortable with them as well. There’s something about holding a gun that makes you stand differently, you know? When you’ve got a gun in your hand, you stand differently.
KC: Yeah, and you used a pistol more in this one.
LH: Yeah, even so, it’s tucked into your back pocket.
KC: How was that different from using a big shotgun?
LH: I don’t know. I mean, it doesn’t differ that much other than what you’re holding. There’s still a sense of danger, you know it’s a real weapon that can fire real bullets and you’ve got to have the respect and the fear, as well.
KC: Did you do a lot of training?
LH: We do a lot on set, you know. We don’t have to hit cans off of a fence, you know? (Laughs) It’s more about how to hold a gun, and how to point it, so you know. You’re never really pointing it at someone’s face. There’s camera tricks.
KC: Were there any films that you spoke of earlier that you saw when you were a kid that you took notes from?
LH: On how to hold guns? (Laughs)
KC: Yeah, to get that attitude down, for inspiration for your character?
LH: No, I think it just comes from when the gun comes out, there’s something in you that changes. That’s what comes through. There’s no part where I’m practicing in the mirror how cool I look this way. It was more about making it real and believable. He was a character who hadn’t had that much to do with weapons which was a great surprise for the film because he’s the one who gets to kill people.
KC: It’s more of like, a naive take?
LH: Exactly, yeah yeah. He’s kind of thrown into this situation which then snowballs out of control, and also, there’s a great kind of juxtaposition between him being a nice, caring simple guy and then being someone who’s able to kill people.
KC: So how did you prepare for this character?
LH: I mean, I prepared the same way I always prepare. It comes back to me, and how truthful I can be in the moment and I don’t ever go to the lengths of going to be a mechanic. Well, actually, I’ve been a mechanic, my first job was in a gas station changing tires and pumping gas. It was one of the last places, where we lived, that actually had people that would pump your gas for you and it was a small town, it wasn’t the beach but it was little town, everyone knew each other, the guys who were coming in, you knew, the motorcycle, not to touch, so you use those things. I used those feelings. But it’s more about being kind of present and focused at the time. There’s definitely work that goes into it but this was so close to my life and experience that it was kind of easy.
KC: Those are great skills to have.
LH: Yeah, yeah. And I think it’s part of being an actor, the more life skills you have, the better and easier it is to cross those boundaries.
KC: So, if you say that you’re going for a more truthful performance, then would you say that acting to you is more about stripping away than adding on?
LH: Yes, well, both. I’d say both. You add on and add on and add on, and then let it all fall away, and then hopefully there’s something left which is what’s…well, I don’t want to say right. I don’t think there’s ever a “right”, there’s good choices and bad choices but yeah, hopefully what comes through is me, there are parts of that that are so inherently me, and those are the bits that are confronting, crossing lines and boundaries. You know, am I capable of shooting someone? What would I be like if something like this happened? Those are questions that you don’t get to ask, which is the attractive part. You get to do things and say things that you never thought you would.
KC: Yeah, but perhaps you see a little bit of yourself in these characters?
LH: I think you have to, yeah. You don’t ever look at it from the third person point of view. You’ve gotta be in there, bringing you, otherwise you’re just copying something I guess.
KC: It’s not as authentic?
LH: Yeah, I guess sometimes. (Laughs)
KC: So, you were saying that you grew up in a little town in Australia. So what was that like?
LH: Amazing. We started out our childhood in a very remote Northern territory, which is right up at the top of Australia. In an aboriginal territory where we were one of two white families, and I mean, it’s great. Chris and I have had the experience of racism and living with people who are very poor, very little services, very little infrastructure out there, so it gives you kind of a unique view.
KC: Would you say that it helps keep you grounded?
LH: Yeah, sure. You know what? Yeah. I think we’re all pretty grounded. I don’t think we ever change, I mean, the nature of your relationship kind of changes, but we keep each other pretty grounded. I mean, we do normal things as well. Like I said, surfing is such a love of ours, surfing and motorcycles.
KC: Is that something that you do with your brothers?
LH: Yeah, yeah. We always have. We’ve always done a lot of surfing, dad and the boys.
KC: What was it like growing up in a house full of actors? Was it something that you inspired them, or they inspired you, because neither of your parents acted, right?
LH: No. And we’re still growing up now. I don’t think there was ever a point where I’m like ‘Wow, it’s so weird to be growing up in a family full of actors.’ It was just something that we did, and it was something that….it’s always Chris and me. It was a normal childhood, it was normal happy, playful childhood that’s the only way I can kind of describe it. It wasn’t a place where we were out of our minds performing at home or anything like that, we were just kids playing, a lot of the time.
KC: Okay, so really quick, let’s discuss your upcoming projects. You have Infini?
KC: What’s this film about?
LH: This is about a rescue team. We’re an elite rescue squad that go to a distant mining station to rescue a soldier and all hell breaks loose on that mining station, and it’s so cool.
KC: That sounds really exciting.
LH: It’s epic. Shane Abbess who directed Gabriel, he directed that and he’s a madman. He’s one of the best, craziest ways of working and he kind of changed me in a lot of ways, I think, that film,
KC: How so?
LH: It just made me question the way I was going about things and a much deeper involvement than in before projects.
KC: Do you have a release date set yet? Or, when can we expect to see this?
LH: Yeah, it’s like May 6th, I think? It’s all dropping on May 6th. That, and I’m doing Westworld as well, which is HBO’s new show. It’s based on the old Yul Brynner film by Michael Chrichton and it’s about cowboys who are robots. It’s a theme park and you can go and pay your money to draw weapons on robots, and the robots start to awaken. It’s awesome.
KC: I look forward to both of those.
Last we heard about Monsters: Dark Continent an April release date was announced. Now we’ve got the specifics: on April 17th the massive-looking sequel for Garth Edwards’ feature debut Monsters will be unleashed.
This time Tom Green (UK show Misfits) will be directing, with Edwards acting as executive producer. From what we’ve seen in the trailer, the tone of Dark Continent looks really interesting, with a tale of soldiers taking on giant monsters in the Middle East. It’s going to be a tough act to juggle but so far it looks pretty awesome.
“Ten years on from the events of Monsters, and the ‘Infected Zones’ have spread worldwide.
Two soldiers embark on a life-altering mission through the dark heart of monster territory in the deserts of the Middle East. By the time they reach their goal, they will have been forced to confront the fear that the true monsters on the planet may not be alien after all.“
Hollywood is all about the franchise, and tapping into our inner child. While most remakes or sequels to films form our beloved childhood, they’ve also started desperate attempts at turning just about anything into a movie.
Remember Battleship? Or how about Ouija?
The latter is more important here as Terror Trove shares a series of art that imagine childhood board games as horror movie posters. It’s a spectacular concept…
All Artwork by Alec Pezzano, Zack Smith and Michelle Massimilla
One of my absolute favorite bands from the past several years is the Norwegian prog rock/metal group Leprous. Their 2011 album Bilateral absolutely blew me away and the follow up, Coal, is an album I still listen to very often. That’s why I’m extremely excited that the band is hard at work on a new album called The Congregation.
The band today released the artwork and track listing for the album and I’m now even more excited. While Bilateral had a very colorful and playful cover, which matched the almost joyous manner of the music, Coal had a more stark cover, using only black and white, which reflected the more mature and serious tone of the album. Now, The Congregation takes things one step further with an album cover that is gruesome yet fascinating, showing some sort of desiccated, almost mummified creature that is entirely unexplainable. It was designed by French artist Nihil.
The band simply states:
The artwork represents the album’s dark theme very well by showing deformation and disturbance.
Leprous recorded all instruments for the album in Sweden’s Fascination Street / Ghostward Studios with David Castillo (Katatonia, Opeth) and the vocals together with Heidi Solberg Tveitan & Vegard Tveitan at Mnemosyne Studios in Norway. Just like the preceding albums Bilateral and Coal, The Congregation was mixed by Jens Bogren at Fascination Street Studios (Symphony X, Kreator).
1. The Price
2. Third Law
4. The Flood
6. Within My Fence
Indie developer Cowardly Creations has gifted us with another deliciously old school trailer for their retro survival horror game Uncanny Valley. The game is scheduled to arrive next month for PC, you can even pre-order it now, if you like.
For the unfamiliar, Uncanny Valley is very much a love letter to the survival horror games of old. It follows Tom, a security guard working the graveyard shift at a mysterious facility. In an effort to better understand the place he’s been stationed to protect, Tom decides to start exploring.
Then, things get spooky.
The Drac Pack is back, on this new poster!
Sony Pictures Animation shared this new one-sheet for Hotel Transylvania 2, which will introduce Oscar-, Tony-, Grammy- and Emmy-winning writer, director, performer, composer and producer Mel Brooks in the sequel to the 2012 worldwide hit. You can also revisit the first teaser trailer here.
I quite enjoyed the first film, which I saw at TIFF back in 2012.
“Dracula, Mavis, Jonathan and all of their monster friends are back in the brand new comedy adventure: when the old-old-old-fashioned vampire Vlad arrives at the hotel for an impromptu family get-together, Hotel Transylvania is in for a comic collision of supernatural old-school and modern day cool.”
Hotel Transylvania 2 is slated for a September 25, 2015 release, and is being directed by Genndy Tartakovsky, produced by Michelle Murdocca, executive-produced by Sandler, Allen Covert, and Ben Waisbren, and written by Robert Smigel.
The fifth season of The Walking Dead” comes to an end Sunday, and AMC is going to force you to watch “Talking Dead” in order to catch the premiere of the spinoff’s promo.
On the heels of news that AMC has picked up two seasons of “The Walking Dead” companion series, AMC will share the first ever look at the pilot presentation of the tentatively titled “Fear The Walking Dead” during “Talking Dead” this coming Sunday at 10:30pm EST.
In the series, Kim Dickens stars as Miranda and Cliff Curtis as Sean.
AMC ordered two seasons of a spin-off series to be executive produced by Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, Greg Nicotero and David Alpert.
AMC president Charles Collier has stated that the series will explore “what was going on in other parts of the zombie apocalypse, and what it looked like as the world really did ‘turn.’”
“Fear The Walking Dead” will be set in Los Angeles and focused on new characters and storylines. The show’s first season will consist of six one-hour episodes and premiere on AMC in late summer. The show’s second season will air in 2016.
The series will star Cliff Curtis (“Missing,” “Gang Related”), Kim Dickens (Gone Girl, “Sons of Anarchy”), Frank Dillane (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince) and Alycia Debnam Carey (Into the Storm).
Photo Credit: Justin Lubin/AMC
Capcom has finally released the content that came with the Resident Evil 5 “Gold Edition” on Steam as a part of the newly available Untold Stories bundle. For just one easy payment of $14.99, you can get both of the game’s story expansions — Lost in Nightmares and Desperate Escape — as well as The Mercenaries Reunion and some new costumes. You’ll also get the terrible idea that was its competitive Versus mode!
I didn’t love Desperate Escape, but Lost in Nightmares is a lot of fun, especially if you play it on the hardest difficulty, which effectively removes the radar. I only recommend you try that if you have a friend to play it with, because you’ll definitely want to be able to hear your friend scream when she gets grabbed by one of those anchor monsters. Good times.
Because alliteration is the shit, Steam is holding a Sega Super Sale that seriously slashes the prices of some games, including a single spooky scary… something — alright, you get it. Alien: Isolation is just $12.49 on Steam (reg. $49.99), its season pass is $14.99 (reg. $29.99), and they’ll remain that way until the sale ends on March 30.
Like what you just read? I haven’t even mentioned the other games that are also on sale this weekend. And I won’t, because that’d ruin the surprise. What surprise? This surprise.
Casting Henry Rollins as a weary, indifferent cannibal is as inspiring as it gets. If you’ve seen Rollins in any of his acting roles (Devil’s Tomb, Sons of Anarchy, hell, even Kroll Show), you’ll know he emits a menacing air every time. He’s aware of his legendary persona and isn’t afraid to have fun with it. Even in Heat, where he shared screen time with De Niro, Rollins effortlessly dominates a scene by just standing there and doing nothing at all.
In Jason Krawczyk’s He Never Died, Rollins’ intimidating persona is cleverly utilized to subvert expectations. He plays Jack, a somber loner whose disdain for the human race is palpable one. His past is only hinted at, as we gradually learn that he’s caused some seriously horrible shit back in the day and at this point would just rather avoid human contact altogether. The catch is he’s an immortal cannibal who needs to consume flesh/blood to survive. Begrudgingly, he feeds on black-market blood packs and as circumstances call, fresh human flesh as well.
Man, I’ve only been on the planet 32 years and I go out of my way to avoid human contact. Imagine being here for centuries? It’s no wonder Jack only leaves his apartment to hit up a diner or play bingo. This part fits Rollins and his dead-stare very, very well.
When a woman from his past resurfaces, Jack’s reclusive life is upheaved in spades. Turns out he has a teenage daughter named Andrea (Jordan Todosey) who’s as outgoing and excitable as he is withdrawn and misanthropic. This little angel could add some much-needed energy to his life, if he’d only let his guard down.
This family drama is balanced with the horror elements very well and Krawczyk’ displays an assured stance as a director. The problem is that the film has an overall feel of vagueness that allows the film to simply drift until its end. The film flirts with providing Jack with a mythology, but by the third or fourth time he is shot or tortured, it’s tough to feel sympathy. The concept is a very compelling one and the casting of Rollins is downright perfect, but He Never Died unfortunately suffers from an aimless vibe that leads to a terribly anticlimactic finish. Although there are some wicked interesting things going on in the film, it never feels cohesive or particularly gripping. Krawczyk is an assured director, there’s no doubt of that. If only He Never Died had a stronger story he would’ve had a better display for his filmmaking talents.
Torche have released their official video for “Annihilation Affair” and it’s fucking insane! Directed by BD fave Phil Mucci (High On Fire, Opeth, Huntress), the video shows an apocalyptic vision of the future where robots are programmed to wage war. However, a good old fashioned porno mag and a gorgeous woman in a cryotube – looking suspiciously like Leeloo from The Fifth Element – are all it takes for everything to descend into utter chaos once again. For some reason, I’m sensing there are a lot of influences and inspirations from the Heavy Metal films.
Torche singer/guitar player Steven Brooks comments:
Phil Mucci’s creation and destruction is so beautiful. Everything we hoped for and more!
“Annihilation Affair” comes from the band’s latest album Restarter, which you can snag via iTunes.
Torche on tour:
March 26 Brooklyn, NY St. Vitus
March 27 Philadelphia, PA Underground Arts
March 28 Richmond, VA Strange Matters
March 29 Washington, DC DC 9
May 2 Leipzig, DE Taubchental
May 3 Wroclaw, PL Asymmetry Festival
May 4 Prague, CZ 007
May 5 Munich, DE Ampere
May 6 Milan, IT Lo Fi Club
May 8 Barcelona, SP Rocksound
May 9 Madrid, SP Boute Live!
May 10 Lisbon, PT Musicbox
May 11 Bilbao, SP Kafe Antzokia
May 13 Zurich, SZ Dynamo
May 14 Wiesbaden, DE Schlachthoff
May 15 Cologne, DE Underground
May 16 Berlin, DE Hafenklang
May 18 Nijmegen, NL Merelyn
May 19 Haarlem, NL Patronaat
May 20 Paris, FR Glazart
May 21 Antwerp, BE Kavka
May 22 London, UK Underworld
May 23 Leeds, UK Belgrave Social Club
May 24 Galway, IR Roisin Dubh
May 25 Cork, IR Craine Lane
May 26 Dublin, IR Grand Social
May 27 Belfast, IR The Limelight
May 28 Glasgow, UK CCA
May 29 Manchester, UK Sound Control
May 30 Bristol, UK Temples Festival
May 31 Nimes, FR This is Not a Love Song
June 1 Nantes, FR Le Ferrailleur
July 2 Portland, OR Dante’s
July 3 Seattle, WA Chop Suey
July 4 Vancouver, BC Venue
July 6 Edmonton, ON Pawn Shop Live
July 7 Calgary, AB The Gateway at SAIT
July 8 Saskatoon, SK Amigos Cantina
July 10 Winnipeg, MB Pyramid Cabaret
July 11 Fargo, ND The Aquarium
July 13 Indianapolis, IN The Hi-Fi
July 14 Chicago, IL The Empty Bottle
July 15 Madison, WI High Noon Saloon
July 16 Des Moines, IA Wooly’s
July 17 Omaha, NE The Waiting Room
July 20 Nashville, TN Exit/In
July 21 Columbus, MO Rose Music Hall
July 22 Kansas City, MO Record Bar
July 24 Denver, CO Larimer Lounge
July 25 Salt Lake City, UT Urban Lounge
July 26 Las Vegas, NV The Bunkhouse
July 28 San Diego, CA The Casbah
July 29 San Diego, CA The Casbah
July 31 Los Angeles, CA The Roxy
August 1 Oakland, CA Oakland Metro Operahouse
March 26 to 29 w/Nothing & Wrong
July 2 to August 1 w/Melt Banana (co-headline)
The Alan Wake franchise has sold over 4.5 million copies on the PC and Xbox 360, says Remedy CEO Matias Myllyrinne, otherwise known as That Guy With the Really Cool Name. That’s enough copies to fill all of Cauldron Lake! Okay, that’s definitely not true, but it is comparable to the population of Barcelona (thanks, Google!)
It’s also an impressive accomplishment for a franchise that I still hear get referred to as a “failure”. It’s not a failure, you’re a failure, and I have it on good authority your parents don’t even love you.
— Matias Myllyrinne (@MausRMD) March 25, 2015
Post-punk band Coliseum have released an official music video for “Sunlight In A Snowstorm”, which comes from their upcoming album Anxiety’s Kiss (out May 5th via Deathwish Inc.).
Direct from the official press release:
Anxiety’s Kiss is arguably the trio’s most experimental album to date, an energized amalgamation of cathartic post-punk, frenetic underground rock, post-gothic ambience, and punk ethos that is easily the most realized representation of the bands’ melodic ebb and flow to date.
Anxiety’s Kiss can be pre-ordered via the official Deathwish Inc. online store.
We premiered Coliseum’s video for “Black Magic Punks” back in early 2013. You can check that out here.
Earlier this month, The Assignment kicked off Tango’s post-launch support for The Evil Within the right way by playing to the game’s strengths and focusing on one of its more interesting characters. Julie “Kid” Kidman’s story will conclude next month with The Consequence, and if it’s half as good as the first DLC was, I doubt we’ll leave it disappointed.
The Evil Within: The Consequence arrives on April 21 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
Slender: The Arrival is continuing its Bataan Death March of migration to all platforms, and the PS4 version is the most recent incarnation.
It’s not necessary to go into detail about the whole of Slender mythology, but suffice it to say there have been games other than these. Slender: The Arrival was released on previous gen platforms last fall, and variants of the core game have appeared all over the internet for years. My review of the PS3 version appeared on this very site in October.
If you somehow missed the Slender craze of the last few years, then woo boy do you have some catching up to do. There’s a whole internet out there for you to peruse, full of reaction GIFs and other arcane knowledge even I don’t know exists.
Slender: The Arrival for the PS4 is a pretty but largely shallow port of an already existing game. It suffers from being a mere clone of its predecessors, and at two hours, it doesn’t provide anything more than a simple, unsophisticated distraction.
The game doesn’t add much to the lore or gameplay, and the changes that do occur are mostly graphical in nature. Unless you somehow missed all of the previous releases, there’s no reason to greet the arrival of this guest.
In Slender: The Arrival, you play as Lauren, who, after finding her friend Kate’s home abandoned, save for some cryptic notes on the wall, goes on a creepy and unsettling search to find her.
Wielding only a video camera and a flashlight, you brave a variety of environments to track Kate down. Meanwhile, in the process, you encounter and must subsequently avoid a shadowy, well-dressed villain in the form of Slender Man. His presence is denoted by a static-y vibration in the camera, and getting too close means being taken down by the blank figure.
And that’s about it. The game takes you through the aforementioned environments — house, abandoned mining facility, mountainous area — but the core concept is the same: explore an area and find a specific number of items to pass on to the next area. The more items you collect, the more aggressive Slender Man becomes in pursuing you.
It’s almost mini-episodic in nature, an adventure game at its most basic level, but the fun is derived not from the exploration but from the sudden and shocking appearance of the game’s antagonist. I won’t even go so far as to call Slender: The Arrival a horror game, in the traditional sense. It’s mostly just a “scare exploration game,” full of atmosphere and mood and lots of scares but very little horror. It’s sort of like the most extreme version of peekaboo imaginable.
The question that presents itself is, if the game is so similar, what does the PS4 version bring that’s different? Well, it must be stated that the game looks FANTASTIC. For example, the textures are way more detailed than in previous ports, and an Abrams-esque lens flare effect also looks pretty cool in The Eight Pages section. Slender Man, too, looks the best of any released version of the game so far. It’s weird staring out over a wide, mountainous vista, a la The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, and thinking, “Jesus, this is a Slender game.”
Ultimately, however, the technical improvements are only frustrating in the end, because they reveal what the game truly lacks. Instead of increasing graphical fidelity, why not spend more time improving the story or refining the game’s limited mechanics? Graphical nuance means nothing if the game is inherently shallow, which is exactly the case with The Arrival.
Not every game should have gunplay and giant explosions, but giving the player a little more to do while walking around — or at least more of a developed story — would make for a more sophisticated and interesting game.
As someone who played the PS3 version, I was looking for something, any sort of hook, that would bring me back to this franchise, but I only came away feeling an underwhelming sense of one-note-ness about the game.
The list of things that could have been improved, even marginally, is huge. We really get very little of the relationship between Lauren and Kate. Lauren, as a protagonist, does nothing besides provide a lens for the audience. Any playable character is just a delivery mechanism for jump scares. The mechanics are underdeveloped. “Press ‘x’ to do ‘y’ thing” is the most common interaction, and that hasn’t changed.
What are the stakes, beyond “if you don’t turn on six generators, then Slender Man will turn you into static?” It works the first time, when you’re new to this particular concept, but it wears off quickly.
With a game so short and so lacking in other elements that normally make a game special, Slender: The Arrival very obviously needs something but doesn’t even attempt to include it, whatever it is. Strip away the graphics and it becomes a walking simulator, doubly so if you’ve played it before.
To give this version some credit, I will say Blue Isle has perfected what Slender does well, as a concept. The frenetic, shaky-cam that accompanies an appearance of Slender Man is both terrifying and nerve-wracking; there just needs to be more of it or a different version of it to be successful. Most gamers are not coming to a Slender game for its features or mechanics. People are coming to it for a certain kind of scare, and this version delivers as well as any other iteration.
This particular form of the Slender story is done, dead and desiccated. There is nothing left to do with it, so let’s hope that we don’t see another Slender: The Arrival anytime soon. If any other reskinned variant appears on any platform, it has to include something fresh (or at last something new) for it to be even the slightest bit interesting. Perhaps now that every market has been satisfied with The Arrival, we can see a different Slender Man story.
The Final Word:If you’ve played Slender: The Arrival in any of its previous variations, you won’t find much more here, unless you’re a completist or hardcore fan. However, if you’ve never ventured into a Slender game, now’s the perfect opportunity.