Last week, indie developer Acid Wizard Studio dropped their first project — an open-world, procedurally generated survival horror game called Darkwood — on Steam Early Access. It’s unfinished, but after spending some time with it last night, I’ve come to the conclusion that even in its current state, Darkwood is more polished than most other games you can find on Early Access.
More than that, it’s atmospheric, terrifying, unique, and backed by some truly stellar sound design. Watch me spend some time with this extraordinarily promising indie horror game in the video below.
You can get Darkwood now on Steam for $13.49, until July 31, where it will return to its original price of $14.99.
Electronic icon Gary Numan has released an official video for “I Am Dust”, which comes from his latest album Splinter (Songs From A Broken Mind). Directed by Chris Corner (IAMX, Sneaker Pimps), the clip features highly artistic imagery and fantastic texture to create a dark visual experience. In fact, many of the scenes reminded me of TV’s Hannibal.
‘I Am Dust’ was a very exciting promo to film. The wealth of creative ideas pouring from Chris was very impressive. He knew exactly what he wanted and how to get it. Plus he was able to translate those ideas into clear instructions for me to follow. It was hard work to be honest, but very enjoyable.
When I saw Gary in Los Angeles performing ‘I Am Dust’, I knew I had to try to capture his immense stage presence and energy in the video, and to combine it with the raw, abstract visual world that it evokes in my head. Primal, subconscious, mystical, wild. We asked Gary to do some strange things. He did them without question. A testament to his trust and professionalism.
I’m a big fan of Splinter. If you haven’t given it a listen, I highly recommend you snag a copy and check it out. It’s like Depeche Mode mixed with Nine Inch Nails in all the best ways.
When a film begins with a 12-year-old casually explaining how his older brother keeps severed heads in a bowling ball bag in his closet, it’s best to expect the unexpected. Such begins Found, a sincere coming-of-age drama blended with the gore and depravity one would expect from a video nasty. Sounds like a tasty recipe, but unfortunately director Scott Schirmer isn’t able to balance these two motifs (particularly during the film’s climax). Found has enough going for it to make it worth checking out, especially for those who fondly remember trips to the video store for all-night horror movie sleepovers, but overall it’s a terribly rocky film.
The 12-year-old I mentioned is Marty, a horror film obsessed youngster trying to survive the gauntlet of adolescence. He’s bullied at school, even by peers he thought were his friends, and his parents are completely disinterested in his plight. Marty wishes he could console in his older brother, Steve, but recently he’s been cold and distant towards him. Sometimes there are gleams of the close relationship they used to have, like when Steve talks to him about horror movies that’ll knock his socks off. But overall Steve’s absent from Marty’s life, leaving the poor kid alone and confused (especially about those severed heads in the closet).
Schirmer (working off of the novel by Todd Rigney) explores Marty’s complex issues in a truly thoughtful manner. His character is treated like a real person, so there’s no simple solutions to his problems or hamfisted moralizing to insult the audience’s intelligence. This aspect of the film – the coming-of-age story – is handled really well. It’s when Found dips into full-blown horror where it all begins to stumble.
This mainly occurs during the last act, when Steve reveals himself to be the depraved, perverse serial killer Marty suspected him to be (this isn’t a spoiler, it’s in the film’s IMDB synopsis). Prior to this there’s a scene where Marty watches a film called “Headless,” in which he imagines his brother in the starring role – severing heads and screwing their bleeding stumps. Although this graphic bit of debauchery prepares us a bit for what’s to come, when the climax goes down, it feels completely over-the-top and ridiculous. The leaps the narrative makes here are abrupt and sort of disheartening since everything leading up to the final moments was done so well. While the closing shot is supposed to be disturbing, it’s just came off as silly to me.
As Marty, young actor Gavin Brown does a great job carrying the emotional weight on his shoulders. His performance is terrifically nuanced for such a young kid. The other actors, not so much. Marty’s parents deliver their lines in a consistently stinted, forced manner that deflates the intensity in the last act’s intense moments. And while there’s an intense menace in Steve’s eyes, he too gives a stunted performance.
Like the acting, Found is overall an uneven film. There are a lot of inspired moments and, on the flip side, a lot of times where it feels like it’s trying way too hard to be shocking. The trials of adolescence are shocking and disturbing enough, no need to go putting your dick in a bloody stump.
Quick note: I’m also not quite sure what the film is saying about the influence of horror movies. Steven is a horror junkie (with an impressive VHS collection and posters littering his walls) and became a serial killer. Marty is coming up a horror fan and already comes off as numb to things like severed heads. While I’m glad Schirmer didn’t preach to us about his personal stance regarding violent media, Found seems to be arguing that yes, horror movies lead people to become severed head collectors and neck-stump fetishists.
Columbia Pictures has sent us San Diego Comic-Con panel highlights and an interview with Jack Black for their upcoming Goosebumps, their horror comedy that will arrive in theaters August 7, 2015.
Directed by Rob Letterman, “Upset about moving from a big city to a small town, teenager Zach Cooper (Dylan Minnette) finds a silver lining when he meets the beautiful girl, Hannah (Odeya Rush), living right next door. But every silver lining has a cloud, and Zach’s comes when he learns that Hannah has a mysterious dad who is revealed to be R. L. Stine (Jack Black), the author of the bestselling Goosebumps series. It turns out that there is a reason why Stine is so strange… he is a prisoner of his own imagination – the monsters that his books made famous are real, and Stine protects his readers by keeping them locked up in their books. When Zach unintentionally unleashes the monsters from their manuscripts and they begin to terrorize the town, it’s suddenly up to Stine, Zach, and Hannah to get all of them back in the books where they belong.“
Scholastic has sold over 400 million Goosebumps books worldwide in 32 languages since the series introduction in 1992, earning critical acclaim and dominating global best seller lists. R.L. Stine has been recognized as one of the bestselling children’s authors in history.
Ben Ketai’s Beneath, which premiering at the Los Angeles Screamfest Horror Film Festival last October, will be arriving on VOD June 27 from IFC Midnight. It will also open in limited theaters July 25.
We now have a second exclusive clip from the pic, starring Jeff Fahey, Kelly Noonan, Joey Kern, Brent Briscoe, Mark L Young and Eric Etebari, in which a member of their underground crew becomes a bloody mess. When things go wrong, there’s no escape…
Heading deep underground, “A crew of coal miners becomes trapped 600 feet below ground after a disastrous collapse. As the air grows more toxic and time runs out, they slowly descend into madness and begin to turn on one another.“
For several issues now Marko and Alana have been safe from the many different factions that have been hunting them. As things quiet down the couple is faced with the challenges that naturally arise in relationships. Meanwhile Price Robot IV receives some terrible news satiates some of that famous “Saga” bloodlust. This issue is one of the most down to earth, melancholy books in the series, and as good as its ever been.
WRITTEN BY: Brian K. Vaughan
ART BY: Fiona Staples
RELEASE: July 23, 2014
Reviewed by Epic Switzer
Now that the dust has settled and our heroes have found a place to lay low, Vaughan is really getting into the nitty gritty of relationships. Invocative of the last seen in “The Graduate”, Marko and Alana fell in love amongst bursting bombshells and the constant threat of discovery. They’re relationship was always dangerous, forbidden, and a metaphor for the excitement of our own youthful affairs. Now that they have escaped certain death, there isn’t a simple happily-ever-after to tack on. The honeymoon phase is over and Marko and Alana are now coping with the banality of normal life. It is a pretty bold direction for this sci/fi adventure book to take but I’m finding it to be both socially relevant and rewarding.
The central conflict for both Marko and Alana has been building over several issue and in this issue they are both just slightly south of crossing that line. Alana is coping with her unfulfilling job by using, which as you might expect is a big part of the entertainment industry culture. Marko, who rarely sees his wife, is facing the temptation of another woman who is actively filling his needs. If you didn’t know I was describing Saga right now you might assume this is any of a variety of true to life dramas, and that cultural commonality is something I think Vaughan is purposely emphasizing in this arc. As always, he gets the point across quite poignantly in the only scene where Marco and Alana are together.
Across the galaxy, Prince Robot IV is having a pity party fuck-a-thon on planet Sextillion after being cracked in the head and failing to apprehend his targets while simultaneously missing the birth of his son and the death of his wife. He’s pissed, and yet another character exhibiting self destructive behavior as a coping mechanism. There’s always a lot to dig into in this book. I can’t wait until everything comes to a head on Gardenia. It will be interesting to see how Marko and Alana handle things together on their next adventure.
Fiona Staples is absolutely incredible, but you already knew that.
Epic Switzer AKA Eric is an aspiring filmmaker and screenplay writer living in Los Angeles. His work tends to focus on the lighter side of entropy, dystopic futures, and man’s innate struggle with his own mortality. He can be found on twitter @epicswitzer or reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Returning to the wheelhouse that made him a comics star on Thor, Walt Simonson launches ‘Ragnarok’ a Norse mythology inspired epic. This first issue starts the tale of Brynja, a sword wielding dark elf worthy of standing along the likes of Red Sonja, and delivers a fun tale of violence and adventure.
WRITTEN BY: Walter Simonson
ART BY: Walter Simonson
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
RELEASE: July 23, 2014
Review By: Ooknabah
Taking place in a blasted world in the aftermath of the death of the gods, Ragnarok follows Brynja as she undertakes to kill a dead god for the sakes of gaining immortality for her family. While the characterization is fairly simple, this is well worn territory for Simonson, and the familiarity allows him to create an authentic atmosphere while still playing in its confines. There is little in the way of groundbreaking developments, but for fans of the genre this is good pulpy entertainment which is essentially what the story promises from the outset, and it delivers.
Simonson’s art is good, although the lack of detail on zoomed-out figures comes across as a bit lazy: Still, the work is functional and the action feels kinetic and lively, while the tense and moody elements work well, all in all creating a more than serviceable whole. Of note, some of the larger reveals of ancient architecture brings to mind Simonson’s best work in the 80s. This does not rise to those heights, but the skill and experience of an industry veteran, particularly in layouts and staging, is evident throughout.
All in all, this comic plays out like a forgotten classic of the 80s or 90s, with overblown dialog and prose that leans a bit over the top. Since those days, writing in comics has evolved to allow for more nuance and subtlety, very little of which is in effect here. That said, there is something to be said for the appeal of a throwback to older comics, and for fans of Conan, Thor, or other such medieval-themed adventures, there is a lot here to like. There is a slight worry however, as the premise of the comic may be overtaken in later issues as the dead god set to be awaken could drastically alter the tone that has been set here. But those are problems for tomorrow: Today, you’ve got a classic adventure, well executed.
Bombastic and bold, if you miss comics like Walt Simonson used to make, well then rejoice, as he is still making them today. To be honest, I didn’t expect to care for this one, but it caught me by surprise in a pleasant way. I’ll be here next issue.
Ooknabah AKA Brent Hirose is a writer, actor and gigantic nerd from Vancouver B.C. You can listen to his podcast about that at HugeNerds.Podomatic.Com or check out his many other projects at BrentHirose.com
Alright folks, I’m back with some music recommendations! It’s Monday and who knows what kind of a week you have ahead of you. Regardless, music always helps time go by faster so let’s get some new tunes into your ears! Below is a collection of pop, electronica, possible metal, and some definite metal! Check out this week’s edition of BD Playlist!
Wolves In The Throne Room – Celestite
The latest album from the Olympia, WA black metal band is more in line with Tangerine Dream. Lush soundscapes accent sublime melodies that take their time, building layer upon layer. To put it in the most plain way possible, it’s wonderful.
Even though Zac Thompson strongly disliked the pilot presentation of NBC’s “Constantine”, we’re still hoping that things get better in the following episodes.
Series stars Matt Ryan, Harold Perrineau, Charles Halford and Executive Producers Daniel Cerone and David S. Goyer were at the San Diego Comic-Con for a panel Q&A on “Constantine,” premiering Friday, October 24 at 10/9c on NBC.
We have the entire panel for you guys, as well as the trailer shown to those who attended. In addition, a third video shows you the musical artistry that helps bring the world of “Constantine” to life.
The series is about occult master and demon hunter John Constantine, who is tasked with defending humanity from the forces of evil.
The project is based on the “Hellblazer” comic book series.
“Based on the wildly popular DC Comics series “Hellblazer,” seasoned demon hunter and master of the occult John Constantine (Matt Ryan, “Criminal Minds”) specializes in giving hell… hell. Armed with a ferocious knowledge of the dark arts and his wickedly naughty wit, he fights the good fight — or at least he did. With his soul already damned to hell, he’s decided to leave his do-gooder life behind, but when demons target Liv (Lucy Griffiths, “True Blood”), the daughter of one of Constantine’s oldest friends, he’s reluctantly thrust back into the fray – and he’ll do whatever it takes to save her. Before long, it’s revealed that Liv’s “second sight” — an ability to see the worlds behind our world and predict supernatural occurrences — is a threat to a mysterious new evil that’s rising in the shadows. Now it’s not just Liv who needs protection; the angels are starting to get worried too. So, together, Constantine and Liv must use her power and his skills to travel the country, find the demons that threaten our world and send them back where they belong. After that, who knows… maybe there’s hope for him and his soul after all.”
David Tennant is back… er sort of in “Doctor Who The Tenth Doctor” # 1 from Titan Comics. This is an interesting adventure into New York that marred by spending far too much time with a new supporting cast, and a extremely dialogue heavy script that couldn’t hold my interest.
WRITTEN BY: Nick Abadzis
ART BY: Elena Casagrande
PUBLISHER: Titan Comics
RELEASE: July 23, 2014
I’m a huge Whovian. I’ve followed The Doctor through thick and thin since the reboot and was positively overjoyed to see this series from Titan. I’ve sorely missed Ten and would give anything for more but Nick Abadzis’ script sadly misses the mark and fails to remind me of the Ten I love.
It’s not that The Doctor doesn’t sound like himself, it’s that he doesn’t have much to say in an issue filled with dialogue. There is no way introducing readers to the supporting characters of the story will invest them in the adventures that await. Remind us of the charm of The Doctor. While the story doesn’t require any requisite knowledge of previous events, it take far too long to get started.
The dialogue is so over abundant and superfluous that you’ll often forget who’s speaking if it isn’t The Doctor. It all feels very monotone and draining. But does a nice job at developing new character, albeit too much.
Elena Casagrande’s work is stellar. She has a great handle on the human form and draws the sprawling metropolis of New York City with relative ease. Yet, she doesn’t really dive into much of the fun stuff here. The aliens she does pepper in feel in place inside Doctor Who mythology but fail to stand out because they feel so subdued until the final page of the book.
In a lot of ways this is the Doctor Who comic fans have always deserved but it doesn’t really have itself figured out yet. The Doctor is incredibly light, and the scope of his adventures isn’t quite communicated. I mean the scope of New York is hardly on display, and for this world, scope is everything. You’re traversing time and space, so at least take me out of the Laundromat and subway tunnels.
Titan Publishing are releasing ‘Alien – Sea of Sorrows” this week. The novel serves as a direct bridge between the first two films. Writer James A Moore brilliantly captures the tone and the terror of the first films in the series and provides an interesting addition to series mythology.
Starz Digital Media is set to release the award-winning horror film Septic Man (read our review) this summer.
The film will be available On Demand and for digital download August 12 and will have a limited theatrical run on August 15. The DVD will be available August 19.
Bloody Disgusting has been provided with a batch of stills to go with the art and trailer.
From the creators of Monster Brawl, Exit Humanity, and 2014’s Hellmouth and Ejecta, Septic Man dazzled audiences at the 2013 Fantastic Fest where its star Jason David Brown (Exit Humanity) won “Best Actor” in a horror feature. The film also garnered a prize at Toronto After Dark 2013.
“Septic Man follows Jack, a sewage worker who is determined to uncover the cause of the town’s water contamination crisis. During his investigation, he becomes trapped underground in a septic tank and undergoes a hideous transformation. He must team up with a docile Giant and confront a murdering madman in order to escape.”
Septic Man was directed by Jesse Thomas Cook (Monster Brawl) and written by Tony Burgess (PontyPool). It co-stars Molly Dunsworth (Bunker 6, Hobo with a Shotgun) and Robert Maillet (The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones).
Give me a second… okay, I’m good.
Just minutes ago we showed you a new comic poster for Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, in theaters August 22 from TWC-Dimension. Now, we have some news out of the panel, as well as a look at this crazy red band trailer that was showed to Comic-Con patrons.
For those of you excited about a potential third film, here’s how to make that happen: “Robert [Rodriguez] and I are already talking about Sin City 3,” Miller told the Hall H crowd, “so you’d better show up to 2!”
You can check out the red band trailer for the film below, which is about Dwight McCarthy planing to have his vengeance against the woman who betrayed him, Ava Lord, while Nancy is trying to cope with Hartigan’s death. Also, enjoy a strip tease by Jessica Alba.
Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Eva Green, Josh Brolin, Bruce Willis, Juno Temple, Jaime King, Rosario Dawson, Michael Madsen, Jamie Chung, Dennis Haysbert, Crystal McCahill, Christopher Meloni, Jeremy Piven, Julia Garner, Ray Liotta and Stacy Keach star.
It’s Halloween night in Rob Zombie’s forthcoming horror flick, 31, which he’s already beginning to tease on his Facebook page.
Today he shared a second production drawing for the film, presumably by Alex Horley, which shows a half-naked girl in a Halloween costume being stormed by a monster of a killer.
Zombie promises that there’s BIG news coming on July 31.
“All I can tell you is that it’s a completely original idea, it’s something new,” Zombie teased last month. “It’s not based on anything. I’ll start shooting the movie in the fall. So hopefully starting from October, I’ll start shooting it. For right now, I’m going to keep the details secret. But it’s not based on anything.”
For whatever reason most of the mainstream press skipped out on the late-night San Diego Comic-Con event in which Kevin Smith revealed this absolutely bonkers trailer for Tusk, his horror film about a man who is turned into half walrus.
Thankfully, /Film was on hand and brings back more news, good news only if Tusk ends up being as crazy as it looks.
Tusk will be the first film in a newly planned series that Smith calls “The True North Trilogy.” Likely a reference to a similar Canadian setting, says the site, Tusk would be followed by Yoga Hosers (which Smith wants to make next, and be PG-13) and a new movie called Moose Jaws which he described as, yes, “Jaws, with a moose.” All three films would return the same actors as Tusk – Justin Long, Michael Parks and Joel Haley Osment.
Smith’s next film, Yoga Hosers, is a bit more mysterious at the moment. He talked like it was going to shoot next and maybe be be ready for release next year. And though the film was spawned by an odd story of theft among yoga enthusiasts, that seems to not be the focus at all. Smith said he was hoping to make Yoga Hosers his second PG-13 movie (the first being Jersey Girl) because it stars two 15-year-old girls as the main characters. In the film, they’ll battle people with superpowers. Or maybe have superpowers. It wasn’t exactly clear. But Smith said he would be “run out of the country” once we heard what the powers in the movie were.
Then there’s Moose Jaws. The only thing Smith said beyond the premise is that it featured a scene of the killer moose chowing down on a little girl. So it sounds like some kind of exploitation horror.
I really, really didn’t like Red State, mostly because it lacked impact and showed Smith didn’t really understand horror or suspense. But, there’s always hope that he’s learned from experience and criticism, and delivers with Tusk, which is my hope. I’d love to be excited for bizarre horror cinema that’s been vacant for quite some time in Hollywood…
Photo Source: Yahoo!
TWC-Dimension unveiled a new San Diego Comic-Con posters for Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City: A Dame To Kill For. It features the great Joseph Gordon-Levitt as “Johnny.”
In theaters August 22, the film is about Dwight McCarthy planing to have his vengeance against the woman who betrayed him, Ava Lord, while Nancy is trying to cope with Hartigan’s death.
Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Eva Green, Josh Brolin, Bruce Willis, Juno Temple, Jaime King, Rosario Dawson, Michael Madsen, Jamie Chung, Dennis Haysbert, Crystal McCahill, Christopher Meloni, Jeremy Piven, Julia Garner, Ray Liotta and Stacy Keach all star.
In theaters May 15,2015, Warner Bros. released these four Comic-Con character posters for Mad Max: Fury Road, which stars Charlize Theron (Prometheus) as Imperator Furiosa. The rest of the cast 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). In addition, we’ve re-added the film’s first footage, which also debuted at the Con.
“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.”
Deadline says today that USA Network has handed a pilot green light to “Colony” (working title), from “Lost” alum Carlton Cuse and Hercules co-writer Ryan Condal. The project hails from Legendary Television, marking the first scripted pilot for the company, and Universal Cable Prods.
“The show is described as a naturalistic drama set in the near future in Los Angeles, which exists in a state of occupation by a force of alien intruders. Some collaborate with the authorities and benefit from the new order, while others rebel and suffer the consequences. The project centers on a family torn by opposing forces and making difficult choices as they balance staying together with surviving the struggle of the human race.”
Written and executive produced by Cuse and Condal, “Colony” was featured on USA’s development slate in May.
Image Source: LA Times
Ever since I picked up a copy of “New Mutants” issue #98 in 1991, I’ve been a huge fan of Deadpool, who is described by wiki as “a disfigured and mentally unstable mercenary”. Next to Wolverine, he’s just the coolest character around – not to mention his design has always been sleek and badass.
Well, today our friends at Latino-Review uncovered the most excellent never-before-seen test footage from the now defunct Deadpool feature film over at FOX.
The site explains:
In 2012 VFX artist and last director to be attached to a ‘Deadpool’ live-action film, Mr. Tim Miller shot some performance capture with Ryan Reynolds reprising his ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ character, Wade Wilson/Deadpool, but looking like he’s supposed to this time.
There is a script for an R-Rated version of this movie by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, the ‘Zombieland’ guys, that was and continues to be leaked after Fox put this movie in an infinite holding pattern.
This footage shows off the mood of that script and the character, gags and pacing in tact.
Seriously, this is some fantastic stuff, and easily the better comic character movie footage I’ve ever seen. I’d even go as far as to say this clip is better than 50% of the superhero movies out there. Tonally, when Deadpool shows off the decapitated head, that’s stuff dreams are mad of. And frankly, Deadpool and Wolverine deserve better. Come on FOX, what up. WAKE UP!
Knowing this will never become realized make me weep.
On November 15 Japan will be the first to see Takashi Miike’s Battle Royale-esque bloodbath of an adaption, As God Says (Kamisama no lu Tori), which now has a brief teaser that shows some of the “participants.”
Based on a popular comic, which also sounds also similar to Cube, As God Says is about teenagers forced to play a deadly game by unknown forces.
Variety originally reported that Sota Fukushi will star as an ordinary teen whose world is suddenly turned upside down one day, as he and his classmates find themselves caught up in a game whose penalty is death.
Miike described the story of the new pic as “They live, some heads roll, they run, blood sprays, they cry, they laugh and then they die – in other words, a fun movie.”
Written by Muneyuki Kanshiro and drawn by Akeji Fujimura, “As God Says” was serialized in Kodansha Comic Magazine from March 2011 to November 2012 and has sold 1.5 million copies in paperback editions.