One of the more intriguing features The Last of Us Remastered brought with it when it arrived on PS4 last month was a new Photo Mode. With the press of the button, the world Naughty Dog created is frozen, giving players all the time they need to frame the perfect shot. YouTuber Grant Voegtle has used this nifty feature to create a beautiful new trailer for the game that, through still images and a haunting track from the game’s OST, manages to be more effective than most trailers we get today.
Something we can all agree on is that horror movies tend to fall on familiar tropes to move the story along. Sometimes those tropes are done in unique, interesting ways, so much so that we don’t even realize that it’s a trope we’re viewing.
But sometimes those tropes are so blatantly obvious that we can’t help but groan and facepalm. These clichés stick out like a sore thumb and drive me insane, almost to the point that I want to turn off a movie when it happens.
So I put together a few of my most hated clichés for you to check out below. Then, if you’re up for it, put together a few of your own in the comments! Let’s hear what drives you batty when it shows up!
No Cell Phone Signal (Or Other Issues)
Sorry, I’m just not buying this one anymore. If you were in the middle of the desert, a lá The Hills Have Eyes remake, I’d be okay with it. But when you’re at a motel or a cottage or a camp, I’d expect there to be service. In fact, I’d almost guarantee that it’d be there.
Sometimes a Tumblr comes around that really nails an idea, even if that idea is completely and utterly insane (see Metal Albums With Googly Eyes). Such is the case with Slug Solos, a Tumblr dedicated to taking guitarists in the midst of their solo and replacing their guitar with a giant slug. I honestly can’t tell you why it works so well but it just does. Seriously, look at some of those photos below and then tell me that you’re not entertained.
These are the kinds of things I wish Lego would release a box of. If they had these sets when I was a kid now, I’d be playing with them pretty much all the time.
Artist Mike Doyle is a guy who doesn’t mind spending countless hours upon hours in his endeavor to create amazing art using only Legos. And one of his projects was to create abandoned houses using only white, gray, and black blocks, ending up with creations that look like they’re haunted, infested with the most terrifying apparitions imaginable.
But what’s most impressive about these sets is just how detailed they are. Considering their massive size (some are measured in feet, not inches), you really begin to lose sight of the fact that they’re created with Legos and, instead, think that they are made of something else entirely. It’s seriously impressive.
Check out the small gallery below and then go to Mike’s website to see more incredible builds.
Article by Bloody-Ian
While the celebrity guests take up much of the attention at Flashback Weekend, what would it be without the tireless toils of the vendors’ room? A big empty room. If it’s horror you can get it here; from horror-themed ties, to guitar pick earrings, to vintage horror comics, to original horror art.
Often unnoticed is the effort these vendors go through to make a living off these events. It’s blood, sweet, and rolling carts that transform these drab folding tables into a mobile store front usually no more than eight feet by four. It’s all about getting the fan to stop and look be it huge posters, videos playing, racks with their most collectable items, or just good old fashion sex appeal.
Larry of the MOJO RESIN table has a wide array of classic magazines stacked in front of model kits. His passion for model kits started when he was stationed in Japan and over the decades he has gone to countless conventions. While several comic-cons have become multi-media spectaculars, “…horror conventions have remained grass-roots.” He comes year after year, because he enjoys meeting with people and the celebrity’s are still approachable.
Next to his table is VOODOO COMICS table run by Jim and Griff (pictured above). Box after box of just horror comics overflow their table as they preside over the collection like demented genies granting any request they can.
Jim shared that the vendors (fans, themselves) often barter with each other; be it simply trading collectibles, to logo designs and graphics printing. They are a community within a community, spending their days in the hustling Dealer’s Room and their nights hanging out in somebody’s hotel room. Each event is like a convention within a convention for the vendors. They catch-up, share information, and just have a lot of fun…all while trying to pay the bills.
New this year is a slightly smaller table full of tiny delights. It’s BENT METAL CRAFTWORKS run by John and the artist Stacey. Glittering in the florescent lights is a wide variety of jewelry, row after row of guitar pick earrings featuring Freddy, Jason, and KISS.
Stacey’s (the artist) has been growing Bent Metal online for 5 years but just recently realized how big Chicago’s appetite was for horror. She’s very pleased the convention-goers and the Flashback Staff and expects to do more conventions.
It’s thanks to the efforts of these fans, craftsmen, and artists that a typical hotel ballroom is transformed into this dark caravan of macabre delights.
There’s a handful of developers who are using virtual reality in some really cool ways right now. One example is a game called Don’t Let Go, which conjures most of the major phobias from spiders to a fear of the dark — no clowns! — and throws them at you in an attempt to get you to let go of the Control buttons on the keyboard. If virtual reality is a part of the exciting future of horror, I feel like The Corridor: On Behalf Of The Dead is one of a growing list of reasons to be excited about that.
The premise behind this game is fantastic, as it puts you in the mind of a suspected murderer. That alone has my full attention, as my imagination immediately starts racing, wondering what the mind of a killer is like. Your goal is to use an experimental program called the The Corridor to find out the truth. I imagine it won’t be as easy as it sounds.
The developer is currently seeking £37,500 on Kickstarter, and with just 23 days to go, they’re still woefully short of that goal. Get familiar with it in the video below.
If I had an Oculus Rift, I’d be all over this. It’s games like this that get me very excited for the possibilities that virtual reality offer developers, and particularly those who are working on horror games. For more on The Corridor, feel free to follow it on Steam Greenlight.
In less than two weeks, the armies of hell will march their way to consoles with the release of the Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition, the ultimate iteration of Blizzard’s dungeon crawler series. Just last month, Blizzard revealed they were unsure as to whether or not Diablo III on consoles would see any support post-release. They seem to have made up their minds now, as it’s been confirmed that everything the PC version gets will come to consoles, albeit with a slight delay.
This is great news. I own the game for PC and Xbox 360 already and I plan on grabbing the Ultimate Evil Edition when it comes to Xbox One later this month, because I’m a massive Diablo nerd who spends way too much time scouring dungeons for their sweet, sweet loot.
I was a bit confused when Blizzard said they weren’t sure if they’d support the console versions, not just because it makes no sense to not support every platform, but also because that was an extraordinarily odd thing to say a month before the release of the game you’re saying you might not support. Now that that’s been cleared up, I can look forward to returning to the game for the third time, because there are demons that need slaying and my level 60-something Monk is the right woman for the job.
Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition arrives on PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One on August 19.
Guardians of the Galaxy is way better than people are giving it credit for, and it’s starting to wear my patience thin.
Thin is one of the major issues Guardians has, if any, and people on my personal Twitter feed are blasting it for being a touch trite, and also being incredible similir to Star Wars (from the characters to the arc). The fact of the matter is, Star Wars isn’t original, either. In fact, the work of the mythologist Joseph Campbell, especially his book “The Hero with a Thousand Faces,” directly influenced Lucas, and was what drove him to create the ‘modern myth’ of Star Wars. (Wiki)
This isn’t a problem for me, mostly because a film’s structure being similar to another isn’t a strike against it. These days, nearly every film is pitched as “so and so meets so and so.” It’s wholly impossible to be 100% original; everyone’s a poser (sorry, kids).
Now that you understand Guardians IS thin on story, and carried many similar themes and structires to Star Wars, it’s time to get over it. What’s most important to me, an extremely harsh critic (in other people’s eyes, at least), is that I’m entertained. There’s nothing worse in entertainment than feeling like you have to skip a song, or fast forward a movie. If a theater starts lighting up with cellphones, that’s a sign that the filmmakers are losing their audience. Personlly, when I’m bored, I start thinking about how badly I want to start tweeting about it. The second I think about my phone, I’ve been lost, at least until something interesting pulls me back in.
Guardians is one of the best – if not THE best – superhero movie in the past decade. It’s impossible to measure it against films like Tim Burton’s Batman or Blade because that was a different time that had an extremely different kind of storytelling. Now, we expect something grand, exceptional, and me personally, I want my films grounded in reality. Even fantasy flicks should have some sort of anchor in the real world to tell our mind, “hey, this is on Earth, and it’s happening for real!”
James Gunn, who wrote the final draft of Guardians, and directed the Marvel Comics adaptation, brilliantly opens with Star Lord’s (Chris Pratt) origins. It’s a tearjerker moment that easily broke the record for how quickly it had the audience weeping. When Star Lord’s mother dies of cancer, its a heartwarming/crushing moment that the entire audience can relate to; everyone has lost something/someone imprtant to them. This entire prelude takes place on Earh, clearly, until he’s abducted by aliens. Now, when Gunn heads to space, the film is already grounded in reality, and our brains can move forward subconciously thinking, “hey, Star Lord is human. Cool.” It’s the kind of thing you wish took place in Star Wars, especially considering how many human-like Lucas’ characters are…this is one of the major issues with modern Star Wars sequels, not to mention the awful, bloated visual effects work.
On a technical level, Guardians avoids this by not allowing the visual art department to overdo it; there’s serious restraint shown. The alien worlds have a human-like structure to them, adding to our believalilty to the situation. And the fact that Gunn took the time to populate these different set pierces with extras is what truly adds to the realism (see Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow for an example of poor polulation in an CGI environment). Even the character’s costume design – which better be nominated for an Oscar or I’m coming for someone’s head – was far superior to any film of its ilk. Suprisingly, a movie about an intergalactiv battle, didnt look cheesy. Probably for the firt time since Star Wars.
All of this works together to make Guardians a technically sound movie, but it’s not what makes it tick. Gunn has put his mark on the film, injecting it with strategically placed humor and payoffs. He clearly understands what an audience want from a movie – escapism. I’m so sick of all of these movies, spawned by the success of Batman Begins, that take themselves too seriously. There’s a bit of 90′s in Guardians, which isn’t all worked up about the science of space, and more focused on how it’s going to make you smile (whether it’s from Rocket Racoon adjusting his crotch or a dancing baby Groot). The soundtrack is the most import device in Guardians as it’s a constant callback to Earth, a cue to our brains to accept this realism, and also an instant mental ejeculation of endorphins.
There’s never a dull moment in Guardians, a masterpiece, yes, a mother-fucking masterpiece of sci-fi/comic cinema. From the moment Star Lord is introduced to the hilarious and uplifting end credit sequence, the audience will be continually engaged with a fury of action-packed fun that, by the final crawl, should have you emotionally locked in to these characters for life. If most films are about entertainment – at least that’s why I go to the theater – Guardians of the Galaxy is cinematic nirvana.
Nope, you read that headline correctly — because the world is a strange and wonderful place, someone has gone and made the original Doom playable in an ATM. If you’re wondering why someone would do such a thing, especially since it looks incredibly frustrating just to control the thing, the answer is simple: because no one else had.
Another possibility is that they were looking for a project that would keep them busy while we wait for Bethesda to show off the next Doom. But if that’s the case they may want to be a bit more ambitious with their next project, because we won’t be hearing from that game for some time.
Article by Bloody-Ian
Flashback Weekend 2014 kicked off in Rosemont, IL…and it did not disappoint.
At check-in, the line stretched through the hotel; a motley parade of all types came out. Metal shirts were standing next to polo shirts, next to others in that all too distinct red and green stripped shirt. Young and the ‘young at heart’ all congregated here in this Chicago suburb to pay homage to icons of horror such as Lance Henriksen, Angus Scrimm, and Caroline Williams. However, there was one name hanging in every conversation; like the halls of Springwood High, everyone was talking about Freddy Krueger.
As the first photo-op got underway (see some samples below, courtesy of Ryan Looney) the crowds were anxious for Freddy. Something magical happens in the makeup when one goes from unassuming Robert Englund to the icon of Horror Cinema, FREDDY.
While Englund works the photo-room for hours in make-up (created by Robert Kurtzman), every photo comes into the hands of a delighted fan and, if for a moment, they forget all the concerns of everyday life. The table where they pick-up the souvenirs has the air of Christmas morning, and of course, Freddy’s there.
It’s important to note that this is NOT a Freddy Convention. Fans of all horror can come and see artists work celebrating everyone from Bela Lugosi to foreign horror of today to independents.
Truly, in the winding neutral walls of this Crown Plaza there is something for every horror fan.
And just when you think it’s dying down, Svengoolie (Chicago’s own horror icon) walks by swinging a rubber chicken…
The opening night capped off with Charles Brand’s “FULL MOON’S 2014 SHOCK-O-RAMA ROADSHOW.” it was a fun time with a lot of audience participation, stories, and several trailers. He shared stories about working with some major actors, distributing GHOULIES and (my personal favorite quote) “Someone stole the Boner-Meter.” It’s truly a show worth staying till the end for.
More coverage tomorrow.
FLASHBACK WEEKEND runs through Sun, Aug 10th.
Tee Villain just won the internet today with their limited edition “Horror Skull” T-shirt, created by Yannick Bouchard, available today (8/8) only.
The best part? It’s available in various colors for only $11.
“I love drawing skulls, and I had this idea, I wanted to make a mosaic of smaller images to create the illusion of a skull,” said Bouchard, “and I just thought a montage of all the most iconic horror movie villains would be perfect.”
Perfect is an understatement. How about EPIC?
DreadCentral is reporting that Jeff Buhler is the latest to take a stab at Paramount’s Pet Sematary reboot.
Buhler, who writer Insanitarium and The Midnight Meat Train, spoke to the site about his faithful adaptation of the Stephen King novel to be directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo.
“Paramount had a script from Matt Greenburg and then brought Juan Carlos on, and they were looking to do some work on the script, and then I came in. Juan Carlos and I collaborated on a new outline for the film, Paramount loved our pitch, and I’ve been writing the first draft of the script. It’s very exciting.”
Commenting on the original 1989 horror classic, which was directed by Mary Lambert and based on the novel of the same name by horror legend Stephen King, “The original has a very special place in my heart,” said Buhler. “The film fits perfectly in the time period [in which it was produced], and the source material is one of the Stephen King books that I read as a teenager that made me flip out, and I’ve read it more than once since then. It’s a fantastic book and a fantastic story.”
With the narrative revolving around a family that moves into a new home next to a cemetery with powers that allow the creatures buried in it to come back from the dead, Buhler stated of his approach to the remake, “Now that I’m a father and I have a six-year old and a two-year old, all of the horror within that story that comes from losing a child is suddenly very real and tangible and utterly tragic [to me]. I think the one element that we are trying to bring to this version of Pet Sematary is a sense of truth and honesty in the horror and really take it back to the original material. I think that in the 80’s movie it’s a little campy in places, and we are trying to get away from all of that and really get back to the core of the story, which is that of the family dealing with grief from the loss of their child and the horror of breaking the laws of nature as a result of that. Juan Carlos in particular is very focused on the emotional elements and how they could be represented in a visual context that is compelling.”
“We are being very respectful to the book,” he continued, “and we are not tying ourselves to anything in the first two films at all. We are [also] bringing in some fresh elements that speak to the spirit of the story that aren’t in either one.”
“If you look at the core of it, of what’s going on with the family, it’s an absolutely disturbing story,” Buhler offered. “I think the heart of the story has to do with Louis and his relationship with his kids and grappling with that dilemma when kids ask you what happens when you die and what you believe in. It deals with these big questions in such a personal way, and that is classic Stephen King. They are huge ideas, but they are told through a very identifiable, close-knit family unit, and that’s so powerful so we are just immersing ourselves in that – the loss, the grief, and the horrific results of people making really, really bad decisions.”
As for the tone of the script as it pertains to the eventual film’s intended rating, “I try not to get too hung up on that while writing, especially because this isn’t like a Texas Chainsaw where there’s going to be a lot of ripped open abdomens and people chewing on intestines or anything like that,” he said. “It’s already going to exist somewhere on that line between R and PG-13. If the studio feels like they need to market it as PG-13, then it will be the most hardcore PG-13 movie you could get away with. There are a couple of deaths, but with this one the horror is a little more atmospheric. The big concern of course is that you are killing children, which studios are always loathe to do, but it’s a King story and that’s at the center of it so Paramount knows what they are getting into. There’s no question that kids are gonna die.”
“We’ll be done with the first draft by the end of the summer,” Buhler said of the current status of Pet Sematary, which is being produced for Paramount by Lorenzo DiBonaventura and Mark Varhadian.
“Juan Carlos and I have been working very closely from the beginning so I think the process will be very quick. It’s not going to be one of those situations where there’s a script that the studio likes but then they bring on a director who has a bunch of new ideas and then it goes back into the scripting process for another six months. Because we are doing everything with the director from the beginning, hopefully we won’t be far from where we need to be [with the first draft] when we are done.”
The 1989 Pet Sematary scored up a 1992 sequel where t he ancient Indian cemetery with the power to raise the dead returns and influences the lives of new residents.
Thinking back over the past few years, I’m not sure I can give you guys a linear breakdown of the events behind the make of Ghostbusters 3. In fact, I’m just now starting to think it would be a good idea to do a documentary, assuming it ever gets made…
While Sony/Columbia Pictures keep treading water with the goal of filming next spring, Vulture did the unthinkable by compiling a breakdown of all the Ghostbusters 3 rumors from the past 25 years. It’s a valiant, yet psychotic effort.
The article, which you can read in full here, begins in 1989 when:
The massive box-office, critical, and pop-cultural success of 1984’s Ghostbusters eventually led to 1989’s no-brainer Ghostbusters II, which, despite a then-enormous non-holiday opening weekend take of just over $29 million and a white-hot theme song by Bobby Brown, received far less acclaim and and only half the overall box-office haul as the original. Still, the iconic characters and big-name actors still had enough juice to spark thought of a second sequel almost immediately.
This leads all the way up to August 2014 where we just reported that Bridesmaids director Paul Feig is set to direct an all-female Ghostbusters reboot.
You’ll learn all sorts of great stuff over at the article, but at least we got that crazy awesome Ghostbusters video game out of it all…
Phillip Raupach had a little fun with the 1999 The Matrix by replacing all of the audio with 8-bit sounds.
I literally lost my shit when someone starts running through doors – not to mention how awesome the ‘jumping’ sound effects are.
This may just be the funniest thing I’ve seen all year…
RLJ/Image Entertainment announced a September 1 home video date for Cabin Fever: Patient Zero, which is now on digital and VOD platforms.
Directed by Altitude‘s Kaare Andrews, and starring Sean Astin, Currie Graham and Ryan Donowho, the sequel was penned by genre writer Jake Wade Wall (The Hitcher, Amusement, When a Stranger Calls).
In it, “A group of friends planned the perfect vacation in the Caribbean, but when they head ashore to explore a remote island, their ultimate bachelor weekend devolves into their worst nightmare. After an ill-fated swim in contaminated water, they stumble upon a seemingly abandoned research facility where a deadly, flesh-eating virus has been unleashed.“
What better way to celebrate the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles than by oozing all over our love of the 1991 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze?
Watch as Screen Junkies literally shits on our childhood, and points out all the flaws in the sequel. I think the part that hurt the most is when they point out that the turtles never use their weapons after a series of parental complaints after the release of the first TMNT – I had never heard about that, and now I’ll always notice it when revisiting their mega-weak battle against Super Shredder (who kills himself).
Watch at your own risk…
One of the coolest character arcs in Marvel’s “Infinity Gauntlet” miniseries was Thanos’ obsession with Death, and how it eventually lead to his defeat.
Thanos has been teased, twice now, in Marvel’s feature film adaptations. With his latest appearance in this summer’s Guardians of the Galaxy, press is starting to feel the presence of the “Gauntlet”, and has starting bugging Josh Brolin about playing the iconic character.
With Sin City: A Dame to Kill For just weeks away, IGN caught up with Brolin who talked about how he landed the role (you can read that at the aforementioned link), and what we can expect from Death (who is a female character in the books).
“His relationship with Death, who is actually the woman, I love that,” Brolin enthused. “You can take Sin City [in which Brolin plays a man obsessed with a dark-hearted woman] and pump it full of steroids, and then you have Thanos. I like that he’s motivated by that — not just motivated by destruction or death or this or that. He’s motivated by a very identifiable, human trait.”
He also talked about some weird rivalry he built with Robert Downey Jr. that started at the Comic-Con. It would be nice to see Thanos get a bit more personality and character development, instead of being just a brute.
“Not that I’m ever 100-percent sure, but we had constructed this small thing, Kevin Feige and I and Robert, and going on-stage at Comic-Con. Then it became something else. Once I got on-stage, it sort of became its own improv. I knew at that point, because I saw the rivalry between Robert [Downey Jr.] and I, and I thought, ‘I get this. I suddenly really get it.’ So I feel like I’m more inside it than I was. It was more a display to me before that. It was more cosmetic. Now I think I’m starting to get who the guy is a little bit.”
And not that we were’t expecting another cameo leading up to the big war, Brolin confirms this:
“I know what one appearance is going to be for sure. There’s one or two that I don’t know.”
We won’t see the “Gauntlet” story until at least the third Avengers, but it’s nice to feel the anticipation building and building. I’ll explode by the time Avengers 3 comes out.
Our younger audiences won’t appreciate the astounding ridiculousness of the following clip, but as someone who grew up watching “Saved By the Bell” religiously, I really want to share this following clip with those who can relate.
It’s a well known fact that Dustin Diamond, who played Screech on the NBC series that ran from 1989–1993, has been a catalyst for public shame against the cast of the series. He’s been very vocal, and even went as far as to write the 2009 “Behind the Bell”, a tell-all that painted himself one way, while alienating the rest of the cast.
Now, Lifetime is set to air an adaptation of said book, “The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story,” which paints said unflattering picture of co-stars Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Mario Lopez, Lark Voorhies, Elizabeth Berkley and Tiffani Thiessen.
A clip was shared online that had me immediately adding to my calendar for its September 1 premiere. Watch as a photo shoot goes to hell because two of the cast members obsess over Gosselaar (Zack Morris), while Lopez and Diamond get into a push-up contest. In just two minutes I was sold, even if it’s probably an exaggeration of Diamond’s self-consuming mind.
Pixel horror has become an increasingly popular trend for indie horror games as of late, but one of the first to use the art style in a really unique way was Jasper Byrne’s survival horror game Lone Survivor. The game is like a love letter to the survival horror genre, with numerous homages to popular horror games, including Silent Hill. It’s gradually become available on nearly every platform out there, and as it’s made its way to new platforms it’s almost always brought new content with it — especially with the most recent Director’s Cut version that hit PC and Mac last October.
Its latest iteration won’t introduce any new content, but at least Wii U owners will have a chance to experience this fantastic horror game.
“We’re not adding any new content to Lone Survivor, as we added such a huge amount when we originally made the Director’s Cut edition for PlayStation last year,” Curve Studios marketing manager Rob Clarke told Destructoid. “But we’ll have all the content in from the start and we’re making full use of the GamePad.”
Kevin played through part of the Director’s Cut back in March. If you aren’t too familiar with it, feel free to use the video below as a preview.
I found out about these guys not moments ago and I absolutely had to share them with you as they are PERFECT for the site! Allow me to introduce to you Sigh, a Japanese metal band that incorporates elements of eerie circus music, avant garde rock, wild theatricality, and so, so much more. They sound like the band that welcomes you on your descent into Hell, fire licking at your limbs and skeleton arms fighting to grab pieces off of your body.
A very brief history: The Tokyo-based band formed in 1990 and have since released two demos, four EP’s, and nine full length albums. They’ve been signed to Deathlike Silence Productions, Voices of Wonder Records, Cacophonous Records, Century Media Records, The End Records, and Candlelight Records (whew!). As of now, they’re in the studio working on their 10th full length album, Graveward. Their bio also states that their, “…show is truly theatrical and spectacular with lots of fire and blood.” Count me in!
Finnish label Blood Music will be releasing a remastered version of their 2005 album Gallows Gallery in the coming months.
Below I’ve included a stream of their 2010 album Scenes From Hell for you to check out, which I highly recommend! I know that I’m about to on one spiraling journey of musical craziness listening to these guys!