All I knew when I sat down for Shrew’s Nest was that it was produced by the always-interesting Álex de la Iglesia (Witching & Bitching, The Last Circus) and that the Stanley Festival folks had compared it to Misery. Well shit, that’s all I needed to hear. The debut feature of Juanfer Andrés and Esteban Roel, Shrew’s Nest is a wicked little film about family ties and the painful constraints of memory. What starts out as a devilish family drama between two sisters transforms into a mad grasp for desperate companionship on one side and straight up survival on the other.
Set sometime in the 1950s, the film centers around Montse (Macarena Gomez) who lives with her younger sister Hermana (Nadia de Santiago), who has just turned 18. The sisters’ morbid family history consists of a dead mother and a father who bounced after the funeral. Since then, Montse has suffered from crippling agoraphobia – one foot out of their apartment door and she’s ready to explode. Hermana, on the other hand, is ready for romance and to shake off the domineering constraints her sister has created.
But maybe Montse is ready for a flame of her own too. And maybe she’s willing to do something drastic to make someone love her. Montse’s slapdash scheme to nail down a lover is the catalyst for the vicious unraveling of her and Hermana’s relationship. The final half of Shrew’s Nest is as wildly suspenseful with a suffocating atmosphere that nearly chokes its audience out.
Some films try to lazily crank up the tension by making the affair inexplicably claustrophobic – condensing the story to a taught location with little explanation. Shrew’s Nest ain’t that lazy mother though. The film delivers one of the most organic takes on claustrophobia in recent memory – giving a thorough and wholly believable explanation for Montse’s agoraphobia. She can’t leave the apartment, so the whole shebang takes place within its cramped walls.
What really sells the drama is Macarena Gomez and Nadia de Santiago’s performances. These two lady leads are passionately versatile as they run a 90 minute marathon of emotions that ranges from sincerely empathetic to bat out of infierno. Montse is a deeply multi-dimensional villain that viewers will find themselves inadvertently rooting for from time to time – only to be disgusted with her the next second. It’s these kind of emotional layers that make Shrew’s Nest a massive step above the rest.
It’s a mesmerizing, sinister drama to watch play out – the audience bares witness as a seemingly nurturing environment absolutely loses its mind in a fury of violence. All the while, Juanfer Andrés and Esteban Roel show themselves to be masters of their craft – from the brutal imagery to the depth of character. It’s hard to comprehend that this is their first feature. It’s just so goddamn well crafted, well acted, and downright gripping.
Shrew’s Nest (aka Musarañas) is currently working the festival circuit. We’ll bring you release news as it comes along.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is back and better than ever in the post-apocalyptic story, Maggie (read our review), arriving on Digital HD June 30th and on Blu-ray (plus Digital HD) and DVD (plus Digital) July 7th from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.
The film is currently available via On Demand. Also starring Academy Award® nominee Abigail Breslin (Best Supporting Actress, Little Miss Sunshine) and Joely Richardson (TV’s “Nip/Tuck,” The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Maggie follows the outbreak of a deadly zombie virus that sweeps the nation.
“As the nation reels from a lethal virus that turns its victims into zombies, Wade’s (Schwarzenegger) daughter Maggie (Breslin) has been infected. Now, as Maggie’s condition worsens, Wade will stop at nothing to protect her from the authorities seeking to kill her to eradicate the virus.”
Maggie comes featuring bonus materials including a “making of” featurette, an audio commentary with the director, a deleted scene and cast and crew interviews.
Time to party!
These MTV celebs are dying to see MTV’s new TV series, “Scream,” which premieres June 30th on MTV!
In regards to the new Ghostface mask, check out what we discovered in the trailer!
“What starts as a YouTube video going viral, soon leads to problems for the teenagers of Lakewood and serves as the catalyst for a murder that opens up a window to the town’s troubled past.”
Willa Fitzgerald, Taylor-Klaus, Bobby Campo, Connor Weil and Joel Gretsch star.
Music by Rilo Kiley “It Just Is”
We’re going to head into the past here, specifically the early 80’s, for an amazing interview with horror filmmakers John Landis (An American Werewolf In London), John Carpenter (The Thing, Halloween), and David Cronenberg (The Brood, Scanners), which was conducted by Mick Garris (“Masters Of Horror,” Critters 2, “The Shining” miniseries). The full 25+ minute interview goes over a wide range of topics and is incredibly fascinating, not only for horror fans but fans of film in general!
The clip was recently found by Uproxx and has less than 9,000 views at the time me writing this. It’s really a stellar clip, one that shows each of these directors in their natural state, playfully answering Garris’ questions and swapping stories with one another.
You don’t need to remind me of my sins. Just don’t forget yours. ~Caliban
I think “Verbis Diablo” is my favorite “Penny Dreadful” episode of both seasons so far. The development in this episode was so rich but (as it has happened in the past with many shows) when they try to fit in too much character development, things get muddied. But such is not the case with this one. It was beautifully plotted and paced to perfection. In addition it had my heart vacillating between shock-induced hummingbird beats and melting into a pool of gooey love for (some) of characters.
Speaking of such characters. I’m about to make an incredibly bold statement here, especially since it’s only been one episode, but I think that Caliban (now John Clare) and Brona (now Lily) might be my favorite live action Monster and Bride…ever. All last season, I was wondering what Brona’s arc would be. I knew she wasn’t just a love interest for Ethan because they didn’t spend enough time developing their relationship. And I knew she’d probably stick around because…well…frankly, Showtime made a character poster for her. So there needed to be another reason she was a part of the cast. And this, this is perfect. It’s been one episode of her being Lily and already she has added a grand new element in both the lives of Caliban and Victor.
But uh oh. I foresee some serious conflict in the future in two ways: Victor’s finally created the perfect creature and now he can’t have her. This has been his life’s work and now that he’s succeeded, he must let go. The second issue I see arising, and I may be reading into it a little too much, is that I’m fairly certain Victor and Lily will develop feelings for each other and that’s not just a problem where Caliban is concerned but Ethan as well. All this to say: Bravo, “Penny Dreadful” for adding such a complicated and unique element to the story of Frankenstein.
I must also thank the writers for the conversation between Ives and Caliban. It was the one time in last night’s episode that I could NOT keep myself from smiling (okay, aside from all the little smiles that Ethan and Lyle’s flirtatious banter brought me). What a beautiful, thoughtful, and stunning introduction for those two characters. The juxtaposition of the scene is stark and striking. Surrounded by the ill and the poor in a dark and dank cavern, yet the two of them seem to be surrounded in light with the lovely and profound words they speak to each other. And their chemistry is exquisite, not in a sexual way, but it’s as if they have an immediate understanding of each other’s true nature. And when Ives closes out their magnificent first meeting with the compliment to his eyes…no words.
Let’s get to the meat (kind of in a literal way…) of the episode. Evelyn Poole. She is quickly becoming my favorite character. Not only does she bathe in blood but she’s also the sassiest, silver-tongued, I-get-what-I-want-so-fuck-off Bitch Witch around. I absolutely adore her. I could watch an entire episode of just her. But it’s not just her character that is wonderful; it’s what her character is adding to the dynamic of the cast and plot. She hasn’t had a chance yet to do too much damage to our crew. But she will. And it’s going to be bad. And I utterly cannot wait. (Yes, I know you all want me to talk about the dolls and the baby heart…give it a minute).
Okay, minute over. The ending…THAT END! My hand literally involuntarily flew to my slack jaw. Who could have seen that coming? No one. That’s who. The dolls, eh, whatever. Dolls are no longer creepy to me, like clowns…is anyone still afraid of clowns? But when dolls are stuffed with human baby hearts…still not creepy but demented and terribly sad. Now that we know what she does with these dolls (or I guess I’m assuming she does something nefarious to the person the doll looks like ::cough cough:: Ives ::cough cough::) it’s incredible to see how many lives she has most likely ruined because dayummmm…that room had SO many dolls. Not to mention how many babies she has killed.
GAH! This episode was so good I could go on forever.
How adorable are Ethan and Lyle? Ethan is such a charmer and Lyle has no shame.
I can’t help thinking of this misfit, ragtag crew of occult purveyors as Scooby-Doo and Gang.
“Sad old sodomite in too much rouge in a flamboyant wig.” Seriously, that witch cuts like a knife.
I just want to see Ives smile again. Who’s with me on that?
I really appreciated the story Ethan told Lyle in the archives about the wolves. His obvious emotion was more telling than his actual words. They are definitely taking their time developing his character and good for them. Slow burn is wonderful when done correctly.
Did I hear correctly? The name of the one survivor of the Tavern massacre, was his name Mr. Ripper?
Angelique No-Last-Name did not impress me. It could be my issue with incredibly bold people, I find them daunting, but eh. Hopefully something fun comes of that. However, in this episode, just from what I’ve seen so far, Dorian and Angelique bore me. They’re just two beautiful things who enjoy way too much hedonism. Let’s hope our lovely new lady of the night (that was a brothel, right?) adds some dimension to Dorian’s story because he needs some facets.
Leave your thoughts in the comments section! Remember, I have such wonderful swag from Showtime and I’m still looking for profound and thoughtful commenters to share with!
I’ve featured the work of a variety of artists here on Bloody Disgusting over the years, because most artists could use the exposure, and because sometimes, horror art can even be inspirational. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten the idea for an article or a video after spending some time looking through the galleries of artists like Chris Cold. Seeing what creative people are capable of can be an effective way to motivate oneself to actually make something.
Today, the goal is different. Below you’ll find the works of a handful of artists, as opposed to just one. The theme that ties them all together is the mutual love for Alan Wake these artists share. So while this is still a celebration of horror art, it’s more of a tribute to Remedy’s cult series.