Aug 16

Oculus

oculusGenre: Horror
Year: 2013
Country: USA

Director: Mike Flanagan
Starring: Karen Gillan, Brenton Thwaites, Katee Sackhoff, Rory Cochrane, Annalise Basso

 

You see what it wants you to see

 

Mirrors don’t lie… or do they? Kaylie is convinced the antique mirror that her father bought for the family eleven years ago is to blame for the tragedy that would leave both her mother and father dead, with the blame being put on her little brother Tim who were only 10 years old at the time.

Tim is put away at a psychiatric hospital for the next eleven years and when he gets out Kaylie has a plan to prove his innocence and also prove that the evil that destroyed their family was supernatural. Her plan puts her and her brother in a night of war against the evil entity hidden within the antique mirror.

Oculus is another successful release by Blumhouse, a production company responsible for some of the biggest horror films in the later years – including Paranormal Activity, Insidious, Sinister and The Purge. This film however wasn’t produced by Blumhouse, but they rather got interested in it after it was completed and decided to bring their powerhouse behind it to give it a proper wide release, which worked and it did bring in over 40 million dollars on the box office with a budget of approximately 5 mill.

Aug 14

Witchboard II: The Devil’s Doorway

witchboard2Genre: Horror
Year: 1993
Country: USA

aka: Witchboard: The Return, Satan’s Dreams

Director: Kevin Tenney
Starring: Ami Dolenz, Christopher Michael Moore, Laraine Newman, Timothy Gibbs, John Gatins

 

This time you won’t escape from the Devil’s Eyes!

 

The young woman named Paige moves into a new apartment and comes across an old Ouija board during her first day in her new home. She comes into contact with a spirit that calls itself for Susan, a previous occupant of the apartment.

Susan tells Paige that she was murdered, even though there was no evidence of such a crime, but Paige believes in the spirit and starts to investigate the occult events that has occurred in her apartment complex. While investigating, more strange deaths start to happen and it soon becomes clear to her that the spirit Susan might not be that friendly after all…

Kevin Tenney returns here with Witchboard 2, a sequel that are loosely connected to the first one. The story does revolve around a Ouijaboard though, but like the first one the story is also very thin here. It’s also still a bit cheesy and silly, although it does become more «horror» this time compared to the first one.

Aug 12

Maniac Cop

maniaccopGenre: Horror / Action
Year: 1988
Country: USA

Director: William Lustig
Starring: Tom Atkins, Bruce Campbell, Laurene Landon, Richard Roundtree, William Smith

 

You have the right to remain silent. Forever.

 

The grim and violent streets of New York becomes even more dangerous when a demented killer in a cop uniform starts to murder off innocent people. The police is putting the blame on a young and promising cop named Jack Forrest and almost everyone is happy with the closing of the case.

The leading detective Frank McCrae is not pleased though, and he continues to investigate the murders even after Forrest is arrested. Together with Forest colleague and lover, Theresa, McCrae has to finds out the identity behind the real maniac cop before they themselves become his newest victims.

Maniac Cop is the first in a trilogy of films that deals with the maniacal zombie cop Matt Cordell. The concept of a cop coming back to life to take revenge upon the police force that he once represented with pride is interesting, but this film plays out more like a silly 80′s action film than anything else. I think that the film could have had some more suspense added to it by having Cordell as a regular human being and perhaps rather bring him back from the dead in the second entry to the trilogy.

Jul 25

Nothing Left to Fear

nothinglefttofearGenre. Horror
Year: 2013
Country: USA

Director: Anthony Leonardi III
Starring: Anne Heche, James Tupper, Ethan Peck, Rebekah Brandes, Carter Cabassa

 

Let us prey

 

Dan is taking his family of five with him to a small town called Stull in Kansas where he will get started on a new job assignment as a Pastor. His teenage daughters aren’t thrilled to live out in the countryside, but the oldest one named Rebecca quickly gets settled in after befriending a local boy named Noah.

After a night that was supposed to be filled with fun at the summer festival, Rebecca’s sister Mary becomes ill after drinking drugged lemonade and is taken away by the towns old pastor to perform a ritual that will turn her into a demon. She is then given back to the family, but now she is also possessed by an evil force that wants to take over every person in their family.

Nothing Left to Fear got some free publicity before its released due to the fact that it is produced by the rock icon Slash from Guns N’ Roses. He also, together with Nicholas O’Toole, provided the music for the film. The story is based on an urban myth about the real town called Stull that are supposed to be the home of one of the Seven Known Gateways to Hell.

Jul 04

Wild Beasts

wildbeastsGenre: Horror
Year: 1984
Country: Italy

aka: Savage Beasts, The Wild Beasts Will Get You!

Director: Franco Prosperi
Starring: Lorraine De Selle, John Aldrich, Ugo Bologna, Louisa Lloyd, John Stacy

 

The most bloody nightmare ever imagined!

 

When the water system of a big european city is contaminated with the drug PCP, the animals run amok and attacks people. Because of a small earthquake the exotic animals of a local zoo gets free aswell which includes everything from tigers to elephants. We follow the animal expert Dr. Ruphert Berner and journalist Laura Schwarz throughout this mayhem.

I have a soft spot for killer animal movies, there’s something enjoyable watching animals take revenge on all the wrong things we humans do to this world and to them. So a movie that shows a range of different animals that attacks people should be right up my alley.

Director Prosperi had experience working with animals prior to this movie from making a couple of infamous mondo movies including Goodbye Uncle Tom, Mondo Cane and Africa Addio. He creates a dark atmosphere and does a good job with this movie. Some of the animal attacks are good and I’m surprised at how much they where able to make the animals do since I’m sure they didn’t have a lot of time to film this. Some scenes does get a bit ridiculous however. It’s fun to see an elephant stomp on cars, but not quite as suspenseful to see it choke a person with his trunk.

Jul 01

The Toolbox Murders

toolboxmurdersGenre: Horror
Year: 2004
Country: USA

aka: Hotel Terror

Director: Tobe Hooper
Starring: Angela Bettis, Brent Roam, Marco Rodriguez, Rance Howard, Juliet Landau

 

Another legacy begins

 

Nell and her boyfriend Steven are the newest tenants at the old building called Lusman Arms. While they try their best to renovate the old apartment, Nell starts to hear strange voices around the building, and also starts to notice that some of the neighbors are becoming missing.

Nell starts to become obsessed with finding out what is going on in this building and the history of it does not make her less concerned. The place has a long line of missing tenants and the man who built the building was heavily into the occult. While trying to find answers, Nell herself becomes a target and might end up being the next one missing…

Toolbox Murders is a remake of a late 70′s slasher film that some might find a bit underrated. Why they decided to remake the film is beyond me since the original film doesn’t have that big of a following and there is hardly any need to use the name of that one to make a new film about a crazy killer in a building.

Jun 22

Ghoulies

ghouliesGenre: Horror / Fantasy
Year: 1985
Country: USA

Director: Luca Bercovici
Starring: Peter Liapis, Lisa Pelikan, Michael Des Barres, Jack Nance, Peter Risch

 

They’ll get you in the end

 

Jonathan Graves and his girlfriend Rebecca moves in to an old house that Jonathan has inherited from his dead father. Jonathan finds several books with satanic rituals described in them and starts to develop an interest in the occult.

After playing around with the spells, he is able to summon a group of small ugly creatures called Ghoulies. Jonathan starts to get more and more obsessed and ends up summoning his dead father back to life, who wants to use Jonathan and his friends to gain even more power.

Ghoulies has one of the coolest 80′s posters that I know. The green ghoulies who sticks up out of a toilet is so awesome that I have bought t-shirts with the poster “art” on it. Surprisingly enough, the ghoulies doesn’t play that big part of the film. After looking at the poster you would expect these little critters to kill and eat people, but they are sadly more or less in the background here and there and how they are made or what they want are not explained. Instead of a fun little creatures film, Ghoulies turn out to be a dull witchcraft movie.

Jun 16

Demons 6: De Profundis

demons6Genre: Horror
Year: 1989
Country: Italy

original title: Il Gatto Nero
aka: Edgar Allan Poe’s The Black Cat, The Black Cat, Demons 6: Armagedon, Dead Eyes

Director: Luigi Cozzi
Starring: Florence Guerin, Urbano Barberini, Caroline Munro, Brett Halsey, Luisa Maneri

 

Between dreams & nightmares… between reality & fantasy… lies the terror of

 

The fans of Dario Argento had been waiting for ten years for the third and final entry to «The Three Mothers» trilogy that he started with Suspiria back in 1977 and Inferno in 1980. Due to the poor reception of the last one, Argento wasn’t able to create the third one before 2007. That being said, there was a third entry into the saga made in the final year of the 80′s without his involvement.

Luigi Cozzi, Argento’s friend and frequent collaborator decided to do his own spin on the saga with this film. I guess there wasn’t any rights issues or such in Italian cinema at the time, cause it is hard to believe that Argento would give his approval on this production regardless of how good friends he and Cozzi were at the time.

Jun 09

Cujo

cujoGenre: Horror
Year: 1983
Country: USA

Director: Lewis Teague
Starring: Dee Wallace, Danny Pintauro, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Christopher Stone, Ed Lauter

 

Now there’s a new name for terror…

 

Today, a killer animal movie is usually done in a comedic style and in most cases seem to be done for the not-so-serious Syfy channel. Back in the early 80′s though, those type of stories were still treated seriously, including Cujo which was based on a Stephen King novel.

Cujo is not only about an animal, in this case a dog with rabies, that are out to destroy human beings. Cujo is just as much as family drama about a broken family that are struggling with infidelity.

Donna Trenton is the main character in this film, a woman who has a young son with her husband Vic and also an affair with her ex-boyfriend Steve. When Vic finds out about this, he leaves his family behind by going on a business trip to clear his head on how he should react to his wife’s adultery. While being left behind, Donna has to take their old car out for a repair, but the farmhouse where her mechanic lives has now been taken over by a big St. Bernard dog with rabies named “Cujo”.

Jun 07

Raw Deal

rawdealGenre: Action
Year: 1986
Country: USA

Director: John Irvin
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kathryn Harrold, Sam Wanamaker, Paul Shenar, Robert Davi

 

The government gave him a raw deal. Nobody gives him a raw deal.

 

Mark Kaminsky was kicked out of the FBI for being too rough towards the suspects. He now lives a more quiet life as a sheriff in a small town. His wife is not happy living the new life outside of a big city and Mark is missing the action of bringing down the big guys in the criminal underworld.

He gets a chance to go on a new mission when his old boss calls him needing help to bring down a big shot mafia boss by working on his own, without the backing of the law. Mark fakes his own death and starts to re-emerge as the convicted felon Joseph P. Brenner and with his new identity he works on becoming one of the henchmen for crime boss Luigi Patrovita and then ultimately take him down.

Older posts «