Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Devil's Candy ~ Review

It's been 7 years since director Sean Byrne's polarizing debut feature film, The Loved Ones and he's come back with another winner. The Devil's Candy is a disturbing trip into heavy metal, art and mental illness or possibly satanic possession.

Jesse Hellman (get the pun?) is a painter who just moved his family into an affordable house in rural Texas. The catch is that an older couple recently died in the house, and their estranged son (a standout Pruitt Taylor Vince) just can't stay away, mostly because demonic voices are constantly murmuring in his ear. To solve this problem he plays loud licks on his amplified guitar! Then Jesse starts hearing the murmuring himself and his painting goes from butterflies to screaming children engulfed in flames. Yikes.

The rest is admittedly underdeveloped and adds little to the sub-genre of demonic serial thrillers, BUT it is well acted (including an unrecognizable Ethan Embry, and Kiara Glasco as his angsty but authentic daughter) and incredibly stylish. You don't expect this kind of polish for horror movies but it's clear the director cares about the art of filmmaking. Every splash of light, color, and sound are purposeful and creates an atmosphere of dread, unease, and unpredictability (which is ideal for horror movies). Ultimately, this is a story of the father-daughter bond, a rumination on the artistic soul, and the truest nature of evil. It also has a deep emotional depth that many movies never quite seem to capture. Overall it's a very satisfying yet disturbing film.




The boring US streaming artwork
The festival circuit poster
that seems too Deathgasm.



The German version of
the poster is easily the best.
The more interesting
but satanic US poster

Friday, March 17, 2017

Pixar's COCO

The first teaser trailer and poster for Pixar's COCO has been released and it is DAZZLING! It's based on the Mexican holiday Dia de los Muertos, rumored to be Pixar's first "musical", and directed by Academy Award Winner Lee Unkrich (Toy Story 3). Opening in theaters (in 3D) on November 22 (Thanksgiving weekend).


https://youtu.be/zNCz4mQzfEI


Happy Saint Patrick's Day!




Tuesday, March 14, 2017

National Spider Day

Celebrate National Spider Day (March 14) with this chilling video of abject horror!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Is FEUD American Horror Story, Season 6.5?

One of my favorite horror films of all time is 1962's Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, a cult classic starring two iconic Hollywood legends, Betty Davis as a deranged former child star, and Joan Crawford as her wheelchair-bound sister. The film is filled with dark humor (what's for dinner Blanche?), psychologically tense, over-the-top crazy, and features one great villain. It went on to get five Academy Award nominations including one win for Best Costume Design.

55 years later Ryan Murphy creator of American Horror Story and Scream Queens has unleashed his latest series: FEUD: Bette and Joan, a fictionalized story chronicling the real-life feud between the two stars during the filming of Baby Jane.  The 8-episode series explores the issues of sexism, ageism and misogyny in Hollywood. Bette Davis is played by Susan Sarandon and Joan Crawford is played by AHS alum, Jessica Lange – both of whom are at the top of their game (just give them the Emmy already).

The show is not a horror per se, but as a long time fan of the powerhouse cast (which also features Alfred Molina, Stanley Tucci, Judy Davis, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Sarah Paulson, Jackie Hoffman, Kathy Bates, on and on), this is one incredible and fascinating series. This is thankfully not as campy as the advertising (below) would have you believe and surprisingly shares the DNA of American Horror Story. At the very least, I have a feeling it will be better than most of Freak Show, and seriously only a few tweaks would be needed to make this an actual AHS season. Maybe shoot it a little darker and out of sequence, add a black demonic figure manipulating the two stars, and figure out how to splash more blood around the set – the physical stunts did result in actual injuries including Bette almost rolling Joan down a flight of stairs!




Thursday, March 2, 2017

Colossal

You can sometimes just tell by a trailer when a movie is going to be epic. The trailer for COLOSSAL if giving me the vibe of greatness – but of course we've all been led astray by the trailer demons. It stars Anne Hathaway, Jason Sedeikis and Dan Stevens and is being released on April 7.

P.S. I'm hearing that the Alien: Covenant trailer is also rocking the horror world but I'm refusing to see any trailers for it until after I see the movie, which opens on May 19. This one is definitely too special to ruin with trailers.



Monday, February 27, 2017

Handmurder Helper

Like many of you, I grew on Hamburger Helper (cheeseburger macaroni anyone?) and Friday the 13th movies. Today's tee from TeeVillain made me chuckle with nostalgia and acid reflux.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Most Famous Haunted Places of the World

Some places are just ripe with paranormal activity and instantly make believers out of skeptics. Some of these locations are more famous than others due to televised documentaries and ghost hunting reality shows. Here are five of these well-known locations that you more than likely heard of at some point.


The Tower of England
London, England

Photo: Haunted Island UK
Who hasn’t heard of the Tower of England? With a 900-year history of imprisonment, torture, and execution, how can this place not be haunted? The landmark was built in 1078 and occupied by William the Conqueror. One of the most famous ghosts that reside in the tower is none other than Anne Boleyn, the wife of King Henry VIII. She was convicted of treason and beheaded. Just as eerie is the sightings of two children ghosts, believed to be the spirits of two princes that were murdered after being deemed illegitimate by Parliament.


Luxor Hotel and Casino
Las Vegas, Nevada


Luxor Hotel is massive with nearly 4,500 rooms spread over 30 floors. It’s the epicenter of the Las Vegas nightlife, especially with its extensive casino history. During its construction in the early 1990s, at least three construction workers were killed. Two guests also took their own lives by leaping off the elevator walkway onto the casino ground floor. In 2007, there was also an explosion caused by a homemade bomb that claimed the life of one guest. Floors 12 and 14 are especially said to be ripe with paranormal activity, including a female apparition sighting.


Fort George
Nova Scotia, Canada 

Photo: Visit Scotland
Fort George is often said to be Canada’s most haunted location. The star-shaped fort was built in 1749, and numerous ghost sightings have been reported over the generations. This includes the apparition of a soldier who is seen wandering in several of the rooms that was previously a prison area. Another apparition is an old lady who is only seen in the reflection of mirrors. Visitors have also routinely seen the ghost of a small girl that sometimes accompanies guests during group tours.


Lawang Sewu
Semarang, Indonesia 

Lawang Sewu was built in 1917 as the primary headquarters for the Dutch East Indies Railway Company. The facility was occupied by Japanese forces during World War II where it was used as a prison. Many inmates were reportedly harshly interrogated and some executed. Numerous more soldiers were killed when the place was retaken by Dutch forces, causing an ensuing battle. Finally, there have been numerous reports of a female apparition, believed to be that of a woman who took her own life. Her suicide was captured on tape during the filming of a television program.


Poveglia Island
Italy

Photo: Daily Mail
The Poveglia Island served as a quarantine center during the Bubonic Plague outbreak in the 14th-century and again in the 1600s when the Black Plague ravaged Venice. Men, women, and children who exhibited symptoms of the disease were ferried to the island to spend their final moments on Earth. The island and the accompanying facility has been closed since 1975, and many locals dare not step foot on the island due to fears of roaming apparitions and a curse. Local fisherman also dare not fish in the area.


These famous haunted sites continue to draw the interest of anyone fascinated with thrills and chills. These people hope for an experience that would convince them that ghosts truly roam the world of the living.




Ashley Williamson is an architecture student from the U.K. and a lover of the supernatural, who always loves to explore places with spooky histories.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Ring vs. The Grudge!?

What started as an April fool’s joke is now – and inexplicably – a real movie. Straight from Japan is SADAKO VS. KAYAKO where the malevolent ghosts from THE RING and the THE GRUDGE face off for the soul of an unfortunate victim. Sounds incredible, right? Find out tonight during its U.S. premiere, exclusively on Shudder.com.


https://youtu.be/PCwfbzY75vQ