Ahh, 2016. The worst! That is, if you get swept up in the wave of everything awful that’s happening around us and decide the easiest place to loudly put the blame is in the year itself. We’re on a timeline of garbage and tonight, as I’m assuming this will get posted on New Year’s Eve to fangoria.com, we get to start again and move on to the brand new awful of 2017.
Anyhow, what the hell am I talking about. Even if Hollywood had one of its shittiest years in a while, the weird step-sister who likes to hang out in the attic and pull the legs off bugs, horror movies, did not. It was a battle narrowing my list for fangoria.com down to twelve and I’m absolutely furious to not have Anna Biller’s provactative, technicolor The Love Witch or the cerebral Escape The Room!: Coroner Edition The Autopsy of Jane Doe or the movie everyone else liked more than me The Witch on here, but who’s to blame? I am. I blame me and I am very tired. I still took the time to write a paragraph about my fixation with Yoga Hosers, so maybe I need to get my priorities straight in 2017. Here we go!
WARNING! BLOODY SPOILERS HAVE BEEN SPILLED! WARNING!
I discovered this movie a couple of months ago on Upcoming Horror Movies‘ website. There was a Facebook link and that led me to Black Fawn Distribution’s website. I hit the Internet and found some reviews. I wanted to get a sense of whether this flick was any good before I tried for a review copy. That’s my reviewing MO. It cuts down on the amount of “bad movies” I might end up reviewing otherwise. Luckily most reviews were glowing, and even luckier I was able to get a copy to review.
I was first exposed to Sam Rami’s The Evil Dead (1981) through issue 23 of Fangoria. I remember it well. My mother, brother, and I were in a downtown bookstore and I was in the magazine section. A friend of mine had whipped out the latest issue on the bus some time earlier on a field trip to the local state park, to show me what the demon from The Incubus (1981) and the possessed from the Evil Dead looked like.
I was transfixed by the design of the Incubus but extremely repulsed by the photos of the then-to-be-coined “deadites.” I wanted that issue, but for The Incubus only. I secured it at the bookstore, along with a horror novel by Robert Craig called “Creepers”. On the trip back home I hunkered down in the backseat and was about to crack open the magazine when the car suddenly lurched and I was thrown into a corner of the backseat. When I looked up we were stalled in the middle of this intersection, the window I had been next was shattered and we were aiming in the opposite direction.
In my opinion, the Child’s Play franchise should have ended with Seed of Chucky. It was the ultimate ending to a solid horror franchise, but Universal has decided to give the little guy another chance on the direct-to-DVD market. Unfortunately the humorous nature of the fifth film turned off a lot of fans, forcing Don Mancini to scrap the wink at the camera formula in favor of a more serious film.
Mancini is bringing Child’s Play back to its roots with the upcoming Curse of Chucky. Not only did Mancini get rid of any humor, he has also restored Chucky’s classic look. Chucky’s patchwork face has been replaced by his original Good Guy Doll image from the first film. This is also Chucky’s first direct-to-DVD sequel, and I’m glad Universal has decided to forgo movie theaters. It puts less pressure on the film to perform, and it could possibly open the door for more sequels in the future.
The makers of the short film Eaglewalk, which we covered several months ago on the site, have started a Kickstarter campaign to help them raise money for a new short set in the same universe as their earlier film. It’s going to be called At The Dark Divide, and they’ve announced a noble mission statement for the creation of this film: “making Bigfoot scary as hell.”
These guys have only got 12 days to come up with the funding to make the prequel to the best damn killer Bigfoot short film we have covered on the site since we came into being. But don’t take my word for it; go click that link down there, visit their Kickstarter, watch Eaglewalk for free on the page, and, if you like it and you can, donate some money.
Patrick Bateman is into murders and executioners mostly, but he is also into designer clothes, business cards, alcoholic drinks, facial masks, and classic horror movies. Ostensibly, he is a wealthy investment banker at Pierce & Pierce living in Manhattan in the late-1980s engaged to high-class fiancé Evelyn Williams (Reese Witherspoon). But he is also Patrick Bateman, a serial killer obsessed with killing his victims as he gives extemporaneous and amusing commentaries on his taste for Phil Collins, Huey Lewis and The News, and Whitney Houston.
MAD Z Productions announced today that they have teamed up with Obolus Entertainment to produce a new horror anthology entitled Box. The new film features seven segments tied together by a frame about a box that terrorizes anyone who dares to open it. MAD Z has released one sheets for first five segments of the film. You can see them all at the MAD Z Productions website. Box is currently in pre-production with a shoot date of June 2013, and a tentative 2014 release.
There is little I enjoy more than experimental horror, and Maniac, directed by Franck Khalfoun (P2) and written and produced by Alexandre Aja (High Tension, the 2006 The Hills Have Eyes remake), is exactly that. In the wake of a bunch of so-so horror movies told from the point of view of a camera, this film has taken it a step further and turned its camera into the eyes of its main character, Frank (Elijah Wood). Frank is a disturbed young man who lives in and runs a shop that refurbishes antique mannequins. In his free time, he can’t seem to stop himself from stalking and slaughtering just about every pretty girl he meets.
The pounding 80s style synth score by Rob and the excellent camera work lend themselves to the film perfectly, harkening back to the heyday of 70s and 80s slashers, while still remaining fresh and original. Yet, while being as exciting and slick as it is, it’s still extremely threatening and completely inescapable. Maniac doesn’t ask for your consent, it makes you a serial killer for an hour and a half. And then, surprisingly enough, tells you an emotional story about an abused outcast.
As I write this, I’ve just heard news that stop motion special effects artist Ray Harryhausen has just passed away at the age of 93. His death reminds me that his monsters and those “Big Bug” movies from the 50s were the first flicks I latched onto when I was kid. It helped that me and my brother were extremely fascinated by insects and spiders growing up, but to see them in a science fiction film in which they grow to an enormous size and wreak havoc upon mankind was a whole new experience for me.