Archives for Uncategorized

Ho, Ho, Horror: All of the Seasonally Appropriate Genre Fare I Could Stomach

This year, it seems like Christmas is a time for killing in the horror genre. Over the last several weeks, I watched as many of 2018’s holiday horror releases as I could get my hands on, to the tune of a whopping eight films. In addition, I saw four seasonally appropriate releases in the theater. Lawrence’s Liberty Hall screened Black Christmas, and during the annual Nerds of Nostalgia podcast’s Christmas with the Nerds Triple Feature and Toy Drive, I caught Silent Night, Batman Returns, and The Long Kiss Goodnight. It’s been a bit of a slog, and I looked to
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BAFF 2018: Scandanavian Shorts

Looking through the schedule for this year’s Buried Alive Film Festival 2018, I was struck by the fact that there was a solid handful of shorts from Scandinavia. There’s the Finnish Helsinki Mansplaining Massacre, the Dutch Netflix and Chill, and the Norweigian Rosalina. So, I watched all of them in one afternoon, looking for a pattern or a connection. I didn’t find much of one, aside from the fact that all three were brilliantly shot, with each short having well-done cinematography which uniquely defines each visually. They were also uniformly entertaining and well worth seeking out as soon as you’re
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The Printed Screen: DARKMAN (1990) (Part 1 of 3)

In The Printed Screen, I’ll be taking an irreverent look at comic book adaptations of notable films. Some of these were released at around the same time as their film counterpart, with the comic being based on an initial script and/or concept art, while others came out months or years after the fact. I’ll break down notable differences, look at the advantages and limitations of comic books compared to celluloid, and try to look at the broader context that led to the creation of both works. The big bang for superhero movies occurred in 1989 with Tim Burton’s Batman. Stay with
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SILENCIO is An Emotional Hodge-Podge of Genres

“In order to save her son’s life, Ana must find a powerful stone. Her grandfather originally discovered it in the Zone of Silence, the Bermuda Triangle of Mexico. Throughout her desperate search, Ana stumbles upon family secrets and enemies who believe the stone’s power is worth killing for.” Silencio sold me with its poster before it sold me with its premise. You put John Noble and Rupert Graves as the ostensible major characters in anything, and you have my undivided attention. It’s not quite accurate, though, because while Noble and Graves do set up most of the plot, the story
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CINE-WEEN – Martin: The Only Vampire Film That Really Matters

Admittedly, I’m not a fan of vampire films (okay, Let Me In was tight), but one staple of every October horror list for me is George A. Romero’s often-overlooked 1978 film, Martin; the film that the director himself credits as being his favorite of his movies. At this point in Romero’s career, he’d already churned out Night of the Living Dead (the film that launched a thousand imitators), The Crazies (the remake does not hold up) and Season of the Witch (solid, but fairly forgettable). Later that year, Romero would go on to release Dawn of the Dead, another near-perfect entry in the
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Escape Through Lunacy: Philadelphia’s Dark Music Pioneer Releases New Album

Forever wars engulf entire regions of the globe. The braindead zombies of fascism are rising from the grave and again infecting political life with their noxious bite. Scientists predict we have less than 20 years to avert a worldwide climate apocalypse. In short, the world as we know it is coming to an end. Hailing from Philadelphia, Lunacy is a project about “being isolated in the world as it is, as we know it, and the demise of that world.” As with the outside world, a thread of apocalypticism runs through the project. The video for their song “Nail in
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Cinematic Sounds: Spun Out of Control’s Gavin Stoker

A great number of micro labels have popped up parallel to the soundtrack resurgence. While Death Waltz, One Way Static, and Giallo Disco do a lot of soundtrack reissues and releases, they’ve also begun branching out into original releases. These acts — Videogram, Antoni Maiovvi, Metavari, and Espectrostatic — are all inspired, in one way or another, by synthy horror and thriller scores. These labels and artists represent the next step for those who have gotten into soundtracks but want something that works more as a musical experience, rather than one tied directly to a film. Rue Morgue magazine’s free
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Brooklyn Horror Film Festival: CANNIBAL CLUB

“Life is a dream for Octavio and Gilda. Residing on Brazil scenic waterfront coast, the rich-as-all-hell couple spends their non-work hours sipping fancy drinks, basking in the sun, and eating the finest of meats. The only problem? That’s human meat, pulled from the bodies of young, financially strapped victims that Gilda lures into their home. They’re part of a secret society of wealthy flesh-eaters, all of whom answer to a charismatic yet dangerous leader. And when Gilda starts getting cold feet about eating, well, cooked limbs, she and Octavio’s marriage, as well as their lives, are put in jeopardy.” It
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CINE-WEEN: You’ll Never Escape From the DARK NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW

When you’re a horror fan, you have to approach the genre with a Ratatouille-like mindset: not every horror film is going to be great, but a great horror film could come from anywhere. Dark Night of the Scarecrow does not seem like it could be a good horror film. For God’s sake, this thing is a TV movie pumped out in 17 days for CBS. Sure, there’s a long history of high quality made-for-TV movies, but one look at the credits for Scarecrow reveals no luminaries behind the scenes, no name brands like Serling or Spielberg or Chayefsky that might
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REKT: CINE-WEEN EDITION-ALTERED (2006)

There’s a scene at the very end of 1993’s (I guess now) classic alien abduction thriller Fire In The Sky where Travis Walton (played by loveable everyman D.B. Sweeney) takes his former best friend Mike Rogers (played by unfortunately only a human and not liquid metal killer robot Robert Patrick) for a ride out to a field where Travis was abducted by aliens years ago. Rogers expresses nervousness at being there, to which Travis, giving his best aw shucks grin, reassures Mike that, “they won’t be comin’ back”. He then winks at him (I think) and quips, “I don’t think
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