Welcome to Horror News Network’s Buy / Wait / Rent, a monthly article devoted to the most highly-anticipated horror releases on blu-ray. Here you will find the best home video releases of each month, along with our opinion on whether each film is a must-own on the first day of release, something you should wait to buy until it goes on sale, or something you’re better off renting for a one-time watch. We sift through the new release heap so you don’t have to! And now, on to the notable new releases of December 2016:
Author Archive for: John Evans
About John Evans
John has loved movie monsters for as far back as he can remember. He's since collected up as many comics, statues, and autographed material related to movies and music that he can get his hands on. He is particularly interested in the critical and analytical discussion of the best stories the horror genre has to offer. One of his largest works on the topic is a study on the portrayals of people with disabilities in horror films.
Entries by John Evans
American Horror Story Season 7 could be returning to airwaves sooner than ever before. It currently looks like the season will be airing on FX as early as Spring, 2017.
It all began with a brief clip that was recently posted to the show’s official Twitter page:
— AmericanHorrorStory (@AHSFX) November 17, 2016
Devoted fans and conspiracy theorists alike took to Reddit and the IMDb message boards to discuss the significance of this minimal clip. The ocean, the “sweet dreams,” and the fact that the clip is exactly seven seconds long is leading some fans to believe that the seventh season could feature some kind of nautical theme. Some fans have linked the clip to a lingering shot of a small boat in the last episode of Season Six, and that has them convinced more than ever that American Horror Story will take to the high seas this Spring. Some fans have gone as far as to wonder if H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu could be making an appearance. read more read more
In news that should surprise no one, Jeffrey Dean Morgan revealed during a recent Howard Stern interview that he will be returning as the controversial character, Negan, in Season Eight of AMC’s The Walking Dead. This news was further confirmed in a Yahoo News interview with showrunner, Scott Gimple. In it, Gimple confirms that the show plans to explore Negan’s backstory:
Sundance Film Festival announced that A Ghost Story, directed by David Lowery and starring Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck, will have it’s world premiere at the festival as a part of its NEXT program. The Sundance Institute described NEXT as:
“Pure, bold works distinguished by an innovative, forward-thinking approach to storytelling populate this program. Digital technology paired with unfettered creativity promises that the films in this section will shape a “greater” next wave in American cinema. “ read more read more
“AMC’s mega-hit fell sharply after its seventh season premiere last month, and has declined steadily each week since to mark the steepest ratings fall in the show’s history. In fact, Sunday’s fifth episode of the season delivered the show’s lowest viewership since season 3.”
It should be noted that “the higher you rise, the farther you fall.” While fans have been gobbling up anything related to the franchise over the past few years, recent episodes have aired content that has divided the fan community. Season 7’s controversial premiere had the second highest number of viewers per episode in the show’s history; so a fall towards more typical numbers would naturally look more significant. Also, some viewers were bound to stop tuning in after its season finale cliffhanger gimmick had been resolved. read more read more
With just two more episodes of the first season of The Exorcist to go, fans are concerned over the fact that Fox has been silent about plans for renewing the series for another season. Horror News Network’s first review of the show was lukewarm at best, but the show has grown to become one of our favorite horror shows on television. Other media outlets followed a similar trajectory: Bloody Disgusting recently published an editorial entitled, “I Misjudged The Exorcist and I’m Sorry.” read more read more
Variety reports that a new Mortal Kombat film is on the horizon. Based on the popular video game franchise, the film will be produced by horror master James Wan (director of Saw, Insidious, The Conjuring), among others. Simon McQuoid, a prolific commercial director who has not yet broken into the world of movies, is currently in talks to direct the film.
The first Mortal Kombat movie, directed by Paul W.S. Anderson in 1995, certainly led to the greatest fifth grade birthday party I could ever ask for; while the 1997 sequel was super cheesy, even to my middle school sensibilities of the time. Hopefully this new attempt will feature a successful mix of outrageous characters and gory action that Mortal Kombat fans krave. read more read more
Chapter Eight of Fox’s The Exorcist, entitled “The Griefbearers” continues to prove the series’ reputation as a quality program that takes creative risks to achieve an expert level of horror storytelling. This episode raises the stakes with the ultimate exorcism of Casey Rance (Hannah Kasulka) and the deaths of two important characters… events which will certainly build towards the high stakes climax of this season.
Geena Davis gives her strongest performance of the season in Episode Eight. Three episodes after a major twist revealed that Angela Rance is actually Regan MacNeil of the original 1973 film, the show now provides Davis with more scenes and more material than ever before. Angela now feels much more like a main character, and her internal struggle over how she is in some way responsible for her daughter’s suffering plays out in numerous interesting ways. One particularly effective scene featured Angela seeing her childhood self in the dusty basement of the classic film, speaking to the Captain Howdy who captivated her as a child. An earlier Horror News Network review commented on how a scene depicting Captain Howdy slowly chipping away at Regan as she lets her guard down wouldn’t have felt out of place in the original film. Through a series of surprise events in the series, the viewers actually get to see that scene!Thankfully, it doesn’t disappoint. Robert Emmet Lunney is creepier than ever before with his bright red and white satin clothing, shoulder bird, and grey nail polish. His interactions with adult Angela and child Regan are perverse and manipulative. It is interesting that his technique seems to be tailored to each individual person he meets. His early encounters with Casey were grossly charming. His early interactions with Regan were creepily childlike. With Angela, he is confrontational and direct. It is clear that the fact that Captain Howdy has been waiting for Angela for over 40 years makes him just as eager to get to her as she is to free her child of this pain. read more read more
In 1980, Shelley Duvall starred in director Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece, The Shining. Her other considerable achievements include Time Bandits, Popeye, and Faerie Tale Theatre. Fans have wondered about her whereabouts over the years, as she has not acted in over 14 years.
Unfortunately, a commercial for Dr. Phil began airing yesterday which lures viewers in with an exploitative look at Duvall’s current difficulties. After presenting anecdotes that reveal that Duvall is struggling with mental illness, she says that she needs help, and “the good doctor” states that he’s going to help her. But if he really wanted to help her, he wouldn’t be waving her in front of a television camera in an attempt to boost ratings. read more read more
After months and months of being very secretive, Paramount Pictures have released the first full length official trailer for 2017’s Ghost in the Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson. Feel free to watch it on repeat below:
If the trailer is any indication, the world of this adaption of the classic anime film is looking like it could be the most detailed and complex futuristic landscape since Blade Runner. It also appears that many of the creepy elements that made the original so popular will be realized on the big screen. Stay tuned to Horror News Network for all upcoming news and a review when the film comes to theaters on March 31, 2017. read more read more