New Search

If you are not happy with the results below please do another search

45 search results for: suspiria

31

HNN Interviews Mike T. Lyddon!

Mike T. Lyddon is the award winning writer, director, cinematographer, and producer of several stunningly original horror films. Starting in 1994 with Cut Up, Lyddon’s work in the horror genre includes Footage Found, Arabi, Thing in the Shed, The Cordyceps Principle, and Horror Anthology Movie Volume 1, but it is his current project, the anthology film Creepers and in particular his segment By the Hair of the Head, that has created a significant buzz in the horror community. HNN talked with Lyddon about his career and his views on the current state of horror.

HNN: How did you get started in film making?

MTL: As a teen, super 8, 16mm and VHS were the mediums for amateur filmmakers so I ended up shooting several super 8 short horror films with friends in and around the Mojave desert about 70 miles north of L.A.

HNN: Did you go to film school? 

MTL: I went to a few classes at a couple of community colleges but didn’t get much out of them. As with any other art form you just have to keep doing it until you find your groove. The problem with film oriented universities is that they keep churning out technocrats who know the mechanics but their stuff ends up looking like everyone else’s. In horror I call this the “James Wan” effect, where the same formulas are repeated ad nauseum and you end up with a “Pavlov’s Dog” method of filmmaking, by which I mean that you keep repeating a horror trope to the point that the audience not only responds to it, they’re expecting it. 

Watch The Conjuring, Insidious, Annabelle and some of the Paranormal Activity films, all put out by the same producers. You will start noticing they use the same tropes over and over again like scenes of a person being suddenly dragged across the floor by an unseen force or the old “knock knock knock” “clap clap clap” repetition of an action which results in a cheap jump scare. Jump scares are not necessarily bad, but when you keep using them it lessens the impact of the horror. Call me crazy, but I think horror should be derived from the story you are telling, not gimmicks.

HNN: What are some of your favorite films and filmmakers?

MTL: Films – Island of Lost Souls, Carpenter’s “The Thing,” Martyrs, Suspiria, Duck Soup, Naked Lunch, The Exorcist, Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, Pontypool, Invasion! (by John Paizs). 

Filmmakers – William Friedkin, Dario Argento, Woody Allen, Roman Polanski, Stuart Gordon, David Cronenberg.

HNN: What is your favorite part of the film making process?

MTL: That’s a difficult question. There are both great and terrible aspects to all phases but I’d have to say developing a script and shooting/directing it are probably the most enjoyable. Post-production can be a hoot, but it also can be a royal pain in the ass. I typically do all the editing and post  for my no-budget films, and while that affords greater control it’s often a tedious and nerve-wracking exercise. It is satisfying getting to that first cut though.

HNN: Why work in the horror genre?

MTL: Is there anything else? 😉

Seriously, horror has the power to reveal unsightly layers of humanity without hitting you over the head with it. As with science fiction I think the allegorical possibilities  are endless. Both The Exorcist and Night of the Living Dead are multi-layered films wherein the horror isn’t just surface level, these films reveal real human horror. Avarice, envy, self-doubt, self-righteousness, bigotry..it’s all there, but crafted in such a way that it draws you in instead of turning you off.  Then there are the more overt yet extremely effective classic TV shows like Twilight Zone, Night Gallery and The Outer Limits.

And of course I love making CREATURES! Whether they are lumbering monsters or creepy ventriloquist dolls, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as bringing a creation to life!

HNN: I first discovered your work through your film Thing in the Shed. How did that film take shape?

MTL: That was part of the first horror anthology volume, and with both Thing in the Shed and The Cordyceps Principle I wanted to explore some recent themes in science. Thing in the Shed deals with bio-nanotechnology under the guise of “one dark and stormy night” while The Cordyceps Principle has to do with the Cordyceps fungus and what would happen if the fungus infected humans the way it does insects and other invertebrates.

Thing in the Shed was my first crack at digital SLR filmmaking and considering we were using 10 dollar utility lights and makeshift gear I think it turned out very well. The mysterious black box, the “Pandora’s Box” if you will, which holds impending doom for humanity..or does it?

HNN: How did Creepers come together?

MTL: After doing volume one I had a good idea where I wanted to go with volume 2 which became Creepers. The main idea was to get stories from established writers and bring in new filmmakers with a track record. Gregory Lamberson was number one on the list and he brought in the considerable talents of writer Jeff Strand for the story and screenplay of “Gave Up the Ghost,” which Lamberson directed.  Jeremiah Kipp was attached with his version of Poe’s “Berenice” and Christian Walker made a very well produced adaptation of Lafcadio Hearn’s “Of a Promise Broken.” Walker is also a good actor whose talents I used in “The Cordyceps Principle” in volume one, and he became one of the leads the Creepers segment I directed and produced called “By the Hair of the Head.”

HNN: Why did you choose Joe R. Lansdale’s “By the Hair of the Head” to adapt?

MTL: Lansdale is a great writer and being able to adapt one of his stories was a dream (or nightmare if you will) come true. It’s an intriguing tale because it combines both psychological and supernatural elements in a classic horror style, something of a departure from his usual, more visceral approach to horror stories.

HNN: What was your approach to filming the story?

The original story takes place in a lighthouse, and after searching far and wide for a lighthouse which would suit the needs of the story, I came up with zilch. Either they were too far away or too expensive (or both) so I adapted the screenplay to have the film take place in an old victorian style house, namely the famous Kate Shepard house located in Mobile, Alabama.  I brought in actors Brian Lanigan and Christian Walker for the two lead roles and they did a great job. Both came away with Outstanding Performance awards at this year’s Zed Fest in Los Angeles and the film came away with four more awards: Outstanding screenplay, supernatural horror, practical effects and Outstanding Production Assistant for my wife Rubi, who totally deserved it. Not only did she make the costumes for actress Chloe Dykes (who does a fine job playing Caroline the doll) but she handled many production duties very well, both for the segment and for the Creepers wraparound.

HNN: Christian Walker and Brian Lannigan give excellent performances in the adaptation. How do you direct your actors?

MTL: Typically I like to get together with the actors a few times before the shoot to get them in the groove with their roles. With no-budget films it can be rather difficult to block the scenes if you don’t have access to the locations until shooting time, so in this case I made X amount of storyboards for key scenes and figured out the lighting/blocking pretty much on the spot. Brian Lanigan’s character “Machen” was the one with the secret, so it was important for Brian to play the role as if he’s a man with something to hide, and I think that came across well. Christian Walker’s character “Joseph” was that of a fledgling writer who is just looking for a place where he can write in peace, so he’s the guy who happens to stumble into the impending horror. Less action, more dialog in this story, so it was crucial that the dialog flowed from scene to scene without getting bogged down. Of course it’s the last 7 minutes of this film where everything comes together, and I think that happened with great intensity due in part to the actors and my ability to use every last drop of atmosphere that location had to offer.  One of the trickiest things was to direct 8 year old actress Chloe Dykes on how to behave like the spirit of a little girl trapped inside a ventriloquist dummy! But she got it, and when she walks through that door it still sends shivers down my spine..

HNN: Why the anthology format?

MTL: Two things – I like seeing what other filmmakers bring to the table, and I like the variety that anthologies have to offer. If you don’t like one segment, there’s always the next.. 

HNN: Is it difficult to connect multiple directors and stories into a cohesive whole?

MTL: In a word, yes. First you have to decide the order of the films and how they flow in relation to each other. Then you need to form a wraparound story based upon that line up, and something that leads to a satisfactory (if not enjoyable) conclusion. 

Creepers works very well in that respect and I think the wraparound actors James Marler and Roy Jackson Jr. do a very good job with the segues. 

HNN: What would be your dream project?

MTL: One  dream project would be resurrecting The Night Gallery as a TV series. I think Serling got screwed with the first one. The potential was there and there are some tremendous stories in the first two seasons, but I think the world needs a first class, character/story driven horror series. We need less zombies, vampires, serial killers and comic book characters and more innovation. More horror geared for adult audiences.

HNN: What’s next for Mike T. Lyddon?

MTL: I’m pleased to announce that I’ve landed a directing and co-producing role for a much larger budget feature to be shot in New Orleans late spring of 2015. It’s a historical drama with supernatural overtones called “Scath” (Gaelic for shadow) from the original story by Jean Stallard who is also producing the film. Not only is she a good writer, she can really tickle the ivories as shown with her piano work for the soundtrack of the Creepers wraparound. As well as being a unique horror film, Scath will take us to a very grim time in New Orleans history that few people are aware of, but after seeing this movie, few are likely to forget!

We’ve just started pre-production, and I will keep you apprised of the progress as we move into the new year. 

Thank you for the interview. Horror News Network has been of great service with the reviews and notices on Creepers and Horror Anthology Movie vol. 1.

HNN: Thank you Mike! We look forward to your future projects! 

 

32

Dario Argento and Iggy Pop Team Up For ‘The Sandman’

From Press Release:

 

Legendary Italian horror director Dario Argento today launched a campaign for his latest film THE SANDMAN on Indiegogo on October 9th. Starring iconic punk singer Iggy Pop as a serial killer dubbed “The Sandman”, the sleek and contemporary thriller is set in the 21st century with deep and twisted primal roots stemming from the dark forests of Germany. The campaign kicks off Indiegogo’s horror month. The month long celebration of all things scary will feature weekly blog posts from industry-insiders as well as a partnership with leading global cinema website Twitch film, which just celebrated their 10th anniversary. 

 

“I was thrilled to read the script, because I recognized right away, this one was written for me,” said Dario Argento, Director of THE SANDMAN. “I’m so excited that for the first time in my career, I will be able to involve my fans so early in the process and have them play an integral role in my next film. Also, working with Iggy Pop is amazing! Such an interesting and intense personality! I would not even simply say “actor” that does not cover it. I would rather say a unique presence! Welcome to the unique world of THE SANDMAN!”

“I have long been thrilled and fascinated by the amazing films of Mr. Argento,” said Iggy Pop, Lead Actor in THE SANDMAN. “All of which are master works. Yes, and also compellingly strange, beautiful, and full of relentless terror.  If I could play the Sandman for him it would make my life complete.  I hope I have not just written my own epitaph.”  

The script, crafted by David Tully, was specifically written for Argento to enable him to make the ultimate horror movie masterpiece with the complete directorial control for which he has long awaited. The film is brimming full of references to Argento’s past classic horror films such as SUSPIRIA and DEEP RED, while standing on its own as a sleek contemporary thriller.

 

 

 

THE SANDMAN Synopsis:

 

THE SANDMAN tells the story of Nathan, a young student in the city who struggles to forget his childhood trauma at the hands of the serial killer dubbed “The Sandman”. Nathan killed The Sandman (Iggy Pop) years ago, on Christmas Eve, after he witnessed the murder of his mother…until he sees the beautiful woman who lives in the apartment across the way dying at the hands of that same masked killer. This brutal murder plunges Nathan into an odyssey into the night country of his past, his dreams…and the buried secrets of The Sandman. Christmas is coming, and so is The Sandman

 

Fans can contribute to THE SANDMAN campaign here.

33

DVD & Blu-ray Releases: August 5, 2014

By: Sean Brickley

Well, we have another short list this week, fiends.  But it’s only because you will all be seeverely inundated with decisions to make once September and October roll around.  And this week isn’t too lackluster in terms of releases.  Oculus is getting released this week, along with some classics from the early 80’s and late 70’s.  And don’t forget to check out the 2 collections at the ends of the list.  In total, 5 movie releases and 2 collections (with a total of 14 movies between them).  Pleasant viewing!



Movies:

Anna (2013)

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Taissa Farmiga, Mark Strong, Brian Cox

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KITEIBA

Synopsis:

A man with the ability to enter peoples’ memories takes on the case of a brilliant, troubled sixteen-year-old girl to determine whether she is a sociopath or a victim of trauma.


Grizzly (1976)

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Christopher George, Andrew Prine, Richard Jaeckel, Joan McCall, Joe Dorsey

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KUCR3LC

Synopsis:

When an eighteen-foot, two-thousand-pound grizzly bear starts mauling campers and hikers at a state park, a park ranger (Christopher George, The Exterminator) springs into action. But the job is too big to tackle alone, so he enlists the aid of a naturalist (Richard Jaeckel, The Dirty Dozen) and a helicopter pilot (Andrew Prine, The Evil) to take this freak of nature down. Meanwhile, the giant grizzly, not content with picnic baskets, continues to kill indiscriminately, leaving pools of blood and piles of body parts in his wake. Can the ranger and his cronies end the grizzly s reign of terror without resorting to excessively extreme measures? This post-Jaws, nature-runs-rampant thriller was directed by William Girdler (Day of the Animals), and was a box office hit and the top-grossing independent film of 1976.


Oculus (2013)

Format(s):

DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:

Rory Cochrane, Brenton Thwaites

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KMULAJS

Blu-ray Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KNVF3US

Synopsis:

 

Ten years ago, tragedy struck the Russell family, leaving the lives of teenage siblings Tim and Kaylie forever changed when Tim was convicted of the brutal murder of their parents. Now in his 20s, Tim is newly released from protective custody and only wants to move on with his life; but Kaylie, still haunted by that fateful night, is convinced her parents’ deaths were caused by something else altogether: a malevolent supernatural force — unleashed through the Lasser Glass, an antique mirror in their childhood home. Determined to prove Tim’s innocence, Kaylie tracks down the mirror, only to learn similar deaths have befallen previous owners over the past century. With the mysterious entity now back in their hands, Tim and Kaylie soon find their hold on reality shattered by terrifying hallucinations, and realize, too late, that their childhood nightmare is beginning again.


Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

Format(s):

Blu-ray/DVD Combo

Notable Names:

Paul Williams, Jessica Harper, William Finley

Blu-ray Link:

http://amzn.com/B00JHH1YQG

Synopsis:

Phantom Of The Paradise is a ground-breaking cult film favorite from acclaimed writer/director Brian De Palma (Carrie, Dressed To Kill).

Paul Williams wrote the acclaimed score for this musical horror classic, and stars as an evil record tycoon haunted and taunted by the disfigured composer Winslow Leach (William Finley, Sisters) he once wronged. Cheered by the Los Angeles Times as a delightful, outrageous…visual triumph, and also starring Jessica Harper (Suspiria, Shock Treatment) and Gerrit Graham (Used Cars, Terrorvision), this hilarious send-up of the glam rock era is pure entertainment from beginning to end.


Without Warning (1980)

Format(s):

Blu-ray/DVD Combo

Notable Names:

Jack Palance, Martin Landau

Blu-ray Link:

http://amzn.com/B00JHH1VSW

Synopsis:

A group of teenagers head out to the lake for a relaxing camping trip in the mountains. They ignore the warnings of the local truck stop owner and head to their destination. Things go terribly wrong when they run into an extraterrestrial who throws deadly discs that suck the blood of their victims. The group heads back to the truck stop for help from the eclectic group of residents: a crazy war veteran (Martin Landau, Ed Wood) and a determined hunter (Jack Palance, Batman).

Special Features:

Audio Commentary with Producer/Director Greydon Clark
New Interviews with:
Cinematographer Dean Cundey
Co-Writer/Co-Producer Daniel Grodnik
Special Make-Up Effects Creator Greg Cannom
Actors Christopher S. Nelson and Tarah Nutter
Original Theatrical Trailer
Still Gallery



Collections:

4 Film Collection Paranormal Thrillers

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Kim Raver, Lindsay Wagner, Bruce Boxleitner, Christopher Reeve, Marg Helgenberger

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KLJW1JI

Movies:

Haunting Sarah
The children of identical twins Erica and Heather (Kim Raver in a dual role), Sarah and David, have always been best friends. But when David is tragically killed and Sarah is convinced his spirit is still present, their families descend into a life of haunting turmoil and, ultimately, danger.

Death Dreams
After her daughter, Jennie, dies tragically, Crista Westfield (Marg Helgenberger) begins communicating with her from beyond. But when Jennie reveals the secrets of her death, Crista realizes her life—and her husband (Christopher Reeve)—may not be what she thought.

Stranger With My Face
After Laurie’s dad dies in a terrible accident, she begins to experience strange occurrences that leave her on edge. Desperate for answers, Laurie uncovers a disturbing secret from her past and now she must battle the evil that threatens to take over her life.

From the Dead of Night
After Joanna experiences a strange vision during a close encounter with death, a string of freak accidents threaten her life over and over again. Refusing to believe she’s the victim of sadistic coincidence, Joanna discovers a haunting premise…and unless she can figure out a way to survive more bizarre attacks on her life, her time on Earth is short.


10 American Horror Stories Volume 2

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Woody Harrelson, Barbara Billingsley, Pamela Sue Martin, Patty Duke, Kelly Rowan

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KVPEQ36

Movies:

Bay Coven
The island community of Bay Cove is quaint and picturesque. But behind the façade of a happy little town is a coven of witches on a mission to fill a vacancy in their bloodline.

Grave Secrets: The Legacy of Hilltop Drive
The Williams’ family moves into a newly-built house, but strangely, someone—or something—has already staked a claim on the property.

Midnight’s Child
An evil au pair puts a family under her sinister spell…one they must break if they hope to survive her stay.

Hurt
Helen Coltrane, at her husband’s last request, fosters a young girl whose evil she mistakes for innocence.

The Cry
In this modern twist on an ancient legend, a detective fights to protect a boy from his own mother…and from the cry of La Llorana.

The Haunting of Fox Hollow Farm
On the property where serial killer Herb Baumeister buried his victims, a group of paranormal experts investigate the haunting claims of lingering spirits.

Haunting of Winchester House
A family moves into the Winchester mansion, but when a malevolent force abducts their daughter, they discover why it’s known as one of most haunted places in America.

The Cellar Door
Herman seeks girl-next-door types to capture, torture and kill and his basement. But his latest victim, Rudy, has other plans.

Room 33
When a group of stranded travelers spend the night at an abandoned institution, they discover an evil force still lives there—and doesn’t want them to leave.

NightScream
Driven by unexplainable nightmares, Drew Summers arrives in the small town of Steveston, Oregon, on the first anniversary of Laura Fairgate’s mysterious death.

34

DVD & Blu-ray Releases: July 29, 2014

By: Sean Brickley

We have such a short list of movies to report about this week, fiends, that I’ve decided to take the modern elementary school field day approach and not list any high points.  Everyone gets a trophy just for participating!  But in all seriousness, there’s some good stuff this week.  I’m personally going to make an effort to pick up a copy of the Blind Dead collection myself.  Enjoy!



Movies:

Curtains (1983)

Format(s):

DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:

John Vernon, Samantha Eggar, Lesleh Donaldson, Lynne Griffin

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00K1L4N3S

Blu-ray Link:

http://amzn.com/B00K1L4NBU

Synopsis:

John Vernon (Chained Heat, National Lampoon’s Animal House) and Samantha Eggar (The Brood, The Exterminator)star in this horror classic from the golden age of the slasher genre.

A group of women gather for a weekend casting call at the secluded mansion of director Jonathan Stryker (Vernon). He’s searching for the perfect woman to play the role of the crazed character Audra, and these women are just dying for the chance to play her! Stryker’s last star, Samantha Sherwood (Eggar), is so determined to get the part, she committed herself to an asylum to prepare for the role. Unfortunately for all, a crazed killer in a disgusting hag mask is viciously murdering everyone, one by one. Who will survive the final curtain call?

Lovingly re-mastered in 2K resolution from original vault materials virtually untouched for over 30 years, Curtains makes its high-definition world premiere from Synapse Films.

Special Features:

The Ultimate Nightmare: The Making Of Curtains – Retrospective
New 5.1 Surround Remix
Audio Commentary With Stars Lesleh Donaldson & Lynne Griffin
Audio Interviews With Producer Peter R. Simpson And Star Samantha Eggar
Theatrical Trailer


The Den (2013)

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Melanie Papalia, Adam Shapiro, David Schlachtenhaufen, Matt Riedy

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00JK7QUD0

Synopsis:

After receiving a grant for her graduate thesis, Elizabeth Benton logs onto a video-chat site known as The Den on a mission to explore the habits of its users. During one of her random video-chats, Elizabeth watches in horror as a teenage girl is gruesomely murdered in front of her webcam. While the police dismiss it as a viral prank, Elizabeth believes what she saw is real and takes it upon herself to find the truth. Soon she finds herself trapped in a twisted game in which she and her loved ones are now targeted for the same grisly fate as the first victim. With nail-biting suspense, The Den plunges the viewer into the darkest depths of humanity and technology.

Special Features:

Behind the Scenes
Trailer


I’ll Kill You…I’ll Bury You…I’ll Spit on your Grave, Too! (2000)

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Don Ray, Alex Black, Tom Caladan, Kit Hadley, Jennifer Proctor

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KIFEZWG

Synopsis:

A summer camp adventure turns into a nightmare! While the partying leads to erotic play for some, others are being stalked and attacked by a blood- and sex-crazed killer. Warning! This gory cult horror movie is for mature audiences only and is definitely not for the squeamish! Starring Don Ray, Alex Black, Tom Caladan, Kit Hadley, Jennifer Proctor, Mike Noble, Tom O’Conner and Denis Strokes. Directed by Tom Koba.


The Pyramid (2013)

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Jack Gallo, Antonio De Matteo, Elio D’Alessandro, Mauro Celaia

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00KGDS6PM

Synopsis:

In the tradition of horror movie greats such as Hellraiser, Black Sabbath and Suspiria comes The Pyramid, a terrifying anthology of four episodes connected by an infernal object: a bizarre pyramid that comes into the world to spread madness, death and destruction. Through the centuries the pyramid has been the focus of terrible happenings… now it has returned and opens the door to a series of terrible and unstoppable events which leads the human race to the verge of extinction. Solid objects coming to life, demonic possessions, monstrous creatures, the living dead, mysterious portals, and catastrophic events: that’s what you’ll find in The PyramidThe Pyramid is an ambitious project born from the collaboration of five young independent Italian directors – Alex Visani, Antonio Zannone, Luca Alessandro and the duo of Roberto Albanesi & Simone Chiesa – as an acknowledgment of the strength and passion of the independent Italian horror film scene. Filmed in diverse locations throughout Italy, The Pyramid is both a new modern masterpiece and a tribute to the classic horror films of the past. Presented in 1.78 anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles, Dolby Digital 2.0 surround sound.



Collections:

The Complete Blind Dead Saga

Format(s):

DVD

Notable Names:

Lone Fleming, Cesar Burner, Tony Kendall, Fernando Sancho, Maria Perschy

DVD Link:

http://amzn.com/B00K2OBY86

Synopsis:

The Holy Grail of Cult/Horror/Zombie films, together in one most own collection. Incredible value: 4-Disc set features high quality video & audio and special features. Films include:

Tombs Of The Blind Dead: In 1971, director Amando de Ossorio created what horror fans worldwide consider to be Spain’s Night Of The Living Dead.  The Knights Templar – executed horsemen whose eyes had been pecked out by crows – rise rotting from their graves, hunting only by sound in a quest for human flesh. The BLIND DEAD saga begins here.

Return Of The Evil Dead: In this second startling film in the BLIND DEAD series, it is the 500th anniversary of their execution, the blind horsemen rise from their tombs to wreak bloody revenge on the town that condemned them. 

The Ghost Galleon: A boatload of stranded swimsuit models who discover a mysterious ghost ship. But this phantom galleon carries the coffins of the satanic Templar. Even if these frightened lovelies can survive their own forbidden desires, will they escape the insatiable hunger of the BLIND DEAD? 

Night Of The Seagulls: The classic saga of the BLIND DEAD ends with the creepy tale of a remote coastal town where frightened villagers must sacrifice beautiful virgins to the blood cult of the Knights Templar.

35

Dario Argento’s Dracula Review

Dario Argento’s Dracula (2013)

 

 

Synopsis: If you don’t know the story of Dracula, don’t start here. Watch Terrence Fisher’s Horror of Dracula.

 

 

Our Thoughts:

Ughhhh. Do you have a friend that, for some masochistic reason, you need to defend in the face of irrefutable evidence of their faults? Everyone else has pointed out, quite correctly, that this person has character flaws that can be easily addressed and rectified but you make excuses for them, coddle them, and protect them from criticisms that might actually be valid? I am a Dario Argento enabler. I’ve never met the man but feel an extreme loyalty to him for changing the way that I not only look at horror but the entire medium of cinema. Though it’s unnecessary, I feel the need to list his absolute triumphs, films that elevated the genre and filmmaking to a higher level: The Bird with the Crystal Plumage, Deep Red, Suspiria, Inferno, Tenebre, Opera. Most directors would kill to have one of these films in their oeuvre. He nurtured the talents of Michele Soavi, encouraged Goblin to do soundtracks, and is the father of an artistic dynamo named Asia. Even his lesser films are still entertaining achievements. A girl that can communicate with insects? A razor welding chimp? C’mon, you’re not going to see that in any JJ Abrams or Joss Wedon flick. Yet around 1993 with the disappointing Trauma, fans started to doubt the maestro’s formidable powers and with each subsequent release bemoan the decline of a once great visionary. I think the films Argento made in the 90’s and 00’s are ripe for revaluation as The Black Cat, The Stendhal Syndrome, Sleepless, and his two Masters of Horror episodes are underrated and represent a different, maturing directing style. I loved The Mother of Tears, which many fans attacked mercilessly because it wasn’t Suspiria or Inferno but that’s like hating Touch of Evil for not being Citizen Kane or The Magnificent Ambersons. Granted there are some clinkers in Argento’s career, but I don’t believe they are entirely his fault. Reports of Adrien Brody’s prima donna antics and the producers’ chicanery pretty much sunk Giallo right out of the gate.

 

 

Which brings us to his latest film, another version of Bram Stoker’s iconic character. Though Argento has often professed his love for Edgar Allan Poe and Gothic romanticism, when I first heard about this project I didn’t see it as a good fit. Argento’s artistry comes from his ability to depict the intrusion of the irrational, the nightmarish, and the brutal into modern environments and situations that should be ordered and protected by logic, law, science, or art. Detectives, doctors, scientists, police, musicians, and teachers all follow certain rules and procedures. Schools, theaters, and museums are all structured around rigidly acceptable forms of behavior. It is the incursion of the chaotic, represented by insanity or the supernatural, onto these rational characters and into these controlled and regulated settings that creates the horror in Argento’s films. The period setting of Argento’s Dracula takes that motif away from his artistic palate and what we get is a contrived, clichéd depiction of some Transylvanian village where the viewer expects something supernatural to happen. Argento’s screenplay doesn’t even follow Stoker’s narrative to London, the capital of decorum and repressive reason during the Victorian Age, which would have been the perfect environment to unleash the irrational on a society that was obsessed with rules and regulations.  That’s just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what’s wrong with this film. While Thomas Kretschmann as Dracula and Asia Argento as Lucy are hammy but fun in their roles, the rest of the acting is either bland or histrionic. What has happened to Rutger Hauer? I thought Anthony Hopkins was over the top as Van Helsing but at least he did something with the role. Hauer alternates between narcolepsy and sleepwalking with a few detours to chew the cheap scenery. The dubbing is atrocious so that certainly doesn’t help the performances.  Argento’s directing is quite American: flat and boring. If someone told me this film was a Sy-Fy production I wouldn’t have been batted an eye. Some critics have condemned the unnecessary nudity, the gratuitous gore during Dracula’s attack on the town’s leaders (which was the film’s only interesting addition as the town’s leading citizens have been in collusion with Dracula to save themselves), and Dracula’s CGI morphing into a praying mantis, but thank goodness these scenes were in the film because something half way interesting was being displayed on screen to break up the monotony.

 

 

After watching Argento’s Dracula, I’ve decided that maybe enabling and blindly defending someone might not be the best way to help them. At least I got something out of this film.

36

DVD & Blu-ray Releases: February 18, 2014

By: Sean Brickley

 

It looks like the non-stop inclement weather that has wreaked havoc across our country recently has a bit of a bright lining.  This week we have 28 new releases to DVD and Blu-ray.  Of those, there are 21 movies and 7 collections, including Battle Of The Damned and the Blu-ray release of Darkman.  Enjoy, fellow fiends.

 


 

Movies:

Alter Ego (A School Conjuring) (2002)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Nobuko Sakuma, Chieko Kawabe, Takashi Shimizu, Issei Shibata

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00FIO19QM

Synopsis:

From Takashi Shimizu, the famed director behind The Grudge and Ju-On horror franchises comes one of his undiscovered films. Never before seen outside the shores of Japan. Set in an urban Japanese city, three young aspiring models are on their very first fashion shoot at an abandoned and neglected school one hot summer day. Without warning strange events begin occurring around the set that causes the models and photo crew to question their sanity as one by one they begin dying an agonizing and painful death. Deaths seemingly caused by none other than themselves. (Japanese with English subtitles)


 

Angry Nazi Zombies (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Tina Barnes, Paul Kelleher, James Eaves, Pat Higgins

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00I30MQE2

Synopsis:

3 interlocking stories from the dark days of World War 2. A soldier on a suicide mission. A troubled family with a monster in their bomb shelter. A supernatural investigator on her most dangerous assignment yet. A unique, sexy and terrifying anthology movie brought to you by three of the most fiercely original independent directors working in horror today. Jim Eaves (Bane), Pat Higgins (KillerKiller) and Alan Ronald (Jesus vs the Messiah) bring you three dark tales from the battlegrounds of World War 2. Medal of Horror: Director Jim Eaves takes you on a suicide mission, with a young British soldier doing all he can to defeat the Nazi menace and their First World War zombified soldiers. Devils of the Blitz: A family, sheltering from Nazi bombers, is terrorized by flesh eating devils. Director Pat Higgins brings you a dark tale of suspense, edged with pitch-black comedy. Harriet’s War: Director Alan Ronald brings you a spooky slice of paranormal pulp in this nerve-jangling ghost story, all against the backdrop of World War 2.


 

Battle of the Damned (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Dolph Lundgren, Melanie Zanetti, Christopher Hatton

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GOYC3I8

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GOYC3ME

Synopsis:

When a deadly virus is accidentally released into a major city, its population is quarantined by military blockade. And for a wealthy industrialist desperate to rescue his daughter from inside the rabid chaos, his only hope is former commando Max Gatling (Dolph Lundgren). Now Gatling has one day to bust in, blast through hordes of the undead, find the girl, and hunt for a way to get them both out alive. But will a small band of survivors and an army of killer robots turn his mission into maximum slaughter? Matt Doran (The Matrix) and David Field (Chopper) co-star in this intense action shocker!


 

Boys Behind Bars (2013)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Wade Radford, Jason Impey

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GKP70HU

Synopsis:

Darrell is a well trained prison bitch looking forward to a night alone in his cell getting jacked on the drugs he’s had smuggled in when a riot erupts on the floors above. To separate the offenders, three of the inmates are placed in Darrell’s cell. Always up for a laugh, Darrell teases, flirts and annoys his fellow cellies Seth & Lanks, until a new boy is placed with them and becomes prey to these wild animals. Nothing short of offensive and disgusting, these boys are savage and hell bent on abusing, insulting, and degrading each other throughout the night. 4 Boys, One Room, & Pure Hell in the Cell, this trashy British arthouse throwback captures the reality of the 80s.


 

Cohasset Snuff Film (2012)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Maria Olsen, Becky T. Bordo, Chad Addison

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00G7A5W6Y

Synopsis:

In 2009, the small town of Cohasset, Massachusetts was rocked with tragedy. A 17-year-old high school senior named Collin Mason murdered three classmates. All the murders were videotaped and uploaded to the Internet via bit torrent sites and for three days, the world viewed the murders of these three innocent teens. Through legal action, the parents of the victims were able to remove all footage from the Internet and the town tried to save face by pretending it never happened. Bootleg copies of this footage are still passed around and downloaded through illegal means. The impact of this video is still being felt in Cohasset today. The video has become infamous, and is now referred to as The Cohasset Snuff Film.

 

 

Darkman (Collector’s Edition) (1990)

 

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Liam Neeson, Frances McDormand, Sam Raimi

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00ESZZO4A

Synopsis:

Liam Neeson (Taken) and Oscar winner Frances McDormand (Fargo) star in Darkman: the explosive, action-packed thriller from director Sam Raimi (The Spider-Man trilogy).
Dr. Peyton Westlake (Neeson) is on the verge of realizing a major breakthrough in the creation of synthetic skin when his laboratory is blown up by gangsters. Having been burned beyond recognition and forever altered by an experimental medical procedure, Westlake becomes known as Darkman, assuming alternate identities in his quest for revenge and a new life with his former love (McDormand).
Also Starring Colin Friels (Dark City), Larry Drake (Dr. Giggles), Danny Hicks (Evil Dead 2) and Nicholas Worth (Swamp Thing), Darkman is ’a frenetic funhouse ride that has you laughing and screaming at the same time’ (The Washington Post)!


 

Darkroom (2013)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Kaylee DeFer, Elisabeth Röhm, Britt Napier

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00EIEPG4Y

Synopsis:

Michelle kills three of her friends in a horrific car accident while driving under the influence. After rehab, Michelle takes a job recommended by her counselor that lands her trapped in a mansion with three psychotic siblings hell bent on physical torture to purge Michelle of her sins.


 

Dead Creatures (2001)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Antonia Beamish, Beverly Wilson

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00FYW50CC

Synopsis:

Part 2 of the Andrew Parkinson Trilogy – A group of young women have a terrible, degenerative illness which forces them to murder and feed on human flesh. As they adjust to this carnivorous existence, their only concerns are where to find human flesh and how to avoid a zombie hunter, until a newly infected girl arrives…


 

Deliverance From Evil (2012)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Victor Miller, Angel Aviles

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GKP710G

Synopsis:

A young couple encounters a diabolical presence that threatens to consume their souls and their flesh after moving into a new home, and suffering the devastating loss of their only child. Later, when a powerful psychic agrees to purge the evil from the tainted home, the demons get angry, and strike back with a vengeance. Angel Aviles and Jose Rosete (The Mentalist, San Franpsycho) star in a film featuring original Friday the 13th screenwriter Victor Miller.


 

Dracula Reborn (2012)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Victoria Summer, Corey Landis, Patrick McManus

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GV8B1EO

Synopsis:

Jonathan had it all; a great job, a loving wife and a baby on the way. But everything is stripped from him when a vampire takes his wife. In order to save his wife and seek vengeance against the vampire that destroyed his life, he joins forces with a renown vampire hunter and descends into the depths of hell.


 

Fields Of The Dead (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Nick Sanchez, Mark Booker

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00HRYH64A

Synopsis:

Seven friends find themselves on an isolated farm. Here, they discover an ancient book, which summons demons from the surrounding woods. Now, these friends will have to find a way out of the fields, if they want to survive.

 

 

Ganzfeld Haunting (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Taylor Cole , Billy Zane

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GSTHCWQ

Synopsis:

Set out to prove that thoughts can be transmitted psychically, a group of hard-partying students mistakenly unearth a grisly series of murders from their forgotten youth. As ghosts from the past become increasingly violent, the students must solve a 20-year-old crime before they are driven insane – or become murder victims themselves. Terrifying and captivating, The Ganzfeld Haunting is a head trip that will keep you up at night!

 

Garden of Hedon (2014)

 

 

RELEASED ON 2/17/2014

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Danielle Lozeau, Richard Cutting, Kevin Kangas

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00I71U4MI

Synopsis:

Owen wakes in a mansion, no memory of how he got there. And a very bad feeling when he sees the dead woman next to him. With no help, no phones, and no way to leave the mansion, he sets out to find the killer himself. But the killer has only just begun…

 

Hanging Shadows: Perspectives On Italian Horror Cinema (2007)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Lamberto Bava, Ruggero Deodato, Michele Soavi, Dario Argento

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GO55QIQ

Synopsis:

Before The Ring and The Grudge, there was Suspiria. Hanging Shadows offers a critical appreciation of Italian horror cinema, pioneered by directors such as Dario Argento and Maria Bava, a genre that influenced filmmakers from Quentin Tarantino to Takashi Miike. With its roots in the pulpy crime novels of the 1920s and 30s, Giallo cinema (the term refers to the lurid yellow covers that graced the early novels) or Italian horror cinema, as it’s more commonly known, first emerged in the late 1960s. Following the neo-realists, the giallo films represented a radical break with Italy’s cinematic past, and much like film-noir in America, were often derided by critics as mere genre films – movies made by artisans (not artists). The films, however, have since developed a fervent cult following and their influence can be seen in the work of numerous contemporary filmmakers, most prominently in the young Asian directors who are developing their own wildly-popular brand of horror cinema. This documentary presents an informative historical overview of the giallo genre, exploring its genesis and chronicling the films, directors, and personalities that made up its golden age. Featuring interviews with Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava (director and son of Maria Bava), Antonella Fulci (daughter of director Lucio Fulci), Franco Ferrini (co-writer of Sergio Leone’s Once upon a time in America and numerous Argento films), Ruggero Deodata (Cannibal Holocaust), Giannetto De Rossi (make-up artist on Fulci’s films), and many others, Hanging Shadows is a fascinating study of a group of films and filmmakers that redefined the horror genre and forever changed the way we think of horror films.

 

Hellbenders (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Clifton Collins, Jr., Clancy Brown

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GWJIDFC

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GWJIDKC

Synopsis:

There are demons so terrible that no mortal man of God could successfully drive them back to Hell. The only option is for the exorcist himself to invite possession and then commit suicide, dragging along the demon to damnation – so the Augustine Interfaith Order of Hellbound Saints – or Hellbenders – was formed. A group of elite, highly-trained exorcists, they live in a constant state of debauchery so they will be ready to go to Hell at any moment. When an infernal Norse demon called Black Surtr escapes into New York City intent on cracking open the gates of Hell, the Hellbenders must use every ounce of their debauchery to battle the demon and save the planet from eternal damnation!


 

I, Zombie (1998)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Dean Sipling, Claire Griffin, Giles Aspen, Ellen Softley

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00FYW52G6

Synopsis:

Part  1 of the Andrew Parkinson Trilogy – While on a trip to the country, a young man is bitten by a strange. When he returns to the city, a slow degeneration begins. In order to survive he must eat human flesh. Against his own conscience he embarks on a killing spree, dragging his victims to his living room where he devours them limb by limb.


 

The Invoking (2013)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Josh Truax, D’Angelo Midili, Jeremy Berg

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GOITWVU

Synopsis:

After inheriting a house from the family she never knew, Samantha Harris (Trin Miller) and three friends head to rural Sader Ridge to inspect the property. Soon after arriving, Sam begins to experience horrific visions of savage brutality and unspeakable evil. Plagued by the sinister forces closing in around her, Sam descends into a waking nightmare when the demons from her past refuse to stay buried any longer.


 

Mad In Italy (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Giovanni Maria Buzzatti, Andrea De Bruyn, Eleonora Bolla

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GO55Q90

Synopsis:

Mad in Italy is a truly disturbing psychological film based on true events about one girl’s ordeal to stay alive at the hands of a young maniac. Featuring amazing cinematography by one of the most talented Italian directors of photography Mirco Sgarzi (House of Flesh Mannequins and Orgy of Blood).


 

Random Acts of Violence (2013)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Ashley Cahill, Jake Hoffman

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00H47IWKC

Synopsis:

The adventures of a young man whose principle interests are movies, New York, and mass murder. When Malcolm gets tired of how gentrified, tepid and antiseptic New York has become, he decides to take matters into his own hands by personally starting a crime wave which he hopes will catch on and drive real estate value down, opening up the city to bohemians, artists and a swell of creativity. The only problem is nobody’s paying attention.


 

Silent Night Bloody Night: The Homecoming (2013)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Lee Bane, Sabrina Dickens, Adrienne King

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GO55O2E

Synopsis:

The abandoned home of Wilfred Butler, a wealthy but troubled man who committed suicide in 1987, has been willed to his grandson, Jeffrey. The house has sat in disarray since Wilfred’s death, standing in the way of developers who want to turn the property into residential homes. Just before Christmas 2012, many years after Wilfred’s death, Jeffrey and his lawyer appear in town to negotiate the sale of the property. But an Axe wielding maniac has set up residence in the house, and he doesn’t take kindly to strangers.


 

Venus Drowning (2006)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Jodie Jameson, Brendan Gregory, Andrew Parkinson

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00FYW4ZK0

Synopsis:

Part 3 of the Andrew Parkinson Trilogy – After a failed suicide attempt a vulnerable woman moves to a remote seaside town where she finds a limbless creature on the beach. Soon a quasi-sexual relationship develops between the two with the creature feeding of orgasms.

 

Collections:

21st Century Grindhouse Vol 1: God Told Me Not To… But I Did It Anyway

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Alex Dawson, Ben Brett

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00G1L6VHS

Synopsis:

4 Grindhouse style tales of terror from filmmaker Nik Box!

Brutal Jesus and the House of Wasted Youth: a Christ like figure punishes a group of teenage drug addicted wasters for their sins.

The Violent Vicar: a friendly local Vicar battles an evil Reverend who is spreading sin in his town.

She’s Dead: When a one night stand goes messy, 3 men have one hour to dispose of the corpse before they are discovered.

Terror of the Blood Demon: friends at a Halloween party unleash something evil through a séance.


 

Bad Dreams / Visiting Hours

 

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray

Notable Names:               William Shatner, Michael Ironside, Andrew Fleming

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GHH9GSC

Movies:

Bad Dreams, Visiting Hours


 

The Boggy Creek Legacy Collection (Bigfoot Triple Feature)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Various

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00G1L6WCW

Synopsis:

It’s hours of Bigfoot action in this gigantic triple feature – the very best of Sasquatch cinema, all for one low price.

Bigfoot: The Mysterious Monster – Real life searches and chilling recreations of Bigfoot sightings.

Sasquatch: A group of adventurers set out on the hunt for the elusive Sasquatch.

The Snowbeast: A research expedition in Tibet discover something that did not want to be found.


 

Jean Rollin: The Vampire Films

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Olivier Rollin, Jean Rollin

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00H27PDUG

Synopsis:

AS the constraints of censorship began to see in the late 1960’s and early ’70’s, visionary French filmmaker Jean Rollin created a series of mesmerizing thrillers that injected the Gothic vampire film with a more contemporary strain of eroticism. Fluctuating between visual poetry and shocking violence, Rollin’s deeply personal films have come to be recognized as classics of the horror genre, and are presented here in deluxe editions, mastered in HD from the original 35mm negatives, and accompanied by printed essays by Tim Lucas (Video Watchdog).

This box set contains:
The Rape Of The Vampire
The Nude Vampire
The Shiver Of The Vampires
Requiem For A Vampire


 

Kinky Cannibal Double Feature

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Misty Mundae, Tina Krause, William Hellfire

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00172TIGC

Synopsis:

Cannibal Doctor, Dinner for Two

 

The Old Dark House Mystery Collection

 

 

RELEASED ON 2/17/2014

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Wallace Ford, Louis Hayward, Paul Leni, René Clair

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00H4XPGF0

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00H3GQEEK

Movies:

And Then There Were None (1945); Cat and the Canary (1927); One Frightened Night; Topper Returns; The House on Haunted Hill (1959); Rogues Tavern; Fog Island (1945); Black Raven; The Ghost Train; Crooked Circle; Charlie Chan’s Secret; The Ghoul (1933); The Gorilla; Tangled Destinies; The Moonstone; The Monster Walks; Bulldog Drummond’s Secret Police; The Door With Seven Locks; Murder By Invitation; The Ghost Walks; One Body Too Many; Thirteenth Guest; The Bat (1926); The Terror (1938)


 

Vaulted: Films From The Yellow Ape Vault (2014)

 

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Lady MacDeath

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00GO55PG4

Synopsis:

The lovely Lady MacDeath takes you into the Yellow Ape Productions film vault and unravels four thrilling ‘Movies for the Midnight Hour’:

In Jim Haggerty’s Cold Dead Hand, a girl from the wrong side of the tracks finds an apartment that’s too good to be true…and something scary in the fridge!

In Ben Fiore’s Penelope, a young woman is haunted by something from her past – and nothing is quite what it seems. The first runner-up of the first annual Yellow Ape Film Festival!  

In the Snyder Brothers’ Farewell To Arm we have a charming coming of age tale of blood relations and bloody dismemberment. The grand prize winner of the first annual Yellow Ape Film Festival!  

And the DVD premiere of lost underground surrealist nightmare Haunting Day. Sought after by film fanatics the world over and believed to only be an urban legend, Yellow Ape has obtained what is believed to be the only existing print of this rare film and restored it to its best possible quality for this DVD premiere!

So sit back and enjoy an evening of thrills and excitement hosted by the most luscious hostess you could hope for! Won’t you join us?

37

DVD & Blu-ray Releases: January 28, 2014

By: Sean Brickley

 

14 releases this week, friends:

 

13 Movies, 1 Collection

Movies:

An American Werewolf in London (1981)

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Griffin Dunne, David Naughton, John Landis

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GSNXOGU

Synopsis:

When two American students touring London are attacked by a vicious wolf during a full moon, their lives are suddenly transformed forever.


 

Antisocial (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Michelle Mylett, Cody Thompson, Cody Calahan

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00GU3WW7K

Synopsis:

Five university friends gather at a house party to ring in the New Year. Unbeknownst to them, an epidemic has erupted outside, causing outbreaks around the world. With nowhere else to turn, they barricade themselves indoors with only their phones, laptops, and other tech devices. They use their devices to research the possible cause of this outbreak. Information and video footage over flow their computers as they descend further into the cause and the ensuing chaos. As the virus spreads, the mood in the house changes from fear to paranoia. Who is safe? Who can they trust? Reality becomes blurred as they slowly discover the source of the virus causing the sickness…and there is no going back.


 

Argento’s Dracula (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray + 3D Combo

Notable Names:               Rutger Hauer, Thomas Kretschmann, Dario Argento

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00FUABJJQ

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00FUABHVQ

Synopsis:

Horror maestro Dario Argento (Suspiria) puts his unique stylistic spin on the classic supernatural tale with Dracula, a visually sumptuous retelling of the legendary myth. It s been 400 years since Count Dracula s (Thomas Kretschmann, Wanted) beloved Dolingen De Gratz passed away, leaving the immortal bloodsucker forever abandoned. But when he discovers that local newlywed Mina Harker (Marta Gastini, The Rite) bears a striking resemblance to Dolingen, his furious yearning is reawakened as he believes Mina to be a reincarnation of his beloved. Luring her husband Jonathan away to his castle with the help of his minion (and Mina’s best friend) Lucy (Asia Argento, xXx), Dracula embarks on a bloody quest to reunite with his long lost love and live forever with her in hellish immortality. Only the arrival of vampire expert Abraham Van Helsing (Rutger Hauer, Blade Runner) can put an end to the fiend s unholy plan. Luridly violent and brimming with passionate eroticism, Dario Argento s Dracula is an all-out assault on the senses from one of horror cinema s most celebrated auteurs.


 

The Cat (2011)

 

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Park Min-young, Kim Dong-wook, Byun Seungwook

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00FM29HHI

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00FLCRAVE

Synopsis:

So-yeon (Park Min-yeong), suffers from claustrophobia, the result of a childhood trauma. But she has a nice life as a pet groomer – that is, until the cops give her a cat to look after. Its owner was just murdered in the elevator. That’s when the nightmares start. A little girl, haunting her sleep. So-yeon needs answers. But now, her best friend is dead too, and she doesn’t know what to believe. It can’t be true. Curses aren’t real. Are they?

 

English Subtitles


 

Dark Touch (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Missy Keating, Marcella Plunkett, Marina de Van

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00FUABH8E

Synopsis:

After a mysterious and bloody massacre in their isolated country house leaves her parents and younger brother dead, 11-year-old Neve is taken by police to friends of the family to be looked after. When Neve tries to explain that an evil force within the house caused her family s deaths, she s met with disbelief from both the authorities and her new family. As the police try to find the crime s real perpetrators, Neve is given a social worker to try to ease her trauma. But before long it becomes apparent that whatever killed her family has followed Neve to her new home, and soon she and all those around her are in mortal danger of the malevolent power that seems to be tied to the innocent girl. A pulse-pounding supernatural thriller, DARK TOUCH weaves the tension of a horror film with the plight of a newly orphaned girl to create a unique examination of the paranormal.


 

Darkroom (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Kaylee DeFer, Elisabeth Röhm, Britt Napier

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00EIEPG4Y

Synopsis:

Michelle kills three of her friends in a horrific car accident while driving under the influence. After rehab, Michelle takes a job recommended by her counselor that lands her trapped in a mansion with three psychotic siblings hell bent on physical torture to purge Michelle of her sins.


 

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde: Kino Classics Remastered Edition (1920)

 

Format(s):                           DVD, Blu-ray

Notable Names:               John Barrymore, Brandon Hurst, John S. Robertson

DVD Link:                            http://amzn.com/B00F878KHK

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00F878JW6

Synopsis:

Based on the Robert Louis Stevenson story: Doctor Henry Jekyll’s enthusiasm for science and his selfless acts of service have made him a much-admired man. But as he visits Sir George Carew one evening, his host criticizes him for his reluctance to experience the more sensual side of life. Sir George goads Jekyll into visiting a music hall, where he watches the alluring dancer Gina. Jekyll becomes fascinated with the two contrasting sides of human nature, and he becomes obsessed with the idea of separating them. After extensive work in his laboratory, he devises a formula that does indeed allow him to alternate between two completely different personalities, his own and that of a brutish, lascivious person whom he names Hyde. It is not long before the personality of Hyde begins to dominate Jekyll’s affairs.


 

Flavia the Heretic (1974)

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Florinda Bolkan, Claudio Cassinelli, Gianfranco Mingozzi

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GOYC3FQ

Synopsis:

Flavia, a young woman (Florinda Bolkan, Lizard In A Woman’s Skin) in the 13th century, is sent by her overbearing father to a strict nunnery in Portugal. After witnessing the unjust practices inside the convent as well as questioning her own faith, Flavia escapes from the nunnery, but is soon recaptured by the primarily male Church leaders. She is then subjected to torture, rape and whippings by the Church leaders, as punishment for her defiance. Battered and beaten, Flavia then starts planning a violent mission of revenge against the Church and everyone in it. She soon finds herself in a position of freedom and ultimate power, and with a Muslim army in tow, she leads her warriors back to the convent to castrate, rape, and kill all in their path. But will Flavia s power and bloodthirsty quest for revenge be her ultimate downfall? Considered one of the greatest “nunsploitation” titles of all time, Flavia The Heretic is now presented in glorious HD from a brand new master!


 

Frankenstein Created Woman (1967)

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray

Notable Names:               Peter Cushing, Thorley Walters, Terence Fisher

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00GNZM03G

Synopsis:

A tormented girl (Susan Denberg) drowns herself after her lover is framed for her father’s murder and guillotined. Baron Frankenstein (Peter Cushing), experimenting with the transfer of souls, places her lover s soul into her body, bringing Christina back to life. With no memories of her past life, she becomes driven by a ghostly revenge and carries out a violent retribution on those responsible for both deaths.  Commentary, Hammer Glamour, Gallery and Ep 4 Hammer Stars: Peter Cushing


 

House of Bodies (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Terrence Howard, Peter Fonda, Alex Merkin

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00G6HO5MU

Synopsis:

A gristly string of copycat murders leads Detective Starks (Terrence Howard) to seek answers from incarcerated serial killer Henry Lee Bishop(Peter Fonda).
As Starks tries to crack his steely demeanor, a teenage boy witnesses a college girl s desperate fight for survival on a twisted voyeur site, webcast from the same house where Bishop committed his murders years before.


 

I Will Follow You Into the Dark (2012)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Mischa Barton, Ryan Eggold, Mark Edwin Robinson

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00FQPLYTU

Synopsis:

A young woman (Mischa Barton) who is severely depressed after the death of her parents retreats within herself, only to be drawn out of her depression by an unexpected romance with a young man named Adam (Ryan Eggold). After Adam mysteriously disappears into the depths of a haunted apartment building, she vows to pursue him, even if it means crossing into the world of the supernatural.


 

Torture Chamber (2013)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               Vincent Pastore, Ron Millkie, Dante Tomaselli

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00FPENI64

Synopsis:

Jimmy Morgan is possessed by an evil too powerful to be exorcised by any religion. After escaping from a mental institution, Jimmy returns with a vengeance — and an army of children who follow his every murderous desire. The town trembles in fear as the youths attack and abduct its residents — innocent and guilty alike — dragging their victims to an abandoned castle and subjecting them to grisly torments deep within its underground tunnels. Those who discover the terrible secret behind the disappearances and deaths don’t live long enough to tell it. The teacher, the doctor, even Jimmy’s own brother and mother, will all confront their fates in the Torture Chamber.


 

Vessel (2012)

 

Format(s):                           DVD

Notable Names:               John Holgren, Daisy Leonard, Terry Tychon

DVD  Link:                           http://amzn.com/B00G0OM9TA

Synopsis:

Investigators lead by the Samsa Foundation enter an abandoned turn-of-the-century prison looking for answers to a two-decade old murder of a wrongly executed man.  Team leader Daniel Samsa (John Holgren) commissions the executed man’s daughter Carrie (Daisy Leonard) and an ex-con named Hector (Dan Herrera) to summon the spirit of the executed man. Along with the help of a psychic drifter named Jason Brooks (Stu Brumbaugh) and his intuitive friend Frank (Mick ODay), the team soon learns that the mystery they’re pursuing isn’t nearly as horrifying as the secrets hidden inside the jail. Once they find themselves on full lock-down, they must try and escape …


 

Collections:

 

Beast Of Hollow Mountain / The Neanderthal Man

 

Format(s):                           Blu-ray/DVD Combo

Notable Names:               Guy Madison, Robert Shayne, Edward Nassour

Blu-ray Link:                       http://amzn.com/B00FUABHVQ

Movies:

The Beast Of Hollow Mountain
Based on an idea by the legendary special effects wizard Willis O’Brien (King Kong, Son Of Kong, The Lost World), The Beast Of Hollow Mountain is a classic creature feature. An American rancher living in Mexico is staying near Hollow Mountain, an impenetrable swamp where, stories have it, dwells a living prehistoric Tyrannosaurus Rex!
The Neanderthal Man
A mad scientist uses his new serum on his housekeeper, turning her into an ape-woman. Like most crazed scientists, he then tries the serum on himself, creating…The Neanderthal Man! Robert Shayne (How To Make A Monster) and Beverly Garland (It Conquered The World, The Alligator People) star in this harrowing creature feature.

 

38

Horror News Network’s 2013 Staff Picks for Movie of the Year


It’s that time of the year again where we take a look back at the best horror movies of 2013. Our staff grappled with their souls to decide which horror movie was their favorite from the past year.

 


 

Christine Caprilozzi, Sr. Editor: “The Purge” & “Found”

I must admit, this year I feel a bit torn about picking a “must see” horror film of the year.  While I really liked many original films, my favorite horror movie of 2013 would have to be “The Purge.” Not a remake or reboot, the film is a totally fresh idea that’s intensely terrifying both in a suspenseful, as well as just creepy way. Seriously, those masks! 

The one aspect of The Purge that is very intriguing is that the entire plot is based on the concept of the thinning of the herd mixed with a biting social commentary on the wealthy versus the poor.  While the wealthy can afford these “purge protectors,” the not so wealthy are left to fend for themselves. Without giving too much away, the mayhem starts when the young boy lets a homeless man in the family’s comfortable and protected home, as he is targeted by the young and wealthy on the one night they are allowed to kill at will.  This act of humanity sets off a chain reaction of horrific situations. The best part for me is that some of the social interactions and insinuations of the film are not that farfetched.

Yes, I know, I’m only supposed to pick one.  I can’t in good conscious write this article without giving huge kudos to the indie flick “Found.” Still making the rounds on the festival circuit, this gem by Scott Schirmer was made on just an $8000 budget.  It’s unique in the fact that it is story driven and seen through the eyes of an 11 year old boy. This movie is gory as hell, and very much pushes the boundaries, while at the same time maintaining the humanity of the two brothers.  Not much scares me after many years of watching horror. However, I was truly disturbed.  That right there makes “Found” one to watch.

 


 

Sean Brickley, Staff Journalist: “Maniac (2013)”

I knew when I first watched this movie that when HNN did the 2013 staff picks, Maniac would be my choice.  Elijah Wood – holy crap.  I can’t say enough about how impressed I was with this guy.  That’s not saying that he isn’t an established, acclaimed actor; not at all.  But as a sociopath Mr. Wood brilliantly knocks it out of the park!  The use of the first person throughout most of the movie was a perfectly executed concept.  Even costar Nora Arnezeder was an outstanding choice as a successful photographer with a subtle touch of naivety.  There really isn’t anything negative to be said about this movie.  It had a creepy atmosphere, the death scenes were great, and the story was made very believable, again thanks a great deal to Elijah Wood’s rock solid performance.

Giving credit where it’s due, my honorable mentions for pick of the year are Texas Chainsaw & The Conjuring.

 


 

Blood E. Bastard, Staff Journalist: “Berberian Sound Studio”

When film sound engineer Gilderoy (Toby Jones) is beckoned to Rome to complete the sound track for giallo horror film ala Mario Bava – the forces separating art, life, dream and reality meld into one.

Though we never see any of the action of the film he is working on, The Equestrian Vortex, the creation of the soundtrack makes for adequate horror.  Director, Peter Strickland draws influence without copying from the likes of Kafka, Coppola, Antonioni, De Palma and Argento.  Berberian Sound Studio is a horror film for film making lovers.

 


 

Larry Dwyer, Staff Journalist:  “Holliston – Season 2”

Well, here we are with our year-end favorite movie picks. It seems like just yesterday that we were doing last year’s picks and I had a tie between “American Mary” and “Cabin in the Woods”. At the time, it was a tough choice for me between the two gems but over the past year, I’ve re-watched “American Mary” loads more times so, in retrospect, the Soska sisters win that battle. This year is inherently more difficult as the few films that I considered for this spot are already being discussed by some of my pals here on the site. After much wailing and gnashing of teeth, it finally dawned on me; my favorite film of the year wasn’t a film at all! My vote goes to “Holliston: Season 2”. From the touchy-feely Christmas episode, to Danielle Harris’ turn as Adam’s new girlfriend, to Kane Hodder’s role as a suicidal crybaby (I hope he doesn’t read this), Season 2 of “Holliston” provided me with all of the gore-filled laughter that I needed. Here’s to hoping we get a Season 3 to see what becomes of our beloved Joe, Adam, Corri and Laura! Cheers!

 


 

Rob Caprilozzi, Site Admin: “The Evil Dead (2013)”

In my opinion, a good horror movie stays with you for at least a few days after you see it. This is why The Evil Dead gets my vote for movie of the year.

The movie featured many cringe-worthy scenes and enough blood to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool. There were many “Holy shit” moments in the film but the scene that stood out to me the most was when the girl was cutting her arm off with an electric knife. (I will be using one of those at Christmas to cut the turkey!)

The best part about The Evil Dead 2013 was that the action NEVER let up! From start to finish, we were treated to a non-stop gore-fest! This is why The Evil Dead 2013 gets my vote for the best of the year.

 


 

Bill Burns, Staff Journalist: “Lords of Salem”

My favorite film of 2013 is Lords of Salem. For his fifth film, Rob Zombie has made an atypical Rob Zombie film. Moody, slower, ominous, and mercifully cutting down on the Tarantino-esque dialogue, Lords of Salem feels like a complete, personal statement. The film takes on a ritualistic aura and pace, a true glorification of darkness, witchcraft, and the black arts. Appropriating the apocryphal statement of Billy Graham about The Exorcist, there is a power of evil in Lords of Salem, in the fabric of the film itself. All the male characters are weak and ineffectual. The female characters are largely middle-aged, defiant, and menacing. Zombie perfectly captures the ominous New England autumnal atmosphere and the pacing accentuates this mood rather than running counter to it. The performances are uniformly great (yes, even the much maligned Sheri Moon Zombie is good), but Meg Foster in particular possesses her role and transforms herself into the embodiment of the left hand path. Zombie’s direction is quite understated with brilliant surrealistic flashes of Kubrick, Russell, Polanski, and Argento, but these references are secondary to Zombie’s own artistic interests and compositions. Put it this way, if you are a horror director and you haven’t been influenced by The Shining, The Devils, Altered States, Rosemary’s Baby, The Tenant, and Suspiria then you’re in the wrong occupation. Zombie’s use of color and sound are mesmerizing, especially the over saturated room 5 and the recurring use of screeching viola, whether it be emanating from John 5’s excellent score or John Cale’s iconic drone as heard in “Venus in Furs” and “All Tomorrow’s Parties.”  I was only slightly disappointed in the title sequence, because Zombie could do better, (I think the title sequence for The Devil’s Rejects is one of the best in cinema history), but with subsequent viewings it’s perfect. 

Unfortunately, Rob Zombie’s best film was unceremoniously dumped in as few theaters as possible with as few showings as possible. Years from now, when the Lords return, their vengeance will not be exacted on the citizens of Salem but on those who foolishly dismissed this uniquely powerful film.

 


Sean McLaughlin, Staff Journalist: “The Conjuring”

Growing up in Monroe, CT, the Warrens and their trail of exorcisms and ghost-hunting were very well known.  For decades, Hollywood has been re-enacting their cases of possession and demonic happenings with quite a few productions (The Amityville Horror and A Haunting in Connecticut, among others).  When it was first revealed that one of their earliest cases, that of the Perron family in rural Rhode Island, would be made into a feature film, horror fans had their reservations.  With gore-porn and found footage movies completely dominating the horror genre, there was some trepidation that a simple ghost story set in the 1970s would be worth a look.  Luckily, with this year’s release of The Conjuring, New Line Cinema has served notice that good ol’ fashioned ghost stories still have a place in the realm of modern American cinema.

Director James Wan (Saw, Insidious) continues his string of creative and game-changing productions with The Conjuring.  Sure, it has it’s somewhat-predictable plot (it IS based on “true events”, after all) and makes sure to include the requisite “jumpy” scenes to make sure nobody’s too comfortable in their chairs.  But above everything else, this movie has a continual sense of doom and foreboding terror that resonates with both horror fans and the casual movie-goers (who filled up the theaters over the summer to the tune of $42 million domestically).  When a movie receives an R rating, despite the fact that there is no blood and zero bad words…that speaks volumes.  Without a doubt, The Conjuring was one of the best horror films of 2013.  If you have yet to see it, what’re you waiting for?

 

 


 

There you have it horror fans. 2013’s best of the best. Agree? Disagree? Let us know. 

39

Goblin, Live at the Music Hall of Williamsburg

Goblin, Live at the Music Hall of Williamsburg

10/16/13

 

The sound of Italian horror is just as important as its garishly beautiful visuals. Dario Argento’s psychedelically gothic blood baths are justifiably celebrated as the epitome of Italian horror excess, but one wonders if his status would be as exalted if it were not for the crucial contributions of premier prog- rock collective Goblin and their all-out sonic assault. Goblin’s soundtracks for Argento’s Deep Red, Suspiria, Tenebre, Phenomena, and Sleepless, and their equally impressive work for George Romero, Luigi Cozzi, and Joe D’Amato have cemented their formidable reputation in the hearts, minds, and ears of horror connoisseurs. The shifting line up of Goblin has seen various combinations, off shoots, and competing versions of the band play concerts and record, but Goblin has never been fully experienced live in the U.S. until now. Second only to The Beatles’ arrival on American shores, the Goblin tour (featuring original members Claudio Simonetti, Maurizio Guarini, and Massimo Morante and youngsters Bruno Previtali on bass and Titta Tani on drums, accompanied on some songs by a feral interpretative dancer) has induced a frenzy amongst horror music fans. For their sold out show at the new bohemian capital of the world Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the power of Goblin conquered the jaded, cynical, bearded New York audience. Openers Secret Chiefs 3 (led by Faith No More/Mr. Bungle’s Trey Spruance) set the occult mood with an intense set that included a wall shaking rendition of John Carpenter’s deathless Halloween theme and a tribute to the master Ennio Morricone. Soon after, the mighty Goblin hit the stage commencing an audio/visual overload dazzling through volume, virtuosity, and European cool. Seeing Simonetti come out wearing the silver mask from Demons set the tone immediately. The journey into Italian horror began with the ominous bass rumblings of “Mad Puppet” from Deep Red and progressed through selections from Sleepless, Dawn of the Dead, Phenomena, and Tenebre (Simonetti’s use of a vocoder was brilliant as their rendition of the theme was one of many amazing highlights) as well as tracks from their non-soundtrack albums Roller and Back to Goblin. Collaged images from Argento and Romero’s films were projected behind the musicians and elevated the experience to dizzying heights of maniacal perversity. The effect of hearing these compositions live for listeners who had only previously heard them through TV’s or in theaters can’t be accurately described, but the ecstatic responses from the audience should be evidence enough of the majesty of the event. The infamous theme from Suspiria was the zenith of this ritual, with every sigh, chime, and witchy sound gloriously reproduced and amplified. Goblin even did a rendition of “Happy Birthday to You” for Massimo and made it sound fresh. Clearly, the band relished playing for the Brooklyn crowd and the audience loved every minute.

Expectations seldom exceed reality, but Goblin’s performance broke through into another dimension, thrusting the stunned audience into that wonderfully decadent giallo atmosphere. Add in the availability of a tour E.P. on blood red vinyl sold at their merchandise table, and you have the perfect Euro-cult evening. Rumor has it that the great Italian horror composer Fabio Frizzi will be making his stateside live debut in the new year. Just get Morricone to come to the U.S.and Italian horror music fans can die happily.

 

 

40

The Revenge of the Vinyl Horror Soundtrack

The Revenge of the Vinyl Horror Soundtrack

By Bill Burns

Once a mighty medium struck down by “progress,” called archaic, anachronistic, and impotent, but now back from the dead format grave to seduce ears only exposed to the curse of digital sound comes the return of the vinyl horror soundtrack.  But this is no pedestrian, ho-hum resurrection: this new breed of reissue is stunningly packaged with exquisite graphics, extensive liner notes, posters, art prints, and luridly breath-taking colored pressings (Glow in the dark green! Rotting zombie flesh! Swirling fog miasma!). Pressed on the finest vinyl with deep grooves for capturing every ominous note in crystal clarity, these releases are both a horror hedonist’s and audiophile’s dream come true.  Who are these mavericks releasing these sonic objects of art that please with fanatical attention to the listening experience as well as with their macabre aesthetics? HNN talks to three extraordinary record labels that are in the vanguard of vinyl horror soundtrack reissues.

Waxwork Records

The new kid on the block when it comes to stylish vinyl reissues, Waxwork Records has hit the ground running with two absolutely classic soundtracks presented in stunningly marvelous sound and packaging.  Their release of Richard Band’s controversial soundtrack for Stuart Gordon’s masterpiece Re-Animator is mastered from the original master tapes and pressed on 180 gram green vinyl (with some lucky fans receiving randomly inserted Glow in the Dark variants). The jacket, center labels, and inner sleeve are graced with original artwork by Ghoulish Gary Pullin. The release is capped off with liner notes from both Gordon and Band. If that’s not enough, an 18? x 24? poster is included too. Their second release (coming in early October) is John Harrison’s soundtrack for George Romero’s Day of the Dead. This double LP monster has been remastered from the original tapes, is pressed on yellow and green vinyl (with a few Zombie Blood and Flesh variants) and includes an 11×22 poster. The package art work is by the prolifically amazing Jay Shaw and is complimented by liner notes from Harrison and Romero. Next up for Waxwork Records is arguably the greatest horror movie score ever recorded: Krzysztof Komeda’s soundtrack for Roman Polanski’s iconic Rosemary’s Baby.

 HNN:  When was your first realization of the effect of a soundtrack on your viewing of a horror film?

WR: The first time I realized the effect that a soundtrack was the very first time watching the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I was a kid, and I noticed that the score wasn’t the usual music that accompanied a horror film. I was used to violins and horns and big orchestras creating a mood. While watching the original Texas Chainsaw for the first time, the score by Tobe Hooper and Wayne Bell literally terrified me. It stands on its own. It’s a series of nightmarish motifs, drones, and banging. You can tell a lot of experimentation and the desire to do something different went into creating it.

 HNN: Why did you start your label?

WR:  I’ve played and toured in bands for 15 years. I had just gotten back from touring Cuba, and realized that my band was about to split up. The band was my life and my day to day for years. It was how I identified myself. I wanted to continue releasing music.

I love soundtracks and scores on vinyl. I thought it would be cool to begin tracking down original master tapes of horror movie scores and using them as the source material for each Waxwork release. I also wanted to get the composers and directors of these movies involved when I could.

 As a fan there’s a lot of scores that I love that other labels won’t release.

 HNN: Why horror soundtracks?

WR: Because horror is cool! It’s the best genre. It’s obvious that composers are allowed a lot of freedom to go wild and experiment while scoring horror films. There’s an edge to it that I really like.

 HNN: Why focus on vinyl releases?

 WR: Aside from the obvious reason that vinyl sounds cool, Waxwork is trying to pay homage to the composers and films whose scores we release. You can’t do that with a CD or with downloads. You can try, but the experience is stripped away. The ceremony of dropping the needle on the record and sitting on the floor staring at the cover art is gone. There’s a difference with hearing music and actually listening to it. Music on vinyl thrusts you into a world of listening and appreciating music in ways that CD’s and downloads don’t offer.

 HNN: Why do you think there is such a significant interest in vinyl horror soundtracks rather than other formats?

WR: I think more and more people are realizing that they’ve been scammed for years into buying inferior formats such as CD’s. The collapse of the music industry has allowed bands, indie labels, talented folk that couldn’t get noticed or afford to master and press a record to do it. I love that. A lot of thought and heart goes into our releases, so when you hold one, you know that you aren’t getting ripped off. You just can’t do that with something you downloaded off of iTunes.

 HNN: Who are your favorite soundtrack composers? What are your favorite soundtracks?

WR: Hermann, Carpenter, Harrison, Komeda, Shore, the list goes on. I love Psycho and Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

HNN: Which Waxwork release (either current or future) are you most proud of? Do you have a dream project/release?

WR: They’re all my babies. Months of work go into each one. I lose sleep. I don’t eat. Every time we make the smallest amount of progress I’m proud of what I’m doing. I want to release Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Evil Dead.

 HNN: Are there any current trends in horror soundtracks that you like or dislike?

WR:  I like it all. I know what goes into doing this, so when I see a new release coming out, I’m all, “Good job!”

HNN:  What projects/releases/events are in the future for your label?

WR: We’re having a Day of the Dead event at The Egyptian Theater in Hollywood on September 30th. George Romero is flying in for a Q&A with composer John Harrison. Sherman “Bub” Howard is going to be there. We’ll be selling the new Day of the Dead vinyl. We’re screening the film. I can’t wait. We sold out The Egyptian in less than 24 hours!

 HNN: Why is a good soundtrack so vital to the horror movie experience?

 WR: It creates the vibe of the film. You can have the most intense, beautifully shot movie (or ‘brutally’ shot in the case of horror films), and if the score isn’t great, or provides a particular mood, you’ve lost your audience.

For more information about Waxwork Records, go to

https://www.facebook.com/#!/waxworkrecords

http://waxworkrecords.com/

https://twitter.com/waxworkrecords

 

 

One Way Static Records

Based in Belgium, One Way Static Records has significantly raised the bar when it comes to the concept of the expansive reissue. One Way Static’s currently release is David Hess’s soundtrack to Wes Craven’s immortal The Last House on The Left. Not content to just release this lost classic on vinyl, One Way Static is blitzing our ears, eyes, and minds with marvelous cassette, digital, and cd versions as well.  The LP is available as a limited edition colored vinyl (red and white versions) and as a regular edition black vinyl packaged in a deluxe, gatefold “old school tip-on” jacket and printed inner-sleeve. This special edition is limited to 300 copies worldwide and comes hand numbered. The limited release also comes with an exclusive bonus flexi disc containing the original 1972 radio spots for the movie.  One Way Static has lined up a who’s who of Euro Cult sleaze to write the liner notes:  Ruggero Deodato, Ulli Lommel, Franco Nero, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, just for starters. The Deluxe Cassette Tape edition is limited to 400 copies worldwide and contains 3 extra bonus tracks that did not make the movie’s original score. Also included is a 4th bonus track: a rare version of ‘Wait For The Rain/The Road Leads To Nowhere’ performed by Jesse & Bo Hess (heard during the end credits of Cabin Fever). These bonus tracks are exclusive to the Cassette, Digital Download and Compact Disc versions. Next on One Way Static’s release slate: Don Peake’s bizarro score for Craven’s The Hills Have Eyes!

 

HNN: When was your first realization of the effect of a soundtrack on your viewing of a horror film?

OWSR: My realization of those effects date back from when I was a kid (way before I was introduced into horror movies) with movies such as Conan, Star Wars,… It was brewing with me back then that there was something about the music adding to the films, could not quite grasp it though. Later it became clear to me that the soundtrack was half of the movie’s impact for me. As for horror, I have to say Cannibal Holocaust. The soundtrack Riz Ortolani delivered is both beautiful and sickening at the same time. I can’t disconnect the score from the gruesome scenes. It’s a match made in heaven. At that point my love for horror soundtracks further developed.

 HNN: Why did you start your label?

I’ve been involved into labels and music for half my life now. Since I love film music it seemed like a logical step. This is what I wanted to focus on, releasing high quality motion picture soundtracks. It all came together like it was meant to be.

HNN: Why horror soundtracks?

OWSR: There are only few genres where the music is as outspoken as the scenes one is viewing. Horror ranks high on this list. My favorite scores are horror or cult related so… I can’t see myself doing romantic comedy types of soundtracks, too mainstream for me. It has to have this ‘edge’ you know?

HNN: Why focus on vinyl releases?

OWSR: Well, we try to have our releases available on other formats too (CD, Digital, even cassette) but yes our focus is on vinyl. I think it’s the best format for the genre. Physical, warm and with big artworks. I just love everything about vinyl. It’s the only medium for me where you can experience active listening, not as a background divertissement like with music on your phone or iPod. You have to commit yourself to a record as opposed to just pushing a ‘play’ button. You take it out of the sleeve, put the needle on, change sides and all. It’s a format for music that deserves attention and special care.

 HNN: Why do you think there is such a significant interest in vinyl horror soundtracks rather than other formats?

OWSR: The two are connected, they come from the same time frame. I think it’s a natural thing that the two are paired. And there is also a lot of retro-nostalgia with some people, like with the VHS revival.

 HNN: Who are your favorite soundtrack composers? What are your favorite soundtracks?

OWSR:  Ooh, this would take pages; let’s just say I have a lot of favorites, all with their good and bad phases. I have a soft spot for the Italians though.

As for favorite horror/cult soundtracks: The Beyond, Cannibal Holocaust, Nekromantik, Suspiria, Shogun Assassin, Inferno… these never tire me. Recently the best thing I’ve heard in ages is the soundtrack by Rob for the MANIAC remake. Such a haunting score; fantastic material. Death Waltz Records released it a couple months back (jealous!)

HNN: Which One Way Static release (either current or future) are you most proud of? Do you have a dream project/release?

OWSR: I’m really proud of Last House on The Left … took me a year to assemble all the pieces and getting the rights. I could have released ten scores in the meantime, so long did it take. No regrets though. I’ve been fascinated with this one for over 15 years; it never got out of my head.

I’d love to do Cannibal Holocaust, been chasing it for over a year now. Still waiting for a couple of responses, so who knows… I’d like to do a couple of ‘genre’ compilations too, but these consume extreme amounts of time. I guess I’m into the ‘hard to get’ ones 😉

 HNN: Are there any current trends in horror soundtracks that you like or dislike?

OWSR: I’m not really annoyed by trends, since they come and go fast. There were always innovators who spawned a lot of copy cats in their wake. It comes in periods since the genre started: Spooky sounds/library music like in the early zombie movies, electronics from the Carpenter movies, metal/punk like with TCM2/ Return of The Living Dead type of movies… these cycles repeat themselves. There is good and there is bad, like with everything. For example when Saw came out every studio wanted likewise music in their movies since it seem to work. I have nothing against the Saw soundtrack, but it gets boring hearing imitations in every generic horror movie that followed in the 3 years after.

HNN: What projects/releases/events are in the future for your label?

OWSR: We have about 9 projects lined up for 2014. All killer, no filler. Can’t say much about it actually since it’s all top secret. For our next release we are now finishing up the details on THE HILLS HAVE EYES (1977 original). A really weird score, close to library music but with a special touch. Especially when you realize it was composed by Don Peake (who orchestrated and composed music for celebrities like Tina Turner, Sonny and Cher, The Monkees,…). Really proud to have Don on board. People will either love it or hate it, but the packaging alone will be worth getting it. Look out for it end of October.

HNN: Why is a good soundtrack so vital to the horror movie experience?

OWSR: Watch one with the sound off and it will all become clear 😉

 

For more information about One Way Static Records, go to

http://onewaystaticrecords.tumblr.com/

https://www.facebook.com/#!/onewaystatic

http://www.onewaystatic.com/

 

 

Death Waltz Recording Company

Setting the gold standard for vinyl soundtrack reissues, Death Waltz Recording Company is a dream come true for the horror score epicurean.  Run by the always innovative Spencer Hickman (the man responsible for bringing Record Store Day to the UK), Death Waltz issues soundtracks on multiple media, but it’s their 180g colored vinyl releases of classic horror scores that has earned the company top accolades. Death Waltz’s releases are done in collaboration with some of the greatest horror composers ever like Fabio Frizzi and Giuliano Sorgini as well as leading genre visual artists like Jay Shaw and Dinos Chapman, who create exclusive artwork for each project.  The crown jewel for Death Waltz is the reissuing of the soundtrack work of John Carpenter with such masterworks as Prince of Darkness, Halloween III, and Escape from New York remastered, restored, and divinely packaged with copious liner notes, posters, prints, and heavy record jackets. Their edition of the soundtrack to The Fog is a thing of rare beauty indeed.  Add in an uber-cool subscription service offering tons of rare goodies, Record Store Day exclusives, and a reformed Goblin tour E.P., and you’ve got the makings of horror soundtrack obsessive heaven.

 

HNN: When was your first realization of the effect of a soundtrack on your viewing of a horror film?

DWRC: Hmmmm tough one…. A horror film … not sure it was even a film.  I assume it would have been Hammer House of Horror when I was 10 or so that aired on ITV.  I remember Salem’s Lot scaring the bejeezus out of me  too.  I guess the first films I noticed music-wise were Zombi 2 and Cannibal Holocaust.

HNN: Why did you start your label?

DWRC: I love horror films and love scores. Also I have worked in the industry for years so it seemed like something I should combine.

HNN: Why horror soundtracks?

DWRC: I just want to release film scores really; we are not a horror label per se.  I guess I am a cult film fan and lots of these scores were loved by many but owned by few. I wanted to change that to celebrate the music as its own beast away from the films and shout about them, like ‘Hey these are great pieces of work in their own right. ‘

HNN: Why focus on vinyl releases?

DWRC: I run Record Store Day in the UK.  I have been selling vinyl in stores for 20 years.  I have a deep love and respect for the format. It simply is the best package for those that BUY music

HNN: Why do you think there is such a significant interest in vinyl horror soundtracks rather than other formats?

DWRC: The collector nerd in all of us!

Horror fans by nature are collectors of ‘stuff.’  I love stuff ! We like to show off and chat with other fans about what we own.  It’s an amazing community!

HNN: Who are your favorite soundtrack composers? What are your favorite soundtracks?

DWRC: So many.  John Williams is the master, Jerry Goldsmith, Carpenter (of course). Clint Mansell is phenomenal.

Fave scores hmmm….  Donnie Darko, Cannibal Holocaust, All the Colours of The Dark, Legend Of Hell House, so many!

HNN: Which Death Waltz release (either current or future) are you most proud of? Do you have a dream project/release?

DWRC: Well, I have to say I am proud of all of them (sorry if that’s cheesy).  Obviously Zombi and Escape from New York as we kicked the label off with those.  Donnie Darko is one of my fave films ever so, yeah, that too….

Dream project is Cannibal Holocaust both myself and Seb are working on co-releasing that as that movie/score was pivotal for both of us.

HNN: Are there any current trends in horror soundtracks that you like or dislike?

DWRC: I’m not a fan of most modern scores if I’m honest, not naming names but lots are uninspired.  I love Jeff Grace’s work for Ti West; so beautiful and orchestral, a really nice change of pace, and Rob’s Maniac score was just out of this world.

HNN: What projects/releases/events are in the future for your label?

DWRC: Well, we kick of Beyond Fest in LA on the 9th with a whole month of events including Umberto performing a live re-score to pieces and Alan Howarth live, plus tons of screenings and guests including Richard Donner and Joe Dante. Then I fly back to London because we have Fabio Frizzi playing live in a church to 900 people on Halloween.  Absolute dream come true!  Fabio has become a close friend,and I love him dearly. We are bringing him to the USA next year!

HNN: Why is a good soundtrack so vital to the horror movie experience?

DWRC: It helps add to the mood and overall atmosphere of the film.  It helps establish the tone and how you relate to the images on screen. A good score adds so much more than music; it pushes the experience along…

 

For more information about Death Waltz Recording Company, go to

https://www.facebook.com/#!/deathwaltzrecordingcompany

http://deathwaltzrecordingcompany.com/

https://twitter.com/deathwaltzrecs/

And catch the reformed Goblin on tour right now!

 

 Releases by all three of these top notch labels can be ordered through Light in the Attic Records:

 

http://lightintheattic.net/