Teaser Trailer Drops for Horror Documentary, Horror Icon: Inside Michael’s Mask With Tony Moran

The teaser trailer recently dropped for the upcoming horror documentary, HORROR ICON: INSIDE MICHAEL’S MASK WITH TONY MORAN. The documentary is directed by  David Langill and Jordan Pacheco and explores the life of actor Tony Moran, who portrayed Michael Myers in the final scenes of John Carpenter’s HALLOWEEN, including the unmasked sequence. Check out the press release below:

Inside Michael's Mask1

Co-directors David Langill and Jordan Pacheco were given unprecedented access to Moran’s life, from his landmark appearance on the big screen in 1978 to his recent return with convention appearances and indie horror films.

The film features appearances by Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters), Dee Wallace (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial), P.J. Soles (Halloween), Andrew Bryniarski (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), Debbie Rochon (Tromeo and Juliet), Felissa Rose (Sleepaway Camp), Jonathan Tiersten (Sleepaway Camp), John Dugan (The Texas Chain Saw Massacre), Timothy Patrick Quill (Army of Darkness) and more.

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Originally scheduled for release this year, the project is now set to premiere in October 2016 in order to give fans the most comprehensive look at the life of a horror icon.

“We wanted to make sure the audience got the best product we could possibly bring them,” explains Langill. “We have a lot of great footage, but we decided to push the premiere and focus on getting additional material. The teaser shows a little taste of the story that we plan on telling.”

Keep up to date with Horror Icon: Inside Michael’s Mask with Tony Moran on Facebook:

Check out the teaser trailer:

Stay Bloody!!!

Inside Michael's Mask poster

NEW HORROR DVD & BLU-RAY RELEASES FOR THE WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 13, 2015

I missed last weeks releases so I worked them into this week. There’s a few good ones in here. Let’s get to it.

!!!4 URBAN LEGEND FILMS4 URBAN LEGEND MONSTER MOVIES

Three-disc set includes “Monster Brawl,” “Hunting the Legend,” “Black Water Vampire,” and “Werewolf Rising.”

Now available on DVD

!!!6 SCARY FILMS6 SCARY FILM COLLECTION

Set during World War II, “Reflecting Skin” (1991) focuses on a young Midwest boy who witnesses the deaths of two friends and his father’s suicide and is convinced that the widow living next door is responsible. With Viggo Mortensen, Lindsay Duncan. A woman who deserted her family returns years later to win them back, using dangerous manipulations. “Mother’s Boys” (1994) stars Jamie Lee Curtis, Peter Gallagher. The dark comedy “Office Killer” (1998) stars Carol Kane as a put-upon proofreader who goes wacko after 14 years on the job. (Editor’s note: It can happen!) With Molly Ringwald, Jeanne Tripplehorn. Years after her daughter’s murder, Claudia receives a strange phone call that leads her on a search for the truth, in the Spanish thriller “The Nameless” (1999). Emma Vilarasau, Karra Elejalde star. A disgraced New York City do (Jennifer Grey) moves to Jamaica, where she becomes caregiver to a sickly man who believes he’s the victim of a voodoo curse. “Ritual” (2002) also stars Craig Sheffer, Tim Curry. AKA: “Tales From The Crypt Presents Ritual.” Two-disc set also includes “Loaded” (1996). 5 1/2 hrs. total. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo; Subtitles: English (SDH).

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREETA NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984)/A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 2: FREDDY’S REVENGE (1986)

Ginsu-gloved dream demon Freddy Krueger makes his debut in Wes Craven’s classic slasher “A Nightmare On Elm Street.” The line between nightmare and reality is shattered when child murderer Krueger terrorizes the sleeping teens of Springfield, seeking revenge against the kids of those who killed him years earlier. With Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, Johnny Depp (his first film), and Robert Englund as Freddy. And, a teenage boy moves to Elm Street and soon becomes a pawn in the supernatural schemes of frightful Freddie Krueger, who tries to possess the young man in an effort to get him to do his evil bidding. “A Nightmare On Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge” stars Mark Patton, Kim Myers, Hope Lange, and Englund. 179 min. total on two discs. Standard and Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtracks: English Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Digital mono; Subtitles: English; audio commentary; theatrical trailers.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET3A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3: DREAM WARRIORS (1987)/ A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4: THE DREAM MASTER (1988)

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to bed…fearsome Freddy’s back, and he’s tormenting the dreams of some troubled teens under the care of the girl who survived his first rampage, in “A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors.” Robert Englund, Heather Langenkamp, Craig Wasson, John Saxon, and Patricia Arquette (her film debut) star. Then, the biggest cut-up in horror films returns, in “A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master.” Fiendish Freddy Krueger (Englund) has come back for revenge on the kids who “killed” him one film earlier, turning their dreams into deadly nightmares. Lisa Wilcox, Rodney Eastman co-star; directed by Renny Harlin. 189 min. total on two discs.

Now available on DVD

!!!A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET5A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 5: THE DREAM CHILD (1989)/FREDDY’S DEAD: THE FINAL NIGHTMARE (1991)

For the young people of Elm Street, the nightmare never ends! Once more Freddy returns from the grave for revenge, focusing on the dreams of the unborn child of the one girl who can stop him that’s right, a pro-life horror film). Robert Englund, Lisa Wilcox, and Kelly Jo Minter star in “A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: The Dream Child.” And, the razor-gloved ghoul “finally” goes to his grave, in “Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare.” But before he does he’s going to take the town of Springfield and his own daughter with him! Englund, Lisa Zane, Yaphet Kotto star, with cameos by Tom and Roseanne Arnold, Alice Cooper, and Johnny Depp. Not in 3-D. 186 min. total on two discs. Standard and Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtracks: English Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Digital stereo; Subtitles: English; theatrical trailers.

Now available on DVD

!!!ALETAALETA: VAMPIRE MISTRESS (2012)

When an armed robbery at an upscale party is singlehandedly thwarted by a cloaked, diminutive woman (Ange Maya) who overpowers and kills the thieves, an FBI agent (Beau Nelson) is dispatched to track her down and enlist her as a government operative. The unfortunate fed, however, soon learns that the source of his prey’s power has an unholy origin! Tom Cochran, Garrett Brawith, Laura Cotenescu co-star. 90 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!ALMOST MERCYALMOST MERCY (2015)

In their depressed Rhode Island tank town, all that teenage outcasts Jackson (Jesse Dufault) and Emily (Danielle Guldin) really had was each other…and that made them prime targets for bullying for their whole school careers. After he gets a stretch in juvie for fighting back–and her assault by the jocks is hushed up–they make a pact for bloody revenge. Shocker also stars Kane Hodder, Bill Moseley, Tommy Dreamer, and Nick Principe. 85 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!ANGSTANGST (1983)

Freshly released from a 10-year sentence for the slaughter of an old woman, an unrepentant psychopath (Erwin Leder) wanders the Viennese countryside, looking for another outlet for his savage anger. Unfortunately for the members of a quiet household, he’s just elected them to be his surrogate family. Stunningly lensed, influential shocker from Austria co-stars Silvia Rabenreither, Edith Rosset. 87 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: German and French DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio; Subtitles: English; audio commentary; featurettes; optional prologue; theatrical trailer. In German and French with English subtitles.

Now available on DVD & Blu-ray

!!!ATTACK OF THE KILLER B'SATTACK OF THE KILLER B’s: 10 MOVIE COLLECTION

Three-disc set includes “The Phantom From 10,000 Leagues,” “Teenagers From Outer Space,” “Attack Of The Giant Leeches” (1959), “The Giant Gila Monster,” “The Killer Shrews,” “The Wasp Woman” (1960), “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die,” “Eegah,” “Night Fright,” and “Invasion Of The Bee Girls.”

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!BLOODY SINBLOODY SIN: ABOMINATIONS OF THE THIRD REICH (2011)

A remote Italian castle that’s home to an eccentric nobleman and his mother is chosen as the setting for a gentleman’s magazine’s sexy photo shoot. What the cameraman and his lovely models don’t know is that the castle has been home to depravity and violence–from witch burnings to Nazi experiments–over the centuries…and something or someone is ready to renew the tradition. Stylish Italian-made shocker stars Lorenzo Balducci, Roberta Gemma. 92 min. Soundtrack: English.

Now available on DVD

!!!BORIS KARLOFF COLLECTIONBORIS KARLOFF COLLECTION: 6 FILMS

Scientist Boris Karloff is executed for illegal work on suspended animation, only to be revived by his assistant so the two can plot a campaign of revenge, in “The Man They Could Not Hang” (1939). Byron Foulger, Lorna Gray co-star. In the offbeat sci-fi tale “The Man With Nine Lives” (1940), scientist Karloff develops a cancer cure that involves putting patients in suspended animation and treating them with an experimental serum. Accidentally frozen along with a group of test subjects and thawed out years later to learn that his miracle drug has long been lost, Karloff is driven to the brink of madness as he tries to make another batch. With Roger Pryor, Jo Ann Sayers, and Wally Wales. AKA: “Behind The Door.” Rarely seen and eerily effective sci-fi/horror shocker “The Devil Commands” (1941) stars Karloff as a scientist who, after his wife is killed in an auto accident, becomes obsessed with developing a machine for communicating with the dead. Anne Revere, Amanda Duff, and Richard Fiske also star. Two-disc set also includes “The Black Room,” “Before I Hang,” and “The Boogie Man Will Get You.” 6 2/3 hrs. total. Standard; Soundtrack: English.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAINCREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN (60th Anniversary Series) (1955)

Kicked out of the States and sent back to Italy, down-and-out gangster Frank Buchanan (Michael Granger) comes up with a twisted, diabolical, and downright bizarre scheme to exact revenge on the cops and rival mobsters who got him pinched. Buchanan enlists the aid of a sinister Nazi scientist (Gregory Gaye) to create an army of murderous zombies to serve as his personal assassins. Offbeat shocker from producer Sam Katzman also stars Richard Denning, Angela Stevens. 70 min. Standard; Soundtrack: English.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIESCRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES: THE COMPLETE HISTORY OF FRIDAY THE 13TH (Two-Disc Collector’s Edition) (2013; Deggsy’s review)

The sanguinary saga of goalie-masked golem Jason Voorhees has made theaters ring with shrieks for better than 30 years, and you’ll be taken on a comprehensive tour of the “Friday the 13th” horror franchise with this expansive documentary. Over 150 cast and crew members from the series share their perspectives; “The Final Chapter” star Corey Feldman hosts and narrates. 6 2/3 hrs. on two discs. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio.

Now available on Blu-ray

!!!DARKNESSDARKNESS (2004)/IMMORTALITY (2000)/THE HOLE (2001)/THEY (2002)

Darkness” stars Anna Paquin as a young woman who moves into a rural Spanish farmhouse with her family. She soon learns of a 40-year-old curse brought about by the horrific murders of six children…a curse that needs a seventh death to be complete. Lena Olin, Iain Glen co-star. Then, Jude Law stars as the pallid, philosophical “creature of one” who lives as a London medical researcher and seeks a woman to love, but drains the blood of those he comes in contact with, in “Immortality.” Elina Lowensohn, Timothy Spall, Kerry Fox co-star. AKA: “The Wisdom of Crocodiles.” In “The Hole,” four high school students get locked in an abandoned bomb shelter during a field trip to Wales. They emerge 18 days later, with different accounts as to what happened inside. Thora Birch, Keira Knightley, Embeth Davidtz star. AKA: “After The Hole.” And, a psychology grad student who is traumatized by weird visions and sounds at night discovers that the childhood night terrors she and her friends feared are actually real, and now they must figure out how to stop from being scared to death, in “They.” Laura Regan, Marc Blucas star. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo; Subtitles: English (SDH). Two-disc set.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!DOLLFACEDOLLFACE (2014)

In 1996, nine college kids weekended at a lake house that had been the ancestral home of traumatized dollmaker’s son Dorchester Stewart (John Kap)…and only three of them walked away. Survivor Paul Donner (Jason Vail) now teaches at his alma mater…and his students are about to take a very ill-advised class trip to the scene of the tragedy. Shocker co-stars Christian James, Elizabeth Mears, and Debbie Rochon. AKA: “Dorchester’s Revenge: The Return Of Crinoline Head.” 94 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo; featurette; outtakes; extended scenes; theatrical trailer.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!FRANKENSTEINFRANKENSTEIN VS. THE MUMMY (2015)/THE FRANKENSTEIN THEORY (2013)

What if the legendary novel “Frankenstein” was really a true story? That’s the conceit behind “The Frankenstein Theory,” the unsettling thriller in which a scholar ventures into the icy wilderness accompanied by a documentary film crew, intent on finding the creature of Mary Shelley’s book…which he believes to be a nonfiction account only disguised as a macabre fantasy. Kris Lemche, Joe Egender, and Eric Zuckerman star. Also includes “Frankenstein vs. The Mummy.” 3 1/3 hrs. total. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English.

Now available on DVD

!!!FREDDY VS JASONFREDDY VS. JASON (2003)/FRIDAY THE 13TH (2009)

Two-disc set includes “Freddy vs. Jason” and “Friday the 13th.”

Now available on Blu-ray

!!!FRIDAY THE 13TH 3FRIDAY THE 13TH, PART 3 (1982)/FRIDAY THE 13TH: THE FINAL CHAPTER (1984)

Two-disc set includes “Friday the 13th, Part 3” (in 3D, comes with a pair of 3D glasses) and “Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter.”

Now available on DVD

!!!FRIDAY THE 13TH 5FRIDAY THE 13TH, PART V: A NEW BEGINNING (1985)/ FRIDAY THE 13TH, PART VI: JASON LIVES (1986)

Two-disc set includes “Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning” and “Friday the 13th, Part VI: Jason Lives.”

Now available on DVD

!!!FRIDAY THE 13TH 7FRIDAY THE 13TH, PART VII: THE NEW BLOOD (1988)/FRIDAY THE 13TH, PART VIII: JASON TAKES MANHATTAN (1989)

Two-disc set includes “Friday the 13th, Part VII: The New Blood” and “Friday the 13th, Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan.”

Now available on DVD

!!!GOTHAMGOTHAM: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON (2014)

All 22 episodes from the debut season are featured in a six-disc set. 16 hrs. total. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital 5.1; Subtitles: French, Spanish; deleted scenes; gag reel; featurettes; more. **22 episodes on 6 discs. 16 hrs.**

Now available on DVD & Blu-ray

!!!HALLOWEENHALLOWEEN: THE CURSE OF MICHAEL MYERS (Unrated Producer’s Cut) (1995)

The sixth installment in the spine-tingling horror series finds masked menace Michael Myers returning to his hometown of Haddonfield. As he seeks to prey upon his niece and her newborn baby as well as a now-grown survivor of the first film, the origin of Michael’s supernatural powers are revealed. Paul Rudd, Mitchell Ryan, Marianne Hagan, and Donald Pleasence as Dr. Loomis star. 118 min. Widescreen; Soundtracks: English, French; Subtitles: English (SDH), French, Spanish.

Being released on Blu-ray on 9/15/2015

!!!HAUNTING AT THE RECTORYHAUNTING AT THE RECTORY (2015)

Based on the infamous legend of Borley Rectory, known as “the most haunted house in England,” this chiller set in 1930 finds a reverend moving into his new parish, accompanied by a wife he feels little desire for compared to the passion he has for his ministry. After a handsome stranger takes up residence in their guest room and tempts the minister’s wife, bizarre events begin to unfold. Tom Bonington, Suzie Frances Garton, and Lee Bane star. 90 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English.

Being released on DVD on 9/15/2015

!!!HOUSE OF THE LONG SHADOWSHOUSE OF THE LONG SHADOWS (1983)

Old-fashioned “haunted house” suspense drives this spooky adaptation of Earl Derr Biggers’ book “Seven Keys to Baldpate.” An American writer (Desi Arnaz, Jr.), who’s made a bet that he can pen a novel in 24 hours, travels to a secluded Welsh manor where he’s thrust into the center of a real-life whodunit, terrorized by a group of sinister characters portrayed by movie horror masters Vincent Price, Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, and John Carradine. 106 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo; audio commentary; featurette; theatrical trailers.

Being released on Blu-ray on 9/15/2015

!!!JASON GOES TO HELLJASON GOES TO HELL: THE FINAL FRIDAY (1993)/JASON X (2002)

Two-disc set includes “Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday” and “Jason X.”

Now available on DVD

!!!MORITORUSMORITURIS (2011)

Two beautiful Romanians hitching through Italy get picked up by three locals who offer to escort them to a midnight rave being held in the deep woods. Things turn bad when the men reveal their depraved agenda in luring them where they’d never be found. Things turn worse when the activity rouses the animated corpses of Roman gladiators from their final resting place! Brutal throwback shocker from Italy stars Valentina D’Andrea, Andrea De Bruyn, Desiree Giorgetti. 86 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: Italian DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio; Subtitles: English; theatrical trailer. In Italian with English subtitles.

Now available on DVD & Blu-ray

!!!RIDDICKRIDDICK (2014)

Set five years after the events of “The Chronicles of Riddick,” this exciting sci-fi follow-up finds Richard Riddick (Vin Diesel) double-crossed and left for dead on a remote planet while searching for his homeworld. A distress beacon brings a team of bounty hunters and a band of mercenaries to his location, forcing Riddick to fight for his life against both groups as well as deadly scorpion-like monsters. Jordi Molla, Dave Bautista, Matt Nable, Katee Sackhoff, Karl Urban co-star. 119 min. Widescreen; Soundtracks: English DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio, DVS Dolby Digital stereo, Spanish DTS 5.1; Subtitles: English (SDH), French, Spanish; featurettes.

Now available on Blu-ray

!!!SHOCKERSHOCKER (1989)

“A Nightmare on Elm Street” creator Wes Craven brings a new unstoppable killer to the screen in this supercharged chiller. Thanks to a Satanic bargain, condemned serial killer Horace Pinker (Mitch Pileggi) survives the chair and is transformed into an electrical force that can zip along power lines and take over household devices. Jolting horror tale also stars Michael Murphy, Cami Cooper, Peter Berg. 109 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English.

Now available on Blu-ray

TERRIFYING TALES TRIPLE FEATURE

Two-disc set includes “Cherry Tree Lane,” “Don’t Let Him In,” and “Home Sweet Home” (2013).

Now available on DVD

!!!THE EDITORTHE EDITOR (2014)

Skewering the vivid depravities of Italian horror movies from the 1970s and ’80s, this humorous hair-raiser is the story of a film editor (co-director Adam Brooks) fallen from his previous career heights due to an accident that claimed multiple fingers on one of his hands. He fits himself with wooden replacement digits, only to become a murder suspect when the cast members of his current project start dying. Sheila Campbell, Laurence R. Harvey, and Udo Kier co-star. 95 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English; Subtitles: English.

Now available on DVD

!!!THE LEGACYTHE LEGACY (1979)

Katharine Ross and Sam Elliott are a young couple who travel to England under the impression that they’re meeting a new client for their interior decorating business. But a seemingly chance encounter with a wealthy man (John Standing) leads them down a bizarre path involving a large inheritance, the mysterious deaths of its potential beneficiaries, and a legacy of Satanic power. Roger Daltrey, Charles Gray co-star in this chilling shocker. 102 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English; Subtitles: English.

Being released on Blu-ray on 9/15/2015

!!!THE TOWN THAT DREADED SUNDOWNTHE TOWN THAT DREADED SUNDOWN (2014)

The title might be the same, but this contemporary shocker functions as a sequel to rather than a remake of the 1976 thriller about the Texas “Moonlight Murders” of the 1940s. Now, with the citizens of Texarkana marking the grisly crimes that took place in the town with an annual screening of the original cult movie classic, a hooded maniac claiming to be the original serial killer strikes new fear into the hearts of innocents. Addison Timlin, Anthony Anderson star. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English.

Now available on Blu-ray

!!!UNIVERSAL MONSTER COLLECTIONUNIVERSAL CLASSIC MONSTERS COLLECTION

Six-disc set includes “Dracula” (1931), “Frankenstein” (1931), “The Mummy” (1932), “The Invisible Man” (1933), “Bride of Frankenstein,” and “The Wolf Man” (1941).

Now available on DVD

!!!WES CRAVEN'S NEW NIGHTMAREWES CRAVEN’S NEW NIGHTMARE (1994)/FREDDY VS. JASON (2003)

Freddy Krueger jumps from the reel world to the real world in “Wes Craven’s New Nightmare.” A series of terrifying dreams leads to horror for actress Heather Langenkamp and her family, and talks with fellow “Nightmare” alumni Robert Englund, John Saxon, and Craven (all playing themselves) convince her that Freddy has come to life. Then, it’s the biggest showdown in Hollywood horror history when blade-slashing baddie Krueger battles hockey-masked “Friday the 13th” maniac Jason Voorhees, in “Freddy vs. Jason.” Trapped in Hell, Freddy seeks a way to return to Earth and terrify a new generation of Elm Street kids…and finds it by resurrecting Jason. But when Jason’s killing spree makes Freddy jealous, the stage is set for a sinister showdown. Englund, Ken Kirzinger, Kelly Rowland star. 3 1/2 hrs. total. Standard and Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo; Subtitles: English; audio commentary; theatrical trailer.

Now available on DVD

!!!WOLF CREEK 2WOLF CREEK 2 (2013; My review)/CABIN FEVER: PATIENT ZERO (2014; My review)

Two-disc set includes “Wolf Creek 2” and “Cabin Fever: Patient Zero.”

Now available on Blu-ray

!!!ZOMBIE ARMAGEDDONZOMBIE ARMAGEDDON: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION (my review)

A mysterious biological disaster spawns a growing “Legion Of The Undead” (2006). Can five people caught in the flesh-eating crossfire summon the willpower and know-how to avoid falling prey to the zombie hordes? Gruesomely inventive low-budget horror opus stars Gary Ugarek (who also wrote and directed), Michelle Wright, Connor Brandt. AKA: “Deadlands: The Rising.” Also, the gore-soaked sequel “Army Of The Dead” (2008) finds the government taking aim at a small Maryland town. The top-secret plan: create the perfect military weapon by turning humans into zombie soldiers! Can a small band of unchanged residents survive the onslaught? Jim Krut, Josh Davidson, Ashley Young star. AKA: “Deadlands 2: Trapped.” And British agents investigating terrorism threats in Romania stumble upon a shocking operation headed up by vengeance-seeking descendants of Nazi scientists. Their project?: the creation of unkillable super-super soldiers with a new energy source powering their undead bodies! “Nazi Zombies” (2013) stars Philip Berzamanis, Rudy Barrow, and Jane Haslehurst. AKA: “Dead Walkers: Rise Of The Fourth Reich.” 5 hrs. total. Soundtrack: English

Now available on DVD

Stay Bloody!!!

Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History of Friday the 13th Gets Release Date & a New Trailer

Say what you will in the comments section below, but the FRIDAY THE 13th  franchise is not only iconic, but it’s just down-right friggin’ fun. Even the not-so-great films in the franchise are fun!! With the failed reboot in 2009 (come on, Jason does not kidnap), and a new reboot planned for next year, Jason and FRIDAY THE 13th aren’t going anywhere.

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Back in 2013, the documentary CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES: THE COMPLETE HISTORY OF FRIDAY THE 13TH was released by the same team behind the NEVER SLEEP AGAIN: THE ELM STREET LEGACY documentary, which I think was way more entertaining than the entire Elm Street franchise!!

The CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES documentary is a 7-hour, three-disc set. I know a lot of fans (myself included) already picked this documentary up when it was released two years ago, but the film has a new distribution deal to re-release the movie and reach a wider audience. CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES is directed by Daniel Farrands, written by Farrands (based off the book by Peter Bracke), and stars just about every actor and actress that has ever starred in a FRIDAY THE 13th movie!! Check out the plot crunch and new trailer below, and if you haven’t picked this one up yet, do yourself a favor and get it. CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES is one of the essential horror documentaries that belongs in every horror fans’ collection.

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Inspired by the critically-acclaimed book, CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES: THE COMPLETE HISTORY OF FRIDAY THE 13TH takes viewers behind the mask on an epic journey into the making of the landmark horror franchise-from its humble beginnings in 1980 at a New Jersey summer camp to the blockbuster release of its 2009 “reboot.” Combining hundreds of rare and never-before-seen photographs, film clips, outtakes, archival documents, conceptual art and behind-the-scenes footage, and featuring interviews with more than 150 cast and crew members spanning all twelve films and the television series, CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES is the ultimate tribute to one of horror’s most iconic and enduring franchises.

Here’s the trailer:

Stay Bloody!!!

Crystal Lake poster

Jennifer Lynch Documentary, Despite the Gods, Gets Release Date

Despite the Gods posterThis is a documentary I’ve had on my radar for a while now. Jennifer Lynch’s documentary, DESPITE THE GODS, will be hitting VOD and DVD this May 19, 2015. Check out the press release:

ANNOUNCEMENT – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BRINKVISION RELEASES THE CRITCIALLY ACCLAIMED JENNIFER LYNCH DOCUMENTARY DESPITE THE GODS ON VOD AND DVD MAY 19TH! 

DESPITE THE GODS 

Jennifer Lynch’s Bollywood Odyssey 

BrinkVision releases the critically acclamied documentary DESPITE THE GODS, going behind the scenes of Jennifer Lynch’s (David Lynch’s daughter), filmmaking in India. Surrounded by a team of truly wonderful Indian crewm he 12 year old daughter, and a cast of Bollywood stars, Lynch does her best to stay sane and guide the production through a minefield of disasters. DESPITE THE GODS has been winning awards, and screening at over 40+ film festivals and conventions worldwide, now will be released on VOD and DVD May 19th!

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Highly entertaining portrait of Lynch as an artist” – Variety

Synopsis:

Jennifer Lynch, daughter of cult film auteur David Lynch, made her auspicious directorial debut in 1993 with cult classic Boxing Helena. She was the youngest American woman to direct a feature film, and after that she took an extended hiatus. Fifteen years later, a recovering addict and hard-working single mother, Lynch returns to the director’s chair with an ambitious project that will test her skills and the entire crew’s sanity. Despite the Gods brings us behind the scenes on the set of Lynch’s Bollywood/Hollywood action film about a man-eating snake goddess. In the spirit of LOST IN LA MANCHA and OVERNIGHT, Penny Vozniak, friend of one of the producers hired on to do behind-the-scenes on HISSS, ended up chronicling Lynch slowly losing her grip over a much-extended eight-month shoot.

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“Despite The Gods is destined to be a classic” – Rue Morgue

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You can buy DESPITE THE GODS on amazon here. For now, though, you’ll just have to live with the trailer:

I completely agree with Rue Morgue magazine in writing that DESPITE THE GODS is “destined to be a classic.” I’ll be swooping this one up as soon as it’s available on May 19, 2015.

Stay Bloody!!!

Despite the Gods2

Top Horror Documentaries: From Haxan to A Haunting in Connecticut

As the third annual Stanley Film Festival in Colorado prepares to open its supposedly haunted doors, in a hotel which apparently influenced Steven King’s classic THE SHINING, it has never been clearer how the thirst for thrills in film and beyond has changed.

Ad Stanley Film Festival

No longer are audiences merely content to sit, popcorn in hand, and wait to be shocked by outlandish CGI. Immersion and realism is the name of the game, as viewers demand a slice of reality with their ghosts and ghouls.

However, despite the clamour for haunted hotel tours, live action games, themed rides and Halloween experiences, with even online casinos now channelling our deepest fears – just check out this game from Slotocash based on horror move Ghost Ship – it is clear that horror documentaries still often touch the rawest nerve.

Horror documentaries have had an undeniable influence on cinema, and that in itself is a credit to how the genre has evolved and adapted to the ever changing tastes of audiences, who want to feel the spine-tingling suspicion that those tales depicted on their screens could really be true.

Here, we take a look at a selection of some of the most popular horror documentaries and how they have helped shape the scene.

Ad HaxanHAXAN (1922)

As a horror documentary, HAXAN, a Scandinavian seven-part silent-film study of the myths surrounding witchcraft, is still widely considered to have been ahead of its time and a stand-out example of the genre.

Director Benjamin Christensen switches up the narrative style by using a clever combination of dramatisation, art history, historical fact and analysis to bring viewers an intriguing piece of filmmaking which blurs the lines between fiction and non-fiction, and undoubtedly inspired generations of investigation as art, as well as critical examinations of folklore. Take a peek at the trailer here:

Ad Curse of Blair WitchCURSE OF THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT (1999)

Released in the same year as the famous film (a faux documentary in itself, whose low budget shaky camerawork style spawned many a high-grossing imitation, such as CLOVERFIELD and the PARANORMAL ACTIVITY series), CURSE OF THE BLAIR WITCH instead delves into the real life mystery.

Archive footage and interviews with the families and friends of three young student filmmakers, who went missing while filming a documentary on the Blair Witch myth, brings a personal twist to the tale, which the sensationalist style of its cinematic counterpart cannot recreate. Watch a clip here:

Ad HauntingA HAUNTING IN CONNECTICUT (2002)

With its stock dramatic music and voiceovers, it’s no wonder that Hollywood snapped up this classic haunted house documentary for a 2009 movie adaptation. When their son falls sick, a New York family is forced to move to Connecticut and into a house that was once a funeral parlour, and events soon begin to take a sinister turn. Treated with the reverence usually saved for disaster documentaries, how A HAUNTING IN CONNECTICUT is chronicled reflects the audience’s appetite for wanting to believe.

AMITYVILLE: THE HAUNTING and AMITYVILLE: HORROR OR HOAX? (2000)

Ad Amityville1One of the most controversial and enduring ‘ghost stories’ to have gripped America, Amityville continues to divide critics over its authenticity, providing plenty of material for horror screenwriter Daniel Farads to get his teeth into in this two-part documentary.

It is a tale that spawned a thousand off-shoots, including several film series, and also lawsuits. The intrigue surrounds the publication of a book by Jay Anson in 1977, which supposedly chronicles the haunting of the Lutz family, who moved into a Long Island house in which the horrific murder of an entire family had previously taken place.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the infamous case, the History Channel commissioned a special programme to delve into the story’s murky past and attempts to separate truth from fiction, and myth from reality.

Documentary on Snuff Films Gets Re-Release from Wild Eye Releasing

SnuffyI think all diehard horror fans are curious about the possibility of the actual existence of snuff films. For those of you who may not know what a snuff film is, this is a movie that films the actual killing of another human being. The FACES OF DEATH films aren’t technically snuff films because they just show people dying on film who were recorded by others. Like the couple who was on vacation and the woman films her husband getting mauled to death by a grizzly bear he was trying to feed. The death was accidental. But in a true snuff film, the sole reason for making such a film is to kill someone on camera for real.

In 2008, a documentary film was released that explored whether snuff films actually exist. The film, SNUFF: A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT KILLING ON CAMERA, didn’t glorify or exaggerate any claims. director Paul von Stoetzel set out to find out if there’s any ground for what many believe to be only urban legends. If you haven’t seen this excellent documentary yet then you’re in luck. Wild Eye Releasing is re-releasing SNUFF with new artwork, the original and full edit versions of SNUFF, the award winning short horror film DINNER DATE, and a 30-minute interview with director Paul von Stoetzel. Check out the press release:

Wild Eye Releasing Resurrects Snuff: 

A Documentary About Killing on Camera 

Available For the First Time in Years On DVD and VOD

New York, NY – Wild Eye Releasing has announced the April 21st DVD and VOD release of Snuff: A Documentary About Killing on Camera.  Long out of print and sought after since its initial release, Paul von Stoetzel’s documentary seeks to uncover the “truth” about snuff films, and how serial killers and horror classics like Cannibal Holocaust, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre play into the pervasive cultural rumors about these taboo and near-mythical films. 

Explore the disturbing urban legend of the “snuff” film, an alleged film where someone is purposely murdered on camera for profit. This compelling documentary features interviews with film professionals, FBI profilers and academics, who all help examine the myths and evidence of snuff films, and its relationship to cult horror movies, serial killers and pornography in our culture. 

Order Snuff: A Documentary About Killing on Camera on DVD 

The DVD release of Snuff: A Documentary About Killing on Camera (SRP $12.95) will exclusively include a fifth anniversary interview with the director by author/ radio host Dave Schrader and the short film Dinner Date.

# # # # #

Snuff1

I saw this documentary back in 2008 and loved it. I thought the material was presented in a very neutral way, and director Stoetzel didn’t have a pre-planned agenda. He seemed as interested and curious to get to the bottom of the mystery of snuff films as I was!! The final interview of the documentary was extremely chilling. I’m not going to give anything away, but I highly recommend SNUFF: A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT KILLING ON CAMERA. You can order the film on Amazon. This is one of those documentaries I want in my collection. Here’s the trailer:

What do you think? Do you think somewhere in the deepest recesses of the internet there’s a market for snuff films?

Stay Bloody!!!

Contamination: A Convention Story (2012)

 

Contamination poster

I don’t watch nearly enough horror documentaries!! Whenever I watch one I always end up learning so much about a facet of the horror genre I didn’t previously know. Take the documentary, CONTAMINATION: A CONVENTION STORY. Directed by Corey Logsdon, CONTAMINATION focuses on the Contamination convention in St. Louis (a horror-scifi-pop culture convention), but the themes Logsdon explores in this film are pretty universal for most conventions.

Contamination dave dyerCONTAMINATION explores the titular convention through interviews with convention attendees, celebrities, artists of various kinds who rent booths, and the founder of the convention, Dave Dyer. Logsdon divides his documentary into several chapters. One chapter explores the celebrities who go to conventions, another the artists, and another the people who attend them. One thing becomes clear from the get-go, and anyone who’s ever attended a horror or sci-fi convention will all ready know this: Genre fans and celebrities are the best people around!! I don’t mean to be hyperbolic but if you’ve ever attended a horror convention you know just how down-to-earth the celebrities are. The year I met Clive Barker at the Texas Frightmare Weekend I couldn’t believe how humble and genuinely happy Barker was to be there. He’d recently had surgery and you could see his discomfort but he sat and signed posters, books, comics, and whatever fans put in front of him for hours at a time. He even talked with every fan as they went by. I had about a seven to eight minute conversation with him about his novel IMAJICA.

Contamination bill

This is precisely one of the themes in CONTAMINATION. Logsdon interviews such celebrities as Bill Johnson, Eric Stanze, Tony Todd, and Kane Hodder (to name but a few) and each one in their own way details how surprised they are when they go to a horror-scifi convention. They are blown away by the community they find, a community made up of hundreds of strangers who all share a love of the genre. As Bill Johnson (Leatherface from THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 2) says:

“Everybody is just really awesome! It’s a great vibe. Everybody is friendly and happy.”

Contamination hodder

Kane Hodder mirrors this sentiment. When talking about the fans Hodder says:

“[T]hey’re fantastic. They’re the most loyal fans in the world. They will support you in all your projects.”

CONTAMINATION shows just how cool the celebrities are that attend and then focuses on the people who pay to attend. There’s nothing more beautiful and surreal and fun than putting a bunch of diehard fans together in one big room full of genre celebrities, memorabilia, and art. It’s like watching hundreds of little kids on Christmas morning. I should know being that I attend TFW every year. Bill Johnson has one of the best lines as he talks about the fans:

“It’s just fascinating to be in an airplane hanger-sized room full of obsession.”

Contamination DotD

I could go on and on talking about the community you find and experience at conventions but CONTAMINATION explores it so much better. I also learned a lot of really cool facts about the convention. The Contamination convention was the first convention to have a reunion of the cast of DAY OF THE DEAD. This was also the convention to screen the 1994 film, THE FANTASTIC FOUR and have the entire cast and director in attendance. This is the version that was made by the studio for the sole reason of keeping the rights to the property. The cast and crew had no idea that the studio was never intending on releasing the film.

Contamination tony

I really loved this documentary. CONTAMINATION: A CONVENTION STORY is a love letter to conventions, the fans, and the celebrities that make it all so awesome. With a short sixty minute run time the only thing I hated here was that it wasn’t longer. I could’ve literally watched it for hours!! Don’t miss this one.

Contamination stanzeMy Summary:

Director: Corey Logsdon

Plot: 5 out of 5 stars

Gore: 0 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 1 out of 5 brains (there were some zombies but they weren’t threatening)

Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

Stay Bloody!!!

Jodorowsky's Dune (2013)

JD12Of all the words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these: ‘It might have been’. Except for the plans to have Shia LeBeouf take over the Indiana Jones franchise getting dropped. That’s not sad, that’s proof of a higher power forestalling the Apocalypse.

Hollywood history tells of a number of films that for various reasons never got made, or finished:  Tim Burton’s SUPERMAN LIVES, David Cronenberg’s FRANKENSTEIN, Orson Welles’ HEART OF DARKNESS, Alfred Hitchcock’s KALEIDOSCOPE, Terry Gilliam’s THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE. Perhaps the best known of these was Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky’s DUNE, the story of which has been filmed and is available now.

As this is Anythinghorror, let's have a bloody scene from EL TOPO
As this is Anythinghorror, let’s have a bloody scene from EL TOPO!

Almost forgotten now, Jodorowsky had, along with George Romero and David Lynch, helped define the Midnight Movie circuit in the late Sixties and early Seventies with surreal, drug-fuelled movies like EL TOPO and THE HOLY MOUNTAIN (I remember sitting through a VHS copy of EL TOPO about thirty years ago, and realising then that I didn’t have enough drugs in my life).

In 1975, Jodorowsky began on what he called a “spiritual journey”, to adapt Frank Herbert’s seminal sci-fi novel DUNE to film. Jodorowsky had entered filmmaking without any prior training or knowledge, never expecting the depth of opposition to his initial efforts from the local film industry and the press (with actual riots having broken out at theatre releases of some of his work).

Would you give millions of dollars to this man?
Would you give millions of dollars to this man?

He approached his films as a classical artist rather than a businessman, and when he set out to make DUNE, he gathered together men and women he didn’t call crewmembers but “spiritual warriors”. And though he hadn’t read the book (I don’t blame him, having tried it myself, and finding it a chore and a half), he was still enthusiastic:  “For me, DUNE will be the coming of a god. I wanted to make something sacred, free, with new perspective. Open the mind!”

Some of the gorgeous spaceship designs, courtesy of Chris Foss
Some of the gorgeous spaceship designs, courtesy of artist Chris Foss

For the following two years he assembled an eclectic group of artists for in front of and behind the camera, and the stories behind each of these was fascinating: his own 12 year old son Brontis (whom he had used in EL TOPO) would play the hero Paul Atredeis, and had him trained in numerous physical and spiritual arts; David Carradine, who would have played Paul’s father Duke Leto, first meet Jodorowsky and ate all of his vitamins; Orson Welles would be the evil Baron Harkonnen, and his services were secured when Jodorowsky agreed to supply the man with his favourite chef; Mick Jagger signed up to take the part of Feyd, a role later taken by another musician, Sting; and most bizarrely of all, Salvador Dali would have played the Emperor of the Universe, a role he agreed upon for the staggering fee of $100,000 per hour of filming, a sum he probably never thought Jodorowsky would agree upon. But, Jodorowsky did.

I dated at least one of these characters - guess right for a No-Prize!
I dated at least one of these characters – guess right for a No-Prize!

But it’s the talent behind the character that’s telling: the music would have been supplied by Pink Floyd, script by writer/director Dan O’Bannon, and art, costume and set designs by future ALIEN designer HR Giger, British sci-fi paperback illustrator Chris Foss, and French comic book legend Jean ‘Moebius’ Giraud.  

A book of over 3,000 storyboards was produced, many paintings, costume trials, and a script that by all accounts went all over the place, and that’s even taking into account that we’re talking about a galactic story set millennia in the future and featuring giant spice-eating worms.

The final picture would have run over 20 hours, and cost a (then) staggering 15 million dollars, and would be “a film that gives LSD hallucinations without taking LSD.” Jodorowsky was driven (“In that time, I say, if I need to cut my arms in order to make that picture, I will cut my arms. I was even ready to die doing that.”).

HR Giger, working out a plethora of issues creativelly...
HR Giger, working out a plethora of issues creativelly…

But Hollywood reality crashed down hard on his spiritual journey. Nowadays, $15 million might just about cover the overhead on those JOHN CARTER McDonald Happy Meal promotions, but pre-STAR WARS, no studio was going to fork out that amount of money on a sci-fi project, especially not a 20+ hour long epic driven by a Chilean auteur who, frankly, acted as mad an outhouse rat. The rights lapsed, eventually getting bought by Dino de Laurentiis, who let David Lynch create his own vision of the story. And the rest, as they say…

JODOROWSKY’S DUNE is a dense but fascinating look at this project. Nearly everyone involved at the time was interviewed, there’s a wealth of paintings and sketches, and some of the storyboards are animated for the documentary (the opening sequence would have been literally universe-expanding, something that would have made the ending of 2001 look like something from Tommy Wiseau).

Yes, it looks cool, but what's the city mileage like?
Yes, it looks cool, but what’s the city mileage like?

And it’s equally fascinating to realise that, though the movie itself never saw (and never will see) fruition, its legacy lives on. Dan O’Bannon wrote ALIEN, and brought in H.R. Giger, Foss, and Moebius to the project. And the visions influenced many other movies, including BLADE RUNNER, THE FIFTH ELEMENT, and many others.

Would Jodorowsky’s DUNE have been a masterpiece, or a train wreck? Both, probably. There’s a thin line between clever and stupid, as David St Hubbins of Spinal Tap fame said, and as crazy as Jodorowsky is, he makes some pertinent points about how the money men restrain the creative process.

Too true, Alejandro...
Too true, Alejandro…

His movie might have been the LORD OF THE RINGS of its day, released on Betamax in a four-tape set for a weekend of Ludes and C&C Cola. The Seventies was a trippy time, and directors and auteurs had a freedom that doesn’t exist nowadays. But this film probably would have been too much for it, though at least Jodorowsky wouldn’t have had a shaved, conjoined cat and mouse being milked like Lynch did.

Probably.

JODOROWSKY’S DUNE is available on DVD and VOD from various sources. The trailer is below.

Deggsy’s Summary:

Director: Frank Pavich

Plot: 5 out of 5 stars

Gore: 1 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Deggsy. Open the mind!

More Brains! A Return to the Living Dead (2011)

MB4Okay, so it’s my birthday. I don’t like celebrating them, except that I suppose you celebrate the fact that you haven’t died yet, especially of something embarrassing. Burgomaster Hans Steininger died in 1567 when he broke his neck tripping over his own 4.5 foot long beard. Paul G Thomas, the co-owner of a textile company, got caught up in a spooling machine in 1987 and ended up suffocating inside a giant spool of wool. Chinese chef Pen Fang died last month when he was bitten by a cobra – or rather, a cobra head he’d chopped off twenty minutes before while preparing snake soup. Then there was actor Mike Myers, whose career died after THE LOVE GURU…

MB15Enough procrastination; I’m old and don’t have much time left in this world. Nearly thirty years ago, I sat alone (because I was a friendless loner whose only girlfriend at the time was a devout Christian who wouldn’t see such things) in a cinema in Belfast on an afternoon after classes, watching a little film called THE RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD. Pre-Internet, all  I knew about it beforehand was an article in Starlog magazine. And it didn’t prepare me for a high-octane blend of horror and comedy the likes of which I had never seen before. It remains in my Top Ten Horror Movies Of All Time. If you have not yet seen it – why not?

Over the years, I’ve waited for a decent DVD copy, the main problem being that copyright issues have made distributors change the original soundtrack (one of many positives about the movie). I’ve resorted to digging out an old VHS copy of the movie and converting it to a video file. and I wore out my CD with the soundtrack. Does it sound like I’m a fan? 

Linnea as Trash, about to achieve horror cinematic immortality...
Linnea as Trash, about to achieve horror cinematic immortality…

However, one of my birthday presents was MORE BRAINS! A RETURN TO THE LIVING DEAD (2011), a documentary on the making of this remarkable little film from Bill Philputt, who produced NEVER SLEEP AGAIN: THE ELM STREET LEGACY. I’ve always enjoyed documentaries on favourite movies (read my review of CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES here), and even movies that have never been made (I’m looking forward to watching JODOROWSKY’S DUNE, another gift). But this one was out of the blue…

Brian Peck, aka Scuz, with his own action figure. Cool!
Brian Peck, aka Scuz, with his own action figure. Cool!

Narrated by Brian Peck, who played the punk Scuz in the movie, MORE BRAINS! is a fast, informative, fun watch behind the making of the movie. They managed to assemble just about everyone involved in front of and behind the scenes: Peck, James Karen (Frank), Clu Gulager (Burt), Dona Calfa (Ernie), Thom Matthews (Freddy), Linnea Quigley (Trash), Jewel Shepard (Casey) and the rest (including Allan Trautman, who played “Tarman” the zombie who killed Suicide (the late Mark Venturini, who sadly died from leukaemia in 1996).

John Russo, co-creator of a thousand nightmares...
John Russo, co-creator of a thousand nightmares…

There’s also producers, editors, casting directors, the former head of Orion Pictures, and the movie’s writer/producer John Russo, who talks about his time with George Romero (after NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, when they parted ways, Russo retained the right to make movies with “Living Dead” in the title, which is why all of Romero’s subsequent zombies films were simply “Something of the Dead”).

Allan Trautman, getting into his Tarman suit...
Allan Trautman, getting into his Tarman suit…

It was also interesting to see how his original ideas and story for RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD changed by the time the late Dan O’Bannon, better known for writing scripts like ALIEN, BLUE THUNDER and LIFEFORCE, came in to direct the movie after Tobe Hooper left to do the aforementioned LIFEFORCE

And the finished product!
And the finished product!

(Russo later novelised the movie, making him an author who wrote two different novels with an identical title. I got a copy of that novelization, and was sorry I lost it, as it greatly expanded on the movie’s characters and their backgrounds).

James Karen, you rock, sir!
James Karen, you rock, sir!

Running at two hours, the documentary is longer than the actual film, but to its credit it’s not the marathon viewing experience of CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES or NEVER SLEEP AGAIN, but it’s still an entertaining slice of behind the scenes and retrospective. The interviews are consistently worth watching, with some of my favourite being James Karen and Clu Culager, veteran actors with a wry outlook on the business.

Oh, Linnea, you still have a special place in my heart. Though I may be aiming a little high…

The actual shoot took only six weeks, but they were said to be contentious ones, with the inexperienced Dan O’Bannon clashing with Gulager, firing special effects artist William Munnis halfway through, the cast arguments, the interference from Orion Studios, and the surprise from all concerned (especially the backers, who derided it as something akin to a porn movie) when the movie went on to be a critical and box-office hit.

You’ll learn some really fascinating things about the movie, including:

  • The Nazi origins of Ernie the Mortician (well, he does listen to German Afrika Corps marching songs on his Walkman, carries a Walther P38, and has a picture of Eva Braun in his morgue. You don’t need to be Columbo to figure that out)
  • What famous comic actor was meant to take Burt’s role before Clu Gulager
  • The embarrassing actions Linnea Quigley had to undergo surrounding her infamous nude scene
  • What the eye test chart in Burt’s office actually reads
  • How they made the reanimated butterflies in the warehouse appear to come to life (it was so simple and obvious I feel like a Kardashian for not knowing)
Our heroes, including the late Mark Venturini...
Our heroes, including the late Mark Venturini…

There’s a wealth of extras on the DVD set, though I’ve yet to view them all. One of them covers the production of the sequel, RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD PART 2 (which I reviewed here), and which is interesting for the fact that almost no one tries to paint this as anything more than a cheap rip-off of the first movie, but lacking any appreciable comedy or horror (though at least the special effects people need not feel ashamed). There’s additional features on the later LIVING DEAD movies, none of which I’ve seen.

Do ya wanna party???
Do ya wanna party???

The main documentary ends with some footage from an interview with O’Bannon, a moving piece further expanded in one of the Special Features, and I wish they had added more to the main doc. Otherwise, MORE BRAINS! is a must-see for fans of the original movie.

Deggsy’s Summary:

Director: Bill Philputt

Plot: 5 out of 5 stars

Gore: 5 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 5 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Deggsy. BBBRRRAAAIIINNNSSS!!!

Alien Encounter at Loch Ness (2013); Aleister Crowley: Legend of the Beast (2013); & Black Water Creek Sasquatch (2013)

Reality nessie coverOh boy. I’m doing a three for one review deal because frankly I couldn’t write up a full review for any one of these. ALIEN ENCOUNTER AT LOCH NESS and ALEISTER CROWLEY: LEGEND OF THE BEAST are both produced by Reality Entertainment. BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH was produced by 5th Underground. Let’s get to it.

ALIEN ENCOUNTER AT LOCH NESS starts out pretty interesting. I really don’t know much about old Nessie other than the few terrible fake pictures taken of the monster and paraded around for decades as “proof for her existence” even though a few of the photographers came forward and confessed to their fakery. But this documentary starts off by going into the history of the sightings (all the way back to the 7th century) and then brings us pretty much up to date. The documentary also examines such issues as to why Nessie may have been able to escape detection in the modern era and gives completely natural and biological (i.e., evolutionary) explanations. These aspects of this film are interesting and informational. But then after the history we are introduced to a “well respected and worldwide scientific expert” with research and a first-hand encounter with old Nessie that will “blow our collective minds.”

uuhhh yeah ... I'm a fake picture!!
uuhhh yeah … I’m a fake picture!!

This “scientist,” who remains anonymous, claims that while doing research on Nessie, he witnessed a UFO descend over Loch Ness and after Nessie poked her head out of the water it seemed the UFO and Nessie were communicating. Yes, communicating. We then get this “scientist’s” research on the experience that is about as plausible as Creationist explaining to us how the world was created in just six days. Keep in mind that the motto of Reality Entertainment is, “Reality Is What You Make It,” and this “scientist” sure is making up his own reality!! There’s nothing convincing about his evidence or research to suggest that the Loch Ness Monster has any connection whatsoever to aliens and UFOs. The strength of this documentary lies in the first half when we get the history of the creature and the sightings. But if you’d like or need a good laugh then by all means watch this “scientist” make a complete ass out of himself!! I am recommending this one.

Summary for ALIEN ENCOUNTER AT LOCH NESS:

Plot: 3 out of 5 stars

Gore: 0 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

 

Reality crowley coverLabeled as the wickedest man alive and even called “The Great Beast 666” by his own mother, Aleister Crowley is probably a name most of my readers will recognize. ALEISTER CROWLEY: LEGEND OF THE BEAST is a docu-bio-drama that sets out to better understand the man who most notably was (wrongly) referred to as a “satanist.” We join Crowley (played by Henry Amphlett) on his deathbed as he remembers various influential parts of his life. He recalls his strict Christian upbringing and how he rejected his faith in order to pursue Western esoteric knowledge, poetry, philosophy, and mountaineering. Crowley, we soon learn, wasn’t an evil man but was in fact an extremely intelligent, knowledge-seeking individual and an important figure (perhaps the first) in the counter-culture movement (which in his life time, 1875-1947, was seen as ‘wicked’). In short, Crowley was a pretty amazing man who we think we know but in fact know very little about.

The man of the hour, Aleister Crowley.
The man of the hour, Aleister Crowley.

This docu-bio-drama sets out to convey all this to the viewer, but there was one problem. ALEISTER CROWLEY: LEGEND OF THE BEAST is so fucking boring!! Seriously. This clocks in at 80 minutes but I kept nodding off. It took me about two hours to finally get through it. And then I saw that Dom Lenoir wrote and directed this and it all made sense. Lenoir is also the co-writer and co-director (along with Tim Osgood) of 2012s NIGHTSCAPE: DARK REIGN OF THANATOS, which made my “10 Worst Horror Films of 2012” list. And it’s really a shame because this Crowley docu-bio-drama has a good heart and has lots of well researched interesting things to say. It just says it in the worst way possible. I can only recommend this one to those who really want to learn about the real Aleister Corwley. But even to these people I’d recommend reading up on him on Wikipedia instead!!

Summary for ALEISTER CROWLEY: LEGEND OF THE BEAST:

Director: Dom Lenoir (& writer)

Plot: 2 out of 5 stars

Gore: 0 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

 

Reality sasquatch coverAnd this brings us to BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH, also known as just BLACK WATER CREEK as well as BLACK WATER CREEK: THE LEGEND OF SASQUATCH. Why so many titles? I’m guessing that every time the filmmakers and production company get a bad review they change the name to trick people into thinking this is a different film. No, seriously. If I would have seen this film last year it would have easily topped my “Worst of 2013” list, hands down. I’ve never seen such a poorly filmed, written, and acted film in my life, and coming from me who has seen hours of shitty films, that means something. There’s no one redeemable thing about BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH. Most scenes are so dark you can’t see what’s going on; the background noise in most scenes is so loud you can’t hear the dialogue; and there is no plot. Seriously, the plot is non-existent. The acting was also horrendous across the board and after witnessing the acting I was hoping for more dark scenes that were drowned out by background noise.

BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH is directed by Marshall Ever and Mark Shell and was “written” by Ever, Shell, Jon Firman, and Chad Pettit. But at least this film answers the ago old question, “How many writers does it take to make a truly shitty film?”

Four. The answer is four.

All the people involved with making this film should be ashamed of themselves. This is another example of a film that looks like a few drunk buddies got together on a whim to make a film. They grabbed a shitty camera, no lights, no mics, and just let the actors ad-lib everything with the hopes of assembling something that is kind of coherent during the editing process. Here’s the level of dialogue in this turd:

“Somethin’s tearing the faces off people … that ain’t right.”

"I shit out more interesting things than this film!!"
“I shit out more interesting things than this film!!”

It’s one thing to make a piece of shit like this, but it’s something completely different when a distribution company picks it up and plans on exposing it to the public to try and make money off of it. I’ve seen amateur home movies that were more interesting and full of better actors!!

I’ve wasted enough of my life on BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH. Just stay away!!

Summary for BLACK WATER CREEK SASQUATCH:

Directors: Marshall Ever & Mark Shell

Plot: 0 out of 5 stars

Gore: 0 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

All Three Films Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

Stay Bloody!!!