Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse (2015) … Zombie Kitties & Zombie Titties!!!

If you can’t tell from the title of the film, SCOUTS GUIDE TO THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE is not meant to be taken seriously. This one came in right at the end of 2015 and it was a very welcome addition not just to the zombie sub-genre, but to the horror-comedy sub-genre as well. Writers Carrie Lee Wilson, Emi Mochizuki, and Christopher Landon (who also directed) give viewers a great balance of horror and comedy, and they didn’t forget about the zombies either!!

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SCOUTS GUIDE TO THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE begins where so many zombie films before it began—in a laboratory. It is night time and the majority of scientists are gone. Left in one lab is a researcher burning the midnight oil and a goofy janitor, Ron (Blake Anderson), who you may recognize from Comedy Central’s WORKAHOLICS). Ron screws up big time and accidentally releases the subject that the scientist was working on, who I’m sure you already guessed is infected with a zombie virus. The virus spreads quickly and in no time the nearby town becomes overrun with the undead.

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Lucky for the town (and the world), three best friends, who happen to be Boy Scouts, are in the woods on “business.” Augie (Joey Morgan) is receiving the highest award a Scout can  get, but his two friends, Carter (Logan Miller) and Bed (Tye Sheridan) have grown weary of being scouts and feel like idiots dressed in the uniform when around the ladies. They are planning on telling Augie they are going to leave the Scouts when they got interrupted by a pesky zombie.

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You can pretty much guess where this is all headed, but the writers managed to inject some new ideas into this film, and I had a lot of fun with it. The zombies looked great and were not easy to kill. The three Scouts meet up with Denise (Sarah Dumont), a hottie who used to go to their high school but dropped out and now works in a strip club. Sure she is the “stripper with a heart of gold” character, but she is also a hottie (I think I already mentioned that) and she kicks some serious ass. There’s a great scene inside the strip club that’ll have you on the edge of your seat, and the situation the group gets into in the jail is classic. All the characters are well written and all the actors do a damn fine job.

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Eventually the guys have to rely of what they learned in Boy Scouts to save themselves and all their friends, and it is a great scene when we see them in the hardware store making some homemade weapons. The ending has a great payoff and the final battle scene offers some good gore as well as an oral sex scene that will remind you of RE-ANIMATOR.

 

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SCOUTS GUIDE TO THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE is a lot of fun and will show you there is life—or undeath—beyond THE WALKING DEAD. With some great practical effects, ferocious zombies, and the best set of zombie titties you’ll ever see, this is one fun movie.

There's even a little zombie pussy!!
There’s even a little zombie pussy!!

My Summary:

Director: Christopher Landon

Plot: 4 out of 5 stars

Gore: 6.5 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 4 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

Stay Bloody!!!

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The Green Inferno Now Available on DVD & Blu-ray

I think one of the most enjoyable horror releases in the theaters last year was Eli Roth’s THE GREEN INFERNO (my review). This was Roth’s love letter to the Italian cannibal sub-genre of the 1970s and 80s. The film boasted all the elements that made films such as ZOMBIE HOLOCAUST, CANNIBAL FEROX, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, and JUNGLE HOLOCAUST (damn, they do love their “holocausts”) so damn fun!! Broadly written characters, intentionally bad dialogue, gross-out special effects, and natives, who although butcher and dismember the Westerners, do so with an air of innocence. Oh yeah, and nature stock footage. Ya gotta have your nature stock footage!!

When Natives Attack!!
When Natives Attack!!

THE GREEN INFERNO his digital HD around Christmas time and has recently been released on DVD and Blu-ray. The film looks beautiful and visually has such a stark contrast to the horrors going on in the film. You can also enjoy some great commentary from Roth, producer Nicolas Lopez, and actors Lorenza Izzo, Aaron Burns, Kirby Bliss Blanton, and Daryl Sabara. THE GREEN INFERNO was one of my favorite horror films of 2015 and the Blu-ray is a most welcome addition to my collection.

What dod you think about THE GREEN INFERNO? Sound off below in the comments section.

Stay Bloody!!!

Welcome to the village!!
Welcome to the village!!

New Clips Drop for Upcoming Horror Film, The Forest

Let the new horror released for 2016 begin!! First up is a new clip for the upcoming film, THE FOREST. THE FOREST is directed by Jason Zada, is written by Ben Ketai, Sarah Cornwell, and Nick Antosca, and stars Natalie Dormer, Taylor Kinney, Yukiyoshi Ozawa, and Eoin Macken. Check out the plot synopsis:

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Rising with terrifying grandeur at the base of Mt. Fuji in Japan, the legendary real-life Aokigahara Forest is the suspense-filled setting of the supernatural thriller. A young American woman, Sara (Natalie Dormer of “Game of Thrones” and “The Hunger Games”), journeys there in search of her twin sister, who has mysteriously disappeared. In the company of expatriate Aiden (Taylor Kinney of “Chicago Fire”), Sara enters the forest having been well warned to “stay on the path.” Determined to discover the truth about her sister’s fate, Sara will have to face the angry and tormented souls of the dead that prey on anyone who dares come near them. These malevolent spirits lying in wait for Sara at every turn will plunge her into a frightening darkness from which she must fight to save herself.

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The film is now out in select theaters and has some pretty stiff competition. STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS is still dominating the box office, and the new film, THE REVENANT is also taking a chunk out of ticket sales. To promote THE FOREST more, the studio has released a few clips from the film. Enjoy!!

Stay Bloody!!!

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The Horror on Netflix: What’s Coming & Going

Check out all the horror films that are coming and going on Netflix for January 2016:

NEW ADDITIONS:

netflix constantine

CONSTANTINE (2005)

In this Keanu Reeves version, audiences are introduced to John Constantine–a man who has literally been to Hell and back and a man who battles his own demons!

netflix curve

CURVE (2015)

A young woman becomes trapped in her car after a hitchhiker causes her to have an automobile accident.

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TURBO KID (2015)

In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, a comic book fan dons the persona of his favourite hero to save his enthusiastic friend and fight a tyrannical overlord.

netflix wax

HOUSE OF WAX (2005)

A group of unwitting teens are stranded near a strange wax museum and soon must fight to survive and keep from becoming the next exhibit.

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SHARKNADO 3: OH HELL NO (2015)

A monstrous tornado unleashes ravenous sharks from Washington, D.C., all the way down to Orlando, Florida.

netflix z nation

Z NATION, SEASON 2

Three years after the zombie virus has gutted the country, a team of everyday heroes must transport the only known survivor of the plague from New York to California, where the last functioning viral lab waits for his blood.

netflix kevin

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN (2011)

Kevin’s mother struggles to love her strange child, despite the increasingly vicious things he says and does as he grows up. But Kevin is just getting started, and his final act will be beyond anything anyone imagined.

netflix duck

FROM DUSK TILL DAWN, SEASON 2

A Texas Ranger is in hot pursuit of the infamous Gecko brothers and their hostages. They all end up trapped in a desert bar secretly run by vampires and discover a vampire conspiracy.

WHAT’S LEAVING:

A CLOCKWORK ORANGE 

AMERICAN PSYCHO 

AMERICAN PSYCHO 2 

CORPSE BRIDE 

CONAN THE BARBARIAN

PARANORMAL HOME INSPECTORS 

ROSEMARY’S BABY 

SKELETON, INC. 

THE MACHINIST

Stay Bloody!!!

A Christmas Horror Story (2015) … Krampus, Ghosts, & Zombie Elves!!

 

Back in the 1980s it was easy to make a Christmas horror film. Slap a Santa suit on a deranged killer and the script practically wrote itself. Now that the Christmas demon, Krampus, has become ingrained in North American minds, most modern-day Xmas horror flicks will have some kind of mention of this evil bastard. Furthermore, being that the anthology has made quite the comeback over the last few years, it only seems natural to bring this format to the holiday-horror arena. Add these ingredients together and voila! A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY is born.

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Taking inspiration from 2007s TRICK R’ TREAT, A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY follows a similar format with four different stories that are loosely connected. I also liked that the four stories aren’t told from beginning to end in one shot. The stories are woven together which adds more suspense and tension to them. The framework of the anthology is a radio DJ, Dangerous Dan (William Shatner), whose radio program is hosting a live broadcast with Santa from the local mall. As the night goes on, not only does Dangerous Dan become more and more drunk, but more and more bizarre stories emerge in the small town. Eventually there even seems to be a massacre at the mall itself. The wraparound story didn’t at first seem to offer too much to the overall film–it honestly felt like nothing more than homage to Adrienne Barbeau’s role in the 1980 film, THE FOG–but by the end of the movie the wraparound ended up being the most compelling and interesting story of the bunch.

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The first story, my favorite of the anthology, is about Santa (George Buza) fighting off a horde of elves who have been stricken with a virus that turns them into zombies. This story has the most action and gore in it, and it is fun as hell to watch Santa using various Christmas-themed items to hold back and kill off the zombified elves. Again, this story is chopped up into smaller segments and is shown over the duration of the anthology. This was a great idea because we get a bunch of cliffhangers that make us anticipate and eagerly await the next segment.

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In the second story, a group of friends–Dylan (Shannon Kook), Caprice (Amy Forsyth), Molly (Zoé De Grand Maison), and Ben (Alex Ozerov)–investigate an old, closed down covent that use to house unwed mothers. This is your standard ghost-possession story and didn’t really have much of an impact on me. The acting was strong and the story was good, but let’s face it, a ghost story is a ghost story!! Thankfully the ending of this segment got dark (more on this below).

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The next story has a great setup and payoff. In it, a family heads out into the woods, unaware they are on someone’s private property, to cut down a Christmas tree. As they are leaving the woods, their young son, Will (Orion John), disappears for a few minutes. The father, Scott (Adrian Holmes) finds him and they all head home. Almost immediately Scott and his wife Kim (Oluniké Adeliyi), who have a very strained relationship, notice that their son is acting odd. He suddenly has a voracious appetite and a vicious little mean streak. The reveal for this story is definitely the most unexpected in the entire anthology.

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In the last story, a miserable, selfish family goes to visit an older relative and accidentally attracts the attention of Krampus, the Christmas Devil. They are stalked in the woods by the creature and their only chance of survival is to put aside their petty issues and come together as a family. Good luck with this bunch!!

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Like I mention above, the acting is terrific in all the stories. No actor stood out as being amateurish or just plain bad. Buza, who plays Santa in the zombie story, stands out in his performance of the jolly one. Buza takes the typical character of Santa and believably transforms it into an action hero to rival Bruce Campbell’s Ash from the EVIL DEAD franchise. But the real power of this story comes in at the end of the film when we see how the Santa-fighting-zombies story fits into the wraparound story. Very clever!! All the stories get very dark as well. This is definitely not a film you want to watch with younger children. A few of the stories seem lighthearted in the beginning but all delve into some really dark territory by the end.

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A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY will remind you more of TRICK R’ TREAT than any other recent anthology film, and I had a lot of fun with this one. With great acting, fantastic special f/x, and talented directs, A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY is a must-watch film this Christmas season (you’ll also like it if your Jewish or Muslim as well. Just sayin). Don’t miss this one!!

My Summary:

Directors: Grant Harvey, Steven Hoban, & Brett Sullivan

Plot: 4 out of 5 stars for the overall anthology

Gore: 7 out of 10 skulls for the overall anthology

Zombie Mayhem: 4 out of 5 brains for the first story

Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

Stay Bloody!!!

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Krampus: The Reckoning (2015) … Voodoo Dolls & Fire!!

Krampus. This dark companion of old Saint Nick seems to be getting more popular with every passing Christmas. And why not? There’s a lot of fertile material to be mined from Krampus. Santa rewards the good kids with presents while Krampus punishes the bad children by beating their asses with tree limbs and whips. Of course there is the new film by TRICK R’ TREAT director, Michael Dougherty, titled simply KRAMPUS (review to come), and there is also the 2013 indie horror film, KRAMPUS: THE CHRISTMAS DEVIL, written and directed by Jason Hull. This 2013 film was a ton of fun and gave us  great history of what Krampus is and why he does what he does.

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Now there is KRAMPUS: THE RECKONING–a pretty dramatic title if you ask me. This is a rather disjointed, confused film that seems to not know what it wants to do with the legend of Krampus, and ends up giving us a final product that resembles something more along the lines of a revenge flick. The story revolves around a little girl, Zoe (Amelia Haberman), who lives with some uncaring and downright mean foster parents. One night Zoe produces a small voodoo-looking Krampus doll and before you can say “chestnuts roasting,” the creature appears and kills the negligent foster parents. Now Zoe is in the hospital and Rachael (Monica Engesser) a child psychologist who works with the police on various cases, is brought in to evaluate Zoe and to see if she can tell them any details about what happened to her foster parents. 

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Zoe is an odd little girl who doesn’t try to get long with the other kids in the hospital, and she also seems confrontational with a few of the hospital staff. Detective O’Connor (James Ray) works with Rachael to try and get to the bottom of the mysterious deaths. But when one of the male nurses from the hospital dies in a similar manner as the foster parents, all the signs point to Zoe somehow being involved. The plot is unraveled–very slowly–until we get an ending that will have you scratching your head. 

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KRAMPUS: THE RECKONING has a lot of problems, but the acting wasn’t one of them. Director Robert Conway, who also wrote the film, put together a strong cast of actors who do a good job with the material. Haberman (Zoe) is a great young actress who puts in a convincing performance and plays her role well. She comes across innocent and as a victim when needed, but she is also able to convey her darker side as the film progresses. The actors who play Rachael and the detective also give strong performances as they slowly come to realize that Zoe is not the child they thought she was. Unfortunately, the main problem here is with the story. There’s a good story buried within the script, but there just wasn’t enough of a plot to fill the ninety-minute run time. The film drags in many places and as you watch it you’ll find yourself repeating, “They could have lost this scene in order to tighten up the film” over and over again. What story we have would have been perfect for a thirty-five to forty-five minute short film. 

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The other problem I had here–which turns out to be a huge problem–was the entire Krampus aspect. The film opens on Christmas Eve with a grandmother telling her grandchild about the legend of Krampus, but after the opening credits the Christmas setting is abandoned. We get voodoo dolls, revenge plots, and even hints of ghosts. As far as staying true to the actual legend of Krampus, KRAMPUS: THE RECKONING fails. In this film, Krampus becomes nothing more than a tool of revenge for a disturbed little girl who can summon the demon by making little voodoo dolls of the people she wants dead. I have a strong suspicion that writer-director Conway wrote a revenge-ghost story and the producers asked him if he was able to rework the story to include Krampus into it. Krampus is definitely a square peg that was trying to be pounded into a circular hole–it just didn’t fit. And Krampus’ preferred method of death? Fire. Again, nothing like the legend.

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Krampus is no doubt a hot subject this Christmas season, but KRAMPUS: THE RECKONING is far from being a Christmas horror film. This is a revenge-ghost story that sneaks in the Christmas devil in order to try and sell more tickets. Add to this the dreadfully slow pace and you’ve got yourself a tedious film to try and get through. Definitely pass on this one and instead check out Jason Hull’s KRAMPUS: THE CHRISTMAS DEVIL or Michael Dougherty’s KRAMPUS.

My Summary:

Director: Robert Conway (& writer)

Plot: 1.5 out of 5 stars

Gore: 3 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

Stay Bloody!!!

Krampus poster

Volume 2 in the Outbreak Series, Outbreak: The Mutation, is Now Available!!!

It is that time again, folks. Time for me to engage in a little self-less self-promotion. My new novel, OUTBREAK: THE MUTATION–the second in the OUTBREAK series–is now available in both paperback and in Ebook formats from Severed Press. My new novel, as well as all my other writings, can be found on my Amazon Author Page. Read on for the press release, followed by a teaser from OUTBREAK: THE MUTATION.

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Outbreak: The Mutation, Volume Two in theTrend-Bucking Zombie Trilogy, Releases a Deadly, Unstoppable Zombie Horde on the World—Hailed as “A Frightening, Violent, and Gory Un-Dead Story”

Masterfully crafted by Scott Shoyer, The Mutation, the powerful second volume in the Outbreak trilogy, continues to break the stagnant mold of zombie fiction as it ensnare and brings readers along in a deadly last chance attempt to save the world from complete annihilation. The Mutation takes place two years after a deadly virus swept across the world. Not only does Shoyer have his readers follow two groups of people as they fight for survival, but he again takes readers where they have never been before—this time on a horrifying trip inside the minds of the deadly zombies themselves. The Mutation is intense, violent, and brings the genre back from the dead.

For Immediate Release

Austin, Texas – While nobody will deny zombie fiction’s huge surge in popularity, both readers and critics alike are currently crying out for wholly unique, mould-breaking narratives that don’t succumb to the recycling of the same old ideas. Thankfully, Scott Shoyer has stepped up to the plate with gusto.

Volume one of Shoyer’s Outbreak trilogy has already injected literally new blood into the market. In The Hunger, readers were captivated as a seemingly innocent day at the zoo led to a violent and world-threatening zombie apocalypse. In volume two, The Mutation, Shoyer further explores the world that he created in volume one and details how two groups of survivors are coping with their fight for survival. In true Shoyer style, he now explores new territory by taking the reader on a horrifying trip inside the minds of the deadly zombies themselves.

Synopsis:

Zombies have overrun the world making human beings an endangered species. The zombies are getting stronger, smarter, and deadlier. The remaining human survivors are finding it more and more difficult to fight them off. Amidst this apocalyptic war, two separate groups of survivors are drawn to the small, seemingly dead town of Spicewood, Texas—but for very different reasons. There is Walt and his group of ex-addicts, and Wilder and Butsko, two of the only characters who made it out of The Hunger alive. Each group believes that what lies in Spicewood, Texas could alter the course of the war with the dead. But what they couldn’t know is that what also lies in Spicewood, Texas might be the source of the outbreak itself and the very end to all life on earth.

“The Mutation continues to explore the world I created in The Hunger,” explains the author, founder of the popular AnythingHorror.com website and community. “In the first volume I traced the origin of the outbreak back to those lovable creatures that live all around us—animals. Readers loved the source of the outbreak. But now the virus has mutated, and The Mutation will take readers into the same world, but with seemingly unstoppable zombies who have gotten stronger, smarter, and deadlier.”

Continuing, “The Outbreak trilogy was designed from the ground up to give the zombie genre something new. As strange as it sounds, zombie fiction can often have a distinct lack of zombies, with the human drama taking center stage and dragging readers away from what they really want—zombie action. I promise my readers that the violence, gore, and horror will keep coming at them hard and fast, while also having interesting, strong characters that drive the narrative forward.”

It is a creative cocktail that appears to be working; readers have come out in force with rave reviews for volume one, Outbreak: The Hunger. For example, one Amazon customer comments, “This was an exhilarating read. The author brings a new and terrifying twist to the zombie horror genre. I read this book in one nail-biting sitting. The unimaginable horrors of this story will keep me up for many nights and will have me looking at my beloved pets with a wary eye. Great read.”

Early praise for Outbreak: The Mutation suggests Shoyer has successfully continued what he started in The Hunger. David Bernstein, author of Toxic Behemoth, writes, “Shoyer raises the stakes with his second book in the Outbreak series, giving us an even smarter, deadlier and harder to kill enemy. Loaded with brutal violence and military action and an ending that took me by total surprise, Outbreak: The Mutation is a must read!”

Joe McKinney, award-winning author of Dead City and The Dead Won’t Die writes, “Scott Shoyer steps into the ring swinging as he continues with the next harrowing volume in the Outbreak series. As I’ve come to expect from him, he handles his action with a sure hand, both violent and furious, and his characters with unrelenting viciousness.”

Outbreak: The Hunger and Outbreak: The Mutation are both published by Severed Press. Outbreak: The Mutation is available on amazon.com in both eBook and paperback.

For more information about the author and his other published works, visit his Author Page on Amazon.

About the author, in his own words:

I’m a horror writer who is also a life long fan. I draw inspiration from everyday situations and then put them through my twisted filter to hopefully shock, disgust, and entertain you.

I find my heaviest influences from the writings of H.P. Lovecraft and Clive Barker. With my Outbreak trilogy I get to write about the sub-genre I grew up on—zombies—and while doing so I get to add my unique twist to it. In addition to zombies, I also love writing about more human monsters and I have many more ideas for novels, short stories, novellas, and scripts. I recently wrote a short script for a brutal, violent Joker-Batman confrontation, and I am currently writing a series of novellas that are heavily influenced by Lovecraft. I’ve created my own Lovecraftian world full of nightmarish creatures and madness—including horrible things that live in the darkness.

In addition to my two Outbreak novels, I currently have four short stories published in four different horror anthologies. You can check out all my writings on my Amazon Author Page.

Contact: Scott Shoyer / scott@anythinghorror.com

And here is a teaser from OUTBREAK: THE MUTATION:

1

Arboretum Area, Austin, TX

Two Years Ago

Her lifeless corpse lay splayed on the bed. The coppery smell of dried blood filled the air, and the buzz of flies on and around the corpse was deafening. Her intestines cascaded down the side of the bed like some macabre waterfall. There were bite marks and deep gashes littered all over her tiny body, but these weren’t the marks of scavenger animals. Her body was ravaged by human teeth that had been altered as a result of the virus—a virus which affected, and altered, many aspects of whomever it infected. The virus was alive, and wanted only one thing: to survive. It created an insatiable need in its host to infect other people. It may have started in lesser life forms like animals and insects, but it now craved to occupy the top of the food chain. 

That was what compelled John to do this to his little girl. The virus didn’t care about age, didn’t recognize family, and didn’t discriminate. Survival was its only goal.

John was now in the kitchen huddled over the corpse of his wife, Sarah. When Sarah had seen John attack their little girl, she’d been at first frozen in fear, but the screams coming from their daughter Fi had slapped her back to reality. Sarah had tried jumping on John, hitting him on the back and head, anything to get him to stop clawing and biting their daughter. Her strength, though, had been no match for his, and he’d effortlessly thrown her across the room with one arm.

The blood from Sarah’s head wound had flowed into her eyes, and she’d only heard the wet sounds coming from John’s mouth as he’d chewed on their young daughter. As dizzy as she’d been, Sarah cursed John as he’d pulled out Fi’s intestines and tore off bits in his mouth. She’d been glad that Fi no longer screamed. Her nightmare was over.

Sarah lay broken against the wall and had gently wept. Once John was through with their daughter, he’d turned his rabid, feral gaze toward Sarah.

No, John! Sarah had uselessly pleaded. What the hell are you doing? she’d screamed. Look what you did to your daughter… our little girl.

John had stopped and turned to look at the lifeless, desecrated body of his daughter. Something inside had recognized the tiny body on the bed. His tongue had danced across his bloody lips as he’d tried to remember. Images of animals and a zoo and a pretty girl with a knife sticking out of her belly had flashed through his mind, but they’d drifted away like steam from a boiling kettle.

My baby! Sarah cried out. Look what you did to my baby!

This had brought John back, and he’d turned violently toward the person on the floor. He’d been so hungry that it hurt. There’d been a searing pain in his stomach that had emanated out to the rest of his body. He’d felt he was on fire, and it had all been because of the hunger. He’d known the only thing that would satiate the pain was to feed.

His eyes had narrowed as he’d leapt onto the screaming woman. Sarah had no longer been his wife, no longer the woman he loved. The virus had no need for love. Sarah had been nothing but a pile of meat on the ground, and with an animalistic scream, he’d jumped on top of her and heard her thighbone snap at the force of his landing. He’d grabbed her hair and pulled backward. The last thing Sarah had felt or saw was his bloodstained teeth closing around her throat. John had thrashed his head and tore her throat out. 

He’d spit the bloody mass out and started ripping into her chest. He’d snapped her sternum in half as he went for her heart. The blood had made it impossible to tell where his body ended and hers began.

Sarah’s body had slid to the ground. John had then straddled her corpse and began to feed the hunger inside. It’d felt good to eat, and the pain went away for a while, but in the back of his mind he’d known the hunger would return. It always returned, and he always obeyed it.

2

Fi’s eyes opened, and she was confused. She looked around and vaguely recognized where she was, but wasn’t concerned about that so much as what she felt. She felt nothing. It was as though there was nothing below her neck. She tried to lean forward, but her arms wouldn’t obey her.

From across the room she heard strange, wet noises with the occasional grunt. Her curiosity got the best of her and she willed her arms to move. Her left arm flopped onto her chest and she felt the large hole in her abdomen. Her hand followed the trail out of the hole and realized what she felt were her own insides. Fi thought it was weird that she wasn’t panicking, but a warm sense of serenity washed over her body.

Finding her balance, she tried to focus on the noise across the room. She could see someone huddled down on the floor doing something, but details escaped her unfocused eyes. She gently grabbed the longest piece of her intestines hanging out of her and tucked it back in the hole. After it popped out twice, she tucked it under one of the bones she felt inside the hole.

She again focused her attention to the thing on the floor. Her feet shuffled as she made her way across the room, as she didn’t trust her balance to pick her feet off the floor and walk. As she got closer, she could see a man covered in blood eating something. In the back of her mind she thought she recognized him, but couldn’t form a concrete enough memory to finish the thought. 

A dull pain started to grow in what was left of her belly. Fi could feel the pain as it urged her on to fulfill some kind of task. Instinct took over, and she began to walk normally as she got closer to the person on the ground. The man was focused on his meal and didn’t hear or even notice the person standing behind him.

Then she remembered. “Daddy?” the question hissed out of her mouth. “What are you doing, Daddy?”

The thing in front of her didn’t acknowledge her, and anger began to rise from where the pain in her belly was. She didn’t know why she was angry, but she clenched her fists and asked once more: “Daddy?”

The anger welled up in her and her arm shot out and landed on her father’s head, pulling it back in a deadly angle. She heard the snap as the head went limp in her hand. When she looked past the dad-thing on the floor, she could see that he’d been eating her mom.

Fi’s head tilted to the side and she tried to understand what was going on. Before she realized what she was doing, she bent down and tore into her father. She loved the sensation of the flesh ripping underneath her fingers as blood poured from the wounds she created. She brought a crimson finger up to her lips and sucked on it. It was tepid and salty, but she didn’t really like the flavor. Fi wiped the bloody finger on her already-blood-splattered shirt and returned to tearing up the body. To an onlooker, Fi would’ve looked like a child who just discovered the fun of playing with Legos or Play-Doh. There was innocence in her play as she shredded her father to pieces.

As she sifted through the remains of her father’s body, she played with the organs and bones. She drew patterns in the blood as it pooled on the ground beside her. Tearing the body apart lessened her anger. It felt like water slowly running down a drain. Fi couldn’t even remember what had made her so angry just a few moments ago as she played in the gore.

Nothing seemed to matter as she played. Fi didn’t like that feeling of anger. She didn’t like the pain it caused her. One thing was for sure: she’d do anything to alleviate the pain.

Fi stood up and brushed the unrecognizable remains of her father aside with her toes and smiled gruesomely at the squeaky noise her foot made in the blood. From the corner of her eye, she saw her mother’s body begin to stir.

I must keep the anger away, Fi thought. Anger brings the pain.

Just before her mother rose, Fi jumped on her and began tearing at the newly reanimated body.

Her giggles became laughs as she played with her mommy.

So if you are looking for a zombie novel that more than dishes up the gore and violence and actually has zombies in it, then I think you are going to love my second novel. Here is the link once again.

Stay Bloody!!!

 

Bone Tomahawk (2015)

BT7Because I’m a writer, I’m also a shameless self-publicising exhibitionist, so I will take every appropriate opportunity to hawk my work or work in progress. At the moment, it’s the latter, a novel 90% completed, about a teenage cowgirl battling a murderous Skinwalker in 1895 Manchester (and yes, I will be looking for any kind folk who might like to read some and let me know how brilliant I am).

As the brief description I’ve given might hint, it’s a mix of the Horror and Western. it’s not an easy mix. If it’s done right, it’s Stephen King’s The Dark Tower. If it’s done wrong, it’s BILLY THE KID VS DRACULA. One movie that has stuck with me for years was THE WHITE BUFFALO (1977) starring Charles Bronson as Wild Bill Hickok, pursuing the titular creature in a cheap Western pastiche of JAWS that, if you ignored the terrible special effects used to portray the beast, succeeded with regard to acting and authenticity of setting and dialogue.

A lot of what I liked in THE WHITE BUFFALO made me appreciate S. Craig Zahler’s BONE TOMAHAWK, though I acknowledge that it can polarise viewers.

Quick, send for Captain Spaulding!
Quick, send for Captain Spaulding!

The movie opens with a man getting his throat slit, courtesy of petty crooks Purvis (David Arquette) and Buddy (Sid Haig! Hi, Sid!), who rob the bodies and, while they’re on a roll, steal from what looks like an Indian burial ground. This desecration earns Buddy a death too soon (Bye Sid!) but Purvis escapes, though later he’s spotted burying his ill-gotten gains by Chicory (Richard Jenkins), a “backup deputy” for the town of Bright Hope. Chicory alerts Sheriff Franklin Hunt (Kurt Russell) about the suspicious activity, and Hunt ends up shooting the perp in the leg.

Hunt sends for Samantha O’Dwyer (Lili Simmons) to tend to the leg in the jail (the town doctor is too drunk to deal with it, of course), leaving behind her husband Arthur (Patrick Wilson) behind with his own broken leg. The next morning however, Hunt discovers that someone came to the jail during the night and took Samantha, Hunt’s other deputy Nick (Evan Jonigkeit) and the drifter, the only clue being an Indian arrow left in the jail.

There's Big Trouble in Little Deadwood...
There’s Big Trouble in Little Deadwood…

But as a local Native American tells Hunt (and us, the audience), this was the handiwork of no Native American, but a truly savage, aboriginal tribe of cannibal Troglodytes living in a cave nearby. (Well, I suppose they *are* technically Native Americans, but we need a disclaimer, because let’s face it, Hollywood has stomped on actual Native Americans for literally more than a century).

The Magnificent Seven Ride! (Okay, there's just four of them. And they're walking. Look, just go with it, okay?)
The Magnificent Seven Ride! (Okay, there’s just four of them. And they’re walking. Look, just go with it, okay?)

Hunt decides to go ahead and try to rescue Samantha, his deputy and the drifter, reluctantly taking along Chicory, Samantha’s injured husband Arthur, and John Brooder (Matthew Fox), a gunfighter said to have extensive experience as an Indian fighter. But the quartet face danger along the way, not just from bandits and the Troglodytes but from within, and Arthur’s leg and Brooder’s douchebaggery threaten to derail them…

Eat it, Russell!
Eat it, Russell!

BONE TOMAHAWK boasts a decent cast, and a script that offers the usual Western tropes (the solid Sheriff, the comic relief deputy, the gunslinger) but gives them nuances and real personality (the deputy Chicory, for instance, at first seems like an incompetent drunk, but along the way you get to know him and root for him). The dialogue also has an authentic feel (just like in WHITE BUFFALO), where you get the impression that these are people who live in another age (I loved the series DEADWOOD, but their decision to have the characters speak with modern dialogue was off-putting to me).

He needs to get out more...
He needs to get out more…

The gore and blood is also unflinching, in particular a scene where a captive of the Troglodytes is stripped, scalped, and has a spike inserted where only alien probes would dare go… Even scenes such as when Arthur’s broken leg has to be reset is played with a gritty realism that made me wince.

Boo!
Boo!

The movie is slow-paced. Many great Westerns are, they’re not all gunfights and bar-room brawls (my favourite Western of all time, Howard Hawks’s RIO BRAVO (1959) is nearly two and a half hours long and consists of long stretches of John Wayne chatting with his buddies or flirting with Angie Dickinson, and I’m perfectly okay with that), but anyone expecting a non-stop orgy of ultra-violence will be disappointed until our heroes actually reach the home of the Troglodytes. There’s also a low-budget feel to it (the town seems to consist of maybe eight people in total).

But if the movie has any major failing, it will be that it will be too horrific for Western fans, and too Westerny for horror films. But that’s the nature of hybrids. BONE TOMAHAWK is available is several different formats, and the trailer is below.

Deggsy’s Summary:

Director: S. Craig Zahler

Plot: 4 out of 5 stars

Gore: 5 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem: 0 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Deggsy. Yippee Kay-Yay…

The Lovecraftian-Noir, The Last Case of August T. Harrison, Now Available!!

Here’s a film I’ve been waiting for all year!! THE LAST CASE OF AUGUST T. HARRISON is described as “a contemporary Loveraftian film-noir.” The film is written and directed by Ansel Faraj and stars Jerry Lacy, Maggie WagnerLisa Blake Richards, Kelly Erin Decker, Max Landwirth, Nathan Wilson, and Eric Gorlow. Check out the plot crunch:

LAST CASE OF AUGUST HARRISON POSTER copy

August T. Harrison, private eye, comes out of retirement to solve a bizarre missing persons case, but finds himself caught in the middle of a dark conspiracy involving the writings of H.P. Lovecraft.

THE LAST CAST OF AUGUST T. HARRISON is now available on Vimeo on Demand, and I can tell you that this film just went to the top of my list of films to watch this weekend!! You can also learn more about the film on its official web site. Check out the trailer below followed by the official press release.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

A Film by Ansel Faraj

“Ever hear of H.P. Lovecraft…?”

Hollinsworth Productions is excited to present The Last Case of August T. Harrison, a dark neo- noir thriller influenced by Val Lewton and H.P. Lovecraft; Now Available on Vimeo On Demand!

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Set in and around Venice Beach, California – August T. Harrison, private eye, comes out of retirement to solve what seems at first to be a bizarre missing persons case, but as he digs deeper, he finds himself caught in the middle of a dark conspiracy involving the writings of H.P. Lovecraft. Are Lovecraft’s tales just fiction? Or do they hold the secrets of the cosmos?

The film stars Jerry Lacy (Dark Shadows, Play it Again Sam) as August T. Harrison, Maggie Wagner, David Graham, Lisa Blake Richards, Eric Gorlow, Max Landwirth, and Nathan Wilson as H.P. Lovecraft himself.

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The film is written and directed by Ansel Faraj, director of 2013’s Doctor Mabuse and the 2014 web series Theatre Fantastique. Ansel Faraj, Nathan Wilson, Rosa Taylor-Faraj and Roxie Zelden are the film’s producers. The score is composed by award winning composer Bill Wandel.

*Official Selection – 2015 Depth of Field Int’l Film Festival Winner: Best Film (Sci-Fi), Best Actor- Jerry Lacy,

Best Supporting Actress- Maggie Wagner *Official Selection – 2016 Other Venice Film Festival

*Official Selection – 2015 August Los Angeles Independent Film Festival – Official Nominee: Best Feature Film,

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Best Director-Ansel Faraj,
Winner: Best Ensemble Cast – Jerry Lacy, Maggie Wagner,
Nathan Wilson, David Graham, Eric Gorlow, Max Landwirth, Lisa Richards

*Official Selection – 2015 Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival (September) Winner: Best Feature Film (Drama),

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Best Director (Feature Film) – Ansel Faraj *Official Selection – 2015 Los Angeles CineFest (October)

www.hollinsworthproductions.com

Stay Bloody!!!

Last Case poster

 

 

Eli Roth’s The Green Inferno Coming to DVD & Blu-ray

Eli Roth’s THE GREEN INFERNO will be getting a digital release and a DVD/Blu-ray release. Love or hate this film (I loved it–my review), THE GREEN INFERNO is definitely the type of film the genre needed in 2015. For those who saw it in the theater, how could you not love watching a bunch of entitled, annoying “social warriors” getting munched up by some cannibals? I certainly loved seeing it. THE GREEN INFERNO will be released on various digital platforms on December 22, 2015 and then will get a DVD/Blu-ray release on January 5, 2016. Check out the press release:

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FROM THE MIND-BLOWING IMAGINATION OF THE WRITER AND DIRECTOR WHO BROUGHT YOU HOSTEL AND CABIN FEVER
 
THE GREEN INFERNO

AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL HD DECEMBER 22, 2015 
AND COMING TO BLU-RAY AND DVD ON JANUARY 5, 2016
FROM UNIVERSAL PICTURES HOME ENTERTAINMENT

 
“THE GREEN INTERNO IS LIKE A GLORIOUS THROWBACK TO THE DRIVE-IN MOVIES OF MY YOUTH: BLOODY, GRIPPING, HARD TO WATCH, BUT YOU CAN’T LOOK AWAY”
– Stephen King, @StephenKing 

Universal City, California, November 9, 2015 – An international goodwill mission goes terrifyingly wrong in The Green Inferno, the highly anticipated return to classic cult horror from iconic director Eli Roth (Cabin Fever, Hostel  1&2 ), available on Digital HD December 22, 2015 and Blu-ray and DVD as well as On Demand on January 5, 2016, from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. The Green Inferno is a gruesomely spectacular journey into the heart of darkness that will have audiences on the edge of their seats.
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New York college student Justine (Lorenza Izzo) meets student activist Alejandro (Ariel Levy) when he goes on a hunger strike on behalf of underpaid janitors. Smitten, she agrees to help Alejandro undertake his next project: rescuing an Amazon village from destruction by a greedy multinational corporation.  But Justine soon comes to regret her decision when their plane crashes in the Peruvian jungle and the students realize they are not alone. No good deed goes unpunished as the well-meaning students are captured by the cannibalistic tribe they came to save.
 
The first feature film directed by Roth since Hostel: Part II, The Green Inferno stars Lorenza Izzo (Aftershock, “Hemlock Grove”), Ariel Levy (The Stranger, Best Worst Friends), Aaron Burns (The Stranger, Best Worst Friends) and Kirby Bliss Blanton (Project X, Candy From Strangers). The screenplay is by Eli Roth and Guillermo Amoedo (Knock Knock, Aftershock).
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BLU-RAYTM and DVD BONUS FEATURES
  • Feature Commentary – With co-writer, director and producer Eli Roth, producer Nicolás López, and stars Lorenza Izzo, Aaron Burns, Kirby Bliss Blanton, and Daryl Sabara

Here’s the red-band trailer in case you missed it:

Stay Bloody!!!