Jai Alexis

Well it was bound to happen. A horror movie about Escape rooms. Sure, Saw (2004) and Cube (1997) might be the most legendary horror movies to feature the subject. Spawning sequels and even a Saw theme escape room in Vegas, but there hasn’t been a film quite like this. Escape room is the new film coming soon in January to be. The film plot is simple but will eventually reveal the secrets behind everything shortly: Six strangers find themselves in circumstances beyond their control and must use their wits to survive. Now on paper this doesn’t really sound convincing or even worth a watch. However, while watching the trailer I am more than excited to see a movie that’s not only going to take place in a room or just one death trap, this movie has a wide range of traps, puzzles, clues and environments that would make any horror fan intrigue. There’s no rating for the movie yet, but I’m hoping for a Rated R and not just for language. A movie like this let’s pull all the stops because most likely this could be an interesting franchise. Plus, it has some great stars like Deborah Ann Woll who you’ll remember from True blood (2008-2014) and Tyler Labine Tucker and Dale vs Evil (2010) So let’s recap a movie about escape rooms where every item is a clue and every item could lead to their ultimate demise. Six strangers connected, and this is their “Hell” no time limit but no time to waste since the room will kill them with no second thought in a clever way. This is a big deal since next year we are getting a lot of great horror movies and what better way to start the new year than with a horror movie! Jan 2019 get ready to solve the puzzle of Escape Room.

 

Trailer review: Escape Room is the big budget version of Cube

Trailer review: Escape Room is the big budget version of Cube

Well it was bound to happen. A horror movie about Escape rooms. Sure, Saw (2004) and Cube (1997) might be the most legendary horror movies to feature the subject. Spawning sequels and even a Saw theme escape room in Vegas, but there hasn’t been a film quite like this. Escape room is the new film coming soon in January to be. The film plot is simple but will eventually reveal the secrets behind everything shortly: Six strangers find themselves in circumstances beyond their control and must use their wits to survive. Now on paper this doesn’t really sound convincing or even worth a watch. However, while watching the trailer I am more than excited to see a movie that’s not only going to take place in a room or just one death trap, this movie has a wide range of traps, puzzles, clues and environments that would make any horror fan intrigue. There’s no rating for the movie yet, but I’m hoping for a Rated R and not just for language. A movie like this let’s pull all the stops because most likely this could be an interesting franchise. Plus, it has some great stars like Deborah Ann Woll who you’ll remember from True blood (2008-2014) and Tyler Labine Tucker and Dale vs Evil (2010) So let’s recap a movie about escape rooms where every item is a clue and every item could lead to their ultimate demise. Six strangers connected, and this is their “Hell” no time limit but no time to waste since the room will kill them with no second thought in a clever way. This is a big deal since next year we are getting a lot of great horror movies and what better way to start the new year than with a horror movie! Jan 2019 get ready to solve the puzzle of Escape Room.

 




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Bounded by Evil is the newest supernatural movie coming soon

Bounded by Evil is the newest supernatural movie coming soon

When it comes to watching Indie horror movies it’s rare I get to see a supernatural film I was fortunate to watch the film BOUNDED BY EVIL (2018) written and directed by Eli Gray. The film is about “A seasoned writer working on his next novel while simultaneously facing a demonic force that’s lurking over his family.” I have to say the movie grabbed my attention with the lighting or set designs with its calm before the storm feel. The film feels like a lucid dream through where you as the audience member feel as if this is happening to you. Through out the film we see and hear pieces of a radio broadcast which plays a part for lead actor and producer JP DeStefano who plays the writer tormented by someone or something. Even though the film consists of others who are affected by the spirit we slowly begin to see him go insane from what’s going on. Now the main point is that yes it may take time to build up, but this is a lot of movies with character development which we find in the end what’s really going on. I won’t spoil the ending but say the film does have some interesting FX where we wonder if it was practical or computer generated. The movie doesn’t rely on over the top gore or anything to sell the film, but it does keep you entertained as there are several times you may jump including the ending which made wonder if they were going to do this, but ended up doing something else. I would say the best time to watch this film would be late at night like I did where I sat thinking, so how do I go to bed now? You can watch the trailer below

 

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, HALLOWEEN, HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, PARANORMAL, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Blessed are the children is a modern day story with an old school feel.

Blessed are the children is a modern day story with an old school feel.

Chris Moore has delivered a movie that uses today’s social commentary with an 80’s feel for a horror movie I saw “Blessed are the children” (2016) The film is about Traci Patterson (KALEY BALL) who decides to get an abortion after finding out she’s pregnant. After wards she seems to be haunted by someone or a group of people for her choice along with her friends Mandy Crane played (Keni Bounds) and Erin Peters (Arian Thigpen). From looking at the cover one would think this is a super natural film. Quite the contrary this is an old school slasher movie. While watching the movie I couldn’t help but feel, wow this is a good indie drama which for the first part plays out as it slowly builds up to the horror aspect that Chris quickly reminds you after all. When I talked to him about his film he stated “I like to ground my horror in a little reality” Chris has a deep-rooted passion for horror as you see the film with the opening credits which pays homage to the 80’s as well as the film itself which has a feel of old school slasher films. The killer has one intention punish the wicked for their sins. While watching the film there is one thing that caught me off where the film takes a turn. An interesting turn which I won’t spoil but kept me intrigued on how they were going to go forward and not be a typical Hollywood film of protagonist vs antagonist. At first the film has minimal gore to finally delivering more and more. I’m glad to see because with the film on such a shoe string budget Chris found a way to tell a great story with some clever fx, great acting as well where you enjoy the characters and see them as real friend’s vs actors pretending to be friends. The film does a great job of not really showcasing the killer’s face even at the end when you think we may see the person and find out more when we just know the basics, but then again should we really know more? Chris uses the simple formula of telling a great story. Cutting to the chase (no pun intended) without wasting the audience’s time. The movie comes out Tuesday to own or rent. Which if you are wanting to know where. Here is a link for the film

Posted by Jai Alexis in FEATURED CONTENT, HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, 0 comments
Essence is coming soon and you can help!

Essence is coming soon and you can help!

I had the pleasure to see the teaser trailer for the new film by Jeff KACMARYNSKI’SESSCENSE” the film has a real late 70’s vibe to it from what I saw and have to say I’m intrigued along with the grindhouse feel of the style of old film. The trailer gave a little bit of what to expect but didn’t reveal all too much which is good because seeing this I’m interested to see what will transpire and want to walk in  surprised on how it escalates. I was lucky enough to get a little more information from the Director on the plot and inspiration of the film “After the death of her son, Joanna discovers a hidden room in her home, with a power that could lead her back to him. However, the room instead, unleashes a malicious cosmic entity, that feeds on her fears and sanity, ultimately unleashing a terrible mind game. Our cast includes legendary Lynn Lowry, and veteran actress Maggie Wagner. We are doing a very psychedelic surreal horror film, influenced by Cronenberg, Lynch, Lovecraft , Argento and Fulci.” I have to wonder will we see body horror, over the top gore that will get under our skin? One thing is fore I myself can’t wait to see more. This will be his first feature film that he’s done since his shorts he did some time back DEAD THERAPY is featured in Wild Eye Releasing’s movie WELCOME TO HELL which all have won several awards. Right now there’s a indigo campaign so if you like to contribute by all means even a share helps! For more information here’s a direct link to the Indigogo campaign

 

 

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, FEATURED ARTISTS, HORROR NEWS, NEW RELEASES, SCI-FI HORROR, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 0 comments
Monikke Shame from Dragula Season 2 live in San Antonio

Monikke Shame from Dragula Season 2 live in San Antonio

 

I just got off work and headed down to the Webhouse to see a drag show. Not just any drag show, but Shawn Benet’s Madhouse. This was an event that I couldn’t afford to miss, Monikke Shame was headlining from Dragula season 2 and even though I missed the first part of the show from what I hear the first half amazing with the cast including Monikke using a stapler to staple tips to her body I told myself, “At least don’t miss the second half.” I do regret missing Miss Taint and Paradox Rei’s first half act. The neighborhood was quiet and dark it looked like something out of a horror movie no sounds or people. As I parked my car there were patrons coming in and out of the club. Smell of amazing food in the air provided by Webhouse which from what I been told have the best ribs in town as the song Bad Reputation by Joan Jett is playing. How appropriate. Walking into the club it was right when the first half ended D.J. Mr. Grim who is also the husband to Shawn Benet a power duo that has been working effortlessly together in the alternative drag scene together as I made my way in I was greeted by friendly faces and familiar performers I’ve seen numerous times c

hatting about or getting ready for the next performance. I immediately felt at home like all of Shawn’s shows. As stated Shawn has worked very hard to get where he is today from his very first performance to now hosting shows working with huge talent from Dragula season 1 and 2 and even working with his Haus being the first to bring Disasterina, Felony Dodger, and Monikkie Shame to Texas. Haus of Coven featuring Shawn Benet, Paradox Rei, The Lady Mystere Lopez, Nova Cain to newest member Miss Vanta Black. Shawn has made sure that every show is filled with something different, something cool and something for everyone. The vision his Haus has is: All drag is valid and that everyone should be themselves and

perform how they want to perform. I met him briefly as he was getting ready and he was able to say something quick: “My goal is to provide opportunites for performers who would normally be rejected from our cities drag community and to alter the perceptions of what drag is in this town” The second half began. Shawn came out doing a Zodiac killer theme. The theme for the evening was Masquerade as stated this isn’t your typical drag show. Imagine Gwar doing theater art showcases, but not so much blood or fake body parts flying around. Well that depends on who’s performing the night. The performers each bring something different to the stage showing off amazing make up, outfit and performances. The house was packed with some many people which is always best to show up early to make sure you get a good seat but with the venue itself it may not be huge but no matter where you are you’ll always see the show. Shawn does a great job not only bringing local talent but so many talented performers from around Texas showcasing their talents and making them feel at home especially the main events. Who Shawn and her husband treat as best friends showing them around the city and hanging out. There isn’t one person who stole the show but more so that everyone was amazing on stage whether it was (Britni Lebosabitch) doing their rendition of Closer by Nine Inch Nails with an assistant that the act became versatile of pain and pleasure to Twiggy Belladonna doing aerobatic splits where they’re fluid with their dance moves. Some performers I was watching for the first time such as Tessa Flowers from Houston who felt more like a headliner with their performance which got everyone hyped up for the headliner. Monikke Shame came out dancing, lip syncing to Lady Gaga throwing out fake pills of Xanax to the crowd. Coming out wearing one of her iconic mask. Imagine Leatherface doing drag performing to pop music. The crowd was cheering and hollering in support to this form of drag. Dragula may believe in horror/filth/glam but Shawn Benet believes in all drag is valid and if you’re looking to perform

with any look any style then try out. If you missed this show don’t miss their upcoming show with Erika Klash as well as their house shows and Voodoo.

Posted by Jai Alexis in ABNORMAL MUSINGS AND FREAKISH FACTS, EVENT REVIEWS, EVENTS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Extremity is the haunted attraction movie we need

Extremity is the haunted attraction movie we need

I recently did a trailer review for the movie Extremity. My anticipation and excitement grew for the film however there was that small bit of worry looming in the background thinking please don’t suck and please don’t end up being a run of the mill horror movie that fails on delivery. How wrong I was. Let’s breakdown how Extremity might be the horror movie you weren’t expecting with a subject that has been told before.

Extremity follows Dana Christina as she is still grieving over the tragic suicide of her sister. After countless sessions of therapy she still hasn’t gotten over anything and is still back to square one. With the newest haunt extreme attraction known as Perdition she ultimately signs over any freedom she has over to this attraction. The film takes place out in the middle of nowhere during winter and is being recorded by a Japanese film crew The people who go by Skulls, work for the attraction free range to do whatever, the movie relies on the participants fear what scares them including a list of things they don’t like or want to see which pretty much gives them an open door to do just that.

The film goes back and forth from present day to the past of Alison as each room unlocks a further piece of her troubled life whether it’s visits to her Therapist, arguments with her girlfriend to even going as far back as dealing with issues of her physical/sexual abusive Father. What I like about this film is that is not only uncovers the layers of the main character’s personal hell we also see the folds unwrap for the characters all around her. Such as the owner played by Chad E. Rook who’s dealing with financial burden and the custody of his child to even the Japanese reporter who is covering the whole show where she is only being used for her body by the camera  guy. It gives you a sense on just exactly what troubles not only the main character has but everyone else around thus creating tension for everyone which makes dispensing fear tactics a lot of more useful since they’re releasing their anger out on the participants. As stated what I love about this film is that it does a great job with character development where we actually worry for the character since there’s no time limit and there’s no safe words to stop the event. We begin to wonder what will happen to her at the end? Don’t expect to see a Saw or Rob Zombie kind of movie there isn’t a whole lot of gore or even that much torture porn, this film relies on psychological factors, but there some a few scenes that entice the audience for fans of Anthony Diblasi’s previous work such as Dread and Last Shift.  The film even had a satisfying ending that wrapped up everything for the character along with the characters in the film where we get what we want: Closure. I won’t spoil it for you but the ending song “Stripped” by Depeche Mode works perfectly. Over all this is the kind of horror film we want where underneath the mask we reveal our true selves and this is what this movie did for us. Revealed it’s true form: a horror film that isn’t afraid to go to the extreme and be different.

Posted by Jai Alexis in Categories, HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, REVIEWS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, WOMEN IN HORROR, 0 comments
I remember Gore De Vol!

I remember Gore De Vol!

I must admit I was not familiar of Count Gore De Vol. Growing up I LOVE watching the kooky horror hosts who have the cheesy set, the interesting outfit, dad jokes but with a PHD in horror trivia, so I stumbled upon his Facebook page thinking, oh cool a horror host showing movies either at con’s, theater shows or what not. Friends were like “ARE YOU KIDDING?! DO YOU KNOW WHO THIS IS?!” Count Gore De Vol is a living breathing legend of not just the Washington D.C., Virginia are he’s a legend through out the world. This is discussed in the most recent documentary “Every other day is Halloween” right now you can watch it on Amazon Prime if you haven’t please watch this!

Growing up I would watch cartoons full blast, but then the cartoons would end sometimes you would see the old westerns, old Italian action movies poorly dubbed to the Godzilla movies. Except my biggest thrill was watching the old Saturday afternoon or evening horror shows. Watching them quietly up to the screen so my folks wouldn’t see or tried not to get scared growing up these hosts shaped me into who I am. Then after a while the horror hosts went away. Given there was Svenghoulie then I stumbled upon Count Gore De Vol I added him on Facebook checking out his posts never really realizing who was on my friends list. After seeing the trailer running home from my day job watching the movie was my main priority. Within a few minutes tears ran down my face seeing The Count be The Count my childhood was relieved watching old clips hearing fans alike praise him. Count Gore De Vol began his career as Bozo the Clown doing a kid’s game show to Captain 20 other kids host he soon realized that he wanted to do an adult show showing classic horror movies on a Saturday night. The first season blew up in a big way on this small show it was beating the first season of Saturday Night Live. Time progressed, and times were changing The Count didn’t give up he didn’t say well the fun is over. For the Count he learned a newer audience the internet. Given this was a time where we had Dial up. You want to talk about first world problems? Try dealing with Dial up. Time changed but Count Gore De Vol never changed this wasn’t a job this wasn’t a gimmick just for a guy given a cape.

This was a way of life that he has forever left a mark on this world. Thanks to him there’s even a society of horror hosts who he’s helped being on there shows or inspiring. Seeing this movie, it’s warmed my heart knowing he’s the real deal. A genuine good guy who’ll listen to the horror fans, smile for the kids. I can honestly after seeing this I am now a fan of his work and hope that if he’s reading this he has inspired me more for the art of horror. Count Gore De Vol thank you for giving me something to believe in and know I’ll never be alone in a  world of monsters, creatures, the living dead and my favorite vampire.

Posted by Jai Alexis in Categories, DOCUMENTARIES, DOCUMENTARY REVIEWS, FAMILY HORROR, HALLOWEEN, HORROR COMEDIES, HOSTED HORROR, REVIEWS, VAMPIRES, 0 comments
How Al Bundy is connected to Child’s Play

How Al Bundy is connected to Child’s Play

The other day I’m watching television eating cereal. Just a normal night off for me when I’m not working. Frankenberry in my bowl as Married with Children is playing. Which in my opinion is one of the best tv shows around! I’m watching a specific episode that comes to mind now this show has had some big amazing stars, Robert Englund, Anthrax, King Kong Bundy, Bubba Smith, but there’s one person who has a huge part in horror movies. I’m not talking about Ed O’Neil or Katey Sagel who in Sons of Anarchy has a scene with Henry Rollins wearing A Michael Myers Mask. No, I’m talking about a character that kind of shares a connection to the Child’s Play movies. I’m talking about the Al Bundy.

Now just hear me out. Basically, in this weird cosmic way the two are connected? Not officially, but it’s a cool way to reference the two. Both the show and Movie take place in Chicago. Ok so let’s talk about this because this isn’t so much click baits or just a bs story. It’s a tribute to one of my favorite Doll/Puppet movies now with controversy of the remake coming out most fans are honestly not for it. Sure, we’ll see it except this isn’t something we’re not looking forward to.

The movie for those who haven’t seen it Child’s Play is about a young boy Andy Barclay played by Alex Vincent who’s been with the series except for Bride and Seed. He gets a good guy who happens to be possessed by known serial killer Charles Lee Ray played by the greatest character actor today Brad Dourif. If you’re not familiar with his work by now, you’ll know him by his voice. The film is amazing with a great storyline directed by Tom Holland who is a master of horror starring and directing in horror it makes you think perhaps it’s the child behind everything only until the big reveal it is the doll and it gets terrifying. To this day I still get creeped out seeing Chucky walk down the hall burnt white milky eyes holding a knife. Now the film boasts a lot of actors. Including Chris Sarandon who was in Fright Night playing the lead character Jerry Danridge and he was also the voice of Jack Skellington in Nightmare Before Christmas.

Speaking of voices that’s the point of this. Watching the episode of Married with Children it was the episode where we see a young Al Bundy the name of the actor was Edan Gross who has starred in a couple of episodes along with a few horror movies and tv shows, but his biggest role would probably be being the voice of the Good Guy dolls. I looked up the name after the movie played to find the name of the actor. I then went to see that his roles on Married with Children ended in 1988 which was the same year Child’s Play came out. So, in the end of the day the iconic voice of the doll from Child’s Play was played by the most iconic tv character I can think of Al Bundy (Young Al Bundy mind you).

Posted by Jai Alexis in Categories, EDITORIALS, MOVIE REVIEWS, PREQUELS AND SEQUELS, REMAKES AND REBOOTS, THRILLER, TRIBUTE, 0 comments
HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) – A Short Film with Lots of Talent

HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) – A Short Film with Lots of Talent

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.In high school, I took a communications class. Growing up, my concept of what filmmaking was was almost an Orson Welles level of perfection, not accepting anything less. We were just teens in high school writing goofy scripts and shooting films with expensive cameras and editing tools. Believe me, I wish I knew back then what I know now. It wasn’t easy at times sitting in the editing room hearing and watching the same footage repeatedly, but it was all worth it and, honestly, it’s such an adrenaline rush. Believe me. Therefore, most directors go to the premieres or screenings incognito focusing on the reactions of the audience instead of the premiere. They see what works, what doesn’t work, and who laughed at what part.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.I heard about an upcoming local film festival in my town called Creeper Film Fest. Working for House of Tortured Souls, I do my best to attend as many cons, expos, and film releases — even the local stuff — to get exclusive info, exclusive showings, or just meet some nice people. Recently, I talked to award-winning director Matthew Mark Hunter from MMH productions. We had a nice talk about his upcoming movie Nightmares Unleashed, and I explained that I’ll do my best to make it to the screening and review his movie. He was nice enough to send me a link to the movie, and I finally got time to watch it, so here’s my honest and fair review. After years of learning the craft and wearing others’ shoes, I learned to see their movie from their vision or their heart from their vision.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Nightmares Unleashed is a short film and runs just under 15 minutes. It doesn’t need a whole lot of time to get to the point, but it does a great job getting there. Some would say, “Oh, you used cheap FX and cheap tactics”, and, sure, you can say that if a film has a huge budget but cuts corners. Instead, Matthew uses some great practical and effective ways of getting shots and FX for his movie. The official plot is as follows:

A young girl loves watching horror films but always gets nightmares from them. She gets grabbed into the TV one night and must escape her worst nightmares through the movies.
As I stated before, Matthew didn’t have a big budget, doesn’t have movie stars, and doesn’t even have a huge crew. Nightmares Unleased is all guerilla filmmaking with a lot of heart from friends and family.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Another piece of info he was glad to share was that he tried to make the film as real as possible, so the worms from the worm zombie’s (Chris Wiggins) mouth, are real worms. That’s right. He had real worms put in his mouth. That’s hardcore! And that’s the level of dedication this movie gives to the audience.Matthew also revealed that all the tools on and around the workbench are real, so our corpse (John Polace) had real saws and knives hanging above him. Matthew further told me:

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.When the little actress (Autumn Johnson) first saw the Joseph makeup — she was always scared of — clowns, so when we did the scene of Joseph the Jester (Matthew Mark Hunter) jumping out of the closet the first time, she got really freaked out.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.I didn’t see the movie as a cheap, low budget, amateur movie effort. Instead, I saw this as a film done by a director who’s going out and doing what he loves best: making movies. So, if you get a chance check out Nightmares Unleashed, do so. And check out other Indie films and filmmakers. Talk to them, and if they ever start a go fund me, donate. Believe it or not, even your favorite filmmakers were once like Matthew, out in his backyard and making a film with heart and soul and with friends and family.

Polace had real worms in his mouth. Worms. That’s hardcore and, honestly, that’s the level of dedication this movie gives to the audience!

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Mandy (2018)

MOVIE REVIEW: Mandy (2018)

You came, I saw, and I love you

In Mandy, Nic Cage takes revenge on a crazy religious cult in the woods with a homemade battle ax. STOP DRILLING YOU HIT OIL! That’s pretty much what sold me on the plot for Mandy, the second film by director Panos Cosmatos whose first film was Beyond The Black Rainbow (2010). Set in 1983, Red Miller (Nicholas Cage) goes after a religious cult that brutally murdered his wife Mandy (Andrea Riseborough). If you have seen his first film, you know what to expect in this; if not, then fair warning — watch the movie with an open mind. Although the film plays out like an 80s-themed slasher movie, it’s almost far from it. Let’s examine this movie further.

Mandy (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Although set in the 80s, it doesn’t have an 80s soundtrack with well-known music. There is a synthesizer, though, along with a Friday the 13th reference to Crystal Lake from Mandy (Andrea Riseborough of such works as Hidden (2015), Waco (2018) (TV mini-series), and Black Mirror (2017) (TV series)). Admittedly there is a real Crystal Lake, Nic Cage himself said that he drew inspiration for his character from Jason Voorhees, so perhaps he wants to give that nod since his character evolved in the woods.

Mandy (2018) / Fair use doctrine.As may be obvious, Mandy is not like any other Nicholas Cage film. From the picture of Cage all bloody and glimpses in the trailer, one would expect a cheesy B horror movie with over the top gore and one-liners. Not at all! The film plays out like a heavy metal live action movie, and at times, it just feels like a dream as Red goes through moments of despair, guilt, and regret. Cage is complemented by a host of character actors, from Richard Brake (31, Halloween II (2009)) to Linus Roache (Batman Begins) to Bill Duke (Payback, Predator), who definitely deliver. The scenes with the cult aren’t over the top, which is good because not once do the characters trail off and leave the idea of the movie on its own. The bikers, though, don’t dress or sound like bikers. Think something out of Mad Max with a distorted voice that almost sounds animalistic. This raises some interesting questions on the cult’s story because there’s really no back story – for anyone on anything.

Mandy (2018) / Fair use doctrine.I saw the movie at night, and it stuck with me — not in a bad way but almost as if I were dreaming too. This, by the way, got me thinking about the end when Nicholas Cage is driving away, caked in blood caked and looking out of his mind. This is not Hollywood Nic Cage but a genuinely insane Nicholas Cage.

Final thoughts: Watch the movie, and watch it at night with an open mind because this is without a doubt an interesting movie, and I sincerely hope we don’t have to wait another eight years for Panos Cosmatos’ third film.

Posted by Jai Alexis in MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: The Predator (2018)

MOVIE REVIEW: The Predator (2018)

The Predator: Hit or Miss

The Predator (2018) / Fair use doctrine.When I first heard that The Predator was coming back to the big screen I thought, ‘Well how are you going to top Predators?’ For my money, Predators is the best sequel to date and has the most legendary opening sequence in a movie ever. The news of Shane Black and Fred Dekker being on board, however, convinced me this was going to be top notch fun, gory, and worth the sequel.

I eagerly attended the first showing on Sunday, 16 September, only to find I was proven wrong – which is a major let down. Black and Dekker (haha) know their stuff and should’ve put together a great movie. With comedy, horror, and even family elements, The Predator struggles to find its focus. On the surface, The Predator is about a young boy who receives a gift of Predator items (WHY?) that eventually turn on a beacon which puts the Predator on a wanted list for being hunted {Or for hunting other creatures?}. The alert causes a problem for Earth since Predators aren’t friendly with anyone. A group of ragtag soldiers who suffer from PTSD ultimately are enlisted to do what’s right, help the kid, and…save the world?

The Predator (2018) / Fair use doctrine.As the film starts, there are actually some great action sequences, nice gore, and even a bit of a character development where you find yourself invested in the main character, Quinn McKenna (Boyd Holbrook, whom you’ll remember as Pierce, the villain, in Logan (2017)). After the spacecraft and presence of the aliens (Predators not Xenomorphs) are revealed, the government steps in and the movie takes a hard turn into Superficialville. Character development and, indeed, care of any characters steps out.

‘But,’ you may think to yourself, ‘This an action horror sci-fi movie. Does character development matter? We’re here for the blood and guts?’

The Predator (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Well, kind of, yes. What I mean is this: When you attend a movie, you invest your time. In return, you expect to be entertained. You expect to see characters to whom you can relate or for whom you actually feel – especially when they die.

Hell, it took me a good while to realize that Thomas Jane was in the movie – not because of great method acting, but I just didn’t realize it was him. With an actor like Thomas Jane, you would expect that he would be front and center. At the very least, he should be cast in a better or more significant role. However, with this movie, you don’t get that. The deaths feel rushed, and the camera doesn’t exactly linger on the gore. It was almost blink-and-you-miss-it shots of the kills. Perhaps this was to avoid delays from the MPAA or maybe another unknown reason. We may never know.

The Predator (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Overall, The Predator doesn’t really hold up to the previous films in the franchise – gore- or action-wise. Sure, there are a few nods to the previous films but not enough to keep you entertained. From the sci-fi/horror aspect, it could have worked as any other alien movie, but as an entry in the Predator franchise, it doesn’t. Peppered with forced jokes as an attempt to engage the audience, it falls flat because they didn’t really fit the movie. At times, the movie felt overlong and drawn out – not good for film with a scant runtime of 107 minutes. My excitement swelled as the ending approached. Would there be a possible connection to the previous films? Or even something better?

I won’t spoil the movie, but it was almost a slap in the face to the fans of the franchise to see this. HINT: Think uber Jason from Jason X but with no delivery of any kind. It was just a big let down.

My advice: Wait until The Predator comes on Netflix or hits Redbox. It just barely made number one this weekend, so perhaps a sequel or another reboot will help the franchise.

The Predator (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, PREQUELS AND SEQUELS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
COMING 2019: A Violent Swamp Thing is Headed to the Small Screen

COMING 2019: A Violent Swamp Thing is Headed to the Small Screen

Derek Mears / Fair use doctrine.It’s been reported that Derek Mears will be playing the character Swamp thing for the exclusive DC comics TV series. The character Dr. Alec Holland hasn’t been cast yet, but other reported cast members are Crystal Reed (Gotham TV series, Teen Wolf TV series) as Abby Arcane and Maria Sten (Channel Zero TV series, Persuasion TV series) as Liz Tremayne. Derek is no stranger to horror films being in such films as Hatchet 3 (2013), Friday the 13th (2009), Predator (2018), plus James Wan is the executive producer and has said the film will be rated R for graphic violence. Just exactly how brutal will this be? Hard to tell but the production has a great cast behind it. Len Wiseman (Underworld, Lucifer) will direct the pilot episode. Filming begins this fall. Co-written by Gary Dauberman (IT chapters 1 and 2 and the upcoming third Annabelle film) as well as Mark Verheiden (Ash vs Evil Dead) Perhaps that answers the question on how brutal this will be.

Crystal Reed / Fair use doctrine.Maria Sten / Fair use doctrine.

This is a huge deal for not only comic fans of Swamp Thing, Constantine, The Walking Dead, and Locke and Key. This gives hope that the horror comics have a lot of stories to tell. There also giving a platform for the streaming services where not are they affordable but producing great shows that people binge in one day, one weekend developing a huge fan base with no restrictions towards violence, nudity, and language. Swamp Thing will premiere on a streaming service for DC slated for some time in 2019 another benefit is you can read the comics from their library. I would recommend reading Swamp Thing by Alan Moore, Jeff Lemire, and Scott Snyder because at this rate if we’re getting Swamp Thing, we might be seeing other horror comics grace the small screen.

Swamp Thing the TV series is being produced by Atomic Monster and DC Universe.

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, NATURE STRIKES BACK, SCI-FI HORROR, 0 comments
COMING SOON: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)

COMING SOON: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)

Anna and the Apocalypse a Christmas zombie musical. Yup, you read that right.

When you think of Christmas horror movies, you can probably name a good dozen of the ones people should watch. The same goes for zombies and musicals. It’s a given that we will choose the classics or ones we feel hold a place in our hearts, but it’s still always a debate on which to watch because there’s just so many out there. Oh, and for the record, the great debate about The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) being either a Halloween or Christmas movie? It’s a holiday movie. Enjoy it anytime you like.

Then came a movie that from the title I thought, “Okay, not bad”. Then the description sealed the deal: Christmas horror zombie musical comedy. Well, of course, I had to stop whatever I’m doing to view this trailer. The film is called; Anna and the Apocalypse and follows Anna, a girl who wakes up one December morning to find her town Little Haven has been taken over by zombies.

Anna and the Apocalypse (2017) / Fair use doctrine.

Anna and the Apocalypse consists of a background of Indie and some horror stars and director. Don’t let this fool you in thinking it’s going to be a teen angst film with goofy zombies, no gore,  and overused songs. There is a great amount of gore in the film, and small tidbits from the trailer promise that we will get some goofy gore as well as some creative kills. The songs are original and sung by the cast, which works, so be on the lookout for the soundtrack. Christmas does play a part as shopping carts full of presents are used as weapons. Zombie carolers, zombie Santa (guy in a Santa suit), plus one zombie Snowman (again guy in a costume) = fun.

Anna and the Apocalypse (2017) / Fair use doctrine.

Anna and the Apocalypse is compared to Shaun Of the Dead meets La La Land which, judging by the trailer, does give off more of a feel-good vibe. I’ll be enjoying this movie. The movie comes out 30 Nov 2018. When you need a break from the Christmas shopping and still eating leftovers from Thanksgiving, check out this movie. Like always, House of Tortured Souls will be checking out this holiday movie.

Posted by Jai Alexis in HORROR COMEDIES, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
Trailer for Extremity (2018) Delivers Extreme Potential

Trailer for Extremity (2018) Delivers Extreme Potential

Extremity (2018) / Image: Dark Elegy FilmsI saw the trailer for Extremity (2018) on my phone while I was out shopping for Halloween stuff. I thought, ‘Oh wow, this is cool, and I’m digging it’. This isn’t so much me saying this just because it’s a horror movie about haunted attractions, either. The trailer really struck a chord with me, so there had to be a way to see this on a bigger screen. Heading home, I rushed to my television and go on YouTube to find the trailer. I lucked out as it was online and ready to be viewed. I sat down with the lights off and saw the trailer in beautiful 1080 HD. The way it was meant to be. The film is called Extremity and was directed by Anthony Diblasi who has done some great horror films such as The Last Shift (2014), Most Likely to Die (2015), and Dread (2009). Extremity is about a young woman who puts herself through an extreme haunt attraction to face her fears and conquer a tragic past that has consumed her.

So, let’s break this down.

Extremity (2018) / Image: Dark Elegy FilmsThe movie looks extremely promising, not hokey or cheesy, but actually a really great horror film with amazing scenery, cinematography, and great acting. In the trailer below, you’ll see some familiar faces, such as Felissa Rose of Sleepaway Camp (1983) and Tiffany Shepis of Tales of Halloween (2015) and Victory Crowley (2017). Extremity shows a lot of promise in that it will rely on great fx and an engaging story without the use of clichés or over the top sets that detract from the gore and terror. What’s especially great is that the “victims” in this movie aren’t trapped or kidnapped; they wholeheartedly sign waivers saying they’re doing this of their own free will and allow the haunters to do whatever they want. Something like this is ten times better because they’re not trying to escape or fight for their lives. They knew the risk and they accepted this place, appropriately named “Perdition”.

It’s interesting to see how long in the film this event will take place or how extreme it will be. From the trailer looks like we’ll see simple acts of drowning, bugs, and body limbs being cut apart along with a difficult task of a “victim” actually killing someone. I say “Victim” because will they survive and if they do how will their mindset be afterward?

Extremity (2018) / Image: Dark Elegy Films

Extremity will be released on VOD services 28 September 2018, followed by a Blu-ray release on 2 October 2018. Watch The Last Shift and Dread to get ready for this release. This will be a movie that House of Tortured Souls will for sure be reviewing.

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HALLOWEEN, HORROR NEWS, NEW RELEASES, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 0 comments
EDITORIAL: How The ‘Burbs (1989) Became a Holiday Movie

EDITORIAL: How The ‘Burbs (1989) Became a Holiday Movie

Tom Hanks in The 'Burbs (1989) / Fair use doctrine.There’s almost a horror movie for most holidays. Some holidays have been done countless times, a few new ones. Hell, even Critters 2 (1988) was the first Easter horror movie, and Uncle Sam (1996) was the first Independence Day/Fourth of July horror movie.

However, there’s always been one movie that I grew up loving even to this day. It’s not officially a designated holiday movie, but to me, The ‘Burbs has always held this place in my heart as a Spring Break/Fourth Of July/Labor Day kind of movie.

Let’s explore The ‘Burbs further.

Bruce Dern, Tom Hanks, and Rick Ducommun in The 'Burbs (1989) / Fair use doctrine.The movie stars a list of amazing character actors who have gone to work with A-list directors along with getting Oscar nominations and Oscars. Not for this movie but later in life. Tom Hanks stars as Ray Peterson who is just trying to enjoy a simple vacation, but he gets dragged along into a mystery by his neighbors — Rumsfeld played by Bruce Dern, Art played by Rick Ducommun, (let’s not forget everyone’s favorite 80s star) Corey Feldman as Ricky Butler — and his wife Carol (the late great Carrie Fisher). They decide that their other neighbors, The Klopeks, are a family of serial killers when Ray hears weird noises late at night and the disappearance of a local neighbor. We’ve seen this movie time and time again and it still holds up. Joe Dante’s vision of suburbia is creepy, funny, and a cult classic. Where else are you going to see Henry Gibson play a serial killer? Or Brother Theodore who’s actually funny just being himself? Interesting tidbit Brother Theodore was the voice of Gollum in the Rankin-Bass animated TV adaptations of The Hobbit (1977) and The Lord of the Rings (1980), while nephew Hans is none other than Courtney Gains, whose debut film was in Children of the Corn (1994) as Malachi.

Carrie Fisher and Tom Hanks in The 'Burbs (1989) / Fair use doctrine.The ‘Burbs doesn’t rely on blood, guts, gore, or even monsters to be a horror comedy. Hell, there’s a part where we realize that maybe Ray was right. Maybe they’re just quiet neighbors who are harmless. Except we find out the truth buried deep in The Klopek’s basement.

Joe Dante’s The ‘Burbs holds up as a classic film of a guy who wants to relax, have a beer, enjoy a ball game, and not worry about life, but it’s also a movie that was inspired by such films as The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Rear Window, and The Three Stooges. You can watch this movie any time any day, but this film will always hold a place in my heart as a holiday movie meant for a day of relaxation, good friends, and a nice beer.

(NOTE: There’s not a single unfunny Carrie Fisher story. Fact.)

Tom Hanks, Corey Feldman, Bruce Dern, Rick Ducommun, Wendy Schaal, and Darla in The 'Burbs (1989) / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in EDITORIALS, HORROR COMEDIES, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 0 comments
THIS JUST IN: Texas Chainsaw Massacre TV Series and Film News

THIS JUST IN: Texas Chainsaw Massacre TV Series and Film News

Texas Chainsaw Massacre TV series / Fair use doctrine.Breaking news! The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise may have a new home! Legendary Pictures/Legendary Entertainment is in TALKS to get the rights of the franchise. If this goes through, there are rumors of a Texas Chainsaw Massacre TV series AND film series.

Legendary also works with Warner Bros, the parent company of New Line Cinema – who owns A Nightmare on Elm Street. If all goes well, Friday the 13th could go back to New Line Cinema. This means that if everything goes well, we might finally see all three in a huge movie.

House of Tortured Souls will keep you up to date as more news comes available.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre TV series / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, 0 comments
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Begins Filming

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Begins Filming

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark / Fair use doctrine.As a kid, I was deeply interested in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, but what really sold it was the artwork. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark were children’s stories with illustrations of things like rotting corpse brides, spiders coming out of a girl’s face, and disfigured salesmen. “The Drum” is by far my favorite story with a truly terrifying ending that didn’t need any illustration. Your mind couldn’t even draw what you heard.

As years went by, the books sold out every Halloween. Except during a time when the books were reprinted without the artwork. Yup, that really happened.

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark / Fair use doctrine.The books hold a special place in all of us ― old and young ― who read them. For the young, this was an introduction to horror literature, and for the old, it was a return to simpler horror.

Several years ago there were rumors that Guillermo Del Toro was interested in adapting the books into a film. The Internet (myself included) went crazy in anticipation. Initially, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark was going to be an anthology. Then talks of the film grew quiet, and other films were released. Still, it was somehow in development; that much was certain.

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark / Guillermo del Toro
Zoe Margaret Colletti to be in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark / IMDbAt first, Del Toro was going to direct, but the project passed down to André Øvredal, who directed The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016) and Trollhunter (2010). The film is written by Kevin Hageman and Dan Hageman who also co-wrote The Lego Movie (2014). Del Toro will be producing and will be heavily involved. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark has also cast its first star, Zoe Colletti, who will play a character named Stella Michaels.

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is a huge deal during a year that seems rife with horror novel adaptations. With Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, IT: Chapter 2, and Pet Semetary (remake) being hot novel-to-screen adaptations, this season may well introduce a new generation of fans to the books and maybe, just maybe, even make the fans of the books excited to see their beloved characters on the big screen.

I’m extremely excited for this movie. Or maybe movies? Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark has enormous potential for a trilogy. Shooting started this week, so does that mean we could see a 2019 release? House of Tortured Souls will be following all the details of the movie through production and right up to the release, so be sure to check back for updates.
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in CAST AND CREW NEWS, HORROR NEWS, STAFF PICKS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich (2018)

MOVIE REVIEW: Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich (2018)

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich (2018)Growing up, I always loved watching the Puppet Master movies. As I got older, I began to realize the movies didn’t make a whole lot of sense — then again, the movies are about killer puppets coming to life and Nazis wanting a secret formula to re-animate the dead.

Puppet Master: The Littlest ReichPuppet Master: The Littlest Reich

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich is the latest film in the franchise and is a new branch to the storyline. The film is about a group of people meeting at a convention for the Andre Toulon Murders that took place in the late 80s. Naturally, the murders begin all over again. I was skeptical at first since I’m a huge Puppet Master fan and the pictures didn’t really convince me. I was especially disappointed in the new looks, but I sat down and watched the movie with an open mind.

Puppet Master: The Littlest ReichFirst, Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich is a great little flick and an excellent addition to the franchise with its new look and perfect balance of over-the-top gore. Yes, some of the original puppets are back some with new designs, and new puppets have been added to the group — including what appears to be a few toys. The story showcases a darker tone for not only the puppets that are clearly being controlled by Toulon but also for Toulon himself. Forget the loving, Nazi-fighting Toulon; this Toulon is much creepier. Udo Kier, who plays Toulon, has a very interesting take on the character, and Kier has definitely made his mark in the franchise.

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich does have some humor but not enough to weaken the horror aspect or riddle the film with shock jokes. At first, it may seem like Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich didn’t cover all the ground, but from the looks of things, we may see a trilogy from this new branch of the Puppet Master storyline.

Overall, I say buy this movie if you’re a Puppet Master fan, and if you’re not, it’s a great movie to watch with friends and a good way to learn about what started this new direction.Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich (2018)

Posted by Jai Alexis in GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, NEW RELEASES, REMAKES AND REBOOTS, THRILLER, 0 comments