Death House

We want to hear your thoughts!

Death House Announces DVD Release Date

Death House Announces DVD Release Date

This morning, co-writer (along with the late Gunnar Hansen) and director B. Harrison Smith, gave the news that fans have been anticipating. Death House finally has a release date for DVD. The DVD drops December 11, 2018Cleopatra Entertainment, will announce the VOD release on another date.

Released in select theaters this past winter, fans have been on edge waiting for this announcement. The film tells the tale of Agents Novak and Boone and their virtual tour of Death House, an experimental prison. The film stars Kane Hodder, Felissa Rose, Dee Wallace, Sean Whalen, Sid Haig and many more horror icons. I reviewed Death House in February.

Death House (2017) / Harrison Smith

The VOD release date is slated to drop before December, but that is also the norm for many films. Cleopatra Entertainment is expected to issue a press release in the next few days. Keep watching House of Tortured Souls for information on this. While December 11th cannot come soon enough, we are however excited we have the release date for at least the DVD and fans have begun the countdown!Death House (2017) / Harrison Smith

Pre-order from AMAZON here!




Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, 0 comments
CON REVIEW:  Mad Monster Party 2018 (Carolinas) Charlotte

CON REVIEW: Mad Monster Party 2018 (Carolinas) Charlotte

Last weekend Mad Monster returned to the Queen City of Charlotte, NC. Their lineup included Freddy Krueger himself, Robert Englund, Jen and Sylvia Soska, Felissa Rose, KISS Co-Founder Peter Criss, Alex Vincent, Christine Elise, Tuesday Knight, Amanda Wyss, R.A. Mihailoff, and many more. Thousands of fans from several States flocked to the Hilton to meet their favorite stars, take advantage of the photo ops (done with amazing backgrounds by Prints Charmn), watch movies in the 7th Annual Mad Monster Film Festival and get to see a 10 minute clip of the upcoming film Death House, introduced by co-writer and director Harrison Smith during the Death House Q&A with Smith, Felissa Rose, and R.A. Mihailoff.

Be sure to check out my interviews with Harrison Smith and Felissa Rose and my EXCLUSIVE pre-release review of Death House.

Okay, let’s get this out of the way. Like any event that attracts thousands of people into one venue, there are going to be speed bumps. Not everyone is going to be happy. There has yet to be a convention, sporting event or any large gathering where every single person went home completely satisfied. Robert Englund is a huge icon in this genre (easily top five over the last four decades) and him attending a show is not a common occurrence. He is a massive draw. Robert is also very gracious to his fans and enjoys sharing a few words and memories with them. He appreciates the fans coming to see him, so his line doesn’t move as if you were scanning two items in the express lane of the grocery store. It can take some time. Many fans were in line for quite some time.

Both Friday and Saturday, the line had more fans than could be accommodated and something had to be done. Credit the staff at Mad Monster for coming up with quick adjustments. They had a system where the fans that remained in line received a number based on where they were in line. Was it perfect? Of course not. Was it the best option? It was the only option. The staff knew that people were going to be upset but came up with a solution with their limited options. It could have been easy to say “that’s it for tonight, please try again tomorrow”. That was not what they did and they handled the issue the only way to make as many people as happy as possible.

Crypt Keeper Clint at Mad Monster Party

Sunday, a light rail (train) knocked out the power for everything in the vicinity of the venue, including the hotel itself. This caused a delay in allowing fans into the show. The power was eventually restored and the show went on, business as usual.

Now that the hiccups are out of the way, let’s talk about the positive aspects. The celebs engaged and enjoyed talking to the fans, there were plenty of vendors for fans to shop from and the panels were informative. For me, one of the highlights of the weekend was the R.I.P. (Mad Monster’s VIP) Party on Saturday night. It was more of a moderate social gathering than a party. The RIPs along with the celebs that attended all gathered to celebrate. Saturday was Tuesday Knight’s birthday and everyone sang and had cake. The RIPs, STIFFS (volunteers), and celebs at the party mingled and shared stories til past midnight. It was a relaxing way to spend the evening after a busy and packed house on Saturday.

The show ended on Sunday and despite the hiccups, the show went off with success. The staff at Mad Monster deserve commendation for how they pulled through. Despite being short-handed (the flu has been nasty and caused several volunteers to have to miss the show) several worked double and triple shifts to ensure there was enough coverage on the floor. They also had to deal with the power issues on Sunday, photo ops selling out in advance and long lines for Robert Englund and Peter Criss. The team was able to power through and make sure as many fans left with amazing memories.

Overall I grade this show a B+.

Next up for Mad Monster is their annual Phoenix, AZ, show July 13-15, 2018.

Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in EVENT REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
EXCLUSIVE Pre-Release Review: Death House (2018)

EXCLUSIVE Pre-Release Review: Death House (2018)

Who prays for Satan, the original sinner?

This is the opening line to the highly anticipated film Death House. Originally written by the late, great Gunnar Hansen (co-written by B Harrison Smith, who also directs the film), Death House has been called by some “The Expendables of Horror”. In reality, it is a 90-minute cross-genre, mixing horror and action. So sit back, buckle up and let’s take a ride through Death House.

Death House is a virtual who’s who in the horror world. It is easier to tell you which horror icon is NOT in this film. Kane Hodder leads the pack on this all-star lineup. He is joined by Tony Todd, Bill Moseley, Dee Wallace, Sid Haig, Felissa Rose, Tiffany Shepis, Sean Whalen, Vernon Wells, RA Mihailoff and I can go on.

Bill Moseley and Michael Berryman in Death House (2018)

The story follows Agents Boone (Cortney Palm) and Novak (Cody Longo) as they prepare to take an in-depth journey into “Death House”, a federal maximum security prison that does experimental testing on its inmates. The Prisoners experience virtual environments and studies are run in their natural environments prior to confinement. There are 9 levels of the Death House, with the 9th level holding “the 5 Evils”. This is going to be a key thing to pay attention to in the film. The agents take a virtual reality tour of the prison, its history, and are “introduced” to some of the prisoners.Satans in Death House (2018)

As the agents are touring the prison, the electricity goes out and all hell breaks loose, as do the prisoners. The prison runs on auxiliary power (it will be explained why they cannot restore power right away). The prisoners are able to leave their cells and begin to roam the prison, leaving dead guards in their wake. Like any great film where an escape is needed for survival, there is only one way to escape…get to the 9th level.

That is the general plot of the movie, without giving any key plot spoilers away. Time for my thoughts on this film. When I said that it is a roller coaster, I meant it. This movie takes you on a ride for 90 minutes and when you are done watching it, you have to ask yourself if you just watched or experienced your very own virtual reality tour. You will want to applaud when you see all of your favorite icons appear on screen and there are a few surprise cameos that are sure not to disappoint.

Speaking of things not disappointing, let’s talk about Kane Hodder. His performance in this film is nothing short of award-winning. In an ensemble cast of mega icons, he stands out. Following a private screening at Scare-A-Con, this past June,

Kane Hodder in Death House (2018)Caroline Williams said, “no one will ever call Kane just a stuntman again”. This has been referred to as “Kane Hodder’s movie” and I have no argument against that. Kane will always be known for his voiceless monsters (Jason Voorhees and Victor Crowley especially), but in this particular performance, he kills any rumors that he cannot be a leading ACTOR. He is absolutely brilliant in this movie.

I will admit, this movie will take watching more than once to truly grasp. Let’s be honest though, how many of us got the concept of Fight Club the first time through (put your hands down because you know just like me, you went back and watched it again after you figured it out)? Does this make Death House a bad film because you may have to go back and re-watch it? Of course not. Maybe you were in awe of the cameo to come on screen and missed something. There could be a lot of reasons why this may take seeing 2-3 times before you grasp everything. Guess what? That is by design and WHY this movie works as well as it does.

Let’s now address the white elephant in the room. This is NOT Freddy vs Jason vs Leatherface or any combination. Death House is a stand-alone movie that does pay homage to a lot of the classics that made us fall in love with horror. But it is not a retread, a reboot or anything like that. It has its own identity. It mixes the gore that the diehard slasher fans love, with the action the adrenaline junkies crave and also throws in a strong psychological plot that the thinkers lust after. This truly has something for EVERY horror fan.

Tony Todd in Death House (2018)

I’ve heard some people complain that the lighting was terrible, and the movie was too dark. I have 2 comments on that. Number 1, there was a power failure and all anyone has are flashlights, so how much light can there realistically be and give this movie the feel it is going for? And second, how many of us walk through a GREAT haunted house with little light? That type of haunted house where there was a new surprise at every turn. That one great haunted house where, when you are done, you want to go back! That is exactly what you feel while you experience Death House. I no longer say watch Death House, I say experience it.

Final thoughts

There are a few things I want you to take away from this before you Barbara Crampton, Cody Longo, Dee Wallace, Cortney Palm in Death House (2018)go and experience Death House. Dee Wallace is a living legend and her portrayal of Dr. Fletcher stands toe to toe with her performance as Donna Trenton in Cujo (and I am not kidding). Kane Hodder is a legit actor and no longer “just a stuntman” or “just great on-screen monster.” As I have mentioned time and again, this is a 90-minute roller coaster ride that will leave you wanting more. This movie was Gunnar Hansen’s dream and his baby. Go see this for Gunnar and view his vision. I wish he could be here to see this come to fruition. He, however, left it in great hands. You can see what Gunnar wanted, through the eyes of B. Harrison Smith.

And last, this movie is not your typical good vs evil. It was never intended for that. This shows that good is dependent on evil and evil dependent on good. The two cannot exist without the other. If you ever have an opportunity to meet and talk with B. Harrison Smith at a convention, he talks about this very thing.  This is actually the oldest storyline in existence. Was Lucifer not a fallen angel? The very opening line of the movie which I will remind you of is, “Who prays for Satan, the original sinner?” That line narrated over the opening credits is not just a cool way to open a movie. This film is the ultimate example of you cannot have evil without good and good without evil.

Death House was scheduled to open this weekend, but unforeseen circumstances created a delay. Next weekend it will open in LA and the following week it will expand to more markets including Philadelphia, (wherein the suburb of Cherry Hill, NJ, Monster Mania Con is going on that weekend and will have at least 2 stars from Death House, including Kane Hodder).

Overall Grade on Death House:

A+ and I wish I had a 3rd hand so I could give it 3 thumbs up.

For more on Death House and all updates on where and when you can experience this thrill ride, visit their official social media sites:

Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in EXCLUSIVE, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, 2 comments
Death House (2018) New Release Date

Death House (2018) New Release Date

Hey, horror fans just got a heads up from Rick Finkelstein, CEO of Entertainment Factory LLC and producer of the highly anticipated Death House, that the release has been pushed back just a bit to further strengthen its debut. Hannover House Distributors has now rescheduled the release for March 2nd, 2018. They also plan to expand the reach of Death House to approximately 20 additional markets on March 9th and March 16th. Home video and digital releases are anticipated for July.

On March 2nd the lucky people that will get to enjoy Death House first will be Los Angeles and Van Nuys California, along with Stroudsburg Pennsylvania which is the birthplace of the amazing Director Harrison Smith. The next lucky people will be able to go on March 9th and they are located in New York, N.Y., Chicago, IL., Philadelphia, PA., Dallas-Ft. Worth TX., Washington D.C., Atlanta, GA., Tampa-St. Petersberg FL., Phoenix AZ., Miami-Ft. Lauderdale FL., Orlando-Daytona Beach FL., Sacramento CA., Charlotte, N.C., Kansas City KS./MO., Oklahoma City OK., Jacksonville FL., Memphis TN., and N.W. AK.

With a running time of 93 minutes, we will have a little over an hour and a half of gore-filled strong horror violence, naughty language and nudity with its “R” rating. We have waited this long, and I know from talking to the director Harrison Smith, it will be WELL worth the wait! So better start planning for your sojourn into the bowels of the Hell.

Posted by Alan Smithee in COMING SOON, EVENTS, FRIENDS OF THE HOUSE, HORROR NEWS, INTERVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, PRESS RELEASES, 1 comment
WiHM: Felissa Rose

WiHM: Felissa Rose

Felissa Rose and Jonathan Tiersten in Sleepaway Camp (1983)Outside of the horror world, most people won’t know the name Felissa Rose, but in 1983, a 13-year-old girl playing the role of Angela introduced herself to the genre. What’s extremely impressive about Felissa’s role in the now cult classic Sleepaway Camp is that she was so memorable while hardly speaking. The character Angela rarely spoke throughout the film and sucked viewers into the story with her facial expressions. She makes you really feel for the character until you find out that young Angela is actually Peter, Angela’s brother, who was “killed” in a boating accident 8 years prior. 2018 celebrates the 35th anniversary of this iconic film and the launch of a brilliant career.

Christopher Collet and Felissa Rose in Sleepaway Camp (1983)Felissa has been a mainstay in the horror genre over the past three and a half decades. She has also been a frequent guest at various horror conventions around the US. Known for her bubbly personality, posing making the “Sleepaway Camp Face”, and her ability to remember names and past interactions with her fans, Felissa is very popular at these shows and leaves her fans old and new with memorable experiences.

Felissa Rose in Terror Tales (2016)

The last calendar year has been one of – if not the – best year yet for this iconic actress. Felissa has several new films that have been released in the last month or will be in the coming weeks to include No Solicitors (a film shot in 2015, but released last month on DVD, where she also served as Producer) where she plays ill-fated Pricilla. Victor Crowley (the surprise fourth installment of the Hatchet series), she plays the role of Kathleen. And in the upcoming film Death House (theatrical release of February 23rd), Felissa plays the role of Dr. Angela Freeman (and also filling the role of Associate Producer). Felissa has been certainly busy over the past several months as these are three of the nearly two dozen projects she has already or is in the process of completing.

Felissa Rose - Shears

Felissa’s next convention appearance will be next weekend in the Queen City of Charlotte, NC, for Mad Monster Party Carolina.  She is celebrating both the 35th Anniversary of Sleepaway Camp and the newly released Victor Crowley.  She is also promoting the upcoming release of Death House, which some of us lucky fans were privileged to see during convention viewings last year.  Thousands more are eagerly awaiting to see the film on February 23, 2018.

So please join me in congratulating this amazing woman on her accomplishments both past and those yet to come.

You can check out what Felissa is working on next by visiting her on the Internet at:

Let’s wish Felissa Rose a very HAPPY Women in Horror Month!

Felissa Rose Official Site Welcome

Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in STAFF PICKS, WOMEN IN HORROR, 0 comments
Death House Gets Updated Release

Death House Gets Updated Release

Big news in the horror world regarding the highly-anticipated film Death House. A press release was shared yesterday stating:

Indie Distributor Hannover House (and theatrical subsidiary Medallion Releasing) have entered in a pact with Entertainment Factory for a NATIONAL theatrical release of Death House. It will open in approximately 100 theaters in the top USA markets beginning February 23, 2018. The red carpet events will be open to the public in both LA (2/22/18) and New York (2/23/18). Theatrical exhibitors will include Regal Entertainment Group, Cinemark/century Group, Malco Theaters, Harkins, Marcus, B&B and Megaplex theaters.
“We share the horror-industry’s enthusiasm for the release of this film,” said Hannover House CEO Eric Parkinson, “ The concept of a film featuring the all star cast of stars from some of the biggest horror hits in recent decades is brilliant and Harrison and the entire production team have delivered a truly enjoyable result. We believe that audiences will love this film, as has already been indicated through word of mouth and pre-screenings.
The home video release and VOD release is planned for June through a distribution pact with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

Hanover House logo / Fair use doctrine.For those who have been living under a tombstone, this is an all-star packed horror thriller feature from director B. Harrison Smith. Co-written by the late (but not forgotten) Gunnar Hansen, Death House is being called “The Expendables of Horror”. It will feature some huge names from horror, including Kane Hodder, Dee Wallace, Sid Haig, Michael Berryman, Tony Todd, Felissa Rose, and more. Like a lot more.

Posted by ZombieGurl in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, 1 comment
INTERVIEW: Death House (2018) Director Harrison Smith

INTERVIEW: Death House (2018) Director Harrison Smith

“The Only Way Out… Is Down”

I had the great privilege of interviewing the superb director Harrison Smith on his newest film Death House. Before I get into that, let me tell you a little bit about the film.

Death House poster.There is a Fed-Max subterranean government prison that holds humanities worst criminals known as the Death House. It serves as a medical, psychological, and parapsychological research center aimed at eradicating evil. Two federal agents are granted a tour of the center. While on the tour, the unthinkable happens. There is a power outage that releases all of the prisoners, and the agents must fight their way through all of the horror and violence to try to survive. They soon discover that they are being herded down to the lowest depths of the facility. In those depths are a group of supernatural evil beings known as The Five Evils and they may be the agents’ only chance at salvation.

Cody Longo in Death House.

Cody Longo in Death House.

The movie sounds and looks amazing but before I go on I just wanted to say that the media and many articles have labeled the movie, “The Horror Movie genre of The Expendables“. I have to disagree with that. If it were The Expendables we would have a movie with Freddy vs Jason vs Michael vs et. al. Which, to some, may sound interesting but it would lack any substance. The stars in this movie are so much more than their individual roles that they have portrayed, they are true actors who excel at their craft. Let me tell you some of them:

  • Adrienne Barbeau: Escape From N.Y., Creepshow, Swamp Thing, The Fog
  • Kane Hodder: Jason Voorhees in some of the Friday the 13th films and Victor Crowley from The Hatchet films
  • Dee Wallace: The Howling, Cujo, The Frighteners
  • Michael Berryman: The Hills Have Eyes, The Devils Rejects
  • Barbara Crampton: Re-Animator, From Beyond, You’re Next
  • Sid Haig: The Devils Rejects, House of 1000 Corpses, Kill Bill
  • Tony Todd: Candyman, Hatchet, Final Destination
  • Bill Moseley: The Devils Rejects, Rob Zombie’s Halloween
  • Vernon Wells: The Road Warrior, Weird Science
  • Lindsay Hartley: Nightmare Nurse
  • Cody Longo: Piranha 3D, Nashville
  • Cortney Palm: The Dark Tapes
  • Felissa Rose: Sleepaway Camp
  • Vincent Ward: The Walking Dead

Whew, that is a LOT of talent in one film!

Holmesburg Prison in Philadelphia, PA.

Holmesburg Prison in Philadelphia, PA. The place had a built-in horror film setting, full of dark history and eerie vibes. It really acts as a functioning character in the film.

IMDb provided a great quote:

This is a solid horror piece, dark, nasty and gore-soaked; not satire or tongue in cheek.

And like Harrison told me, he was writing in a local bar when the ad for Jurassic World came on and it hit him that this movie was “Assault on Precinct 13 meets Jurassic World without the dinosaurs”. So… great actors along with an exciting script and skilled direction. Then throw in stupefying makeup and effects by the Roy Knyrim (Sinister 2) and SOTA FX, and a soundtrack by John Avarese that sets the perfect ambiance. We will finally get what we paid for at the box office!

Death House - Cody Longo and Dee Wallace on set at Holmesburg Prison.

Death House – Cody Longo and Dee Wallace on set at Holmesburg Prison.

Cortney Palm in Death House.

Cortney Palm in Death House.

House of Tortured Souls: My first question for Harrison was why the horror genre?
Harrison Smith: My first film, The Fields, was based on what really happened to me when I lived and grew up with my grandparents on their farm. The farm came under attack for a short period of time by an unseen presence. We never understood what caused it and we never understood what ended it, so I had personal experience. But also my grandmother and I used to watch horror movies and the old horror TV show Dr. Shock who hosted Saturday morning shows like Scream-In, Horror Theater, and Mad Theater. The movies were captivating. I loved finding out there was a sequel to Frankenstein and that he didn’t die in the burning windmill. There were more like Frankenstein Meets The Wolf Man that continued on the story of Lon Chaney. Like when they killed Lon Chaney in the original Wolfman I was like, “Why? He was a nice man, he didn’t want to be The Wolf Man“. I loved it. They were like Saturday morning soap operas. I loved them as a kid, but that time is gone. That is why I like Tom Holland’s Fright Night. I was watching in the summer of ’85 and knew it was a Valentine to an era that was quickly fading and disappearing. At that time, the threat was coming from cable television and the home video revolution, so Peter Vincent was this aging icon of an era long gone trying to stay relevant. Tom Holland got it, and Fright Night works on many levels. So horror movies, for me, were a real escape from the actually really scary shit that happened to me.

Kane Hodder in Death House. Set piece by PCND/fx.

Kane Hodder in Death House. Set piece by PCND/fx.

HoTS: Then I asked him about the abundance of horror movies and shows seem to be throwing back to the ’80s. Movies like It Follows and The House of the Devil and shows like Stranger Things all reflect that age in horror, and Death House has many actors from that era. Why do you think it is a niche we all still enjoy?

Dee Wallace in Death House.

Dee Wallace in Death House.

HS: Director and actor Eli Roth said that the have-sex-and-die concept behind many of the ’80s slasher films was not as relevant today because millennials look at it and don’t get it. There was a study reported by the L.A. Times in an article by Melissa Batchelor Warnke saying that the millennial generation is the least sexually active, so that concept does not translate well. But at the time when Friday the 13th came around, it was a perfect storm of both liberal and conservative values. We had a very conservative administration with Reagan and yet, at the same time, we were known as the party generation. It was a weird flux of things coming together. So Friday the 13th had fun and parties with lots of boobs and tons of gore but with a moral lesson. See what happens when you fuck in the woods? Jason was like a walking STD. So the ’80s made us nostalgic for the ’50s, and now we look back to the ’80s. We are nostalgic for when we grew up. That is why, when making Death House, we always remembered that we were handling peoples memories and that is very important. The new generation gets to fall in love with it like we did. And with regards to the actors in Death House, they were all smart enough to choose great directors and projects that were just starting out, and their careers flourished from those collaborations so they are all still relevant today.

Death House - Kane Hodder arriving on set.

Kane Hodder arriving on the Death House set pictured with Harrison (dressed as an extra for the ward scene). The guy over his shoulder is producer Rick Finkelstein.

HoTS: I did some research on Holmesburg Prison, where you decided to film the movie. Some extremely monstrous things went on there. Any ghosts try to break into acting for the film?

HS: No, I did not experience anything myself. There were a few reports of the cameras acting wonky, but it was really cold there which probably contributed to that. The place itself was perfect for the mood though. There is a great book called Acres of Skin: Human Experiments At Holmesberg Prison 1998 by Allen Hornblum that tells all about the medical experiments and tortures that went on inside the prison. It really lent itself to what we were shooting. I remember when they gave us a tour and brought us into the warden’s office where he had his throat slit. Nothing paranormal happened but everyone was in tune with what had happened there. Dee Wallace said that it was sometimes overwhelming knowing that you were walking by cells where so much abject misery and torture had taken place. It is a building built on misery.

Harrison also wanted to make sure and give a shout out to the administration and the City of Philadelphia and especially the Philadelphia Police Department, who were more than gracious and just all-around wonderful people.

Death House set design by Joshua Reale.

Death House set design by Joshua Reale.

HoTS: My next question for Harrison was, as a director, what directors influence his work?

HS: Growing up, John Carpenter: Halloween, The Thing, They Live and Tommy Lee Wallace: IT, Halloween III, Fright Night II were major influences on me because they were accessible to me. I used to read Fangoria Magazine all the time and got a subscription to it. I used to read and devour the interviews and not just because of the pictures and oh! there making a sequel to Halloween and I want to see the blood and gore. They did an interview with John Carpenter and he talked about how he made movies and about finding a good crew and sticking with them. And I noticed for the first decade of John’s career he used a lot of the same people in front and behind the camera and that really made an impact on me because Carpenter was very much the founder of the guerilla film movement — that you get a camera, you go out there, and you shoot. That’s what you do, and that really inspired me as a filmmaker. I had a Super 8 silent Kodak camera, and I was learning. I was learning from those interviews in Fangoria and got a really strong base of knowledge. So if you look at my catalog of work so far, you will see many of the same faces. And if you read the credits, you will see a lot of the same names return time and time again. I bring them back because it is like putting the band back together, so to speak, which works for me because it becomes like production shorthand. I would also say Tom Holland of Fright Night and Psycho II fame was another influence because Psycho II made a big impact on me because of the script. I think it is one of the greatest sequels ever made and is very underrated. I wanted to hate it, but 30 minutes into the film I just fell in love with it. When it was over I walked out, called my family to let them know I would be late and went in to see it again. My film Camp Dread is a tip of the hat to Tom Holland. It was more like Psycho II than Friday the 13th.

Barbara Crampton in Death House.

Barbara Crampton in Death House.

HoTS: What is the theme for Death House?

HS: The whole pretext of Death House is evil is evil and good is good, but do they need each other? Because when you try to eradicate evil you are, at most, canceling out good as well. There is no need for good if there’s no need for evil. Bill Mosely has a great line in the film, “True evil is nothingness”. That is true hell. If we were to remove the Holocaust from history we would need a litmus test. Dee Wallace’s and Barbara Crampton’s characters think what they are doing is good. Look at the Nazis during the Holocaust. They didn’t think what they were doing was evil. Dee is like Nurse Ratched. One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest as a social horror film was a snake pit. Louise Fletcher played it so well because there are real nurses like that. That is the banality of evil. How a modicum of power gives rise to abuse of said power. Are The Five Evils in Death House really evil compared to Dee’s character or Nurse Ratched? They aren’t Cenobites they are regular people like you run into in everyday life. How many times in your own life might you have come into contact with real killers? The Five Evils are normal looking people.

Death House - The Five Evils

Death House – The Five Evils: Vincent Ward, Vernon Wells, Bill Moseley, Lindsay Hartley, Michael Berryman.

The original script for Death House was penned by the incredible Gunnar Hansen, who is best known for playing the mentally-impaired cannibal Leatherface in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. Gunnar left us on November 7th, 2015, from pancreatic cancer. His agent, Michael Eisenstadt, brought producers Rick Finkelstein and Steven Chase of Entertainment Factory to the screening of Zombie Killers: Elephant’s Graveyard to meet Harrison. Another writer had taken a stab at rewriting the script, but it turned into Texas Chainsaw meets Friday the 13th meets Saw, but that was not what Gunnar wanted. He did not want torture porn but a high concept horror film. Gunnar liked what Harrison did with it, so Harrison finished writing and then directed it. The actors were all there for their friend Gunnar and with Harrison collaborating with Gunnar before his death, I like to think of this as a love letter to an amazing man and actor that we lost too soon.

Gunnar Hansen, 4 March 4, 1947 – 7 November 2015

I was extremely honored to speak with Harrison Smith and pick his brain. To read more on Death House, I have included some links that come straight from the horse’s mouth. Harrison Smith’s Road To Death House articles.

Harrison with stunt coordinator Jaye Greene and his team.

Harrison with stunt coordinator Jaye Greene and his team.

Sean Whalen and Felissa Rose on the Death House set in LA.

Sean Whalen and Felissa Rose on the Death House set in LA.

I cannot even begin to express how excited I am to see this film. It has already won the audience choice award along with best feature film from the Central Florida Film Festival (CENFLO). MPAA said it was gritty, claustrophobic and a hell of a lot of fun. Harrison said it is like a roller coaster ride through a funhouse, and Kane Hodder said it was his favorite film he has worked on. So horror fans get ready for the ride of your life!

I have also included a link to a petition if you want Death House to come to a Regal Cinema near you. It is going to major theaters but I would like to see it in all of them.

So, from myself and the family at House of Tortured Souls, thank you again to the great Harrison Smith and everyone involved with Death House! And just remember readers… “Hell isn’t a word…it’s a sentence.”

Death House - Harrison, Yan Birch and Lauren Compton after filming in LA.

Harrison, Yan Birch, and Lauren Compton after filming Death House in LA.

Posted by Alan Smithee in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, INTERVIEWS, PARANORMAL, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 2 comments