gothic

NEW FEATURE! CROWDFUNDING PICK: Baphomet

NEW FEATURE! CROWDFUNDING PICK: Baphomet

By Dixielord

Crowdsourcing is becoming a more and more popular way to finance films although it was once almost exclusively the territory of low budget and Indie films. Now, however, directors from the likes of Spike Lee to Rob Zombie have used the public to fund the budgets of their films. While there has been some outcry among fans concerning established filmmakers using this avenue, it, nonetheless, remains a lucrative way of funding a film. In addition to freeing filmmakers of studio restrictions, crowdfunding enables them to connect with the fans via special offers for different levels of donations.

With crowdfunding here to stay, House of Tortured Souls has decided to do a “Best of Crowdsourcing” series. It will have an irregular schedule to start, but we hope to grow into a monthly article. HoTS writers will scour the popular sourcing sites, Kickstarter and Indiegogo (and any others that may exist or come to exist), and find horror projects that look interesting to report back on for our followers. We also welcome suggestions from our followers. Just comment on this article as well as the upcoming articles and let us know what hidden gems you’ve found.

I’m going to kickstart this (Heh, heh, heh) with a little movie I found late one recent Friday night. The name of the film is Baphomet, and it drew me in right away. The story concept kept me there. It’s still early in the crowdsourcing for Baphomet, so it’s still anybody’s guess on how it will come out. But I’m really hoping this one is successful. After all, I already put my money where my mouth is.

Baphomet the movie

Promotional poster for Baphomet
Art courtesy of Stu Schuckman

According to the Kickstarter page, Baphomet is

THE STORY OF HANNA, a beautiful and cold-blooded murderer, a born sociopath with no concern for societal expectations. While living as a drifter on the highways of the east coast, she meets a sensitive young musician and begins a relationship that will blur the line between victim and accomplice.

Director Alex Sinesi describes it as a Southern Gothic road movie, and he means Gothic in the traditional way, not the Hot Topic way.

The crucial lead role of Hanna will be played by Hannah Elizabeth Smith, an award winning film and theater actress. Apparently Hannah isn’t afraid to get bloody with roles like Carrie (Carrie the Musical), and Lady MacBeth in her past. If that ain’t enough, just check out her photo on Kickstarter.

Hannah Elizabeth Smith as Carrie White, in Carrie the Musical from the Baphomet Kickstarter page

Hannah Elizabeth Smith as Carrie White, in Carrie the Musical

Along with Smith, Baphomet will star Nicholas Reed and Christopher Marino. All three members of the cast come from East Coast theater backgrounds.

There’s a lot that drew me to Baphomet. While the idea of a female serial killer might not be new, it’s far from common, and it’s relatively fresh ground. Plus, the idea of a Gothic road movie is appealing. I grew up in the South, on Faulkner, and there was always a darkness in his stories. They always made me feel uncomfortable. I think Baphomet may strike that same chord in me, and that makes me excited.

Baphomet- Never Behave again courtesy Kickstarter

Baphomet- Never Behave Again
Courtesy Kickstarter

The director promises that it will be bloody, but it wont be cheap gore. Sinesi promises that we will see the effect the killing has, even on the killer. I’m trusting he will have the skill to follow through on those promises, and make Baphomet more than a cheap horror film. So give it a look, and if you agree that this is an interesting project consider giving them a hand. There’s more information to be found on the movie’s Facebook page or on the Kickstarter page If it looks interesting, consider chipping in and helping what could be a great Indie horror film get made. House of Tortured Souls, and I, personally, will be keeping our eye on Baphomet and updating everyone on any major happenings.

Posted by Allen Alberson in Crowd funding Pick, HORROR NEWS, 0 comments
Salute: 50 Years of Dark Shadows

Salute: 50 Years of Dark Shadows

Welcome to Collinsport


Woofer McWooferson

This tribute is dedicated to Jason “Egg” Brown who is no longer with us. Jason was a smart, funny, and kind person, and he had a way with words as anyone in The Vortexx chat will tell you. Rest in peace.

Egg with Mod Ghoul, who left us in July of 2015.

Dark Shadows - Jonathan Frid as Barnabas Collins

Jonathan Frid as Barnabas Collins

Despite Dark Shadows airing between 1966 and 1971 when I was three- to eight-years-old, I have fond memories of rushing to watch it when it came on. How much of this is from the original airing and how much is from its syndication run I do not know. Memory is a tricky thing. Either way, Dark Shadows was a big deal for me and many other young horror fans. With witches, vampires, werewolves, gothic architecture, flashbacks to period piece episodes, and storylines inspired by the likes of Shelley, Poe, and Lovecraft, Dark Shadows was nothing like anything we’d seen on TV before. And we couldn’t get enough of it.

Dark Shadows - Kathryn Leigh Scott as Magie Evans

Kathryn Leigh Scott as Magie Evans

Created by Dan Curtis after he dreamed of a mysterious young woman on a train, Dark Shadows began as a gothic soap opera following the lives of the Collins family of Collinsport, Maine (named for the family) and eventually morphed more into a supernatural soap opera. The show really took off in the second after the character of Barnabas Collins was introduced and Jonathan Frid joined the cast. Barnabas was eventually revealed to be a Collins ancestor who was cursed to be a vampire after he refused to return to the witch Angelique (Lara Parker), his former lover.

Dark Shadows - Joan Bennett as Elizabeth Stoddard Collins

Joan Bennett as Elizabeth Stoddard Collins

Barnabas was imprisoned by his own father in a chained coffin with a cross on the inside of the lid, but returns after his coffin is disturbed by contemporary Collins’ looking for the family’s alleged jewels. It doesn’t take long for Barnabas to assume the role of a ladies man while feeding off the citizens of Collinsport at night. He is most taken by Maggie Evans (Kathryn Leigh Scott) because she resembles his long lost love Josette.

Dark Shadows - David Selby as Quentin Collins

David Selby as Quentin Collins

Interestingly, Barnabas was not supposed to be a regular, but his enormous popularity persuaded the producers to bring him on board completely. It even took quite a while before any character used the word vampire to describe Barnabas. Until that time, characters merely referred to him as one who “walks at night but…ain’t alive” and “one of the undead”.

Dark Shadows - Nancy Barrett as Carolyn Stoddard

Nancy Barrett as Carolyn Stoddard

Other show regulars include Joan Bennett (who was on for the show’s entire run) as Elizabeth Collins Stoddard, who had not ventured outside of her palatial home in over eighteen years, Alexandra Moltke Isles (for which producers received a great deal of criticism because of her age and lack of experience) as Victoria Winters, Nancy Barrett as Carolyn Stoddard (Elizabeth’s daughter), Louis Edmonds (who also stayed for the show’s full run) as Roger Collins (Elizabeth’s brother), and David Selby as Quentin Collins.

Dark Shadows - Alexandra Isles as Victoria Winters

Alexandra Moltke Isles as Victoria Winters

Bennett, Barrett, and Edmonds were acting veterans who brought an air of legitimacy to the show and offset the perceived problem with having an unknown in a key role.

 

It’s difficult to imagine now, but Dark Shadows was first and foremost a soap opera – a dark, gothic soap opera, but a soap opera nonetheless, and it originally aired on daytime television. With only a weekly budget of $70,000, they managed to create 1,125 episodes of one of the most beloved horror shows of the 20th century and spawn countless variations, including:

House of Dark Shadows (1970) – feature length movie
Night of Dark Shadows (1971) – feature length movie
-A television revival show in 1991 (featuring a very young Joseph Gordon-Levitt)
-Two book series of Dark Shadows, one consisting of 32 books and a novelization of House of Dark Shadows and the other a trilogy by Lara Parker, the actress who played Angelique
-Countless magazine articles and features
-A comic strip
-Comic books
-Two board games
-Coloring books
-Two jigsaw puzzles
-A View-Master reel
-A series of audio dramas with many members of the original cast

Yes, Dark Shadows was a seminal production that paved the way for many other horror television shows, and television was the better for it.

Dark Shadows cast

The cast of Dark Shadows

Posted by Woofer McWooferson in FEATURED CONTENT, HORROR HEROES, RETRO REVIEWS, TELEVISION REVIEWS, THIS DAY IN HORROR HISTORY, 0 comments