Ryuhei Kitamura

Are you ready…for absolute MAYHEM? The Mayhem Film Festival descends upon Nottingham, UK, at the Broadway Cinema, October 11 – 14, 2018. Featuring some of the best of horror, sci-fi, and cult classic features and shorts, there’s going to be a wide variety of cinematic genre offerings that should keep everyone happy.

Quite a few of the menu items have been making the rounds at many of the festivals, with some of them even winning awards. You’ll find a few that have been reviewed here and some that are about to be in the very near future, including:

Mayhem Film Festival: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)Anna and the Apocalypse : A Scottish high-school Christmas zombie musical, this one’s been getting a lot of buzz lately, and MAYHEM will also feature a Q&A with Anna and the Apocalypse’s director John McPhail.

Mayhem Film Festival: The Witch in the Window (2018)The Witch in the Window: Canadian filmmaker Andy Mitton’s follow-up to Yellowbrickroad and We Go On, this supernatural chiller is primed to bring a lot of unhappy relationships together. For those families where someone loves horror movies but hates the PG-13 ones and has yet another finicky watcher who loves horror but ONLY if it’s PG-13, The Witch in the Window is that happy medium where everyone gets what they want. With a minimum of reliance on tired horror tropes and no gore whatsoever, The Witch in the Window specializes more in classic creeps, using the slow-burn technique to come to a heart-warming, yet also heart-breaking finish.

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich continues to advance the beloved cult Full Moon Features franchise, with both fan favorites Udo Kier and Barbara Crampton on board.

Mayhem Film Festival: One Cut of the Dead (2017)One Cut of the Dead: Asian filmmakers have had their American brethren hanging their heads in shame (or they should be) with the way they’ve been managing to freshen up the tired zombie genre, with Korea’s outstanding Train to Busan and the quirky Chinese gut-muncher Zombiology: Enjoy Yourself Tonight. Now it’s Japanese co-writer/director Shin’ichiro Ueda’s turn, and if the other two are any indication of what kind of surprises to expect, you probably want to get your tickets to this one ASAP.

Mayhem Film Festival: What Keeps You Alive (2018)What Keeps You Alive: Even if you’re not familiar with Colin Minihan’s name, you’ve probably seen one or both of the films in the Grave Encounters franchise that he launched, or maybe his zombie-apocalypse-hits-Sin-City thriller It Stains the Sands Red. Based on his past work alone, his latest, a remote, woodsy horror drama sounds like another ‘must-see’ to add to your list.

Mayhem Film Festival: Nightmare Cinema (2018)Besides these films, there are also some debuts and other goodies worth noting. Nightmare Cinema is the much-anticipated horror omnibus from genre icon Mick Garris, who gave us the unforgettable Showtime shock-stravaganza Masters of Horror. Directors on-board this time around include Garris himself, Joe Dante, David Slade, and Ryuhei Kitamura (No One Lives, Versus, Midnight Meat Train).

Mayhem Film Festival: Mandy (2018)Mandy, the plenty-talked-about horror-on-acid freakshow starring – appropriately enough – Nicolas Cage – will infiltrate the Festival as well, and hopefully have tongues wagging just as much about its writer/director Panos Cosmatos, who also created the equally trippy Beyond the Black Rainbow.

And if One Cut of the Dead leaves you ravenous for more Japanese horror-goodness, you’re in luck. Making its UK premiere will be Shinsuke Sato’s live-action adaptation of the popular manga Inuyashiki.

And if this wasn’t mind-blowing enough, there’s also going to be a screening of the Lamberto Bava/Dario Argento collaboration from 1985, the crowd-pleasing Demons, and from Finland, The White Reindeer, a rarely-seen supernatural adaptation of a Finnish folk tale, made in 1952 by director Erik Blomberg.

More information about dates, times, the features and shorts, and where to get tickets, can be found at www.mayhemfilmfestival.com.

The MAYHEM FILM FESTIVAL Brings Scares Aplenty To The UK

The MAYHEM FILM FESTIVAL Brings Scares Aplenty To The UK

Are you ready…for absolute MAYHEM? The Mayhem Film Festival descends upon Nottingham, UK, at the Broadway Cinema, October 11 – 14, 2018. Featuring some of the best of horror, sci-fi, and cult classic features and shorts, there’s going to be a wide variety of cinematic genre offerings that should keep everyone happy.

Quite a few of the menu items have been making the rounds at many of the festivals, with some of them even winning awards. You’ll find a few that have been reviewed here and some that are about to be in the very near future, including:

Mayhem Film Festival: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)Anna and the Apocalypse : A Scottish high-school Christmas zombie musical, this one’s been getting a lot of buzz lately, and MAYHEM will also feature a Q&A with Anna and the Apocalypse’s director John McPhail.

Mayhem Film Festival: The Witch in the Window (2018)The Witch in the Window: Canadian filmmaker Andy Mitton’s follow-up to Yellowbrickroad and We Go On, this supernatural chiller is primed to bring a lot of unhappy relationships together. For those families where someone loves horror movies but hates the PG-13 ones and has yet another finicky watcher who loves horror but ONLY if it’s PG-13, The Witch in the Window is that happy medium where everyone gets what they want. With a minimum of reliance on tired horror tropes and no gore whatsoever, The Witch in the Window specializes more in classic creeps, using the slow-burn technique to come to a heart-warming, yet also heart-breaking finish.

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich continues to advance the beloved cult Full Moon Features franchise, with both fan favorites Udo Kier and Barbara Crampton on board.

Mayhem Film Festival: One Cut of the Dead (2017)One Cut of the Dead: Asian filmmakers have had their American brethren hanging their heads in shame (or they should be) with the way they’ve been managing to freshen up the tired zombie genre, with Korea’s outstanding Train to Busan and the quirky Chinese gut-muncher Zombiology: Enjoy Yourself Tonight. Now it’s Japanese co-writer/director Shin’ichiro Ueda’s turn, and if the other two are any indication of what kind of surprises to expect, you probably want to get your tickets to this one ASAP.

Mayhem Film Festival: What Keeps You Alive (2018)What Keeps You Alive: Even if you’re not familiar with Colin Minihan’s name, you’ve probably seen one or both of the films in the Grave Encounters franchise that he launched, or maybe his zombie-apocalypse-hits-Sin-City thriller It Stains the Sands Red. Based on his past work alone, his latest, a remote, woodsy horror drama sounds like another ‘must-see’ to add to your list.

Mayhem Film Festival: Nightmare Cinema (2018)Besides these films, there are also some debuts and other goodies worth noting. Nightmare Cinema is the much-anticipated horror omnibus from genre icon Mick Garris, who gave us the unforgettable Showtime shock-stravaganza Masters of Horror. Directors on-board this time around include Garris himself, Joe Dante, David Slade, and Ryuhei Kitamura (No One Lives, Versus, Midnight Meat Train).

Mayhem Film Festival: Mandy (2018)Mandy, the plenty-talked-about horror-on-acid freakshow starring – appropriately enough – Nicolas Cage – will infiltrate the Festival as well, and hopefully have tongues wagging just as much about its writer/director Panos Cosmatos, who also created the equally trippy Beyond the Black Rainbow.

And if One Cut of the Dead leaves you ravenous for more Japanese horror-goodness, you’re in luck. Making its UK premiere will be Shinsuke Sato’s live-action adaptation of the popular manga Inuyashiki.

And if this wasn’t mind-blowing enough, there’s also going to be a screening of the Lamberto Bava/Dario Argento collaboration from 1985, the crowd-pleasing Demons, and from Finland, The White Reindeer, a rarely-seen supernatural adaptation of a Finnish folk tale, made in 1952 by director Erik Blomberg.

More information about dates, times, the features and shorts, and where to get tickets, can be found at www.mayhemfilmfestival.com.


Posted by Samuel Glass in ATTRACTIONS AND DESTINATIONS, EVENTS, HORROR NEWS, PRESS RELEASES, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: No One Lives (2012)

MOVIE REVIEW: No One Lives (2012)

By Amy Mead

No One Lives movie poster

No One Lives

Directed by Ryuhei Kitamura 

Written by David Lawrence Cohen

Starring Luke Evans, Lee Turgesen, America Olivio, and  Adelaide Clemens

Betty and her nameless companion (credited only as "Driver") are a couple who are on the road, making a move. Straight away, we can see that there is tension between the couple and things seem more than a bit off in their dynamic. It appears as though Driver has done something terrible to expedite the cross country relocation and Betty seems both resigned and reluctant and there is a sense of despair that seems to emanate from her.  

They find a hotel for the night and decide to get something to eat. Before long they encounter seasoned criminal Hoag and his crew of accomplices while having dinner in a dive bar.

The band of would be robbers have just come from a robbery gone completely awry. One of the crew, Flynn, had an itchy trigger finger when the homeowners showed up to their vacation home unexpectedly, killing them and causing Hoag to call the whole thing off. Hoping to redeem himself for the botched robbery and killing a few people, Flynn set his sights upon the young couple, and targets them, convinced that they are wealthy and can help offset the crew's earlier losses. 

When the couple leaves. Flynn decides to have them run off the road and apprehended by another one of their crew, Ethan, who then holds them captive and attempts to question them about where their money is and how to gain access to their funds.

Things take a shocking turn when in the middle of all this, Betty suddenly gives Driver a speech about how she "can't do this anymore" and suddenly commits suicide by slamming her neck onto the blade Ethan is holding against her throat. This sends Driver into a rage and he breaks free from his handcuffs, killing Ethan. 

Meanwhile, Flynn takes the couple's vehicle and trailer back to Hoag's house and soon makes a shocking and unexpected discovery that changes everything. It seems this couple has been holding a young woman captive in the trunk of their car. Shortly after this discovery, Hoag's daughter realizes she has seen this woman before. She is Emma Ward, daughter of a well to do family, who vanished from a party where many of her friends were violently slaughtered. The crimes, her disappearance, and the two million dollar reward for her safe return have all been highly publicized, and after seeing the story on a rerun of a crime show, the crew thinks they have discovered their golden ticket. But Emma is no cash cow. They have no idea what is in store for them or the lengths that Driver will go to get her back...

WWE Studios film, No One Lives has gotten a lot of flack from many critics but I don't share the general opinion of most of them. I had a lot of fun with this film. I had originally seen the film when it first hit the new release shelves back in 2013 but was distracted during the viewing and didn't give it my full attention. I put the DVD away and then just sort of forgot all about it.  I recently pulled my copy out and gave it a second watch and I was seriously blown away by it. How did I miss all this the first time around? I could kick myself. I have been missing out and if you have yet to see it, so have you. 

While this film is nothing groundbreaking by any means, it is fast moving, entertaining, and if you are into gore, this film should be right up your alley. There is gore aplenty in this action packed thriller and some of the kill scenes are so brutally unrestrained that I was actually cringing and squirming in my seat. There's just something about seeing someone's head being lowered into a metal grinder that does it for me. And the best thing about it? It's practical effects, no fake looking CGI to be had here, folks. It's fucking beautiful. Truly something to behold if blood, guts and gore is your thing and on that basis alone, I can't recommend it enough. I can't help it, I love the gore and Kitamura (Midnight Meat Train) unflinchingly delivers as far as that goes. 

However, that being said, there are a few things I had issues with that many may not be able to get past. some of the acting isn't the greatest and the way this band of idiot criminals are always screaming at each other and making some pretty dumbass decisions gets a little annoying. The acting talent of  Luke Evans and Adelaide Clemens are truly the saving grace of No One Lives. Unfortunately, there isn't much to be had by way of a story line here and at times, the dialogue is flimsy and just a touch annoying. Overall, the story seems like maybe there is something missing and seems a bit incomplete but it was a fun watch for me all the same. There's nothing wrong with a little mindless carnage and blood splatter from time to time, at least not for this girl. 

I give No One Lives 6/10

 

Posted by Alan Smithee in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments