EXCLUSIVE

We want to hear your thoughts!

House of Tortured Souls sits down with Ms. Langanja Estranja

House of Tortured Souls sits down with Ms. Langanja Estranja

I got to sit down with the amazing, talented and beautiful Ms. Laganja Estranja! We talk about everything So sit back relax, light up your favorite recreational treat, grab those heels, pause that horror movie and let’s break down what’s on Laganja’s mind! 

  • HOTS:I’m Jai Alexis here for House of Tortured Souls here with Laganja Estranja!
  • LE:YASSS GAWD!
  • HOTS:So, I saw the show and it was really good. It was so fun. It felt very natural for you. I know you wanted to do this last year, but for whatever reason it didn’t go through. It was heart breaking we didn’t see it, but we finally have! How did it feel going on stage as FrankenFurter?
  • LE:Thank you! Last year was the anniversary, but the rights weren’t available. It felt really nerve racking. I’ll be honest as a drag queen I’m very rarely nervous. As a drag queen I’m so used to that you know, I lip sync, death drop, say a couple catch phrases and hit it! Tonight, was a big night for me I had to remember lines, act and sing. It was very natural it’s what I grew up doing. I felt honored to showcase my talents in other ways.
  • HOTS:I know you did Ru Paul drag race, So you can think you can dance to Rocky Horror picture show. Do you think you’ll find yourself venturing into acting?
  • LE:Absolutely I think the best queens. Not so much drag queens but queens in general they’re all about reinvention. I’m actually going through a big re-invention myself. I was recently in Miami this year I was in a dance residency where I was director, choreography, set designer, costume designer. I did it all. It was a spiritual journey for me. It made me realize I have so many gifts. I was able to be multifaced and to show different skills I gained all these years in this world.
  • HOTS:You come a long way in the years in your career from the beginning to now and as stated you were on, So you can think can dance? Was this your idea, or did your fans or friends encourage you to go forward for an audition?
  • LE:It was a little from column A and column B. I tweeted out to my supporters who I call my “Buds” I asked them, “do you think I should go in as a boy or in drag?” They were extremely supportive and said I should audition in drag. I think normally I wouldn’t have gone in drag, but I’m so glad I did, my story was one of the first which was seen especially on FOX. To represent my community in a different light that show is really all about your talent. Not to say that Drag race isn’t about talent but it’s a tv show there’s drama there’s a certain way thing work where SYTYCD you have 30 seconds to show your talent with what you bring in that solo. It was going back to my roots. I plan on returning next year I have a strong feeling I’ll make it to the live show. I made it to top 33 this year which was a big deal for me something I wanted my whole life I grown up watching it since season 1. I definitely want to go back next year make top 20, top 10 and I want to win. My plan is going back to the studio take some time off to focus on my technique which is where I was failing if you will working from Nov to Feb working on my technique and in Feb I’m going to go kill that audition!
  • HOTS:I heard your latest song “LOOK AT ME” from your newest album “Exhibit A” what I love is with the music, the outfits your message on expressing your love for Cannabis where you state numerous facts that it’s proven to be a medical drug that helps so many as well as drug arrests for very minor items involving cannabis can you tell us what we expect to hear from the album?
  • LE:Yes, so my next single which is called Smoke Break will be coming out this Nov. I’m very vulnerable and open on this album where I express the separation from Jay to Laganja about my life with the difficulties that come with. There’re some fun tracks on it as well. As an artist it was important to focus on a message. Like “Look at me” I focused on the racial injustice that people go through more specifically through marijuana and the jail system and I feel because I’m a white man making rap music dealing with things that come from an African American culture it’s very important I use my platform thanks to Ru Paul drag race I can give a message to people. I represent a lot more than just death drops and tongue pops. It’s my duty as an entertainer and as an artist to be an activist.
  • HOTS:Are you finding more fans from cannabis, drag or dance?
  • LE:Most of my fans have been Drag race, with that being said my work in the lgbtq community to the cannabis community separate from drag and dance. I have accumulated a group of wonderful weirdos and beautiful people I love so much it’s growing and changing every day as I am rebranding moving into dance, acting where I’m adyrongus not necessarily Laganja with the wig and without a beard where people are used to seeing my horizons are broadening and that’s my goal.
  • HOTS:In the past you considered yourself being Non-binary. Do you still feel that way?
  • LE:I do. Absolutely. I present male, but I feel female. So that’s why Non-Binary works for me it’s about being one or the other but a beautiful blend of both. For Rocky horror I chose to keep my beard. Usually Frankenfurter doesn’t have a beard.
  • HOTS:I thought it worked. A lot of performers when playing Dr. Frankenfurter go for his look where as you brought your own look to it.
  • LE:It’s important for me to bring something new to the table. I was inspired by Tim Curry I did several moves he’s known to do. I brought my own flair the dance elements to it. My voice isn’t as low so theirs softer moments. As an artist we have this opportunity to take a character like Frankenfurter and make it into our own.
  • HOTS:Do you feel yourself doing more horror after this performance?
  • LE:Yes, I love horror it’s my favorite genre! I love Halloween, haunted houses, I’m a big horror fan! I would love to continue more in the genre. It’s a lot of fun with horror there’s a message behind it too for me it’ll be a natural transition. I would love to bring horror to my dance. In college I was known around campus to have these dark dances being inspired by Macbeth, Vampires, Witches. Horror has always had a big influence on me. I was a vampire for seven years as a kid for Halloween!
  • HOTS:Would you try to be Non-Binary in the role of a horror movie or just be male for a horror movie?
  • LE:Well I would be whatever the role and money called for! I would love to see horror continue to expand in the lgbtq scene the non-binary scene there’s plenty of gay horror movies. I would love to see more of that I think the generation is ready for it.
  • HOTS:For your love of Horror and drag. Do you see yourself being a judge for Draugla?
  • LE:I would LOVE to be a judge on Dragula! I feel like a shoe in for it! I wanted to be on season 2 but it was a conflict of interest since I’m best friends with Biqtch Pudding and they didn’t want it to be unfair, but I’m hoping to get a seat on season 3!
  • HOTS:I’ve seen you perform a few times already where Rey Lopez (Rey Lopez Entertainment) brings you for either a small headlining event or a bigger event bringing down the show with an amazing performances from his showgirls to you . Do you enjoy your times here regardless the event in San Antonio whether it’s a small or big event?
  • LE:I love San Antonio! You guys have the best queso in the world! For me San Antonio reminds me of being a child coming here for choir competions this was one of the big hubs we would come to. I always have a place for San Antonio in my heart. I would say I have enjoyed playing Dr. Frankenfurter this role than my club roles. I’m looking to push myself and challenge myself.
  • HOTS:Well thank you so much for giving me your time and patience for this interview!
  • LE:Of course, my pleasure!




Posted by Jai Alexis in Categories, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED ARTISTS, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
Sharp Knives cuts deep into the veins for horror comic fans

Sharp Knives cuts deep into the veins for horror comic fans

It’s been a while since I read a comic book or even a horror comic book. Truth be told the last horror graphic novels I read were by Junji Ito and Steve Niles. I was very pleased to get a chance to read issue one of Sharp Knives written by Anthony Cotter and illustrated by Martin Trafford. Normally I’ll review a movie or tv show, but it was nice to get back to my roots of horror comics since that’s what I loved to read growing up. Right off the back this comic has a hopelessness cold feel to it with style of a 70’s, 80’s slasher movie. Not the hokey slasher movies with the one liner I’m talking stuff like New York Ripper and Maniac feel to it. Sharpe Knives is a dark and gritty story set in a fictional corner of the real world, free from supernatural elements. An exploration of what drives the worst kind of villains, and the choices they might make when confronted by forces as malevolent as they are themselves. Narrated by depraved serial killer, and master blade-smith Jeffery Sharpe, who’s waning self-control drives him down a path toward a formidable adversary the likes of which he likely never expected to encounter. It begins! The main character’s narration is written out almost as if you’re reading the journal of the serial Killer. At times me reading the comic felt as if I was reading a movie script envisioning the scenarios in my head. The story builds up to an interesting read where we follow the main character Jeffery Sharpe stalking his prey and nothing will get in his way to achieve his goal it’s almost as if times, we’re rooting for him to what degree though? Perhaps it’s just the fact that we’re not terrible people but just enjoying a horror comic that doesn’t hold back almost as if we’re watching Jason Voorhees kill for the first time and gives the audience what we want: Blood. The artwork is amazing showcasing the mentality of a killer where he brutally murders an innocent by stander just for talking to him to finally brutally killing the body guard of the victim he’s been chasing. As stated yes, I read issue one it’s not out yet although here’s the best part there’s an Indiegogo campaign going on with perks that are worth every penny. For more info please click here for the campaign. This is a horror comic you’ll be hooked on very early

Posted by Jai Alexis in BOOKS, COMICS, AND PUBLICATION REVIEWS, COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED CONTENT, HORROR NEWS, NEW RELEASES, REVIEWS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, 0 comments
Trailer Review: DIS the new movie from Unearthed Films coming this January-House of tortured Souls

Trailer Review: DIS the new movie from Unearthed Films coming this January-House of tortured Souls

When it comes to surprises Unearthed Films is no stranger to them. It was revealed this week that the film DIS (2017) will be released in Jan. The trailer which I saw blew me out of the water. The film has a feel of part indie art film to graphic twisted nightmare. The plot follows: an ex-soldier with a criminal past takes refuge in the woods. A demonic figure seeks the seed of killers and the blood of the damned to feed his mandrake garden. DIS is an infernal descent into the root of the mandrake legend and a man who wanders too close to that legend and the unnamable terror behind it. What you sow you will reap. The movie gives us interesting details but no real spoilers. Which is great because it’s best to walk in with no real idea of what to expect. I’m sure there will be gore, brutality, insanity with a story. The film stars Bill Orbest Jr. Who you might recognize from Circus of the Dead (2014) Death Camp (2018) and even Criminal Minds (2014) who is no stranger to horror. So, after the holidays are over the turkey has been devoured and the Christmas presents have been opened. Sit back and enjoy this film as we venture into the new year with a new film that will for sur be talked about for a while!

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED CONTENT, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HORROR NEWS, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, REVIEWS, SATANIC/DEMONIC, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, 0 comments
Exclusive Interview with Lex Ortega

Exclusive Interview with Lex Ortega

I’m a huge fan of the film Atroz by Lex Ortega. In my opinion it’s one of the best extreme horror films made in the last 10 years… maybe ever. It’s unrelenting and brutal beyond imagining.  I’m incredibly excited to have this opportunity to talk with Lex Ortega about it and his future plans to make films.

  • HoTS:  Before making Atroz you were the mastermind behind Mexico Barbaro what made you decide to make Mexico’s first horror anthology movie? How was it received?
  • Lex: Actually I was on the metro and I was thinking what shortfilm should I do next? Then I realized there were a lot of directors thinking the same thing, trying to get their films on festivals, paying fees, trying to finance themselves their production, etc. So I got the idea to unite efforts and make an anthology, in this case we could get distribution, promotion for us as directors, in overall a better projection than a single shorfilm, and maybe have an economic retribution for our job. It had a great reception from the audience all over the world, we got distribution around 8 counties and Netflix America (all continent), and we were in around 50 festivals all over the world.
  • HoTSAtroz was insanely brutal, in the opening it says 98% of the 27,500 murders per year in Mexico go unsolved. Did you make the film as a social commentary, meant to shed light on the level of violence there or did you just want to make an extreme film? Personally, I respect both.
  • Lex: It started weird, at the beginning I just wanted to shoot a torture sequence with no credits and release it on the internet as a supposed “Snuff film”, then I realized a lot of talent was getting involved, as well as my savings that I was going to invest on it so I decided to make it an actual shortfilm (the first video tape you see on the feature), after it was done, I was getting censorship and lots of comments on how brutal this short was. THAT WAS A PUMP OF GAS FOR ME! and I said, I want to scream louder about these topics, then making the documentary investigation to create the profile of the main character (Goyo) I got into these hard numbers you mention, and I turned the story into a social critique to the institutions, from our first social contract that we have as individuals such as family, to the state, and politics that are supposed to be there to protect us as a society.
  • HoTS:  Is your movie an accurate portrayal of violence in Mexico?
  • Lex: In certain ways yes, we don’t have a specific record on serial killers like the US, and in my personal opinion that is because a lot of murders that happen in Mexico are attributed to the Narco, and there is no investigation about it.
  • HoTS: I imagine Atroz might be bad for tourism, how did the Mexican people receive it?
  • Lex: I don’t make tourism promotions, I do horror films so I really don’t mind. When must people watch Atroz they’re shocked, and that makes me happy for 2 reasons, the first one is that for me cinema has to make you feel something, it doesn’t matter the genre, if not, it means it is not working. And second and most important is seeing people freaking out watching violence tells me that we haven’t normalized violence yet, by the time we watch graphic violence and we feel nothing it means that we don’t have empathy for each other, then we will be rotten as a society.
  • HoTS: As a Canadian I was excited to learn you came here to go to a very prestigious school in Montreal. What made you decide to attend the Trebas Institute? How did you like your stay here?
  • Lex: Oh man Canada is very important for me, it means a lot in my life. I was living in beatiful Montreal studying Sound Engineering, How I got there? It was weird, I was studying the second semester of Civil Engineering at UNAM (the biggest university in Latin America) in 1999 it went on strike for over a year and a half, so obviously I couldn’t keep studying there, my dad told me I had to start over in a new university because it seemed like the strike was going to take forever, so I told my old man that I was going to start over but this time I wanted to study what my real passion is, and he goes: Ok, so where and what are you studying? I told him Sound Engineering, but that career didn’t exist in Mexico at that time so I started looking for schools around the world and a good friend of mine went on vacation to Canada from coast to coast and I asked him what was the city he liked the most and he said Montreal, so I applied to Trebas in Montreal and I got it.
  • HoTS: Atroz is presented by extreme horror legend and director of Cannibal Holocaust Ruggero Deodato, how did you manage to score such an amazing endorsement?
  • Lex: I meet Ruggero back in 2004 in Bogota, Colombia, me and the producer Abigail Bonilla were presenting Mexico Barbaro in a fest called Zinema Zombie Fest and Ruggero was also a guest from the festival.  We were promoting the crowd funding at that time so Ruggero helped fund it, but further than the economic help he gave us I wanted him to endorse the film.  We asked him if we could use his name on the promotional advertisement for the movie, at that time he was like: Ok, but I would like to see what it is about. When we finished the film we sent it over and he loved it and he said yes to our request and became an associate producer of the film.
  • HoTS: Do you have future plans to make more extreme movies?
  • Lex: Of course hermano!!!, personally I don’t want to do the same thing over and over, I am not interested to make things other than horror.
    The horror genre is huge and I would love to dig deeper into it, to other topics and subgenres, but I definitely like to tell stories in a violent way, where antagonists are not just bad, I want them to be real sons of bitches.
  • HoTS: What are some of the movies and directors that inspired you to get into film?
  • Lex: If I had to pick a top 3 I would say, Roman Polanski’s Repulsion, Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Cannibal Holocaust.
  • HoTS: It’s my understanding that you are also a talented musician, what can you tell fans about your band?
  • Lex: I don’t know if I’m talented but I really love music, it’s very important in my life and career, that’s what made me start in the industry. It was music that made me decide to study Sound Engineering, then after working on a studio making sound design for films, that made me decide to grab a camera and shoot my first short film called “Devourment”.  I didn’t know how to direct a film at that time, all I knew was that my premise was: How do zombies hear us?, what if a human screams, sirens and helicopters are so loud and annoying for them, that they just want it to stop and attack to get it done?I started a band called “The Massacre Must Begin” with a couple of friends back in 2009 (Our album is on Atroz’s bluray that Unearthed Film released in the US), then we  broke up, some of them became parents, I guess our interests changed.Now, this week you will be able to hear my new band’s album on Spotify, Apple Music, Itunes and all the streaming platforms. We are called Belibette and we’re relasing our first LP calle 72 Huries, it’s a strong-in your face technical Grindcore. So go and listen to it!
  • Thank you very much for answering all my questions, I enjoyed your answers very much and look forward to watching the next disturbing film you make. I’d also like to thank John Roisland for setting up this interview and being our go between and just an all around good guy. Thank you both for the opportunity.
Posted by Candace Stone in BRUTAL REALITY, Categories, EXCLUSIVE, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
Leprechaun Returns gives us the pot of gold earlier than we expected

Leprechaun Returns gives us the pot of gold earlier than we expected

Linden Porco

Growing up as a kid I made it my mission to watch Leprechaun when it first came out. When I was able to finally watch it on VHS I couldn’t be happier the films were pretty much gory b movies to finally just…a comedy…to LEPRECHAUN ORIGINS. The less said about origins the better. All hope was lost in the films. Well they have them all on Blu-ray so there’s that. Then there was word the film was going to get a reboot I was listening again. Sure it was going to be on SYFY, but the directors of The Void (2017) Steven Kostanski, Jeremy Gillespie were going to be behind it  so I have faith in it. With news breaking today of a poster it pretty much gives us the hint that this will be a direct sequel to Leprechaun (1993) Now originally, we were going to see the film in March of 2019 but a couple of great things: The movie will be released next month on VOD DEC 11TH. Plus the original distributor LIONSGATE will be behind it after all. So, this means more blood and more gore. The plot for Leprechaun Returns is “The Leprechaun returns once again, when a group of girls unwillingly awaken him, when they tear down a cabin so that they can build a new sorority house.” Truth be told I’m not looking for Oscar worthy stuff just give me a creature terrorizing people out in the woods, city, Las Vegas, Space, wherever he may bust just as long as we have Leprechaun back on the small or big screen. Below is the teaser trailer that premiered this past St. Patrick’s Day. Sadly, Warwick Davis won’t be in this version but there will be a new actor playing name Linden Porco who you may have seen in Channel Zero: Butcher’s Block and Cult of Chucky (2017). Linden has done numerous roles in movies and tv shows bringing a lot to his roles. So, this should be interesting to maybe see a different take on Leprechaun.

Posted by Jai Alexis in COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HORROR COMEDIES, HORROR NEWS, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, NEW RELEASES, SATANIC/DEMONIC, THRILLER, 0 comments
Up Close and Personal with Stephen Biro

Up Close and Personal with Stephen Biro

In the world of horror there are many sub-genres ranging from the creature feature to the slasher. The hottest new trend on the rise caters to those who lust for gore and the extreme. The rise of extreme horror movies increases everyday with some attributes seeking to push the boundaries of sanity. House of Tortured Souls has the good fortune to sit down and chat with the man who has taken extreme horror by the reigns and made it his bitch, Mr. Stephen Biro! Join Candace Stone and John Roisland as we get the skinny from the godfather of extreme horror

  • 1. HoTS: First, thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us, we’re all huge fans of yours and Unearthed films. We know you’re a busy guy and appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions. This past weekend was your birthday or “The day of the Biro” an event fans were really excited to partake in. How did you spend your special day?
  • Biro: Well… I actually checked a menu design for a future film, packaged orders and worked. Didn’t go out, no parties or cake. Now… I think the only thing I really missed was NOT getting a birthday blowjob. I miss those, but alas… being single does that.
  • 2. HoTS: The American Guinea Pig series is a huge success and fans are thirsty for more, is there a possibility of an Alien themed installment? It would be difficult to make a good alien on a budget, but it would be a damn shame to miss an opportunity to make a film with an extreme alien anal probing scene (that we can only hope it will have).
  • Biro: Were in talks… with a director/fx man you all know and love. The trick would be the alien design. We couldn’t half ass it… but we’re trying to figure some things out. Also figuring a Frankenstein sort of laboratory sort of thing I was pitched recently as well. It all takes time. Can’t tell you who would be involved as well cause it is another director/fx person we all know and love. Lot of love for our fx people cause if we’re going to try to outdo or match Bouquet of Guts and Gore and the rest in AGP… that’s some serious special effects.
  • 3. HoTS:  Extreme gore films are becoming more and more popular, each director is going to try and out extreme the competition but where do you personally draw the line when it comes to gore?
  • Biro: Me personally? My films, I don’t want rape, pee, poo, semen, ejaculate, vomit or really sexuel violence. I mean, I could do a massive sexuel violence film. I’ve always wanted to do the orgy scene from a little ole comic book called Faust. The satanic orgy scene in issue 10 would be outrageous… would need porn actresses and actors in it to pull it off. But that’s in the stuff I want to make. Now when other filmmakers do it…. they can go wherever they want, unless it like glorifies rape. I won’t touch that stuff. It all depends really. We have released our share of films I would never make. But then again, I have turned down films with a lot of poo. LOL
  • 4. HoTS: You’ve mentioned your Christian faith before, how does it affect the movies you choose to release? Does it prevent you from taking on certain types of films or are there certain types you just won’t touch?
  • Biro: Not much at all… I’m forgiven of my sins.  I won’t do real death videos because they are out there by the dozens. Profiting off of the misery of others is evil. I don’t even like the true crime stuff cause someone is making money off the death of innocents. We did release Cannibal but that was someone who volunteered to be eaten. Texas Chainsaw is loosely based on Ed Gein but it wasn’t using his name to sell it. I’ve seen plenty of movies based on serial killers… but I think it’s a hack sort of thing to be honest. Make money off the deaths of others… not my style. Now, back before I found my faith I did sell real death videos… so I am guilty on that account. I can understand when you’re young, interested in death and want to watch it, study it and know what death can be like cause we are ALL going to die but… not my style anymore.
  • 5. HoTS: Do you get negative feedback from others in the Christian church? How do you handle that?
  • Biro: I haven’t been to church in a long time… I’ve tried some churches, went to one were they were speaking in tongues and that just pissed me off actually. Went to a Catholic church once and listened to the priest bitch for 20 minutes at the congregation for not giving them 10% of their money so they can make this mega church even bigger, so that pissed me off as well. As you can tell, some churches piss me off. They’re usually corrupted in some sort of way. I’d like to find a cool church… I’ve read the Holy Bible 3 and a half times… should probably read it a bit more but I have a hard time finding a KJV that is actually a real KJV version. So many are not, sort of crazy. I had one, gave it to my Mom and she gave it to someone else. hopefully, it found a good home
  • .6. HoTS: Can we expect to see more out of print Chinese films in the future? What’s the biggest challenge in releasing them?
  • Biro: We hope so… hardest part is getting your hands on a print of any film. They didn’t bother to store them correctly so a lot of mold and they usually just threw them out after the theatrical run in China, and everyone is about the 2k or 4k scans.
  • 7. HoTS: You’re also an accomplished author having written several books; do you have any plans to write more? Check out Hellucination: A Memoir here
  • Biro: If I ever get the time. Moving into producing films takes a lot of time as well as Unearthed Films swallowing up a lot of time. I do enjoy screenwriting, not as heavy as writing a novel so that’s what I have been doing lately.
  • 8. HoTS: Every director will face their share of negative feedback, you have been praised for how well you handle it. You share all reviews good and bad which is commendable, but how does it affect you personally?
  • Biro: Sometimes, it’s like… you stupid mother fucker. I enjoy them though. Some people just can’t wrap their mind around making an indie film and they all think a film should be so polished and expensive, it shines so bright but sometimes, you can only polish a turd so much and it still stinks. But then again, everyone’s a critic these days. Some people know what we do, others don’t and if someone shits all over us… they usually didn’t buy the film. The worst reviews are usually people who stole the film. IMDB is full of them. IF you go out of your way to buy an Unearthed Film… you know what you’re in store for and you’re going to enjoy it.
  • 9. HoTS: A lot of young hopefuls come to you looking for advice and you tell them not to get into film, why is that? Was it a difficult road for you?
  • Biro: Mmmm, because it is a total shitty business. I’m going to sound like a total dick here BUT… it’s better to know what you’re getting into than going in all bright eyed and bushy tailed just to get eaten alive. People rip you off, all the time. People lose their ass all the time. Look at it this way. 95% of all films lose their ass, can’t even make their budgets back and I am talking ALL films worldwide. Even the studios lose their asses.. Now… lets just say, you went to film school. Spent 70 grand in tuition and now, know how to make a film. Say you pull it off. You made a real good film. Now what? Now you got to step into the film festival trap. 40 bucks, 60 bucks and even up to 100 bucks just to submit and hope they pick it up. You and about 200 other filmmakers, or 300, 400… 1000 others. Did you know there is over 8500 film festivals in the world right now? Did you market the film? Did you know what you were doing? Marketing and promotion is another side of the battle. What? You made a free Facebook page… now the distribution trap. Do you know anything about contract negotiations? Do you know anything about IFTA? Arbitration? IFTA Arbitration? Assignment for the benefit of creditors? Do you even know what Force Majeure is? Royalty payments? Marketing cap? Return reserve? Well, you’re going to sign a contract with all of this in it so you better know it. What about international sales to other territories? Do you have reps you can trust? Can you even find a rep and sign a contract that your not going to get screwed over? Well, all of the above I mentioned in that contract you’re going to sign to a company in the US will be for sure, in the contracts, if you ever get a chance for international sales to other countries. Do you know how to negotiate a deal? Know what’s fair? Know what is too expensive? Do you know that the industry is flooded and it is very hard to get noticed. Do you know which companies rip people off? I do… I know all of this and a ton more and they don’t teach this in school and not even in film school. These are the pitfalls of the business and it’s filled with sharks, piranha’s, gators and vultures. I’m not going to get into torrents and piracy. It’s called show business… it’s a business. If you don’t know the business side of it… then why am I going to tell anyone to get into it.I’ve been in the horror business for over 20 years total. Getting traction now. I have a distribution company, I know how to do my own international sales. I even know what to do when I am getting fucked. I got screwed out 1.4 million dollars our 3rd year of business and my partner has been in it for 40 years… and we still got screwed. I’ve sued other companies and had people try to rip me off with screenplays. I’m in the middle of suing a company right now for another filmmaker as we speak. It’s been a very difficult road but it’s a difficult road for everyone that is going to last in this business. I got horror stories man… make the hair stand on end. Now you can say… I am doom and gloom and you’re fucking right. But… I am being honest here… wouldn’t you want to know the pitfalls and truth of what you’re getting into rather than me saying, “Go for it man! Your going to make millions!” Or would you rather hear a veteran of the industry say, “You’re going to get fucked, watch your ass and this is what you look out for.”
  • 10. HoTS: During your recent Live Facebook video you mentioned a podcast, when and where can fans expect to hear it? Who will you be doing it with?
  • Biro: I’m working with Brad Slaton of the Picking Brains Podcast that is now defunct but still available to hear past episodes. He’s a great interviewer and sort of crazy like me. Well, exactly as crazy as me… but not really since he has been podcasting for a lot longer than me It will be just us, chatting away, talking about everything really. You would figure it would be horror based and it will be, a bit but it will be more of a crazy sort of thing. I don’t think anyone will actually be ready for it. It’s a bit more entertainment but devious, fucked up that’s going to offend a lot of people. Well, normal people. Were going to see where it goes… It’s called… Stephen and Brad… The Podcast. Should be crazy interesting to say the least… it’s happening very soon, sooner than you think
  • HoTS: Thank you again Stephen, for this awesome interview. we appreciate your honesty and candor and enjoyed your answers immensely. Best wishes to you and everyone at the Unearthed family.
Posted by Candace Stone in Categories, EXCLUSIVE, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
Cast of Ru Paul Drag race brings The Rocky Horror Picture to life in San Antonio

Cast of Ru Paul Drag race brings The Rocky Horror Picture to life in San Antonio

If Halloween has given us anything it’s 31 days of so much horror. Throughout this month there have been parties, movie screenings, cartoons, seasonal candies, Halloween stuffed toys to even people going above and beyond dressing up as popular memes. However, the one thing that is just pure Halloween is The Rocky Horror picture show. Now if you have never seen it you are considered a “Virgin” Which isn’t a bad thing because for those who haven’t seen it watching it for the first time is almost a spiritual journey if you will. So, let’s breakdown Rocky Horror Picture show not the movie but the LIVE version featuring cast members from Ru Paul drag race. I had the pleasure of attending the live version for my second time so far. I’ve seen the movie countless times either for parties or just simple entertainment. It’s a classic none the less, but to see it LIVE to interact, dance along which was HIGHLY encouraged. There’s nothing in the world that can replace that feeling as if I’m watching it with friends who loved it just as much as I do. The event was held at the Woodlawn Point Church. Which was extremely cool for them to host the event especially for what the show was about. As I took my seat there was a small pre-show with our local drag show celebrity Tencha La Jefa warming up the crowd with her usual comedic routine. She is our Don Rickles of San Antonio. The show came on and what I loved about this version was that a live band performed on the side which made the event even better as if you’re watching a play AND a rock show. I would explain the plot for the film, but at this point to all horror fans they know it all too well. The cast was amazing with the Talented queens from various seasons. Laganja Estranja KILLED it as Dr. FrankenFurter. Previous actors and actresses have taken on the iconic role but Laganja added their own flair to it to where it’ll be hard to top. Tim Curry would be proud. Ginger Minj played the role of Janet belting out amazing vocal abilities which once again proves She deserves to be on the stage as well singing and performing because she is a talented comedian as well. Texas’ own Cynthia Lee Fontaine played Magenta and was amazing even towards the finale where her iconic outfit felt as if it was her own design.  Even Comedian Daniel Franzese who you’ll remember from Mean Girls did a really great Eddie adding his vocal tunes to the show which was amazing to see in a different light. Overall the show was by far one of the best productions I’ve seen in a long time. The cast stayed true to the script of the original as well as adding little improv lines and the main stars inconic lines and dance moves. Laganja doing the death drop as Frankenfurter, PRICELESS! Club promotor Rey Lopez has really out done himself this year with a great production and a great cast. When he’s not busying running his store Male B Wear he’s busy at work with the production (Rey Lopez Entertainment) of the show and other shows he goes all out for whether it’s a club show or a big event. I asked him about it and he told me, “This has been one of my biggest challenges, but with the help of a great team it all worked out” I couldn’t agree more! Truth be told the show was top notch and everything went well with no problems. The only downside of this event is that it’s only twice this month and that’s it. Onward to next year where it’ll be a different cast or maybe somebody from before. Either way I have to say if you’ve never seen Rocky Horror go see it LIVE while you have the chance and if you have seen it still go see it LIVE. The last performance of the year will be tomorrow on Halloween which is the perfect time. There’s a light over at the Frankenstein place, but Rey is keeping it brighter with an amazing cast and an amazing production. I would also like to say even though I couldn’t take flash photography or videos for the YOUTUBE page due to legal reasons out of my control I was able to get these production photos from the Photographer CJ Photography 

Posted by Jai Alexis in Categories, EVENTS, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED ARTISTS, FEATURED CONTENT, HALLOWEEN, HORROR COMEDIES, NEW RELEASES, PRESS RELEASES, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Domestic Hell local movie that shows real horrors

Domestic Hell local movie that shows real horrors

I’ve reviewed numerous films all over the U.S. so I was really happy to finally review a local film shot here in my back yard. I recently got to watch the film Domestic Hell (2018) by Colin Bressler. I would see advertisements of the film having it’s premiere in my city. I reached out to them and introduced myself and explain who I am. I was lucky enough to view the film before screening and take in what the cast and crew was able to pull off. So let’s break it down. The plot is: A couple in a open marriage kidnap a girl being held against her will. The Husband has become abusive towards his wife and hostage, We then find out that the husband has created a blood lust towards innocent women. Making the decision for the wife to stay or just work things out and the friend trying to locate her missing friend. The film doesn’t have any major stars but the cast does have potential for acting where at times felt too real in certain scenarios almost as if they were giving an emotional testimony of their pain. Given the film may not an over the top gore you may know me to review, but I couldn’t help but check out the film. I have to say there is that feel of The Last house on the left (1972) in reference to the husband and to where his captive wife who has developed somewhat of a Stockholm syndrome for her husband even though during the film she can’t help but feel bad and worried for her own life as she’s also a victim. The director set out to make a horror movie where it’s the horrors of real life about Domestic abuse. I have to give the Director credit for turning out a captivating story where we felt compassion, fear and sorrow for these characters where as even though it may not be a big budget film  they give it their all for this which I’m glad to see since this is a horrific scenario. Including a satisfying ending that wraps up the story very well. The film Domestic Hell is a terrifying ordeal, but a joy for the movie goers who are looking to see new talent bring something to the big screen. If given the opportunity watch the film or if you’re in the San Antonio area stop by for the premiere part of the proceeds at the door will be donated to the Domestic Violence Shelters which I think is a great reason to see this movie. The link for the viewing can be found here.

Posted by Jai Alexis in EVENTS, EXCLUSIVE, HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, REVIEWS, 0 comments
The Official Albert Fish Tour

The Official Albert Fish Tour

Albert Fish was an American serial killer. He was a child rapist and a cannibal, boasting he had killed 100 children “one in every state”.  I’ll be taking a look at America’s only official Albert Fish tour and the man behind it, Michal Bajer. I first met Michal Bajer in my favourite and in my opinion the best group on Facebook The Holy Mountain: Dr. Caligari’s Cult Movie Utopia (join group here:  I was fascinated with his personal story and felt it was beautiful and important. I was also very curious to learn more about his tour. He agreed to give me the details of the tour and the reasons why he started it in a candid fashion.

 

        • HoTS: Thank you so much for agreeing to talk with me, I understand this interview will be somewhat personal in nature. Can you please tell us what the tour entails?
        • Michal: Of course! The tour entails 2 main stops: Wisteria Cottage in which Albert Fish committed his most infamous (though certainly not his most despicable crime) as well as his burial grounds at Flushing Cemetery. There are plans to expand to other areas in the NY area such as the former residence of the Budd’s, but this is permitting time allowance. During the tour, I tell the guests (since it is a long car ride) the detailed autobiography of Albert Fish, as well as allow them to view memorabilia related to Albert such as books, films, curio tidbits and actual case photographs from the time period.
        • HoTS: Why did you choose Albert Fish?
        • Michal:This is going to be a long answer, so please bear with me! My fascination, if you will, with Albert began in my earliest years. I was and am to this day a tremendous history buff. The less than savory aspects of history, especially American, intrigued and tantalized me to no end as I poured over countless stories of wicked men and women. It was a natural progression from the gunmen and outlaws of the West to the mobsters and gangsters of Chicago, to finally discover the world of serial killers. The first book I ever read on the matter was called “Serial Killer Encyclopedia” by Harold Schechter and it contained numerous criminal cases that I found both intriguing and tantalizing. However, the only case which piqued both my absolute revulsion and curiosity was that of Albert Fish. I thought at first it was an exercise in horror-writer one-upsmanship. Surely, no individual could have committed acts so vile and so close in my state? From there on, the ball eventually started rolling as I began to acquire more and more data on his life and deeds. No horror film, story or fictional piece of media ever, truly chilled me as much as his life did. Proving that life is the author of the most bizarre stories.
        • HoTS: How did you decide to start doing the tour?
        • Michal:This too has a tale. I grew up fascinated and an ardent reader of Weird NJ. Embarking on the road less traveled seemed to me almost a beckoning call, the proverbial moth to the flame if you will. Over time, I became interested in places that possessed an acute and uncanny history. I promised myself I would visit these places and if possible, spread the information and experience with others! Accumulating all this knowledge, while self fulfilling, isn’t nearly as gratifying as having the chance to share it with others. It took me a whole 6 months of planning, mapping out areas and fine tuning details to make sure it was, above all, an informative and dare I say educational experience. I looked at the way essentially people handled the Dahmer tour in Milwaukee and said “I want the complete opposite of that. Less theatrics, more history”. As of now, I charge nothing as it has mainly been what I consider a series of test runs. Next year, I plan to visit Wisconsin and hit up both Dahmer’s and Gein’s haunts. Then I will plan accordingly and charge. However, since this is a one man operation I have no intention of overcharging or fleecing the people who come. My intention is too make enough money to cover the costs of the current tour, and hopefully have a little left over that can go DIRECTLY into the very next one. This is a passion project, above all. My desire to share knowledge comes first, my capitalist ambitions come second, so I make a better tour guide and historian than businessman I’m afraid.
        • HoTS: How can people take the tour?
        • Michal:The beginning tours were personal invite only, but I am changing that very soon! A website will be open very soon and until then, it is best to contact me through my Facebook until I figure out exactly what social media I want to use in the future. I am a member of a few true crime groups on FB as well, so be on the lookout for posts from me in the meantime!
        • HoTS: At one point you were close to suicide, but you have stated that your love of extreme films and serial killer trivia saved your life. Can you share how?
        • Michal:It should come maybe as now small shock that I didn’t always have the most positive outlook on life and did attempt suicide a 2nd time over a year ago. A lot of personal turmoil was apparent in my life and I was very close to ending it all. Surprisingly, what offered me the most comfort and understanding was the film Melancholie Der Engel by Marian Dora, perhaps the only film that ever truly resonated with me and moved me to the nth degree. I owe Marian Dora a lot, and after I went voluntarily into therapy, I decided I needed to focus on a goal. Ironically enough, subjects dealing with death opened up a new avenue of life and inspiration for me.
        • Hots: Thank you again for your time, your story resonated with me he first time I heard it and I am excited to share it with others. Hopefully one day I’ll get to take the tour myself.
Posted by Candace Stone in ABNORMAL MUSINGS AND FREAKISH FACTS, ATTRACTIONS AND DESTINATIONS, BRUTAL REALITY, Categories, EXCLUSIVE, 0 comments
HALLOWEEN ( 2018 ) 40 YEARS OF TERROR – MOVIE REVIEW

HALLOWEEN ( 2018 ) 40 YEARS OF TERROR – MOVIE REVIEW

On October 19, 1957, Michael Audrey Myers was born and on the night of Halloween, 1963, he stabbed his older sister, Judith Myers to death. Being held at Smiths Grove’s Sanitarium for 15 years, until he escapes on October 30, 1978. On Halloween, he murdered 5 people trying to get to his main target, Laurie Strode ( Jamie Lee Curtis ). But his Doctor shot him 6 times. After falling off a balcony, he was arrested and taken back to Smiths Grove, where he remained for the next 40 years.

The film opens with two British people who run a podcast and are visiting Smiths Grove to see if they can get Michael to speak by showing him his infamous mask, while instigating him. ( not a very wise decision ) from there the opening titles begin with the same orange text and a reverse time lapse of a rebuilding jack o’ lantern.

Ignoring everything that happened after the events of the first one, the film picks up 40 years later and Laurie Strode has been preparing herself for the day that Michael would escape again and come back for her. Lautie is armed to the teeth with various weaponry and booby traps that surround the inside of her home. Laurie has suffered an incredible amount of trauma, leaving her to have a not so great relationship with her daughter, Karen ( Judy Greer )

Her granddaughter , Allyson sides with her, feeling bad with no real understanding who Michael is and why he is the way he is and why he chose Laurie as his main target back in 1978.  All she knows is that he did some real damage to her and after 40 years, he is still traumatized.

On the night of October 30, 2018. Michael is being transported to another maximum security, where he is to remain for the rest of his days. The bus crashes and Michael is loose.

Once Michael gets his mask at a nearby gas station, he makes his way to Haddonfield, with a body count that puts the original to shame. Michael Myers is more brutal than ever before with some clever death sequences.  No spoilers, but his favorite weapon is not the only thing he uses to dismember his victims. The film has some over the top jaw dropping practical gore effects as well as a story that is so neatly scripted, you can tell the filmmakers did their research and they did it quite well. John Carpenter signed on as executive producer and also scored the film with his son, Cody Carpenter. Of course we get the infamous theme that everybody cheers during, but we also get some very nice additional music pieces that also fit very well within the film.  The mask looks great and in some scenes it looks even better, because of the lighting and shadows used, much like in the original.

For fans of the franchise, you will find easter eggs scattered throughout the film that are clever nods to the other sequels. That was a nice touch.

Overall, Halloween 2018, is a great follow up to the original with some great tension, kills and a battle  sequence between Myers and Strode that feels like an amazing Pay Per View event that viewers have been dying to see for a long time.  Halloween is now in theaters and you all should flock to the theaters ASAP and see this film. It’s an amazing follow up and should be recognized by not only the fans, but for people who just love horror movies.

Posted by Jonathan Hughes in Categories, EXCLUSIVE, HALLOWEEN, HORROR HEROES, HORROR HISTORY, NEW RELEASES, PARANORMAL, 0 comments
Interview with the director of Visceral Felipe Eluti

Interview with the director of Visceral Felipe Eluti

If you haven’t already watched Visceral by Felipe Eluti (check out the trailer : https://youtu.be/NsfmqIu8IGA”>HERE) and if you’re a fan of extreme horror I recommend watching it immediately. It’s been a fan favorite in the underground community for a while now. Made in Chile it’s about a boxer who loses the big fight. After the loss and what would appear to be brain damage from multiple concussions he’s unable to cope and loses his grip on reality. He goes into a downward spiral and begins murdering and torturing using many creative bondage scenarios. The main character is played by Eluti himself and today I’m going to ask him a few questions about the film, and his upcoming film called Shadowplay.

  • HoTS: First of all thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat with me I’m a big fan of your work. My first question is how did you come up with the idea for the film?
  • Felipe: The idea for Visceral was born thanks to many horror movies and real life psychopaths in general. I felt that a really extreme film was missing, a film that was not afraid to tell such a dark story.
  • HoTS: How did you find it playing a serial killer? It was a really brutal character how did it affect you?
  • Felipe: That’s a very personal question… you always have to know how to distinguish from the role one is playing with the person one is. When one acts, one can inquire into the darkness of the mind, but it’s only to play the character not in my normal life.
  • HoTS: there is a really graphic genital mutilation scene in Visceral that happens to your character is that hard for you to watch?
  • Felipe: I think the character deserved the punishment and the idea that the character never wins is exciting
  • HoTS: There was a lot to do with boxing in the film are you a boxer or just a fan of the sport?
  • Felipe: I practiced boxing only for the role, but personally I don’t enjoy the sport or participate in it. I’m a vegetarian  and a pacifist.
  • HoTS: There was a lot of bondage and rope in the film were you going for a BDSM theme?
  • Felipe: When my friends (Thomas Smith and Cristobal Rivera) and I looked at the film aesthetically and the script we came to the conclusion we needed it to add more perversion. We added it in and it worked.
  • HoTS: I understand you’re working on a new film called Shadowplay, what can you tell us about it?
  • Felipe: It’s different from Visceral, it’s much less violent. It’s more personal and focuses on a couple relationships. However there is still an element of terror, cosmic horror and Lovecraft style.
  • HoTS: How did you get into filmmaking?
  • Felipe: I studied film, it’s my profession. Since I was little I loved movies, music, and comics. When I had to choose a career I decided I wanted to make films.
  • HoTS: How are your films received at home in Chile vs North America?
  • Felipe: Visceral is better known outside of Chile, here I’ve been unable to show it many times because of its level of brutality. I am like Sugar Man, better known in other countries than in my native land.
  • HoTS: How did you get involved with Stephen Biro and Unearthed Films?
  • Felipe: Stephen contacted me after my film went through many festivals and realized that it was definitely for Unearthed.
  • HoTS: Finally just for fun what are your top 10 favorite movies?
  • Felipe: This is difficult since there is always more than 10, but here we go… Haze by Shinya Tsukamoto, Nekromantik  by Jorg Buttgereit, Blue Velvet by David Lynch, A Clockwork Orange by Kubrick, Phase IV by Saul Bass, The Dead Zone by Cronenberg, A Zed and Two Noughts by Greenway, Akira by Otomo, They Live by Carpenter, The Dawn of the Dead by George Romero, Phenomena by Argento, City of the Living Dead by Fulci and I’m already over ten.
  • HoTS: Thank you again for taking the time to answer my questions. I really look forward to seeing your new film Shadowplay and wish you the best on all your future projects.
  • Felipe: Thank you very much for your interest in my films, I send greetings to all my fans and lovers of extreme cinema.
Posted by Candace Stone in Categories, EDITORIALS, EXCLUSIVE, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
Local Legends and Creatures of North America

Local Legends and Creatures of North America

Tis the season to explore all things that go bump in the night, keep us awake and give us a fright! Please join me as I look at local legends across North America, their origins, and the best books and movies to see on the subject.
#1 The Wendigo

The Wendigo comes from Algonquin legend and is native to the Atlantic coast of Canada and the USA. There are several variations of the beast, but most popular is that the creature is a forest dwelling, evil spirit.
Physically it’s described as a giant with elongated limbs and protruding or visible bones. It often is said to have antlers or be half man half deer. The beast lives primarily off the flesh of humans and is associated with greed, famine, starvation and winter. Although the Wendigo is much larger than man it’s usually very thin and emaciated due to an increase in size after every meal. The wendigo is never full because it grows in proportion to each meal it eats.
A human Wendigo can occur when a man is overcome with greed, or resorts to cannibalism.

The book to read: The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood. Listen to the story here :https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVCNUOk-O9E
Movies to watch: Ravenous (1999), and Wendigo (2001)

#2 The Blair witch

We’ve all seen the movie The Blair Witch Project or at least heard of it, but where did the story originate from? The directors based the film on the case of Elly Kedward an Irish settler.
In 1785 in the town of Blair located in Maryland several children came forward accusing Kedward of luring them into her home and taking their blood. The townspeople found her guilty of witchcraft and banished her to the forest. They left her in the woods bound to a cart during a particularly harsh and cold winter. As the time passed and no more was heard or seen from her, she was presumed dead.
In the middle of winter in 1786 everyone involved with Kedward’s death disappeared along with half the towns children. The remaining residents flee believing Blair is cursed. In 1824 Burkittsville is built over the corpse of Blair.
In 1825 11 witnesses come forward to testify that a ghost like hand reached up and dragged a 10-year-old girl into the Tappy East Creek. Bizarre greasy bundles of sticks are said to have clogged the creek for 13 days after the drowning and the girl’s body was never found.
In 1886 an 8-year-old girl goes missing in the forest, several rescue teams are dispatched to find the missing girl who eventually returns on her own. One of the search parties doesn’t return and are discovered at Coffin Rock weeks later. The five men are found tied together hand to foot and disemboweled in an advanced stage of decay. When a recovery team returns to the rock hours later the bodies are missing.
From 1940-1941 8 children go missing. A local hermit Rustin Parr enters the market shouting “I’ve finally finished”. Local authorities discover 7 of the 8 bodies behind Parr’s home buried in shallow graves. The 8th victim was still alive and found in the basement standing in the corner. Parr claimed to have heard an old woman’s voice ordering him to kill the children. Parr was tried and hung for his crimes.
In 1999 The Blair Witch project is released, people believe that it’s real. The movie makes millions and paves the way for every dickhead with a handheld camera to make a shaky, poorly edited movie.

Books to read: The Blair Witch Files – various authors (read all 8, they’re each an independent story) buy them here: https://www.thriftbooks.com/series/the-blair-witch-files/53167/

Movies to watch: The Blair Witch Project, Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2, Blair Witch (2016)

#3 Ogopogo
The Ogopogo or Naitaka is a large serpent like lake monster found in the Okanagan lake in British Columbia. The Ogopogo is reportedly 40-50 long and resembles the Basilosaurus dinosaur. It’s Green in color with a reptilian or horse shaped head (depending who you ask). It was First seen by Canada’s first nations people as far back as the 19th century. The first Nations called the creature Naitaka and believed it was a bloodthirsty killer demanding a live sacrifice from travelers in exchange for safe passage. Hundreds of years ago before entering, the natives would drop chickens and other small animals into the lake to appease the giant water spirit.
In 1946 a group of 30 car loads of people all claimed to have spotted Ogopogo although no proof was presented. All videos and sightings have been labelled inconclusive.
The creature has never been reported to have hurt anyone and is mostly happy to do its own thing, it may even possibly be a bottom feeder living off plankton and small fish.
I’ve spent many summers on the lake trying to catch a glimpse myself, but sadly never saw the creature.

Books to read: In Search of Ogopogo: Sacred Creature of the Okanagan Waters by Arlene B. Gaal. Buy it here: https://www.amazon.ca/Ogopogo-Arlene-B-Gaal/dp/0888394829

Movies to watch: Mee-Shee: The Water Giant (renamed due to aboriginal protest)

#4 Chupacabra
The Chupacabra was originally discovered in Puerto Rico, but now has many sightings in North America mainly in Mexico and some of the Southern states. Chupacabra literally translates to Goat-sucker and is associated with killing livestock. It kills by draining the animals blood and sometimes removing their organs through three holes in the chest. Its kills are purely vampiric as the flesh is not consumed only the blood.
The Chupacabra is described as a large animal (the size of a small bear) with spines from its neck to the bottom of its tail. Alternatively, it’s described as dog-like in nature with little to no fur. It has large fangs and claws and very pronounced eye sockets.
All reports and sightings have been deemed inconclusive by leading cryptozoologists.
Books to read: Tracking the Chupacabra by Benjamin Radford buy it here: https://www.amazon.ca/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/138-7302764-1050759?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=tracking+the+Chupacabra,
Movies to watch: Indigenous (2014), Chupacabra Territory (2016)

#5 The Jersey Devil or Leeds Devil
The Jersey Devil is native to New Jersey USA and was originally called the Leeds Devil. The creature is said to live in the pine barrens of Southern New Jersey. Its description varies, most commonly its described as a flying biped with hooves, a goat head, bat-like wings, horns, small arms and clawed hands. The Jersey Devil has a high-pitched banshee scream that can be heard at a distance.
The legend begins in 1735 with the Leeds family. A mother of 12 becomes pregnant with her 13th child and in her exhaustion and desperation curses the child in her womb. When the child is born it turns into a monster, growling and snapping, it kills the midwife before flying up the chimney and heading into the pines. Some variations of the tale suggest the mother was a witch and the father was the devil himself.
There are many reported sightings of the beast, but skeptics believe that it was a boogeyman invented by bored English settlers. There was also a general disdain for the Leeds family which could have spawned the unfavorable rumors.

Books to read: The Jersey Devil by Hunter Shea, buy it here:https://www.amazon.com/Jersey-Devil-Hunter-Shea/dp/078603887X

Phantom of the Pines: More Tales of the Jersey Devil by James F. McCloy 
Movies to watch: The Barrens (2012), The Last Broadcast (1998)

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about these fantastic creatures of legend as much as I did, keep a look out for my follow up on the Local Legends of Europe.

Posted by Candace Stone in Categories, EDITORIALS, EXCLUSIVE, HORROR HISTORY, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MYTHS AND LEGENDS, 0 comments
Interview with Domiziano Cristopharo

Interview with Domiziano Cristopharo

Domiziano Cristopharo has been wowing audiences in his native Italy for years. So it’s a true pleasure that he is now taking the US by storm. Thanks to the 2018 release of the Director’s Cut Blu-ray of his 2012 film Red Krokodil, Domiziano reached a whole new audience. Red Krokodil chronicles the downward spiral of drug addiction and proves that Domiziano is no stranger to body horror.

Domiziano Cristopharo

His penchant for the grotesque is showcased in his work, and he doesn’t hold back, which is a real treat for those of us that prefer the more extreme end of the horror genre. As a fan who prefers foreign horror, I was honored to speak with Domiziano recently, and to find out what it is that fuels the man behind the lens, and to get a sneak peek at what he has in store for us.

Domiziano Cristopharo

House of Tortured Souls: I read that you’re often compared to Dario Argento and that you’re the first Italian director to revive the erotic/horror genre. How does it feel to be described that way?
Domiziano Cristopharo: Actually, I was recently even described – by a very kind critic – also like a “mix between the Fulci’s trilogy of hell and contemporary American horror” (and this is a comparison that really makes me feel proud to exist)… but I don’t know, I don’t see resemblances in my works, and I would love to be closer/similar just for a 10% to a master like Fulci or Bava.
HoTS: You made your first film, House of Flesh Mannequins, in 2009. What did you do before you got into film, and what inspired you to do it?
DC: I work in tv, stage and film industry by age of 14. My principal job till 20 was acting then I started professionally to realize fx make up, and write screenplays. My intention was to sell the script but was rejected for years in Italy ’cause the contents. So I tried to send it in USA and I was lucky: empire films produced it and gave me the direction of the movie too.
HoTS: Do you feel there is a difference between Italian horror filmmaking and American horror filmmaking?
DC: More than a difference, I see an abyss. I started in 2008 and I did more than 25 films ’till now (including collective projects and productions). In 2011 after my third film I quit work with Italy and Italians. This helped me to become more productive and find a really active market and a field where I get the chance to grow up as a person and as an artist. In Italy I had just two small distributions in those years, DVD of my films are still available only by import. No support at all and useless to mention the hate and rage that fill this field… Favorite sport of other directors and horror fan here is to create a shitstorm round people who have even a small success. Bad, bad, bad.

Domiziano Cristopharo

HoTS: A lot of your work can be described as extreme horror. What is it that attracts you to that part of the genre?
DC: I always loved to explore excesses, I think is useless to offer to an audience – especially as indie – something that already exists. But my concept of extreme is not related in blood, I don’t even use much of it in my films. Extreme is a feeling, is to dare, to show something forbidden, something not socially accepted, not only murders but evil thoughts, nasty actions, uncomfortable secrets. This is also what makes my lead roles so intense and in same time scares actors so much that I hardly find people to hire.
HoTS: You recently helped produced Sacrifice, one of the latest installments to the American Guinea Pig series. What are your thoughts on the rumors that viewers walked out of early screenings of the film due to content?
DC: Aren’t rumors at all. In France, during the “Sadique-master” (a festival dedicated to extreme movies) three people fainted and one puked. In Italy during the “optical theater festival”, a girl fainted and we needed more than 1 hour for reanimate her… Was scary. I’m very proud of SACRIFICE, is the first part of an extreme trilogy (second part is TORMENT by Adam Ford and XPIATION, just concluded, by me) may be the first extreme Italian series by decades. Biro caught the potential of those films and he wanted it so badly in the AGP saga.
HoTS: Poison Rouge was an actress in your first film, and she also directed Sacrifice. What made you want to collaborate with her again?
DC: She acted with me on stage first, we had a sideshow called BLOODY CABARET; then she played in many films: from the debut in FLESH MANNEQUINS to HYDE’S SECRET NIGHTMARE and PHANTASMAGORIA. She also always helped me on set as assistant director.
SACRIFICE was in my thoughts written for a female role, but I had troubles with the actress…
So I asked Poison to replace her, and then finally I gave to her the direction of the movie.
HoTS: What’s your favorite scary movie?
DC: Dunno, I have many… I love classics… and for sure Carpenter, Fulci, Bava, Cronenberg… But also Polanski, Jodorowski, Lynch
Posted by Alan Smithee in EXCLUSIVE, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
Danzig 30th Anniversary

Danzig 30th Anniversary

Here we are again, giving some news on the good ol’ Mr. Danzig. This time, we celebrate the 30th Anniversary of..uh..Danzig. The first album released 30 years ago was a pivotal point in the music industry. We all grew to love the Misfits and Samhain, this time though Danzig came to us with something completely different. Blackest of the black, darker than night, yes this album really did what Mr. Glenn always does and set a new standard for evil. He took punk into a new direction, took postpunk/goth and death rock into a new direction. So he said, “Fuck it, I’m going to use the Danzig name and we are going in this direction now”. Thusly we were gifted the first album, Danzig.
Danzig
Danzig has retired from the touring life but makes his appearance at random festivals and one-off shows here and there. Just to give a taste of the true lord of darkness that has warmed our hearts. The wonderful part of the Danzig scene is that the bands he has played with him are always vastly different from what you would think would be opening for such an act. This 30th anniversary is no different.

November 3rd, 2018, at the Five Points Amphitheatre in Irvine, CA, Danzig will be celebrating the 30th anniversary of the first record with a fine list of different acts. Punk Rock legends The Damned, Black metal originators Venom Inc. (bet someone got sued for the name..now they have to put the ” Inc” at the end),O.G. Psychobilly band The Meteors, Thrash Metal band Power Trip, and some band called Mutoid Man(no clue what the hell style they are playing). So as you can tell there is quite an array of musical enjoyment here guaranteed to please anyone.

Tickets go on sale: July 27th, 2018, so wake your asses up and get online to get these bad boys. Visit www.danzig-verotik.com for more details. In the meantime please enjoy these videos from all the bands playing this event. So you can understand what you’re getting yourself into.

Danzig:

The Damned:

Venom Inc:

The Meteors:

Power Trip:

Posted by Schock in COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, HALLOWEEN, HORROR HEROES, HORROR NEWS, MUSIC REVIEWS, 0 comments
UPDATE: Zombieland 2 (2019)

UPDATE: Zombieland 2 (2019)

Almost exactly ten years later we finally get to spend another day at Zombieland.

Zombieland 2 Update: Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Abigail Breslin, and Emma Stone in Zombieland (2009)

Sony announced that Zombieland 2 is happening. It will reunite Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, and Emma Stone for another adventure. Though no plot has been “released”, it is rumored this film will send the team to the American Heartland. Meeting more evolved zombies than before and some other not so great survivors. All while learning to be the crazy patchwork family they are.

Zombieland 2 Update: Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg in Zombieland (2009)To recap the original Zombieland, this film came out in 2009 from director Ruben Fleischer, who is also bringing us the Marvel film Venom. It was a Zom-Com (zombie comedy) that followed a zombie apocalypse survivor named Columbus, played by Jesse Eisenberg. He traveled across the country to reach family and ran into some characters along the way. Meeting Tallahassee portrayed by Woody Harrelson first and then the beautiful Emma Stone as Wichita. The film has a great cameo that you have to watch to see, I won’t ruin it for you. Throughout the film, you also learn some great rules of the apocalypse from Columbus.

Zombieland 2 Update: Derek Graf in Zombieland (2009)

Back to the sequel. Both original writer, Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese will be coming back to lend their expertise. These two helped with Deadpool and Deadpool 2 most recently. Slated to start production in January 2019, this long speculated sequel is finally raising from the grave. The tentative release will be October 2019, just in time for the Halloween season. Who’s bringing the Twinkies to the release party?

Zombieland 2 Update: Bill Murray in Zombieland (2009)Here’s to hoping that such a quick turnaround will produce a fun dedicated flick that won’t let us down.

Happy Nightmares!
ZombieGurl

Posted by ZombieGurl in EXCLUSIVE, FAMILY HORROR, HORROR COMEDIES, HORROR NEWS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
EXCLUSIVE: 4/20 Massacre – Interview with Vanessa Rose Parker, 3 of 3

EXCLUSIVE: 4/20 Massacre – Interview with Vanessa Rose Parker, 3 of 3

Well, we held it as long as we could, but it’s time to exhale and enjoy as we finish up our 4/20 MASSACRE exclusive with an interview with Vanessa Rose Parker.
House of Tortured Souls: What was your first impression of the 4/20 MASSACRE script?
Vanessa Rose Parker: Honestly, I have been working on this project in so many forms that I don’t remember my initial thoughts about it. I remember that I got really excited by the prospect of an all-female main cast. I wanted to make sure that we were treating each character with respect and humanity. We spent a lot of time crafting backstories for each character that would give each actor something unique to work with and give each character a moment to shine.
Jamie Bernadette and Vanessa Rose Parker in 4/20 Massacre (2018)

Jamie Bernadette and Vanessa Rose Parker in 4/20 Massacre (2018)

HoTS: Are you a fan of the genre?
VRP: Yes! I am a horror fan. I absolutely love being scared. And there are certain things that will get me every time… demons and scary ghosts, specifically. I don’t know if it is my lapsed Christian upbringing, but the supernatural world scares the shit out of me! Now there are certain sectors of the genre that aren’t my favorite, like torture porn. But even with that, I think there are exceptions that prove all horror sub genres can be done well.
HoTS: I heard you did your own stunts. What was that like?
VRP: Stunts were a little intimidating. But I worked with our amazing stunt coordinator, James Gregory, and he really took care of me. He patiently took me through everything step by step and always made me feel very safe on set. My biggest stunt involved running in the forest, being shot through the leg with an arrow, and falling to the ground. When it came to actually shooting it, my husband/director, Dylan Reynolds, didn’t seem satisfied with my performance. He made me do so many takes of it! Eventually, he seemed to give up and want to move on. Then during the editing process, Dylan came out and apologized for being hard on me that day…. he used the first take!
HoTS: What would you say was the most difficult or challenging aspect of this shoot?
VRP: The most challenging aspect of this project was the budget and time restraint. We only had ten days to shoot. Seriously, I wasn’t sure if I was even going to be able to take all ten off of work because I didn’t have enough vacation time. But the gods of indie movies shown down upon us and everything worked out. So many wonderful and talented people were willing to work with us and added their hearts to our project. I think it really shows.
HoTS: Would you mind recounting one memorable behind the scenes story?
VRP: After long days of shooting, the cast and crew would get together in the cabins’ common room, drink, and play games. One night we split into two teams and played Encore, a singing word challenge game. It was so evenly matched and got so competitive that the game went on into the wee hours, but we were too stubborn to quit. At about 2 am, when we had a 6 am call, we finally called it a tie. Marissa Pistone (plays Michelle) and I were the heads of each team and we were practically crying to stop, but neither of us would back down. Marissa is a beast. Consider yourselves warned!
Justine Wachsberger, Jamie Bernadette, Vanessa Rose Parker, Marissa Pistone, and Stacey Danger in 4/20 Massacre (2018)

Justine Wachsberger, Jamie Bernadette, Vanessa Rose Parker, Marissa Pistone, and Stacey Danger in 4/20 Massacre (2018)

HoTS: What are you working on currently?
VRP: Currently, we are focused on getting this movie out into the world! But then after a little Caribbean vacation, we are going to regroup and see what we’d like to tackle next.
So there you have it, Souls. The final 4/20 MASSACRE exclusive. I’d like to thank Vanessa Rose Parker for her time. Don’t forget to check out my review as well as my interview with 4/20 MASSACRE writer/director Dylan Reynolds.
Posted by Mike Vaughn in EXCLUSIVE, HORROR COMEDIES, INTERVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, 0 comments
EXCLUSIVE: 4/20 Massacre (2018), 1 of 3 – Review

EXCLUSIVE: 4/20 Massacre (2018), 1 of 3 – Review

4/20 Massacre (2018), 1 of 3

Director: Dylan Reynolds; Writer: Dylan Reynolds; Stars: Jamie Bernadette, Stacey Danger, Jim Storm, Vanessa Rose Parker, James Gregory, Justine Wachsberger, Marissa Pistone; Rating: N/A; Run Time: 84 min; Genre: Action, Horror; Country: USA; Language: English; Year: 2018

I have to admit when I got the screener for 4/20 Massacre I was um…how to put this nicely…skeptical of its quality. But hey I am anything but a film snob and while I love all classics in the genre I love a good B-slasher romp. A group of friends goes camping to celebrate a friend’s birthday which falls on — you guessed it — April 20th. Little do they know that they are venturing into pot growing territory or terror-tory in this case, as a killer is dispatching anybody getting near his patch. 4/20 Massacre feels like a film rift with camp however to my delight (not that I don’t love some campy goodness) and, surprise, it didn’t. It actually manages to inject some solid drama to the stab genre. My one complaint would be some of it gets a bit heavy-handed. I do however have to give Reynolds huge props for giving his characters more depth something I think few other directors would have bothered with. Also having a female-dominated cast is a fun and interesting way to subvert genre troupes. The scene where two female characters play out a scene just like a man/female would in a standard slasher is clever and drives home that point. In a film filled with wonderful dunk smelling pot smoke, it’s a defiant breath of fresh air.

Justine Wachsberger, Jamie Bernadette, Vanessa Rose Parker, Marissa Pistone, and Stacey Danger in 420 Massacre (2018)

4/20 Massacre also does something pretty clever which is, pardon the pun, takes pot shots at holiday-based horrors which were a pretty awesome element. It’s very clear that despite its shortcomings,Reynolds knows how to craft a film and it has slick editing, great camera work (that aerial credit scene is impressive) as well as a nice soundtrack. Another thing that was impressive was the cast that is damn good. Jamie Bernadette, Stacy Danger, Justine Wachsberger, Vanessa Rose Parker, and Marissa Pistone do a fantastic job at bringing a real element to the film and in turn, it really gives it a more polished feel. Even veteran actor Jim Storm (TV’s Dark Shadows, Trilogy of Terror) makes a fun appearance as a sleazy, beer-guzzling park ranger aptly named Rick. Storm has a ball in the role and sure its hammy but damn it’s so entertaining to watch. This being a slice and dice film you live or die with good FX and thankfully this has some well-executed splatter gags especially considering that this was on a modest budget. So many movies rely on a gimmick to get fans talking about a movie, this is as true for Hollywood products as the indie people. And it’s no wonder I was skeptical, to say the least about a movie entitled 4/20 Massacre, however, I am happy to admit I was proven wrong. Sure it tends to be a bit heavy-handed and uneven at times however there really is a solid film in here and I’m not just blowing smoke here…Okay, that was bad.

Bottom Line: Support this filmmaker and rent, buy, and follow 4/20 Massacre on Twitter. Like a good jay, this one should be passed around with a group of friends.

Check back for my exclusive interviews with writer/director Dylan Reynolds and the cast of 4/20 Massacre.

Posted by Mike Vaughn in EXCLUSIVE, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, 0 comments
INTERVIEW – HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Phil Stevens

INTERVIEW – HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Phil Stevens

Phil Stevens' Flowers (2015) posterI recently had the pleasure of seeing Flowers by Phil Stevens. It was such an amazing and beautiful film that I decided to reach out to the director and tell him how much I enjoyed it. To my surprise, Phil Stevens turned out to be one of the nicest, coolest, down to earth guys. I was delighted to learn of his plans to make a sequel to Flowers, simply called Flowers 02. He also graciously agreed to do this interview and give us an exclusive look at his new project.

Phil Stevens Interview

House of Tortured Souls: First off, let me just say that I’m a huge fan of Flowers and really excited to talk to you about your latest project. What type of film can we expect? Do you think it will be more extreme or more artistic than the last?
Phil Stevens: Extreme is too broad a category, I mean of course yes it will be extreme but it’s more of a survival horror where everyone is being attacked by something. I actually didn’t think I was making an extreme film when I made Flowers. I thought the complete opposite. When Flowers came out, I thought people were going to be like, “Here’s this guy with his artsy movie called Flowers“. It turned out to be this surreal horror that people seemed to really enjoy. The last word I ever expected to read describing my film was “beautiful”, but it seems to come up in every single review about the movie.
PS: In Flowers, the house itself was the enemy almost. But in Flowers 02, not only is it the house, but there are entities in all the rooms –sometimes more than one. It’s all leading to this grand finale involving the killer and all his misdeeds. We’ll get a backstory and more of a look at his life. There will be new rooms with new themes and sort of a past, present, and future look at the killer. My favorite movie of all time is Day of the Dead, and I always wanted to make a zombie film, but I wanted to do it in my own way. Finally, in this we get to do that, and it’s so fun.

HoTS: That all sounds awesome! Why did you choose Indie and underground filmmaking rather than mainstream?
PS: I spent most of my life drawing and painting. I started drawing my own comics, and then I discovered the Beta-max camera and started making films for myself. Drawing is my first love, I don’t want a career in filmmaking; I see it as a hobby, a really expensive hobby. I’m a fan of Indie films myself and knew that it was only natural that I would go that route. I think that everyone who makes movies would like to think that one day they’ll go to Hollywood and make a big epic movie with a budget. That’s the real dream having a budget.

Phil Stevens' Flowers (2015) title card

HoTS: I understand that for an Indie director, getting funding is always an issue. You’ve started a crowdfunding campaign, correct? Maybe you could tell our readers a bit about that and how they can contribute.
PS: Crowdfunding is a big deal because you’re giving us the means to make a movie that we otherwise would not be able to make. It’s been tougher to get funding in the last few years because either fans don’t know about it or they’ve been screwed over in the past by other directors.
PS: My job is making and selling art. I’m actually on disability from an accident that happened when I was 10. I fell out of a tree, and now I have soft neurological brain damage so I can’t have a regular 9-5 job. I spend a lot of time drawing and painting and doing commissions. I grew up with severe agoraphobia, crowds give me severe anxiety, which is another reason making movies is so important to me because it gives me a chance to work in a group environment while doing something I love.
PS: Here is the link to the Flowers 02 crowdfunding campaign. Even a 5$ contribution will get you some really cool exclusive swag!
HoTS: So how does one get a piece of your artwork?
PS: My Facebook page Manomatul Art or my website Insomnia Collectibles, and I’m also on deviant art.
HoTS: All of the actors/actresses in Flowers were amazing. Will we see any familiar faces in the sequel?
PS: Yes! You actually will see some returning Flowers in a subplot of Flowers 02. Absolutely. You’re going to see some of them, but I can’t reveal who yet.
HoTS: It’s my understanding you used your home in the first film… what was that like?
PS: Using my own home to make Flowers was a blessing and an absolute nightmare. We scouted a lot of warehouses, and they were all in really bad neighborhoods. We just didn’t feel safe having our equipment there. We decided the next best thing and the safest thing was our house. I hated it, there was so much debris and equipment everywhere. My wife (Colette Kenny Mckenna) and I lived an entire summer in that. I actually spent my 30th birthday inside the dining room set, it was surreal. Some of my friends I hadn’t seen in a while would come over and a say, “This is absolutely insane. What are you doing?” My wife and I both ended up with really bad respiratory infections from the room with all the gouged out drywall. We were constantly breathing it in for three months, and we got really sick.

Phil Stevens' Flowers (2015) writing on the wall

HoTS: Do you do your own practical fx?
PS: Yes, I used to more but with Flowers, it was an all hands on deck kind of thing and my wife and I did months of fx testing. We found some great local talent. My wife, Krystle Fitch, and Anastasia Blue did the fx and also acted in the movie.
HoTS: Do you have a dream location if money were no object?
PS: Actually yeah, I don’t know where that location is but I know what it looks like. The whole reason I wanted to make Flowers 02 was it’s supposed to fund my next film, Paradise, which is the serial killer’s hell kind of. I want it to involve a lot of ocean and beach sequences, stuff you don’t tend to see in an underground film. I’ve been working on it for three years, and it’s probably going to be my swan song film. The first film is purgatory, the next is hell, and the last one is paradise. That will be the last movie I do, and Flowers 02 is the way to get there.
HoTS: Do you have any directors who inspire you?
PS: I’m inspired by Shin’ya Tsukamoto (Tetsuo: The Iron Man). I’m a huge, huge fan of Asian cinema in general, so Takashi Miike (Audition) obviously and Kim Ki-duk (The Isle). What inspires me about Kim Ki-duk is that he doesn’t use many words, and his main characters don’t talk but everyone around them always does. I love all things artistic, I loved Andrey Iskanovs’ Nails so much. I also like Akira Kurosawa, his movies are beautiful; the cinematography is incredible and his movies top movies that are made to this day. A lot of my inspiration comes from Asian cinema.
HoTS: I just want to take this opportunity again to thank you and say what a fun time I’ve had talking with you today. I wish you the best of luck with Flowers 02 and can’t wait to see it.
PS: Thank you. I had fun today, too!

Flowers 02 Crowdfunding on the Web

Check out the fundraiser video on contributing to Flowers 02. Then click the link below to donate!

Phil Stevens on the Web

Posted by Candace Stone in EXCLUSIVE, HORROR NEWS, INTERVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, 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
The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

Hey, horror fans, whatever you’re doing STOP! Horrormadam here with the newest part of the Cloverfield Series, The Cloverfield Paradox premiering tonight 2/4/2018 on Netflix. This is the third installment of the J.J. Abrams fueled science fiction horror franchise!

The premise: After a scientific experiment aboard the space station involving a particle accelerator has unexpected results, the astronauts find themselves isolated. Following their horrible discovery, the space station crew must fight for survival.

Directed by Black filmmaker Julius Onah, and yes I am pointing out that he is black because this is an important distinction during Black History Month. On the wings of the success of Get Out, it is important to recognize all of the amazing contributions from people of color in film. Julius Onah was born on February 10, 1983 in Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria. He is a producer and director, known for Don’t Look Back (2008), The Girl Is in Trouble (2015) and Luce (2018).

Also on board are writers Oren Uziel (Shimmer Lake, 22 Jump Street), and Doug Jung (Star Trek: Beyond, Banshee).

Actors David Oyelowo (Selma, /em>Nightingale), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Concussion, Beauty & the Beast), Ziyi Zhang (Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, >House of Flying Daggers), Elizabeth Debicki (Great Gatsby, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Man From U.N.C.L.E.), Daniel Buhl (Rush, Inglourious Basterds, Captain America Civil War), and Chris Odowd (Bridesmaids, Thor:The Dark World). Really great and diverse cast.

Ava DuVernay,director, producer, writer, marketer and film distributor, (Selma, Dreamgirls, Rollbounce, amongst so many other titles) said it best on Twitter and this is a direct quote:

Woman of color-led, sci-fi thriller released worldwide day + date w/ big Netflix muscle for black director, his super producer + POC cast. No advance press, ads, trailer. Straight to the people. Gamechanger. Congrats to helmer #JuliusOnah + my dears JJ, Gugu, David. #Cloverfield.

She is right, this is a game changer and very exciting. Really looking forward to it and we will have more on it after it airs.

Posted by Alan Smithee in COMING SOON, EVENTS, EXCLUSIVE, HORROR NEWS, NEW RELEASES, PREQUELS AND SEQUELS, 0 comments