independent film

INTERVIEW: Dakota Bailey

INTERVIEW: Dakota Bailey

Dakota Bailey is well known within the independent cinema circles for his gritty and often all too realistic take, on true identities of people within the chaotic worlds that he envisions. Drawing from the modern day epitome of drug sub-culture and with a penchant for horror since his childhood, Bailey has been building a following through his films and his name is steadily on the rise with R. A. Productions.
Since 2015 Bailey has progressed from short films into creating lengthier features. First we were introduced in 2016 to My Master Satan: 3 Tales of Drug Fueled Violence, a drug laden romp through three interlocking short tales of the macabre.
Then (also in 2016) Bailey released American Scumbags, a nastier tale told from varied angles, which is a more fluid film regarding some uncertain elements and their spiral into madness.
Now we sit on the edge awaiting Bailey's release of his long anticipated third film The Acid Sorcerer. In anticipation of his latest film creation, Dakota Bailey answered some questions for The House of Tortured Souls ahead of the official release in August this year.
House of Tortured Souls: As a fan of the horror genre, what are your influences and favourite horror films, icons and filmmakers?
Dakota Baley: I am influenced by everything from silent horror film like Noseferatu, The Golem, Haxan, and Faust, to classic films like The Exorcist, underground extreme films and SOV films like Black Devil Doll From Hell. As for my favorite filmmakers I would have to say Sam Raimi, Jose Monica Marins (Coffin Joe), Marian Dora, Jorg Buttgerit, Lucio Fulci, Chester Novell Turner, David Lynch, Mario Bava and many more. For horror icons, my favorites would be Reagan from The Exorcist or Michael Myers from Halloween.
HoTS: What inspired you to create My Master Satan, American Scumbags, and The Acid Sorcerer?
DB: The idea behind My Master Satan was to make an anti-film. Meaning, that I just wanted to make a film that was extremely unusual and had absolutely no mainstream appeal whatsoever. I purposefully degraded the footage and filmed it on VHS but at the same time I kind of wanted My Master Satan to be kind of like an evil heavy metal Cheech and Chong type film. After My Master Satan came out, I developed the characters for American Scumbags. My intentions were to make an epic sleaze/trash/crime film. I just drew inspiration from real life people I used to know or people I had seen on the streets. I think American Scumbags is an important film because not only does it show my growth as a filmmaker but the film also has some really good characters in it such as Billy and Wheelin' Deals. For The Acid Sorcerer I basically wanted to make an extremely dark, depressing and hateful film that was about a set of characters embracing their inner darkness. I wanted to make a film that was similar to David Lynch's Eraserhead but at the same time I wanted to make a film that was highly original and I think we accomplished that. The Acid Sorcerer is a very strong film in my opinion.
HoTS: It's clear to see your evolution as a filmmaker, how do you feel about your films new and old?
DB: I think the evolution of myself as a filmmaker is fascinating. Every time I work on a new film I sit down and watch all my older shorts such as Satan's Coming for You or My Master Satan and I study them and I still enjoy those films and the immature degenerate feel of them. But I think it's kind of strange that I made those films and went on to make a film like The Acid Sorcerer. With each film I kind of feel like we change our style and that our films may deal with similar subject matter but each film is its own entity and each film has its own style.
HoTS: What's next on the horizon? Anymore films? Will we see familiar faces?
DB: We are currently working on a film called The Life of an American Scumbag that is a sequel to American Scumbags. It will be out before the end of this year and it is being shot in color as opposed to black and white like our other films. And then I plan on making a sequel to The Acid Sorcerer. I can't say too much about it because I am still coming up ideas and new characters, but it is definitely going to be an extremely dark film. As a matter of fact, I think it will be darker than the first Acid Sorcerer. As for more familiar faces ― yes, you will continue to see all the main actors such as Darien Fawkes, Nick Benning and myself, but with each film we introduce a few new actors or actresses, so it's not always the exact same people in all of our films.
HoTS: Who has been your favourite character to create (in any of your films)? And why?
DB: I love all the character in my films but if I had to pick only a couple I'd have to say Smoke and Leach from The Acid Sorcerer. I play the main character Smoke who is a serial killer/drug addict with multiple personality disorder and he has his other half called Leach that is his darker and philosophical side that compels him to murder. It was a strange process to film scenes involving Smoke and Leach. Darien Fawkes (who plays Leach and Crawdad in The Acid Sorcerer) had this black hood he'd wear that concealed his face. He would recite the lines and monologues that I had wrote for Leach in his normal voice and I would then take the footage we did and slow it down making his voice deep and droning sounding. It was actually powerful to see the footage transform. Another character I really like in The Acid Sorcerer is Eyevin, a sadistic drug dealer played by my friend Brian Knapp. Eyevin is a drug dealer that enjoys toying with drug addicts and enjoys watching snuff films that he commissions. Brian did an excellent job portraying him and he really captured the essence of the Eyevin character and what I wanted to bring to the screen. What I enjoy most about Eyevin is that almost in every scene of him he is always doing or saying something hateful or in bad taste. As far as characters from other films I would definitely have to say that Billy from American Scumbags is one of the best characters I've created so far. Darien Fawkes really captured the essence of the character and brought exactly what I wanted to the screen, but I can't leave out Alister and Bubba from My Master Satan. I just really like how they are kind of like an evil heavy metal version of Cheech and Chong. I just really enjoy the degenerate and immature feel of the characters.
HoTS: What can fans expect from The Acid Sorcerer?
DB: They can expect something a little different, but like I mentioned previously with each film we kind of change our style and we continue to grow and get better. I think that if fans enjoyed our previous films then they will definitely enjoy The Acid Sorcerer ― I consider it our best film yet.
HoTS: Musically you always seem to have something fresh for the scores of your films, any favourites?
DB: Music in my films is extremely important and finding the right music is imperative to my films. Whenever we start working on a new film, the first thing that comes to my mind is the soundtrack. The Acid Sorcerer features a soundtrack by Ramesses ― the film has three songs off of their album Possessed by the Rise of Magik. The soundtrack is very powerful and gives The Acid Sorcerer a dark and almost spiritual feel. As far as what film soundtrack is my favorite, I would definitely have to say Ramesses. I am a fan of theirs and it was an honor to get to use their music in our film. However, I also enjoyed the sound track for My Master Satan that came from my friend Daren Peterson and his band Luciferian Insectus. I think in particular that 'Ode to Darkness' at the end of My Master Satan was very powerful.
HoTS: What has been the highlight of your film career so far?
DB: I would have to say our films getting played at festivals like Cinema Wasteland; Shock Stock is a highlight, but also getting to use three songs off of Ramesses' Possessed by the Rise of Magik album. Another highlight is that with each film we get new fans and more recognition.
HoTS: We all have to start somewhere - childhood, schools, relationships, etc - who is Dakota Bailey?
DB: I am from Denver, Colorado; I developed an interest in films at an early age and eventually started making films with a battered camcorder and eventually I progressed into what I am. I consider myself a film fan making the kind of films that I want to see, but at the same time I do consider myself an artist and I consider each film a serious artistic endeavor.
HoTS: Anyone you want to thank for making you who you are today?
DB: Yes, my mom and dad for all the support and for letting me do whatever I wanted to while I was growing up and for letting me pursue my interests whether it be films or music.
Dakota Bailey currently has three features available for pre order (The Acid Sorcerer) or purchase (My Master Satan and American Scumbags).
Posted by Michelle MIDI Peifer in INTERVIEWS, 2 comments
COMING SOON: 10/31/16 (2017)

COMING SOON: 10/31/16 (2017)

By John Roisland

Red Letter Entertainment, Inc. brings you the directorial debut from Rocky Gray (composer of The Barn, Killing Floor 2),two time Grammy winning musician and former drummer for Evanescence.

A new horror anthology in the vein of V/H/S/ and Creepshow
brings an ensemble cast together to spin twisted tales of the macabre. The film is Executive Produced by P.J. Starks, creator of the critically acclaimed Volumes of Blood franchise.

Story line:
A video tape given to a group of teens by a sinister trick or treater turns Halloween night into a living nightmare.

The film stars Jordan Phipps, Greg Fallon, Samantha Anderson, Taylor Aulbach, Darius White, Micah Patterson, Kirby Gocke, Star McCann, and Alivea Lafavor.

So when can we expect too see the finished project? Good question! 10/31/16 is set to be released around August 2017.

When Rocky and I first met, i knew he was the drummer for Evanescence, I also knew he was a huge horror fan, it was because that, that i pursued Rocky to join the staff of House of Tortured Souls. And what an addition he has been, graphics for the website, logo images, and last but by no means least - the opening and closing music for our podcast House of Tortured Souls Live. All of which we have had many compliments over, and we thank you, Rocky!!

I was in awe of the work Rocky had been doing with scores and soundtracks, but when he first mentioned to me about him making his own film, the upcoming 10/31/16, I’m pretty sure my reply text to him was, “FUUUCK YEA!!!!! Keep me posted. I’d be honored to support and help you out any way I can!”

When Rocky told me he had sent me the trailer and press release for 10/31/16, I was thrilled and couldn't wait to get home and check it out ! As most of you know, I am a huge fan of horror anthologies, so when Rocky mentioned that's what his film was, I was super stoked!

Be sure to check out 10/31/16 online:

Keep your eyes on 10/31/16 and on for updates on the film and keep your ears open to House of Tortured Souls Live for the podcast with Rocky Gray.

A horror fan living the dream, give 'em hell, Rocky!

Keep It Evil...

Posted by John Roisland in HORROR NEWS, 1 comment
COMING SOON: RAPT 2016 (Indie short)

COMING SOON: RAPT 2016 (Indie short)

By John Roisland


If there's one film you need to keep an eye out for, it's Rapt. More and more lately, the independent movie scene is on the move and growing larger everyday. There's so much hidden talent out there and, unfortunately, there're still a lot of movie and horror film fans that are leery about putting down their hard-earned cash for a DVD that doesn't have a major movie label on the DVD box, a huge name in the cast, or a great soundtrack.

Well, I'm here to introduce to you a short film that I think you will all enjoy. The film is called Rapt and is brought to you and filmed on location and by some great people in New Jersey. The story is that of a disgruntled, down on his luck, independent horror film director (Russell Hackett) giving his debut film a viewing at a small but extremely cool local film house where they do film testing. Sadly, the audience’s response to the director's film is less than comforting as not only do people criticize it, but many even walk out. This throws the filmmaker into a downward spiral, his depression now fueling his rage at rejection. One by one he hunts the movie goers who were less than kind to his film with an eye to make all of them the leads in his next horror film. No makeup or SFX are needed for the cast as he brutally slays all of them on camera.

When Rapt co-writer and star of the film Russell Hackett asked me a few weeks ago if I would consider viewing and giving my thoughts on the film, I responded that I'd be honored to do so. I’m very glad that I did as one highlight of the film for me was getting to see faces of online friends that I have not yet personally met, such as Deana Demko, Todd Staruch, and Russell Hackett, who gave a very impressive performance as Filmmaker.

12310536_10208014129297030_1832838868256629080_nThe film was co-written by Russell Hackett and Jerry Janda (Painkiller) and directed by Thomas Ryan (writer and executive producer Day 9). Keep an eye on Ryan because he is on the move and has an eye for the camera that really makes you feel his vision.

The film itself runs just under 40 minutes, but don't mistake a short run time for lack of quality. Rapt is a good, solid film that possesses everything you would want and expect from a quality film. It has realistic dialogue and believable acting, which are complemented by clever use of lighting and excellent sound. And, might I add, it has a great score to boot!

Rapt is a refreshing and original film brought to you by DocHack Productions and Theater of Terror (that director Thomas Ryan founded). I highly recommend you check out Rapt online and hop on over and give their Facebook page a like. Be a true horror fan, and help support the independent movie scene!

Russell, thank you for the opportunity!

Keep It Evil.

Posted by John Roisland in HORROR NEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Harvest Lake (2016)

MOVIE REVIEW: Harvest Lake (2016)

By Dixielord

Today it seems all too common to take the easy way out in horror films. Especially with low budget films. So many filmmakers go for the cookie cutter zombie or masked killer film. Sure, there are standouts, but mostly it seems it's just more of the same. Well, I can guarantee you wont feel that way about Harvest Lake. Love it or hate it, I think you will agree it is anything other than the usual.

Ellie Church from Harvest Lake
Ellie Church in Harvest Lake

Director Scott Schirmer took the masked serial killer in all new directions with his last film Found. With Harvest Lake, Schirmer and producer/ photographer Brian Williams take the creature feature where it's never been before, and along the way explores every orifice. It was billed as an “erotic creature feature”, and that's about as close to on point as you can get, although I would say it touches heavily on the body horror genre as well.

American Mary's Tristan Risk headlines the cast of Harvest Lake, along with Ellie Church (Headless), Jason Crowe, and Dan Nye.The plot concerns four friends who pack it off to a remote cabin to celebrate a birthday. The friends go out fully intending to drink and sex it up. Along the way they pick up a stranger and invite him back for festivities. Things start to go a bit strange when they encounter a mysterious plant. The plant, complete with pods (that look a lot like xenomorph eggs), tentacle like appendages, and fruit that look like misshapen breasts, exerts a strange pull over the campers, as one after another they fall under its spell. What few inhibitions the group had melt away, leading to more debauchery before finally discovering the alien (?) source of the infestation.


plant sex in Harvest Lake
This almost happened.

Harvest Lake is a highly sexually charged movie. When a film starts out with male and female full frontal nudity, you know you are in for a raunchy ride. And there is a lot of sex and nudity in Harvest Lake. A lot. There are at least four sex scenes in the film before the big finale, which of course involves sex. Get it? There's sex in this here film, so don't blame me if your prudish ass gets offended.

Some of the sex is fairly explicit, but it never feels gratuitous. It's an important part of the film, instrumental in the story being told. Harvest Lake also has one of the more explicit same gender love scenes between two men. It's brave of a film maker to go there, and I really hope we have grown enough as a culture to accept this and not be offended. There is also quite a bit of nudity from pretty much every member of the cast, male and female. But once again, none of it, with the possible exception of the opening scene, feels gratuitous. It's there for a reason.

In a recent coming soon article, I likened Harvest Lake to 80s science fiction films like Breeders and Inseminoid, due to the buzz I was hearing. After actually seeing the film, however, it's much closer to Cronenberg's Shivers with a little of the 70s Invasion of the Body Snatchers thrown in. There is a scene between Ellie Church and Tristan Risk that visually is very similar to one in Shivers between Barbara Steele and Susan Petrie. Besides the visual similarity, the whole concept of a parasite, for lack of a better word, invading you, by contact, kissing, or love making, and releasing your primal desires is the basic story line of Shivers. But unlike Shivers, this is a wholly alien force versus a scientifically created virus.

But Harvest Lake isn't just a carbon copy of Shivers. It's its own film, more of a true science fiction horror and without the obvious social commentary of Shivers. This is a film about a presumably alien force coming to earth, to basically get its pods off. There is no real gore and very little violence, which also sets it apart from Cronenberg's classic. The little critter here seems more interested in sex than violence or perversion. Although there are hints that he might have a more sinister fate awaiting our campers once he gets his jollies.

As I mentioned earlier, this isn't cookie cutter horror. I dare you to say you have ever seen anything quite like this, even a Cronenberg film. What other horror film are you going to see Tristan Risk in a bikini, on hands and knees, ass up in the air about to perform fellatio on an alien pod? Yeah that happened, and I'll never complain about Tristan with her ass in the air. Never. But it's a surreal scene, a situation that's echoed in different situations, and poses, by the other cast members. One by one the friends are seduced or outright raped by the creature in the lake. There's a scene between it and Ellie Church that will make Lovecraft fans quiver. I dont want to spoil it, but the weirdness doesn't stop, and neither does the sex, until the credits roll.

Tristan Risk from American Mary and Harvest Lake
Tristan Risk from American Mary and Harvest Lake

The surreal visuals are driven home and lent more power by the haunting, eerie and driving score. It's both beautiful and unnerving at the same time. Do yourself a favor and listen to this on good speakers with the sound up. It helps keep you on edge throughout the film.

And let's be competently honest, who the hell wouldn't enjoy watching Little Ms Risk and Ellie Church run around in very small bikinis for almost an entire movie? Not to be left out, there are some bare asses for the ladies and guys who prefer the guys. Special bonus points for being the only movie I have ever seen to reference the chimp raping a frog video...sharing that video made me lots of friends online...memories.

Harvest Lake orgy
And this totally happened in Harvest Lake.

There's really not a lot that I disliked about Harvest Lake. Gore fans may be turned off by its lack of bloody mayhem, but seriously you can catch that shit anywhere. And the same gender sex may turn off some folks, but really, 21st century y’all. Grow the fuck up. We have all drooled over naked ladies and lesbian scenes over the years, so chill. If all you want is masked killers, zombies or paranormal bumps in the night, Harvest Lake probably isn't for you. But if you want an erotic and trippy ass visual experience, then you NEED to see Harvest Lake. True story bro.

Posted by Allen Alberson in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 1 comment
MOVIE REVIEW: Pieces of Talent (2014)

MOVIE REVIEW: Pieces of Talent (2014)


By: John Roisland

What should've been announced at the 2015 Oscars:

Best Movie: Pieces of Talent
Best Screenplay: David Long and Joe Stauffer
Best Director: Joe Stauffer
Best Actor: David Long
Best Actress: Kristi Ray

It was all there; all they had to do was announce it!

As you can tell, I'm a big fan of every aspect of this film. I first remember seeing a trailer for Pieces of Talent and thinking to myself, "Holy Fuck... I gotta see that!!" A few months later, my big-little brother Travis Love and his always adorable wife Megan got to meet the lovely Kristi Ray, who plays Charlotte in the film. Shortly after, they were nice enough to surprise me with an autographed copy of the DVD. I was ecstatic!

Since owning it, I've watched it repeatedly, and every time I do, it's like the first time all over again.

The story is of David Long, played by none other than, David Long, who is a fun loving, long haired, always smiling, southern hippy - with one small drawback: David is a brutal murderer.  One night, while getting his ass kicked by strip club bouncers for having a video camera on him, up walks Charlotte, one of the cocktail waitress, who rescues our long haired friend.

Charlotte is a free spirit trying her damnedest to become an actress in spite of having been dealt a shitty hand in life. She hates her job, and her worthless, dead beat mom puts her down all the time and steals from her. Still, Charlotte takes care of her.images

David and Charlotte become pretty good friends after he tells her that he's actually directing a movie of his own, and wants her for the lead role. Their relation quickly spirals downward as David becomes obsessed with Charlotte and brutally kills anyone who harms her or gets in her way of pursuing her dream.

This is one of the best independent horror films I've ever had the honor of viewing, and it is also in my top horror films! The quality of the film is beautifully shot, and the special f/x are phenomenal. The writing is superb, and the acting is... WOW!! Top notch jobs by  David Long and Kristi Ray! Both gave riveting performances and even made me want to hang out with them!

Director Joe Stauffer should be very proud, not only for the awesome job he did in his own role, but also for how well his vision came through!

The film grabs you, comforts you, flips you around, and then shakes the shit out of you!

If the follow up, A Missing Piece, is ANYTHING like Pieces of Talent, it will be something to see. It will be beautiful!


 Keep It Evil

Posted by John Roisland in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Found (2012)

MOVIE REVIEW: Found (2012)


By : John Roisland


July of 2012 brought to us an independent film that has been loved, adored and feared by horror fans everywhere, I bring to you Found.

Director and screen play writer, Scott Schirmer,  brings the novel , written by Todd Rigney to life.

Before continuing, I want to let everyone know that this is a spoiler free review and with good damn reasons, AND, with that said, this is also the hardest review I've have done yet. I love this film, and have trashed and rewritten this now three times! So I hope you enjoy my view, of what I think is one of the greatest horror films made.

Filmed in Bloomington Indiana, Found is the story of Marty , played by Gavin Brown ( The Impersonators)  , a middle school aged boy and his older brother Steve, played by Ethan Philbeck.  The two brothers live in your stereo typical dysfunctional family.  Everyone seems to be fake to each other, almost to as if give off the image of being a happy family. This is the furthest thing from the truth.

Found is the profound look into the dark side of the middle American family. The struggling young Marty battles the everyday fights of todays youth in trying to fit in. Finding himself at the wrong end of the cool stick, he keeps to himself, stays home a lot, and starts to explore in to his brothers room where he find a bowling ball bag deep in his brothers closet, containing a human head of a local boy  in it. Marty had been previously warned by Steve to stay out of his room,...well, Steve picked up on that someone had been in there, and had uncovered his secret. Being as how his parents hadn't jumped his shit , he knew it was his brother Marty.



Marty , scared, swore to secrecy to his brother not to mention this to anyone...until. Until one day, when in an attempt to keep a friend, Marty invites a classmate over to his house to hang out. The two boys watch a horror movie that was found in Steve's room called Headless. The story of a skull faced killer named Headless , played by Alex Kogin, who enjoys, torturing , sexually abusing, murdering, decapitating , oh and lets not forget, fucking his victims heads in a way, I must admit, I've never seen in any movie! The entire time the boys are watching this film, Marty is envisioning his brother as the killer, so when the film is over, his so called friend makes fun of Marty, because hes a bit out of sorts from his thoughts of his brother, so the boy assumed he was scared of the movie.


In attempt to prove he wasn't scared, he ended up showing the boy, the severed head. The kid freaked , and on his way home he went. When Steve found out about what had happened...well...lets just say it was then two heads in the bag. Steven killed the boy, and took his head as a trophy.

Marty's fear for his brother grew, and things got worse in the household, parent yelling at both the brothers constantly until one day  Steve and his father get into a fight in the garage, and Steve splits. This is when things get really bad for the family.

Sadly enough...this is where I leave you. I honestly can't  and don't want to go any further with the story, as I fear I may run on and on and tell you the ending... and that just cant happen!!

The ending to Found , is one that will leave you with your jaw on your lap. It is truly an ending of all endings. I do warn you, it is very disturbing, but the way Scott Shirmer did it, ...incredible!

Brought to you by the great folks at Forbidden Films, I cant stress to you enough , that if your ass hasn't seen this film yet, you need to fucking do it!! And when your done with it...go see only makes sense, right?!?


Keep it Evil



Posted by John Roisland in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Creeper (2012)

MOVIE REVIEW: Creeper (2012)

By Travis Love


Directed by Matthew Gunnoe and released in 2015 by Unearthed Films, Creeper finds a group of women fed up with skeezy Internet pervs heavy breathing over them like an eight dollar beach raft, so they decide to teach one of their unlucky admirers a lesson through physical degradation. But when humiliation goes too far, who is really the victim?

The beginning of the film starts off in full gear as a girl wakes up in a metal dog crate completely naked and disoriented. As she tries to regain her senses, a zip line attached to the cage pulls taut across the lake where the crate is banked. It rapidly pulls her under the water as she screams bloody murder. Welcome to What-the-fucksville; population: You.

As you come to find out, the series of events that lead to this scene are as follows:

1) Buxom, clothing-impaired typical slasher victims tire of Internet pervs and create a plan to find one special perv and punish him thoroughly (cue Jerry).
2) Humiliating Jerry is no longer cutting it, so the plan turns to ridding the world of Jerry and his 1980s youth pastor haircut via good ol' fashioned murdering.
3) Murder of Jerry is botched worse than a home abortion, and now Jerry is loose and ready to do more than just watch (perhaps with pants still off though).
4) Torture traps and mind games galore, survival of the fittest (or with the girls being nude the majority of the film, it's more like survival of the tittest).

As far as Jerry's revenge, some of the torture lacks the real impact that you'd be expecting, so many times you think that something gruesome has happened beforehand (i.e. decapitated head in a box), but are quickly let down by reality (the head is still attached to the victim who is only covered in blood and buried up to her neck and very much alive). The traps set are mostly explosives or Jerry driving after them in a jeep like a psycho designated driver during beach week. The kills are handled by the same CGI-kill-blood-splatter on the camera effect which leaves a good bit to be desired in the gore department. All in all, it had good ideas but relied too heavily on "Let's explode stuff with a CGI grenade effect!". Shoving a victim’s face into a canned chili fueled shit bucket (latrine) shouldn't have been a highlight (commendable though).

In conclusion, the acting in Creeper is pretty solid for an Indie horror, and the dialog and cat-and-mouse appeal are highly enjoyable. Unfortunately, the torture and actual revenge didn't deliver quite like the opening scene promised. If the imagery would've been as gruesome as the tension that built throughout the movie, this movie would've been perfect, but like a hand job from an just wasn't there.

Score: 4/10


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

MOVIE REVIEW (RETRO): Felidae (1994)

Because Cats Know Things

By Woofer McWooferson


Director: Michael Schaack; Writers: Akif Pirinçci (novel and screenplay), Martin Kluger (screenplay); Stars: Klaus Maria Brandauer; Rating: NR; Run Time: 82 min; Genre: Animation, Mystery, Thriller; Country: Germany; Language: German; Year: 1994

The 1994 German mystery/thriller animation Felidae is a clever and entertaining film about a cat named Francis and his human moving into a new neighborhood where, unbeknownst to them, cats are being murdered. Francis makes friends with Bluebeard almost immediately and shortly thereafter is drawn into the mystery of the cat murders. As Francis and Bluebeard try to solve the murders, they consult a variety of characters in their neighborhood, from blind Felicity to bully Kong to Hermann and Hermann. Francis and Bluebeard find themselves drawn ever deeper into a web of intrigue as they work out the evil fiend behind the cat murders.

Felidae runs a quick 82 minutes and is perfectly timed without fluff or fat. The rich, detailed animation, full, nuanced audio, and impeccably selected musical soundtrack combine to create an animated adult film that even anime lovers can enjoy. The characters are fully developed, even those with but a few lines, and this makes for a pleasantly repeatable viewing experience.

Originally released in German by Fontana Filmproduktion, Senator Film Produktion, and TFC Trickompany Filmproduktion, the English version was released via Internet in the UK, the US, and Canada in 2013 and has some well known names voicing the cats, including Cary Elwes, John Hurt, and Malcolm McDowell. If you like cats, mysteries, horror, or excellent animation, you can't go wrong with Felidae.

Check out this cast!

Character Germany United States
Francis Ulrich Tukur Cary Elwes
Bluebeard Mario Adorf Michael Madsen
Claudandus Klaus Maria Brandauer John Hurt
Kong Wolfgang Hess Kevin Nealon
Jesaja Helge Schneider David Jason
Preterius Gerhard Garbers Malcom McDowell
Felicity Mona Seefried Kath Soucie
Joker Ulrich Wildgruber Burt Reynolds
Gustav Manfred Steffen Bill Fagerbakke
Archie Uwe Ochsenknecht Steve Buscemi
Nhozemphtekh Michaela Amler Elizabeth Daily
Gregor Mendel Christian Schneller Maurice Denham
Hermann 1 Tobias Lelle Tom Kenny
Hermann 2 Frank Röth Rob Paulsen
Pepeline Alexandra Mink Andrea Libman

For information on the differences between the novel and the film, check out the Felidae wiki.

11/10 claws

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