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Monster Reviews: The Dead Don’t Die 2019

Monster Reviews: The Dead Don’t Die 2019

When it comes to zombie films, they’re traditionally all very similar. Lots of blood, guts and brains. They rely heavily on the gore and they’re usually rich with social commentary. The storylines are generally very light and its always about the aesthetics.

The Dead Don’t Die is written and directed by Jim Jarmusch. It stars Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Tom Waits, Chloë Sevigny, Tilda Swinton, Danny Glover, Steve Buscemi, Iggy Pop, Rosie Perez, RZA, Sturgill Simpson and Selena Gomez. The residents of Centerville are left to battle for their lives as the dead begin to rise and invade their once tranquil town.

Let’s face it, when it comes to the actors and characters in films, they can single handedly make or break a picture. They can make you fall in love with them, or they can make you hate them. You can root for them to survive, or cheer for their defeat. However, when executed properly, a legendary performance can be eternal and sometimes even immortal. 

The Dead Don’t Die is full of dry wit and laugh out loud humor that will tickle your funny bone to the core. It’s a killer horror comedy unlike any other, with the largest ensemble cast ever assembled for a zombie film. Just when you thought you’d seen it all, hold on tight as director Jim Jarmusch brings viewers a side splitting comedy about the end of the world.

This film is absolute genius. It’s managed to take the nearly beat to death subgenre and flip it on its axis. Instead of the tired old gore and blood drenched cannibal feasts that we’re used to, this film focuses more on gut busting laughs and hysterics from its amazing cast. Bill Murray and Adam Driver headline one magnificently talented lineup that’s guaranteed to entertain.

There are some seriously amazing performances in this. Murray was awesome as the cool, laid back Sheriff, and Driver was the perfect level headed sidekick. Chloë Sevigny was also great as the shy and awkward third wheel of the law, and Steve Busvemi was a riot as the crazy racist farmer. Tom Waits was savage as Hermit Bob, but the best has to be Rosie Perez as a news reporter with the hilariously similar name.

It’s not your average fast paced, chew em up and spit em out, insane, over the top type of zombie film. Instead it’s a much slower, more comedic based style where the zombies are essentially the background noise to the jokes and one liners. It’s a truly entertaining laugh filled odyssey.

Not evry film needs to employ off the wall kills or loads of gore. With the subgenre currently on a downslope, it’s pleasing to see a fresh take on the outdated monsters. It’s nice to see the undead reinvented and not taken so seriously, like they normally are. With all the zombie themed content out there, it’s hard to leave a mark on the genre and that’s exactly what this film has done.

The film looks amazing. The cinematography is great and the countryside sets are very soothing. Jarmusch’s storytelling is always slower paced, which seems to work really well with the Romeroesque zombies. It amps up the fun quotient and lightens the intensity. 

While fans might not be so accepting of a film like this, it’s definitely delightful and a worthy addition to the zombie subgenre. Stellar performances and a solid cast make it one of the best modern undead films to date. It’s a hilarious centerpiece and a great all around film.

If you’re bored of the same old tiresome zombie films, look no further. The Dead Don’t Die is an off the path, unconventional, entertaining undead film unlike the rest. Tons of laughs, awesome special effects and even its own theme song. It’s the best ZomCom yet.


Posted by Donovan Smith in EVENTS, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HORROR COMEDIES, HORROR HISTORY, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MOVIE REVIEWS, NEW RELEASES, PARANORMAL, SCI-FI HORROR, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
Netflix Announced ‘Santa Clarita Diet’ will not be renewed

Netflix Announced ‘Santa Clarita Diet’ will not be renewed

All good things cannot last forever and eventually has to end at some point. There has been news circling that Netflix is pulling the plug on Santa Clarita Diet, so there goes the theory if a fourth season happens. The third season of Santa Clarita Diet which stars Drew Barrymore, Timothy Olyphant, Liv Hewson, and Skyler Gisondo has been up and running, and sadly that is the last we will see. 

Leaving us, the third season shows Sheila (Barrymore) and Joel (Olyphant), two realtors who live in the suburbs of LA, they seem like an average couple, but Sheila is a zombie. This season Sheila asks Joel to convert so they can live together forever. Meanwhile, their daughter Abby (Hewson) and her friend Eric (Gisondo) fight to stay off the FBI’s radar after blowing up the site from last season. 

With all the zombie humor coming to an end, we will miss you Santa Clarita Diet.

 

Posted by Sarah Gregory in CAST AND CREW NEWS, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HORROR COMEDIES, HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, SERIES REVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, WOMEN IN HORROR, ZOMBIES, 2 comments
Black Summer: Official Trailer Released—House Of Tortured Souls

Black Summer: Official Trailer Released—House Of Tortured Souls

The official trailer for the Netflix new series Black Summer has just been released and already has the ‘Walking Dead’ vibes. 

A quick synopsis: Rose (Jamie King) is torn away from her daughter during the early days of the zombie apocalypse. She sets out on a journey to go and find her only to encounter hurdles and strangers along her way.  

Check out the trailer below and also tune into Netflix on April 11th to start Rose’s adventure during the first season. ⬇️⬇️

 

Posted by Sarah Gregory in Categories, COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, NEW RELEASES, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
Netflix to bring Resident Evil as a TV series

Netflix to bring Resident Evil as a TV series

Just like zombies Resident Evil refuses to stay dead. Deadline is reporting that NETFLIX will be doing a live action tv series. Per Deadline, “the plan is for the series to expand the Resident Evil universe and deepen the existing mythology. I hear the series will keep the basic premise, which also served as a setup for the movie franchise. The drama series will explore the dark inner workings of the Umbrella Corporation and the new world order caused by the outbreak of the T-virus.”

Let’s face it the movies are great, the video games are great even the cgi cartoons aren’t bad. This is big news where Netflix is getting a lot of buzz with their TV and films. Original or not this will be interesting to see where it goes. No word yet on casting or release date.

Posted by Jai Alexis in CAST AND CREW NEWS, COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED CONTENT, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HALLOWEEN, HORROR HISTORY, HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, NEW RELEASES, REVIEWS, SCI-FI HORROR, SERIES REVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, THRILLER, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
Seasons Greetings with STALLED (2013)

Seasons Greetings with STALLED (2013)

STALLED is a British movie that was released in 2013. It is a Christmas focused zombie comedy, exploring on a serious zombie outbreak in an office building during their annual party. The plot is easy to follow “W.C is a discontent office manager, who decides to rob his boss during the office Christmas party. Sadly for W.C he becomes trapped in the ladies room stalls as a hoard of zombies plague the building! While trapped in the stalls he befriends a female in another stall and the two attempt to escape the zombie onslaught together.”

Stalled

I’ll start by discussing the one thing I didn’t get about this film. All it was is that STALLED does start with a rather unnecessary lesbian scene between two females.  Simply it didn’t add any value to the story line, but it wasn’t offensive or anything either. I just found it rather unnecessary. W.C is played by Dan Palmer. Palmer actually wrote

Dan Palmer in Stalled

the screenplay himself. So I know that the feeling of him being able to connect with his character was evident because he portrayed W.C based on how he wrote the character himself. The concept is good! Similar to films like Phonebooth (with Colin Farrell), or even Devil (with Logan Marshall- Green), it is set ultimately in ONE location throughout. This doesn’t slow the film down, nor does it restrict the evolution of the plot. In fact it creates some unique experiences, to be seen on-screen. Our pragmatist is caught in the stalls throughout the majority of the film. As he is bumbling and fumbling his way to safety, we see him repeatedly fail and his faith diminish. It’s not for his lack of attempts of course, but the various

Stalled

obstacles he faces – primarily the zombies. W.C may be a criminal, but through the film we develop compassion for him. He often sticks his proverbial foot in his mouth and is actually very apologetic. We see a sweet side to him, as well as the misled cad he’s become. STALLED

Stalled

really does just follow a simple plot formula. There is basic makeup use, everyday costumes, one primary set. However it is still ultimately a most enjoyable film. In fact some of the make up jobs made me think of the original Night of the Living Dead, which made it somewhat nostalgic. I think it’s the simplicity that one can enjoy most. It doesn’t exceed your ideas of how it will unfold. It’s an independent films and it doesn’t maquerade as a bigger budget films. Palmers writing compliments Christian James’ smooth direction perfectly. The duo pace the action well enough to remind us of the great danger on-screen, and yet add in little emotional moments sweetly. There’s a few zesty one liners, some really good kills and a  well-rounded performance from our lead actor. So this film is easy to like, I honestly can’t hate on it.

Posted by Michelle MIDI Sayles in Categories, 0 comments
HoTS Celebrates 50 Years Of: Night Of The Living Dead

HoTS Celebrates 50 Years Of: Night Of The Living Dead

Night Of The Living Dead / IMDB

Although it opened on Tuesday, October 1, 1968 in Pittsburgh only, today is a special day in history. On Friday, October 4, 1968 Night Of The Living Dead made its nationwide debut.  Although there had been a couple of zombie movies prior, this film would go on to set the standards of the zombie sub genre. Originally titled Night of Anubis, writers George A. Romero and John Russo  would give the film a more fitting name. Romero directed Night Of The Living Dead. The film tells the tale of seven people trapped in a farmhouse, attacked by people risen from the dead.

Night Of The Living Dead / IMDBNight Of The Living Dead opens with Johnny and Barbara, visiting their father’s grave. They see a man who looks disoriented and Johnny teases Barbara. He reminds her of a chant from their youth, ‘they’re coming to get you Barbara”. The man attacks and throws Johnny onto on a grave. The blow to the head kills Johnny.

Barbara escapes to a farmhouse and meets Ben. She is catatonic and Ben tries to get her to help him board the house. They discover a family of three hiding in the basement with another couple. Everyone but Ben is eventually killed by zombies (one is the young girl of the older couple from the basement). Ben survives but, the next morning a posse mistakes him for a zombie and shot him dead.

Night Of The Living Dead / IMDB

That is a very brief description of the movie. Today we are  focusing on the impact it has made in 50 years. Five “of the Dead” films followed, all directed by Romero. 1990 saw a remake of the film as well. Night Of The Living Dead introduced the world to the only way to kill a zombie. You must kill its brain.

How many movies and TV shows come from the idea of the the zombie? Night Of The Living Dead was not the first zombie film remember, but it stemmed the most followers.  The Walking Dead draws millions of viewers each week. The Walking Dead which spawned from a comic book, uses the same principles but in a more modern era. In fact, one could argue that any film or TV show since 1968 depicting zombies were inspired by Night Of The Living Dead. Romero and Russo created the blueprint and reinvented the sub genre.

Today, the remaining surviving cast and crew members attend several conventions nationwide to meet with fans. New generations of movie goers experience meeting Judith O’Day (Barbara), Russell Streiner (Johnny), Kyra Schon (Karen) and John Russo. George Romero actively attended cons until his passing last summer. With Romero’s passing, the franchise did not fade away. George’s son, George Cameron Romero is working on a prequel to the 1968 original. It’s a safe bet however, to say we are looking forward to that.

Happy 50th Anniversary Night Of The Living Dead and here’s to 50 more great years!

 

Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in Categories, HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, STAFF PICKS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) – A Short Film with Lots of Talent

HoTS EXCLUSIVE: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) – A Short Film with Lots of Talent

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.In high school, I took a communications class. Growing up, my concept of what filmmaking was was almost an Orson Welles level of perfection, not accepting anything less. We were just teens in high school writing goofy scripts and shooting films with expensive cameras and editing tools. Believe me, I wish I knew back then what I know now. It wasn’t easy at times sitting in the editing room hearing and watching the same footage repeatedly, but it was all worth it and, honestly, it’s such an adrenaline rush. Believe me. Therefore, most directors go to the premieres or screenings incognito focusing on the reactions of the audience instead of the premiere. They see what works, what doesn’t work, and who laughed at what part.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.I heard about an upcoming local film festival in my town called Creeper Film Fest. Working for House of Tortured Souls, I do my best to attend as many cons, expos, and film releases — even the local stuff — to get exclusive info, exclusive showings, or just meet some nice people. Recently, I talked to award-winning director Matthew Mark Hunter from MMH productions. We had a nice talk about his upcoming movie Nightmares Unleashed, and I explained that I’ll do my best to make it to the screening and review his movie. He was nice enough to send me a link to the movie, and I finally got time to watch it, so here’s my honest and fair review. After years of learning the craft and wearing others’ shoes, I learned to see their movie from their vision or their heart from their vision.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Nightmares Unleashed is a short film and runs just under 15 minutes. It doesn’t need a whole lot of time to get to the point, but it does a great job getting there. Some would say, “Oh, you used cheap FX and cheap tactics”, and, sure, you can say that if a film has a huge budget but cuts corners. Instead, Matthew uses some great practical and effective ways of getting shots and FX for his movie. The official plot is as follows:

A young girl loves watching horror films but always gets nightmares from them. She gets grabbed into the TV one night and must escape her worst nightmares through the movies.
As I stated before, Matthew didn’t have a big budget, doesn’t have movie stars, and doesn’t even have a huge crew. Nightmares Unleased is all guerilla filmmaking with a lot of heart from friends and family.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.Another piece of info he was glad to share was that he tried to make the film as real as possible, so the worms from the worm zombie’s (Chris Wiggins) mouth, are real worms. That’s right. He had real worms put in his mouth. That’s hardcore! And that’s the level of dedication this movie gives to the audience.Matthew also revealed that all the tools on and around the workbench are real, so our corpse (John Polace) had real saws and knives hanging above him. Matthew further told me:

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.When the little actress (Autumn Johnson) first saw the Joseph makeup — she was always scared of — clowns, so when we did the scene of Joseph the Jester (Matthew Mark Hunter) jumping out of the closet the first time, she got really freaked out.

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.I didn’t see the movie as a cheap, low budget, amateur movie effort. Instead, I saw this as a film done by a director who’s going out and doing what he loves best: making movies. So, if you get a chance check out Nightmares Unleashed, do so. And check out other Indie films and filmmakers. Talk to them, and if they ever start a go fund me, donate. Believe it or not, even your favorite filmmakers were once like Matthew, out in his backyard and making a film with heart and soul and with friends and family.

Polace had real worms in his mouth. Worms. That’s hardcore and, honestly, that’s the level of dedication this movie gives to the audience!

Creeper Film Fest: Nightmares Unleashed (2018) / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by Jai Alexis in HORROR NEWS, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
COMING SOON: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)

COMING SOON: Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)

Anna and the Apocalypse a Christmas zombie musical. Yup, you read that right.

When you think of Christmas horror movies, you can probably name a good dozen of the ones people should watch. The same goes for zombies and musicals. It’s a given that we will choose the classics or ones we feel hold a place in our hearts, but it’s still always a debate on which to watch because there’s just so many out there. Oh, and for the record, the great debate about The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) being either a Halloween or Christmas movie? It’s a holiday movie. Enjoy it anytime you like.

Then came a movie that from the title I thought, “Okay, not bad”. Then the description sealed the deal: Christmas horror zombie musical comedy. Well, of course, I had to stop whatever I’m doing to view this trailer. The film is called; Anna and the Apocalypse and follows Anna, a girl who wakes up one December morning to find her town Little Haven has been taken over by zombies.

Anna and the Apocalypse (2017) / Fair use doctrine.

Anna and the Apocalypse consists of a background of Indie and some horror stars and director. Don’t let this fool you in thinking it’s going to be a teen angst film with goofy zombies, no gore,  and overused songs. There is a great amount of gore in the film, and small tidbits from the trailer promise that we will get some goofy gore as well as some creative kills. The songs are original and sung by the cast, which works, so be on the lookout for the soundtrack. Christmas does play a part as shopping carts full of presents are used as weapons. Zombie carolers, zombie Santa (guy in a Santa suit), plus one zombie Snowman (again guy in a costume) = fun.

Anna and the Apocalypse (2017) / Fair use doctrine.

Anna and the Apocalypse is compared to Shaun Of the Dead meets La La Land which, judging by the trailer, does give off more of a feel-good vibe. I’ll be enjoying this movie. The movie comes out 30 Nov 2018. When you need a break from the Christmas shopping and still eating leftovers from Thanksgiving, check out this movie. Like always, House of Tortured Souls will be checking out this holiday movie.

Posted by Jai Alexis in HORROR COMEDIES, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Smoking Hot with … Bong of The Living Dead (2017)

MOVIE REVIEW: Smoking Hot with … Bong of The Living Dead (2017)

Yes, you read that correctly, this review will be about the recent release of a film titled Bong of the Living Dead, a new breed of Zombie film that has so much beautiful sentiment it actually surprised me!

Again, this is an actual moderately action-packed stoner film involving a group of potheads and their antics during an untimely zombie outbreak.

Of course, when you hear the title, you will prejudge based on your views on the prior Evil Bong films. This is not affiliated with those films in any way, shape, or form.

Ted (2012)

Ted (2012) – No, not that bong.

Bong of the Living Dead features a group of twenty-something adults who have known each other since they were kids.

As kids, our hazy leader Christ Moser (played by Eric Boso, previously seen in short films) establishes himself as a self-proclaimed zombie aficionado. He spends a lot of his days mulling over how he would react to a zombie apocalypse, usually while smoking his bong.

Also in the friends’ group is Kate Mitchell (Tiffany Arnold, who appears in Lilith with Jessica Cameron). Kate is a doctor now with much less regard for Christ’s discussions and thinking more logically about the possibility of an attack of the undead.

Joining this duo is Daniel Alan Kiely as Hal Rockwood, Laura. E. Mock as Tara Callahan, Dan Nye as Jon Lance, and Cat Taylor as Danielle Dewitt.

Each adds some genuinely funny moments to this oddly conceived film and balance the humor with their genuine care and compassion for each other.

Daniel Alan Kiely, Tiffany Arnold, Eric Boso, Dan Nye, and Laura E. Mock in Bong of the Living Dead (2017)

Daniel Alan Kiely, Tiffany Arnold, Eric Boso, Dan Nye, and Laura E. Mock in Bong of the Living Dead (2017)

Obviously, there are nods to films notable within the zombie sub-genre and Night of the Living Dead is discussed in one of their Zombie talks. as well as Land of the Dead in relation to guns within the Zombie film world.

When the actual news breaks on TV about the onslaught of Zombies, naturally some are excited and others more reserved within the group.

That said, the original onslaught is quite less than anticipated and notably disheartened, they instead all return inside to…you guessed it…get high!

Hours pass and the news reports worsen to the point that one newscaster reports, “You’re fucked, Columbus!” Even worse, a politician begins a campaign (Councilman Ted Swanson) with the cheesiest slogan, “Don’t be a problem, zom-bee the solution”.  All of this prompts our collective ensemble to again get high, and we are treated to a montage of zombie preparations before they attempt to venture outside. A few of the neighbors are devoured by the increasing horde and things begin to take a zombie-like twist for the worst.

Daniel Alan Kiely, Tiffany Arnold, Eric Boso, Dan Nye, Laura E. Mock, and Cat Taylor in Bong of the Living Dead (2017)

Daniel Alan Kiely, Tiffany Arnold, Eric Boso, Dan Nye, Laura E. Mock, and Cat Taylor in Bong of the Living Dead (2017)

This is where they take a downward spiral. Zombies overtake, some are hurt, even killed. The usual plot aspects of a zombie film. However through a series of horrific moments, and even the news guy shooting himself, our gang begin to recall their fond memories with one another. Tied in with such an amazingly emotional score, it pulls oddly at your heartstrings – not something I anticipated – and creates an almost beautiful climax.

I think people will prejudge Bong of the Living Dead, but in those moments it showed real heart and actually became so much more than a stoner zombie viewing.

Posted by Michelle MIDI Sayles in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Pirating Movies: A Dagger In The Heart For Filmmakers

Pirating Movies: A Dagger In The Heart For Filmmakers

So we all know Ash vs Evil Dead was canceled recently and that star Bruce Campbell lashed out against those who were illegally downloading the show. Unfortunately, pirating movies and TV shows has gone deeper than that, and it has made life for filmmakers even more challenging.

RIP Ash vs Evil Dead

Now let me start off by saying I am not here to get into an ethics battle with anyone. I would hope that anyone reading this can tell the difference between right and wrong and that pirating is stealing. What I have seen on social media recently, however, is a bit troubling.

Being in the infant stages of my own filmmaking career, I have faced the number one challenge that can stop many inspired writers and directors dead in their tracks…funding. Getting someone to believe in your project as much you as do is impossible, but getting them to believe in you can be done if you are passionate enough and have a great pitch.

The problem, however, is that investors want to see projections for how fast they will get their investment back and also a profit — especially with horror. So a good sales deck will show how similar titles fared in box office, VoD, and DVD sales. This is where filmmakers can face a battle against which they cannot properly defend themselves. Numbers in the sense of dollars can be deflated because advances in technology enable people with better and faster ways to steal movies and TV shows and, in some cases, profit from doing so.

I don’t know if the numbers are in fact true that Ash vs Evil Dead was the most illegally downloaded show of all time. I think it is very plausible. Here are couple examples of actual horror stories I’ve seen from people and tell you the effect it has had on them.

There is a filmmaker who made a zombie film starring Tony Todd that was released last year. DVD sales were not what was projected or even safely targeted. This filmmaker was informed that his movie was uploaded to YouTube and had been watched over 300,000 times. Even if he made no sales and had only VoD rentals, that still would have generated over $1,500,000 in those rentals. But that’s not what happened.

The general reaction when the filmmaker took to social media to express his frustration only added insult to injury. The reactions were almost as bad as the thefts themselves.

At least your film was watched 300,000 times.
Be glad people like your film enough to watch it.

Anyone who lives in a city larger than 100,000 people has some sort of outlet mall, flea market, dirt mall, etc. I have yet to see one where 3-4 “vendors” were not selling $3-$5 films they had downloaded and burned to DVD. These include films that had just been released in theaters. These people are profiting from someone else’s work. What’s worse is that the people buying them are enabling it to continue.

What’s the point of all of this? Indie filmmakers (especially in horror) clear enough hurdles just to get a film made. Many people who sell and watch these films may think that Hollywood has enough money and they’re not hurting anyone. But it’s the people who are trying to break into the business and the Indie filmmakers who want to make something a little different who are suffering.

What can you do? That’s a good question.

For starters, these thieves hocking illegally downloaded movies need to be shut down. The next thing you can do is show support for the movies you love. Attend a con and tell the stars how much you enjoyed the movie. Subscribe to a page or blog, follow House of Tortured Souls (cheap plug, but I saw my shot). Keep the horror voice alive.

Crypt Keeper Clint with Joe Bob Briggs

These little things can keep the shows we love on the air. They will also let the world know that we horror fans have a strong voice and WILL be heard. Want proof? Through a social media campaign, Joe Bob Briggs asked his supporters to send videos to Shudder. They asked Shudder to bring him back. Joe Bob returns June 22nd for a 24-hour marathon. That was due to all of those fan videos creating a demand that Shudder couldn’t ignore.

Never underestimate the power of your own voice and don’t hurt what you love by stealing to save $10-$20.

Posted by Crypt Keeper Clint in EDITORIALS, STAFF PICKS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Savageland (2015)

MOVIE REVIEW: Savageland (2015)

Zombie movies are never really about zombies. At least the good ones aren’t. There’s always some social or political message being conveyed, and Savageland is no exception. At its heart, it’s more of a social statement about immigration and bigotry than a horror film, but we’re going to overlook the message and focus on the horror.

Savageland presents itself as a documentary about a small southwestern town that is virtually wiped out overnight. The story follows a photographer accused of mass murder and is told and illustrated by the pictures he took on the night in question.

The use of still photography adds a certain creepy element to the film, which probably couldn’t have been achieved if they had gone with the found footage format. In addition, the pictures themselves are quite eerie and haunting. Another benefit of using photos as opposed to film is that there is no poorly done CGI that seems to be rampant in the lower budget horror films.

Savageland (2015)The documentary style leaves a bit to be desired as it feels a bit more polished than it probably should, and the story starts out a bit confusing. However, once it gets rolling, it’s a pretty solid film, and the still photos are not overused, which leaves the viewer wanting to see more.

My only real issue with Savageland is that several characters are over the top caricatures of Southern rednecks and “bleeding heart liberals”. Now, I’m sure that people like that really exist, but both of those tropes are vastly overused, in my opinion.

I recommend Savageland to anyone looking for something a little different in the horror genre. If you like the found footage films, you’ll probably find Savageland worth watching, as it falls along those lines. If you don’t like the found footage films, you might still enjoy it, as there isn’t much in the “shaky cam” department.

Posted by Richard Francis in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
INTERVIEW: Writer/Director Jared Cohn

INTERVIEW: Writer/Director Jared Cohn

Where we talk Dead AfterLife, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Serial Killers, and Mental Fitness

Jared Cohn We're All Animals - chilling / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

Horrormadam here, guys, and I had the privilege of interviewing actor/director Jared Cohn. Best known for 13/13/13, Hulk Blood Tapes, and Feed the Devil for acting and Hold Your Breath, The Horde (which got a 94% on Rotten Tomatoes), and Little Dead Rotting Hood for his directing.
For those who do not know yet, Dead AfterLife is a currently in development film written by Michael Joy. And Michael knows horror, he is the CEO of Marketing Macabre, CEO of Joyhorror Entertainment, Director of Marketing for Artsploitation Films (that just released Red Christmas starring Dee Wallace), and Operations Manager for Horrornews.net. I am really looking forward to Dead Afterlife because of its unique and interesting premise. Imagine watching your own funeral as a ghost and then the unthinkable happens, your undead body climbs out of your coffin and starts killing and eating your friends and family. Pharmaceutical Scientist, Donald Conlee faces this conundrum after he’s murdered and is administered his own “Awake”, super drug. His death was only the beginning of his problems. The Gatekeeper has given Donald a time limit to return his Zombie-self to the ground, or else his soul can never gain entrance into Heaven. To complicate matters, he finds out that his murderer is at the funeral and his girlfriend is in grave danger. How can a couple of disgruntled gravediggers and a hearse driver help Donald’s lost soul find the way? Or maybe the real question is how can the spirit world defeat the living dead?

Jared Cohn on Stepmother / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

House of Tortured Souls: Is that an amazing premise or what? I asked Director Jared Cohn about this budding horror film.
Jared Cohn: I am a big fan of Michael Joy and looking forward to working with him, he is plugged into the horror community. Look this is a really cool story we got ghosts vs zombies, we got amazing talent on board to act in this. This project is gonna be a bad ass horror movie, straight up. It’s ghosts and zombies fighting each other, it’s gore there’s lots of blood, there is death and a funeral, it can’t lose.

Jared Cohn working on set / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

And Jared wasn’t kidding about the amazing talent. They just signed on Dee Wallace (Cujo, The Howling), Michael Berryman (The Hills Have Eyes), Bill Moseley (The Devils Rejects, House of 1000 Corpses), Kane Hodder (Victor Crowley in Hatchet, and Jason Voorhees from some of the Friday the 13th films), Bill Oberst Jr. (Scream Queens, Priest), David Gere (Bleed For This), Andy Gates (Garden Party Massacre), David Vescio (Hick), Mindy Robinson (Lizzie Borden’s Revenge), WWE wrestling star Diamond Dallas Page( Devil’s Rejects), And first timer professional wrestling legend,The Universal Heartthrob, Austin Idol.
Jared Cohn with William Shatner / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

Jared Cohn with William Shatner

HoTS: I was really excited about the prospect of seeing ghosts fighting the living dead on film and asked Jared about that.
JC: I am a fan of practical effects and I would also love to incorporate some CGI to enhance the ghosts visually. Really want to do something cool and a little different if we really want it to be scary and to pay homage to some of the great classics. That would go a long way towards making it look cool, make it look good. But in order to do that, you have to rely on the resources that are available. Which some could consider a cop out answer but it’s true. I would love someone like Vincent Guastini (Under The Bed, Requiem For A Dream, V/H/S Viral, and The Dark Tapes), he does creature suits, ghosts, zombies, makeup. To get someone like him on board would be amazing, but he is not cheap. But he would make amazing looking ghosts and zombies, those are the kind of things you need obviously if you want that big budget look, you need those premium people. We are still waiting on the financing to go through though but it is getting a lot of press so it is just a hurry up and wait game, but I am extremely excited to get going.

Jared Cohn sunlight / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

HoTS: I then had to ask Jared about a film that I saw on IMDB that he is directing that is in post-production called Street Survivors: The True Story of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Plane Crash because I am a fan of the band and found this title so intriguing.

JC: I got the movie shot, there are just some legal difficulties going on. Kind of waiting until March to see whats going on with that one. I’m very proud of that movie so I am really hoping it can see the light of day. It happened because of Cleopatra Entertainment, I love those guys. They gave me great opportunities to make movies, big fan of that company. I am going to be doing some music videos for them that I am very excited about. I used to do a lot of music videos back in the day in New York. I like getting back to my roots. I used to do more cinematography, stunts, editing, and camera work and lately I have been focusing on acting and directing but it is so great to go back and relearn everything and expand.

Jared Cohn on set / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

When researching the film, I found that Jared wrote the film from a story by Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle. It depicts the band’s tragic history centering on Pyle and his experiences of the events surrounding the chartered-plane crash on October 20, 1977, that killed original band members Ronnie Van Zant, Steve Gaines, and backing vocalist Cassie Gaines, Steve’s sister. An assistant road manager and the two pilots also died in the crash after the plane ran out of fuel over Mississippi after the final show of the Street Survivors tour. Ian Shultis, Taylor Clift, Samuel Kay Forrest and Rich Dally III have been cast in the film and the legal battle continues.
HoTS: Next, I asked Jared about his film Death Pool starring Sara Malakul Lane (Jailbait, Kickboxer Vengeance), Randy Wayne (Hellraiser Judgement, Hold Your Breath), James Cullen Bressack (Bethany), and Shawn C. Phillips (WTF!, Cannibal Cop). I just loved how this film dealt with the whole cult of personality. The premise is this:
Johnny Taylor has a big problem: he LOVES to drown good-looking girls. When he sees water and attractive females together, something in his head begs him to kill – the psychological result of a traumatic near-drowning during his childhood at the hands of a twisted babysitter. Fighting the urge to act on his sinister thoughts most of his adult life, Johnny finally succumbs to his dark instincts when the only work he can find is around water, cleaning pools. Filled with colorful characters, beautiful women and set against the backdrop of the LA party scene, Death Pool encapsulates the desire for fame, the lust for desire, and the urge to kill.

JC: I think that was one of the more interesting movies that I have made, it had a message. Social media, fame, the upsides and the downsides, and the reactions of people to someone who is killing people. There are a lot of serial killer groupies. It’s nutty, but in a weird way it is understandable also. There are many people out there that are contemplating killing someone, not that they go out and do it but it’s the idea. To analyze the psyche behind those people who do these things, those that find that extreme violence is their only outlet is interesting.
Jared Cohn on set with William Shatner / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

Jared Cohn on set with William Shatner

HoTS: I also asked him about who his directing influences might be.
JC: I think that Alejandro Inarritu (Amores Perros, Birdman, The Revenant) and Damian Chazelle (La La Land, Whiplash) have really great style. There are so many great and talented people out there.
HoTS: We then talked about what he is doing for 2018:
JC: I am keeping positive, focusing on mental health, and spirituality. You can be the busiest and most successful person in the world, but if you are not feeling great mentally, physically, and spiritually, you cant get your best work done. So I am trying to raise awareness, you know, help people who feel like they could use a boost in life. I would like to give back rather than just make movies. I would like to help people. Many people are suffering quietly, and I want them to know that they are not alone. If I can do something in that regard, it makes me feel better. Not that this is about me, I just want to give back. I’ve made some mistakes. I have some regrets, so I understand the challenges. It is good to talk about, doing interviews, and talking about various movies and being able to bring awareness to the problem of people’s mental health.
Lastly but cool as hell is the fact that Jared became a licensed FAA 107 certified drone remote pilot for taking absolutely stunning aerial shots for filmmaking and commercial use. Check out Drone-Shots.net to find out what’s available. He is also a Pro-paintballer and a black belt in Shaolin Kempo Karate.

Jared Cohn with drone / Image: Jared Cohn - Instagram

Please check out more on him at:
Posted by Alan Smithee in COMING SOON, EXCLUSIVE, FEATURED CONTENT, FRIENDS OF THE HOUSE, INTERVIEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, STAFF PICKS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
The Horror Equity Fund

The Horror Equity Fund

Hello everyone! Horrormadam here wanting to introduce you to our new advertisers that have the greatest horror opportunity. I know it is really great when you see that one of your favorite actors is trying to get funding for his or her new movie, and you give them some money through a pledge system and they, in turn, will give you a tee shirt or some other token of their gratitude. The Horror Equity Fund (HEF) will actually let you invest and get a piece of the movie! Before I tell you more about them, take a look at what Sean Patrick Flannery (The Boondock Saints, Saw 3D: The Final Chapter) and Bill Oberst Jr. (Scary or Die and the highly anticipated Death House) had to say:

Horror Equity Fund was born of the necessity for a central place for professionals, fans, and investors to meet, offer services, find opportunities, discover content, and find funding for horror-centric projects. HEF is not a production company, but it offers investors, through direct investment into HEF, the opportunity, knowledge, and ability to participate and profit in this previously inaccessible world of entertainment. Projects include films, video games, AR/VR, live action entertainment, transmedia projects, board and card games, books, toys and other horror-centric entertainment properties.

Like I was telling you, readers, you actually get to invest in horror films not just watch them! Horror Equity Fund brings together the best forces that are needed to fund, create, market, and distribute all projects related to the profitable world of horror. Unlike those platforms that solicit donations or contributions in return for a poster, a broken download, or a pat on the back, projects presented through HEF offer real ownership, royalties, or profit participation. HEF melds the old with the new, as industry-savvy professionals guide the process of efficiently securing funds while keeping visions intact and costs as low as possible.

Projects are submitted for consideration through crowdsourcing on the Federation of Horror, or through professionally vetted sources (agents, managers, script contest winners etc…) What is the Federation of Horror you may ask. The Federation of Horror will gather fans, investors, and content creators in one centralized location. This aggregation will allow them to bring all kinds of horror/thriller related entertainment to the fans and allow the public to partake in the single highest ROI(return on investment)segment in entertainment.

I have always loved horror; it has been the major motivator in my life. One thing I did not know until I met the Horror Equity Fund is that since 2010, the Top Films Based on ROI Have ALL BEEN HORROR! So all of those people who thought I was weird or a little off for liking horror are now seeing what I saw: Horror is one of the greatest genres and the horror community is huge and welcoming! So to have a company like the Horror Equity Fund to invest in means the world to me, and I hope it will for you also. I want to especially thank Marlon Schulman, founder and CEO, and Brian Herskowitz, CCO, for joining the House of Tortured Souls in our pursuit of all things HORROR!

Please make sure to check out their two new projects Star Leaf — Hikers find a secret grove of extra-terrestrial marijuana growing in the Olympic Mountains, and must fight for their lives when they anger the other-worldly forces protecting the plants. And ZBurbs – A Zom-com about the triumph of love trapped in a Zombie apocalypse/government conspiracy that infects one suburban tract home, possibly right next door. “If you were dinner you’d be home by now.”

Posted by Alan Smithee in EDITORIALS, HORROR NEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Train to Busan (2016)

MOVIE REVIEW: Train to Busan (2016)

Train to Busan is a 2016 South Korean zombie flick that is a breath of fresh air!! The storyline... Well, like in any other zombie film: run and don't get eaten! Okay, that's the same here. Our story centers around a divorced father and young daughter who are traveling by train to get to... you guessed it, Busan. They are trying to get his daughter back to her mother. The father sadly is a workaholic and spends no time with his daughter, and that also plays an emotionally important part in the story.
While the father and daughter are travelling, an outbreak has begun and, yes, people are starting to turn into zombies. Only becoming aware of the situations via cell phones while en route, the crowded train learns the hard way at a scheduled stop that things are a lot worse than what they had expected - having been anticipating a military welcome in what was supposedly a safe area.

Without giving anything away from the film, you use your imagination as to what happens next...on its way to Busan.
What sets Train to Busan apart from other recent zombie films is how it's shot. The first thing that really hit me was how sharp and bright the colors in the film are. Most are dark and almost dingy, but this could have been used for a Clorox color-safe bleach commercial. The colors just seemed to pop and everything just seemed to be so damn clean!
The makeup and special FX used were spot on! No masks and no use of dirt and buckets of blood for decay value, all while still packing a punch and throwing a few holy shit moments at you. It was a near-perfect zombie film.
Lastly, one thing I’ve learned over the years with Asian horror films, they are either so far over-the-top-what-the-fuck-did-I-just-watch kind of film or they are extremely brutal and violent and usually very sexually oriented, often in a somewhat perverted way. I'm not saying that I don't enjoy all those qualities in a good wholesome Asian horror film, but Train to Busan possessed none of those stereotypical qualities. It is just a straight-ahead zombie film, with a great ending!

Train to Busan was directed by Sang-ho-Yeon, runs just under 2 hours long, is subtitled, and is currently on Netflix. I really can’t suggest Train to Busan enough!

Keep It Evil...

Posted by John Roisland in MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
RECAP: TWD, S08E06: The King, The Widow, and Rick

RECAP: TWD, S08E06: The King, The Widow, and Rick

Okay, so we have definitely settled down. This episode again was not so intense, but, of course, TWD will always have an OMG moment! Now we are seeing more of the story grow, and some things being explained.

Our team has a clever way of exchanging notes back and forth while they are split up. I’m digging the new mailboxes. 😉

UMMM, so Jadis feels artsy-fartsy while in the nude, huh? 😕

We see her in her trash-heap homestead in nothing but an apron, while putting together a new metal kitty.

This one looks like it may be a tiger. Does she know that Shiva is dead? And she actually bothers to put on clothes when she finds out it’s Rick??

So Rick offers the Heapsters  (Scavengers) a deal again?!?!? Why would he consider trusting them again? Jadis even questions him about that. Jadan tells him no and has him locked into a cargo box (nude!).

Come to think of it, this whole episode had a Terminus feeling. The metal box, the one Savior talking to Jesus the way that Termite talked to Ty, and the warehouse Michonne and Rosita creep into appeared a lot like Terminus.
Carol goes to talk some sense into the King. As she walks up, Jerry, standing guard, tells her Ezekiel is not taking visitors. Like Carol gives a damn. Jerry tells her, Ezekiel told him he could go, that there was no need for him to be there, Jerry said that is all he had to do.
Gregory steps into his old study to tell Maggie to get rid of the Saviors. That there are too many wolves amongst the sheep. HA!
Rosita and Michonne going off when they are supposed to stay put and heal. On their way ‘to take a look’ at the Sanctuary, they hear the weirdest music and stop the car. The two follow the sound to a warehouse. Inside they find a male and female Savior talking. The WTF MICHONNE?!?!?! A ball???? After all the times we’ve seen Michonne stealthily creep in and out of places she bumps into a ball and it rolls away letting the bad guys know they are not alone. Great. Now Michonne is in another fight – while healing from the last one!! She really is a good match for Rick, I swear! The male Savior finds Rosita, but boy does she have a surprise for him! The Grenade Launcher! He laughs at her and tells her she knows good and well that she will not use it. WHOOPSIE! But the female Savior gets away in the vehicle, all them damn speakers blasting that crazy ass music to draw in the Walkers. BOOM! Daryl to the rescue! He’s been doing that a lot lately. He ran right into her. 😉 So now we have the 4 Musketeers (Daryl went to Alexandria and picked up Tara to take her to Alexandria) all heading off to ‘end this’.
Of course, Henry would follow Carol! At this point, she needs to come up with a strategy to keep kids away from her! Is this going to be Sam part 2 or Elijah part 2? hopefully neither and he becomes Carl part 2! In real life, the boy that plays Henry is the little brother of the girl that played Sofia.
The Saviors are moved to an outdoor prison inside the walls of the Hilltop. Gregory gets placed in with them, acting like a straight up baby. Suddenly he remembers her name! Long hair Savior goes for one of the Hilltop lady’s gun. Maggie knocks some sense into him. 😉
Carl and new buddy (we learn his name is Saadiq) have near-death experiences in the woods with some Walkers needing redemption. (Did that deer bring up fond memories Carl?) Carl tells him he is taking him to Alexandria even though his father thinks it’s a bad idea.
LOL!!! Carol goes back to see Ezekiel, this time Henry follows. Carol tells Jerry to stand next to Henry, and he does. 🙂 She finds Ezekiel holding Shiva’s chain. Carol breaks down to Ezekiel, and both end up bawling. Ezekiel tells her she can lead the people. Carol tell him he needs to get back to his role.
Aaron talking about Eric to Enid and Maggie. Maggie holding Gracie. Maggie is becoming a babysitter like her sister used to be. I imagine Maggie will breastfeed Gracie, too. When Aaron is leaving, Enid rushes out and begs him to take her along (they, too, are heading to the Sanctuary). This will certainly be interesting!!
At the end of the episode, we see Jadan puts a big A on the metal shipping crate Rick is naked in. Is that for Alexandria? Or Alpha? 😮

Hmmmm……

Posted by Alan Smithee in MONSTERS AND CREATURES, SERIES REVIEWS, STAFF PICKS, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
COMING SOON: AMC’s The Walking Dead 100th Episode Contest

COMING SOON: AMC’s The Walking Dead 100th Episode Contest

The Walking Dead's 100th episode will begin season 8 on October 22, 2017! It's hard to believe that after 7 years, October 22nd will only be the one hundredth episode. But as long as it takes for a new season to come on, and the mid-season break does take up a lot of time. On Sunday, September 10th, during the return of Fear the Walking Dead, there will be an exclusive sneak peak into this special occasion. Take a look at this video that the folks at AMC put together of the best scenes of the last 99 episodes.
Season 8 of The Walking Dead will be the beginning of the war between Negan and The Saviors and our man Rick and everyone else! The season premieres are in generally pretty thrilling, and since this is the 100th episode, I imagine they have some very special treats for their fans.
Come join our The Walking Dead Facebook group. As always, we will be having a group chat during the episode. Since you are already going to be screaming at your TV, crying, and laughing, so why not join the fun with like-minded fellow DeadHeads.
Just yesterday AMC announced that they are holding a contest where the winner (one extremely lucky fan) will be flown to see the special and sit in for a 2-hour filming of The Talking Dead. The winner will even get a photo with the entire cast! Oh MAN! Just think of it. You would be up close and personal with the crew of The Walking Dead! :O (I think I truly would become one of the walking dead as I’m fairly certain I would die a million times over if I won!)
Here is the link to enter this amazing and generous contest. Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor!
Posted by Alan Smithee in HORROR NEWS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
House of Tortured Souls – 2016 Horror Awards

House of Tortured Souls – 2016 Horror Awards

We here at The House of Tortured Souls love horror. It’s kind of our jam. And we love to see good horror get recognition. It can be argued that horror is more popular than ever, there are more conventions, festivals, and awards than ever. However, one thing bugged us here at HoTS, and from responses online, we weren’t the only ones. Some awards, not to call names (message me), stretch out the word horror way to far. Seriously Deadpool? Captian America: Civil War? I love me some Cap, and who can talk smack about Ryan Reynolds’ red spandex covered ass, but it’s not FUCKING horror.

So we said “Screw it. Let’s do this”. So here we are with the first annual House of Tortured Souls Awards. Neato huh? We can’t promise we wont make mistakes, can’t promise we don’t stutter step and come in a bit late (I planned to have this April 1st), but we do promise to keep it horror. No super heroes, no Tarzan, and no funny South African robots! What we got? Serial killers, zombies, vampires, ghosts and demons, we got ’em. No there are films that straddle that line of horror/ thriller. We accept that, but repeat after me, no friggin superheros or Jedi.

We are still learning, but we decided to jump in with both feet and stomp the shit out of it. We asked our staff to pick their favorites in a group of categories. Rules are the films have to be originally released in a mass audience format. So feature films released to VoD, DVD, or theater, for the FIRST time in 2016 are eligible. Secondary release to DVD, does not qualify it for 2016. Thus, a film released to theater in 2016 will qualify for 2016. If it is released to DVD in 2017, it would not qualify for 2017.

There is a slight difference for independent films. Since most of them will not get a wide release theatrical release, and it might be years before a VoD or DVD release. For independent films, they may be considered, if they have had a major festival release, are currently (award year) touring the festival circuit, or have a release to VoD, DVD, or theater, AND have not been nominated in a previous year. There’s a logic there as many Indie may tour the festival circuit for a couple years, this allows them a chance to be seen, but not to win multiple years. The HoTS staff will select four nominees per category, in case of an unbreakable tie (which we had a couple of), we may select five nominees in some categories. It’s a work in progress, but we think this is fair.

So without the proverbial further ado, here are the nominees.

Best Horror Movie 2016*

  • Green Room
  • I Am Not A Serial Killer
  • The Witch
  • 10 Cloverfield Lane
  • 31

Best Horror Director 2016

  • Jeremy Saluner – Green Room
  • Andre Overdal – The Autopsy of Jane Doe
  • Roger Eggers – The Witch
  • Rob Zombie – 31

Best Actor Horror 2016

  • John Goodman – 10 Cloverfield Lane
  • Anton Yeltsin – Green Room
  • Patrick Wilson – The Conjuring
  • Richard Brake – 31

Best Actress Horror Movie 2016

  • Mary Elizabeth Winstead – 10 Cloverfield Lane
  • Vera Farmiga – The Conjuring
  • Anja Taylor Joy – The Witch
  • Blake Lively – The Shallows

Best Supporting Actor Horror 2016

  • Stephen Lang – Don’t Breathe
  • John Gallager Jr – 10 Cloverfield Lane
  • Christopher Lloyd – I Am Not A Serial Killer
  • Patrick Stewart – Green Room

Best Supporting Actress Horror 2016

  • Imogene Poots – Green Room
  • Kate Dickey – The Witch
  • Ella – The Monster
  • Madison Wolfe – The Conjuring 2

Best Television Horror

  • Stranger Things
  • Bates Motel
  • Ash versus Evil Dead
  • American Horror Story
  • The Exorcist

Best Actor TV Horror

  • Bruce Campbell – Ash versus Evil Dead
  • Freddie Highmore – Bates Motel
  • Andrew Lincoln – The Walking Dead
  • Alfonso Herrara – The Exorcist

Best actress TV Horror

  • Vera Farmiga – Bates Motel
  • Millie Bobbie Brown – Stranger Things
  • Sarah Paulson – American Horror Story
  • Hannah Kasulka – The Exorcist

Best Supporting Actor TV Horror

  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan – The Walking Dead
  • Ray Santiago – Ash versus Evil Dead
  • Max Theriot – Bates Motel
  • Gaten Matarazzo – Stranger Things

Best Supporting Actress TV Horror

  • Kathy Bates – American Horror Story
  • Lucy Lawless – Ash versus Evil Dead
  • Hannah Kasulka – The Exorcist
  • Olivia Cooke – Bates Motel

Best Indie Horror Movie

  • Circus of the Dead
  • The Barn
  • Plank Face
  • Family Possession

Best Indie Horror Director 2016

  • Billy Pon – Circus of the Dead
  • James Bickert – Frankenstein Created Bikers
  • Justin M Seaman – The Barn
  • Scott Schrimer – Plank Face

Best Indie Actor Horror 2016

  • Parrish Randal – Circus of the Dead
  • Nathan Barret – Plank Face
  • Mitchell Muselino – The Barn
  • Fred Lass – Bubba the Red Neck Werewolf

Best Indie Actress Horror 2016

  • Tristan Risk – Frankenstein Created Bikers
  • Chanel Ryan – Circus of the Dead
  • Susan M Martin – Plank Face
  • Lexi Dripps – The Barn

Best Supporting Actor Horror 2016

  • Bill Oberst – Circus of the Dead
  • Laurence Harvey – Frankenstein Created Bikers
  • Mitch Hyman – Bubba the Redneck Werewolf
  • Will Stout – The Barn

Best Supporting Actress Horror

  • Ellie Church – Frankenstein Created Bikers
  • Alyss Winkler – Plank Face
  • Lizzie Mears – Family Possessions
  • Brigid McCauley – Plank Face

(*Five nominees due to a tie.)

Posted by Allen Alberson in CONTESTS, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, PARANORMAL, SATANIC/DEMONIC, SCI-FI HORROR, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, URBAN DECAY/DYSTOPIAN FUTURES, WOMEN IN HORROR, ZOMBIES, 0 comments
TRIBUTE: George A. Romero (5 of ?)

TRIBUTE: George A. Romero (5 of ?)

Remembering George A. Romero

With the passing of George A. Romero this week many of us are mourning the loss of one of the true legends of the horror industry. Although he is viewed as the father of the modern zombie film, I feel that it's important to keep in mind some of the other influences he had both inside the horror industry as well as outside.
As we all know, he is almost single-handedly responsible for the modern zombie. Everything from The Walking Dead graphic novels and the TV series, the Resident Evil franchise (both the games and the films), and even books like The Zombie Survival Guide all owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Romero, as his take on the undead have helped to shape all these.
His sphere of influence spreads far beyond zombies, though. Some of his best work was with the writing of Stephen King. Everyone knows that the works of King are notoriously difficult to translate to film. His take on King's The Dark Half made the story compelling and interesting while remaining very true to the source material. Many people consider it to be one of the most faithful King adaptations ever put to film.
His directing skill was always spot on and appropriate to the type of film he was making. His use of unique lighting and camera angles on Creepshow differed from most other films and made it feel like a comic book come to life. It also helped teach young impressionable fans such as myself that horror could be artistic, beautifully lit, ironic, and fun.
Although many people consider Bruiser to be his worst film, I believe that it proves that he wasn't just a great director but a masterful storyteller. Weaving a very bleak story with depth and heart about a man struggling with life and identity. Making the viewer feel compassion for the man and the monster while also creating a stark, uncomfortable world.
Don't even get me started on the genius and magic behind the film Martin. I could talk about that one for hours.
So much more than just the "Godfather of zombies", George A. Romero was a true visionary who will be missed but whose influence will live on for generations.
Posted by Richard Francis in EDITORIALS, TRIBUTE, 0 comments
TRIBUTE: GEORGE A. ROMERO (4 of ?)

TRIBUTE: GEORGE A. ROMERO (4 of ?)

Georgette Romero Meets George A. Romero

What can be said about George Romero that you have not already read. He is the Godfather of Zombies......he paved the way for others......he was brilliant. No, you have heard this I am sure and they are all true.
I want to share a personal moment I had with this kind man. For those who don’t know I love zombies. Have for 20+ years so it is no wonder that George Romero is my hero. Night of the Living Dead will always be my favorite zombie/ghoul movie. (FYI, George called them ghouls or flesh eaters back them) I had never cosplayed in my life but decided one year I wanted to get in on the fun. When I sat down to think of what I wanted to be, literally the first thing I thought of was my idol George Romero.
I had plans to meet him at Scarefest Convention in Lexington, KY, and thought "This is perfect!" When I looked online for ideas I found none. It was crazy. This man is a legend yet from what I could tell no one had done it. I swore right then that I would do it and by god I would do it right. I looked for the perfect frames, the perfect shirt, the perfect vest, perfect everything. I was happy with what I came up with and wore it with pride to meet him. I even wore a name tag that said "My name is Georgette Romero."
Fair use doctrine.
As I was standing in his line, awestruck to even be looking at him, his manager/agent pointed me out and couldn't tell me enough how great I looked. She had never seen it. When I got to him I was speechless and he was in awe of my cosplay. He said himself he had never seen anyone dress as him and it was amazing. He loved it. Can you believe it... My idol loved my cosplay of him? I could have died. He signed my VHS copy of Dawn of the Dead that Tom Savini had signed a few years earlier. After that, he insisted on pictures. His smile was genuine. It was his idea to even switch glasses for a few of the pictures. That's right, I wore George Romero's glasses.
Fair use doctrine.
In my glasses
Fair use doctrine.
After we switched glasses
It was amazing and I will forever miss him. He was one of a kind and can never be replaced.
Happy nightmares, Mr. Romero, may you be at peace or come back as one of your own kind.
Posted by ZombieGurl in EDITORIALS, TRIBUTE, 0 comments
TRIBUTE: GEORGE A. ROMERO (2 of ?)

TRIBUTE: GEORGE A. ROMERO (2 of ?)

RIP - The Godfather of Zombies
George A. Romero

georgeromero-zombielove / Fair use doctrine.George Romero meant so much to me personally. He created my love, my obsession with zombies. I cannot tell you my exact age when I first watched Night of the Living Dead, but it sparked the fire that is my love for horror and, more importantly, zombie stories. George A. Romero opened the door for many to follow, pushed the limits of horror further than anyone dreamed, awakened future directors and storytellers, and educated the world on the zombies (how they move, groan, react, and how people would react in a zombie apocalypse).
I'm not sure if Romero went for black and white to blend in with the classic horrors or because makeup and prosthetics aren't what they are today. All I know that it was a genius move! Night of the Living Dead was meant to be b&w. When I first turned on the movie (in my foolish youth) I wanted to immediately change the channel, after all b&w movies are just boring (back in the 80s when everything was neon). I'm not even sure now what kept me watching, but I am ever so thankful! George Romero was such a creative intelligent fellow in his time.
Romero was one of my first articles for HoTS when a little over a year ago Mr. Romero finally received a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. It blew my mind that only just now was he receiving a star! After all his movies and work?!?!? Night of the Living Dead had several sequels (almost all 10 years apart), and he made several other type of horror movies, directed much of Creepshow, and participated in many documentaries, and specials. Romero is so loved by so many that The Walking Dead has had many tribute Easter eggs to Romero.
Fair use doctrine.
Romero even had a part in the zombie mode on Call of Duty: Black Ops.

George Romero left his mark and 'infected' so many of us. I, personally, will truly miss him.
Posted by Alan Smithee in EDITORIALS, HORROR HEROES, HORROR NEWS, STAFF PICKS, TRIBUTE, 0 comments