Popular Posts

Saturday, September 30, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 30th, 1988

On this day in horror history.... William S. Mayfield's (Creepercast writer and contributor) personal favorite scarelebrity, Elivra, releases her feature film debut: 'Elvira, Mistress of the Dark'. A camp horror "classic", this has gone down as a midnight movie masterpiece. Full of scary sexiness and goofy laughs, it is one movie that has no equal, but it will have you seeing double.

Friday, September 29, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 29th, 1995

On this day in horror history.... yet another chapter in the tale of Michael Myers, 'Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers', is released. Considered by many of the fans, to be a worthy installment in the franchise, I don't find it as appealing as most. Taking what started out to be a simple story of an unstoppable killing machine and turning it into something more. This made the mythos far too complicated. From this point forward, the series continued in a downward spiral, until Rob Zombies eventual 2 part reboot.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 28th, 1987

On this day in horror history.... primetime television gets a little bit scarier, as 'Friday the 13th: The Series' hits the airwaves. Tied to the never ending franchise of Jason Voorhees, only in name. It tells the weekly tales of a store filled with cursed antiques and those who work there, tracking them down. I distinctly remember watching this every week, hoping Jason would show up, but always sticking around until the end.... because it was actually really good. A bit ahead of its time, this is a series that took its pedigree and made it all its own.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

My review of 'It' By William S. Mayfield

This movie takes place in the town of Derry, Maine. The story follows a group of young teenagers, as they begin the summer vacation. Bill Denbrough wants to explore the towns sewer system for his missing younger brother who vanished, during a rain storm, the previous year. His other friends are scared, but decide to help their friend. Meanwhile, Ben Hanscom, another youngster who has just moves to town and with no friends yet feels more at home in the local library. He starts looking into the history of his new town and finds that Derry has a very terrifying history. Ben has a run in with some local bullies, leaving the library, and winds up running into Bill and his friends. Enter Beverly Marsh, a loner girl who met Ben on the last day of school then meets the rest of the group and the gang is complete, for now. The kids start to realize all the strange things over the years are all connected and that the thing they have been seeing is somehow real. The last member of this misfit group of friends is Mike Hanlon, a young man who is home schooled and is bullied by the same kids that pick on the other kids. All of the kids are seeing the same thing, a clown, to them a very terrifying clown, and not know to anyone other them, Bills little brother saw it to. The children realize that fear is the key to this creatures power and start to find out what they must do to survive.

It is directed by Andy Muschietti and is the first chapter in this series. Bill Skarsgard plays Pennywise the clown and he played this character very well and to someone who is afraid of clowns, I guess it wold be scary, but when it comes to clowns I don't fear them or find them funny. 'It', as a movie, was good. I could almost call it great, if they had not billed it as a horror movie. This movie was a suspense movie with a horror element to it, with buckets of jump scares. There were a few really creepy scenes, but to me it had nothing to do with the clown. It felt more like a coming of age tale that just happened to have a horror story thrown in. The acting was suburb from everyone, yes even Bill Skarsgard did wonderful as Pennywise, but I just felt that something that is now being billed as "the highest grossing horror movie of all time" and "best horror movie of all time", I should have trouble walking back to my car after the movie let out. I want to give this movie high score but it's supposed to be a horror movie and to me it failed on that note. I give It 5 out of 10 stars. But as always, please see this if you are interested, I say that with all my reviews.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 26th, 1970

On this day in horror history.... Sheri Moon Zombie is born. Wife and long collaborator of Rob Zombie, Sheri is a unique talent. Known for her role as Baby Firefly in 'House of 1000 Corpses' and 'The Devil's Rejects'. Also working as his personal muse, she's been in all of Rob's other films and tours with him, when he's on the road. Happy Birthday, Sheri!

Monday, September 25, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 25th, 1959

On this day in horror history.... 'The Mummy' (1959) is released. Another building block in the Hammer house of horror, this re-tells the classic Universal monsters tale, but in a more modern way. In full Technicolor and starring both Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, it's no wonder that it's stood the test of time.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 24th, 2004

On this day in horror history.... Edgar Wright's amazing zom-rom-com, 'Shaun of the Dead', is released. Bringing not only Wright to the states, but also Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. From the moment it was released, it was instantly seen as a modern day classic. A near pitch perfect comedy, horror and romance, this film defies definition and is required viewing for any lover of horror and cinema in general.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 23rd, 1988

On this day in horror history.... the master of body horror, David Cronenberg, releases 'Dead Ringers' in theaters. A bizarre tale of twin gynocologists, that I've never actually seen. A bit of a cult classic and one that's on my bucket list of films. Someday....

Friday, September 22, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 22nd, 1986

On this day in horror history.... the original 'Castlevania' is released on the Nintendo Entertainment System! We don't normally cover video games, but this one stands out in my memory as a pivitol gaming moment. I remember playing the heck out of this game for hours with my friends. A true classic, that has spawned many sequels, and most recently, a Netflix original miniseries.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 21st, 1947

On this day in horror history.... the man who would be king, Stephen King, is born. Quite possibly, the most prolific writer of the modern age. The man has destroyed more trees than any other living thing on earth. He's also given us some of the most memorable horror classics in history: 'It', 'The Shining', 'Salem's Lot' and the list goes on and on. Happy Birthday, Mr. King! (He's also an actor sometimes too. Just check out the link below.)

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 20th, 1975

On this day in horror history.... an actress I've been known to have a bit of a crush on, Asia Argento, is born! Known for her acting ability, as much as her bold personality and style, Asia is the daughter of famous Italian horror director, Dario Argento. She's done many of her father's films, but has taken on parts in many other films, on her own. Happy Birthday, Asia!

Monday, September 18, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 18th, 1963

On this day in horror history.... a classic sleeper, 'The Haunting' (1963) is released. A film that has only grown in popularity and stature over the years, this one has made several well known film makers 'top scariest films of all time' lists. Another one that is on my list of things to see before I die. Which I hope, isn't any time soon. (the death part)

Sunday, September 17, 2017

my thoughts on.... 'Hell Baby'

As with all of my reviews of films for The Creepercast, I fully recommend that you check each and every one of them out. I am one man and this is my opinion. I've seen plenty of movies that received reviews that were the complete opposite of how I saw the film. These writers, directors, producers and actors all put a lot of time and love into these projects. They deserve to be seen and appreciated for what they are. Everyone has a dream and I fully support the people that take the time to make theirs a reality. With that being said....

Horror comedies are a personal favorite of mine. I love them because they come in all shapes and sizes. They're also great because they blend my love of humor and my passion for horror and mixes them together, so that I can enjoy them both at the same time. Kind of like how I love the scary monster decorations, that come out at Halloween, as much as I love the really cute ones. There's no wrong answer and everybody wins! So, whenever I hear a buzz about an upcoming horror comedy, I get excited. They aren't entirely rare, but there's so many amateurish ones floating around on Netflix and Amazon Prime, that I'm hesitant to jump in the pool feet first. Through my assignments at The Creepercast, I've come across some really good indie ones. I'm not saying that low budget, indies are always going to be bad. Not at all. But there's also a higher percentage that they might be. Because anyone can make a movie these days and a lot of them do.... and shouldn't. Hollywood isn't innocent either though. They've made some truly horrific garbage. (I'm looking at you 'A Haunted House' 1 and 2) This film, 'Hell Baby', comes with a bit of a pedigree and an awesome cast, that already put it ahead of the pack. Written and directed by Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon, two of the minds behind 'Reno 911!'. They also co-star in the film alongside Rob Corddry, Leslie Bibb, Keegan-Michael Key, David Wain, Michael Ian Black, Paul Scheer, Kumail Nanjiani, Riki Lindhome and Rob Huebel! All of them funny in their own right and all of them fully committed to their roles, no matter far it might take them into the bowels of hell.

'Hell Baby' tells the story of Jack and Vanessa. A couple that is expecting their first child and who have just moved into a major fixer upper in a rough side of town. They're quickly introduced to their neighbor and possible roommate, F'resnel. Within just a few days of moving in, it quickly becomes apparent that the house is full of some kind of evil. Vanessa begins to show signs of demonic possession, as she starts drinking, smoking and doing a heck of a lot of things that doctors don't recommend during pregnancy! Meanwhile, a couple of priests who have been sent by the Vatican, seek out this couple in order to stop the possession and the possible end of days. They soon team up with a couple of local, bumbling cops, who keep finding stranger and stranger things going on with Jack and Vanessa. As Jack soon begins to figure out, the cops and the priests may be onto something. Unsure of how to proceed, he continues to play along with Vanessa's more and more troubling behavior. Then it finally happens, Vanessa goes into labor and things really get weird!

This film isn't going to be everyone's cup of tea, let's face it. There's a lot of gross out humor, swearing and things that can't be unseen. For me, those are all good reasons to love this film. I found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion and that's not something I can say too often, when I watch comedies. Granted, I enjoy them and find them funny, but it takes a certain brand of humor to get me to actually laugh. It borrows some bits from other classic horror films such as, 'The Shining', 'It's Alive', Silence of the Lambs' and 'The Amityville Horror'. That's not too say that it isn't it's own entity. This film is in a class all its own. I can honestly say that I didn't see what was coming from one scene to the next and that's a good thing. As a horror film fanatic, I've begun to wonder if I've seen it all and then I watch something like this and realize that there's still so much out there to still surprise me. The writing is clever, the characters are fun to watch and the story (although not very original) is done in such a way that it feels fresh. Despite the familiarity you may have with the basic premise.

I'm hesitant to say too much about 'Hell Baby', as half of the fun is the ride it takes you on. From the opening scene, until the credits roll, it's a very kinetic film. Jumping from one sequence to the next and constantly setting up the next joke, as the last one is still settling in. I've already put this one on my list of things to add to my collection, as I think it will hold up well to repeated viewing. I feel that this is 4 out of 5 star film. Not one that I can recommend to everyone out there, as it is an aquired taste. However, if you're a fan of 'Reno 911!' and enjoy being grossed out for an hour and a half, then you're the audience this film requires. My only regret with this movie, is that I didn't see it sooner. It's been sitting on my 'To Watch' list for a while now, but I think I just needed to be in the right mood, in order to truly appreciate it for what it is. If you decide to buy the ticket and take the ride, be prepared for anything, as this is one film that knows what it wants to be and never apologizes. I only hope that, Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon, return to this genre again at some point. We all already know that they can write comedy, but when they mix in their love of horror.... it's pure gold.

If you like this one, check out: 'Bad Taste', 'Ash vs Evil Dead' and 'Braindead' aka 'Dead Alive'

Saturday, September 16, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 16th, 2005

On this day in horror history.... a horror film that ended up being better than it should have been, 'Cry_Wolf' is released. A stylistic horror film that looked like it should be lumped in with all the other early 2000's releases, but ended up being a bit better than the rest of the pack. I'll only say it's worth seeing once, but it was worth seeing.

Friday, September 15, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 15th, 1974

On this day in horror history.... the third in Amando de Ossorio's "Blind Dead" series, and the sequel to 'Return of the Blind Dead' (1973) is released. It was soon followed by the final entry, 'Night of the Seagulls' (1975). A film franchise that I've yet to undertake, it is on my radar, as it's been recommended by several other horror fanatics that I trust. Soon, my friends.... soon.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 14th, 1960

On this day in horror history.... Audrey, the killer plant, appears for the first time on screen in the Roger Corman produced 'The Little Shop of Horrors'. Eventually turned into a musical and producing a remake, this story continues to grow in popularity, just like Audrey. "Feed me, Seymour!"

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 13th, 2005

On this day in horror history.... a TV show that I will get around to binge watching at some point, 'Supernatural' hits the airwaves! Far outlasting anything I ever anticipated, when I first heard about the show. It's garnered a huge cult following and has a long and celebrated history. Fans love it! (Someday, I'll find out why?)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 12th, 1992

On this day in horror history.... leading man and icon in the horror world, Anthony Perkins, passes away. A favorite of mine, growing up, I was saddened by his passing in 1992. Luckily, he left an enduring legacy of celluloid classics that will always be able to breathe life into him again. Even if it's only for an hour and a half.

Monday, September 11, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 11th, 1992

On this day in horror history.... yet another Clive Barker story hit the theaters and scared the hell out of us. 'Candyman' makes it's debut and we've never looked at bees the same way since. Tony Todd breathes life into this character and created such a buzz, that sequels were inevitable.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 10th, 2004

On this day in horror history.... the next chapter in the 'Resident Evil' franchise is released. 'Apocalypse' marks the return of Alice and a whole lot of zombies and monsters. A personal favorite franchise of mine and how can you go wrong with Milla Jovovich?

Saturday, September 9, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 9th, 1997

On this day in horror history.... the Canadian indie cult classic 'Cube' is released! Starting a 3 part franchise and introducing myself to Nicole DeBoer. A fantastic film and one that, if you haven't seen it yet, you need too! Also, the sequels were pretty cool too.

Friday, September 8, 2017

On this day in horror history.... September 8th, 1990

On this day in horror history.... the sequel to one of the most beloved cult classics, 'Bride of Re-Animator' is released. Reprising his role as Dr. Herbert West, Jeffrey Combs comes back again for more re-animating madness. An unlikely franchise, this HP Lovecraft series spawned 3 films to date and a soon to be released reboot. Owing as much to its insane antics, as it does to its insane leading man, the 'Re-Animator' series will live on in infamy.

my thoughts on.... 'Death Note'

As with all of my reviews of films for The Creepercast, I fully recommend that you check each and every one of them out. I am one man and this is my opinion. I've seen plenty of movies that received reviews that were the complete opposite of how I saw the film. These writers, directors, producers and actors all put a lot of time and love into these projects. They deserve to be seen and appreciated for what they are. Everyone has a dream and I fully support the people that take the time to make theirs a reality. With that being said....

Anime has been a, somewhat, tapped genre for film adaptations in the past. Recently, it seems to be the next well that will be dipped into for Hollywood to drain of film ideas. Of the films made to date, they tend to be intently scrutinized and commonly brushed off as “not as good as the original source material”. While I can't always argue that this isn't the case, sometimes you have to take the original and the adaptation and look at them as two separate things. Take James O'Barr's 'The Crow', as an example. While the film is a well made action film (minus some overused Hollywood tropes), it's not the same heartbreaking story that the original comic was. While the original 5 issue series, remains as one of my favorite comic series of all time, I can't just push the film aside as “not as good as the original”. It's something different and I can truly appreciate both. For my second Netflix new release review, I'm talking about the Adam Wingard version of 'Death Note'. A Japanese manga, turned anime, turned live action film, turned American live action film. A dark and twisted story that has taken on a life and mythos of its own. Beloved by countless fans and looked upon as something more than the sum of its original parts. The problem is, that when you have something that's this highly regarded, it's almost impossible to remake it without people hurling criticisms at it. 'Death Note' is no different.

Telling the tale of Light Turner (played by Nat Wolff), a high school student who comes into possession of the mythical 'Death Note'. A notebook, of sorts, that allows the caretaker to write down the name of someone and thus sentencing them to death in a manner that the owner chooses. Complete with a large set of rules, Light jumps in feet first into using it and soon becomes consumed by it's power. Along for the ride is a Shinigami named Ryuk. A death god and owner of the 'Death Note', voiced by Willem Dafoe, he oversees the use of the book and seems to know more than he's letting on. Light is soon joined by Mia Sutton (played by Margaret Qualley), who learns of the notebooks power and becomes Light's partner in crime. Determined to rid the world of criminals and a desire to be almost god like in his power, Light takes on the persona of “Kira”. Before long, his names is scrawled upon countless deaths across the globe and the world is divided on whether to praise him or fear him. The government is soon seeking the help of 'L'. A strange man who's been raised to be the greatest detective on the planet. Battling each other in a game of wits, things start to spiral out of control, as Light realizes he may not be as in control as he originally thought and is seeking a way to continue his work without interference. All the while, Ryuk is standing by, enjoying what's unfolding before him.

Admittedly, I hadn't seen or read any of the original source material, prior to watching 'Death Note'. For me, Adam Wingard's take on the story, was my first experience with this tale. I have to say, that I enjoyed this film. Adam has a unique voice and an incredible knack for telling a story that puts the viewer on high alert at all times. Through his use of editing, musical score and lighting, he creates a world that isn't quite reality, but isn't entirely fiction. I've yet to see any of his films that I haven't enjoyed on some level. He's a force to be reckoned with, not only in horror, but in anything that he takes on. The characters are all fairly well flushed out and the special effects are visually striking. He also creates some incredibly nasty death sequences, that are not for the squeamish. In his world, death is ugly, as it should be. Now, with all that being said, I took the time to start the original anime. As of the time I am writing this review, I'm 3 episodes into the original 37 episode run. I can already see some major differences in the story line. Light is a bit more maniacal and egocentric. Ryuk is a bit more involved in the goings on and the book seems to have more restrictions. There is also the fact that the first 100 kills, are all achieved by a heart attack. Which, according to the anime world rules, is how someone will die if no other specifics are written into the book That alone, changes the initial dynamic of the how the deaths play out in the story. 'L' is also a bit more reclusive and secretive, not too mention a bit smarter and quicker to pin him down. I can also see that there is and will be, a lot more in depth dissection of the motivations and moral repercussions of using the book. That is something you will always find, when you have a longer period of time, in which to tell a story.

Taking all of this into consideration, I still stand by my original statements and will say that I enjoyed Netflix's version of 'Death Note'. I can also say that I'm already enjoying the anime and can see why this story has taken on a life of its own. For such a simple premise, there is a lot going on. I'm looking forward to seeing how the anime plays out, over time. I would have gotten to this series eventually, but this film pushed me into that world, much sooner than anticipated. For that, I think people should take their hatred of the film and look at it as a positive. It may just be creating a whole new legion of fans, who may never have found the source material, without the American spin on things. I found 'Death Note' to be a 4 out of 5 star film in Mr. Wingard's ever growing filmography. It may not be perfect, but it has a lot more going for it then many of the other horror type films I've seen recently. At the end of the film, they left it open for a potential sequel. Which, I'm guessing, based on the anime, could be a reality.... if the film can overcome people's distaste for it. I'm hoping this is the case, because Ryuk deserves some more screen time, whether it's with Light or a new owner of the 'Death Note'. Only time will tell.

If you like Adam Wingard's work, be sure to check out some of his other films: 'The Guest', 'Blair Witch' and 'You're Next'