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Horror
 

Psycho II / Psycho III / Bates Motel

We all still go a little made sometimes for Norman.


Horror

Rod Lott
Let's all acknowledge something right away: No matter who was involved creatively, no follow-up ever was going to match the greatness of Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. When a film proves as revolutionary as that 1960 shocker was, the bar is set impossibly high.
 
Monday, September 23, 2013

Prince of Darkness / Halloween: 35th Anniversary Edition

For horror, Carpenter build 'em best.


Horror

Rod Lott
So in John Carpenter's Prince of Darkness, a priest (Donald Pleasence, Halloween) calls up a professor (Victor Wong, Big Trouble in Little China) and says, "Hey, I've got this 2,000-year-old jar in the basement of this Catholic church downtown. Get this: It has the devil inside! Whaddaya say you round up some physics students to spend the weekend here and see if they can't figure out whassup?"
 
Monday, September 23, 2013

The Lords of Salem

Zombie Nation!


Horror

Patrick Crain
To put it politely, the cinema of Rob Zombie is fairly polarizing. Some folks love him, some folks hate him, and there just aren’t a whole lot of people in the middle. Over the course of 10 years, he has made six feature films and one of the fake trailers for the Rodriguez/Tarantino experiment, Grindhouse. Chances are, you either think all of his films are good or, at least, have some kind of merit or are just revolted by the notion that anyone allows him near a camera. The Lords of Salem is unlikely to make anyone jump from his or her respective camp, but it’s also his best film to date and an amazing piece of contemporary horror.
 
Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Bloody Homecoming

It's 'Bloody' stool.


Horror

Rod Lott
Bloody Homecoming would like to be the next Halloween — a given, per the soundalike score kicking in upon first frame. It'd also like to be the next Prom Night. Realistically, the movie isn't even Arbor Day; it is, however, an utter waste of your time.
 
Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Let's Scare Jessica to Death

Let's not.


Horror

Rod Lott

After hearing about Let's Scare Jessica to Death for years, I'm thankful I finally got to see it, newly rescued from out-of-print oblivion by Warner Archive. I only wish the 1971 shocker had proven worthy of its hype.

 
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Haunting of Helena

Lotsa teeth, no bite.


Horror

Rod Lott
One cannot discuss The Haunting of Helena without bringing 2003's Darkness Falls into the conversation. Both horror movies are about an über-evil Tooth Fairy (really a malevolent spirit of a female killed ages ago), and Helena's heroine looks not unlike the earlier film's Emma Caulfield. I'd go so far as to call this one an unofficial remake, with the setting transplanted to Italy.
 
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Frankenstein's Army

Should you enlist? Ja!


Horror

Rod Lott

So towering is the legend of Frankenstein, one found-footage film just isn't enough. This spring saw the release of The Frankenstein Theory, and now we're days away from the invasion of the weirder, wilder, wonderfully imaginative Frankenstein's Army.

 
Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Black Waters of Echo's Pond

Don't even dip your toes.


Horror

Rod Lott

To paraphrase a character late in The Black Waters of Echo's Pond, anything to get off this movie. From the start, director Gabriel Bologna (The Asylum's 30,000 Leagues Under the Sea) has no real hold on the material; what little there is gets so far away from his grasp that his last name proves accidentally apt.

 
Tuesday, September 3, 2013

An American Ghost Story

A pile of sheet.


Horror

Rod Lott

Here's how ludicrous the protagonist of An American Ghost Story is: He still uses American Online. Here's how ludicrous An American Ghost Story is as a whole: It uses AOL's once-ubiquitous greeting of “You've got mail!” as a scare.

 
Friday, August 23, 2013

Hatchet III

Ax and ye shall receive.


Horror

Rod Lott
Hatchet III posits that a man whose face has been turned to raw meat can get right back up and walk around as if nothing happened. Then he gets chainsawed into even halves, yet even that fails to faze him.
 
Wednesday, August 7, 2013

X-Ray / Schizoid

Prognosis: 178 minutes of frightful fun.


Horror

Rod Lott
Continuing its reissues of finely aged cheese from the Cannon Films vault, Shout! Factory presents a welcome double feature of silly-ass slashers in 1982’s X-Ray and 1980’s Schizoid.
 
Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Fog

For a great ghost story, bank on it.


Horror

Rod Lott
Once considered a disappointment (because anything after Halloween unfairly would be), John Carpenter's The Fog today is a genre-audience favorite — well-admired if just shy of qualifying as a modern horror classic. Its Blu-ray debut from Shout! Factory cements that.
 
Saturday, July 27, 2013

Under the Bed

Warning: May cure insomnia.


Horror

Rod Lott
Because monsters hiding beneath beds is a near-universal fear among children, it seems ripe for a horror movie to explore. Under the Bed does, yet provokes only yawns. That’s because the concept is best-suited for a youthful audience, à la an episode of Goosebumps, rather than an R-rated treatment. 
 
Thursday, July 25, 2013

Kiss of the Damned

Pucker up.


Horror

Rod Lott
As if HBO's True Blood had been scrubbed clean of all its suds and Southern accents, Kiss of the Damned explores the politics and passions of a vampire community.
 
Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Detention of the Dead / The Demented

They put the “Zzzzz” in “zombies.”


Horror

Rod Lott
Ten years ago, we didn’t have enough zombie movies. Now, we have too many of them, which might not be a problem if most weren’t so bland and unimaginative. Detention of the Dead tries — not too hard, mind you — to distinguish itself by being a comedy. Technically, I suppose it is; in execution, it fails.
 
Friday, July 19, 2013
 
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