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Horror
 

Steve Niles' Remains

Put it to rest.


Horror

Rod Lott
While I'm glad to see that the horror cable channel Chiller is now making original movies, its first offering, the sci-fi "comedy" Alien Opponent, was nearly unwatchable. That film's director and writer, Colin Theys and John Doolan, return to helm the outlet's second, Steve Niles' Remains. Springing from rosier pastures — Niles' original comics — it's automatically better, rising to the level of mediocre. Perhaps their third time at bat, October's Dead Souls, will prove the proverbial charm?
 
Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Casting the Runes

Rent a 'Rune' with a view.


Horror

Rod Lott
I remember vividly when I first read "Casting the Runes," one of several suspense classics to pour from the pen of M.R. James, the master of the ghost story whose supernatural bent became a huge influence on H.P. Lovecraft. Just because the short story is old (1911) doesn't mean it wasn't chilling to read, and so it is with this 1979 presentation, an episode of the UK's ITV Playhouse anthology series.
 
Friday, July 20, 2012

Twins of Evil

Double, double, toil and trouble ...


Horror

Rod Lott
For me, the more desperate Hammer Film Productions got as audiences’ tastes changed in the early 1970s, the more fun their flicks became. That’s why 1971’s Twins of Evil is now one of my favorites from the legendary British studio, after digging into its Blu-ray debut from Synapse Films.
 
Friday, July 20, 2012

Don't Go in the Woods

Don’t go near the directorial debut of Vincent D’Onofrio.


Horror

Rod Lott
New to DVD, 2010’s Don't Go in the Woods is not to be confused with 1981’s Don't Go in the Woods. That one was a cheap slasher movie; this one is a cheap slasher movie in which characters wonder what John Fogerty and the Donner party have in common, and then sing songs.
 
Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Awakening

Mummy dearest.


Horror

Rod Lott
As someone who loves mummy movies, I’ve long had The Awakening on my radar, but only now has the 1980 horror thriller come within reach, thanks to Warner Archive. While the film's rep isn't sterling by any stretch, I found it to be a nice surprise.
 
Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Rogue River / The Collapsed

All washed up, all fall down.


Horror

Rod Lott
Two new direct-to-DVD horror thrillers begin with much promise, but fizzle before they’re able to provide any sizzle.
 
Monday, May 21, 2012

The Wizard of Gore / The Gore Gore Girls

Let it bleed some more, in high-def.


Horror

Rod Lott
On the bloody heels of Something Weird Video's The Blood Trilogy comes another Blu-ray of pioneering indie filmmaker Herschell Gordon Lewis' well-known works. The disc may hold one feature fewer, but high-def beggars can't be choosers, so chew happily on what you got: 1970's The Wizard of Gore and '72's The Gore Gore Girls, which would be his last directorial effort for more than 35 years.
 
Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Shock Labyrinth

Holds as much ‘Shock’ as a 9-volt.


Horror

Rod Lott
If Hollywood ever resurrects its craze of remaking Asian horror films, it's safe to say The Shock Labyrinth won't be high on its list. However, if it were, there's plenty of room for improvement.
 
Friday, May 4, 2012

Madison County

Burns its bridges with the viewer.


Horror

Rod Lott
An SUV full of beautiful young people sets off on a road trip to — yeah, yeah, I know, I know. Madison County is another one of “those” horror films, where every step of the wilderness trail is paved with predictability — so much so, that it’s filled with lines like this:
 
Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Mother's Day / 11-11-11

Free from ‘Saw’ sequels, Darren Lynn Bousman broadens his range.


Horror

Rod Lott
Can director Darren Lynn Bousman survive in a post-Saw world? After the grating steampunk musical misfire Repo! The Genetic Opera, I would have said "no way," but my mindset has been reversed by Mother’s Day and, to a lesser degree, 11-11-11. Ironically, not only were both films denied anything beyond a blip of a theatrical release, but now — insult to injury — they have to compete against one another on home video.
 
Monday, April 30, 2012

The Theatre Bizarre

Texters will be eviscerated.


Horror

Rod Lott
Continuing the recent revival of horror anthologies is The Theatre Bizarre, helmed by seven directors. With so many contributing to the recipe, results are expectedly varied, but with enough good to outweigh the bad.
 
Monday, April 30, 2012

12 Creature Features

Need a dozen ways to kill a weekend? Just add cheese!


Horror

Rod Lott
I don't know that Mill Creek Entertainment's three-disc set of 12 Creature Features is quite the "dream come true" for "B-movie lovers" as the box proclaims, but that's only because so much of the contents likely already exist in their collections of public-domain DVDs.
 
Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Innkeepers

Do check in.


Horror

Rod Lott
Insert the The Innkeepers Blu-ray into your machine, and a disclaimer pops up, reading in part, “Play it loud.”

 
Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Terror Experiment

Fail.


Horror

Rod Lott
Not like TV's The Walking Dead is perfect, but its mainstream success on a weekly in-season basis has spoiled viewers, thus ruining many zombie movies. It has raised a bar that most only could hope to come close to clearing. But even without the show, efforts like The Terror Experiment likely would find no love.

 
Friday, April 20, 2012

The Wicker Tree

You can find better 'Wicker' at Pier 1.


Horror

Rod Lott
After helming the 1973 British horror classic The Wicker Man, Robin Hardy didn't follow it up until 1986, and didn't make a third until now. For whatever reason — distract the public from the disaster of Nic Cage's bear-punching remake, perhaps? — he's gone back to the well with an overdue, arguably unnecessary sequel, The Wicker Tree.
 
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
 
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