Horror Films

Jim

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The Ghoul (2017): A very British Horror Film bringing to mind both Kill List and A Dark Ritual among other recent works. Chris (Tom Meeten), an ex-cop is recruited by a detective Jim (Dan Skinner) and profiler Kathleen (Alice Lowe) to help investigate the murder of two psychotherapists. The main suspect is Coulson (Rufus Jones), their landlord chris now moves to London and goes undercover to trail him. Finding that Coulson has himself gone into psychotherapy after the incident, Chris feigns depression and is referred to Coulson's psychotherapist, Dr Fisher (Niamh Cusack).

The narrative then takes a strange twist as Chris tells Fisher that he is unemployed but often daydreams that he is assisting the police as an undercover operative. Indeed he meets with both Kathleen and Jim (a couple) who are his friends from university but they are respectively a teacher and a drinks sales rep. Dr Fisher falls ill and both Coulson and Chris (who in the meantime have become acquaintances) have a new therapist: Dr Morland (Geoffrey McGivern). It is difficult to tell which sequence of events experienced by Chris is the real one as he seems to fall further into existetnial despair. Was he ever even a policeman? He has also carried a torch for Kathleen since their college days.

A dark film which mixes elements of Chaos Magick in with time loops and psychological terror. Director and writer Gareth Tunley has added to the Canon of New British Horror with this drama which delivers a few twists and surprises. 8/10.
British horror tends is more plot orientated and doesn't tend to rely as heavily on special effects as American horror. Generally plenty of creepiness and atmospheric stories. This goes back to the Hammer films and British Blk & Wht films of the 50's and 60's. Films classics such as "The Quartermass Experiments", "The Witches", "Village of the Damned, the early Hammer "Dracula" and "Frankenstein" movies are solid examples of this. Personally I'm glad the tradition continues.
 
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The Ghoul (2017): A very British Horror Film bringing to mind both Kill List and A Dark Ritual among other recent works. Chris (Tom Meeten), an ex-cop is recruited by a detective Jim (Dan Skinner) and profiler Kathleen (Alice Lowe) to help investigate the murder of two psychotherapists. The main suspect is Coulson (Rufus Jones), their landlord chris now moves to London and goes undercover to trail him. Finding that Coulson has himself gone into psychotherapy after the incident, Chris feigns depression and is referred to Coulson's psychotherapist, Dr Fisher (Niamh Cusack).

The narrative then takes a strange twist as Chris tells Fisher that he is unemployed but often daydreams that he is assisting the police as an undercover operative. Indeed he meets with both Kathleen and Jim (a couple) who are his friends from university but they are respectively a teacher and a drinks sales rep. Dr Fisher falls ill and both Coulson and Chris (who in the meantime have become acquaintances) have a new therapist: Dr Morland (Geoffrey McGivern). It is difficult to tell which sequence of events experienced by Chris is the real one as he seems to fall further into existential despair. Was he ever even a policeman? He has also carried a torch for Kathleen since their college days.

A dark film which mixes elements of Chaos Magick in with time loops and psychological terror. Director and writer Gareth Tunley has added to the Canon of New British Horror with this drama which delivers a few twists and surprises. 8/10.
A very odd film this, but clever and you might, like me, have to spool backwards and forwards a bit to figure it out. Well worth a go.
 

Peripart

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The Ghoul (2017): A very British Horror Film bringing to mind both Kill List and A Dark Ritual among other recent works. Chris (Tom Meeten), an ex-cop is recruited by a detective Jim (Dan Skinner) and profiler Kathleen (Alice Lowe) to help investigate the murder of two psychotherapists. The main suspect is Coulson (Rufus Jones), their landlord chris now moves to London and goes undercover to trail him. Finding that Coulson has himself gone into psychotherapy after the incident, Chris feigns depression and is referred to Coulson's psychotherapist, Dr Fisher (Niamh Cusack).

The narrative then takes a strange twist as Chris tells Fisher that he is unemployed but often daydreams that he is assisting the police as an undercover operative. Indeed he meets with both Kathleen and Jim (a couple) who are his friends from university but they are respectively a teacher and a drinks sales rep. Dr Fisher falls ill and both Coulson and Chris (who in the meantime have become acquaintances) have a new therapist: Dr Morland (Geoffrey McGivern). It is difficult to tell which sequence of events experienced by Chris is the real one as he seems to fall further into existetnial despair. Was he ever even a policeman? He has also carried a torch for Kathleen since their college days.

A dark film which mixes elements of Chaos Magick in with time loops and psychological terror. Director and writer Gareth Tunley has added to the Canon of New British Horror with this drama which delivers a few twists and surprises. 8/10.
Sounds interesting but I always think of Geoff MvGivern as Wolfbane in Chelmsford 123...
 

Swifty

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There's (possibly) a Friday The 13th prequel on the way, a Pamela Vorhees - The Early Years kind of thing explaining why she went mentalist while raising a young deformed Jason .. the screenplay's been written anyway so it's far from getting the green light to go into production.

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/81246

edit: bonus Friday The 13th pt3 filming locations video from Adam The Woo

 
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Ringo

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I must be getting soft in my old age because I keep trying to watch horror films on Nexflix and then I bottle out. I've been watching Hammer stuff recently. And when I was younger there was nothing that scared me. But it seems I'm getting more delicate with age.
 
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I must be getting soft in my old age because I keep trying to watch horror films on Nexflix and then I bottle out. I've been watching Hammer stuff recently. And when I was younger there was nothing that scared me. But it seems I'm getting more delicate with age.
The older I get the more Horror I want!
 
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Nightmare Cinema: Mick Garris has wanted to make this Horror Anthology film since the end of Masters of Horror. Here he has assembled directors Alejandro Brugués, Joe Dante, Ryûhei Kitamura, and David Slade to join him at the helm of the segments. Garris also directs the linking sequences set in a cinema theatre where Mickey O'Rourke is the projectionist and quite literally the Angel of Death where the audience are lured in to view films which feature themselves.

The Thing in the Woods, directed by Alejandro Brugués is a pastiche which throws in every cliche from slashers to alien spiders. Mirare directed by Joe Dante deals with the weirder aspects of cosmetic surgery philia, taking it far beyond any logical conclusion. Mashit directed by Ryûhei Kitamura takes place in a Catholic Boarding School where staff and pupils are possessed by Demons. The exorcisms aren't working and an army of Demon children are loose. This Way to Egress directed by David Slade is filmed in dark monochrome and is the one film not enlivened by humour, a woman loses touch with reality and seems to have crossed into a frightening parallel universe. Dead directed Mick Garris is set in a hospital where a boy fights evil spirits and a real life murder.

It was probably appropriate to have one totally bleak segment seeing as a dark vein of humour does run through the other four shorts (five counting the linking sequence). As many shocks as laughs though in this satisfying collection. 8/10.
 

Swifty

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I must be getting soft in my old age because I keep trying to watch horror films on Nexflix and then I bottle out. I've been watching Hammer stuff recently. And when I was younger there was nothing that scared me. But it seems I'm getting more delicate with age.
I've got that way as well, I couldn't get enough when I was a youngster but I had to switch The First Purge off the other day .. it was just too depressing .. I think when you're older and you've seen too much of the real thing in real life it's hard to switch off.
 

GNC

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Nightmare Cinema: Mick Garris has wanted to make this Horror Anthology film since the end of Masters of Horror. Here he has assembled directors Alejandro Brugués, Joe Dante, Ryûhei Kitamura, and David Slade to join him at the helm of the segments. Garris also directs the linking sequences set in a cinema theatre where Mickey O'Rourke is the projectionist and quite literally the Angel of Death where the audience are lured in to view films which feature themselves.

The Thing in the Woods, directed by Alejandro Brugués is a pastiche which throws in every cliche from slashers to alien spiders. Mirare directed by Joe Dante deals with the weirder aspects of cosmetic surgery philia, taking it far beyond any logical conclusion. Mashit directed by Ryûhei Kitamura takes place in a Catholic Boarding School where staff and pupils are possessed by Demons. The exorcisms aren't working and an army of Demon children are loose. This Way to Egress directed by David Slade is filmed in dark monochrome and is the one film not enlivened by humour, a woman loses touch with reality and seems to have crossed into a frightening parallel universe. Dead directed Mick Garris is set in a hospital where a boy fights evil spirits and a real life murder.

It was probably appropriate to have one totally bleak segment seeing as a dark vein of humour does run through the other four shorts (five counting the linking sequence). As many shocks as laughs though in this satisfying collection. 8/10.
Mick Garris was on last week's Trailers from Hell podcast - with co-host Joe Dante! - and they mentioned this project (though mostly they were on about rock 'n' roll movies). It's a good listen, Mick's a really nice guy, just a terrible director. But he does know his stuff (not sure about putting The Boat that Rocked in his top ten music movies, mind).
 
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Slaughterhouse Rulez: This is the exclusive Public School from Hell, bullying at epic scales, mad sadistic prefects, especially Clegg (Tom Rhys-Harries), as Blake (Asa Butterfield) tells newcomer Wallace (Finn Cole): "Clegg comes from a long line of war criminals". Yes, Slaughterhouse provides the Nation with it's politicians, generals, captains of industry, spies and weirdos. Wallace is smitten by Clemsie (Hermione Corfield) but the gulf of noth class and school ranking separate them.

Fracking is taking place in the woods adjoining the school, facilitated by the links between the Headmaster "The Bat" (Michael Sheen) and Terrafrack boss (Alex Macqueen). A tribe of eco-warriors led by deranged ex-pupil Woody (Nick Frost) are out to sabotage this development. The drilling results earthquakes, sinkholes and methane gas leaks. But more than just that - monsters emerge from beneath the Earth.

A good Horror -Comedy enlivened by the totally crazy performances of the cast especially "The Bat" with his terrier Mr Chips. The fracking rig resembles Barad-dûr. Decapitations, dismemberment and people being eaten alive by the creatures are done for laughs but do provide a certain horror element. Some of the bullying is more disturbing, especially that of the younger pupils. 7/10.
 
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Final Girl: Veronica (Abigail Breslin) is out to bury the hatchet in this Revenge Horror/Thriller. Veronica has trained from since she was five years old to become an avenging angel, now at aged seventeen she enters the final stages of her tutelage before going live. Her mentor, William (Wes Bentley), instructs her in strangle holds and she experiences the combined effects of truth serum and DMT, so she can experience what her targets will feel when she drugs them.

Her prey in this first mission are four teenage boys who hunt and kill young women. We seem them chase and savagely kill a waitress from a local restaurant. Veronica sets herself up as their quarry and a game is afoot. She has become versed in the arts of self-defence, hand to hand combat and evading capture but is unarmed apart from the drug potion in a hip flask.

A terrifying chase move with many disturbing scenes. Great performance from Breslin and a good directorial debut by Tyler Shields. 7/10.
 

Naughty_Felid

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Apostle? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostle_(film)

A bit of a mess, some great ideas but the violence wasn't needed. I think The Ritual was far better. 6 out of 10


Saying that it's great that British filmmakers are exploring horror beyond the sicko slasher or evildemonspiritchild haunts a house rubbish that has plagued the genre over the last 10 years.
 
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Apostle? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostle_(film)

A bit of a mess, some great ideas but the violence wasn't needed. I think The Ritual was far better. 6 out of 10


Saying that it's great that British filmmakers are exploring horror beyond the sicko slasher or evildemonspiritchild haunts a house rubbish that has plagued the genre over the last 10 years.
I gave it 8/10 but some of the violence may be ott. I liked The Ritual but felt some of the background info was rushed in. Must catch up with the novel.

It is indeed a great new era for British and Irish Horror films.
 
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Review by Jason Colavito

The Teenage Slasher Movie Book (2nd revised and expanded ed.)
J. A. Kerswell | 224 pages | Companion | October 2018 | ISBN: 978-1620083079 | $24.99



Horror fans have sliced and diced the genre into innumerable subgenres—if you will forgive the terrible pun. It is now possible to be a fan exclusively of Korean zombie movies, or films about people trapped in overly complex torture devices, or even movies about creepy strangers posing menacingly outside of young adults’ windows. It is both an astonishing time to be alive, and also kind of uncomfortable to have Hollywood feeding so much of the same that the most obscure horrors are no longer isolated gems cherished for their own sake but are instead copied and pasted until the original no longer stands out. There is a certain degree of homogenization in horror, and the homages, copycats, and riders of coattails end up retroactively detracting from the true originals.



This has always been the case, of course. Universal Pictures drove its own monsters into an untimely grave through too many inferior sequels in the 1940s, from which they have never entirely recovered. The inferior slasher films of the 1980s and 1990s make it hard to remember just how powerful the original Halloween was upon its release forty years ago. Unless you are the author of the book under consideration today, for whom those copycat cutups are the very apex of the horror genre.

In 2010, British author J. A. Kerswell of The Hysteria Continues podcast published Teenage Wasteland: The Slasher Movie Uncut, also released in the U.S. in 2012 as The Slasher Movie Book, which outlined the history of teen slasher movies. Now, just in time for Halloween 2018, Kerswell has a revised and expanded second edition of the text, covering recent developments down to about the end of 2016. I have not read the first edition, but the New York Times reported in 2012 that it was a book of movie posters, so the new edition must lean more heavily toward text. ...

http://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/review-of-the-teenage-slasher-movie-book-2nd-ed-by-j-a-kerswell#
 
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Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween: The R.L. Stine Goosebumps books where the characters come to life are back. We have magic mixed with Tesla in this intriguing tale set in Wardenclyffe New York. Two young teens, Sonny (Jeremy Ray Taylor and Sam (Caleel Harris) are cleaning out an abandoned house (a previous residence of author Stine). When they move a stuffed cat a secret chamber is revealed and they find a locked book with a key. Finding a scrap of paper, Sam recites the words on it and they find a ventriloquist's dummy.

On their way home the dummy defends them against bullies. It is only later that they realise the dummy, Slappy *(voiced by Mick Wingert, puppeteer Avery Lee Jones), is alive. Next day when it finds out that Sonny's sister Sarah's (Madison Iseman) boyfriend Tyler has cheated on her it causes him to fall off a ladder. Slappy also helps Sonny with his science project, an attempt to create a working scale model of Nikola Tesla's Wardenclyffe Tower with disastrous results at school. The evil side of slappy now becomes more apparent when his scheme to bring Halloween creatures to life and conquer the world. Sonny, Sam and Sarah must trey and stop him.

While the film is mainly aimed at children/teens it would take very little to trans form it into an an adult horror film. From the outset Slappy is quiet sinister and his his manic laugh is disturbing rather than endearing. Some wonderful scenes: gummy bears coming to life, merging and absorbing a boy; rubber bats flying off and dive-bombing the citizens of Wardenclyffe; model witches dragging people into the sky. Best of all though is Slappy's attempt to make Tesla's Tower functional again.

An entertaining Horror/Comedy by director Ari Sandel. 8/10.
 
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Overlord: Where Eagles Dare and Zombies. More of a War film than Horror but the horrors of war are illustrated all too clearly from the outset. A platoon of US paratroopers are flying to France on D-Day, their mission is to destroy a radio transmission mast on a church tower. All around them are other planes with soldiers on different special missions. Nearby aircraft are blown up by flak, their own plane is struck, few survive. Terrible scenes of dead soldiers hanging by their parachutes from trees.

The survivors find that the church tower is in a compound where an SS doctor is carrying out terrible experiments on locals. POWs and dead German soldiers in an attempt to create Super Soldiers. Zombies are the outcome but not very many of them. Mostly lots of derring-do by the small band of GIs and a French woman who aids them to fight the beastly Bosche.

Overlord was apparently inspired by "Operation ZZ", a 2010 Belgian short film by Angel Itani. but it also bears an uncanny resemblance (in some scenes and plot development) to the 2013 film Frankenstein's Army which contained much more Horror.

Bit disappointed at the paucity of Horror but a worthwhile film. 7/10
 
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Suspiria: The original came in at 100 minutes, this remake runs for 152 minutes. Really overlong, could shed 20 minutes and be a tighter film. At times the sub-plots involving a Berlin psychiatrist and Susie's home in Ohio make the plot seem to lack coherence but it all comes together in the end. If anything the final act (of six) and the epilogue are too rushed and may further confuse some viewers.

1977, Susie (Dakota Johnson) an ex-Mennonite from Ohio arrives in West Berlin hoping to join the Markos Dance Academy, Madame Blanc (Tilda Swinton) the Academy's lead choreographer witnesses her triumphant audition. Susie joins the Troupe but learns that the dancer she has replaced, Patricia (Chloe Grace Moretz), has disappeared. We see Patricia meeting Dr Josef Klemper (Tilda Swinton), telling him that the Academy is controlled by witches who have a secret plan. However she also talks of being involved with the Red Army Faction and Klemper believes she is delusional.

However the matrons (staff) of the Academy are indeed witches who confirm the aged and hidden Mother Makros (Tilda Swinton) as leader, defeating Blanc in a vote. A ritual is to be carried out to revitalise Makros and Susie is now chosen to be the victim. There are secrets about Susie though which the witches are unaware of but then these truths are also only later revealed to the dancer herself.

In contrast to the original this version is filmed in dull colours, both parts of Berlin are grim and dark. Only snow and the red outfits of the dancers provide a bright contrast. There are scenes of horror and violence which will test your resolve and this is certainly not a film for the squeamish or fainthearted. Johnson and Moretz put in good performances but the real star is Tilda Swinton in her triple role. Director Luca Guadagnino is somewhat self indulgent with the extended running time making this a good rather than a great Horror Film. 7/10.
 
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Hell Fest: Another slasher film set in a Carnival of Horrors might sound jaded but there's life (and death) in this trope yet. Three couples go to Hell Fest, a smorgasbord of Horror rides, games and mazes. But naturally there is a killer on the loose, a hooded masked one. Trouble is he looks just like 15 other employees at the park. When he kills someone it looks realistic because his victim is really dead. But so many other fake murders carried out by Hell Fest staff look equally convincing. The killer starts to stalk the couples and the death toll rises.

The carnival is wonderfully imagined: park workers dressed as crazed killers wield chainsaws, circular saws, knives, hatchets. Evil clowns and monsters grab and "attack" Hell Fest customers. Great anitromic dummies and animals pop out of walls and closets, a corridor lined with "living" arms has to negotiated. This is a festival you will really want to attend. But the dark side of the film is grim indeed, a giant mallet is used to crush a head, an eye is pierced, a woman is almost beheaded. If you are squeamish then you will be covering your eyes a lot.

While the plot development is formulaic there isn't a minute wasted out of the 89 minute running time, non-stop action and tension. Director (and Editor) Gregory Plotkin has delivered a worthy addition to the Amusement Park Slasher sub-genre. 7.5/10.
 

GNC

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I've added Hell Fest to my Amazon watchlist - is it like Hooper's The Funhouse for the 2010s? (I hope).
 

Jim

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Just viewed "The Outer Wild". A Post-apocalyptic Thriller Movie made this year. It's a slow moving story that only hints at the a possible few marauding mutants. Not one to like over done special effects, but come on now a few solid creature scenes can make or break a movie like this. Out of 10 stars I give it 1.5, wouldn't advise this one.
 

Jim

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Next movie I had the pleasure of screening was the Conjuring 2. Investigators Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren come off a sabbatical to travel to Enfield and prove for the church with hard evidences that evil entities are haunting the family and possessing an older daughter. Good horror movie and a solid sequel to the Conjuring. I give it 8.5 out of 10.
 
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Assassination Nation: A Social Media Satire, Black Comedy, Thriller and Horror film in the vein of The Purge. Set in Salem, Massachusetts where once again hysteria results in a Witch Hunt just as deadly as the 17th Century events. A hacker reveals all of the Anti-Gay Mayor's information including pictures of him crossdressing and engaging with male escorts. The Mayor commits suicide at a conference. Next school principal Turrell's phone is hacked, downloads, texts and images are revealed. Some images are used out of context to smear him as an abuser.

Things spiral out of control when the phones half of the town's population are hacked and their secrets are revealed, violence results when affairs are revealed and other secrets uncovered. A teen girl Lily (Odessa Young) is wrongly accused of being behind the hacks and an armed mob comes after her and her friends Bex (Harl Net), Sarah (Suki Waterhouse) and Em (Abra). However the girls fight back and a battle to the death ensues.

This is an exploitation flick, a revenge thriller which doesn't spare the gore, every button is pushed as trigger warnings flash up at the beginning for every possible topic which might outrage an intersectional and even some that would trouble sane human beings. Lily editorialises on the superficiality of Social Media, about how a large amount of life is an act to fit in, especially for women. So much of our lives are online or on servers, cached, ready to be hacked. Hypocrisies revealed, how people claim to live by rules but secretly flout them. Lily herself along with her friends openly flout conventions but this doesn't help when Lily is reveled to be sexting to an older married man. When the violence erupts, Bex is a special target because she is transgender. She is targeted for lynching by the football team because on of their members had sex with her. Their members feel threatened as well. The violence is extreme at times, reminiscent of The Purge, the mobs even wear Purge style bandanas and masks. Lily fashions a weapon out of soap and a razor blade to defend herself ending up being literally bathed in blood.

Great costumes (Rachel Dainer-Best) some incredible scenes and cinematography (Marcell Rev) with a crackling script by Sam Levinson who also directs. 8/10.
 
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