Monday, September 29, 2014

A Small Break.

I'll be taking a small break for October, no reviews, rants or revenge; but i well be posting new art... everyday. I've decided that this year i would draw one monster/horror movie related thing everyday of October, then a friend on Facebook told me about the Inktober Initiative, Which is right up my alley and already what i was planing on doing anyway. 

Check out Inktober on tumblr with #inktober.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Reviews: A Few Favorite Found Footage Films

Found footage has grown into one of the one of the most popular Sub-genre used by filmmakers of horror in the last ten years. While its beginnings can be traced back to the 1980's it really didn't get its footing till 1999's 'Blair Witch Project' took the world by storm with its clever marketing and campaign that made over half the people that went to see it think it was a real film. 
Personal i'm not really a fan of most found footage out there, but there are some clever movies that i like that have used the format in smart ways that make the movies enjoyable. here are a few of my favorite.

 Troll Hunter
Dir. Andre Ovredal

Troll Hunter is a fantastic watch because of its size and scope. Three university students fallow Hans, a man that hunts trolls for a secret government organization. First of, this does not feel like a found footage film, it feels like a movie. I know that sounds dumb, but if you got to see this film in theaters you would not feel like you just paid $15.00 to watch some jerk holding a camera as he films a love story while a giant monster destroys New York (i'll talk more about cloverfield when i talk about found footage films i hate). You would feel like you just watch a movie that someone put a lot of the heart and soul into.
Watching Hans get ready to do battle with some of the trolls is awesome, the homemade Armour looks great and his truck with all the lights really shows that they wonted to keep some of the beliefs surrounding trolls in the Netherlands a fact more then just superstition.
The special effects are nice, its low budget and that shows on some of the trolls which kind of removes the believably part of the film, but its fun and they still feel very large.

The Poughkeepsie Tapes
Dir. John Erick Dowdle

When people tell me they don't get frightened from horror movies anymore, i asked them if they've seen 'Poughkeepsie Tapes' which most haven't seeing how it has never really been officially released except for a short video on demand run. So then i tell them to watch it... and they never speak to me again.
The Poughkeepsie Tapes is almost to real. Done more like a A&E crime documentary, it fallows the investigators who found over 800 videos of the "Water Street Butcher" capturing, torturing, killing, and mutilating his victims. Not only does the movie focus on the crimes but the toll watching these movie took on the officers involved.
Like the 'Blair Witch Project' this movie seems to real for some people but not because of clever marketing. More it has to do with the fact that it never got any kind of release. now more of a movie you hear about then have to track down on the internet tell your friends about then they track it down and so on. This movie is shocking, brutal, and powerful like so few other movies. It leaves you depressed and angry and more then a little afraid.

Dir. Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza

Very few movies turn out this intense, Trapped in a apartment building with these fast, demon possessed, zombie like creatures, locked in with nowhere to run or hide. Crazy shit.
The movie revolves around a young television reported and her camera man, who are filming a late night show at the local fire station when they get to do a ride along to what sounds like a routine call. they get to a apartment building and go to check on a elderly lady the other tenants are worried about and get attacked, then shit goes to hell.
[Rec] may be my favorite found footage film ever. The camera work is solid, the possessed are awesome looking especially the creepy girl at the end. its fast passed and cramped which makes for some really frighting scenes, and the acting is good, although i have a hard time gauging actors that speck a different language then me, but i believe them to be frighten when they we supposed to be, and that's enough.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tirades, Rants and Riots: Some New Art For Some Old Classics

This Halloween we'll be seeing some old classics get a face-lift.  Skuzzles - a Art print house set here in Canada  has struck a deal with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) Studios and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment to release 13 horror movies with some awesome looking art work of the covers. Now while most of us horror fans may already own most (or All) of these movies some of the art work is just to great to skip at the price Skuzzles has list on there site, Blu-ray's for $7 - $9 and DVD's $5 - $7. Check them out here Skuzzles

Monday, September 15, 2014

Tirades, Rants and Riots: The Halloween Collection

On Sept 23, After years of waiting us horror fans will finally Be treated to a complete collection of the Halloween franchise including a Never before (officially) released Halloween: the Curse of Micheal Myers Producers Cut and both of Rob Zombies Films, plus Different cuts of part Halloween and Halloween part 2 as well as a incredible amount of extra's.

Anchor Bay and Scream Factory are known for some great release of classic (and not so classic) horror gems have now put together one hell of a package in this 15-disc bluray box-set, with stunning artwork on the box and a great looking 40 page booklet. This is a great looking set for any horror fan and a necessity for any Halloween Fan.

The only con I can see to shelling out the money for this set, (although there is a cheaper 10 disc box-set, but its not worth the money at all.) is that any Horror fan probably already owns a couple copies of Halloween, and maybe a couple of doubles of some of the other movies. Including some great Halloween 2 and 3 disc recently release by Scream Factory and a 35 Anniversary Edition of the original Halloween. So you may be asking yourself why? why should I buy another copy of movies I own already? And the reason is...
This is it. this is the set you should have had all along. Sell your other copies (unless you wont to keep them) and get this, this has everything you could wont in a Halloween set and more.

For more Details on the special features and a countdown until release day check out Halloween666

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Remake Revenge: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Ever Wednesday I'll be switching between Reviews and Remake Revenge from now on. Next week i'll review three found footage films and the week after that i'll be Telling you what I think of the original and the remake of "The Hills Have Eyes".

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
Dir. Tobe Hooper

Five friends visiting their grandfather's house in the country are hunted and terrorized by a chain-saw wielding killer and his family of grave-robbing cannibals.

First let me say something about my childhood. I have many memories of sneaking down our old creaky stairs to the living room late at night to watch horror movies on TV; having an old fashion satellite I had enough to choose from. It was on one of these nights I was first introduced to the monster known as Leatherface. From the moment he steps through the door and bashes Kirk over the head with the hammer and the slamming of the door afterwards, Leatherface was something to be afraid off.

As I got older I became more aware of Leatherface’s child like innocence. Sure he kills people but if that is what you grew up in and all you knew, would you consider it wrong to do so. There are times this Leatherface seams almost sympathetic and alone in his world, the time he is sitting in the “living room” comes to mind looking around the room after the kill, almost scared.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)
Dir. Marcus Nispel

After picking up a traumatized young hitchhiker, five friends find themselves stalked and hunted by a deformed chainsaw-wielding killer and his family of equally psychopathic killers.

The True monster of this film come as Sheriff Hoyt, a sadistic old bastard that gets so much pleasure out of the power he commands, even if it is just fake. The new Leatherface is more of a quiet stalker type killer, more in the line of Jason from Friday the 13th parts 6 through 8. More of a force of death then a monster, I think this is where the filmmakers really fail. To take such a large part of a character and turn him more into a mindless killing machine was just too much of a change for me to take.

So what do i think of the remake, well In the end I guess all I can say is that the remake off TCM has everything every other horror movie has. Its not a bad horror movie, it just has too much to live up to. The original was far too real and horrifying to ever be remade right. You can't remake something like Texas Chainsaw Massacre, its a animal, a force you just can't reproduce. Instead we get a watered down slasher flick that runs through the same cliches and makes some new ones. That being said, I love those cliches. They are the back bone of some of my favorite slasher, but not when their being used to muddy the water of a great film like Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

All you have to do to compare these movies is think about the ending. In the original Sally (Marilyn Burns) Crashes through a window escaping hell itself, then is chased on to the road having her back repetitively cut with a Straight razor by the sick Hitch-hiker until he gets run over, She then jumps in to the back of a passing truck. As she looks back you can see pain and loss in her face as she laughs and screams. She will never be the same, what she has experienced over the last 24 hour is something that will live with her. She didn't survive... Not really.

In the Remake Erin (Jessica Biel) Has gotten away from Leatherface and hidden in a old slaughterhouse, as leatherface is distracted, she chops of his hand with a meat clever and runs off. She gets pick up on the road by a man in a semi-truck, who then stops at a local dinner to get help to Erin's disapproval, while said trucker is busy with the murderous sheriff Hoyt and some other family member. Erin goes in to the dinner to save a baby we assumed was kidnapped earlier and hot wires the sheriff car. Then repetitively runs over Hoyt before driving off.

Now, off all the remakes I’ve seen over the past 15 or more years I don’t think any have ended so differently. The original has an ending that is what you wonted but still so bleak. The girl gets away but at what cost. “Who will survive and what well be left of them.” After seeing the end of this movie you know that Sally well never be the same girl she was before this. It leaves a definite impact. The remake goes the same old slasher film route girl survives and kills those who tormented her and leaves you feeling both fulfilled and empty at the same time. Sure your glad she got away and got revenge, but that doesn't necessarily make a good ending.

 A line from the intro dialogue to T.C.M. 2 sums up the original well I think.

“Sally said she had broken out of a window from hell”

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Tirades, Rants and Riots: Horror Movie Soundtracks Re-released on Vinyl

Of all the growing trends in horror culture this one I find the easiest to fall in love with. A large amount of classic and not so classic soundtracks are getting re-released on Vinyl records, and not only that some come with great looking art on the record covers. If you love horror movies, music and art this is a great thing for you to look in to.

Mondo Tees, Know for their beautiful movie posters has put out some great looking (and i'm guessing good sounding) records including John Carpenter's Halloween, Here Comes the Devil, Manic (the Remake), and The Deadly Spawn (to name a few) all got great art work as well as some special attention to the record.

One Way Static Doesn't really have the art work that mondo does but they seem to be trying to put out some real great rare original soundtrack Like The Hills Have Eyes and Last House on the Left. They Also have Soundtracks for Surf Nazi Must Die and Wolfcop coming out soon, both of those look pretty sweet.

Death Waltz If you looking for strange or rare soundtracks Death Waltz may be what your looking for. They Release Halloween 2 With some great art work, they did Halloween 3 as well but the art work is lacking in comparison but still cool. They have also released a ton of old Italian Horror movie soundtracks from dario argento's inferno to Lucio Fulci's City of the Dead. Lot of good stuff.

WaxWorks  Seems to be a newer company jumping in but they've already release Re-animator, Rosemary's Baby, and Day of the Dead. All are great looking. They are also in the process of releasing a Vinyl copy of Friday the 13th which look quit nice.  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Reviews: Jack Ketchum's Evil Mind in Films.

I watched 'The Girl Next Door' (not staring Elisha Cuthbert) with some friends who told me after it was over that they would never watch that movie again, and that i had a sick taste in movies but... I really have to disagree with them. Now, understand that i do not enjoy anything that happened to that young girl in that movie, but i do view this movie is a great Horror film and a excellent example of how this genre can not only be horrifying at times but also make you feel something. Now that being said this movie makes you feel completely depressed and empty but its still a great movie. So after that i wanted more Jake Ketchum and i don't read much so anytime i could find one of his movies i watched it. so here's what i thought.

The Girl Next Door (2007)
Dir. Gregory Wilson
'the Girl Next Door' Is a fictional story written by Katchum based of the true crimes that befell on a young girl by her over baring Aunt. The film is as much about the torment and abuses that happened to the young girl is it is the loss of innocents that happened to all the other young children involved. The movie is hard hitting and slow paced but it doesn't feel like it at times because of the great acting done but some out standing kids. I'm amazed their parents were willing to let their kids experiences this even if it was fake. this movie is not recommended as a date movie... trust me, you will not get laid after.

4.5 Burnt Vajayjay's out of 5.... it really is a good movie.

The Lost (2007)
Dir. Chris Sivertson

'The lost' was the second Ketchum movie i tracked down, and although i did enjoy the movie i was not entirely impressed up until the frantic ending... that i did like. This movie is also based on true events that is something Ketchum is great at, finding truly horrible true crimes and turning them into great story's. This one is about Ray, who one day while hanging out at the campgrounds around where he lives comes upon two girls and decides to murder them, he gets some help covering it up by two friends and is never brought to justice. 4 years later Ray feels invincible but thing start to unwind as some old cops and new friend start to turn his world upside down and he finally snaps.

3 crushed cans in your shoes do make you taller out of 5.

Offspring (2009)
Dir. Andrew Van den Houten
I'm not going to be kind here, i hated this movie... well maybe hate is a little strong... But Maybe its not. The movie is about a family attacked by a group of nomadic cannibal's who have been living on the coast of Maine for many years. Well what can i say, low production value show throughout the whole movie, sub par acting (almost saved by veteran Canadian actor Art Hindle.) crappy gore that doesn't seem necessary at most times, and a plot that leave something to be desired. Well Mr. Ketchum can make them all great.

2.5 dead babies out of 5.

The Women (2011)
Dir. lucky Mckee
In this movie Pollyanna McIntosh reclaims her role as the women (a feral eater of human flesh) from the previous talked about film 'Offspring', she is captured by a overbearing father and family man named Chris who whats to civilize her, to what end, who knows. as the movie progresses we see that Chis is not as nice a person as he seems and his son may be just as fucked up. Chis is a abusive and bastard of a man treating everyone like his own property, and he gets whats coming in the end. Not a bad movie and it at times brings to mind 'The Girl Next Door' but maybe only because they have a girl tied up and they torture and rape her. Fun stuff. Not a great movie, but not a bad one either.

3 lawnmower blades to your sons guts out of 5.

Red (2008)
Dir. Lucky Mckee & Trygve Allister Diesen
'Red' may be the redeeming film i've been looking for, since seeing 'The Girl Next Door' i've been waiting for someone to take one of Jack Katchum's stories and make another solid film out of it, and 'Red' is that. Red is the story of a old man looking for vindication after Three young men kill his dog and make a joke out of it. The movie looks at the difference between the classes of people living out there as well as some heart breaking look at how far someone well go just to get the truth. The movie has some great actors like veteran actor Brian Cox and the up and comer Noel Fisher. At first glance this is just a simple revenge movie... but over a dog, but it not as if Brian Cox's character is asking for blood he just wants to know that the young men understand that they can't get away whit what they've done, until it looks like they can. This story is all build up to a great climax that leaves you feeling alittle depressed and somewhat empty... hmmm. that's funny, just like another movie of Ketchum's. Anyways This movie is great, give it a watch.

4 dead dogs out of 5.