Archive for the ‘Horror Collection Review’ Category

Dollar Store Marathon Part the Second

And it’s time again to delve into the obscure, the forgotten and the underrated. Celluloid procured for the measly sum of a single dollar. Are they worth it? Is it worth the bother? Does anyone care?

I do, and I’m up for the challenge. Sans further waffling what say I scribble a few words on each followed by an unbiased rating?

Well, why not? Let’s begin with;

I’ll Take Your Dead (2018)



Writer – Jayme Leverett, Chad Archibald

Director – Chad Archibald

Runtime – 86 minutes

Trailer courtesy of Black Fawn Fiulms

A mash up of several genres this combines crime, horror and the supernatural (with nods to Sixth Sense, Thirteen Ghosts and The Cleaner among others). In employing a father daughter duo, it adds effective emotion and a number of situations including scenarios whereupon any Father would feel uncomfortable. Add a suburban syndicate element, a retainer of sorts applaudable FX and tension and you have a tale which though predictable in moments is an interesting view worthy of the 86 minutes it runs.


(It’s already out!)

The Blood Lands (aka White Settlers)


(2015) UK

Writer – Ian Fenton

Director – Simeon Halligan

Runtime – 83 minutes

A young couple move from an English city to the middle of nowheresville Scotland into an abandoned house with centuries of history to its credit. The sudden appearance of uninvited guests makes enjoying their new house that much more difficult. But just who are they and what do they want? These questions slowly unravel as the film plays out amidst effectively constructed tension and scenes blanketed in claustrophobic atmosphere aided by fantastic shots of the Scottish wilderness. Sidenote; with the amount of pig masks in attendance one might begin to think this is perhaps where “Bullets of Justice ” found part inspiration?

This film is guaranteed to have you yelling at the screen in frustration. Regardless of the ending being somewhat questionable keep the eyes peeled for this title.

Trailer courtesy of Top10Horrorow


Axe Giant – The Wrath of Paul Bunyan (2013)



Writer – Jeff Miller, Jason Ancona, Gary Jones

Director – Gary Jones

Runtime- 91 minutes

Right from the get-go grisliness, horrid CGI and green screen effects. But it’s too late I’m sold regardless of the fact that the star of Gentle Ben (Google it!) has been sliced clean in half and the films antagonist looks like a hybrid of the beasties from the Wrong Turn franchise and the poor fella from Adam Green’s Hatchet.

Several years after this massacre a motley crew of teens find themselves under the tutelage of a DoC officer in hopes to earn their badges of ideal citizenship. He calls them STUMPS (Stupid Teenagers Under My Protection) a score for ingenuity here. Carnage soon ensues as the teens and their handlers encounter the ‘Axe Giant’. Predictable from here on in this remains fun and a glorious example of the quality of which low budget can attain if handled within the right hands.

Grisliness, boobs, rubber suit mayhem, crimson, dark humor and Estevez (complete with a wacko Hillbilly accent). What more could you wish for? Well, there’s a moral in here also for those who wish to see it.

An utterly watchable, somewhat mindless treat for those whose tastes run to the low budget arena. It goes without mentioning this is a fantastic value for a single dollar.

Trailer courtesy of Signature Entertainment


Dead Mine (2012)



Writers – Stephen Sheil, Ziad Semaan

Director – Steven Sheil

Runtime – 92 minutes

A highly polished adventurous romp through the Indonesian jungle. A small team escorted by local special forces seek out a lost something or other. Will they find it? Will the CEO’S son get to brag he spend Daddies money wisely?

Smart writing, likable characters and solid acting help this one along. The atmosphere here is plentiful and the scenery impressive helping to pull the viewer in to the story. Sporting an enjoyable pace the film takes little time in providing action, mystery and intrigue.

As well a diverse cast there’s also a dead ringer for Steve McQueen, add “zombies” (caused by way of medical experiments) to the mix, ancient Samurai warriors, decent FX & makeup, effectively tension and surprisingly adequate directing and all the ingredients are all in place for a perfect waste of ninety minutes. My only qualm lay in the fact that I was expecting a martial arts film rather than a horror and WWII themed adventure/thriller.

Trialer courtesy of WorldMovieTrailerz

Underrated and under-appreciated this warrants attention.


The Piper (2015)

Dark Fantasy/Horror


Writer/Director- Kim Gwang Tae

Runtime – 109 minutes

Take Pied Piper folklore, add easily manipulated villagers, a wrong doing and chilling retribution and you have the template for a film which leaves a lasting impression. Sprinkle into the mix stunning landscapes, palpable emotion, the bond between a Father, his offspring, exquisite writing and excellent directing and the ingredients make for a feature which is slightly reminiscent of James Herbert’s “Rats” trilogy (books) bearing a tightly-knit small farming community, rather than modern-day city, aura. I’m only left wondering just how many of the little viciously fanged bastids are actually called “Ben”?

Trailer courtesy of CJEntertainment USA


Trailer Park Shark (2017)



Writers – Griff Furst, Nathan Furst, Marcy Holland, Matt Muschamp, Xander Wolfe

Director – Griff Furst

Runtime – 85 minutes

As ridiculous as it sounds this is actually rather entertaining, silly at times even. Showcasing the finest elements of redneckdom (great word that!) complete with stereotypes aplenty, an antagonist (you’ll love to hate) and enough dark humor to choke an oversized Selachimorphia. Money, floods and sharks, toss a few babes in there, appreciation of duct tape, homicide (for financial stability) and a need for cheap electricity (as well nods to Sharknado) and the movie is complete. ” Do sharks go good with mustard and relish?”

Trailer courtesy of ITN Movies

A fantastic waste of close to ninety minutes tailor-made for those with a severe case of adoration for low- budget cheese.


Pagan Warrior (2019)


Horror/Historical Action

Writer – Shannon Holliday

Director – Louissa Warren and Nick Minaj

Runtime – 83 minutes

An epic soundtrack, creative historical license (a diverse cast which doesn’t fit the historical context) and ultra-low budget theatrical shenanigans. Don’t be fooled by the cover, or the IMDB rating most probably created by a cast member, this is a tough watch only slightly saved by the film’s lush surroundings and its main antagonist; The Krampus. Yes, this is somewhat a Yule/Holiday themed movie ripe with retribution elements. Sadly, this suffers from an amateur aura, shoddy directing and the utilization of historical monuments aged a thousand years with zero preparation to add to the films vintage authenticity. Only the bravest will be able to sit through this.

Trailer courtesy of ITN Movies


Darkness Reigns (2018)



Writer/Director – Andrew P Jones

Runtime – 76 minutes

A documentary crew is on scene to shot a behind the scenes expose. The film itself is set in a abandoned, supposed, haunted hotel. All involved are ecstatic at the opportunity to save on the budget but at what cost? Is the hotel actually haunted? How much does Casper Van Dien charge per appearance? Will the feature ever be finished? Are there any Blockbuster Video still open? Is this worth spending a dollar for the seventy-six minutes it runs?

Trailer courtesy of Multivisionnaire

Plenty of action, a little silliness, a few jump scares, abrupt and unprompted inventive (well ececuted) gore. In short, this is entertaining and ambitious celluloid for those in search of retina fodder which is slightly different.


Asura- City of Madness (2016)



Writer – Sung-su Kim

Director – Sung-su Kim

Runtime- 134 minutes

Corruption, double-crossing and treachery run amuck in this crime thriller. Public servants conducting all manner of atrocity for the almighty dollar. A slow build climaxes in an epic crimson splattered hatchet and gun showdown. Excellent directing character portrayals which evokes strong emotions and notable writing make this shine. The addition of a steel guitar and Southern blues soundtrack is a gamble though pays off to perk the intrigue. For those who desire instant gratification this probably won’t suffice, though the finale certainly delivers.

Trailer courtesy of FilmIsNow action Movie Trailers


Shiver (2012)



Writer – Brian Harper (novel) Brian D Weinbach

Director – Julian Richards

Runtime – 92 minutes

John (for some reason I want to call him Jeff) Jarrett and Danielle Harris. Seriously, what more do you need?

Well, there’s Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers) to further prompt a watch.

With a soundtrack which seethes with a made for television vibe, writing and production which doesn’t flow quite as well. A high predictably factor results in a watch that isn’t quite as exciting as one might expect. Although it gets better as it progresses it still doesn’t reach the level one might expect given the cast and the movies with which they’re associated.

Trailer courtesy of RLJ Entertainment


Veteran (2015)

South Korea


Writer/Director – Ryoo Seung-Wan

Runtime – 125 minutes

A determined cop attempts to take down a spoilt ultra-rich kid and put an end to his boisterous activities. Naturally, he gets one than he bargains for when corruption and bribery rears its ugly head.

Excellent choreography, remarkable stunt work, strong character portrayals, diabolical antics and humor in a vintage Jackie Channel vein make this a highly entertaining view. Pile on the Ouch! moments and Oh fuck! instances and this rockets to must see realms.

Trailer courtesy of CJEntertainment USA


Don’t Kill it (2016)



Writer – Dan Berkeley, Robert Olsen

Director – Mike Mendez

Runtime – 83 minutes

Damn! This film starts with a shotgun blast. Several in fact and resulting carnag to go with. Dolph is apparently a demon hunter and it appears he has his work cut out for him in a sleepy small town.

Possession passes from one to the next via homicide making clearing the situation up rather messy. A hellfire preaching padre adds to the confusion and the bizarre nature of the whole predicament. Dolph is at hand to equal the equation and brings a certain unintended levity to the proceedings.

Trailer courtesy of Ryan Zweers

Far from the traditional (low- hanging fruit zero imagination low budget directors typically employ) slathered in pitch humor and dark fantastical themes (demonology) this is a breath of fresh air for the genre, albeit sprinkled with a wide assortment of cheese, captured in a way which is highly enjoyable. This seriously has all the ingredients required to earn cult status. Underrated and under-appreciated this demands eyes upon it.


Cavite (2005)



Writers – Neill Dela Llana, Ian Gamazon

Directors – Neill Dela Llama. Ian Gamazon

Runtime – 81 minutes

Gonzo or Guerilla call it what you will, this feature thrives on the concept utilizing Steadicams and POV (camera techniques) in showcasing Adams plight.  Adam has recently traveled from California to visit his family in The Philippines. Upon arriving he finds himself stranded, then abruptly at the whims of a disembodied voice. In defiance of any “orders” Adam is informed that his Sister and Mother will be harmed (they are being held hostage in an undisclosed location). Adam already has a finger and a tongue to prove the captor’s willingness to follow through.

Cavite is terrifying, an element more impactful is the realization that the scenario on offer here could actually happen, than the movie itself. Adam is drawn through several “settlements” depicting life at its lowest point also marketplaces, a hustle and bustle hive of activity, and past places most would take for granted (did you know there are McDonald’s and 7-11’s in The Philippines?) Life is certainly and most notably different here. Most struggle but make do, barely, in conditions we could only dream of and hopefully never experience.

Trailer courtesy of UnitelPictures

Take a break from the luxuries of First World life and dive head first into a terrifying slice of what is most probably happening on a monthly basis in a part of the world most chose to ignore.


Bonejangles (2017)



Writer – Keith Melcher

Director – Brett DeJager

Runtime – 79 minutes

Plenty of nods to the genre here (this is based in the town of Argento), tons of elements to offend and hilarious dialogue aplenty. This film doesn’t take itself too seriously but it’s fun throughout with enough storylines to fuel a handful of genre features. If you like low-budget slash-a-thons with a heaping side of unapologetic nature this is a viewing experience you’ll savor. Minimal gore, although the start of this film teases the opposite, plenty of crimson, but the comedy more than makes up for it… Did I mention Reggie Bannister is in here? He brings a “protect your wee-winky” tagline to the festivities.

Trailer courtesy of OC Trailers


Hidden 3D (2011)


Writer – Alan Smithy, Alana Smithy, Mariano Baino, Carolina Cataldi- Tassoni

Director – Antoine Thomas

Runtime – 82 minutes

Formulaic and uninspiring, shrouded in a made for television aura. It’s a pity as all the ingredients are in place. The acting isn’t half bad, the characters are likable and the score is evocative, however the story leaves a little to be desired and the payoff is lacking. And the film isn’t even in 3D, perhaps I need to purchase the “special edition”?

Trailer courtesy of GoToHellTown4


Miniscule: Valley of the Lost Ants (2013)



Writers – Thomas Szabo, Helene Giraud

Directors- Helene Giraud

Runtime – 89 minutes

I started to watch this with my daughter. She quickly lost interest as it wasn’t all Princesses and musical numbers. The story revolves around an abandoned picnic and the various bugs who ransack the goodies.

Carpenter ants claim the prize though are soon set upon by a legion of Fire ants with designs on claiming the treasure for their own. A ladybug somehow manages to get caught in the situation. Her/His (are Ladybugs male?) ingenuity is tested to the limits as the Fire Ants encroach upon their prey’s ‘hill’. Sure this doesn’t sound like much but it’s chock full of humor (both dark and traditional most of which would probably go way above a child’s head), stand out characters and bears a certain darkness which anyone can appreciate. The soundtrack lends an air of stunning grandeur, life and emotion upon the proceedings (ranging from elation to desperation and most everything in between) to heighten the senses.

Trailer courtesy of Movieclips Trailers

The animation is top notch set against live action sequences to bring about an aura of realism complemented by exquisite audio and sound effects which brings the viewer down to the level of the feature’s ‘players’ and their strange world, a place which isn’t so strange after all. I wasn’t expecting much from this honestly, other than a distraction for my youngest, I left the view with a new appreciation for the power of animation mixed with real time action and the stellar talent and patience required to create the hybrid flawlessly. This is simply surprisingly brilliant and probably not at all what you were expecting to be featured here in the slightest.


Maneater (2009)


Writers – John K. Anderson, Michael Emanuel

Director – Michael Emanuel

Runtime – 91 minutes

Boobs, blood, a (mythical) beast and Dean Cain (quite the underutilized tagline).

A small town, rambunctious youngsters and an aura which would fit into the 80’s brilliantly. Did I mention Dean Cain? Thankfully he isn’t the most delicious hunk of walking flesh here, barely dressed youngsters hold that title. Likable characters, exquisite mannerisms, a lingering backstory and enjoyable dialogue elevate this to enjoyable plateaus. Remember kids, if you’re going to have sex you’re going to perish (probably in the most horrific of way).

Trailer courtesy of Canalstreetfilms
Michael Emanuel stars in this.

Overall a surprisingly intriguing effort nestled within a collection encapsulating eight slices of cinema which are heading rapidly towards forgottenville and dusty, cobweb ridden storage realms.

Funfact; this film’s director was the main character in Lucky; a 2004 film deserved of a watch showcasing a talking dog and a failed cartoonist drunk, slipping into craziville antics.


And that’s about it. Huge thanks for making it this far down the page, here’s hoping I’ve sparked a little interest in films which otherwise might find very little.

Discover, explore, preach and support the Indie filmmaking scene.


Dissecting the Afterdark Horrorfest Collection

A tagline to get all Horror fans excited!

Many moons ago, when cinemas were a thing, and masks (as an everyday accessory) were not, there was a time when a certain collective created Afterdark films. Their mission; to shed light on features deemed too brutal, shocking or just too much for the average movie attendee. Naturally the attention of many was perked.

I am shocked!

The title alone for the collection of features was enough to get the senses enlightened; 8 Films to Die For: AfterDark Horrorfest. With this in mind and the premise gore fans started to salivate in between scrambling for the most uncut/complete version of the newest slab of world-shocking celluloid and others…well, most admittedly carried on about their daily as if nothing out if the ordinary was about to transpire. Was it? Was there a reason to panic, a reason to obtain a vendor license to sell barf bags by the dozen? Would the police suddenly storm cinema foyers demanding the protectionist hand over materials deemed “indecent and obscene”? Was a new era of cinematic brutality about to be spewed forth from the bowels and sordid minds of the Underworld upon the unsuspecting masses? Probably not, and I believe I’ve gotten just a smidgen carried away here. What better way to begin to answer these queries than by delving into the films themselves? I just so happen to have the third season in a handy dandy collection.

The collection under scrutiny

In no particular order, the films on offer;



The Broken

Dying Breed,

Perkins 14′,

From Within,


and to round the collection off;

The Butterfly Effect 3; Revelations.

What say I give each a few minutes of my time (and scribble) a few thoughts?

Let’s start with;

Trailer courtesy of Trailers and Movieclips

Autopsy (2008) US

Writers – Jace Anderson, E.L.Katz and Adam Gierasch

Director – Adam Gierasch

Runtume – 85 minutes

A thin plot revolves around a mad doctor organ harvesting from unsuspecting donors in order to keep his bride (?) alive. A group of drunken teens find themselves in an abandoned hospital. Confused they play an improvised game of hide and seek and are slowly picked off one by one by either the doctor (played by Terminator 2’s Robert Patrick) or one of his cohorts. Nothing new here but the elevated, inventive, grisliness and brutality factor, rather than either the performances or the predictable story, is a reason to stick around. Silly ending but it delivers on the gore front and the effects aren’t half bad either.


Trailer courtesy of Trailers and Movieclips

Slaughter (2009) US

Writer – Stewart Hopewell, Timothy R. Long

Director- Stewart Hopewell

Runtime – 96 minutes

Slow, slow, slow. A little carnage, a lot of fuzzy images, a few scantily clad babes though nothing to make me want to watch until the films finale. Suffice it to say you’ll be braver than me if you finish this. On a side note this features a (pig) slaughter house if you feel the need to watch another with a similar theme check out Rogue (just released) with Meagan Fox. Again, it’s not great but it is entertaining.

Trailer courtesy of Rehabsyd

The Broken (2008) UK/France

Writer/Director – Sean Ellis

Runtime – 89 minutes

Yes, It’s GoT’s Queen Cerse

A string of unexplainable abrupt mirror shattering somehow leads to Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister – Game of Thrones) entering an alternate universe (of sorts) within which she believes she sees her doppelganger playing her role only a few seconds ahead of her own reality. She follows. Distracted, for obvious reasons, she gets into a car accident.

In recovery Lena, Gina in this instance, starts to recall what happened leading up to the crash. But that isn’t all. A certain “strangeness” seems to be surrounding her. Odd occurrences of the same nature seem to be spreading and shattered mirrors are always in attendance. Palpable atmosphere, a chilling score and dizzying camerawork make this shine. Takes a while to get going but it builds well. Among the highlights a slo-mo car crash, a crimson bathtub scene and Lena Headey fighting (herself). I’m not too keen on the ending but the movie has an undeniable creepiness to it, boasts style, flair and a familiar aura that if mentioned outright would ruin the whole experience. Wholly enjoyable but not great.


Trailer courtesy of Icon Films Australia and New Zealand

The Butterfly Effect 3; Revelations (2009) US

Writer – Holly Brix

Director – Seth Grossmann

Runtime – 91 minutes

impressive DVD art

Sam is a psychic of sorts. Unable to stop himself he “jumps” in order to exonerate one falsely accused, to capture his ex- girlfriend’s killer. But in order to do so he must break one of the rules and insert himself back into his own ‘timeline’. One thing leads to another, memories become fuzzy and new details begin to emerge as too a string of murders. The present shifts and suspicions begin to arise. But does Sam’s “helping people” have consequences? It appears so. But can he help himself?

For a “franchise entry” this was surprisingly decent. The kills were brutal (the bludgeoning at the beginning apparently opened up the floodgates for grisliness to made a gruesome entrance), the characters likeable and the pace superb. Occasionally it boasted made for tv moments but on the whole it’s decent enough to set upon the eyeballs. A few standout scenes here, a fair bit of crimson, a sweaty steamy couple of minutes and an enjoyable twist at the film’s finale. The payoff was a tad naff but this is well worthy of a watch in my book.


Trailer courtesy of Chris Gibbin

From Within (2008) US

Writer – Brad Keene

Director – Phedon Papamicheal

Runtime – 90 minutes

A string of suicides rocks a small, closely-knit, Bible belt town. Is it part of a pact, or something infinity more diabolical? Utilizing elements of Children of the Corn, Carrie, It Follows, The Craft and borrowing the chilling atmosphere of Japanese features of a similar vein to The Ring and Ju-on, this weaves a spell. An epic soundtrack adds depth and emotion, combined with characters which elicit strong emotions this makes for a film which is underrated and easy to appreciate. Although this won’t win any awards it’s still executed with a style and an aura which shines neon bright with influence. Well worth a watch especially if your viewing penchant runs to troublesome teens getting into perilous situations.


trailer courtesy of Harveywallbanger 123

Perkins 14′ (2009) US

Writers- Jeremy Donaldson, Lane Shadgett

Director – Craig Singer

Runtime – 95 minutes

Someone has been hard at work (oo-er missus!) creating super soldiers. Only they’re kids. Ten years in captivity on a steady diet of brain washing and drugs has transformed said individuals into something akin to Rage infected types as seen in “28 Days Later”. Is one of them the local deputy’s son? Who, or what, is responsible? Is this film any good?

Is it merely me or does this have a Grindhouse vibe to it?

I’ll answer the last question only. It’s not bad. Borrowing troupes from a whole slew of films, this offers that which fans of the genre love. But with a twist (Was Dr. Moreau a serial abductor?) The acting has it moments and the main creepy guy is a character, that if fleshed out, could have made this that much better. Regardless, this is still worth a peek. “Perkins” actually hits a satisfying sprinting pace towards its finale, transforming both its tone and from quite likeable to highly enjoyable. A number of sequences are a tad experimental in tone though not to the extent to draw one from the overall pleasing cinematic experience. Standout scenes include, though are not limited to, tons of crimson, frenetic entrail removal and a skull brutalization reminiscent of a scene from the French shocker “Irreversible”.


Trailer courtesy of The Solid State

Dying Breed (2008) Australia

Writer- Micheal Boughen, Jody Dwyer and Rod Morris

Director- Jody Dwyer

Runtime- 92 minutes

A pair of brothers reunite and decide what better way to celebrate the fact than by visiting Tasmania in search of a tiger species which is apparently extinct. Creepiness abounds as the atmosphere and the demeanor of the locals combine for a feature which is somewhere between The Hills have Eyes, Wrong Turn and Deliverance.


The Bush soon proves too treacherous for our intrepid adventurers. Something is out there, more than they could have imagined or even hoped for.

Stunning cinematography, character interaction, a fantastic pace, a tension building soundtrack and an exquisitely executed feeling of unease result in a must watch warranting praise.


Trailer courtesy of 24framesmovies

Voices (2007) South Korea

Writer – Jang-Hwan Jung, Kwung-ok Kang, Hyo-Chul Lee, Shin-ae Lee, Ki- hwan Oh, Don Sun-Shin.

Director – Ki-hwan Oh

Runtime – 86 minutes

Emotions are at frenzy level here as a curse born of all manner of sin surrounds the main character, a schoolgirl who for all intents and purposes appears innocent enough. Stylish direction and abrupt transformations give this an edge. And with plenty going for it more than merely long stringy hair the Asian horror fan base are going to be leaving this viewing experience with a grin.


So, was this worth the time invested? Sure. Is this going to alight a deluge of underground features direct to the cinema? Probably not (especially in the current conditions we all find ourselves in) but it was a decent attempt. And for all intents and purposes it showcased interest in features which might not have found the time of day otherwise and for that I applaud the think-tank behind the idea.

That about nails it!

Hopefully this has shone a light on films one might normally experience and perhaps has sparked a modicum of interest in features which aren’t huge budgeted or Hollywood derived. Admittedly, there’s inventiveness still out there and talent to pull the vision off, even amidst the cavalcade of remakes and rehashed scripts. In closing, support the Indie scene and broaden your viewing exploration and horizons. There’s a great deal out there to discover and a scene which warrants praise.


Scorching the Retinas – Diving into Yet another Movie Collection

where evil lies horror collection

The collection in question

Occasionally I find myself perusing my movie collection hoping that a title catches my eye. In this instance I was at a loss, nothing caught my eye, so I turned towards the collections if only to wax on that which might make me chuckle. That’s not to say that all on these collections are humorous, oftentimes there’s a gem in the rough. With six films on offer I tossed a dice (die?) to see which were to flash across my eyes and my scrutiny.

First up;

Candy_Stripers art

Candy Stripers (2006)
Writer – Jill Garson, Kate Robbins
Director – Kate Robbins
Runtime – 90 minutes
Windchill Films

Admittedly, I’m not even sure what a “Candy Striper” is, or does (but I’m guessing they’re a ‘thing’?) This film really doesn’t really explain it or their purpose though does serve to offer an hour and a half of mindless entertainment which fans of low budget movies are sure to enjoy. Horny teens, horrific acting, boobs aplenty and adrenaline-fueled sex appeal worthy of a soft-core adult film script. All the traditional tropes of the genre are included and although the film commences on a level where some might be put off it soon revs up to boast practical effects of a quality which are rather surprising. Naturally, the acting remains at a sub-par level but strangely this remains utterly watchable, not award worthy but watchable.

(trailer courtesy of ThatsHollywoodTV)

Standout characters include a love struck, not quite cool enough, kid (Sarah), her wise-cracking brother (Joey) and a socialite who has little time for anything but her vanity.

Candy_Stripers pickle

You want a pickle with your “sexy”?

A few standout scenes are what make this worth a peek and include a decapitation, an emasculation, oral birthing and a buffet in which an array of supermodel ‘Candy Stripers’ are stuffing their faces with assorted sugary delectables. But let’s not forget the slimy pickles?!

The good slightly outweigh the bad here and although the premise isn’t new, think ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ (it doesn’t matter which one) with a sexy edge, this remains a film fans of the genre are sure to appreciate.



Next up;

incubus art

Incubus (2006)
Writer – Gary Humphreys
Director – Anya Camilleri
Runtime – 88 minutes
Fuel Entertainment
Junction Films


So, I’m glancing at the cover art for this feature and the character displayed front and center looks awfully familiar. Within seconds the film pronounces the face as that belonging to Tara Reid. Obviously, she’s been in some stinkers, however being as I’m curious I’ll gladly take one for the team and suffer (?) this till the credits roll.

(trailer courtesy of Intandemfilms)

The film opens on three young couples. Their truck has rolled over and they find themselves stranded in mountainous surrounding. Choosing to foot it they happen upon a fence and being as this is a movie; night fall is approaching and they really don’t want to ‘rough it’ they decide to do a spot of B and E in order to perhaps enjoy a roof over their heads for the night.

A fence in the middle of nowhere, a location which isn’t on the map, a rollover and zero cell phone service this isn’t at all ominous…right?

incubus is there a room at this inn

Hello, hello? I can’t find the remote, or the TV

Early on one notices something doesn’t quite add up. The collective has climbing gear yet they don’t wish to ‘rough it’. Am I the only one who finds this rather odd? One character decides she’s had enough already (her boots cost $500 why should she use them for what they were designed for?) and heads off alone.  I’m sure we’ll catch up with her later(?)

Tara earns her coin by being the first to explore the mysterious construct and wouldn’t you know it the place is littered with human remains (does anyone have a dustpan and broom?)

incubus I do believe aiC made a song about me

I do believe Alice in Chains wrote a song about me

But wait, it gets better. The team soon discover a figure locked behind a glass enclosure. They deliberate upon whom he might be but come to no clear consensus. They do however come to the conclusion that they aren’t alone. Enter an antagonist who looks much like the Penguin (the villain associated with Batman not the flightless arctic bird). The collective’s numbers dwindle, Tara sobs and the films enigmatic qualities are heightened.

Amidst all the bloodshed the group continue to pontificate on the identity of the figure within the enclosure. Tara locates a VHS player and a stack of tapes in hopes to find some answers but to no avail, the questions continue to pile up and being the curious type, she decides to befriend the man in the box (for a spot of Monopoly amid the chaos I’m assuming. Perhaps Yahtzee?)


Ouch! Stop throwing those Fn’ Dice at me!

As luck (and the script) would have it the group split up, which I’m sure you’ll agree is a huge no-no in any horror feature, only to find that one within their ranks is mimicking a famous Jack Nicholson role but with a great deal less animation. Has it got anything to do with the sleeping/comatose (Yes, I probably should have mentioned that earlier) man in the box? Is he like a infamous claw-fingered villain, minus the claws, who interferes with people in their dreams? Why might he do such a thing? But more importantly, who changes his diapers?

Incubus nope I'm merely sleeping

id rather eat a bullet than change a grown mans diaper

This film has its moments, it has Tara Reid (!), it’s mostly predictable, the acting is so-so, the effects consist of mostly blood splatter and the dialogue is largely unremarkable. However, it was the first direct to download film to premier on the internet (that’s got to count for something, right?) Admittedly, it isn’t the worst film I’ve endured, it shows promise in both the directing and scare departments but never really hits the mark I was hoping for. Probably more for the Tara Reid completist than the casual fan, watch at your own risk.



Scorching the Retinas – Avalanche of Indy

Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore (2014)
Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore (2014)
Director – Lorenzo Fascina, Marco Giangiareli
Runtime – 59 minutes
Bayview Entertainment
Widowmaker Films


How Pizza delivery and Slasher cinema collide I have no idea. Perhaps I should confer with Axe Slasher (a band from California with much the same interests whose work can be found here or Werewolves in Siberia (who provided the soundtrack for “Slice” an online comic book with much the same premise) before I continue. Regardless, this vignette collection opens with a Pizza delivery person (whoops, I nearly said “boy”) navigating hasty drawn directions. The chosen mode of transport is a skateboard and this is the first indication that this might be a different than normal excursion into cinematic depths.

(trailer courtesy of DirtyTapeProduction)

With the “package” securely fastened cheesy deliciousness is on its way. However, it isn’t as easy as all that. The directions aren’t as easy to follow as believed and an obstacle hampers the deliveries progress; It’s a VHS tape. But more on that later.

Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore - Ghost

Whoa – You have cold fingers!


Scuffed up and bloody the courier believes he’s found his destination. Indeed, he has. Bludgeoning replaces the traditional tip and the movie has an introduction. Cut to the first segment; “Whispering Ghosts”. A shared file proves to boast more than merely something for the eyes to discover, in fact its influence is undeniable. This is “The Ring”, hardly as polished, but in shared file form rather than VHS format. Be wary what you download, check its origin first folks.

The second segment; “Devils in the Night” amps up the skateboard element and adds a Punk rock/metal aura. By this point I’ve realized the movie hasn’t any SUBS.  Surprisingly, there’s hardly any dialogue other than an ominous figure narrating in Italian, a presence much like the Crypt keeper (though more sinister, add a Satanic aura) from the infamous Romero/King helmed “Creepshow” franchise. His narration would I can only imagine would add weight to this particular segment as it merely plays out as a Capture/kill in gruesome ways for little reason short with an arrival at the end which could well tie the reasonings together.


creepshow soundtrack

Most probably the first of many Creepshow images this article will boast. (This is a limited edition soundtrack on vinyl)

“Alone in the House” is the following segment. As you can imagine it is exactly that. A solitary female discovers a mysterious intruder, hides, then confronts said intruder (with a knife). Words aren’t needed here; the story is rather self-explanatory. The addition of symbol laden flashes is a nice touch as well the protagonist’s reflection in the knife she wields in a shaking grasp. The ending is a little odd but provides a gruesome climax for those wanting such. If only the lighting were better the FX could have truly shined.

“Wood” is next up. And is blatantly another segment plucked from the aforementioned “Creepshow” ala “Hitchiker” but with a difference, the moniker nods at not only its location (if you catch my drift) but also at this segment’s erotic nature, in part anyway. However, the mood soon transforms when the pairs vehicle collides with…something. One of the most inventive segments on offer “Wood” changes direction veering from predictable realms and yanks its viewers into WTF territories. Suffice to say this is one of my favorites here showcasing one of my favorite actors within this feature; the quite delicious Bunny Roberts, who sadly only has one acting credit to her name (even fewer pictures online), such a tragic waste of talent. Again, the lighting is abysmal leaving many of the FX, action and character in murky shadows and much of the details up to one’s own imagination.

Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore VHS

Now imagine this has a life of its own and makes humorous noises as it moves around quite comically

Lastly, “Killer Tape”. Serving as the dark humor book end of the piece it gives live to a VHS tape when its owner decides to about face, change personalities from a comic book loving nerd into more a Collegiate Jock and bin bag all of his previous bits and bobs into the nearest trash receptacle to be replaced by various, cliched, sports paraphernalia.

Zero dialogue again in this piece other than grunts, groans (issuing from assorted bedroom activities) squeals, screams and a myriad of cutesy noises one might associate with Gremlins or creatures within features of similar ilk.

Several elements make this my favorite segment here. The tapes movements coupled with the noises it makes and the overall absurd nature propels it into fantastical realms and the fact that it pines over its ripped-up cover is the icing on the cake. Add to this a scene in which it comes face to face with an arch enemy and you have all the makings of a classic segment. I only wish I could say the same for the entire collection.

Bad taste one sheet

Any excuse to add a Bad Taste image and I jump on the opportunity.

“Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore” has its moments and lovingly embraces a camera style which fans of “The Evil Dead” and “Bad Taste” will be quick to appreciate but only leave them wanting more. The tie ins from several of the segments are clever, especially the Introduction and last segment, though not all seem to fit the puzzle leaving several questions which demand answers. The acting surprisingly isn’t horrid and fits the overall mood of the collection. Even sans conversation the collection makes sense, largely, although subtitles would be useful in working out what the enigmatic narrator is saying, a factor perhaps which might also explain somewhat his place in the proceedings and undoubtedly heighten the flow of the overall feature. Apart from the undeniable channeling of vignette collections before it (namely “Creepshow”) this overall shows promise for the filmmakers involved, although using the word “Gore” dominantly in the title might leave many wanting more. Yes, it has a few scenes of grisliness, though not nearly as many as one might imagine.

hjeavy metal soundtrack

Obviously, this is the  most famous film with a “metal” soundtrack

The ideas are there, the direction is there (the easy to embrace up close somewhat quirky style – the homage in part) and the lighting, well, I believe I’ve mentioned that a few times. The use of Thrash/Speed metal as part of the soundtrack is a nice touch (a love it or hate it element really) which many Independent pioneers are embracing. Sure, the writing requires tightening up, experimental avenues need exploring, but that’s all part of the ongoing filmmaking journey and honestly, I’ve witnessed a great deal worse than this in my past viewing of Independent (low budget) films. All in all, this leaves me curious as to what comes next from the creative team involved. I’ll keep my eyes and ears to the ground.



best horror quotes


Creepy Tales of Pizza and Gore is available on DVD (Region 1: US and Canada) courtesy of Bayview Entertainment from most online retailers including Target, Walmart and Amazon (and I would imagine complete with English subtitles which this screener was absent of).

It can also be purchased here;


For all those interested “Slice” the online comic can be found here



Scorching the Retinas – Tackling the Wrong Turn Franchise

Wrong Turn 2: Dead End (2007)
wrong turn 2 cover art
Writers – Turi Meyer, Alfredo Septien, Alan B McElroy
Director – Joe Lynch
Runtime – 97 minutes
20th Century Fox, Summit Entertainment, Constantin Film Production

Sure, why not start in the middle rather than at the beginning? Well, I did and here I am. Cult is away again, probably sleeping already. He’s on vacation and he’s stuck with his young un’ at home, and let me tell you, she’s a spirited one. If she ain’t singing “Let it Go” or “Into the Unknown” she’s storming around like a Princess, with an attitude to fit. But getting back on track; I’ve got the reins now with snippets of that Slayer Comp still ragin’ through my ears.
So what say we get started.

(trailer courtesy of Movie Clips Classic Trailers)

“Wrong Turn 2” was made back in 2007 and it doesn’t take long to realize this. Cell phones are flip things, and earpieces are akin to those unsightly slabs of metal worn on “Star Trek” (the early series with good old Shat not the newer ones).

wrong turn 2 opening kill

Breast or Thigh? …It doesn’t matter!

Anyhows,  this chick, in the opening scene, is belligerent, screaming at her agent about one thing or another then she plows this poor chap down.  and wouldn’t you know it the poor bugga’ scratched up her Stang. Now rather than being somewhat pissed, who wouldn’t he scratched up the Stang’, she’s unsure, hysterical. However, this doesn’t last long. Some logger type looking chap makes his way outta the woods and cuts her in Twain. Downwards (“Terrifier” style), not across and this movie is off to a great start with perhaps one of the finest kill scenes to open up a movie ever. And my popcorn has suddenly found itself with extra butter (or a liquid which looks strangely close).

Wrong turn 2 Henry Rollins

End scene. Enter Mr. Black Flag, Henry (motherfkn’) Rollins, and an introduction to a reality game show of sorts with six contestants (five now, or seven. All depending on how one looks at it) and a theme centered around the Apocalypse (at this point we should all be taking notes and making time to rewatch the “Mad Max” franchise). Naturally, all of the contestants are young, nubile, hot to trot and bursting with enthusiasm.
A quick look behind the scenes shows the competition heating up and a producer wearing a “Battle Royal” shirt which is rather fitting (if you haven’t seen it, drop whatcha’ doing and prepare to forget Hollywood’s take on it; which is often referred to as “The Hunger Games” franchise).

wrong turn 2 i wanna play

Peek a boo!

The games begin, the rules are explained and it’s clear from the get-go who’s present for the money and who for the prestige of competing. Mr. Rollins does a great job of emulating the drill Sergeant from “The Frighteners” and “Full Metal Jacket” (R. Lee Ermey) and there’s another stand out scene in the books. But it ain’t all fun and games. There’s something uninvited in the woods which wants to join in but with rules of it’s own choosing.

“Holy shit, the whole family’s deformed” about describes the way the remainder of the movie goes. Powered by “The Hills Have Eyes” and general Slasher movie mayhem on bathsalts the kills come fast and furious, unflinching, just like Daddy likes them and uncompromising to boot. Seriously folks, this has more guts in its first half than most reputable Cult Cannibal flicks and a shotgun which would put many cannons to shame.

wrong turn 2 Boom


The pace here is remarkable, fluid and feverish throughout, enough to spike anyone’s adrenaline and the characters varied enough to bring forth opinions ranging from instant I don’t care if you perish hatred to I wish you’re the one who survives to repopulate the world adoration. The acting isn’t horrid enough to deter from the story, which is somewhat minimal, but it matters not when the screen is drenched in this much grue.
The finale looms, there’s enough blood and body parts scattered to give Dahmer a boner and the cast is significantly smaller in size, but more widespread,(that’s a pun), than when the movie commenced. But the action remains slick and sticky (nope, this isn’t another filling every available orifice extravaganza flick) two teams face off and…
Well that’s where I’m going to leave my blow-by-blow (enough of the double entendres already) commentary.

wrong turn 2 lunch

This is strange. I can see my spleen.

To cut this short, for it’s about my bedtime, Joe Lynch has far surpassed himself here. A homage to a wide swath of slasher flicks doused with a generous dollop of dark humor and enough glorious FX to sate the most depraved of penchants I’m pleased to state that this brings to the table more crimson goodies than any “Friday the 13th” flick and an overall viewing experience I would somewhat liken to (one of Cults favorites) “Dead Alive”.


“Wrong Turn 2” is frenetic, unflinching, graphic, splattered with antagonists which appear immortal (though most certainly don’t live like it) and dotted with characters one wants to root for. The effects are abundant, grisly and executed with attention to detail (that explosion. Wow!) The directing is top notch, again huge props to the mind behind one of the sickest segments within “Chillerama”, and there’s seriously not a complaint here. Boobs, blood, guts, an inbred fellow who looks like he was plucked from a John Hughes film, tons of pitch humor and a final scene which puts Tobe Hoopers “The Mangler” to shame. This is my kind of film. Did I mention Henry Rollins is in this? I did, well shit I’ll say it again, cus’ he deserves another mention. Go get em’ Rambo (whoops!)
Do whatever you have to be able to set the eyes upon this. I much prefer this over any of the “Friday the 13th” films. Don’t @ me, I don’t care. I don’t have any allegiances, I like whatever puts a stoopid grin on my face. And now I’ve said my part. I’m out!
Shit. I Nearly forgot, Cult likes ‘ratings’ now. If it needs one, fuk, I guess a 9.5 will suffice.

The wrong turn collection

Here’s hoping I get the chance to lay words on the others in the franchise. If they’re anything like this I’m happy to oblige. Naturally I’ve plucked the wrong image from the internet to show the others in the series. This one shows the regular (British) versions, I’ll be diving into the uncut versions whenever I can find them, and the time, and access to Cult’s keyboard in order that I can diarrhea my thoughts all lover his site. Until then.

Scorching the Retinas – The films of Bruno Mattei

Island of the Living Dead

eyeballs header

Island of the Living Dead (2006)
Director – Bruno Mattei (as Vincent Dawn)
Writers/Screenplay – Antonio Tentori, Giovani Paolucci and Bruno Mattei
Runtime – 98 minutes


island of the living dead.jpg

For those who are new to the films of Bruno Mattei, like myself, an introduction. Island of the Living Dead was the last feature Bruno Mattei completed before his passing in 2007. His filmography is vast, diverse, and much like Joe D’Amato, he has also worked under a plethora of pseudonyms touching upon soft core, exploitation, Nunsploitation, drama, adventure, science fiction/fantasy, Caligula/Nero Emperor debauchery films and the cannibalism genres (although some twenty years after their heyday).

He’s most famous for a film entitled Virus (1980) aka Hell of the Living Dead, Night of the Zombie and Zombie: Creeping Flesh. And with as many aka’s as that you can betcha’ it placed high on Thatcher’s Banned/ ”Nasties” list back in the day.

Ironically, His output oftentimes overlaps those more renowned in the same genre, both in theme and substance. Zombie 3 (1988) is an instance where he stepped in to finish a Fulci feature when the original director was forced to depart due to suffering a stroke.

zombie 3.jpg

Alright, so this is a film shot somewhat recently hoping to capitalize on the aura and feel of an 80’s old school classic. The giveaways; well for one the copyright date, the names in the credits changed to give it more a European feel, but other than that it boasts a made for television, on the cheap, feel (much like a vintage Troma feature) down to the font, boldness and even the position of the credits themselves.

The movies opening scene introduces an island with a slight problem. Apparently, the locals have tired of the foreigner influence and rather than use the age-old trick of poisoning the visitors (or boring them to death with interpretive dance and the like) they decide instead to reanimated corpses via magick of the Dark variety. It works. Too damn well in fact, the undead overrun the Isle. One would think rifles would help, they don’t, but they do provide a decent enough head explosion to perk the interest of the Gorehounds among the audience early on. A character who could be a vampire is the last to be seen (I’m not sure where he figures into things, perhaps we’ll find out later?) before the scene comes to a close.

(trailer courtesy of SeverinFilms Official)

Cut to present times. A fishing boat, a crew (complete with a distinguished English gent) whose acting abilities are close only to the quality of the dubbing (it’s hilarious) and a treasure pulled from the sea. But the boat becomes damaged as the sea vomits its disgust at having the film produced upon it. The crew soon find themselves on an undersized dingy and soon upon an island with plenty of bushes (huh?) But that’s not all, there’s also ruins, a graveyard and a rotting looking chap in a Cavalier helmet who likes to grin at the camera (this makes me wonder what he’s been up to for the last four hundred years).

night of the living dead Theyre coming to get you Barbara gif

The crew split. A nod to “Night of the Living Dead” and “They’re coming to get you Barbara” in not so many words is blatant but it’s the wait until the corpse is upon you until you scream and move which makes me snort with laughter. It gets better; rather than run the poor lady struggles as if to fend off an unwanted snog. The chap grunts, as if to say “well, what do you expect. It’s not as if we have mouthwash or even toothpaste, it hasn’t been invented yet or transported to this island yet”.


Gimme a kiss

Her companions scramble I’m sure they don’t want corpse lips on their bits either but he’s a persistent bloke who’s rather good at taking punishment from an adversary whose Kung-Fu is only slightly better than his acting.

Meanwhile the ships mechanic is encountering problems of his own. A legion of round helmeted troops has arisen from the sea, without appearing wet in the slightest, to infest the engine room. The ship, I’m guessing probably the most expensive prop in the movie, goes up with a boom, crackle and pop and the crew deliberate amongst themselves as to the reasoning why without really considering the likelihood that the mechanic is still alive.

island-of-the-living-dead  my gawd this books in latin.jpg

This is in Latin, but it’s OK. I know Latin

The remainder of the team find themselves deep underground in the company of ancient texts and wouldn’t you know it one of them reads Latin. One spells out doom whilst the others are fancifully jacketed Readers Digest special Editions most probably pilfered from the nearest Goodwill.

Soon, our heroes find themselves crowded with the likes of various types who shambles and display very little in the way of rhythm. I’m guessing within their four hundred years of solitude that they didn’t learn the Salsa, the Rumba or the Macarena. Luckily the script calls for our heroes to remain mostly unscathed. They advance accompanied by the type of soundtrack one would expect to find within a fantasy-based RPG and find themselves in a fortified building, a place of worship of sorts. The locals however remain hungry.


C’mon just a nibble. It’s been four-hundred years fer Christs sake!

The night has magically transformed into day (kudos to the continuity department, perhaps their lunch break overran?) and our band of intrepid treasure hunters are off again. Those ominous tunnels won’t discover themselves, right? One contains a plethora of doors, one with a handle which begs to be broken whilst the other a sanctuary of sorts.

Probably the best line of the movie (“Oh shit, I think it might be too risky to go this way”) takes place at about the point when one of the crew discovers that it wasn’t altogether too wise to tap a mysterious cloaked figure on the shoulder (but it was in the script) “Father, Father” only to realize ‘he’ might have in fact, been a ‘she’ after all (wrong movie? Whoops).

Traipsing through the caverns our heroes soon happening upon plentiful homage to both Edgar Allen Poe (‘Montel Agro’ (sp) a wine from one of his tales?) and Lovecraft (one of the mirrors needs a little attention as it shows a reflection which is most definitely not a reflection).  A disgruntled head in a trunk full of gold is a surprising touch as too is the brief swashbuckling score. A spot of guitar fretboard tinkering is intriguing, do corpses still have sufficient dexterity in their extremities to pull off the flamenco?

zombie eyeball splinter.gif

However, it’s a scene sporting blatant Fulci (Zombie) worship, an eyeball and a wicked looking splinter, without a ‘money shot’ which might leave the majority puzzled.

Ghostly shenanigans and sudden Misfit (the band) in appearance acolyte silliness adds to a story with more holes in it than a string vest. Greed as it often does override survival instincts and the survivors continue about their merry way in utter disregard of their safety. The Isle opens up with its backstory using handy dandy stock footage from the 1600’s (wait what) and leaves only those with very scant attention still confused as to what’s going on. There’s an epidemic, the people are cursed with eternal undeath, blah, blah, blah.

Madness and hallucination prevail as it often does in times such as these and the crew start attacking each other. This threat is nothing however compared to the sudden appearance of a horde of vampires in corpse paint who’ve been hiding in plain sight the entire time.

island of the living dead conquistadors

They’ve been here the entire time. Did you know this?

Will Sharon, Snoopy, (Captain) Kirk (Where’s Spock?), Mark, Balboa, Max and Fred survive or at least make it off the island? How is it that their names seem pulled out of a hat dedicated to 80’s celluloid and/or cartoon worship? Why does Sharon remind me of the usually-naked-in-most-films-she stars-in; Laura Gemser? Is this in part homage to The Tombs of the Blind Dead series as well to Romero? Does anyone care, is there anyone even still watching at this point? Admittedly, this is rather silly but the ending boasts a lady with surprisingly adept scythe skills (where can I find a class?), a blazing inferno and a horde of zombies who grunt and groan like lovable (but don’t fed them after midnight, or get them wet) creatures from a Joe Dante helmed Christmas movie.

island of the living dead im not a gremlin

No one has ever called me a Gremlin, before now

Recommended only for those who have an adoration for the very worst, this is a feature overflowing with horrific one-liners, a script which a middle school-ager would be proud to take home to their parents, cardboard acting, makeup comprised of caked on foundation, obvious green screen effects aplenty and not nearly as much naked flesh on display as one might assume. But as much as I like to complain (I’m rather good at it) it has a certain something which can’t be denied. Is it the fact that it tries so hard to be what it so definitely isn’t? It deserves huge props in that regard, it fails but it’s delightful to watch it do so. Or is it that it’s just horrid and reminds me such of that which as a child I couldn’t get enough of. An element which dragged me into the realm of cult celluloid. I’m not entirely sure, but it has something which kept me watching, unable to caress the STOP button.

bad taste bear goes boom!

You were expecting a pic plucked from an early Peter Jackson film?

I can’t recall the amount of times I quoted, yelling furiously at the screen, Bad Taste, whilst witnessing the antics of those in distress. Seriously…”the head shots the only true stoppa!”.

Watch this at your peril, the cover art is better than the movie itself and the pictures displayed on the back jacket about say it all without one actually watching the film. But God help me, I want more and I have four more to sit through, so be prepared for I might scribble upon each in turn in my own good time.