Monthly Archives August 2013


Haunter - Abigail Breslin, posterDirector: Vincenzo Natali

Cast: Abigail Breslin, Stephen McHattie, Michelle Nolden, Peter Outerbridge, Peter DaCunha

Cert: 15 (TBC)

Running time: 97mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown: Cube and Splice director Vincenzo Natali ditches sci-fi for this beautifully mounted more traditional ghost story, but retains the otherworldly weirdness of his earlier films. Abigail Breslin, Little Miss Sunshine herself, is excellent as a girl realising something is very wrong in her fog-enshrouded house. A big reveal most movies save for the climax is let out early on, allowing the film to move into more interesting territory.  Forget Twilight and its clones, this is horror Twihards should be watching.

Haunter - Abigal BreslinHaunted Photo

The full verdict: Pre-rewrites, Groundhog Day’s original script began with Phil Connors already living th...

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Gemma Atkinson & Holly Goss On The Dyatlov Pass Incident

Dyatlov Pass - Goss, Atkinson

Not many of us would shoot a film in the Russian mountains. Particularly when learning the director is Renny Harlin, the Finnish daredevil director behind such “that looked tough to make” action epics as Cliffhanger and Deep Blue Sea.

But, British actresses Gemma Atkinson and Holly Goss like a challenge and can be seen in Harlin’s “Blair Witch on ice” horror The Dyatlov Pass Incident.

Based around a real life incident in which a group of experience skiers perished in the Ural mountains in unexplained circumstances, Harlin’s movie is gloriously bonkers, with added viscera by virtue of shooting in Russian mountains on the Arctic Circle.

Rob Daniel caught up with Atkinson and Goss to talk about an experience a million miles away from their previous work on Casualty and Holby City...

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FrightFest 2013 Review – A Feast of Fear

Frightfest 2013 posterFrightFest 2013 was one of the best programmes the team have put together in the festival’s fourteen year history.

On Saturday morning Paul McEvoy said to me with equal parts surprise and delight that they had four screens running simultaneously, the demand for the movies this year was so great.

None of this is surprising; FrightFest has long been the festival with the reputation to which others can only aspire.  But, ironically surprise was the word of this year’s five day August Bank Holiday santa sangre.

Surprise from the very beginning as Bobcat Goldthwait took to the stage in the Empire, Leicester Square’s massive Screen1 and won over a crowd bemused that he had been awarded the honour.

“I know half of you thought I was dead,” Goldthwait deadpanned, “and I know the other half a...

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Odd Thomas

Odd Thomas - Anton Yelchin, posterDirector: Stephen Sommers

Cast: Anton Yelchin, Ashley Sommers, Willem Dafoe, Patton Oswalt

Cert: 15

Running time: 100mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown: Donnie Darko gets a huge shot of Scott Pilgrim in this charming knockabout horror.  Anton Yelchin is the titular Odd, a young lad who can see dead people… and then smacks down their killers.  Odd can also see Bodachs, parasitic wraiths that feed on persons linked to impending doom.  And when his sleepy California desert town becomes infested with them, something awful is clearly about to go down and he must solve the mystery.  Bouncy supernatural fun from the director of Deep Rising, Van Helsing and *cough* The Mummy.

Odd Thomas - Ashley Sommer, Anton YelchinOdd Thomas - Anton Yelchin, Fungus Bob

The full verdict: Dean R Koontz has always run second to Stephen King, both on page and screen.

But, with Odd Thomas K...

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FrightFest 2013 so far…

Random thoughts on this year’s Frightfest.

Haven’t seen a real duffer yet.  Frankenstein’s Army was better

with an audience than when I saw it on a screener a few month’s back, so a nice surprise.

I’m in a minority with The Dead 2 – liked the sense of adventure, the unique feel through shooting on location, the character arcs, the glimpses of gore and an attempt to get some of the culture into the movie.

Gareth Evans gave some plot details of The Raid 2 and it sounds like a crime epic, with a large timeframe and a car chase! When I saw The Raid I thought, imagine what this guy could do with a car chase, and it sounds amazing.

I’m gutted I didn’t see The Raid 2 footage. Above was from an ace 1-2-1 interview.

Today’s Corruption screening should be a goody, it looks insane.

Finally – WordPre...

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Curse of Chucky

Curse of Chucky quad posterDirector: Don Mancini

Cast: Fiona Dourif, Danielle Bisutti, Brennan Elliott, Summer H. Howell, Maitland McConnell

Cert: 15

Running time: 97mins

Year: 2013


The lowdown: Almost a decade after the disappointing Seed of Chucky, the teeny titian terror returns, still voiced by Brad Dourif and the film’s USP being he’s terrifying his real life daughter, Fiona Dourif. Series creator Don Mancini has more luck behind the camera than he did directing Seed of Chucky, going back to basics with a horror-comedy that does not forget the horror.  Gory, funny and bizarrely kind of sweet, this C-word still has the power to surprise.

Curse of Chucky - killer dollCurse of Chucky - Summer Howell

The full verdict: Never one of horror’s scarier icons, Chucky nonetheless has infected pop culture, his DNA most recently evident in the comic smash Ted.

Curse of C...

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You’re Next

You're Next - UK Quad posterDirector: Adam Wingard

Cast: Sharni Vinson, AJ Bowen, Joe Swanberg, Rob Moran, Barbara Crampton, Nicholas Tucci, Wendy Glenn, Amy Siemetz, Lane Hughes

Cert: 18

Running time: 94mins

Year: 2011

The lowdown: After scoring recognition with 2010’s A Horrible Way to Die director and writer duo Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett here provide numerous horrible ways to die for a family who find themselves under siege from murderous assailants.  Tense, frightening, violent and blackly funny, it is bizarre this 2011 movie has taken so long to reach cinema screens.  No mind, it is one of 2013’s best horror releases – a slasher movie with brains and guts.

You're Next - Larry FessendenYou're Next - Sharni Vinson, axe

The full verdict: Indie horror (or “mumblegore”) alumni band together for Adam Wingard’s irresistible horrorshow, reworking tired slasher clic...

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VHS2 posterDirectors: Jason Eisener, Adam Wingard, Gareth Evans, Eduardo Sanchez, Gregg Hale, Timo Tjahjanto

Cast: Adam Wingard, Jay Sanders, Fachry Albar, Hannah Al Rashid, Zack Ford

Cert: 18

Running time: 96mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown: Follow-up to the hit anthology original that retains the same structure but loses some of the surprise and scares that made V/H/S a winner.  The Raid director Gareth Evans delivers the best episode, with other instalments coming from Jason (Hobo with a Shotgun) Eisener and Eduardo (The Blair Witch Project) Sanchez, plus You’re Next’s Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett, who previously contributed to V/H/S.

VHS2 - Adam Wingard, eyeVHS2 - Eduardo Sanchez

The full verdict: It is fitting Eduardo Sanchez contributes to V/H/S2 (aka S-VHS) as he practically invented the found footage genre as co-director of The Blai...

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Hatchet III

Hatchet III - posterDirector: BJ McDonnell

Cast: Danielle Harris, Zach Galligan, Caroline Williams, Kane Hodder

Cert: 18

Running time: 85mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown: Jason-Voorhees-like killer Victor Crowley rises again in this third instalment of the likeably scrappy, insanely gory horror franchise. Picking up moments after Hatchet II, Crowley is soon causing New Orleans swamp-based mayhem once more, while Danielle Harris and Zach (Gremlins) Galligan attempt to stop him. Plot and character are solid enough to keep momentum going, but fans are here for the red stuff and that runs in rivers.

Hatchet III - Crowley, Kane Hodder, Caroline WilliamsHATCHET III / Director BJ McDonnell

The full verdict: Hatchet was the little slasher movie that could...

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We’re The Millers

We're the Millers - quad posterDirector: Rawston Marshall Thurber

Cast: Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts, Will Poulter, Nick Offerman, Kathryn Hahn, Ed Helms

Cert: 15

Running time: 110mins

Year: 2013

The lowdown:  Class A comedy from the director of Dodgeball, with small time pot dealer Dave (Sudeikis) hiring a fake family to get him and two tons of weed over the Mexican border and off the hit-list of his gleefully corrupt supplier (Helms) .  Snarky stripper Rose (Aniston), potty-mouthed runaway Casey (Roberts) and vacuous virgin Kenny (Will Poulter) join him for the ride, but things go south down South and the quarrelsome quartet are soon fleeing for their lives from a particularly peeved drug lord...

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