June 4, 2011

Day of the Dead (1985) - Review

With Land of the Dead and Diary of the Dead you could have pretty much attributed the films to any director. Although I enjoy both to a certain degree I really do not feel any passion towards them, they both seem a million miles away from what came before. I fail to mention Survival of the Dead purely because I haven’t seen it, and don’t suppose I will any time soon. George A Romero, once upon a time, made truly excellent Dead, or undead if you like, movies.
As a wee youngster I was introduced to the Dead trilogy, as it once was, first through Night of the Living Dead, which was shown on television, and then Day of the Dead which I rented on VHS. Dawn came later due to it be a bitch to find in the UK during the 80’s. Out of the three though Day definitely had the biggest impact on me at the time, this was due mainly to the copious amounts of gore on display. Of course I have found more to enjoy about it over the years, and decided to give it another airing just recently.
To read the rest of the review at The Liberal Dead click here

Wake Up! Wake Wood Hits The US

Hammer's latest flick is set for its US DVD and Blu-ray release on June 28th through MPI Dark Sky Films.

Still grieving the death of their only child Alice at the jaws of a crazed dog, vet Patrick and pharmacist Louise relocate to the remote town of Wake Wood where a local pagan ritual gives them three more precious days with her... but what will they do when it's time for their new 

daughter to go back?

June 3, 2011

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo 2011 Poster And Trailer

I will have to admit that this remake doesn't look too shabby so far. Of course, time will tell. In case you hadn't guessed this is due to be released in December. I suggest that in the meantime, if you haven't already, check out the sublime original from director Niels Arden Oplev. I think the poster looks like a bloody Bond poster. Hope they come up with better ones neaer to the release.

Cross Of Iron To Hit Blu

Hitting Blu-ray, through Optimum Releasing, in the UK later this week is Sam Peckinpah's excellent flick Cross of Iron.

WWII, 1943, the Russian front. An arrogant aristocratic Prussian Officer named Stransky (Maximilian Schell) is assigned as the new commander of a German platoon, his only ambition to win the Iron Cross to maintain his family honour. When Stransky falsely claims credit for bravely leading the squad into a bloody battle against the Russians in order to be awarded the medal he craves, he names gutsy Sergeant Rolf Steiner (James Coburn) as his witness. When Steiner refuses to be complicit, a battle of wills between the two men from very different backgrounds ensures. Then Stransky purposefully fails to relay an order to the squad to fall back from their position, leaving them surrounded by Russian troops and suffering heavy bombardment. Knowing that defeat is inevitable their only goal is survival….
Heralded as the most anti-war war film ever made, CROSS OF IRON is a bloody and thought-provoking depiction of the horrors of war and Peckinpah has served as an inspiration for everyone from Tarantino to Kathryn Bigelow.

Passion & Poetry - Sam Peckinpah's War  (46:00): A documentary by Mike Siegel featuring James Coburn, Senta Berger, David Warner, Vadim Glowna, Roger Fritz, Katy Haber & Sam Peckinpah. 5 featurettes with 1976 on set audio interviews: Sam Peckinpah (5:06) / James Coburn  (5:30) / James Mason (6:05) / Maximilian Schell (4:35) / David Warner  (3:14) / Featurette KRÜGER KISSES KERN(8:27) / Letters From Vadim & Sam Featurette (3:48)
Vadim & Sam - Son & Dad Featurette (5:55) / Cutting Room Floor Featurette (
4:19) / Mike's Homemovies Featurette - Steiner meets Kiesel again (7:16) / Steiner In Japan
 (2-3 mins) / Before & After Restoration Comparison / German Trailer (3:10) / USA TV-Spot  (0:30) / USA/UK Trailer (3:42) 

June 2, 2011

Time To Be Afraid

Anyone else looking forward to this? I know I am! 

Distributor:                   FilmDistrict
Directed by:                 Troy Nixey
Written by:                   Guillermo del Toro, Matthew Robbins
Produced by:              Guillermo del Toro, Mark Johnson
Cast:                            Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce, Bailee Madison, Jack Thompson
Release date:             Opening Nationally on August 26, 2011
Running Time/Rating: 100m/R for Violence and Terror
Guillermo del Toro presents DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK, a horror film starring Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce and Bailee Madison, directed by Troy Nixey.  Based on the 1973 telefilm that del Toro believes is the scariest TV production ever made, the story follows Sally (Madison), a young girl who moves to Rhode Island to live with her father (Pearce) and his new girlfriend (Holmes) in the 19th-century mansion they are restoring. While exploring the house, Sally starts to hear voices coming from creatures in the basement whose hidden agenda is to claim her as one of their own.  Akin to del Toro’s PAN’S LABYRINTH, DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK focuses on a young girl’s struggle against menacing and terrifying forces.  FilmDistrict will release the film on August 26th

Official Site

This Is The End, Beautiful Dead End My Friend

A little undead action for you to check out. Written by Garry Charles and Directed by Dirk Rades and Martin Rath, Dead End is a 10 minute short that takes a look at the zombie apocalypse through the eyes of a couple who are taking refuge from the gathering shamblers outside. Short, sharp and to the point with a nicely understated score and crisp cinematography, I found this to thoroughly entertaining. Make sure you watch it through the end credits, good times for sure!

June 1, 2011

Karma Will Bite You In The Ass

This saucy looking number is set to hit DVD and VOD on June 14th.

Sweet Karma is a thriller starring Shera Bechard (Miss November 2010). It follows Karma Balint a shy, mute Russian girl whose sister Anna left for Canada with bright hopes of making some money for the two of them. When Karma discovers that Anna’s body has been found in the woods, the apparent victim of a Russian mafia hit, Karma sets off to infiltrate the criminal underworld to avenge her sister. Her journey takes her through the twisted underbelly of society leaving behind death and mayhem in her wake.

May 30, 2011

Shattering Stuff

Directed by Wolfgang Meyer and Written by Brandon Slagle, who also stars as well as being one of the Producers, Song of the Shattered looks like it is set to be quite brutal viewing (check the savage trailer below). I'll be keeping my eyes fully peeled for this, it's set for a DVD release through York Entertainment.

After killing her abusive husband, a young woman finds that it is harder to move on with her life than she immediately thought she would be, which yields horrific results for those closest to her.

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Alice in Zombieland - Book Review

Alice in Zombieland

Lewis Carroll and Nickolas Cook

There seems to be, what I can only describe as, a fad at the moment of taking literary classics and historic icons and thrusting them into the world of horror. Novels such as Pride and Prejudice, Little Vampire Women and Emma and the Vampires are crawling out of the wordwork at an alarming rate. Personally they don’t appeal to me and as such I have resisted the urge to read any of them, I am sure they have an audience otherwise they just don’t grab me.

Maybe it is for this very reason that Alice in Zombieland fell so flat for me. It has been many, many moons since I have read Lewis Carroll’s novel, so if Alice in Zombieland achieved anything for me it was that it has made me want to revisit the classic.

The story in Alice in Zombieland does not involve Woody Harrelson or Jesse Eisenburg, more is the shame, but does in fact follow young Alice as she tumbles into an open grave where she then meets all the characters you might expect, such as The Queen and Mad Hatter, in fact it is basically Lewis Carroll’s story with the odd change made here and there to accommodate the undead factor. That being said there isn’t any real zombie carnage until the very end. Everything else is hinted at, such as Alice’s voracious appetite.

That all being said it is hard to fault the writing as it is basically Carroll’s work, hence the author’s credit, and the use of words and conversation is as charming as you might hope it would be.
If Nickolas Cook had really wanted to impress I would have much preferred he had taken the main characters and locations and put them in an entirely new story, where he would have had free rein to throw a totally unique twist into this sub-genre.

Overall I can’t fault the writing, or the accompanying art, but I do find fault with the execution. I really am not sure who this would appeal to aside from an absolute undead completist. Even then that might be stretching it.

Review by Jude Felton

May 29, 2011

Summertime Chills and Thrills

Thought I would have a ramble through what will be hitting the big screen over the summer. Will there be anything worth checking out? Or will we get the usual staple of remakes and sequels? Anyway, this takes us up to the end of August. September will see releases of Shark Night 3D, Straw Dogs (remake) and Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive. After that we get in Halloween season with the likes of The Thing prequel and Paranormal Activity 3 (!?!). In the meantime here are some of the movies that may be of interest to genre fans. Personally I think the standout flick looks like Bellflower, although Don't Be Afraid of the Dark is right up there.

Hitting screens on June 10th, J.J. Abrams and Spielberg get ready to steamroll all before them.

Ohio, 1979: when kids shooting a super 8 movie witness a train crash, their shock soon turns to feelings of suspicion and horror after disappearances and inexplicable events begin to take place in town 

Also released on June 10th, having already been available on VOD, comes the limited release of this quirky looking flick from director Andre Ovredal. It won't play near me, although I wish it would!

Director Jon Favreau will be unleashing this fun looking flick on July 29th. Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford look to be a good pairing here, and even if they aren't I'm sure the alien action will draw your attention away from it.

Am liking the look of this movie, due for an August 5th release. Solid looking effects and a decent cast could prove a winner here.

An August 5th release in New York for this very interesting looking movie. Brought to us by the studio that release the excellent Rare Exports this looks like one to keep an eye on.

Best friends Woodrow and Aiden spend all of their free time building MAD MAX-inspired flamethrowers and muscle cars in preparation for a global apocalypse.  But when Woodrow meets a charismatic young woman and falls hard in love, he and Aiden quickly integrate into a new group of friends, setting off on a journey of love and hate, betrayal, infidelity, and extreme violence more devastating and fiery than any of their apocalyptic fantasies.

I'm expecting more of the same here when this gets release in 3D on August 12th. If nothing else I am sure it will look spectacular.

Mixed feelings about this one. I love the original but I have to admit that the trailer doesn't look too shabby. I will be catching this on my birthday and will post a review shortly after. Release date is August 19th.

Certainly the flick that is most likely to scare us shitless this summer! Guillermo Del Toro brings this update of the 1973 flick to screens on August 26th.

The latest found-footage style movie also coming at us on August 26th. I like the premise behind it, it's just a case of wait and see if the execution works.

Klagger (2010) - Review

Ever watch a two hour movie where absolutely nothing happens bar maybe the last ten minutes? You have? Me too, and it pisses me off no end. If you don't have enough material to fill the running time please don't bother. Really, please don't do it.

With that in mind I can now get on with writing about Klagger, a short independent movie which has none of the above problems. It runs to about 10 minutes and I can honestly say that not one of them is wasted. It is the kind of movie that gets straight to the point, smashes your around the head a couple of times and then politely leaves before you have time to complain. Not that I imagine you will complain after viewing Klagger.

The story itself involves Perry, who works for an Industrial Salvage company, who is sent out to inspect and catalogue an abandoned factory. What he is unaware of though, until he arrives, is that the reason the factory was closed was due to the death of a former worker. Regardless, Perry continues about his work until he comes face to face with the Klagger, and the Klagger is none to happy to see him.

Despite Klagger's short running time it still manages to pack in plenty of suspense and atmosphere due to the quite effective camera work and score. The look of the film itself echoes the setting of the story, with an almost industrial feel to it with sharp yet bleak colors and plenty of shadows which work perfectly. The film is dark in tone throughout without the need for any moments of levity, well until you reach the final credits. Just watch and you will see what I mean! Surreal to say the least.

Whichever way you look at it Klagger manages to pack a punch and remain an atmospheric short movie, one that would work perfectly as an opening film on a horror movie night with your friends. Well worth checking out if you get the chance.

Review by Jude Felton