Advertisements

Category Archives: horror

The Unreal Reality of ‘Fake Blood’


We live in a time when spoiler alerts (and complaints about spoilers) abound. Still, some movies do rely on audiences knowing as little as possible beforehand, not because they are indicative of lazy storytelling methods, but because the journey itself is part of the enjoyment factor. This lack of foreknowledge favors the kinds of documentaries that allow the viewer to accompany the film’s narrator on his or her quest for some form of the truth.

Such narrative journeys can be suspenseful or downright creepy; witness 2011’s Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the Toynbee Tiles, 2012’s The Imposter, or most famously, 2010’s Catfish. Comparing Fake Blood to Catfish makes me feel like this review is already giving too much away, but, Spoiler Alert! It’s a risk I’m willing to take. Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

The Week In Horror: Victor Crowley is Here, ‘The Fog’ Has a Birthday + more


This past Tuesday, February 6, Adam Green’s shot-in-secret sequel to his gore fest horror comedy franchise Hatchet, landed on Blu-ray, digital, and VOD. Victor Crowley features the legendary Kane Hodder (Friday the 13th 7-X) returning to the title role to stalk a new batch of victims in his swamp. (You can read my full review.) Read the rest of this entry

Exclusive: Director Gary J. Tunnicliffe discusses ‘Hellraiser: Judgement’

Hellraiser-Judgment-Trailer.jpg

The Hellraiser franchise has had a rough go the last…well, really, since the second instalment back in 1988, I’d say. Following upon the commercially succesful introductions to the series, we’ve seen poor stories, Alan Smithee-directed movies, straight to VOD and DVD movies, and one film made for all intents and purposes strictly to keep the franchise in the hands of a studio. And yet, with all these stumbles, there’s always interest when a new Hellraiser movie is on the way. Credit that to the mind of Clive Barker, who created us the pain-loving Cenobites and their leader, Pinhead.

One could make the argument that Hellraiser: Judgement, out this Tuesday is simply more of the same – a low-budget film with a no-name cast, with Doug Bradley not even involved as the iconic Pinhead. One could make the argument, especially knowing Tunnicliffe was stuck working with a minuscule budget, except the thing is, if you’re open-minded, Hellraiser: Judgement is really a solid achievement.

In this film, director/writer Gary J. Tunnicliffe gives us the story of two cops on the trail of a serial killer using the Bible as his guidebook, bringing the duo face to face with the Hell Priest along with some new, horrific characters, including The Assessor and The Auditor. While the main story is fairly di rigueur serial killer stuff, the way it’s meshed with the Hellraiser mythos both old and new worked extremely well for me. The acting is fine (not great) from all the leads, while Paul T. Taylor does an exceptional job stepping into the role of Pinhead. His interpretation honours Doug Bradley’s version without aping him. Director Tunnicliffe himself plays The Auditor, and he’s compellingly horrific in the role.

Visually, the film shines when dealing with the creatures of hell – if you want blood, you’ve got it, and then some. The sexiness of early Hellraiser films is on display here, melded to with the horror. I can see fans of American Horror Story enjoying what’s on display.

Is Hellraiser: Judgement perfect? Hell, no. How could it be, with the limitations it faced? As I said, the acting is fine and watchable, but the work of the leads is less than compelling when compared to the monsters. There’s a moment where the lack of budget shines through for me, though overall I think Tunnicliffe does admirably well with what he had to work with.

A lot of fans and critics have been slamming the film, which led me to reach out and let Gary know how much I genuinely enjoyed Hellraiser: Judgment. In our email exchange, he was kind enough to agree to an interview, which you can read below and which hopefully gives you insight into the minor miracle he was able to pull off bringing Hellraiser: Judgement to life.

Read the rest of this entry

Supernatural Slasher ‘Inoperable’ Needs Saving


Directed by Christopher Lawrence Chapman, 2017’s Inoperable stars Danielle Harris (Halloween 4 and 5) as a traffic accident victim who wakes up in a seemingly abandoned hospital, during a category 5 hurricane in Tampa, Florida. Dark forces have been awakened within the hospital by the hurricane and Harris’ character must find a way out before the hurricane ends or be trapped forever. Read the rest of this entry

Brave The Cold Horror Of The “Swamp Thing Winter Special #1” On The Wednesday Run

I don’t know where you live, but Toronto just got dumped on with about ten centimeters of snow today.

Not a whole heck of a lot, I know, but it’s enough to make you realize that although the days are getting slightly longer, it’s still only February. Winter is still calling the shots around here.

Speaking of “winter” and “shots”, DC Comics, who have been on a veritable tear recently with a number of fascinating publications (many of which have been featured in this column), is releasing a winter-themed one-shot.

Perfect timing.

It’s written and illustrated by a couple of comicdom’s favourites.

And it’s starring one of DC’s most beloved, and yet currently not-regularly-published, characters.

Really, all things considered, it’s a stroke of genius from the publisher.

Because winter snow must equal the Swamp Thing Winter Special #1!

Read the rest of this entry

Victor Crowley Returns Today!


“It’s not a remake. It’s not a sequel. And it’s not based on a Japanese one,” claimed the original poster for Adam Green’s 2006 horror comedy Hatchet. The movie revived the fun and gore of the best 1980s slasher films brilliantly and spawned two wildly bloody sequels. Hatchet III dropped in 2013 and since then everything in Honey Island Swamp has been quiet.
Read the rest of this entry

Dine With ‘Hungry Ghosts #1’ on The Wednesday Run

A celebrated traveler, chef and self-proclaimed enthusiast.

A praised journalist and author.

A genre-defying and ground-breaking editor.

A host of luminously talented and beloved illustrators.

The launch of a new book publishing imprint.

Food, candles, samurai… and classic ghost stories.

That’s what’s on the menu today at local comic book shops everywhere today. It’s an event whose literary courses are sure to fill any reader’s appetite – from wonderful art to historical learning to spooky stories that keep you up at night.

Hungry Ghosts, co-written by Parts Unknown celebrity chef, Anthony Bourdain and novelist Joel Rose (The Blackest Bird, Kill Kill Faster Faster) is the first release from new publisher, Berger Books.

And it’s much anticipated. This is the book to dine on, with the (candle) light turned low!

Read the rest of this entry

Fearless And Powerful Is This ‘Frankenstein Alive, Alive! Trio’ on The Wednesday Run

Frankenstein (or Frankenstein or the Modern Prometheus for you die-hard purists out there) by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley is, of course, a classic mi- nineteenth century Gothic novel of man’s hubris.

Without debate, it has stood the test of time. We all know Frankenstein and the Frankenstein monster.

A comic book adaptation of that novel was undertaken by the legendary Gothic-horror artist, Bernie Wrightson, who was also responsible for co-creating everyone’s favourite muck monster, Swamp Thing for DC Comics in the early 1970s. It took nearly a decade for Wrightson to produce his exquisitely detailed drawings for that adaptation, which looked like metal etchings from the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. A perfect visual appeal for the corresponding text!

His Frankenstein was published by Marvel Comics to great acclaim in 1983 and remains a highly sought collector’s item.

In 2012, writer Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) and Wrightson began creating a much anticipated sequel to the original Shelley story.

Today, that sequel gets compiled for the first time as the Frankenstein Alive, Alive! Trio.

Read the rest of this entry

Andy Burns’ winter reading list: Richard Chizmar & Billy Chizmar’s Widow’s Point, and Michael Moreci’s Black Star Renegades

Over the holidays, I had a chance to sit back with a few solid novels, which also happened to be written by colleagues who I have a lot of respect for. Thankfully, I liked both books! It makes it a lot easier to not have to skirt around titles, or outright ignore them, when the books in question deliver the goods.

Read the rest of this entry

Experience The Cinematic Horror Of “Gene Colan’s The Tomb Of Dracula Artist’s Edition” On The Wednesday Run

There are certain comic book titles that, regardless of their age, their genre, their publication format or their trade dress, always seem to come up again and again in conversation.

They’re ever-lasting, it seems. Undying works of art that are discovered and re-discovered by generations that follow the witnesses to the original release.

The Tomb of Dracula, featuring everyone’ favourite undying vampire is one such publication.

Maybe you’ve heard of it?

You should have. We’ve featured The Tomb of Dracula on Biff Bam Pop! a number of times. The late, great, Glenn Walker gave a fantastic historic account of the 1970’s Marvel Comics monthly horror series a while back, which you can find right here. Site contributor, Jason Shayer, also shared his love for the title in a Tales From The Longbox column a few years ago.

More recently, I too brought up The Tomb of Dracula in one of BBP’s 31 Days of Horror (the October 2017 edition) features. You can find that piece here.

But it’s today’s release of the sumptuous and absolutely stunning Gene Colan’s the Tomb of Dracula Artist’s Edition that’s got everyone talking – so long as they can stop their mouths from watering!

Here’s why:

Read the rest of this entry

%d bloggers like this: