Friday, March 28, 2014

Waxwork Records Pleases Again With CREEPSHOW Reissue

If you love horror and you love vinyl, then Waxwork Records should be one of your favorite companies in the world. Heaven knows they're one of mine, and I always get excited when they break news on their next big project. This time they've set their sights on the amazing horror anthology, Creepshow

The art for the sleeve and gatefold was done by Gary Pullin and the soundtrack was remastered from the original master tapes, which were lost for over 30 years. This really is something special. 

To commemorate that, Waxwork is going to be offering FIVE different vinyl variants! Below you'll find more details on each of those versions as well as pictures of the art and gatefold! 

Vinyl variants:
1. Father’s Day: Cake Icing vinyl with Blood Clot splatter.
2. Something To Tide You Over: Transparent Ocean Blue vinyl. 
3. The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verill: Transparent “Meteor Shit” green vinyl.
4. The Crate: Fluffy Fur Gray vinyl with Blood Clot splatter.
5. They’re Creeping Up On You!: Cockroach Brown vinyl. 

The Beautifully Restored TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE Gets It's Release Date!

To celebrate the 40 year anniversary of the one of the most iconic horror films of all time, Dark Sky Films and NOLO Engineering spent a grueling 5 months (of 40 hour work weeks) to completely restore Tobe Hooper's The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

While most people will wax on and on about Halloween being the god father of slasher films, I will stand firmly in my beliefs that the title was claimed four years earlier (although if you want to get technical, 1960's Peeping Tom was the first slasher film). It's a magical film that was created under disgustingly painful circumstances that you can literally feel when you're watching it. It was and always will be one of my favorite horror films and the opportunity to see it on the big screen is one that I am honored to get. I mean, this is coming from the guy that sleeps beneath a framed TCM poster. As a native Texan, it's how I show pride for my home state.

SO, before I get emotional and ramble on for another eight paragraphs, today Dark Sky Films announced the theatrical release date for the restored film: June 20th! 

It's safe to say that the film will also see a blu-ray release, most like special edition, as well, but that date has yet to be released. You can read more about the exhaustive efforts to restore this film here and here, I've been covering it pretty heavily. 

So will you be going out to your local theater to partake in the depravity? Heaven knows I will. I almost want to see if it will be playing at a drive-in in the LA area. Now that would make it a perfect experience, no?

Thursday, March 27, 2014

MR. JONES Teaches You Not To Fuck With His Art

One horror flick that's been making the rounds, having premiered at Tribeca this year, is Karl Mueller's Mr. Jones. I've been seeing people talking about it all over the internet, I've watched the trailer a good several times and I must say, I'm excited to see this one.

In what appears to be a mix between Jeepers Creepers and The Blair Witch Project, “Scott (Jon Foster) and Penny (Sarah Jones) just moved to a remote cabin to escape the pressures of the world and breathe new life into their art. But they’ll soon discover they are not alone: an infamously reclusive artist – known only as ‘Mr. Jones’ – lives nearby. He doesn’t like to be disturbed, and only comes out at night when he drags his strange, sinister sculptures deep into the woods. When Scott and Penny’s curiosity leads them too close for Mr. Jones’ comfort, he plunges the young couple into a nightmare world of mayhem, madness and mind-bending terror.

Jon Foster (Suits), Sarah Jones (Vegas) and Mark Steger (The Pact, I Am Legend) star in the flick from debut director Karl Mueller, who also penned the script. While the Mr. Jones will be hitting DVD and Blu-ray on May 6th, if you're lucky enough to live in the LA area you'll be able to catch it in a theater while on a limited theatrical run starting May 2nd. Heaven knows I'll be there with bells on.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

HORROR ON TV: Gooble Gobble Gooble Gobble, AMERICAN HORROR STORY Names Fourth Season - FREAKSHOW

Last week it was let loose that the fourth season of the anthology based American Horror Story would take place at, somewhat of a, carnival and would be set in the 1950's. Well, yesterday Ryan Murphy made it official with the announcement of the title: American Horror Story: Freak Show

Murphy also divulged a few plot points, not much (in true AHS fashion) but enough to get fans salivating. Set in Florida in 1950, Jessica Lange will return as a German expatriate as the manager of the last standing freak show in the US. AHS regulars Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson and Frances Conroy as well as season 3 (Coven) players Kathy Bates and Angela Bassett will comprise her merry group of freaks that Lange has rescued. The season will follow their exploits as they "do anything to keep their business around". 

There is no reason in denying that I did not watch this past season. It held little to no appeal to me, to be completely honest. It seemed a little too polished and pristine and while there's nothing wrong with that, I simply prefer the grimy approach that season two's Asylum delivered. I'm hoping that this may be the format of the show, as season one was quite tailored for the ladies, perhaps the boys will get some nasty violence in even numbered seasons? 

I'll be keeping you posted as more news trickles down the line, and as I'm sure you can already pre-meditate, American Horror Story: Freak Show will return in time for the Halloween season.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Special Edition "Record Store Day" Release of THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT Soundtrack!

As an avid music fan and vinyl junkie, I love Record Store Day. It's like Christmas, even though I rarely buy anything. I can guarantee you this though, I WILL be on the hunt for this bad boy come April 19th! 

One Way Static has announced the remastered release of David Hess's (Krug in the film) soundtrack to Wes Craven's The Last House on the Left, and it will come in the form of a totally bitchin picture disk variant! It's limited to only 15,000 copies so if you want to get your grubby mitts on a copy you better be on the hunt, quite literally. Thankfully I live down the street from one of the best record shops in LA so I'm not too worried about getting one, but I will be sending out friends to help me on the crusade.

This is definitely one of the strangest soundtracks of any horror flick I've ever seen, if only due to the fact that it's so damn happy. It's jarring to hear such a light melody playing in the background of a scene where a girl is getting tortured and butchered, but hey! That's what makes it so awesome. The music truly is fantastic and it is extremely indicative of the times in which this film was released, in the midst of the Vietnam war and after the rise and fall of the hippie movement. The film can be seen as making a valid statement about the peace and love movement, and the various ways that the times had an effect on the youth at the time.

Dig on the art below and get your copy on April 19th! 


Thursday, March 20, 2014

HORROR NEWS: Gene Jones and AJ Bowen Team Up Again In DEMENTIA

One of most anticipated films of this year has to be Ti Wests follow up to 2011's The Innkeepers, the cult based faux-documentary The Sacrament. The flick stars Gene Jones and AJ Bowen, and news broke yesterday that they've both been tapped for Boulderlight Pictures' new flick, Dementia.

Bloody Disgusting reported yesterday that Mike Testin (cinematographer of Contracted) will direct the flick, which has been described as a mix of Misery (yes!) and What Ever Happened to Baby Jane (YES!). Two of my absolute favorites, especially the latter (which seems to get NO love). The film will be about "an elderly war veteran who is forced by his estranged family to hire a live-in nurse after finding out he has been diagnosed with Dementia, only to find that she harbors a sinister secret.

As already mentioned, Gene Jones (No Country for Old Men) and AJ Bowen (You're Next, The House of the Devil) will star with Kristina Klebe (Rob Zombie's Halloween), Marc Senter (The Lost) and Hassie Harrison in a script penned by Meredith Berg (Blood List).

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

NON-HORROR NEWS: Ti West Breaks Into The Major Market - FINALLY!

It's no secret that I have a bit of a man crush on Ti West. I think he's absolutely the shining beacon of hope for the horror genre, and if you don't believe me just hunker down for a viewing of The House of the Devil

Yesterday Bloody Disgusting announced some pretty exciting news: Ti West has been brought in to direct some major names in the biz. While it's not a horror film, it's a western revenge flick, John Travolta and Ethan Hawke (Sinister, The Purge) have been tapped to star.

West will be writing and directing, and the film is set to take place in the late 1800's. I think it's pretty safe to say that this move is probably heavily inspired by Tarantino's Django Unchained, which I am perfectly okay with. I guess the question is how far detached from the horror genre it will be, West has proved himself to be quite the master of suspense while not relying on violence. Will we see a blood bath? I'm so interested and excited I could just pee myself. 

Somos lo que hay (2010) - A Review

Young. Wild. Hungry.

Last year, Jim Mickle’s story of a family of cannibals swept the festival circuit and horror world alike. Unbeknownst to most, his was but a reinterpretation of Jorge Michel Grau’s Somos lo que hay. Translated to We Are What We Are, the film is the story of a group of kids who are forced to pick up where their father left off when he unexpectedly dies and leaves them with the responsibility of providing for the family.

Knowing little about the film pre-viewing, I was excited to see it on OnDemand the other night. While both the original and remake have been on my radar for some time now, I was excited to get a chance to dig my toes into the source material before seeing Mickle’s vision of the story. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

HORROR FUN FIND: Tobe Hooper Shares the Grimiest of Stories From The Set of TCM

For those of you unaware, the great The Texas Chain Saw Massacre recently underwent an extensive make over and was debuted at this year's South by Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, TX. The original 16MM prints were taken and digitally transferred, color corrected and presented in a new and spiffy 4K transfer, as well as the audio, which was remixed into 7.1 Dolby Digital. From everything I've read, it's jaw droppingly beautiful (the film will see a theatrical release this summer). 

Tobe Hooper was at the festival, and according to Bloody Disgusting, he had quite the story to share with the mass of fans who turned out for the screening. TCM is known as one of the grimiest horror films of all time, and a lot of that has to do with the conditions in which it was filmed. In sweltering heat in the middle of a Texas summer, this cast was coated in sticky, home made fake blood and dealing with real rotting meat is one thing, but what Hooper went on to reveal is a whole different thing entirely. Read on for the story: 

The last day of shooting went on for like 26 or 27 hours. Maybe even longer because I had to shoot an actor out. And it was the last prosthetic job on Old Granpa, and he was melting. The lights were so damn strong that the bones [they were using as props] started cooking. So every time I’d say cut everyone would run to the window and puke, throw up. A doctor had to come out and administer dramamine to help settle people’s stomachs. 

This family was into death art, it was a hobby. And we needed animals. The city pound had done their due for the month and they came out with a dump truck, I was in the house I didn’t even know it has happening. Anyway they pulled up about 20 meters from the house and dumped about 500 lbs of dead animals out front. I came out and looked at it and realized it was over the line, that a domestic animal is like a child so seeing all those dead cats and dogs would ruin the movie. So I said, “get rid of these.” And then I went back inside and I was shooting.

The house was tinted because we were shooting the dinner table scene, which takes place at night but we were shooting part of it in the day. But when I told them to get rid of it, someone got 5 gallons of gasoline and poured it over all of those dead animals and set fire to them. I guess they were thinking that they were going to disappear or go up into ashes. The house was bad enough with the bones cooking and everyone throwing up, but then all of this smoke [from burning fur and flesh] started coming in through the house. That’s when everyone really started losing it.

Yup. And believe it or not, this is what I love about horror. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

HORROR ON TV - First Look at Zoe Saldana in ROSEMARY'S BABY!

Well this is both exciting and unexpected as I never would have thought we'd be seeing things so early BUT Entertainment Weekly got their hands on a first look at Zoe Saldana as Rosemary Woodhouse in the televised adaptation of Ira Levin's Rosemary's Baby. I think it looks AWESOME. 

The second photo, especially, seems to hint that the show will be utilizing cinematography of the late 60's which I think is very exciting. The way that shot is set up screams horror of yesteryear, and I'm all about that. It worked beautifully for The House of the Devil, but they would have to commit 100% for it to work. Regardless, I'm getting way ahead of myself, we'll have to wait to see more!

The four hour mini-series that is being produced by Lionsgate TV for NBC is starring Zoe Saldana as Rosemary, and  co-stars Patrick J. Adams, Jason Isaac and Carol Bouquet. 

Rosemary and her husband, Guy, move into a Paris apartment that has a darkly storied past. After finally getting pregnant, she becomes increasingly suspicious that both Guy and their mysterious neighbors have ulterior motives about the future of her child.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

INSIDIOUS Franchise Trudges Along - Leigh Whannell and Angus Sampson Divulge CHAPTER 3 Details at SXSW

It appears that the Insidious franchise is already starting to fall privy to the the tired franchise trope. It appears that actors Patrick Wilson, nor Rose Byrne, will be returning for the newly announced Insidious: Chapter 3. According to Leigh Whannell (writer) and actor Angus Sampson, the film will (which has a tentative release date in spring of 2015) focus on a whole new family and their whacky adventures in The Further.

Matt Donato at We've Got This Covered interviewed the two at South by Southwest in Austin, TX and was able to get some details surrounding the new addition:
WGTC: So you’re both coming back for Insidious 3 I’m assuming, as Specs and Tucker?
Leigh Whannell: Yes, yes, you’ll see some Specs and Tucker. [Laughs]
WGTC: So are we going to go even harder on the comedy, or will there be a step back?
Leigh Whannell: I don’t know, I always thought that a little of Specs and Tucker goes a long way.
Angus Sampson: Agreed.
Leigh Whannell: I think they were always meant to be side characters. Insidious was great fun because I wrote it and I wasn’t even planning to be in it, then all of a sudden I’m like, “Well, she has an assistant.” Then I was like, “Well, I’ll get Angus involved, how great would that be to have my mate come over from Australia!” So we ended up doing this thing and it was so fun. But I wouldn’t want it to be – I think it’s like chocolate. You eat enough and you’re like, “Blah, chocolate!” One piece is enough, but [Specs and Tucker] will be back and I’d like to do something different with them, you know?
WGTC: So my other question of course deals with the ending of Insidious Chapter 2, when Lin Shaye’s character sees something, and she gasps right before cutting to black. Did she see something from her past? A future demon? Where is Insidious 3 going?
Leigh Whannell: I don’t think we’re going to continue with that for the sequel. I can’t say too much, but I think we’re going to go off in a different direction with a new family, and not pick up from where the second one left off. I think Patrick [Wilson] and Rose [Byrne] have had enough punishment – we need to move on and punish someone new. I think that’s probably all Jason Blum would allow me to say, he’s comfortable with me telling people we’re not going with the Lambert family again. It was great to write because it was like writing the first film.
Welp, there you have it. Will Insidious be able to survive without the Lamberts? Franchises certainly lose a huge oomph when this is the case, but only time will tell. There are still plenty of teenage butts to cram in those theater seats. 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

British Found Footage Horror THE BORDERLANDS Promises Pure Demonic Terror

The found footage genre was given a huge kick in the pants when Heather Donahue wept into a camera in 1999's The Blair Witch Project. Since then, countless films and franchises have sprung up utilizing the genre's choice of filmography, some would say to the point of milking it dry. In British director Elliot Goldner's debut, however, there seems to be a certain dread and presence that most of these films has been lacking. In short, there's a trailer and it looks pretty damn solid. 

While there's not much to be found online in terms of info on the film (there's a Facebook), the tag line states that The Borderlands "follows a team of Vatican investigators sent to the British West Country to investigate reports of paranormal activity at a remote church." 

It has been making it's rounds on the festival circuit (most recently FrightFest) to rave reviews, some going so far as to hail it as "the most important found footage film since The Blair Witch Project". I don't have word on an official release date in America as of yet, I will be keeping you posted on that, but it's slated for an April release in the UK. 

I have to say, I'm excited about this one. The last time I was excited about a found footage horror film was the release of the first Paranormal Activity film which put such a sour taste in my mouth I've had trouble dealing with the genre since, minus the exception of the V/H/S franchise. Here's to hoping this one changes my mind a bit. 

Dig on the trailer and poster below!

Monday, March 10, 2014


As human beings, we are all entitled to make mistakes. They happen, and we shouldn't be shunned for them. Right?

I love, love, love French horror and for some unknown reason, I have yet to look deeper into this film until now. There's a certain way that French directors handle their films, they treat horror as a veritable art form (the way it should be treated everywhere) and it really shows. Even when they do a straight forward, if you can call it that, slasher flick everything is more stylized and much more though provoking than what you would traditionally expect. Case and point: the trailer for Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo's (Inside, Livide) latest film, Among the Living or Aux Yeux des Vivants.

In this Texas Chain Saw Massacre, IT hybrid “Youngsters, Victor, Dan and Tom skip school to wander around an abandoned movie set. They stumble upon a horrific vision : a woman in chains is dragged through the field by a man wearing a clown mask. The masked man catches a glimpse of the boys, who scramble to run away. But, before they can escape, they see something which has been hidden for years, something they were not meant to see. Terrified of having been seen by the masked man, the boys try to alert the police. Unfortunately, their past record of unruly behavior discredits them and the police do not follow up on their tipoff. That night someone breaks into their homes, seeking to eliminate them…one after another… They are going to meet Klarence…

So this one has been hotly anticipated for what appears to be months and I have been none the wiser until now. I feel stupid. Regardless, enjoy the (now old) sales art from Bloody Disgusting and please indulge in this fantastic trailer. I've already watched it a good 3 times. About to be four. And then probably five.

Friday, March 7, 2014

THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE Gets Restored For Summer Theatrical Release!

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is one of the top tier horror films in my life. There is no one single film that turned me onto the genre; it was a combined effort in which TCM played an integral part. It showed me the terror beyond Satan, ghosties and ghouls; it showed me the very real terror of the atrocities that human beings are capable of. 

Yesterday news broke that, in honor of the films 40th anniversary, the original 16mm film that it was shot on has been transferred to a beautiful 4K scan. Taking a staggering 5 months, of 40-hour workweeks, to complete the restoration, Boris Seagraves (engineer at NOLO) stated, “This film probably needed the most restoration of any project we’ve done.

It was originally filmed on 16mm film, which was not exactly the best quality of film at the time, and also meant that there was no negative. The result was hodge podge of rough splices, dirt spots, scratches and film stains. Seagraves went on to say, “There were hundreds, if not thousands, of instances where you’d find a splice mark cooked into the middle of a frame. Some frames would have close to two hundred dirt events on them. We also spent a lot of time stabilizing the image. When doing a digital scan of a conformed 16mm print with a splice at every cut, it can be tough to achieve the high standards we all aspire to in the era of digital cinema. What might have passed as acceptable in the 70′s looks jarring now. So we worked hard to smooth out the tremors that almost inevitably occur when scanning this type of film element. There were tears in the film that we had to digitally rebuild from adjacent frames. There were tens of thousands of things we were dealing with."

 Tobe Hooper, director of TCM, was heavily involved in not only the video restoration but the audio as well. I am much more excited about this aspect than that of the video, however Hooper says that the film has never looked better: “I haven’t seen The Texas Chain Saw Massacre on the big screen for many, many years. This 40th anniversary restoration is absolutely the best the film has ever looked. The color and clarity is spectacular, displaying visual details in the film that were never before perceptible. The newly remastered 7.1 soundtrack breathes new life and energy into the film. I am very much looking forward to audiences experiencing this film as they never have before.

The prospect of seeing this film on the big screen for the first time, as always, excites me like no other. There is something about this film that will also send a tickle of excitement down my spine. I don't think I'll ever forget how excited I was when I held that VHS in my hands for the first time; it was this taboo thing that I had heard of, this film that shocked the world. To be completely honest, I don't know how I feel about the restoration of the video. Part of what makes this film are all those dirt spots and scratches and inconsistencies. It makes the film seem quasi-voyeuristic, like Leatherface himself spliced the film together as a deranged monument to his family. At the same time, it's very exciting to know that steps are being made to ensure that this film is never lost with time. I couldn't be more excited about the audio restoration though. That makes a horror film, and one like this in 7.1 surround sound in a crowded movie theater sounds like heaven.

The restoration will premiere at this years SXSW Film Festival, and news of the theatrical release this summer will break in the coming months.