Monday, 24 April 2017

BALLAD IN BLOOD (2016)


This one came with high expectations considering director Ruggero Deodoto whom many reader will know as respsonsible for directing one of the most iconic horror films of all time, "Cannibal Holocaust". The film starts out with lots of exploitative female nudity (I would expect no less...) and descends into an orgy of early 20 something sex and drug abuse.... some connections can be found as it explores the darker side of human nature and in this case it's a decidedly more sexual take on that.... and there's a fair bit of the 'found footage' thing going on...  but it borders on porn rather than the gore we loved "Cannibal Holocaust" for ..... the similarities don't end there though..... this film is a modern, voyueristic and rather disturbing look into a frat house style accommodation in Europe, Italy to be precise, where swinging and drug taking is a regular occurrence (well more the norm in this case)  and through the haze of sexual decadence a young red haired girl turns up dead in the groups apartment, and no-one can remember how it happened until footage of the party shows up.


The survivors of previous nights debauchery find the phone and computer of the deceased and recount the nights events and the painful realisation of the previous nights events come back to haunt them bit by bit. A wild party that none of them can remember cuts in an out the friends trying to dispose of the body whilst coming to grips with what just happened.

I'm not sure how I feel about it but it left me polarised in a similar way to what 'cannibal holocaust' did but in a much different way. It highlights just how crappy humans can be to each other in a similar way to what "cannibal holocaust" did and leaves the viewer with the same dirty feelings afterwards.

As a film it is very well shot though it can be a bit disjointed if you're not paying attention to when the film cuts in and out of past footage and current timelines, but if you can deal with that its a hard hitting and unnerving watch on a few levels, I wouldn't say it would go down as a classic by any stretch but more than worthy of a watch once.

Anyway you guys can judge for yourself:




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Friday, 21 April 2017

SATANS SCHOOL FOR GIRLS (1973)

This ones not too bad really its an early effort from Aaron Spelling (who went on to do Beverly Hills 90210). I guess I expected something a little more in the exploitation genre with a title like that but after the initial disappointment it panned out to be a reasonably cool little watch. It has that old time horror / thriller feel and while it has no real gore/horror factor its a decent way to pass a couple hours, one you can watch with your non-horror minded friends.

The plot focuses in on Elizabeth who after finding her sister hanging as the result of an apparent suicide. Not convinced of the police reaction and findings of the case Elizabeth joins the "Salem  Academy" which her sister attended previously to find answers. Upon further investigation Elizabeth and their friends uncover tales of historical "Witch Hangings" and other mysterious goings on in the underbelly of the school, leading to the discovery of a satanic cult under there.

While not being a hugely gripping watch, or a huge budget feature (I believe it was made for TV) its something to do and worth watching once, and beats watching most shows on television.

Interesting note, the film was remade in 2000 and starring Shannon Doherty and to be honest I find this a much easier watch. Not in the least part because I think miss Doherty is a babe. Tho not directed by Spelling it does have a very 90210 / The Craft type feel to it  but that just depends on your tastes I guess. The two movies do have a fair amount of differences in the plot so there's probably no point going into too much detail about both films but they follow a central thread as outlined above.

Overall I think the 2000 remake of this one is a more entertaining watch so if you're going to watch only one I'd personally choose the remake but I've listed both of them below which are available for streaming from youtube

the 1973 version:


and the 2000 version:



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Thursday, 13 April 2017

NIGHTBREED (1990)


The plot within Nightbreed is a resonably complex one, it  focuses in on Boone, a young man who is experiencing what he thinks are delusional dreams about a mythical place called Midian, the vunerable Boone is then heavily drugged and misled by his psychiatrist Decker into thinking he is responsible a series of murders that Decker himself has committed. He is then institutionalised and meets a fellow inmate who shares his 'delusions'  and the two venture into a cemetary called 'Midian' which is indeed hosting a clan of beings from an ancient race who shun the light and dwell in secrecy under the secluded cemetery. Boon is then bitten by one of the 'nightbreed' who inhabit the underground lair and given the gift of immortality which works out well for him because the psychiatrist who has stitched him up with the murder rap has him killed by the local police force. Boon then rises from the dead and flees the morgue to seek his own kind amongst the underground caverns of Midian only to be attacked by Decker and the local police force. There's a deeper subplot as well involving Boone and his girlfriend Lori who tracks the 'decased but missing' Boon from the morgue to the Cemetary and wants to be part of his world. It's a fairly complex film and holds up to multiple viewings in which finer points of the story come to light as well.

I understand this didn't do too well at the box office but I think its a great film and the creature effects are stunning the attention to detail is unbelievable. Except for a few places still holds up well even to today against the CGI which has taken over a lot of bigger budget movies. This is all practical effects (except for a couple of obvious exceptions) and serves to bring Clive Barkers magical underworld imagery to life rather well, and creates a captivating atmosphere with plenty of fantasy and occult imagery to keep everyone enjoying this movie!

I would recommend it to anyone with an interest in horror, the occult, or more specifically Clive's Claim to fame series "Hellraiser" .... The "Nightbreed" in this film remind me a lot of the Cenobites and have similar captivating personalites of their own.

I was unable to find a watchable version of this on youtube... but again well worth paying for if you can download it or find it somewhere to buy a physical copy!

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Saturday, 8 April 2017

ALIEN APOCALYPSE (2005)



One of horror legend Bruce Campbell's lesser known works. Its a Sci-Fi film firmly rooted in the B Grade Category. It isn't a bad film perse but can't tell if it was serious attempt at science fiction or a parody of the old alien films. (as the aliens look really cheap and fake)

The film centres around a small team of astronauts led by Dr. Hood (Campbell) who were sent on a 40 year space probe mission and on their return to Earth find the planet taken over by insect like aliens. Its not that bad a movie actually and quite watchable.... But it makes me wonder why Bruce Campbell agreed to be in the film as I'm sure he could have been doing better things. Even though he did seem to vanish for a while after Evil Dead 3.

Anyway, back to the film... after landing back on Earth the team find themselves promptly captured by the alien overlords that have since taken over Earth to harvest the planet for its wood, to send back their own planet. Hood and one of his team manage to escape the alien labour camp and flee to the hills where they meet a few of the last remaining free humans and hatch a plan to free Earth from the space insects.

While its far from being a masterpiece, aside from a few dumb moments it's actually quite watchable and the violence / gore factor is pretty low, so you can watch it with children who are partial to a bit of low level horror



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Thursday, 6 April 2017

SINISTER (2012)

This is a pretty cool little affair directed by the same guys that brought you "Paranormal Activity" so  you know its going to be good.

The plot centres around a true crime author Ellison (Ethan Hawke)  who is under pressure both financially and from the press to release a good book before his career goes down the toilet. He and his family  move to the country and buy a big old house and start a new life which is of course, as fate would have it is hiding some nasty little secrets. Including the hanging murder of a family in their backyard. Upon digging through the attic Ellison finds some stored footage from across the years depicting entire families getting slaughtered. Upon further investigation Ellison finds some childrens illustrations in the attic depicting the killings with a common thread featuring a "Mr. Boogie"

Who is this "Mr Boogie"? How is he linked to all these murders? The Answer is much stranger than just a standard run of the mill serial killer / slasher flick.... and has roots in ancient pagan mythology. But sadly I will have to leave it at that, and not give away much more than that as not to ruin your enjoyment of this film .... except to say that it is an enthralling watch and well worth any horror fans time to check it out.

The film has a genuinely creepy air  about it and does keep the suspense high, with high impact 'scare' scenes expertly placed. As a seasoned fan of the genre it takes a lot to genuinely creep me out ... and I'm happy to say this film crept me out big time, the kind of creep out that can hit on the psychological level,  and it kept me right on the edge of my seat for the whole duration of the film! Well done guys!

If you can't find the physical DVD its available on view on demand on you tube and if you're going to pay to watch a film online this one is well worth it!

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Saturday, 1 April 2017

DIARY OF A CANNIBAL (2006)


Diary of a Cannibal - reviewed at http://www.gorenography.comI have to say this is a pretty 'out there' concept for a film. It centres around a young couple that meet on the internet and fall in love. The male in the relationship obviously has some deep psychological issues and need for love (probably attributable to his mother) and Noelle the female still isn't right after the death of her father in her childhood, so I guess between the two of them and their mental malfunctions, the pair make a well matched couple.  At some point he asks his new found lady love to kill him and eat him. She of course refuses but later reconsiders and agrees to his request.

This film starts out a little slow with a series of flash backs with a badly injured Noelle being interrogated by the police about the grizzly death. And works backwards from there. It's a novel way to tell a tale I guess, but honestly it gets a bit boring and confusing not long into the movie. A lot of random footage and blurry flash back vision make this rather painful to watch. It watches kind of like a dream sequence / home made snuff film, maybe that was the intent? I'm not really sure. Plot wise its a little thin, and I've more or less disclosed the whole story anyway

I will go as far as to say it doesn't seem to follow any logical sequence at all, and many of the sequences are repeated..... maybe it is intended to be watched on drugs? If someone reading this wants to get really wasted and watch this one and report back to me if makes more sense on mind altering substances I'd like some feedback on that. I'm not sure what the director of this was aiming for but for me it fell short of the mark, well short, which is  a shame because it is a fairly morbid concept behind the film and I think had it been done a little better could have been something quite...  well not excellent, but at least a lot more captivating.

Overall it doesn't suck too bad, but the movie itself is a tale of squandered potential.....



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Monday, 27 March 2017

DIARY OF A MADMAN (1963)



To be honest I hadn't heard of this film, I was really just looking for "Ozzy Osbourne" songs to listen to on youtube, but since this one came up in my search results I thought I'd give it a shot.... And why not? I quite like what little I've seen of Vincent Price films. While this one may or may not be considered "Horror" by todays standards, it is a pretty cool little viewing experience....... hardened gore fiends may or may not dig this as it does not have any real horror or violence (well very little violence) but touches on darker themes in a similar way to what Alfred Hitchcock did with his movies. Its also a movie that you can watch if you've got kids around without fear of scarring them for life which can be a good thing too for the parents out there. "The most terrifying motion picture ever created?" I think not, but still a great film.

Starring Vincent price as Simon the magistrate who prior to his death is possessed by an evil spirit, which attaches itself to him from a meeting with a deranged killer. Simon rekindles an interest in sculpture to quell the bad dreams. The subject of his artistic musings, Odette takes a shining to him and the pair decide to get married but the evil spirit that is trying to take a hold of Simon is getting stronger and this is where the things gets strange

The dialogue is a charming old world style affair and the plot holds water rather well, this is a well shot and executed film and quite captivating.

Anyway you guys can see for yourself below:


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