Archive for category: Horror

Review: Sssssss

14 October, 2014 (08:20) | by Robert C. Cumbow, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Robert C. Cumbow

[Originally published in Movietone News 43, September 1975] Like Bug, its current traveling companion, Sssssss (which made the rounds as a top feature in 1973) is a preposterous horror film that never quite gets itself organized enough to make you want to suspend that old disbelief. But it is definitely the better half of the […]

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‘Horrors of the Black Museum': Herman Cohen’s Lurid Horror with a British Accent

13 October, 2014 (05:52) | by Sean Axmaker, Essays, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Hammer wasn’t the only studio in Britain mining the vein of horror films that made them such attractive imports for American theaters. Before Amicus and Trigon arose in the 1960s, American producer Herman Cohen made a deal with British studio Anglo-Amalgamated to produce a pair of lurid horrors with British accents. Horrors of the Black […]

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Videophiled Binge Watch: ‘Penny Dreadful’ and more horror TV

12 October, 2014 (15:14) | Blu-ray, by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Horror, Television | By: Sean Axmaker

Let’s catch up on a month of TV releases. And as Halloween is coming, let’s begin with some shows from the dark side. Penny Dreadful: Season One (CBS, Blu-ray, DVD) takes a premise similar to the graphic novel The League of Extraordinary Gentleman: the characters and supernatural beings of 19th century horror literature all exist […]

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Review: ‘Bug’

28 September, 2014 (13:16) | by Robert C. Cumbow, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

[Originally published in Movietone News 43, September 1975] Because it tries to become a new film every 15 or 20 minutes, Bug seems about three times as long as its hour-and-a-half. The effect is, I am sure, the unintended result of both cast’s and crew’s having no idea at all what they wanted to do […]

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Film Review: ‘Tusk’

19 September, 2014 (08:23) | by Andrew Wright, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Kevin Smith’s 1994 debut Clerks found the filmmaker already firmly intertwined with his narrative, with the movie’s hilarity bolstered by the writer/director’s profane stories about his struggles getting the damn thing made in the first place. What first seemed like charming promotion quickly grew into a canny empire, as each subsequent project emerged accompanied by […]

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Blu-ray: ‘Countess Dracula’

17 September, 2014 (20:15) | Blu-ray, by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Hammer Studios struggled to remain relevant in the seventies as their lurid Gothic style was upstaged by the transgressive horrors in films like Night of Living Dead, Rosemary’s Baby, and The Witchfinder General, which pushed the boundaries of movie conventions, screen violence, and subject matter. Their answer was to simply push their natural tendencies in […]

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Film Review: ‘The Strange Color of Your Body’s Tears’

4 September, 2014 (08:12) | by Robert Horton, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Robert Horton

The Belgian writer/director team Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani are obsessed with the 1970s Italian horror subgenre known as giallo. Their 2010 Amer was a cool one-off, a clever compendium of lovingly imitated giallo motifs that also created a lush experience in and of itself. Except it wasn’t a one-off, because here’s another excursion into […]

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Videophiled: Jim Jarmusch’s vampire ‘Lovers’ and ‘A Brony Tale’

19 August, 2014 (12:46) | Blu-ray, by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Only Lovers Left Alive (Sony, Blu-ray, DVD, VOD) is the richest film that Jim Jarmusch has made in some time. Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston are the eternal lovers Eve and Adam, vampire soulmates who have become disenchanted with a world that the zombie inhabitants (their word for humans) are blithely poisoning. They are sophisticates, […]

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Larry Fessenden: Taking Genre Seriously

13 August, 2014 (10:05) | by Sean Axmaker, Horror, Interviews | By: Sean Axmaker

There’s no shortage of independent horror filmmakers but Larry Fessenden is the filmmaker who puts the emphasis on the “indie” part of the equation. As a writer/director, he’s take the classic horror genres and turned them inside out. No Telling was his take on Frankenstein as an environmental drama, Habit, a vampire story set in […]

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Review: ‘Captain Kronos – Vampire Hunter’

14 July, 2014 (11:34) | by Ken Eisler, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Movietone News contributor

[Originally published in Movietone News 46, December 1975] Brian Clemens did some of the funniest, spiffiest episodes of the delightful British TV series The Avengers. In this first feature film, an intermittently serious, Hammer-produced exploration of horror flick conventions, he tracks and pans through the woods, around carefully lit and furnished interiors, like an old […]

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Blu-ray: ‘Godzilla vs. Hedorah’

15 June, 2014 (07:16) | Blu-ray, by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Godzilla, the biggest star of Japan’s giant monster craze of the 1960s, went through an interesting evolution since his debut in the 1954 Godzilla, a dark nuclear parable in a solemn key featuring a giant rampaging lizard who descends upon Tokyo like a biblical curse with attitude. Godzilla’s devastating rampage and radioactive breath leaves behind […]

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DVD: ‘The Beast with Five Fingers’

25 May, 2014 (12:52) | by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

“Your flesh will creep… at the hand that crawls!” promises the poster for the 1948 The Beast with Five Fingers, a Warner Bros. production that, modest by studio standards, is one of the classier horror films of its day. Once a thriving genre, horror films had largely slipped into the B-movie units of the Hollywood […]

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Videophiled: 11 Classic ‘Godzilla’ Romps Across Three Decades

18 May, 2014 (08:06) | by Sean Axmaker, Film Reviews, Horror, Science Fiction | By: Sean Axmaker

Remakes have a tendency to revive interest in the originals, at least as far as the studios are concerned. They roll out new editions rolling on disc and digital streams in anticipation of interest and the new Godzilla has no shortage of ancestors: 28 Japanese Godzilla features (and one American film that is best not […]

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DVD: ‘Dante’s Inferno’

8 May, 2014 (19:57) | by Sean Axmaker, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Dante’s Inferno, the 1935 spectacle of destructive greed and carnival ballyhoo, opens on flames. It’s not hellfire but the boiler-room furnaces of an ocean liner where Jim Carter (Spencer Tracy) is ostensibly a stoker, though he manages to get out of work with a litany of manufactured injuries before he’s tossed out. He’s a born […]

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Videophiled Classic: Friedkin’s ‘Sorcerer’ Restored on Blu, Claire Denis’ ‘Trouble Every Day’ Debuts on DVD

1 May, 2014 (18:23) | Animation, by Sean Axmaker, DVD, Film Reviews, Horror | By: Sean Axmaker

Sorcerer (Warner, Blu-ray, DVD) – William Friedkin spent years trying to untangle the rights to his 1977 film, an expensive dream project that he made after hitting it big with The French Connection and The Exorcist, and after suing to force the studios to clear up the legal morass he supervised a restoration, mastered from […]

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