The Scarlet Gospels by Clive Barker (2015)

•March 2, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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This has been one of the most hotly anticipated books of this year among horror fans.  Clive Barker returns to the character that put him on the map, the cenobite Pinhead, who was made iconic in the film Hellraiser, which was adapted from Barker’s novella The Hellbound Heart.  It seems like Clive has been talking about returning to that character for the past twenty years.  The concept of the book has been described by it’s creator as being about Pinhead, who he really is, where he comes from, his real name, and his eventual destruction at the hands of Barker’s regular character Harry D’Amour.  One of D’Amour’s stories was also made into a film in 1995’s Lord of Illusions.  The book seems like a dream come true for Barker fans as the ideas on display tie a lot of his works together, especially The Books of the Art series that D’Amour appears in. Continue reading ‘The Scarlet Gospels by Clive Barker (2015)’

Witching and Bitching (2013)

•February 21, 2015 • 1 Comment

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Alex de La Iglesia is fast becoming one of my favorite filmmakers.  After having seen his remarkable Here Comes the Devil and the flawed but interesting The Last Circus in years past at the Milwaukee Film Festival, it was a given that I’d be seeing Witching and Bitching at last years same event.  My fiancee was even able to score free tickets to the event courtesy of the great people at Milwaukee Movie Talk for a midnight showing of the event on a Saturday. Continue reading ‘Witching and Bitching (2013)’

The Town that Dreaded Sundown (2014)

•February 4, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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The Phantom killer once again strikes old-school fear into Texarkana in this meta remake/sequel of the 1976 film of the same name.  The 1976 version of The Town that Dreaded Sundown is a film that I’ve tried to watch more than a few times (more than a few drunk) and I just couldn’t get into it.  I normally dig on cult flicks, but I just wasn’t feeling the original due to a lack of it being an unfocused mess of a film that isn’t scary or entertaining in any way at all. As with most films based on a true story (yes this is actually a true story) the creators play fast and loose with quite a bit of the facts concerning the story of the Phantom Killer, who claimed eight lives between the months of February and May of 1976.  Despite the film not being very good (or perhaps because of) it does has a cult following, and evidently part of it’s fan base is one Ryan Murphy — yes, the Ryan Murphy who created American Horror Story series, and the more terrifying Glee. Continue reading ‘The Town that Dreaded Sundown (2014)’

Rats: Night of Terror (1984)

•January 31, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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I hate to be mean but the title of this film gives away it’s quality.  Directed by “legendary” horror director Bruno Mattei, this movie focuses on a group of survivors trying to make ends meet after a nuclear holocaust that is supposed to happen sometime this year (2015).  You see, after the holocaust, humanity separated into two classes: the elite, who live below ground, and the common people, who live above ground.   Yes, it would make more sense if their locations were inverted, but such is the logic of this film. Continue reading ‘Rats: Night of Terror (1984)’

“The Fifty Year Sword” by Mark Z. Danielewski (2005, 2012)

•January 10, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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Those of you who know me fairly well know my love for House of Leaves, the debut novel by Mark Z. Danielewski (and a book I eventually plan to re-read and review/write out all my thoughts on at some point in the near future). Danielewski is a writer who likes to challenge the reader. His books are intricately designed to invite re-reading to discover hidden gems, and as much as I loved his debut his second work, Only Revolutions is one I just could not get into. Continue reading ‘“The Fifty Year Sword” by Mark Z. Danielewski (2005, 2012)’

It by Stephen King (1986)

•January 7, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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When I was a kid, my mom and sister were big Stephen King fans.  I remember my sister being a part of the Stephen King book club (those commercials for it used to freak me out).  The cover art for the books were amazing (that first edition Gunslinger is on point), but the most intriguing was the cover for It with a clawed green hand reaching up from a sewer grate for the paper-mache boat.  They both read the book shortly after it’s release, and I remember thinking how good the book must have been.  Flash forward two to three years and the TV mini-series aired starring Tim Curry in an iconic role as Pennywise and ruined many childhoods. Continue reading ‘It by Stephen King (1986)’

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

•January 3, 2015 • 4 Comments

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After my father died, my mother and I made it a ritual to go see a movie every Christmas, and on December 25, 2001, we saw one of the best Christmas releases ever.  It was of course, Lord of the Rings:  The Fellowship of the Rings.  It was a brilliant, dark, and beautiful film that instantly captured our imaginations and led us to reading the books.  The following two years, I and my family were equally excited for the next two films in the series.  And it was very sad when the trilogy came to a close, but what a great time it was.  Now, fourteen years later, we have the final release of the Hobbit trilogy.  I happened to be home for the holidays and for the sake of tradition to both our Christmas ritual and obligation to this series, we went to go see the final chapter. Continue reading ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)’

 
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