Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Feb 26, 2008 - New horror on DVD today - Forget "30 Days of Night", pick up the horror flicks starring porn stars...

I've decided, once again, to stop covering the old films that are getting rereleases, as well as films that just don't interest me. If there's something old that happens to interest me, sure... I'll write about it, but I'm not going to write about films like the "Tod Slaughter Triple Feature" with three films, dating from 1935 - 1940 or films that I've never seen, that look boring and have a terrible rating. I want to cover horror movies starring porn stars, like "The Sick & Twisted Horror of Joanna Angel" and "The Rage".

The Rage actually ran the festival circuit in 2006 and screened at Screamfest, Fantasia Film Festival, Sitges Film Festival, Brussels Festival of Fantastic Film, Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival and, of course, the Pifan Korea Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival. It stars Andrew Divoff, who you probably remember as The Djinn from the "Wishmaster" franchise or as Mikhail Bakunin from "Lost", if you're into that little show... it also stars semi porn star Erin Brown, who's turned scream queen as of late, as she's been in tons of low-budget horror, such as "Splatter Beach" and "Shock-O-Rama", as well as semi-erotica like "Bikini Girls on Dinosaur Planet" and "The Lord of the G-Strings: The Femaleship of the String" ...and she played Dildo Saggins like Deniro played Bickle. "The Rage" was directed by Robert Kurtzman, who got his start in make-up and special effects, having worked on tons of horror classics, such as "A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Dream Child", "Bride of Re-Animator", "Army of Darkness" and piles upon piles more... until he switched to directing and made "The Demolitionist" in 1995 and "Wishmaster" in 1997. It would be ten years before he would sit in the director's chair again, when he came out with "Buried Alive" and, after that... "The Rage". "The Rage" was shot on the relatively low-budget of $2Million in and around the town of Crestlin, OH. It's about a mad scientist, disillusioned with capitalist society, who creates a virus that's designed to make people rage with anger. The experiments don't go as planned, the infected victims escape, vultures eat the remains and they, too, become out of control with rage, but gain the compulsion to eat human flesh. Reviews are good, check it out.

I'm sure you're all well aware of 30 Days of Night, the vampire film based on the graphic novel. So, what can I say that you don't know? It was released in 2,855 theaters in North America on Oct 19, 2007. It grossed $15,951,902 in its opening weekend, placing it first in the box office and went on to gross over $70Million worldwide. It was directed by David Slade, who really hadn't done much before "30 Days". He's feature length, directorial debut was "Hard Candy" in 2005, but prior to that it was music video's and "Do Geese See God?". Up next for him is "Unthinkable", a psychological thriller centred around the interrogation of a man suspected of knowing the location of three nuclear weapons set to detonate in the U.S. I had a few issues with "30 Days of Night" and it's gapping plot flaws and logistical problems, but it was still a decent flick. It's just that when you've got a budget like that and hype like that, you better deliver 100% and... it really didn't.

Them (a.k.a. Ils) is, supposedly, based on true events... but, what isn't these days? I heard "Cloverfield" and "Diary of the Dead" were based on true events. This isn't a 'found footage' film, but it is a French film, in French, with English subtitles. So, it's footage probably isn't going to be found in my DVD player. It's about a couple who have recently moved to this rural part of Romania and are awakened in the middle of the night by a series of disturbing noises. They investigate, only to find their car being stolen. Attempts to report the crime to the local police are unsuccessful and soon the couple realizes that the mysterious figures have returned... and are trying to enter their house. It's been well received internationally, has been called "77 minutes of gloriously maintained tension" and now "the film that terrified Europe has come to America". At absolute worst, it's only 77 minutes, so if it sucks... you don't have to wait long.

Nature Morte is a french artists term for still life, but it literally translates as Dead Nature. A pshycholigal thriller from writer/director Paul Burrows, "Nature Morte" was filmed on location in Thailand, France and the UK with an international cast. It's about the strange case of ten beautiful paintings, ten victims of a deranged serial killer and the suicide of a brilliant painter being investigated by an American art guru who gets drawn into a world of lust and depravity, where more paintings begin to surface and another artist begins to kill in order to create. Just becuase this one's about a French artist and the last movie was in French, don't fret... this one's in English and the reviews are fantastic... but expect an artsy horror.

The Sick & Twisted Horror Of Joanna Angel is a collaboration between Joanna Angel and horror director Doug Sakmann, who brought us "Punk Rock Holocaust". This release collects two 'absolutely disgusting horror flicks', "Re-Penetrator" and "XXXorcist" in their unrated versions. Joanna Angel is, well... a porn star. Doug Sakmann, well... came from Troma. It's brought to you by HALO-8 Entertainment, a production/distribution company specializing in 'dangerous indie films and alt-culture videos'. Troma meets porn - expect laughs, gross-outs, gore and lots of nudity and... a bit more nudity.

Dark Chamber was originally called "Under Surveillance" and did the festival circuit back in 2006. It actually won best suspense feature at the Cleveland Indie Gathering, best dramatic feature at the Long Island Film Festival, as well as a few other awards and is the only feature that director, Dave Campfield, has under his belt. It's about a guy who moves back into his Dad's apartment and finds that the victim of a cult killing turns up on his property, which gets him increasingly suspicious of his new housemates. A buddy of his talks him into using pinhole surveillance cameras on the apartment residents, but the deeper he and his friend dig, the more they put their own lives in danger.

I'm not sure I'm going to do Winterbeast as much justice as this description - "Welcome to the Wild Goose Lodge... where forest rangers battle living totem poles, tree monsters, Indian mummies, and the legendary Winterbeast! Female campers fight for their lives as the twisted lodge owner, Mr. Sheldon, carries out his bizarre rituals designed to unleash a parade of nightmare demons on an unsuspecting mountain town. Filled with stop-motion animated creatures, over-the-top performances, and a crazed fever-dream plot, this unique 1980's low budget feature is now considered a cult-classic by a whole new generation of fans. It's one movie that really must be seen to be believed!" ...and if that's your thing, have at it. Actually, I may have to check this one out.

Now, I see the link to New York City Horror Film Festival DVD on Amazon, but I can't find out what the hell it is? The New York City Horror Film Festival takes place in NYC for a week, each October. You can check out my description of it on our Horror Film Festival links... I'll put up the product link to it, but I really have no idea what this is. If you know, email me.

New on DVD today:

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