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Showing posts from January, 2015

American Horror Story: Freak Show ~ Season Review

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Hit shows have greats odds against them. They have to maintain a fresh appeal, keep fans happy, find new audiences, and explore new territory. American Horror Story reboots each season with a self-contained story and new characters so the fresh part is easy. But dealing with fans is not. Since the brilliant first season viewer expectations seem to have spiraled out of control. It doesn’t help that months of internet speculation, hidden clues in episodes, and unofficial fan art fuel the fire. When it was announced that Season 4 would have a carnival theme, I immediately thought of scary clowns in the sewer, Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes, and the endless haunted carnival attractions at Halloween. I admit that I had a difficult time keeping my own expectations in check, so perhaps that's why Freak Show seems like an overall disappointment. Or maybe it was the hodgepodge approach of throwing everything on the wall to see what sticks. There were so many characters,

Favorite Scary Movies of 2014

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It's that time of the year to recap my favorite films from 2014. I wouldn't necessarily call this the best "horror" movies of the year, although there's a strong component of frightful stuff. As a fervent fan of the genre, I believe horror resides in many realms from family to science fiction to drama movies. Horror's many sub genres is what makes it so unique as a category and I enjoy reveling in it's many facets. Below is a list of my favorite Scary Movies of 2014. Unfortunately there's always more movies than time, so I've also included a list of some favorites praised throughout the community – and I will see at some point in 2015! Mr. Babadook fan art from Eemeling ! 1. The Babadook This Australian film has done what few could do: tell an original story in a compelling way with the perfect amount of surprise, tension, and emotional impact. This is a truly frightening film that takes one back to childhood fears of the dark, and parents

Seth Grahame-Smith on Beetlejuice 2, Gremlins, IT, and more

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The January 23 issue of Entertainment Weekly has a great feature on writer  Seth Grahame-Smith . If the name is not familiar, he's the author of the brilliant mash-ups  Pride and Prejudice and Zombies , and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.  He's just released a sequel to the Lincoln novel titled  The Last Vampire Hunter which follows a rebellious vampire from the first book through 1963. (See the book trailer below.) Grahame-Smith is also producing, screenwriting and even directing a slate of films sure to interest any scary movie lover. Here's a quick recap: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies On the movie front, his film-adaptation of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is in post-production and getting a 2015 release. It's produced by Natalie Portman who was originally slated to star as the formidable Elizabeth Bennet. Beetlejuice 2 Grahame-Smith first worked with Tim Burton on the screenplay for Dark Shadows and has been tapped to write the screenplay for Beet

The Woman in Black 2: Review

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I have a soft spot for period horror movies, especially since they often feature old haunted houses and restless spirits. Add an English accent and it practically earns a free pass. That said, The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death is a good but not great follow-up to the original film. This is a beautifully filmed, unnerving, and spooky return to Eel Marsh House but unfortunately lacks the gravitas, pace, and a compelling story to satisfy expectations. The actors are charming and the performances are solid, yet it was difficult to be fully invested in the lead characters plight. The writing left their actions and many unnecessary backstories stranded with too many leaps in reason and direction. Very little made sense including what may have been a reveal in the third act. Ultimately the storytelling ends up being as murky as the waters that fill the causeway. It was clever to set this film 40 years after the first and use WWII as the backdrop. There was a possibility to explore

2015 Horror Movie Preview

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Happy New Year! With the start of the new year comes the prospect of great new horror movies – and this year looks to be full of high-profiles remakes/reboots, some long-awaited sequels, and new films from Guillermo del Toro, Michael Dougherty, James Wan, Kevin Smith, Rob Zombie... and M. Night Shayamalan? Really?! The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death (January 2) Set 40 years after the first film, a group of children are evacuated from London during WWII to the desolate Eel Marsh House. [Rec 4] Apocalypse (January 2, VOD) The final in the Spanish "trilogy" concludes the story from [Rec 2] as the virus-afflicted tv reporter leaves the ravaged building in Barcelona to a remote quarantine facility. The Vatican Tapes (February 27) An ordinary girl begins to have devastating effects on anyone close to her from serious injury to death. After a local priest believes she is possessed Vatican experts are called in to face a terror beyond their experience. Paranormal Act