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'Insidious: Chapter 3' releases this Summer

by Seth Metoyer

I wasn't a huge fan of Insidious: Chapter 2 but my interest is piqued for the upcoming Chapter 3 release, which is a prequel. The tagline is "The Darkest Chapter Goes Back to The beginning".

Focus Features will unleash the ghostly beast of Insidious: Chapter 3 into theaters nationwide on June 5, 2015.

The film is written and directed by Leigh Whannell (SAW, Insidious).

Check out the details below and expect the first trailer to drop tomorrow night. A larger version of the poster is also under the synopsis.

About Insidious: Chapter 3
Written and Directed by Leigh Whannell

Starring Dermot Mulroney, Stefanie Scott, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell, Lin Shaye

The newest chapter in the terrifying horror series is written and directed by franchise co-creator Leigh Whannell.

This chilling prequel, set before the haunting of the Lambert family, reveals how gifted psychic Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) reluctantly agrees to use her ability to contact the dead in order to help a teenage girl (Stefanie Scott) who has been targeted by a dangerous supernatural entity.

Nymph aka 'Killer Mermaid' (2014) review

Nymph PosterReviewed by Kevin Scott

Nymph (2014)
Written by: Marko Backovic, Barry Keating, Milan Konjevic
Directed by: Milan Todorovic
Cast: Kristina Klebe (Kelly), Franco Nero (Niko), Natalie Burn (Lucy), Dragan Micanovic (Boban), Slobodan Stefanovic (Alex), Miodrag Krstovic (The Guardian), Sofija Rajovic (Yasmine)

As you can see from the very challenging names to spell in the cast, this film has an international flair. Some scenes were filmed in Montenegro and some in Serbia. As of this writing, this film is streaming on Netflix under the title “Killer Mermaid”. I tend to gravitate more towards “Nymph”, the films’ original title. It leaves a little more mystique and still lets the film hold on to that exotic flair I eluded to earlier.

If anyone remembers “She Creature”, it involved a killer mermaid as well. That’s the only other film that I know of that can be compared to this one. I liked it a lot, but I gotta tell you, this one may be my new favorite. Two nubile American girls take a trip to Montenegro for a vacation. They have a mutual guy friend there that’s settle in with some nice digs right on the water, and a pretty snazzy boat to go with it. For the most part, the relationship is platonic, however it didn’t used to be, as he had a fling with one of them back when they went to school together. He’s moved on, and has an attractive, but inebriated new girlfriend. Things get a little weird, and awkward, and pretty much stay that way.

Meanwhile, there’s the crazy but lovable guy that spearfishes out of a janky boat, and endears himself to the girls, as delightfully eccentric. Together, they all hatch a plan to visit an isolated and abandoned military base that’s on an island not far from the mainland. When they get there, what they find is much more than just a killer mermaid. Franco Nero has more than just a cameo as a grizzled salty dog that warns them not to go in the first place, and ends up being much more than just the European version of crazy Ralph from “Friday the 13th”. We don’t get a look at the mermaid until a good ways into the film, but it’s worth it. I didn’t mind. When she did show up, she beguiled the men folk with a song singing them to their deaths, and got way uglier the hungrier she got.

'The Lashman' movie review

The LashmanReviewed by Robert J. Thompson II

The Lashman
Written and Directed by Cameron McCasland
Starring Stacey Dixon, Shawn C. Phillips, David Vaughn, Jeremy Jones, and Kaylee Williams

The Lashman has been making it's Festival run for a bit now, and has been getting some love. I will start by saying I wasn't entirely sure what to expect, but I know that the slasher film is my favorite sub-genre of horror, so I was excited to get a chance to check it out.

What McCasland, and Co., have constructed here is every bit a love letter to a specific time period in horror history. Films such as “The Town that Dreaded Sundown”, “Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, and “Friday the 13th” all came to mind, while viewing the movie. I have to admit here and now that this is not my favorite time period for horror. So to say that I can still speak positively of what was done here, is saying something. And I do think positively of the movie.

Everything about the film works to compliment each other, to create a movie that may as well have been shot in 1979. And had there been some more grain, and detail choices, I would have completely bought it was shot in the time frame. In this sense you can tell that those working on the film love this era of the horror genre.

The script is nothing mind-blowing, but it's the basis which the entire thing is built on. And again, is the essence found here that makes the movie work. It fits perfectly in the era, and allows everyone a much easier job in telling that sort of story. The acting works to enhance these aspects as well, and the character archetypes are all here, cliched, and on display.

A lot of people who watch the flick are going to attack certain aspects of it. The audio fluctuates noticeably, at times. The acting can come off 'wooden' at times. The shots, and editing, jump and are awkward. Little 'goofs' stick out. So on, so forth. But the fact is, a lot of it comes off one-hundred percent intentional. They're only problems because of what we've come to expect from the average film. What you have to realize is this movie wasn't made for the fans of 'Saw', or 'Scream', or even 'A Nightmare on Elm Street'. It's a love letter to an era of horror film before all of those. And in that respect, I have nothing but compliments for it. It's perfectly imperfect in every aspect.

'Spring' Movie Review

SpringReviewed by Jonathan Weichsel

Spring, opening in theaters and VOD Friday March 20th, is a new film from Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson, the filmmaking duo responsible for the strange, gritty indie gem Resolution, which I and just about every critic who saw it gave rave reviews to a few years back. Moorhead's and Benson's new film starts out with the same kind of grit fans of Resolution might expect, but quickly moves on to new, uncharted territory for the two directors.

Like Resolution, Spring is a mixed-genre horror film, but where Resolution mixes horror with indie-drama, Spring mixes horror with romance. After an American (Lou Taylor Pucci) loses the only two things in his life that are important to him, his ailing mother and his crappy job at a bar, he decides to take a trip to Italy in order to find himself. After bumming around the coast a bit, he meets a beautiful, mysterious women (Nadia Hilker) and falls in love at first sight. They start seeing each other, but unfortunately for our hapless traveler, the woman is in fact a monster.

None of this is anything we have never seen in a movie before. I mean, about half of all the romance films ever made are about somebody trying to find his or her self on the coast of Europe and instead meeting the significant other of their dreams, and some of the oldest horror stories ever written are about men who fall in love with monsters, but Benson and Moorhead make the material feel new again by treating it with a high level of sincerity, by creating a monster that operates under a unique but clearly defined set of rules, and by crafting two believable, relatable, and most importantly, contemporary characters.

Infernal (2015) Review

Infernal 2015Reviewed by Jesse Miller

Infernal (2015) Review
Writer/Director: Bryan Coyne
Cast: Alyssa Koerner, Matthew Scott Payne, Leandra Ryan.
Synopsis: The joy of parenthood for a pair of newlyweds turns dark as their child begins to become something not human.

The indie INFERNAL was an intriguing beast to sit through, because it seems to take inspiration from other haunted house films like Insidious and The Shining – which can only be a good thing – and takes that step further and uses the subject of demon possession to explore something unique to the genre: Autism and the struggles the family go through because of the condition.

Yes, INFERNAL’s newlyweds Nathan and Sophia’s daughter Imogene is autistic and something strange and evil is being drawn to her. But why? And furthermore, what effect does this have on the couple and how will the demon use this to its advantage, negative environments being something they thrive in and all that jazz.

Writer/Director Bryan Coyne uses the metaphor rather effectively, capturing the family’s hardships while having a good eye for executing horrific images and violent and gory scenes. Traditional cinematography is mixed in with the found footage style and more often than not, this is used to dizzying effect when things start to get more chaotic.

The cast of Infernal are all in top form, bringing the script to life and effectively fleshing out these characters. These are troubled and ugly characters, yes, but they are performed rather masterfully so I cannot fault them.

Resolution (2012) Review

ResolutionBy Jonathan Weichsel

NOTE: This review original appeared April of 2013 on the now defunct website Planet Fury.

I have read a lot of online reviews lately bashing indie horror as a whole for being derivative, unimaginative, and amateurish. I have been reviewing indie horror films for years, and I have watched my share of knockoffs made by people with no knowledge of the genre, and “homages” made by filmmakers who follow the rules of the genre so slavishly that their films end up adding nothing new. Like these other critics, I get sick of it too. But every once in awhile I come across a great indie horror movie like Resolution directed by Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead, a clever, innovative, unique little film that slowly gets under your skin. Films like Resolution are the reason indie filmmaking exists.

When Michael Danube (Peter Cilella) receives a mysterious email containing a video of his best friend Chris Daniels (Vinny Curran) smoking meth and shooting a gun at imaginary birds, along with a map, he decides to find his friend and save him. The map leads to a run down shack in the boonies.

When Chris refuses Michael’s help, Michael handcuffs him to a pipe in order to force him to detox. However, things, to put it mildly, soon get weird. When Michael finds a series of old black and white photographs depicting a murder, he decides that the pictures tell a story.

Michael explores the boonies and discovers more discarded media, a record, a VHS tape, filmstrips, etc. Each piece of media tells a story, and each story has a gruesome ending.

Michael becomes obsessed with the media and the stories they tell, but Chris, lacking Michael’s natural curiosity, doesn’t believe that the media tells stories, and doesn’t care.Michael finds clues that lead him to more media, and things get really weird when the media starts to involve him and Chris in the stories.

Exclusive: Interview with VANish star, actress Maiara Walsh

Maiara Walshby Robert J. Thompson II

Hello Maiara,

First let me start by saying thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions, and that I really was impressed by your performance in VANish (review). I thought it was absolutely great.

Maiara Walsh (MW): Well first of all, thank you! I’m glad that you enjoyed it, it was, as Bryan Bockbrader would say, “one hell of a ride”.

I've got a questions pertaining to both you, as an actress, and to the film itself, so I will try to alternate them for the most part. My first question is for you, and really, I'm always curious what leads anyone to get into this industry. I know I have a story. Everyone I know has a story, whether they Direct, act, work Craft services, etc. So what lead you to want to be an actress?

MW: Ah stories, that’s one of the reasons I do what I do. I love stories. I love people, I’m fascinated by them. We are all our own little universes catapulting around earth bumping into one another, sometimes creating massive collisions, sometimes just skating past someone’s field of gravity.

I’ve always been someone with a very large imagination. As a young kid I grew up mostly in Seattle where it was usually cold and gray and I passed the time by creating elaborate stories in my room that I or my dolls would act out. I talked to myself A LOT as a kid. Let’s be real, I still do. I loved creating those worlds and being a part of them, I think they helped me make peace with why people acted the way they did. I sang as a kid, I was in plays, I wanted to be a singer or a scientist. I still want to be those things. When we moved to California in ’99 I was finally able to pursue it. We didn’t know anything about the business. We fell prey to scam after scam, but I’m stubborn. I don’t stop. And in this business, as with many things in life, we can’t afford to stop if it’s something we are truly passionate about.

What interested you in acting in VANish?

MW: I liked the script. I met with Bryan Bockbrader (the director) and Austin Abke and I dug how they were making this happen on their own and that every step along the way was a huge challenge. I knew it would be an adventure, I knew it would be tough as shit, and I just had a feeling this was something I should do. Also, I wanted to break away from the characters I had been playing and play someone strong and smart who thought on the fly. I also like action. And there was a lot of that in the last act.

British Action film stars Craig Fairbrass and Mem Ferda square up in uber-violent feature A LIFE OF VIOLENCE

MEMBritish Action film stars Craig Fairbrass and Mem Ferda square up in uber-violent feature A LIFE OF VIOLENCE. British film stars Craig Fairbrass and Mem Ferda have signed on to come face-toface in the much anticipated, uber-violent action thriller A LIFE OF VIOLENCE, to be directed by Mark McQueen.

A LIFE OF VIOLENCE stars Craig Fairbrass (Rise of the Footsoldier) as a career criminal and armed robber Jack Cregan, who seeks to discover the truth behind his father’s murder and his stolen heist money. As Jack battles to unravel the mystery, he endangers his own life at every step.

Set in Spain’s vibrant southern city of Marbella contrasted with London’s dark underworld, Gunned Down is a thriller with brains as well as bruises. Mem Ferda (Pusher, Plastic) commented ‘ I’m elated to be back on screen with Craig, he’s a wonderful actor an real gentleman. Craig has written a powerful, no nonsense screenplay here. A lot of recent action movies are contrived, but for me ‘A LIFE OF VIOLENCE’ is very real’.

The rest of cast includes James Cosmo (Game of Thrones), Steven Berkoff (Octopussy), Nick Moran (Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels), and Nathalie Cox (Kingdom of Heaven). Producer Luke Fairbrass (Breakdown).

'Late Phases' Movie Review

Late PhasesReviewed by Robert J. Thompson II

On to Werewolf Weekend movie #2, Dark Sky Films release Late Phases. I hadn't received a dud from this company, for review yet, and Phases keeps that going. Written by Eric Stolze, and Directed by Adrian Garcia Bogliano, Late Phases tells the story of an Army Vet, Ambrose, who has went blind with time, after being injured in Vietnam. He has become hardened to life, and in his own way, looks forward to death. His son puts him in a retirement community, thinking it's best for everyone involved, until Ambrose realizes there's something very dark hiding in the community.

I'm going to start with what I didn't like, this time. There were a couple sparse sound design issues. This is something that's hard to pin point where the problem originated at, because so much work goes into it. Suffice it to say that, in only a couple scenes, the audio fluctuates a bit, randomly. The other problem I had was that, while they went with the werewolf style I love the most (bi-pedal monster dog), there was something left to be desired, in the final product. It was really just the faces of a couple of the monsters. They came across more as giant wererats, than werewolves. However, the monsters weren't without their charms, which I'll get to, shortly.

The script was decent. Coming from a military family, I appreciate when Vets are given their due for what they've been through, and are aged accordingly. Someone did their research, or knew someone who could relate, when developing Ambrose. And I appreciate that. I think a lot of viewers will. I can also relate to Will (Ethan Embry), and the frustration he deals with, with a father who's disassociated himself from the world around him. There's nothing overly complex here, but the lead character being blind was a nice addition. Several times the character asserts, “I'm blind, not crippled.”, and this is a mindset many Veterans share.

Kill-Crazy Nymphos Attack!

Kill Crazy Nymphos Attack!By Jonathan Weichsel

The Soska sisters (Jen Soska and Sylvia Soska), those twisted identical twins from Canada who rocked the horror scene with the bizarre, over the top exploitation classic Dead Hooker in a Trunk and then broke into popular culture with the equally outrageous, but more challenging and deep horror film American Mary, are back at it again with their first major original project since American Mary, and Twisted Twins fans, as well as fans of horror, exploitation, and comics should be very, very excited.

Kill-Crazy Nymphos Attack! is an upcoming graphic novel co-written by the Soska sisters, and to be frank, the title of the project and the fact that the Soskas are writing it is enough to get me onboard. In recent years the Soska sisters have focused on directing other people's projects, and this is all well and good, but what makes the Soskas really unique, and is a large part of what attracts me to their work, is their writing. This isn't to say that the Soska sisters aren't excellent filmmakers, but when they write their own material the Soskas are able to tell stories that really speak to the younger generation in the irreverent, darkly humorous way they deal with the social issues of our time.

I am also very excited that this is going to be a graphic novel. Without any censorship, and without the limits that budget places on a film, the Soska sisters will be able to let their imaginations run wild in a way that we haven't seen yet. Of course, the project cannot happen without support, so check out the kickstarter by clicking here.


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