Those of us who grew up in the time of video stores still remember the sense of pride we felt when we watched a film that we thought nobody else knew existed. It became a badge of honor if we found someone else who had seen that random film, a bonding moment between two people who were "in the know" with esoteric cinema. We'd show it to friends, while we were proud of the notion that we were exposing them to something they had never seen. Then, something started to happen in the last 5 to 10 years. Suddenly, our fellow movie nerds now had companies that were releasing Blu-rays of all those strange gems we thought would get no better than those crappy DVD transfers so familiar to us.
The new sci-fi/horror film PHOENIX FORGOTTEN, is based on the shocking, true events of March 13, 1997, when several mysterious lights appeared over Phoenix, Arizona. This unprecedented and inexplicable phenomenon became known as "The Phoenix Lights", and remains the most famous and widely viewed UFO sighting in history.
May 5-7 of this year finds the dead rising in Seattle at Crypticon, the largest gathering of fans of the macabre in the Pacific Northwest. Hosted by the Doubletree Hotel directly across from the Sea-Tac-International airport, this is an easy weekend getaway for those from out of town and a wonderful spot for locals who don't want to fight downtown traffic to attend a con.
Doug Jones has had quite the career of transforming himself into characters ranging from fantastical creatures, horrifying monsters, superheroes, and more. For the upcoming Blu-ray/DVD release of the supernatural thriller, THE BYE BYE MAN, in which Doug Jones stars as the title character, Shannon took a look back at some of her favorite Doug Jones metamorphosis's throughout his career.
Today, A24 released their terrifying new horror film, THE BLACKCOAT'S DAUGHTER, from director Osgood Perkins. The film centers around two girls stranded at their prep school who find themselves battling a mysterious evil force. In anticipation of the film's release, Shannon took a look back at some of her favorite films that focused on the subject of possessions and exorcisms. As our favorite demon would say in THE EXORCIST, it truly is an excellent day for an exorcism.
Behind the wide facade of Speculative Fiction twist the hedge-mazes of fantasy, brood the catacombs of horror and gaze the far-seeing floors of science fiction. Among them, between them, are the closets and crawlspaces of the niche, one of which - a relatively bigger one - is the place of Weird Fiction, a dark storage of many souvenirs from fantasy, horror and science fiction, though dusted with its own special charms.
They drilled my scalp for the ninth brain surgery and I had skull pain for a month, a kind of vibrating, an almost humming in my ears. For my first surgery, they cut into my hours-old back and removed parts of my spine that were malformed. They removed staples holding my guts in with an actual staple remover, and counted it down like a game for me as a nine-year-old. I woke up from anesthesia temporarily blind. I've had foot surgery ten times, and was sent home after the first with a blood puddle under said foot that was deemed "normal post-op bleeding" by the doctor. He was wrong - it was not normal and that would not heal properly, if at all, for some years, to where my body would not let it close because, I don't know, it liked the whole "raw hamburger" look. In the darkest of times, I turned to these wounds, talked to them even, but they would simply stare back, unblinking, and say nothing about the pain they caused.
Perhaps even more than film itself, I'm a fan of characters and acting. Great actors and actresses are capable of transcending reality, giving life to characters that otherwise would not exist. Save for the performances in films such as The Exorcist and The Silence of the Lambs, the horror genre is unjustly neglected by the masses, though it gives us examples of brilliant acting time and again. In celebration of Women in Horror Month, I'm taking a look at a performance that was not only neglected by critics, but casual fans alike.
LOVELY MOLLY is a 2012 psychological horror film from the brilliant Eduardo Sanchez that follows newlyweds, Molly and Tim, as they move into Molly's childhood home. Once there, Molly becomes haunted by a supernatural entity, as well as her past in the house, including the hinted at sexual abuse from her father and her previous addiction to heroin. Entirely underrated, underseen, and underappreciated, LOVELY MOLLY is masterfully directed by Sanchez, but the film truly soars on the powerful performance of Gretchen Lodge. This is a film that's worth watching for the performance alone, which rivals the greatest acting showcases in horror history.
With the upcoming release of the horror film GHOST OF NEW ORLEANS, which has an all-star cast that includes Josh Lucas, Terrence Howard, Lake Bell, and Cary Elwes, we thought we would take a look back at some of the best paranormal/horror movies that have been set in the infamous city of New Orleans. In GHOST OF NEW ORLEANS, we are introduced to a disgraced detective, post-Katrina, who encounters the ghost of a murdered woman who wants to help him identify her killer.
If there was one place I would tell anyone to visit in the United States, I would say New Orleans. The history is rich and the tales of urban legends run rampant through the streets and dark alleyways. The following are the top 5 horror films set in good ole' New Orleans, starting with the most famous one of all...
Going behind the veil, finding the creative origins or making a statement that will change society as we know it, documentaries represent some of the most important and informative filmmaking. A true art form to present as full of a picture as possible surrounding the highs, lows and levels of each documentary topic. 2016 had its share of quality documentaries creating conversation, stoking memories and stirring controversy. Here are three of my favorite documentaries from this year focusing on the life cycle of movie posters, trading cards and an infamous religious movement that all have affected generations after them.
I read a lot.
Laundry goes undone. Dishes are left to grow fuzzy green mold in the sink. My children run like wild animals out of a scene from "Lord of the Flies". All because I'd rather be reading. This year, I made it a point to read outside my typical genres - horror quickly became one of newest loves. Not all of these books were published in 2016, but I read them this year, which totally counts. I hope you find your new favorite read in one of these.
With the Halloween season approaching and immersive horror experiences growing in popularity, let's take a moment to reflect on whether you are ready to move from the conga line haunts at main theme parks to an experience where you get to be part of the story and participate. For many, the idea of going to an experience by yourself can seem overwhelming and downright terrifying, but maybe there is a small part of you that is wondering what this might feel like. That's who this is written for.
Today it was announced that Knott’s Scary Farm would be closing their newest attraction, Fear VR: 5150 due to an outcry from some (not all) of the mental health community. This is in regards to the experience of Fear VR taking place inside of a haunted psychiatric unit which is home to a possessed and most likely evil girl as well as the attraction having 5150 - which is a section of the California Welfare and Institution Code which authorizes a qualified officer or clinician to involuntarily confine a person suspected to have a mental disorder that makes them a danger to themself, a danger to others, etc - in the title. There has been a huge upset with fans of the park who think that Knott’s Berry Farm should have stood their ground and now allowed for the reaction of a few to close down an experience (and jobs) for a lot of people. I’ll be honest, I didn’t have a chance to check out Fear VR: 5150 when I went on media night, but had I been able to, I would have done so gladly.
This will be my fourth Halloween in 'The OC', yes, that OC. Since I've moved here, I've had several customers at various retail jobs take one look at me and ask if I've been to the Roger's Gardens Halloween Boutique. A couple days ago, I finally dragged the husband down to Corona Del Mar (next door to Newport Beach) for a visit...
Growing up, I used to be obsessed with the television show “Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction.” Even as an adult, I’m still obsessed with films and television shows that ride that fine line between real and fabricated. Ask most horror fans, when those 5 words - BASED ON A TRUE STORY - come on the screen, a part of us jumps for joy as the story has suddenly taken on a much more macabre yet realistic undertone. These types of films/television shows/books have a way of playing off of our fears while simultaneously embedding itself deep within us. Whether it’s a true crime story or something within the supernatural sphere we are inexplicably drawn into knowing more.
When it comes to horror films, my worst fears are many and specific: creepy kids (and now that I have my own, this goes double), sharp objects near or around a person's neck, demonic possession (I'm a recovering Catholic, so duh), and jump scares (because I'm gullible as hell). In spite of ALL THAT, when theaters rereleased THE EXORCIST in 2000, at the maddening age of fourteen, I gladly went along with my step-father and my two brothers (aged thirteen and twelve at the time) to see it.
Dental Implants are usually painful, but luckily now we have sedatives to ease the pain. Back in the good old days, people were not so lucky. The oldest type of Dental Implant was discovered in Chinese culture four thousand years ago. They would use carved bamboo pegs to replace missing teeth; violently hammering them in your mouth with pegs which was excruciatingly painful! Even thinking about it makes my mouth hurt!
New Jersey’s own Heather Buckley was born a monster rascal to a train construction foreman and a tarot card-reading psychic. A child that should be born as a Horror Fangirl. In her younger days, Father dutifully took her to buy Fangoria magazines. Her mother was so alarmed, she actually performed an old-world Easter European exorcism ritual on her daughter to drive the horror love out of her, but a fun little exorcism didn’t stop Heather.