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Help #SaveDreadCentral – Show Your Support!

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Save Dread Central

#SaveDreadCentral and show your support!

Dread Central has always been a family endeavor. We’re a mom and pop shop to the greatest extent. We’ve made it 10 years with absolutely no help from anyone. No parent company. Nobody watching our backs.

It’s with a great deal of humility that we say we think we’ve become a cornerstone within the genre. And that’s because of you guys. It’s you, the talented creators out there, the readers, and the close friends who have lifted us up when we were down, who have allowed us to do what we do for this long; and words cannot describe how grateful we are to each and every one of you. We will never forget this time… these past few years.

Even though our site is doing great traffic-wise, advertising dollars are shrinking more and more every month. These changes are largely beyond our control and have hit the entire online publishing industry hard. Quietly many sites have been absorbed into parent companies, filed for bankruptcy, or have closed for good. Even sites that get 10x our traffic have felt the squeeze, laying off writers or in some cases turning to crowdsourced content and paying far below industry standards for articles.

That being said… This is the tipping point. Ad-supported websites are on the way out. We have staved this off for as long as possible. We are tired of running click-bait stories, of making multi-page galleries, of having to put revenue concerns ahead of the user experience.

So, we are turning to you and a reader-supported model similar to PBS and its sustaining members.

We know this news that Dread Central needs your patronage may be a shock to you. Hell, it’s a shock to us. Unfortunately, after dealing with a perfect storm of sorts this year where everything has either changed abruptly or just not gone our way, we find ourselves still standing, but on our last legs.

We are hoping that moving to a reader-supported model will allow us to bring fans and filmmakers the kind of site they deserve. And allow us to continue to grow the site and create original content that celebrates the genre we all have come to love.

It’s a scary prospect. People may not be ready for this. Everyone is used to things being free on the internet, but few realize how much time and money goes into running a website. With mounting costs and an ever-increasing demand for original, in-depth content, being shackled to an ad-supported model that is offering publishers less and less is not a sustainable plan anymore.

We’ve launched a Patreon initiative, which will let our patrons get Dread Central ad-free with no click-bait for just $1 a month / $12 a year. We don’t want to sell out to a company, but rather to the fans and the industry itself. If you cannot afford it, Dread Central will still be here as-is but with the same ads that drive us all mad. We just don’t know for how long.

Patreon will allow us to reward our friends and readers who support our site. Those who choose to support Dread Central on a monthly basis can contribute as little as $1 a month and be rewarded and recognized for their contribution right here on the website.

We all use the same internet and are well aware of what’s annoying (i.e., pop-up ads we cannot figure out how to close and multi-page galleries and stories). We don’t want to do any of that crap anymore. We want this to be YOUR site. YOUR way! We want YOU to be a part of design choices and editorial choices.

Our patrons WILL have the opportunity to be the guiding voice of Dread Central, and that excites us to no end. Also, if you cannot chip in, please just spread the word on your social media. You never know whom it might get to, and maybe they can help out.

At the end of the day we remain hopeful that we can actually come together and make this work. We don’t know where our future lies, but we do know what we’d like to be doing now, and that’s bringing you all the content you want – THE WAY THAT YOU WANT IT.

We love you guys, and we mean that. It’s been a hell of a ride, and we hope it continues. This is new territory for us and everyone. But that’s what we do… we get back up and we keep fighting. One way or another.

The official press release is below, but I wanted you to hear it first from me.

Thank you so much, so very much for your time and consideration.

Save Dread Central

Dread Central, the premier website for breaking news and in-depth original content in the world of horror, has announced that after a decade of independently serving fans, independent filmmakers, and studios, it will shift its operations to the publicly-funded service Patreon by March 2017.

Due to sweeping shifts in studio advertising dollar allocation and the ever-shifting landscape of horror, if we are to survive, we need to make this change,” said Dread Central Editor-in-Chief and horror pillar Steve Barton. “Over the past ten years, we’ve supported filmmakers and their projects by sharing their films with our extensive readership free of charge. We don’t want to sell out to a conglomerate or shut down the site so we are joining with crowdfunding platform Patreon to keep our independent voice. We need everyone’s support.

Through a monthly subscription of just $1.00 a month, or $12.00 a year, via www.patreon.com/dreadcentral, Dread Central will be able to provide a new, ad-free experience with cutting-edge and exclusive content to horror enthusiasts and subscribers. This move will ultimately allow the site to continue to support the unique voices of genre filmmakers worldwide.

In order to survive, Dread Central must now become a publicly-funded service, and WE absolutely NEED to subscribe,” said Halloween director John Carpenter. “$12.00 a year. $1.00 a month. That’s it, and Dread Central will remain able to continue to support the filmmaking community and horror audiences alike, with the love, care, and voice that they historically have.

Patreon is all about making it easy for websites like Dread Central to connect with patrons and share exclusive content,” said Jordan Cope, Patreon Creator Talent Lead. “We’re excited to partner with such a renowned horror website and can’t wait to be a part of the next decade of incredible work.

Founded in 2006 by Barton and long-time collaborator Jon Condit and staffed with such notable horror journalists as Staci Layne Wilson, Sean Decker, Andrew Kasch, Debi Moore, Buz Wallick, and countless other contributors (many of whom have gone on to filmmaking careers of their own), Dread Central has strived tirelessly to provide objective and all-inclusive coverage of horror cinema and culture in all its forms: from on-set visits to red carpet premieres and everything in between – all with an historic and keen eye on independent cinema.

To subscribe to Dread Central, visit www.patreon.com/dreadcentral.

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Last Toys on the Left

Funko Giving Jurassic Park the Pop! Treatment as Only They Can

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It is no secret we’re BIG fans of Funko’s Pop! Vinyl line here at DC HQ, and now they’ve announced a new series that has made our hearts just about burst… read on for a look at Pop! Movies: Jurassic Park, heading our way in February. The regular figures are awesome on their own, but wait until you see the exclusives!

From the Funko Blog:
Jurassic Park fans, get excited! To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the iconic film’s appearance on the silver screen, Jurassic Park is coming to Pop!

This series of Pop! features paleontologist Dr. Grant, Jurassic Park CEO John Hammond, mathematician Dr. Malcolm, and embryo-smuggler Dennis Nedry. (Keep an eye out for Dr. Ellie Sattler in Pop! Rides coming soon.)

We couldn’t forget the Jurassic Park dinosaurs! Featured in this line are the great T. rex, Velociraptor, and Dilophsaurus. Look for the Dilophosaurus chase, a rarity of 1-in-6.

Be on the lookout for exclusives. At Target you can find a wounded Dr. Malcolm, and the Dennis Nedry and Dilophosaurus 2-pack is available only at Entertainment Earth.

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American Psycho Meets Creep – Strawberry Flavored Plastic Review

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Starring Aidan Bristow, Nicholas Urda, Andres Montejo

Directed by Colin Bemis


Recently I wrote up an article here on Dread Central which was basically an open letter to anyone who was listening called “I Miss Found Footage.” Well, it seems like someone WAS listening, as I was then sent the link to an all-new found footage film called Strawberry Flavored Plastic from first-time writer-director Colin Bemis.

The film follows the “still-at-large crimes of Noel, a repentant, classy and charming serial killer loose in the suburbs of New York.” Basically, you could think of the flick as American Psycho meets Mark Duplass and Partick Brice’s Creep. That, or you could think of it as “Man Bites Dog in color!” However you choose to label Colin Bemis’ psychological thriller, just make sure you check out the film once it hits in the future.

As I alluded to above, the film is basically a found footage version of American Psycho. But that said, the film sports a twist on the charming serial killer subgenre that I have yet to see play out in any of the above-mentioned classics. I’m not going to go into spoiler territory here, but I will say that the film introduces an element to the tale that spins it into much more of a character drama than a straight horror film. Not that there is anything wrong with that!

Truth be told, the film’s turn from serial killer flick into a layered character study might have been its kiss of death, but this slight genre switch is rendered a minor issue as the film’s central narcissistic antagonist is played by Aidan Bristow. Bristow is an actor you may not have heard of before this review, but you will hear his name more and more over the years to come, I promise. The guy gives (no pun intended) a killer performance as the film’s resident serial killer Noel Rose, and time after time surprised me with how chilling, charming, or downright vulnerable he chose to play any given scene.

Bristow’s performance is, in the end, the major element the film has going for it. But that said, as a fan of found footage, I was smiling ear to ear at first-time director Colin Bemis’ understanding of what makes a found footage suspense sequence work.

In Strawberry Flavored Plastic director Colin Bemis is confident and content to allow full emotional scenes to play out with the camera directed at nothing more than a character’s knees. Why is this so important? Because it keeps the reality of the film going. Too many found footage directors would focus on the actors’ faces during such emotional scenes – no matter how contrived the camera angle was. In this film, however, Bemis favors the reality that says, “If you were really in this emotional state and holding a camera, you would let it drop to your side.” I agree, and it is small touches like that which make the film feel authentic and thus – once the shite hits the fan – all the scarier.

On the dull side of the kitchen knife, the film does feel a bit long even given it’s short running time, and there doesn’t seem too much in the way of visceral horror to be found within. Again, graphic blood and gore aren’t a must in a fright flick, but a tad more of the old ultra-violence would have gone a long way in selling our main psychopath’s insanity and unpredictability. But all the same, the film does feature a rather shocking sequence where our main baddie performs a brutal home invasion/murder that puts this film firmly in the realm of horror. In fact, the particular POV home invasion scene I’m talking about holds about as much horror as you’ll ever wish to witness.

In the end, Colin Bemis’ Strawberry Flavored Plastic is a must-see for fans of found footage and serial killer studies such as American Pyscho, Creep, and Man Bites Dog. I recommend giving it a watch once it premieres. If only to be able to point to Aidan Bristow in the near future and tell all your friends that you watched (one of) his first movies.

Until then, check out the film’s trailer HERE, and follow the movie on Facebook.

  • Strawberry Flavored Plastic
3.5

Summary

Lead actor Aidan Bristow turns in a star-making performance in Colin Bemis’ Strawberry Flavored Plastic, a found footage film that plays out like Man Bites Dog in Color before introducing a new element to the charming-serial-killer subgenre and becoming more character study than a straight horror. Think American Psycho meets Creep.

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Who Goes There Podcast: Ep 148 – Inside (2017 Remake)

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We’ve all heard the old saying, “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Well, I’m here to tell you that’s only partially true. It seems there is a third certainty that had been omitted from the original quote, “It is certain, if you enjoy a movie, at some point someone will remake that movie.” Now is the time when one of my favorite movies gets reimagined, “for an American audience”.

In the late 2000’s an explosion of “French extreme” horror films was released. Martyrs and or High Tension can often be found on any number of lists of the “most fucked up horror movies ever”. Unfortunately, the vastly superior Inside is often forgotten (as well as Frontier(s), but that’s a whole ‘nother rant). Now, ten years after it’s initial release, Inside has been Americanized. Don’t worry, we watched it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

Mommy says you’re not dead. Is that true? It’s the Who Goes There Podcast episode 148!

If you like what you hear, please consider joining our Patreon subscribers. For less than the cost of a beer, you get bonus content, exclusive merchandise, special giveaways, and you get to help us continue doing what we love.

The Who Goes There Podcast is available to subscribe to on iTunes right here. Not an iTunes user? You can listen on our Dread Central page. Can’t get enough? We also do that social media shit. You’ll find us on FacebookTwitterInstagramTwitch, and YouTube.

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