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DVD and Blu-Ray Releases: January 4th – Exorcise Your Machete With A Case

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Whoa, what a way to start the new year! After several weeks of desolate conditions in terms of horror title releases, the floodgate just burst open.

This is the week you may want to think about using up those giftcards and cash you got from returning your holiday presents. Major releases are vying for your greenbacks alongside re-releases in Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D (in case Santa brought you a 3D TV recently), and other more independent titles. In addition to movies, there’s also a Buffy motion comic and the next volume of a vampire’s diary in paperback.


The Last Exorcism on DVDThe Last Exorcism (Review)
Directed by Daniel Stamm
Starring Patrick Fabian (Interview), Ashley Bell, Louis Herthum, Tony Bentley

When he arrives on the rural Louisiana farm of Louis Sweetzer, the Reverend Cotton Marcus expects to perform just another routine “exorcism” on a disturbed religious fanatic. An earnest fundamentalist, Sweetzer has contacted the charismatic preacher as a last resort, certain his teenage daughter Nell is possessed by a demon who must be exorcized before their terrifying ordeal ends in unimaginable tragedy. Buckling under the weight of his conscience after years of parting desperate believers from their money, Cotton and his crew plan to film a confessionary documentary of this, his last exorcism. But upon his arrival at the already blood-drenched family farm, it is soon clear that nothing could have prepared him for the true evil he encounters there. Now, too late to turn back, Reverend Marcus’ own beliefs are shaken to the core as he and his crew must find a way to save Nell – and themselves – before it is too late. Check out our Last Exorcism CENTRAL and the UK Holiday Surprise video.

Buy the Blu-ray or the regular DVD.


Machete on DVDMachete (Review)
Directed by Robert Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis
Starring Danny Trejo, Robert De Niro, Steven Seagal, Michelle Rodriguez, Jessica Alba

From director Robert Rodriguez, comes an action- packed, cutting-edge serving of carnage asada…with killer deleted scenes that deliver more guns, more girls and more Machete action! Set up, double-crossed and left for dead, Machete is an ass-kicking ex-Federale who lays waste to anything that gets in his path. As he takes on hitmen, vigilantes and a ruthless drug cartel, bullets fly, blades clash and the body count rises. Any way you slice it, vengeance has a new name–Machete. Check out our Machete CENTRAL.

Buy the Blu-ray or the regular DVD.


Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 Motion ComicBuffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 Motion Comic

Following the destruction of the Hellmouth in the explosive finale of the television series, Buffy and her trusted friend Xander have relocated to a citadel in Scotland to oversee the thousands of newly activated slayers from across the globe. Using their new home as command-central in their fight against evil, Buffy and her allies lead these new slayers as they take on vamps, zombies, and now the U.S. government who declare, in the wake of Sunnydale’s destruction, that slayers are nothing more than international terrorists.

Buy the DVD.


Case 39 on DVDCase 39 (Review)
Directed by Christian Alvart
Starring Renée Zellweger, Jodelle Ferland, Ian McShane, Bradley Cooper, Kerry O’Malley

Academy Award® winner Renee Zellweger stars in this terrifying, supernatural thriller about a social worker who has been assigned the unusual and disturbing case of Lillith Sullivan…a girl with a strange and mysterious past. When Emily opens her home in an attempt to help Lillith, it turns into a deadly nightmare she may not survive. Case 39 (page) is a heart-stopping chiller with startling surprises that lead to a shocking and sinister ending.

Buy the Blu-ray or the regular DVD.


Coraline Blu-ray 3DCoraline Blu-ray 3D (Movie Review)
Directed by Henry Selick
Starring the voices of Teri Hatcher, Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Saunders, Keith David

11-year-old Coraline Jones has just moved with her parents to a new home in Oregon. With no friends and her parents distracted by work, the feisty and adventurous Coraline sets out to find some excitement in her isolated new environment. She is befriended—or, as she sees it, pestered—by a local boy close to her age, Wybie Lovat and visits her older neighbors, eccentric British actresses Miss Spink and Miss Forcible as well as the arguably even more eccentric Russian, Mr. Bobinsky.

Buy the Blu-ray 3D.


The Vampire Diaries: Stefan's Diaries #2: BloodlustThe Vampire Diaries: Stefan’s Diaries #2: Bloodlust
Authored by L. J. Smith, Kevin Williamson & Julie Plec

Stefan and Damon Salvatore are now vampires and must deal with the consequences of their fate. They escape their small hometown of Mystic Falls, which is overrun with vampire hunters, and travel to New Orleans. While Stefan revels in his powers, Damon continues to mourn the loss of Katherine, the beautiful vampire that turned them both. But New Orleans offers temptations and dangers. Stefan falls in love with another human, and his willpower is tested to the limit. Damon ends up captured by an evil, sadistic vampire hunter. Stefan knows that he must save his brother, but will it cost him his new love?

Buy the Kindle Edition or the paperback.


WolvesBayne on DVDWolvesBayne
Directed by Griff Furst
Starring Jeremy London, Marc Dacascos, Yancy Butler, Christy Carlson Romano, Rhett Giles, Stephanie Honore

Russell Bane (Jeremy London, ”Party of Five”) finds himself in the middle of a paranormal war between vampires, werewolves and human hunters after being viciously attacked by a werewolf. Overwhelmed by his own werewolf transformation, he seeks the help of the beautiful and mysterious Alex. Together they must stop the war before the exiled vampire goddess Lilith (Yancy Butler, ”Kick-Ass”) regains her strength and destroys all mankind.

Buy the DVD.


Let Me Die Quietly on DVDLet Me Die Quietly
Directed by Mitchell Reichler, Brian Michael Finn
Starring Charles Casillo, Dana Perry, Ian Tomaschik

Mario is a man who’s been tortured by visions of violent murders all his life. An encounter, a location, or even a touch can bring him the terrifying final sensations of a murder victim. Now, as his visions intensify, he senses his own impending death. With an encroaching sense of tragedy, Mario sets out to save the life of the last victim in his final premonitions. Then he has a chance encounter in an elevator with a beautiful woman, Gabrielle, who herself is psychic and seeing different aspects of the same murder. These two lost souls join forces in an attempt to stop a serial killer, but in their quest they may end up leading each other down a path of self-destruction.

Buy the DVD.


8213: Gacy House on DVD8213: Gacy House
Directed by N/A
Starring: N/A

8213: Gacy House (Review) is the latest found footage film from The Asylum following last year’s tediously dreadful mockbuster Paranormal Entity. This time they went all out to try and convince viewers that what we are watching is honest-to-goodness raw footage found at the scene of a crime. No listing of cast or crew; nothing on the disc besides the movie and an 8-minute fake documentary spotlighting the victims seen in the feature-length fake documentary and how this footage finally got released to the public. The back of the DVD case boasts two different disclaimers proclaiming this to be legit police footage found next to their bodies, going so far as to outright state in no uncertain terms that “This is not a hoax”.

Buy the Blu-ray or the regular DVD.


Fright Flick on DVDFright Flick
Directed by Israel Luna
Starring Chad Allen, Daphne Khoury, Adam Kitchen, Richard Curtin and Todd Jenkins

A second-rate film crew is shooting the third in a trilogy of tasteless (yet cheesy) horror flick called FRIGHT FLICK. The schmuck-of-a-director can’t keep his hands off the lead actress, the producer never gets his due credit, the supporting actress knows that SHE should be the lead, and the crew has secrets of their own. Competition in the movie business is tough enough — but anyone on this set would kill to be on top. Watch the Fright Flick Trailer.

Buy the DVD.


Monster Mutt on DVDMonster Mutt
Directed by Todd Tucker
Starring Zack Ward, Rhiannon Leigh Wryn, Bart Johnson, Billy Unger, Juliet Landau, Brian Stepanek

The Taylor’s family dog, Max, is kidnapped by the evil Sirus Caldwell, CEO of mega corporation Envigormax, to be used as a test subject for a new super energy drink. When trials go terribly wrong, Max escapes only to be transformed from his lovable self into… ”Monster Mutt”! The Taylor kids, Ashley & Zach try to save their loyal friend with the help of the scientist, Dr. Victor Lloyd, who regretfully helped transform Max. The children must elude the evil Sirus and his henchwoman Natalya, who are determined to capture Monster Mutt to complete their experiment! Monster Mutt, is an adventure in both comedy & chaos as the Taylor kids race to find a cure for their furry loved one before it’s too late! Watch the Monster Mutt Trailer

Buy the DVD.


Bitter Feast on DVDBitter Feast
Directed by Joe Maggio
Starring James Le Gros, Joshua Leonard

A celebrity chef turns the tables on his harshest critic. Peter Grey, an overly zealous television chef kidnaps J.T. Franks, an influential and notoriously snarky food blogger after a particularly nasty review deals the final blow to Grey s already plummeting career. Sequestered deep in the woods of the Hudson Valley, Grey keeps Franks chained up in a basement, presenting him with a series of deceptively simple food challenges – from preparing a perfect egg over easy, to grilling a steak precisely medium rare – punishing him sadistically for anything less than total perfection. A tense thrill-ride served up with wicked wit and culinary flare, BITTER FEAST (trailer) is an exploration of the creative impulse gone tragically and ferociously awry.

Buy the DVD.


Graves / Zombies Of Mass Destruction (The Best of Horrorfest)Graves / Zombies Of Mass Destruction (The Best of Horrorfest)
Graves (Review)
Directed by Brian Pulido
Starring Jillian Murray, Clare Grant, Bill Moseley, Tony Todd, Amanda Wyss, Shane Stevens
Zombies Of Mass Destruction (Review)
Directed by Kevin Hamedani
Starring Janette Armand, Doug Fahl, Cooper Hopkins, Russell Hodgkinson, Bill Johns

Buy the Blu-ray.


The Gravedancers / Wicked Little Things (The Best of Horrorfest)The Gravedancers / Wicked Little Things (The Best of Horrorfest)
The Gravedancers (Review)
Directed by Mike Mendez
Starring Dominic Purcell, Clare Kramer, Josie Maran, Marcus Thomas, Tchéky Karyo, Megahn Perry
Wicked Little Things (Review)
Directed by J. S. Cardone
Starring Lori Heuring, Scout Taylor-Compton, Chloe Moretz, Geoffrey Lewis

Buy the Blu-ray.


Borderland / Crazy Eights (The Best of Horrorfest)Borderland / Crazy Eights (The Best of Horrorfest)
Borderland (Review)
Directed by Zev Berman (interview)
Starring Rider Strong, Brian Presley, Martha Higareda, Jake Muxworthy, Sean Astin
Crazy Eights (Review)
Directed by James Koya Jones
Starring Traci Lords, Dina Meyer, Gabrielle Anwar, George Newbern, Dan DeLuca and Frank Whaley

Buy the Blu-ray.


KW Low

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New Insidious: The Last Key Trailer Speaks Softly But Carries a Big Whistle

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The last word we brought you guys on the fourth installment in the Insidious franchise was when we let you know the new film had snagged a PG-13 rating from the MPAA for “disturbing thematic content, violence and terror, and brief strong language”.

Today we have a new trailer/TV spot for Insidious: The Last Key, and if you aren’t already on board for a fourth round of spooky shite courtesy of screenwriter Leigh Whannel, maybe this quick trailer will do the trick.

You can check out the new trailer below; then let us know how excited you are for Insidious: The Last Key!

I’m digging what I’ve seen from the new film thus far, and this new trailer only strengthens that. Plus I’m excited to see what director Adam Robitel can do with this series after his fucking terrifying previous film The Taking of Deborah Logan.

The film is directed by Adam Robitel from a script by Leigh Whannell and stars Lin Shaye, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell, Josh Stewart, Caitlin Gerard, Kirk Acevedo, Javier Botet, Bruce Davison, Spencer Locke, Tessa Ferrer, Ava Kolker, and Marcus Henderson.

Insidious: The Last Key hits theaters January 5, 2018.

Synopsis:

Parapsychologist Elise Rainier and her team travel to Five Keys, N.M., to investigate a man’s claim of a haunting. Terror soon strikes when Rainier realizes that the house he lives in was her family’s old home.

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Luke Genton’s The Bone Box Trailer Proves Not All Graves Are Quiet

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Sometimes a fright flick comes along that sells me on the logline itself. And writer-director Luke Genton’s upcoming supernatural horror movie The Bone Box has just such a premise.

The film follows the story of a grave robber who comes to believe he’s being haunted by those he stole from. And if that premise doesn’t sell you on at least checking out the film’s trailer, I don’t know what to do for you.

Speaking of the trailer, you can check it out below. Then let us know what you think below!

The film stars Gareth Koorzen (The Black That Follows), Michelle Krusiec (The Invitation), and Maria Olsen (Starry Eyes), Jamie Bernadette (I Spit On Your Grave: Deja Vu), David Chokachi (Baywatch), Aaron Schwartz (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2), and Tess Bellomo (Liked).

Look for updates on Facebook HERE and the Director’s Instagram: @lukegenton.

The Bone Box is currently in post-production. It is scheduled to be completed by November 2017 and is seeking distribution.

Synopsis:

Depressed and reeling from the recent death of his wife, Tom (Koorzen) has built up quite a gambling debt. He goes to stay with his wealthy Aunt Florence (Olsen) in hopes that she will write him into her will. When a nasty creditor makes it clear that Tom is out of time, he devises a plan with Elodie (Krusiec), the undertaker’s daughter, to rob the graves of the rich townspeople buried in the cemetery across the road. After plundering the graves, Tom begins hearing and seeing strange things that seem to coincide with the deaths of the people he robbed. Even more disconcerting… he appears to be the only one sensing the occurrences. One question lingers: Is Tom’s conscience playing a trick on him… or is he really being haunted by those he stole from?

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Last Meeple Standing

H.P. Lovecraft’s Kingsport Festival: The Card Game, Overview and Review – Last Meeple Standing

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Yeah, I know. I’ve said it before, and I will scream it to the heavens again: There is an abysmal glut of Lovecraft Mythos games out there (and still streaming into the market). For a while there, it was vampire games (wanna take a sparkly guess why?). Then, it was zombie games (only Robert Kirkman knows why). Now it is Lovecraft games, and it is a LOT of them. Shambling, fish-headed masses of them, weighing down the game shop shelves like heavily laden buckets of freshly shorn tentacles (calm down, hentai fans). It’s true, and a lot of them seem to be sad doppelgangers of other games, just skinned with a rotting coat of Elder God goo.

Photo Credit: Tiffany Hahn

For that reason, it is nice to run across a Lovecraft-themed game that is GOOD. H.P. Lovecraft’s Kingsport Festival: The Card Game is one of those… it’s good, but it’s not great (for ONE painful reason). But, for our nefarious purposes today, that’s good enough. The stars are PARTIALLY in alignment. There is one little detail to get out of the way before we wade into the spawn-infested miasma of this game: it is the hellish offspring of an earlier, more complex game called (you guessed it) H.P. Lovecraft’s Kingsport Festival the board game. Much has been said about the relationship between these two games and many comparisons have been made, but since I neither own the board game nor have I played it, let’s leave it to fester in cold, barren space all by its lonesome for now. I’m sure its time will come…when the stars are right (rolling his eyes).

COMPONENTS:
It is RARE (like fresh Deep One filets) that the components of a game are as nice as the gameplay, but there are two elements of Kingsport Festival: TCG that really make it shine. The first is the titular cards that make up the bulk of the game. The artwork on the tarot-sized cards depicting the various gods, lesser gods, demons, and evil corgis (I kid) from the Mythos is dark and shows off the creatures to good/evil effect. I have to admit that these are some of my favorite depictions of the creatures from Lovecraft’s mind I’ve seen. They really look threatening here. The portraits on the cards presenting the investigators/evil cultists look dignified, a little creepy, and mysterious, as is only right for nogoodniks taking on Cthulhu’s worst. The graphic design is really classy with easily interpreted iconography and border artwork. Equal care has been taken with the backs of the cards, which have appropriately aged and Victorian elements. The only parts to this game are the cards and the dice. Wait, this is a card game, right?

Well, yes and no.

Although cards make up the lion’s share of the game, there is a heavy dice aspect as well, and these are some NICE dice. I’m a SUCKER for custom dice, and Kingsport Festival: TCG comes loaded with them. There are three types of dice: a white d10 with a clock icon on one face, brain-pink (a nice touch) d12 dice representing the player’s sanity with a Sanity icon on one face, and grey Domain d6 dice with three types of domain faces: purple Evil, black Death, and red Destruction. All of the dice are high-quality and engraved, not printed, with easily recognizable faces for ease of play and match up nicely with the icons on the game’s cards. Squee! Wonderfully evil custom dice!

SETUP:
Set up is pretty basic. All of the cards depicting the horrid gods are displayed in order of their power in six rows within reach of all of the players. The total number of copies of each type of god card is dictated by how many people are playing, so the number varies. Each player gets one of the brain-ilicious d12s with which to track their sanity and sets it to 10. All players white timer die, with the high roller taking the role of the starting player. Then each player sets their Sanity die to 10 (yes, the value can be increased up to 12 through game effects. That player takes the white d10 and sets it to the clock face. Players can pick an investigator card, but I suggest dealing them out at random to each player to liven things up (before they get driven insane, of course).

GAMEPLAY:
Gameplay is equally simple, yet strangely engaging. The first player takes the white timer d10, passes it to the next player to their left, who turns it to the number 1, effectively creating a timer that will count up from 1 to 10, ending the game. That player becomes the starting player. Once the white die is passed, the passing player increases their Sanity by one, as will be the mechanic throughout the rest of the game.

At the start of a game, the players will have no cards in their hands. They acquire them throughout the game, but we’ll talk about a general turn. The starting player rolls one of the domain dice and notes the resultant face. If they have cards to play, now is when they would play them. The card effects are varied. They might instruct the player to roll more dice, add specified domains to their pool of domains, change rolled die faces, etc. There are many possibilities. After the player has played all the cards they wish to and resolved the card effects, the player may spend the resources/domains gained through the dice they’ve rolled and the cards they have played to buy ONE god from the displayed cards and add it to their hand. It should be noted that players are limited to one and only one copy of each available god.

Once the player has completed their turn, they check to see if the round indicator on the white d10 matches one of the Raid rounds shown on the investigator card at the very bottom. If the numbers match, the player must compare the Gun icons on his cards to the strength of the raid indicated on his character card. If the Cultist’s strength is greater, he gains the difference in Sanity points. If the Cultist’s strength matches the Raid strength, they neither gain nor lose Sanity. If the Cultist’s strength is less than the Raid strength, they lose the difference in Sanity points. After this, the next player to the left will take their turn.

WINNING:
The game ends at the end of the ninth round, unless a Cultist is able to invoke the Elder God Azathoth, which results in dogs and cats sleeping together (no, not really). The cultists look at all of their god cards and add up the Elder God symbols at the bottom of each card. The Cultist with the most Elder God symbols/points at the end of the game WINS!

FINAL THOUGHTS:
So, there you have it: an epic battle between creepy Cultists and ghoulish Gods in one rather small box. I’ll get to the point. I really like H.P. Lovecraft’s Kingsport Festival: The Card Game. I happen to be fond of little filler games like this. The box lists the playtime for this game as 30 min, but once the players know the rules, you can cut playtime down to 20 min, easy. It lists the age limit at 13+, which I think is absurd. There is nothing in the theme or artwork that would preclude players 10 and up from playing, other than rule complexity. Between the awesome art, the devilish dice, and the rad rules (ugh…), there is not much to dislike about this game… other than the hellish rules. You may be asking what I mean. The rules seem easy. They ARE. It’s the rulebook that is a pain in the neck. For some reason, the graphic designer (I’m looking at you, Savini -no, not Tom-) decided to print all of the rule examples in the book in a nearly unreadable “old-timey” font that is TINY. I think they thought they were adding flavor. If so, that flavor is YUCKY. When learning a new game, you want crystal-clear rules, not something you have to squint and struggle over, like this sad, arcane tome. The same hellish font appears on the cards in places, as well, making me one unhappy game collector. You may look past it, but I had a hard time doing so. Other than that, though, the game is great fun, a nice way to fill in time between bigger games, and beautiful to look at. You make your own judgement.

PRODUCT DETAILS:
Designer: Gianluca Santopietro
Artist: Maichol Quinto and Demis Savini
Publisher: Passport Games/ Giochi Uniti
Published: 2016
Players/Playtime/Age Rating: 3 -5 players/30 min/13+ (seriously?)

RATING:
3/5


Last Meeple Standing is brought to you by Villainous Lair Comics & Games, the ultimate destination for board game fanatics in Southern California. For more information visit the official Villainous Lair Comics & Games website, “Like” the Villainous Lair Facebook page and be sure to follow Villainous Lair on Twitter and Instagram.

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