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The Six Slays of Christmas – Day Two

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Welcome back to the second entry of Dread Central’s Six Slays of Christmas feature! We’re now just five little days away from the year’s biggest holiday season, and to celebrate the coming of Saint Nick (or whomever you believe in), we’ll be taking a look at a different yuletide horror flick each day until the 25th! Think of it as a cinema crazed Advent calendar!

I know Christmas is right around the corner and many of you are out there doing some last-minute shopping. Let me give you one piece of advice. Whatever you do, do not buy some weird looking animal you’ve never seen before from a guy in Chinatown with the worst cataract you’ve ever seen. If you need a gift, just buy a copy of Arkham City or something skimpy from Victoria’s Secret (unless it’s for your mother, then neither of those gifts seems very appropriate unless she’s a big-time gamer or ‘mature’ adult film actress). Either way … just stay out of Chinatown.

The Six Slays of Christmas - Day Two

From the intro of the film, as the mellow voice of Hoyt Axton welcomes us into the movie, you can’t help but fall in love with Gremlins. And how can you help it when they bring out the face of uber-cuteness, Gizmo the Mogwai (voiced by Howie Mandel), right off the bat. It’s as if the filmmakers said, “We need a personification of cute…” and Gizmo was created. Cute look, cute voice, cute name … as long as you follow the rules.

As we all know, Billy (Zach Galligan) does his best to follow the rules for taking care of the Mogwai (avoid bright light; don’t get them wet; and never, ever feed them after midnight), and he’s doing a good job until the young Corey Feldman comes in and spills water all over the thing. That’s when the trouble begins. Is it so hard not to get a Mogwai wet? The old man in Chinatown didn’t seem to have a problem doing it. Perhaps some clothes for Gizmo wouldn’t have been a bad idea. Maybe a rain slicker to wear around?

Regardless, we soon meet Stripe, who has to be the biggest dickhead puppet since Oscar the Grouch. With nothing but bad intentions in mind, Stripe and his merry band of asshole Mogwais begin to make life miserable for Gizmo, Billy and the neighborhood in general. And this mayhem leads to one of the most memorable scenes from the film. After the big change, Billy’s mother (played by Frances Lee McClain) is being attacked by gremlins and she’s forced to fight back (and she proves to be quite efficient at eliminating the gruesome little creatures). In the span of just a few moments, Mrs. Peltzer jams one gremlin in a blender, stabs the holy hell out of another with a butcher knife and (the piece de resistance) stuffs one in the microwave and…splat!

As enjoyable as Gremlins is, I’m sure you’ve never thought of it as a ground-breaking film, but in fact, there is something you see every time you go to the theater that Gremlins had a big hand in creating. Very much due to that gremlin exploding in the microwave, some moviegoers complained that the film’s PG rating was a bit misleading. In response to the issue, producer Steven Spielberg suggested the MPAA reform their rating system to account for a film that was too intense to be rated PG but not R material. Two months later PG-13 was born.

And, of course, we all loved the great details of the film. Like Polly Holliday (Flo from “Alice” … anyone remember that show?) doing her best Mrs. Gulch impression as the completely bitchy Ruby Deagle. She was involved in another great scene when the gremlin Christmas carolers showed up at her house and she attempted to escape in a lift chair that had been “modified” by the little green beasties, launching her up through the roof of the house. Classic. The flasher gremlin, the break-dancer and the entire Snow White scene were all awesome. Hugely entertaining.

And if you need a little disturbing family drama to complete your holiday viewing experience, Gremlins throws in the twisted story of how Kate’s (Phoebe Cates) father got himself wedged in the chimney playing St. Nick and died there. If Santa could do it, then so could the Grinch…but I guess Kate’s dad was a bit too wide.

Gremlins is a great holiday film for all ages (at least ages 13 and up according to the MPAA). While you’re watching, check for a couple of nods to Indiana Jones and appearances by Spielberg and Tom Bergeron.

There you have it, The Six Slays of Christmas – Number Two … Gremlins.

The Six Slays of Christmas - Day Two

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Alien: Covenant’s Carmen Ejogo Joins True Detective Season 3

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“From the dusty mesa her looming shadow grows…”

The first season of HBO’s “True Detective” was one of the best seasons ever put on a TV screen. Hands down. The second season was another story altogether. While not a complete waste of time (Colin Farrell owed) the season was basically merely ‘meh’.

But what about “True Detective” season 3?

Well, a few months back it was announced that the third season had been greenlit by HBO, with creator Nic Pizzolatto returning to pen the series and director Jeremy Saulnier (Green Room) taking the helm of the episodes.

Today we have news that Carmen Ejogo – who you may recognize Ejogo from such recent fright flicks as It Comes at Night, Alien: Covenant, and The Purge: Anarchy – will be joining the previously announced Mahershala Ali (Moonlight) for Season 3.

Ejogo will play the female lead, Amelia Reardon, who THR describes as “an Arkansas schoolteacher with a connection to two missing children in 1980.”

Nice Pizzolatto will serve as showrunner and direct alongside Jeremy Saulnier. Executive producers include Pizzolatto, Saulnier, Scott Stephens and season one stars Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey as well as original director Cary Joji Fukunaga. Steve Golin, Bard Dorros and Richard Brown are also credited as exec producers.

Synopsis:

A macabre crime in the heart of the Ozarks and a mystery that deepens over decades and plays out in three separate time periods.

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Danielle Harris Tried to Get Jamie Lloyd into New Halloween Movie

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One of the top films all of us are looking forward to the most here at Dread Central is Blumhouse’s upcoming sequel/reboot thing to John Carpenter’s Halloween.

The new Halloween (2018) film is written by Danny McBride and David Gordon Green and is all set to be directed by Green this year. Recently we learned that original Halloween star Jamie Lee Curtis was going to be returning to the new film.

Not only that, but Curtis’ classic character Laurie Strode would have a daughter… played by Judy Greer. But what about Danielle Harris?

After all, Harris was the star of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Curse of Michael Myers. Let alone, she had a starring role in both Rob Zombie’s remake and it’s sequel. So how about the new film?

Turns out Harris tried to get her character Jamie Llyod (aka the daughter of Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode) from Halloween 4 and 5 into the new film… but she was turned down by Blumhouse and the new creative team. That sucks.

Harris was pretty bummed about the whole deal and took to Facebook recently to clear the air. You can check out quotes from her video, along with the video itself, below.

After that make sure to hit us up and let us know how much you would have liked to see Harris return to Halloween in the comments below or on social media!

“What I am bummed about is… [Laurie] has a daughter,” Harris says. “I was okay with it when she had a son… but they’re saying it’s the last one and… she has a daughter. And it’s not Jamie. It’s just kind of a bummer, I guess. I think somebody had said, it wouldn’t have hurt the movie to have Jamie reunited with [Laurie]. But that didn’t happen.”

“We did put in a call, thought it’d be kinda cool even just to have a little flashback…” She continues. “They were not interested. So. I tried.”

Blumhouse’s Halloween hits theaters October 19, 2018.

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Posted by Danielle Harris on Monday, November 6, 2017

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Through the Cracks – Trick or Treat (1986) Review

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Starring Marc Price, Tony Fields, Lisa Orgolini, Glen Morgan, Gene Simmons, and Ozzy Osbourne

Directed by Charles Martin Smith


I have been a horror fan for more than half of my life at this point. Meaning I have seen most of the quality horror offerings under the sun. But that said, every once in awhile a classic sneaks past so we wanted to create this “Through the Cracks” review section for such films.

Case in point, I had never seen the Halloween horror flick Trick or Treat until last night. I know, right? How the hell did that happen? But these things do happen and so for everyone that has seen the flick a million times, this will be a review of the movie from a super horror fan that – at the age of 33 – is seeing Trick or Treat for the very first time.

Now let’s get to it.

First off you have to love the movie’s plot. Mixing horror and heavy metal seems like a given, yet preciously few films Frankenstein these two great tastes together.

Like many of you out there, I am a big metal fan as well as a big horror fan. The two seem to go together like chocolate and peanut butter. Or Jason and horny campers.

I dig bands like Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, and even those hair metal bands (Dokken forever!) and I’m well aware of the legends surrounding playing these records backward.

Off the top of my head, the only other flick that combines the two to this degree is the (relatively) recent horror-comedy Deathgasm. I say more horror-metal flicks! Or should we call it Metal-Horror? Yeah, that’s a much more metal title.

It only makes sense that someone, somewhere would take the idea of “What if Ozzy Osbourne really was evil and came back from the dead (you know, if he had passed away during his heyday) to torment a loner fan?” Great premise for a movie!

And Trick or Treat delivers on the promise of this premise in spades. Sammi Curr is an epic hybrid of the best of the best metal frontmen and his resurrection via speaker is one of the great horror birthing scenes I have seen in all my years.

Add to that the film feels like a lost entry in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. More specifically the film feels like it would fit snugly in between two of my favorite entries in that series, Dream Warriors and The Dream Master.

This movie is 80’s as all f*ck and I loved every minute of it.

And speaking of how this film brought other minor classics to the forefront of my brain, let’s talk about the film’s central villain, Sammi Curr. This guy looks like he could share an epic horror band with the likes of Mary Lou from Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II and the Drill Killer rocker from Slumber Party Massacre Part II.

Picture that band for a moment and tell me they aren’t currently playing the most epic set in Hell as we speak. I say let’s see an Avengers-style series of films based on these minor horror icons sharing the stage and touring the country’s high school proms!

In the end Trick or Treat has more than it’s fair share of issues. Sammi Curr doesn’t enter the film until much too late and is dispatched way too easily. Water? Really? That’s it?

That said, the film is still a blast as director Charles Martin Smith keeps the movie rocking like an 80’s music video with highlights being Sammi’s rock show massacre at the prom and his final assault on our hero teens in the family bathroom.

Rockstar lighting for days.

Even though the film has issues (zero blood, a rushed ending) none of that mattered much to this horror hound as the film was filled to the brim with striking horror/metal imagery and a killer soundtrack via Fastway and composer Christopher Young.

Plus you’ve got to love the cameos by Gene Simmons (boy, his character just dropped right out of the movie, huh?) and Ozzy Osbourne as a mad-as-hell Preacher that isn’t going to take any more of this devil music. P.S. Watch for the post-credits tag.

More than a few of my closest horror buddies have this film placed high on their annual Halloween must-watch lists. And after (finally) viewing the film for myself, I think I just may have to add the film to mine as well. Preferably on VHS.

Trick or Treat is an 80’s horror classic. If you dig films like Popcornand if you put the film off like I did, remedy that tonight and slap a copy in the old VHS/DVD player.

Just don’t play it backward… God knows what could happen.

All said and done, I enjoyed the hell out of my first viewing of Trick or Treat. But what do YOU think of the film? Make sure to hit us up and let us know below or on social media!

Now bring on Trick or Treat 2: The Prom Band from Hell, featuring Sammi Curr, Mary Lou Maloney, and Atanas Ilitch’s Driller Killer from Slumber Party Massacre Part II!

  • Trick or Treat (1986) 3.5
3.5

Summary

Charles Martin Smith’s Trick or Treat is a sure-fire Halloween treat for fans of 80’s horror flicks, as well as fans of heavy metal music.

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User Rating 3.25 (12 votes)
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