Joseph Morgan Talks Armistice, The Originals, and Being Klaus - Dread Central
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Joseph Morgan Talks Armistice, The Originals, and Being Klaus



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Recently we caught up with “The Originals'” Joseph Morgan to talk a bit about his latest film, Armistice, as well as playing the anti-hero and of course the finer and favorite parts of portraying Klaus Mikaelson. Read on for the goods.

First, Morgan spoke about what attracted him to Armistice. “Working with the director, Luke Massey, was the main thing that attracted me to the project. I worked with him on a short film previously with Matt Ryan, who played the other role in Armistice. Luke was the director of photography, and it was just a great experience.”

“Luke was very much into the same films as I was and the same comics and books so we geeked out a lot together. When he presented me with Armistice, which is his directorial debut, and then I met Ben [Read], who wrote the film with him, it just seemed like the perfect opportunity to collaborate on a deeper level.”

“I had a fair bit of acting experience just before making it, but I didn’t have the profile that I have now, and I certainly didn’t have the experience of working on something not only as an actor but also on a producing level and being creatively involved in the decision-making pertaining to story and character development. Being a part of that inner circle was really, really attractive to me. It was a very rewarding experience. Not everything is as you’d expect it to be by the film’s end. This is something that I know I’ll be proud of for the rest of my career.”

In Armistice Morgan carries pretty much the entire film on his shoulders so we then spoke about the challenges he faced as an actor as a result. “I wonder if I’ll ever get to play a role again in my career where I have those moments to create. Especially now being in a TV show where the show is 42 and a half minutes long so your dialogue really has to be rattled off. There’s very rarely time in which you can spend a moment contemplating. It’s very punchy, and you often find that if you do have those moments, they end up being edited out to meet the time frame.”

“To do a film in which the majority of it I get to spend time engaging with this character so you can relate and you can root for him, without saying hardly anything at all, was a HUGE challenge, but it was very exciting to me. I remember saying to Ben and Luke, ‘Even if we make a film which just the three of us like, it will have been worth it. I was so excited by the whole idea of it. I enjoyed it immensely.”

Throughout his career this far Joseph has played many a hero and anti-hero so we asked if he was more attracted to the darker side. “I enjoy being the villain. It’s not something that I actively look for… I’m just looking for interesting parts really, and I suppose what I deem as interesting is a role that’s a little more damaged than most. More layered.”

“I did a remake of Ben Hur for television, and I know that character is widely regarded as a hero, but for me the challenge of playing a role like that was to look for those flaws and the idea that I had going into it was that here is someone who’s consumed by revenge… so yeah, maybe I am attracted more to the darker roles, but it’s not something that I will look at a role and say, ‘That’s not dark enough for me.’ *laughs* I’m always looking for something challenging that will allow me to dig deep emotionally.”

“I have to be able to empathize with a character in order to play them,” says Morgan. “I have to be able to relate to them and understand their motives, even if I don’t agree with them objectively. I need to understand them because if I don’t, then I’m just playing a two-dimensional character. In terms of playing Klaus, doing a TV show allows you to explore a character for far longer than you would do in a movie. I’ve seen hours and hours of this character, and I’m still having a good time playing him. I’m a perfectionist so I’m constantly able to improve on something or, in this case, someone. Being able to win people over with a complicated and quintessentially evil character like Klaus is a challenge which I very much enjoy.”

Klaus has wrought a lot of heartache on his universe between “The Vampire Diaries” and now “The Originals” so we asked Morgan if he had any favorite Klaus moments. “I don’t know, man! That’s too hard! *laughs* That’s like asking what’s your ultimate favorite movie, and I could tell you that my favorite movie is Fight Club but it’s also 12 Monkeys… I could answer that question but my answer would be bullshit because it would be the first one that I could think of right now, but that doesn’t mean in five minutes my favorite moment won’t be something different. It’s hard… it’s too hard… don’t make me answer that! *laughs*”

XLrator Media has released director Luke Massey’s Armistice (formerly known as Warhouse) on VOD, and it will be in theaters on January 31st.

Matt Ryan and William Troughton co-star.

In the role of Royal Marine A.J. Budd, Joseph Morgan stars in this brutal psychological and supernatural thriller, in which he finds himself trapped in the Warhouse. Imprisoned, he is forced to fight for his life against grotesque, inhuman opponents. He must kill every day or die himself. His one glimmer of hope comes in the form of a diary, left by a former occupant of the house, WWI Lieutenant Edward Sterling, played by Matt Ryan.


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Like Me – Will You Like This Dystopian Thriller?



Starring Addison Timlin, Ian Nelson, Larry Fessenden

Directed by Robert Mockler

While Like Me is not dystopian in the classic science-fiction sense, it does aptly put the downer vibe across. If the present is abysmal, then the future is downright hopeless. We learn this as we follow an unhinged teenage loner called Kiya (Addison Timlin) on a hollow crime spree that she broadcasts on social media. At first the world “likes” her—with the exception of YouTube rival Burt (Ian Nelson), who disdainfully denounces her viral videos—but pride goes before the fall, and Kiya’s descent is spectacular.

If you’ve peeped the trailer for Like Me, then you’re probably expecting a horror movie. I mean, they’ve got the requisite menacing masked baddie and they’ve got genre icon Larry Fessenden in a major role—those are a couple of the key ingredients, right? Yes they are, but this simmering, shimmering stew of Natural Born Killers, Excision and King Kelly, it boils down to a whole lotta nothing. Like Me is sort of a drama, kind of a road trip flick, and almost a thriller. It succeeds at none yet does stand on its own as a compelling collection of cool visuals and pertinent performances. But is that enough?

While Kiya is a compelling character on the surface, there’s barebones beneath. Sure, she’s a Millennial mind-fed on random online clips and snappy soundbites—but what turned her into a psychopath? Was she born that way? Is social media to blame? We’ll never know, because not a hint is given. I don’t mind ambiguity, but even a morsel would have been welcome in this case. As Kiya ramps up her reckless exhibitionistic extremes, the stakes are never raised. In the end, who cares? Maybe that’s the point.

A word of warning: If you plan on watching this movie while chomping snacks…don’t. There is stomach-turning scene after vomit-inducing scene of orgiastic easting, binging, and the inevitable purging. I’m sure it’s all metaphorical mastication, a cutting comment on disposable consumption. I get it. But I don’t wanna look at it, again and again and again. Having said that, Like Me is an experimental film and in its presentation of such grotesquery, it’s quite accomplished. Montages, split-screens and jittered motions are scattered throughout, showing us all sorts of unpleasant things…Kudos to the editor.

I didn’t hate Like Me. But I do think one has to be in the mood for a movie such as this. It’s not an easy or entertaining watch, but it is a peculiar and thought-provoking one. There’s some style and mastery behind the camera, and I am curious to see what first-time writer-director Rob Mockler comes up with next.

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Last Toys on the Left

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



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



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


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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