What is it with Texas Chainsaw Massacre sequels? Why do they always try ignoring everything except for Tobe Hooper's 1974 original? It's as if every sequel thinks the rest of them "got it wrong", and only they stand a chance of getting it right.
It's true there are slasher movies out there worse than Shredder. No budget nonsense that challenges the least discerning viewer to finish watching it.
I don't usually like using the term "guilty pleasure" because I rarely feel guilty about the films I like. But this adaptation of one of Stephen King's earliest (and most fun) short stories is such a mixed bag that it's hard to type out any kind of legitimate defense.
One of the challenges of writing a weekly article is picking the right subject. I didn't have much time to contemplate it this week and hadn't settled on one until Thursday evening. I knew I'd be out of luck if my choice didn't deliver, but after reading the back of the box, I figured I couldn't miss.
At the conclusion of Lamberto Bava's Demons a universe of possibilities had been opened, suggesting a myriad of directions for sequels. Despite their penchant for cashing in, the Italians seemed to favor ripping off Hollywood successes, rather than carving out their own franchises.
The Internet doesn't need another "Jaws The Revenge is a terrible movie!" column, does it? Attacking the third sequel to Steven Spielberg's timeless masterpiece is like shooting bluefish in a barrel: unchallenging and pointless.
Tobe Hooper’s Invaders from Mars is one of those films that must’ve traumatized a good percentage of the kids who watched it upon release. Even before it hit video, I remember kids a few classes ahead of me talking about how scary it was. Catching it a year later on VHS, I recall sharing that sentiment.
Dread Central regulars might remember my short-lived column from 2010. I drudged up older genre films on a weekly basis in an effort to give them their day in the sun. But I found myself bogged down in real life stuff at the time that prevented me from continuing on. I always intended on bringing it back, and I'm happy to say that day is nearly upon us!
Up-and-coming convention Saturday Nightmares, which runs this June 3-5, 2011, in East Rutherford, NJ, has quite an impressive lineup. From a live screening of The Birds with star Tippi Hedren to a Martin screening with John Amplas to Barbara Steele introducing The Pit and the Pendulum, it has a little something for everyone.
Bargain basement horror doesn’t get much stranger than this unusual little effort from 1985. Ostensibly unfolding as another entry in the long-running 80’s slasher canon, that label only applies to a piece of these truly wacked out proceedings as there’s so much oddity on display throughout Horror House on Highway 5 that it truly needs to be experienced more than once in order to catch everything.
After the debacle of Puppet Master – Axis of Evil (review here), I was asked to list off some of my favorite Full Moon films. I listed Meridian despite having seen it last in 1992, recalling it as both an atmospheric and original romantic horror film. I was thirteen then. Most probably it was the sex and nudity that won me over.
The Prey isn’t a movie to be recommended lightly. You’ve really got to have spent some time mining the depths of the slasher subgenre in order to gleam any appreciation from this little oddity. It’s not particularly well made - padded to the nines with more wildlife footage than most nature documentaries and bogged down by the most lugubrious pace imaginable – and it fails at creating any substantial tension or suspense.
It’s no secret that the early 80s saw many fledgling filmmakers scrambling to become the next John Carpenter by capitalizing on the infamous slasher boom, and Madman’s genesis was certainly no different. And while it was one of four ‘campfire slashers’ made in 1981 (Friday the 13th, part 2, The Burning and The Final Terror being the others), it is perhaps the most distinct.
One of the defining characteristics of 70s horror is the thick and pervasive atmosphere that distinguishes them amongst their peers. Films like Let’s Scare Jessica to Death and Phantasm invoke such strong, yet unique, impressions that it’s impossible to find others exactly like them.
Panned by critics and moviegoers alike upon its direct-to-video release back in 2000, Bruiser never really found its audience and, ten years later, seems to have been entirely forgotten. And while I realize that I’m in the minority here, I’ve always considered this one to be a bit of an overlooked little gem. George A.