Monday, 21 October 2019

MAYHEM Festival-Day 3- Super Saturday!



Up nice and early we arrived just in time to grab a coffee again and get our seats for the long but brilliant MAYHEM Saturday. It kicked off at 12 with a film I had been looking forward to The Pool. A simple tale of a man who falls asleep on a lino as the pool is drained and he is trapped. Sounds simple enough right? But oh no it certainty isnt! My description is actually very sketchy as quite a bit does lead up to the draining of the pool but it's one of those films that you could easily spoil as it has so many twists and outright bonkers situations. Another mad think about it is that's its sponsored by pizza hut!


There is also Lucky the dog who stays around the top of the pool hopelessly trying to help out his stranded master. I shall say no more apart from it was one of my favourites of the weekend. 9/10 from me! Up next was one I was also very intrigued by She never died. After last years superb He never died and talk of it becoming a TV series I was looking forward to what they would do with it. Not a direct sequel but set in the same universe it was great and very very violent.



This time it followed the story of Cannibal Lacey when she does a deal to catch a local particularly nasty gang who deal in snuff movies. It's greatly paced and the lead is superb. It does set it up for a sequel or indeed as I mentioned even a TV series. If you liked He never died or I would say even if you didn't this is one we'll worth catching when you can.


After the great She Never Died next up was Something Else.It was i found a nice easy watch with one of the most WTF?? Moments of any films of the festival! I told the story of small town life with a house renovation and love story but when the girlfriend has had enough and just leaves a note and leaves he is left alone, With a great house, No Motivation, Beer, A sofa and a Monster that tries to smash the front door down every night, It's not your usual love story!

 The local Sheriff is his ex girlfriends brother and stories leak back to the town that he says he sees a monster and he's lost the plot, To be fair it doesn't help that he shoots at passing cars. Like i said it was a nice easy watch, At a point near the end i did get a bit fidgety thinking it was going on  a bit but then.......Just watch it and you'll see what i mean! A great laugh.

Next up was one of my favourite parts of and indeed the heart of the festival the Short Film Showcase. Filled with the Brilliant, The Weird and the downright bizarre! Its usually about 2 hours long and goes so fast,
My favourites this year were "Creaker" A funny take on the monster under the bed story,

 "Unmade" a very welcome and creepy return from MAYHEM director Steven Sheil,

 "A little taste" Old school witches on a see-saw! "Frost Bite" a beautifully shot zombie short with some of the best looking zombies i have seen for a long time.

"Toe" A strange little animated Tim Burton style short

"Limbus" Very short but hilarious hitch hiker tale!

"Wild Love" An ice age style gore fest where nature really hits back, And to be honest the fate of some of the animals in this weekends films it was great to see them get revenge!

Last but by no means least was my favourite out of the all, "It's Not Custard" It is available on YouTube and i have stuck it below, Be warned, Don't eat whilst watching!!!





The Next film up was The Cop, The Gangster and The Devil, A film based on  true story of a serial killer that is hunted down by both the police and the mob after a literal run in one night with the boss of the mob! It was yet another great UK premier for MAYHEM and it was brilliant, Fast paced, Superb acting, Extremely violent and as you expect with great Asian cinema loads of insane twists. This was one of my highlights of MAYHEM and yet another one you need to keep an eye out for.

The last film of the evening was the cheese fest that was Nicolas Cage in Kiss of the Vampire, Sadly i had to miss out on this one but from all accounts as with this slot in previous years the late night showing went down a storm, Taxi home, Early (ish!) night and back up tomorrow for the final day of MAYHEM, It's gone so fast again!!

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Mayhem Festival 2019 Day 2.




Nice lay in on a day off. Breakfast sorted, Coffee brought then up to the screen for day 2.
The day started with now a regular feature of mayhem showing something obscure and usually slightly out there. Today was no different with 60s Russian film VIY. It was an old folklore tale of a young monk summoned to oversee the funeral arrangements of a young girl who's passed away. Seems pretty straight forward but far from it. The visuals for a 60s movie were brilliant very much Jack the giant killer or some of the old Yokai Monster movies. The acting was bonkers as was the drinking vodka whilst chomping on a bunch of spring onions(That was in the film not me!) One part when they stopped on the way at an inn they all drank copious amounts of vodka and started a sing song, I though to myself "Bloody hell its IDLES band!!" 


The young monk has to spend 3 nights in a Chapel with the deceased girl. Each night gets crazier and the third night is truly bonkers and nightmarish and reminded me a lot of Encounters of a spooky kind,Apparently it has been picked up finally for distribution and its one I definitely will be adding to my collection and so should you! 



Next up was a UK premier of Sword Of God. Aka The Mute. The story told of 2 missionaries washed up on a remote island who try to convince the local village that their God is wrong and the is only 1 God. It was very heavy but beautifully shot and brutal. The scenery was stunning as we're the performances from the lead 2 missionary's. It's one I did like but not sure I'd watch again. But well worth seeing once even if its just to see how beautifully shot it is.





Up next was Girl in the 3rd floor. A tale of a house renovation that disturbs the spirits that formally occupied the house. It was pretty much a one man (and dog) movie that at points was totally Evil Dead Ash level. It was dark, Funny and extremely gory in places! The story slowly unravels to reveal the reasons behind the haunting and its bleak! The main guy i thought was a bit of a dick from the beginning and this is proven later on, Oh and more goo from this one! White weird stuff coming from the plug sockets,Yuk! It was a nice easy watch after Sword Of God one you should look out for.
Sadly we couldn't make it for te last two movies Color out of space but it seemed it was this years equivalent of last years MANDY, The Marmite movie of MAYHEM, Some loved it some hated it, I must say i am intrigued to see it, Also we Missed the 80's cheese fest The Hidden but i have seen that and apparently it was great fun on the big screen.
So after we had left i looked on the ever awesome flyer and looked through the line up for tommorow, It looked solid, One film i was really looking forward to since the announcement was The Pool and this opened the festival bright and early on the Saturday at 12pm and i was not disappointed.

HARPOON launches ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL this Friday 18 Oct

HIT HORROR ‘HARPOON’ PREMIERES EXCLUSIVELY ON

THE ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL FROM 18 OCTOBER 2019

ON APPLE TV AND AMAZON PRIME VIDEO





UK: Tuesday 1st October 2019 – Today Arrow Video is thrilled to officially announce that hit horror HARPOON will premiere exclusively on its Cult Film video-on-demand service THE ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL from 18 October, just in time for Halloween. The Arrow Video Channel is now available to UK customers of Apple TV channels in the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and select Samsung smart TVs, in addition to Amazon Prime Video subscribers.



Hot on the heels of its UK Premiere at Arrow Video FrightFest where it received critical acclaim, HARPOON is written, directed and edited by Rob Grant (Alive, What Doesn’t Kill You), Produced by Michael Peterson and Kurtis David Harder and stars Munro Chambers (Cardinal, Turbo Kid, Degrassi: The Next Generation), Emily Tyra (Code Black, Boardwalk Empire), Christopher Gray (The Mist, The Society, Sell By) with narration by Brett Gelman (Fleabag, Stranger Things, The Other Guys).



With his perfect family and perfect upbringing, Richard (Christopher Gray) appears to have it all. So when he thinks that his long-term girlfriend, Sasha (Emily Tyra), and best friend, Jonah (Munro Chambers), are having an affair, it sends him into a fit of rage that leaves Jonah a bloody mess. Once Jonah and Sasha convince Richard the allegations are false, Richard tries to buy back their trust by taking them out for a day-trip on his family’s yacht.



Tension boils over once out at sea, and to make matters worse, the yacht’s engine fails. Stranded without food and supplies, the trio must set aside their differences in order to survive. One-part post-modern Edgar Allan Poe adaptation, one-part Knife in the Water with the cast of Seinfeld, Harpoon is a wickedly humourous and bloody deconstruction of friendship and love.



The ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL service gives cult film fans the opportunity to watch a varied and curated selection of films that the ARROW VIDEO brand has been famous for with many film fans all over the world. From horror to sci-fi, thrillers to westerns, the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will launch with classic cult films such as the Jake Gyllenhaal starring Donnie Darko, Heathers starring Winona Ryder, the horror classic Hellraiser, and the Japanese horror masterpiece Ringu. In addition to these Cult Classic films, the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will continue to premiere exclusive brand-new films on the service beginning the critically acclaimed indie-horror-comedy from Canada Harpoon in October, German period horror Hagazussa in November and in December the Rory Culkin and Emory Cohen starrer Lords of Chaos.



The ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will also host a growing collection of documentaries, interviews and never-before-seen content from the Arrow Video archives, as well as newly produced material. These documentaries will breathe new life on the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL, giving film fans an immersive look into the creation of many cult film classics such as Donnie Darko and Hellraiser. The service will be updated regularly with new content, new curation focus and never-before-seen content, all hand-picked by the Arrow Video team.



UK: Tuesday 1st October 2019 – Today Arrow Video is thrilled to officially announce that hit horror HARPOON will premiere exclusively on its Cult Film video-on-demand service THE ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL from 18 October, just in time for Halloween. The Arrow Video Channel is now available to UK customers of Apple TV channels in the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and select Samsung smart TVs, in addition to Amazon Prime Video subscribers.



Hot on the heels of its UK Premiere at Arrow Video FrightFest where it received critical acclaim, HARPOON is written, directed and edited by Rob Grant (Alive, What Doesn’t Kill You), Produced by Michael Peterson and Kurtis David Harder and stars Munro Chambers (Cardinal, Turbo Kid, Degrassi: The Next Generation), Emily Tyra (Code Black, Boardwalk Empire), Christopher Gray (The Mist, The Society, Sell By) with narration by Brett Gelman (Fleabag, Stranger Things, The Other Guys).



With his perfect family and perfect upbringing, Richard (Christopher Gray) appears to have it all. So when he thinks that his long-term girlfriend, Sasha (Emily Tyra), and best friend, Jonah (Munro Chambers), are having an affair, it sends him into a fit of rage that leaves Jonah a bloody mess. Once Jonah and Sasha convince Richard the allegations are false, Richard tries to buy back their trust by taking them out for a day-trip on his family’s yacht.



Tension boils over once out at sea, and to make matters worse, the yacht’s engine fails. Stranded without food and supplies, the trio must set aside their differences in order to survive. One-part post-modern Edgar Allan Poe adaptation, one-part Knife in the Water with the cast of Seinfeld, Harpoon is a wickedly humourous and bloody deconstruction of friendship and love.



The ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL service gives cult film fans the opportunity to watch a varied and curated selection of films that the ARROW VIDEO brand has been famous for with many film fans all over the world. From horror to sci-fi, thrillers to westerns, the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will launch with classic cult films such as the Jake Gyllenhaal starring Donnie Darko, Heathers starring Winona Ryder, the horror classic Hellraiser, and the Japanese horror masterpiece Ringu. In addition to these Cult Classic films, the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will continue to premiere exclusive brand-new films on the service beginning the critically acclaimed indie-horror-comedy from Canada Harpoon in October, German period horror Hagazussa in November and in December the Rory Culkin and Emory Cohen starrer Lords of Chaos.



The ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL will also host a growing collection of documentaries, interviews and never-before-seen content from the Arrow Video archives, as well as newly produced material. These documentaries will breathe new life on the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL, giving film fans an immersive look into the creation of many cult film classics such as Donnie Darko and Hellraiser. The service will be updated regularly with new content, new curation focus and never-before-seen content, all hand-picked by the Arrow Video team.



ARROW VIDEO’s Head of Digital Daniel Perry said:

“We are honoured and excited to be launching HARPOON on the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL exclusively as our first premiere title on the service this October. HARPOON is a perfect example of the quality of film we will be bringing every month to the Channel, supporting stand out new release cult films that fit perfectly with our brand and our extensive list of curated catalogue titles such as Donnie Darko and Heathers”.



A wider Home Entertainment release including Blu-ray is planned for HARPOON in early 2020.   



HARPOON will be available exclusively on the ARROW VIDEO CHANNEL on Amazon Prime Video and Apple TV from 18th October.



Tuesday, 15 October 2019

MAYHEM 2019 FESTIVAL DAY ONE.




We arrived nice and early for day one of Mayhem 2019! Two films were showing the first night,Extra Ordinary and Daniel isn't real. We were here once again (our 7th full year) for the weekend so got our passes and headed up to the cinema with its new super plush seats, Complete with drinks holders, I do have to say about the seats that they are a big improvement especially when watching one of the many subtitled movies, And the new sound system is bloody marvellous!
The opening film was Irish Satanic/Paranormal comedy Extra Ordinary (Yes i know it's one word but that's explained why in the film!) The film opened VHS style from Rose Dooley's Father who was a paranormal investigator who died from a tragic accident caused apparently by his guilt ridden daughter who has since dismissed  anything to do with the paranormal and now runs her own driving school.


She still sees paranormal things but refuses to acknowledge their existence. We then move on to Martin Martin (Barry Ward) Who's wife has recently deceased and her spirit refuses to leave the family home. I shall say no more but the two of them meet up and the rest of the movie is hilarious. There is also a sub plot of  one hit wonder singer Christian Winter (Will Forte) who moved into a local big castle with the royalties of his Chris De Burg style smash hit and is so desperate to get success again he does a satanic pact and all he needs is a virgin for a sacrifice!
Needless to say it was hilarious. Some great special FX for a low budget film and it certainly didn't skimp on the gore level. The performances from the two main characters were spot on. The ectoplasm parts were gross but extremely funny which set up for a weekend of Mayhem Goo!Definitely one to keep your eye out for.



Next up was Daniel isn't real and you not could get more change in direction from Extra Ordinary this was certainly that!
Daniel was the imaginary friend of a young  Luke (Miles Robbins) But when he makes him do something really bad his mum makes him banish him and lock him in a dolls house. Years later he returns home his mums mental state has deteriorated severely and this then leads to him releasing his imaginary friend Daniel from the dolls house with very dire consequences.



The performances were superb, Especially surprising for myself was the performance by Arnold Schwarzenegger's son Patrick Schwarzenegger, He was truly bonkers, The weird thing was that from certain angles he looked just like him and that for me made it more unsettling.
It delves into very dark areas of schizophrenia with a booming soundtrack and visuals to match.
So that was the 1st two films of mayhem 2019 done and next up was Friday with an earlier start with the very intriguing looking VIY.


Monday, 14 October 2019

And soon the darkness and Fright reviewed!



Director: Robert Fuest
Writers: Brian Clemens (original story), Terry Nation (original story).
Stars: Pamela Franklin, Michele Dotrice, Sandor El├Ęs |

Just released on the Studio Canal Vintage Classics label its great to see the 1970 classic"And Soon The Darkness"finally get a well deserved UK Blu-Ray release,
It tells the tale of 2 English girls who decide to take a cycling trip off the beaten path into rural France. Whilst having a break in a local cafe they see a very cool Serge Gainsbourg look alike who one of the girls takes a secret fancy to, They finish up and decide to carry on with the journey and the cool dude passes them on his scooter, He stops at another cafe, They carry on and decide to have a break, At which point they argue about how its "Too Hot" and "You don't like the food" In of course a typical British manner!
One of the girls then decides to take off on her own leaving the other to chill out and do a bit of sunbathing, Things then go rapidly downhill from there!
The print on the new release is superb with super vibrant colours and the booming 70's cheesy soundtrack, I know it got remade in 2010 but the remake as with most is not a patch on the original.The story by the always brilliant Brian Clemens is full of mystery right up to the final frame. So for me it's a solid 9/10 and one i'll be more than happy to see on my shelf. And with this and the release of Fright i personally can't wait to see what else Studio Canal Vintage Classics will be releasing,


Young babysitter Amanda arrives at the Lloyd residence to spend the evening looking after their young son. Soon after the Lloyds leave, a series of frightening occurrences in the gloomy old house have Amanda's nerves on edge. The real terror begins, however, when the child's biological father appears after recently escaping from a nearby mental institution.

Director: Peter Collinson
Writer: Tudor Gates
Stars: Honor Blackman, Susan George, Ian Bannen , George Cole.

Also Just released another on the Vintage Classics label "Fright". Starring a great cast of British household names. I haven't seen it in years so of course being a huge fan of 70's British its one i had to get and so glad i did. At first i was surprised to see it has an "18" certificate but after the re-watch i can certainly see why! As with "And Soon The Darkness" the print again is superb, The setting of the story is fantastic and that other British Classic "Killers Moon" the good old 70's loony bin comes into play, In some places it is a hard watch and if made today i suppose they would have to change a fair few things about it to say the least! Another solid 9/10 from me, So that's my 1st 2 reviews for the Vintage Classics label and watch this space for (fingers crossed!) many, many more.
Jonny T.

BOTH ARE NOW AVAILABLE FROM STUDIO CANAL VINTAGE CLASSICS.





'Upgrade' with Logan Marshall-Green on Limited Edition Blu-ray 18 November




Hello Folks,
Just bringing you the news that UPGRADE is getting a very limited edition Blu-Ray release on 18th November, You may have seen it on a certain streaming site but come on admit it there is nothing like actually having a physical copy is there!
It also looks like it's packed with extras so this is one i'll definitely adding to my collection and you should to. Watch this space for a review coming very soon,
Jonny T.

‘A sardonic blend of The Six Million Dollar Man and Dr Faustus…a satire that cleaves dangerously close to reality at times’

****

The Times



‘Wildly inventive, brutally violent and glossily designed’

****

Daily Mirror



‘A brutal and brilliant film’

****

HeyUGuys

‘Upgrade is as fluid and exhilarating as anything the Wachowskis signed their names to in the days when they were brothers: the kind of nifty, sometimes nasty surprise our multiplexes sorely need’

****

The Guardian



The critically acclaimed breakout Sci-Fi hit of 2018, Upgrade from director Leigh Whannell (Insidious, Saw) and  the team behind Get Out, gets its highly anticipated enhanced release as a Limited Edition Blu-ray, complete with a host of brand new special features from Second Sight Films.



In a near-future world, where technology controls everything, technophobe Grey Trace (Logan Marshall-Green – The Invitation, Spider-Man: Homecoming) is the victim of a brutal mugging that leaves his wife dead and him paralysed. A reclusive billionaire inventor offers him an experimental cure, an A.I. implant called STEM. Grey accepts and is immediately transformed into an unstoppable killing machine with enhanced strength and agility. Now it’s payback time.



Genre specialist Blumhouse and the visionary creator of the Saw franchise team up to create an instant cyberpunk classic.



Your Upgrade is due on 18 November 2019.

Monday, 23 September 2019

Tigers are not afraid - Reviewed.





"A dark fairy tale about a gang of five children trying to survive the horrific violence of the cartels and the ghosts created every day by the drug war."


Well. I have had Shudder for quite a while now and to be honest i have never really watched much on it, I saw on twitter the other day that someone i follow had watched a film called "Tigers are not afraid" and was raving about it so i decided to give it a go and i am very glad that i did.

It tells the story of street kids in Mexico that are orphaned through the local  cartels killing off their parents and that is how they are all brought together by their tragedies, The main character in it is a young girl called Estrella, Her mother has been kidnapped and she hangs on for slim hope that on day she may return.
During one of her school days there is a shooting that takes place and whilst the children cower on the floor the teacher gives her three sticks of chalk and grants her three wishes,Needless to say these don't turn out well.
The school is then closed until further notice when Estella starts to feel things in her apartment relating to her mother, On her own and terrified she decides to leave and hook up with a young gang of street orphans led by a young boy named El Shine.

They have tales about the children being kidnapped by the cartel and taken to satanic rituals and eaten, The theft by El Shine of one the cartels leading members phone opens up something far more dangerous than any of them could have hoped for.



Ok so it sounds like a bunch of kids on a dangerous adventure but this certainly isn't Stranger things!
The locations and story are grim, A true reflection of the life of these kids, The acting from everyone of them is top notch as is the pacing, At first after seeing the poster and trailer i felt that both were a little misleading but i guess that's what the selling point  is, Its far from your usual Insidious/The Nun jump scare movie. It has so much more depth and heart than the whole of that franchise put together, It certainly has it's creepy moments and some genuinely sad moments, So in summing up don't be taken in by the western style poster and marketing, This has way more depth than a creepy poster and trailer, Seek it out when you can you won't be disappointed. This has also renewed my interest in Shudder along with the excellent Witch in the window, With the Creepshow series also coming soon to Shudder i'll be going through it a lot more and if i find any more gems i'll be sure to let you know.
8/10
Jonny.