Wednesday, 30 October 2013

MAYHEM Festival preview day 4!


And now the end is near, Last day of MAYHEM festival, boo hoo! But in saying that yet again it's a fantastic days worth of movie and a quiz! Sunday is a nice relaxing day so what better way to relax in a nice comfy cinema seat at Broadway with a beer! The Films on show today are Wake In Fright, Painless, In Fear, The Unknown and Big Bad wolves. Along with the films you also get at 9PM in the cafe bar the one and only quiz THE FLINTERROGATION, I took part in it last year but I didn't do great to say the very least! Quiz master David Flint of the great site http://strangethingsarehappening.com/ will again be hosting it again this year and it's sure to be a little tough but as always will be great fun!So hope to see you all there! Tickets avalaible from the box office and the link below,
Jonny T.

GET YOUR TICKETS HERE!
http://www.broadway.org.uk/groups/mayhem_horror_film_festival



MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
WAKE IN FRIGHT 18
SUN 3 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Ted Kotcheff
Cast: Gary Bond, Donald Pleasence
Origin: Australia
Duration: 114m
At long last this masterpiece has been rediscovered, resurrected and fully restored. Rare, intense, controversial and incredibly savage filmmaking, where the real horror is man. A disgruntled teacher descends into a degrading and brutal hell after finding himself stranded in a small outback town. The ultimate Ozploitation film.

“Powerful, genuinely shocking and rather amazing.” Roger Ebert


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
PAINLESS 18
SUN 3 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Juan Carlos Medina
Cast: Alex Brendemühl, Tómas Lemarquis
Origin: Spain
Duration: 102m
Subtitles: Yes
The 1930s, a group of children are discovered who feel no pain, they are forced into a sanatorium, isolated and experimented upon. Spain's fascist past collides horrifically with its present as, in the present a man begins a desperate search for a bone marrow transplant and a hidden past rears its head. A beautifully staged and moving horror-thriller.

“A dark fairy-tale.” Starburst
TIMES


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
BAFTA PRESENTS IN FEAR 15
SUN 3 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Jeremy Lovering
Cast: Iain De Caestecker, Alice Englert
Origin: United Kingdom
Duration: 85m
Driving and lost in the Irish countryside a young couple start to suspect someone is tormenting them. Unusually, Lovering (director of the new series opener of Sherlock) withheld the script from the cast not allowing them to know what might happen next - making the scares as real for them as for us. Claustrophobic, tense and incredibly suspenseful. 

“Edge-of–your-seat thrills, this is one ride you're going to want to take.” Dread Central 

These events form part of BAFTA's UK-wide learning and events programme, giving audiences access behind the screens of the film, TV and games industries. For more information and to sign up to our e-bulletin, go to www.bafta.org

This screening is free to BAFTA members.


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
THE UNKNOWN + LIVE SCORE FROM 8MM ORCHESTRA PG
SUN 3 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Tod Browning
Cast: Joan Crawford, Lon Chaney
Origin: United States
Duration: 90m
Mayhem have commissioned a live score for this special screening of one of the most influential horror films ever made in which a murderer on the run hides out in a circus and falls for the daughter of the ringmaster, From the director of Freaks and Dracula, The Unknown stars Chaney, the man of a thousand faces, in his greatest role as crazed Alonzo, the armless knife thrower! 

“Spectacular.” Combustible Celluloid


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
BIG BAD WOLVES 18
SUN 3 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Aharon Keshales, Navot Papushado
Cast: Lior Ashkenazi, Dvir Benedek
Origin: Israel
Duration: 110m
Subtitles: Yes
“The only thing maniacs are afraid of is other maniacs.” A meek school teacher is strapped to a chair and tortured by a father seeking revenge and a cop turned vigilante. Brilliantly mixing unsettling violence with grim laughs and out-of-nowhere twists, this is a controversial and gripping masterpiece from the makers of cult hit Rabies, Israel's first horror film.

“Masterful.” Dread Central
TIMES


Monday, 28 October 2013

MAYHEM festival Preview - Day 3.


So we move on to Saturday 2nd November, Day 3 of MAYHEM festival and what a line up it is! There are sure to be a few people nursing Discopath hangovers so what better way to recover than in a big comfy seat and a whole day of great movies! Today we have lined up, The Demons Rook, Kiss of the Damned, The Borderlands, Scary Shorts, The Machine and finally the Tobe Hooper Classic LifeForce, Phew! So once again I have put the link below for you all to get your tickets whilst you can and by the looks of it they are selling fast!
Jonny T.


GET YOUR TICKETS HERE!




MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
THE DEMON'S ROOK 18
SAT 2 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: James Sizemore
Cast: Ashleigh Jo Sizemore, James Sizemore
Origin: United States
Duration: 103m
After making a childhood pact with a demon, a grown-up Roscoe returns from the underworld with mystical powers. But three demons pursue him: one who possesses the minds of all she crosses, another transforms a man into a beast and the third summons an army of the dead. Utterly hysterical blood-spurting fun; a DIY homage to all pre-CGI gore effects.

“Insane.” Dread Central


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
KISS OF THE DAMNED 18
SAT 2 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Xan Cassavetes
Cast: Roxane Mesquida, Joséphine de la Baume
Origin: United States
Duration: 97m
Having sworn off humans, young vampire Djuna finds peace with her new partner, only for her less hung-up sister to invade their tranquillity and threaten the whole vampire community. An impressively stylish, slyly funny and decadent mix of 70s sexy vampirism: think Tony Scott's The Hunger crossed with Jean Rollin.

“Pure kitsch. Sumptuously goofy gothic.” L.A. Times


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
THE BORDERLANDS + Q&A 18
SAT 2 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Elliot Goldner
Cast: Robin Hill, Gordon Kennedy
Origin: United Kingdom
Duration: 90m
A couple of Vatican investigators head to an isolated country church to report on supernatural activity and find much more than they bargained for in this chilling tale co-written by Severence Screenwriter James Moran. Is what haunts this remote location fake or horribly real? Expertly using sound to create genuine chills, Goldner slowly moves the story from humour to horror.

Mayhem and Broadway are pleased to welcome Director Elliot Goldner and Producer Jennifer Handorf for a special post-screening Q&A.


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
SCARY SHORTS 18
SAT 2 NOV - BOOK NOW
Duration: 120m
Subtitles: Yes
(Note: this is not a running order)

FIST OF JESUS (15 mins, Dirs: Adrian Cardona, David Munoz)
Jesus is always willing to lend a hand to those in need… but there
are others that will taste his fist

BIOCOP (5 mins, Dir: Steve Konstanski)
A fake trailer about a mutated cop who cannot die and his struggles to stop the latest designer drug.

THE APOCALYPSE (6 mins, Dir: Andrew Zuchero)
Four uninspired friends try to come up with a terrific idea for how to spend their Saturday afternoon.

HELL NO! (4 mins, Dir: Joe Nicolosi)
HELL NO is a short movie trailer that explores what would happen in horror 
movies if smart characters made good decisions. Spoiler alert: everyone 
lives.

TWO FINGERS:’VENGEANCE RHYTHM’ (3 mins, Dir: Chris Ullens)
This is the story of a very very angry teddy bear!

AN ALIEN CLAYMATION (3 mins, Dir: Lee Hardcastle)
Dad invites Alien visitors into his home then ends up fighting them.

GRANDPA (15 mins, Dir: Leslie Simpson)
Milo is a troubled kid. He's having night terrors, little accidents, and his only friend has lost an eye. 
Luke, his father, is blind to Milo's problems. 
He's overworked, underpaid, and up to his eyes in debt. 
They live in Grandpa's old house; not so much an inheritance than a millstone round their necks.

But something is changing. 
And Grandpa keeps watch.

SENDO SENSHI (3.30, Dirs: Alan D. Boyd & Video Mat)
Whilst investigating a Yakuza kidnapping, Sendo Senshi begins to reveal a deeper sinister plot that threatens to tear the underworld limb from limb sending shockwaves across the globe.

RELLIK (5.18 mins, Dir: David Lilley)
Starting at the end and returning to the beginning, ‘Rellik’ retraces the steps that lead to a woman’s horrific murder. A secluded wood. Two masked perpetrators. Who are they? What is their motivation? 

HOME MOVIES (40 secs, Dir: Jordan Morris)
We tried to think of the most twisted, depraved and horrifying film we 
could make in under a minute, Home Movies was the result, you have been 
warned........

TIGHTENING OUR BELTS (9.15mins, Dir: Jordan Shankman)
On a Halloween night, a father searches for his son, and comes face to face with pure evil. 


THE POLICEMAN'S STORY (7.20mins, Dir: Tristan Ofield)
Responding to a concerned neighbor - a Policeman arrives at a house in the dead of night to search for Mr. Groboski who has been missing for the past three days.

8.47 (12.03 mins, Dir: Nik Kacevski)
MAIA will do anything to save her sister, but in this sci-fi, time-travel thriller, she will only have one breath.




MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
THE MACHINE + Q&A 18
SAT 2 NOV - BOOK NOW
Director: Caradog James
Cast: Caity Lotz, Toby Stephens
Origin: United Kingdom
Duration: 90m
A near-future cold war, Britain is on the brink of developing a game-changing weapon, ‘The Machine’. But when a programming error causes the prototype to run amok, scientist Vincent McCarthy decides to create a truly conscious killing machine. Incredibly designed, thoroughly human, The Machine is a dazzling triumph of independent British cinema.

“Slickly designed and beautiful... radical.” Fangoria

Mayhem and Broadway are pleased to welcome Director Caradog James and Producer John Giwa-Amu for a post-screening Q&A.


MAYHEM HORROR FESTIVAL
LIFEFORCE 18
SAT 2 NOV - 11:30PM - 1:26AM - BOOK NOW
Director: Tobe Hooper
Cast: Steve Railsback, Mathilda May
Origin: United Kingdom
Duration: 116m
An insane late night Halloween party offering – nude space vampires have hitched a ride on a space shuttle to London and are sexily sucking the lifeforce out of everyone and nakedly creating a horde of shambling undead. From the director of POLTERGEIST and THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, remastered and restored to its garish, glorious best. 

“Hysterical vampire porn.” New York Times




Saturday, 26 October 2013

MAYHEM Festival Day Preview 2 + Disco time!




Hello Folks,
Jonny T here with my preview of this years MAYHEM horror festival in Nottingham this time I bring you day 2! The films showing on Friday 1st November will be The Strange Colour of Your Body's Tears, Delivery and Discopath, But not only do you get 3 great films you also get to celebrate the showing of Discopath with a Halloween themed 70's Disco! So dust off those flairs and boogey on down to MAYHEM on Friday, See you there!
Jonny T.

Get your tickets for MAYHEM festival here!



The Strange Colour of your body's tears.

FRIDAY 1 NOVEMBER
6.15PM
THE STRANGE COLOUR OF YOUR BODY'S TEARS
Dir. Helene Cattet & Bruno Forzani, 2013 (BEL/FRA)
Klaus Tange, Ursula Bedena
From the visionary directors of Amer comes something just as bizarre, stylised and extreme. A businessman returns home to discover his apartment locked and his wife mysteriously vanished. What follows is a surreal journey that will please fans of Peter Strickland (Berberian Sound Studio) and Dario Argento.
“Psychedelic and mesmerising.” Screen


8.15PM
DELIVERY with special guest Director Brian Netto
Dir. Brian Netto, 2013 (USA)
Danny Barclay, Laurel Vail
This genuinely fresh and exciting take on the 'found-footage' film proves that it's still possible to take the genre in new directions. Building its story around a never-aired reality show episode which follows a couple trying for their first child, the story soon darkens as the young mother starts to believe her unborn child just might be possessed.
“Refreshing, scary, creepy.” Indiewire


10.30PM
DISCOPATH
Dir. Renaud Gauthier, 2013 (CAN)
Katherine Cleland, Ivan Freud
The mid-70s: a timid young New Yorker is fatefully exposed to the pulsating rhythms of a brand new genre of music: Disco. Unable to control his murderous impulses stemming from a childhood trauma, he becomes a dangerous serial killer, exiled to Montreal. A pitch perfect blend of music and mayhem - gloriously sleazy fun.
“A swift, satisfying salute to the slasher cinema of the ’70s.” Fangoria


The Conspiracy - Reviewed.




The Conspiracy Reviewed.

So I went into The Conspiracy pretty much blind on the recommendation of my good friend Steve , we pass many an hour away at work by talking about conspiracy theories and programmes such as the Jessie Ventura and Joe Rogan ones as well as what we've seen on YouTube. So he had seen it and said I’d enjoy it so I gave it a go and here are my thoughts.
The film opens up with our 2 documentary makers Jim (James Gilbert) and Aaron (Aaron Poole) who have been sent a link to a video of a guy Robert Williams (Dennis O’Conner) who is known on YouTube as an insane guy that stands around New York with a Megaphone shouting out at passing people telling them they are all “Slaves” and are lied to daily by the people that control them. What catches the filmmakers eyes are not the amount of views the videos have had but the comments, the comments are basically everyone agreeing to pretty much everything he is saying. So they decide to set out to find Robert Williams, it doesn’t take them long to find him.


They arrive at his apartment and when he opens the door it is a conspiracy theorists dream, Every single wall his covered with newspaper clippings and internet pages and he slowly explains how this particular thing in this year relates to another thing from another year that then ties in with every USA president all finished off with him saying “BOOM!” He clearly is not all there although saying that it’s fascinating stuff! He then sits down with them for a brief interview where he ends by saying “You do not want to be like me”.
We then see him  followed around on his daily routes with a notice board strapped to his back before he sets up in a park with his stand and argues with some guy over the 9/11 attacks, They then go and grab a coffee where he points out to them about a guy on a bicycle at the end of the street in shades who he swears is following, so he shouts at him “GO FUCK YOURSELF!” and the man duly rides off, Paranoia or is he actually being targeted?
This leads to the next part where the Jim and Aaron try and make contact with Robert but to no avail, 4 weeks pass and still no sign, they go into the internet chat rooms where he was a daily user and nobody has heard a thing so they decide to try and get into his apartment, on arrival they find it pretty much emptied and people just taking stuff out, it’s a an empty shell. Aaron then sees that there is still a hell of a lot of the newspaper/internet clippings lying around and tells Jim that there is no way they should go to waste and scoops all the clippings into a couple of black bags and the return to his apartment.


They once again venture into the chat room and get warned to drop what they are do and leave well alone an article they found in the new York times, The guy who warns them is the guy that wrote it and knows what will happen if the carry on perusing a truthful answer and the outcome for them will not be good. They do set up a meeting with the guy and this is where they start to get followed, The see the man on the bicycle and are randomly followed by a dark windowed black 4x4. Aaron rather than being put off by this is determined more than ever to pursue the truth and spirals downwards to almost becoming Peter Williams, So what will be the outcome? Will Aaron drop it? Well I won’t spoil anything here!
In summing up it’s a very well made Mockumentary with some great acting by all involved, It’s a mix of factual events and actual news footage clips and the whole subject of his conspiracy theory business is to me personally fascinating, Not just in the fact of the government won’t tell us the truth etc. but the way it can blow people’s minds that they are so convinced by anything and everything they read.
7.5/10
Jonny T.




Friday, 25 October 2013

The Following - Season 2 - 2 Teasers released!


Hello Folks,
Jonny T here with 2 new teasers trailers released for The Following Season 2. Now I have to admit that I wasn't a massive fan of the 1st season but there was something about it that kept me watching week in week out, Maybe in was the H.P Lovecraft connection that was done very well, So let's hope this next season does well and one point, Dear Kevin Bacon, STOP DOING THOSE BLOODY CONGA ADVERTS!! 
Enjoy,
Jonny T.







Captain America The Winter Soldier Trailer.






Hello Folks,
Today we bring you the brand new released Captain America The Winter Soldier Trailer, So with the new Thor film opening it appears that the Marvel/Disney money machine just keeps on rolling but saying that I do love a good Marvel film. There has already of course been complaints that the new trailer looks way to CGI heavy but how else could they do it? Bring it on I say!
Enjoy,
Jonny T.



Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Bigfoot returns in Willow Creek!


Hello Folks,
Now you all know my love of all things Big-foot! So I was watching the new show on channel 4 in the UK Big-foot Files which I must say is pretty good and it lead me on to the internet searching as I usually do every month or so to see if there are any more Big-foot films out there and this is when I came across a film called Willow Creek and what shocked me the most it has good reviews! An independent movie directed by Bobcat Goldthwaite it tells the story in found footage form of a couple interested in big foot and who set out to find the truth......Now with this being a low budget feature my only concern is it may take a while to appear especially here in the UK,  Now after seeing last year's very disappointing Big-foot Files I still hold out hope that one day they will make a truly brilliant one, what I am saying is it's such a great and Fascinating subject the material is there! So I'll keep my eyes out for a release and try and pick it up so when I do I shall bring the review right here,
Thanks,
Jonny T.



Friday, 18 October 2013

Paranormal Activity - The Marked Ones - Trailer hits!




Hello Folks,
Well the trailer has been released for Paranormal Activity – The Marked Ones. Bit odd that this one has been changed as not to be called Paranormal Activity 5 and the release date also pushed back to January 3rd  2014, Now the last ones have all been released around Halloween time and even though the series cost next to nothing to make and make a shit ton of money the decision to release it on risky January at the box office is a weird one,  I must admit I was not a real fan of the 1st film but did really enjoy the 2nd but as for 3 and 4 I thought they were pretty dire. But I don’t know what it is about the series it’s that age old horror fan thing where it’s gotten to the point of seeing the film out of mainly curiosity rather than excitement, so will this be the final instalment to have a cinema release the maybe straight to DVD after this? I suppose only time will tell.
Enjoy,
Jonny T. 




Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Paranormal Diaries - Out now on DVD!


Hello Folks,
Jonny T here with news of a great release! Now you know us over here as we love our Paranormal themed things, whether it be TV shows or Movies you really can't beat a good ghost story and from what I have read this is one of these, From the makers of the low budget and rather great Zombie Diaries I for one am looking forward to getting a copy of this so watch this space for a review coming very soon,
Enjoy,
Jonny T. 



THE PARANORMAL DIARIES: CLOPHILL


From the makers of The Zombie Diaries comes a brand new, chilling hit British horror The Paranormal Diaries: Clophill. This bone-chilling horror will make its debut at FrightFest 2013 followed by its release on DVD complete with stunning packaging and excellent special features on 14 October 2013





"TRULY SPINE-TINGLING"
DREAD CENTRAL

"BONE CHILLING"
RUE MORGUE

"SLICK, CLEVER AND VERY FRIGHTENING"
SCREAM MAGAZINE



OFFICIAL TRAILER 






Friday, 11 October 2013

Have a Film on me Friday! Good Against Evil (1977)




Hello Folks!
Well its nearly Saturday so let's get Satanic! Today on have a film on me Friday I bring you Good Against Evil a great little piece of Seventies Satanica! Starring the one and only Dack Rambo(what a name!) it has to be said it is a real weird kind of movie with an abrupt ending to say the least but in my opinion well worth a watch and it's free!
So click play and enjoy,
Have a great weekend,
Jonny T.

Dack Rambo a new face to love!




Enough of Dack, Here's the film, Enjoy.




Thursday, 10 October 2013

The Disco Exorcist - Comes to DVD October 14th!


Yes folks you read it correct, The Disco Exorcist! Getting a release from Monster Pictures in the UK on October 14th this looks insane to say the very least, so watch this space for a review coming very soon!
Jonny T.




Director: Richard Griffin
Writers: Ted Geoghegan, Tony Nunes 
Stars: Michael Reed, Sarah Nicklin, Ruth Sullivan
82 Minutes Certificate 18.

Suave swinger and womanizer Rex Romanski loves and leaves evil black magic priestess Rita Marie. Naturally, Rex incurs Rita's lethal wrath by spurning her. Can Rex figure out a way to stop Rita's subsequent rampage of revenge, murder, and destruction as well as reclaim the soul of his new porn starlet gal Amoreena Jones before it's too late? 








Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Newly released image for upcoming DVD -The Casebook of Eddie Brewer






Hello Folks,
Today I bring you a newly released image for the DVD cover of the brilliant The Casebook of Eddie Brewer. From Rookery pictures I managed to catch a screening at last year’s Nottingham MAYHEM horror festival and I have to say it is quite superb and for me it was a personal highlight of the festival.  It will finally be released on Halloween 2013! Starring the great Ian Brooker it tells the tales and troubles of old school Paranormal Investigator Eddie Brewer where in trying to prove to others the existence of spirits thing take a real bad turn for the worse, brilliantly acted and directed and creepy in a very British way this is well worth a look.

See my original review here---- The Casebook of Eddie Brewer Reviewed.

So I have put the link to the site that is also great and packed full of stuff as well as all the details you’ll need to keep up to date with the release of The Casebook Of Eddie Brewer.

Jonny T.

DVD Artwork Revealed!


OFFICIAL THE CASEBOOK OF EDDIE BREW SITE - http://www.thecasebookofeddiebrewer.com/

TRAILER.



Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Robert R Best Returns with Sample Chapter for THE INDEPENDENT!

 
Hello Folks,
Jonny T here with great new that Author and great friend of the site Robert R Best has returned with his new Novella "The Independent" Author of the highly acclaimed  Lakewood Memorial Trilogy it's great to have him back with some new stuff.So be sure to clink the link below for Robert's site to get your copy as well as all his great previous work,
Enjoy!
Jonny T

ROBERT R BEST OFFICAL SITE:http://robertrbest.com

 Chapter One



Sarah Keller stepped across the field, picking her way through grass that would have to be mowed soon. Cars went by on the road behind her. The fairgrounds off to her left, normally vacant, now contained a large, sprawling structure. The carnival was in town. Or soon would be, once they were set up.

Her police car was parked along the road behind her. Lakewood County Sherriff’s Department, it read. Sarah was the small town and surrounding county's Sherriff. Her only deputy, Chip, knelt in the field ahead of her. His hat provided him some shade. Something raw, twisted and red stained the grass in front of him. He wore white plastic gloves pulled tight over his hands. They were stained pink. Flies buzzed furiously around him and the mass.

"So what we got?" said Sarah, picking her way forward.

Chip looked up, nodded in acknowledgment, then back down at the red mass. "Hope you had breakfast a while ago. Or not at all, really."

Sarah took another step and the smell hit her. Raw and putrid. The body up ahead - and Sarah knew it was a body - was already stinking in the early July heat. The acrid tang of it stung the back of her throat.

She stopped and grimaced. "Fuck. God's left tit, that stinks."

Chip smirked. "Eloquent as always, Sheriff."

"Eat me," said Sarah, fishing around in her pockets and pulling out a small container of Vicks. She opened it, dug out a glob with her finger and rubbed under her nose. The strong menthol smell helped cut the odor. A little. "You think you'd get used to that, huh, Chip?"

"Name's not Chip," he said, his voice reminding her he'd told her a million times.

"Should be."

Sarah resumed walking. Two more steps and she was close enough. The red mass was indeed a body, or at least had been. The man - Sarah was reasonably sure it was a man - was crushed and split open. Bones jutted through purple wounds in his skin. His spine was twisted and broken, much of it visible through his ruined back. His head was crushed, partly deflated against the grass. Blood and muck spread out from where he lay, like he'd been stomped on by some sort of giant. Or dropped from the sky.

Sarah looked around the field. Other than her and Chip’s footsteps and the point of the body’s impact, the field was undisturbed. There was no sign of what had left the body there, or how it got in that state. No mangled grass, no bloody trail. Nothing.

"Huh," she said, looking back down.

"My thoughts exactly," said Chip, pulling off his gloves in an inside-out motion and dropping them in a plastic bag to his left.

Sarah slid the Vicks back into her pocket. "Any ID?"

Chip shook his head. "None. Cheap-ass wallet with a few bucks in it, but no ID."

"Transient?"

"Most likely," said Chip.

Sarah knelt for a closer look, despite wishing she didn't have to. She leaned in to look closely at what was left of his face. Half of his head was flattened against the ground like a deflated basketball. Splits ran up what remained of his face, radiating out from the point of impact. Blood and bone showed beneath. His remaining eye was open, bulging outward and filled with blood.

"Yeah," said Sarah. "Never seen him around town."

She stood, brushing dirt and grass from her knees. She let her gaze wander across the field, landing on the carnival. She stared at it as she idly slipped a hand into her pants pocket. She pulled out a stick of gum and unwrapped it.

"Isn't that where the Fourth of July carnival's going up?" she said, sticking the gum in her mouth.

"You sure that's a good idea?" said Chip, looking up at her.

Sarah started chewing and grimaced. "Oh fuck," she said. The odor, still heavy in the air, was now in her mouth. She spit the gum out, followed by another round of saliva for good measure. "That was a mistake. Shit."

Chip nodded. "What was that before?"

Sarah spit one more time and indicated to her left. "The carnival. They're setting it up across the field there." She looked over at it, then down to the body. It struck her that the man could have been thrown to where he lay. That would explain how there was no blood or disruption of grass anywhere around the body. She looked back to the carnival. It was too far away.

Wasn't it?

"Yeah?" said Chip, breaking her thoughts. "Why?"

Sarah stared a moment longer, then shook her head. "Nothing. Call the coroner. Tell him to bring a hoe to scrape this guy off the ground. Maybe a rake. Or a trowel."

Chip retrieved his phone from his shirt pocket. "On it."

Sarah watched Chip, then reached in her own pocket. "Fuck, that gives me an idea." She pulled out her own phone and tapped at it to open the camera. Flies buzzed around her. The putrid meat smell crept past the Vicks guarding her nose.

"What are you doing?" said Chip, pausing his dialing long enough to look up at her.

Sarah knelt and held the phone in front of her. She moved her hand left to right, trying to center the man's head in the frame. "Mush-face here's got no ID. We need a picture so we can ask around."

"You're serious?"

"As serious as your grandma's blowjobs."

Chip shook his head. "Nice."

Sarah was about to snap the picture when her phone rang. "Shit," she said, standing. The display read Ginny.

Sarah pushed down a pang of annoyance. She tapped the screen to answer and held the phone to her ear. "Yep, sis?"

"Watcha doing?" said Ginny's voice. Sarah could tell she was in the kitchen from the background noise. Sarah assumed she was cooking for Ben, Ginny's son and Sarah's nephew. Sarah knew this meant a huge mess would be waiting for her.

"Looking at a dead body," said Sarah.

"I hope you're kidding."

"Hold on to that dream, Ginny. And hold on for a second." Sarah lowered the phone from her ear and touched an icon on the screen. "I've got you on speaker."

"Why?" said Ginny's voice, now ringing out through the field.

"Nothing," said Sarah. She knelt again and re-opened the camera.

"Oh God, you're taking a picture of the body, aren't you?"

"Don't interfere with police business, Ginny," said Sarah. She snapped the picture. The phone clicked and the red ruin of the man's face froze on the screen.

"That's gross," said Ginny's voice.

"Don't think about it," said Sarah, standing. She held the phone in her palm, leaving Ginny on speaker. She looked around the field once again for good measure.

"I can't help it!"

"Not that I don't appreciate standing in a muggy field with flies and corpses and talking to my sister, but why did you call?"

"Oh, right," said Ginny. "Just making sure you haven't forgotten Ben's birthday tomorrow."

Sarah paused. She opened her mouth and then shut it. Chip, talking to the coroner on his phone, shook his head and grinned at her.

Shit, thought Sarah. "No, of course not. I've already gotten his present."

"Really?"

"No."

"Dammit, Sarah." There was subtle, but real, anger in her voice. Chip raised his eyebrows at it.

Sarah's gaze fell back on the carnival. "Wait. Have you already bought passes to the carnival?"

"No, they haven't gone on sale yet."

"Well there you go," said Sarah, stepping away from the body. "Two passes on me."

"Fine," said Ginny. There was a clatter of pots and pans, and Ben's voice saying something in the distance. "Gotta go. Thanks!"

"Sure thing," said Sarah. Ginny hung up on her end. Sarah locked the phone and slid it back into her pocket.

Chip was hanging up his phone as well. “Trouble at home?”

“Have any siblings, Chip?”

“Can’t say I do.”

“Well, if any materialize, don’t live with them.”

“Will do,” said Chip. “Anyway, coroner’s on his way."

Sarah looked down at the ruined mass of pulp and bone. Flies buzzed and the smell hung heavy.

She sighed. “We need some more deputies, Chip.”

“Says the person who fires them and won’t hire any new ones.”

“Hate your face, Chip.”

Chip chuckled. “So fire it, then.”

“Nah. I’d have to hire you a new face and it would get all weird and shit.”

Sarah sniffed as deeply as she dared in the thick, putrid odor. She looked back to the carnival and took a step toward it. "Let's go shopping, Chip."

***

The walk to the carnival was longer than Sarah had figured. For one thing, the ticket booth was on the far side. And for another, the muggy air made each step feel like two. Both she and Chip were sweating profusely by the time they walked the outer fence of the carnival and reached the front gate. Or, rather, where the front gate would be once they had finished setting up.

It was a wooden archway, freshly painted but obviously old. A large bright sign cried out from the top of arch: Tuck's Travelling Treasures, Est. 1908. Home of the first travelling wooden roller coaster! And it was, too. Or at least it had a wooden roller coaster. Sarah could see the brightly painted coaster sitting across the carnival. The seats were bright yellow and made of ancient looking wood. The metal frame holding them together and the metal track made Sarah feel a little better about letting her nephew ride on the thing.

She frowned and looked around again. More wood had been plastered over everything. Whoever ran the place was really playing up the wooden angle. Every ride was covered in wood, even though obvious bits of metal poked through. Sarah figured it was to make the carnival seem old-timey, rustic. Charming.

She and Chip stopped walking when they reached a large chain that was stretched across the archway. A metal sign reading Closed hung from it.

Sarah glanced once at the sign and climbed over the chain. It was waist high and Sarah was thirty years old, but she could manage it. Chip followed behind her.

Once inside, she saw a large wooden booth. Tickets, read large painted letters. A ragged looking man stood next to it, looking hazily at the sky. A name tag on his dirty shirt read Pete.

Pete noticed Sarah approaching and straightened himself. He swayed slightly. "We look open, lady?"

Sarah kept walking, amused Pete hadn't noticed hers or Chip's uniforms. As she drew near, a second strong smell hit her that day. Alcohol and stale smoke. But mostly alcohol.

"Whoa," said Sarah, stopping right in front of him. "That whiskey smell from last night or this morning? Or is it all one long drunk?"

"Fuck off bitch. We're closed!" said Pete, moving a shaky arm to wave her and Chip away.

Sarah grabbed his arm mid-wave. "Well, ain't you a big bag of stupid? See this shiny thing on my shirt?" She nodded down toward her badge.

Pete's eyes moved downward. He blinked a few times, focusing. Realization spread across his face. "Oh shit. Ma'am, I'm sorry..."

Sarah dropped his arm. It fell limply. “Don’t worry about it,” she said. “Boss man in?”

Pete blinked hazily and was silent for several seconds. Behind Sarah, Chip cleared his throat.

“What?” Pete finally said.

Sarah shook her head. “Mother ass fuck…” she muttered, walking back to the chain and stepping over it. She looked up at the sign, read it, then climbed back over the chain. Chip chuckled as she returned.

“Tuck,” she said. “Is Tuck in?”

“Um,” said Pete, opening and closing his mouth several times, “we’re still closed.”

Sarah smiled and calmly reached for her badge. She tapped it lightly, waiting for Pete to notice. He didn’t. Sarah moved the badge around until the sun caught it and bounced to Pete’s eyes. He blinked and gave a start, as though noticing the badge for the first time.

“Oh right,” he said. “Just a moment.”

Pete stumbled away from the ticket booth, headed for a trailer set against one wall. He made it to the metal steps, hesitated, and made his way inside.

“It’s like watching a baby bird leave the nest,” said Sarah.

“Beautiful,” said Chip.

Pete shut the door behind him. For a few seconds there was silence. Then voices, almost shouting, emanated from within. One voice was Pete. The other, Sarah assumed, was Tuck.

“Cops!” rang out from the trailer, loud and clear.

Sarah smacked Chip’s chest with the back of her hand. “That’s us, Chip!”

“Mmmm hmmm,” said Chip.

As if aware they could be heard, the voices dropped considerably. The talking went on for a minute or so longer. Sarah smiled stiffly and drummed her fingers on her belt.

Right when she finally sighed, the door to the trailer opened. Pete emerged, stumbling back down the stairs and over to Sarah.

“Tuck will see you now,” said Pete, blinking in the light.

Sarah raised her eyebrows. “How formal. Thank you, Peter.”

Chip tipped his hat to Pete as Sarah and he walked over to the trailer. Sarah stepped up the metal stairs, opened the door and stepped inside. Chip followed behind her.

***

Sarah blinked several times, her eyes adjusting to the dimness inside. The trailer smelled musty and old, covered with a thick layer of cheap air freshener. It wasn’t working.

She stepped over to a fat, greasy man sitting at a desk against the back wall. His face was red and a bright Hawaiian shirt stretched across his considerable belly.

He gave Sarah and Chip a big smile. “Morning, officers! What can I do you for?”

“Don’t do that,” said Sarah. “I fucking hate it.”

Tuck blinked. “What?”

Sarah grinned. “Nothing. Did you know you have a dead body in your field?”

Tuck jolted back in his chair, the wheels squeaking on the carpet. “What? Which one?”

Sarah raised an eyebrow. “Which body?” She turned to Chip, who was already taking out a small notepad from his breast pocket. “Make a note of that, Chip,” she said. Chip fished out a stub of a pencil.

“No, no,” said Tuck, red, sweaty and flustered. “Which field?”

“False alarm, Chip.”

Chip slipped the pencil and pad back into his pocket.

Sarah nodded to her right. “That one.”

“Oh Christ,” said Tuck, wiping sweat from his face and neck. “On opening day?”

“Touching,” said Sarah. She fished her phone from her pocket, brought up the picture of the body, and turned the phone to face Tuck. “You know this guy?”

Tuck pulled back, repulsed. “Jesus!”

Sarah pulled back her phone and looked at it. “I guess what I mean is, did you know him before he turned into field chili?” She lowered the phone and slipped it into her pocket.

“On opening day…”

“You said that already,” said Sarah. “We’d moved on to whether or not you know Cherry Cobbler out there.”

“No, no, no,” said Tuck, looking pale and wiping more sweat away. “Never seen him before.”

“Well fuck me, then.” Sarah shrugged and looked around. “Anyway, the coroner will be here any second, maybe he can—”

Tuck jolted back again. “A coroner?”

“Yep. And an ambulance and everything. If you’re real good, we’ll let you turn on the lights. They go woo woo…”

Tuck shot her a dirty look, then it was gone. He leaned across his desk. “Can we talk a little more intimately, Sherriff?”

Sarah sat in the chair opposite him. “Well ain’t my heart aflutter.”

Tuck cleared his throat. “Sherriff, I’ve got a business to run, I’m sure you understand.”

“And?”

“Maybe we could come to some sort of understanding?”

“Understanding?” said Sarah. “Like Plato and shit?”

Tucked rubbed his face, flustered and sweating. “Maybe I could do something for you and you could do something for me.”

“I’m not giving you a rimjob, Tuck.”

Chip laughed behind her.

Tuck turned redder. “No, no,” he said, wiping away a thick layer of sweat. “What I mean is, you could keep quiet about the whole body thing until we’ve had a successful Fourth of July and move on?”

Sarah stared at him a long time in silence. The air hung heavy, moldy and damp.

Finally she spoke. “Two tickets for the carnival.”

Tuck smiled and leaned back in his chair. He opened a squeaky desk drawer and fished out two tickets. He pushed them across the table to Sarah, his hand on top of them. “I knew we could come to an understanding,” he said.

Sarah darted forward and slammed her hand down over his wrist. He jerked in shock but Sarah held on easily. He stared at her and she at him. With her other hand, she slid the tickets out, then reached into her shirt pocket, without ever taking her eyes off of Tuck’s. She retrieved a twenty dollar bill and slid it under Tuck’s hand. Tuck squirmed and sweated, but could not free himself.

Finally she let go. Tuck sat back so fast his chair slammed into the wall behind him. His face was red and splotchy. He rubbed his wrist and glared at her.

Sarah kept her eyes locked on his. “That’s for the tickets,” she said, quietly. “Don’t ever try to fucking bribe me again.” She stood and smiled. “Let’s go Chip.”

She turned and stepped past Chip towards the door, and he followed her.

“Sherriff….” said Tuck, his voice shaking with both embarrassment and a rising fury.

“Not now, Tuck,” said Sarah, still headed for the door. “The coroner trains ‘a coming. Whoo whoo.”

She opened the door and motioned for Chip to go first. He did, stepping out into the muggy morning air.

Sarah was still for a moment. She looked back over her shoulder. Tuck looked furious now.

“Also,” she said, “your shirt looks fucking stupid.”

She stepped through the door and shut it. The air was thick and heavy outside but smelled better than the trailer. Chip was waiting for her at the bottom of the stairs.

As she walked, Tuck’s voice erupted from inside. “You crazy fucking bitch!”

Sarah reached the bottom and smiled. “Listen, Chip. It’s my theme song.”

“Yep,” said Chip.

© 2013 Robert R Best

Monday, 7 October 2013

The Beast in the Cellar - Reviewed.


The Beast in the Cellar(1970)

Director: James Kelley

Writer: James Kelley (original screenplay)

Stars: Beryl Reid, Flora Robson, John Hamill

So here we have another blast from the past The Beast in the cellar starring the fantastic Beryl Reid and Flora Robson, It tells the tale of two lonely spinsters Ellie Ballantyne (Reid) and Joyce Ballantyne (Robson) that live together in an idyllic setting within the British countryside, or is it that idyllic?
The film opens up with a scene that is very reminiscent of the opening of An American werewolf in London, This time involving a soldier that is walking alone on the moors when he is viciously attacked by an unseen attacker, The spinsters live near a military base and are obviously shaken by the news of a murder in such a quiet place, They are reassured by a local soldier that regularly visits them, But when another and another murder takes place this sends Ellie into a spiral of madness and paranoia, It then transpires that they may well know the attacker and are not letting on what indeed they do know.
It is said that Reid and Robson upon seeing the completed cut of the film were very unhappy at the way it was edited and felt that their best scenes were trimmed way too much. The film is a slow burner but the interaction and the conversations between both women are all part of the films very English charm, Reid makes and drinks tea like it is going out of fashion!
This film to me has a great feel, such as with Deathline (RAW MEAT) But as I said the pace is a lot slower, Not really that much gore either to mention but the performances are superb and as I said it's full of atmosphere and 70's English charm, So with the darks night coming along if you fancy a great 70's British film and this is one that is not seen around as many of the others from that era you could do a lot worse than this, well worth a look.
7.5 / 10