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Showing posts from September, 2009

Paracinema Competition Extravaganza!*

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The lovely folks over at Paracinema HQ are having a contest. Anyone who purchases a magazine in the month of October is automatically entered into a raffle to win an AMAZING prize pack.

Just head over to paracinema.net and pick up an issue for a chance to win! Each single issue purchased is another entry. For example: 2 copies of issue 7 equals your name 2 times in the drawing. Just remember, subscriptions do not count. It is only for printed issues already in existence.

So what's in this amazing pack of prizes? Well, I'll tell you.

* A year subscription (4 issues) of Paracinema Magazine
* 3 titillating releases from Pink Eiga including Tsumugi - Special Edition, New Tokyo Decadence - The Slave and Sexy Battle Girls.
* Viva the uncut & unrated release from Cult Epics.
* A copy of Trash Cinephile the "irreverent guide to exploitation cinema" by Blake Ryan.
* A Fright Rags t-shirt the style and size of your choosing (must be a regular "horror t-shirt"; d…

The Stepford Wives

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1975
Dir. Bryan Forbes

When former photographer Joanna Eberhart (Katherine Ross) and her family move to the sleepy town of Stepford, it isn’t long before she suspects something sinister is afoot. All of the women in Stepford have an uncanny hankering to do whatever it takes to become the perfect embodiment of housewifery. What makes matters even stranger is Joanna’s unshakable feeling that the men of Stepford, including her own husband Walter (Peter Masterson), are involved in something diabolical that transforms the women of Stepford into empty shells of their former selves. But what could it be? Surely they’re not being replaced by mindless automatons solely programmed to please the men-folk? Surely not!?

I would love to be able to watch The Stepford Wives again for the first time – without knowing anything about it. From the outset, it is obvious that something sinister lurks beneath the pristine exterior of Stepford’s white picket fences and expertly maintained hedges and it soon …

Suspiria Remake Update...

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A remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 masterpiece Suspiria has been on the cards for some time now. While things have been fairly quiet since the news that David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express) was set to helm the re-imaginification, some new information about the project has been posted over at Dread Central.

In the current climate of Hollywoodised remakes of classic horror flicks from yesterday, it was probably only a matter of time before Argento’s nightmarishly gothic fairytale of witchcraft suffered the same fate as the likes of The Omen, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Halloween and an ever increasing plethora of others.

Suspiria is the tale of a young ballet student who realises that her prestigious school is actually a front for a coven of evil witches. It is a firm favourite with Argento fans and often hailed as the director’s masterpiece. One can only wait with a certain degree of trepidation (and hopeless despair) to see how his film will be inevitably glossified and diluted to app…

Paracinema: Issue 7...

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The latest issue of Paracinema is set to hit shelves soon.

Issue 7 includes such features as 'Deconstructive Feedback: The Cinema of Larry Cohen' by Adam Protextor, 'The Bikinis, Hairspray, and Shattered Ceilings of Bimbo Feminism: Anita Rosenberg’s Modern Girls and Assault of the Killer Bimbos' by Jonathan Plombon and (shameless self-promotion alert) 'Cold Cinema: Emotional Glaciation and Active Spectatorship in Michael Haneke’s Funny Games' by yours truly.

Why not head over to Paracinema and order a copy now. Before its too late!


Sexy Killer

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2008
Dir. Miguel Martí

Head over to Eye for Film to read my review of Sexy Killer - a film that surely resembles what would happen if Pedro Almodóvar directed a slasher movie. I kid thee not.

Sexy Killer is the story of Barbara (Macarena Gómez), a promising student at an exclusive Spanish university, who also just happens to be a psychotic serial killer.
Events become increasingly complicated when her victims are resurrected by a couple of medical students hoping to solve the case of the 'campus killer.' However, said victims, whilst only too happy to help a zombie detective with his enquiries, suffer the unfortunate side-effect of an insatiable craving for human flesh...
They don't let this stop them though and are soon making their way to the campus Halloween party to seek revenge and maybe get lucky...

Kinky, kitsch and ludicrously over-the-top, Sexy Killer perfectly balances humour with gross-out effects and lovingly references a plethora of old favourites such as Fri…

Black Sabbath

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1963
Dir. Mario Bava

AKA
The Three Faces of Fear
(I tre volti della paura)

Mario Bava’s Gothic horror anthology consists of three different tales of horror, each with their own unique tone and style, but all containing that inimitable Bava touch. Each of the films unfolds as an exercise in style and atmosphere, bolstered by intriguing stories that carefully unfold to reveal a deadly sting in the tale.
As a whole, Black Sabbath is most satisfactory and none of the segments outstay their welcome. What makes it all even more appealing is the introduction of the film by none other than Boris Karloff himself, waxing lyrical on the mechanics of fear, the uncanny, things that go bump in the night and a treatise on what makes a scary film and why. Each segment is introduced by a title card and contains its own share of nightmare-inducing moments; all beautifully captured by Bava’s ever prowling camera, and rendered dreamlike in the vivid lighting.

First up is the giallo-esque The Telephone, a …

The Reptile

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1966
Dir. John Gilling

Harry and Valerie Spaulding move to the small Cornish village of Clagmoor when they inherit the house of his brother – who died under mysterious circumstances. Treated with contempt and mistrust by the villagers, Harry and Valerie are shunned. To make matters worse, a number of locals have been turning up dead, with mysterious bite marks on their necks. Harry’s investigations lead him to the home of the sinister Dr Franklyn and his mysterious daughter Anna, and he soon uncovers the horrific secrets of an ancient curse and a monstrous reptilian creature with a taste for human blood!

Filmed back to back with Gilling’s Plague of the Zombies, using the same sets and several of the same cast members, The Reptile is perhaps one of Hammer’s more overlooked hidden gems. Often unfavorably compared to Plague of the Zombies, the film nevertheless still manages to entice the viewer into its tightly coiled mystery with an alluring atmosphere and a number of compelling perfor…

End of the World

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1977
Dir. John Hayes

When Professor Andrew Boran (Kirk Scott) decodes messages received from deepest space that coincide with recent natural disasters, his investigations lead him to a spooky convent where the inhabitants are not what they seem. They are actually aliens attempting to destroy earth because it has become too polluted and diseased. No, really.
Ladies and gentlemens – allow me to present the deliciously mediocre and irrestibly entertaining schlock that is – End of the World.

Mysterious messages from the cosmos! Parallel dimensions! Cloning! Laser beams! Christopher Lee! Nuns from outer space! Well, strictly speaking the nuns aren’t really from outer space – they are clones of nuns inhabited by the forces of an alien race who are desperately trying to leave earth and return to their own planet… And even though they have effortlessly mastered the concepts of inter-stellar time travelling and stuff, they still need the help of a mere mortal human scientist to assist their a…

Cradle Will Fall

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2008
Dirs. Lars Jacobson and Amardeep Kaleka

AKA Baby Blues

Head over to Eye for Film to read my review of this taut, yet grim little shocker.

Cradle Will Fall is a chaotic and deeply upsetting film about a young mother who snaps under the pressure of trying to raise four young children on an isolated farmhouse while her husband works away from home. Going utterly berserk, Mommie Dearest (a thoroughly deranged Colleen Porch) starts offing her sprogs in increasingly grisly ways...

A sort of Flowers in the Attic for the Eli Roth generation, if you like.