Sunday, March 31, 2019

We Are Our Own Worst Enemy

Us (2019)
Dir- Jordan Peele

Jordan Peele has made a career with his work in TV comedy alongside Keegan-Michael Key that his venture into horror movies was seen with skepticism until "Get Out" showed he has a real flair for horror. His follow-up film "Us" follows a family of four enjoying time in their vacation home when they find four strangers trying to break in. Once they confront these home invaders, they are shocked to learn that they are near identical doppelgangers of them. Whatever their purpose will be explained as the movie unfolds and thankfully the audience was left in the dark thanks to the skillful editing of the preview. "Us" is a dark comedy that uses elements of horror to tell a surprisingly original story while throwing in clues to the outcome of the film with cultural references and historical events. In many respects, this film could easily have been an episode of Black Mirror or the Twilight Zone especially considering that director Jordan Peele will be hosting the updated Twilight Zones series in 2019. "Us" is winning praise for the cast including Lupita Nyong'o, Winston Duke and the unique take on the home invasion trope, critic reaction is positive, and many have praised Peele's efforts as proof he is no one hit wonder. Fans of horror will appreciate the twists and references to cult horror films of the '80s as well as some carefully planted Easter eggs.   

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Radio DJ's in Horror Movies

Here is a collection of notable DJ's featured in horror films over the past 50 years.  

Lords of Salem- Heidi La Rock/Adelaide Hawthorne

Sheri Moon Zombie stars as Heidi, a recovering drug addict who co-hosts a radio show with two other DJ's. Trouble begins when she receives an album from a band called The Lords that when played has a bizarre effect on women that leads her to look into the history of Salem and the witch hunts that occurred. 

The Pontypool- Grant Mazzy

Small town shock jock Grant Mazzy (Stephen McHattie) reports on a series of events that are occurring while he is doing his evening show. Amid the confusing reports from outside reporters, it appears that a virus outbreak is occurring but how its spread and the effects of the illness are shown in real time as Grant and his coworkers try to figure out what's going on and how to survive. 

The Fog- Stevie Wayne

Screen horror legend Adrienne Barbeau portrays Stevie Wayne, the DJ of a small coastal town that is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its founding. That evening a mysterious fog comes into town, and a series of murders occur that Stevie and other locals find out is a part of a dark secret involving the town's forefathers.

Play Misty For Me- Dave Garver

Clint Eastwood stars as DJ Dave Garver who meets a woman who is a massive fan of his, and after a brief affair he breaks it off when she shows obsessive behavior. Not too keen on rejection, she becomes murderous as she pursues him and his new girlfriend. 

Texas Chainsaw Massacre II- Stretch

Texas-born Screen Queen Caroline Williams appears as Radio DJ Vanita Brock aka Stretch who during a broadcast before the big Texas/OU football takes a call from a pair of rowdy fans who are then killed by Leatherface and company. Afterward, she is kidnapped and held by the Sawyer family while a Texas sheriff named Lefty attempts to rescue Stretch and take down the cannibal clan.

A Christmas Horror Story- Dangerous Dan

William Shatner plays DJ Dangerous Dan in this 2015 Christmas themed horror anthology, Dangerous Dan acts as a bridge between the four-story segments as he plays music and reports on a disturbance at the local mall. As the movie progresses, the stories will all tie together as DJ Dan continues to play music and learn more about the events in the mall. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

20 Years in the making, here is 21st Century Terror

For the first time in over twenty years, I have created an original section for my website to represent movies made after 2001. I will link to my Letterboxd lists for great movies on topics to include found footage, new slashers films, and other hot horror films in recent years. Check it out and pass the word

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Horror Movies for Mardi Gras

Hatchet (2006)
Two friends partying on Mardi Gras decide to take a haunted boat ride through a Louisiana swamp with a group of tourists as they learn about the legend of  Victor Crowley. After the group gets stuck, they find themselves being murdered and ripped apart by the monstrous Crowley who is then confronted by a mysterious girl named Marybeth who has a vendetta with the swamp killer.

Candy Man: Farewell to the Flesh (1995)
A young art teacher finds herself immersed in the Candyman legend when her brother is arrested for a brutal crime; we then discover that her father was mysteriously murdered in a vicious manner similar to the style as her brother. She is then shocked to find a student of hers sketching a creepy character named Candyman. From there she decides to do the deed and say his name in New Orleans on the eve of Mardi Gras where we get more murders and a full origin story of Candyman.

Mardi Gras Massacre (1978)
A man in New Orleans hires prostitutes and sacrifices them to an Aztec goddess. Police begin to search for the killer as he prepares for a big Mardi Gras sacrifice with three women he is holding hostage.

Autopsy (2008)
After attending Mardi Gras, a group of friends get into a car accident but are surprised by an ambulance that arrives without anyone calling for one. They arrive at a strange hospital where they individually become victims of the deranged staff who are working to save their boss's wife, even if it means having their bodies ripped apart for her medical needs.

Dracula 2000 (2000)
Thieves break into a store owned by the descendant of Dr. Van Helsing and steal a coffin they think contains valuables, but instead has the body of Dracula. The plane carrying the coffin crashes in Louisiana where Dracula proceeds to find new brides and victims with Van Helsing having to hunt him down yet again.

Night Trap (1993)
A series of vicious homicides have police chasing a serial killer who is on a killing spree during Mardi Gras. This movie was featured on Joe Bob Brigg's show where he gave it a colorful review despite the otherwise wasted effort.

Zombie! vs. Mardi Gras (1999)
An indie horror parody that follows a deranged occultist who summons "Zombie!" to seek revenge on Mardi Gras partiers for injuries he suffered during the drunken street parties. The film includes unrelated sketches and shots of women flashing their breasts during the Mardi Gras celebration but otherwise is rather uneventful.