Sunday, March 8, 2020

New Episode of The Midnight Manor Podcast

In this episode of The Midnight Manor Podcast, The Losman and Lady Winters talk about their trip to Bastrop for the Cult Classic Convention, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Candyman, and the appeal of Urban Legends in horror.

https://soundcloud.com/losman94/the-midnight-manor-podcast-episode-three

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Tremors (1990)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Tremors (1990)
Dir- Ron Underwood

Remember those movies of the fifties.  The ones that relied on the big scary monster and our fear of the unknown pretending to be Communism. Tremors take us to those beautiful days and give us a good scare and a dose of fifties style horror. It seems that an unidentified creature is killing the folks of a sleepy desert town. Two junks dealers meet up with a researcher and discover the monster at hand. They return to town to the amazed looks of the locals and are suddenly held hostage by even more of the tunnel dwellers. Tremors did not rely on mere gore like many monster movies of this period; it uses the fear of the unknown and places its heroes at odds with an unstoppable menace that has trapped them. Great practical creature effects highlight the intense performances by Fred Ward and Kevin Bacon as the two junk dealers. The real kudos go to Reba McIntyre and Michael Gross, who play a pair of survivalists in roles that are very far from their usual selves. A welcome addition to the field that was sorely lacking in a great monster movie.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Cloverfield (2008)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Cloverfield (2008)
Dir- Matt Reeves

A monster attack on New York City is seen through the shaky video camera of a group of friends who flee the city and face threats from the creature as it tears through the city. Matt Reeves directs this found footage film that made excellent use of viral marketing to play up the fear as we see the events unfold before seeing the creature entirely.

Scanners (1981)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Scanners (1981)
Dir- David Cronenberg

A homeless man named Vale with psychic abilities is recruited by a group to do battle with a powerful psychic known as Revok. Both men are known as Scanners and possess the ability to read minds and other skills that would make them powerful weapons. As Vale is trained to understand his abilities, he has to avoid assassins sent out by Revok and learn the secret of their abilities. Scanners is a 1981 sci-fi horror movie directed by Canadian David Cronenberg. The film was notable for the fantastic special effects created by makeup artist Dick Smith that included the famous head explosions. The film has become a cult classic and one of Cronenberg's most memorable movies along with The Fly remake.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Women Who Made An Impact in Horror in 2019




Allison Williams
The daughter of former NBC anchor Brian Williams, Ms. Williams made a name for herself with a popular Youtube video that got the attention of Judd Apatow, who cast her on the HBO series Girls. Her role as Peter Pan drew the attention of Jordan Peele, who cast her in his hit 2017 black comedy Get Out. She added to her horror movie resume with a part in the 2019 Netflix horror movie The Perfection as well as the black comedy series A Series of Unfortunate Events.



Logan Browning
With a career spanning 15 years, Ms. Browning appeared in the Bratz movie, Meet the Browns and Dear White People. Her role in the 2019 horror film The Perfection won her praise alongside her costar Allison Williams. The twist-filled thriller was released in May 2019 after premiering at Fantastic Fest in 2018.



Samara Weaving
An Australian television and screen actress who has made quite an impact in several roles, including The Babysitter, Mayhem, Picnic at Hanging Rock, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbings Montana. Ms. Weaving starred in the 2019 black comedy Ready or Not and won praise from critics and audiences for her outstanding role as the newlywed bride caught in a deadly game of hide and seek.



Rebecca Ferguson
A Swedish actress who came to the attention of audiences worldwide for her portrayal of Elizabeth Woodville in The White Queen. Ms. Ferguson also starred in two Mission Impossible movies, the sci-fi horror movie Life Men in Black: International. Her role as the cult leader Rose the Hat in the 2019 Stephen King adaptation of Doctor Sleep terrified audiences with her scene-stealing presence and evil intent.



Lupita Nyong'o
An Oscar-winning actress who showed great success in roles that include 12 Years a Slave, the recent Star Wars franchise, and Marvels Black Panther. In 2019 Ms. Nyong'o starred in the zombie movie Little Monsters and won further acclaim for her role in Jordan Peele's Us as the wife and mother of a family who is confronted by doppelgangers. 



Florence Pugh
English actress Florence Pugh had a significant impact in 2019 with breakthrough roles in Fighting with My Family, Midsommar, and Little Women. Ari Aster's Midsommar was one of the most talked-about horror films of the summer of 2019 with Ms. Pugh delivering an incredible performance that shows her range as an emerging superstar.



Jen and Sylvia Soska
Jen and Sylvia Soska are Canadian sisters who write, produce and direct films such as Dead Hooker in a Trunk, See No Evil 2, and the cult favorite American Mary. They released a remake of the David Cronenberg film Rabid in 2019 with Laura Vandervoort in the starring role.



Brea Grant
An actress, writer, and director who specializes in horror, Ms. Grant appeared in the popular tv show Heroes, Dexter, and Friday Night Lights. Along with her numerous acting roles, Ms. Grant has written and directed two movies, including the 2012 dark comedy Best Friends Forever and the forthcoming horror film 12 Hour Shift set for a 2020 release.



Barbara Crampton
With a career going back to the 1980s, Ms. Crampton appeared in several popular horror films including Chopping Mall, Re-Animator, From Beyond and Castle Freak. After a hiatus, she returned to horror films in 2011 with the home invasion film. You're Next. Ms. Crampton has since appeared in over 15 movies in recent years, attends fan conventions, and, in 2019, added producer credits with a remake of the film Castle Freak. 



Issa Lopez
A Mexican Director whose film Tigers Are Not Afraid shows the aftermath of the violence of the drug cartels in Mexico on the children who are orphaned. The award-winning film drew praise from Stephen King and Guillermo Del Toro, with Del Toro offering to produce her next project.



Diana Prince
Ms. Diana Prince is an actress, producer, and cosplay personality who has made an impact on the horror scene as the Mail Girl Darcy on Shudders The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs. Her role on the show also includes handling the social media as well as making appearances with Joe Bob at fan conventions, movie screenings, and events related to The Last Drive-In. Ms. Prince is quite active on social media and reaches out to fans of horror, sharing her insight with the horror community.



Kreepazoid Kelly
Ms. Kelly has been active in the horror fan scene since the early 90s visiting Universal Halloween horror nights and reaching out to fans since 2003 on MySpace and Twitter since 2006. Her work also included horror modeling for conventions and product advertisements. Despite her illness Ms. Kelly is active on Twitter and Instagram, supporting the horror fan community, independent horror films, and encouraging horror content creators.



Jill Sixx
Jill Gevargizian, aka Jill Sixx, is an actress, director, and producer who has made several short movies, including the award-winning film The Stylist, which features a character based on her experience as a hairstylist. Ms. Sixx started a monthly showcase called Slaughter MOvie House in her home town of Kansas City that she runs to this day. Her current project is a full-length version of The Stylist starring Najarra Townsend and Brea Grant. 



Sophia Takal
Sophia Takal is known for her many roles in independent films as an actress, producer, and director. In 2019 she was tasked with directing a reimagined version of the classic horror film Black Christmas for Blumhouse. Despite the film's modest performance, it was welcomed by young female fans who embraced the strong feminist theme and cast of women who the audience found it easy to cheer for as final girls.



Natasha Pascetta
A writer and producer, Ms. Pascetta is the director of Digital Production at Cinestate and Fangoria. As the "Vanguard of the Vault," she is responsible for creating and producing podcasts for Fangoria Podcast Network and the horror community. Ms. Pascetta is also the director of the award-winning short film Road Trash and has a second movie Dark Ages coming soon.



Chelsea Stardust
After graduating from film school, Ms. Stardust moved to Los Angeles. She worked as Jason Blum's executive assistant for four years, allowing her to pursue her love for horror with several short movies as well as a musical theater production Slashed: The Musical. Her full-length film directorial debut came with 2019s Stanic Panic as well as an episode of Into the Dark. 



Maya Hawke
The daughter of actors Uma Thurman and Ethan Hawke, Maya Hawke, won praise for her role as Robin Buckley in the third season of the Netflix series Stranger Things. Ms. Hawke started her acting career in the tv miniseries Little Women and has appeared in Ladyworld, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Human Capital.



Laura Vandervoort
The Canadian actress is known for roles on Instant Star, Haven, Smallville, and V, as well as many television movies. In 2019 Ms. Vandervoort appeared in the sci-fi series V-Wars and was involved in the remake of the David Cronenberg movie Rabid directed by the Soska sisters. 



Veronika Franz
Austrian director who directed the films Goodnight Mommy and a segment in the anthology The Field Guide to Evil. Her latest movie is the isolation thriller The Lodge starring Riley Keough and Richard Armitage scheduled for release in early 2020.



Heather Wixson
A journalist and frequent blogger, Ms. Wixson, enjoys sharing her love for horror and indie cinema. A former writer for Dread Central and TerrorTube.com, Ms. Wixson is now the Managing Editor for DailyDead.com. Her first book, Monster Squad: Celebrating the Artists Behind Cinema's Most Memorable Creatures, was published in 2018, and she is currently working on a follow-up book on Special Effects Artists.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Son of Frankenstein (1939)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Son of Frankenstein (1939)
Dir- Rowland V. Lee

Boris Karloff's final appearance as the famed monster. In this sequel to the classic movie Bride of Frankenstein, we find Basil Rathbone playing the son of a famed doctor who happens to discover the still-living monster in the ruins of the laboratory. Lugosi is perfect as Ygor, who has cared for the monster in the time before his discovery. Great settings and an impressive score only help to make this movie a classic. This film was a huge success and helped to reinvigorate the market for monster movies after a brief hiatus due to issues with British censorship and the Hays Code.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

A Bucket of Blood (1959) - The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



A Bucket of Blood (1959)
Dir- Roger Corman

A standard Roger Corman quickie that does the job and manages to spoof the beatnik movement as well as the new craze of horror movies like House of Wax and Curse of the Demon. A bumbling busboy has a fascination with art and tries a new and unique style. After accidentally killing a neighbor's cat, he gets inspired to cover up the evidence with some molding clay. He then half-wittingly murders people and covers their body with earth and displays them at his coffee house to get attention from the customers. All in the hopes of impressing the artistic types with whom he wishes to befriend. With all idiots comes his eventual discovery, and the finale is somewhat novel in his wanting to go out in style. In the form of Corman's more famous Little Shop of Horrors, which he would make the next year. A real delight to those who want to see even more of Corman's early little-known work.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Motel Hell (1980)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Motel Hell (1980)
Dir- Kevin Connor

Farmer Vincent is known for his fantastic smoked meats that are second to none. He also runs a small motel with his younger sister, but they have a secret, and it's not preservatives. Vincent's younger brother is the local town Sheriff, and he is not aware of his brother's secret, but this may change when a lovely young accident survivor draws Famer Vincent's attention away from his work. Can Farmer Vincent share his secret with his new lady friend? Motel Hell is an excellent satire that offers laughs as well as chilling frights. The movie subject matter is disgusting, yet it is presented in a fun and campy way that makes this film stand out as a fantastic black comedy as well as a horror movie. Screen Cowboy legend Rory Calhoun portrays Famer Vincent with a folksy charm that makes him amiable and friendly to all. The film also offers some great cameos in the cast, but it's best to go in cold to enjoy this fun little film. Motel Hell has emerged as a Midnite Movie classic often sharing space with similar B-Horror movies, but don't let that deter you; this is a great and fun movie for those who enjoy dark humor. Scream Factory has released this cult classic on Blu Ray.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Carrie (1976)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Carrie (1976)
Dir- Brian De Palma

Starring a cast that would provide many well-known Hollywood players, Carrie is both a sad and frightening tale of ostracism and revenge. "Crazy Carrie," as she is called, is portrayed quite effectively by Sissy Spacek in a role that would stand out in horror movie lore. Carrie is a loner, teased by her classmates and taunted by her zealously religious mother, but she has a secret. It appears Carrie has powers that seem to be barely under her control. When it appears that her peers are finally accepting her, we discover that they wish to play a cruel joke on her during the senior prom. Tragically, the prank pulled on her goes wrong, the release of pig's blood on her and the subsequent laughter by both students and teachers unleashes a fury of anger as she burns the school and kills everyone in her path. Her final confrontation with her mom is not only frightening but also tragic. Carrie earned Sissy Spacek her first Oscar nomination and was a commercial success for the filmmakers and Stephen King. With its excellent cast, good direction, and a climactic finale, we have a classic shocker that still has an impact today.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Child's Play (1988)- The Los 366

Child's Play (1988)

Dir- Tom Holland

Dynamic character villain Brad Dourif plays a voodoo worshipping serial killer named Charles "Chucky" Lee Ray, who returns to life as a cute Good Guy Doll named Chucky. Catherine Hicks is a single mom who buys the Good Guy Doll from a street vendor and is delighted when her son, the sickeningly cute Alex Vincent, happily accepts. Well, Chucky comes to life and wreaks enough havoc that leaves mom, son, and the nice guy cop played by Chris Sarandon to deal with this murderous Teddy Ruxpin-like doll. A big hit with horror fans, this film used clever FX and an excellent cast to overcome its blatant swipes from Trilogy of Terror and a couple of classic Twilight Zone episodes. 

Poltergeist (1983)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Poltergeist (1983)
Dir- Tobe Hooper 

Steven Spielberg wrote and produced what had to be one of the best ghost stories of the 1980s. Making use of state of the art special effects and the acting talents of Craig T Nelson and JoBeth Williams, we are presented one of the scariest PG movies ever made. A family in an upscale middle-class neighborhood find themselves living with a playful spirit. At first, the ghost plays gags and simple tricks, yet the real terror begins when researchers arrive to study the phenomena. In one of the most iconic movie scenes, we see the late Heather O'Rourke kidnaped by the television as her frantic parents face an evil series of ghosts. The climax is both terrifying and intense, boasting top-notch visuals and plenty of ghostly terror. Surprisingly there is no blood or gore, an ironic note to Director Tobe Hooper, best known for directing The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Although Spielberg wanted a tamer story, we get the right blend of both terror and suspense in this classic. Tragically a curse is believed to have affected this movie series, in this film, and it's subsequent sequels there were tragic deaths involving many of its stars. Whether there is a genuine curse or just a coincidence, we have a genuinely frightening and engaging story that will forever remain a classic of the Horror genre.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Alice Sweet Alice (1976)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Alice Sweet Alice (1976)
Dir- Alfred Sole

A young girl named Karen (Brooke Shields) is strangled and burned on the day of her holy communion, and the clues all point to a close family member. After more attacks occur, the family priest and father seek out suspects who they feel will prove it was not who they suspect. An excellent early slasher, Alice Sweet Alice, was the first film for Brook Shields and uses family dysfunction and religious expectations to craft a tragic story with some genuinely memorable death scenes along with its dark conclusion. Alice Sweet Alice has achieved cult status in recent years with fans appreciating the Giallo like plot and surprises that make the film an excellent slasher movie of the mid-seventies.

M (1931) The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



M (1931)
Dir- Fritz Lang

Set in a dark industrial world, M is the tale of a frightened city held hostage by a serial killer who is targeting children. The search is so intensive that the local crime organization joins in because the killer's reign of fear is detrimental for their business. M was an intense film for its time with a subject matter that was a warning to families about watching out for their children. A compelling German Crime/Drama that has excellent horror elements and will remain a classic of all three genres. Peter Lorre's first film and one of director Fritz Lang's greatest movies.

Friday, January 3, 2020

The Host (2006) The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.




The Host (2006)
Dir- Bong Joon-ho

On the banks of the Han River, a simple food vendor watches in horror as a monster emerges from the river and takes his daughter. Fearing that he has lost her, he gets a message showing she may be alive and in the sewers. As he begins his quest to rescue her, he finds that outside parties are working against him to hide the secret about the creature. The Host was one of the biggest films to open in South Korea, this success, along with an excellent review, helped the film to gain a following outside of the Asian market. Critics praised the movie for its effective blending of various genres by mixing family struggles, distrust of the government, and, of course, the amphibious monster that was not as large as many other monsters in movies but shown in great detail.  

Jacobs Ladder (1990)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



Jacob's Ladder (1990)
Dir- Adrian Lyne

Jacob Singer is a postal worker, who is haunted by what may or may not be drug-induced nightmares, the result of a bizarre experiment during the Vietnam War. Jacob is experiencing some truly nightmarish visions, one of the most notable being a mad hospital with deformed souls and equally grotesque doctors. Somewhat confusing in its eerie nightmare vision and gory visuals, Jacob's Ladder delivers a unique trip into the world of a man who may or may not be fully sane. The finale is very creepy and has "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" style twist ending. What is certain is that Jacob's Ladder is neither mild nor passive. It is shocking and brilliant in its use of gory visuals and nightmarish visions that will leave the viewer reeling in their sanity.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

The Thing From Another World (1951)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.



The Thing From Another World
Dir- Christian Nyby

Scientists in an Arctic base discover a flying saucer buried under the ice with a humanoid creature that is returned to their headquarters for study. Once thawed, the creature comes to life and wrecks havoc on the station with the scientists and military crewmembers debating on the best way to handle the situation. "The Thing From Another World" was based on the 1938 novella "Who Goes There," written by John Campbell, yet changes were made to make the creature more human-like with a plant-based cell structure. The novella featured a shape-shifting alien that would be better imagined in the 1982 John Carpenter film "The Thing." The movie is considered a classic in both Sci-Fi and Horror movie genres and remains one of the best movies of the Atomic Monster era that emerged in the 1950s due to the threat of the Cold War.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Terror Train (1980)- The Los 366

For 2020 I will be listing what I feel are 366 essential horror films that all fans should watch. This list will include many of the best horror movies ever made as well as important films that I believe should be watched as well.


Terror Train (1980)
Dir- Roger Spottiswoode

Terror Train is one of many slasher films to come from Canada after the success of Halloween in 1978. Terror Train sets the events on board a train during a frat party celebrating the New Year. The group of young men and women find that their friends are dying one at a time. The mystery of who is responsible is made all the more difficult as each of them is in costume. One of a trio of films that would feature Jaime Lee Curtis, Terror Train is the only one not to be followed by sequels and remakes. The film is better than most slasher films and makes an effort to stand out with the smart use of a costume party to help disguise the identity of the murder as well as keeping all of the action in a contained location. It is often overlooked but worth checking out if you are a fan of Scream Queen Curtis.