Anticipation Alert: Tales Of Halloween (2015)

Halloween is only three months away, and I’m already getting all of my ‘required viewing’ horror movies lined up to start the celebration.  In 2007, the ridiculously good anthology flick Trick ‘r Treat came busting onto the scene and has earned a right into that ‘required viewing’ category.  And speaking of Halloween anthology movies, I’m pretty excited this year because a new one called Tales Of Halloween is coming out on October 16th (limited theaters and VOD), and if the trailer below is any indication – we’re in for a fun ride:

Early word and buzz on this is that it’s as fun as the trailer looks.  Comprised of 10 short stories each done by a different director that intertwine throughout, Tales Of Halloween looks to be exactly what we need to cure our Halloween movie blues.  And the fact that there are some of your favorite horror actors, actresses, and directors involved only sweetens the deal.  Who you ask?  How about Neil Marshall, Darren Lynn Bousman, Lucky McKee, Lin Shaye, Adrienne Barbeau, John Landis, and Barbara Crampton to name a few.  So get ready for Tales Of Halloween hitting select theaters on October 16th and you will also have the option to relax in your own home and check it out on VOD.

Anticipation Alert: Howl (2015)

Werewolves seem to be the forgotten horror villain.  Oh sure, Lon Chaney Jr. put everything in motion as far as werewolf movies go back in 1941 with The Wolf Man.  Then in the 80’s, An American Werewolf In London and The Howling broke the mold when it came to special effects as far as werewolf transformations go.  And don’t forget about the early 2000’s when Dog Soldiers and Ginger Snaps put their independent stamp on the sub-genre.  But we’re talking about 75 years of content here, and the werewolf movie seems to sputter more than spurt.  So how do we change that?  By putting werewolves on train of course!

Ooooooh that’s right.  Werewolves on a train are definitely in full effect in the upcoming horror flick called Howl.  Directed by Paul Hyett (who gave us the impressive debut, The Seasoning House), this new take on the werewolf story takes place on and off of a broken down train as a band of riders come together to fight off a lycanthrope or two.  The trailer was just released and it’s pretty awesome.  And it looks like practical effects are going to take center stage!  Check it out below and get ready for more updates on Howl soon.

Anticipation Alert: The Gallows (2015)

Nothing pleases me more than having a teaser trailer for a new horror movie pop up on my screen that impresses me so much, I feel the need to watch it again.  Such is the case with The Gallows:

I’m hoping I’m not alone with this one, but I think that it’s of the better teasers I’ve seen in a long time.  Coming to us from Blumhouse Productions, this hopeful little treat arrives in theaters on July 10th.  Below is the synapsis for The Gallows:

20 years after a horrific accident during a small town school play, students at the school resurrect the failed show in a misguided attempt to honor the anniversary of the tragedy – but soon discover that some things are better left alone.

After watching the teaser trailer and then reading the synapsis again, I’m even more intrigued.  The red lighting in the teaser definitely wins me over, as does the final shot with the noose around the girl’s neck.  Speaking of necks, what the hell happened to that girl’s neck?  Was she bitten?  Is she having a bad reaction to a new lotion that she tried out?  We’ll see what the full trailer reveals, but for now – I’m definitely onboard with The Gallows.

Anticipation Alert: We Are Still Here (2015)

2015 is looking like it might be shaping up as a good year for horror movies.  I don’t want to jinx it, but I’m pretty optimistic.  I’m waiting on pins and needles for It Follows to come out next month, and this teaser for We Are Still Here just got me tingling.

Barbara Crampton?  Lisa Marie?  Weird demon looking things?  I’m there!  I love the teaser because it leaves a lot to the imagination and unless you look up the premise (revolving around a creepy house that awakens every 30 years demanding a sacrifice), you wouldn’t really know what the movie is about.  And I love that.  I noticed the other week some early word leaked online about We Are Still Here, and the early word is good.  Apparently the practical effects, that director Ted Geoghegan is known for from his previous films, are a stand-out and it’s supposedly a genuinely scary horror flick.  No official word on a release date yet, but it will premiere at SXSW in March.  

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Anticipation Alert: Goodnight Mommy (2015)

Move over Funny Games, it looks like there’s a new Austrian horror film in town!  And it only took about 18 years for it to happen.  It’s true, there isn’t an abundance of horror movies spewing from the republic of Austria – but it looks like they have a winner on their hands with Goodnight Mommy.

Ok, I have no idea what was being said in that trailer, but I do know two things: First, that was one hell of a slap the mother put on that kid.  And second, this movie looks creepy as fuck.  Early word about this one is that it lives up to the hype of the trailer by the way.  Goodnight Mommy revolves around a mother, who is a television personality, that goes in for some plastic surgery and comes home to her two sons “changed”.  You can tell from the trailer that things seem to go a bit awry when she does return, and what’s up with the masks that the kids are wearing?  I’m sure it will all make sense when Goodnight Mommy is finally released here in the US.  And that can’t come soon enough for me!

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Anticipation Alert: Krampus (2015)

Tis the season for news about Christmas horror movies!  And while I’ve heard about this one for a while now, it’s finally picking up steam with some casting choices.  I’m talking about Michael Dougherty’s demonic horror/comedy, Krampus.  

For those in the dark, Michael Dougherty gave us the amazing (and horribly studio managed) Halloween anthology, Trick ‘R Treat back in 2007.  So because of his name alone, I’m already on board with Krampus.  The film will revolve around the Alpine country folklore about a demon who would reward good children with gifts and the bad children would get tossed in his sack and taken back to his lair for punishment.  Sounds a bit wrong if you ask me and would have scared the shit out of me as a kid had my parents told me that story, but the pics you can find about Krampus online are even more disturbing.

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Sweet Mother of God!  What the hell is going on there?  I was under the assumption that Krampus would just kidnap these kids for a little while, take them back to his untidy lair, and maybe make them eat broccoli or something as punishment for being bad.  Apparently I was way off.  At least the girl in the pic is enjoying some delicious fruit while the boy is either about to have his ass licked or worse.

Michael Dougherty sounds like he’s definitely going to go the horror/comedy route with this, so expect a tone similar to Trick ‘R Treat.  Not a bad thing by any means, but what is kind of bad is that director/writer Kevin Smith is also doing a horror/comedy about Krampus and his will be called Anti-Claus.  The more the merrier I guess, so get ready for the battle of the Krampus movies in 2015!  Now let’s see another one of those uncomfortable Krampus pics where he’s licking a boy’s head while pulling his ears apart.

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Anticipation Alert: Amityville – The Awakening (2014)

La La La La La La La (puts fingers in ears and yells that really loud).  But now why am I being so juvenile and refusing to hear something?  Oh – that’s because yet another ‘evil possession’ movie is set to be unleashed upon the horror masses and I honestly don’t want to hear about it.  But wait….what’s this?  The trailer actually looks good?  And it’s written and directed by Frank Khalfoun?  Ok ok……I’m listening.

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One of the godfather’s of all possession movies is 1979’s The Amityville Horror, and it’s spawned more than enough sequels, prequels and documentaries over the years (my personal favorite being Amityville II: The Possession).  And now we have another to throw into that mix called Amityville: The Awakening.

As mentioned previously, it’s written and directed by Frank Khalfoun (Maniac) and stars Jennifer Jason Leigh, Bella Thorne, Mckenna Grace, and Cameron Monaghan.  Focusing on the story of a mother and her three children who move into the infamous Amityville house…..wait a minute — why in the hell are they moving into that house?  I’m sure they got it for cheap since murders occurred there and supernatural entities call it home, but is saving a little cash worth all of the demonic fuss?  To make matters worse, the son is in a coma and weird shit starts happening.  Don’t believe me?  Check out the somewhat impressive trailer and get ready for Amityville: The Awakening on January 2, 2015.

Anticipation Alert: Tusk (2014)

How could you not be interested in a movie about a creepy guy who wants to turn a podcaster who comes to interview him into a walrus?  Unsurprisingly, writer/director Kevin Smith has admitted to coming up with the story to his upcoming movie, Tusk, while being stoned.  And now we luckily have a bat-shit crazy trailer to give a taste of what his weed-induced mind has conjured up:

Obviously more in the horror/comedy range than straight horror, Tusk looks like loads of fun.  Shades of The Human Centipede are evident, but what Kevin Smith has come up (at least from the trailer) looks like it will definitely be in it’s own lane.  I dig Justin Long, and seeing an older and more plump Hayley Joel Osment is a nice surprise – but it’s another name that is being associated with this movie that’s causing a bit of a stir.  Johnny Depp.  That’s right folks, Johnny Depp’s in a movie about a guy trying to turn another guy into a walrus. Hopefully that upped your anticipation a little more as it did for me.  Kevin Smith’s Tusk will be out on September 19th – stay tuned for more info and reviews rolling in soon!

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Anticipation Alert: Among The Living (2014)

Anyone who asks me to recommend a horror film from the last 10 years will automatically get one of two responses:  Martyrs (2008) or Inside (2007)

Both are French horror movies and both are pretty fucked up in their own right. Also, both are near masterpieces in this writer’s opinion, with Inside probably narrowly edging out Martyrs for being my favorite out of the two.  In 2011, the Inside writer/director team of Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury gave us their fresh take on the vampire subgenre with Livide, and now they’re getting back to glorious basics this year with Among The Living:

A lot of things are going on in that trailer, which unfortunately is completely in French, and my interest piqued even more when I saw a clown mask pop up. Among The Living looks like a more demented and fucked up version of Stand By Me, and considering I love that movie as much as I do – it’s not a surprise that I’m completely on board with this one.  Stylistically it looks great and the tension seems to be in full effect, much like it was during Inside. Judging from the fact that Among The Living is already receiving high praise from film festival reviews, this one has made it to the top of my list for this year’s most anticipated horror movies.

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Anticipation Alert: Harbinger Down (2014)

You had me at practical effects.  And also, Lance Henriksen.  That’s what I said after I first read about the independent Sci-Fi/Horror movie, Harbinger Down, a few months back.  Funded primarily from Kickstarter, it’s been boasting around town (with good intent mind you) that it’s going back to the good ol’ days of animatronics, prosthetic makeup, and one of my favs:  stop motion effects.  And it’s about f*cking time!

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Any movie that pays homage to The Thing and Alien has a pretty good start going for it.  I’m holding out hope though that it ends up with better results than this year’s alien abduction indie Sci-Fi/Horror flick, Almost Human.  For those interested in the premise of Harbinger Down, it goes a little something like this:

A group of grad students have booked passage on the fishing trawler Harbinger to study the effects of global warming on a pod of Orcas in the Bering Sea. When the ship’s crew dredges up a recently thawed piece of old Soviet space wreckage, things get downright deadly. It seems that the Russians experimented with tardigrades, tiny resilient animals able to withstand the extremes of space radiation. The creatures survived, but not without mutation.

Now the crew is exposed to aggressively mutating organisms. And after being locked in ice for 3 decades, the creatures aren’t about to give up the warmth of human companionship.

Old school plot.  Old school effects.  And an old school teaser trailer to boot that you can check out below.  Stay tuned for more info on Harbinger Down and look for a release date soon!