Monday, September 28, 2009

Night of the Living Dead: Origins casting news

It seems Night of the Living Dead has yet another redux on the way. This will be the third attempt at a remake of the classic, though it looks to be more of a prequel than anything. The other two remakes ranged from great (Night of the Living Dead 1990) to awful (Night of the Living Dead 3D) though this one looks to be shaping up nicely. The film has been described as a 3D CGI "American Anime".

As of now, the film stars Danielle Harris as Barbara, Joe Pilato as Cooper, with Mos Def currently in talks to play Ben. So, in short, casting is currently epic. The film itself could still go either way. Interested to see how this develops.

Nightmare on Elm Street Trailer is Now Online!

Well, it looks like all our waiting has paid off, as the trailer for Platinum Dunes' A Nightmare on Elm Street is online as of midnight.

The Captain's Thoughts: My anticipation with this film continues to grow. The first image and poster were great, the trailer is damn near everything I wanted it to be. Jackie Earle Hayley keeps proving himself as the right guy for the job and this pretty much sets it in stone. We see shots of a scary, shadowed Freddy, some nice homages to the original film, and some beautiful nightmare imagery. The trailer's opening shot is interesting, and the film seems to be trying a new take on the Krueger mythos with adding a "did he/didn't he do it" mentality to the film. As in: was Krueger a monster before the fire, or was he made that way by what was done to him, and does it matter in the end? All intriguing. Now, for the look of the monster. This is most definitely Freddy Krueger. All the elements are there and striking images. But, this is Jackie Earle Hayley's Krueger, not Robert Englund's, and the differences are there and noticeable. They reached the perfect balance of new/old.

If the trailer is any indication, this should shape up to be one of the best horror films of 2010. You can view it here: http:

Friday, September 11, 2009

Hidden Gem: Waxwork (1988)

Trying another new segment here. This is for severely overlooked horror films, even by fan standards.

Now, there were certainly some gems in the late 80's, that's for sure. They ranged from the outrageously cheesy (Night of the Demons) to the fantastic (The Serpent and the Rainbow), but if there was one overlooked camp classic to sneak in at the end of the decade, Waxwork is in my eyes most assuredly it.

The film is directed by Anthony Hicox, who would go on to direct Waxwork II: Lost in Time and Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth. It stars Zach Galligan (Gremlins 1&2), Deborah Foreman (April Fool's Day), John Rhys-Davies (Lord of the Rings, Raiders of the Lost Ark) and the always epic David Warner (In the Mouth of Madness, TRON, The Omen).

The focus of the movie is, obviously, a Waxwork. But whereas I went in expecting another ol' dip the bodies in wax to hide them type of movie, I was pleasantly surprised to find a rather awesome new take. This is a campy supernatural film, and the true plot is that the owner of the Waxwork wants to unleash hell on earth by offering up victims to his horror-themed wax exhibits. When the people step through the exhibit, they step into the world inhabited by that specific character. Dracula's victim finds herself in a castle, the werewolf's victim in a forest, etc. Now, one would think this would shift to play like an anthology film, but the plot remains surprisingly coherent throughout.

The plot point that sealed the deal for me, however, was the one spot where the film truly rose above just being a campy 80's monster movie. The heroine, Sara, is very sexually repressed and instead of having her simply do battle with a burly monster at the end, Hicox instead explores the theme throughout. Sara clearly has desires of her own. Desires that may even go a step further than what her friends are doing. For example, the wax figure that captivates her most is not The Count, nor Frankenstein's Monster, nor the Phantom of the Opera... it's the Marquis de Sade. A figure she nearly seems to idolize... until she meets him face to face.

Of course, any 1980's monster pic depends heavily on its gore and effects, and this film has these by the buckets. The special effects are done by Bob Keene, the genius who worked on the early Hellraiser films.

So, while Waxwork may not take its spot amongst the classics, it does explore some interesting themes when it wants to. What can truly be expected here is simply good, clean, messy fun. It is, just as the tagline reads, "more fun than a barrel of mummies."

Daily Cheesey Horror Trailer: Basket Case (1982)

New segment I'm trying here.