Friday, 4 August 2017

Malady (2015)


Online screener 

Written and directed by: Jack James

Stars: Roxy Bugler, Kemal Yildirim, Jill Connick 

Official Trailer

I was really pleased to hear from Jack James regarding his evocative psychological thriller Malady with the chance to check it out/review. 

Roxy Bugler stars as Holly in an uncompromisingly morose and brittle role - Holly is broken by the death of her mother and deeply lonely. Its this vulnerable state of being that leads her to the enigmatic Matthew (Kemal Yildirim) a fellow solitary soul  which leads the two to enter into a passionate and unsettling relationship. When Matthews mother Lorelei (a terrifying Jill Connick) falls seriously ill he and Holly travel to her home to care for her during what will be her final days.  Its safe to add that Lorelei is by no means a nice person, in actual fact shes spiteful and cold and has somewhat of a twisted hold on Matthew.

The plot unfolds slowly and eerily and to Jacks absolute credit, Malady is by no means an 'easy' film. There aren't any jump scenes, fake-out scares or the like but it is nonetheless a captivating journey into a true family nightmare. The film is also lacking in dialogue, not that this need be a bad thing. As a film that  does not offer everything on a plate,viewers need to work with it in order to go along for the ride.

As mentioned Roxy Bugler nails the role of Holly but both other actors Kemal Yildirim and Jill Connick are also outstanding. The character of Lorelei is impossible to love but easily the most fascinating of all. Jill Connick really gives a direct, glaring performance of a character who could have easily been of the mustache twiddling variety in different hands.  Kemal Yildirim plays probably the most complicated of characters with the audience never quite sure what to make of him and does an excellent job of maintaining the mystery which surrounds Matthew.

Its a wonderfully made film using  beguiling colours and distorted shots to creepy effect. Malady shows amazing promise for Jack James' future in film, I hope he stays aligned with the thriller/horror genre as I would expect he has many more tricks up his crafty sleeve. 

Malady  was released on VOD  on the 11th July and is available in both the US, UK and more.  The film can be purchased/rented via the usual outlets such as Amazon, iTunes, GooglePlay, VUDU so whats stopping you? 

Thursday, 22 June 2017

3 (2017)

Online screener review 

Written and directed by Lou Simon

Stars: Todd Bruno, Aniela McGuinness, Mike Stanley and Katie Carpenter.

Thanks to Lou Simon for reaching out to ask me to review another film in her growing catalogue of horror and thriller films. I have enjoyed them immensely so far particularly Hazmat and Agoraphobia. This time Lou has gone the psychological thriller route with a small cast, claustrophobic setting and a lot of tension. 3 is impressive in many ways but particularly in how Lou manages to tell a successfully dark and twisting tale with very little.

The core cast comprises of Todd Bruno and Aniela McGuinness as 'He' and 'She' a couple who take Mike Stanley (as 'It') hostage in order to make him confess to a rape he is believed to have committed. Said confession -by the way - will be extracted via any means necessary.

There isn't a chance in hell I am going to say any more on the plot and the details of the suspected offence other to say as things go along it really will surprise you and make you think back over the entire movie. I certainly did. This is always a great thing. There are some similarities to another movie which you may pick up on and which I wont mention but in actuality 3 is very very different. The final scene is also a knockout - nicely done.

The couple as mentioned are not afraid to do whatever it takes to get a confession and He leads the show in this sense. There are a few scenes where he really goes for the jugular, providing some shocking and wince inducing moments.

The cast are really great. Aniela plays She with a creepy, cool calm as well as sad vulnerability while Todd Bruno veers from softly spoken and caring to raging and murderous with skillful ease. Mike Stanley is extremely impressive and plays the 'did he or did he not do it' role to the hilt. I was unsure for a while whether I felt scared and sorry for the guy or was disgusted by him and his possible ability to keep lying through his teeth...testament to a great actor.

A taut and twisty thriller with a shocking conclusion not to mention an excellent example of what can be achieved with a well written script and a small and able cast . In addition the film explores some themes, although horrible and dark,that are  not addressed enough on TV or film. Check 3 out as soon as you can.

Be sure to check out for more on Lou's work.

Hillbilly Horror Show (2014)

Directed By Sharif Salama

Written by Blu De Golyer

With Bo Keister, Scott Geiter, Rachel Faulkner as your Hillbilly Horror Show Hosts! 

I was so pleased to hear that Scott Geiter (well known in the horror community as The Voice of Horror 'Gruesome Hertzogg' a passionate and dedicated reviewer and actor) would be hosting a new online horror series and here is the first fruits of this labor: Episode 1 of The Hillbilly Horror Show....

Along with Friends Bo (Bo Keister),  Lulu ( Rachel Faulkner) Scott plays Cephus, rounding out our hosts for an hour of horror shorts from a mixture of established and newcomers to horror film making.

This first episode features the following shorts and I will give a little summary of for each:

Franky and the Ant

Directed by Billy Hayes
Written by Billy Hayes

Franky and the Ant features two friends (perhaps in a loose sense of the word) kidnapping a young woman from her home, taking her out to a freshly dug likely not to end well. Being ten minutes long you know this film is going to get to the point pretty quickly, which it does and we soon learn that things are not all they seem. I loved the films about turn and was nervous about how it might end based on the rather horrifying predicament of one of the three characters. Safe to say the film ended in the way I was praying it wouldn't, leaving a bad taste in the mouth and jaw slightly agape. Props to Billy Hayes for creating a dark and bleak psychological horror film in just ten minutes which I enjoyed but also felt a bit queasy watching!!


Directed by Drew Daywalt
Written by Drew Daywalt

I can't say too much about this film except that it's refreshingly different to any other horror short I have seen recently. Featuring some amazing stop motion effects, we are witness to the meeting of two skeletons wandering around a desolate and eerie landscape. Even those looking for something far more straightforward in their horror should be transfixed by this film as I was. Recommended for something new and very interesting. 

Directed by Cuyle Carvin
Written by Cuyle Carvin 

Amused, I am not ashamed to admit, gave me the massive creeps. There is something so terrifying about the thought of being chased around an isolate area by a complete lunatic and that is the awful fate that befalls our main character in this short. The travelling woman finds herself witness to a savage killing, the perpetrator of which is a giggling wide eyed maniac who quickly gives chase. It's down to the woman to find her killer instinct in order to fight back and survive. A great short horror film which easily tapped into one of my true fears and even though I did see the ending coming, it still worked extremely well. 

The Nest
Directed by Tim Zwica
Written by Tim Zwica

The longest of the four shortsThe Nest  is a brilliant and inventive film with some cool effects and a claustrophobic atmosphere. Although you may roll your eyes at the fact that the core element of this story is giant bees, I can gaurentee you haven't seen them used in this way before. In fact the true villian of this film is probably the creepy lady who runs the diner featured in the film, using a macabre method of keeping her honey a coming.  There is a scene with two young girls who upset the diner owner which had me cringing in horror. Their fates are NOT nice let me tell you.  That said there is a perfectly executed scene of justice towards the end which should have audiences cheering out loud so it's not all doom and gloom. A VERY highly recommended film to horror lovers out there. As well as a great story, the special effects are also very credible and makes me wonder what Tim Zwica would be capable of with a big budget...amazing things I predict. 

The Hillbilly Horror Show is a lot of fun, bottom line. Its clear that this is what these guys wanted it to be and that really shines through.The hosts are great fun, Scott along with horror actor Bo Kesiter and model/actress Rachel Faulkner all bounce off each other hillariously as they go about their business and watch the shorts. I hope they can keep this momentum up for the next episodes as I think it will be a must see for horror fans.

Head on over to the website and see what its all about AND you can rent the first episode for next to GO DO IT.

Peelers (2016)

Image result for peelers the movie amazon

Online screener

Directed by Sevé Schelenz

Written by Lisa DeVita and Sevé Schelenz

Stars: Wren Walker, Caz Odin Darko, Madison J. Loos, Cameron Dent, Al Dales, Momona Komogata, Kirsty Peters, Nikki Wallin.

I am beyond pleased that Sevé Schelenz, a true gent it must be said, reached out to ask me to check out his newest film knowing how much I loved his previous effort Skew. A very different beast to the previous found footage shocker, Peelers is a gung-ho gory and gratuitous carnage fest...and I loved it,

Peelers tells the  story of a strip club filled with a variety of interesting characters, mostly all likable (some purposefully not so) that falls foul of a deadly disease brought in by some infected customers. Its up to the amazingly tough and sassy Blue Jean (Wren Walker) to try to stop the bloodshed and save her friends/loved ones, her bar and herself from the onslaught! To that end there is gore galore on offer here - body parts flying all over the shop, leaking bodily fluids, impalement's and much much more. Family friendly Peelers aint but therein lies the appeal.

The cast all do a great job. Clearly Wren Walker is the standout and its easy to see why she was chosen to play the ballsy but caring character of Blue - strictly NOT Blowjob- Jean. I enjoyed the other strippers as well particularly Nikki Wallin as Baby, she was a lot of fun. Momona Komogata is also really endearing as Frankie and has some great lines. Finally Madison J. Loos as Wrens bad lad son Logan is another great character, played really naturally with some fantastic dialogue between him and his onscreen mother.

The script is fab - Lisa DeVita's writing elevates the film to another level, juxtaposing engaging comedy with splattery horror and also giving us really rootable characters with some brilliant dialogue. Solid direction from Sevé Schelenz also who has got so much more to work with outside of the found footage format and really gives his all in Peelers providing an horror film that is rife with action a la From Dusk Till Dawn. What a team these two make; if not a Peelers 2 then I still hope these guys come together again at some point for another project.

In short this Peelers is completely nuts in the best possible way and I dare anyone not to admit that its total fun to watch. A true popcorn movie for the fans.

Peelers is out now on VOD in the US with the DVD arriving July 4th and is also coming to Canada on VOD on July 11th. Hopefully its on its way to UK really soon!

For more on the movie please do check out the following:





Friday, 24 March 2017

Stripped to the Bone: Here Comes PEELERS!

Image result for peelers the movie amazon

I am beyond happy to share exciting distribution news of upcoming horror film Peelers written & produced by Lisa DeVita and directed & co written by Sevé Schelenz, the man behind the ultra creepy Skew. Being a huge fan of the latter(shameless review plug HERE)  I have been eagerly anticipating Peelers for some time and going by the trailer and promo materials, this film is going to be fun - of the bloodied and broken boned type! Read on for all the deets and get ready for some gory stripper action!!


Contact: Sevé Schelenz     Tel: 604.889.4805
March 17, 2017 – Independent Horror Feature Film PEELERS to have CANADIAN THEATRICAL SNEAK PEEK on March 20, 2017 & U.S. VOD on March 28, 2017.
The makers of the Independent Cult Horror feature film SKEW (2011) bring you their balls-to-the-wall action/horror follow-up flick PEELERS.
PEELERS - What starts out as the last hurrah on the closing night of an infamous small-town strip club, quickly turns into a night of bloodshed when a crew of coal miners shows up and with them, a deadly contaminant.  Former baseball player and current club owner, Blue Jean Douglas has decided to hand over her bar to a new owner and leave town for good. But Blue Jean’s plans are thwarted when she discovers the magnitude of the epidemic that has been unleashed. With victims piling up, Blue Jean must step up to the plate to protect her family, her friends, and her bar before it's too late and she loses everything she holds dear.
PEELERS destroys the cliché stripper horror sub-genre by giving us a story packed with exciting twists, baseball, strippers of unusual talents and a strong female lead.  PEELERS has quickly become 2016’s horror festival darling, premiering in 65 festivals worldwide while carving up 54 nominations and 31 wins.  What’s being described as “Rodriguez meets Tarantino” and “… a pretty damn fun trip” (Dread Central) that “any horror fan is going to love from start to finish” (HEAVY Magazine) has Director / Producer Sevé Schelenz hoping to give genre fans the indie horror cult hit of 2017.
PEELERS CANADIAN SNEAK PEEK – March 20, 2017 (from TWMedia Events)
PEELERS U.S. VOD – March 28, 2017 (from Uncork’d Entertainment)
Not bloody enough for you?  Here’s more:

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Out of my Mind (2016)


 (Online Screener)

Written by John Cosper, Neil Kellen, Cindy Maples

Directed by Cindy Maples

Stars: Rusty James and Mina Fedora

Huge thanks to the extremely talented and always lovely Cindy Maples for reaching out to me to review her horror short Out of my Mind. Its really exciting for me to see Cindy branching out into directing after following her acting career for some time.  Showing a keen eye for  interesting colours and offbeat camera angles, Out of my Mind looks professional, quirky and more importantly an all too promising sign of things to come for Ms Maples.

The story is eerie, interesting and expertly carried by Maples real life husband Rusty James who has done some excellent work in the indie field also. In its short running time we follow James as an author named Carter who spots an attractive young woman (Mina Fedora) in a blue dress at a writers celebration.  Carters disappointment is all too evident when the woman's date suddenly appears signalling that his chances are definitely out of the window.

From here on out we witness Carters creative juices mixing with the hard liquor as he starts to write back at home, picturing his eerie story as he does so and yes it involves the beautiful lady in blue. Things begin to get very strange for Carter after he calls it a night and the film effectively toys with our expectations as to what is really unfolding.  The film ends with the morning after the night before being more horrific than Carter could ever have imagined as shocking news comes a knocking.

In addition to Rusty I must also add that Mina Fedora does a superb job in her very mysterious role. The character veers from unassuming to seductive to horribly crazed and vengeful and Mina really pulls it off in impressive fashion.

In short Out of my Mind is an intriguing, well made, well acted journey into psychological terror.  I cannot wait to see what Cindy does next, I truly hope that a feature film is in the works. Check out the films creepy trailer right HERE and make sure to see it when you get the chance!

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Volumes of Blood: Horror Stories (2016)

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Many thanks to P.J. Starks (Producer among many other things on VoB: Horror Stories) for asking if I would be interested in reviewing the sequel to the excellent Volumes of Blood - it was an easy answer of course. The follow up is even better and without giving away any spoilers this review will give an overview and thoughts on each segment:

Murder Death Killer
Written & directed by Nathan Thomas Milliner
Stars: Barbie Clark, Warren Ray, Thomas Dunbar, Aric Stanish 

Murder Death Killer centres around a con gone horribly wrong and also introduces an iconic killer who doesn't hold back on the stabbing, slashing and worse!  An exciting segment which builds on the legend of a supposedly murdered warehouse employee named Atticus Crow... soon those greedy few who don't heed the warnings find themselves stalked by their very worst nightmare.  I loved the concept of the killer and he is one mean bastard for sure, Atticus Crow is welcome back on my screen anytime!

Written by Nathan Thomas Milliner
Directed by P.J. Starks
Stars: Nathan Thomas Milliner, Kevin Roach, Gerrimy Keiffer, Mark Sheetz, Grady Cooper, Brad Reinhardt, Eric Huskisson, 

Cleverly leading on from Murder Death KillerHaters is a fun and funny short which also acts as the lead in to the main movie credits. In fact it would be a good point now to advise viewers to pay careful attention to this movie as a whole. There are clever links between the shorts all the way through and not just via the main wrap around (which incidentally hasn't even started yet by this point...don't get confused just do as I say PAY attention!)

Anyway back to Haters an expletive filled piece where a couple of hardened horror fans are kicked out of the cinema and return home to kick back and talk horror films, remakes and sequels. The dialogue is great fun with lots of funny opinions on both the follow ups to classic horror films and the many recent remakes. Add to this a nice nasty sting in the tail proving that your actions can very much come back to haunt (or maim) you!

Trick or Treat
Written by P.J Starks & Sean Blevins
Directed by Sean Blevins
Stars: Shelby Taylor Mullins, Chad Benefield, Chad Ray

Post credits comes Trick or Treat.  Shelby Taylor Mullins is a young woman named Mallory alone on Halloween night after her security guard boyfriend is called into work. Work just so happens to be the same library where the first films bloody massacre occurred and it also just so happens that the bodies of the victims have just been discovered. Cue a chilling news report warning that the killer is still on the loose and Mallory starts to get very scared, particularly since she has already had an unsettling encounter with a trick of treater... 

One definite thing to say about Trick or Treat is that it contains the most gut wrenching gore scene in the whole movie and I defy anyone not to recoil in horror at it!  I loved this part and really loved how it connects to everything else.

A Killer House
Witten by P.J. Starks
Directed by James Treakle
Stars:Jacob Ewers, Erin Troutman, Christopher Bower

So here is the core wraparound as such and features Jacob Ewers and Erin Troutman as a young couple being shown around a house for sale. The realtor played by Christopher Bower is sinister to say the least and its very clear that some...unsavoury....things have occurred within the walls of the house. Which then introduces us to the following four segments before unleashing a very grand finale:

Feeding Time
Written by P.J. Starks & Jason Turner
Directed by John Williams Holt
Stars: Caleb Shore, Shelby Taylor Mullins, TJ Clark, Jim O'Rear

Feeding time is a classic wrong time wrong place tale featuring Caleb Shore as a salesman who happens upon a distraught young woman (Shelby Taylor Mullins) who claims that she is being tormented by a monster who lives under her bed. Here is another clever link to a previous story with Shelby Taylor Mullins playing the character of Mallory once say anymore would be giving too much away.  An enjoyable story with decent build up and a great end.

Blood Bath
Written by P.J. Starks
Directed by Jon Maynard
Stars: Kevin Arnold, Bridgette Michelle Hoover, Moses J. Moseley

Kevin Arnold and Bridgette Michelle Hoover play a young married couple who move into their new home...they of course did not expect a dangerous evil to be living in their bathroom of all places! I enjoyed Blood Bath its a short and nasty segment with some cool grue and gore and a very creepy villain.

Fear, For Sinners Here
Written & directed by Nathan Thomas Milliner
Stars: Jessica Schroeder, Julie Streble, Troy Davis, Connor Starks

Set on Christmas eve,  Fear, For Sinners Here plays out as a sort of home invasion/revenge horror story which is both shocking and gory. Jessica Schroeder plays a young mother who is on someones (a great crazed performance by Julie Streble) naughty list. Why is to be revealed and its a great reveal at that - its  also a true testament to how crazy the holidays and present buying makes some people. The ending is almost as horrific as aforementioned Trick or Treat scene and excellently  done - silent night indeed!

The Deathday Party 
Written by P.J. Starks 
Directed by Justin Seaman
Stars: Eric Huskisson, Anne Welsh, Jay Woolston, Cindy Maples, Alyssa Evelyn Rhoads

The Deathday Party is an ace horror short which could have been ripped straight from the bloodstained pages of Tales From The Crypt.  I love Cindy Maples and I don't care who knows it. I have enjoyed all of her roles and she is also a sweet, passionate actress who was kind enough to interview with me a few years ago. In this short she plays possibly my favourite character yet, a sweet homely wife to her loving husband (Jay Woolston in an equally excellent role) with some truly disturbing skeletons in the closet. Cindy shows an incredible range in such a short amount of time and proves what a pro she really is - the selfie scene is stellar. 

This story is insanely bloody, hilarious (the dialogue and facial expressions during THAT haemorrhoids conversation) and tense in equal measure and may just be my favourite of the bunch.  

On the whole Volumes of Blood: Horror Stories does what every sequel should do, surpass the original in every way and has ended my 2016 brilliantly.  So what if its not perfect - perfection is dull.  

Find out more here -this one is 100% by the fans, for the fans and not to be missed.

Friday, 2 December 2016

Slasher House II (2016)

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(Online Screener)

Written & Directed by MJ Dixon

Stars: Francesca Louise White, Luna Wolf , Sophie Portman, Sam Cullingworth , David Hon Ma Chu, Wellington Grosvenor , Tiana Rogers. 

I love sequels, I love Slasher House and I was beyond excited at the prospect of a follow up.. I really admire the work of MJ Dixon and his production company Mycho - they do a heck of a lot with very little and while they do have their battles with the many challenges of low budget filmaking, they never make a big deal of it - they move on and still manage to create a great film.

In keeping with previous effort Legacy of Thorn, Slasher House II goes into crazy action horror mode. Whereas the original movie played out as a creepy, claustrophobic mystery, the follow up is more balls to wall while still retaining the intrigue.

Red, now played by the very capable Francesca Louise White, is no longer suffering from amnesia as she was when she was stumbling around the danger filled Slasher House. Therefore she knows who she is, she knows what she is and she knows what she must do. What she is trying to get to the bottom of is why there is such interest in these creepy killers from another corrupt group of people! What the end game is is a mystery to  the audience and without adding anymore, the rug is suitably pulled out from under you in the final minutes - hats off though as I enjoyed this twist a heck of a lot.

The new killers are very cool indeed, there is maniac in a panda mask who enjoys nothing more than slicing and dicing nubile strippers, as well as killer dolls and a nightmarish skeleton who happens upon a group of hapless teens- so a nice supernatural angle to spice things up. As well as this I loved the fact that the teens were credited as the slasher type cliches they were intended to be (the good girl, the slut, the stoner etc etc).

As always MJ's colouring is absolutely striking and this time not only is there the vivacious red of Reds hair to behold there is the cartoonish yellow of co-star Luna Wolfs stripper wig. It just looks so impressive on screen - bringing characters and situations to life in such a way  really is something that MJ Dixon and his team excel at. In addition to that a huge thumbs up for the fantastic score, a perfect fitting for the movie for both the suspense and the action sequences.

All in all this is a very worthy follow up to Slasher House and brings new things to the table. Its far more ambitious than its predecessor and I  truly commend the Mycho team for always working hard to up their game. Its also always wonderful to see what true fans of the horror genre come up with via their own twisted minds - and that is quite honestly said with love.

You can see Slasher House II  in its gory glory on 22nd January 2017 at the  Horror-On-Sea festival in Southend . In addition you can pre-order the DVD right here,  although this is currently a limited run so get shopping!

Thursday, 13 October 2016

All Through the House (2015)

Online Screener copy

Written and Directed By Todd Nunes

Stars: Ashley Mary Nunes, Jessica Cameron, Melynda Kiring, Natalie Montera, Lito Velasco, Jason Ray Schumacher, Johanna Ray, Matt Poeschl, Cathy Garrett, Kelsey Carlstedt, Danica Riner, Jennifer Wenger, Tamra Garrett, Justice Lee. 

This is a holiday horror film to die for - I absolutely bloody LOVED IT.  Thanks very much to Todd Nunes for kindly hooking me up with a screener of his film. I have seen and heard lots about it for a while and was eager as a kid at Christmas to see it . It really did not disappoint in anyway, it takes the psycho in a Santa suit scenario to a whole new grisly level..and its FUN.

Rachel Kimmel (Ashley Mary Nunes) returns to her hometown for the holidays just as a crazed killer starts hacking away at the local population. The film offers a decent balance of suspense, humour, interesting characters and eye popping gore.  Along for the ride is an enticing mystery which slowly unfolds as Rachel and her best pals go to the feared home of Mrs Garrett (a great offbeat performance by Melynda Kiring) to help her for the holidays, as the body count ramps up it seems all roads lead to the Garrett house....but why? And who has decided to wipe out all the naughty people with garden shears and other such sharp objects??

The film boasts a great array of characters - I loved Danica Riner as the naughty Sarah, a fun and feisty character who has some killer scenes later on in the film.  Cathy Garrett plays Abby, a character I am sure has already garnered much attention and is awesome as the foul mouthed, wheelchair bound grandmother of Rachel. Abby is great fun  to watch and as she effs and blinds her way around you can also tell she is fiercely protective of her granddaughter which rounds her out brilliantly. Ashley Mary Nunes plays Rachel brilliantly, a great 'final' girl with heart and fire - the character also takes some interesting turns so stay tuned. Also look out for Jessica Cameron's cameo as 'Sheila' in a fun but nasty little scene..

Many people will wonder about the kills and all I can tell you is that this movie delivers and then some. Who knew there were so may creative things you can do with one murder weapon? Seriously, nasty and bloody stuff here. There are also a couple of scenes that will literally kill male viewers - be warned. Not that Santa only sticks to garden shears there are plenty other surprises in store too. 

The film is also beautifully shot and its aesthetics are wonderful. Some horror themed Christmas films throw in a Christmas tree and bauble and hope that this will be enough to sell it as such. All Through the House has a near perfect attention to detail on the holiday front and it just looks fantastic for it. 

What more can I say, All Through the House is a fun, funny, blood soaked ride just begging for a bigger, bloodier sequel.

Follow the film on its Official Facebook Page 

Its out NOW in the US:  Order DVD and to the UK soon after: Preorder DVD