Well it's been a long time coming but it finally looks like we can wash the shitty taste the Mathew Broderick version of Godzilla left in our mouths. Premiering this very afternoon was the new trailer for the Gareth Edwards directed, Bryan Cranston starring, new Godzilla film.
Godzilla will hit theaters on May 16, 2014. The film not only stars Cranston, but the talented Olsen sister, Elizabeth, along with a whole bunch of other cool folks. What do you guys think? Does this teaser make you more or less excited to see the film?
Ahh Christmas. That special time where we all spend our hard earned dollars trying find that right gift to buy someones love for another year? Unless your Jewish...then you get eight shots at buying love. It's also the time of the year where we dust off all our old decorations, hang them up and hope the neighbors don't remember they are the same ones you put up last year. For some of us though, Christmas is the perfect time to revisit those old holiday classics : 'A Christmas Carol,' 'Miracle On 34th Street,' 'Black Christmas.' Wait, what? Yup, see we in the horror community (I swear that's a thing) have been bathing the sight of Good Ol' Saint Nick hacking and slashing his way through the end of December for the last 30 years.
Some of these films have been classics, the a for mentioned 'Black Christmas,' 'Christmas Evil,' 'Silent Night, Deadly Night,' others however, 'Jack Frost,' 'Santa Claws,' that film with Goldberg can barely be categorized as films, let alone classics. Into this very hit or miss world of Christmas films stumbles 'Caesar and Otto's Deadly Chrismas." The horror/comedy, with emphasis on the "comedy part of the description, is actually the fifth adventure for this pair of mismatched brothers. It follows their feature film debut, the eponymously titled 'Caesar and Otto' and the follow up 2009's 'Caesar and Otto's Summer cam Massacre' sandwich in two short films and you get caught up on all of Caesar and Otto's adventures.
A confluence of events leads to the pair winding up being framed for a series of grizzly murders by Demian (Deron Miller, one of the dudes from CKY). Demians murders are just a front for a more sinister plot involving a satanic cult hell bent on bringing back the original meaning behind Christmas.
'Caesar and Otto's Deadly Christmas' is a terrible film. The acting, the directing, writing is all sub par...BUT...and it's a big but...the film is pretty damn hilarious. Dave Campfield (Caeser, Writer and Director) and Paul Chomicki (Otto) have a wonderful chemistry together, even if Campfields over the top acting is a little grating at first. But that's part of the joke. Caesar is supposed to be over the top. The scrip is supposed to be stupid. Campfield knows what he's doing and lets us in on the joke.
And the jokes are there in abundance. There are legitimately laugh out loud funny moments throughout the film. Most come from Chomicki and his aww shucks ideas about love and romance. But there is enough funny to sustain the poor narrative for the entire 90 minutes of the film. Hell, there's even an awesome 'Princess Bride' quote thrown in just to make sure we are all paying attention. If you aren't paying attention to the dialogue then maybe then the who's who of B-Movie stardom being totted out will surely catch your attention.
Ceasar and Otto's latest adventure is not going to be for everyone. There are folks out there will say it's pretty stupid. They won't be able to see past the bad acting, the poor production values and ultimately nonsensical script. But if you go into the film with an open mind and just want to be entertained, 'Caesar and Otto's Deadly Christmas' is an extremely rewarding experience. It's the perfect film to throw on after you've killed four or five beers (I know I have no tolerance) anymore and just laugh your way through.
The film will hit DVD and VOD on November 19th through Wild Eye Releasing. Look for it, watch it, have fun.
*** stars out of *****
Thanks for reading. And as always : "Enjoy Every Sandwich"
This is way too late for me to be positing this, but I've been a bit busy...between traveling on the TARDIS and doing shit like this, some things have slipped past the radar. Not really past it. I saw it knew it was there, but waited until now to bring it to yo. So in case you missed it...take a look at the poster for writer/director Eric Englands latest film 'Contracted.'
England as you may or may not know...and you should, is the man behind throwback backwoods slasher 'Madison County.' Check out the review here. While it wasn't my favorite film of all time, it certainly did enough right to get me stoked for 'Contracted.' Here's the trailer...it's pretty fucked up...
'Contracted' stars Najarra Townsend, Caroline Williams, Katie Stegeman and the dude who lost to Jesse Camp on that MTV VJ contest thing years ago, Dave Holmes. The film tells the story of the worst one night stands in history. So guy's if your out at a club and this girl you've been about just shuts down, she's probably seen 'Contracted.' Thanks Eric....
'Contracted' is touring the festival circuit right now and getting some pretty damn good buzz. Check it out if you can. If not you'll just have to wait for the VOD or DVD release like the rest of us.
Well it's certainly no secret that the number of posts on the site have been diminishing over the last month. There are a couple of reasons for this. The first being that I've been writing a lot for 411mania.com. Look for my Walking Dead reviews and contributions to Fact or Fiction and Top 5 over there. The other (and more important reason for this column sake) is my new found addiction to Doctor Who. Thanks to the wonderfulness that is Netflix, I've been able to totally immerse myself (and my family) in everything Doctor. Fuck, I love this show. Now, to be fully open, Which I know is something you come here for. I have only watched the new series of The Doctor, or Nu-Who as some of you other fans like to call it. So this top 10 (as designated in the title) is strictly regarding the new run of Doctor Who. That should cover all my bases...so without further adieu, let's dive head first into the DreadWorld Top Ten Episodes OF New Doctor Who!
#10:Vincent and The Doctor
My biggest issue with Matt Smith as the Doctor isn't really with Smith, but with the scripts he gets. Steven Moffat tends to lean on time lines and time travel as a crutch. Luckily when Smiths Doctor travels back in time, there is less opportunity for the script to get "all timey wimey." Case in point : "Vincent and The Doctor." A truly wonderful script where the 11th Doctor and Amy Pond go back in time and meet a very troubled Vincent Van Gogh. Smith is actually reserved here (I know I'm as surprised as you are). but it's really a companion story. Amy Pond takes a lot of shit for being hot, and she certainly is, but out of any of the nu-Who companions she is easily the most female. Where as Rose was the wide eyed teenager, Martha was the tough one, Donna was the scatterbrain, and Clara...well Clara is something different all together, Amy was the most...um...girlie. She liked girl things. She was definitely the most artsy based of all The Doctors companions. It's hard to see Rose or Martha being as excited to meet Vincent Van Gogh as Amy is. An outstanding story with a heartbreaking ending, the best "historical" episode of the Moffat era.
#9: The End Of Time Parts 1 & 2
Yes I am treating "to be continued episodes" as one entry. Get used to it. It's going to happen again. This is the first David Tennant episode(s) on the list but it certainly won't be the last. He is my favorite Nu-Doctor, so expect to see more of him. This episode, Tennant swan song s the tenth Doctor, is just so well done and wraps up everything for this group of characters in a neat little bow. It felt like the end of Nu-Who part one in it's entirety. The Doctors regeneration certainly felt like it had more gravitas than the 9th into the 10th did. Maybe that had something to do with Eccletsons quick exit, but I think it had more to do with the heaviness that Tennant brought to the character over the years. A tragic ending if there ever was one, emphasizing that above anything else The Doctor was a lonely man, destined to continue his adventures long after those whom he loved and cared about have passed on. Case in point : 5 minutes before the end of the episode, The Doctor is surrounded by all his friends, his companions, then suddenly - he's alone, by himself.
#8: The Doctors Wife
Written by author extraordinaire Neil Gaiman (Coraline) 'The Doctors Wife' gets to the bottom of one of the (many) great questions int the Whoniverse - Just what is the relationship between The Doctor and his TARDIS? Lured to an asteroid outside the known universe that siphons Time Lords energy by the mysterious "HOUSE," the TARDIS takes human form, allowing The Doctor to express his true feelings for her. Smith really shows that he can be a tremendous dramatic actor when the scripts call for it (which, unfortunately they do not). His desperation to save his first love, and yes, he does love the TARDIS, is palpable. A great episode that reenforced the fact that companions may come and go, but the TARDIS...the TARDIS is forever. At least in The Doctors eyes.
#7: Human Nature/Family Of Blood
The Martha Jones run of shows is a bit weird. On one hand Martha had a hand in some of The Doctors most memorable moments. Hell, she saved him certain death at the hands of The Master. But she also followed Rose Tyler (ahhh Rose Tyler), one of The Doctors most memorable companions - new Doctor or Old. So it's a bit hard to quantify her importance in a certain sense. This episode though, where The Doctor uses the Chameleon Arch to turn himself human, really gives her a chance to shine. Running from the Family of Blood, The Doctor (David Tennant) uses The Chameleon Arch to erase all his memories as The Doctor. It's up to Martha to decipher The Doctors clues and restore him to his former glory. Freema Agyeman is outstanding while carrying the episode. As a guest star it's eay to see how Harry Lloyd went from this role to Viserys Targarian. Another great #10 episode - this tme with a happy ending. Good actually wins.
I am a huge fan of 'The Twilight Zone' and someday I may even be able to do a similar Top 10 list. But every time I get to end of the run, all I want to do id start it again. This episode of Doctor Who is the closest thing I have seen to the original 'Twilight Zone' since it's hey day. A companion light episode, Donna Nobel spends her day at the spa while The Doctor travels to the diamond mines of the planet Midnight. The transport to the mines is forced to take a detour. It gets stuck via nefarious means. it's up to The Doctor to figure out where or who is the nefarious alien. Everyone is a suspect - even himself. Need proof that David Tennant is the man? Look no further than this wonderful episode. This episode showed once again that it's not about awesome special effects and blowing shit up. It's about a well written story and tremendous performances.
#5: Fathers Day
There is a certain segment of folks out there that are saying "thank fucking god! Some Eccletson. It's about time." Well rest assured this is the first but not the last time we will have an appearance by the ninth doctor. 'Fathers Day' is the 8th Episode of the re-launch of Doctor Who. Up until this point we had met Rose Tyler, her mother Jackie and her boyfriend Mickey. Yet, nothing had been mentioned regarding her father. Here we learn that her father had died whist Rose was but a new born and that she never really new him. When The Doctor asks Rose where she would like to go, she tells hm she wants to see her dad. Taken to the moment of his death, Rose watches him die (he's hit by a car). She regrets not being with him when she passes and makes The Doctor bring her back to his death a second time. This time, instead of watching him die, she saves his life. Which would be good but, saving her father has caused a rip in the space time continuum. Moffat would have "timey wimey-ed" his way out of it. But we are knee deep in the Russell Davies era here, so actions have consequences. It's the first episode of the new series that The Doctor, still torn from the Time Wars, does something strictly for someone else. And it almost destroys existence. It's an odd story because The Doctor, despite being very giving to Rose, is rather ineffectual to the rest of the cast. He is willing to walk away at the end, leaving humanity to it's fate. He knows the solution but leaves it Roses father to figure it out.
#4: The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances
"Are you my Mummy?" Back to Eccletsons 9th doctor and his shining moment. This episode has has everything that makes Eccletsons run great. It's the story that introduced the world to John Barrowmans Captain Jack Harkness. The Doctor and Rose find themselves in 1941 London at the height of the German blitz. But the terror doesn't come from above, it comes from the army of (seemingly) gas masked people slowly overtaking the streets of London. The evolution of The Doctor continues as he begins to show more and more human emotion. Here, he gets obviously jealous of the burgeoning relationship between Rose and Jack - hence him trying to prove to Rose he can dance. Wonderfully cinematic in its feel. It's by far the most epic of all the Russell T. Davies era.
#3: The Name Of The Doctor
From the most epic Russell T. Davies story to the most epic story of the Steven Moffat era. The series Seven finale is by far the most ambitions of the Moffat era - a story spanning literally decades that finally answers the longstanding question regarding the identity of Clara, while at the same time asking new questions regarding The Doctors origins and motivations. I often criticize the Moffat era as being too thin and throwing continuity to the wind. It uses time travel as a crutch way too often, but when focused, like in this episode, the show has never been better. Warned over and over again that he is not to go to Trenzalore, The Doctor is forced to the planet by The Great Intelligence. Once there, we learn that Trenzalore is The Doctors burial site. Being a Time Lord, he doesn't exactly have a grave per say. The Great Intelligence leaps into The Doctors time stream slowly eliminating The Doctor from history. Clara finally figuring out who she is - The Doctors eternal protector - leaps in after - herself being split into infinite pieces. Each piece attaching itself to The Doctor throughout his time stream. The Doctor realizes that Claras sacrifice will mean losing her forever. He enters his own time stream (a big no no) to try and save Clara. While there they run into an alternate Doctor (John Hurt) who is responsible for such an unspeakable act that the eleventh doctor has nothing but rebuke for his other self. Throw in great stuff from River Song, Madame Vastra and Strax and it all adds up to the best episode of the Moffatt/Smith era.
#2: The Girl In The Fireplace
I don't even really know where to begin, there is so much wonderful stuff going on during this story. You have a new, unique, villain. The dichotomy of 1720's France and a cargo ship thousands of years in the future. And then there's the chemistry...at no other time in Nu-Who's run has a Doctor had a s much chemistry with a guest star as here. Now to be fair David Tennant was dating Sophie Myles at the time, but we've seen people in relationships work together with disastrous results. Myles is The Madame Du Pompadour, or more simple Reinette, an actual figure from early 18th century France. The real life Madame was years ahead of her time in her attitudes, her intelligence and her beauty. When The Doctor, Rose and Mickey, land inside a freighter drifting in space, everything seems rather ho hum until The Doctor discovers a fireplace straight out of the 18th century. Said fireplace is not just decorative, it also acts as a time window to Reinettes bedroom. The android creators of the time window, The Clockwork Droids, have been using it to spy on Reinettes life, waiting for her to be "finished." The Doctor appears at various pints of her life, with minutes passing on the ship side of the window equaling years passing for Reinette, to protect her from the androids. The Rose/Mickey sub plot is rather weak - the only thing keeping this from number one. Tennant is at his "sad Doctor" greatest here. Probably the greatest example of the Russel T. Davies years of the overall "lonely Doctor" story arc.
I'm not sure what it says about the re-boot of Doctor Who that the best episode of the new series is one that is considered a "Doctor-Lite" episode. Probably nothing, but I would be remiss if I didn't point out that David Tennant has about 4 minutes of screen time here. Instead of The good Doctor whirling around space and time, we get yet another 'Twilight Zone' influenced episode that stars Oscar nominated actress Carey Mulligan as Sally Sparrow, intrepid photographer who stumbles upon the mystery of the Nu-Whos greatest enemy - The Weeping Angels after breaking into an abandoned house. The Angels survive by the energy created by zapping people back through time. The key to defending yourself against the Angels is that they cant move or touch you if you are looking at them. Which works fine if there is just one of them, but how do you keep your eye on two at once? So, as The Doctor warns: "Blink and you're dead. Don't turn your back. Don't look away. And DON'T. BLINK. Good luck." We would see The Angles reappear a number of times thought the Moffatt era, but they would never be as scary and off putting as they are here.
So that's it...my Top 10 episodes of the new era of Doctor Who. What do you think? Thought's? Suggestions? Anything I royally fucked up? Let me know and as always...
Thanks for Reading and "Enjoy Every Sandwich..."
Well, it's Halloween time and you know what that means...time for another 'Paranormal Activity' film. But wait! It's 2013 and there will be no new 'Paranormal Activity' film this year. So in a new films absence we at the DW went back and took a second look at the last entry in the series : 'Paranormal Activity 4.'
Here's a quick recap of the series if you've been hiding under a rock: The first 'Paranormal Activity' film, written and directed by Oren Peli, was a surprise hit. Remembered almost more for it's keen marketing than it's content, the film was nonetheless an effectively scary haunted house film for the new millennium, 'PA' kicked open the doors on the "found footage" film craze. Extremely profitable, a sequel was inevitable. One year later, 'Paranormal Activity 2' dropped into theaters. It followed pretty much the same formula as the first - except it sucked. The less said the better. Still profitable, the series pushed forward with a third installment. This time the franchises reigns were given to Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman. The duo had made waves the year before with their fake documentary hit 'Catfish' (yes it's fake - deal with it). Serving as a prequel to the first film, 'Paranormal Activity 3' was a big step up from the second film. Making even more money than the first film, it's success guaranteed a forth film. With Joost and Schulman back at the controls, the odds of a second straight successful sequel were pretty damn good.
We pick up very quickly with Kristi and and her baby, Hunter. Katie shows up and kidnaps little Hunter. Fast forward five years later to Hendersonville Nevada for some reason. There is a youth soccer situation going on (I'm sure they will all get medal, so who cares who wins). Little Wyatt is pretty terrible, but...medal. At home Wyatt has an older (but still jailbait) sister, Alex. Alex has a boyfriend, Ben - who is some sort of computer magician. There is also a very strange boy, Robbie, who likes to hang out in their playhouse. Unbeknownst to the family (there is a mom and dad, but they aren't really given anything to do), Katie is parading around as Robbies mom. That is until she's hauled away by the authorities for some reason. Robbie moves in across the street - and creepy things start happening.
Or rather, creepy things are supposed to start happening. Here's the main problem with 'Paranormal Activity 4' - it's boring as fuck. It focuses on the kids, namely Alex and Ben as they try to figure out who Robbie is so creepy and why Wyatt seems to like talking to the TV. There is supposed to be a surprise as to Wyatts identity, but it's not really a surprise - nor is it really treated as some sort of big reveal. It just kind of happens. And that's the best way to describe the film - it just kind of happens.
'Paranormal Activity 3' did a lot to fill in some of the blanks missing in the first two films of the series. Part 4 does none of that. It tries to talk about some sort of symbolism, but the symbols and the coven (established in part 3) are merely and afterthought, throw away lines, like someone said "Shit. I guess we should mention that stuff." Here none of the actual mythology of the series is advanced. It's a film that really just takes place in stasis as a point in time. Nothing new, nothing risked, everything lost.
The performances are fine. When you are dealing with a (mostly) child or adolescent cast you can't expect the world. The people here aren't bad, they are certainly not 'Let Me In' good, but they are not bad. Kathie Featherston shows up at the beginning and the end doing her zombie walk thing. Does any one out there know if we've decided if she's hot or not? She's certainly cute. But hot? She's the girl at the party that sort of catches your eye and you should probably be talking to, but instead you make for the impossible to get chick who you know you have no chance with. While you are wasting your time, your buddy has sidled up to Katie and claimed her as his own. How much further can I digress? Not much as it turns out...
'Paranormal Activity 4' is available on DVD, Blu-Ray, NetFilx and I assume other streaming video services (the one's I don't have). Watch it if you are a completest. If not skip it and watch something good.
** stars out of *****
As always : Thanks for reading and "Enjoy every sandwich."
When two and a half hot sisters (one is a half sister, not like half a person - only a torso or something, they share the same dad), steal a shitload of coke, or heroine, or meth,...it's something white they are forced to hole up in their families abandoned house and wait for their fence. Fence in terms of drug buyer, not the thing that keeps dogs in, or Jehovahs Witnesses out. Ah, who am I kidding - nothing keeps Jehovahs Witnesses out. The house gives them more than they bargain for when it turns out to still be inhabited by the spirits of their dead mother and father - and those two are pissed at each other.
'House Of Bad' is just that - pretty damn bad. I respect any film maker, actor or actress (are they still called actresses? Can someone get me that memo) for having the balls and the ability to actually get things made. Please don;t misunderstand me, but this film is simply a mess.
Teig, the butch one, Sirih the stripper and Lily the drug addict, manage to somehow steal a briefcase full of drugs from a guy named Tommy Lee (no joke - and it's not that Tommy Lee either). Teig is the ring leader and brains behind the operation despite being a candidate for the short bus. They steal the drugs and are forced to wait two weeks in this abandoned house until their fence arrives. Then she includes a current drug user (Lily) in on the scheme. Hmmm...we're holding a briefcase full of drugs. Let's put it right next to the sister still coming down from her last high. What could go wrong? Everything. Oh and lets not lock the briefcase giving her easy access. Why couldn't they wait to steal the drugs - Tommy Lee (sigh) had plenty more as we learn later. There really was no rush. And why include the drug addict half sister, especially since the other two sister clearly don;t like her in the first place. No justifiable reason is given for including her.
After a few days in the house the fathers spirit begins to posses Teig. Which makes sense. They were close. He was hard on her, but they had a connection. Then in a move that defies all common logic, Lily gets possessed by the mother of the other two girls. Why? They have no connection - except that the mother was pissed when the father told her about his child out of wedlock. Which ultimately led to him letting her die during child birth. This is okay - except you have a perfectly acceptable substitute for this logical reach. The other damn sister. It's not rocket science.
Lets do a mini Flipping The Script here. Instead of having Sirih be tho one who steals the drugs. Make it Lily. She's the one who would bed a drug dealer quicker than Sirih would. They even mention that in the script. Will Lily be able to execute her part of the plan? Or will she fall prey to the drugs? That's called building tension. Lily secures the drugs in a narrow escape. Before rendezvousing at the house, Lily takes one last hit. Once at the house she starts coming down. She starts seeing ghosts. Is she really seeing things or is it just a symptom of the withdrawals. 'Evil Dead 3013' used the is same plot device. It worked wonderfully. Steal it. Use it here. As each parent begins to posses a daughter, Teig her father and Sirih her mother. It's left up to Lily to figure out what is real and what is imagined. Each sister pulling her into their web of deceit in order to destroy the other. The drugs become secondary in the way between two dead parents and their living daughters. See, it's that simple - 10 minutes for me to write that. Plot holes gone. Tension found.
There are many other problems with the film other than it just not really making any sense. Obvious writing cues are missed. For example at the end (or what should be the end of the film - sadly there is another 5 minute after this) ("Spoilers" - Thanks River) Sirih shoots Teig after not being able to do it before. Teig challenges her on this. Sirih shoots her, then delivers a punchline. The problem is - the line needs to be before she pulls the trigger, not after. The shocking moment is her pulling the trigger. After it's done the line is useless. Sorry if this is getting too, I don't know, smart.
I usually use this section to find some good things to say about the film. Let's see...the actress who played Sirih (Sadie Katz) has a hell of a sexy stomach. And boy did director Jim Towns know it. Not one time in the whose film is it actually covered up unless she is under a blanket sleeping. There are at least 4 gratuitous close up shots of her stomach. It's the highlight of the film.
'House Of Bad' is slow, plodding, mess of a film. Like watching a drunken jam band who just doesn't know when the song should end. Look for it on DVD December 3rd. Pick it up if you want to see a great looking stomach and little else.
* star out of *****
Thanks for reading and "enjoy every sandwich."
Ladies and Gentleman, it's that time again. That's right, time for everyone's favorite 35mm horror festival - Hudson Horror Show, the premiere Horror film festival in the Northeast - maybe even the world!
This seasons HHS is chocked full of 35mm horror goodness. Included in this years show are the John Carpenter classics - 'The Thing' and 'Escape From New York.' Also being shown are 'Invasion Of The Bee Girls' and the Christopher Lee classic 'Horror Express!' And just becasue we all love surprises, there is mystery fifth film that will also be shown during the festival!
Check out the awesome trailer:
As in years past, Hudson Horror Fest 8 will take place at the Silver Cinemas South Hills 8 in the Po Po - Poughkeepsie, NY. Doors open at 1. There are going to be a shit load of vendors - so bring some cash and spread the love.
So set aside the whole day - Saturday, November 16th and be prepared to strap in for 12 hours of 35mm goodness. Word of warning - the shows usually sell out so head over to Hudson Horror Tickets and get your tickets IN ADVANCE!