Friday, 30 January 2015

Review: Lady of the Dark: Genesis of the Serpent Vampire (2011) (January 2015)

Melanie Denholme plays the titular character - a married woman descenting into hell and vampire-ism with bloody results. She is selected for the host to give birth to an evil force transforming her into Lady of the Dark: Genesis of the Serpent Vampire (2011).

Mel is beautiful and comes into her own as the Scream Queen type. Her roles are usually girl next door and was previously a model from Wales. The story isn't anything too complex, but dark and gothic where it can find an audience.

It might have been nice to see more happen later on in the film, however this is low budget and a male audience might appreciate the beauty of Denholme in bloody and naked situations as well as horror fans. The film's run-time is less than 80 minutes as the dvd info believes us to believe, all though that could include the interview with Denholme and a music video in total.

Mel Denholme, seductive and sexy in covered in blood!!

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

On Location: Dark Vale - Behind the Scenes (January 2015)

Dark Vale (2015) is the latest low budget (in Hollywood terms) feature from film-maker Jay Brown of Mansfield, Woodhouse - Nottingham. On the 19th of January, 2015 - I was lucky enjoy to film some behind the scenes footage of the film and meet the films' cast and small crew. The film stars Sadie Kime (A Date With Ghosts [2015]) and Darren Randall as two lovers pursued by a jealous ghost from the past called "Lady Lucy" (played by Chloe Clarke). Please check out the behind the scenes photos and images - taken by Martin Farmilo - who turns up in the film telling the back ghost-story of this supernatural horror.

Filming is due to wrap in April/Spring and a distribution needs to be set for this horror feature. It was fun seeing behind the scenes of DV and meeting the cast and small crew. A lot of imagination has gone into the scenes and script writing has gone to plan since Jay started in mid 2014. I really hope this film does as well as his first feature: A Date with Ghosts (2015) - Please, order your copy from Amazon.

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Review: The Toxic Avenger - Part 2 (1989) (January 2015)

The Toxic Avenger - Part 2 (1989)
The Toxic Avenger's bizarre adventures continue in The Toxic Avenger - Part II (1989). This time, our hero has fallen into a deep depression of not knowing his father, so he travels to Tokyo, Japan to find him! Meanwhile, back in Tromaville - an evil corporation threatens peace in the once cime-filled city! Cue the chaos and plenty of monster/fight action!

After a bit of a wait, TA2 comes along and changes up the actors, but director Lloyd Kaufman returns from the over-the-top original with Michael Herz. Toxie's girlfriend (now played by Phoebe Legere) - all though a new actress - plays a bigger role in the first 30 minutes setting up the story for our to cross seas to find his father which ends up being a twist itself! Lisa Gaye comes into the series as an evil corporate worker hell-bent on taking over Tromaville! Plenty of gore and nudity ensues in this sequel which isn't as fast-paced as the first, but there are some laughs and slapstick action sequences. Don't worry, there is a happy ending, again which opens up for a sequel! The music kicks-ass, too!

88 Films re-released this classic in the UK on dvd and Blu-Ray in late 2014, more sequels to follow from the cult home-dvd label. Runtime: 109 mins. For a look at the first film, see HERE.

British B-Invasion of Scream Queens (January 2015)

Actress, Jessica Messenger - New rise of UK Scream Queen?
The UK has seen it's rise of feminine beauties on the indie film scene in horror. What once was british in old Hammer Horror films before the glamorous Scream Queens of Hollywood Cinema with the likes of Linnea Quigley (Return of the Living Dead [1985]), Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween [1978]) sees the low budget UK scene here and in the USA with a new rise of lady lung-screamers! It's just really nice to look at actresses and models like Jessica Ann Bonner (Christmas Slay), Dani Thompson (Serial Kaller [2015]) and others like Jessica Messenger (Wasteland [2015]) and Melanie Denholme (One Hour To Die [2011])! Modern feminism in the indie movie scene has never looked better!

Some of these beauties like to write and producer, too (Dani Thompson and Jessica Ann Bonner) with films like the upcoming Bad Moon Rising (???) - also starring Angela Holmes.

Other talent includes Emma Dark who is co-directing and starring in dark vampire action/horror, Seize the Night! The Horror Channel's very own Emily Booth is doing a festival short called Selkie (???) about the a fairy tale mermaid with a horror twist. Another classic you should definitely check out from the 90's is Razor Blade Smile (1998) starring Eileen Daly - a film that influenced the upcoming Seize the Night! Also, look out for model/actress Kookie Katana from Newcastle upon Tyne - of Zombie Women of Satan 2 (2015) fame.

Horror seems to be a step so many walk into and Mel Denholme went from sweet model into films like Lady of the Dark: Genesis of the Serpent Vampire (2011) - which includes gore and nudity! An interesting film indeed as I know she went on to do A Killer Conversation (2015) - see, HERE - and worked behind the scenes on production, too. Another classic is Pervirella (1997) - starring miss Booth again who starred during her university days - it's a campy cult classic! She also starred in Evil Aliens (2005) and Doghouse (2009) with Danny Dyer.

L-R: Jessica Ann, Dani Thompson, Mel Denholme & Jessica Messenger - Bloody Beauties!

You know I like my Scream Queens and have interviewed a few amount including classic scream queen, Debra Lamb - see, HERE. So, watch out guys, these ladies are in control! Blood and babes is their little game! What ever happened to the girl next door?

Other mentions I should point out in the Scream Queen field, yet across the seas are Mel Heflin - see, HERE. Her roles in films have been limited, but remains a huge horror fan. I admire Devanny Pinn also as a self-proclaimed Horror Barbie with a dark edge with a great deal of horror movies underneath her sexy garter belt. These women seem to follow in the footsteps of the Soska Sisters (American Mary [2012]) from the USA, too. Another BIG horror fan and macabre photo model is Michelle Macabre - another internet model from the states. Diane Foster of The Orphan Killer (2011) has another loyal following and has the #TOKfamily behind her, too on Twitter and cyberspace.

However, sometimes the USA meets the UK in films like Axe to the Grind (2015) starring Thompson and Troma-Legend, Debbie Rochan amongst others, too. Also, the classic scream queen never seems far behind either, returning to the UK, there is Caroline Murno (Dracula A.D. 1972 [1972]) who still works at sci-fi fan conventions and in the Indie Horror industry in films such as Cute Little Buggers (2015). Please watch out for these films and ladies coming soon on to dvd and support the projects coming to a blood-splattered screen near you, soon.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Review: Day of the Dead (1985) (January 2015)

Day of the Dead (1985)... "The dead have their day!"
Day of the Dead (1985) was the third installment in George A Romero's original "Dead" trilogy. Set in Florida, the living dead have over run the living again whilst army generals and survivors seek refuge in an underground, eerie bunker trying to figure out a way for survival.

This is the darkest and goriest zombie entry so far from Romero. The story is simple - humans vs humans vs zombies and science is trying to find a way! The characters are quite memorable with the likes of Captain Rhodes - Joesph Pilato, Bub (the friendly trained zombie) - Sherman Howard, Sarah and Doctor Frankenstein all at each others throats - literally. Tom Savini's gore effects are are very gruesome and graphic, but it's a lot of ghoulish fun! Originally-intended to be a much longer film until budget restraints became an issue, Romero delivers his last zombie film until Land of the Dead (2005) - twenty years later.

Day of the Dead was loosely remade by Steve Miner in Day of the Dead (2008). It has been released and re-released onto dvd and now blu-ray, thanks to Arrow Films.

Monday, 5 January 2015

Review: Dawn of the Dead (1978) (January 2015)

Dawn of the Dead (1978) - a colourful splatter-fest!!
Following the black & white zombie-horror classic, Night of the Living Dead (1968) (see, HERE) came George A. Romero's epic Dawn of the Dead (1978). The world has been over run by the undead and our survivors consist of swat team members lead by Peter (Ken Foree) and Roger (Scott H. Reiniger). This all takes place in a shopping mall as the safe haven which is crawling with ghouls and zombies! There is a pregnant survivor and her boyfriend Fly Boy (David Emge) who all must pull together through-out the film and tragic events! The mall is being eyed up by bikers - the real threat - lead by special effects artist Tom Savini. One of the most famous zombies in Dawn is played by Mike Christopher.

It's interesting to note that an alternative ending was shot with a bleak ending, yet it was changed for it's release. This film was released in an even more epic director's cut on dvd. Dawn is a very good sequel in any form and it was my dad that got me into such a film and it's ghoulish trail which dominated the late 70's into the 80's on VHS during the video nasty era. The same mall used in the film is still standing, yet slightly different and update these days - a popular tourist attraction for film buffs!

Romero's first sequel is colourful and comic book like having been influenced by comics in his childhood - see Creepshow (1982). The blood is bright - the zombies are blue/grey! It is still scary and the music by the progressive rock band Goblin really sets the pacing of this splatter-fest from the 70's! What would follow would be films like Zombie Flesh Eaters (1979) from Italy (Lucio Fulci) - for whom Romero wrote the Dawn script along side Italian horror director, Dario Argento. Many spin-offs would come and even in modern times, Dawn of the Dead (2004) would manifest in Hollywood from Universal Studios. A sequel would follow in the very dark, yet gory Day of the Dead (1985).

Review: Night of the Living Dead (1968) (January 2015)

Night of the Living Dead (1968)... "They won't stay dead!"
"They're coming to get you, Barbara!" torments the ill-fated Johnny to his sister in the graveyard they are visiting one evening!  Night of the Living Dead (1968) starts as it pretty much means to go on, Johnny and Barbara are attacked by lead zombie Bill Hinzman where the brother is left for dead and the sister runs for cover in a nearby farmhouse. There, she encounters dead corpses on the stair landing before trying to leg it before meeting our hero, Ben (a leading black actor). From there, making sense of the zombie apocalypse is too much for Barbara who fears that her brother Johnny is still out there! It's up to the survivors to board windows and doors to keep the undead out before discovering that they are not along in the house... only then does survival really start for the human characters in Night of the Living Dead!

The zombie genre of the modern age starts with director George A Romero and crew's nightmarish, black and white classic, NOTLD. It is considered the pinnacle walking dead movie with a cult film series following which continued into 2010 with Survival of the Dead (2009). NOTLD is well known for being in the public domain of the horror genre through mistakes made by the film-makers, hence endless re-releases and spin-offs done in the past and in recent times!

Romero was a university drop out and tv commercial maker before turning to feature films. His cult following in the horror field is legendary and in recent times, he turned his interest and skills to comic book writing in Empire of the Dead from Marvel. I would also recommend that you check out the documentary, Birth of the Living Dead (2013).

With zombies, we kinda take them for granted with shows like The Walking Dead (2010). However, NOTLD was followed by the sequel: Dawn of the Dead (1978) - ten years later - see, HERE! From there on in, the flesh-eating zombie genre really took off on the silver screen.

Review: The Invisible Maniac (1990) (January 2015)

The Invisible Maniac (1990) is one of those late-80's sex/horror comedies. Beautiful women and cheerleaders, an outcast deviant and jocks! Yes, this film is set in high-school and the villain takes place in the form of Noel Peters - a nerdy physics professor with a voyeuristic dark background with a lust for vengeance on the school teenagers. He was a murderer who was once locked away for killing several colleagues and has now escaped with a mysterious serum which helps drive his rage and become the titular character of this campy b-movie movie from Rif Coogan (aka Adam Rifkin)!

This film has reached cult status with it's sexual comedy drive and horror situations. It's fan base is quite popular online with pin-ups such as actress Debra Lamb and the late Shannon Wilsey - who play high school lady victims of Noel Peters. The film is now OOP (out-of-print) and I read that the director has an interest in revisiting the film for a dvd-market release but the copyright holder has The Invisible Maniac in limbo... as far as I know?

The special-effects for this cult classic range from victims getting their clothes getting torn-off but the unseen force, whilst his voice-over is heard in comical form. How did I get to see this film? I saw a dvd-r copy which is from the original VHS, so I feel quite lucky in a way to hold such a cult classic in demand.

The women in this film are gorgeous but the situations seem so un-pc in these days. I know it's only a comedy and fantasy horror, but this film isn't for minors. Warning: Contains Nudity!

Shannon Wilsey makes a good likeable lead as the blonde girl-next-door type we see in these type of movies. It's just a shame that her life was cut short some time after this film. I enjoyed Debra Lamb in her small role - she indeed is a loveable lady herself, too and went on work on the independent horror film scene years later. Your beer-drinking buddies should get a laugh and enjoy this film. I think a lot of modern low-budget indie horrors tend to go for the feel of this cult, campy American production, blending the film genre elements.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

REVIEW: The G-String Horror: Demon Cut (2014) (January 2015)

You can't keep a good/bad demon down! The G-String Horror is back in the Demon Cut (2014). In all fairness, a lot of fans and critics have praised this new edit. I was a fan of the first and this version is amped up! The concept is now that the "ghosts" of the first film have now re-edited the original feature. It's very interesting in that way. Again, the film-makers have a great interest in the supernatural and it probably shows in both versions of G-String Horror. You will find some familiar music used in the series by Kevin Macleod for atmosphere and scares! The sharper sounds sound perfect in surround sound for jump-scares. It's edited, almost art-like with transitional footage and possessed sound effects. Warning: Contains nudity.

The film stars Debra Lamb and Natasha Talonz

Again, if you like Ghost Adventures - the tv show and the macabre, you should still enjoy this independent horror from Charles Webb. For the Original review - click, HERE. Please, order the dvd, HERE.

The G-String Horror (Demon Cut) (2014) - directed by Charles Webb.

Friday, 2 January 2015

A Killer Conversation (2015) (Review) (Januray 2015)

A Killer Conversation: On the same day a burglar wants to kill you and your ex wants to make up... and for the life of it, you can't decide which is worse! It is produced by and stars Welsh Scream Queen and Comedy fan: Melanie Denholme. Directed by David V.G. Davies. Written by Michael Haberfelner. The film stars Ryan Hunter and Rudy Barrow.

AKC is Haberfelner's screen-writing debut - he also runs (re)Search my Trash website. This is a dark comedy, indie-feature. The film starts of fast in story and situations with a house break-in and hostage situation (Barrow and Hunter). With all this drama going-off the ex (Denholme) walks in on Hunter and turns a comedy of errors on it's head! What will Hunter do? Who does he want to be stuck with as he is tied to a chair at gun point?

Tongue in cheek, British, dark humor which takes a serious turn. Denholme takes a break from horror to play a likable comedy girlfriend in a bad situation questioning motives. Ryan Hunter and a masked Rudy Barrow also handle their scenes well in a one room shooting locationMichael Haberfelner does a great job in writing and look forward to his future screen-writing work.

Please, check the website and Pre-order the dvd, here.

(L-R) Rudy Barrow, Ryan Hunter & Melanie Denholme.

IN MEMORY: Carlos Dunn (Indie Film-maker) has Passed Away! (Rest In Peace) (September 2018)

Some sad news to report. The film community in the Indie Field are stunned to learn that Film-maker and Writer , Carlos Dunn has pass...