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    “BLUE RUIN” (Blu-ray Review)

    A universal concept, the revenge film is a rightful staple of cinema that can emotionally connect with audiences of any generation around the world. We’ve all been wronged and as a result, we’ve all pondered the internal and external consequences of vengeance. As cinematic culture has progressed, the revenge tale has evolved into various directions; whereas U.S. cinema has opted for bloodier and spectacle-based revenge fantasies, international filmmakers have opted for bleaker and grim tales of unrewarding comeuppance. In fact, revenge films have become so formulaic that fewer powerhouse filmmakers have approached these stories, relegating the genre to winter dumping season or a quiet straight-to-DVD release.

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    “CITY OF LUST” (Movie Review)

    The indie thriller CITY OF LUST was shot under the title YELLOW; you know, “Giallo” in Italian. Obviously that titular nod should spell out exactly what kind of films were going through writer/director David A. Holcombe’s head when he began sculpting this stylish, sensual and amusing sex-stained psychodrama. A deliberate quote on some of the early 1970s, non-Argento (think more Martino) murder mysteries that overflowed from Italy like a cauldron of spaghetti, CITY OF LUST is bereft of budget but high on energy and imagination, and is absolutely worth a look.

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    “THE STRAIN” (Pilot Review)

    Part fantasy, part medical horror and part vampire odyssey, Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s THE STRAIN was always going to be a complicated adaptation. Considering Hogan and del Toro are both executive producers on the series however, there was a confidence from horror fans that the series would at least be faithful to its source material. And it was. Despite inspired visuals, impressive performances and high ambition, THE STRAIN’s faithfulness and tonal inconsistencies may be the biggest obstacle keeping it from being the next truly great horror show.

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    “THE TWILIGHT ZONE: ESSENTIAL EPISODES” (DVD Review)

    As we’ve articulated many times on this site and in the pages of FANGORIA magazine, we adore THE TWILIGHT ZONE. And really, what right-minded scholar of horror and dark fantasy doesn’t? This writer has often said, with conviction, that Rod Serling’s immortal and groundbreaking television series can be appreciated much like sex from a teenage boy’s point of view: even bad TZ episodes are awesome and welcome TZ episodes.

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    “DEVIL’S KNOT” (DVD Review)

    The case of the West Memphis Three, the trio of Arkansas boys falsely accused and convicted of the murder of three little boys over 20 years ago, has been discussed, debated and chronicled in exhaustive detail in four masterful documentaries. Though free men now (sort of), theirs is a true tragedy and one of the most revolting miscarriages of justice in American history.

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