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  • “BIG GAME” (FANTASTICA Blu-ray Review)

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    This writer isn’t sure about any of the readers out there, but considering the loud and overloaded action fare that seems to come out of Hollywood more often than not, there’s definitely a hole where the fun, high-concept action/adventure film used to be. You all know the ones: the action pictures you’d so often find the names “Renny Harlin”, “John McTiernan”, “Paul Verhoeven” or “Kathryn Bigelow” attached to and would feature eccentric villains and heart-felt heroes with egos as big as the explosions on display. But with the rise of CGI and the dumbing down of the action movie model, these films have seeming gone dormant… that is with the exception of Jalmari Helander’s BIG GAME, a blast from the past through the eyes of an up-and-coming Finnish director.

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  • “THE BOY” (Movie Review)

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    Craig William Macneill’s THE BOY focuses on the exquisite loneliness of a child’s life and a meditation on that child’s development into a murderer. Not a horror film in the most direct sense, the movie is poetic, quiet and methodical, and meditative in tone, almost as still and isolated as the landscape in which it was shot.

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  • “BURYING THE EX” (Blu-ray Review)

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    Out of the many of the proclaimed “Masters of Horror” working today, there’s few who keep their cinematic voices as refreshing and versatile as Joe Dante. While his budgets and resources are a far cry from his subversive studio days, Dante still goes for broke in terms of his projects and subject matter as opposed to slumming it with annoying tailored fan service. There’s no better example of Dante’s evolving voice than BURYING THE EX, a potentially by-the-numbers Rom-Zom-Com that escapes its meager means via Dante’s ambition and willingness to get down and dirty with the subject matter.

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  • “THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS” (Blu-ray Review)

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    There’s no denying that Wes Craven is indeed one of the top directors in the genre, and there are few who are outright more terrifying and gripping that Craven at the top of his game. Yet Craven is known for his peaks as well as his valleys, and from the jump from one point to another, there is a ton of weird, wild stuff on the way. THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS is among Craven’s most bizarre (and heavy-handed) films, and though the film isn’t necessarily a genre classic in any regards, the outrageous places the flick eventually goes has rightfully earned THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS a loyal cult audience.

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  • “THE SLASHENING” (Film Review)

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    In an age where horror spoofs are almost universally derided, there’s a certain amount of gutsy respect afforded to filmmaker Brandon Bassham for going straight into THE SLASHENING as a parody. After all, there’s only so much material in the slasher genre that has yet to be untouched by spoofs or commented upon by self-referential fright flicks. And while this serves true for some parts of THE SLASHENING, which is clearly inspired beyond its means, Bassham thankfully takes a more absurdist approach that provides inherent charm to this lean, mean parody.

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  • “HARBINGER DOWN” (Film Review)

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    For a critic who primarily reviews within the horror genre, giving a completely unbiased review to a project such as HARBINGER DOWN is almost impossible. Given the film’s publicized Kickstarter, promotional materials presenting itself as a “practical effects film” and the heartbreaking saga of Studio ADI’s work on THE THING, HARBINGER DOWN has been a film fright fans have been rooting for since day one. And while any horror fan should be excited when one of the industries top FX masterminds is given free reign to do an old school monster movie, that same sense anticipation can be a double edged sword, and HARBINGER DOWN unfortunately falls into that category.

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  • “WYRMWOOD: ROAD OF THE DEAD” (Blu-ray Review)

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    While the marketing materials may try to sell Kiah Roache-Turner’s WYRMWOOD: ROAD OF THE DEAD as a cross between MAD MAX and DAWN OF THE DEAD, this fantastic independent zombie flick is much closer to something like THE SIGNAL (2007) or DARKMAN. Though WYRMWOOD offerings more than enough blood, violence and turbo-charged insanity to come off as ROAD WARRIOR-esque, the film is also surprisingly emotional while exploring different, more sci-fi oriented avenues than one might expect. But in doing this, WYRMWOOD’s weird streak allows it to stand among the recently saturated zombie film market to be something truly memorable and fun, reminding the audience how far one can stretch a dollar with the right amount of imagination and gore FX.

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  • “NORTHMEN – A VIKING SAGA” (Film Review)

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    When life hands you lemons… start throwing axes at random nameless, faceless baddies.

    Such is the maxim the marooned berserkers of NORTHMEN—A VIKING SAGA seek to honor and invoke fewer than five minutes into this viscera-festooned, manic-in-a-good-way, unabashedly over the top ninth century adventure flick: Think the popular History Channel docudrama series imbued with a little John McTiernan-esque swagger and sheen—not to mention a considerably more laissez-faire approach towards graphic violence—and your expectations will be roughly in the right longship.

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