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  • Sitges 2016: “CAGE DIVE” (Film Review)

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    CAGE DIVE kicked off the Midnight X-Treme selection here at Sitges. The world premiere was at 1 a.m., and it led a block of four films that ran until the early hours of morning. By the time you make it to that timeslot, you’ve likely already seen three or four other films that day. The audience might be jet-lagged, hungover, or drunk. I was existing somewhere between a few of those options, with no idea what to expect (I could assume a cage and possibly some diving), on my way to see CAGE DIVE.

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  • Blu-ray Review Round-Up: Vestron Video, “THE SHALLOWS”, More…

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    Now that October is around the corner, horrorheads are preparing to stock up on macabre movies and get into the Halloween spirit. With an impressive line-up of cult classics and new releases now hitting shelves nationwide, FANGORIA has rounded up the latest releases so that devoted fright fans can better decide which horror offerings are best suited for their home media collection…

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  • “PHANTASM: RAVAGER” (Film Review)

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    The PHANTASM series has always been one of wonder. Based within dreams and the question of what happens when we die, Don Coscarelli created a series which never fully relied on being linear in its storytelling, but focused more on an otherworldly, dream-like tone that might have left some viewers wondering what had just happened to them. Yet for the majority of horror fans (including this writer), the PHANTASM films leave you smiling ear to ear at the innovative and special brand of filmmaking on display. Now with PHANTASM: RAVAGER, the fifth and supposedly final entry into the series, the story created back in 1979 with the first PHANTASM film is officially wrapped up and boy oh boy is it a bookend that will give “Phans” of the series happiness, horror and a bittersweet goodbye to the world and characters they have loved for years.

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  • “ASH VS. EVIL DEAD: Season 2, Episodes 1 & 2” (TV Review)

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    For EVIL DEAD fans, the first season of ASH VS. EVIL DEAD reintroduced the original franchise’s canon in a way that felt organic yet modernized. While the ARMY OF DARKNESS iteration of Ashley J. Williams was given a 21st Century polish, revitalized with one-liners and a “dismember first, ask questions later” attitude, the series itself brought more to the table: more characters, more mythology, and much, much more violence. But if anything could be said about the first season, it’s that- despite a killer pilot- the series didn’t quite find it’s footing until it pointed us back to the EVIL DEAD cabin. However, if one were to argue that the CGI-heavy gore and fan service of the first season did ASH VS. EVIL DEAD a disservice, season two has definitely recognized and corrected its weaknesses, offering a noticeably more confident attitude and some outright insane moments you’ll have to see to believe.

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  • Fantastic Fest 2016: “RAW” (Film Review)

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    As a genre fan, you may have noticed a bit of a trend, recently. Each year, between all the midnight programming and genre festivals, the horror audience has tended to latch onto one film, championing it not just as the best of the year, but the best movie “since.” THE BABADOOK, IT FOLLOWS, THE WITCH, movies you hear about from everyone you know, everywhere you look. Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc, rave about how such-and-such is this year’s surprise runaway hit that you can’t afford to miss. This writer can only hope that RAW becomes one such film, over the next year.

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  • Fantastic Fest 2016: “HEADSHOT” (Film Review)

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    HEADSHOT starts with a bang– several, actually, as vicious gangster Lee stages a bloody prison break. Dozens of prison guards and prisoners alike are mowed down in a shootout, bones are broken, and copious amounts of blood are spilled. This all before the title ever hits the screen. It only gets better from there. The latest martial arts masterpiece out of a country that appears increasingly adept at creating them, HEADSHOT comes to us by way of Indonesian directors (and Fangoria favorites) Kimo Stamboel and Timo Tjahjanto, better known as The Mo Brothers.

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  • Fantastic Fest 2016: “THE VOID” (Film Review)

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    Going into Fantastic Fest 2016, THE VOID was easily my most anticipated premiere of the festival. I’ve been a long-time fan of co-writers/directors Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski from their work with filmmaking collective Astron-6. FATHER’S DAY and MANBORG are among this writer’s favorite films in recent memory. I pull up the LAZER GHOSTS 2 and BIO-COP shorts in an attempt to indoctrinate newcomers on a regular basis. So a chance to see what some of these talents could bring to the realm of sincere horror films was immediately appealing to me. I contributed to the Indiegogo campaign; I’ve got the t-shirt, the poster, etc. All this to say: I walked into the premiere with lofty expectations.

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  • “THE REMAINS” (Film Review)

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    THE REMAINS is a ghost movie gloriously rich with gothic atmosphere. It’s setting is immaculate, featuring a haunted house that rivals the aesthetics of top budget Hollywood blockbusters. The dark, patchily lit Victorian home which protagonist John and his family moves into is the perfect home for its hostile, ghostly inhabitants. The way the ghosts glide in and out of shadows, skating through patches of light in the hallways, inspires something like reverence from an imagistic standpoint. The ghosts sprout into the frames with impeccable timing, appearing out of badly lit corners to genuinely startle. The portraying of restless, refreshingly creepy ghosts is brought back with flair in this film.

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  • Blu-ray Review Round-Up: “DEAD END DRIVE-IN”, “IT”, More…

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    Now that their Summer is coming to a close, boutique horror labels are breaking out the big guns to bring Halloween early to Blu-ray collectors. With an impressive line-up of cult classics from distributors such as Arrow Video, Scream Factory, and more , FANGORIA has rounded up the latest releases so that devoted fright fans can better decide which horror offerings are best suited for their home media collection…

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  • “TRAIN TO BUSAN” (Film Review)

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    As an American relegated to only briefly glimpse into the wide world of Korean Cinema, it’s been rewarding to see a cinematic culture redefine subgenres that Hollywood could only dream of doing. Whether it’s the serial killer thriller with I SAW THE DEVIL, the creature feature with THE HOST, or, in this instance, the zombie film with TRAIN TO BUSAN, Korean filmmakers have been able to subvert expectations and create truly emotional, multidimensional stories that effectively mix drama, humor, action, and horror. And in the case for TRAIN TO BUSAN, all those elements naturally compliment one another while presenting spectacle and adult-oriented blockbuster entertainment that captivates the audience from start to finish. In fact, Yeon Sang-ho’s TRAIN TO BUSAN so effectively crafts a heartfelt story and pulse-pounding set pieces that one may almost forget that the film is an unabashedly proud horror title.

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  • “BLAIR WITCH” (Film Review)

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    When reviewing a film, there’s much to be taken into account, but at the end of the day, a critic’s job is to review the film and only the film. Sure, one could spend their whole day discussing the various impacts of the film’s marketing, the early hype, the legacy of films that came before it, or even what the film signifies in the bigger picture of modern cinema. But for a critic, a review should focus on their personal experience to the film in question, without any outside elements weighing upon their expectations. In lesser terms, you’re not reviewing what the film should be, but rather what the film is. And in the case of Adam Wingard’s BLAIR WITCH, the film is a perfectly fine horror offering whose pedestrian nature is actually hindered by the occasional stroke of brilliance that the filmmaker and his frequent collaborator Simon Barrett bring to the table.

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  • “FLYTRAP” (Film Review)

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    It’s the surreal acting that generates intrigue as FLYTRAP’s plot unfolds. Austrian actress Ina-Alice Kopp is beyond convincing as an alien pretending to be an attractive human woman. Her stellar performance is much warranted, as this hostage story is largely dependent on the developing relationship between the captive and the capturer. As for the captive, Jeremy Crutchley’s dryly humorous British professor is an entertaining character to be trapped in a Los Angeles suburban house with for one hour and twenty minutes.

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