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    “ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW” trailer eerily exploits unauthorized Disney locale

    “Bad things happen everywhere,” so says a character in Randy Moore’s acclaimed, controversial ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW. Everywhere extends to the so-called Happiest Place on Earth where the manufactured magic of Disneyland—complete with iconic characters and rides—and the family-friendly company’s recognizable title cards are utilized to frame a surreal, horrifying trip in the first trailer for the film.

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    “UNDER THE SKIN” (TIFF Movie Review)

    There is a scene in director Jonathan Glazer’s unsettling and unusual masterpiece BIRTH where his camera hugs actress Nicole Kidman’s face as tightly as possible. In that sequence, we study Kidman’s porcelain visage as she watches an opera. Not one word of dialogue distracts us from her eyes, her lips, her skin. The character is clearly processing an idea—that a mysterious child may be the reincarnation of her dead husband—and that idea slowly evolves into an epiphany resulting in a single tear streaming from her rapidly reddening eye. It is without a doubt the single most alarming example of an actor’s “inner voice” in effect this critic has ever seen, and a majestic moment of “pure cinema,” uncompromising in its ambiguity and reliance on sound and image to make magic.

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    “THE HALLOWEEN LEGION: THE GREAT GOBLIN INVASION” (Comic Review)

    There’s something strange happening in the little town of Woodland. Of course, this is one of those towns where something strange always happens, a spooky crossroad for all things that bump in the night. Such is the setting of THE HALLOWEEN LEGION, an all-ages story about a haunted circus, an unlucky city, and a Halloween-themed collection of heroes each imbued with unique powers. Don’t let the young reader tag fool you; with its clever writing and characters, the work is appealing for the weird kid in everyone, from new readers to experienced horror fans. THE HALLOWEEN LEGION: THE GREAT GOBLIN INVASION (now available from Dark Horse Comics) continues where the novella left off, this time pinning our heroes against invaders from space.

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    “A FIELD IN ENGLAND” (TIFF Movie Review)

    With only a handful of movies, writer/director Ben Wheatley has already established himself as one of the finest filmmakers of his generation. Always toeing genre lines, his greatest achievement thus far was probably KILL LIST, a viscous hit man movie transformed into occult horror with one of the most disturbing finale twists since his obvious influence THE WICKER MAN. The genre journalists all immediately demanded that he dabble in horror again and now he kind of has with the twisted art house hallucinogen he calls A FIELD IN ENGLAND. Like KILL LIST, the movie is not pure horror, but it does boast some of the most disturbing images destined to flicker across screens this year.

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    “DEATH FORCE / VAMPIRE HOOKERS” (DVD Review)

    It isn’t every day that fans of both heads-on-stakes and stakes-in-hearts are able to indulge in one stop shopping, but this double feature of films from the “King of Filipino Exploitation” Ciro H. Santiago (courtesy Vinegar Syndrome’s endlessly awesome Drive-In Collections) provides precisely such a buying opportunity.

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    “SAVAGES CROSSING” (DVD Review)

    When WOLF CREEK came out back in 2005, it proved to be one of the most riveting and raw horror films in a long time. The main attraction that tied it all together was the central villainous performance by then-unknown actor John Jarratt. The promise of another horror film starring Jarratt, set in his native Australia, gave rise to great hopes and anticipation—which, unfortunately, are quickly shattered by SAVAGES CROSSING.

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