HORROR RELEASE ROUNDUP OCTOBER 2019

HORROR RELEASE ROUNDUP OCTOBER 2019

We did it, everyone. We made it through another year of most of the world not understanding why we watch horror movies and we are now squarely into the month that is made for them. The leaves are changing, the air is getting crisp and it’s the perfect time to sit back and watch as many of these as we can between now and Halloween because why the hell not? Let’s take a look at the newest entries that are coming our way and will be jockeying for our eyeballs this October.

Horror Release Roundup September 2019

Ahhh, September. Now is the time for studios to push hard to whet everyone’s horror appetites before Halloween. This September presents a strong showing, with blockbusters we all saw coming to surprisingly awesome looking indie flicks.

The Horror Release Roundup is our recurring feature breaking down the screams and scares that are heading your way every month. This time around we have everything (or at least our attempt at everything) coming at you in MONTH of 2019. Enjoy the trailers and our respective thoughts below.

Interested in reading up on previous months? Try checking out our archive.

Prefer hearing words over looking at words? Try checking out our podcast.

Like us enough to throw a buck or two our way? We have a Patreon now!


GAGS THE CLOWN
09/02/2019 - VOD

 
 

An unidentified man in Green Bay, WI has captured worldwide attention for roaming the streets dressed as a clown. Many write it off as a harmless prank, others aren't so sure. When a group of friends cross paths with the clown everyone calls Gags, his true intentions are revealed.

Jack: Hey news reporter woman? Ain’t no in the god damn way that clown could ever be seen as “an attempt to entertain” the citizens. Just nope. I’m pretty interested in the found footage coulrophobia thing, and this looks well put together. This one’s a watch. 

Jake: Interested to see where they go with the clown sighting backdrop and relieved that this movie is small enough that it won’t spark another bout of that shit. Also, this is going to get a few extra watches just because of IT, so good work I guess?

Mark:  I’ll admit that the opening of the trailer had me thinking that this was just going to be another low budget forgettable clown-slasher something or other, but it really turned around in the second half. I am surprised by how excited I am for this movie. If there were a dude in a clown costume with black balloons standing outside my house I would shit a brick.


THE WRATH
09/05/2019 - SHUDDER

 
 

In the household of Lee Gyeong-jin, a high-ranking official of Joseon Kingdom, three sons die from an unidentified horror. A woman pregnant with a child of the third son soon learns of the evil spirit that haunts the house.

Jack: Judging from the visuals alone, this kind of feels more like a J-Horror flick than it does some of the more arty and high-minded stuff Korean horror directors have given us in the past few years. And there’s nothing wrong with that, I love a good J-Horror flick, but it’s kind of interesting.

Jake: It’s pretty hard to tell how this will be without being able to understand any of the dialog, but this is a movie that’s been out for a minute and Shudder is gobbling it up to bring it to our market as an exclusive. I’ve been enjoying their recent entries, and I really like a lot of K-horror, particularly from a directorial perspective, so I’m excited that this could be a good flick. Looking forward to having English subtitles though...

Mark: I don’t speak Korean so I am just going to assume that this is a movie about a house haunted by a ghost that has a thing for knives. It’s actually kind of interesting watching a trailer where there is speech that you can’t understand because you have to pay attention to the other details. What I learned from this experience? This movie does not look particularly interesting from a visual perspective except for that snippet of the room filled with knives.


IT CHAPTER TWO
09/06/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back.

Jack: Yep. On board. Duh. I don’t even care that this is probably going to approaching the three-hour mark. I’m still excited. 

Jake: Everybody’s got clammy hands for this one and the trailers sure make it seem like it’ll be a hell of a ride. Far and away the biggest thing we will get this month, if not this year. 

Mark:  Really though, what more can be added at this point? It Chapter One was absolutely stellar and this one has all that momentum rolling into a hellish second act. Also, have we talked enough about Bill Hader being in this? That was a rhetorical question, no we have not talked enough about it.


SATANIC PANIC
09/06/2019 - VOD

 
 

A pizza delivery girl at the end of her financial rope has to fight for her life - and her tips - when her last order of the night turns out to be high society Satanists in need of a virgin sacrifice.

Jack: This looks hilarious. It’s going to be totally dependent on the performances of the leads to sell it, but it those are there, then this could be truly great. I am a little confused about the inciting incident. Did they not know they ordered pizza? Did she happen to just go to the wrong address? If they didn’t know the pizza was coming, what was their plan to acquire a virgin? Satanists never think things through these days.

Jake: Oh boy, I want this to be as fun and funny as the trailer makes it seem but I have no idea if it will have the legs for a feature-length movie. The trailer ended on the perfect note though, so I’m hoping that somehow says something about the movie too and I have never once been burned by this logic nope nope nope.

Mark: This month is off to a strong start. I have a special place in my heart for horror-comedies because the two genres are seemingly so opposed but share so much common ground. When you find one that works, they really work. Will this one fall into that category? We’ll have to wait until the 6th to find out, but I’m certainly not discouraged by the trailer.


ARTIK
09/10/2019 - VOD

 
 

A comic book obsessed serial killer teaches his son how to get away with a series of brutal murders until the boy befriends a mysterious man who threatens to expose everything.

Jack: Between Arctic and Polar that both came out recently starring Mads Mikkelsen, there is no way I will remember in a few months that this a) was a horror movie and b) did not star Mads Mikkelsen. Does that say nothing about how good this looks and more about how dumb I am? Yes, probably. But I thought it was worth mentioning anyway.

Jake: Interesting name. Assuming it’s related to a comic… Anywhooo, there looks like there’s gonna be some wrasslin’ in this one. Seriously, there’s gonna be some brutal, hand-to-hand violence when that dad and dude with the barcode neck tat get ahold of each other and I am down. 

Mark:  I love me a good stylish serial killer romp and the sultry vocals sure are intriguing. I get a bit of a Devil’s Candy vibe out of this one that I hope it can capitalize on. 


DEPRAVED
09/13/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL

 
 

A disillusioned field surgeon suffering from PTSD makes a man out of body parts and brings him to life in a Brooklyn loft.

Jack: This looks like a cool take on Frankenstein, and despite its obviously low budget looks like it’ll be a good watch. But what about the Frankenstein story is perfectly reflective of our time? Don’t get me wrong, the world is presently a nightmare and there’s plenty to pillory about it, but I’m just not seeing the prescience of Frankenstein’s themes. Again though, probably wrong. Dumb guy.

Jake: This looks like an interesting and entertaining enough flick to have on around this time of year and you add onto the pile that there is a 100% chance for a Fessenden sighting, and there’s basically no way I’m not going to throw this one on.

Mark:  Up to this point in my life I’ve only had exposure to The Fess as an actor and sometimes as a producer. Looking into his background I see he actually also has pretty storied chops as a director and writer as well. Who knew? (That was another rhetorical question, everybody other than me probably already knew.) If nothing else this will at least be a break from the same old storylines, which is a bit ironic since this is an incredibly old story with a modern twist. 


HAUNT
09/13/2019 - VOD

 
 

On Halloween, a group of friends encounter an "extreme" haunted house that promises to feed on their darkest fears. The night turns deadly as they come to the horrifying realization that some nightmares are real.

Jack: Between Hell House LLC and the Houses October Built, the “extreme haunted house is too extreme” genre is already full of some great flicks. This has a lot to live up to. I’m not saying it can’t do it, but I also didn’t necessarily see anything in that trailer that would make me watch this instead of one of those again. 

Jake: Ok, movie - to say “A Quiet Place writers” is horseshit and you know it. It should say “From the writers of A Quiet Place except for the person you give any fucks about”. That has a better ring to it. Also, with Eli Roth involved, it’ll be interesting to see how much of a gore-hound flick this is. 

Mark:  Equal parts Funhouse Massacre and Houses October Built, this movie is right up my alley. You throw in some heavy hitting names and a decent budget and I am all the way on board. Yes, I’ve effectively already seen this movie. But also yes, I will still be watching it and probably throwing it into my stable of “people are killed in a theme park” horror movies that I rotate through on an annual basis.


MARIANNE
09/13/2019 - NETFLIX

 
 

Lured back to her hometown, a famous horror writer discovers that the evil spirit who plagues her dreams is now wreaking havoc in the real world.

Jack: Oh hell yeah. I love these kinds of movies with a supernatural element that lets them tie terrifying vignettes of dread and jump scares together with a vague plot. The best ones have strong thematic overtones that pervade the whole thing, but I don’t even care, because some of these scares look downright great. I just hope they didn’t give all the best scares away in the trailer. Also, I speak French, so that probably helps.

Jake: Given the language barrier, it’ll probably take me awhile to get to something like this, if I do at all. I still haven’t watched Dark and I’ve heard that’s amazing. This looks good, but it probably won’t be me you hear talk about it anytime soon. 

Mark: I would like to start by saying a big “thank you” to Netflix for actually releasing a trailer this time and not just a cryptic title with no other information. As with most Netflix horror content, this looks very promising. Barrier to entry is a little higher than usual due to it being in French, but I’ll still probably get around to it eventually. Just let me watch through Hill House a few more times...


3 FROM HELL
09/16/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

Crazed killers Baby Firefly, Captain Spaulding and Otis Driftwood return to unleash bloody mayhem.

Jack: I guess now some of the triplet imagery from the Devil’s Rejects makes a little more sense. I don’t know that we really needed a third installment in this series, but I do know that the people who loved those first two movies--and there are people who loved those first two--are going to be giddy about this. And hey, if it makes people happy, then who am I to say we didn’t need it?

Jake: My god that trailer was annoying. Shut the fuck up, Sheri Moon Zombie. 

Mark:  I like that they can toss out “A modern masterpiece of horror” but then cite absolutely no one person or media outlet who is attached to that quote. Actually, they don’t even have quotes around it so they’re just labeling it that themselves. It’s a bold move, Rob, let’s see how it plays out.


CANDY CORN
09/17/2019 - VOD

 
 

It's Halloween weekend and a group of bullies are planning their annual hazing on local outcast, Jacob Atkins. When they take things too far, he's resurrected to seek revenge against those that wronged him.

Jack: Diner tip: do not use the paper you’re intending to read with your breakfast as a coaster for your coffee. You’re at a diner, you probably don’t even need to be worrying too much about coasters, that’s why the have the laminate countertops. Diner faux pas aside, this thing looks stylistic as all hell, right down to the choice of vehicles that appear in every  scene. This looks amazing.

Jake: there was a weird sensation that washed over me as I watched this trailer. I can’t place whether the melancholy autumnal vibe and general low-budget sheen is going to be a boon for the movie (it worked for Halloween) or if it is truly going to be empty. The total lack of any words spoken in the trailer could be a stylistic choice but it’s also making me somewhat hesitant.

MarkGags The Clown Producers: “We have a bunch of scary clowns. What do you got?”

Candy Corn Producers: “We only have one clown.”

GTC: “HA! Suck it!”

CCP: “He’s played by a little person.”

GTC: “Oh.”

CCP: “And our trailer has only ominous music and no spoken words at all.”

GTC: “Shit, we better get ours out first.”


REBORN
09/17/2019 - VOD

 
 

A stillborn baby girl is abducted by a morgue attendant and brought back to life by electrokinetic power. On her 16th birthday, she escapes captivity and sets out to find her birth mother, leaving a trail of destruction behind her.

Jack: I don’t want to just come on here and do nothing but bash on a thing I’m sure people worked hard on, but this trailer isn’t leaving me too much choice. I know what I’ll do. I’ll talk about how the past tense of the verb “fuel” is “fueled” in American English but “fuelled” in the Queen’s English. What? Why? This isn’t like adding an unnecessary “u” into words ending in “or”. I cannot fathom the reason for this difference.

Jake: Holy mackerel this looks awful. Lips don’t approach matching the audio, there are multiple perplexing and horrible looking (probable) deaths in the trailer, and the thing used two pull quotes from the same outfit. Not even barbara Crampton can save this from bottom 1 territory. 

Mark:  That baby looks like it’s 80 years old. I just wanted to say that. Holy shit. This movie looks terrible.


HELL HOUSE LLC 3: LAKE OF FIRE
09/19/19 - SHUDDER

 
 

The doors of the Abbadon Hotel will once again be opened to the public, and its horrors will be unleashed upon the world.

Jack: I did really dig how short that trailer was. In and out. That said, I want to be so much excited for this movie than I am. The first Hell House just absolutely ruled. I wish I had not watched the second. Really hoping this  follows the path of the first, although it seems to already be taking after the second in the unnecessary subtitles game. 

Jake: Hell House LLC was incredibly awesome and I got all excited for the 2nd installment, got really drunk, and had a BAD time. I should go back and watch it again before this comes out to have a more enlightened (sober) viewpoint as I prep for this one, but I can tell you that despite my feelings towards the second, the fact that I’m planning for my viewing of the 3rd means something. 

Mark: Unlike 3 From Hell, Hell House 1 actually was a masterpiece of modern horror. And although Hell House 2 was a bit divisive amongst our group, I liked it for what it was. If number 3 just stays the course I’ll be happy. If it improves recaptures the magic we had from number 1 I would be thrilled.


BLOODLINE
09/20/2019 - VOD

 
 

Evan (Seann William Scott) values family above all else, and anyone who gets between him, his wife, and newborn son learns that the hard way. But when it comes to violent tendencies, it seems the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Jack: Seann William Scott is a much better actor than people give him credit for, and he looks to be on full display in this. Not the most original story, but it looks well made. I will say that, from all the stuff Blumhouse has produced (a lot), they chose three very strange movies to sell this one with (Sinister, the Visit, and Upgrade). All good movies, but weird choices.

Jake: So it’s Stiffler as Dexter sorta. Seems like a fit, honestly. 

Mark:  I am always interested to see what Blumhouse has coming down the pipe. It seems like they’ve really been concentrating on varying their offerings over the last few years. They’re not all winners but they’re at least trying some new things. This looks more like a thriller than your typical honest to god horror fare, but we’re an inclusive outfit over here so we decided to include it.


CORPORATE ANIMALS
09/20/2019 - VOD

 
 

An egotistical megalomaniac CEO leads her staff on a corporate team-building caving weekend to New Mexico. When disaster strikes, not even their useless guide can save them. Trapped underground by a cave-in, this mismatched and disgruntled group must pull together in order to survive.

Jack: This looks hilarious and has a stacked cast, but I don't care. You stole the “team / meat” joke from Shaun of the Dead, and a meta commentary on that joke theft would have been totally appropriate, but none was displayed. Shame on you. 

Jake: This isn’t horror but people are going to eat Ed Helms and crack jokes and therefore we are including it here because you’ll probably be on board for that, too. 

Mark:  Okay so this trailer makes it seem like this isn’t a horror movie except some light cannibalism. Actually, that description sounds a lot like Bone Tomahawk. Here’s the thing, it’s tagged as horror on imdb and it is a movie about being trapped in a cave starving to death with your coworkers. If nothing else, that's a pretty horrifying scenario in its own right.


VILLAINS
09/20/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

After a pair of amateur criminals break into a suburban home, they stumble upon a dark secret that two sadistic homeowners will do anything to keep from getting out.

Jack: Jeffrey emm effiing Donovan. Yes. This looks absolutely bonkers. Not much to say here. If you didn’t get a giddy gleefulness from that trailer, then there’s nothing I can do. You’re too far gone.

Jake: Wow, what a cast. Bill Skarsgård is the official dude of September horror movies. The crown was already on his head before this came around, but now he’s just swinging his nuts around. Also,this has Jeffrey Donovan with one hell of an accent.  Looks awesome. Will watch.

Mark:  I. Fucking. Love. Jeffrey Donovan. My favorite part of Sicario was his four lines of dialogue and the fraction of a second that they cut to him during that one gun fight. I actually kinda liked Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2. This looks incredible. I am all the way in. Now I’m just sitting here curious if the little girl is a demon or a zombie. Maybe both?


THE BLACK STRING
09/24/2019 - VOD

 
 

Jonathan is a lonely twenty-something, stuck in his home town working night shifts at the local convenience store. When an unexpected encounter with a mysterious woman turns his life upside down, Jonathan is stricken by illness and nightmarish visions. Paranoid and desperate, he launches on a quest across the suburbs to find the seductress who started it all.

Jack: Wow. I was not expecting much at the beginning of the trailer, but damn if that didn’t suck me in. Weird supernatural stuff with some likely body horror elements? Yes please.

Jake: It was really hard to listen to this trailer while the narration was ripping me back to the 90’s and rendering me incapable of anything but thinking about the last time I heard this voice in a trailer. It would have been the last time I played a VHS, probably. 

Mark:  Wow what is with that voiceover? Honestly, the last time we had earnest VO like that Frankie Muniz was still on TV. Heyooo. What a transition… While we’re on the topic of Frankie Muniz, my understanding was that he had retired to pursue his passion of being an unapologetic millionaire. I’m a little curious what caught his eye about this movie that inspired him to come back to the game.


EXTRA ORDINARY
09/27/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

Rose, a sweet, lonely driving instructor in rural Ireland, is gifted with supernatural abilities. When a local girl is cursed and starts levitating she must overcome the fear of her supernatural gift & work with the girls father to save the girl, get the guy and be home in time for a light snack...maybe a yogurt or something...

Jack: That was the most unexpected Will Forte I dare say I’ve ever experienced. Came out of nowhere, he did. Look, this looks funny, and the cast looks like they have good chemistry,  but I’m a hair concerned that it’s diving a little bit in the pointing out its own shortcomings as jokes thing. Like when he points out how unnecessarily gross the situation is. Funny joke, but pointing out your problems just becomes a problem at some point.

Jake: This one’s got a wee bit o’ whimsy. It looks pretty funny, but I’m not necessarily running towards this kind of content with great frequency. It’ll probably take some additional mentions or accolades down the line to make me remember this exists after I stop typing this sentence. 

Mark:  So I’m guessing a marketing firm released a report on the success of horror comedies in the month of September? This just seems like a notable uptick in frequency is all I’m saying. Will Forte is incredibly fun to watch and Maeve Higgins seems charming so I’m thinking they’ll have something fun to watch here. I’m only concerned that they might get lost in the wash.


BLISS
09/27/2019 - VOD

 
 

A brilliant painter facing the worst creative block of her life turns to anything she can to complete her masterpiece, spiraling into a hallucinatory hellscape of drugs, sex, and murder in the sleazy underbelly of Los Angeles.

Jack: So this unquestionably took inspiration from Gaspar Noe, but I’m sincerely hoping they combine the cool and stunning visuals with some actual coherence of narrative. Because Gaspar Noe is still out there doing his thing. Making straight up pornography and calling it an “art film.” This does look beautiful though.

Jake: “Plays like Gaspar Noe meets…” That sentence does not need to be completed to be completely understood. This movie will be artsy for the sake of being artsy. It will have colors and camera tricks and probably at least one POV sequence with random credits in random places with random orientations. It’s high-concept, man. 

Mark:  So wait are they vampires or just artistic?  Also, wasn’t bliss the name of the drug from Far Cry 5? Well, those are my two pieces of input for this one. Glad I could help.


THE CURSE OF BUCKOUT ROAD
09/27/2019 - VOD

 
 

A college class project on creation and destruction of modern myth, turns terrifying when a trio of young people come to realize the urban legends surrounding the famed Buckout Road may, in fact, be real.

Jack: I don’t know if it’s the frame rate or something from the compression or uploading, but why the hell was that so choppy? They clearly had a decent enough camera, so why not fix that issue before releasing the trailer? I really couldn’t focus on anything else.

Jake: Why the fuck is Danny Glover in this movie?

Mark:  I mean, they can’t all be winners right? This looks like the generic low budget “hope they had fun making it” adventure for the month.


OTHER THINGS

FREAKS is getting a wider release 09/13/2019. We talked about it last month when it got a limited theatrical release.

POLAROID is apparently actually coming out now. We talked about this, like, a year ago or something like that.


TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1

TOP 1 (THAT ISN’T JUST IT CHAPTER TWO WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY ALL OF OUR TOP PICK)

Jack: Maryanne - I really like the look of this one. And the fact that it’s on netflix puts the barrier to entry at effectively zero. I think this is going to be downright scary.

Jake: Villains - This would obviously be IT Chapter 2, but this is an incredibly strong looking movie in its own right. It seems like it will have something unique to offer and the cast is incredible. 

Mark: Haunt - This is basically tied with Villains for me, but Jake already said that one and I like to bring you some variety. Haunt is exactly the type of movie that I like to watch, and it looks good to boot. Why not lean into that synergy?

BOTTOM 1

Jack: Reborn - Sorry Barbara, it just really doesn’t look good.

Jake: Reborn - I had to do it. Sorry. The Curse of Buckout Road was close but that seems like it’s more well constructed within the low budget arena, and it has Danny Glover for some absurd reason so I’m at least mildly interested in taking a peek. 

Mark: Reborn - I hate it when Jake, Jack, and I are in lock-step because it usually means I’m wrong but this is a pretty strong month and this looks like a massive whiff. 



Horror Release Roundup August 2019

Horror Release Roundup August 2019

The dog days of summer may be here but August’s horror entries are anything but lazy. I mean holy shit you guys. This bunch of movies are more lit than your campfires. In other words, they bat…

Horror Release Roundup July 2019

Welcome to the third quarter of the year everyone. It’s hot and the best thing you can do over those sweltering weekends is to stay inside and watch a nice horror movie with the AC blasting. It might not be the most energy efficient thing to do, but dammit if it doesn’t feel good. And what movie should you put on while trying not to sweat your ass off? Well, let us make a few suggestions for you...

The Horror Release Roundup is our recurring feature breaking down the screams and scares that are heading your way every month. This time around we have everything (or at least our attempt at everything) coming at you in July of 2019. Enjoy the trailers and our respective thoughts below.

Interested in reading up on previous months? Try checking out our archive.

Prefer hearing words over looking at words? Try checking out our podcast.

Like us enough to throw a buck or two our way? We have a Patreon now!


DEADSIGHT
07/02/2019 - VOD

 

A man with partial blindness and a young pregnant police officer must work together to escape from a deadly virus that has spread across Grey County.

 

Jack: The idea of protagonists lacking one major sense or another is becoming really popular on the backs of movies like A Quiet Place and Bird Box and Hush a little before that. Nothing about this looks bad, but it just feels like the logical conclusion of this trend by adding it to the zombie genre. I’ll let Jake watch this one, being the resident zombie fan and all.

Jake: Welp, the zombie category is already full enough for the month. This… uh… this looks like a zombie movie. It doesn’t look like a particularly good one either. The idea of blindness in the face of the threat is interesting but not sure it’ll amount to much here.

Mark: I generally like to start these things out by being positive, but god damn that is a stupid name for this movie. Kudos, however, should go to the editor for shoehorning in the main character basically reading the synopsis of the movie in the first 20 seconds of the trailer. The name is dumb but at least we know what we’re in for.


DOLLS
07/02/2019 - VOD

 

A struggling children's book author and his rebellious teenage daughter move into a house they've inherited and find mysterious dolls in the attic. The father and daughter soon learn that the dolls have a sinister - and deadly - past.

 

Jack: So I was quite ready to give this thing grief for an uninspired concept and an on the nose title, but maybe dolls are actually creepy enough to carry the day here. Damn if that didn’t actually look pretty freaky.

Jake: So this is an Uncork’d Puppet Master-ish thing. Not a lot of need for this but it makes some sense given the popularity of that franchise and Mark said it below… this could be worth a watch.

Mark: Wait, is that drew carey? I swear to god Uncork’d, if you got Drew Carey to do a horror movie then I fully apologize for everything I’ve ever said about you. IMDB informs me that this guy’s name is actually Thomas Downey, but hey at least now we all know what it takes to get back on my good side. In all seriousness, this actually does look like one of Uncork’d’s better efforts. Also, I’ve never had to make Uncork’d possessive like that and now I want to know what the style guide says I should do. 


PLAY OR DIE
07/02/2019 - VOD

 

Welcome to Paranoia, the ultimate escape game. Rule #1: Nothing is real. Rule #2: One of you will die.

 

Jack: So the “based on” card toward the beginning definitely led me to believe that this movie was based on a best-selling puzzle until I went back through and re-read it. Full disclosure, most of my jokes were based on that fact. Kind of drawing a blank now . . . I don’t think people bemoan the fact that they made a movie about emojis enough.

Jake: Based on a book about events inspired by a game. Question: if rule number 1 is to be believed then does rule #2 matter?

Mark: Basically Escape Room but on a seemingly lower budget. I think there is something fundamentally appealing about these “malevolent games” types of movies. I’m in on this one. It might not be great, but at the very least the conceit will appeal to the potentially-a-serial-killer side of my brain. 


MIDSOMMAR
07/03/2019 - THEATRICAL

 

A couple travels to Sweden to visit a rural hometown's fabled mid-summer festival. What begins as an idyllic retreat quickly devolves into an increasingly violent and bizarre competition at the hands of a pagan cult.

 

Jack: Well. I mean, yes. What’s  surprising to me is how much this feels like Hereditary. The guy’s really got a style, I guess, and that style works for me.

Jake: Given the unreal success of Hereditary, it was pretty inevitable that Aster’s next movie would carry some heavy expectations but this looks up to the task. Cult things really get to me for some reason. Can’t wait for this.

Mark: I guess Ari Aster really wanted to remake Wicker Man, but this time get it right? Well, looks (and per the early festival viewings, sounds) like he did. I guess the trick was to put it in Sweden instead of the San Juans. Who knew filmmaking was both that fickle and that easy?  Really though, this looks great and I want it in my life.


STRANGER THINGS SEASON 3
07/04/2019 - NETFLIX

 

School's out, there's a brand new mall in town, and the Hawkins crew are on the cusp of adulthood. Meanwhile, danger looms. When the town's threatened by enemies old and new, Eleven and her friends are reminded that evil never ends; it evolves.

 

Jack: Obviously, I’m excited for this and it will almost certainly be great. That said, I like season 1 wayyyyyy more than season 2 and this trailer leads me to believe I will like season 3 a little less than season 2. I think this thing woked best when the supernatural stuff was really unknown and mysterious. 

Jake: Known quantity binge fest, this. It seems odd to have Midsommar play second fiddle in any month but when we’re talking Stranger Things, that’s exactly what we have in July #blessed.

Mark: In preparation for this, the horror cinematic event of the summer, my lovely wife and I have been re-binging the first two seasons of Stranger Things. Both seasons are amazing, but season 1 absolutely blows 2 out of the water. Why? Well, many things, but in my opinion the chief reason is that instead of the cooperative optimism of the first season the Duffers defaulted to a much more simplistic angsty feel where all the characters basically argue non stop. Season 3 will be great if they can re-capture the vibe of the first season and could falter significantly if they continue to go down this path where all the characters hate each other for no sensical reason. Also, don’t (for the love of all that is holy) bring back any of those fucking stupid X-Men characters from that bullshit backdoor pilot. No one wants that. 


ASHES
07/09/2019 - VOD

 

After a family's "black sheep" aunt passes away, they're reluctant and creeped out to receive her cremated ashes. But when a series of strange, supernatural misfortunes beset them, they'll have to go through hell to be rid of her angry spirit once and for all.

 

Jack: Ooh, baby. A lot of tropes on display here. Jump scares, heavy violins, ouija boards, metronomes--it’s like they were working from a checklist. Not that that’s always a bad thing, but I’m not expecting much innovation here.

Jake:  I have no idea what is happening in this trailer. The aunt plays too large a role. This is probably just a bump-in-the-night ghost story so I’m not going to worry about it too much but really not seeing anything that piques my interest.

Mark: Based on actual events… somebody’s aunt died? I mean, yeah, that’s probably happened. Someone’s aunt got mad at them? Also seemingly possible. Isn’t this basically the plot of Hereditary but with an aunt instead of a grandma? This is your run-of-the-milll ghost movie fodder. Probably good for putting on in the background at your halloween party, but there’s virtually no way it’s bringing anything new to the table. 


CRAWL
07/12/2019 - RELEASE FORMAT

 

A young woman, while attempting to save her father during a Category 5 hurricane, finds herself trapped in a flooding house and must fight for her life against alligators.

 

Jack: Oh hell yeah. I’m a little worried that there was a pretty major spoiler about halfway through that trailer, but who really cares? You’re not watching this thing to figure out if they survive the alligators.

Jake: You guys. Third fiddle (that’s a thing) is a fucking Alexandre Aja directed, Sam Raimi produces fast ball of a summer monster flick. I am so excited for this embarrassment of riches.

Mark: Ah yes, everyone’s new favorite genre cross-over: alligator home invasion. Sam Raimi and Alex Aja bring some gravitas to this one. This is the exact perfect time to release something like this. Best case scenario we get something that can run with Deep Blue Sea or Lake Placid. That might sound like a bad thing, but I love both of those movies.


DARLIN’
07/12/2019 - VOD

 

A direct sequel to 2011's The Woman. A feral teenage girl is taken into strict Catholic church care and prepared for her First Holy Communion.

 

Jack: They didn’t cast the girl who played that demon thing ninja in season 2 of Barry, and that was a mistake I cannot abide. Still though, this looks pretty cool and is probably worth a watch.

Jake: Pretty sure someone would just shoot the feral mom character and all of this action would never come to pass. This is America, after all. 

Mark: So basically if Nell were a serial killer? Chicka chicka chickabee. Tee an me an tee an me, chickabee? (And then ostensibly she eats someone’s face or something.)


TRESPASSERS
07/12/2019 - VOD

 

Two dysfunctional couples rent a modern luxury desert home for the weekend hoping to sort out their messed-up lives. Just as they are about to settle in for a fun night, a neighbour turns up at their front door saying she has car trouble. And that's when the murderous trouble really starts.

 

Jack: I have A LOT of questions about that whiskey decanter in the kitchen there. This is clearly an AirBnB kind of a sitch, right? Is this an AirBnB that comes with a decanter of whiskey for the guests? That’s a classy move. Did they bring their own decanter on vacation to pour whiskey into? Show me those establishing shots a la breaking bad. Did they rummage through the host’s house just to find a decanter? Then they probably deserve some of what they get. Again, build the world, show me how this happened.

Jake: This looks like it could be pretty brutal. I don’t care for torture porn, but that’s probably the necessary direction for this to stand out even a little bit. Looks well made but I do have a question about the synopsis. Does the phrase “murderous trouble” have a weird ring to it to anyone else? Sounds like a minor inconvenience when put that way. 

Mark: So, kind of a strangers ripoff but with some purge mixed in as well? Looks good enough. Senseless violence just for the shit of it is something that will always work in horror at a very basic level.  Production value doesn’t look incredible, but I’d watch this if it were on any of the common streaming services.


THEY’RE INSIDE
07/16/2019 - VOD

 

When two sisters go to an isolated cabin in the woods to film a passion project, family secrets start to get in the way, as do masked strangers filming a passion project of their own.

 

Jack: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again--if you’re going with a straight up and down home invasion flick, you’ve gotta put some time into finding or making cool masks. This, unfortunately, did not do that. I am pretty curious about the censor blurring on the guy’s face at the end, though.

Jake: This is the second straight release that looks a lot like The Strangers and this one seems to lack the potential of Trespassers. I do not appreciate this.

Mark: Oh, so we get two Strangers rip offs  four days apart from each other? I guess there’s a little bit more to the story based on the synopsis we were able to find, but boy that sure is a strange coincidence isn’t it? There’s gotta be some marketing research something or other out there saying that this is the best month for Strangers ripoffs right?


DEADTECTIVES
07/18/2019 - SHUDDER

 

DeadTectives follows a team of hapless paranormal investigators on a reality TV series who go on a quest to Mexico's most haunted house in the pursuit of better ratings.

 

Jack: I’m always a little concerned when the use a pull quote from a publication predicting how the thing looks. “Looks like a blast” is the conclusion I should (and, for the record, kind of did) come to on my own after watching the trailer, not what I need the appeal to the authority of Bloody Disgusting to believe. It’s awesome that Shudder just keeps taking shots, however this turns out. 

Jake: This may hit all the right notes and be hilarious and awesome. It’s also totally possible that this will fall totally fall flat but I don’t really care. Shudder is really starting to bring it with more and more exclusive and original content and I am genuinely excited to see what they continue to put out as they grow. Thanks Shudder!

Mark: This strikes me as a show where they came up with the name first and then decided to write a narrative around it. Having said that sardonically, I would now like to seriously state that this show looks awesome, and I fully endorse Shudder getting more original exclusive content.


LUZ
07/19/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL

 

Luz, a young cabdriver, drags herself into the brightly lit entrance of a run-down police station. A demonic entity follows her, determined to finally be close to the woman it loves.

 

Jack: What just happened? Smart trailer-ing there, movie. Now I’m going to have to watch just to figure out what in the hell was going on. Also, I can figure out why that receptionist just ignores a weird woman standing directly in front of him for what looks like minutes on end.

Jake: This is a difficult trailer to glean much from in terms of what the hell the movie will be about (synopsis doesn’t help). What it does do is larger on some atmosphere and showcase some interesting and pretty gorgeous shots. I like it when movies give a tiny morsel but really afford you the opportunity to go in blind. Given the pedigree of the releases this month I probably won’t get to this until later in the year but it’s for sure one I will check out.

Mark: Hard to tell what’s going on here, but the imagery sure seems spooky. The opaque trailer combined with the synopsis kinda leads me to think this might feel a bit like Last Shift, and if that’s anywhere near the right ballpark then we’re all in for a treat. Why is she pantomiming driving a car like she’s in an improv class? That’s basically my biggest question here. Second biggest question: what was the smoke machine budget for this movie?


CRITTERS ATTACK
07/23/2019 - VOD

 

Follows 20-year-old Drea, who reluctantly takes a job babysitting for a professor of a college she hopes to attend. Drea takes them on a hike, unaware that mysterious alien critters have crash-landed and started devouring every living thing they encounter.

 

Jack: Yup. This sure is Critters. I will say that they seem to have just nailed the tone, which is among the most important things with campy flicks like this. 

Jake: Hell yeah, dude. Like with Luz, I might not be able to get my eyeballs on this until later but this is gonna be a ton of fun. Those little bastards rolling around and causing mayhem is a thing of beauty. The earlier phrase “murderous trouble” applies much better in this scenario.

Mark: Crampton gonna Crampt, nahmean? Critters is one of those franchises that I’m glad exists, but I'll never really seek it out in any regard. Basically the same as tremors in that way. It’s doofy camp and this is going to premier on Syfy in a month or two… you know what you’re getting into with this one. I love the laser sound effects they use for the “really big gun.”


ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS (aka ROCK PAPER DEAD)
07/23/2019 - VOD

 

A man returns to his family home after spending time in a state hospital. A young woman's arrival leads to a fateful decision that rekindles the man's murderous desires.

 

Jack: See? Here we go. Original mask. I’m a little worried this might have one too many subplots going on, but I do like the hunting the serial killer thing, and I’ll good and guarantee you that: 1) there will be a significant twist; and 2) that significant twist will not be the final twist.

Jake: This movie is my dark horse for the month because it has the potential to and lightly suggests it may go the direction of having the female lead fuck with this dude, turning the tables a la the cop in The Devil’s Rejects. That would be awesome but I’m not sure it will go there.

Mark: If I just said “the doll movie from July” you could legitimately think I was talking about any of three or four movies. Are we at peak doll saturation? I guess I should say that at least The Boy 2, which also has a doll theme to it, was originally slated for release this month as welll but got pushed to December. This will likely be a moderately well made psychological serial killer type movie that I wouldn’t hate to watch. Michael Madsen wouldn’t sign off it it was that bad, would he?


HORRORISH RELEASE ROUNDUP


These movies might not exactly count as “horror,” but we figure we can squeeze them in with an “ish.” That still counts, right?

  • Once upon a time in Hollywood - 07/26/2019 - THEATRICAL

    • This is a dram-com about being recruited into Chuck Manson’s cult. Probably won’t be particularly scary unless you think hard about it, but Manson is a recognizable subject in the genre and there was that other Sharon Tate movie just a few months ago… A few of those shots of the family about to attack do ring true to the genre, and we don’t need much of an excuse to give a tenuous recommend to a movie with this cast. 


TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1

TOP 1

Jack: Midsommar - Hereditary was amazing, and I have absolutely no reason to believe that this won’t measure up. The tone in that trailer is chilling.

Jake: Stranger Things Season 3 - I have to. Don’t fucking kill Steve, writers. Or I will come to your house, and I will cut you. 

Mark: Midsommar - I get Jake’s take, but I’m also too concerned that they’ll continue to push that series down the angst rabbit hole. Midsommar is a  new IP that is brought to us by the guy who brought us arguably the best movie from last year. The worst case version of Midsommar is still pretty damn good.

BOTTOM 1

Jack: Deadsight - I don’t love zombie flicks to begin with, and I’m pretty soured on these down-a-sense movies (thanks, the Silence).

Jake: Ashes - I could barely give a shit about the likely run of the mill paranormal storyline here but the trailer was unnecessarily confusing as well. Does not inspire confidence.  

Mark: Deadsight - I just don’t have any interest at all in seeing this. The sight disadvantage really doesn’t seem to impede the protagonist much and although the elevator pitch of the movie sounds good it just doesn’t look like it’ll execute. 



Horror Release Roundup June 2019

Horror Release Roundup June 2019

Men and gentleladies, we have officially lived half way through 2019 and as kids all over the country march into summer break we are getting treated to a massively satisfying release schedule. June is bringing in some heavy hitters and some potential under the radar jams…

Horror Release Roundup May 2019

Horror Release Roundup May 2019

May is here and ready to usher us into the summer with some freakin’ heat on the horror front. Look at all these movies and get your weekends (or whatever time you take off - we don’t judge) planned, because there’s some volume.

Horror Release Roundup April 2019

Horror Release Roundup April 2019

We make an April showers joke in this post every single year. This year, I refuse to talk about pilgrims or spring or flowers or dentists. Why? I’m not sure, I’m just feeling spicy. Hey, speaking of spicy… this month has a pretty stellar lineup of on-the-radar and off-the-radar horror movies that you should probably look into so you don’t get blindsided by them like 8 months from now when they show up on those “best of 2019” lists.

Horror Release Roundup March 2019

March is here and spring is in the air. Valentine’s Day is behind us and St. Patrick’s day is doing its jig on the horizon. Maybe instead of going back to your yearly re-watch of Jennifer Aniston in Leprechaun, you could take a look at some of these newer movies heading your way? March has some serious talent.

The Horror Release Roundup is our recurring feature breaking down the screams and scares that are heading your way every month. This time around we have everything (or at least our attempt at everything) coming at you in March of 2019. Enjoy the trailers and our respective thoughts below.

Interested in reading up on previous months? Try checking out our archive.

Prefer hearing words over looking at words? Try checking out our podcast.


CLIMAX
03/01/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

French dancers gather in a remote, empty school building to rehearse on a wintry night. The all-night celebration morphs into a hallucinatory nightmare when they learn their sangria is laced with LSD.

Jack:  Now I’ve never done LSD, but I don’t believe that its whole thing is making people violent and deranged where they otherwise wouldn’t be. Also, with a crew that big, you figure at least of few of ‘em would end up on the kind of trip where they just can’t leave their corner or whatever. I also have many questions about how to regulate LSD dosage when you’ve just dissolved it in a large bowl that people are pulling from wily nilly. I guess what I’m saying is that this movie looks more style than substance. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Jake: So dancers at a dance thing do LSD… I don’t get what’s different about that than any normal night at any club, anywhere. I’m guessing this will take “dance battle” quite literally, but I’m still struggling to grasp how LSD is an inciting incident for dancers. They gotta be used to this shit.

Mark: This looks to be more than just Suspiria with drugs instead of witches, which is what my initial impressions were. I don’t want to pigeon hole this movie just because it uses dance, and to the credit of the director, the camera seems to move as much as the dancers themselves which is a nice thematic element. It is a little concerning that most of the movie appears to take place on one set… maybe they just don’t want to give too much away?


THE HOLE IN THE GROUND
03/01/2019 - VOD

 
 

Sarah O'Neill is building a life on the fringes of a backwood rural town with her young son Chris. A terrifying encounter with a mysterious neighbour shatters her fragile security, throwing Sarah into a spiralling nightmare of paranoia and mistrust.

Jack: I would just not be very worried about a person of that stature headbutting the window of my modern-ish car. You ever see those compilation videos of local reporters trying to smash car windows with hammers and just miserably failing? Good shit. Also, the movie looks pretty creepy and like the kind of paranormal shit that really freaks me out.

Jake: Does anyone else think this kid looks like Haley Joel Osment? Also, that “hole” in the ground looks less like a hole and more like that pit in Star Wars that eats people (I don’t know the name. Don't @ me). Regardless, we got a changeling tale here that seems very well shot and atmospheric. Hopefully it’s a good entry that helps the year gain some needed momentum.

Mark: I like the soundtrack mix in that trailer. I also like the idea of discovering a Sarlac pit in the middle of the woods near your house. That’s creepy. What do I not like about this trailer? How half assed that window headbutt was. Right? That being said, if that’s my main complaint then you are doing pretty well for yourself. I can’t wait to see this one.


INTO THE DARK: TREEHOUSE
03/01/2019 - HULU

 
 

Peter Rake, who tries to escape a recent wave of negative tabloid exposure by retreating to his family’s vacation estate in the woods. But the ghosts of Peter’s past are everywhere and debts will be settled.

Jack: See, now I’m in a conundrum. On the one had, I have caught two of these so far (Pooka and Down) and didn’t particularly enjoy either of them. On the other hand, James Roday directed this, and I love that guy and also love Jimmy Simpson. I’ll probably end up watching this and hopefully this will be the installment that turns the series around.

Jake: Think this was made at least in part because of the role the treehouse played in Hereditary? McPoyle gon’ get it.

Mark: So, for the record James Roday directed this and he has generated enough good will for himself from Psyche that I will absolutely be watching this. Beyond that, this actually looks good and has a very low barrier to entry. It’s got that mix of fantasy monster haunting and childhood trauma that really gets the juices flowing nahmean?


TUFTLAND
03/01/2019 - VOD

 
 

A headstrong textile student tries to overcome her problems by accepting a summer job offer from an isolated and offbeat village of Kyrsyä.

Jack: Well this certainly looks . . . odd. I can’t quite figure out if that one shot of her addressing the camera directly means this is going to be a fourth-wall-breaking bonanza or if it’s just an interesting or symbolic shot. This kind of has the vibe of being a little too weird to be outright terrifying, but will make you feel weird and disturbed throughout.

Jake: Finland with another hat into the ring and this one looks, incesty? I wonder when the warning signs for this girl actually go off and how the alarms manage to be too late (I assume) because there is not one inhabitant of this village at any moment of this trailer that looks acceptable enough to make me spend a second in their township. Hard pass on them as people. Hard maybe on this flick.

Mark: Prime example of the people Jake is talking about? Skip to 1:03. Look at that beard. It’s majestic in its absurdity. I assume this movie will be a solid entry into the stranded-with-a-cult type of movies like Wicker Man or Apostle, but the trailer did not inspire much gusto in me to go and aggressively seek this out in any regard.


STRAY
03/01/2019 - VOD

 
 

An orphaned teenager forms an unlikely friendship with a detective. Together they investigate her mother's murder, and uncover the supernatural force that proves to be a threat to her family.

Jack: You never guarantee the victim’s family you’re going to find the killer. Haven’t you seen any Law & Order SVU? That’s your mistake right there. And this just proves why that’s the case, what if she was just some random non-supernatural detective and this victim was killed by whatever CG ghost did the deed here? No chance of solving that one. You lucked out with those powers.

Jake: This seems like it might be horrorish rather than horror-proper, but whatevs. There’s some super duper dicey CG in this one and it looks like there’s a lot of it. As for the story, it kind of seems vaguely like a superhero plot line and as I type this I’m sure there are some nerds out there who are livid and calling for my head and fuck you nerd.

Mark: I’m a big superhero movie apologist. I like all of them almost without exception. Superpeople are just fun imagination capsules that present you with new and fun ways to escape your world. That little extra superhero twist on the “ally with a detective to solve a murder” trope might just be enough to pull me into this one.


30 MILES FROM NOWHERE
03/05/2019 - VOD

 
 

When five college pals return to rural Wisconsin for their estranged friend's funeral, what begins as an uneasy reunion becomes a terrifying fight for survival.

Jack: My grandparents used to live in Chanute Kansas, and when we would drive hundreds of miles down to see them, my dad would bemoan the fact that they live “a hundred miles from any place you’d rather be.” What I’m getting at it is that 30 miles doesn’t make something seem all that secluded. And if nowhere is the part that’s supposed to make me feel alone, then this makes it seem like I’m thirty miles closer to safety from that. What’s that? I should talk about the movie rather than just its title? Ehh, looks kind of generic.

Jake: Man I wonder what these people did to their friend because I gotta say, based on how pissed he is in the afterlife, I’m not sure they should have been invited to the funeral. Real low blow type stuff.

Mark: I disagree with Jake on this one. If I die anytime soon, I will absolutely spend my free time in the afterlife fucking with him and Jack. Blood coming out of the faucets? Yup, that’s gonna happen. Flickering lightbulbs? You betcha. He must’ve really loved these friends, because he could be hanging out with Elvis and instead decides to spend his time dragging them around the forest.


AMONG THE SHADOWS
03/05/2019 - VOD

 
 

A private investigator must unravel the murder of her uncle while keeping the secret that she is a descendant from a line of werewolves.

Jack: Wowsers bowsers. This trailer looks to be about half free stock footage. And the other half starts with an aggressively bad green screened Lindsay Lohan. I know her career took a turn and all, but holy diver. I cannot fathom this movie being even mildly watchable.

Jake: Is this a real movie? It kind of seems like one of those a fan would cobble together to make suckers think someone is in a new flick but it’s really just a bunch of footage recycled from other movies. This seems like it’s real though and Lindsay Lohan seems not good in it so I guess that makes sense. What a journey it was to land on “this movie exists”. Now I’m tired.

Mark: Okay, wait. For reals though. Is this actually a thing? Let me pull the curtain aside, we see a lot of fake trailers while putting this piece together. I feel like we are pretty adept at sniffing them out. This one? I have no clue. If it is actually the true true then I really want to know what percentage of this movie was shot in front of a green screen, because judging by the trailer it’s upwards of 90%. You couldn’t just shoot the dialogue on a set?


RABID
03/05/2019 - VOD

(No Trailer)
Rose is a quiet, demure, unassuming woman. When a terrible accident leaves Rose scarred beyond recognition she seeks out a radical untested stem cell treatment. When the treatment seems too good to be true, she must realize that everything in life comes at a price.

Jack: The description of this makes it seem like a body-horrorish monster flick. I’m way in for that. Mark says it’s a Cronenberg remake, so I’m now deeming my analysis unassailable.

Jake: Mark did the research (I think) so… what he said.

Mark: So there’s no trailer yet for this one, and what I’m getting from our thorough and incredibly probing research is that this is a remake/reimagining of the 1977 Cronenberg flick from two Canadian sisters. I’m betting it’ll be a solid body horror flick, so if that’s your bailiwick then keep an eye out for this one.


DISCARNATE
03/06/2019 - VOD

 
 

A neuroscientist's obsession with a drug that expands the human mind inadvertently unleashes a deadly supernatural force on his team.

Jack: So I’m pretty sure that a big part of hallucinations is your brain believing that they’re real, and I’m not sure I’d believe anyone saying they could identify one. That said, the monster looks pretty cool, and this might be the first movie to play with the scientifically-induced afterlife thing and actually be watchable. Plus it’s got Sofia from the League in it. So it’s probably a watch.

Jake: Moderately cool looking monster in this one aside from 1 or 2 shots where it looks like a walking lump of feces. I’m hoping it comes along with some good scares but will tread lightly. This seems like a Jack movie.

Mark: “I’d know a hallucination if I saw one?” Would you though? Isn’t that like the whole deal with hallucinations is that they’re believable? I have a hard time getting behind a movie that has a line like that in the first few seconds of the trailer, but this actually seems to be pretty decent monster fodder.


THE ORDER
03/07/2019 - NETFLIX

 
 

Out to avenge his mother's death, a college student pledges a secret order and lands in a war between werewolves and practitioners of dark magic.

Jack: Oh, what a fun, clever, and timely use of “fake news.” You’re so up on the zeitgeist, movie. I mean, it’s almost a guaranteed watch just by virtue of being on Netflix which means it will start auto-playing. And I’m really really hoping that the line “What does it do? Anything is possible” is just bad trailer editing and doesn’t actually appear that way in the movie.

Jake: Love Netflix doing more and more horror and even horrorish things. Not sure where exactly this will fall because of the heavy dose of whimsy to that trailer, but there were enough werewolves involved to think it’ll have a chance at being pretty cool. I hope the maulings are aplenty.

Mark: This is the most stereotypical Netflix thing I’ve seen to the point where I would buy that it’s some type of parody. Young adult themed semi-horror set in a high school full of 20 somethings and solid production value with a sonic backdrop of a synthy bass with repeating female vocals and a trailer that drops like a week before the movie comes out. Neato. Am I stuck in the matrix? Can anyone else see that lady in a red dress?


GARDEN PARTY MASSACRE
03/12/2019 - VOD

 
 

A gathering of friends goes awry when an uninvited guest appears. With a pickax. And an attitude.

Jack: So here’s the thing. This is ultra-low budget and it’s cool that the filmmakers actually did the damn thing and made it. That being cool, mind you, does not make me want to see it. Also, I don’t care how low budget your movie is, don’t have the person give up on mustard-ing their wiener after not actually getting any on said wiener. That has nothing to do with your budget. That’s just being careless with your wieners. We here at A to Z Horror cannot abide that.

Jake: In the space of “__ Party Massacre” movies, I’m going to go out on a limb and guess this will be near the bottom of the barrel. Definitely no chance at reaching the lofty heights of Slumber Party Massacre or Dude Bro Party Massacre 3.

Mark: One time when I was in high school me and a friend of mine rented a slasher flick from the local Hollywood Video, took it home, popped it in the DVD player, and something along these lines came on. We lasted about 3 minutes before turning it off and finding something to watch on MTV. I tell you that completely pointless story to provide the basis for my opinion that this movie also looks like it will overstay its welcome in about 3 minutes. Shit, I got tired of it during the trailer.


US
03/22/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

A family's serenity turns to chaos when a group of doppelgängers begin to terrorize them.

Jack: Yeah. Not much to say here. This looks amazing on every level. This would be the top pick if Jordan Peele wasn’t fresh off one of the best and coolest horror flicks in modern history. But that’s also a thing.

Jake: Wow. Just wow. Top 1 for this month. Top 1 for probably the year. Let’s go see it.

Mark: I have no idea what putting five on it means, and at this point I’m too afraid to ask. I’m not going to belabor the point on this one. This movie looks good. It looks sublimely good. It looks existentially terrifying, smart, disturbing, funny, and psychotic break inducing. If this turns out to be a fraction of what I’m hoping for then I will be satisfied.


BOOK OF MONSTERS
03/19/2019 - VOD

 
 

Sophie's 18th birthday party becomes a bloodbath when six terrifying monsters descend upon her house.

Jack: Is waiting for your parents to go out and drinking when they’re gone a big thing when you’re 18 in Great Britain? It is here, but you also can’t just go to a fucking bar when you’re 18 here. Now don’t get it twisted, this looks like a ton of fun and I legitimately chuckled with delight when those garden gnomes popped up at the end, but still.

Jake: That was shockingly so much more interesting than I was expecting. Practical will do that for you. This might be pushing for a dark horse pick, y’all.

Mark: Am I given to believe that she carved that pentacle into the guys chest before she became possessed and summoned Satan’s horde? I know Europeans are known for their sexual proclivities, but that is a bit much for my delicate constitution. This looks like a fun and silly (albeit mindless) romp, and there will always be a place in my heart for gnomes bursting forth from someone’s chest.


WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
03/27/2019 - FX

 
 

A look into the daily (or rather, nightly) lives of four vampires who've lived together for over 100 years in Staten Island.

Jack: This looks absurdly funny. Matt Berry, Mark Proksch, and Taika Waititi? Yes please. All three of those people are known for really bizarre high-concept comedy, but I think were all funniest when they were doing more middle of the road stuff which this looks to be.

Jake: The movie was funny but I thought it started to lose its shine as the film went on so I’m definitely pumping the brakes just a bit on this. This definitely looks like What We Do in the Shadows and when I think about it conceptually, the concept seems like it would fit a show format really well, so there’s definitely hope here, but I’m not going too far.

Mark: While I hear what Jake is saying I have two rebuttal arguments to make: Taika Waititi and Mark Proksch. Boom, QED. This might not be an absolutely stop-what-you’re-doing-to-watch uproarious comedy series, but I will at least bet that it’ll be prime Hulu fodder that you’ll sink into and then realize you’ve watched 7 episodes since breakfast.


THE FIELD GUIDE TO EVIL
03/29/2019 - VOD

 
 

A feature-length anthology film. They are known as myths, lore, and folktales. Created to give logic to mankind’s darkest fears, these stories laid the foundation for what we now know as the horror genre.

Jack: Note to other trailer editors - If you’re going to insist on flashing your festival awards around during your trailer, the least you could do is actually arrange them interestingly and meaningfully like this one does with the upside down cross reveal. That was kind of cool. As for the actual movie, I’m not sure what the connective tissue, if any, of this anthology is. Looks kind of cool regardless, but I’d still like to know.

Jake: Anthologies are always a way more reasonable an endeavor when I’m skeptical about the quality than normal flicks because the time each segment demands is so much more limited and there is always bound to be some quality in at least one segment. I didn’t find a ton that I was interested in from the trailer for this one, specifically, but it’s about folktales and they did the thing where they had directors from different countries for each segment. That’s a cool combo. I’ll probably check this out just to see if there’s something cool to be seen.

Mark: I like that they say that we “probably haven’t seen an anthology like this” to leave the door open for us weirdos who might actually have seen an anthology like this. That phrasing please both my inner horror nerd and my inner stats nerd. This is coming from the people who brought us the ABCs of Death so I’m sure it’ll be interesting, but I just wish that the trailer gave us a little more information on what the anthology was actually trying to accomplish.


TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1

TOP 1

Jack: Us - I’ll leave it to the other two yahoos to say more.

Jake: Us - no shit.

Mark: Us - Yes, shit. For the record (since you didn’t come here to just see us pick Us a bunch) Hole in the Ground is my runner up. I’m actually also very excited for that movie as well.


BOTTOM 1

Jack: Among the Shadows - This looks so astonishingly unwatchable that I will be making a metric fuck-ton of ill advised bets just to try to pin watching this thing on one of the other guys.

Jake: Stray - I probably would have taken the layup like Mark but this looks like a vaguely super-heroey flick with terrible CG throughout. Nah.

Mark: Garden Party Massacre - Yeah so this is a layup and I’m taking it. March is a strong month content-wise and this is the lone movie that looks terrible.


Horror Release Roundup February 2019

February: Still winter, almost spring. Valentine’s Day AND President’s Day? Wow. What a month. Also, not for nothing, it’s Women in Horror Month, so make sure you celebrate that appropriately. February 2019 is hitting us in full force, and frankly has already dropped some gems in our lap by the time you’re reading this.

The Horror Release Roundup is our recurring feature breaking down the screams and scares that are heading your way every month. This time around we have everything (or at least our attempt at everything) coming at you in February of 2019. Enjoy the trailers and our respective thoughts below.

Interested in reading up on previous months? Try checking out our archive.


DOWN
02/01/2019 - HULU

 
 

A pair of office workers get trapped in an elevator over a long Valentine’s Day weekend, but what at first promises to be a romantic connection turns dangerous and horrifying.

Jack: Okay. Hold on. I’mma let the obvious copy of Devil pass for a minute because there’s something more important to talk about here. The guy in that trailer is clearly the villain. I flat refuse to look up how many times valentine’s and presidents’ day happen on the same weekend, because no non-demon human in the history of forever has or would have referred to that event as the perfect storm. Nope.

Jake: Is Valentine’s Day a holiday that anyone, anywhere, gets a day off for? If not, then I’m confused because I don’t know anyone who is getting more than 3 days off for that “long weekend”. President’s Day is the federal holiday, not that Hallmark bullshit.

Mark: These two bozos are over here commenting on the semantics of holidays, and the only thing I can focus on is the fact that some file folders are deleting themselves from a computer that appears to be running Windows Vista. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say neither of them are the villains and that they’re being attacked (or maybe set up on an elaborate blind date) by some type of sentient techno-demon.


THE VELVET BUZZSAW
02/01/2019 - NETFLIX AND LIMITED THEATRICAL

Note: This trailer is super long and a bit spoilery. You can turn it off at about 1:10 and still get the gist without spoiling too much.

 
 

After a series of paintings by an unknown artist are discovered, a supernatural force enacts revenge on those who have allowed their greed to get in the way of art.

Jack: Well alright. I was all ready to slam this trailer for being way too long, but damn if I was engrossed throughout that whole thing. I dug Nightcrawler a whole lot and think it was pretty underrated, so I’m into this whole thing. But you know what? What if the trailer didn’t show me the entirety of the horror turn? Okay, I’m back on thinking this trailer is way too fucking long.

Jake: Jack’s wrong. This trailer is still way too long. And it officially lost me when the monkeys started doing monkey things. Not that it was the movie fault, mind you. But I just couldn’t help but think about Jumanji for the rest of the trailer. Yeah, I have problems… This movie will be great.

Mark: There is no way I’m going to take Gyllenhaal’s performance as anything other than Ongo Gablogian.I fully expect this movie to be one of those that I find funny, but also I’m not sure if that was intended or not. Does that make it art? I have no clue. Will this movie be another grand slam netflix power house? I have no clue. Will everyone at work be talking about it and will there be a Velvet Buzzsaw challenge where people set themselves on fire while driving around town? Yeah… probably.


PIERCING
02/01/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL

 
 

A man kisses his wife and baby goodbye and seemingly heads away on business, with a plan to check into a hotel, call an escort service, and kill an unsuspecting prostitute.

Jack: A lot of those things fit in that trailer. And then one thing abundantly did not. All of the psychosexual stuff fits very well with the kinky, BDSM, border-questioning horror this thing appears to have going on. And then there’s a talking infant at one point? Kind of mood killer. I have a feeling that this thing won’t be anything like the tone we just saw.

Jake: What. The Fuck. The Eyes of My Mother was pretty gnarly and this looks like it’s from an entirely different universe of weirdness. Count this one in for at very least a lost bet movie because it’s too damn odd not to be.

Mark: If Jake is going to hand this thing out as a penalty for a lost bet then I’m going to start throwing bets. It feels weird to say (and will definitely get me on some lists in a government building somewhere) but I am really digging what this movie is putting down. The hotel room torture scene thing has been done before, but I get the sense that this mixes in enough absurdly weird toppings that it won’t get bogged down enough to make it a slog. Mix in some good ol fashioned doo-wop and I’m hooked.


FOLKLORE
02/01/2019 - HBO

 
 

This HBO Asia Original horror anthology series features the deeply-rooted superstitions and myths across six Asian countries, including Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.

Jack: Why was there a random white guy in the middle of that trailer saying “holy fuck”? That made me think that “U.S.” was going to pop in at the end there when they were listing countries. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad it didn’t, but was that supposed to be in there?

Jake: Conceptually, this seems awesome. I really hope it’s actually accessible because I’d be in just to see the differences in style from place to place.

Mark: Anthology series? Cool. Based in Asian folklore? Cool. Something I’m going to have to ask my sister for her HBO Go password for? Less cool. If nothing else I like that this exists as it seems that off-mainstream horror is becoming more and more desirable for streaming services, which is going to make things better for all of us in the long run.


THE GOLEM
02/01/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL
02/05/2019 - VOD

 
 

During an outbreak of a deadly plague, a mystical woman must save her tight-knit Jewish community from foreign invaders, but the entity she conjures to protect them is a far greater evil.

Jack: Hell yeah. We’ve been wondering for awhile why there isn’t more Jewish horror. Not that religious horror is something I really need in my life, but if I’m gonna have to sit through x hours of demonic possessions and crucifixes every year, I might as well be exposed to other myths too. And to be clear, this looks to be about as good as the upper tier of bad possession movies that come out every year. Which isn’t great.

Jake: This trailer is too fucking long. And it’s boring. I also got all I needed to know out of the on-screen text. This is made by the creators of Jeruzalem. Ok. I hated that movie. This is “A Jewish Frankenstein”. Oh. Just that I’ve been clamoring for…

Mark: It seems that the single piano key trailer score trend has been replaced by the single atonal cello string plucking trend. On the one hand, I can really only name one time I’ve seen an honest-to-god golem storyline in horror media, and it was that episode of The X-Files with the dude made out of garbage. On the other, this still looks like it might be pretty trope driven. Time will have to tell if this thing is creative as it has the possibility to be. From the directors of Jeruzalem? Uh oh.


THE MERMAID: LAKE OF THE DEAD
02/05/2019 - VOD, DVD

 
 

An evil Mermaid falls in love with Marina's fiancé Roman and aims to keep him away from Marina in her Kingdom of Death under water.

Jack: You know, the last mermaid horror movie I saw was The Lure, and it’s going to be pretty hard to convince me that this extremely generic looking flick that happens to feature a mermaid is going to be worth it after the unadulterated insanity that was The Lure.

Jake: Awful lot of jumpscares involving mildly to full-blown horrible CG effects. That’s flat-out danger zone for the movie and there’s also a real chance you just saw all of them right here in a 2 minute trailer. What’s the reason for me to throw this five bones at this point? So I can see mermaid lady jolt at me again?

Mark: When did mermaids become the villains? Back in my day mermaids were just there to ogle you from afar and sing to their crustacean-jamaican friends about life in the Epipelagic Zone. It was sirens you had to worry about. They were the ones that sang too… I feel like we definitely got some mythological wires crossed within the last decade or so. This movie might have some budget limitations, and with it some not-great-looking CG effects in that trailer, but I’m actually surprisingly interested by it. It seems like it has a lot to say about mermaids and their ability to teleport into any source of water anywhere, and I would like to know more about their powers. If a mermaid doesn’t swim out of somebody’s blood stream in this film I am going to be upset.


THE PRODIGY
02/08/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

A mother concerned about her young son's disturbing behavior thinks something supernatural may be affecting him.

Jack: Yikes. When the best name-dropping you can do is “a producer” of the Exorcism of Emily Rose, you’d have been better off not saying anything. And god dammit. That was such a rad jump scare, why did they fucking just ruin it right there in the trailer? Still, this looks pretty good and the heterochromia on the kid is a nice touch.

Jake: This trailer is too long. And not a lot happens. It’s going for the tension thing and I suppose the second half is pretty good but you could start almost a minute in and get nothing different from the thing. Judging by the pre trailer-trailer, this movie is at least acting like it’s the real deal. I’m not sure I’m convinced, but I’m going to avoid anything more and try to go in as blind as possible.

Mark: It is sorta funny that the trailer seems to be actively trying to put you to sleep. Maybe not the best device to get people excited for your movie? Except, I suppose it worked because I’m in like Flynn on this one. Kids are creepy, and now if I have to start worrying about past lives then that well becomes much deeper. Sidenote, I’m not a musical person and only am just now realizing that metronomes tick when the pendulum is all the way out and not when it’s straight up. Ya learn something new every day.


DARKNESS VISIBLE
02/08/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL

 
 

London-raised Ronnie returns to his home in India to discover his mother Suleka has died in mysterious circumstances. As he uncovers a series of similar past murders, Ronnie's own inner-darkness come to light.

Jack: Holy diver, this looks downright terrifying to me. I always love horror movies based on lore and cultures that I’m not terribly familiar with. Plus, the use of color in the trailer alone is striking. This is on my must-watch list.

Jake: It’s hard to take too much away from that trailer but it looks like it’s a competently made film and I am totally down with checking out a horror movie from India because that’s an area I definitely don’t have much experience in.

Mark: I’m going to get past it in a second, but I can’t not comment on the title. I feel like it was supposed to be more deep than it is. Darkness is visible all the fucking time. Unless you are somehow reading these words from the world of THX 1138 then I’m not buying that darkness isn’t visible. As far as the movie goes I can get behind any trend that brings in some new horror cultures into the mix, and if they’re willing to lower the barrier to entry and shoot in english then more power to them. This one might not blow your socks off, but you never know.... Maybe you’ll see something new. Just please don’t make another The Other Side Of the Door.


THE MAN WHO KILLED HITLER AND THEN THE BIGFOOT
02/08/2019 - VOD

 
 

A legendary American war veteran is recruited to hunt a mythical creature.

Jack: Sam Elliott badassery and sweeping Canadian vistas is enough to draw me in right off the bat. There is very little that could stop me from seeing this movie.

Jake: Title alone should have you ready to throw down whatever it takes to see this. But then you’ll see that it has Sam Elliott and Ron Livingston in it. Wow. Just wow. Take all of my money.

Mark: Likely to be more horrorish than horror, but sometimes those are the ones that surprise you. This will obviously get our stamp of approval because it looks awesome, but can I just gripe for one second that they could’ve gotten rid of the “the” before bigfoot and it would flow just a little bit better? Wait, that’s two title gripes in a row now… I must be in a mood.


ST. AGATHA
02/08/2019 - VOD

 
 

Set in the 1950s in small-town Georgia, a pregnant young woman named Agatha seeks refuge in a convent. What first starts out as the perfect place to have a child turns into a dark layer where silence is forced, ghastly secrets are masked, and every bit of will power Agatha has is tested as she learns the sick and twisted truth of the convent and the odd people that lurk inside its halls.

Jack: Hey, here’s part of that pile of christian horror movies I was talking about earlier. I guess this could surprise me, but I’m pretty sure it will be fairly indistinguishable from the other 400 demonic horror movies that will come out this year.

Jake: Oh shit. Nunsploitation making a comeback. There are a lot of Sitges 2018 movies coming out on Feb 8th. I have not idea how good they all are but that’s at least a little exciting.

Mark: Are we all just going to accept that nunsploitation is a thing? If there is a setting or character archetype that has been in more than two movies does it just automatically qualify for a sploitation? I’ll tell you what, that rorschach-without-the-splotches masked homey shows promise, but everything else about the trailer leaves me very uninterested.


THE ISLE
02/08/2019 - LIMITED THEATRICAL

 
 

On a remote island off the west coast of Scotland in 1846 a heavy storm hits, causing a ship to sink. The survivors soon discover that the myth of a ghostly siren haunting the island may be true, driving them to uncover the truth whilst they battle to survive.

Jack: It’s giving me a headache that everyone in the trailer calls it “the island” when the movie is called “the isle.” I honestly didn’t even really retain any other information from the trailer. I would also guess that if you can’t find an island with rudimentary navigating equipment in a spinning rowboat, it’s not that the island--sorry, isle--doesn’t or shouldn't exist. It’s that you don’t have a sextant or whatever. Or a table.

Jake: A period piece about people running around on a spooky British island just isn’t doing it for me. I’m not sure if I’ve hit my period piece quota or if cold, damp windswept islands are too much to enthrall me in the dead of winter, but my excitement meter didn’t move at all while watching the trailer. This is going to be a pass from me.

Mark: For a moment I thought this might be a reimagining of Shock Waves and I got very excited. Although I can’t be certain that this isn’t that, I’m pretty sure no one will ever re-imagine that movie. At its best this could be something like It Comes at Night on an island and with a plot, so at least it has promise.


HAPPY DEATH DAY 2 U
02/13/2019 - THEATRICAL

 
 

Tree Gelbman discovers that dying over and over was surprisingly easier than the dangers that lie ahead.

Jack: The first one of these ended up being really fun, and this one looks no different. Jessica Rothe is charming and magnetic on screen, and, like the first movie, the very worst this one will be because of how good she is is good, stupid fun. I’m not giving it much hype beyond that, but that’s plenty. What are you people looking for these days? Sheesh.

Jake: I didn’t really think we’d be seeing Happy Death Day turn into a series and when this was announced I wasn’t really able to make heads or tails of it but hey, just watch the trailer if you’re skeptical. Seems fun, right?

Mark: What Jake fails to realize is that Happy Death Day made a cool $125MM on a $5MM budget, which is a return of 2500%. Granted, that’s basically all Blumhouse ever does (make piles of cash off small budget movies - the much worse Truth or Dare had a return of 2700%), but I’m not even remotely surprised they’re dipping back into this well. It’s funny. It’s got that easy to settle into college setting. It’s super easy to setup bonkers situations like skydiving in your skivvies. It satiates our subconscious need to watch Groundhog Day. They’d be dumb not to make it. And releasing it for Valentine’s Day as a date movie? Brilliant.


THE UNSEEN
02/26/2019 - DVD

 
 

A man, who years earlier mysteriously abandoned his family and isolated himself in a small northern town, returns for one last chance to reconnect with his troubled daughter. When she goes missing, he risks everything to find her, including exposing the fact that he is becoming invisible.

Jack: What does this have to do with Unbreakable? You know what? I don’t even care, this looks original as shit and totally awesome. The effects, though briefly shown, look largely practical and great. Mark me down.

Jake: Damn this guy gets all fucked up. If that’s what getting a superpower looks like I don’t want it. Too much drama and I like my guts on the inside of my skin, thanks.

Mark: I honestly think the best thing this movie can do is avoid using the invisibility as a hamfisted metaphor for anything. For one, it will lead to a bunch of people arguing about whether or not it has a deeper meaning, which will generate both word of mouth and possibly create some interesting fan theories. For two, it can allow the movie to focus on the actual interesting part of its story which is that this dude is literally turning invisible for no reason and it looks fucking weird. That’s what I want to see. If the effects are pulled off even remotely well then this could be a phenomenally interesting little flick. Hopefully it actually comes out… (it’s been kicked around the release schedule for a bit).


TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1

TOP 1:

Jack: Darkness Visible - I cannot get over the cinematography and use of color in that trailer. If this continues that and has a halfway competent story, it will be excellent.

Jake: The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot - for having the best title ever and then showing me who is in the movie.

Mark: Piercing - I’m already on their list. I might as well lean in, right? The bloody fishbowl murder movies are not typically my thing at all, but if this movie has any of the charm and editing prowess of the trailer then I’ll be all the way in on this one.

BOTTOM 1:

Jack: Down - This appears to have an unoriginal premise with very little to back that up. No thanks.

Jake: The Mermaid: Lake of the Dead - I was damn close to picking Golem but the over-reliance on jumpscares in this trailer bodes terribly for the quality of the film as a whole. There are some other forgettable movies this month, but I have the feeling this one could be a rage-inducing piece of work.

Mark: St Agatha - Nuns and convents don’t really resonate with me at all as a horror element. I just don’t see any avenues where I find this movie either engrossing or entertaining.


Horror Release Roundup January 2019

Welcome back, dear reader, and happy new year! If you’re reading this then you must’ve survived the apocalypse and managed not to look at any otherworldly zephyrs of suicide inducing leaf movement. 2019 greets us with a frankly lackluster number of new horror movies coming out. But what the month may lack in quantity, it may just make up for in quality, as there’s some heavy hitters coming in.

The Horror Release Roundup is our recurring feature breaking down the screams and scares that are heading your way every month. This time around we have everything (or at least our attempt at everything) coming at you in January, 2019. Enjoy the trailers and our respective thoughts below.

Interested in reading up on previous months? Try checking out our archive.


Escape Room
01/04/2019 - Theatrical

 
 

Six strangers find themselves in circumstances beyond their control, and must use their wits to survive.

Jack: I’m actually really surprised this concept hasn’t been brought to the big screen as a horror flick before now, because it fits perfectly. Almost . . . suspiciously perfectly? I really like the Cube-style modular rooms of terror this looks like it’s bringing, and it looks very well put together. Also Karen from Daredevil is in this thing! She’s a good actor. So there’s that.

Jake: This movie looks super duper fun. I don’t know if it will be very good, but I’d be shocked if I wasn’t entertained. Plus it has Tyler Labine in it, so you know you want to see it. If it sounds interesting, I’d recommend not watching the trailer because that thing seems SPOILERY AS FUCK.

Mark: If your curious, Minos was the dickhole king of Crete who commissioned Daedalus’ famous labyrinth and eventually became the judge of the dead in Hades. So if that's not foreshadowing than I don't know what is. This really strikes me as having the same vibe as Jigsaw, the Saw franchise reboot that came out in 2017, but it doesn’t appear that the two movies share any DNA. That movie surprised me with how good it was (especially in relation to how bad the franchise had gotten before it), and I’m hoping that this one does the same. There’s just some part of my lizard brain that likes these exceptionally complicated yet somehow poetic traps that force characters to confront their past. I’m not sure I’ll ever get bored of that setup.


Rust Creek
01/04/2019 - Limited Theatrical

 
 

An overachieving college student gets lost on her way to a job interview. A wrong turn leaves her stranded deep in the Kentucky forest. The woman must defend herself against the harsh elements and a band of ruthless outlaws. She is forced into an uneasy alliance with a strange loner who has unknown intentions.

Jack: You know, for a concept as tired as the wrong-turn leads to hillbillies wanting to kill you, this actually looks pretty innovative and cool. I do predict that this will have a least a few twists along the way, but the kind of twist that you can see coming from well earlier, along the way. What? I’m eloquent.

Jake: This seems a lot more thriller than horror but we’ll include it here because this wrong turn genre is for real and the hillbilly cat & mouse game can get pretty ugly. Will it in this flick? I doubt it but I’m also usually wrong.

Mark: As Jake said, this will likely be pretty low on the scare factor score, but pretty high on the intensity factor score. Moreover, it actually looks like a pretty solid movie on its own right even outside the confines of the horror genre. If this one lands itself on any of the major distribution channels I’ll plan on giving it a watch.


The Vanishing (aka ‘Keepers’)
01/04/2019 - Limited Theatrical

 
 

Three lighthouse keepers on the remote Flannan Isles find a hidden trunk of gold, leading to their mysterious disappearance.

Jack: By “based on true events,” do they mean that one time a lighthouse keeper disappeared? Cool, good work. Also that trailer gave way too much of the movie’s plot away. I kind of thought we were moving away from that particular issue, but here we are. Nothing about this looks bad, but it sure doesn’t look exciting to me either.

Jake: Another possibly horrorish movie coming out this month, but at least this one asks the age old question, “what’s in the box?” At very best, this seems like it could be in the same-ish psychological sector as something like Black Mountain side, which, to be clear, it absolutely won’t be but we have to make exciting comparisons that are totally unfounded or we aren’t doing our jobs.

Mark: It sorta sends the wrong message to have the opening lines of your trailer be “we don’t talk about this.” If that’s true then, well, what exactly are you talking about? I am also immediately dubious of anything that claims to be “based on true events.” Especially, because it seems that these people disappeared and presumably never reappeared. Should read more along the lines of “based on a dramatized version of something that could’ve happened we suppose.” Man, I should quit my job and go into marketing.


Pledge
01/11/2019 - Limited Theatrical, VOD

 
 

A group of college freshmen pledge an exclusive fraternity but soon realize there's more at stake than they could have ever imagined.

Jack: I’m confused about the “this isn’t a frat” line. Like, did these guys pledge a regular, well-established frat but it was taken over by lunatics for the night, or does this frat do this pretty routinely? Frats have some heft paperwork to comply with, and I think I’d need like 45 minutes of story to explain how a frat is continuously getting away with it. Not that I’d want to watch 45 minutes of explanations about how a frat skirts administrative regulations, but I’d need it to be satisfied. It’s hard being me.

Jake: I don’t know if this is trying to be serious or funny or both, but I’m a little concerned about the tone with this one. Granted, this is just a trailer and we see plenty of trailers that are waaaay different than the movie. Still, I’m feeling a bit funny about the odor wafting from the direction of this flick. I’m going to play it cautiously.

Mark: I suppose it was only a matter of time before we got a hazing as torture porn style movie (which also might have some Would You Rather mixed in for good measure). Truth be told, I’m actually rather surprised it took this long. The only other movie I can think of that is in the same space is The Skulls, and even then it’s only kind of. This might not be good, but at least it’s a setup that is relatively fresh.


Glass
01/18/2019 - Theatrical

 
 

Security guard David Dunn uses his supernatural abilities to track Kevin Wendell Crumb, a disturbed man who has twenty-four personalities.

Jack: Don’t do that. You know about Glass. It’s going to be great. You’re going to watch it.

Jake: This will be a good movie that is extremely well done and the acting chops that will be on display are otherworldly, and I don’t give a shit. When we enter superhero territory, I’m out hard. I hate superhero movies.

Mark: Coming off what I thought was a truly stellar supporting role in Birdbox, Sarah Paulson is one of those people that I want to see everything that she touches. Jake is right in saying that this is going to be a cavalcade of talent, and the fact that Anya Taylor Joy only gets like 8 seconds of screen time in the trailer is a great indication of this. I actually do like superhero movies, so I’ll be reporting back on this one. Only thing is this: I fully expect this to not be a horror movie.


The Final Wish
01/24/2019 - Limited Theatrical

 
 

After the death of his father, Aaron returns home to help his grief-stricken mother and to confront his past. Going through his dad's belongings, he comes across a mysterious item that is more than it seems.

Jack: Ugggh. What even is this? Is this in the same world as Wishmaster? It’s got Tony Todd in it, so they’re clearly pulling for some kind of nostalgic allusions. But then it looks like it’s taking itself totally seriously too. I do not like that combination.

Jake: I don’t know about you, but I prefer my djinn to have some personality. This one seems to be all bite and no bark. All wheat and no chaff, nahmean? That said, the movie made sure to let you know it’s going to share some DNA with Final Destination, so here’s hoping for some entertaining kills.

Mark: Of course Tony Todd is in this. And of course he has some expositional knowledge about the exact nature of things that are happening. I like this cast. I like this concept. I’m not totally sure when it is we’ll actually be able to see this movie given their weird one-night-only release, but I’ll be trying to watch as soon as it becomes widely available..


Top 1 / Bottom 1


Top 1:

Jack: Glass - This is going to be well acted and well put together, and polish off a trilogy that I have quite enjoyed the first two installments of. This is what I’m looking for.

Jake: Escape Room - Fuck it. We are in the vice grip of winter and I want something entertaining.

Mark: The Final Wish - There are only 6 movies this month and two of them are massive blockbusters that we’ve seen coming for a while. I’m picking The Final Wish because it surprised me with some interesting content and I think it actually looks promising as long as you can get past the makeup effects on the djinn.

Bottom 1:

Jack: The Final Wish - Whatever this movie was going for, I’m almost certain they missed the mark. If it’s just trying to wink at Wishmaster, I’m out. If it’s trying to take itself totally seriously, then why the nods to Wishmaster? I’m out.

Jake: Glass - must be a pretty good month so I’ll put the “objectively not horror but all the horror fans will be talking about it so we do too” superhero movie here.

Mark: Pledge - Unique premise, but the trailer leaves the execution looking lackluster. There isn’t really a bottom of the barrel pick this month so my hand is forced.