Well, everyone, we've done it. We've made it two years. This is our 25th Horror Release Roundup. I'm not gonna bother going back to count how many trailers we've watched so I'll just assume it's roughly 1 million. Wow, 1 million trailers. What a ride.
March is shaping up to be a pretty good month, and a whole hell of a lot better than our original HRR. We're bringing you another batch of movies that should be available for you to see this month in one form or another... particularly if mother nature has you trapped in your house.
Midnight, New Year's Eve: when all the hopes of new beginnings come to life - except for Lindsey and Jeff Pittman, whose strained marriage faces the ultimate test after they cover up a terrible crime and find themselves entangled in a Hitchcockian web of deceit and madness.
Jack: Just a quick little legal tip for all you would be murderers. Murder is murder regardless of whether or not you “get away with it.” Also, there’s no statute of limitations for murder, so getting away with it isn’t something to declare a few hours after the deed. Also, also, if there was really nothing you could have done, then you should have called the police, because that shit wasn’t murder.
Jake: Let me tell you something. If you are going to mention Hitchcock in the synopsis of your movie AND throw a bunch of selection award fig leaf icon things in your trailer, you should probably be able to stage a believable slap. And the slap that that girl from Starry Eyes slaps is not a believable slap.
Mark: God damn people in horror movies are bad at driving. Like, can we get past this trope of accidentally obliterating someone on your drive home and deciding to hide the body? If not, can we at least make it look more believable? It really doesn’t seem that hard.
03/02/2018 - LIMITED THEATRICAL
In 19th century Estonia, a village is inhabited by personified Black Death, spirits, werewolves and the devil himself. A peasant girl, Liina, longs for a village boy Hans, while Hans longs for a daughter of an aristocrat. Both try to use mythical powers so that their unrequited love could change into requited love.
Jack: I have no idea what in the fuck was happening even a little bit there, but I can tell you this much: I was frightened. That was legitimately scary. And since when can you show bush on youtube?
Jake: This looks like something you’d see projected onto a wall as part of an installation at an art museum and then watch for eight minutes before you realize that it will take you three days to get through everything at the pace you are going so you abruptly turn on the afterburners and blow through everything else in a half hour before going to a bar and ordering a Hamms tallboy.
Mark: I love the mouth harp. I also realize that the mouth harp is not a piano, but I am counting this as a point in my “single piano key trailer score” wager. Conceptually it’s close enough. Because I don’t speak Dutch or 19th century Estonian I had to turn on the auto translated english subtitles. One of the first lines is “family standing seem in dark concept,” and frankly I could not have summarized this better myself.
03/02/2018 - LIMITED THEATRICAL
03/06/2018 - VOD
Over the course of one torturous night, a suicidal woman and the violent home intruder that saved her life test the limits of human endurance and the boundaries of forgiveness.
Jack: This looks like a significant step up from most of its ultra low budget peers. It doesn’t look great, mind you, but it actually doesn’t look all that bad. That’s . . . something?
Jake: Pretty sure The Tingler has a cameo in this trailer. Why? That’s weird.
Mark: This looks terrible. I definitely don’t want to see this. Blue Fox is gunning for an UnCork’d rule on this one, and I feel inclined to give it to them.
THE RAVENOUS (LES AFFAMES)
03/03/2018 - NETFLIX
In a small, remote village in upstate Quebec, things have changed. Locals are not the same anymore - their bodies are breaking down and they have turned against their loved ones. A handful of survivors goes hiding into the woods, looking for others like them.
Jack: Hey, hey filmmaker. Explain this to me. How come when I’m actively trying to keep my lawn nice and green it dies and looks brown and shitty, but these jabronis just up and have an apocalypse and keep their lawns perfectly green and manicured. The fuck is up with that? Lawn continuity aside, this movie actually looks really good for a zombie flick.
Jake: So, are these people becoming zombies or is this just a depiction of a new-wave of modern art?
Mark: I like that the trailer seems to focus on the process of turning into zed-word. It doesn’t otherwise seem like they’re doing much new with the genre so it’ll rely on the individual performances and strength of script. That being said, I am intrigued as to why these zombies have adopted a penchant for amateur junk architecture.
03/06/2018 - VOD
After the death of her mother, an estranged daughter struggles to save her brother, and those around her from a malevolent faceless spirit.
Jack: Things I already hate about this movie include the story, the acting, the delivery of exposition, the effects, and the fact that they call it a “slender man-type movie.” Okay. Take those things out . . . that’s still a movie somehow. Did they spoil the whole fucking thing by showing the apparently Native American warrior getting killed and tortured?
Jake: I haven’t seen many trailers where the action is cut with a dinner-table discussion about the events of the movie so novelty points should be awarded I guess, but holy shit it ruins the tension. Also this CG blood is preposterous.
Mark: Okay, so, the positives: it looks moderately well made and the world has needed a non-Marble-Hornets slender man movie for a while. The negatives: that is A LOT of CG smoke. Probably too much CG smoke. Actually, any amount of CG smoke is too much CG smoke, so this is definitely going to have too much.
03/06/2018 - VOD
A little girl with formidable powers imagines into existence the Sandman, a terrible monster from her nightmares that brings harm to anyone who wants to hurt her.
Jack: Wait. Like, that Stan Lee? Why? Isn’t that guy’s schedule busy enough having a cameo in the roughtly 30000 Marvel movies that will come out this year? Don’t fall asleep? Is he Freddy Kruger? Or is it just that you’re way easier prey when you fall asleep? Coming soon, the tale of man being stalked by a murderous snail. Don’t fall asleep! You know, because otherwise you’ll easily be able to outrun it.
Jake: Mr. Babadook > Mr. Sandman Comes at Night
Mark: Jigsaw? What are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be making traps and flushing key-dongles down the drain? EP’d by Stan Lee? Whaaaaaa? For reals though this movie premiered on SyFy channel back in October, but now it’s getting a wider release on DVD and VOD. God bless us. Every one.
THE TERRIBLE TWO
03/06/2018 - VOD
Albert and Rose Poe mourn the death of their daughters on the one year anniversary of their death. Then horror ensues as it is apt to do.
Jack: That sound effect they used sounds astonishingly like sprinkler swing back around to restart its arc. That had to be on purpose. Also, I might have to see this movie just to figure out how those girls are supposed to have died. It showed their bodies laying, seemingly unblemished, on the deck. No fall, no pinata related tragedy, no nothing.
Jake: Pro tip: crack eggs on flat surfaces, not edges. Actually, that’s not even a pro tip. That’s some basic shit... I do not care about this movie.
Mark: Wait, wait, wait. They could’ve chosen to call this movie The Gruesome Twosome and they chose not to? Man, with that prayer she’s really begging for a Monkey Paw sitch. Do you want to lose your ability to feel physical pain? Because that is how you lose your ability to feel physical pain. Actually, this trailer looks even less subtle than that. She just goes crazy. Case closed.
03/07/2018 - HULU
Charlie Hicks and Elaine Renko are two mismatched police officers who, whilst investigating what appears to be the routine death of a hacker in London, stumble upon proof that due to a mysterious cosmic event, the world is facing certain destruction in five years, a fact the powers-that-be would very much like to keep under wraps.
Jack: So did the hacker hack a comet? What is happening here? He should have followed the white rabbit left at that turn at Albuquerque. Was that a joke? No? That was nothing? Fuck you, read my nonexistent Matrix/Merry Melodies crossover fanfic and that shit will be hilarious. I’m a visionary.
Jake: This is probably more horrorish than horror, but whatever. These people look like they’re having a bad time. I'll just leave this here: Link.
Mark: Is this horror? Surely it’s existential horror, but does that really count? This seems like it belongs more with Armageddon or Deep Impact types. Then again, the second half of the trailer does involve a lot of machete wielding masked killers so it probably belongs here.
THE STRANGERS: PREY AT NIGHT
03/09/2018 - THEATRICAL
A family staying in a secluded mobile home park for the night are visited by three masked psychopaths, to test their every limit.
Jack: So I’m pretty excited about this, but cautiously so. Of all slasher/home invasion movies that definitely don’t need a sequel, the premise of this one actually lends itself to one pretty well. But I still think they’re going to refer to and rely on that first one way too much.
Jake: This movie won’t be as good as the first because Dennis Reynolds won’t be there to get obliterated immediately upon entering the fold. Also, this is reason #237 why you should always have a gun on your person and ready to fire.
Mark: I love this trailer purely because of the musical choices. What? You think I’m talking about Tommy James and Shondells? Nah. I’m talking Streetcar. Remember kids, a stranger is just a friend you haven’t met.
03/09/2018 - THEATRICAL
Two upper-class teenage girls in suburban Connecticut rekindle their unlikely friendship after years of growing apart. Together, they hatch a plan to solve both of their problems-no matter what the cost.
Jack: I really dig the deadpan delivery throughout this whole thing. I also like that Anya Taylor-Joy is developing a thing for horror movies. I don’t even really have any jokes. This kind of just looks great.
Jake: See? Anton Yelchin carries a gun. And remember, the safety’s off so it could go off for like no reason. Also, how long ago was this filmed? I feel like dude’s been dead for a while now. They didn’t Weekend at Bernie’s him did they? Is that the twist?
Mark: Another pre-trailer trailer? HOLY SHIT ANTON YELCHIN IS BACK FROM THE GRAVE. This is #1. Unquestioned. ATJ and Anton is all I need. I’m in. In sooooo in. Flynn is not as in as I am. Flynn has nothing on me.
03/09/2018 - LIMITED THEATRICAL
Two scientists who share a romantic history are tasked with investigating unnatural animal behaviour on the site of a Manson Family-style cult's compound.
Jack: “How many indigents do you think have been tortured and murdered in these woods?” Like . . . three . . . absolute max. Does he think that torturing and killing homeless people is a particularly common occurrence? I’m not trying to say that people are as kind to indigents as they should be, but that’s a far cry from torturing and murdering so many you have to wax fucking poetic about it.
Jake: Hey viewer, just to make sure you’re aware this is an indie movie we’re gonna use the most lo-fi track imaginable and plenty of bloom effects...
Mark: Chidi in a horror movie? How will he reconcile all of this ethical dilemmas? This looks promising but I can’t get past the music playing the background. Is it intentionally clipped? It’s like they converted the mp3 to a jpeg and then back to an mp3 just for funsies. That’s not funsies guys, that’s anti-funsies.
BIRDBOY: THE FORGOTTEN CHILDREN
3/13/2018 - VOD
Three children decide to leave their homes looking for a better life.
Jack: So this looks awesome. Kind of a Miyzaki mixed with some Courage the Cowardly Dog with a little Samurai Jack thrown in for good measure. I adore all of those things. Mark me down.
Jake: This is terrifying to look at and it’s a fucking children’s movie. But then again, most children’s shit is scarier than anything made for adults. Just go ahead and read Rumpelstiltskin again if you think you disagree.
Mark: Okay. So today I learned that I have had a birdboy shaped hole in my soul for a while. This looks amazing. Why is there not more animation like this in the horror world? Hell, for that matter, why is there not more animation like this in the overall world?
CHILDREN OF THE CORN: RUNAWAY
03/13/2018 - VOD
A young, pregnant Ruth who escapes a murderous child cult in a small Midwestern town and spends the next decade living anonymously in an attempt to spare her son the horrors that she experienced as a child. She lands in the small Oklahoma town, but something is following her. Now, she must confront this evil or lose her child.
Jack: Hold right the fuck on. This is the tenth installment of the Children of the Corn Franchise, and the first was loosely based on a fucking short story by Stephen King. Nine full feature length movies later, you kind of have to give up the ghost on claiming that this is in any way related to a King story. Sorry.
Jake: Hey, Ruth. I’ve got an idea for you. If you are going to spend a decade on the run you might want to at least use it to get out of the Bible Belt.
Mark: How many CotCs have there been at this point? Jack says there's 10, but it really feels more like there have been close to 45. At first, I was excited since it’s a pretty impressive horror franchise, but then the trailer happened and I remembered that the franchise hasn’t been good since the original. And even that one was pretty hinky.
03/15/2018 - NETFLIX
Vienna, a woman is witness to a murder in a neighboring apartment. But she is also seen by the murderer, and her life turns upside down as she tries to protect herself.
Jack: No idea what’s going on here, but it doesn’t look half bad. It’s almost a given that I’ll be watching it if it comes out on Netflix. The barrier to entry is just so low.
Jake: I’ve been pretty impressed with what Netflix is adding of late so while I can’t even come close to making a reasonable judgement on anything in this trailer except the protagonist(?)’s jacket (it’s badass), I’ll blindly trust it and probably throw it on at some point this year. Viva la Die Hole.
Mark: Our second non-english trailer does a lot less with dialogue and the first. Probably a good move, because it means they focus more on the action. Like, dude getting his dick set on fire type of action. Also, I feel like we should comment on the fact that the untranslated name of this movie is basically “Die Hole.”
03/16/2018 - VOD
Paranormal investigator Zak Bagans documents the most authenticated case of possession in American history.
Jack: Does anything about this look exciting to anyone? I guess it doesn’t look bad, but I am having real trouble remaining interested in any of t. . . oh look, there went the last of my interest.
Jake: Movie or Travel Channel special? Also, FUCK Zak Bagans. Dude made this and he definitely planted those snakes. I grew up there and that’s some grade A bullshit. Doubt he feigned the windedness though.
Mark: Wait, view at my own risk? You maybe not want to tell me that 20% of the way through the trailer? You better be glad I’m not the litigious type because I don’t think this type legal disclaimer is binding in any way. This appears to be a feature-length film of the “ghost busting reality show” variety. I usually get tired of those shows almost immediately, so this one is treading on thin ice.
03/23/2018 - THEATRICAL, VOD
Two brothers return to the cult they fled from years ago to discover that the group's beliefs may be more sane than they once thought
Jack: These guys have enough good will built up from Spring that anything that I could criticize in this trailer I’m instead just going to assume went over my head or will be fixed in the final cut. Fair to the other movies? Maybe not. But other movies weren’t directed by the guys who did Spring.
Jake: The eagle-eared podcast listener will remember that this was my pick for most anticipated movie of 2018, so it should come as no surprise that I’m over the moons (both of them) to finally watch this thing. I’ve loved everything Benson and Moorhead have done so far, and my expectations are about as high as could be for this one as well.
Mark: Weird. That was weird. But as I incessantly had to tell people in highschool: “weird is good.” This is a very intriguing trailer, but I’m heavily concerned that I will be unable to get over the anticipation of seeing Jason Voorhees on the other end of that rope. Wait, is he pulling on the moon? Is Jason on the moon? Is this a sequel to Jason X? God I hope so. I’m so much more excited for this movie now.
03/23/2018 - VOD
A frustrated, angst-ridden teenage girl awakens something in the woods when she naively performs an occult ritual to evoke a witch to kill her mother.
Jack: I’ve been thinking about adopting the 80’s punk black and white patches on a jeans jacket with cut off sleeves look for a while now. How do we think that would play on a thirty year old man. I could pull that off. Right?
Jake: 2017 gave us a Dark Song and frankly, I do not need any more black magic for awhile. It’s not going to be as good. And if you’re going to go the demon summoning route, might as well just go with We Summoned a Demon.
Mark: I feel like the name of this movie was the result of some type of glitched out autocorrect. Perhaps the demon’s original name was Buddy Hackett? Bob Saget? Lemony Snicket? What if she summons Jim Carrey? Man, wouldn’t that be a trip. This movie looks pretty good. I am excited for it. Unfortunately, I will definitely be unable to remember its name.
03/23/2018 - THEATRICAL
A young woman is involuntarily committed to a mental institution, where she is confronted by her greatest fear--but is it real or a product of her delusion?
Jack: The thing about voluntary commitment is that if you checked yourself in, you can check yourself right the fuck back out. Also, those stalker texts were coming way too fast for him to have actually typed those out one by one. This actually looks really good and tense.
Jake: Hey, David. How ‘bout we dial it back a bit, hey bud? Just because she doesn’t answer your text in literally 2 seconds doesn’t mean that your relationship is in a catastrophic spiraOH… He’s a stalker. That makes so much more sensOH… she’s in a loony bin and none of this may be real in the first place. Not bad, movie. Not bad.
Mark: I’m very lukewarm on stalker horror. I get it, they’re scary. In fairness, they are likely the single most realistic scary thing in horror, but they just don’t do it for me. At least this one is adding the additional psychological twist.
03/23/2018 - VOD
A social media couple's camping trip is ruined by filmmakers making a documentary on how easy it is to track someone down off social media and kill them.
Jack: You know what really takes some of the gravitas about screaming about consequences? Having a dumb fucking Go Pro strapped to your beanie.
Jake: Missing from this trailer - incessant complaining about mosquitoes.
Mark: Did we really need a movie to tell us that telling the world you’re going camping on Facebook is a problem? I’m pretty sure there was a state farm commercial to that extent like a year ago. As an addendum, I will let the world know that the last thing she wanted to say was: “AHHHHHHHH AHHHHHHHH.”
03/27/2018 - VOD
A maniacal clown named Art, terrorizes three young women on Halloween night and everyone else who stands in his way.
Jack: Little late to the bandwagon on this one. Although with that said I’m pretty confident based on that trailer that this is not just another hanger-on meant to take advantage of a trend. This looks real. And scary.
Jake: Love the look of this film. Pure, shitty exploitative goodness. And I don’t know how to make any sense of what Mark is blathering about down there. This clown is scary looking. He’s got a thing with his teeth and I am NOT too comfortable with it.
Mark: A maniacal clown named Art you say? Methinks I may have stumbled upon a hidden meaning. If I’m able to get past the general low level of film quality then I think this will probably be surprisingly good. My wife is very coulrophobic so it’s generally pretty enjoyable to watch these types of movie with her to get her honest reactions. She seemed largely unphased by the trailer so maybe it’s not as scary as I thought it was.
03/27/2018 - VOD
Hell's Kitty is a comedy horror series based on the true life events of Nick, a Hollywood writer, and Angel, his possessed and very possessive pussycat.
Jack: This is a movie that’s trying really hard to be so bad it’s good. That’s a fine line to walk, and I’m concerned they’re not going to make it out of the just bad part of that.
Jake: Cats suck so unless this movie can promise me a scene as great as this one, I’m out. And I don’t think it can promise me that.
Mark: A-Z Horror is a decidedly pro-cat website and podcast, and yet… I don’t know what to think about this. Pretty confident it’s going to be bad. Schlocky and goofy, but also definitely bad. That CG looks like it cost about as much as it probably did.
#Screamers is now supposed to be getting a VOD release on March 20th. Call it a coin flip after the missed release date back in October, 2017.
TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1:
Jack: Birdboy: the Forgotten Children - I cannot even describe how excited I am for this movie. It looks like a truly unique and wonderful film.
Jake: The Endless - Because I keep promises. Like a real hero.
Mark: Thoroughbreds - Not even close. This looks soooooo good. There is 0% chance this movie lives up to my brain hype.
Jack: Flay - Everything about this movie looks bad. Plus I think they spoiled the damn thing right there in the trailer.
Jake: Flay - This looks shitty. Marble Hornets was good because it knew its medium and executed on it perfectly. This is a good example of how that doesn’t mean the concept travels all that well.
Mark: Midnighters - Tense psychological thrillers are not my thing, and this one also looks to have the unfortunate weight of also being poorly conceived and poorly acted.