Alright ya-hoos. It's back! It’s the Horror Release Roundup for April, 2016! HRR is where we let you know what horror movies are coming out over the next month, and we’ll even give you a juicy little morsel of our thoughts on them based on the trailer. Is there a movie we missed? Likely. Let us know what we’ve omitted either on Twitter or in the comments at the bottom of the page. Pick your favorite. I mean, shit, do we have to do everything?
DARLING - 4/1/16 - Theatrical (4/8/16 - VOD)
Jack: Mickey Keating is becoming a bananas-prolific director. And the best part is that none of the movies seem to share a tone or style at all. That’s some pretty insane depth of film making ability. He’s gonna have to be on point with this one though, because that film noire thing seems like it could get old quick.
Jake: This looks interesting to me. One thing I know for sure - Mark will hate it because Mr. Mickey Keating is again rolling out Lauren Ashley Carter in a starring role. That alone makes me want to watch it with the crew.
Mark: I could see this movie being good… but I doubt I’ll be able to get past its schtick. I like a little bit of artsy in my horror from time to time, but this looks like it will be too much. It insists upon itself, Lois, it insists upon itself.
THE GIRL IN THE PHOTOGRAPHS - 4/1/16 - VOD
Jack: At one point the trailer had text flash that said “1000 Screams.” Why would it do that? I think it was a pretty well-put-together trailer save for that. The movie looks like it’s gonna have four-too-many twists.
Jake: Looks promising. I like the design of the obligatory slasher villain mask. I wonder if they’ll go to White Castle?
Mark: It’s been awhile since there’s been a new slasher added to the genre. If this is a halfway decent entry into the genre I think it could be pretty exciting, if for no other reason than there isn’t much competition.
FLIGHT 7500 - 4/5/16 - VOD
Jack: Well if nothing else that trailer got John Denver seriously stuck in my head. Actually though, I’m really excited for this movie. One common thing among all the scariest movies is that the filmmakers set it up so they control variables without dumb forced plot and that can make the viewer feel really isolated. This movie has that potential.
Jake: Full disclosure - I have some level of flight anxiety. Planes are not my favorite. I’m not sure this will strike the right chords with me though, as supernatural shit on a plane somehow seems less scary than just a regular plane crash. Still excited to see where it goes.
Mark: This movie seems cursed. It was originally slated to come out in 2012 and then it got hit with a long string of delays. It was finally supposed to be released in April 2014, but then in March 2014 MH370 went missing so they shitcanned it. In any case, this one will finally be available to view on a wide platform. Of the myriad things that scare me planes and Japanese horror movies are near the top, so I’m pretty excited for this one.
THE ENTITY - 4/5/16 - VOD
Jack: I really hope this movie is good. There’s some good stuff in the trailer, and that blinking statue thing was fucking terrifying. Unfortunately, it looks like all the movie’s best scares were in that trailer and the movie itself is quickly going to become overwrought.
Jake: This trailer was roughly 1:15 of shaky-cam and :10 of statues opening their mouths. What’s exciting is that films that illustrate this much repetition in the trailer typically have real drinking game potential.
Mark: Welp, that was frenetic. This is technically a US release of a Peruvian movie that came out last year, but we’re including it here because Murica. I like found footage and all, but this one looks like a pass to me. I just don’t really see it bringing anything new to the table.
THE EXORCISM OF ANNA ECKLUND - 4/8/16 - Theatrical
Jack: You gus. You guys. The first line of text in that trailer was “A Once Normal Woman” . . . What?! Getting possessed by demons typically isn’t described as “not being normal anymore.” That’s the line you use in an afterschool special for the girl who starts experiementing with drugs. Or an X-Men movie. Except not “woman” because they’re the X-Men. It’s right there in the title.
Jake: “Based on a true story”. Typically a kiss of death. In this case, it’s even more so because I am so fucking sick of exorcism movies. If this does anything remotely new, I will be shocked.
Mark: This looks terrible. Really bad.
BEFORE I WAKE - 4/8/16 - Theatrical
Jack: You really think the new kid isn’t going to get fucked up having to look at a giant portrait of your dead but better son that this new one is clearly just a replacement for? No wonder he’s got fucking nightmares.
Jake: The solution is ALWAYS to give the kid more pills. Do it. Do it.
Mark: I’m happy to hear this movie didn’t end up getting canceled as was rumored a month ago. It seems like it’s a decent concept that shouldn’t be too far removed from a Nightmare on Elm Street kinda thing.
THE DEAD ROOM - 4/8/16 - VOD
Jack: Well that’s your standard ghost-hunting crew right there: grizzled old guy; techie nerd; and the pretty girl. Nailed it. I don’t want to write this movie off right off the bat, but man it looks like it has just stone nothing original going on.
Jake: The only thing worse than saying “based on a true story” is switching that language up to say “inspired by”. I’m typically turned off by that sort of bullshit, but this looks like it could be well filmed, if nothing else. Then again, when the cards in your hand involve New Zealand’s Southern Alps as a backdrop, you’re playing with an advantage. Will watch to see how they decide to fuck it up.
Mark: Uh oh, guys. This is a true story. I guess ghosts really do exist. I’ll probably end up seeing this just to get a flavor for New Zealand horror, but outside of that reason the trailer didn’t inspire a lot of confidence.
HUSH - 4/8/16 - Netflix Exclusive
Jack: Well I didn’t particularly like Oculus (save for Karen Gillan’s performance), so this being from the same team isn’t really a selling point. But that said, this movie looks like it could be good. What I like most about it is how capable and resourceful the protagonist seems.
Jake: This looks like a unique riff on the home invasion subgenre, but I’m wondering how well they will execute on the concept. If she is deaf and mute, then why is she alone in the woods in the first place? Seems irresponsible.
Mark: I was hoping this would be a movie about the Batman serial killer, but alas it’s just a survival horror flick. Seems like this one is a mix of The Strangers with Wait Until Dark. Looks like a solid concept and I really hope they deliver on it. As they say in the sports world - this one has a lot of upside.
THE INVITATION - 4/8/2016 - VOD
Jack: Kind of hard to tell what’s going on from that trailer, but the sound design is pretty great, and I’ve traditionally liked movies of the building interpersonal distrust variety.
Jake: There is a certain way to handle a film trailer, and the horror genre is exceptionally lacking on that front. Routinely, movies just prematurely ejaculate everything into a 2 min trailer and it ruins the whole experience. This is not one of those cases. It seems tense and I have no idea what’s going on, but my interest is piqued.
Mark: Good ol’ psychological horror. I have no idea what to expect from this movie, but the buzz around the film festival circuit seems to be pretty positive so I can’t help but get my hopes up a little bit.
HOLIDAYS - 4/13/16 - Tribeca Film Fest
Jack: This looks like a pretty good time. Assuming that they keep the tone of that trailer that is. Whoever cut that trailer together nailed it. Self-aware, taking itself just seriously enough, breaks in the right points, color me excited.
Jake: I like anthologies, and, as I mentioned in our Nightmare Before Christmas review, one using the different holidays as its backdrop is something that needs to be made. Now I just kind of wish Jack Skellington was involved though. Maybe he could be like the Crypt Keeper tying all the epic yarn together. Shit. Ima go make a movie.
Mark: So it’s a horror anthology about a bunch of different holidays. I’m down. It’s weird that the thing I was most excited about in the trailer was the song though. That thing was bumpin.
13 CAMERAS - 4/15/16 - VOD
Jack: Well holy shit. That old man is built like a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. Seriously though, he looks like he has the potential to be one of the all time great horror villains.
Jake: Not many trailers succeed at making me feel unsettled but this one… HOLY SHIT THAT DUDE IS ASTOUNDINGLY SHREDDED.
Mark: Creepy. As. Hell. Stalker voyeurism doesn’t seem to get enough pull in the world of horror movies.
TALE OF TALES - 4/22/16 - Limited Theatrical
Jack: Is this thing really a horror movie? Although if they’re just pulling an Audition-style twist and the whole thing follows John C. Reilly in that fucking terrifying steampunk scuba-suit, then maybe you’ve got something. Also how does that suit work? Wait, I know just the guys to tackle this.
Jake: How is John C. Reilly in this? How is this horror? If you like Game of Thrones you likely have a raging semi right now.
Mark: This is somehow classified as a horror movie. Really looks more like a fantasy romp to me, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see. I don’t have high hopes for a big scare factor, but whatever... at the very least it looks like it’ll be pretty entertaining.
GREEN ROOM - 4/25/16 - Theatrical
Jack: What did I miss there? I have no idea what the fuck this movie’s about. I’m into it, whatever it is. Looks pretty unsettling. I was hoping to come up with a joke when I got to this part of the paragraph, but what are you gonna do?
Jake: Band-centered take on the invasion flick? Patrick Stewart as a villain? Party on, Wayne.
Mark: Holy shit. Star studded. I will absolutely be watching this movie purely because of its cast. That has literally never gone wrong for me.
TOP 1 BOTTOM 1:
To wrap up April's horror movies, we’re all going to give our most anticipated movie and our least anticipated movie. Let us know what you're most and least excited for.
Jack: Flight 7500 - If they get this right, it could be so terrifically scary. Here’s hoping that they do. Even if it’s been delayed for so long that you no longer need to turn off your electronic devices during take off so that quip falls flat . . .
Jake: Holidays - This was a really tough month for me to pick, and I waffled between Darling, The Invitation, Holidays, and Green Room. That alone bodes well for the month in horror. Ultimately, I’m going with Holidays because I think this is the movie that fits most squarely into the “needs to be made” category. I am interested in why this is an April release, though. Is Earth Day going to tie it all together? Is this about climate change? Fuckin’ #ThanksObama.
Mark: Green Room - I mean come on. Patrick Stewart. I’m in agreement with Jake about this month, though. Too many titles to choose from.
Jack: The Dead Room - Sure, maybe The Exorcism of Anna Ecklund is the sexy pick, but I think I spy a real clunker in the Dead Room. I could be wrong, but damn this thing looks cookie cutter.
Jake: The Exorcism of Anna Ecklund - Nooooope.
Mark: The Exorcism of Anna Ecklund - To elaborate on Jake’s response: Way Way Way Noooooooooooooooooope.
Live reactions to Hellhouse LLC 2. Wow this is awful.