The ides of March are upon us, friends, and with them come a metric shit-ton of horror movie releases! HRR is a compilation of trailers of all the horror flicks coming out over the next month, complete a juicy little morsel of our own thoughts on each movie. Is there a movie we missed? Unsurprising, because as we just mentioned... Metric shit-ton. We're sure there are more where that came from, too. Let us know what we’ve omitted either on Twitter or in the comments at the bottom of the page. Don't leave us hangin'. Team effort, y'all.
DON'T KILL IT
03/03/2017 - VOD
Jack: Dolph Lundgren: Demon Hunter. Yes. Mark me down. This thing looks full of gore and badassery and just general merriment.
Jake: Dolph Lundgren smells something that stinks… Crrrriiiiiiiiiimmmmmeeee… Demon crime. Yeah, I’ll be watching this.
Mark: I believe this movie is also being released via Dolph Lundgren punching the movie directly into your eyeballs, a nary used but highly rewarding venue for content delivery. I’m with the other two guys on this one: not a lot to say other than hot damn this is gonna be a fun (but also terrible) one.
03/03/2017 - THEATRICAL, VOD
Jack: Hey you guys. . . Why does this look terrible? This looks just awful. Is it James Franco’s performance? I’ve liked him in stuff before, but shit this just looks bad.
Jake: Jack, you’re not giving enough credit to the fact that there are (at minimum) 3 outstanding bowties in this trailer. Other than that, I don’t have much on the positive side to say. And you know what your momma told you about when you don’t have something nice to say...
Mark: So is this the horror version of 50 Shades? Jimmy Franco seems like he has two modes: ultra-stoner and unsettlingly-pervy. This movie appears to fall in the latter (so.. I mean… I guess you get some points there for being unsettling), but I’m frankly hoping Seth Rogen shows up at some point to bring back the Franco we all know and tolerate.
03/03/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL, VOD
Jack: Okay, back on track. This one, I’m excited for. It looks beautifully shot and like I’ll be trying to figure out what’s going on throughout the whole damn thing. But in a good way, not an annoying one. You feel me?
Jake: Nah, not really. This by no means looks like a bad movie, but something about its mystery is just totally whiffing on capturing me. Oh well. At least one of us can be disappointed by it. Jack.
Mark: SINGLE PIANO KEY TRAILER WHOOOOO YEAH! Another month down, and the most resoundingly easy horror trailer music is still going strong. This one at least adds a little variety by changing from a single piano key to a single violin note. Perhaps that is hinting at a depth to this movie that I’m really hoping it can achieve. I’m siding more with Jake than Jack on this one. It looks good, but I doubt it’s going to be much of a head scratcher.
CAPTURE KILL RELEASE
03/07/2017 - VOD
Jack: What is “prom night for murder”? You wanted to skip the murder and go to your buddy’s shed to watch him play Zelda, but instead you got roped into going to the murder and it was weird? Because that’s what I take from that. That was everyone’s prom experience . . . right?
Jake: I don’t care how good the sex is, no relationship can be made stronger by gutting living humans together for sport. Well, there was that one time, but… nope. Nevermind. I stand by it.
Mark: Spoiler alert for the podcast, but we’ll be watching this one officially for the site shortly. It was one of my picks so I’m clearly going to bat for this one. Early film festival showings of this one seemed to go well so I’m equal parts excited to take a whack at this one, and terrified that the wife is going to be mad at me for making her watch a movie where they murder a cat.
DEVIL IN THE DARK
03/07/2017 - VOD
Jack: That rabbit hole of brambles and antlers reminds me of the tunnel of bushes you needed to crawl through to get to Totoro. Though I’m guessing what’s on the other side of this one will be significantly less comfortable and adorable. You never know though . . .
Jake: This month’s first “people getting fucked with in the woods” flick! I’m not sick of these yet so this is exciting for me. This looks to have some promise, but I definitely wonder where this will fall on the psychological vs reality continuum.
Mark: What the hell is the point of including a flashback in the trailer? Just start it at the “30 years later” scene. Just as effective and keeps the trailer simple. Aside from that, very effective trailer. The “devil” looks a little schmaltzy but it could be okay depending on how much screen time it gets. Hint: less is better.
GALAXY OF HORRORS
03/07/2017 - VOD
Jack: There is so much shit going on in this trailer that I can barely handle it. That said, the production actually doesn’t look half bad, so I’m going in with an open mind. You know what? No. I can’t handle it. My mind was so open that it just changed right here on the spot. What does that mean for the movie? Well . . . frankly, I’ve lost track of this particular train of thought. I bet it was insightful, though.
Jake: Well, I can honestly say I’ve never seen something quite like that before. What a weird hodgepodge of shit this seems to have going on. As with any anthology flick, the shorts will be of varying quality but based on the trailer, the ceiling doesn’t seem that high. I have not a goddamned clue what thread, if any, ties these together either which could make it super fucking jarring.
Mark: The movie called Galaxy of Horrors opens with someone in the woods. Off to a good start. I kinda like the rope head guy, but the rest of the seem incredibly lackluster. Also, pro tip for the editing team, don’t end your fucking trailer that way. Jump scares are scary because you don’t see them coming, not because you saw them in the trailer.
GHOSTS OF DARKNESS
03/07/2017 - VOD
Jack: This guy’s got it. Drinking is the best way to find things out. Has there been a skeptic v. believer horror movie where that conflict was the sole focus before? Probably. Can I think of one? Well I’ll just have to go “find that out” for a few hours down at the bar.
Jake: Ok so this is a weird one for me. Horrible, generic movie name with what is surely a shoestring budget and what seems like a premise lacking any punch. Yet the trailer seems decent to me for some reason. I was alarmingly engaged throughout. I can’t really reconcile that so I’ll just go drink instead.
Mark: I’m beginning to have a pavlovian response to the Uncork’d Entertainment production card. Every single goddamn month they put out two or three movies that are so bad that I’m sad I have to waste five minutes of my time watching them. This is no example. I’m instituting a rule: until I see something interesting coming out of this group I’m just going to completely ignore them. We’ll see how that goes next month when they inevitably release like six more movies.
KONG: SKULL ISLAND
03/10/2017 - THEATRICAL
Jack: Well hot damn. This thing’s got a fucking incredible cast huh? Like . . . holy shit. John Goodman and John C. Reilly? This one has all the Johns! You’ve gotta see it just for that. Plus all the other incredible actors.
Jake: Stacked cast, we’ve got here, eh boys? For real though, this looks fun. You kind of know what you’re getting with Kong. Big time production value, big time acting chops, and a big time ape. In fact, I’m pretty sure this is the largest Kong’s ever been. He’s like the size of a fucking mountain in this trailer. Fucking HGH, man… Gets the best of ‘em.
Mark: You know, it’s an interesting conversation to talk about where this type of movie fits in with the horror genre. King Kong and Godzilla were pretty scary when they first came out (I assume), but now they’ve changed over mostly to action movies. I really don’t care, because I will be seeing this regardless and it looks awesome, but it’s an interesting conversation to have. That’s all I’m saying. Use it to strike up a conversation at the next party you go to. See how that goes. You’ll be the life of the party.
03/10/2017 - THEATRICAL
Jack: Did she say “My brother died here so we made this oath”? Like, her brother dying was the impetus for her to make an oath with her brother about which of them was going to die first? The timing on that seems questionable at best.
Jake: I can’t decide if I’m more frustrated that they had to work an explanation of Kristen Stewart’s totally unrelated job into the trailer to try to tether together the title and the events that unfold in the movie, or that they named the movie after the occupation she doesn’t give two fucks about and probably abandons during the movie in the first place. Either way, it feels off.
Mark: Kristen Stewart is really stretching her acting muscles in this one. Ranging all the way from lazily disinterested to actively disinterested. She does gasp at one point, so there’s that too. I guess ragging on KStew is the low hanging fruit at this point, but honestly I’m finding it hard to latch on to anything else in the trailer. Man, french subtitles sure are weird, huh?
03/10/2017 - THEATRICAL
Jack: It’s like Carrie, but for horses . . . and with veterinary school instead of prom . . . and not at all like Carrie. You know what Jake? That was a stupid thing you said about this being like Carrie. Also, I question whether it’s really “Disturbingly Erotic.”
Jake: Hey fuck you, Jack. NOTHING says disturbingly erotic like horses on horse treadmills, raves, and Salmonella. This movie promises all 3! I think I just cummed...
Mark: I agree with Jack on two things: yes, it was stupid what Jake said about this being like Carrie. Also, beware of any movie that brags about being “disturbingly erotic.” Is that really a combination of emotions that you want to experience? I’d toss that phrase in the same bucket as “boringly melancholic” or “joyously vapid.”
THE DARK BELOW
03/10/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL, VOD
Jack: Ah, your classic “lovers who ice dive together fall out of love and creepily try to kill each other” story. Aren’t we tired of filmmakers trotting out the same old tropes?
Jake: It may be low budget, but it’s doing the public a great service by peeling back the curtain on the rarely broached subject of domestic violence involving drysuits and snorkels. The people need to know, guys.
Mark: Jack, stating a plot synopsis as a sub-genre is my joke and it always has been. Get off my goddamn coattails. Your (my) joke does make a good point though: this is sure to be unique. There aren’t a ton of movies that focus on fear of water, and this one combines that fear with a myriad of other creepy storylines. It’s a pleasant surprise when the low budget thriller du jour brings something new to the table.
03/10/2017 - VOD
Jack: Why in the fuck do trailers need to give so much the fuck away? Seriously. I’m a professional, and I’m here doing this for you, but fuck, I no longer want to see this movie. I know how ⅔ of the villains die now. Shit.
Jake: Fuck you, movie. Your trailer clearly shows manicured lawn space, buildings, and cable bridges, and yet these women are supposed to be playing badasses braving the great wild unknown? Are you trying to make them look like uninformed assholes who don’t know what the wilderness actually is? Oh, you are? Ok.
Mark: For the record: if your choices are “go willingly” or “go unwillingly” then that’s not a choice. Sartre would have something to say about that. The comparisons to The Descent are inevitable with this one, which makes sense when you look at its bones. Swap out a cave for a cabin, and creepy cave crawlers for murderous hillbillies and they’d be pretty comparable. Hopefully it lives up to the same standard of quality that The Descent lived up to. Godspeed pilgrims.
JOHNNY FRANK GARRETT'S LAST WORD
03/14/2017 - VOD
Jack: As ghost stories go, this one looks pretty legit. Now why in the fuck the trailer-maker had to go and ruin it with the “based on true events” is fucking beyond me. Fuck you.
Jake: Damn, this Garrett dude sure is pissed off. He’s pulling the same tricks as Paymon from Last Shift, but that dude was full-blown Satan-incarnate. I guess everything really is bigger in Texas. Even ghost revenge murders.
Mark: I’ll get past the “true events” side of it, because at this point that basically just means that there was a guy named John Garrett this one time. Honestly, these “true events” movies are starting to remind me of that episode of The Last Airbender when the two warring tribes have to cross the canyon together. If you don’t know what I mean then you have a show to watch. All that aside, I am excited for this movie.
THE DEVIL'S CANDY
03/17/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL, VOD
Jack: I kind of really like that I have no idea whether this is a legitimate religious horror flick or just a story about a fucked up religious dude. Frankly, the uncertainty is titillating It's a strange feeling. Now I'm all confused. Hang on, I've got to go buy and read those 50 Shades books real quick.
Jake: I’ve heard some really, really good things about this movie from its festival run, and I’m excited that us regular ass, horror loving Americans are finally getting a chance to see it. I wanted to make a joke about the antagonist’s windbreaker in this preview, but then he slapped the bass in the trailer in sequence with its score. Fine, man. You win. Rock on.
Mark: This is actually a move that came out about two years ago, but appears to be getting a wider release this month. Where Raw brought you something “disturbingly erotic” this one brings you a “gorgeous rumination.” Okay, Mr. Thesaurus. Keep it in your pants. I have no idea what this movie is going to be. Could be horrible, could be mediocre, could be decent, could be fantastic. Man, I’m good at predictions.
THE BELKO EXPERIMENT
03/17/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL
Jack: Well this just looks like a ton of fucking fun. Sure, there's a huge chance that the movie fucks it up and can't sustain the tone of the trailer, but sometimes you just gotta dive in. And this is one of those times.
Jake: It is difficult to effectively balance humor and dread, and this one seems to be promising just that. How well it is able to pivot between these will be the key to whether it is massively entertaining or a steaming pile of horseshit. With several known quantities in the cast, I’m optimistic that it will be the former. Bonus points if the watchdog organization has even 1/100th the chutzpah of the guys pulling the strings in Cabin in the Woods.
Mark: Oh hell yes. Battle Royale in an office. Who hasn’t fantasized about this three or four or seven or a hundred times. Hey Uncork’d, you see how they didn’t show his head explode in the trailer? You see how they provided an effective plot preview without giving away every single twist and turn? You see how the movie seems to deal with a larger philosophical issue than just “devil=bad?” That’s how you make a goddamn trailer right there.
03/17/2017 - VOD, THEATRICAL
* Trailer linked above
Jack: Well this looks atmospheric as all hell. I’m intellectually excited for this one . . . but . . . I don’t know, maybe it just looks like every sci-fi game from the last 10 years? That’s probably not fair, but that’s how I feel god damn it!
Jake: Weird one, right here. Tom Sizemore and Dominic Monaghan are involved, yet it is surprisingly hard to drum up anything about it. The trailer shows a bit of promise, but it’s mixed in with a bit of cg-effects jank. Call it a 50/50 proposition.
Mark: I will forever struggle to understand why dailymotion is used over youtube, but that’s a conversation for another day. This looks like it’s shaping up to be a fairly generic sci fi thriller, but you never really know with this genre. It’s got Tom Sizemore, so that more or less establishes a floor. I’m lukewarm on this one, but I feel like that’s more because I’m lukewarm on the genre than on this specific trailer. Also, maybe I just got my hopes up about a Half Life movie.
THE HOUSE ON WILLOW STREET
03/23/2017 - VOD
Jack: Isn't this kind of just Don't Breathe again? Like, it looks fine and all, but is bruglars get something they weren't expecting a new sub-genre now? It kind feels like it. Not complaining, just noticing.
Jake: Cool bleached hair, jackass. I hope that fatass science-experiment-gone-bananas eats your face off of your face.
Mark: The house doesn’t even have a fucking willow in the yard. Missed opportunity if there ever was one. IFC usually has their shit together, and this looks to be no exception. I’m in like Flynn on this one. Or at least I would have been if there had only been a willow in the front yard.
03/24/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL, SHUDDER
Jack: Well this is certainly a novel concept. I can't say I'm particularly excited for it, but still, props. If this finds its way into my netflix queue, I'll definitely toss a watch on it. Otherwise, I'll probably forget about it.
Jake: There is no way on earth you can make a funny movie about a fetus. I don’t give a shit how much funk you slap in the trailer. It’s just horror. And that’s before you add the “manipulative murderer” tag to said fetus.
Mark: Isn’t prevenge just called murder? Isn’t prevenge sort of defined as “the thing that immediately proceeds revenge?” Okay, I’m deflecting. This looks very interesting. Decent concept, weird facepaint, british accents that make me unsure what is and isn’t a joke, and an incredibly obnoxious child voice.
DIG TWO GRAVES
03/24/2017 - LIMITED THEATRICAL, VOD
Jack: What? It seems more like you should either dig one or four graves. Two is right out.
Jake: I watched this trailer roughly 2.73 times and I still have no idea when the fuck this thing is supposed to be set. Maybe I should ask Mark. That’s his forte. My forte is telling you that dude sounds vaguely like Wilford Brimley.
Mark: “I wish I could tell you there was some kinda magical lines here, but there isn’t any.” Smash cut. “Oh yeah, we can definitely use some magic in this situation.” This is basically just a wishy washy version of the “be careful who you wish back to life” horror trope. I liked the teaser trailer a whole hell of a lot better than the actual story trailer. That bodes poorly for the feature length film.
03/28/2017 - VOD
Jack: Oh good. A doll with black eyes. I was worried this wasn't going to be generic enough with the kid in the woods and the creepy nursery rhyme.
Jake: Odds the old man is actually some kind of mystical mountain troll? Never been higher. Also, the nursery rhyme/poem in this trailer is way better than Dead Silence. I couldn’t live with myself without mentioning that.
Mark: Is this the Icelandic movie that the world has been clamoring for? The answer is no. No it is not. It is a movie about an old man who eats children. Does that mean that it will be bad? No, but it does likely mean that it will be forgettable.
03/28/2017 - VOD
Jack: Yeah, this looks really stupid. And yeah, the 10% of that trailer devoted to farting and vomiting is concerning. Buy you know what? It looks pretty well produced, and damn if it just might be a whole lot of fun in the process.
Jake: This movie looks fucking silly in a way not totally dissimilar to Greasy Strangler. The problem with that is, I don’t think you can have a film worse than the Greasy Strangler and still have an acceptable film. That thing toed a fine line. The fart laugh alone makes me think this one is grasping at straws.
Mark: Well, look who’s feeling cheeky. This trailer is mercifully short, and a solid 6 or 7 seconds are dedicated to explosive black vomit and what appears to be a butthole laughing. We get it, you’re trying to be edgy. The issue? The type of edgy hilarity that you are trying for isn’t achievable unless you aren’t trying to achieve it. It’s a Catch 22, and what’s worse is I don’t think a single damn person associated with this production is aware of that fact.
03/31/2017 - VOD
Jack: You know what? As far as zombie flicks go, this looks kind of awesome. It looks like it has all the best parts of The Road, but without the serious and depressing second 2/3s. Now this might still be depressing, but at least it won't be fucking boring (hopefully) like that one was.
Jake: Oh thank goodness! I was getting worried about whether we were going to have a zombie movie this month. This is actually a decent trailer, and it looks to be beautifully shot, but I can’t fit any more zombie movies into my consciousness unless I’ve specifically been told it is great. Someone else can make that leap of faith.
Mark: Ooh a zombie movie that focuses more on isolation than on literal tidal waves of the undead running after you. What’s more is it appears to be beautifully shot, and is described as unnerving instead of “a wild ride.” I’m sold so hard on this one. So hard. I need this in my life.
03/31/2017 - VOD, LIMITED THEATRICAL
Jack: Oh my fucking God: that stupid phone. You know, I was worried this wasn’t going to be as pretentious as it was terrible, but then they solved that problem with that fucking phone.
Jake: Holy fuck. No.
Mark: Is there such thing as movie trailer whiplash? Because I think I just watched the best and worst movie trailers back to back. This looks incredibly bad. Uncork’d level bad. Man, way to go out with a bad taste in the mouth. Fuck that shit.
Another Note: There is some information still out there suggesting Hellraiser: Judgment is due out in March. At the time of this post, that sounds like a big crock of shit to us.
TOP 1 / BOTTOM 1:
Jack: Kong: Skull Island - The fucking cast on this one alone is enough for me. All the way in.
Jake: The Belko Experiment - This just seems like it will be the most enjoyable and white-knuckled of the crop, this month. There are acting chops involved, AND there is an outside chance it’s hilarious. I’m excited to find out.
Mark: The Belko Experiment - Good combination of fun and intense with a great cast to match. John C McGinley, John Gallagher Jr., and Michael Rooker lend good acting talent to a Blumhouse backed bloodbath. Count me in. Very, very, very close second goes to Here Alone. I’ve just had my heart broken too many times by zombie movies, and I don’t think I can stand being hurt again.
Jack: The Institute - No James Franco. NO. I will not follow you down this far. Fuck this movie.
Jake: Holy Terror - hahahahaha noooooooooppe.
Mark: Peelers - People will start liking you more if you stop trying so hard. There’s an outside chance that this actually winds up being good, but if I were a betting man I’d lean much more heavily on it being cringe worthy.