Playroom (2006)

“Playroom” is yet another horror movie with an identity crisis, and the apparent struggle for a solid identity is concocted by director Stephen Stahl who wants a coming of age movie, and a horror movie wrapped in one bizarre package. Paired with homophobic overtones, “Playroom” (also known as “Consequences”) is the story of a group of friends in the eighties (Stahl never lets us forget it’s the eighties) who bond and love one another, and eventually disconnect as life takes its toll.

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Where Is Nancy? (2020)

This documentary follows family and friends of Nancy Paulikas after she seemingly wandered off from a Los Angeles museum they were visiting to never be seen alive again. This doc is one that is a hard watch and will be particularly so for those with family members battling or who have battled Alzheimer’s or dementia. It’s a film all about looking for a lost woman, but also about how it affected those close to her and how it brought them and others to create technology and put in place systems to help avoid this happening again and to help people find their loved ones who have wandered away.

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Dawn of the Living Dead (Evil Grave: Curse of the Maya) (2004)

“Dawn of the Living Dead” is such a blatant attempt to garner the Romero fan’s attention, especially with the tagline “In the tradition of “Night of the Living Dead…” If we’re splitting hairs here, pretty much all of these zombie movies that copy Romero are in the tradition of “Night of the Living Dead.” David Heavener’s “Dawn of the Living Dead” (or “Evil Grave: Curse of the Maya”) induced my optimism and I pleaded that perhaps this movie would be a so bad its good little independent foreign horror comedy. Instead it’s just a film that revels in tedium, padding, and glacial pacing.

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Scare Package (2019) [Blu-Ray]

I guess you could classify “Scare Package” as a horror movie, and yes even a horror comedy. But if my arm were twisted I’d be more comfortable just classifying it as a comedy. “Scare Package” is that movie that has a great time breaking down horror tropes and satirizing the clichés we’ve seen in various horror movies, but never actually includes any kind of scary content. Every single segment in this anthology is played with a tongue in cheek, and it’s a shame since a movie with this concept has a chance to re-imagine horror tropes.

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Five Great Latinx Horror Movie Heroes

It’s tough finding good Latinx Horror Movie heroes or heroines of any kind. Most latinx characters in horror and or genre films are gangsters, criminals, or cannon fodder. And if they are heroes, they’re either blithering priests, or nuns. I’m still waiting for an every guy or every gal like Laurie Strode or Tommy Jarvis but of the Latinx or Hispanic persuasion. Thanks to the accessibility of modern filmmaking tools, we’re getting to see a much more diverse roster of horror heroes and heroines, but I hope we can see more, very soon; especially in light of “Hispanic Heritage Month” recently ending on the 15th.

In either case, here are five great Latinx horror heroes and heroines.

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The Bootleg Files: Legend of Superman – Covid Response

BOOTLEG FILES 743: “Legend of Superman – Covid Response” (2020 fan film by Frank Palangi).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A fan film based on copyright-protected characters.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely at this time.

Fan films occupy a curious place in the movie universe. Clearly, these films are the ultimate in bootlegging because they borrow copyright-protected characters and put them into new films made without the blessings of their creators. On the other hand, they offer an affirmation of the popularity of the franchises being pilfered. For the most part, the makers of these films are rarely harassed by the lawyers representing the companies whose intellectual property is being used without permission.
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