I’ve always loved the William Castle ghost film and the remake of “Thirteen Ghosts” by Steve Beck. Back in 2001 when it was being panned, I appreciated its ambition, amazing special effects, and great narrative. Now, many years later, horror fans have finally caught up to what a great, radical re-imagining of William Castle’s ghost film is. It’s a hard rock, balls to the wall ride that compensates for the lack of ghost glasses with excellent special effects, and some fun gore and grue.
Peter Hyams’ horror comedy was way ahead of its time in 1992, and it’s a film that warrants so much more examination, mainly because of its prophetic view of television. Back in 1992 television was humongous and low income houses were finally getting access to cable television, so naturally there was a lot of ballyhoo about its addictive nature. Speaking as a television junky, “Stay Tuned” was a great bit of satire that also dabbled in to the arena of “So Bad it’s Good.” It’s not laugh out loud funny, but it’s often very clever, and never misses a chance to deliver some kind of word horror oriented pun.
I hope this year has been merciful to you, as October is now in full motion. After such a terrible, bizarre year, feel free to lose yourself in five short horror films for our October festivities, which are no in full swing! Warning: Some of the reviews include the short films for your viewing pleasure, while others are just the teaser.
If you’d like to submit your short film for review consideration, submissions are always opened to filmmakers and producers.
We’re nearing the beginning of October so as is the mandate to keep reality from collapsing, we have another Tim Burton classic re-released and updated. Burton’s horror comedy classic “Beetlejuice” gets another big re-release for physical media collectors, allowing fans to re-visit the demented and dark supernatural comedy in a 4K UHD upgrade. Of course Burton’s film is being released in various other editions online, including Steelbook.
Steve Villeneuve’s “Hail to the Deadites” is a documentary about “Evil Dead” that touts itself as not featuring any kind of footage from the original films at any point. You’d think that would hinder the experience, but that only benefits the feature in the end. “Hail to the Deadites” is an unabashed love letter to the fans and the fans only. It explores the various facets of “Evil Dead” fandom, how all three movies have affected their lives, and how Bruce Campbell has become a source of inspiration to many.
I’m a big fan of the concept where studios or a collective of directors take various short films from indie directors and create anthology horror films in the vein of “Tales from the Darkside” or “V/H/S/.” The idea is a great one and opens up a broader audience, and allows them some great exposure. “A Night of Horror: Nightmare Radio,” is one of the many that’s come along, mixing seven stellar horror shorts told by a lone radio DJ in the middle of the night.
A coven of young witches find their 5th they had been waiting for in a new witch they did not realize the power of. Together they aim at bringing back a martyrized powerful witch named Ashura, unleashing more than they expected by doing so.
I was an ardent supporter and fan of the “Paranormal Activity” films for a while there. Parts one to three are a pretty great trilogy on their own, discussing Katie’s family, and how their entire lives were fated to become prey to the demonic entity known simply as “Tobi.” With the release of “Paranormal Activity 7” being announced for a potential 2021 date, I’m hoping the new movie bothers to create some sense of cogency by bringing back characters, introducing heroes, and answering so many lingering questions they never bothered to answer.
Without further ado…