Tag Archives: Horror

The Cured (David Freyne, 2017)

The Cured, the debut feature from writer-director David Freyne, is a horror film that doesn’t end as well as it starts. But it does start very well, in part, because it’s blessed by a killer premise…

Full review for VODzilla.co

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Ghost Stories (Jeremy Dyson/Andy Nyman, 2017)

Horror anthologies are tricky beasts. For every terrifying tale in a trilogy of terror, there’s often a dud or two to spoil the cumulative experience. Less in the vein of V/H/S and more in the spirit(s) of Dead of Night, Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman’s Ghost Stories bucks the usual curse in maintaining solid scares throughout…

Full review for The Skinny

The Open House (Matt Angel/Suzanne Coote, 2018)

Horror movies are popular for first time filmmakers for many reasons. One is that the genre is well suited to low budgets; in many of the best horrors, a little goes a long way. Another reason may be that horror, particularly via sub-genres like the slasher or home invasion thriller, is more prone to template-based filmmaking than most other genres. If you’re just looking to show that you can write and direct something, anything, it’s ostensibly easier to produce a horror movie that hits expected genre beats than it is to, say, write a comedy that actually makes people laugh.

Bringing to the screen a horror movie that simply resembles a horror movie seems to have been the sole mission statement behind The Open House, the feature debut of directors Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote. It’s a Netflix Original without an ounce of originality…

Full review for VODzilla.co

Still/Born (Brandon Christensen, 2017)

The subgenre of maternal horror gets a solid new entry from Canada in the form of Still/Born, the confident feature debut of director Brandon Christensen. There’s not a lot of innovation on display in its story (a dash of Rosemary’s Baby here, a pinch of The Babadook there), but there’s enough merit in the filmmaking itself to warrant a look…

Full review for VODzilla.co

Nicolas Pesce talks ‘The Eyes of My Mother’

Following the premiere of his directorial debut, The Eyes of My Mother, at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, young filmmaker Nicolas Pesce has fast become a rising star in the world of horror cinema. He’s already wrapped his next feature, Piercing, which stars Mia Wasikowska and Christopher Abbott and is based on a novel by Ryû Murakami, the author behind the story of Takashi Miike’s Audition. And, at the time of writing, Pesce has just been tapped to direct and rewrite a reboot of The Grudge/Ju-on for Sam Raimi’s Ghost House Pictures.

A fondness for Asian horror comes up in our discussion with Pesce about The Eyes of My Mother, which is now available on VOD in the UK. The film follows the unsettling actions of a young, lonely woman consumed by dark desires, triggered by both a childhood tragedy and memories of her mother, a former surgeon who taught her daughter to be unfazed by death.

We sit down to talk working with Borderline Films (Martha Marcy May Marlene, Simon Killer), southern gothic classic The Night of the Hunter as a key influence (spoilers for that 1955 film ahead), The Eyes of My Mother’s black-and-white aesthetic, and how he wanted to make viewers scare themselves…

Full interview for VODzilla.co

Fresh Blood: 5 mind-blowing vampire movies

The Transfiguration, receiving its UK premiere at this year’s Glasgow Film Festival, is a bold calling card debut from writer-director Michael O’Shea. Its central conceit sees an African-American teen, Milo, drenching himself in vampire lore, much of it gleaned from movies, and attempting to become a blood-sucker himself.

It’s something of a ‘realist’ spin on the vampire movie, a horror subgenre that’s proved just as prone to re-examination and re-appropriation over the years as the ever-adaptable zombie movie. The number of unique cinematic spins on vampire mythology far outweighs the constraints of a top five (there are five Twilight movies alone), but here’s a selection of some of the diverse, compelling options out there for creatures of the night…

Full feature for The Skinny

The Wailing (Na Hong-jin, 2016)

As a follow-up to The Yellow Sea and The Chaser, it should come as little surprise that Na Hong-jin’s The Wailing is a slippery beast to define, opening as one thing and ending as something completely different, while also becoming several very different things on the road there. It is a furiously weird and inventive film, and thanks to those qualities being stretched over a two-and-a-half-hour-plus runtime, it’s also something of an exhausting journey. But the bonkers ride is definitely worth it…

Full review for VODzilla.co