What About… House of Wax

It seems churlish to say, but for a little while there in the '00s, Hollywood horror movies got really... mean. In spite of Kevin Williamson's injection of post-modernist humour, the '90s weren't a vintage decade for the genre, at least, not in the West. This was kind of surprising, especially considering the pre-millennial tension that … Continue reading What About… House of Wax

Review: We Summon The Darkness

Director: Marc Meyers Stars: Alexandra Daddario, Amy Forsyth, Maddie Hasson I have to confess; obnoxious as it may have seemed to some/most, I have a soft spot for illogical 3D cheese-fest Texas Chainsaw from the early '10s. It's one of my comfort blanket movies. Bright and dumb enough to sustain me when I want to switch … Continue reading Review: We Summon The Darkness

Why I Love… #117: I Know What You Did Last Summer

Year: 1997 Director: Jim Gillespie Stars: Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe There are movies that I've included in this series based on their artistic prowess, on their merit, on their phenomenal influence on the medium of film and my experience of it. And then there are other movies. I'm not a fan … Continue reading Why I Love… #117: I Know What You Did Last Summer

Why I Love… #112: Candyman

Year: 1992 Director: Bernard Rose Stars: Virginia Madsen, Tony Todd, Kasi Lemmons Growing up as a sheltered white kid on the Southern coast of England in the early '90s, there was a wealth of then-recent horror to sate my appetite for excitement. The '80s had been a boom-time for the genre as video exploded with … Continue reading Why I Love… #112: Candyman

Review: 47 Meters Down Uncaged

Director: Johannes Roberts Stars: Sophie Nélisse, Corinne Foxx, Brianne Tju A couple of years ago horror filmmaker Johannes Roberts took the po-faced brio of Bryan Bertino's The Strangers and reconstituted it into the giddily enjoyable slasher throwback The Strangers: Prey at Night. Based on that gorgeous and bloody 90 minutes of nonsense, I'll happily follow him … Continue reading Review: 47 Meters Down Uncaged

Review: The Hunt (2020)

Director: Craig Zobel Stars: Betty Gilpin, Ethan Suplee, Emma Roberts George Orwell's most famous works of fiction followed grim dystopian ideas through to their horrible, logical conclusions. In the process of putting these nightmares to paper, one wonders if Orwell didn't give a few people some ideas along the way. It's a notion that is … Continue reading Review: The Hunt (2020)

Review: Fantasy Island

Director: Jeff Wadlow Stars: Lucy Hale, Michael Peña, Maggie Q Blumhouse churn out modestly budgeted horror pictures at a rate of knots and they all make money. As a result they can afford their variable hit ratio. Granted, more often than not they come up with the goods (perhaps only A24 know their audience better), … Continue reading Review: Fantasy Island

Review: The Invisible Man

Director: Leigh Whannell Stars: Elisabeth Moss, Aldis Hodge, Storm Reid Abuse and abusers come in many forms but the root objective, insidiously, seems most often to be control. Control of another person. It's one of the more despicable traits to have defined humanity for centuries. Leigh Whannell's bold reinterpretation of The Invisible Man shines a … Continue reading Review: The Invisible Man

Review: The Grudge (2020)

Director: Nicolas Pesce Stars: Andrea Riseborough, John Cho, Frankie Faison Life and movies are filled with mysteries. One of the most puzzling movie mysteries of the 21st century is quite how Takashi Shimizu went from making such a thoroughly chilling entry in the prolific Japanese Grudge series (2002's Ju-On) only to find his brand of horror thoroughly … Continue reading Review: The Grudge (2020)

Review: Black Christmas (2019)

Director: Sophia Takal Stars: Imogen Poots, Aleyse Shannon, Cary Elwes In an early scene of Sophia Takal's unfairly derided Black Christmas, Imogen Poots' Riley is selected in her classic literature class to suppose a writer's intention. She responds that the context-free quote speaks of how men think and women feel; that because of this it is a man's … Continue reading Review: Black Christmas (2019)

Review: Doctor Sleep

Director: Mike Flanagan Stars: Rebecca Ferguson, Kyliegh Curran, Ewan McGregor Redefining for yourself what constitutes family is a large part of Doctor Sleep. the belated follow-up to both Stephen King and Stanley Kubrick's The Shining. Those two precursors are famously divergent. King hated Kubrick's film, which is widely regarded as one of the horror masterpieces. Kubrick altered the … Continue reading Review: Doctor Sleep

Review: Countdown

Director: Justin Dec Stars: Elizabeth Lail, Jordan Calloway, Talitha Bateman At the time of writing there's a news cycle that won't die; a stir caused by Martin Scorsese calling comic book movies 'theme park rides' instead of real cinema. It's become the question to ask anyone in the business who'll answer and, as such, objectivity when … Continue reading Review: Countdown

Review: Wounds

Director: Babak Anvari Stars: Dakota Johnson, Armie Hammer, Zazie Beetz It makes perfect sense that Annapurna Pictures would snap up the first English language property from Babak Anvari, the British-Iranian director responsible for the deeply effective chiller Under The Shadow. Anvari seemed fully formed right out the gate; a safe bet to deliver an indie … Continue reading Review: Wounds

Review: Ready Or Not

Director: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett Stars: Samara Weaving, Adam Brody, Andie MacDowell Throughout 2012's past-lives cascade Cloud Atlas, a recurring phrase bounces into the mouths of some of its many characters; "The weak are meat, and the strong do eat." It's a neat catchphrase for the theme of exploitation coursing through the intermingled narratives. Ready Or … Continue reading Review: Ready Or Not

Review: IT Chapter Two

Director: Andy Muschietti Stars: Bill Hader, Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy Andy Muschietti's IT felt like a culmination of everything popular horror had been trying to do in the cinema for the past 10 years. It was a grandiose, nostalgia-laced funhouse of jump scares. It moved sleekly, it looked gorgeous and - as with King's doorstop source … Continue reading Review: IT Chapter Two