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Good morning film fiends! Feast your eyeballs on the triple whammy of trashy cinematic greatness I’ve served up below and  wile away those Monday morning blues on the grey drudgery of the morning commute. Rejoice I say and remember it’s just another five days till the weekend…

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This October, you’re not even safe on the Sofa!
From filmmaker Bernardo Rao, comes the most ridiculously entertaining horror jaunt of the year, KILLER SOFA on DVD and Digital from High Octane Pictures.
ELECTRIC DREAMS meets CHRISTINE in the heart-warmingly horrific chronicle of a killer Lazy Boy that falls in love with a girl – and the bloody carnage that follows as a result!
Francesca always attracted weirdos. When one of her stalkers is found dead, she looks for comfort from her best friend, Maxi. Meanwhile, Maxi’s grandfather, Jack, a disgraced Rabbi, comes across a reclining chair containing a Dybbuk inside. Jack and his voodoo sorceress partner try to find out where the recliner has been delivered while exploring Jack’s newfound gift for communicating with the other world. Meanwhile the reclining chair becomes enchanted by Francesca and starts committing crimes of passion.
Jed Brophy (THE HOBBIT), Sarah Munn, Stacy King, and Harley Neville star in a horror treat straight out of New Zealand, available October

 

The book opens on Krisstian de Lara’s spine-tingling Investigation 13 with Uncork’d Entertainment announcing a digital and DVD release for September 10.
Screen icon Meg Foster (LORDS OF SALEM, THE STEPFATHER 2, THEY LIVE) stars in director Krisstian de Lara’s mesmerizingly unnerving INVESTIGATION 13, premiering on digital and DVD this September from Uncork’d Entertainment.

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Incorporating traditional narrative story-telling, as well as numerous forms of pioneering technology, including found footage, hand-held cameras, surveillance cameras, and smart glasses, INVESTIGATION 13 is a new-age fright-fest chronicling the tale of a group of college science students investigating the urban legend of The Mole Man, an ex-patient said to still be residing within the walls of the Black Grove Asylum. When members of the group start missing, they soon learn that this myth is more real than they thought, making this 13th investigation one they will come to regret.
From Gorilla Studios, INVESTIGATION 13 also stars Stephanie Hernandez, Patrick Flanagan, Robert Paget, William Alexander, Giordan Diaz, Jesse Ramos and Peter Aratari as ‘The Mole Man’.
Clay Smith wrote the original screenplay, Rolando Vinas and de Lara wrote the most recent version.
INVESTIGATION 13 On VOD and DVD September 10 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

 

New artwork and a trailer have been released for ONCE UPON A TIME IN DEADWOOD, the new revenge western feature starring Robert Bronzi (recent hit DEATH KISS) and Michael Pare (STREETS OF FIRE) that comes out October 1st in the U.S.
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ONCE UPON A TIME IN DEADWOOD concerns a notorious gunslinger who is slipped a slow-acting poison by an heiress and told he has three days to track down and rescue her sister, who has been kidnapped by a band of hoodlums and holds the antidote.  Rene Perez directs from his screenplay, with Jeff Miller (THE TOYBOX) also contributing.
Bronzi plays the gunslinger.  Pare plays the main villain.  The cast is rounded out with Karin Brauns (PLAYING WITH DOLLS series), Lauren Compton (CLOWNTOWN), actor-model Chris Matteis, J.D. Angstadt, Jose Varela Garcia, Justin Hawkins, Tony Jackson, and Sierra Sherbundy.
The movie was filmed in California as well as in Western Leone, near Almeria, Spain, site of much of the filming of the famous Sergio Leone/Charles Bronson western ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST.
Miller (who produced the recent DEATH KISS, which Perez directed, as well as the recent thriller  THE RUSSIAN BRIDE) is producing with Ronnie D. Lee (THE TOYBOX, OUIJA HOUSE) through their companies Millman Productions and Ron Lee Productions, respectively.
“If you liked DEATH KISS, you’ll love Bronzi again delivering his brand of justice,” says Miller.   “We filmed at recognizable locations where Bronson stood 50 years ago on the classic ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST, and I can’t wait for fans to check out this latest chapter in our series of films with Bronzi.”
ONCE UPON A TIME IN DEADWOOD comes out in the U.S. on October 1st on digital and on November 19th on dvd.  Uncork’d Entertainment is handling distribution in North America and international sales.
For more information and updates, please visit the film’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/onceuponatimeindeadwood

Festival News

With this year’s FrightFest now passed, there are two more annual UK film festivals for horror hounds and cult movie mavens to make a beeline for – Grimmfest 2019 in Manchester, and Mayhem in sunny old Nottingham town.

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Grimmfest 2020 has already announced it’s line up for this year’s event with one of the highlights been the announcement that the Soska Sisters will be attending showcasing their reimagining of the 70’s lo-fi Cronenberg classic RABID. Other flicks lined up include SHE NEVER DIED, director Audrey Cummings female centric follow up to the 2015 Henry Rollins vehicle HE NEVER DIED, Australian WWII set creature feature BLOOD VESSEL and outrageous splatter-satire, SATANIC PANIC, from first-time director, Chelsea Stardust and Fangoria Films and loads more. Horror icon and all round great lady Barbara Crampton heads the jury with 14 awards including BEST FEATURE FILM, BEST SHORT FILM, BEST DIRECTOR, BEST SFX and BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY, up for grabs with prizes that include over £120,000 worth of post – production support.
For more information on this great festival visit http://grimmfest.com/grimmupnorth/2019/09/grimmfest-2019-schedule/

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As well as continuing to make much hay out of its association with medieval armed robbery, Nottingham is also home to The Broadway cinema which hosts the annual Mayhem Film Festival every October. Billed as a showcase for the best features and short films in horror, sci-fi and cult cinema, through premieres, previews, and special events, this year sees HARDWARE director Richard Stanley’s HP Lovecraft adaptation COLOR OUT OF SPACE, nightmarish sci-fi VIVARIUM starring Jesse Eisenberg and Imogen Poots (CENTURION), haunted house thriller  GIRL ON THE THIRD FLOOR and twisted suspense thrillers DOOR LOCK and COME TO DADDY.
Two classocs dusted down and brought out of the archive are Nicolas Cage’s VAMPIRE’S KISS and the crinminally underrated late VHS era classic THE HIDDEN.
For more information on this joyful celebration of everything cinematically weird and horrific visit
http://www.mayhemfilmfestival.com/news/2019/09/mayhem-film-festival-reveals-full-line-up-for-2019-edition

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!
Ian

 

Morning film fiends!

Here I am to ward off those Monday morning blues with a slate of under the radar bad movie goodness –

A man of the cloth turns Jurassic in Wild Eye Releasing’s THE VELOCIPASTOR – coming later this year from the reputable genre label!After a devastating family tragedy, a priest travels to China to find deeper spirituality, but instead is endowed with an ancient ability that allows him to turn into a dinosaur. At first, he is horrified by his newfound superpower, but a local prostitute convinces him to use his newfound gift to fight evil – and ninjas.

https://youtu.be/7Nyb0GqAjKM

Gregory James Cohan, Alyssa Kempinski, Daniel Steere, Yang Jiechang, Jesse Turits, Fernando Pacheco de Castro star with Aurelio Voltaire in the Wild Eye Releasing title.

Devilworks Drops poster and Trailer for UK Supernatural Horror ‘The Young Cannibals’ from writer/director duo Kris Carr and Sam Fowler. 
 Starring Megan Purvis and Hannah Louise Howell, this fast-paced horror follows a group of friends as they arrive at a secluded campsite, where they plan on spending a relaxing weekend by the lake. What they didn’t plan on, was being tricked into eating burgers made of human flesh. This act summons an unrelenting supernatural creature, which hunts them down one by one.

https://youtu.be/i8AjG4uXgJY

The film was produced by Charlie Pride for Bad Taste Pictures.
Devilworks is representing Worldwide rights and will start to sell at the upcoming Cannes 

Juan Frausto, director of Road Kill and Once Upon a Time in the Hood, invites you to log on for a streaming screamfest that will leave one girl possessed… and you on the edge of your seat!
 Playing with a Ouija board is dangerous, and college student Rebecca Clarkson (Katherine Munroe) is now documenting the proof, as day by day a demon takes possession of her while a webcam audience watch the horrific event.

https://youtu.be/ZdzKuBS5jNQ

Eileen Dietz (The Exorcist), Johnny Ortiz (Peppermint), Noel Gugliemi (“Fresh Off The Boat”), Monica Engesser (“Crazy in Love”), and Delilah Cotto (Empire) star alongside James Russo and Katherine Munroe in The Possession Diaries, on DVD and Digital June 4, 2019 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

Connect with Crisis Hotline, from acclaimed filmmaker Mark Schwab, this June from High Octane Pictures.

A cynical counselor at a crisis hotline finds himself in a life or death situation when a young man calls and threatens to kill three people and then himself.

https://youtu.be/73yyrfLfoQI

Corey Jackson, Christian Gabriel and Pano Tsaklas star.
Written and directed by Mark Schwab, and produced by Diamond in the Rough Films, Crisis Hotlinearrives on digital and DVD June 11.

Documentary Examines Beloved, Sometimes Demonized, Children’s Horror Book Series 

            Los Angeles, California – Scary Stories, the highly anticipated documentary about Alvin Schwartz’ iconic Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark book series, will debut in select theaters beginning April 26 via Wild Eye Releasing.
Explore the history of one of the most controversial works of modern children’s literature: The best selling teen classic Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, which scared a generation of young readers and became one of the most banned books of modern times. Scary Stories creates both the ultimate celebration and dissertation of this iconic piece of horror literature.

Following the limited theatrical release – which includes Los Angeles, New Orleans, Columbus, and Texas – Scary Stories will be available on VOD May 7 with a DVD release set for July 16.
Cody Meirick’s film features more than 40 interviews, from family members of author Alvin Schwartz, to fellow children’s book horror authors like R.L Stine (Goosebumps) and Q.L. Pearce, to folklorists, artists and fans discussing the impact that the books have had on both themselves as well as the culture at large. The documentary also explores the various times in which the books were banned or targeted by parent and religious groups as ‘satanic’ or otherwise too macabre for its targeted teen scholastic audience.

https://youtu.be/d2n5NSJNe9A

Penned by Schwartz and illustrated by Stephen Gammell, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is a three-volume series consisting of short horror stories for pre-teens and children that were adapted from American folklore and urban legends.  Because of some of the violent illustrations and the subject matter, parent groups, religious organizations and school boards had the books pulled from libraries and schools at various times. A feature film adaptation of the books, produced by horror icon Guillermo del Toro, is due in theaters this summer. 

 

Overlord (USA 2018) Dir: Julius Avery
Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Mathilde Ollivier, Pilou Asbæk

I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the war and horror film genres should be natural bedfellows, and given that World War II is indelibly etched into both British and American popular culture it’s surprising that the many cross genre films that have been attempted have all been execrable dross (special mention for Michael Mann’s 1983 effort THE KEEP, but even that’s a very mixed bag.)

Step forward OVERLORD, the latest offering from JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot stable. The trailer promised much, with FURY levels of war violence mixed in with the Nazi super soldiers trope topped of with AC/DC on the soundtrack. Thankfully, director Julius Avery’s Ronseal approach to his film means we pretty much get what we were promised. The tight narrative sees gentle farm boy turned paratrooper Boyce (Adepo) and his comrades dropped into occupied France on the eve of D-Day to take out a German radio tower located in a nearby town.

They soon discover something very nefarious going on in the German base involving human experiments conducted by the sinister Dr Schmidt (Erich Redman) backed up by rent a villain Nazi Commandant Wagner (Asbæk).

OVERLORD knows that it’s b-movie schlock albeit backed with a decent budget and studio backed marketing, and it and wisely chooses to revels in the fact. With that in mind the script takes care to avoid any incongruous humour, and the cast play the whole thing straight. Thus  we avoid tipping into IRON SKY territory with proceedings kept just the right side of ludicrous, as Avery cranks the cartoonish level of violence all the way to eleven.

Unlike the current glut of spandex drenched bore-a-thons bunging up the multiplexes, OVERLORD doesn’t lose sight of the story it is telling and never feels like it has neglected its narrative in favour of spectacle. Sure, it may come in for criticism from some quarters for its theme of Nazi human experimentation, but these are Indiana Jones style comic book nazis, and while Avery’s film riffs off old school exploitation it never reaches ILSA, SHE WOLF OF THE SS levels of bad taste either.

This is a solid action horror that, while containing no surprises, certainly won’t disappoint its intended audience either. And on the face of it who ever went to see an action-horror mash up featuring Nazi super soldiers expecting Shakespearean levels of character development?

Good morning film fiends, and happy Bonfire Night to all my fellow Brits! I’ve got four great previews to put on your midnight movie viewing lists and cheer you all up on these cold winter nights! Let’s take a peek –

Teenagers are kidnapped and made into living scarecrows who are left to die in crop fields in an exceedingly frightening stoner-horror throwback in the vein of JEEPERS CREEPERS and Scream. SCARECROWS, from director Stu Stone, rise from the cornfields 11 December from Uncork’d Entertainment.
While on a hike to find a secret lagoon, a group of friends have no choice but to pass through an ominous cornfield. Unbeknownst to them, the farm owner despises trespassers and has vowed to kill anyone who crosses his land by turning them into living scarecrows, leaving them to rot in his fields. Once one goes up… it never comes down.


SCARECROWS, starring Hannah Gordon (HURT), Mike Taylor (PURE) and Umed Amin (A SIMPLE FAVOR) and co-written by Stone and Adam Rodness, premieres on VOD December 11 and DVD February 1 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

In the tradition of SUSPIRIA, and featuring horror icons Caroline Williams and Debbie Rochon, BLOODY BALLET arabesque’s onto November 13 from High Octane Pictures.
When a beautiful ballerina dancer, Adriana Mena (Kendra Carelli, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2), lands the lead role in the upcoming Nutcracker performance, she’s forced to face her demons as jealousy and tension begin to provoke the supernatural.
A giallo film –  a horror-thriller that blends the atmosphere and suspense of thriller fiction with elements of horror fiction and eroticism – in the vein of Dario Argento’s and SUSPIRIA and Sergio Martino’s TORSO – BLOODY BALLET is a tour-de-force for rising filmmaker Brett Mullen, who co-wrote the script with Matt Cloude.  

Caroline Williams (TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE II, HALLOWEEN II), Debbie Rochon (MODEL HUNGER, DEATH HOUSE), Katie Carpenter (THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE), Brett Wagner (THE HAPPYTIME MURDERS), and Rob Springer (BOMBSHELL BLOODBATH) star in BLOODY BALLET out November 13 on VOD and December 4 on DVD.

 

Christmas is under siege from a horde of evil elves in Jamaal Buden’s frighteningly fun ELVES, on VOD and DVD this December!
The Holiday Reaper, a ruthless killer that terrorized a small Texas town, has been caught. While celebrating, a group of friends find an elf inside a magical toy box.  When a freak accident kills one of them, they discover a group of elves have been scattered throughout town, each representing one of the seven deadly sins. It’s a race against time to survive the elves’ wrath before Christmas ends.
Horror staples Justin Price (THE ELF) and Khu (DARK MOON RISING) produce.

Lisa May, Deanna Grace Congo, Stephanie Marie Baggett and Amy Jo Guthrie star in ELVES, on VOD and DVD December 4 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

 

Award-winning Hitchockian suspense thriller NUMBER 37, filmed in Cape Town, releases in select theaters throughout November and On Demand November 20 from Dark Star Pictures.
In a gritty homage to perennial Alfred Hitchcock favorite REAR WINDOW, director Nospiho Dumia’s film focuses on the residents of a block of apartments in the down-and-out Cape Flats neighborhood–which, with its petty thugs, crooked cops, violent loan sharks, and troubled pastors, soon reveals itself to be a very different place from REAR WINDOW’s Greenwich Village of 1954.

Set in a rough section of Cape Town, NUMBER 37 follows Randal Hendricks, a small-time crook who becomes wheelchair-bound in a drug deal gone wrong, and his hard-working girlfriend Pam Ismael. To distract Randal during his homebound days of limited mobility, Pam gives him a pair of binoculars. While idly surveying his block, he accidentally witnesses a dirty cop being executed by his gangster neighbor Lawyer. With a loan shark breathing down his neck, Randal decides to blackmail Lawyer, and enlists the help of both his girlfriend and his friend Warren. When the plan goes horribly awry, Randal’s options get more and more restricted—and not even local detective Gail February, investigating the death of her partner, may be able to help him.Irshaad Ally, Monique Rockman, Ephraim Gordon, Sandi Schultz, Danny Ross, David Manuel, Elton Landrew, and Deon Lotz star in a Nosipho Dumisa directed film, scripted by Dumisa, Travis Taute, and Daryne Joshua.
NUMBER 37 is available on demand November 20.

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicise and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!
Ian

Good evening film fiends! I hope his regular missive is finding you all well on this chilly evening (here in rainy old England anyway) on the night before All Hallows Eve? in keeping with the spooky season I’m treating myself to a screening of john Carpenter’s eponymous 1978 slasher at Nottingham’s Broadway cinema tomorrow night, complete with a pre recorded Q &A with the master himself. Keep an eye of my social media feeds for a micro review of how the evening went.
On the following day it seems rude for me to not catch the long awaited Blumhouse retconned sequel too, so look out for my review in coming days.

New release-wise, this week I’ve got two great looking little indie flicks for you all to take a look at. Let’s dive in –

 

15-year-old Mia and her parents move to the suburbs of Zürich. While Mia plunges into a wild teenager existence, her body begins to change oddly. First hardly noticeably, but then with a force that threatens to drive her out of her mind. Mia’s transformation progresses inexorably, and she turns into the being which has slumbered within her for years… and is now gaining the upper hand.

There’s something frighteningly fishy going on in Lisa Brühlmann’s shocking debut feature BLUE MY MIND in theatres and On Demand this November through Uncork’d Entertainment.
An elegiac allegory accompanied by hauntingly visceral body horror, BLUE MY MIND is part SUSPIRIA and part THE METAMORPHOSIS but largely incontestably unique.
Luna Wedler and Zoë Pastelle Holthuizen headline a celebrated fantasy-drama about a young woman who faces an overwhelming transformation which calls her entire existence into question. Her body is changing radically, and despite desperate attempts to halt the process, she is soon forced to accept that nature is far more powerful than her.
The VOD will be release on November 13 on such platforms as iTunes, Amazon Instant, Vudu, Google Play, xbox, Fandango Now, YouTube and Dish.

 

This Halloween, a familiar face is going trick or treating.
Days before the November mid-term Elections, three young girls (a Muslim, a Mexican and a Haitian, are stalked by a deranged killer dressed as the President Trump.
From Giant Meteor Films comes the second-most anticipated Michael Myers-centric release of the year, PRESIDENT EVIL – available On Demand this Halloween.
A parody of John Carpenter’s horror masterpiece, PRESIDENT EVIL sees Michael Myers disguised as Trump as he gets about suburbia, hell-bent on killing minorities.   Jose Rosete (THE WALKING DEAD : RED MACHETE), Christian Hutcherson (DARK) and Johanna Rae (PSYCHOS) star in a Richard Lowly film, written by Lowry and Gregory P. Wolk. Producers are Ruben Estremera, Gregory P.Wolk and Francesca Zappitelli.
Days before the November mid-term Elections, three young girls (a Muslim, a Mexican and a Haitian, are stalked by a deranged killer dressed as the President Trump. All in the best possible taste of course.

PRESIDENT EVIL is available this Halloween on Demand (Amazon and other platforms).

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!
Ian

 

Good morning film fiends! I have a quadruple whammy of upcoming greatness for you all to feast your retinsa on as well as a cool little short form the Dobrofsky brothers over at Short Story TV. let’s dive in –

It’s going to be a killer Christmas!

The terrifying backstory of the yuletide slaughterer comes to digital and DVD this November with KRAMPUS: ORIGINS, arriving November 6 from Uncork’d Entertainment.
The first World War rages on when a group of American soldiers find a mysterious artifact that can summon the ancient evil of the Krampus.  After the men are killed in action, the artifact is sent to the commanding officers widow who is a teacher at a small-town orphanage.  The orphans accidentally summon the Krampus and the teacher, and her pupils are forced to battle this ancient evil.
Starring Maria Olsen (I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE: DÉJÀ VU, PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3) and Anna Harr (BETHANY, RESTORATION), and directed by Joseph Mbah and written by Robert Conway, KRAMPUS: ORIGINS on digital and DVD November 6.

This November, Gloria is transforming into something very, very strange.
From director Chad Archibald, and in the tradition of CABIN IN THE WOODS and HEREDITARY, comes THE HERETICS on demand November 6 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

A young woman (Nina Kiri of THE HANDMAID’S TALE) is abducted by a strange man who claims that a cult is hunting her. His goal is to protect her until sunrise but while restrained, she falls deathly ill. As her friends and family search for her, the source of her illness becomes more and more apparent. She’s not sick…she’s changing.
From Black Fawn Films, the award-winning and celebrated Canadian horror machine behind the ANTISOCIAL series, BITE, and LET HER OUT, comes a film that’s “part cabin-in-the-woods thriller, part psychological puzzle, and part demonic possession battleground” (iHorror).
Nina Kiri, Ry Barrett (LIFECHANGER), and Jorja Cadence star in THE HERETICS available on Demand November 6 and DVD January 5 from Uncork’d Entertainment.

 

Leading independent distributor Wild Eye Releasing releases Portuguese horror film THE FOREST OF LOST SOULS on Amazon Prime and Blu-ray this month.

The psychological “coming of age” horror film, written and directed by directed by José Pedro Lopes, also has new artwork to coincide with the Amazon and BD launch.
Ricardo and Carolina are complete strangers that meet seemingly by chance in the FOREST OF THE LOST SOULS , a place where many people go to commit suicide. These two, a young woman and an old man, are no different than the others as they also came to the forest for this very reason.
They decide to briefly postpone killing themselves in order to explore the forest and also to continue talking to one another, as Ricardo and Carolina find themselves intrigued by each other.
However, as the pair go further into the forest it becomes clear that one of them has other reasons for being in the forest, is not who they would have the other believe them to be and is actually a psychopath…

 

KISS KISS, BANG BANG meets classic Hitchcock in the whodunnit of the year!
Winner of no less than 9 major film awards, including Best Feature Film at the Hollywood Boulevard Film Festival and Best Indie Feature at the Los Angeles Film Awards, Clyde Cooper (Souvenir Films) is on the case this November.

Jordi Vilasuso plays Silicon Valley private detective Clyde Cooper. Hired by a tech investor to find a missing woman, the love of his life, who had mysteriously disappeared, Cooper runs into an odd ring of strange women, and weird characters until he finds much more than what he’s bargaining for.
Jordi Vilasuso, Abigail Titmuss, Richard Neil (PRODIGY), Aria Sirvaitis (ROSEWOOD), Isabella Racco (THE DOLL) and veteran actor Lou Wagner (PLANET OF THE APES) star in a Peter Daskaloff film,CLYDE COOPER on VOD November 22.

 

I was contacted this week by the Dobrofsky brothers, the team behind the Short Story TV YouTube channel which, in their own words are ‘Content Warriors here to frighten, entertain and inspire!’ Their newest work is MR HOLIDAY, a very dark short little fil about a serial killer who decides to celebrate new tear by making his very own snuff movie…
Check it out below and subscribe to their channel to see what else the brothers have in store. You can also follow them on Twitter @shortstorytv

Den of Geek founder and all round nice bloke Simon Brew has launched a Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund is new print format film magazine Film Stories. Already a successful podcast, the monthly mag will primarily focus  on mainstream fare but less on superheroes and Star Wars! In their own words -‘Imagine it as the magazine for the smaller screens in the multiplex, and the larger screens in the independent.’

The campaign runs up until 19th November with a target of £10,000. There are loads of different pledge levels and you can check the project out here –

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!
Ian

Good day film fiends! Just one upcoming release to share with you today, but it’s a doozy (I mean, who doesn’t like werewolf films, right?) Check it out below –
THIS OCTOBER, HUNGER SHOWS NO MERCY
From legendary underground filmmaker Todd Sheets comes a howlingly terrifying werewolf movie for Halloween, BONEHILL ROAD!
Emily and Eden Stevens escape one violent situation only to dive head first into another. Terrified and alone they are stranded in the dark woods only to be chased into a horrific scene in a house or horrors. They must work together to get out alive. But what is worse? What is on the inside or out?
Genre legend Linnea Quigley (RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD, CREEPOZOIDS) stars alongside Gary Kent, and David E. McMahon star in Bonehill Road, out from Wild Eye Releasing this week on DVD and on Digital soon.
On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!
Ian

Good morning film fiends! Feast your eyes on these upcoming offerings –

Ojala Productions announces a limited theatrical release of September 22 (Los Angeles) for new horror feature STRANGE NATURE.

This September, It’s man versus nature when wrestling superstar John Hennigan and acclaimed actor Stephen Tobolowsky (SILICON VALLEY, DEADWOOD) play ‘leapfrog’ with mutated amphibians in Ojala Productions’ highly-anticipated eco-thriller Strange Nature.
By moving in with her estranged hermit father in the backwoods of a small town, Kim (Lisa Sheridan, THE 4400) and son Brody find themselves in the middle of a horrendous phenomenon where deadly offspring mutations spread from animals to humans.


Based on true unsolved outbreaks of wildlife mutations, fall fright-fest STRANGE NATURE marks the directorial debut of fx maestro James Ojala (HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY, THOR, TRON: LEGACY, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER) and stars Lisa Sheridan INVASION), Stephen Tobolowsky (MEMENTO), John Hennigan (MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT), Tiffany Shepis (VICTOR CROWLEY), and Carlos Alazraqui (THE FUNHOUSE MASSACRE).
STRANGE NATURE leaps into theaters from Sep 22 (Los Angeles with other cities to follow).

A fairy tale classic goes under the frightening sea this September with MERMAID’S SONG, premiering on digital from Wild Eye Releasing.

A dark homage to Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid, and starring  Iwan Rheon (GAME OF THRONES), the film is set during the 1930s depression and tells of young Charlotte, who is struggling to keep the family business afloat. When gangster Randall offers to pay off the family debt – he demands some illegal changes to the business. But Charlotte, like her mother before her, is a mermaid capable of controlling humans with nothing but her voice, which creates a battle between all of those who want Charlotte’s magical powers for themselves.

From director Nicholas Humphries, and starring Iwan Rheon, Katelyn Mager, and Brendan Taylor, Mermaid’s Song arrives on digital September 18.

Uncork’d Entertainment announces a digital/VOD release date of October 2nd for new action-vigilante feature DEATH KISS.

Filmed in Northern California, the film stars Robert Kovacs (who has gained attention for his uncanny resemblance to a certain well-known action star), Daniel Baldwin (JOHN CARPENTER’S VAMPIRES), Richard Tyson (KINDERGARTEN COP, TWO MOON JUNCTION), Eva Hamilton (horror fest fave RUIN ME), Stormi Maya, Leia Perez, Reese Austyn, and Sam Story.
DEATH KISS concerns a vigilante with a mysterious past who goes to a crime-infested city and takes the law into his own hands, at the same time protecting a young mother and her child.

Writer-director is Rene Perez (PLAYING WITH DOLLS: HAVOC).  Producer is Jeff Miller (THE TOYBOX, OUIJA HOUSE), through his company Millman Productions.  Gary Jones helped executive produce through his company Mosquito Entertainment. Zach Carter served as Supervising Producer.
“Rene’s movie is very cool and stylish.  It feels like a throwback to the Cannon films of the ’80s,” says Miller.  “After an enthusiastic response at Texas Frightmare Weekend in May, we’re excited to show the film to the general public.”
The DVD, with special features such as director’s commentary and the trailer, will be released December 4th.

In the tradition of Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil, What We Do in the Shadows, James Gunn’s Slither, and Sy Fy’s Sharknado franchise, the demented creature feature RETURN OF THE KILLER SHREWS splatters its way onto VOD platforms this Halloween season!
Fans of pop culture and gonzo gorefests will eat up this tasty treat, as it hearkens back to the grindhouse drive-in era with sexy babes, carnivorous creatures and bloody mayhem, and does it with a smile.

In 1959, the original KILLER SHREWS exploded onto drive-in screens, as a charter boat Captain and a bevy of hapless scientists were besieged by a horde of mutant beasts on a remote, storm-swept island. This classic mad doctor-meets-monster movie mashup featured edgy character actor James Best (Dukes of Hazzard, Rolling Thunder) as Captain Thorne Sherman and famously low-fi special effects, giving birth to one of the most revered genre entries of its era.
Now, more than five decades later, the snarling, blood hungry monsters are back in RETURN OF THE KILLER SHREWS.  Captain Thorne Sherman returns to Shrew Island with a boatload of cargo for a TV crew filming a reality television show.  As the cameras roll, cast and crewmembers start falling prey to strange bloodthirsty creatures, and Thorne Sherman comes face to face with the toothy terrors that have haunted his dreams for so many years. What, or who, could be behind the bloody rampage of the insatiable giant killer shrews?

Best, making history in his repeat performance as Sherman, is joined by fellow Hazzard alumni John Schneider (SUPER SHARK, SMALLVILLE, GLEE, IT’S HOT IN CLEVELAND) and Rick Hurst (THE GUARDIAN, VENOMOUS). Also aboard for the doomed voyage are Bruce Davison (BLINDSPOT, INSIDIOUS: THE LAST KEY, X-MEN), Jennifer Lyons (HITTING THE BREAKS, THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN), Christopher Goodman (JANE THE VIRGIN), Holly Weber (VALLEY PEAKS, FAST & FURIOUS), Patrick Moran (JACK-O), Jason Shane Scott (THE BAY, GREY’S ANATOMY, SNIPER: SPECIAL OPS), Katherine Randolph (JARHEAD), Jeneta St. Clair (AFTER MIDNIGHT) and Sean Flynn (DEVIOUS MAIDS, LAST OF ROBIN HOOD, ZOEY 101).
RETURN OF THE KILLER SHREWS comes barking onto VOD for the first time with a hearty dose of chills and laughs. It’s a retro homage to the low budget drive-in films of yore, a shock ‘til you drop monster movie extravaganza that’ll make your blood vessels burst with suspense and laughter, RETURN OF THE KILLER SHREWS is just what the mad doctor ordered!   

iTunes Presales – 10/12
iTunes Exclusive Launch (Digital Premier) – 10/26
Amazon and Google Launch – 11/9

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

Spread the Word!

Ian

Good morning film fiends! Buckle up for KING COHEN, the true story of writer, producer, director, creator and all-around maverick, Larry Cohen. Told through compelling live interviews, stills and film/TV clips, the people who helped fulfill his vision, including Larry himself, bring one-of-a-kind insight into the work, process and legacy of a true American film auteur. Few can boast of a career as remarkable or prolific, spanning more than 50 years of entertaining audiences worldwide.

The highly anticipated KING COHEN, the true story of writer, producer, director, creator and all-around maverick, Larry Cohen,  will receive a full theatrical run across the U.S – including Los Angeles and New York – beginning July 27 courtesy Dark Star Pictures.

Cohen, best known for resourceful low-budget horror and thriller films that combine social commentary with prerequisite scares and welcome humor, is responsible for celluloid classics including BLACK CAESAR, IT’S ALIVE, Q: THE WINGED SERPENT, and THE STUFF. He was also a major player in the Blaxploitation films of the 1970s, as well as a prominent Hollywood screenwriter (PHONE BOOTH).

The acclaimed film features interviews with such industry luminaries as Martin Scorsese, J.J Abrams, Joe Dante, Mick Garris, John Landis, Fred Williamson as well as Cohen himself. Cohen’s remarkable one-of-a-kind career, from 60’s TV series creator (Branded, The Invaders), to 70’s and 80’s independent film icon and beyond, is chronicled with freewheeling and insightful verve.

Winner of the 2017 Fantasia Fest Best Documentary Feature Audience Award, KING COHEN hails from Rondo Award-winning writer/director Steve Mitchell, whose film and television credits include co-writing the beloved cult horror/comedy CHOPPING MALL. KING COHEN is a La-La Land Entertainment production, in association with Big And Tall Pictures and Off The Cliff Productions. It is directed and produced by Steve Mitchell and produced by Matt Verboys and Dan McKeon.

KING COHEN begins its theatrical run July 27 in markets including Los Angeles and New York. Special event screenings of the film will also be held throughout July and August in cities including Asheville, VA and Yonkers, NY. UK and European release dates to follow.

On a final note –  to any aspiring independent filmmakers, podcasters or film related writers out there out there reading this, let me know if you’d like me to publicize and/or review your projects, The Stricken Land is always happy to promote new talent and ideas! And as ever, please feel free to share this post and any others on here that you like, far and wide.

 

Spread the Word!

Ian

Knights of the Damned (2017) UK Dir: Simon Wells
Ross O’Hennessy, Ben Loyd-Holmes, Silvio Simac, Kate Davies Speak

Everyone loves a good cheesy low budget fantasy romp, especially those of us Generation VHS types who grew up with John Milius’ glorious take on CONAN THE BARBARIAN and the slew of straight to video copycats that arrived in its wake in the early to mid eighties.

Before even the Austrian Oak bestrode the Hyborian Age however, a much loved British curio hit cinema screens a year before. Terry Marcel’s HAWK THE SLAYER was a classic slice of b-movie sword and sorcery schlock featuring a scenery chewing Jack Palance as gasping villain Vultan and awesome special lo-fi special effects such as death by silly string(!)

Unfortunately we never saw a run of British fantasy movies after this, instead being treated to a steady run of American high fantasy flicks (DEATHSTALKER, WIZARDS OF THE LOST KINGDOM, ATOR THE FIGHTING EAGLE) starring musclebound non entities and Playboy playmates, usually courtesy of Roger Corman’s New World Pictures.

KNIGHTS OF THE DAMNED then, is the spiritual successor to Marcels microbudget masterpiece. Unfortunately it arrives hard on the mega budget heels of the likes of HBO’s GAME OF THRONES, a series that, along with Peter Jackson’s LORD OF THE RINGS movies has single handedly rescued the fantasy genre from being the preserve of 80’ D&D Which is a shame, because KNIGHTS OF THE DAMNED tries hard to be loved. The first entry in a proposed franchise called Order of Kings, the basic plot of the film is sound if unoriginal (never a hindrance in the fantasy genre). The Kingdom of Nazroth is threatened by dragons sent by ‘the Dark Kingdom’ along with a sorcerous plague that raises the dead for good mesure. A band of the King’s knights are sent out to slay the dragons and discover the source of the plague, encountering malevolent sirens, a band of warrior women and several other staples of the fantasy genre along the way.

The real problem the film has is that its ambitions are let down by its low budget, with the whole thing coming across as being somewhat half finished,with poor lighting and sound, at times coming perilously close to resembling a LARP home video.

The cast do well, struggling through some terribly stilted dialogue (“you can write this shit, but you sure can’t say it,” to quote a certain A list actor), and looking like they are all going to have a strong word with their agents. Ultimately, the achilles heel of the film is the budget versus the vision of the filmmakers who might have been better to scale down their ideas, along with what seems to become an interminable running time (in fact only 84 minutes.)

If, like me however you are solidly entertained by the budget end of the fantasy film spectrum, you will probably find something to entertain here if not just for a boozy film night with your mates and copious amounts of beer.