What to Watch on Netflix- May 2017

It occurred to me recently that there are a lot of great movies streaming that get overlooked. It can be difficult when you’re browsing through Netflix and you’ve seen almost everything. Keeping that in mind I’ve decided to do a monthly round up of films that are worth watching. Bear in mind that my picks are only applicable to the American version of platforms. This week I’ll be focusing on Netflix. Ok, let’s do it.

ParaElisa1.png

Para Elisa

This is a super short and sweet movie from Spain. It’s only about 75 minutes and the plot is fairly straightforward. I first saw this film at Screamfest and I was impressed, but since then I haven’t heard much about it. Like many festival favorites, it seems to have skipped the hype and gone straight to the oblivion that is Netflix. I recommend this film to anyone that digs creepy dolls. Just know this isn’t your standard creepy doll film.

mine-games_first-time.jpg

Mine Games

I’d be lying if I said I totally comprehended what occurred in this movie. Still, it’s weird and enjoyable. The story is about a group of friends that go into an old mine, and bizarre events ensue. I’m a big fan of films that are more about atmosphere than plot. To me horror is more effective when it’s not one hundred percent explained. This movie is for those that dig films like Triangle, Southbound, and Coherence.

14671301165772a104107a0.png

Almost Mercy

This indie film features appearances from horror favorites Bill Moseley and Kane Hodder, but it’s lead, Danielle Guldin that steals the show. The story follows two teen psychos who fight back against those that have abused them. The movie makes you think it’s going in one direction, and then swerves and goes the other way. If you like revenge stories, or character studies of sociopaths, then this is the one for you. Think American Psycho, the teen edition.

baskin_-_h_2015.jpg

Baskin

I don’t know if I would say that I like this movie, but it’s definitely worth the watch. This film from Turkey follows a group of corrupt policeman who venture into an abandoned building and discover Hell. There are many cool elements in this movie. I’m a fan of its depiction of Hell, and there are some awesome scenes of depravity. Some of the concepts are bit too literal for my liking. For example, one character has an actual lock on his head that another character must stick a key into to gain knowledge. Still, this Turkish gore fest is a safe bet for those looking for something on the extreme side of the genre.

Mockingbird-2014-movie-Bryan-Bertino-6.jpg

Mockingbird

If you check IMDB, you’ll notice that viewers hated this film. I actually found it to be quite entertaining. It’s a sloppy mess, and the ending is one of the WTF variety. Yet it’s captivating in the way it weaves together a couple different found footage perspectives. The story revolves around a couple that are forced to follow an anonymous set of instructions or else someone will die. Across town a man puts on a clown outfit after being informed that he could win a large sum of money if he plays along. There’s a sense of dread wondering how these two stories will overlap. Although, the resolution is a let down, I’ll still vouch for this found footage film by the director of The Strangers.

The Horror of Resurrection

Well it’s Easter, creeps. That means candy, rabbits, and dyed eggs… oh yeah and Jesus rising from the grave. Now I’m not particularly religious, but Easter seems like the perfect time to examine some excellent depictions of reanimation in horror films. For the purposes of this list, I’m going to try and leave off the super obvious choices, so no Frankenstein. That doesn’t mean I’m only listing indie films, it just means I won’t be recommending Evil Dead. I mean, come on, that’d just be lazy.

Cemetery-Man-1.jpg

Cemetery Man

There are so many weird things about this movie, apparently it’s based off a novel that is just as abstract and comedic. Although this movie is hilarious, there’s also a layer of sadness winding through it and the ending is gut-wrenching. You won’t find many clear cut answers in Cemetery Man, but one thing is clear. Keeping the dead in their graves is a lonely and unrewarding task.

100812-pet-sematary.jpg

Pet Sematary

Let’s be honest, Pet Sematary is not a great film. Like a lot of Stephen King adaptations, it feels a tad lackluster. Still, I love it. This cautionary tale is well suited to this list, because it demonstrates the tragic results that can occur when the natural process of death is disturbed. Louis Creed should’ve listened to Herman Munster. I mean, hell he’d already been reanimated once. Also, can we all agree that Rachel’s sister Zelda is one of the creepiest things ever?

FolkWake.jpg

Wake Wood

Wake Wood is a delightful little Irish flick that marked the return of Hammer Films. The premise is the same as Pet Sematary. A child dies, the parents are devastated, so they turn to extreme methods to bring their kid back to life. While Pet Sematary revolves around Native American mythology, Wake Wood utilizes Wicker Man style Paganism. The loopy locals combined with the gloomy Irish setting make Wake Wood a unique gem of a movie.

thumbnail_21702.jpg

Burying the Ex

Maybe you’d prefer a film that’s a bit more cute. Well if you consider flesh rotting and romance cute, then you should check out Burying the Ex. Burying the Ex features iconic Los Angeles scenery, an adorable Halloween loving protagonist, and Ashley Greene as the most annoying undead girlfriend anyone could imagine. Joe Dante’s films have always held a certain unparalleled offbeat charm, and Burying the Ex is no exception.

dead-alive_592x299-7.jpg

Dead Alive

Before Peter Jackson made long films about fantasy creatures taking epic walks, he made some insane movies. Among those, is Dead Alive. Dead Alive begins with Lionel’s obnoxious mother dying after being bitten by a Sumatran rat-monkey. Unfortunately for Lionel, she rises from the dead and proceeds to devour the living. Not only does this screw up Lionel’s love life, it leaves him with a whole mess of zombies to slaughter. Like Cemetery Man this film is laugh your ass off funny. It features some of the most gore-tastic zombie killing methods I’ve ever seen. If you’re looking for a zombie film that’s bursting with creativity, this is the one to watch.

I hope these 5 “Back from the Dead” films bring you a bit of macabre joy this Easter. However, if you’re having a big celebration dinner, I might wait until after you eat to check these flicks out. You might find them a bit nauseating if you’ve got a weak stomach. Check me out on Twitter @LolaTarantula and on our blog feed @HallowsHaunts. Happy Easter friends, enjoy.

 

4 Prank Endings in Horror

Beware! Here be spoilers!

There are plenty of twists in horror films, some are good, some are awful. Then, there are some that feel like the filmmakers pulled back the curtain and yelled “Gotcha!”. Unlike most twists in horror, which are used to increase the terror, these prank endings reveal that there was never any horror to begin with. It’s the movie equivalent of the end of every Scooby Doo episode ever. If there was ever a time to take a look at these wacky film conclusions, it’s April Fool’s Day. Let’s get started!

20121224afd1986h1.png

April Fool’s Day

April Fool’s Day is the most obvious choice on this list. This 1986 slasher is part of a whole batch of holiday themed horror films of the 80s. This weird movie follows a group of bonehead college students that take a trip to their friend Muffy’s home over the weekend of April Fool’s. The group soon realizes that Muffy’s name isn’t the only odd thing about her. She seems obsessed with pranks. It starts innocently enough, but gradually her pranks become more and more sinister. Then people begin turning up dead. The last couple survivors soon discover that Muffy isn’t the killer, her evil, psycho twin Buffy is. The final girl is pursued by a knife crazy Buffy. She runs into a room, fleeing for her life.

There she discovers the whole group alive and well. What the hell happened? It turns out that there never was a Buffy and no one was ever killed. Muffy set the whole thing up as one gigantic, elaborate joke. This ending pissed many viewers off, but no one can deny that it’s clever. If you haven’t seen this underrated slasher, be sure to check it out.

characters-600x319.jpg

The Village

It wouldn’t be an M. Night Shyamalan film without a twist, right? Well The Village has one hell of a twist. The Village begins by introducing the audience to a village of what seems to be 19th century settlers, who live in fear of the monsters in the forest. The villagers are taught that they’ll remain safe, as long as they follow a certain set of rules and never venture into the woods.

When blind protagonist, Ivy wishes to journey through the forest to retrieve medicine for her dying love, it is revealed to the viewers that the monsters are actually the village elders in costumes. They perpetuate the legends, in order to exert control and dissuade people from leaving.  Ivy is permitted to enter the forest, where she encounters the violent, mentally disabled Noah who is dressed as a monster. In her attempt to get away, she ends up causing his death. Believing she has successfully defeated one of the monsters, she is able to reach town.

Here’s where the real twist kicks in. It is revealed that it is present day, rather than the past. The elders were just a group of individuals who experienced so much trauma in their lives that they retreated to the woods in order to live a life separate from the dangerous outside world. Due to the fact that Ivy can’t see, her interpretation of events, allows the elders to continue their lies. If you want to see a beautiful romance, a strong protagonist, and a crazy twist then you should give this movie a chance.

Baghead_4.jpg

Baghead

This charming mumblegore favorite revolves around a group of struggling filmmakers that retreat to a remote cabin to come up with a film script. Unfortunately, coming up with a solid film idea is more difficult than they thought. Then bubbly blonde Michelle spots a creepy figure wearing a paper bag over his head. She believes that it was all a dream, and pitches her idea to the group. They love it and quickly get to work. Then Michelle has another encounter with the bagheaded figure.

Accusations fly as Matt, Michelle, Chad, and Catherine debate over the identity and the existence of the Baghead. A couple pranks/betrayals later, Matt and Chad spot the Baghead and go to check out the situation. They realize that the situation has become dire.  The next day they attempt to flee on foot. The Baghead kills Matt, and the other three manage to run to the highway. All the chaos results in Chad being plowed down by a car.

As he recovers in the hospital, it is revealed that Matt is actually fine. He and his friend had arranged the whole thing, in order to create a movie. Chad is rightfully pissed, but after some thought, he agrees that it’ll make a great film. Baghead says a lot about the nature of the film business, and the relationships dynamics that exist within friend groups.

Mark-of-the-Vampire_main.jpg

Mark of the Vampire

Have you ever wished that Tod Browning’s Dracula was a bit more of a mess? Well then, Mark of the Vampire is the film for you. Browning’s 1935 follow-up to Dracula was intended to be a sort of remake of London After Midnight. The plot follows the investigation into the death of a rich nobleman. His death has been attributed to a pair of vampires. The vampires are an undead father and daughter, with the father vampire being played by Bela Lugosi.

Unfortunately for Browning, the film was too ahead of its time. Throughout the film, Lugosi sometimes sports a bullet wound in the head. This was because he had an incestuous relationship with his daughter that resulted in a murder/suicide. Due to the uproar surrounding Freaks, MGM felt the audience would find this idea too shocking, and cut 30 minutes from the movie. The result was a major plot hole.

However, that little slip up turned out to be irrelevant, because at the end of the film it is revealed that the vampires were actors hired in order to help solve the mystery. Why? Well it’s a bit illogical, but that doesn’t detract from the overall enjoyability of the film. It is moody, quirky, and satirical all at the same time. Just don’t go in expecting a typical vampire movie.

There you have it folks, four films with joke endings. If you’re thinking of playing some April Fool’s pranks, maybe these slices of cinema will give you some inspiration. If not there’s always rubber spiders, fake fingers, and ketchup blood.

 

Midsummer Scream Tickets on Sale Now!

Midsummer-Scream-2017_Postcard-696x1024Alright all you Halloween, horror, and haunt enthusiasts! Tickets are now on sale for Midsummer Scream, the biggest Halloween festival of the year. In case you’re unfamiliar with Midsummer Scream, it’s a summertime extravaganza dedicated to Halloween and haunts. Many of the California based haunts and theme parks, including Knott’s, Universal Studios, and Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor, made their official Halloween announcements at Midsummer Scream.

Theme Park Adventure (@TPAMagazine), the co-creators of Midsummer Scream, have announced some of the lineup for this year’s event that includes the Decayed Brigade, Zombie Joe’s Underground, Return Home Podcast, Force of Nature Productions, Mudd The Magnificent, and many more to be announced.

They also announced the return of the Hall of Shadows, Midsummer Scream’s own scarezone which features numerous mini-haunts.

img_0259

For you party ghouls, this year’s party will be hosted aboard the Queen Mary by Dark Harbor’s Sinister Circus!

img_0181

I know that I speak for the whole All Hallows’ Haunts team when I say last year’s Midsummer Scream was not just the best Halloween convention we had been to, but it was the best overall convention that any of us had ever attended. We can’t wait for July when Midsummer Scream returns!!!

Midsummer Scream takes place Saturday July 29th and Sunday July 30th, 2017 at the Long Beach convention center. Tickets are on sale and can be bought at MidsummerScream.org . You can also follow them on Twitter/Periscope: @MidsummerScream, and Instagram: @MidsummerScream.

Be sure to follow All Hallows’ Haunts here and on Twitter (@HallowsHaunts) for more information on Midsummer Scream as more announcements are made.

(Midsummer Scream Poster by Midsummer Scream.)

 

A Cure For Wellness- A Gothic Spectacular

maxresdefault

Visionary director, Gore Verbinski is back with his first horror film since The Ring. 2017’s A Cure for Wellness blends Verbinski’s meticulous attention to detail with elements from gothic and weird fiction. The resulting film contains a few flaws, but overall is a beautiful and unique cinematic experience.

A Cure for Wellness follows ruthless young businessman, Lockhart (Dane DeHaan), on his mission to Switzerland to convince his company’s head to return to his life in New York. Lockhart is the kind of guy who will do anything to achieve a goal, and he isn’t afraid to push people around in order to get what he wants. His arrogance leads him to believe that retrieving his boss will be a simple task, but he quickly discovers the sanitarium is hiding secrets in every corner, most of them related to the water.

NE27Jkd74Nv849_2_b.jpg

From a technical perspective, A Cure For Wellness is a feast for the eyes. Verbinski’s clear understanding of visual storytelling, creates a tense atmosphere of foreboding that is present in every scene. Whether the camera is following the dizzying movements of a group of white robed dancers, or showing a static image reflected in the eye of an animal bust, there is a grandness created within the frame. His indulgent style is an excellent fit with the dramatic storyline.

As for the story itself, there’s a bit of everything for all types horror fans. Fans of gothic horror will be attracted to the old buildings, incestuous relationships, and the forbidden romance. Those more drawn to Lovecraftian themes will enjoy the slimy creatures, the body horror, and the overall sense of individual oppression by the seemingly larger than life institution.

thumbnail_25048.jpg

The mystery behind the water in A Cure For Wellness is compelling, but a bit predictable. Chances are, most viewers will figure out what’s going on, pretty fast. That doesn’t make the film less enjoyable, just don’t expect to be shocked. It’s also a little on the long side, but because Lockhart is learning more and more with each scene, it doesn’t seem slow or boring. However, it might upon repeat viewings.

The film is at its very best when it relies on the creepiness of the characters and the cult-like mindset of the institution. The weird water based treatments, the polite but stiff staff, and the zombified patients in white are what makes the movie so spine chilling.

2774024590e73d66236acc3a3b9ea2015d075455.jpg

The film is at its worst when ventures beyond the atmospheric and the psychological. The climax boils down to a physical fistfight between Lockhart and a character that basically transforms into Skeletor (No spoilers, here.). For a film that spent two hours being so thought provoking, it seems jarring and out of place for a high action scene to occur. For some this borderline comedic resolution may ruin the film. For others it’ll just seem like a sizeable bump in the road.

A Cure For Wellness is likely to be on many top 10 lists for 2017. Even though, it contains some significant blemishes, it still possesses many brilliant qualities. Like Crimson Peak, its gothic aesthetic and precise performances more than make up for its basic storyline. Verbinski may not have created a genre masterpiece, but A Cure For Wellness still way exceeds most studio horror productions.

8 Yandere Girls That Will Stab Their Way Into Your Heart

Yandere – Yandere is a type of character trope in anime. These girls start out as cute, but go totally psychotic when they fall in love. Valentine’s Day seemed like the perfect time to shine the spotlight on these violent vixens.

Note: These are not ranked in any particular order, and there are plenty of spoilers.

YunoYandereFace.jpg

1. Yuno Gasai – Mirai Nikki/Future Diary

Abusive parents, traveling between parallel universes, and competing in a survival game are definitely contributing factors, but what really brings out the homicidal in Yuno, is Yukiteru Amano. The premise of Future Diary is that 12 contestants must kill each other in order to become the god of time and space. They are given a diary that gives them information about the future. Each person’s diary is tailored to their own personality and style. Yuno’s diary keeps track of Yuki and all of his actions. Yuno is prepared to kill anyone, to protect Yuki and their love. Fortunately for Yuno, Yuki warms up to her terrifying methods of expressing her devotion.

Most Yandere Moment: When she force feeds Yuki in her underwear, in a dark room next to her dead parents.

normal_elfen_lied_002.jpg

2. Lucy – Elfen Lied

Lucy is a Diclonius, meaning that she is part of a new powerful species, that poses a massive threat to humans. She has seen very little kindness in her life, so when she made friends with young Kouta, she resorted to violence of Carrie level proportions in order to keep him.

Most Yandere Moment: When she decapitates Kouta’s father and tears his sister in half.

pvypjyi.jpg

3. Toko Fukawa- Danganronpa

Toko seems like a shy, reserved girl. She is a young romance novelist with a large amount of success, but underneath it all she is a deadly serial killer known as Genocide Jack. Genocide Jack only comes out when Toko becomes obsessed with a boy. In the anime, Toko lapses into her Genocide Jack personality when she sneezes or faints. Keep a tissue and a straight jacket handy!

Most Yandere Moment: Genocide Jack is known to crucify her victims with her Genoscissors.

kaede_shockedi-710795.jpg

4. Kaede Fuyou- Shuffle

Shuffle is a pretty standard harem anime, but it’s one of the first harems to include a yandere. Kaede Fuyou is pretty, talented, and athletic. Unfortunately she’s also insecure, self loathing, and suffering from a bad case of unrequited love. When her crush/roommate Rin gets a girlfriend, she snaps. She goes as far as to try and murder Asa, Rin’s girlfriend in order to eliminate the competition.

Most Yandere Moment: Kaede does pretty much all the household cooking. That’s fine except for that time she was intensely stirring an empty pot with an expression of pure madness on her face.

p4885.jpg

5. Misa Amane- Death Note

Crazy attracts crazy in Death Note. Misa and her love, Light prove that. Misa is a popular young model/actress, who’s not afraid to go after what she wants. She has a cute gothic style and a bubbly personality, but many consider her to be annoying. Misa devotes herself to Light, after he kills the man who murdered her family. Both Light and Misa are able to hold the lives of others in their hands. This makes them a deadly combination. Although Misa is willing to do anything for Light, but Light feels nothing for her. I’d compare their relationship to the one between Harley Quinn and the Joker.

Most Yandere Moment: Misa tells Light that she’ll kill any other girl he shows an interest in. Little does she know, Light was planning to kill her after she ceases to be useful.

2394.jpg

6. Kotonoha Katsura – School Days

Kotonoha, seems like she has it all. She’s beautiful, rich, and charming. However, she’s hiding a seriously sinister side. At the beginning of the series, she is quiet and polite, and always seems to be alone. Then she starts dating Makoto and it’s all downhill from there. When their relationship begins falling apart, Kotonoha becomes desperate. She started out as a prude, but in order to keep Makoto she transforms into a straight up nymphomaniac. She even encourages Makoto’s other yandere love, Sekai, to get an abortion. She also does crazy shit like pretending to talk to Makoto on the phone, when no one is on the other end.

Most Yandere Moment- In order to prove Sekai was lying about her pregnancy, Kotonoha stabs her in the stomach then goes digging for a baby. Then she sails into the sunset with Makoto’s severed head.

Sekai_yandere_after_push.jpg

7. Sekai Saionji – School Days

Sekai may act like a sweet tomboy, who only wants her best friend Makoto to be happy. Go beneath the surface, and she’s a manipulative bitch, pulling strings to get Makoto and Kotonoha to do as she wants. Sekai is the one who initially sets them up, she gives them relationship advice, then she steals him from her. When Makoto wants to got back to Kotonoha, she pretends she’s pregnant to force him into staying with her.

Most Yandere Moment: Sekai texts Makoto “goodbye” before stabbing the hell out of him.

Minase.Yuka.full.29910.jpg

8. Yuka Minase- 11 Eyes

Yuka and Kakeru met as children, they grew up together at an orphanage. Like many other yanderes, Yuka is kind and reserved but has a jealous side that is powerful when unleashed. Yuka is so powerful that she creates a whole world just for her and Kakeru. Unfortunately, this new world is populated by pretty girls that love Kakeru.

Most Yandere Moment: When Yuka decides, Kakeru is getting a little too close to Misuzu, she hides a razorblade in her tea.

Do you agree with my list? Who else would you add? Let me know in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

 

Rings- Too Little, Too Late

rings-visual.jpeg

Rings, the third film in the American Ring franchise comes more than a decade after The Ring 2. Like the first two films, Rings focuses on a cursed video tape, and the mythology surrounding it. Since it’s 2016, one might expect Rings to focus on social media, and the way a video can go “viral”. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Instead, the movie delves deeper into the history of the tape, creating a boring, disjointed narrative.

rings-3.jpg

Rings follows two college aged students (Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz and Alex Roe) that become involved with the tape and the mystery of Samara. When Holt (Roe) begins attending college, he is convinced to watch the tape by his professor, Gabriel (Johnny Galecki). Gabriel believes the tape provides absolute proof of life after death, and he has created a club dedicated to watching and spreading it. While the tape is a sure death sentence, that death can be avoided if you have someone else watch it. Julia (Lutz) watches the tape to save Holt. After that she begins experiencing visions of Samara, the legendary girl from the tape. These visions, accompanied by clues from the tape lead Holt and Julia to the small town where Samara was born. The couple struggle to put the pieces together, before it’s too late.

3CE2104300000578-4193834-Frightening_film_Alex_Roe_and_Matilda_Anna_Ingrid_Lutz_s_film_Ri-a-1_1486343814056.jpg

Rings has some intriguing stuff in it. The idea of a club being built around the tape is a good one. The film also shows the innovative ways the tape can be viewed and shared. However, these aspects of the movie are minor and are never given enough time to fully develop. Instead, all of the emphasis is put on Samara and her history. The 2002 Gore Verbinski film did an excellent job of detailing Samara’s story, Rings only adds details that are both unnecessary and confusing. In the final act, Rings attempts to redeem itself by adding a plot twist involving Vincent D’Onofrio. Unfortunately, it falls flat.

rgs-02315k-1.jpg

In addition to the details of the story, the film suffers from a distinct lack of worthy characters. Julia and Holt lack personality. Their love story feels hollow. There’s just nothing there to make the viewer feel attached to them. The film would be much better, if it followed Gabriel the professor, and his obsession with the tape.

Finally, there’s Samara herself. She’s a creepy character by nature. However, Rings attempts to make her more menacing by adding excessive makeup and CGI. She’s reduced to a silly parody of the Samara/Sadako fans have come to know and love.

d582de1c59533983c8c68bde2bfe116de15d1b2b8dbb80ddcc4b164fa896c078.jpg

Rings isn’t a terrible film, it’s just boring. The plot is too tedious. On the surface it seems like the story makes sense, but it can be picked apart with ease. It does nothing to enhance or further the franchise. Rings played it too safe. Director, F. Javier Gutierrez attempted to copy the format of the Verbinksi film, but had little success. The end result is another sloppy, paint by numbers horror film.

 

Split- M. Night is officially back!

Every horror fan knows that M. Night Shyamalan has had a rocky career. He’s hit some high highs, but unfortunately he’s also hit some extreme lows. In 2015 he gave us the Wayward Pines series, which I’ve yet to finish, but showed promise. He also released The Visit which falls into a weird gray area where it manages to be both awesome and awful. His latest film, Split places him firmly back into good filmmaker territory, well at least for now.

Split-(2017)-2-News.jpg

Split follows a teen outcast (Anya Taylor-Joy) and two of her classmates (Haley Lu Richardson and Jessica Sula) that are captured by a man with multiple personalities (James McAvoy). The girls must figure out how to stay alive, and how to protect themselves from their attacker’s 24 identities.

Split relies on heavy tension and well crafted characters to hold the viewer hostage until the very end. Each one of McAvoy’s personalities is unique and feels like an actual person, or perhaps even something supernatural. He sheds personas with ease, allowing him to shift back and forth between characters. Like his captives, the audience is left waiting for him to snap and change into someone or something else.

36190303split-mcavoy-thumb-1484962366951_1280w.jpg

The film tackles issues of mental illness and abuse with an unexpected level of compassion. Split makes you feel for McAvoy’s character, even as he commits horrific crimes. There is great deal of debate about whether Dissociative Identity Disorder/Multiple Personality Disorder even exists. For the purposes of Split, DID is both a gift and a burden. McAvoy’s character, possesses a multitude of talents, due to the diverse nature of his personalities. However, it makes life difficult for him, as he essentially has 24 identities competing for control, and some of them have bad intentions. In addition to DID, Split also delves into abuse. Both the protagonist and the antagonist are victims of child abuse. This is intriguing, because in a sense it makes them kindred spirits, who have wound up on different paths.

split-images-movie-2016.jpg

Split is a great theatrical horror film to kick off 2017. It’s smart, it has fully developed characters, and one hell of an ending. Hopefully M. Night can keep producing quality work like Split.

 

Speed Date Through The Apocalypse

One of the best parts of living in Southern California is we are in the heart of the haunt, horror, and Halloween community. This a place where many live like it’s Halloween everyday. Honestly, who wouldn’t want it to be Halloween every day? Being in Southern California gives us the ability to attend and experience macabre events unlike anywhere else. So, when the team here at All Hallows’ Haunts found out that Serial Killer Speed Dating and The Bunker Experience, two of our favorite events, are teaming up together, we were filled with blood soaked joy.

(Photo By Th Bunker Experience)

The Bunker Experience is a fully immersive post-apocalyptic escape room and mini maze, filled with mutated villains trying to prevent your escape. For this special event, Serial Killer Speed Dating will be hosting a special speed dating segment where participants will receive special clues to help them through the Bunker. It’s really important to note that while Serial Killer Speed Dating is hosting the speed dating portion, the speed dating is not serial killer speed dating.

Per their joint email that went out earlier this week: “Speed date with like-minded singles in the dystopian future deep in underground Old Pasadena. The evening starts with speed dating, where you’ll all be given clues as to how to survive the night, before being ushered into The Bunker Experience’s outstanding escape room and haunted maze. This one’s a doozy, people. It has a 20% success rate. Good luck.”

(Photo by The Bunker Experience)

The best part is that tickets for this amazing evening of fun, romance, fright, and adventure are just $39.95. Tickets include full entry to both speed dating and the escape room. Plus you will get access to a hidden bar, right across the street from The Bunker Experience and enjoy a 30% discount on drinks. Tickets can be bought at https://the-bunker-experience.ticketleap.com/speed-dating-in-an-escape-room/ and it’s recommended that you buy tickets early as they can sell out.

(Photo by Kady Chun)

This awesome event will take place every Friday night at 8pm in February at Bunker Experience- 20 N Raymond Ave, Pasadena, Ca 91103.

The Bunker Experience, which first opened during the 2015 Halloween season, now runs year round. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit them online at http://www.thebunkerexperoence.com . You can also follow them on Twitter- @BunkerEx . Serial Killer Speed Dating made its debut at ScareLA 2015 and has been touring all over Southern California since. You can find more info about all SKSD events at http://www.serialkillerspeeddating.com and follow them on Twitter- @SKSpeedDating.

You can also read our past review of The Bunker Experience here https://allhallowshaunts.wordpress.com/2016/08/08/will-you-escape-the-bunker-experience/ and our review of Serial Killer Speed Dating here https://allhallowshaunts.wordpress.com/2016/04/18/serial-killer-speed-dating-spring-fever-edition/

Be sure to follow All Hallows’ Haunts here and on twitter-@HallowsHaunts, for more information of Halloween, horror, and haunt events in Southern California.

(Main Postcard by Serial Killer Speed Dating/The Bunker Experience)

Lola’s Top Ten Worst Films of 2016

While 2016 was mostly a good year for the horror genre, there were still some major flops that slipped through the cracks. My list consists of the films that were not necessarily the worst, but the ones that I found most annoying. I’ve ranked them accordingly.

disappoint5.jpg10. The Disappointments Room

There isn’t much to say here. I think Wentworth Miller had some sort of gothic trope check list that he used to create this script. The sad thing is, he’s an excellent writer. Stoker is a favorite of mine. If you want to see a good gothic thriller starring Kate Beckinsale, I’d go with Stonehurst Asylum.

holidays-screenshot-1.jpg

9. Holidays

There have been some great anthology films of late. Unfortunately, Holidays falls into the weird and stupid category next to The ABCs of Death. The best segment of the batch is the Kevin Smith one, but even Smith’s piece seems lacking. The worst one is the Saint Patrick’s Day one, which crams a shitty 90 minute film into about 15 minutes.

171610088-7213fc65-1b44-41b3-a847-68a42f5b4325.jpg8. Green Room

I know many of you are going to disagree with me about this one. I liked the director’s first film, Blue Ruin, but Green Room seemed sloppy and nonsensical. It was drastically underlit, and I frequently couldn’t tell where the characters were in relation to one another. I’m also confused as to why this massive group of white supremacists couldn’t wipe out a few punk rockers. Finally, I have to talk about Patrick Stewart. His performance was almost unwatchable. He mumbles his way through the whole damn movie, like he’s sedated or something.

intruder-still-one.jpg

7. Intruder

If I were ranking these films based on how poorly they were made, Intruder would be at the very top. This Netflix original had little to offer except unintended laughs. The most cringe worthy scenes are the ones where Moby attempts to act. Also, why can’t that girl see her stalker when he’s standing right next to her while she’s in the shower? She better get her peripheral vision checked.

1617.jpg

6. The Purge: Election Year

The Purge is a fun concept, and I enjoyed the first film and parts on Anarchy. However, Election Year just took it way too far. I didn’t hate this film, but it was just trying too hard. There were moments and characters I enjoyed, but the film as a whole felt like silly political propaganda.

ghostbusters-full-new-img.jpg

5. Ghostbusters

Ok, so Ghostbusters isn’t a horror movie, but horror sites covered the hell out of it and it has ghosts. To be honest, I couldn’t sit through the entirety of this film. The jokes fell flat as a pancake, and the characters made my flesh crawl. Whoever thought this script was good must’ve had their streams crossed.

morgan-gallery8-gallery-image.jpg

4. Morgan

This film had so much potential to be smart and scary. Instead, audiences were forced to endure some needless action scenes and an obvious plot twist.

cf-2.jpg

3. Cabin Fever

Cabin Fever gets the award for most pointless remake of 2016. Ever wonder what would happen if you took the exact same script, and reshot it with different actors? Yeah, neither did anyone else.

image.jpg

2. Blair Witch

The Blair Witch happens to be one of my very favorite films. When I heard about the new film, I was pretty excited. The trailer looked good, and I knew it was in the capable hands of Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a messy, confusing rehash of the original. Dumbest part of the movie? The drone, definitely the drone. They set it up to be an important part of the film, and then did nothing with it, what a waste.

PH03txXd8SWJ39_1_l.jpg

1. The Darkness

This film is so rubbish, it’d be comical if it wasn’t so sad. The trailer offered promise of an unusual ghost story, with Anasazi gods at the heart of it. Unfortunately, the Anasazi gods were only a minor part of the film. Instead, the audience was forced to endure haunted house 101 gimmicks, and a family that is full of dysfunction and low on likability. Kevin Bacon, you can do so much better.