THE DEAD NEXT DOOR
One of the last movies to be filmed on super 8 hand held technology the Dead Next Door is a zombie gorefest which gives thrills from start to finish. Secretly produced by Evil dead series horror legend Sam Raimi and directed by a young JR Bookwalter, Dead Next Door is a cult classic that any zombie fan NEEDS in their dvd collection.
The story is set in Akron Ohio where the world has been taken over by flesh eating zombies (which run and cannot be killed I might add) and society is on the brink of collapse. The law enforcement agency has developed a new type of SWAT team to combat the zombie scum in the form of the Zombie Squad who drive around in a cool hearse which (looks like a cop car) and they are also armed up to the eyeballs.
The zombie Squad are led by a character named Raimi (who is voice dubbed over by Evil Dead's Bruce Cambell!!) and they go out kicking zombie ass, looking for survivors and a serum combat the virus by the man who created it. Sent by Doctor Savani (yes named in tribute to Dawn of the Dead's Tom Savini) to find the serum the zombie squad end up locking horns with a religious cult who protect the zombies and feed them. Will they get the serum and end this nightmare?
This zombie movie is an all time favorite of mine! If you love low budget zombie movies covered in gore and satire then this is for you. Highlights for me are scenes like when a zombie walks into a video store and returns a Dawn of the Dead tape, a recently decapitated head digests a finger, zombies on leads like dogs, protesters for zombie rights, Bruce Cambell's cameo voice over, zombies outside the White House and the great guerrilla special effects throughout.
The Dead Next door is a must for gore hounds!
Sam Raimi gave these young film makers the money for this and they ran with it producing one of the best splatter-fest's which checked all the boxes as far as I'm concerned with B movie nastiness.
THE CURSE OF THE WEREWOLF
The Curse of the Werewolf is a Hammer Horror movie I have always wanted to see as I am a huge fan of the Hammer Horror movies and the main star of this movie Oliver Reed.
Thanks to Lovefilm.com's on demand streaming service I was finally able to check it out this week via Xbox Live.
The movie was a bit of an anti climax after all these years of wanting to see it after seeing photos of Oliver Reed in Lycanthrope form in various books and magazines over the years.
The plot of the movie to cut it short (which really does need doing as the story moves at an alarmingly slow pace) is the story of an unwanted baby boy who is born on Christmas Day and for some strange reason this makes you become a Werewolf?
The boy is brought up by a local rich couple as their own son but when local goats start getting all kinds of fucked up they decide to bar up the windows and hope for the best.
The "what's scarier" debate on a real life drunken Oliver Reed and a real werewolf is still a great question!
Then the boy grows up (into Oliver Reed maybe one of the coolest hardest drinking men to ever walk the Earth) and they send him packing. Now if your adopted son who you know for a fact is a Werewolf and not to forget this same man is Oliver Reed (who once said he wanted to drink every pub dry and shag every woman alive and meant it) then surely letting him loose to the nearby community might be a bit of a bad idea? Oh well fuck em!
Anyway within a few days of meeting the love of his life Reedy metamorphosises into a Werewolf and starts killing people and throwing doors at them etc.
Now most of the interesting bits of this movie you don't get to see like for instance most death scenes just involve a hairy hand coming out from the side and grabbing someone. When Oliver Reed finally transforms into the beast he just runs around a few rooftops growling and snarling at the people below until he is ultimately shot by his adopted father with a silver bullet.
This movie was a major disappointment but it is not the fault of the actors who all gave convincing enough performances, nor the special effects crew which make a decent effort for the time that the movie was made. Its the script that lets this movie down the most in my opinion. The movie focuses too much with events at the start which in all fairness could have been explained in 20 seconds by a narrator at the beginning instead of the good 40 minutes it took.
30 minutes through this movie I had to double check if I was watching a movie about Werewolves or some shit period drama about a load of non events and rich people bullying poor ones by locking them in Dungeons.
Although the image of Oliver Reed portraying the Wolf will always be an enduring one and will forever be immortalized by action figures and posters, the movie it self will always be a let down no matter who views it. A few years later Hammer made a much better effort with The Legend of the Werewolf which I would recommend instead of this one if you fancy watching a Hammer Werewolf movie.
THE LIVING DEAD AT THE MANCHESTER MORGUE
The Living Dead at The Manchester Morgue is a film which I have been meaning to watch for sometime. For some reason it has been hard to get hold of and very over priced for some reason (maybe due to the fact it is also known as Let Sleeping Corpses Lie) but I'm not gunna pay £20 for a film I've never seen before incase its shit! I managed to find it online via google video I wasnt disappointed.
The film starts out when a hip bearded antique shop owning biker goes on a road trip from the busy city to the lake district. On his way he encounters a wallflower ginger female who backs into his motorbike at a petrol garage and renders it useless. The biker (George) gets the woman driver (Edna) to give him a lift to where he is going as its the least she can do. The two get lost in the countryside and while George is off getting directions from a group of men in a field (who work for the department of agriculture and have a big fuck off radiation machine for killing ants) Edna is attacked by a zombie tramp who tries getting in the car. George comes back the tramp is gone and its not long before the zombie tramp kills someone and they get framed for it, a policeman with a really fucked up accent comes after them thinking they are satanic killers. A short time after babies start biting people, zombies start turning up ripping people to pieces and the two main characters are slap bang in the middle.
The movie is awesome and really captures the feel of the decade it was filmed in. The use of the British countryside gives this film the same eerie quality of Romeros first undead nightmare (NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD) which is awesome and old school locations like church crypts and graveyards make it that little bit cooler. The zombies themselves are that tiny bit more terryfying than the usual undead which grace our screens on a regular basis. They cant die from head shots and just keep coming and are freakishly strong and in one scene a zombie lifts a gravestone out of the ground and uses it as a weapon. Theres lots of drug use including a character who is addicted to heroin and the gore count is tip top and much more hardcore than anything else released at its time. Anyway I never like to spoil films in my reviews but I love this movie please check it out!
Imagine if they made a cabin horror movie that was like Evil Dead and Inglorious Basterds put together... well in Norway they have!! A country famed for its hostile weather, Vikings, Mountains and crazy black Metal bands that kill people and burn churches Norway is a pretty cool place in my book.
The movie starts out as many horrors do with teens on their way to a secluded log cabin (this time in the snowy mountains) for a weekend trip away. When they arrive they encounter a wierd old man who comes into the cabin who doesent like their coffee and smokes roll ups who tells them the tale of the evil curse and the nazis that were never found again in the mountains. At this point the movie is pretty much Friday the 13th with different use of words. Anyway its not long before the kids find a box of treasure in the cabin and decide to steal it and a horde of undead Nazis decide to turn up and are not very pleased at all. The rest of the movie is just the characters trying to survive against the horde of the 3rd Reich's undead. The movie has buckets of gore and the zombies themselves have awesome make up, costumes and special effects. The zombies are very strong, can run, use objects such as knives to kill their victims and they eat the bodies.
There is a really cool general Zombie who looks awesome and leads the pack of the undead towards the victims! The victims fight back using snow mobiles that have gattling guns attached to the front, axes, chainsaws, shotguns and the usual aresnal of weapons that you would see in a zombie flick. There are lots of funny bits in this movie all in the tongue in cheek style of Peter Jacksons Braindead and Sam Ramis Evil Dead and the film doesent take it self too seriously which is a good thing. If you like zombies and you like Nazis (not in a racist weird way but just think they make decent bad guys in movies like I do! like the ones in Indiana Jones and Ingloriuos Basterds for instance) then please check out this movie. Please remember to get the dubbed English version unless you want to sit through sub titles.
Ok so I'm doing more posts mainly out of boredom and the fact I'm going through my horror collection. I have got all the classics in my collection the Freddies, the Jasons, the Michael Myers, the Stephen King movie adaptions, Romeros zombie movies and all the other standard greats you would find in your local video stores horror section. (On a quick note I did buy out the stock of the local video store when it went bust a few years back) But I want to share with you the movies I really enjoy that you probably have never seen or heard of and Demons 2 is likely to be one of those. Demons 2 is a sequel to the Euro horror movie Demons (well duh!) which was directed by Lamberto Bava and produced by Dario Argento (Dawn of the Dead). In the first movie a bunch of cinema goers get locked in a movie theater and the movie comes to life turning the viewers into demons with claws and fangs which infect everyone and everyone gets fucked up to put it mildly.
In this movie its some girl called Sally's 16th birthday and she just so happens to live in a futuristic block of flats that when the power is out no one can escape the building and the windows are bullet/sound proof... how convienient! Anyway Sally is watching a movie about demons on the TV in her room while all the guests are arriving and a demon just decides to jump out of the TV and infect her. Sally comes out later to blow out the candles on her cake and then metamorphises into a demon in which is a really cool 1980's special effects fest with sprouting teeth and claws. Within minutes she rips everyone in the party apart and then everyone else grows teeth fangs and the lust for human flesh. I must note as well while this is going on a really cool song by the Cult is playing. Toxic demon blood soaks through the floors into the apartments below knocking out the power cables and infecting who ever it touches (including a dog and a young boy) leaving the remaining survivors locked in the futuristic tower block with hordes of demonic bastards.
The demons work their way through the apartment block which has a body building gym at the bottom
(which has the black guy from the first movie who is also if I'm not mistaken the lead singer of hot chocolate!)
and they fuck up everything in their path. The two main survivors the movie focuses on are some yuppie hero type called George and his pregnant wife and the rest of the movie is about their survival and escaping the hell which surrounds them.
For me I love this movie it isnt the best horror movie around but if you like cool gory special effects, 80's horror movies, new wave music or just stupid storylines with ridiculous violence (including people getting slammed in sunbeds, stabbed with umbrellas, castration and people getting clawed to death) and you like movies that are just fun then check this out!
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD 1990
So the original Night of the Living Dead from 1968 is an undisputed classic. It made the rules for the format and formula for zombie movies for decades to come. It had the underlying social commentary of what was going on in real life America at that time and all the rest of the really clever things that people take from that movie that might not have even been intended. I just look at the living dead series straight up for what they were and thats amazing zombie movies. Yeah you can look deeper into it that it has a black guy as a main character or you can look at Dawn of the Dead as being satire on consumerism but I personally think as I said before.. they are just cool zombie movies nothing more nothing less and when you put all of that extra stuff in there it somewhat takes the fun away from it all.
I am a fan of the original for what it was and the success it had for being a B-movie made in black white on a pittance of a budget and it was guerrilla film making at its finest. However the original Night of the Living Dead is my least favorite of the series. I am not saying its a shit film but out of the three... (well I will stop there I would say four but Land of the Dead was made soo long after the original three that with its futuristic feel it feels like a completely different film and nothing to do with the rest of the series) but but whenever I watch them in a row the first movie is somewhat of a chore compared to watching Dawn or Day. Some people will agree with me a lot more will disagree but thats freedom of speech for you.
I am not a fan of movie remakes unless its a movie that needs remaking and what I mean by that is if the original movie was a classic but lacking in either budget, special effects, camera shots or bad plot holes. I am not a fan of needless remakes that Michael Bay feeds us on a regular basis of massive movies that didnt need to be remade just to draw cash for no reason what so ever. If you have seen the Nightmare on Elm Street, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Hills Have Eyes, Friday the 13th and the list could go on forever of shit needless remakes you will know what I mean.
The Night of the Living Dead remake is different. It was remade by the original crew (plus gore master Tom Savini) with a real budget and this time they could do things with the movie that they couldnt do with the original. Another reason for the remake was due to a copyright fuck up the original Night of the Living Dead ended up becoming a public domain film and everyone involved ended up getting screwed out of the movies earnings kinda the same way that the cast an crew of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre did. So this time round they were going to reboot a classic and reap the rewards.
This time round the zombies are nothing short of amazing and they have more of a presence than the original. In the original you would sometimes forget that you were watching a zombie movie due to the amount of boring dialogue that would go on for too long without seeing any undead. This time round the hands are frequently coming through the windows and they are always around to jump out when least expected.
This time round Barbara isnt as annoying as the first movie and is not scared of pumping a few zombies full of lead and doesent just sit there being a mong all the time. Ben is played by Tony Todd out of the Candyman and nails the role spot on. I really enjoy this movie and I may be making a bold statement by saying its better than the original but I really think it is. Its in color, the performances are better, hardly anythings been changed story wise, the performances are better, its full of action and the zombie special effects are awesome. Go watch it!
TOMBS OF THE BLIND DEAD
Tombs of the blind Dead is a Spanish horror movie from 1971 that I just had to check out. The movie gets a bad rating on online reviews but I thought it was really cool and I really digged it.
The story is about two friends (a male and a female who's names escape me at this hour) who are going for a trip into the countryside when the female bumps into her old college room mate who just so happens to be an old lesbian fling and they decide to bring her along on just for the hell of it. On the train ride the woman gets jealous of the other two flirting so she jumps off the really slow moving steam train and heads off into an abandoned Medieval village. She sets camp up there only to find that at night time undead hooded skeletons (that ride horses really slowly that look cool as fuck by the way) rise from their grave looking for flesh. She gets chased and bitten to fuck and left dead.
The next day the other 2 decide to leave their really nice hotel and go and look for her. This bit puzzled me as if you were that concerned surely you would have started the search the day before and especially before nightfall? Oh well I guess if they would have found her during the day and just gone back to the hotel this movie would have ended up being a porn film as it was leaning that way. After finding the police in the village and finding out their female friend was "murdered in a ritual killing" the plot thickens and they start doing a bit of detective work.
During their investigation it turns out that the village was ruled by Templar Knights who practiced Satanic rituals and sacrifices in order for them to gain the secret of eternal life. Then we get a cool flashback of some hot chick getting fucked up by these cool knights and are then told the knights were all hung and their eyes pecked out by crows. They return from the grave blind and hunt using the sense of sound so upon hearing all of this they decide to go back there, why? I don't fucking know but again if they didn't the movie would just end there I guess. During this time the body of the woman comes to life in the morgue and kills some weird bloke who likes playing with frogs and chases a woman around a mannequin workshop until she burns.
The couple then enlist the help of a flick knife wielding smuggler called Pedro (who kinda looks like Earl from my name is Earl) to go back to the village along with some other chick because they needed the body count I guess. When returning to the cursed village there is rape scene involving Pedro and the main character woman which is random and has nothing to do with anything and to top it off after its finished the woman just does her top up and acts like nothings happened. Maybe that kind of thing is normal in Spain or something but it made me laugh more than it shocked me. To cut it short though without ruining the ending the Blind dead return from their Tombs and go on a rampage on al the dickheads who decided it was a good idea to go back there and all hell breaks loose.
In all fairness I enjoyed the movie it had a dark atmosphere and was a really cool concept. The filming locations are spot on and the effects of the blind dead are spot on. Before judging this movie too harshly you must remember that this was made in 1971 and for the time it was made and the resources they had I think they pulled off a pretty good film. Yes there are endless plot holes and lots of bits that make no sense but what other horror movies are flawless in that department apart from a few high budget master pieces. I am at the stage now where I have pretty much seen almost every zombie/horror movie around and now I am just ticking off the list of ones I havent viewed and this was enjoyable. The movie is in Spanish with text subtitles which I do not prefer as I really enjoy the work of shit dub over acting but there isnt that much dialogue as you can imagine.
After viewing the movie I discovered that when the movie was released for drive in theaters in the US that they re edited the movie and put in an alternate opening sequence from the original to make it look like a Planet of the Apes sequel to sucker in movie goers to watch it. Watch the video to see it.
5 REASONS TO WATCH HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD
Hell of the Living Dead/Night of the Zombies/Zombie Creeping Flesh is fun Zombie movie that cashed in on the whole Cannibal Holocaust craze that was going on at the time. Heres five reasons why I thought it was fun
There are lots of Zombies
The annoying SWAT team guy with the incredibly bad dubbing thats soo bad its good.
Cannibals/ Zombie Cannibals
The movie has the same soundtrack from Dawn of The Dead
If thats not enough reasons then you obviously dont like Zombie movies or tits!
Cemetery Man (or Dellamorte Dellamore) is an Italian comedy horror masterpiece from 1994. Its the story of a young man called Francesco Dellamorte a cemetery watchman who's hobbies include putting a skull puzzle together, crossing off dead peoples names in telephone books and killing zombies. At the cemetery he works the deceased return from the dead 7 days after burial and his job to shoot them in the head or bash their brains in with a shovel.
He has a companion called Gnaghi who also lives at the cemetery who is a giant of a man who is a bit simple in the same sort of sense as Lenny from Of Mice and Men who pukes over females if they talk to him and hardly speaks.
A gorgeous unamed widow appears at the graveyard mourning her husband and to cut a long story short Francesco falls in love with her and bangs her on her dead husbands grave. The dead husband responds by coming back to life and biting her. She dies and when she returns Francesco kills her only for her to rise again seven days later making him believe that he killed the non zombie version of his lover. At this point I would like to point out that the woman in this film is so fucking hot and has amazing jugs which she is more than happy to get out lots in this movie so this was an awesome bonus for me and my mate Squid who was overjoyed about the whole thing.
The mayor is to wrapped up in his campaign to listen to Francesco and his zombie problems at the cemetery until his young daughter is decapitated in a motorcycle crash. Gnaghi falls in love with the girls head and forms an innocent romance with it.
Everybody loves a bit of "head" I guess..
Francesco who is suffering with great depression starts to believe that the only way to stop the zombie plague is to shoot the people in the head while they are still alive and goes on a bit of a rampage shooting punks and randoms in the local town. The Grim Reaper himself turns up and is trying to recruit Francesco's services while different manifestations of his lover keep turning up sending him insane.
Im not going to go to far in as I dont want to spoil it but this is a great movie if your a fan of the Evil Dead franchise or just decent horror in general this is a real gem. With amazing twists turns and all the little things that make you question and think this movie is a classic. Buckets of gore amazing looking zombies and dark humor this one is a winner!
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