Category: Horror

Underworld

I saw Underworld today [which fits right in with our monster movie theme of late].Underworld tells the story of a centuries old war between vampires and werewolves. It has tons of action and effects but feels like it could have been shortened a bit. Also, with Underworld, the more you think about it, the more you find to question. It’s fun while it’s going on, but doesn’t hold up under examination. I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone, yet if you like this sort of thing, then it’s probably the sort of thing that you’ll like. ; )

On another note, the trailer for the new Texas Chainsaw Massacre played before Underworld. I haven’t seen the orginal in years [and didn’t really care for it when I saw it], but this remake looks interesting… As does Gothica with Halle Berry [both of which also fit our continuing horro theme].
“Underworld” rates a C

House of the Dead

Well, it seems I’m not alone in my love of horror movies. That being the case, I thought I’d tell you about another monster movie that you may be interested in.It’s called House of the Dead and looks like something that I’d have caught as the second feature back in the day of drive-ins. [Man, how I miss those days!]

House of the Dead has an interesting trailer and a classic plot. A group of young people find themselves stranded on an island with a group of zombies that want to kill / eat them.

If I go to see it, am I expecting a classic? No. An award-winning film? No. A scary good time? Yeah. And what more should you ask from a drive-in movie?

Frankenstein, Wolfman & Dracula: Together Again!

As most of you know, I love a good horror movie. I’ll watch most any kind of horror film from the giant bug movies of the 50’s to the unstoppable serial killers of recent days. But my favorite type of horror movies are ones with great monsters.
Especially the classic monsters.
Frankenstein.
Dracula.
The Wolfman.

These are the big three. The kings of the hill. The monsters that other monsters aspire to be.

And next summer they’ll all be in the same movie!

Van Helsing stars Hugh Jackman as the famed vampire killer, Dr. Abraham Van Helsing.

In the screenplay, written and directed by Stephen Sommers, Van Helsing goes to Transylvania to hunt down and kill Count Dracula, and finds himself up against the Wolf Man and Frankenstein’s monster as well. How cool does that sound?

Cool enough that even though the movie doesn’t come out until May of next year, they’re already planning a tv series “based” on the idea and leaving the door open for sequels.

And that’s just great news for horror movie fans like me!

28 days, Return of the King & More"

  • I saw a great little horror film today. If you enjoy a good “zombie” flick in the vien [pardon the pun] of “Night of the Living Dead” then you’ll love this! “28 days later…” should be seen now not later!
  • USAToday ran a picture of the advance poster for “The Return of the King,” the next installment in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. The poster can also be seen at theonering.net. Peter Jackson [director] said it was his favorite of the three… I know I’m looking forward to it!
  • Chris Tucker is in line for another $20 million-plus payday to co-star in “Rush Hour 3.” If he makes the movie it will be his third film since 1998 [with the other two being “Rush Hour” and “Rush Hour 2”]. It’s good work if you can get it!
  • MESA, Ariz. – City officials in Mesa have mistakenly installed two bus shelters where no buses run. Can’t you just imagine some poor soul… “Uh… I’m sure it’ll be a long any minute now.”
  • Singapore unveiled Friday plans for a $114 million, 558-foot Ferris wheel that would swing 114 feet above the current world record holder. “C’mon mom, don’t worry about SARS, I just GOTTA ride that Ferris wheel.” Yeah, that should bring in the tourists.
  • HANOI (Reuters) – A Vietnamese man passed off a lump of iron as valuable black bronze found buyers — but was paid $64,000 in counterfeit bills. Talk about poetic justice!
  • PARIS (AFP) – Bean-lovers, rejoice: the embarrassing side-effect of your favourite food may soon become a distant memory. Big Beatty can go back to eating chilli on his omlettes!
  • NEW YORK (AFP) – New York police rescued and then arrested a red-faced burglar after he managed to get himself stuck in the chimney of the restaurant he was trying to burgle. Another criminal mastermind brought to justice!
  • BERLIN (Reuters) – A German thief has had to call the police to rescue him after becoming trapped during a bungled break-in. Still another criminal mastermind brought to justice!
  • STOCKHOLM, SwedenVodka-flavored ice pops won’t be available on store shelves in Sweden after regulators said Tuesday they were worried that young kids might eat them. Guess that means no crack flavored cupcakes either!

Monster Bash, Halfway Home for Arnie, Lisa Marie Preps and More Planet Hollywood

  • The 7th Annual Monster Bash was held this weekend in Pittsburgh. It featured guests [the guy who played the Creature from the Black Lagoon, Boris Karlaff’s daughter, etc.] and film showings. I’ve been in the mood for some good horror movies [last night we watched “Frankenstien,” “Donavan’s Brain,” and “The Invisible Man”]… if I lived near Pittsburgh, I’d have attended the show! 
  • Arnold told Bob Costas that he feels like he’s in the middle of his career.  If Arnold does “King Conan” I’ll believe him. 
  • Lisa Marie Presley is getting ready for her first concert tour. Presley will play hour-long sets opening for Chris Isaak but will NOT cover any of her dad’s songs. Maybe she can cover some over her ex-husband’s songs. That could be a real “Thriller.” 
  • A federal bankruptcy court awarded the billion-dollar Aladdin casino to investors who plan to turn the Las Vegas property into a Planet Hollywood-themed resort! And you just know I love me some Planet Hollywood!

Movies In Our Future

It’s been a while since I’ve been to a theater to see a movie, but with the summer season approaching that’s going to change. The best trailer that I’ve seen lately has been for Underworld. I really haven’t heard much about this movie, but the preview kicks and kicks hard. It will be on my “must -see” list.

Of the other new trailers, here are a few you might want to check out: S.W.A.T. looks like a sure thing with Samuel L. Jackson, Collin Farrell and Michelle Rodriguez.  Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle looks to be as much fun as the original, so I’ll plan to see it..

Hollywood Homicide [with Harrison Ford], Pirates of the Carribean and The Hulk look to be movies I’ll pass on, at least until a rental is available.

I’m sure that we’re going to see more trailers for “Terminator 3,” “Spy Kids 3D,” and many more in the next few weeks. And you know I’ll post up my thoughts and the links here!

Lord is Crowned King! Peter Jackson to Helm “King Kong”

Peter Jackson, the creative genius behind the “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy has signed on to helm Universal’s remake of “King Kong!”

Jackson had this to say, “No film has captivated my imagination more than ‘King Kong.’ I’m making movies today because I saw this film when I was 9 years old. It has been my sustained dream to reinterpret this classic story.”

What Peter Jackson was able to do with “The Lord of the Rings” was amazing. You can tell by his quote that his true passion is for Kong. Can you even begin to imagine how cool this is going to be?

Eric Powell Takes the Goon Through Rough Stuff

Eric Powell writes, pencils and inks The Goon, which is one of the few comics that I buy EVERY time it comes out. Dark Horse just picked up The Goon so if you wanna beat the crowd, get on board now! You’ll also find Eric’s work on the covers to DC‘s Arkham Asylum: Living Hell six issue mini-series starting in May.

Eric did his version of Sly when I caught up with him at MegaCon. I was so tempted to get a Goon sketch but just had to have Eric in the SZ Gallery. Eric‘s take reminds me of a sports drawing from the ’30’s.

Rough Stuff, a trade paperback which collects The Goon‘s first three issues is now available.

I’ll bet it’s the first graphic novel to come with a “director’s commentary!” Yep, a trade paperback book with a director’s commentary.

Isn’t that just goony?

Steve Niles is Quite a Writer

Steve Niles is quite a writer.

I guess he should be though since he’s been making a living at it for about fifteen years. What? You haven’t heard of him? Sure you have! I wrote a ZONE piece on Steve way back on January 4th, after I read his novel, Guns, Drugs and Monsters.

I was so impressed with Guns, Drugs and Monsters that I immediately bought Savage Membrane, the first Cal McDonald novel. It was just as good! There are more Cal McDonald novels in the works, as well as a series from Dark Horse Comics.

Steve is also the author of 30 Days of Night, a vampire graphic novel that Ben Templesmith illustrated. It has just gone into it’s third printing, and was optioned [for a cool million bucks] by Sam Raimi‘s production company! Plus Steve get’s to write the screenplay!

You might think that all of this has gone to Steve‘s head. You’d be wrong. I got to meet Steve at MegaCon and he was very kind, gracious, and appreciative of his fans. Read this interview with Steve, check out his website [tell him I sent ya!] and then order his books. You’ll be glad you did because…

Steve Niles is quite a writer.

John Carpenter

I learned about another classic that CARPENTER had created even earlier in his career. That was the cult classic “Assault on Precinct 13.” In the following years CARPENTER went on to direct “Escape From New York,” “The Thing,” “Big Trouble in Little China” and even “Starman.”

After that his movies began to be hit or miss and mostly miss.

Still when I go back and watch one of JOHN CARPENTER‘s early films, like “Assault on Precinct 13,” it’s obvious why he was one of my favorites!

Below Rises to the Top

Way back on October 5, 2002, I told you about a movie that I couldn’t wait to see. And I wouldn’t have to since “Below” was scheduled to premiere the following week.

Funny thing was, it never got a theatrical release.

“Below” came out on dvd and video this week. I went to Blockbuster to rent it and all copies were gone. I called Best Buy and Circuit City and they were sold out. I went to Wal Mart and they had three copies left. Now they have two.

“Below” is the story of an American submarine crew facing Nazi war ships on the surface and something worse below. It’s not just a war movie though, it’s a haunted house movie as well… and there’s no leaving the house! After watching it, I can tell you it’s GREAT! David Twohy co-wrote and directed it just as it did on another favorite of mine, “Pitch Black.” Keep an out for him – he’s the real deal!

If you like scary movies, you’ll love “Below” and unlike me you won’t have to wait five months to see it!

Leviathan

“It is the greatest beast to walk the Earth, a beast without equal. A beast without fear. It has not ruled the world of men for six thousand years.

Until now.”

Trapped on an island, a handful of people must find a way to kill the beast before it kills them… and to make matters worse, an atomic bomb is set to explode there in a just a few hours! James Byron Huggins has written another winner.

Sammy’s Pleasant Nightmares!

Everybody loves Sammy Terry. Well, everybody that knows him.

If you’re a longtime reader of this blog, then you probably remember that I wrote about Sammy Terry not a year ago. [Here’s the link if you want to catch up.]

Sammy hosted Nightmare Theater  on Friday nights at 11:00pm. Sammy would rise from a coffin, introduce himself and after a brief monologue about many things [including the movie we were about to see, would invite us to watch – if we dared!

So there we’d be, huddled in the dark, with our popcorn waiting for the monster of the week to appear and scare us! Sammy would return before the movie after commercial breaks with more of his dry humor… and then again, at the end of the movie, Sammy would make his final appearance. Before returning to his coffin, he would always wish us “Pleasant Nightmares!” followed by maniacal laugh.

What’s really cool is that Jerrald Hawkins has created a fan site and movie club dedicated to Sammy Terry. Jerrald has remastered old tapes of Sammy presenting movies. On the last Friday of each month, club members start their tapes at 11PM. Not only are members watching the movies “together” but at the same time they’re also able to take part in a live chat via Jerrald‘s site!

What could make this even better? Well, the tapes are professionally produced. They come in plastic cases with labels giving details of the movie, pictures of SAMMY and his logo… plus Jerrald sends them to members for the cost of the mailing! If this sounds like something you’d like then check out Jerrald’s site!

Even if you’ve never heard of SAMMY TERRY, you’re gonna love him because…… Everybody loves Sammy Terry! [“Until next time… Pleasant Nightmares!]

Guns and Monsters

STEVE NILES writes a mean hard-boiled novel. He also writes a wicked horror novel. What makes NILES unique is that he does this in the same book! Guns, Drugs and Monsters is actually the second in a [hopefully long-running] series featuring Cal MacDonald. Cal is a human with the gift / curse that he knows that monsters walk among us. He knows this because he hunts them. Well, a guy has to make a living somehow, doesn’t he?

NILES skillfully combines the best elements of CHANDLER and HAMMETT along with a dose of KING, plus a good bit of humor as well. I read through Guns, Drugs and Monsters in nearly one sitting [it’s that much fun]. It also features spot illustrations by ASHLEY WOOD that are the icing on the cake. I’ve already ordered Savage Membrane [the book that started the series]. If it’s just half as good as Guns then I’ll still have a winner.

New Years Means Twilight Zone

One of our New Year’s Eve traditions [in addition to running movies, having good food, and setting off fireworks for my sons, nieces, nephews and well, myself] is to catch several episodes from Sci-Fi‘s Twilight Zone Marathon. I really love the idea of a TZ Marathon. Even though I rarely catch more than a few episodes, knowing that they’re available makes me smile.
For the last TZ Marathon, I recommended  Terror at 20,000 Feet and To Serve Man. They’re my favorites. If you can only catch two, then they’re the two.

Looking for more? The Invaders starts at 9:06pm on December 31st. An old woman alone, in a remote cabin with no neighbors or electricity is attacked when a small spaceship with invaders arrives!

The Shelter airs at 10:45 the same night. Several good friends who are also neighbors have gotten together to celebrate Dr. Stockton’s birthday. Everything is swell until there is an emergency announcement: the U.S. is in danger of an attack! The President warns everyone to seek immediate shelter — just the kind of shelter that Dr. Stockton has. Unfortunately there’s not room for everyone. Just what will friends do to each other in order to get a chance at survival? You’ll know if you watch!

  • Updated 5/14/23