Pet

Pet (2016)

Pet first published by VODzilla.co Pet opens with a bobbing shot of a tropical island and with the sound of seagulls, only for those squawks to resolve into the persistent beeping of an alarm clock, and for the image to reveal itself as a large wall poster placed over the sleeping – and now waking –…

not really horror

‘Not Really Horror’: Pushing genre’s boundaries at FrightFest 2016

First published by Sight & Sound While 2014’s Spring, It Follows and The Babadook had little in common apart from their well-earned success, they found themselves being dismissively labelled by some as ‘not really horror’ – an oft-heard expression used to describe (and degrade) the genre’s unruly outliers and inventive misfits. ‘Not really horror’ involves…

SiREN

SiREN (2016)

In the prologue to SiREN, the mysterious Mr Nyx (Justin Welborn) is called by the police to a church, where he finds the aftermath of a demonic conjuring gone horribly wrong, and a naked girl, her mouth covered in blood, who is evidently not of this world. Rather more knowledgeable about these sorts of phenomena…

Cell

Cell (2016)

First published by Sight & Sound, September 2016 Review: Stephen King famously objected to the liberties taken with his 1977 novel The Shining in Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 film adaptation. Yet in co-adapting (with Adam Alleca) his own 2006 novel Cell to the big screen, King has licensed himself to introduce substantial changes to the original,…

Footage

Found Footage 3D (2016)

“It’s a little cliched, don’t you think?”, says director Andrew (Tom Saporito), after reading, along with us, the ominous text – about a couple’s disappearance while ‘vacatoining’ [sic] – with which the film begins. For us that film is Steven DeGennaro’s feature debut Found Footage 3D – but for Andrew, his co-director, writer and star Derek…

Evil

The Evil In Us (2016)

The prologue to The Evil In Us reveals a modern apartment turned blood-soaked charnel house where police find two of the three room mates dead, and the third (Tatyana Forrest) alive but horrifically mutilated. There appears to have been no murder weapon. As, over the next 24 hours, Detective Jake Strudwick (John Gillich) races to…

Hunters

Blood Hunters (2016)

“Hello? What did you do to me? Why am I pregnant? I have a son. His name is Hunter. Is he here? Is he ok?” The speaker is single mother Ellie Barnes (Lara Gilchrist). In the opening scene of Blood Hunters (aka One Drop) we see her collapsing in the street outside her suburban home…

Anvari

Under the Shadow (2016)

Under the Shadow begins with text about the Iran-Iraq War of the Eighties (when the film’s events are set) that followed hard upon the 1979 Iranian revolution – and the title credits are accompanied by archival footage of bombs dropping and people scattering in the streets of Tehran. For Babak Anvari’s bold debut – an intimate…

Monolith

Monolith (2016)

The Monolith is, at least according to the slick corporate advertisement with which Ivan Silvestrini’s eponymous film begins, “quite simply the safest car ever built and the safest place for you and your family.” This state-of the-art, jet-black SUV comes with ‘adamantine nanotech body armour’ and a high-tech onboard interactive ‘drive companion’ bearing the ominous name…

Windmill

The Windmill Massacre (2016)

First published by VODzilla.co “This isn’t hell, this is Holland,” says the ever-sceptical Douglas (Patrick Baladi), an English businessman who has suddenly taken his son Curt (Adam Thomas Wright) out of school for a tour of the Netherlands, and who is always being distracted by his mobile phone. Douglas sure did not believe young Australian…