Dawn of the Dead

Dawn of the Dead (1978)

Dawn of the Dead first published by Through The Trees Magazine George A. Romero’s Dawn of the Dead is a sequel of sorts (with no common characters) to his groundbreaking sociopolitical zombie film Night of the Living Dead (1968) – and its two opening sequences offer a sketch in diptych of society in rapid, chaotic…

Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep (2019)

Doctor Sleep first published by Little White Lies Let’s call it the battle of the SKs. In 1977, Stephen King publishes his best-selling novel The Shining, translating into the allegorical language of horror fiction the toll that his own alcoholism was taking on his professional and domestic lives. in 1980, Stanley Kubrick turns that novel…

Grudge

The Grudge (2020)

The Grudge first published by Dirty Movies In 1998, for the TV anthology Gakko no Kaidan G, Takashi Shimizu made two very short (three-minute) shock films, respectively titled Katasumu and 4444444444, in which he introduced creepy, contorting revenant Kayako Saeki and her meowing son Toshio, laying the central groundwork for the grudge-bearing, implacably vengeful spirits…

The Grudge

The Grudge (2004)

The Grudge first published by Movie Gazette in 2004   To call Gore Verbinski’s The Ring (2002) a ‘reimagining’ of Hideo Nakata’s extraordinary Ring (1998) would be to imply that there was any imagination at all in the Hollywood retread. Instead, there were some second-hand frights, a few entirely gratuitous new scenes (mostly involving spooked…

Rizen: Possession

The Rizen: Possession (aka The Facility) (2019)

As films like Deathwatch, The Devil’s Rock, the Outpost franchise, Frankenstein’s Army, Overlord and many others amply demonstrate, films pitched as ‘trapped in a bunker with infernal abominations’ form a (literal) subgenre, exposing the monstrousness of the military mentality. Falling neatly into this category, Matt Mitchell’s original The Rizen (2017) showed cold warriors struggling to…

Grave

Grave Encounters 2 (2012)

Grave Encounters 2 first published by VODzilla.co Found footage is one of the few subgenres whose name refers not (like, say action or comedy) to content, nor (like horror) to an ideal viewer response, but rather to the films’ (fictive) material framing and form – which is to say that, for all its claims to…

Key

Insidious: The Last Key (2018)

Insidious: The Last Key first published by Sight & Sound, March 2018 Review: In the spaces between all stories there are yet more stories – which goes some way to explain Insidious: the Last Key, the latest, literally middling tale of mediumship in the Insidious franchise. Originally a pastiche of Poltergeist (1982) and other domestic horror…

Blair

Blair Witch (2016)

First published by Little White Lies It has been a long time since Heather Donahue and her two-man crew ventured into the woods of Burkittsville to become a part of the local legend that they were there to document. Back in 1999, Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez’s ultra-low-budget The Blair Witch Project would revolutionise genre…

Centipede

The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) (2011)

The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) first published by Little White Lies If Franz Kafka’s 1915 novella The Metamorphosis begins with Gregor Samsa waking from troubled dreams to find himself transformed into a monstrous bug, then Tom Six’s The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) comes with a decidedly Kafkaesque pedigree. For its protagonist Martin (Laurence R. Harvey) is also…

Woman In Black

The Woman In Black 2: Angel of Death (2014)

The Woman In Black2 : Angerl of Death first published by Film4 Synopsis: The spectral ‘woman in black’ feeds off the loss and trauma of Second World War evacuees in this gothic sequel from director Tom Harper (The Scouting Book For Boys, 2009). Review: In James Watkins’ gothic ghost story The Woman In Black (2012), adapted from the novel…

Chapter

Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)

Insidious: Chapter 2 first published by movieScope “It’s still happening,” declares Renai Lambert (Rose Byrne) near the beginning of Insidious: Chapter 2. “I heard the piano playing downstairs by itself, and I found Callie on the floor.” “I just want to move on,” replies her husband Josh (Patrick Wilson), with a resigned sigh. This exchange…