March 27, 2018

SXSW Trailer: Hereditary (2018)

"When Ellen, the matriarch of the Graham family, passes away, her daughter's family begins to unravel cryptic and increasingly terrifying secrets about their ancestry. The more they discover, the more they find themselves trying to outrun the sinister fate they seem to have inherited as it slowly destroys everything they know. Making his feature debut, writer-director Ari Aster unleashes a nightmare vision of a domestic breakdown that exhibits the craft and precision of a nascent auteur, transforming a familial tragedy into something ominous and deeply disquieting, and pushing the horror movie into chilling new terrain with its shattering portrait of heritage gone to hell."

We're not exactly sure what to make of Hereditary, but if this trailer is any indication, it's going to be equal parts odd, creepy, and possibly even terrifying. It garnered rave reviews at Sundance, where critics called it "This year's scariest Horror movie" which in years past was bestowed upon movies like The Witch and It Follows, which could be a blessing or a curse, depending.

Either way, it's one that we'll definitely be checking out.

Hereditary hits theaters on June 8th.

March 24, 2018

VOD Review: Pyewacket (2018)

"Family drama with a supernatural bent."
(aka I Hate My Mom!.)
Release Date: March 23.
Country: Canada.
Rating: NR.
Written by: Adam MacDonald.
Directed by: Adam MacDonald.
Starring: Nicole Munoz, Laurie Holden, Chloe Rose, and Missy Peregrym as the voice of Pyewacket.

A few years back, writer/director Adam MacDonald gave us the really enjoyable killer bear flick, Backcountry, and you can read our review of that little gem, right HERE. Now, he's returned to the Horror fold with a little tale of grief and a goth kid gone matricidal, which only serves to further our belief that they guy knows how to make an effective genre flick.

FYI: According to real-life English lore, Pyewacket is the spirit of a familiar that was bound to serve a witch back in the 1600's, and is described as an imp. Now, going into this movie we thought that Pyewacket was supposed to be a witch, and some reviews out there call the titular character a witch, while others use the word demon to describe the otherworldly spirit, but it's really a familiar, which I guess is neither here nor there, but for some reason I felt the need to clarify.

Don't ask why. Just go with it.

Ever since the death of her father, Leah has gone goth and turned to Death Metal and the occult as a coping method. Conversely, her mother just drinks a lot of wine and cries. Feeling that they need a new start, Mom decides to move them both to a new home way out in the boonies, because the wilderness life will do them both some good.

Leah is not happy about this at all, and so her relationship with her mother grows more and more contentious, to the point where she feels that summoning the vengeful spirit Pyewacket to kill the bitch is the only reasonable course of action.

Of course it takes Leah about 10 minutes to realize that she's done something horribly stupid, and when odd and creepy things start to happen around their new home, she has to figure out a way to undo what she's done, before Pyewacket takes her mother her too.

Pyewacket is a slow-burn of a movie which offers plenty of moody dread throughout, but doles it out in a very subtle way. To me personally, it plays a lot like the excellent The Blackcoat's Daughter (review HERE) did in that regard; they both have mood and atmosphere to spare, and they both pack a pretty good punch at the end. I really like the way that MacDonald avoids the use of cheap jump scares here.

Teen angst plays a large part in the movie and its plot developments, and whereas that trope usually tends to annoy us, it's done very well here thanks to a truly great performance by Nicole Munoz. Sure she's moody, and yeah she's so unreasonable that she goes through an elaborate ritual to summon an otherworldly spirit to kill her mother after an argument, but she never plays it over-the-top or never gets too annoying with things. And Laurie Holden does a killer job as the aforementioned mother, especially towards the end when her character gets downright unsettling.

There's a bit of ritualistic bloodshed in this one, but it's the horrifying ending that might just make you hurl. Not that it's bloody, but it's... well, you'll see.

Not that kind of flick.

Teenage girls are moody. Also, messing with the occult is never a good idea, especially for moody teenage girls.

Pyewacket is a movie that creeped us out and kept us involved in its human story at the same time, and gave us an ending that was truly disturbing to behold. A nice little surprise, all told, and one that should be seen by anyone who loves the term "Slow burn."


Pyewacket is available on VOD now.

Nicole, Chloe, and Laurie: the bewitching women of Pyewacket.

March 23, 2018

What's New on VOD This Week? (3/19-3/23)

With the latest installment in the Insidious series, the fantastic-looking I Kill Giants, and the witchy Pyewacket hitting VOD this week, it's going to be a busy weekend for us. Welcome the Stranger looks like an interesting thriller too, and Followers mixes Internet Horror and Found Footage together to hopefully scary results, but they don't intrigue us quite like the others.

Happy streaming!

*Be sure to click the pics to rent the movies, or watch their trailers. Or both. Or neither. It really depends on your mood, now doesn't it?  

*If you aren't already a member, you should really give Amazon Prime a shot, especially if you order movies on the regular like we do, because the free two-day shipping pays for itself after around 10 orders. Check it out for free HERE.

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March 20, 2018

Blu-ray & DVD: The Digital Dread Report for 3/20

In a world where streaming movies in HD is growing in popularity, it gets harder and harder to justify spending hard earned money on physical media. The fact is though that when done right, nothing makes a movie look or sound better on Blu-ray, so we bring you The Digital Dread Report to help you figure out what's worth buying, and what you're better off streaming.

It's great to see The Burbs finally getting the treatment it deserves with Shout Factory's new Collector's Edition; The Church and Ichi The Killer are classically odd titles worth looking at; and Small Town Crime was a fun, quirky crime thriller...and they'll all be taking our money first this week.

Be sure to click the pics below to buy the movies, or even rent them. Or both. Or neither. It really depends on your mood, now doesn't it?

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