Lights Out News

Remember creepy horror short Lights Out that took the top spot on my Horror Short Round Up last year?  This online favorite created by David F. Sandberg, starring his wife Lotta, is now being turned into a full length feature.  The best part?  It’s being produced by James Wan!

Sandberg will be directing, and has also mentioned via Reddit that he’s aiming for more practical driven effects.  The full length feature, written by Eric A. Heisserer, has expanded to focus on an entire family being haunted by supernatural enemy.

It’ll be exciting to see how this terrifying short translates to a much longer story.  If you’ve never seen the short previously, or need a refresher, view it here.

lights out

Houston! Join the WolfCop Wolf Pack!


Do you have plans Thursday, April 8th?  No? Good.  Then you should come join me for WolfCop on the big screen.  It’ll be a howl (ha!). This is exactly the type of movie you want to see with a crowd, so please rsvp and help me make that happen. So please, click below, and I’ll see you April 8th!

 Join me at this @Tugginc screening of Wolf Cop!.

Blood Glacier (2013) Review

Blood GlacierA group of scientists stationed in the Austrian Alps make the discovery of a crimson glacier.  It, like all surrounding glaciers, are melting thanks to climate change.  It’s not blood in the glacier, however, but an organic matter that incubates in the host’s stomach, mixing DNA of the host and any animal it may have eaten.  So a fox that has eaten a wood louse and a beetle will have a creature burst from its stomach that will be a mutation of all three animals, and it will be hostile.  This is precisely what the scientists discover when our lead, loud mouthed Janek, follows his dog into a dark cavern beneath the blood glacier.  While the scientists try to process their discovery, more and more creatures begin making their presence known.  Throw in a government minister with an entourage en route, including Janek’s ex, to make a publicity appearance at the outpost and you have a multitude of characters that must band together if they want to survive.

Much of the story’s focus is on Janek and his ex, Tanja.  It’s made clear that they parted under sudden and mysterious circumstances years prior, and her sudden reappearance has thrown him into emotional turmoil.  It’s this plot thread that is meant to anchor the audience emotionally to the story, but it ends up feeling contrived.  In a later scene, Tanja picks a strange moment to make a solemn confession to Janek about the end of their relationship, but never offers to explain the reason behind her decision.  It’s this forced relationship that makes the film feel much longer than it actually is.

Minister Bodicek should have been the focus.  Her introduction gives the false impression that she’s a high maintenance, fragile politician that needs her every whim catered to.  She proves to be the toughest one of the bunch while retaining the most compassion for her fellow survivors.

Likely to budget, the creatures don’t seem to attack often or with any sense of urgency.  It’s rare to even get a good look at the creatures.  I didn’t realize that the climax had come and gone until the music queued up to signal the film’s end.  It’s not the budget that’s the issue, but that the film doesn’t know what it wants to be.  Torn between B movie creature feature and ominous eco horror, the film unsuccessfully attempts both.  There are tragic moments in the film, and it doesn’t mesh with the gory camp moments.  Choosing just one would have made Blood Glacier far less tonally confusing and much more enjoyable.


Grabbers movie review

ImageCurrently available on demand, Grabbers is a horror comedy from Ireland released last year.  Erin Island’s local cop, Ciarán O’Shea, is an alcoholic.  He’s not amused at all to be partnered with straight laced city cop Lisa Nolan when his partner goes on leave for the next two weeks.  Of course, Lisa shows up right after a mysterious green light plummets into the sea nearby and a resident drunk catches something not quite of this Earth in his lobster trap.  The small town’s quiet is almost immediately disrupted.

Turns out a male and female tentacled alien pair crash landed, bringing a multitude of eggs with them.  They thrive on blood and water, of which there’s an abundance on Erin Island:  aside from being on an island there’s a storm coming, and the aliens can feast on the locals.

But this is a comedy, right?  The comedy is played up hardcore in the form of the aliens’ weakness, an allergy to alcohol.  Yup.  So they cannot feed on anyone drunk.  And they’re in Ireland.  On a secluded island where people flock to the lone pub.  So naturally, Ciarán and Lisa hatch a plan to get everyone drunk while they battle the aliens and much hilarity ensues.

The c.g. of the aliens was well done; any flaws hidden in a clever tangle of tentacles.  The setting of the movie was stunning.  Though the writing was a little disjointed in the awkward scheme of getting the two mismatched leads together, overall it was a fun ride.  I laughed quite a bit once their drunk scheme was enacted.

Light on gore and horror, but high on comedy and drunken shenanigans.  B-