Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Shameless Promotion: Perversion

Please, don't turn on me yet, guys! More shameless promotion ahead...

This summer, ScreamKings is distributing my other feature film, Perversion. The story....Terrified to leave his home, a teenage agoraphobiac becomes entangled in a web of nightmarish, psychosexual terror as disturbing demons from his past begin to resurface, forcing him to fight for his life and his sanity. 

Sounds good, eh????

Take a look at the trailer here:

I'm very very VERY proud of the film and I think it's pretty scary, disturbing, and suspenseful. I hope you will too! Support my poo, broke starvin' ass and buy a copy, pleeeeaaaase!

This appears to be the DVD artwork the studio wants! What ya think?

I hope you guys will take the time to check this little doozy of a movie out. It's certainly different than most of the films coming out these days. It's a pretty creepy and uncomfortable movie. It really isn't too shabby for a film featuring unpaid non-actors, mostly shot in one location, all for about a buck and a half.
Just check out this clip from the film...

I'll have more updates, including a firm, set in stone release date very soon!

Shameless Promotion: Lock In

Hello all!
It's been a little while since I've posted anything. I'm cooking up something really good, trust me...or don't...whatevs!

Anyhooooo, I decided I'd give myself a little plug, because, let's face it, I'm not above it. A feature film I made, Lock In, is now up for sale at and I'd be very appreciative for you all to snatch up a copy. It's an intentionally cheesy and ludicrous slasher film about a group of high school seniors setting up for their senior prank on campus after hours. Someone from the town's past returns and well...I think you can guess the rest.

It was made as a high school film club project and the audience loved it. Just ate it up! Guess it must work somehow, right? ScreamKings picked it up for distribution last year.

The DVD art on the website might look like this....

Trust me, that is not the art on the DVD itself. This dude isn't even in the film and I have no idea who he is. Strange, but I don't decide these things.

Here's a trailer for the film. Hope you enjoy!

Get yourself a copy today! I want to know what you think!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

"Why does she always close the house on June 19th?"

Ah, the magic life of a sorority sister. Parties, glamour, popularity, the pranks. One of my favorite tales of sorority prank misfires is Mark Rosman's hugely underrated gem The House on Sorority Row.  It's suspenseful, thrilling, well crafted, and above all, classy. Yes, the recent film Sorority Row was a loose remake of this film, but I'll probably be discussing that film pretty soon, so we should probably just focus on the original for today.

The film begins with a blue tinted flashback in which it appears that a woman has had severe complications during a house call birth and has lost her child.

Cut to several years later and Mrs. Slater (Lois Kelso Hunt), the same woman from the flashback, in that same house, is now the house mother for a group of sorority girls who have just graduated and are planning on having one last huge party to celebrate.

Let's take inventory, shall we?

First up is good girl Katherine (soulful Kate McNeil). Katie is sweet, virtuous and just all around nice. We should also feel sorry for her because her mother sports this ridiculous hairdo...
It couldn't have been easy on poor Katie all those years.

Next is Vicki (sex kitten Eileen Davidson) who just reeks of sex and leadership. Bad girl all the way!

The rest are not quite as well developed but we do have...
Morgan, the drunk who has about 3 lines (which she mumbles)
Liz, the tag along; Stevie, the smart one training to be a flight attendant
Jeanie, the emotional one who literally shrieks "Eeeek!" every time she's scared
Diane, the sarcastic one (LOVE her!)

All of these gals are actually quite interesting for the most part. I like 'em!

Mrs. Slater has been talking to the same sketchy doctor from the prologue, let's call him Sketchy McDoctor. So, Sketchy McDoctor keeps telling Mrs. Slater all of these things that don't really make sense about how she needs to take it easy and stuff, but she's pretty set in her ways.

Once Mrs. Slater learns about the party plans, she has quite a fit, which leads to a great scene where she intrudes on Vicki and her kinda creepy pedo-looking boyfriend in the throes of passion and splits her waterbed in two with her sharp bird tipped cane. It's all sorts of awesome.

Vicki vows that she'll get back at Slater, so she stages an elaborate prank that...well, you know these pranks always end up with someone dead. So, Slater is accidentally shot by Vicki and the girls have to hide her corpse in the water while the guests for the party start to arrive.

As the party kicks off, and boy, does it ever, the girls realize that someone might try to go swimming or turn on the pool lights. Luckily for them, the body has somehow been removed from the pool.

As one can imagine, the rest of the film is all about the girls pointing fingers, losing fingers, and going bonkers a.k.a. Heaven on a Stick!

The party itself is a cheese lover's dream. Check out the lead singer of the band.
Baby, no, just... no.

There's also a random death involving some dude who appears to just be fiddling about in the bushes. Filler much?
Um... do I know you?

One most also note the infamous "Sea Pig" scene, which is by far one of the most random and mind-numbing WTF moments in cinema history.
"I'm a Sea Pi..." "Nope, just a creepy fat ass!"

Let me now take the time to turn the spotlight on the REAL hero of this film. Peter (Michael Kuhn) is one of my favorite slasher characters of all time. So, why haven't we heard of him you might be asking? Y'know, I'm not sure.

Peter couldn't be a nicer guy if he tried. He's about as optimistic and charming as a Julie Andrews film festival during the Christmas holidays. Poor Peter just can't catch a break. Vicki sets him up on a blind date with Katie for the party, which sounds like a match made in heaven, but by the time they meet, Katie's got an awful lot on her mind, y'know with helping to kill her house mother and all. Peter just sort of mopes around for the rest of the film, like a lost puppy, trying to cheer Katie up, but he keeps getting rejected.

Once he's out of the picture, or so we think, he returns, only to get a shoulder full of sedative from Sketchy McDoctor. There he lies for the rest of the climax, passed out next to a bunch of party decorations. At least he survives.

To make a long story short, I love Peter and want to father his children. Who wouldn't! He kinda rules.
"Did you ever know that you're my hero!"

It's hard to write a review on this movie, cause I really don't want to spoil much. The movie is actually good. Not even kidding. Really. I'm not joking.

Once the finale rolls around, it just keeps getting weirder and trippier as Katie starts hallucinating and Sketchy McDoctor shows back up.

The ending is a bit of a let down as it just sort of...ends. Y'know? When movies just sort of END. For no reason. It's one of those movies. Still, everything else up to that point is stellar. I can't praise it enough. It has suspense, style, good acting, and a few grisly moments. The whole thing is class act! The music score by Richard Band, of Re-Animator fame, is one of the best, most melodic, ever written for a slasher. It's awesome.
'atta girl!

BTW, I certainly can't be the only guy out there who, at times, wishes he could channel his inner sorority bitch and tell someone off, diva style! Or am I? Really? I'm all alone? Oh, well...

9 out of 10 bloody bird tipped canes!

"Did anybody ever tell you, you've got great tits?"

I hopped onto the Silent Scream parade a little late in the game. I honestly had never heard of the film until a few years back, thanks to the amazing website Hysteria-Lives. I quickly bought a used VHS copy and indulged in what, I believe, is one of the classiest slasher pics of the 70's and 80's. I think it's time to re-visit this little lost gem. How good has time been to it?

First, let's inspect the creepy as balls trailer! Seriously, it's, like, one of the best trailers ever!

THE Silent Scream? Isn't that some abortion video? Shit, did I get the wrong movie again?

Silent Scream (or THE Silent Scream as the title card says) starts with a bizarre slow motion police raid on a spooky old mansion, where they discover a gruesome surprise in the attic. From there, we are taken to a super exciting university campus registration session where we are greeted by these beautiful faces...
Um, are you turned on yet? I'm hard as a rock!

One Sally Jessy Raphael bespeckled nutjob, who appears to be either reading from a cue card or in some sort of zen trance, asks pleadingly "Can you tell me where I can get my library card? I need my library card." as if she's a little girl who's just lost her mother in the supermarket.
Sally Jessy called, she wants her glasses back!

I'll never understand why in the Hell women used to want to look like Sally Jessy Raphael. I remember my mom having a pair of those damn glasses too. Was there a period when women were trying to all look hideous?
THIS isn't a good look for anyone!

We meet Scotty (adorable Rebecca Balding) who might sport an unfortunate fluffy hairdo, but at least she's a charmer. After being told that on campus housing is full, Scotty goes on a delightful, zany montage where she meets a wacky assortment of characters. Seriously, these characters are wacky!

Finally, Scotty arrives at a beautiful, but spooky old mansion perched on a cliff right by the sea.
Damnit, Scotty, I trusted you to be the attractive one!

Seems perfect, but once we meet Mason (Brad Reardon), the awkward teenage son of the owner and the other tenants, we just know poor Scotty is about to take one wild ride.
Could he be any more awkward?

There's goof ball Doris (Juli Andelman) and with a name like Doris, how could she not be at least slightly goofy.
Shit, Doris, not you too! I hope Sally Jessy got a profit off this movie!

Professional ass hole Peter (Jack Widelock).
Just look at that smug bastard!

and let's not forget obvious hunky love interest Jack (Steve Doubet).
Yes, there's a saxophone solo on the soundtrack right now.

It's a strange, eccentric group that one wouldn't find in films these days. First of all, none of them really look like professional models like they all do today (even though Rebecca Balding is quite the cutie) and they're all pretty, eh, quirky.
Blow, doris, Blow!

Did I forget to mention that Scotty meets the silent Mrs. Engels (Yvonne DeCarlo) in the attic? Yes, Ms. DeCarlo isn't the only star slumming it here. We've got Cameron Mitchell AND funnyman Avery Schreiber as cops.

Truth be told, every time they come on screen, the plot screeches to a grinding halt.

After a night on the town, ass wipe Peter tries to fondle Doris spouting such romantic dialogue as "Doris, did anybody ever tell you, you've got great tits?" Peter ultimately finds himself drunk and alone on the beach when he's visited by company.
Thank God! That guy was annoying.

Once Peter's body is discovered, the movie slows down for a little while as Mitchell and Schreiber showup and question all the boarders while Mason acts suspicious. One of Mitchell and Schreiber (sounds like an old vaudeville troupe)'s best moments comes when Mitchell asks "Do you know what kinda knife it was?" to which Schreiber responds "Yeah, real big...and real sharp!" No shit, Sherlock!

Doris mopes around doing laundry, acting like she lost a family member and not a man who tried to molest her on the beach, while Scotty and Jack go swimming and share more saxophone scored make out sessions including one where Doris listens to them make love through the air vent. Oh, jeez, Doris! I thought you were soooooo sad about Peter and meanwhile you're horn doggin' around eavesdropping on people having sex.
What a creepo you are, Doris!

Thankfully, our mystery killer puts Doris out of her repressed misery in a pretty violent, yet wonderfullysubtle sequence. Have I mentioned yet that every death scene practically has the exact same Bernard Hermann "shower scene strings" from Psycho on the soundtrack? No? Well, it's true!

Jack leaves and Scotty starts snooping around and pretty soon, she finds herself in a cavernous attic/air vent/installation (?) tunnel where she's dragged inside a small little girl's room where our killer is finally revealed to be....
Yes, ladies and gents, the great Ms. Barbara Steele!

Barbara does great here, not uttering a single word and using those magical eyes of hers to convey fear,confusion, anger, etc. It's kinda of a treat to see her here.

As the finale gets closer, dark family secrets emerge like something out of Lifetime movie and it turns out that Mrs. Engels really CAN speak and she isn't Mason's real mother...Victoria (Barbara Steele) is! Victoria tried to kill herself while pregnant and we're treated to a surreal sequence where young Victoria resembles a young Winona Ryder. She also got stuck in a mental hospital where she was lobotomized. I think it goes without saying that whoever lobotomized her should be fired.

Winona? Is that you? Talk about a Girl Interrupted!

How can one not love the finale of a film that gives us these great images?
Good times!

Silent Scream ends where it began with the cop raid coming full circle and closing the lurid case once and for all.

I'll be the first to admit it, there's nothing really too special about Silent Scream. It's well acted, competently made, has a bombastic orchestral score, and a few good set pieces, but it's really isn't anything we haven't seen before.

While it was released after Halloween, filming actually began in '77, so it's far from a rip-off of that '78game changer. It owes more to pulpy mystery tales and old, dark haunted house films of the 30's and 40's, not to mention Hitchcock's classic Psycho, from which it takes more than just a few pages from.

Silent Scream is actually a pretty decent, creepy movie and a fun nostalgic trip back to the 70's, where apparently, everyone wanted to look like Sally Jessy Raphael. It's now out on a fantastic remastered DVD with tons of great special features. It's a must for fans of the movie!

In other news, I've just scored a first look at promo art for the long awaited sequel.
I smell box office gold!

8 out of 10 lobotomized knife wielding dames!