Independent Horror

All posts tagged Independent Horror

Review: Necroplasmosis

Published June 17, 2017 by biggayhorrorfan

necroplasmosis

In the early ‘90s, long before the days of instant internet accessibility, those who loved their ladies of horror had two places to go: the glossy, more mainstream Femme Fatales magazine and the grittier, homegrown Draculina. Harkening back to that underground Draculina vibe, writer-director-performer Henry Frias Leon and co-writer-lead actress Courtney Perkins create something very visceral with Necroplasmosis, their latest short film.

Perkins plays Lucinda, a photographer with slightly macabre subject matter, and Leon is the obsessed filmmaker who is following her around. Strong and resourceful, Lucinda ultimately finds the most cutting way to deal with an errant beau here. Nicely, unlike the days when Hugh Gallagher seemed to control everything that came out of Draculina, Perkins and Leon seem to be equal partners in Necroplasmosis. Thus, the world they create seems free of exploitation and centered around mutual interest.

Here’s hoping, though, that future installments will show Lucinda taking out her skills of vengeance upon all those right wing bigots and power figures that are still threatening to keep women from their equal rights.

Until then, be sure to check out this initial DIY work at:

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Stay Out of the Woods

Published September 21, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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While many terror fans have been focusing on the forest dwelling scares of Blair Witch of late, true connoisseurs of cheesy ‘80s grue have been, eagerly, keeping their eyes on Stay Out of the Woods, the indie horror sequel to the cult classic slasher, Don’t Go in the Woods…Alone.

Working closely with James Bryan, the director of the original, writer-director Henry Frias Leon promises lots of zaniness and gore in this what if/parody.

To reserve a bloody tent and killer sleeping bag of your own, be sure to follow the film’s progress at https://www.facebook.com/Stayoutofthewoodsmovie/.

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Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Review: Night Terrors

Published September 15, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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While, perhaps, considered blasphemous by some, this critic maintains that Night Terrors killer Santa segment provides more visceral enjoyment than the classic And All Through the House from 1972’s Tales from the Crypt. Sorry, Joan and friends!

Here, a rampaging Claus obliterates a group of likeable punks in a rundown house. Full of humor and bloody mayhem, this jolly (yet very murderous) stranger makes quick work of these youths in a variety of brutal ways and then, thankfully, makes his way onto the typical (and very annoying) suburban family next door. Interestingly, the fact that writer Alex Lukens and director Jason Link create very enjoyable and relatable victims makes the violence seem all the more random and unnecessary. These are the type of people that populate your favorite local bands or write that anarchistic blog that you adore and are the exact opposite of the obnoxious and privileged denizens of the popular slasher projects from the ‘80s. Thus, their demises, while fun, are littered with a touch of rare poignancy.nt-santa

Baby Killer, the second story in this well executed independent horror anthology from Weird on Top Pictures, benefits from some emotional immediacy, as well. Here, writer-director Lukens goes for broke, creating some of the film’s most disturbing visuals, including the savage murder of a young child, as a mad scientist-type goes on a killing spree trying to save his dying daughter. Although, actor Richard Hackel fills his determined patriarch with such anguished passion that it is hard not to feel for him. Meanwhile, Miranda Howard’s Sandy is equally effective as she, valiantly, fights for her life and that of her unborn child.

nt-baby-killerThe final story, Abstinence, is full of gooey madness as a viral infection, caused by sexual contact, takes its toll on a college campus. Most notably, actors Sean Jones and Joe Bachan add plenty of bro-type humor while Asia Rain is an effectively attractive presence as the woman worth dying for.

Admirably filmed on a budget of $5000 with mostly non-actor types, Night Terrors even succeeds with its wrap-around segment,  featuring an annoyed older sister (the invigorating Alyssa Benner) spinning scary tales to her relentlessly sleepless brother (a cutely exasperating Dominic Crawford).

You can rent this fine indie terror achievement at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00QU8OOY4 or purchase it and other goodies at www.weirdontoppictures.com.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Review: I Love Lucy

Published July 7, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

I Love Lucy

If only…I had known about that paternal lycanthrope curse. Those full moons in my thirties might have been a lot easier.

Likewise, writer-director-editor Zach Lorkiewicz explores some mysterious traits and hidden personalities, but within high school culture, with his latest, colorful short I Love Lucy. Here, beautiful Lucy (an ethereal Danielle Lauder) is nervously looking forward to her prom date, and all that may follow, with the cherub cute Rex (a spot-on, charming Jacob Kogan). Encouraged by her friends and a couple of ominously over interested school officials, Lucy’s preparations for her special night may be bit more bloody and freakishly revealing than anyone could possibly anticipate, though.

Combining the sunny world of teen comedies with science fiction and horror overtones, Lorkiewicz creates a fuzzily unique universe here. Aided immeasurably by Tracy Rosenblum’s special effects work and the sonic backgrounds created by Alison Ho and Catherine Yang, I Love Lucy is truly an intriguing and artistically superior work. Its ending may be open to interpretation, but anyone who has experienced the cold hard truth that everyone around them is virtually unknowable with find much to chew over here.

You can watch the short, in full, at:

 

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Review: Killer Piñata

Published July 2, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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Upon entering Scott Sholder’s 6th birthday party, I encountered Marty, his handsome, shirtless father. The flushed tingles that radiated throughout my body indicated that my life would never be the same. Similarly, Lindsey in the very fun Killer Piñata discovers her existence forever, and bloodily, altered after her younger brother’s natal day celebration. One of the left over piñatas is soon wrecking giggling, skittering carnage upon her and her friends and, to no seasoned viewer’s surprise, the survivors are few in number!

KP1Besides the gloriously ridiculous premise, what is most impressive about this independent terror treat is the strong females at its core. Lindsey (a quietly intense Eliza Morris) is just beginning to deal with her sexual identity issues and her struggles to come to grips with her lesbianism are echoed in her resolve and determination to fight for her life. This is a nice contrast to other Sapphic terror teens – i.e. supermodels that are often hired to lip locks in order to aggravate male pulses – in similar products. Even Rosetta (an exuberant Lindsey Ashcroft), the stereotypical flirty best friend, is presented as a determined sexual adventurer who turns the tables on the aggressive yet charming Chad (a smoothly egocentric Nate Bryan). There is even a surprising twist involving Lindsey’s take charge mother (the point blank Sheila Edmiston). Perhaps even more significantly, the Dr. Loomis quotient is filled by Joette Waters’ strong and determined The Shopkeeper, who relates the piñata’s anguished back story with spitfire and subtle comic zeal.KP3

Of course, director Stephen Tramontana, who co-wrote the script with Megan Macmanus, delivers on the piece’s expected ludicrousness. The effects are often simple, but Lindsay’s ever devoted ex-boyfriend Scott (the appropriately confused Billy Chengary) is the focus of one of the film’s most ambitious and re-DICK-u-lous set pieces. This moment, alone, is sure to have audiences laughing and squirming at the same time.

Filmed in 8 days, in and out of Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, Killer Piñata is, ultimately, a truly professional looking product and evidence of what can be done with a small budget and limited resources when passion and skill are involved. It is obvious that everyone, from the cast members to the crew, was taken in by this project’s quirky charms. Granted, the pacing flags a bit in some of the dialogue heavy sections and one or two of the gag bits don’t connect. But, overall, this is an incredibly impressive venture and one looks forward to future cinematic concoctions, in particular those focusing on strong female action types, from Angry Mule Productions.

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Killer Piñata is available for purchase on Amazon – tinyurl.com/zl83j8m.

www.facebook.com/KillerPinataMovie

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan

 

Review: Sacrament: The Film

Published June 25, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

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One of my biggest dreams as a horror fan is to have a homosexual character at the center of one of those seemingly endless Friday the 13th reboots. But until some major studio comes to its senses – not likely, I suppose – I am grateful that the world has writer-director Shawn Ewert’s (very independent) Sacrament: The Film. This fun backwoods horror epic is particularly impactful due to its focus on Lee (Trey Ford) and Blake (Avery Pfeiffer), a young gay couple, and its look at the poisonous after effects of the violence caused by those belonging to the religious right.

Taking off on a traditional road trip, Lee and Blake and their friends soon find themselves sequestered in a small town for the night. Unfortunately for them, this burg’s residents believe in punishing any that they view as transgressors and, eventually, turning them into food for their ravenously faithful flock. Borrowing heavily from genre favorites like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and more obscure flicks like Terror at Red Wolf Inn, Ewert still makes his mark here by focusing on the hypocrisy and anger of those who, supposedly, live a kind and sacred life. This is, obviously, a timely notion as we live in a climate where bathroom laws and hate bills are being promoted with maniacal zeal.marilyn burns sacrament

Nicely, Ewert, as a director, supplies multiple levels, though. It is almost possible to sympathize with the quiet town folk who are bombarded with the obnoxious activities of the film’s central youths – at first. He also pays homage to his influences by casting TTCM mainstays Marilyn Burns and Ed Guinn in smaller yet pertinent roles. Burns, in particular, brings a quiet yet seething intensity to her activities here, making her untimely passing in 2014 feel all the more tragic.

Meanwhile, the rest of the cast also handles itself deftly, a rarity in low budget projects, with Ford’s level headed Lee, Amanda Rebholz’s sensitive and playful Lorri and Joshua Cole Simmons’ understandingly frantic Brahm deserving special notice. Nicely, Ford and Pfeiffer gamely offer up their flesh to the masses as well, counterbalancing the preponderance of female nudity in projects such as this. Unfortunately, this still feels like a social or political act in a genre where bare femininity is the norm and the playing field is rarely leveled.Sacrament 2

Granted, there are minor disappointments here. Ewert builds a complex narrative. Thus, his ending could have benefited from some more high stakes escape techniques. It feels a bit abrupt after all that has come before. But, overall, this is a truly solid, admirable – and important effort. Sacrament: The Film offers up all the savage thrills of the tried and true slasher genre while also staking a claim as a statement against bigotry and hate. Bravo!

Sacrament: The Film is now available on iTunes, Amazon and Vudu.

https://www.facebook.com/SacramentFilm

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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The Evil

Published March 18, 2016 by biggayhorrorfan

the evil

Sunburn, heat stroke, chigger bites…There is so much to look forward to in the summertime!

Ingenious independent director-writer-actor Reuben Rox has now given us something else to anticipate during those warmer months – his latest horror feature, The Evil!

Not much information is forthcoming about the project as of yet, but that is surely only to make this project more intriguing to the bloody curious…

…whom can all take a stab at receiving updates at https://www.facebook.com/the-evil-1684538168501183/.

Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

www.facebook.com/biggayhorrorfan