Review: ‘BLOOD FEST’ is a fun homage to genre filmmakers and fans alike.

presents

BLOOD FEST

Fans flock to a festival celebrating the most iconic horror movies, only to discover that the charismatic showman behind the event has a diabolical agenda. As attendees start dying off, three teenagers with more horror-film wits than real-world knowledge must band together and battle through every madman, monstrosity and terrifying scenario if they have any hope of surviving.

Blood Fest takes a page out of the Scream franchise playbook by breaking down the scary movie rules and tropes. It’s a horror fan’s playground, literally. “Bloodfest” is horror’s Comic-Con or Disneyland. The film doesn’t take itself too seriously, the dialogue is snappy as hell, and the sets are incredible. I know people, myself included, that would pay good money to enter such a gore-infused playland. Blood Fest is unapologetically silly and wonderful. Once on location at Bloodfest, we get right into the slashing, enhanced by a nice practical FX and some CG shots. It’s like being trapped in a horror video game you’re watching someone else play for you. Every nightmare someone might have is explored even if only for a moment.Think Cabin In The Woods level humor and (frankly, plot, as well) but with some new twists. To top it off, the entire cast is phenomenally talented. Also, ladies and gentlemen, Zachery Levi cameo. Blood Fest is wildly entertaining and undeniably fun. If you love the horror genre you’ll be thoroughly amused by the tongue-in-cheek way the plot rolls out, despite a few corny moments. Simply sit back and enjoy the bloody ride. Oh, and back to the franchise mention, there is no reason why this couldn’t turn into one itself. A sequel, at the very least, is completely plausible and welcome.

In Theaters & On Demand on August 31, 2018
Written and Directed by: Owen Egerton

Starring: Tate Donovan (The Untouchables, The Only Boy Living in New York,”The O.C.”), Robbie Kay (“Once Upon a Time”), Seychelle Gabriel (The Last Airbender, “Falling Skies”, “Sleepy Hollow”), Jacob Batalon (Spider-Man: Homecoming and Avengers: Infinity War, Every Day, and The True Don Quixote), and Barbara Dunkelman (RWBY), Nick Rutherford, Chris Doubek, Rebecca Wagner and Zachary Levi

Executive Producers: Matt Hullum, Burnie Burns, and Ryan P. Hall

Producers: Seth Caplan, Will Hyde, and Ezra Venetos

Review: ‘Against The Night” has one big winner…

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AGAINST THE NIGHT

AGAINST THE NIGHT is a psychological thriller that tests the boundaries of trust as nine friends sneak into an abandoned prison to film a ghost hunting video. When their friend, Hank, disappears, everyone is pointing fingers and placing blame until they realize they may not be alone.

Against the Night has a plot we’ve seen before… until it doesn’t. I have to admit, this film tries really hard to be unique but ultimately ends up being totally convoluted. There are moments in the script that are so far out in left field I literally said, “What?!” out loud as I watched. The practical effects don’t help, and the majority of the acting is pretty blah and even ventures into the downright atrocious. Oftentimes, the cast’s reactions, (mostly the girls) are completely unbelievable and frankly, don’t lend you to care about them. The chemistry is humming along one moment and nonexistent the next. The tropes seem forced and cobbled together without any flow to the story. While I did enjoy the opening setup and the use of multiple camera styles, Against the Night just didn’t work for me as a whole. The one saving grace in this film is actor Josh Cahn. Playing what feels akin to Jaimie Kennedy‘s role in SCREAM, Cahn is funny, likeable, and I wanted more of him on screen. I would watch an entire stand alone film with him as the lead, any day. This kid is a gem. If you do catch the film, he and the appearance of Frank Whaley as Detective Ramsey are worth their short amount of screen time. Check out the trailer below. As always, we want to know what you think, so those of you heading to the theater this weekend, tell us how Against the Night played out for you!

AGAINST THE NIGHT will be released theatrically in LA, NY and additional select markets on September 15.  The film has a running time of 86 minutes and will not be rated by the MPAA.

Fantasia International Film Festival 2017 Review: ‘Le Manior’ (The Mansion) brings a the scares and the one liners.

LE MANOIR(“The Mansion”)When a group of 20 something friends plan a New Year’s Eve getaway at an old mansion, things get heated when accusations fly, drugs and alcohol are plenty, and there is no signal for phones or wifi. Oh, and did I mention they start dying one by one? While this may sound like you’ve already seen this movie a hundred times, don’t be fooled by the build up. Le Manoir is one hell of a unique dark comedy horror. This movie is what the Scary Movie franchise could have looked like if they were actually intending on genuinely scaring you. The dialogue is much less punny but seriously over the top. Think Evil Dead meets Scooby Doo in all the best ways possible (and you can add in Scream just for good measure). The cinematography is great and the impact of the music and sound editing is spot on. Not only that, but the cast is shockingly comprised of YouTube stars… and they’re fantastic! The chemistry is beyond and each holds their own and then some. I legitimately laughed out loud during the entire 96-minute run. I highly recommend you seek this film out at and after this year’s Fantasia Festival. Check out the trailer below.

NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
  • France
  • 2017
  • 96 mins
  • French
  • English (subtitles)

SCREENING TIMES

CREDITS

  • Directed by: Tony T. Datis
  • Cast: Marc Jarousseau, Yvick Letexier, Nathalie Odzierejko, Ludovik Day, Jérôme Niel
  • Company: Gaumont

‘Scream: the TV Series’ Season 1 coming to DVD May 10th

Scream-S1-TV-Series-3DAdapted from the late Wes Craven’s iconic film Scream, MTV’s popular teen slasher series, “Scream: The TV Series” Season 1 arrives on DVD May 10 from Anchor Bay Entertainment and Dimension TV. The series premiered on MTV on June 30, 2015 and featured today’s hottest young actors including Bella Thorne (The DUFF), Willa Fitzgerald (For the Love of a Dog), Bex Taylor-Klaus (The Last Witch Hunter), Carlson Young (Premature), and Jason Wiles (“Third Watch”).  “Scream: The TV Series” returns for a second killer season May 31, 2016 on MTV.

SCREAM_EP102_EN_US_STORYARTIn “Scream: The TV Series” Season 1, what starts as a YouTube video going viral, soon leads to problems for the teenagers of Lakewood and serves as the catalyst for a murder that opens up a window to the town’s troubled past.

“Scream: The TV Series” Season 1 will be available on DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment on May 10, 2016 for the suggest retail price of $34.98.  Special features include thrilling never-before-seen footage including a Gag Reel, Deleted Scenes and Promotional Gallery.

“…Ridiculous, meme-obsessed, self-mocking, and fun…”
Lenika Cruz, The Atlantic

“Waiting for a serial killer to strike has never been more fun”
Deborah Day, The Wrap

To learn more about the TV series on DVD, please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

Jeremy’s Review: Justin Reardon’s “Playing It Cool” Holds a Mirror Up to the Rom-Com Genre with Varied Success

Playing It Cool_PosterI’ve stated this before a few times, but romantic comedies aren’t traditionally films that I will watch. Most of them are ill-conceived and rife with so many cliches that are so bad they make me want to punch my own face. From time to time, some stand out and rise above the all-too familiar trappings of being a romantic comedy (Cameron Crowe’s Say Anything is a perfect example) and that’s just what Justin Reardon‘s Playing It Cool aims to do. The film is what essentially is a meta-romantic comedy, think the Scream of the romantic comedy genre. But is it successful? Playing It Cool_Still01

The narrator and protagonist (played by Chris Evans) is a screenwriter hired to write…a romantic comedy (how meta is that)! The problem is he’s never been in love, and in fact has done everything he can to avoid it, so he is struggling to find his story and meet his deadline despite pleas from his agent (played by Evans‘s Avengers co-star Anthony Mackie). When the narrator (no, he doesn’t have a real name in the film) gets dragged to a charity benefit with his friend Scott (Topher Grace), he meets Her (she, too, has no name but is played by the exquisite Michelle Monaghan) and as would happen in your standard rom-com, they share a moment or at least the narrator thinks so. After they part, he can’t stop thinking about her so he embarks on a whirlwind tour of all the charity events he can find. Of course, he finally meets her again at an event. They talk more and of course, she’s got a boyfriend. But does that stop him? HELL NO! This is a romantic comedy, after all. The pursuit begins and it’s clear that the narrator has fallen for Her. His group of friends (played by Grace, Luke Wilson, Aubrey Plaza and Martin Starr) give him varying degrees of advice, some good, most of it bad. So the narrator is left to figure out what his approach should be. Does he get the girl? Remember, even a meta-rom com is still a rom com.

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I wasn’t sure what to expect from this film, but I enjoyed it. Evans and Monaghan have real chemistry together, which obviously is key for a film like this. Monaghan really stands out, though. She is everything that a paramour should be in a romantic comedy – funny, pretty, witty and vulnerable. Evans does an admirable job stepping outside his more action-based filmography (his best role being in Danny Boyle‘s Sunshine). A lot hinges on how these two actors interact and they pull it off well. Writers Chris Shafer and Paul Vicknair did a fantastic job deconstructing the romantic comedy genre and employing its more ridiculous conventions in funny ways right down to using the same cafe/diner that appears in every other romantic comedy. Honestly, I wish they would have eviscerated it a bit more, but I guess that may be too much to ask. The scenes with the narrator and his group of friends are the absolute highlight of the film, although I would liked to have seen more Martin Starr. Luke Wilson gets back to his early Wes Anderson-film form, which is nice to see since he been in a pile of shitty movies since Idiocracy.

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All in all, Playing It Cool is a satisfying experience and one that may well surprise you. This film opens today in theaters and will be the perfect antidote to the universally panned and borderline offensive Hot Pursuit. Monaghan‘s infectious performance is worth the price of admission. Here is the list of theaters where it is playing and it is also available On Demand as well.

90s Netflix Time Capsule – 18 Essential Flicks That Will Take You Back In Time

NetflixSomeone asked me last week to recommend some 90s movies to watch on Netflix. After much internal debate, I’ve narrowed it down to the movies that really SCREAM 90s to me. (see what I did there?) What are your favorite 90s movies? Read More →