HMPod.com Podcast 188 — Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, Sinister 2, The Gift, Self/less, Childhood’s End, The H8ful Eight

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Ghosts, gifts & gruesome guffaws

A gracious good day to everyone in the entire universe. Welcome to another episode of The Horror Movie Show, hosted yet again by the inestimable Jerry & Mark. Join our bleary-eyed hosts as they discuss puppies, politics & poltergeists.

First movie discussed is Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, yet another instalment in the ridiculously popular series. If you have enjoyed previous efforts in this slog of sequels, then this one will satisfy. At least the moviemakers added some actual special effects to this one.

More likeable is Sinister 2 which follows on from the Ethan Hawke flick of a couple years back. Starring the character Ex-Deputy So & So (James Ransome), this is a solid & enjoyable ghost story.

Joel Edgerton wrote, directed & co-stars in The Gift, an excellent thriller from last year. Along with Jason Bateman & Rebecca Hall, this is a slow-burning story of what happens when hatred & resentment are buried for a couple of decades & then let loose. Worth sticking with it, though there’s not a ghost in sight.

Self/less is director Tarsem Singh‘s (The Cell, Mirror Mirror) remake of the 1966 chestnut Seconds. Though not as striking as that movie, Self/less offers Ryan Reynolds another opportunity to be ridden with angst. Can’t be bad.

Three-part mini-series Childhood’s End, based on the novel by Arthur C. Clarke, is an entertaining bit of science fiction. Starring Mike Vogel, Daisy Betts & a heavily made-up Charles Dance (as alien Karellen), updating this much-loved story is tricky, but definitely worth a watch.

Finally, Mark catches up with Jerry & the two discuss Quentin Tarantino‘s latest black comedy, The Hateful Eight. With a hell of a cast — Samuel L. Jackson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kurt Russell, Tim Roth & Bruce Dern, among others — this is a gory, grisly take on the Wild West. So let’s move ‘em on out! Yip-yip-yahoo!

HMPod.com Podcast 187 — Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Room, Stung, Last Shift, Attack on Titan Part 2, Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, The Martian, Everest, The 33

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I’ve got a bad feeling about this…

Greetings from a podcast recorded a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… Yes, it’s another episode of The Horror Movie Show, hosted as ever by those unforceful dudes Mark & Jerry. With the first new Star Wars movie to appear in several parsecs (yes, parsecs), the guys examine this Wookiee deposit & try to decide if it’s worth watching — or just a lightspeed version of the original.

Following that is a review of Room, the excellent adaptation of Emma Donoghue‘s novel about a woman & her young son trapped in a backyard shed by a lunatic kidnaper — who is also father of the boy. It is a harrowing story & one of the best movies of the past year.

Occasionally there is a creature-feature worth watching. Stung is one such movie. Gigantic, mutated hornets invade an upper-crust garden party with hilariously gruesome results. The inimitable Lance Henrikson steals every scene he’s in. Following that is the low-budget but excellent Last Shift from 2014. Starring Juliana Harkavy, this is a night at work that would make anyone want to quit.

A quick discussion of a pair of sequels — Attack on Titan Part 2 & Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials — offer perfect examples of what is wrong with most sequels.

The show ends with some rapid-fire opinions on a few mainstream movies recently seen by our doddering duo, including The Martian, Everest, The 33, The H8ful Eight, The Big Short, Legend, In the Heart of the Sea & Trumbo. Just in time for the Oscars. And the winner is….

The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival

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When in the Big Apple…

One of the mainstays of big-budget science fiction flicks of the last 20 years is the literary work of the uniquely twisted writer Philip K. Dick. From Blade Runner to Minority Report & two big-screen versions of Total Recall, PKD continues to be an important, relevant & interesting voice in science fiction. His books are worth reading, too!
For Dick fans in the New York City area, the fourth annual Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival should be a fun way to spend four days. The staff here at The Horror Movie Show wishes we could hop a transcontinental maglev train & be there, along with other members of the Crypt Family.
Here is the content of a press release from the event organizers. Cheers!
The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival returns to New York City for its fourth annual event from January 14–17, 2016. The four-day festival, screening at the magnificent Village East Cinemas (181–189 2nd Ave., New York, NY 10003), has announced its full schedule of events which includes a record 80 films from more than 20 countries, including several film premieres.

Highlights from the exciting lineup include Clones, starring Rutger Hauer (Blade Runner); Genghis Khan Conquers the Moon, starring Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle); The Mill at Calder’s End, starring Barbara Steele (Black Sunday); the NYC premiere of Chatter, starring Richard Hatch (Battlestar Galactica); The Art of Human Salvage, starring Edward James Olmos (Blade Runner); The Future Perfect, starring Zachary Quinto (Star Trek); the NYC premiere of The Incident, starring Raúl Méndez (Netflix’s Narcos); the world premiere of Dean Philips‘ short film Tap Tap Tap; the U.S. premiere of The Worlds of Philip K. Dick documentary and the NYC premieres of documentaries Sympathy For The Devil: The True Story of The Process Church of the Final Judgment, featuring George Clinton, and Travis: The True Story of Travis Walton.

The festival will also hold the U.S. unveiling of the Philip K. Dick-inspired video game Californium by Darjeeling and Nova Productions, and the panel Philip K. Dick, The Man in the High Castle, Science Fiction and the Politics of Identity with writers Richard Doyle and Adi Tantimedh, writer and media personality Paul Levinson and digital producer Noam Roubah.

The festival is excited for another year in offering the very best of independent science fiction film to celebrate the enduring legacy of Philip K. Dick.

HMPod.com Podcast 186 — The Best of 2015

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Have a crustacean new year!

Happiest of new years to our faithful listeners & the few of you who do not even know The Horror Movie Show exists. This is another in a long line of special episodes recounting the very best of the past 12 months — more or less. Listen now as your horrible hosts, Jerry & Mark, count down their picks.

Starting at No. 10 is the hilariously dark vampire comedy What We Do in the Shadows. No. 9 is one of the year’s strongest science-fiction flicks, Ex Machina, co-starring busy Oscar Isaac & Domhnall Gleeson. At No. 8 is The Boy, a peek into the pre-adolescence of a budding serial killer. No. 7 is the low-budget but excellent ghost story We Are Still Here, featuring beautiful Barbara Crampton & friend of the show Larry Fessenden. And No. 6 is horror superstar Eli Roth‘s terrifying black comedy The Green Inferno.

The choice for No. 5 is David Robert Mitchell‘s horror hit It Follows, another low-budget thrill-ride. On the other side of the budgetary scale is Leonardo DiCaprio & super-popular Tom Hardy in the epic revenge yarn The Revenant. Also on a historic bent, No. 3 is Bone Tomahawk, starring Kurt Russell‘s magnificent whiskers. The always intense Henry Rollins plays a very jaded, mysterious immortal in No. 2: He Never Died.

And HMPod‘s choice for the best movie of 2015 is the ultra-weird allegorical feature from director Yorgos LanthimoThe Lobster. Starring Colin Farrell & Rachel Weisz, this is one of the most peculiarly menacing flicks from any year.

Hope everyone has recovered from holiday season hangovers. You can keep the volume low on the jibber-jabber. Now on with The Horror Movie Show….

HMPod.com Podcast 185 — Xmas 2015: Krampus, Krampus: The Reckoning, Christmas Icetastrophe, Crimson Peak, The Last Witch Hunter, Bad Boy Bubby, Absolutely Anything

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Don’t eat the mistletoe!

Top o’ the season to all our overstuffed listeners. The Horror Movie Show, hosted by slow-roasted turkeys Mark & Jerry, expects you are enjoying a jolly Xmas, etc. As usual, HMPod is moderately pleased to bring you a special episode to count down the final days of this year.

Beginning with the biggest budget Krampus movie ever made, your gobblin’ hosts are pleased to report that this flick was pretty good — though perhaps a tad overdone. Lots of monsters — including a horrific Jack-in-the-box — make this one too scary for kids who still believe in St. Nick. But it’s certainly better than the low-budget Krampus: The Reckoning. And both surpass the disastrous Christmas Icetastrophe.

As with all of Guillermo del Toro‘s films, Crimson Peaks looks gorgeous. Is it worth the time to watch? That depends on whether you are a Hiddlestoner or not. And director Breck Eisner‘s The Last Witch Hunter gives jolly old elf Vin Diesel a chance to shine as an immortal crusader.

Bad Boy Bubby (1993) is a highly peculiar tale from Australia about a youngish man raised in a tiny room by a psychotic mother, then released into the big bad world to find his way. One of the most successfully odd movies to pass by in some time. Highly recommended.

Finally, Simon Pegg proves that having the power to do Absolutely Anything does not guarantee happiness. In fact, it leads to chaos & a lot of recycled jokes. The movie, directed by Monty Python alumni Terry Jones, does boast what may be the final film gathering of the surviving five Pythons — in fine vocal form at least.

So sit back, slip your feet into a pair of cranberry sauce tins & listen to The Horror Movie Show‘s final episode for 2015. Expect Jerry & Mark’s picks for the Top 10 horror movies of the dying year in the next episode. Cheers!