Saturday, May 23, 2015

I Was Bitten: The Walker County Incident - Cryptid Curiosity

As you may or may not know, it's Monster Week on Animal Planet.  Well, at this point it's the tale end of Monster Week, which is going to culminate with the premier of a film called The Cannibal in the Jungle....which is apparently about a guy who either survived a cannibal attack in a jungle, or murdered his friends and tried to blame it on cannibals.  Firstly, I'm not sure what the heck that has to do with I'm not sure why that movie would be debuting on Animal Planet.  Secondly....why does THIS get released yet Eli Roth's The Green Inferno languishes in distribution hell?  WHY? 

Anyway, as I was watching a marathon of Monsters & Mysteries in America today (what can I say, I'm a sucker for poorly recreated supernatural events!) and I saw a commercial for I Was Bitten.  I was intrigued to say the least.  I told the Mrs. about it and we tuned in at 7pm (Eastern Standard) and settled in for what we thought was going to be a two hour documentary about a dude that had a close call with some sort of cryptid. 

The show focuses on a man named Daniel who claims that he was attacked by an unknown creature while he was out in the woods one day.  His wife, Krsytal (as well as his mother and step-father) is worried about him because he's been acting rather strange.  He's become completely obsessed with finding this mystery critter and making sure that he and his family are safe.

We follow along as Daniel becomes more and more obsessed as his health seems to decline slightly.  His wife convinces him to go to the hospital to get checked out and have some tests run.  The doctor states that she cannot identify the animal that bit him from the bite marks.  The doctor also suggests that Daniel see a psychiatrist to help him work through the obvious PTSD that he's going through.  He does go to see a hypnotist at one point, hoping to help him remember some of the details that are a bit fuzzy.  The session does not go well, when Daniel becomes agitated.

************************SPOILER WARNING**************************************

I've gotta say that they had me going along hook, line and sinker.  While I won't spoil the end of this "special", I will say that I was very surprised by the end, which immediately signaled that this entire documentary had indeed been fictional.  Quite impressively, both the Mrs and I thought we were watching a bona-fide Animal Planet documentary right up until the last 10 seconds!  Sure, there were moments here and there that had me questioning exactly what in the hell was going on, but goddamned if it didn't come out of nowhere and smack me upside the head! 

Having said that, it's very well done and I'll admit that I became invested in Daniel & Krystal and their life and truly wanted to see Daniel get the help he needed while simultaneously hoping to catch a glimpse of the mystery beast. Turns out, it was all a great bit shame!  Fool me once......

Cie la vie, as they say.

Monday, May 11, 2015

The Houses October Built - Extreme Screams

The Houses October Built
Directed by Bobby Roe
Not Rated - Approx 91 Min
Room 101/Foreboding Films


Alternate Titles:

Waaaaaaaaaaay back in October, I had James Harris aka Doc Terror on the MC Podcast and we discussed this film.  I had not seen it at that point, but you can bet your sweet ass that I was intrigued.  About a week after the podcast aired, I finally got a chance to sit down and watch the film on Amazon Streaming.  Sort of.  See, that was the month that I also found out that the useless internet service provider (HughesNet...which is my ONLY option deep in the woods of New Hampshire, apparently) only allows me 20GB of data a month.  That's what $130 gets me.  Useless.  I got about halfway through the film and then my bandwith was cut down to just about nothing and had to wait a week and a half to get service back, by which point my digital rental had obviously expired.  But anyway....I'm sure you don't really care about my internet problems, so let's get on with the film review, shall we?

I finally got around to picking up Houses on Blu Ray a while back and I watched it as a double feature with Digging Up The Marrow and I've gotta say, it paired quite nicely.  The film is another found footage flick, but it plays more like a documentary than anything else for most of the running time.  It revolves around five friends who rent an RV and set out on a quest the week before Halloween to find the most "extreme" haunted house.

Things begin predictably as they go to a few run of the mill haunt locations and see your standard actors dressed as clowns and creepy masked characters.  The haunts themselves while fun are nothing that impresses the group.  They begin to here of a group called The Blue Skeleton which has no designated location, and travels around from year to year.  The only way to find this mysterious haunt is to be invited.

After sniffing around, asking some questions and pissing off some of the local backwoods scare actors, they pick up the trail of The Blue Skeleton....or rather....The Blue Skeleton picks up on them.  A series of bizarre and freaky occurrences begin to plague the group as they make their way towards their ultimate fate.  A video appears online in a haunt forum depicting the entire group sleeping in their RV.  What looks like an animal heart is left in their refrigerator.  Halloween masks are left on their windshield wipers and lots of other stuff that would have had me sayin "Aw, HELL NO!" and getting the heck out of dodge.  But of course if our heroes did that, then there wouldn't be much of a movie, would there?

I must say that it doesn't paint scare actors in a very positive light.  I've never worked directly as a scare actor at a haunt, but I did work very closely with a haunt one year when  I developed a gothic illusion show (back in my magic days) to entertain the crowds in conjunction with the haunt.  I met all the scare actors and they were all really great people.  I never came across one who seemed mentally disturbed to me.  Granted that was at just one haunt....and I'm sure that there are some seriously messed up hombres and hombrettes (I just invented another new word!) out there who are scare actors....but this kinda made it look like they were all a few scoops short of a milkshake if ya catch my drift!

No "real" gore, but plenty of make up gore at the various haunts they go to.


Tons of ghouls, goblins, ghosts and fucked up clowns at the various haunts!

I've always had a soft spot for haunted houses and other haunted attractions, so I had a really good time with this one.  I'm also a sucker for road trip movies of pretty much any kind so that scratched that itch as well.  As far as found footage flicks go, it goes pretty easy on the shaky camera, so if you're the type that gets motion sickness from FF films, then you should be okay with this one.  Definitely worth checking out....especially in October before you go to some local (Or NOT local) haunts!

Midnight Cinephile Podcast Episode 5.5

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeey kids!

Episode 5.5 of the Midnight Cinephile Podcast is live!  My apologies for being a day late....sometimes you just can't fight the flying fickle finger of fate, know what I mean?  Better late than never though, I say!

It's another .5 episode which means it's a half hour of terror tunes, spooky sounds and maniacal music.  I hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed putting it together!

As always, you can listen right here on the website, download via the RSS feed, download from iTunes or you can download it right off of LibSyn!

Until next time.....Stay Spooky!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Midnight Cinephile Episode V: The Cinephile Strikes Back

Okay, so this episode has nothing to do with Star Wars, but's Episode V....when am I going to be able to use that again?

At long last Midnight Cinephile Episode V is upon us.  As I mentioned last week when I put up episode 4.5, we've been making some tweeks and adjustments and playing a bit with the format.  I think you're gonna dig what we've come up with so far.

In this episode two new segments make their debut:

Pixilated Horrors:
Taking a look at horror in gaming.  Could be any console...could be PC....but each week we'll take a look at a spooky little bit of gaming goodness.
This week, I take a look back at an obscure game for the NES called Monster Party.  It's a fun little romp with lots of zany monsters and a ton of fun.

Monster Mag Time Warp:
Each episode I take a look at a monster/horror mag from the past and review it's contents.
This week I take a look at Fangoria #12...the April/May issue from 1981!  We read Bob Martin's editorial regarding the gore in the magazine as well as take a look at some "Upcoming Movies" reported in the "Monster Invasion" segment.  Don't miss it!

On top of these two segments, of course is the meat 'n' potatoes of the mag.....where we talk film!  I'm joined this week by my lovely wife as we discuss The Babadook, From A Whisper To A Scream, Cellar Dweller and Lucio Fulci's The Beyond.

Like candy for the ears!  You can listen here online or follow any of the following download links!

Stay Spooky!

You can also download from LibSyn HERE
Follow The RSS Feed on the upper right corner of the page
Or listen using the player at the bottom of the page!