Thursday, May 17, 2018

Unearthed Films brings A Serbian Film to the Downtown Independent in L.A.



Today is your last day to get advanced tickets to one of the most infamously disturbing and controversial films in recent history. Yes, I'm talking about A Serbian Film! It will be screening in UNCUT glory at the Downtown Independent on Friday May 18th and the screening will be accompanied by a free three day exhibit showcasing screen used props, outfits, and casts at the Lethal Amounts gallery. At the start of the exhibit, all of these props will be listed on eBay for a full week.





And hey, even if you don't have a wad of cash to raise your bids, you can still pick up a random piece of the storyboard, which will be listed at $175 a page. Each page will be signed by the director! These will remain on eBay until all 255 of them are gone. 





In addition to the exhibit and screening, this event will also feature a special guest; the co-writer and director of A Serbian Film, Srdjan Spasojevic, will be at the screening, after which he will do a Q&A and attend the VIP after party. It's also been announced that Jelena Gavrilovic, who played Marija's ( aka Milo's) wife in the film, will also be making her first appearance in the United States to be at the film's after party! She will also be at the gallery exhibition for all three days and will be signing autographs.




This entire event would not be possible, were it not for the work of one indie horror loving madman, Stephen Biro, the head of Unearthed Films. Thanks to this unsung hero of the extreme horror world, we get an always growing library of gore and insanity, available both streaming via that Unearthed Films Extreme Horror Channel on Vimeo, and as physical discs via UnearthedFilms.com. And to get an early glimpse into what else the night has in store for us, the hosts of The Overlook Hour spoke to the man behind it all in episode 90. 


Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud today!




-Huntress

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Bluray Tuesday Featuring: It's Alive Trilogy, Black Panther & Rick & Morty Season 3

May 15th 2018


Our favorite day of the week returns and it's a big week for releases and collection worthy films! Scream Factory releases several titles today starting with the It's Alive Trilogy box set. This box set is must for me, I don't remember the sequels and I'm looking forward to a marathon real soon. Scream Factory also releases Doctor's Blood Coffin, and collectible steelbook editions of Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure and The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across The 8th Dimension. Rick and Morty fans can finally own the complete third season of the show on Bluray today. Best Buy will carry an exclusive steelbook as well, to give you guys some options. Arrow Video releases a cool vampire boxset titled The Bloodthirsty Trilogy. I haven't seen these but will definitely check them out in the near future. As a kid I loved the Problem Child movies and Problem Child 2 is finally being released for the first time on Bluray! I can't wait to re-watch this sequel in HD. The biggest release of the week is Marvel's Black Panther and it's my main pick up this week is for sure! I loved this movie, not only because it's a good Marvel film but a great standalone feature in general. Target will carry an exclusive Digibook packaging and Best Buy will carry an exclusive steelbook. What will you guys buy, rent or skip this week? Let us know in the comments. Until next week!

It's Alive Trilogy: Amazon - $31.99

It's Alive: Heavily pregnant Lenore Davis tells her husband, Frank, that she is in labor. They leave their eleven year-old son Chris with their friend Charley and they head to the Community Hospital. Lenore feels that something is wrong and delivers a monster that kills the team in the delivery room and escapes through a skylight. Lieutenant Perkins comes to the hospital to investigate the murder and the press divulges the identity of the parents. Frank discovers a dark secret about Lenore and the baby.
It's Alive 2: Parents (Frederic Forrest, Kathleen Lloyd) take their fanged-monster baby to a secret institute studying more of the same.
It's Alive 3: The father (Michael Moriarty) of a monster baby goes where it and others like it have been banished by the state.

It's Alive Trilogy (Blu-ray) 

Marvel's Black Panther: Best Buy - $22.99
4K: Best Buy - $27.99

After the death of his father, T'Challa returns home to the African nation of Wakanda to take his rightful place as king. When a powerful enemy suddenly reappears, T'Challa's mettle as king -- and as Black Panther -- gets tested when he's drawn into a conflict that puts the fate of Wakanda and the entire world at risk. Faced with treachery and danger, the young king must rally his allies and release the full power of Black Panther to defeat his foes and secure the safety of his people.

Black Panther (Blu-ray) 

Black Panther 4K (Blu-ray) 

Steelbook: Best Buy - $34.99

Black Panther 4K (Blu-ray) 

Digibook: Target - $24.99

Black Panther (Blu-ray) 

Rick & Morty (Season 3): Amazon - $22.99

Welcome to the world of Rick and Morty, a genius inventor grandfather and his less than genius grandson. Missing for nearly 20 years, Rick arrives at his daughter’s doorstep looking to move in, but her husband isn’t too thrilled. Rick converts the garage into his lab and involves Morty in his insane adventures.
 
Rick and Morty: Season 3 (Blu-ray) 

Steelbook: Best Buy - $27.99

Rick and Morty: Season 3 (Blu-ray) 

The Wizard: Amazon - $19.99

A boy and his brother run away from home and hitch cross country with the help of a girl they meet to compete in the ultimate video game championship.

The Wizard (Blu-ray)
Temporary cover art 

The Bloodthirsty Trilogy: Amazon - $31.99

A young man goes missing after visiting his girlfriend’s isolated country home. His sister and her boyfriend trace him to the creepy mansion, but their search becomes perilous when they uncover a gruesome family history.

The Bloodthirsty Trilogy (Blu-ray) 

Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (Steelbook): Amazon - $19.99

Bill and Ted are high school buddies starting a band. However, they are about to fail their history class, which means Ted would be sent to military school. They receive help from Rufus, a traveler from a future where their band is the foundation for a perfect society. With the use of Rufus' time machine, Bill and Ted travel to various points in history, returning with important figures to help them complete their final history presentation.
 
 Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (Blu-ray) 

The Return of The Swamp Thing: Amazon - $24.99

Swamp Thing is a hero of sorts, rescuing attractive horticulturist Abby from her stepfather, Dr. Arcane, whom she suspects is behind her mother's death.
 
 The Return of Swamp Thing (Blu-ray) 

Problem Child 2: Amazon - $21.99

Ben Healy and his son Junior Healy move from Cold River, Illinois to Mortville, Oregon, a quiet, peaceful community, apparently as a way to start their lives all over again.

Problem Child 2 (Blu-ray)
Temporary cover art 

The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai (Steelbook): Amazon - $18.99

Adventurer/surgeon/rock musician Buckaroo Banzai and his band of men, the Hong Kong Cavaliers, take on evil alien invaders from the 8th dimension.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (Blu-ray) 

Doctor Blood's Coffin: Amazon - $19.99

People are mysteriously disappearing near a remote Cornish village, where a scientist is experimenting with reviving the dead.

Doctor Blood's Coffin (Blu-ray) 

Two Thousand Maniacs: Amazon - $34.99

The citizens of a small Southern town celebrate the anniversary of the Civil War by forcing a handful of Northeners to participate in a variety of blood-crazed fun and games!

Two Thousand Maniacs! (Blu-ray) 

Bent: Amazon - $14.99

On his latest private investigation, a shamed former cop connects a murder case to a government conspiracy involving rogue agents from a top spy agency.

Bent (Blu-ray) 

Apartment 212: Amazon - $19.99

Jennifer Conrad is a small-town girl starting over in the big city. Fleeing an abusive relationship, all she wants is a chance to begin again. But it is hard to start over when something is eating you while you sleep...one painful bite at a time.

Apartment 212 (Blu-ray) 

Platoon of The Dead: Amazon - 24.99

Three soldiers must fight to survive the night in a seemingly abandoned house, when a zombie platoon attacks.
 
 Platoon of the Dead (Blu-ray) 



- The Impostor

Monday, May 14, 2018

Screenings in the Bay (Monday to Friday): The Hollow Child, Black Magic, TerrorVision


While we do have several repeat titles making their way to different theatres in the bay area, we also have three brand new titles that will be gracing our screens in the very near future. Currently, Dark Crimes is the only one with a showtime this week, and will be opening at the Roxie Theatre Friday night. First Reformed is one of the new A24 films hitting the public this week, but the soonest showtime I could find is still a week and a half away, so I'm hoping that changes soon. And finally, The Hollow Child, which I fear may be a VOD only release. However, that remains to be seen!

Also this week, Terror Tuesday returns to the 80's with TerrorVision, the Super Shangri-La Show plays with Black Magic at the Balboa Theatre, and the Stanford breaks out their romantic crime double feature. 



Opening This Week


Opens Friday 18th (1hr 32min)
Horror/ Thriller (IMDB)
Troubled teen Samantha's position in her new foster family is jeopardized when her new sister Olivia goes missing in the woods, only to reappear, apparently unharmed, days later. But when Sam begins to suspect that what emerged from the woods is not Olivia, her investigation will bring her face to face with an evil presence which has haunted the town for generations.



Opens Friday 18th (1hr 48min)
Drama/ Thriller (IMDB)
Reverend Ernst Toller (Ethan Hawke) is a solitary, middle-aged parish pastor at a small Dutch Reform church in upstate New York on the cusp of celebrating its 250th anniversary. Once a stop on the Underground Railroad, the church is now a tourist attraction catering to a dwindling congregation, eclipsed by its nearby parent church, Abundant Life, with its state-of-the-art facilities and 5,000-strong flock. When a pregnant parishioner (Amanda Seyfried) asks Reverend Toller to counsel her husband, a radical environmentalist, the clergyman finds himself plunged into his own tormented past, and equally despairing future, until he finds redemption in an act of grandiose violence. From writer-director Paul Schrader (Taxi Driver; American Gigolo; Affliction) comes a gripping thriller about a crisis of faith that is at once personal, political, and planetary.


Opens Friday 18th (1hr 32min)
Crime/ Drama/ Thriller (IMDB)
Jim Carrey commands the screen in this spellbinding thriller from Executive Producers of The Revenant and Black Mass. When police officer Tadek (Carrey) finds similarities between an unsolved murder and a crime outlined in a book by famed writer Krystov Kozlov, Tadek begins to track Kozlov and his girlfriend, a mysterious sex-club worker (Charlotte Gainsbourg). As his obsession with Kozlov grows, Tadek descends into a deadly underworld of sex, lies, and corruption to find the shocking, deadly truth.





Terror Tuesday

Tuesday 15th @ 9:45pm (1hr 23min)
Comedy/ Horror/ Sci-Fi (IMDB)
When their satellite dish accidentally picks up the energy of a voracious alien beast and it is suddenly reconstructed in material form, an otherwise normal family is terrorized. This sci-fi/horror pic contains violence and adult situations.



Tuesday 15th @ 12:55pm & 3:45pm (1hr 48min)
Wednesday 16th @ 12:55pm
Action/ Thriller (IMDB)
Jen (fearlessly embodied by Matilda Lutz, Rings) is enjoying a romantic getaway with her wealthy boyfriend which is suddenly disrupted when his sleazy friends arrive for an unannounced hunting trip. Tension mounts in the house until the situation abruptly--and viciously--intensifies, culminating in a shocking act that leaves Jen left for dead. Unfortunately for her assailants, Jen survives and reemerges with a relentless, wrathful intent: revenge. A white-knuckle tale of transgression and transformation, REVENGE gloriously blurs the lines of vengeance and survival while simultaneously delivering a ferocious dissection of gender and genre.




Super Shangri-La Show Presents

Wednesday 16th @ 7:30pm (1hr 45min)
Drama/ Mystery/ Romance (IMDB)
Hypnotist uses his powers for revenge against King Louis XV's court.





Screening All Week (1hr 38min)
Drama/ Horror (IMDB)
Experience three spine-tingling tales of terror to haunt your dreams. A debunker of all thing paranormal, Professor Phillip Goodman (Andy Nyman) has devoted his life to exposing phony psychics and fraudulent supernatural shenanigans on his own television show. His skepticism is put to the test, however, when he receives a file of three chilling, inexplicable cases: a night watchman (Paul Whitehouse) haunted by disturbing visions as he patrols an abandoned asylum; an edgy young man (Black Mirror's Alex Lawther) involved in a hellish car accident deep in the woods; and a wealthy former banker (Sherlock's Martin Freeman) visited by the poltergeist spirit of his unborn child. Even scarier: each of these macabre stories seems to have sinister connection to Professor Goodman's own life. Will they make a believer of him yet?




Double Feature

Charade (1963)
Wednesday 16th & Thursday 17th @ 7:30pm (1hr 53min)
Comedy/ Mystery/ Romance (IMDB)
Romance and suspense ensue in Paris as a woman is pursued by several men who want a fortune her murdered husband had stolen. Whom can she trust?

-with-


Arabesque (1966)
Wednesday 16th & Thursday 17th @ 5:30pm & 9:35pm (1hr 45min)
Action/ Adventure/ Crime (IMDB)
An American expert in hieroglyphics travels to Oxford to decipher a cryptic message. He soon discovers that the message is of great import to a series of foreign spies and Middle Eastern leaders and finds himself at the center of an international conspiracy in this espionage drama.



-Huntress

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: Wicked City, Yoshiaki Kawajiri's

 4 of 5 viewers "Liked" "Wicked City" (1987, Japan)
Creature reviews have been minimally altered in an attempt to maintain their voice:

Lord Battle - "Wicked City follows a pair of Blackguards (kinda like CIA) who have to protect a two-hundred-year-old Italian mystic because he is the only one who can make a treaty between the Human World and the Black World possible. If that's hard to imagine just think the Men In Black (yes Will Smith) protecting Donald Trump on his way to shake hands with Kim Jon Un. I first watched Wicked City on VHS as a teen and apparently all I remembered of the film was animated nudity. Now 10 years later, it didn't quite make the same impact as before but I really enjoyed the neo-noir vibe, especially seen through an X-Files tinged 90's lens. I just wanted more interesting demons/characters and less exposition." - 3 Stars

Eddie the Gamer Ghoul - "Dis was a Romeo N Juliet meets da Gyver wift a dash of DevilMan fer good measure. Favorit character... da pervy sage dude. Giuseppi kicked an' gropped ass. Hehe! Couldn't tell ya why but dis movie made me wanna go watch old Godzilla movie's. Not a bad movie fer da late 80's but nothing Imma purposely watch twice." - 1.5 Stars

Huntress - "From what I've heard about anime, I thought the norm was outrageous plots and circuitous relationships. So I was kind of surprised by the straightforward storyline in Wicked City. But looking back, everything paled in comparison to the monsters. I'll be thinking about the creature designs for a long time." - 4 Stars

Wandering Panda - "Demons, softcore hentai, and an overly perverted super powerful old man. What more do you want from anime?! Oh I know, a female spider demon with vagina teeth! This movie is amazing and could never be made today, and if it was it wouldn't be as good. Wicked City is truly overlooked by the modern anime community and deserves more attention. Do yourself a favor and dig up a copy, you won't regret this golden age anime." - 5 Stars

Math Mage - "An espionage thriller about anti-miscegenation.” - 4 Stars



The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)


Horror anime tend to fit into one of three categories. The first are stories about terrible things happening to people for almost no reason (Another, Death Parade). The second are stories in other genres that have horror elements (Attack on Titan, Shakugan no Shana). The third are horror stories that pretend to belong to another genre but are clearly horror on further reflection (Betterman, Madoka). You may have noticed that all my parenthetical examples are series, and this is because, while horror anime are quite rare, horror anime feature films are vanishingly so. A list of anime horror films would be dominated by entries from the late 80’s and early 90's, with only a few outliers. So when a group specializing in horror feature films wants to watch anime, they go 90's. Which brings us to Wicked City; an animated film adaptation of a short novel by Hideyuki Kikuchi*. Appearing around the same time as Ninja Scroll, it was popular for the same reasons (gore and nudity). If I were to be as cryptic as usual I would describe the film as “An espionage thriller about anti-miscegenation.” A description that manages to be unhelpful while still spoiling the “twist”. The film is about members of an MIB style organization that polices demons, specifically the human (Taki) and his new demon partner (Makie). Their job is to protect a dirty-old-man stereotype until a peace treaty is signed, battling demonic terrorists and boredom** until their relationship blossoms into true love over the course of like 9 hours (most of which they spend unconscious or being tortured).

I wouldn’t make a big deal about that (most action films have tacked on romance) except (Spoilers) that them falling in love is the point of the film. In order to encourage coexistence between the two worlds a plan was hatched to create demon-human hybrids and these two falling in love is the last step. This intricate plan over 1000 years in the making, hinges on two total strangers falling in love overnight. So the strategy to make that happen is to lie to them, get them targeted by terrorists, convince them to sacrifice themselves to protect a fool who’s supposed to be guarding them and go to some strip clubs. I’m not a romance expert, but this seems like a terrible plan, especially when their “bodyguard” nearly gets killed, and has to be rushed to the hospital. The original novel had many of the same problems***, but given the changes they made for the film already they could have fixed those issues.

Those changes are actually pretty extensive. Removing Taki’s psychic powers weakened his agency, though making Maki less alien made her character less one-dimensional. Other positive changes include removing the scene where Taki and Makie flirt by competing to see who is better at finger-banging prostitutes (though they kept the vagina-monster that attacks immediately afterward). In all, I enjoyed this film less than 17-year-old me did but it was still enjoyable. Call it a guilty pleasure.


* Of Vampire Hunter D fame
** Seriously, there is an extended scene of Taki being bored.
*** Kikuchi writes like he’s publishing the novel 1 chapter at a time even when he isn’t. This leads to some wild inconsistencies with background characters suddenly becoming pivotal, new main characters introduced three quarters through the book, and crucial information delivered in third person narration after it would have been helpful.



- Math Mage

The Overlook Theatre materialized in a residence for a screening on 5/3/2018
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Screenings in the Bay (Friday to Sunday): Revenge, You Were Never Really Here, Shadow of a Doubt


Happy Friday everyone :)
We're at the top of a very genre filled weekend that has a lot of fairly new releases. So if you have been lagging on checking out You Were Never Really Here or Ghost Stories, both are playing at several theatres in the bay area. This weekend The Room also returns to the Clay Theatre for two nights of Midnight Madness. In one month, The Room will return again, and will be introduced by Tommy Wiseau in person both nights. Saturday is already sold out!

And finally, Revenge has made its way into the city! It'll be playing at the Alamo Drafthouse all weekend and will hopefully be seeping into more theatres soon!



Limited Theatres Thursday 10th (1hr 48min)
Action/ Thriller (IMDB)
Jen (fearlessly embodied by Matilda Lutz, Rings) is enjoying a romantic getaway with her wealthy boyfriend which is suddenly disrupted when his sleazy friends arrive for an unannounced hunting trip. Tension mounts in the house until the situation abruptly--and viciously--intensifies, culminating in a shocking act that leaves Jen left for dead. Unfortunately for her assailants, Jen survives and reemerges with a relentless, wrathful intent: revenge. A white-knuckle tale of transgression and transformation, REVENGE gloriously blurs the lines of vengeance and survival while simultaneously delivering a ferocious dissection of gender and genre.





Screening All Weekend @ 6:25pm (1hr 30min)
Drama/ Mystery/ Thriller (IMDB)
A traumatized veteran, unafraid of violence, tracks down missing girls for a living. When a job spins out of control, Joe's nightmares overtake him as a conspiracy is uncovered leading to what may be his death trip or his awakening.

Also Screening at Landmark Opera Plaza

Also Screening at the Roxie Theatre




Triple Feature

Double Indemnity (1944)
Saturday 12th @ 1:30pm & 7:15pm (1hr 47min)
Crime/ Drama/ Noir (IMDB)
Directed by Billy Wilder and adapted from a James M. Cain novel by Wilder and Raymond Chandler, Double Indemnity represents the high-water mark of 1940s film noir urban crime dramas in which a greedy, weak man is seduced and trapped by a cold, evil woman amidst the dark shadows and Expressionist lighting of modern cities. Phyllis Dietrichson (Barbara Stanwyck) seduces insurance agent Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray) into murdering her husband to collect his accident policy. The murder goes as planned, but after the couple's passion cools, each becomes suspicious of the other's motives. The plan is further complicated when Neff's boss Barton Keyes (Edward G. Robinson), a brilliant insurance investigator, takes over the investigation.

-with-


The Killers (1946)
Saturday 12th @ 3:30pm & 9:15pm (1hr 43min)
Crime/ Drama/ Noir (IMDB)
The Killers, directed by Robert Siodmak, who received an Academy Award nomination, has long been considered the quintessential noir film: a character study of one man, Swede (Burt Lancaster), who because of betrayal and the love for a woman, Kitty Collins (Ava Gardner) has lost the will to live and waits, alone in one room as his fate unfolds. The entire film, a masterfully edited and photographed series of flashbacks, is Swede's story, told from the perspective of Riordan (Edmond O'Brien) as he tries to find out the truth. This film established Ava Gardner as a major film presence. Siodmak uses shadows to mask her eyes, giving Kitty an evasive, mysterious quality and effectively keeping her true motivations in question. Burt Lancaster, in his film debut, gives one of his best performances, portraying the tough ex-boxer with simplicity and a stoic acceptance of fate that is unforgettable. Siodmark's hard, edged, moody direction of the excellent Oscar nominated screenplay by Anthony Veiller, makes The Killers one of the definitive film noir, and an involving, poignant, pipeful film.

-with-


Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (1982)
Saturday 12th @ 5:30pm (1hr 28min)
Comedy/ Crime/ Mystery (IMDB)
Affectionately spoofing 1940s film noir and detective dramas, this comedy follows a private investigator's attempts to solve the murder of a scientist. The central gimmick allows the film's modern-day stars to, through clever editing, interact with scenes and characters from actual period thrillers.




Midnight Madness

Friday 11th & Saturday 12th @ 11:55pm (1hr 39min)
Drama (IMDB)
This film centers on Johnny, a man who has it all; great friends, a good job, and a gorgeous fiancée named Lisa. But Lisa's innocent act masks the fact that she's looking to bring Johnny down, and her manipulations are tearing Johnny apart. As Lisa informs her cancer-ridden mother, Claudette, that Johnny hit her (and he did not hit her, that is bull$&*t, he did not!), Johnny's best friend, Mark, finds his resistance to Lisa's seductive charms weakening. Meanwhile, local orphan Denny looks up to Johnny, and needs the older man's help after the teen rips off a drug dealer. What kind of drugs? It doesn't matter. Then guys play football in tuxedos, because you can play football anywhere.





Saturday 12th @ 4:50pm (1hr 38min)
Sunday 13th @ 9pm
Drama/ Horror (IMDB)
Experience three spine-tingling tales of terror to haunt your dreams. A debunker of all thing paranormal, Professor Phillip Goodman (Andy Nyman) has devoted his life to exposing phony psychics and fraudulent supernatural shenanigans on his own television show. His skepticism is put to the test, however, when he receives a file of three chilling, inexplicable cases: a night watchman (Paul Whitehouse) haunted by disturbing visions as he patrols an abandoned asylum; an edgy young man (Black Mirror's Alex Lawther) involved in a hellish car accident deep in the woods; and a wealthy former banker (Sherlock's Martin Freeman) visited by the poltergeist spirit of his unborn child. Even scarier: each of these macabre stories seems to have sinister connection to Professor Goodman's own life. Will they make a believer of him yet?




Double Feature

Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
Friday 11th @ th @ 7:30pm (1hr 48min)
Saturday 12th & Sunday 13th @ 3:35pm & 7:30pm
Drama/ Thriller (Google)
"Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotten) visits his relatives in Santa Rosa. He is a very charming man, but his niece slowly realizes that he is wanted for murder and he soon recognizes her suspicions. Although one of the suspected murderers is killed and the case is considered closed, she still has her suspicions.

-with-


Strangers on a Train (1951)
Friday 11th to Sunday 13th @ 5:35pm & 9:30pm (1hr 43min)
Crime/ Noir/ Thriller (IMDB)
"A psychotic socialite confronts a pro tennis star with a theory on how two complete strangers can get away with murder - a theory that he plans to implement."



-Huntress