Pity the poor gargoyle, second tier (at the very least) in horror iconography, resigned to being stone portents in many a film, but never getting their creepy due. This brings us to CBS’ Gargoyles (1972), a TV movie that aimed to rectify that situation and give these mostly forgotten creatures a chance to shine through the filter of a demented Saturday morning vibe.
The Women’s Liberation Movement, or more commonly known as Women’s Lib, was in full swing by the mid-’70s. The fight for equality raged on from the late ’60s until…well, what time have you got? It was only natural for the arts to comment on the growing and vocal discontent within the feminist community, and so it was that The Stepford Wives (1975) hit the screen (based on the Ira Levin novel) with a resounding thud. Regardless, it plays as a witty indictment of male morals and suburban blandness.
This past Tuesday night, Jonas Åkerlund’s Lords of Chaos closed out the Midnighter premieres at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Starring Rory Culkin, Emory Cohen, Jack Kilmer, Sky Ferreira, Valter Skarsgård, and Sam Coleman, Akerlund’s Lords recounts (in its own way) the start of the Norwegian Black Metal movement in the late 1980s, which was pioneered by Euronymous (Culkin), the founder of the band Mayhem, and how jealousy and egos corrupted the scene once an eager fan-turned-bandmate Varg (Cohen) takes Euronymous’ ideologies as a battle cry, culminating in an unforgettable showdown between the two musicians.
In 2015, the filmmaking trio of François Simard, Anouk Whissell, and Yoann-Karl Whissell (otherwise known as RKSS, aka “Roadkill Superstar”) brought their first feature, Turbo Kid, to the Sundance Film Festival, and over this past week, they celebrated the world premiere of their latest throwback endeavor, Summer of ’84, that screened as part of Sundance's 2018 Midnighters slate.
Earlier this week, up-and-coming filmmaker Augustine Frizzell celebrated the world premiere of her debut feature, Never Goin’ Back, which played as part of the 2018 Sundance Film Festival’s Midnighter programming slate. The rebellious stoner comedy follows two teenage dropouts (played by Camila Morrone and Maia Mitchell), who just want to take a vacation to the beach where they can eat donuts and relax, but their chaotic lifestyles keep getting in the way of their plans, resulting in hijinks and hilarity.
Just a few days ago, Beyond the Black Rainbow filmmaker Panos Cosmatos’ second feature Mandy celebrated its world premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Daily Dead had the opportunity to speak with Cosmatos, as well as the film’s star Nicolas Cage (who was only able to join us briefly) and co-star Linus Roache, who portrays the villainous cult leader Jeremiah, and they discussed the evolution of Mandy, their experiences collaborating together and with Andrea Riseborough, who plays the titular character, and much more.
Over this past weekend, Nicolas Pesce celebrated the world premiere of his second feature, Piercing, at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival (his debut film, The Eyes of My Mother, premiered at the fest back in 2016). While in Park City, Daily Dead caught up with Pesce and Piercing co-star Christopher Abbott, where they chatted about working together on the adaptation of Ryū Murakami’s novel, tapping into the physical comedy of the story, the distinct visual style of the movie, collaborating with Mia Wasikowska, and more.
Just a couple of years ago, up-and-coming director Nicolas Pesce celebrated the world premiere of his debut feature, The Eyes of My Mother, at the Sundance Film Festival, and he’s now returned in 2018 with his follow-up effort, Piercing, a slick and stylized exploration of obsession and murderous intentions. Featuring memorable performances from Christopher Abbott and Mia Wasikowska, a savagely funny and surprising script from Pesce, who adapted Ryû Murakami’s novel of the same name for the big screen, and a neo-retro approach to both the score and visual style of Piercing, Pesce confidently proves here that when it comes to telling stories, he enjoys screwing around with viewers' sensibilities and expectations. And I am all about it.
In 2010, filmmaker Panos Cosmatos came out guns blazing with his feature film debut, Beyond the Black Rainbow, and his follow-up project, Mandy, proved to be well worth the wait for those of us who have patiently waited to see just what the boundary-pushing director would do next. Like a powder keg of cinematic insanity ready to blow at any given moment (and when it does, man, the results are glorious), Mandy makes for a stunning companion piece to Black Rainbow in many ways, and yet still feels like a wholly unique step forward from Cosmatos. It’s hard to believe that he’s only two films into his career, but just based on his track record so far, Panos is now poised to become one of the boldest filmmaking voices of his generation.
As a child, the notion of romance to me was distant and adult, and frankly I wanted no part of it – especially in movies; I was the comedy and horror kid, with the occasional foray into fantasy. (Okay, I kissed Bev Peters on the cheek under the schoolyard tire when I was seven, but that fizzled out quickly.) I did however make my way to my small town’s Orpheum theatre at the age of nine to see what looked like a promising horror/sci-fi blend, Nicholas Meyer’s Time After Time (1979), and stumbled out into the darkness with a new understanding of what romance meant to me.
Besides releasing a number of our favorite classic horror films and the occasional cult oddity, the good folks at Scream Factory are also releasing a number of contemporary horror films and giving them a home on Blu-ray. Here’s a look at three of their recent efforts:
As someone who revels in the unabashed ridiculousness and wrongness of the Crank films, Mom and Dad was just the kind of anarchic cinema I was hoping to experience from writer/director Brian Taylor (who helmed the aforementioned Crank films alongside Mark Neveldine). A mix of survival/pandemic horror with a steady flow of pitch-black comedy coursing through its wonderfully nasty veins, Mom and Dad is just the right amount of wrong for this writer, and I enjoyed that Taylor—as expected—doesn’t pull any punches with his latest over-the-top endeavor.
When I first heard that filmmaker Brian Taylor (the Crank films, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance) was teaming up with Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair for a brand new pitch black comedy called Mom and Dad, in which parents are desperately trying to kill their offspring, I was immediately all in (and thankfully, it did not disappoint—but more on that later this week).
It’s hard to believe, but another year of the Sundance Film Festival is nearly upon us. Kicking off this Thursday, Sundance will be running until January 28th in Park City, Utah, and Daily Dead will be on-hand to check out an assortment of genre-related offerings. That being said, there’s a handful of films that immediately caught this writer’s attention as soon as they were announced for Sundance 2018, and here’s a look at what has me excited from this year’s festival lineup:
Creepy kids, am I right? The horror landscape has been littered with them as far back as The Bad Seed (1956). Every once in awhile TV too would trot out the killer tots in hopes of alluring viewers with no-good imps and smiling, murderous waifs. One such early effort is A Little Game (1971), an ABC Movie of the Week thriller that leans heavily on the psychology behind stepparent-child relations.