In Joseph Conrad's cynical, politically influenced work Under Western Eyes, the author takes steps in describing themes of terrorism, the degradation of character, and the suffering experienced by ordinary people caught in the wave of political influence. Mr. Conrad makes a poignant statement describing how two factions of society lived in pre-Revolutionary Russia when it is stated, "only that a belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness."
It's within this nature of humanity that writer/director Trey Edward Shults positions his new film It Comes At Night; within the turmoil that humanity faces with the unknown, within the natural distrust that exists deep in the souls of humans, within the emotions that motivate choices to act without compassion.
There are horror authors whose fiction never sees the light of a film screen. This is likely for the best—their works are so complex and visually bizarre that an adaptation would destroy them. Thomas Ligotti is a prime example of this barrier. Most of his stories are so perfectly phrased and nebulous that seeing them, rather than reading them, would break their terrifying spell. That does not mean that their themes or aesthetics can’t be translated into film through different, less rigid structures. Perhaps unintentionally, Alex Proyas embodies many of Ligotti’s qualities in his cinematic masterpiece, Dark City.
Here’s a spicy hot take—I’m as far as one could get from excited for Universal’s new film The Mummy. This isn’t exactly the movie’s fault, per se, as much as it is the world the movie inhabits, a sort of bizarro realm where a Brian Tyler-scored Tom Cruise action spectacle that’s meant to lay the groundwork for a Marvel-style cinematic universe, complete with Dr. Jekyll in the role of Nick Fury, is the most commercially viable way to make a movie about an ancient mummy’s curse. Now, I can see why the film’s being made, and you can’t exactly fault a studio for wanting to chase the money train that is the MCU, but personally, I couldn’t care less about the picture being released. Because when I think of mummies, I don’t think of Tom Cruise, or Brendan Fraser, or even Boris Karloff or Lon Chaney Jr. I think of Christopher Lee.
Now in theaters everywhere is The Mummy from director Alex Kurtzman, and earlier this week, Daily Dead had the chance to speak with the filmmaker about his approach to resurrecting the classic Universal Monster for modern audiences, marrying horror and action, his experiences collaborating with Tom Cruise, and more.
On Friday, June 9th, Aaron B. Koontz’s Camera Obscura hits theaters before making its way onto VOD platforms everywhere just a few days later on the 13th. The psychological horror film stars Christopher Denham (Money Monster, The Bay), Nadja Bobyleva (Bridge of Spies), Noah Segan (Looper, Starry Eyes, Brick), and also features some other stellar supporting talent that should be familiar to genre fans, including Chase Williamson (John Dies at the End, Beyond the Gates), Andrew Sensenig (We Are Still Here), and Gretchen Lodge (Lovely Molly).
Arriving in theaters this weekend is Alex Kurtzman’s The Mummy, kicking off Universal’s upcoming Dark Universe that hopes to resurrect all of the studio's classic monsters for modern audiences. During the press day earlier this week, Daily Dead had the opportunity to speak with Jake Johnson (Jurassic World, New Girl) about taking on his most action-oriented role to date, collaborating with Tom Cruise as well as Kurtzman, and more.
This Friday, June 9th, Trey Edward Shults’ It Comes At Night arrives in theaters everywhere. The pandemic-themed horror/domestic hybrid thriller stars Joel Edgerton, Carmen Ejogo, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Riley Keough, and Christopher Abbott, and explores how paranoia and fear can tear apart even the strongest of families and exploit our own psychological cracks, most of all when we least expect it.
I’ll be the first to admit I was rather skeptical going into Alex Kurtzman’s The Mummy, as the trailers seemed to be far more focused on the action instead of the horror to the story. But thankfully, my fears about the direction this new Mummy would take were quickly quelled about 25 minutes into the film, when I realized that this brand new Dark Universe that Universal is set to unleash was starting off on the right foot, because I was having a helluva fun time and was completely immersed in this world.
The first time I ever met Paul Davis was at a HorrorHound convention back in 2007. He was there presenting some footage from his amazing documentary, Beware The Moon, a celebration of all things An American Werewolf in London. His passion and enthusiasm for John Landis’ film, as well as for the horror genre as a whole, immediately struck me, and I’ve been following his career in the realms of filmmaking and writing ever since.
On Tuesday, June 6th, writer/director Natasha Kermani’s science fiction-fueled exploration of identity, Imitation Girl, will celebrate its Los Angeles premiere at the 2017 Dances With Film festival being held at the Chinese Theaters in Los Angeles. To mark the occasion, Daily Dead had the chance to speak with Kermani about collaborating with Imitation Girl star Lauren Ashley Carter (Darling, The Mind’s Eye, Pod), using genre elements to explore the themes of identity and humanity, and creating a film with grandeur while working within the constraints of a tight budget.
Born on Halloween night (in the US, although it was already November 1st in Istria), actor Massimo Dobrovic has shared a link with the horror genre since his birth, and he's strengthened that connection over the years with memorable roles in a wide range of films and TV series. After stepping into the world of vampires in Nocturna, Massimo turns his attention to zombies with key roles in two upcoming TV series, Age of the Living Dead and Feel the Dead. For our latest Q&A feature, we caught up with Massimo to discuss both series, as well as working with Brendan Fraser on Behind the Curtain of Night, his new cookbook, and much more.
You don't want to get in Madison Clark's way when it comes to her family. In the midst of the living dead apocalypse, Madison (played by Kim Dickens) has proved to be a cunning, calculating, and ever-resourceful survivor who can keep both herself and her family safe. Season 3 of Fear The Walking Dead will prove to be the most dangerous one yet for the Clarks, and with the third season recently kicking off with back-to-back episodes on AMC, I had the great pleasure of speaking with Kim Dickens about what's next for one of the most enigmatic characters in The Walking Dead universe.
Enjoying its world premiere later today at the 2017 Dances With Films festival in Los Angeles, writer/director Justin Reinsilber’s Central Park is an ambitious slasher hybrid that interweaves several different storylines which all coincide on one fateful night in the titular, iconic New York City location. During our interview, Reinsilber chatted about what inspired his unusual approach to his ambitious story, the challenges of shooting in New York and creating a compelling masked killer for modern audiences, and why it was important to him to go all practical with Central Park’s effects.
Never mind the holidays; dealing with family can be stressful any time of year. Birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, or just a mandatory visit to a forgotten aunt you haven’t seen in 15 years can all hold their share of tension and misery. But at least be thankful you’re not part of the Merrye clan, the family at the center of Jack Hill’s Spider Baby (1967), a quirky yet clever examination of the prototypical horror tribe that influenced the likes of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) and The Hills Have Eyes (1977).
While walking into the anticipated screening of director Patty Jenkins' film Wonder Woman, two women were walking a few steps in front of me and one of them proudly said, "We finally have a superhero we can call our own." It's a pertinent comment because this Wonder Woman film is a huge step in the right direction for female-fronted superhero films, but also the DC Extended Universe, which has seen a string of disappointing superhero/antihero films, including Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad.