Some photos from the Toronto premiere of A Nightmare on Elm Street (courtesy of Warner Bros.) to get you in the mood:
Archive for April, 2010
A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (2010)
Starring Jackie Earle Haley, Rooney Mara and Kyle Gallner
Directed by Samuel Bayer
Written by Wesley Strick and Eric Heisserer
Don’t fall asleep.
That might be the mantra Freddy Krueger’s would-be victims keep repeating to themselves on screen, but judging by the number of yawns and sighs punctuating last night’s preview screening in Toronto, it’s also good advice for any moviegoer thinking of taking in this new version of the horror classic this coming weekend.
Which is not to see that A Nightmare on Elm Street 2010 is a complete disaster. Jackie Earle Haley, who proved that he can channel both psychopathic rage in 2009’s Watchmen and disturbing perversity in 2006’s Little Children, is the best Freddy we could hope for under the circumstances, and endows his take with both a physical fury and a revolting eroticism which proves he was the right man/monster to fill Robert Englund’s frayed red-and-green sweater. (Kudos to the show’s make-up department for re-imagining the Freddy look in a more realistic but still horrible way.)
Likewise, music video director Samuel Bayer (best known for filming Nirvana’s iconic ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ clip), here making his directing debut, lenses some intensely creepy visuals, although most of them are ripped off from original Nightmare director Wes Craven, albeit with subtle (some might say almost non-existent) tweaks.
Plot-wise, this Nightmare doesn’t deviate much from the 1984 version. Pedophile Freddy Krueger is burned to death by angry parents, and years later he takes his revenge by killing their children in their dreams. Our heroine Nancy (Mara: Urban Legends: Bloody Mary), one of Krueger’s victims, discovers the truth behind Krueger’s death and tries to kill him before he kills her. We do get to see Krueger’s back story, and the final confrontation has slightly more emotional resonance than Craven’s original, but the thinly-written characters and sometimes unintentionally funny dialogue undercuts what is supposed to be scary.
Really, there is no reason for this movie to exist, save to generate profits, which is perfectly fine – I’m not going to start railing against Hollywood for favouring commerce over creativity at this point – but if you’ve seen the original then this is merely a curiosity. Craven’s film wasn’t perfect – the acting was generally only adequate, some of the dialogue was wooden – but the sheer imagination on display and its execution made it and Freddy iconic for a reason: they were new and scary. Bayer’s visual sophistication is evident, but none of his images are more disturbing than what Craven created 26 years ago, computer generated imagery be damned.
If you’re 14 – as I was when the original Nightmare came out – and have no emotional stake in the Nightmare series then go see this. You will be entertained. You may even be scared depending on your tolerance. (After all, Nightmare is a mainstream horror property, not some niche B-movie for fanboys only.) Then watch the original and compare the two. For this viewer, who has seen all the (mostly) crappy sequels and understands Freddy Kruger’s cultural legacy (he’s been parodied on The Simpsons, for Christ’s sake), this Nightmare on Elm Street was a hollow exercise in futility and certainly not a cut above the original.
There you go, people. Ozzy’s new album — his first album in three years and 10th studio album overall — is out June 15 for those who care.
Official info follows:
“Let It Die”
”Let Me Hear You Scream”
”Life Won’t Wait”
”Diggin’ Me Down”
”I Want It More”
”I Love You All”
“Let Me Hear You Scream”–the album’s first single–is already Top Five (#5) on the Mainstream Rock Chart and Top Ten (#9) on the Active Rock chart in only its second week on the charts. In Canada “Let Me Hear You Scream” is sitting in the Top Ten on the BDS Rock Chart. The fist-pumping anthemic song had its world premiere, during a prison riot scene, on “CSI: NY” Wednesday, April 14. Next month, OZZY will shoot a video for “Let Me Hear You Scream” with famed director Jonas Akerlund.
SCREAM was produced by OZZY and Kevin Churko, both of whom did the same honors for OZZY’s 2007 worldwide million-seller Black Rain, the album. The multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer recorded most of the album at his Los Angeles home studio, The Bunker, and co-wrote all the songs, primarily with Churko. Notably, the album marks the first appearance of OZZY’s new guitar player, Gus G. OZZY’s band also features bassist Blasko, drummer Tommy Clufetos and keyboardist Adam Wakeman.
OZZY will also embark on an 18-month world tour (dates TBA) in support of SCREAM, with news about OZZFEST to emerge THIS Friday night, April 30
The Dark Lord Bunnykins can’t wait to receive his copy of Rue Morgue Magazine`s upcoming 100th issue, not only because he contributed to the cover story on Hammer Films but because he well and truly loves the mag and has been contributing to it since somewhere around Issue #4. That’s more than a decade of work with a tremendous cast of characters whose talents and love for horror know no bounds. Congratulations, gals and ghouls.
Anyway, while I wipe a tear from my bloodshot eye, here is a breakdown of what to expect from #100, which hits newsstands May 1.
(Featuring a black-on-black spot-varnished cover!)
ROYAL BLOOD: AN INTERVIEW WITH CHRISTOPER LEE
To celebrate our 100th issue, Rue Morgue proudly presents the ongoing story of the genre’s greatest living legend and the studio that made him an icon.
Plus: Interviews with Hammer star Ingrid Pitt, the man who revived the company, Hammer 101, and more!
by James Burrell, Sean Plummer, Trevor Tuminski and Paul Corupe
13 YEARS OF FEAR
Rue Morgue writers consult experts and luminaries for an in-depth look at how the genre has changed since we began publishing in 1997, and where it’s headed…
by Rue Morgue Staff
THE NIGHTMARE GALLERY
We commissioned sixteen of the best dark artists out there to each create an original piece that exemplifies a personal nightmare, and tell us why the work haunts them. The results will scare you too.
curated by Gary Pullin
HYMNS FROM THE HOUSE OF HORROR
Dive into Rue Morgue Radio’s first ever free downloadable terror tunes compilation, with a spotlight on all seventeen of the rare, classic, remixed and world premiere tracks! Hear what the bands themselves have to say about their caustic cuts.
by Trevor Tuminski, Tomb Dragomir and Dave Alexander
GATHER ’ROUND, KIDDIES
During the 1990s, R.L. Stine’s creepy children’s books sold millions of copies. The often reclusive, incredibly prolific author tells his own spooky story.
by Phil Brown
Rue Morgue downloads the top ten iPhone apps for horror fans.
by MARIE- ÈVE LARIN
NOTE FROM UNDERGROUND
What’s in a number?
Indian film promoters take cues from William Castle; Kinetik Fest aims to make Montreal top destination for industrial music fans; New Mexico to host horror film boot camp, and more!
THE CORONER’S REPORT
Weird stats and morbid facts. Sick Top Six Christopher Lee Dracula Deaths
Hammer Poster Reprints, Hellbent for Cooking, Gruesome Gift Baskets, Murder Ink Notepad
CineMacabre features Best Worst Movie, plus reviews of Clash of the Titans. The Day of the Triffids, Freeway Killer, Tony, The Real Wolfman, Dante’s Inferno: An Animated Epic, Monster Warriors, Lo, The Caretaker, Ravage the Scream Queen, Breaking Her Will and Night of the Pumpkin. Abbreviated Terrors reviews Cheerbleeders, Night of the Hell Hamsters and 2:22. And reissues features Arrow Video’s new Dario Argento DVDs, plus reviews Girly (1970), Honeymoon of Horror (1964), Goodbye Gemini (1970) and Knife of Ice (1972).
The Giant Spider Invasion (1975).
BLOOD IN FOUR COLOURS
Features Day of the Dead: Desertion, plus reviews of American Vampire #1, The Mystic Hands of Doctor Strange #1, Zombies Vs. Robots Aventure #1, The Ghoul #3 and Greek Street Volume 1.
THE NINTH CIRCLE
Spotlight: Tom Jokinen’s funeral industry tell-all Curtains. Library of the Damned presents a World Horror Con 2010 recap. Plus, reviews of A Sci-fi Swarm and Horror Horde: Interviews with 62 Filmmakers, The Mammoth Book of the Best of Best New Horror: Two Decades of Dark Fiction, Marie Corelli’s Vendetta, Seth Grahame-Smith’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Alexandra Sokoloff’s Book of Shadows, Altered Visions: The Art of Vincent Chong, Neil Cross’ Burial and The Zombie Combat Manual: A Guide to Fighting the Living Dead.
TRAVELOGUE OF TERROR
Musée Fragonard D’Alfort – Paris, France
Menu: Long Pigs (2007) and La petite mort: Die Nasty (2009).
Featuring experimental metal outfit Hobgoblin. Blood Spattered Guide features The Ghost. Plus reviews of The Crazies (2010) OST, Grace OST, The Wolfman OST, Robe., Rodentum: The Best of Dark Roots Music Volume IV, :Wumpscut:, Darkthrone, Psycho, The Vision Bleak, Lair of the Minotaur, Barren Earth, Omega Lithium, Unholy Grave, and Abscess.
Metro 2033, Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon and Deadly Premonition.
Terence Fisher’s The Curse of Frankenstein.
GIVEAWAYS THIS ISSUE!
Ten new subscribers will win a Horror Classics Collection box set courtesy of Warner Home Video Canada.
Starring Jackson Rathbone, Shaun Evans and Laura Donnelly
Written and directed by Anthony DiBlasi
It’s always great to see horror icon Clive Barker’s work adapted to film, even if the results are often a mixed blessing. Dread is based on a short story taken from one of Barker’s seminal (ha, ha) Books of Blood. I haven’t read it in 20 years so we’ll leave aside comparisons between text and film, but there’s little denying that Dread is the best Barker adaptation since the master’s last directorial effort, 1995’s Lord of Illusions.
Twilight staple Jackson Rathbone gets a chance to really show us his abilities as Stephen Grace, a bored psychology student who falls under the spell of the older Quaid (Shaun Evans). Quaid, plagued by his own demons (namely the psycho who killed his family in front of his eyes as a child), challenges Stephen to amp up his university psychology experiment. Their aim: to discover what their subjects dread. That the experiment degenerates into trauma, cruelty and torture should come as little surprise.
Writer/director Anthony DiBlasi manages to balance onscreen violence and gore with actual tension, with Quaid’s horrific visions providing gorehounds with their red red meat, while the increasingly fractured and co-dependent relationship between Stephen and Quaid provides an uncomfortable frisson of tension.
That Dread should degenerate into distasteful violence and unseen horror should be a given, given Barker’s taste for perversity. Kudos then to DiBlasi for realizing the flavour of Barker’s work while managing to make a film which stands as a testament to his own talent.
Starring David Hess, Jesse Buck and Sasha Grey
Directed by Lee Demarbre
Written by Ian Driscoll
Montreal-based filmmaker Lee Gordon Demarbre (Gordon?) channels Herschell Gordon Lewis (oh wait, I get it) in Smash Cut, his tribute to the gore pioneer. Genre veteran David Hess (Last House on the Left) stars as Able Whitman, a Z-grade movie director whose films are panned for their incompetence, especially their special effects. When a car accident provides him with access to REAL body parts, the increasingly unhinged Whitman uses them to give his films a more realistic sheen, resulting in the best reviews of his career. Needless to say, the body count rises as Whitman’s need for fresh meat increases.
Smash Cut is not a good film, but taken in the spirit in which it was intended — as a tribute to HG Lewis (who has a cameo) — it’s mildly entertaining. Porn star Sasha Grey, cast as a TV star whose sister is Whitman’s first victim, is sexy but wooden as the reporter who cottons on to Whitman’s depraved scheme, but it’s Hess whose relish for the role of an artist cock-blocked by producers makes it worth watching.
That said, we support film fan Demarbre and his enthusiasm for taking the piss out of mainstream moviemaking.
For the lowdown on Smash Cut, though, here’s Demarbre, screenwriter Ian Driscoll and David Hess:
ON MAY 1st, RUE MORGUE RADIO RELEASES FREE, DOWNLOADABLE
HORROR MUSIC COMPILATION, HYMNS FROM THE HOUSE OF HORROR!
In honour of Rue Morgue’s 100th issue, our favourite horror mag will be releasing a free, downloadable compilation album titled Rue Morgue Radio Presents…Hymns from the House of Horror! Thousands of bands have graced the pages of Rue Morgue magazine and airwaves of Rue Morgue Radio over the course of thirteen years, more than 300 radio shows and 100 magazines. RM enticed some of the many artists they believe best encapsulate the world of Rue Morgue into giving them exclusive mixes, previously unreleased tracks, rarities and classic cuts for this morbid mixtape, hosted by Rue Morgue Radio’s Tomb Dragomir.
This downloadable album will be available at the stroke of midnight May 1st at rue-morgue.com and ruemorgueradio.com, will be promoted on Rue Morgue Radio and their social networking sites. Listeners can check out the bands, link to their websites and download Hymns from the House of Horror, complete with printable album artwork designed by RM’s Justin Erickson.
A four-page feature article about the compilation in their expanded 100th issue spotlights each artist/band and the song they contributed, exploring the origins of each track’s conception.
Hymns will receive further exposure on the award-winning weekly Rue Morgue Radio (ruemorgueradio.com), and at Rue Morgue events such as the upcoming Black 100 Celebration (Friday, May 7 at Revival Event Theatre in Toronto) and the Rue Morgue Festival of Fear, the country’s largest horror expo (August 27 – 29, 2010).
Rue Morgue Radio’s Hymns from the House of Horror tracklisting:
(Tomb Dragomir’s Greeting)
1. The Creepshow – Rue Morgue Radio
2. Midnight Syndicate – Haunted Nursery
3. Cauldron – Into the Cauldron
4. The Independents – Black Dream
5. Ghoultown – Return of the Living Dead
6. The Ghastly Ones – Banshee Beach
7. Psycho Charger – Redneck Zombies (Tomb Dragomir Mix)
8. Harley Poe – It’s Only the End of the World
9. Those Poor Bastards – Nightmare World
10. Dead Man’s Bones – My Body’s a Zombie for You
11. Forbidden Dimension – Hand of Glory
12. Zombina and the Skeletones – Something Weird
13. Creature Feature – Grave Robber at Large
14. Damn Laser Vampires – Saint of Killers
15. Balzac – Hurt
16. The Handsome Family – The Lost Soul
17. The Unsettlers – Oil and Blood
(Tomb Dragomir Bids You Farewell)
And to whet your appetite’s, here is The Creepshow performing “Rue Morgue Radio” live at Toronto’s late and lamented Reverb club, filmed by The DLB himself: