Friday, 20 September 2019

FANGORIA X MONSTER FEST 2019 PROGRAM LAUNCH (full article at Screen Realm)

Friday 13th September saw the full Program Launch for Monster Fest 2019. Monster Fest is entering its eighth year and the second year back at Cinema Nova in Carlton.  It is also the second successive year the festival has been sponsored by beloved horror magazine Fangoria. The festival is similar in both scope and programming to London’s long running Fright Fest and this year they both share screenings of, amongst others, Bliss, Satanic Panic, Daniel Isn’t Real and the Rabid remake.

Normally spread over the course of one weekend, the first bit of news is that Monster Fest has expanded and the Melbourne program will be taking place over the course of a full week from Thursday 10 October until Friday 18th October. For horror fiends outside of Victoria, the festival also has selected screenings interstate over the weekend of 31 October to 3 November 2019 and hits up Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

Read the full article at Screen Realm:

Monster Fest 2019

Saturday, 14 September 2019

MIDSOMMAR (full review at Screen Realm)

Midsommar is the second film from director Ari Aster and the follow up to his highly regarded debut Hereditary. 

After experiencing a tragedy, Dani (Florence Pugh) is invited on a trip to Sweden by her insensitive and toxic boyfriend Christian (Jack Reynor). Christian and his friends Josh (Wiliam Jackson Harper) and Mark (Will Poulter) are anthropology students, invited by fellow student Pelle (Vilhelm Blomgren) to visit the commune in Hälsingland, where he grew up, and to witness a once-every-ninety-years summer festival.

It doesn’t take long for the visitors to warm up to the Hårga and their idyllic, welcoming, psychotropic drug friendly commune. But gradually, slowly, almost imperceptibly, things start to feel off. As the festival continues and events become stranger, the relationships between the visitors become more fraught and before long the situation goes awry.

Read the full review at Screen Realm:

IMDB: Midsommar

Monday, 19 August 2019


With Rutger Hauer’s recent passing, many reflected on a long and varied career that included memorable bad guys (The Hitcher, Nighthawks), heroic warriors (Ladyhawke) bizarre adverts (Guinness, Lurpak) and post-apocalyptic sports dudes (Salute of the Jugger a.k.a. The Blood Of Heroes). It goes without saying that his iconic role as replicant Roy Batty, in Ridley Scott’s tech-noir potboiler, Blade Runner (1982), is the one he’ll be best remembered for.

But another of Hauer’s films that is well worth revisiting, is an action comedy directed by Phillip Noyce (Rabbit Proof Fence, Patriot Games, Dead Calm), with mediocre critical scores and tucked away in the middle of his filmography. Loosely based around the classic Japanese swordplay serial character Zatoichi, but transposed to modern day U.S.A., Blind Fury’s (1989) gloriously simple plot sees Hauer’s blind swordsman, and that kid off Baywatch, facing off against some drug dealers. So while we’re not debating the quality of Blade Runner, forget all that ‘tears in the rain’ stuff for a moment, because what we really want to see is Rutger Hauer mistake an alligator for a pet dog, ‘accidentally’ thrash a barroom full of tough guys and slice some geezers up with a hidden sword.

Read the full article at Diabolique Magazine:

IMDB: Blind Fury

COME TO DADDY (full review at Screen Realm)

Come to Daddy is the debut feature from Ant Timpson, best known for founding New Zealand’s 48Hours film competition and producing Turbo Kid, The ABCs Of Death, and celebrated cinematic irritant The Greasy Strangler. It screened as part of the 2019 Melbourne International Film Festival.

Come to Daddy begins as a classic estranged father story. We meet Norval Greenwood (Elijah Wood) as he arrives on the doorstep of his father’s remote (and architecturally bold) clifftop pad. Norval is responding to a letter received from his father, suggesting a reconciliation, and pays a visit to the man he has not seen since he was three years old… to say they don’t hit it off is something of an understatement.

His father (Stephen McHattie) is annoyed, belligerent and frequently drunk. Norval is understandably uncomfortable and matters are compounded when he is caught in a lie, trying to impress his Dad. It doesn’t take long for events to come to a head

Read the full review at Screen Realm:
IMDB: Come To Daddy

Tuesday, 23 July 2019


While the 1980s might generally be considered the heyday of the action movie, or at least the decade with the biggest wealth of nostalgia attached to it, the 1990s was an equal, arguably better decade for high octane, high concept celluloid. Action classics were hitting us left, right and centre and these films were made all the better for their unspoken but collectively loose regard for believability...

...John Woo’s prolificacy from the mid-80s onwards made his name synonymous with slow motion action, double gun wielding protagonists and a lot of agitated, flappy birds. He delivered several outright classics in the form of A Better Tomorrow (1986), Bullet In The Head (1990) and The Killer (1989) before his undoubted masterpiece, and the subject of this particular love letter, Hard Boiled (1992).

Hard Boiled a.k.a God of Guns a.k.a. Ruthless Super-Cop, sees tough, play-by-his-own-rules cop, Inspector ‘Tequila’ Yuen (Chow Yun Fat) on the trail of underworld gun runners led by the evil Johnny Wong (Anthony Wong). Unbeknownst to Tequila, one of Johnny Wong’s lieutenants, Alan (Tony Chiu-Wai Leung), is an undercover cop who has infiltrated the gang to such a degree that he behaves exactly as a genuine gang member. Justifying homicide in the service of a greater good. Not only that, but Alan’s undercover operation is being run in total secrecy by Tequila’s own boss, Superintendent Pang (played by real life ex-policeman Philp Chan).

Read the full article at Diabolique Magazine:

IMDB: Hard Boiled

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

POINT BLANK (full review at Screen Realm)

Point Blank is a Netflix produced crime thriller from director Joe Lynch and a remake of the French thriller A Bout Portent, by Fred Cavayé.

The story sees emergency room nurse, Paul (Anthony Mackie) tending to unnamed man brought in to the hospital with injuries sustained from a car accident. It transpires that the man is Abe Guevara (Frank Grillo), who is wanted by police in connection to the assassination of a district attorney. While Abe is under police guard, Paul’s pregnant wife, Taryn (Teyonah Parris), is abducted by Abe’s brother, Mateo (Christian Cooke), who gives Paul an ultimatum. Free Abe from the hospital or his wife will be killed.

With no choice but to do as he is asked, Paul takes Abe on the run, with two seasoned cops, Lewis (Marcia Gay Harden - The Mist, Miller’s Crossing) and Masterson (Boris McGiver – House Of Cards) in their tail. The story leads us down a winding path of corruption and duplicity.

Read the full review at Screen Realm:

IMDB: Point Blank

Monday, 15 July 2019

BUBBA HO-TEP (Issue #55 of Scream Horror Magazine

Okay so here’s some cool news. I’ve written a piece on one of my all time favourite movies, Don Coscarelli's BUBBA HO-TEP,  for Scream Magazine. It’s also the first time my writing has appeared in print so that’s pretty exciting. The magazine is July / August issue #55, and is available in the UK in places like WH Smiths. For the Rest of the World you can get it on the internets or try your trusty comic shop.