Here’s some of my trailer reactions to the titles we didn’t get around to see, and some who just flew completely under our radar. Further reviews (for those of them that we’ll check out later) will be uploaded on horrorghouls.com

 

The Dead don’t die

Kylo Ren and Peter Venkman are two police officers who must fight against zombies in a sleepy American town. Doesn’t seem to have much of a plot.. but when an indie filmmaker like Jim Jarmusch, who’s primarily given us poetic dramas and underground art-house films, suddenly makes a mainstream genre film like this, well, it must be at least something unconventional. I don’t know what to expect, really..

 

Ready or Not

When you’re about to get married into a filthy rich elite-family where the mother-in-law gives you the death stare, and looks like the devil incarnate straight from The Illuminati, it’s probably not a bad idea to just run far, far away. I get some exploitation vibes here, especially by looking at the poster, and that’s a good thing.

 

Dr. Sleep

Here’s Dr. Sleeeeep… I’ve seen this trailer several times in the movie theater, and it just didn’t manage to hype me very much. When the archive footage from the Stanley Kubrick version looks so much more scary than Dr. Sleep itself, with the trailer ending with the classic bone-shilling synth track and all, that’s not a good sign. But Mike Flanagan is a talented filmmaker, and I really enjoyed his first season of “The Haunting of Hill House”,  so I’m prepared to be surprised.

 

COuNTDOWN

Ooooh, you better watch out for that spoOOoky app… I just despise smartphones, hoarded with all these fucking, useless apps and all the irritating sounds they make. App this, app that, app in your apphole. So it’s no surprise that I can’t relate much to a cursed app that kills some dumb, degenerated  teenagers. I doesn’t sound a bit scary, either. But I could be wrong. And for all I know, it could be an unintentionally fun film..

 

De Dødes Tjern (Lake of Death)

Haha, dear Lord, this just looks hilariously bad. Norwegian horror films has been a dead horse for many years now, and it doesn’t seem to get any better with this one. In this case it looks so funny-bad that Vanja and I was actually eager to see it for just the shits and giggles. Just look at that fake jump-scare at the end of the trailer. James wan should takes some notes. But since the film flopped so hard that it was pulled from the screen just under a week, we’ll have to wait for the DVD or streaming.

 

The Nightingale

«The Babadook» was a mixed bag for my part, but it clearly showed that the newcomer Jennifer Kent knew how to create melancholy atmosphere and give an insight into mental illness and severe depression in an rather unique way. And her second film, “The Nightingale” doesn’t look any more cheerful, to say at least. Some overwhelmingly positive things have been said about this movie, so yeah, I’m a bit curious.

 

Black Christmas

Uhm… No thanks!

Happy, scary new year! We, The Horror Ghouls, saw 13 horror films at the big screen in 2019, and here’s a quick summary with links to the reviews. And as you have probably figured out, Vanja has so far been the one who covers the theatrical releases.

 

The theatrical screenings:

US
The Wilson family owns a vacation house near the beach in Santa Cruz. Adelaide, the wife in the family, had an experience at that beach when she was a little girl and has no desire at all to revisit the place. Her husband convinces her to go there, however, together with the Tyler family to …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/us-2019/

 

Pet Sematary
Dr. Louis Creed and his family have decided to move away from Boston and settle down in rural Maine in order to live a more quiet life, and give Louis more time with his family: Rachel, his wife, Ellie, his daughter, and Gage, his young son. Their new home seem to be peaceful and nice…except …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/pet-sematary-2019/

 

The Curse of La Llorona
We’re in the 1970’s Los Angeles. Anna, a social worker who’s now alone with her two children after her husband’s death, is at the risk of having some of her cases handed over to her co-worker, one of them being the case of Patricia Alvarez and her two boys. She demands to get the rights …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/the-curse-of-la-llorona-2019/

 

Brightburn
Tori and Kyle are struggling to have a child, when one night something from outer space crashes nearby their farm. Just like a blessing from above, it’s some sort of space craft that includes a little baby boy, and the couple are happy to take care of him and raise him as their own (hmm…have …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/brightburn-2019/

 

Ma    
Sue Ann is a lonely middle-aged woman who befriends a group of teenagers when they beg her to buy some booze for them. She eventually lets them have their parties in the basement of her own house, and the teenagers all think they’ve gotten really lucky. One of the teenagers jokingly nickname her “Ma”…

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/ma-2019/

 

Annbelle Comes Home
In this third “Annabelle” horror movie, we follow the doll to its final destination: the Warren’s occult museum, which houses all kinds of cursed and possessed items. After the Warrens bring the doll back home with them, they quickly realize that the doll has the ability to possess and control the other things around her, …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/annabelle-comes-home-2019/

 

Crawl
Haley is a young woman who is struggling to become a champion swimmer, and her competitive nature keeps her always trying to reach her best potential. When her sister calls and informs her that their father won’t answer his phone, she decides to drive to his house and check for him. The problem is that …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/crawl-2019/

 

Child’s Play
Kaslan Products have invented a brand new toy: Buddi, the interactive doll that is the most high-tech product available that can also connect to all other Kaslan products and smart home devices. These dolls are produced at a factory in Vietnam, under terrible working conditions. The movie starts off showing us one of the depressed …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/childs-play-2019/

 

Midsommar
Dani and Christian, a young American couple, are at the brink of breaking up. Christian has already started planning a trip abroad with his friends and is more or less starting to walk out the door on the relationship, but after Dani experiences a horrible family tragedy where she loses her parents and sister in …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/midsommar-2019/

 

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
It’s 1968, and we’re in a small town called Mill Valley where a group of teens are dressing up and getting ready for Halloween. This trio consists of Stella, an aspiring horror writer, a nervous nerd named Auggie, and the prankster Chuck. It’s their final year of trick-or-treating on Halloween together, and they’ve planned to …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/scary-stories-to-tell-in-the-dark-2019/

 

It: Chapter Two
It’s now been 27 years since “The Losers Club” had their first and terrifying encounter with the child-eating entity Pennywise. They have all moved on with their lives, and away from Derry and its awful memories. With the exception of Mike, the only one of them who stayed behind. When Mike starts noticing the tell-tale …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/it-chapter-two-2019/

 

In The Tall Grass 
A sister (Becky) and brother (Cal) is driving close by a vast field area of tall grass in the middle of Kansas. She is pregnant, and they stop by a deserted church because she’s gotten a bit carsick. There, they hear a young boy’s cry for help from the tall grass, claiming he’s lost and …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/in-the-tall-grass-2019/

 

Koko-di-koko-da
A couple (Elin and Tobias) is on a vacation with their young daughter (Maja), when a serious case of food-poisoning causes the mother to become very ill. She is rushed to the hospital, and the whole family is spending the night in the hospital room, awaiting the mother’s recovery. When the next day arrives, which …

http://horrorghouls.com/reviews/koko-di-koko-da-2019/

 

 

DVD’s and streaming:

 

The Guardian (1990)

TERRIFIED (2017)

LOCH NESS TERROR (2008)

THE WAILING (2016)

The POUGHKEEPSIE TAPES (2007)

GHOSTWATCH (1992)

HELL FEST (2018)

HOUSEBOUND (2014)

SUSPIRIA (2018)

VIOLENT SHIT (1989)

STILL/BORN (2017)

MR. JONES (2013)

DEATHGASM (2015)

THE POSSESSION OF HANNAH GRACE (2018)

HELL HOUSE LLC (2015)

THE MIMIC (2017)

THE DEVIL AND FATHER AMORTH (2017)

THE BURNING (1981)

THE CRUCIFIXION (2017)

NUDE FOR SATAN (1974)

FRIEND REQUEST (2016)

THE BURNING MOON (1992)

TERRIFIER (2016)

WISH UPON (2017)

MY BLOODY VALENTINE (2009)

Haunted Hospital: Heilstätten (2018)

QUEEN CRAB (2015)

THE MANGLER (1995)

IT (2017)

HIGHWAY TO HELL (1991)

NAILS (2017)

JACK THE RIPPER (1976)

LORDS OF CHAOS (2018)

LAKE MUNGO (2008)

THE RUSSIAN BRIDE (2019)

 

 

I will also soon add a post about movies we missed out, that we eventually will see on DVD / streaming.

Horror Ghouls

Vanja and I just started a new horror movie website: “Horror Ghouls” ! Here we will post horror movie reviews, and horror shorts…and we also have our mascot, Mr. Ghööl, give “badges” to the movies.

My love for horror movies hasn’t faded over the years, and two years in a row I’ve had “Monsters of October” here on my blog. This has always been limited to October, however…and I’ve missed writing about horror movies on a more frequent scale. I used to run a norwegian horror movie website called Skrekkmania, but that’s been offline for years now. So when Vanja introduced me to the idea of a new horror movie website (after we got our recent batch of new horror movie dvd’s) I was thrilled! And thus, “Horror Ghouls” became a reality.

The website is now filled with the old “Monsters of October” reviews, but also some posts about horror shorts and a brand new review. It will be updated frequently, so check it out:

http://www.horrorghouls.com

The Haunted

Before The Conjuring, Annabelle and The Nun there was an obscure movie made for TV called “The Haunted”.

In the 1970’s, Jack and Janet Smurl moves to a big house in West Pittston, Pennsylvania, together with Jack’s parents who resides in one part of the house. Janet, being a housewife and spending most of the time alone in the house, starts experiencing strange things like unexplained noises and a dark shape showing up while she’s cleaning the house. As things escalate, they contact a pair of priests who, instead of helping them, advice them to seek family counseling. In desperation Janet seeks out the well-known paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, and the war against the paranormal has started.

“The Haunted” can in many ways be seen as the first “Conjuring” movie, and is based on what the Smurl-family experienced in the period between 1979-89. However, this TV-movie is pretty obscure and doesn’t even have any official dvd release. Which is quite sad, as this is a pretty good haunted house horror movie.

My first meeting with this movie was in the early 1990’s when it was shown on “TV3” under the norwegian title “Hjemsøkt av djevelen” (which means “Haunted by the devil”). At that time (and age) it was the scariest movie I had seen and it caused a couple of sleepless nights afterwards. There are several scenes in the movie that are quite effective because they play the good game of “less is more”. There is, however, an incredibly cheesy scene where Jack Smurl is attacked and sexually assaulted by a demon in the living room, with pink lighting effects and a smoke machine. Aside from that, the movie does have a serious tone and is suspenseful and creepy, and it would be nice to see it released on dvd someday. Or, at the very least, on streaming (like Netflix, Prime, and so on). As of now, the only options you have are bootlegs or YouTube.

The Haunted

The film is also based on the biography “The Haunted: One Family’s Nightmare” by Robert Curran, which I recommend if you’re interested in the life of Ed and Lorraine Warren, or if you simply enjoy a great ghost story.

IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0102007/

The House Next Door

The young couple Krish and Lakshmi live in an idyllic little neighborhood in a quiet village. They are invited to a welcome party in the neighboring house, the house next door (yes, literally), which is an old house previously owned by a Chinese family. The party turns into a dramatic event when the new family’s young daughter goes outside and, like in a trance, falls into the giant well in the garden. Krish, who is also a doctor, jumps down and saves her, but after this event the girl is not quite the same in the days after. The word “possessed” is not far away, and she is sent to a psychologist who is blaming her for her interest in heavy metal music (as if we were back in the 80s), reading horror litterature and watching horror movies. He is determined that she is easily influenced by horror, and mixed together with the recent move, he believes that therein lies all her problems. Still, her problems grow worse and in the end the family see no other option than calling for a priest and have a good old-fashioned exorcism.

Bollywood is a whole new territory for me, and I wasn’t really sure what I would expect from this two-hour long ghost / possession movie, except a musical number every 10 minutes. Bollywood is known to love adding some music tracks, but in this movie we only get a small cheer- and colorful montage of the young couple, with a pop song that shows us the story of how he and she met, married etc. For a person like me who is not used to this kind of thing in horror movies, I immediately felt that it set a strange contrast in a movie that also captures inspirations from The Conjuring and The Exorcism of Emily Rose, overflowing with a ton of other horror and pop culture references where even a certain Dean Winchester would had lost the overview. Also, Krish works as a surgeon at a hospital called Silent Hill Hospital… yes, seriously. Silent Hill Hospital. Maybe all this was done in order to appeal as much as possible to an international audience, especially in the United States, but this is just overkill. Nor can I avoid mentioning that the psychologist is similar to Roger Ebert, which must be a crazy coincidence.

With its two hours running time, The House Next Door never gets scary, and the frequent broken English mixed into their sentences (Hinglish) makes several moments just involuntarily comical (at least for people like me who isn’t used to this sort of thing). Nevertheless, the film has its strong elements, like beautiful cinematography with a lot of atmosphere, and with its fast pacing and colorful characters, I certainly had a fun time watching it. So if you’ve never seen a Bollywood horrorfilm before, then I can assure you that this will be a compelety new, fresh, unique and somewhat bizarre experience.

IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt7471004/

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