LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS Wes Craven - The Nightmare Man
By James W, Thursday 4th January 2018
"Horror films don't create fear. They release it."
Wesley Earl Craven, Wes to his friends, was born in Cleveland, Ohio August 2nd 1939 and became one of the most respected and acclaimed creatives of his generation. When he died on August 30th 2015 it came as a huge shock to all, especially those of us who heard the news whilst attending FrightFest. Gone was the man who gave the world Krug Stillo, Pluto and Horace Pinker as well as the career defining creation of Freddy Krueger. He made stars of Michael Berryman, Johnny Depp and Robert Englund and rejuvenated the horror genre not once but twice.
Horror will be celebrating the work of Wes Craven throughout January so here's a quick look at his cinematic life and his most famous pieces of work.
Craven started out as a teacher but soon moved into film editing where he honed his craft but didn't make an impression until he unleashed the censor worrying shocker The Last House On The Left in 1972. This brutal and uncompromising revenge flick woke up the horror movement and helped pave the way for other such genre defining movies such as The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.
It was in 1977 when the world sat up and took Craven seriously when The Hills Have Eyes hit cinemas. Not as brutal a LHOTL but still with a grindhouse vibe to it, this "cannibals on the rise" movie was one of the first big hits of the home video era which helped The Hills Have Eyes Part 2 to arrive in 1985. Infamous for its "dog daydream sequence" it wasn't Craven's finest moment but this is usually overlooked for in 1984 he delivered a true classic, A Nightmare On Elm Street.
This story of a child killer who returns from the dead to kill teens in their dreams was such a commercial hit that it lead to five direct sequels, the meta-movie Wes Craven's New Nightmare in 1994 and Freddy Vs Jason in 2003. With Robert Englund in the lead role the franchise made the slasher movie "fun" again and a once more a box-office favourite. Even on TV the character had his own anthology series, Freddy's Nightmares in 1988.
Craven's The Serpent And The Rainbow in 1988 was one of his most critically acclaimed movies. This tale of voodoo (supposedly based on true accounts) retained his grisly eye for detail but was also done completely straight and became one of his first movies not to worry the censor. Shocker in 1989 and The People Under The Stairs in 1991 showed Craven having fun with his audience, delivering big shocks but laced with acidic wit and social commntary.
Then in 1996 he changed the face of horror once more with a film that sparked resurgence in the slasher genre which paved the way for Michael Myers to return to the big screen a few years later, Scream. Released in 1996 Scream has everything, a superior cast, a tight script and tons of violence it proved that horror could be smart, intelligent and above all bloody good fun.
Craven was more than just a horror director, he was a writer, a producer, an actor, a man who loved the art of cinema. He could make big budget movies, small budget movies, movies with real heart and passion, movies that were made to entertain, to provoke a reaction and above all made with love. We may never see another "Wes Craven" but his influence on those who were inspired by him will live on for decades.
Throughout January, Saturday nights at 9pm on Horror will be devoted to a Wes Craven Season as Horror Channel presents a retrospective of the late great genre director's career. Four of his supernatural shockers and scream-filled slashers will be broadcast; including the network premieres of serial killer chiller My Soul To Take, his macabre masterpiece The Serpent And The Rainbow, his diabolically electrifying Shocker and the goofy, gory satire The People Under The Stairs.
Related show tags: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, JOHNNY DEPP, MICHAEL BERRYMAN, MY SOUL TO TAKE, ROBERT ENGLUND, SHOCKER, THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS, THE SERPENT AND THE RAINBOW, WES CRAVEN MORE FEATURES Celebrate Stephen King's 71st birthday with Horror
Posted on Friday 14th September 2018
He's sold well over 350 million of books, has just as many fans across the globe and celebrates his 71st birthday on September 21st, Stephen King is without doubt the most famous genre author in the world today.
From his first novel, Carrie in 1974, King has scared, inspired, and entertained countless people. His descriptive and raw prose has given us some of the most chilling and memorable characters including Pennywise, Johnny Smith and a dog named Cujo.
On the night of his birthday, Horror is celebrating in style with the first episode of the acclaimed series Under The Dome and a quartet of big screen versions of some of his finest books.
Here's all you need to know:
Under the Dome (8...SHARE: READ MORE Horror has everything this Autumn because We Are Horror!
Posted on Wednesday 29th August 2018
Horror Channel kicks off the Autumn season with eight chilling prime time weekend film premieres including the UK TV premiere of Adam Green's slasher favourite that gave the world Victor Crowley,Hatchet (14th Sep), starring horror icons Kane Hodder, Robert Englund and Tony Todd.
There are also TV firsts for Kieran Parker's Outpost III: Rise Of The Spetsnaz (15th Sep), the third installment of the hit Nazi zombie action horror franchise, Steven Sheil's graphic underground thriller Dead Mine (22nd Sep) set in Indonesia and Will Canon's haunted house horror Demonic (29th Sep).
September also sees network premieres for the gory and hilarious 100 Bloody Acres (8th Sep), the erotic, murderous triple-hander...SHARE: READ MORE 10 FrightFest flicks for 2018
Posted on Thursday 16th August 2018
Stewart Bridle, Channel Manager for Horror Channel, selects the FrightFest films to catch at this year's event.
It's that time again when the most torturous experience isn't being slowly sliced in half by a deranged chainsaw-wielding maniac but actually deciding what to watch from the massive line-up of over 70 films at this year's FrightFest London on the August Bank holiday weekend. Unless you've found some mad scientist to clone you several times you'll never catch everything so here are ten devious delights I recommend this year.
SUMMER OF 84 The RKSS collective return to FrightFest after wowing audiences back in 2015 with the terrific...SHARE: READ MORE 5 Reasons To See Unfriended: Dark Web This Weekend
Posted on Friday 10th August 2018
Today marks the UK release of Unfriended: Dark Web. The latest nightmare offering an unnerving and unflinching look into what lies beyond the everyday realms of the internet.
When Matias (Colin Woodell) stumbles across a new laptop which runs a lot better than his current hunk o' junk, he connects with his friends online for their usual game night. He soon finds out that the computer he's picked up has a connection to the Dark Web, a horrific, and unmonitored part of the internet. Matias shares his findings, and his screen, with his friends during the game night, and finds himself the target of the laptop's original owner... who will ...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel unleashes monstrous FrightFest Season
Posted on Monday 6th August 2018
To celebrate FrightFest 2018, taking place in London during the August Bank Holiday, Horror Channel is dedicating thirteen nights to past festival hits.
Amongst the twenty-six fear-filled favourites, the channel will air four UK TV premieres: Simeon Halligan's 'terror-torial' home invasion shocker White Settlers; Jeff Maher's crowd-pleasingly ghoulish orgy of sex and gore Bed Of The Dead; Chad Archibald's breath-choking supernatural thriller The Drownsman; and the hauntingly sinister Nightworld, directed by Patricio Valladares and starring horror icon Robert Englund.
Plus, we're broadcasting three network premieres; Alberto Marini's sly and witty scaremonger Summer Camp; Bernard Rose's Frankenstein, a s...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel gets beastly in July with Animal Attack Season
Posted on Tuesday 19th June 2018
Nature gets nasty on Horror Channel in July with Animal Attack Season, a beastly collection of movies which will claw their way into your nightmares each Saturday at 9pm.
The season starts on the 7th with the big screen version of a Stephen king classic, Cujo. When sweet St. Bernard dog Cujo is bitten by a bat, he morphs into a dangerous beast and goes on a rampage in a small town. Stay-at-home mom Donna (Dee Wallace) gets caught in Cujo's crosshairs on a fateful errand with her son, Tad (Danny Pintauro). Stuck in their car, Donna and Tad have a frightening showdown with the crazed animal. Then the following week a movie that has real bite, Burning Bright. Johnny Gavenau's latest get-quick-rich scheme is to turn his Florida...SHARE: READ MORE Happy 50th birthday Rosemary's Baby
Posted on Tuesday 12th June 2018
Kids! What are they like? Some can be cute, others can be little devils... literally!
Today is the 50th anniversary of the classic shocker Rosemary's Baby so here we take a look at five of the finest devil child movies. Do you agree with our list and which ones would you refuse to babysit?! Note we have not included the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie Junior as that's horrific in other ways (!)
5: Devil's Due (2014) A recently married couple on honeymoon experience a bizarre warning, a long journey, come across some strange symbols, then are drugged, left in a room and a couple of weeks later the wife discovers she's pregnant! Her pregnancy is a time of torture for her and convinced she's being watched. Could...SHARE: READ MORE 13 reasons why John Carpenter is The Horror Master
Posted on Thursday 31st May 2018
On the eve of Horror Channel's John Carpenter Season (stars June 2nd), we present to you 13 reasons why he truly is the Master of Horror. Agree or disagree let us know via out social media channels.
1: Made the slasher movie cool again with Halloween (1978)
2: His use of a Steadicam put us in the heart of the terror on screen.
3: Gave the world the finest horror movie theme, ever (Halloween, 1978)
4: Turned Kurt Russell an action hero.
5: Way ahead of his time with They Live (1988), Carpenter delivered a movie that woke up the world to the evils of subliminal consumerism and stimuli via a cool sci-fi movie.
6: They Live also has a fight scene that lasts over 6 minutes and co...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel to celebrate the films of John Carpenter in June
Posted on Wednesday 23rd May 2018
From horrific hauntings and supernatural sorcery to alien invasions and blood-sucking battles, Saturday nights on Horror Channel at 9pm in June will be devoted to John Carpenter, one of the true Masters of Horror.
The celebratory season is highlighted by the network premieres of Carpenter's classic car-rage chiller Christine, with the superb Harry Dean Stanton, and John Carpenter's Vampires, a horror Western starring James Woods, as a vengeful, stake-wielding bloodsucker hunter. It also includes iconic favourite The Fog, the high-kicking fantasy thriller Big Trouble in Little China and his timely sci-fi political thriller They Live.
The Fog on the 2nd is set in a Northern California fishing town, built 100 years ago over ...SHARE: READ MORE 13 reasons why you need to watch The Evil Dead
Posted on Sunday 20th May 2018
Sam Raimi's horror masterpiece, The Evil Dead is rightly regarded as a true horror classic.
So, it's weird to think then that there are still some viewers have yet to enjoy this ultimate experience in gruelling Horror.
Here's 13 reasons why you need to see The Evil Dead when it's shown on Horror Saturday May 26th.
1: The film spawned a cult hero in star Bruce Campbell and gave the world Ash Williams. 2: The BBFC deemed it to be placed on the Video Nasties list in 1983 even in cut form and not released uncut until 2001. 3: Stephen King liked it saying in 1972 that it was "The most ferociously original horror film". 4: The cover art for the VHS was the first...SHARE: READ MORE Exclusive: Director Johannes Roberts talks 'The Strangers: Prey at Night'
Posted on Tuesday 1st May 2018
This weekend sees the release of a long-awaited sequel to one of 2008's most beloved slasher films. Yes, nine whole years after The Strangers premiered, UK cinema-goers will be met once again by Dollface, the Man in Mask and Pin-Up Girl in The Strangers: Prey at Night.
Starring Mad Men's Christina Hendricks, Bailee Madison, Martin Henderson, and Lewis Pullman, son of the late Bill, the film sees a family of four being stalked and tormented shortly after arriving on what was supposed to be a quiet family trip to a remote mobile home. The family must decide whether to take on the dreaded strangers hell-bent on wreaking havoc, or to run for their lives.
We had a chat with the film's direct...SHARE: READ MORE Acclaimed sci-fi thriller Radius amongst four UK TV premieres on Horror Channel in May
Posted on Tuesday 17th April 2018
The gates of Hell are well and truly opened on Horror Channel in May, as the UK's most popular TV destination for genre fans plays host to chilling Chinese legends, sinister sorcery, deadly zombies and a rampaging Arnold Schwarzenegger.
There are four prime-time UK TV premieres this month, headed by Caroline Labreche and Steeve Leonard's unusual and compelling sci-fi thriller Radius on the 25th.
Premiered at FrightFest in 2017, it weaves an ingenious plot from the moment Liam (Diego Klattenhoff) wakes from a car crash with no memory of who he is. As he makes his way into town to look for help, he finds only dead bodies, all with strange pale eyes. Liam's first assessment is that a virus is present in...SHARE: READ MORE Features Archive: 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 PICK OF THE WEEK
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