LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS 10 of the best from 2019!
By James Whittington, Sunday 22nd December 2019
The last 12 months has been a prime year for the horror genre fan with titles that stretched well-trodden ideas mixed with some truly original pieces.
We've had sequels, remakes, and more than our fair share of true oddities and for once the good outweighed the bad.
Here in no particular order are ten of the best the year had to offer either at festivals, in cinema or home entertainment.
The Man Who Killed Hitler and then The Bigfoot Sam Elliott and Aidan Turner are The Man Who Killed Hitler and then The Bigfoot the critically acclaimed, genre-bending, breath-taking adventure that sees a legendary American war hero as a young man and in his twilight years, taking on two very different adversaries. Decades after serving in WWII and assassinating Adolf Hitler, Calvin Barr (Elliott/Turner) is enlisted as the only man for the job: to hunt down the fabled Bigfoot. Living a peaceful life in New England reflecting on his lost love Maxine (Caitlin FitzGerald), the war veteran is contacted by the FBI and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to lead the charge to capture the elusive beast that is carrying a deadly plague.
Us Academy Award-winning Jordan Peele returned with another original nightmare which he wrote, directed and produced. The lady of the moment Lupita Nyong'o is Adelaide Wilson, a woman returning to her beachside childhood home with her husband, Gabe (Winston Duke), and their two children for an idyllic summer getaway. Haunted by an unexplainable and unresolved trauma from her past and compounded by a string of eerie coincidences, Adelaide feels her paranoia elevate to high-alert as she grows increasingly certain that something bad is going to befall her family. After spending a tense beach day with their friends, the Tylers, Adelaide and her family return to their vacation home. When darkness falls, the Wilsons discover the silhouette of four figures holding hands as they stand in the driveway. Us pits an endearing American family against a terrifying and uncanny opponent: doppelgangers of themselves.
Little Monsters Lupita Nyong'o, fresh from the success of Jordan Peele's Us, returned to the screen in a brilliantly inventive and fantastically entertaining horror comedy, Little Monsters. Also starring Josh Gad and Alexander England, Little Monsters is an hilarious piece that perfectly combines genres whilst adding some music added to the mix! Little Monsters follows Dave (England), as washed-up musician who volunteers to chaperone his nephew's kindergarten class field trip after taking a serious liking to the fearless schoolteacher, Miss Caroline (Nyong'o). Dave's intentions are complicated by the presence of the world's most famous kids' show personality and competition for Miss Caroline's affections, Teddy McGiggle (Gad).
Possum Possum is the disturbing debut feature film from writer/director Matthew Holness which stars Sean Harris and Alun Armstrong. The film pays homage to the British horror films of the 70s and contains so many alarming moments that it should come with a health warning! The film's unique and stylish exploration of a man's isolation and abandonment is accompanied by a compelling soundtrack from the legendary electronic BBC music studio The Radiophonic Workshop. The story follows disgraced children's puppeteer Philip (Harris), returning to his childhood home of Fallmarsh, Norfolk, intent on destroying Possum, a hideous puppet he keeps hidden inside a brown leather bag. When his attempts fail, Philip is forced to confront his sinister stepfather Maurice (Armstrong) in an effort to escape the dark horrors of his past.
A Good Woman is Hard to Find Directed by Abner (Road Games) Pastoll and stars Sarah Bolger, Edward Hogg, Andrew Simpson and Jane Brennan the superb thriller A Good Woman is Hard to Find was written by Academy Award nominee and BAFTA winner Ronan Blaney. The movie closed FrightFest 2019 to much acclaim being a crowd-pleasing and violent kitchen-sink revenge thriller which is a dark and daring journey through Northern Ireland's criminal underbelly. Recently widowed mother of two Sarah (a tour-de-force Sarah Bolger) is desperate to know who murdered her husband in front of their young son, rendering him mute. Coerced into helping a low-life drug-dealer, she's forced to go beyond her humanity to protect her children and learn the truth.
One Cut of the Dead One of the finest movies that I've ever seen at FrightFest, One Cut of the Dead (Kamera o tomeru na!) is a film which takes the "meta movie" idea and pushes it right up to 11. With a budget said to have been around $27,000 it has raked in far more across the globe and taken its rightful place in countless "greatest film" lists from the last 12 months. For once the hype is real! The movie opens in a run-down, abandoned warehouse where a film crew are making a zombie film... Yet, this is no ordinary warehouse. It's been said that it's the site of where military experiments took place... Out of nowhere, real zombies arrive and terrorize the crew! Then we cut and travel back in time by a month and discover how this "happening" happened...
Harpoon Rob Grant is a firm favourite here at Horror Channel and his latest piece, Harpoon went down a storm at FrightFest and Grimmfest. Set on a yacht, it's a nail-biting, tension-ripping thriller that hits all the right marks. Jonah (Munro Chambers), Richard (Christopher Gray) and Sasha (Emily Tyra) have been friends a long time... maybe too long. Following a ferocious bust-up, Richard tries to make amends in the form of a sailing trip on his family yacht. After all, a friendship is the kind of ship that never sinks - until the yacht breaks down and the trio are left stranded in the middle of the ocean. As food and water supplies start to sink and rivalries, dark secrets and sexual tension start to surface, the question becomes: which of these three broken humans will run out of air first?
I'll Take Your Dead Chad Archibald has been behind a number of Horror Channel favourites in the past including Bite and The Drownsman. His latest movie, I'll Take Your Dead is a tense psychological/paranormal chiller which is as original as it is atmospheric. With superb performances this dark story is made even darker by solid direction from Archibald. William makes dead bodies disappear. This isn't something he likes or even wants to do, but through circumstances out of his control, his house in the country has become a dumping ground for casualties of gang related murders city. His daughter has become used to rough looking men dropping off corpses and is even convinced that some of them are haunting their house. After a woman's body, is dumped at the house, William begins his meticulous process when he realizes, she's not actually dead. As the gang activity increases, William patches the woman up and holds her against her will until he can figure out what to do with her. As they begin to develop a very unusual respect for each other, the woman's murderers get word that she's still alive and make plan to go finish what they started.
Knives and Skin One of the standout movies at FrightFest 2019 was Knives and Skin from Jennifer Reeder. Emotional, raw, funny, sincere and above all very original, it's a film that defies catagorisation and signals the arrival of one of the brightest creative talents around. In rural Illinois, a drum majorette's disappearance traumatises the small-town residents as secrets are revealed, destroying some relationships and strengthening others. Three girls form a bond in the aftermath of the tragedy as everyone struggles with their own infidelities, dreams and family cruelties while the manhunt continues.
Rabid The Soska Sisters took a film from their homeland hero David Cronenberg and gave it a very cool 21st century twist proving that these creatives have the balls to take on anyone. After aspiring fashion designer Rose (Laura Vandervoort) suffers a disfiguring traffic accident she undergoes a radical and untested stem-cell treatment. The experimental transformation is a miraculous success, transforming her into a ravishing beauty. But she soon develops an uncontrollable sexual appetite, resulting in several torrid encounters, which sees her lovers become rabid carriers of death and disease. As the illness mutates and the contagion spreads out of control, all hell breaks loose as the infected rampage through the city on a violent and gruesome killing spree.
MORE FEATURES Horror Channel bares its teeth in March with Vampire Week
Posted on Tuesday 16th February 2021
Time to get the garlic out as Horror Channel presents Vampire Week, a bitefest of vampire movies from 13 - 19 of March, led by the channel premiere of 30 Days Of Night, David Slade's savage riff on the vampire myth, starring Josh Hartnet and Melissa George.
There are also classics and cult favourites to sink your teeth in to, including Matt Reeves' critically-acclaimed vampire fantasy Let Me In, and Tom Holland's voracious teen vampire hit Fright Night, John Carpenter's Vampires, a horror Western starring James Woods, as a vengeful, stake-wielding bloodsucker hunter, and Francis Ford Cappolas powerful Bram Stoker's Dracula, starring Gary Oldman as the im...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel February premieres feature zombie action, bloodsucking comedy and Jet-Li heroics
Posted on Tuesday 19th January 2021
Horror Channel has three thrilling primetime Saturday night channel premieres in February including the UK TV premiere of Chee Keong Cheung's REDCON-1, a British zombie action epic, starring Mark Strange as a Special Forces operative battling a virus outbreak, Plus, there are Channel premieres for Eat Locals in which actor Jason Flemying makes his directorial debut with a bloodsucking comedy chiller featuring Mackenzie Crook, Dexter Fletcher and Annette Crosbie, and The One, James Wong's flashy superhero martial arts drama, starring Jet Li and Jason Stratham.
Other highlights for February include the John Carpenter remake of Village Of The Da...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel ushers in New Year with monstrous Saturday night premieres
Posted on Tuesday 15th December 2020
Horror Channel gets the New Year off to a horrifying start with three thrilling primetime Saturday night channel premieres, including John Schlesinger's gripping psychological thriller Pacific Heights, starring Melanie Griffith, Matthew Modine and Michael Keaton. Plus, there's Clive Barker's dark monster fantasy Nightbreed, starring David Cronenberg, and Anthony DiBlasi's claustrophobic, intensely creepy Last Shift.
Other highlights for January include Bernard Rose's Frankenstein, a stylishly smart update of the classic myth, starring Xavier Samuel, Danny Huston, Carrie-Anne Moss and Tony Todd, Scott Stewart's compulsive alien home-invasion thriller Dark Skies, Serenity, the big screen continuation o...SHARE: READ MORE More Horror hits My5 in December
Posted on Wednesday 9th December 2020
If you've got access to My5 you catch up with some Horror Channel prime cuts right now!SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel unwraps its slate of seasonal shockers
Posted on Tuesday 17th November 2020
Xmas hauntings, festive nightmares, sadistic serial killers and warrior priests...Be prepared for seasonal shocks a-plenty on Horror Channel this December, with a selection of prime-time movies including an Xmas Day screening of Frank Khalfoun's boundary-pushing Christmas crime slasher P2, starring Wes Bentley and the George Clooney/Steven Soderbergh produced Wind Chill, in which Emily Blunt spends Christmas Eve fighting off a horde of menacing apparitions.
Also unwrapped are John Carpenter's classic car-rage chiller Christine, vampire action thriller Priest, starring Paul Bettany, the high velocity sci-fi drama Skyline and the supernatural twister Sinister, starring...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel is now on Freeview channel 68
Posted on Tuesday 27th October 2020
Horror Channel has moved to Freeview Channel 68 so you may need to re-tune to ensure you don't miss out on our super scary Halloween line-up plus much more.
Any issues with retuning check the Freeview website.SHARE: READ MORE Devils, demons and the Occult...Horror Channel gets possessed in November
Posted on Thursday 15th October 2020
Saturday nights in November belong to the vice-like grip of Possessed Season on Horror Channel, with Channel premieres for Exorcist: The Beginning, the prequel to The Exorcist, starring Stellan Skarsgard as Father Merrin, the demon-beleaguered priest, and The Exorcist III, written and directed by William Peter Blatty. There is also a UK TV premiere for Chad Archibald's chilling occult fantasy The Heretics, and Scott Derrickson's supernatural chiller Deliver Us From Evil completes the devilish line-up.
Here's the full line-up:
The season begins on the 7th with Exorcist: The Beginning. Having abandoned his faith, Father Merrin joins an archaeological excavation in Kenya, where ...SHARE: READ MORE Grindhouse style revenge and spaced-out aliens. Day 5 of Grimmfest
Posted on Sunday 11th October 2020
The final day of Grimmfest 2020 holds five movies which will truly satisfy the horror needs of every genre fan out there.
Death Ranch from prolific film maker Charlie Steeds takes us right back to the days of Blaxploitation movies and ups the violence and gore to its limit. 1970s USA, Three African American siblings on the run from the police take refuge at an abandoned Tennessee Ranch, unaware their hideout is on the hunting grounds of a cannibalistic Ku Klux Klan cult...Trapped and tortured, the three must fight tooth and nail to escape alive and take down the bloodthirsty Klan. Incredibly strong and incredibly violent the film doesn't stray from its...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel's Stewart Bridle chats to the legendary director Mick Garris
Posted on Saturday 10th October 2020
Today at Grimmfest, Mick Garris, who has been awarded the Horror Channel Grimmfest Lifetime Achievement Award will be taking part in a live Q&A. Earlier in the week he chatted to Horror's Channel Manager Stewart Bridle about his career.SHARE: READ MORE Robot or not? You have to decide! Day 4 of Grimmfest
Posted on Saturday 10th October 2020
Another big day at Grimmfest 2020 with five more movies that are designed to intrigue and shock in equal measures.
First up is I Am Ren which takes the soul of Philip K. Dick and places it firmly into a living nightmare. A young woman goes into therapy after she starts to believe that she is an android. Is she having a breakdown, is she being gaslighted by an abusive husband, or is she really the synthetic wife and mother REN v.4.3? This film has the ability to keep you guessing throughout its duration. With bleak camerawork it mixes psychological horror with emotion perfectly.
One movie that's really making people talk is Rent-A-Pal from Jon Stevenson. 1990. Lonely bachelor David seeks e...SHARE: READ MORE Icons, Shamen and unexpected guests! More from Day 3 of Grimmfest
Posted on Friday 9th October 2020
Exclusive to pass holders, Grimmfest 2020 are hosting a Female Horror Icons Panel this evening. This event will consist of a short intro video and a live online Q&A with various female horror icons, including Pollyanna McIntosh, Caroline Williams, Adrienne Barbeau, Kelli Maroney, Natasha Halevi, Tiffany Schepsis and Krista Allen.
Back to the movies and following the Icons panel we have the UK premiere of Martin Guigui's The Unhealer. A botched faith healing bestows supernatural Shaman powers on a bullied teenager. When his lifelong tormentors pull a prank that kills someone he loves, he uses his powers for revenge and goes on a bloody rampage to settle the score. We've ...SHARE: READ MORE Deadly dogs, bar room tales and Lovecraftian madness. Day 3 of Grimmfest
Posted on Friday 9th October 2020
The first full day of Grimmfest 2020 is here and with it comes a prime selection of top shockers. The first part of the day has three movies which take often used tropes but gives them a smart and cool twist.
Ropes from director Jose Luis Montesinos is a movie that has plenty of tension thanks to cool direction. With the sorrow for her sister's death still very recent, Elena, a young quadriplegic, has retired to a country house along with her father. There she has the help of Athos, a Belgian shepherd specially trained to help her. But the creature who is supposed to be her best friend has contracted a strange disease... and has turned into her worst enemy. ...SHARE: READ MORE Features Archive: 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 PICK OF THE WEEK
Sunday 7th March
Sunday 14th March
Saturday 6th March