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Booth's Blog: Ding Dong you're Dead! '80s VHS classic comes to Horror!
By Emily Booth, Thursday 17th November 2016
Emily with chopperYou have no idea how much of a fan-girl I became when Horror HQ told me they were giving House its network premiere this weekend. Released in 1986, I was ripe pickings for this kind of lurid VHS as an incredibly underage, wide-eyed nipper in the back of my local video store, drooling over the salacious, sensational, and indeed saucy video sleeves. This one hooked me in right away, and my brother and I rented it out again and again (the Video Recordings Act was introduced in 1984, and I'm not sure my local video store had caught up; regardless, they had no problems with me and my brother renting the likes of Porkies, House, Phenomena (Creepers at the time), Evil Dead, Nightmare on Elm Street etc, when clearly we were way under 18!). I know many of you hold dear those memories of fondly fondling your way through countless depraved video sleeves designed purely to suck you in and incite lust and terror. 'Rent me, rent me, rent me' they screamed! And we did my pretties, we did...

Like Sam Raimi's Evil Dead, this film manages to straddle both horror and comedy (though I'd say it veers more towards horror) without becoming too self-conscious. it's what I call 'fun-house horror' - a real circus of a spectacle where you can open any door, and waiting behind is all manner of the bizarre and bloody. Here a frustrated horror novelist suffering from PTSD from his time serving in Vietnam, as well as the disappearance of his young son, returns to his late aunt's house for rest and inspiration. But he gets a whole lot more than he bargains for when his inner demons seem to take on a life of their own in the house, seeking to drag him down to hell. Could his son have been taken by this hell house itself? Is he trapped in another dimension? Why is he seeing the burned and vengeful body of the man he left to die in Vietnam, and why has his ex-wife turned into a grotesque, hysterical demon who looks a cross between Miss Piggy and the creature from The Thing? There are so many moments to love here, as the direction from Steve Miner - who'd just come off the fantastic Friday the 13th Parts 2 and 3 - has a real abrupt shock value to it... He certainly knows his jump scares! From the freaky mounted dead fish whose eyes follow him around the room, to the tools in the shed coming to life and flying through the air, and the monster in the closet who only comes out at midnight, the creature effects are simply amazing, grotesque, and inventive, so if you’re a fan of monster makeup over CGI rubbish, then this is the film for you.

On a more serious note, like some of the other films of this era such as Jacob's Ladder (1990) and Cannibal Apocalypse (1980), the subtext of the film really exposes the horrors of the Vietnam War; a reflection of America's military finally acknowledging PTSD as a real, serious condition in 1980. For once, films depicted the mental trauma of the battlefield on its soldiers, rather than the glory.

So if you want a real nostalgic trip back to those rose-tinted and somewhat innocent days of renting a coveted 'horror movie', then make a date with House on Saturday 19th November at 11pm.

Related show tags: HOUSE
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Interview with Andy Nyman about his role in the classic TV version of The Woman in Black
Posted in Interviews, Sunday 9th August 2020
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Andy Nyman is one of the most popular and hardworking actors working today. From thrillers to chillers, from comedy to drama, Andy can turn his hand to any genre. Thanks to Network Releasing we are able to appreciate his first ever TV appearance as they release a remastered version of the acclaimed television adaptation of The Woman in Black. We chatted to Andy about his role in this legendary piece.

HC: Let's chat about this TV version of The Woman in Black, was it one of your first ever roles very first TV role?

AN: That was my very first TV role, I was 23, the same age my son is now. It is a shock, isn't it? I was like, when I saw it ...

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Dracula's Child by J.S. Barnes - The Unofficial Sequel to Bram Stoker's 'Dracula'
Posted in News, Saturday 8th August 2020
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J.S. Barnes dives straight to the dark heart of Bram Stoker's legendary creation, capturing the voice, tone, style and characters of the original, whilst exploring pressing themes of modern life in this age of false facts and fake news in Dracula's Child. The book offers a wonderful and wholly original expansion to the story of the world's most famous vampire. After all, evil never truly dies.

It has been some years since Jonathan and Mina Harker survived their ordeal in Transylvania and, vanquishing Count Dracula, returned to England to try and live ordinary lives.

But shadows linger long in this world of blood feud and superstition - and, the older their s...

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I Spit on Your Grave franchise to get box-set treatment
Posted in News, Saturday 8th August 2020
I Spit on Your Grave Box SetKaleidoscope Home Entertainment has announced I Spit on Your Grave: The Complete Collection - the shocking, controversial and ground-breaking film series, presented on Blu-ray and DVD for the very first time, arriving 5th October.

When the original 1978 film was banned in the UK upon release, this notorious revenge movie helped launch the "video nasty" craze of the 1980's and inspired a generation of genre directors through its provocative, no-holds-barred filmmaking. 32 years later, a bold and shocking remake reignited the franchise and spawned a series of sequels which pushed the envelope even further.

Available in the UK as a complete set for the first time, t...

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Arrow Video FrightFest announces August 2020 Short Film Programme
Posted in Frightfest, Saturday 8th August 2020
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The films may be short, but there is no shortage of scares as Arrow Video FrightFest 2020 showcases the best new short films from the UK and around the world, with six countries representing three continents. From under-the-bed monsters to monsters in front of your eyes, from the sinister and the creepy to the wickedly human and the not-so-human, this year's selection shines a spotlight on upcoming filmmakers.

The UK is represented with a record eleven entries. There are world premiere screenings for Werewolf, where game night just got dangerous, A Bit Of Fun, where a girls' night in brings out the dead and The Beholder, in which you'd be wise to ...

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Interview with Airell Hayles writer and co-director of They're Outside
Posted in Frightfest, Interviews, Saturday 1st August 2020
Airell Hayles

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HC: Where did the idea for They're Outside come from?

AH: This idea for They're Outside came from a couple of things. I remember as a kid hearing that my uncle suffered mild agoraphobia, and when I learned what it was, I was fascinated by this idea of some people being kind of scared to leave their homes. Of course, the recent Covid-19 events h...

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Interview with Fionn and Toby Watts, directors of Playhouse
Posted in Frightfest, Interviews, Saturday 1st August 2020
Toby and Fionn Clapper 1

FrightFest is once again on the horizon but this time, due to global events the event has become a virtual experience with all films being accessed online. Horror is once again sponsoring the First Blood strand of the event. Here we chat to talented brothers Fionn and Toby Watts who have delivered a gothic, creepy piece named Playhouse.

HC: Was there one film or person who influenced or inspired you to become film makers?

FW: As a young boy I remember being absolutely blown away by the image of The Terminator's exo-skeleton rising from the flames. Around the same time I saw Candyman at a sleepover (rented by my friend's 'older' brother...) and it was such an i...

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Shatner Vs The Devil! Who wouldn't want to see that?
Posted in News, Thursday 30th July 2020
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All hell is about to break loose as Shatner takes on Satan, when 4Digital unleashes The Tomb: Devil's Revenge, on digital platforms from 14th September.

The Descent meets The Exorcist, with a dash of Raiders of the Lost Ark thrown in for good measure, in what promises to be a suspenseful thrill-ride starring iconic Star Trek legend William Shatner, Jeri Ryan (Star Trek: Voyager), Jason Brooks (Star Trek, 2009), Jackie Dallas (Stranger Things) and Michael Yahn (Daredevil).

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Arrow Video FrightFest announces August Digital Edition line-up and Horror Channel sponsors talent-seeking First Blood strand
Posted in Features, Frightfest, Tuesday 28th July 2020
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The UK's most popular horror and fantasy film festival celebrates its 21st bloody year with a special Digital edition, showcasing twenty-five films, from Thursday 27th August to Monday 31st August, including seven world premieres and sixteen UK premieres. Ten countries are represented from four continents in a deadly, daring and diverse programme exclusively presented to UK audiences.

Passes and tickets will go on sale Saturday 1 August and details on how to access the event and choose which films to watch are on the FrightFest website. All film screenings will be geo-locked to UK audiences and only accessible from within the United Kingdom.

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Revisit James Cameron's first movie on Blu-ray in August
Posted in News, Friday 24th July 2020
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While investigating the mysterious death of a diver, scuba instructor Anne Kimbrough (Tricia O'Neil) makes a horrific discovery: mutated piranhas, with wings that enable them to fly, are responsible for the death.

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An all-star cast for an all-time sleazy shocker!
Posted in News, Friday 24th July 2020
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In the lurid shocker, Schizoid a newspaper advice columnist (Mariana Hill) starts receiving threats from a mysterious person. At the same time, the female members of her psychiatrist's (Klaus Kinski, Crawlspace) therapy group are being murdered one by one by a maniac wielding a large pair of scissors.

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Dracula on red wax!
Posted in News, Friday 24th July 2020
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From the team behind BBC's critically acclaimed Sherlock came Dracula, the reimagining of the iconic titular vampire for a 21st Century audience. Composers David Arnold and Michael Price reunited with writers and creators Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, to breathe musical life into another famous literary character from Victorian times.

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Posted in News, Tuesday 21st July 2020
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