LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS Booth's Blog: Get ready to meet The Tall Man...
By Emily Booth, Thursday 13th July 2017
Most horror fans will already know this elusive yet enigmatic man; villain of one of the strangest, most surreal and nightmarish horror movies in the stratosphere. If not, you've missed out (and, ummm, where were you in the '80s?) Not to fear though, because Horror Channel proudly has the network premiere of the one and only Phantasm this coming Saturday. Throw logic and plot out of the window for this one and just get swept up in its dreamlike quality.
The film came out in 1979 and has since snowballed into a huge cult favourite spanning 5 decades, with 5 films, countless comics, fan sites and merchandise. The word 'phantasm' actually means 'something that is seen or imagined but is not real', and it is Don Coscarelli's imagination that we need to thank here. Just 23 years old at the time Phantasm was made on a tiny budget with big ideas, many of the movie-making decisions were instinctive, says Coscarelli; they happened off the cuff, on set.
Recently orphaned Jody (Bill Thornbury) and his younger brother Mike (Michael Baldwin) set up home in a new town where strange things have begun to occur. It all leads to the local mortuary and its creepy, otherworldly undertaker known as the Tall Man (Angus Scrimm). Corpses are going missing, and when Mike witnesses this first-hand, he decides to dig a little deeper, soon finding himself in the bowels of a very mysterious mortuary. For the Tall Man is indeed more than just 'otherworldly'. He has an army of killer dwarves (actually re-animated shrunken versions of the corpses we mentioned earlier) and an arsenal of lethal silver spheres designed to drill into your skull to collect your brain matter. Oh and the basement of the mortuary actually disguises a portal to another planet, I think... Weird enough for ya?
On one level, Phantasm is a strange and surreal trip into the imagination, but on a deeper level, the film's central themes are death, grieving, and how a child's mind might fracture when coping with a death in the family. Angus Scrimm is literally the harbinger of death here (he died around the same time as David Bowie in January 2016) and was perfectly cast with his crooked frown and 'too small suits', providing the already 6 ft 4 actor an even greater sense of menace. It's no surprise he ranks as one of the most popular horror villains of all time.
Fans of '80s electronica and Italian horror movie soundtracks will also be in seventh heaven with a creepy synthy soundtrack taking its cue from the aforementioned influences, which in turn no doubt inspired the amazing soundtrack for '80s revival horror series "Stranger Things". You can't help but get sucked in.
Phantasm enjoys its network premiere on Horror this Saturday 15th July at 11pm.
MORE ARTICLES Arrow Video FrightFest 2022 announces bumper Glasgow Film Festival line-up
Posted in Frightfest, Thursday 20th January 2022
The UK's No.1 horror and fantasy film festival is back in person at the Glasgow Film Theatre, which for 17 glorious years has been FrightFest's second home, as part of the internationally renowned Glasgow Film Festival.
From Thursday 10th March to Saturday 12th March, FrightFest opens its terror trove to present twelve tasty treasures; an extravaganza of the dark arts, embracing the latest genre discoveries from around the globe, spanning eight countries in three continents, which includes World, International and UK premieres.
Alan Jones, co-director of FrightFest commentated: "It's with great delight and with every single b...SHARE: READ MORE Classic slasher, Hatchet for the Honeymoon gets Blu-ray treatment
Posted in News, Tuesday 18th January 2022
From director Mario Bava, the Godfather of Italian horror, comes Hatchet for the Honeymoon, a superlative early 70s slasher which places us and the erstwhile filmmaker back in the realm of the Gialli feature, a cinematic sub-genre he practically invented. Limited to 3000 units this edition from 88 Films is avai.able now.
With echoes of Psycho (1960) and Peeping Tom (1960), this unsettling production sees troubled protagonist John Harrington (Stephen Forsythe) turning to a life of serial killing. Refused a divorce by his uncaring wife, and haunted by childhood trauma John takes out his murderous frustrations on a string of would-be brides who innocently c...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel announces raft of premieres for February
Posted in Features, Thursday 13th January 2022
February on Horror Channel keeps genre fans alive with the UK TV premiere of What Keeps You Alive - another suspenseful knife to the throat of 21st Century genre cinema from the deliciously warped mind of Colin Minihan, director of It Stains The Sand Red.
And expect more total shock and abject terror in the UK TV premiere of Paul Hyett's sinister sci-fi horror fantasy Peripheral. This twisted cross between Ex Machina and Videodrome boasts an astonishing performance from Hannah Arterton.
Plus, there are channel premieres for the gore-filled, stomach-churning zombie chiller Death Trench, Producer M. Night Shyamalan's claustrophobic supernatural thriller Devil, the...SHARE: READ MORE Marco Beltrami and Brian Tyler's Scream scores get new releases
Posted in News, Sunday 9th January 2022
Varese Sarabande celebrate the return of Scream with two very special releases. Marco Beltrami's scores from the first four films get the box set treatment via a 4-LP set, 6-CD set (exclusive to VareseSarabande.com), and digital releases. Featuring a trove of previously unreleased material, both physical sets come in packaging that folds out into a Ghostface mask. The digital album is now available to stream wherever you get your music!
Meanwhile, Brian Tyler's score for the brand new Scream is getting an LP, CD and digital release as well... The expanded 24-track CD and digital version of Scream: Music from the Motion Picture are out n...SHARE: READ MORE Who ya gonna call for help in the Afterlife?
Posted in News, Wednesday 5th January 2022
From director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman comes the next chapter in the original Ghostbusters universe, Ghostbusters: Afterlife, available to Download and Keep on January 10th, to Rent on Digital on January 31st and also on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
Starring Carrie Coon (Gone Girl, The Nest), Finn Wolfhard (Stranger Things, It), McKenna Grace (Young Sheldon, Gifted), Annie Potts (Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters II) and Paul Rudd (Ant-man, Avengers: Endgame), the film is written by Gil Kenan and Jason Reitman.
When single mum Callie (Carrie Coon) and her two children Finn (Finn Wolfhard) and ...SHARE: READ MORE Stagefright - Blu-ray review
Posted in Reviews, Thursday 30th December 2021 Stagefright Shameless Entertainment Certificate 18 ****
Also known as Aquarius, Deliria and Bloody Bird, Michele Soavi's bold directorial debut Stagefright finally gets the Shameless treatment. Released at the backend of the slasher trend this 1987 effort takes the genre in a far more artistic direction than most of the era and stands up to close scrutiny to this day. More recent movies such as Halloween (2018) and Climax (2018) seems to have taken some themes from this which is a fine reminder of why slasher movies don't just start and end with the more famous franchises.
When a masked killer infiltrates a group of actors rehearsing overnight in an isolated theatr...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel ushers in 2022 with zombie invasions
Posted in Features, Tuesday 21st December 2021
January weekends on Horror Channel are invaded by the undead with the UK TV premiere of Lin Oeding's newly-flavoured zombie horror-comedy Office Uprising, and the two highly acclaimed Zombie apocalypse road movies - Stake Land, receiving its Channel premiere, and the sequel The Stakelander, enjoying a UK TV premiere.
Plus, there are channel premieres for the bone-chilling The Wretched, directed by The Pierce Brothers, Sam Raimi's classic Evil Dead 2, once again starring the demon battling Brue Campbell and the original Dolph Lundgrem/Jean-Claude Van Damme futuristic thriller Universal Soldier.
Here's everything you need to know:
A VHS classic on the 8th as Je...SHARE: READ MORE The best kind of honey trap! Doctor Who: Hornets' Nest is coming to vinyl
Posted in News, Thursday 16th December 2021
On limited edition vinyl for the very first time, Demon Records presents Doctor Who: Hornet's Nest, the unique audio adventure that first instigated Tom Baker's remarkable return to the role of the Doctor.
This release will include an exclusive, frameable portrait of the Fourth Doctor - every copy of which has been individually signed by Tom Baker himself and is just one of the treats inside this stunningly designed package which also includes an impressive, die-cut removable outer sleeve houses a hornet-adorned lidded box, inside which are 10 individual, exquisitely illustrated LP sleeves featuring full cast and credits for each story.
Also included is The Do...SHARE: READ MORE Interview with Abigail Blackmore, writer and director of Tales From The Lodge
Posted in Interviews, Tuesday 14th December 2021
Ahead of Horror Channel's Xmas Day broadcast of her horror comedy feature Tales From The Lodge, director Abigail Blackmore recalls the brutal weather conditions, the challenges of casting and the joy of playing at FrightFest.
HC: Thanks to Horror Channel, Tales From The Lodge finally gets its UK TV premiere on British TV. Excited or what?
AB: So excited! I know a huge amount of people watch the Horror Channel so I'm hoping it opens TFTL up to a whole new audience.
HC: Looking back to its showcase screening at FrightFest in 2019, what are your abiding memories?
AB: It was a wonderful experience! FrightFest has long been one of the highlights of my ...SHARE: READ MORE Interview with Barbara Crampton, star of chilling horror Sacrifice
Posted in Interviews, Wednesday 8th December 2021
Barbara Crampton is a Horror Channel favourite. This much loved and much admired creative is starring in the UK TV premiere of Sacrifice, which is showing December 12th at 9pm on Horror so we chatted to her about this movie and her plans for the future.
Note that there are some spoilers for Sacrifice in the interview.
HC: Can you recall how you felt the first time you stepped onto a TV or film set?
BC: Yes, I remember the first time I was ever on a television set, it was for the soap opera, Days of Our Lives, and it was my very first job, and I had one line, "Hi. I'm your cousin Trista from Colorado". It was to the character Marlena Evans and subsequently I had w...SHARE: READ MORE Stagefright to be released thanks to Shameless
Posted in News, Saturday 4th December 2021
Combining graphic, blood-splattered set pieces with his trademark wit and filmmaking elegance, Michele Soavi's (Dellamorte Dellamore, The Sect, The Church), Stagefright is now unleashed in a new 4K restoration.
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Posted in News, Saturday 4th December 2021
It's always someone you know.
Twenty-five years after a streak of brutal murders shocked the quiet town of Woodsboro, a new killer has donned the Ghostface mask and begins targeting a group of teenagers to resurrect secrets from the town's deadly past.
Neve Campbell (Sidney Prescott), Courteney Cox (Gale Weathers) and David Arquette (Dewey Riley) return to their iconic roles in Scream but will all three survive?
The cast also includes Melissa Barrera, Kyle Gallner, Mason Gooding, Mikey Madison, Dylan Minnette, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, Marley Shelton, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Sonia Ammar.
Paramount Pictures and Spyglas...SHARE: READ MORE Articles Archive: 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 PICK OF THE WEEK
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