ARTICLES

LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS

Edge of the Axe - Blu-ray review
By James Whittington, Sunday 26th January 2020
Edge of the Axe
Arrow Video
Certificate 18

I must admit, Edge of the Axe is one of those late 80s slashers that passed me by when it was originally released. Maybe because I was tired of the genre by then, maybe because the concept of it being a Euro/American horror just didn't appeal to me, or just maybe there was something better to rent out that week! Anyway, this cut on its original release in 1989 due to the amount of axe on show but thanks to Arrow video we can now view uncut with all chopper moments intact!

The rural community of Paddock County is being rocked by the crazed exploits of an axe-wielding psychopath, who stalks the night in a black trenchcoat and mask. As the victims pile up, the authorities attempt to keep a lid on the situation, whilst computer whizz-kid Gerald and girlfriend Lillian seek to unmask the killer before the town population reaches zero.

Pedestrian in pace but with acting way above the usual for such a movie, Edge of the Axe is a hack n' slash movie that brings nothing new to the genre but when it gets going is fun. The set-pieces are well sign posted but well executed (ha ha, get it?) with the effects standing up more than I was expecting. The lead characters are your usual horny teens and the killer never breaks into a run when stalking.

The electronic score sounds at time as if someone was bashing two metal bin lids together and dates the film, saying that there are some wild country tracks to get your foot tappin'. Oh, and there's some wonderfully cheesy sax music for all you romantics out there!

Barton Faulks stars as computer nerd Gerald, a mysterious young man who gets with a stare to as weird as his clothing choice with Christina Marie Lane as Lillian, Gerald's on/off girlfriend who seems as troubled as he is. Both didn't have very long movie careers. As the movie plods along more and more red herrings are introduced, each one with a not so subtle evil glint in their eye.

The axe sequences are very well staged being more violent and bloody than I was expecting but there are few shocks here to get your pulse racing.

There are extras on the full release but not available to review.

Edge of the Axe is enjoyable horror hokum, not the best slasher in the world but not the worst by any measure.


MORE REVIEWS
Darkroom - Blu-ray review
Posted on Monday 18th January 2021
Darkroom CoverDarkroom
88 Films
Certificate 15

88 Films continues to search out for forgotten shockers for their Slasher Collection and this time has unearthed a truly cheesy piece from 1989, Darkroom. Being produced by Nico Mastorakis, the guy who gave the world the censor bothering shocker Island of Death you'd expect it to be a wild and unflinching slasher. Instead, we get an above average slice and dice flick with plenty of set-ups but more considerate on the bloodletting.

The film begins with a brutal double axe slaying by an unknown murderer but who could this mad killer be? Why does he photograph his victims as they die? Most of all, what drives them to kill?

Directo...

SHARE: READ MORE
Blind Date - Blu-ray review
Posted on Monday 18th January 2021
BLIND DATE COVERBlind Date
88 Films
Certificate 18

This tale of obsession and sight loss is a prime example of 80s arty horror. Directed by Nico Mastorakis, the man behind the controversial shocker Island of Death, this is a sci-fi infused giallo style slasher that's been off the shelves for far too long.

Ad Exec Jon Ratcliff is obsessed and riddled with guilt over his lost girlfriend but then is convinced he spots her at a photo shoot. Trying to track her down he's involved in an incident and loses his sight, but medics can't understand how it's happened as his eyes have suffered no damage. Luckily, he's soon equipped with state-of-the-art technology (a zipped-up Walkman!) which par...

SHARE: READ MORE
Dawn of the Dead: Limited 4K Edition
Posted on Monday 16th November 2020
DAWN_OF_THE_DEAD_3D_BD_SLIPCASE_PACK_ (1)Dawn of the Dead: Limited 4K Edition
Certificate 18
Second Sight Films

Arriving 10 years after the seminal Night of the Living Dead had ushered in a new era of zombie films, George A Romero returned to his undead roots to deliver, what many consider to be the greatest zombie, if not horror movie of all time, Dawn of the Dead.

The movie has been released many times, from laserdisc to VHS to Blu-ray and as fans will know, there are a number of different editions of the movie, The Theatrical Cut, The Extended ('Cannes') Cut and The Argento Cut so you'd think by now fans would have everything they ever wanted from this movi...

SHARE: READ MORE
The Grudge (2020) - Blu-ray review
Posted on Monday 1st June 2020
The Grudge 2020The Grudge
Certificate 15
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

One of the most famous films of the last couple of decades or so, Japanese shocker Ju-On: The Grudge from director Takashi Shimizu was an expertly crafted journey into the paranormal. A few sequels and remake later and we arrive at a new version of the idea, this time the horror has never been more violent.

When someone dies in the grip of a powerful rage, a curse is born. It gathers in the place of death but cannot be contained. Once you encounter it...it will never let go.

Written and directed by Nicolas Pesce, the movie really does get under the skin of the viewer with an atmosphere that contains ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Revenge - Blu-ray review
Posted on Sunday 3rd May 2020
Revenge
Second Sight Films
Certificate 18

Over the years there have been many "revenge" themed movies, a lot of which used uncomfortable and challenging set-ups to grasp their audiences. One only must think of the grindhouse films such as I Spit on Your Grave (1978), Last House on the Left (1972) and Death Wish (1974) to see what I am getting at here. There is a fine line between art and exploitation, and these challenged the censor to the limits.

Revenge, which is just about to hit Blu-ray contains a similar premise, assault is the major plot point here as a young girl is brutally attacked and victimised, but the stylish way it is filmed and played, you see it rise above the...

SHARE: READ MORE
Knives and Skin - Original Soundtrack
Posted on Thursday 30th January 2020
Knives and Skin - Original Soundtrack
Nick Zinner
Lakeshore Records

Knives and Skin from director Jennifer Reeder was one of the strongest and most original movies from FrightFest 2019. Its hypnotic and sometimes surreal plot contained some superb set-pieces of nerve tightening drama. To make the film even more memorable it had a score which added a delicate beauty to the whole experience.

Part suburban nightmare, part neon-soaked teenage fever dream, this tantalizing mystery traces the wave of fear and distrust that spreads across a small Midwestern town in the wake of a high school girl's mysterious disappearance. As the loneliness and darkness lurking beneath the ve...

SHARE: READ MORE
The Beyond - Blu-ray review
Posted on Monday 13th January 2020
The Beyond
Shameless
Certificate 18

There are some movies that horror fans have multiple copies of, for me it's The Evil Dead, Halloween and Zombie Flesh Eaters. I have loads of editions in my loft on tape, laserdisc, DVDs, and now lovely Blu-rays and, where I can, 4K editions. Lucio Fulci's The Beyond (1981) is one movie that could also take up a shelf for all the different editions and versions I own as for some reason I'm drawn to it whenever I see a new release, even if it's just for a new cover!

This time around though Shameless have something rather cool and a bit different for fans of this Fulci classic but more on this later. For those new to this title, The Beyond i...

SHARE: READ MORE
Vault of Horror presents The Gates of Hell Trilogy (Coloured Vinyl)
Posted on Thursday 19th December 2019
Gates of Hell Front cover with stickerVault of Horror presents The Gates of Hell Trilogy
Demon Records

Following the success of the first two Vault of Horror vinyl releases, Demon Records have pulled out all the stops to deliver another sublime piece of audio that should form part of everyone's Christmas list this year.

Lucio Fulci's Gates of Hell trilogy of movies delivered some of the most controversial pieces of horror cinema at a time when horror was entering the "video nasties" period and the genre, as a whole, was frowned upon. Fulci grabbed this chance to push the envelope further with movies which celebrated the limits horror could go to and by doing so opened the doors - ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Anna and the Apocalypse - Blu-ray review
Posted on Monday 9th December 2019
Anna and the Apocalypse Blu-ray Second Sight Films Certificate 15

Musical horror movies aren't a new thing. In fact, there's been far more than you first think such as Stage Fright (2014), Cannibal: The Musical (1993) and Repo! The Genetic Opera (2008) and all became smallish cult hits. The problem with most is that sometimes the storyline suffers from trying to force as many songs in as possible. There's no such issue with Anna and the Apocalypse.

This wonderfully wacky piece of seasonal cinema has all that you'd want and more from a rom-zom-sing-a-long-com!

It's Christmas, is under threat from a zombie apocalypse, forcing Anna (Ella Hunt) and her friends to fight, slas...

SHARE: READ MORE
Judy and Punch - Film review
Posted on Wednesday 20th November 2019
Judy and Punch
Picturehouse Entertainment
Certificate 15
Release 22nd November

If you're tired of sequels, predictable plots and unimaginative situations then writer/director Mirrah Foulkes has something really special for you! By turning the traditional story of Punch and Judy totally on its head, she has delivered a directorial debut that is bold, brash and bloody good fun.

In the outlandish town of Seaside, located nowhere near the coast, puppeteers Judy (Mia Wasikowska) and Punch (Damon Herriman) are trying to resurrect their marionette show. The show is a hit due to Judy's superior puppeteering, but Punch's driving ambition and penchant for a drink lead to an ill-fat...

SHARE: READ MORE
Ghostland - Music from the Motion Picture
Posted on Friday 18th October 2019
Ghostland - Music from the Motion Picture
Georges Boukoff, Anthony d'Amario and Ed Rig
The Omega Productions Records

Pascal Laugier's Ghostland (known in the UK as Incident in a Ghostland) was one of the highlights of FrightFest 2018 and proved once and for all that this director was a master of the sinister and murky.

Produced ten years after Martyrs, the movie was more considered in its tension building and was in its strange way a contained a classic fairy tale structure.

The movie concerns the aftermath of a brutal home invasion experienced by Beth along with mother and sister Vera. Forward a few years and Beth is now a horror novelist and has found solace in her w...

SHARE: READ MORE
Halloween: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Expanded Edition)
Posted on Thursday 17th October 2019

Halloween: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Expanded Edition)
Sacred Bones
Double Vinyl

Halloween 2018 was a box-office hit and gave the franchise a much-needed tension injection. It saw the return of Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode and that of original director John Carpenter though he wasn't in the driving seat for this one. Instead he, alongside his son and godson, Cody Carpenter and Daniel Davies created the score and delivered an atmospheric piece which retained whispers to the past without drowning in them.

The soundtrack album was a hit as much as the movie was debuting at #12 on the Billboard Albums chart and #2 on the vinyl chart, o...

SHARE: READ MORE
Reviews Archive: 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012
PICK OF THE WEEK
John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars
JOHN CARPENTER'S GHOSTS OF MARS
Monday 25th January
9.00 PM
From A House On Willow Street
FROM A HOUSE ON WILLOW STREET
Thursday 28th January
9.00 PM
Shut In
SHUT IN
Wednesday 27th January
9.00 PM