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3 items from 2016

12 Days of Christmas Horror: Day 4 – Gremlins (1984)

17 December 2016 4:00 AM, PST | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Gremlins, 1984.

Directed by Joe Dante.

Starring Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, Hoyt Axton, Polly Holliday and Francis Lee McCain.


Young Billy receives a rather unusual Christmas gift from his father in the form of a furry little creature called a Mogwai. Christening the fuzzy pet Gizmo, Billy is given three strict rules on how to deal with a Mogwai: don’t let them near bright lights, don’t get them wet and most importantly, don’t feed them after midnight. A series of mishaps ensures that Billy unwittingly breaks all the rules resulting in a whole horde of fuzzy little creatures being spawned, and after a midnight feeding these fuzzy creatures transform into hideous green monsters intent on causing mischief around Billy’s small town.

It’s Christmas time and I’m doing a series in which I’m reviewing Christmas horror films, and if you’re doing that you »

- Graeme Robertson

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Venice Film Review: ‘Summertime’

31 August 2016 2:37 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Gabriele Muccino is an Italian filmmaker (“The Last Kiss,” “Ecco Fatto”) who had a high-profile moment of going Hollywood. He was handed the plum of directing two Will Smith vehicles in a row, “The Pursuit of Happyness” (2006) and “Seven Pounds” (2007), and he was able to bring his earthy intelligence and humanity to at least one of them. (The less said about “Seven Pounds” the better.) One way to talk about Muccino’s new film, “Summertime,” which premiered tonight at the 73rd Venice International Film Festival, is to say that he is once again an “Italian filmmaker.” But that wouldn’t be quite accurate. “Summertime” is more like an American film embedded in an Italian one.

It’s about Marco (Brando Pacitto), a sulky curly-haired cherub from Rome, and the fussbudget princess Maria (Matilda Lutz), also from Rome, who he doesn’t know well and doesn’t get along with. The »

- Owen Gleiberman

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Looking back at Drop Dead Fred

1 August 2016 6:39 AM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Mark Harrison Aug 15, 2016

We revisit Drop Dead Fred, starring the late, great Rik Mayall...

Hey, snotfaces, what do you get when you mix Mary Poppins and Beetlejuice? Look no further than 1991's Drop Dead Fred, a fantasy comedy about an imaginary friend, which turns out to be about a woman's mental breakdown after years and years of emotional abuse.

If you're of a certain age and, much like Phoebe Cates' protagonist Elizabeth at the beginning of the movie, you haven't seen Fred since you were a child, you may remember it as a childhood staple that you were probably a bit young to be watching and for many, it might have been your introduction to Mayall's comic stylings. However, also like Lizzie, Fred's anarchic behaviour has different implications when you meet him again in adulthood.

He first re-emerges after Lizzie has lost the three major totems of adulthood - her marriage, »

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