1-20 of 115 items from 2016 « Prev | Next »
It’s the most wonderful time of the year for film fans, with some of the best films of the year in theaters and lots of elaborate and thoroughly-researched books to read. This rundown has real variety, with new and recent texts covering cinema history, TV greats, and, of course, Star Wars. Note that one of this year’s finest books, The Oliver Stone Experience (Abrams Books), was covered by The Film Stage in September via an interview with author Matt Zoller Seitz. Make sure to check out Experience, and see below for another fine selection from the prolific Seitz.
- Christopher Schobert
Multiple Personality Disorder, like amnesia, is one of those aberrant mental states that’s been a curse to those who suffer, but a gift to screenwriters over the years. From Alfred Hitchcock’s “Psycho” to Brian De Palma’s “Dressed to Kill,” filmmakers have long exploited how little we truly understand the condition — though none has pushed it quite as far as M. Night Shyamalan does in “Split,” treating Dissociative Identity Disorder not as the twist, but as the premise on which this wickedly compelling abduction thriller is founded, as James McAvoy plays a lunatic kidnapper with at least 23 personalities to his name.
Rest assured, there are plenty of proper twists to follow, none more unexpected that the fact that Shyamalan has managed to get his groove back after a slew of increasingly atrocious misfires. To be fair, it’s hard to imagine any writer-director sustaining a career based almost entirely on surprising audiences, »
- Peter Debruge
The Initiation, 1984.
Directed by Larry Stewart.
When a college prank goes wrong a group of teenage girls find themselves at the mercy of a killer.
Originally released during the dying breaths of the first run of slasher films, The Initiation is a film that ticks all the boxes as far as slashers go but doesn’t do enough to raise the bar in any way, and seeing as this came out a month after Wes Craven’s groundbreaking A Nightmare on Elm Street changed the horror landscape forever it does look a little old hat when put up against that film and the Friday the 13th sequels that were proving popular at the time.
Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland and Agnes Moorehead play it nasty, chop-chopping their way through a Grand Dame Guignol epic of 'sixties Hag Horror. Ace director Robert Aldrich's big success handed the deserving Davis a big role, and it looks better than ever on this razor-sharp remastered edition. With good original film promos as well as a lively new commentary. Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte Blu-ray Twilight Time 1964 / B&W / 1:85 widescreen / 133 min. / Street Date October 11, 2016 / Available from the Twilight Time Movies Store29.95 Starring Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Joseph Cotten, Agnes Moorehead, Cecil Kellaway, Victor Buono, Mary Astor. Cinematography Joseph F. Biroc Art Direction William Glasgow Film Editor Michael Luciano Original Music Frank De Vol Written by Lukas Heller from a novel by Henry Farrell Produced and Directed by Robert Aldrich
Reviewed by Glenn Erickson
Good horror pictures featuring big stars were once fairly rare; this month Twilight Time »
- Glenn Erickson
In the 1960s, actress Tippi Hedren was the muse of acclaimed director Alfred Hitchcock, starring in “Birds”, his horror followup to “Psycho”, and in his subsequent drama “Marnie”. According to the New York Post, which has obtained an advance copy of Hedren’s upcoming autobiography, the actress makes some shocking claims about Hitchcock, alleging cruel on-set behaviour, […] »
- Brent Furdyk
There are horror movies that will give you nightmares, and cause you to fear showers and shallow waters for decades. There are some that get deep under your skin – often times because they've literally flayed or burrowed under their characters' skins – and others that will make you see everyday items (a bowl of pea soup, a hockey mask, a videotape) in a horrifying new light. And then there are the ones that push so many social-taboo envelopes, strike so many collective raw nerves and tweak so many communal gag reflexes that they are a cut, »
What better way to prepare for Halloween than look back at one of the most iconic horror film directors of all time! Join us as we examining the trademark style and calling signs of John Carpenter, aka. The Master of Horror, as director.
John Carpenter is a filmmaker best characterized by his work in genre films. He became fascinated by film at a young age and attended film school at the University of Southern California before dropping out in 1974 to film his feature debut, Dark Star. That film didn’t get much commercial traction, but caught the attention of many in the industry who admired Carpenter’s ability to make the film on a shoestring budget. His follow-up was 1976’s Assault on Precinct 13, which didn’t receive much attention upon release, but after a showing at several festivals in 1977 became a critical hit and received a strong cult following. »
- email@example.com (G.S. Perno)
Can a horror movie get by on nothing but atmosphere, on the the je ne sais quoi of its unsettling mood? I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives In The House suggests that maybe it can. This curious object with a curious title is the second feature from writer-director Oz Perkins, son of Psycho star Anthony Perkins. Does horror run through the filmmaker’s veins or is he just a very fast learner? Perkins’ first feature, a kind of new-millennium Suspiria called The Blackcoat’s Daughter, is still awaiting its theatrical release, more than a year after it freaked out festivalgoers under the title February. With his follow-up, arriving on Netflix tomorrow, Perkins commits even harder to his singularly strange approach to the genre, turning a simple ghost story into an exercise in extremely prolonged unease. It could give Norman Bates the willies.
From the very first scenes, Perkins establishes »
- A.A. Dowd
Boo! It's "Oscar Horrors". Each evening 'til Halloween we look back on a horror-connected Oscar nomination. Here's David on the cinematography of a camp classic...
What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? is hardly remembered as a horror classic; its camp reputation precedes it, as its recent appearance on RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars attests. (Only the finest for that crop of drag queens!) While the film is not what we might traditionally think of as a horror film, it has the same elements of lost souls, grotesque faces and physical cruelty that you might expect from any product of the genre. Just one year after Alfred Hitchcock changed the genre forever with Psycho, Baby Jane features a close-up of Joan Crawford’s face mushed against the floor - an eerie recall of Janet Leigh’s glassy-eyed demise.
It's maybe a tad unfair to be interested in a filmmaker's work purely based on who their parents were, but that curiosity is certainly the case when it comes to Oz Perkins. When the son of Psycho star Anthony Perkins starts making his own horror movies, it's kind of hard to not pay attention. Unfortunately his first horror movie, formerly titled February now called The Blackcoat's Daughter, is currently sitting on A24's distribution shelf, waiting for release. Fortunately, however, Perkins already has another horror film in the can. It's called I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives In The House and it will be available much, much sooner than his first movie. Like, really soon. It hits Netflix on Friday. I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives In The House stars...
- Peter Hall
Hdnet Movies Horror Marathon: Los Angeles – October 10, 2016 – Trick or Treat with Hdnet Movies this October, as the network presents a three-day Halloween Weekend block, featuring 16 sci-fi, suspense, and slasher classics. The special event begins on Saturday, Oct. 29, and runs through Monday, Oct. 31.
The thrills and chills kickoff with an out-of-this-world “Sci-Fi Saturday” on Saturday, Oct. 29, starting with Nathan Fillion as the captain of a spaceship harboring a mysterious stowaway in the 2005 Joss Whedon adventure Serenity at 7pE. Next up is Henry Thomas as a young boy who befriends a stranded alien in the Stephen Spielberg opus E.T., with Dee Wallace and Drew Barrymore, at 9pE; and Bruce Willis travels back in time to save the »
- Derek Anderson
Mark Harrison Oct 14, 2016
With the question of who's playing James Bond in James Bond 25 unresolved, we look back at the casting conundrums 007 has faced before.
Since 1962, fewer men have played James Bond than have walked on the moon. Despite the relatively long turnaround of the role, the subject of who might follow in the footsteps of Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig in the future has fuelled many column inches and tabloid splashes.
It feels as if speculation about the seventh 007 in Eon Productions' long-lived spy franchise has been at fever pitch since this time last year, when Craig was doing the promotional rounds for Spectre and commented that he would rather “slash [his] wrists” than play Bond again. It's only after a year of constant reports on the subject that his far more optimistic comments at last weekend's New Yorker Festival »
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock
Marion Crane has just stolen thousands of dollars from her former employer in order to clear the debts of her soon-to-be-husband and build a new life for them. Making a quick getaway, Marion stops in at the isolated Bates Motel run by the slightly eccentric Norman Bates, who owns the hotel with his domineering mother. While slightly unnerved by Norman’s odd behaviour, Marion thinks that she has escaped safely… until she decides to have a shower.
What to say about Psycho, from the master of suspense and arguably the most famous film director of all time Alfred Hitchcock? This film is not only one of the most famous horror films of all time, pioneering many of the tropes that would be popularised by the slasher films of the later 1970s and most of the 1980s. »
- Graeme Robertson
A little while back, we wrote about Twenty Essential Scream Factory Releases, which were DVD/Blurays releases that the gang at Scream Factory knocked right out of the park. It was a fun, overwhelmingly in depth project to take on, going through my Sf collection (I’m a self-proclaimed fanatic of the brand, and will continue to be) and figuring out which films and releases were ones I considered good, bad and downright Essential.It’s be a little while since that piece and the Sf crew continues to put out excellent titles, so I thought I’d do my best to turn you fright fanatics onto a few more films which I not only love, but feel like were given the “all out” treatment when it comes to home releases. Here are Seven More Scream Factory Releases You Don’t Want to Miss!!
7.) The Dead Room (Dir. Jason Stutter »
- Jerry Smith
While many of us are guilty of shrieking in our seats during scary movies, horror film actresses have screaming down to a science, perfecting everything from the pitch to the look of terror in their eyes. With Halloween coming up and tons of new horror flicks out, we're taking a look at actresses who have managed to make our hair stand on end with their bloodcurdling screams. From Janet Leigh's iconic Psycho moment to Drew Barrymore's Scream opener, check out the ladies who made their mark - and made themselves heard! - Additional reporting by Maggie Pehanick Related Stories:18 "Final Girl" Halloween Costumes Only Badasses Can Pull Off13 Horror Villain Costume Ideas That Are Almost Too Scary to Look At »
- Rose Curiel
Alfred Hitchcock was not above a remake. Or adaptations. Or self referencing. But this latest news is taking things too far in posthumous Hitchcock mania. A new show called Welcome to Hitchcock is going to "reimagine" Hitchcock stories one season-long mystery/crime at a time. The news gets worse: Chris Columbus will direct the pilot. Because, you know, Columbus has always excelled at taut psychologically provocative suspense (wtf?).
Sigh. After all the Hitchcock rip-offs and "sequels" and homages and "recreations" over the years, we do not need a ten episode reimagining of Psycho or Rear Window or Notorious; they're perfect the way they are. With the TV-making community scrambling to jump on the hot hot hot anthology train we all should have assumed that remakes were next. But if they must do this, let's hope they find a young director with an actual voice and gift for suspense to flesh »
- NATHANIEL R
Entitled Welcome to Hitchcock, the TV show will mine inspiration from the director’s prestigious portfolio, before covering a single crime or mystery over a single season. From Vertigo to Rear Window, Strangers on a Train to Psycho – the latter of which is already occupying the small-screen via prequel spinoff Bates Motel – there’s ample content at Universal’s disposal, though Variety’s report stopped short of disclosing which of the director’s properties will be considered for Universal’s new project.
All we know for sure is that it will “re-imagine classic tales from the iconic horror filmmaker” and “be an homage to his work.” Intriguing, if a little ambiguous. It’s already pulled in some promising talent behind the lens, »
- Michael Briers
Kayti Burt Sep 29, 2016
Universal is developing a new anthology TV series that will focus on season-long mysteries told in "Hitchcock's classic style"...
Anthology TV series are all the rage these days, and now we have another exciting project to add to the trend: an Alfred Hitchcock-inspired TV show. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Universal Cable Productions has made a deal with the Alfred Hitchcock Estate to develop an anthology series called Welcome To Hitchcock.
Unlike Alfred Hitchcock Presents..., Welcome To Hitchcock will not have standalone episodes, but rather unfurl the story of a single mystery or crime over the course of an entire season. How that makes it the 'anthology' series it's being billed as is as yet unclear, »
The NBCUniversal-owned production company has inked a deal with the Alfred Hitchcock Estate to re-imagine classic tales from the iconic horror filmmaker for the TV project that is titled “Welcome to Hitchcock.”
“Welcome to Hitchcock” will follow Hitchcock’s unique brand of storytelling that resulted in films such as “The Birds,” “Psycho” and the series “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” In the spirit of the classic Hitchcock style and legacy, the anthology will focus on a single season-long mystery or crime. Plans are in place for all potential future seasons to be produced in step with Hitchcock Estate.
“Long after his death, Alfred Hitchcock continues to be one of the most celebrated directors and visionaries in the world, a master manipulator of the macabre,” said Dawn Olmstead, executive vice president of development at Universal Cable Productions. “We’re honored that the Hitchcock Estate has »
- Elizabeth Wagmeister
For as quaint and economical as it comes across, The Eyes of My Mother is a pull-no-punches horror film. This debut effort shows that Nicolas Pesce is not just a talent to watch (with your hand over your eyes) but his attention to details make this effort as striking as it is horrific.
In the film, a traumatic event befalls a young girl and her family. Soon after, she begins to associate pain and death with love and friendship in increasingly dangerous ways. At the festival, we spoke candidly about the elements and plot points in Pesce’s film. So, be advised, this interview contains spoilers.
The Film Stage: Nicolas, I have to tell you that I’m not sure I liked your film, because of how it made me feel, but I will never forget it.
Nicolas Pesce: [Laughs] Great, that makes me so happy to hear. [Laughs]
- Marc Ciafardini
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