Saturday, 13 September 2014

Tons of new British horror on Viewster

A site called Viewster currently has a shedload of BHR titles currently available to watch online for free - and the fact that some of these films are promoting Viewster on their own Facebook pages suggests it's all legit.

So if you haven't caught up with these titles yet, here's your chance to watch Amityville Asylum, Bane*, Bloodmyth, Deadtime, Deranged, Exhibit A, Greetings, Hellbride, Heretic, High Stakes, Home Made*, Night Junkies*, NOTLD: Resurrection, Red Canopy, Sawney: Flesh of Man, Sick Bastard*, Silent Night Bloody Night: The Homecoming, The Slayers: Portrait of a Dismembered Family, Stalker and Time of Her Life*.

There are stacks of British shorts as well - too many to list here.

* Films marked with an asterisk are featured in my book.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Free test screening of new Mark Murphy feature in York on Tuesday

Fancy a chance to see a brand new British horror before everyone else (even me)? Mark Murphy, director of The Crypt (aka The Convent) which premiered at Fantasporto, has a new feature ready to be seen - and it looks great.

Awaiting stars Tony Curran (Vincent Van Gogh in that Doctor Who episode!), Peter Woodward (Shame the Devil), Adrian Bouchet (The Seasoning House, Idol of Evil), Rupert Hill (Entity, Corrie) and Sophie Lovell Anderson (Candy in Stag Night of the Dead!). Here's the synopsis:

"Morris is a recluse with psychotic tendencies, whose life changes when his innocent daughter Lauren rescues one of his victims and befriends him. Jake, an ordinary businessman, soon realises that he is stranded and his presence in the house gradually reveals unexpected and dark mysteries from the past."

If you're anywhere near the University of York this Tuesday, 16th September, you can see the film at a free test screening. Full details over on Eventbrite. Meanwhile, here's the terrific looking trailer.

Awaiting Trailer (2015) from Solar Productions on Vimeo.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Indie auteur Paul TT Easter selling up

I've never actually watched one of Paul TT Easter's movies - and now it looks like I might not get the chance, because Easter is apparently jacking it all in and selling his entire Side Effect Films business - on eBay!

The package includes the rights to at least six, possibly up to nine of Easter's films, plus two HD cameras, a stills camera and a Mercedes. Bidding starts at £5,000. Auction closes on 18th September.

The IMDB lists 15 directing credits for Easter, mostly gangster/action films but also including Black Shuck, Thumb N It and Lone Walker, all of which are horror. U Mugs might also be horror too as it's pitched as 'Jackass meets Blair Witch'. Or it might just be a found footage movie about knobheads hurting themselves...

The reviews on Amazon suggest that Easter's films are somewhat basic in their execution, but he has released several through Amazon Prime including the four titles mentioned above - and that makes him a representative of the British Horror Revival as far as I'm concerned.

You can see Paul's Mercedes at the start of this trailer for Lone Walker:

Monday, 1 September 2014

Exclusive - first look at 'Nocturnal Activity'

Here is the first trailer for Nocturnal Activity, the next feature from Rites of Passage director Steve Lawson. The film stars Raven Lee, June Bladon (Bicycle Day), Jonathan Hansler (The Devil's Business, Axed, Call of the Hunter, Patrol Men, After Death), Steve Dolton (Devil's Tower, Zombie Undead). I expect a screener for this to turn up very soon...

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Looking forward to... The Unfolding

The Unfolding, from writer-director Eugene McGing, is a brand new feature which should be finished in post next month, fingers crossed. Here's the synopsis and some photos.

England, October 2017…a fearful world stands on the brink of nuclear catastrophe. Tam Burke, a paranormal investigator, and girlfriend Rose Ellis, travel to the wilds of Dartmoor to see the ancient and mysterious 'Hound Tor'. As they stand and admire the incredible rock formation, they are enveloped by a strange mist, and see a spectral apparition that seems to watch them from the summit. Slightly shaken after their experience, they continue on their way to Hopton House, a rambling old building, its history dating back to the 15th century. Strange and paranormal events have been documented there, and Tam hopes that the interviews he has arranged with the caretaker and his wife will be of great importance in proving the existence of the supernatural.

Tam is crestfallen to find his interviewees fleeing the old building in dread. Despite his protests, they insist on departing, but do leave him the keys to the house. Together with Rose, he grasps the opportunity to stay alone there, hoping to salvage a little research from the trip. After their first night as guests, the young couple become convinced that they are not alone. Despite his high hopes, Tam is unable to record any solid evidence of ghostly activity. They decide to leave after two nights. They are then surprised by the arrival of Harvey Waller, Tam’s sceptical university buddy, who has come to lend a hand with the research, and is looking forward to having some fun at his friend’s expense. Harvey soon finds his amusement turn to trepidation, as even he is forced to admit that there is indeed something inexplicable happening around them.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Actors vs zombies in Opening Night of the Living Dead

Here's one that slipped entirely under my radar. Opening Night of the Living Dead is the first feature directed by actor Joshua Dickinson, adapted from his own stage play which was a hit in Edinburgh back in 2009. In a nutshell, an amdram group are performing Romeo and Juliet when a zombie outbreak happens - and the show must go on.

Sounds and looks great. Although the 60-minute film isn't on IMDB yet there's a Facebook page which says the cast includes Amy Bellwood (Branagh's Cinderella), Joe Leat, Roger Parkins and Callum Hale, as well as Dickinson himself.

ONotLD was filmed at the Quay Theatre, Sudbury (in Suffolk) last summer with £4,000 of funds from Kickstarter and is scheduled to premiere in that very same venue this Sunday, 17th August. A handful of tickets are still available at £7/£5 - grab 'em while you can. If you can't make it, the film  is also lined up to play Ipswich and Colchester later this year.

I only discovered the existence of Opening Night because I was researching Joshua Dickinson's background for my review of Ed Boase's The Mirror which plays Frightfest the following week, giving Dickinson two premieres in the space of eight days!

Not to be confused with Opening Night of the Living Dead, a zombie short directed by Shalena Oxley in 2008, or Opening Night of the Living Dead, a zombie short directed by Jonathan McDevott in 2010, or Opening Night of the Living Dead, an unreleased zombie feature directed by Brian Bazala and Jay Lavley in 2011, Those are all American. Joshua's film is solidly British, and all the better for it.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Legend of the 5ive fina11y 6etting re1eas3d

Back when people thought it was cool to randomly replace letters with numbers, James P Weatherall made a film called The Legend of the 5ive. Shot in 2009/10 and first screened in October 2011, the film has sat on the shelf for a few years (apart from a screening at Horror-on-Sea in January 2013) during which time the basic premise - a found footage movie about a ghost-hunting show - has become something of a cliche in low-budget horror cinema (see Dark Vision for one of the most recent examples). Which may be unfortunate, or may be why a distributor has now picked it up.

Fenix films will release The Legend of the 5ive on DVD in the States on 9th September; it's up on Amazon now. No idea what it's like.

All Hallows Eve – the perfect night for your first ghost hunt, to find that irrefutable proof of live after death, at least that’s what sceptical documentary film‐maker Julia Marsh was told when she joined Greg Connell and his team ‘Paranormal Investigations Inc’ for their live Halloween special.
   Their location: a remote farm in deepest, darkest England. Their mission: to uncover the truth behind the legend of the ‘Screaming Spectres of Emerson farm’ known locally as ‘The 5ive’.The legend of the 5ive
Rumour has it, three hundred years ago, five mysterious strangers were found butchered on the land. Their bodies placed in such a way to form the points of a giant pentagram, their deaths said to be so violent, so hideous, that you can still see their screaming forms running from whoever or whatever killed them.
   The Live show begins and the World Wide Web watches as the team quickly records evidence of paranormal activity. Unexplainable images, unearthly sounds, poltergeist activity and the revelation of the name Anne Foster; the name you call upon three times to reveal the fate of the five. Spotting a rare ratings opportunity Greg Connell leads the team in an impromptu midnight séance, calling Anne Fosters name from the points of the pentagram, as the witching hour strikes.
   At exactly 12.15am their live webcast inexplicitly dies and Julia and the team find themselves thrust into a horrific fight for survival. The evil they called forth will deliver the terrifying truth.
   This horror feature is the debut from director James P Weatherall and takes the reality of TV’s Most Haunted, the cold horror of the Blair witch and mixes them together with an equal measure of subtle dark humour to create a disturbing but ultimately entertaining movie.