Monday 22 December 2014

Red Christmas (2014)

Movie Poster

Written and Directed by Steve Rudzinski

Stars: Seth Gontkovic, Amie Wrenn, Shawn Shelpman and Steve Rudzinski

(Online Screener Copy) 

Many thanks to Mr Rudzinski for sharing another of his films with Hacked in the Head. I have seen a fun slasher from Steve followed by a campy and fun adventure horror film and this time around we have a found footage style creeper told from the killers point of view.

Said killer is Tara (a scarily natural Amie Wrenn) a happy go lucky, intelligent and coherent young woman who just happens to be a serial killer!!  Tara is only active in the month of December when she seeks to kill three men until the following holiday season.

The film in its basic form plays as Taras video diary as she takes the audience through her ghoulish lifestyle; the how, the why, the when etc. Things take a decidedly darker turn after Tara bags herself another victim (after going 'Christmas shopping' as she cheerfully puts it).  Seth Gontkovic plays our unfortunate victim Bill as Tara opens a vicious can of Christmas misery on him.

To not give anything else away I will add that events don't play out exactly as you might expect with a nice twist on the tale coming in following some pretty wince inducing torture scenes. I applaud this curveball very much!

While I am on the gory side of things, let me just elaborate on Tara's MO as a serial killing loony tunes. She likes a hefty dose of torture, tied to a chair style and oh man does she play with her prey. Poor Bill suffers a lot of physical and mental torture and both are sometimes hard to watch. Effects are all practical and again this should be applauded.

Red Christmas is a an engaging and well acted movie only clocking in at 55 minutes meaning it never outstays its welcome. There are some genuinely chilling moments and these are enhanced by the killer performance by Amie Wrenn and the pure bewilderment and horror conveyed by Seth Gontkovic. I'm very impressed by Red Christmas particularly since it also gives a new spin on the seasonal horror sub genre.

Thats not all - you can purchase the film yourself along with Steve's other movies right HERE which is great enough on its own BUT its also available in Blu Ray and limited edition - so go get it!

Tara is dreaming of a Red Christmas....good luck to.any poor dude on her radar!!!!

Monday 27 October 2014

Captain Z & The Terror of Leviathan (2014)


 (Online Screener Copy)

Director by Steve Rudzinski

Written by  Steve Rudzinski, Zoltan Zilai

Stars: Zoltan Zilai, Madison Siple, Steve Rudzinski, Aleen Isley, Julie Alexander, Rebecca Amick.

After checking out and reviewing Steve Rudzinski's comedy slasher Everyone Must Die, I considered myself a fan and eagerly looked forward to his next project.  Steve was nice enough to ask me to check out an online screener of his newest film which is as wacky as its title: Captain Z & the Terror of Leviathan.  Asked to direct the film by co writer Zoltan Zilai, Steve soon found himself cast as the lead character Glen, for those who want some background!

Starting off in 1714, Captain Z (writer Zoltan Zilai) manages to avert a bloody disaster when a group of possessed townsfolk almost raise the horror of Leviathan via magical amulet.  Fast forward 300 years and it appears that history is doomed to repeat itself when a ragtag group of hillbilly's get their grubby mitts on aforementioned amulet.  Its not long until they are too possessed and being led to raise Leviathan - but not to worry, the legendary Captain Z has been transported to present day too and he isn't going to take this lying down!

In a nutshell this movie is hilarious and entertaining. It absolutely does NOT take itself seriously if you hadn't already guessed that and this made me love it even more. It has some well written comedy and also a great separation of characters and their individual identities - something that is always important to me personally. 

The acting was engaging and worked well toward bringing the various characters to life. Steve totally shines in front of the camera so its no wonder he ended up playing Glen - impressive work. The hillbillies were all a lot of fun and local museum employee Heather (Madison Siple) also shone. Zoltan Zilai's performance as Captain Z is delightfully OTT - lots of laughs here.

Hats off to Steve and Zoltan for a fun movie which, refreshingly, is not in the slasher sub-genre (and I love slasher movies). It has good laughs and lots of adventure making for a highly entertaining hour and a half. 

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Varsity Blood (2014)

Screener copy courtesy of Aim Publicity

Directed by: Jake Helgren

Written by: Jake Helgren

Stars: Lexi Giovagnoli, Wesley Scott, Natalie Peyton, Blair Jackson and Debbie Rochon

Release: DVD, UK, August 18 2014, Image Entertainment
                DVD USA, August 19 2014Image Entertainment

Varsity Blood follows a group of teenagers partying it up on Halloween on the anniversary of a local tragedy. What they did not count on was a vengeful killer to arrive with the intent of picking them off one by one by one by - yeh you get the picture.

As the group of cheerleaders and jocks dwindles to next to nothing its up to new girl in town Hannah (well played by Lexi Giovagnoli) to unmask the maniac and try to escape with her life! Who knew moving would turn out so fun...

Varsity Blood is one of those films that sounds great on paper - an 80s style slasher film complete with costumed, mysterious killer. In fact the mascot costume worn by the killer is one of the most fun and interesting (if impractical) I have seen for ages.

Where I think this movie failed to hit the spot for me personally was the lack of imagination beyond the costume.  This kind of film will likely have slasher fans screaming out for some creativity in the kills and a more focused separation of the characters identities. Sadly both are fairly generic, and while I enjoy a good old fashioned generic slasher plot wise, I really enjoy well drawn characters and some offbeat kills even more.  It got a bit hard to really tell who was who while the arrows (points for the killer using a bow and arrow!) were flying all over the place and I ended up not really caring who lived or died sadly.

For those looking for a quick and easy slasher fix I certainty wouldn't deter you from this film, Its got the babes, the blood and the general chaos you would expect with a madman descending on a group of vapid teens. I would personally still be keen to see what Jake Helgren has up his sleeve next, its just a shame that Varsity Blood didn't deliver what I thought it might.

Friday 17 October 2014

Doll Factory: Exclusive Poster Art and Premiere News!

Not too long ago I had the opportunity to interview writer/director Stephen Wolfe about his upcoming horror comedy Doll Factory a film I have been excited about ever since!

Now producer Carlos Tovar has very kindly shared details of the films upcoming premiere (why oh why do I have to be stuck here in the UK??)  and some exclusive poster art!

The poster has a fun 80s style to it which only endears me to this flick even more. It was designed by horror artist Nathan Thomas Millineand I am sure people will agree that it promises a fun ride.  Check it out below along with details of how YOU can see the film!

From the official press release:

“Doll Factory” is an over-the-top horror comedy that centers on a small Texas town terrorized by evil possessed  baby dolls. Wolfe wrote and directed his second feature a year later. His second feature was produced by Andy Palmer, Carlos M. Tovar and Joe Grisaffi. It stars Nicole Elliott (Abel’s Field), Patrick Sane (Breaking Bad, Sin City 2), Deke Anderson (Army of Darkness, Green Lantern) and Larry Carrell (Jacob, She Rises). 

“For the Doll Factory key art, I wanted to go for a classic creature feature look and feel,” explains Wolfe, “so I reached out to a well-respected artist named Nathan Thomas Milliner. Milliner has created artwork for a wide

variety of classics including the Scream Factory anniversary DVD/Blu-Ray releases for Halloween 2, Halloween 3, The Howling, Terror Train and others. His unique blend of realism and eye for dynamic artistry elevated the key art well beyond anything we could have created in-house. It perfectly captures the spirit and tone of the film.” News and updates from “Doll Factory” can be found on the Official Facebook page ( 

The film is scheduled to screen in Houston, TX on October 29 before beginning a 2015 horror festival & convention run''

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Thursday 25 September 2014

Legacy of Thorn (2014)

Legacy of Thorn Movie Poster Mem Ferda to Play Detective in New Horror Film Legacy of Thorn

Directed by MJ Dixon 

Written by MJ Dixon

Stars: Jade wallis, Mem Ferda, Paris Rivers, Craig Canning, Jane Haslehurst, Aaron Jeffcoate, Stephanie Jezard, Evie Constanti, Alex Tamaro, Dave Laurie and Richard Daniel Thomas Holloran as 'Thorn;' 

I doubt anyone was more excited than me (challenge me I dare you) when Mycho Entertainment announced a spin off movie from their original Slasher House featuring the colossal sized and colossally crazy manic 'Thorn'. Clad in black, face covered with steel, and wielder of HUGE blades, Thorn chased poor actress Eleanor James around the mysterious Slasher House in an attempt to claim her as his victim. However, there is far more to this mammoth maniacs story then we ever knew and Legacy of Thorn truly lets us into that bloody, twisted world.

The basic premise of LoT is a group of survivors from Thorns previous antics banding together to take him down once and for all, but there is even more to it then that. You need to pay attention to this film as it makes a number of time jumps in order for the audience to witness what has led all of these characters to this dark place (and it gives audiences a chance to see Thorn flex those vicious muscles).

For the majority of this film I felt swept up in what I'm going to call an action horror film as opposed to a slasher film - although there is plenty of slashing throughout mind! I hope that this is not offensive to MJ and co but I felt definite Terminator 2 shades in several parts of the film - a good thing obviously.

Now remind yourselves that this is an independent feature people - money is tight and resources are usually low. That besides there are some incredible scenes in this film that totally belie that fact. Not only are many of the death scenes done with a keen eye and impressive practical effects but there is an under water shot that had me on the edge of my seat. This particular scene was extremely well shot and creepy/depressing as hell and gives me great faith that MJ Dixon and his team may well have the UK horror scene by the nads soon.

Performance wise the group of survivors all do a great job of portraying wounded and angry people, their lives in ruins because of an encounter they never expected or wanted. Jade Wallis as lead 'Jess', Paris Rivers as 'Eric' and Craig Canning as 'Clark' are clear standouts and its easy to see why they where chosen as the core survivors. Special mention to Evie Constanti as school mean girl 'Sally Marsh' who producer Anna McCarthy assures me is a sweetie in real life. This is the kind of intimidating, spiteful girl that would have even had the boys running and hiding at my school! Great albeit scary character.  Not as scary as Thorn a margin....Richard Holloran plays the masked madman with a far more hulkingly creepy presence than many a horror icon. The thought of turning around to seeing that behind me blades and all is enough to make me stop watching horror films (well probably wont go that far but still...)

I completely recommend Legacy of Thorn and please don't be put off by my references to Slasher House you don't have to have seen it to enjoy this in the slightest - although I recommend it. The film has everything, horror, action, emotion and some laughs and to top it off a very intriguing ending that strongly suggests there is even more to explore in the world of Thorn. Thank you to the Mycho team for sharing this with, it was my pleasure to watch.

UK and US viewers can show they support AND get their hands of a fantastic movie by heading HERE and preordering the official Legacy of Thorn DVD. If you like your movies digital then go HERE.  Go get this film folks!

Monday 15 September 2014

Ten (2014)

(Online Screener)

Directed by Sophia Cacciola, Michael J. Epstein

Written by Sophia Cacciola, Michael J. Epstein

Stars: Jade Sylvan, Molly Carlisle, Molly Devon, Karin Webb, Kerri Lynch, Leah Principe, Rachel Leah Blumenthal, Susannah Plaster, Porcelain Dalya and Sophia Cacciola

A wonderfully arty and creepy post modern slasher film with grin inducing offbeat performances. It's like Ten little Indians went to Twin Peaks to get offed one by one and for that this film gets a high recommendation from me!

A creepy opening scene involving a nice old fashioned horror movie chase complete with masked psycho and beautiful lady, leads the film moves towards it core plot. Ten woman arrive at the mansion where the aforementioned chase took place but in an intriguing twist  it transpires that these are all apparent strangers with no ties to one another.

As the women find themselves stranded for the night, a masked maniac begins taking them out one by one.... you have all heard THAT one before I know, however Ten has a refreshingly different tone to your usual slice and dice fare. There is a dreamlike quality to proceedings that may take the seasoned slasher fan out of their comfort zone but will certainly appeal to those looking for something a bit different and original. There are some funny scenes for sure - ten very different people all holed up together? Of course you should expect some fighting and squabbling! You may not, however, expect a musical number but that's what you get and it should raise a smile.

Please show your support for TEN and go and check out the official movie website.  I am excited to see what is next in store from this team that's for sure.

Monday 18 August 2014

Dorchesters Revenge: The Return of Crinoline Head (2014)

Image result for dorchester's revenge the return of crinoline head

Online Screener Copy (courtsesy of Horsecreek Productions)

Written and Directed by Tommy Faircloth

Stars: Debbie Rochon, Jason Vail, Christian James, Kirsten Ray, Leah Wiseman, Elizabeth Mears, Gunner Willis, Nicholas A Sweezer, Cameron Turner

I wont lie - I was extremely excited when Tommy Faircloth of Horsecreek Productions, allowed me a sneak peak at his sequel to the campy cult classic Crinoline Head this weekend. Like, beyond excited.  I am a big fan of Crinoline Head with its 80s slasher tone, cool kills and bizarre assortment of characters, some with their very own unique lingo! Also it has a psycho wearing a crinoline skirt to cover his/her face know....!

The sequel focuses one of the two survivors of Crinoline Heads killing spree from 20 years previously, now a college teacher. Paul Donner (Jason Vail) doesn't like to talk about those events so it comes as a shock to him when two of his pupils,  David (Christian James) and James (Gunner Willis) wish to do their research project on local legends on the one and only Dorchester Stewart - the young boy who became Crinoline Head after a traumatic childhood event (if you haven't seen the original fear not, Dorchesters childhood is nicely covered at the start of this movie).  This brings back hideous memories for Paul who doesn't prevent his students from undertaking the project but is clearly affected by resurrecting his disturbing past.

David and James decide to camp out at the site of the murders and are joined by fellow students Shelby (Kirsten Ray) and Donna (Leah Wiseman) who ask to tag along. They are also trailed by several other students, meatheads Scott (Nicholas A Sweezer) and Reggie (Cameron Turner) along with slutty and spiteful Janet (Elizabeth Mears) who claim they 'are not' there to steal David and James' idea.  Another bump in the road is the shotgun wielding Betsy (an insanely awesome performance from Debbie Rochon) who lives on the property in her mobile home and isn't happy at the intrusion on the land.  Of course they all have FAR worse to fear as the present starts to mirror the past and the bodies begin to pile up. Is Dorchester Stewart really still alive after his ambiguous end back in the 90's....or is someone else responsible for this new blood shed?

There are a lot of great things to shout about with this long awaited sequel. Firstly its aesthetically great; really well shot and directed and comes off as 100% professional. Sometimes an indie feature can suffer, although not always, from sub par camera work but this isn't a problem in the slightest here. Secondly the writing is spot on, hilarious dialogue, some great one liners, and some excellent nods to the original film and other classic horror films..... "plug it up" being particularly  superb...

In terms of acting I was really really impressed. Scream Queen Debbie Rochon seems to be having a ball with her material in the role of Betsy. Gun toting, profanity spewing and oversexed, Debbie owned every single scene as this character. Explaining each and every one of her very obvious sexual innuendos had me in stitches. The lead teens played by Christian James and Kirsten Ray were great and had believable chemistry between them, Ray has some great chase scenes towards the end reminiscent of slasher films of their reigning era the 1980s. I LOVED Donna, played by Leah Wiseman, she had the most fantastic facial expressions whether it be disdain, sadness or fury (wait for THAT scene) and I hope to see more of her work in the future. Both Nicholas Sweezer and Elizabeth Mears play the teens you love to hate brilliantly and both individually have some great scenes...both meet Betsy in completely different circumstances and their interactions are just perfect. Jason Vail plays the haunted Paul Donner to perfection and it was great to have a surviving character return to add a sense of continuity between both scenes. Jason also has some great material later on in the movie which he really sinks his teeth into.

Tommy has written in some great gore gags into the movie, one of which made me squirm for a while after, its also hilarious but that doesn't take away from the eeeek factor of it! There are some nicely done scenes of murder and mayhem and you wont need to a fan of the original to appreciate them.

A perfect sequel to a cult classic, Dorchesters Revenge: the Return of Crinoline Head has it all; laughs, scares, blood, guts and some very very funny drag queens. Viewers with a good sense of humor and an interest in quirky slasher movies will LOVE this. Check out the official Horsecreek Productions website and also the official Dorchesters Revenge Facebook page to find out more.

Tuesday 5 August 2014

Pieces of Talent (2014)

Directed by Joe Stauffer 

Written by  Joe Stauffer, Dustin Lewis 

Stars:  Kristi Ray, David Long, Nate Panning, Barbara Weetman, Jon Stafford, Taylor Kowalski

Release: DVD and VHS available HERE   (Enter 'Hacked' for a $2 discount from your purchase - due to the kindness of David Long!)

From the Official Pieces of Talent webiste:

Set in the small coastal town of Bright Leaf, North Carolina, “Pieces of Talent” centers around Charlotte, a disillusioned aspiring actress working a night job as a cocktail waitress in order to make ends meet. Charlotte catches a break when seemingly chance circumstances put her in contact with a local filmmaker, David Long. David and Charlotte form a quick friendship that leads to Charlotte landing the starring role in David’s newest project. David quickly becomes obsessed with Charlotte and begins building his bloody masterpiece. He films each encounter with the ultimate goal of filming Charlotte as his final installment. David is a happily obsessed individual willing to do whatever it takes to make “true art”. He utilizes his charm and skills to make something dark and deranged seem utterly beautiful and loving.
In a sense Pieces of Talent is a toughie to review - not because I did not enjoy it, but because I DID enjoy it. To those interested in owning a copy I highly recommend it, but would warn there are several disturbing scenes - these scenes are incredibly important in order to support the plot but I thought I would warn you anyway!

Anyway with the dull stuff out of the way, I have to applaud the director and writers of Pieces of Talent for creating a visually excellent, brilliantly written and acted, sometimes grueling piece of horror cinema with enough human drama to make you feel something for those involved. Don't expect any thinly drawn characters of whose deaths you are just foaming at the mouth for. This film gives us characters we either care about or dislike to the point you expect them to die but you are still not sure they deserve the fate that is likely coming their way. That's where David Long comes in.

David Long playing, well, David Long is a complete revelation in this film. No matter what he is doing good, bad, kind or outright atrocious, its incredibly hard to avert your eyes - a real raw acting talent which is carried to a high standard all the way to the movies grim conclusion.

Likewise Kristi Ray as Charlotte provides an amazingly natural performance and there are points in the film where I wanted to reach out and hug her, she is basically beaten down for having the audacity to have ambitions, ambitions which eventually guide her into the twisted realm of David Long. Charlotte's mother played by Barbara Weetman, one of the guilty parties for driving Charlotte's sense of worth deep into the ground is another fantastic performance. Unless Barbara was actually drunk off her face on set the whole time, I have to say, man can this lady play the bitter alcoholic to a fine art - a truly believable performance.

There are a number of grisly scenes in this movie, all brilliantly done and practical with a few being quite disturbing. The first two victims fates definitely had me wanting to cover my eyes and this was less about the graphic nature and more about Davids cheerful disposition throughout - watch and you will catch my drift.

Support indie cinema and grab of a copy of this film, Joe Stauffer is clearly a director to watch based on this film which has a wonderfully dreamy feel in among the expertly written and directed scenes of horror. I also predict bright futures for many others involved in the film, particularly the actors mentioned.

Thursday 31 July 2014

PJ Starks New Horror Anthology Needs YOU!

PJ starks is responsible for one of my all time favorite indie horror films Hallows Eve: Slaughter on 2nd Street so of course I was excited to hear of a new project in the works: Volumes of Blood.

Described as a anthology of 5 horror shorts, directed by film makers across the Kentucky region, this should be a blast. The project is penned by P.J. Starks along with Todd Martin and Nathan Thomas Milliner and is currently raising funds on Kickstarter which now has just 36 days to go.

Production kicks off in August through November this year following the end of the campaign but please note that the team needs to reach their $3750 target in order to receive funding.

Please head on over to the Kickstarter page and show PJ and co some love, the project sounds pretty massive with a lot of collaboration and even the chance for backers to get REALLY involved in the project.

Take a stab at reading... before it takes a stab at you.

Razor Sharp Studios Terrible Two Shares the Grease with Hacked Reviews!

It is always a pleasure to have a conversation with Eamon Hardiman and Missy Dawn of Razor Sharp Studios. Hard working doesn't really begin to describe these makers of wonderfully bad taste, funny, entertaining as hell independent films - year on year they don't seem to bloody stop! Most recently Razor Sharp studios completed  latest movie Pig Girl (Tip - DVD available HERE), a slightly darker spin off from the Porkchop trilogy which features the titular harridan from hell wrecking death and destruction on her lonesome.  Director, writer, producer and much much more Eamon Hardiman and actress producer and much much more Missy Dawn gave some great answers to my questions so please read on and enjoy!

HitH: Let’s kick off with Razor Sharp Studios new movie Pig Girl which you wrote and directed (and so much more). I love the idea of a straight horror film particularly as you have cited giallo as an inspiration. Pig Girl was such a revelation in Porkchop 3D, creepy, strange and quite scary! What can fans expect from this spin off movie? I know you set out to make it big on frights, how did you set about achieving this?

Eamon: We definitely started out going to giallo route, but I think it wound up becoming something much more in line with the first Porkchop movie. It's very traditional, but due to our budget, time, crew, and cast limitations, we actually wound up with a more interesting and original film than we would have. At least I hope so. Folks seem to enjoy it so far. We did focus strongly on the build-up to kills much more in this one. There's a massive chase sequence mid-way through that I enjoyed a lot. We try to build more tension and do things in a slightly more epic way than we have in the well as going back to some tried-and-true slasher kills.

HitH:  I remember Missy,  you cited Pig Girl as your favorite character to play when we last spoke. How did it feel to don that hideous mask again and get to go full on Pig Girl? It must have been exciting to take the reign from Porkchop and get your kill on, alone?

Missy: It felt awesome! I think everyone's dream is to be the killer in a horror movie. At least, I would hope so. It really gets you going to be able to chase young nubile vixens through the woods with a weapon.It’s an adrenaline rush. The mask makes everything hard to see so running with actual weapons is risky. When you produce a real machete close to someone’s face…shit gets real. It would be my dream for Porkchop and Pig Girl to become horror icons one day. We'll see what happens!

HitH: I think it’s great that the Porkchop trilogy grew with each movie. You have your original film, an ode to 80s slasher movie, complete with nasty kills, comedy and quirkiness. Then came Porkchops taking events to the present day and although funny, had a real black edge with a least two unanticipated shocks during the film. Finally you progressed to a mammoth of a third part, in 3D no less, which brought back key players from previous movies. Did you have an idea of how you wanted a trilogy to play out or did you come up with the idea for the sequels after the first one came out?

Eamon: It was always a joke, you know....."Porkchop 3 will be in 3D." We made the first one and just really thought that we could do better. Zombie Babies was a huge learning experience for us on what to avoid and what to focus on and how to reign a story in to be a simple little thing and then add flair to that. We fucked up so many times on that movie.....and we saw that someone had released a Porkchop knock-off with a bigger budget so we decided "Hey, fuck these guys. Let's make a sequel." I'd wanted to work with Sam Qualiana in a really big way and it seemed like the perfect time to do so. Once that was done, we talked about what to do next and found out we had access to a 3D camera, so we decided to give it a go. It all just kind of flowed from one event to the next. You get the itch, you look at what you want to do versus what you can AFFORD to do. It would have been really easy to just do a Porkchop 4 after know, we already had a lot of weapons....we already had the costume....but folks just loved Pig Girl so damn much. I wanted to see that movie. So I figured I'd better make it.

HitH: Although I love Pig Girl (possibly fear her as well) – when are we going to see Missy Dawns lovely face in another movie…if the character gets to be an uber bitch from hell as well, then all the better!

Missy: I know, right? I got to play a maskless role in Pig Girl (due to… last minute circumstances) and it was actually lot of fun! Don’t get me wrong, I still love to kill teens, but running from yourself adds an incredible layer of complexity to the “character development” process. It’s also hilarious.I think there will definitely be some more Missy Dawn sans the grease very soon! I'm always ready for new opportunities and ready to read any scripts that come my way.

HitH: I need to apologise…I realised the other day to my horror I still haven’t watched The Crawling Dead! I will be rectifying that very soon…on that note is there more to come from the Zombie Babies side of things?

Eamon: One day, maybe. Those are hard movies to make, for a number of reasons. I think I'd rather do something unrelated to Pig Girl or Porkchop or the Zombie Babies next.

HitH: you both do a lot more than one job on each movie, which is extremely impressive. You put so much work in, that it must hurt to a degree when somebody tears the film apart on Amazon or IMDB? My opinion is that many of these reviewers expect everything to be polished, big budget and unflawed with no real knowledge of what independent cinema actually means. Although everyone’s entitled to their opinion, how would you respond to overly harsh critiques and piss poor reviews such as “I hated this movie, it sucked” (end of review)?

Eamon: Hey, at least they watched it, right? Our movies don't really generate good reviews often....and probably never will. We're not making 90 minutes of just gore for the torture-porn underground crowd, we're not making whatever the fuck the Walking Dead fans want (Reedus?)....and we're not making big budget stuff. With the exception of Zombie Babies, every movie we've made was made for under $2,000. That's crazy shit. I think that most times, critics are NOT horror fans and most horror fans aren't necessarily into the same stuff that I am. I honestly could care less about gore unless it's fun. I make fun horror films...or at least I think I do until someone posts on Amazon that it sucked.

Missy: It does hurt a little because I love making these films and I want people to enjoy them. When they don’t, it sucks. But bad press is still press, right? ;) I never look at it like, “Fuck this asshole. They don’t know half the shit we’ve been through.” Of course they don’t and they shouldn’t!I don’t think it’s cool to respond and lash out at people for writing their opinion. So whenever I come across something negative, I read it, cast a curse spell upon the individual and their family, and then move on.

Like Eamon said, at least our movies are out there and people are watching. With everything in filmmaking, you’ve gotta take the good with the bad, and at the end of the day, I’m proud of our cast and crews hard work to make these films happen!

HitH: How are things going with getting your movies into festivals? It would be amazing for you to get them out there in such a way. I know it’s a very long and expensive old trip but the Southend on Sea Horror film festival would love your movies!

Eamon: We actually just got into a few festivals here in the States It's exciting as hell! I've got my passport. I'm ready. I just need a couple thousand bucks for the trip. You know...the budget of Pig Girl 2.

Missy: Pig Girl, The Crawling Dead and Porkchop 3D were all accepted and will be screening at various film festivals this year! Our booster fundraisers helped us cover some of those entry fee costs – and we’d love to submit to more festivals if we are able. I just checked out the Horror on the Sea film fest web site and I can’t find the link for submissions! If you can point me in the right direction we’d love to see if we could submit some films. And then if we are accepted… we could finally film Pig Girl’s Motherfucking European Vacation….

HitH: Finally I have to ask what’s next for Razor Sharp Studios. You never seem to bloody stop so are you going to take a damn well earned break…or get moving on another feature?

Eamon: Break.

Missy: A slight break…. I wanted to take this summer and really promote those three films so we are hitting the convention circuit! I can't wait!

Thanks so much to both of you, always a pleasure to be in touch! xx

Friday 4 July 2014

The Night Before Easter (2014)


Directed by Joseph Henson and Nathan Johnson

Written by Joseph Henson and Nathan johnson

Starring April Sinclair, Emily Chidalek, Alyssa Matsiuk, Bonnie Marilyn Jean, Eric Wyatt, Nelson Flint, Michael Seragon, Gemma Hardy, Chelsea Regina, Madeleine Hicks, Jason Gonzales, Barbara Prince, Nathan Johnson, Rick James Willis, Joseph Henson.

Many thanks to the guys behind new holiday slasher The Night Before Easter for sharing it with me - much obliged! Just like the best of the 1980s stalk and slash ‘em's, this movie features a legendary killer who stalks his victims in a costume befitting to the time of year - naturally a bunny costume in this one.

Two separate murder spree's at hands of the same mad man still haunt a small town and this year a group of its young teens are going to meet the sharp end of his axe as they hunted through an old storage facility. Has the same killer returned for another outing, or does another maniacal bunny have an axe to grind?

There is a lot of obvious heart and soul poured into this film, it’s very evident that the film makers love slasher films and had a great time making this fun love letter to horrors best (in my opinion) decade. They have also thrown in some new and original ideas such as the hilarious and clever opening which I enjoyed immensely.

The characters are not a melting pot of total dicks so you do have some interest in what is going to happen to them. I have to admit that some horror films such as Sleepaway Camp work for the exact opposite reason, such awful characters BUT also entertaining and just ripe for a mean spirited death scene. But truthfully, a lot of films have become so generic and dull because of poorly written ‘mean’ girls or boys and so you don’t care about them and by the time they are killed you are ready to switch off anyway. So it is a nice refreshing change to have some well-drawn characters with some depth to them. It also helps that the main actors do a great job in their roles. On that note I thought that the young couple just after the opening scene may be main characters because I thought that the two actors involved were so natural - very impressive.

All in all The Night Before Easter is a fun watch with good characters, a great killer, a bit of mystery and a promising indication of what might come next from Joseph and Nathan. Recommended especially for fans of the all-time great holiday slashers!

Friday 2 May 2014

The Devils Show (2014)

(Screener copy)

Directed by Robert Noel Gifford

Written by Robert Noel Gifford

With Robert Noel Giffords Death Hours transformation into The Devils Hours I decided to revise my initial review after Rob was so kind as to send me a copy! Therefore I will include my original reviews of Dirty Little Dead Things and The Wishing Box (both of which reward repeat viewings) and also include a review of new horror short Believe in me Not. The Devils Show is a great collection of creepy horror shorts which show a great deal of talent for the unexpected and original. 

Dirty Little Dead Things:


Well Dirty Little Dead Things was very similar in theme to No Strings 2. A group of beautiful woman fall foul of a doll out for blood as a mysterious parcel is passed from one to the other. The difference in Dirty Little Dead Things is that all five ladies dissed and dismissed the wrong dude (Mr Gifford himself!) and he has found a macabre and murderous way to bring toys to life, to do his bidding, Very bad news for Jacquelyn Velvets, Suzi Lorraine and co as the nastiest looking of little fiends is dispatched to their homes to take revenge on them. I loved the little doll in this, he was like a larger version of the Tiki doll in Trilogy of Terror and far uglier, not only that but he is one vicious little fella! The first victim in the short is given the longest run around, terrorised by the doll, Trilogy of Terror style, before being horribly hacked to death and lets just say our puppet friend shows no mercy on this lady! The doll then makes his rounds, ending the lives of the other unsuspecting woman such as an impaired Suzi Lorraine, who has no hope in escaping our little pal! In short, Dirty Little Dead Things provides a wickedly fun 25 minutes, taking the very best elements of No Strings 2 and condensing them into a gruesome little horror flick which will satiate any fan of the killer toy sub genre. Great work Rob!

The Wishing Box:


The Wishing Box is the second, and slightly longer segment, of Robert Noel Giffords, Death Hours part 1 and reflects the things I love most about Robs work. You get your mysterious legend at the start, part acted and part textualised, in order to explain why the following mayhem is occurring. Following this we get a variety of characters experiencing the bad side of a malignant collection of stones which are home to hundreds of demonic souls. During this short we are treated to the ill effects of the stones on various characters, including that of Jaquelyn Velvets and her down and out husband as well as Kylee Nash's character Krista, and those unfortunate enough to be involved with her! There are some decent, bloody scenes in this short, particularly in Kylee Nash's segment...and for those so inclined...Ms Nash shows some skin...a lot of skin! I really enjoyed Jacquelyn Velvets role in this movie, I was a big fan of her in No Strings 2 and I think she does a great job in both this short and Dirty Little Dead Things (playing two easily discernibly different characters) . I hope she goes onto the take the indie horror world by the horns! 

Believe in me Not:


Believe in me Not features Anju Mcintyre as a young woman, haunted by the demonic spirits which invade her home. Upset at her boyfriend, Anju does a great job of carrying the short film, largely on her own, getting worked up about the way he has treated her while unaware that dark forces are slowly but surely coming for her.....

Believe in me Not may well be my favorite of the three short films on offer here. The best thing about it was the atmosphere of sheer dread running through the majority of it before horrible things really start happening. We follow the main character as she goes about her business, knowing that the strange parcel she has received cannot be anything benign, but unsure of exactly whats going to happen next.

When the bad stuff does kick off, there are some nice creepy scenes, the demonic entity creeping around the hallway is excellent and gives a truly "what the FUCK is THAT!?" moment.

The ending is great, just when you think its all over the evil that invades the house has more tricks up its sleeve and has a wicked plan on cornering its next victim.....

Another creepy, dark outing from Rob, with the usual imagination and offbeat effects that I have loved since watching No Strings 2: Playtime in Hell. I'm really looking forward to Robs segment in the upcoming horror anthology Blaze of Gory and also a new cut of No Strings 2...bring it on!

Find out more about The Devils Show over at the official Facebook Page and show your support of independent cinema.

Saturday 19 April 2014

Night of the Dolls (2014)

(Online screener copy)

Directed by Daniel A Murphy

Written by Tom Komisar

Stars: Emily Rhoads, Bryer Sage, Cassie Boom Guthrie, Linda Schrader, R.J Cecott, Eric Reaume, Dustin Lawson, Chuck Smith, Deb Perkins and Paisley Blackburn.

Night of the Dolls is the new horror film by Daniel Murphy ( Director of the excellent revenge flick And Then YOU Die) a dark journey that manages to be horrifying, creepy, emotional and funny in turn. 

I'm going to be extra careful to avoid anything remotely close to spoilers in this review as this is a film that calls to be viewed with limited knowledge. I will of course touch on the synopsis as much as possible without giving anything away.

An all girl rock group, The Lolita Dolls, are heading to an old Sanitarium with their two male companions to shoot their new music video. Kari (Emily Rhoads), the lead vocalist of the band, has a strong interest in the dark, bloody past of the Sanitarium and thanks to a recommendation from their biggest fan, they have secured exclusive permission to record their video there. Right where a number of horrific events occurred twenty years previous........

While the four feisty girls and their mini entourage of pranksters Lenny (Eric Reaume) and Steve (R.J. Cecott) start to make their  way to their macabre destination, Detective Bailey (Chuck Smith) is doing his own investigation into the gruesome events of the past.

Neither Lolita Dolls and co or the viewer will be able to foresee the terror that will be unleashed by this fateful trip and on this note I must commend writer Tom Komisar for the twisted story he has woven. Its going to keep viewers guessing as I did and I will happily admit that I was wrong on several assumptions.

I wont lie, there are some very disturbing scenes in this film a few of which had me squirming but there is also a great deal of heart at the centre of all the madness. There is a particularly powerful scene towards the end where bloody, wince inducing scenes are broken up by shots of the band having fun. I'm a sucker for characters who I have grown to care for and in these scenes I admit to feeling bloody emotional - the tear in my eye was obviously due to getting smoke in it but well..... As well as this there is a lot of laughs to be had for the first 3/4 of the film. The characters interactions are mostly hilarious, they joke, poke fun at each other and ultimately appear to care and look out for one another. While none of this will help calm the blow of some of the events in the final act, it still makes the characters far more fleshed out and colourful than you might see in other movies, especially those in the horror genre. This is course is helped by some great performances and I have to hold up Emily Rhoads as Kari, Eric Reaume as Lenny and R.J Cecott as stand outs. I also thought Bryer Sage as the softly spoken and slightly shy Chloe to be adorable.

The film has a great professional look and impresses me with what is possible with a smaller budget, its full of interesting camera angles and is shot exceptionally well. If this is the kind of progress that can be made in such a short amount of time from his previous film And Then YOU Die then I can only imagine what's coming next from Daniel!

Oh and I absolutely loved the interpretation of one of my favourite Ramones songs - a nice touch! As I mentioned to Daniel, the songs performed by the Lolita Girls were awesome and music I as a music lover would totally buy.
Check out Night of the Dolls official Facebook page HERE and start getting excited for the moment you get to see it for itself. Its original story, scares and laughs will ensure a very satisfied audience and I can only express again how much it impressed me, made me laugh out loud and had me squirming in my seat!

Tuesday 15 April 2014

The Lashman (2014) - Online Screener copy

Image result for lashman

Directed by Cameron McCasland

Written by Cameron McCasland

Stars: Stacey Dixon, Shawn C. Phillips, David Vaughn, Jeremy Jones, Kaylee Williams, Tim Emery, David Chattam, Lee Vervoort, Larry Underwood, Todd Bush, Terry Gragg, Bob King.

Cameron McCasland's new slasher movie The Lashman shines due to its excellent atmosphere, engaging main characters and fresh cinematography. I have read a lot about the film over the years and so it was my pleasure to have been sent a screener copy to review.

The Lashman spins the familiar yarn of a group of friends heading out to a lakeside area for a summer break; drinking, screwing and bickering…until the fun is broken up by a madman out for blood. In this case its nice guy Billy (David Vaughn) total arsehole, Daniel (Jeremy Jones) gal pals Stacy and Jan (Stacey Dixon and Kaylee Williams) and Stacy’s slightly odd brother Bobby (Shawn C. Phillips) who are on the chopping block.

Even a warning from local lunatic Eustice (in an almost alarmingly freaky scene I might add!) doesn't stop them from setting up camp and putting themselves in the firing line. On the first night the atmosphere is set as Billy tells the tale of ‘the Lashman’, the local legend that Eustice had manically referred to at the start of the film. This tale gives the film a nice, creepy vibe, enhanced by Billy expressing how much the story scared him as a kid. Even Daniels constant heckling throughout doesn't break the shivery feeling of knowing what might be out in those woods. After a few teasers such as the mysterious person peeking in a window while Jan and Daniel getting it on, and a couple of minor character deaths, the Lashman closes in one the group of friends who soon realise the awful predicament they are really in.

I really enjoyed this movie- there are a few flaws sure such as some sound glitches at several points along the way and there are some inconsistency’s in how a few of the characters are played. However there is also plenty to recommend The Lashman.

The sound track itself is amazing, glitches aside. It gives the film an added punch that reminded me of the days of watching Friday 13th movies when I was too young to do so. As with those movies, the soundtrack fits The Lashman perfectly and really adds to its appeal.

I liked the main characters, most of their conversations and interactions are funny and likable. A scene where Daniel shows up after a heavy night of drinking made me chuckle. He walked just like I would when REALLY hung over so it was very effective to me! Although there are one or two issues earlier on in the movie, the actors and actresses’ really step up to the plate in the final 20 minutes when things turn extremely dark and dramatic. In fact I was quite surprised at how brutal and intense things got in the final act, one ax murder literally made me jump!

The film is also exceptionally well shot – it looks fresh and clear and you can see how much hard work went into editing the film in post production. Cameron and team should be incredibly proud of how the final product turned out. In addition the opening and closing credits are AWESOME.

Check out the official Facebook page to find out more and also how you YOU can see the film this Sunday when it has its premiere!
All in all, a fun, spirited, sometimes dark, slasher movie that I can recommend most definitely.I really hope The Lashman does very well as its easy to see that a lot of hard work went into making it what it is.

Friday 11 April 2014

Murderdrome (2014)


Directed by Daniel Armstrong 

Written by Daniel Armstrong 

Stars: Kat Anderson, Daisy Masterman, Amber Sajben 

Release: May 12 2014,UK DVD Courtesy of Monster Pictures. 

Big thanks to Monster Pictures UK for sharing a screener of slice, dice and roller-skate film MurderDrome with me! I have been very interested in this Australia produced flick since I heard about it so was delighted to get the chance to check it out.

The plot of Murderdrome is simple – two rival roller derby teams find much more to worry about than their distinct hatred for one another when a dark evil from the past sets about cutting them down to size – literally. As girls from both sides of the fence start dropping like flies, it’s up to feisty ‘Cherry Skye’(Amber Sajben) to try to put a lid on the chaos before there’s no one left to compete against ...or with for that matter!

MurderDrome is low budget, make no bones about it. Obviously for someone like me that’s no issue as I love a good film made  for next to nothing. However I also wouldn't want to deter people from this film who perhaps like a bit more polish to their horror film because MurderDrome also has plenty to recommend it.  First, there is some nice comedy running throughout and I definitely laughed out loud several times. There are some great characters with brilliant team member names (aforementioned Cherry Skye, Trans Em, Princess Bitchface (YES!)  Hell Grazer and many more) AND there is plenty of splattery grue and gore to keep the hounds happy.

I think that Daniel Armstrong and team did a fine job of giving horror fans a trip back to the gory days of horror cinema where all you needed to do was pop open a can, sit back and enjoy. I think there is plenty more to come from Mr Armstrong and whether it be a MurderDrome sequel or something entirely new I am in.

UK readers can grab a copy of MurderDrome from the 12 May and if you want to get a pre-order in then check out Amazon!  You can also follow the films official Facebook right here.  Get your skates on people! (sorry….)

Friday 4 April 2014

Lucky (2014) - Horror Short

Directed by Jakob Billinski

Written by Todd Martin

Stars: Louisa Torres, Dillon Schueller

Produced by P.J Starks and Jim Blanton

It always nice to hear from a friend asking me to check out a new film or short - particularly if they made one of my favorite indie horrors ever (Hallows Eve: Slaughter on Second Street). P.J Starks is on producing duties this time around in the Jakob Billinski directed (Bloody hooker Bang Bang) and Todd Martin written Lucky.

Displaying Lucky - Quicktime Animation MASTER color

I really enjoyed Lucky - its a really great twist on the 'woman in peril' story and also features some cool makeup and effects. Louisa Torres stars as a young lady holed up in a library late at night, which doesn't bode too well for her after we learn of a string of murders in the local area. She is soon approached by a real creep (Dillon Schueller) who may or may not be the killer closing in on his next hapless victim. At this point the short turns nicely on its head and we learn that all is certainly not what it seems. The ending left me wanting more and I honestly see the potential for a feature film on the back of this.

Displaying Lucky - Quicktime Animation MASTER color

It never ceases to amaze me, just what is possible in a film running at only 8 minutes long, if in the right hands. Lucky is a solid, well made, well written little film with a cool twist. As a fan of both Jakob and P.J's work already, I would love to see them team up again in the near future.

Displaying Lucky - Quicktime Animation MASTER color

Oh and did I mention you can watch Lucky right HERE right now??? Go and show your support friends!

Tuesday 4 March 2014

HYPNOPHOBIA (2013- Short Film)

Directed By Adam Dunning

Written by Adam Dunning

Stars: Erin Rovin, Sam Rovin,  Olivia Kuttrubis,  Ronald Muir, Nicki Ostrowski

 Its always great to hear from Mr Adam Dunning, the macabre mind behind Laughter a fun slasher film featuring the subject of many a persons nightmares: CLOWNS....... 

This time he has created a much darker piece with his short film Hypnophobia, a tale of madness, despair and spirits that just wont rest. 

Erin Rovin gives an excellent performance as Sam, a young lady locked away in a padded cell, haunted by the apparent ghost of a young girl (creepily portrayed by Olivia Kuutrubis). Rounding out the core cast is Sam Rovin as Dr Peter's - a man intent on helping Sam to face her demons once and for all...with some very bleak consequences. 

The thing I love most about short films is that sometimes they just work better as a short. Its as simple as that. Obviously I love a good feature film as much as the next person, but there are many a film out there, that with the fat trimmed would make a really decent 30-45 minute film. Hypnophobia runs at 30 minutes and its just right for it. The small cast means you still have time to get a good feel for the characters and care about what the outcome of their journey may be by the end. 

I LOVED the final scene of this film and refuse to give anything away about it. It was just a nice dark touch that left me a little gobsmacked and depressed. But that just means that Adams story came across correctly and that the final bite was effective. My only real criticism is that I found some of the dialogue hard to hear and ended up having to use my headphones, turned up pretty high. 

I would love to see Adam combine his knack for a great psychological horror tale such as this with some of the slasher antics he threw out there in laughter in a future film - cant wait to hear what he has coming up next! 

Check Hypnophobia on  Facebook and then head on over to  Youtube to watch it for free...cant say fairer than that! 

Tuesday 28 January 2014

Crinoline Head (1995)

Directed by Tommy Faircloth

Written by Tommy Faircloth 

Stars: Elizabeth Taheri, Richard Abbott, Tommy Faircloth, Billie Fontanez, Cathy Slaminko, David Garone, Brian Kelly, Tracey Powlas, Steven Lee.

I have been meaning to review Crinoline Head for absolutely ages, since I first saw it in fact, a few years ago. A slasher film with the usual premise (although this film soon separates itself out from the crowd) of a group of college kids; some good friends, some not so much, on holiday at a lakeside home. There is of course a maniac on the loose and these squabbling young uns' are soon wandering off separately left right and center just for him! Said killer covers his identity with the titular crinoline skirt which is a nice, offbeat diversion from the usual Halloween or hockey mask!

There are a number of things which, for me, set Crinoline Head apart from many a slasher movie, particularly those also released in the 90s. There are the kills for one, comical and crazy, with a dark dose of imagination on par with Sleepaway Camp. A murder involving celery (yes CELERY) and one involving a recently used toilet both stand out - fun and absurd just as they should be. Secondly, the characters are wonderfully varied and colorful to say the least. Tracey Powlas is hilarious as dumb blonde with a bad attitude Jenny while Cathy Slaminko is even better as mean girl Trish - her lingo has to be heard to be believed, truly and brilliantly bizarre. That brings me onto my final point and that's how elements such as the quirky dialogue and the most unusual choice of  mask for the killer give this films very much its own identity.

I enjoyed most of the acting, all of the actors playing the college kids do a great job of bringing their oddball characters to life and Elizabeth Taheri as 'Robyn' provides a decent heroine.

A slasher comedy well worth your time - if this one slipped by your radar back in the 90s you can grab your very own copy over at Amazon or On Demand.

You can then help to make slasher history by lending a hand to director Tommy Faircloth who is gearing up to make....Crinoline Head 2! Yes that's right...18 years later and the sequel is coming your way. Please head over to Tommys Indiegogo page to read all about the project and how you can help. There are lots of awesome rewards for pledging to this and lets face it...the main one will be getting to see a follow up to Crinoline Head!  For even MORE on Crinoline Head 2, head on over to the official Facebook page and give it a like while you are there :)