The Amityville Horror

discs 100 bloody acres

Welcome back! This week the pitches come straight from the actual marketing for each release. Perhaps unsurprisingly, some of them sound just as ridiculous as the ones I make up every week. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. 100 Bloody Acres When the going gets tough the tough get grinding, and in the Morgan Brothers’ case what they’re grinding are human bodies. They’re not murderers per se as they rely almost exclusively on accident victims, but what else are small business owners to do when they discover that humans are the secret ingredient that makes their fertilizer more popular than ever? When Reg (Damon Herriman) passes three twenty-somethings on a back road and offers to give them a lift the trio learn the lengths he and his brother Lindsay (Angus Sampson) will go to secure the necessary ingredients to satisfy their customers. Writers/directors/probably brothers Cameron and Colin Cairnes deliver an incredibly fun and bloody romp for their feature debut that manages to shake up character conventions in regard to the protagonist/antagonist distinctions. As familiar as the setup feels it’s actually Reg and Lindsay who become the most interesting characters here as the trio of potential victims drown in their own bickering. It’s a damn funny film, but that doesn’t mean they shy away from the red stuff. Just the opposite in fact leading to a bloody good time for all. (Except the folks who get ground up into fertilizer of course.) [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Behind […]



This week sees the opening of James Wan’s The Conjuring, the horror maestro’s latest scream-filled outing that has already picked up plenty of accolades, thanks to an early premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival. A riff on the classic haunted house trope, The Conjuring laces in plenty of that “based on a true story” stuff that’s so often tossed on horror film branding with very little basis in fact – which makes the film’s apparent basis in fact all the more interesting (and, fine, totally scary). The film centers on the haunting of the Perrone family (led by Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor), who find their lives terrifyingly upended after moving into a large, isolated farmhouse with a bloody history (pro tip: never move into a large, insolated farmhouse with a bloody history). All the classic hallmarks of a demonic haunting show themselves early – bad smells, bumps in the night, stopped clocks, bad dreams, incessant knocking, destroyed belongings, visions, and a creeping sense of dread that all seven Perrons can’t escape – so the arrival of noted demonlogists Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) comes as a tremendous relief. The arrival of the Warrens will also come as relief to fans of the couple’s work in the paranormal realm, as yup, the Warrens really did investigate the paranormal and the demonic and, indeed, The Conjuring is based on one of their actual cases. But while The Conjuring is the first feature film based on a […]



Editor’s note: This review was originally featured as part of our Fantasia Fest 2012 coverage (and later during Fantastic Fest), but now it’s out in limited release and on VOD, so we’re bringing it back for a third time. We’ve all seen The Amityville Horror, or at least we all should have by now. I highly recommend correcting any possible woeful oversights on your part in this regard. Those who have seen it are most likely aware that the film was based on a true story. The Lutz family moved into a house in Amityville, a suburb on Long Island, in 1975. The house was rather affordable largely due to its sinister history. The previous owners of the house were the DeFeo’s. A little over a year before the Lutz family moved in, Ronnie DeFeo shot and killed six members of his family in a brutal massacre that still haunts the local community. Shortly after they arrive, the Lutz family experience a series of unexplained events that seem to suggest a paranormal presence. Twenty-eight days later they flee the house, leaving all personal belongings behind. Later they would come forward and make their story public, a movie based on their experiences is produced and would go on to be a horror classic. Over time however, aspersions have been cast on the validity of the Lutz family’s story. A paranormal research team was unable to uncover anything strange in the home in the aftermath of the Lutz exodus, and none of the […]



This article is presented in partnership with SINISTER, in theaters October 5. Don’t forget that you can see Sinister first with and Film School Rejects in Washington, DC (and many other cities) by visiting Even though movies often get a bad rap for glorifying sex and violence, there’s a lot of lessons that can be learned from various films. Horror films, in particular, have taught people a variety of helpful things. For example, we all know to never split up when being chased by a maniac. We know to never drop your weapon next to a killer’s “obviously” dead body. And we also know not to go out a-sexing and a-drinking in the woods without at least keeping one eye open for a deranged psychopath with a questionable past. Movies have also taught us to ask what might be considered bizarre questions when deciding on a new place to live. Has anyone been killed with a nail gun in the living room? Does there happen to be a gateway to hell in the basement? How many former tenants have gone completely bat-shit crazy and murdered their entire families? (Note: if the answer is more than zero, you might want to reconsider renting or purchasing this home.) These real estate listings below might seem to be a good deal, but read between the lines and discover the wicked deal you’re getting on the purchase price might not be a good deal at all.


It was sort of heartbreaking earlier in the year when The Weinstein Company failed to purchase Miramax back. It would have been a homecoming of sorts for both companies, and it promised a return to form for Miramax after struggling through the latter part of the 2000s with fewer titles (and far less edge). The two companies have announced the next best thing – a long-term partnership. Unfortunately, that partnership is built upon producing and releasing a blight on the cinematic community. The two companies plan on releasing sequels to long-forgotten titles. Unnecessary sequels are planned for Bad Santa, Rounders, and Shakespeare in Love. There’s something harmless about seeing Billy Bob Thornton back in the Santa suit, but do they expect to nab Matt Damon and Ed Norton back? Do they plan on getting Gwyneth Paltrow back into drag? Those aren’t necessary components, but without those main actor ties, the sequels – coming a decade late – would be In Name Only sequels. The worst case scenario is Miramax becoming the National Lampoon of indie companies.


Junkfood Cinema

Welcome back to Junkfood Cinema; the existence of leftovers is a sign of failure. This is the internet column in which I gorge myself on bad movies in much the same manner as you stuffed your face with stuffing and mashed potatoes yesterday. But unlike you, I only occasionally slip into a 13 hour nap after my cinematic chow-downs. I will carve up these films and serve up exactly what makes them less-than-perfect, and then lovingly pour over it a gravy of praise that ultimately masks that distinctive schlocky taste. I will then pair the film with an appropriate junkfood selection in an effort to abuse your stomach the way the movie abuses your cognitive faculties. This week’s film provides a nice two-for-one advantage that all you manic shoppers should appreciate. Incidentally, if you are currently reading this on your mobile device while waiting in line at Big Box Retailer #685, would it kill you to pick me up seven copies of Over the Top on Blu-ray? As I was saying, I had promised that the rest of November would be dedicated to recently-deceased industry legend Dino De Laurentiis, and today’s film is not only a De Laurentiis production but also resides in my favorite of film genres: horror. Today’s film is Amityville II: The Possession.


Hello 80s, Goodbye 3D

With the clear dawn of a new decade, we say goodbye to a once-great innovation that’s been reduced to a scummy fad. R.I.P. 3D.



The only thing haunting about The Haunting in Connecticut is how similar it is to every other haunted house movie of the last three decades.


10 Cinematic Houses That Should Be Foreclosed

We know it’s technically a buyer’s market right now, but that doesn’t mean you have to rush into buying a property – especially if the chairs are going to rearrange themselves or you’re going to end up being raped by trees. Be a smart consumer and avoid these listings.

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published: 12.23.2014
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