We’re riding the double decker bus this week and throwing down a second fun horror movie review. I guess one review per week just isn’t gonna quench the horror thirst! This time we’re checking out Harrison Smith’s Zombie Killers: Elephant’s Graveyard (2015) release. The movie is essentially about a group of militia protecting their small surviving town from a horde of hungry-as-fuck zombies who are quickly approaching in record numbers. Regardless of the ratings and reviews I’ve seen and heard, I enjoyed the movie for what it was, no doubt. To boot, what a frickin’ BA cast. The film puts together such genre-rich names as Dee Wallace, Mischa Barton, and Felissa Rose (of Sleepaway Camp fame). Add to the pot Billy Zane, Michael Kean, and Gabrielle Stone to name just a few others, and you’ve got a really bang-up group of folks.
Onward to the nitty-gritty.
The film isn’t without its flaws, but let’s be honest, no film is. Some of the digital effects left a little to be desired, and the action didn’t quite live up to my expectations (the first kill scene set a tone, but the film tapered off from that afterwards). There were some lulls where I found myself having to work a little harder to pay attention, so that’s something to consider in the overall enjoyment-of-the-film department. That said, there were certainly many good things I was surprised to see come forth throughout the course of the film.
This IS a zombie movie, right? Well yes, we all know the industry is flooded with them, so already there is a challenge to create something unique and inviting. What I found to be a breath of fresh air was the fact that these survivors were PROactive as opposed to reactive. Matter of fact, you could argue calling them survivors to begin with in some sense. I can’t recall another film where people actually CHOSE to look death in the eye as opposed to running from it. This small group of armed soldiers took fate in their own hands and sought out to destroy the zombie army instead of just running around all mopey as shit and depressed, wondering if there was ever a way out (read “This isn’t like those pussies in The Walking Dead"). That said, I’d have also preferred to see the quick, maniacal, vicious zombies rather than the slow, dumb TWD variety. Generally speaking, zombies fit into only 1 of those 2 categories, and I think for my taste, AMC has ruined the slow, dumb zombie category. These zombies in ZKEG were persistent, not aggressive. Yes, there most certainly is a difference. Truthfully, I’m on the Dawn of the Dead remake side of the fence when it comes to my undead. Call me crazy.
I’m getting off topic.
Lastly, the thing I think I may have enjoyed most was the near absolute hopeless nature of the film. From the psychotic god-fearing group of brainwashed folks led by the uber creepy Lia (Felissa Rose), to the armed militia and the survivors, and even Dee Wallace’s character, not one group thought they’d survive. Even the group’s leader played by Billy Zane knew it. He knew it, he embraced it, and he used it to his advantage (no spoilers here, biscuits!).
Wouldn’t it be a heck of a thing to be in a situation where you know you’re going to die and instead of creating a false sense of hope you just say “Fuck it”, live the life you’re able to live, and die when you get the call? One could argue that it’s much like having a terminal illness I’d imagine. Either way, I have to respect the effort of creating a damn near “you will never escape from your fate” atmosphere with this film.
You can follow the goings on of the film via Twitter @ZOMBIEKILLERSEG and from there you can go stalk the cast and crew!
Like I said, the movie came with faults, but I was ok with them. I’m going with a solid 5 of 10 cleavers and yes, absolutely you should check this out given the opportunity. Golly gee, if only there were a free copy of the bluray up for grabs this weekend somewhere….
Howdy all!! Time for another review and this time it is the film, Zombie Killers: Elephant's Graveyard. This movie was written by David Agnew Penn and Harrison Smith, while Harrison took on the directing duties himself.
So where do I start? Well, obviously this is a zombie film. Over the last few years, I have become extremely tired of two fads: Zombies and bacon. Yes, bacon is delicious, but it is getting a little out of hand with the amounts of dishes trying incorporate fried pig in it. Okay, sorry, that was a little off topic, so here we go. I went into this movie a little skeptical because I am just simply not a fan of zombie films. I am not knocking anyone who likes them, it just is not my "cup of tea." With that said, I went into this one with an open mind and was ready to give a true and honest review....which is what I am about to do.
So before watching Zombie Killers: Elephant's Graveyard, I checked the IMDB info on it. It is a habit, I do this to all films I watch. I saw an IMDB Rating of 2.7 and was like "oh god, here we go." So, I popped in my DVD, pressed play, and got to watching.
Well, first and foremost, the movie was not THAT BAD. Whoever was in charge of the IMDB Reviewers are assholes. A 2.7?? Come on....I have seen much much worse than this. The acting was solid, the characters were well developed, and the story itself was not bad at all. The major knock I have on this film is that it does tend to get a little boring at times. I went into it expecting zombies getting blown away with sawed off shotguns and lots of blood and mayhem, I did not get that. To me, for a zombie film, where people want zombies and action, there was just way too much other stuff going on that just took away from me getting to see zombies get blasted. Now, that could be MY FAULT. Maybe I set unreal or just straight up cliche expectations of this movie.
I will say, IMDB reviewers had no idea what they were talking about. Overall, the story was good, the characters were likable for the most part, and I believe the writers attempted to make something more than your typical zombie movie. Check out this film. There is plenty of good in it. It is not my thing, but we are all individuals with our own unique tastes. If you are a zombie fan, I strongly urge you to see it.
I give Zombie Killers: Elephant's Graveyard 5.5 of 10 cleavers.
Not bad guys, not bad.
If I think back to moments that created this love of horror that I have, they all basically start with the typical 80’s icons like Jason, Freddy, etc. That was a solid 25 years ago, and though I’ve seen more horror films since then than I can even count, my heart always goes back to the good ol’ fashioned, campy, legend-born slasher characters of the 80’s. That said, I was more than happy to get a chance to view director Terron Parsons’ follow up to his 2013 slasher flick Hayride. This week Reelbloody dives into Hayride 2: Fear the Legend.
Yes, you read that correctly. I did compare this film to the same legendary 80’s horror movies that entranced me a kid. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that Parsons’ character Pitchfork stacks up against the likes of Jason Voorhees, and I think the director would agree. The legacy behind the Friday the 13th world for example, has been cemented into the history books after some 35 years at this point. What I AM saying is that the movie is strongly influenced by that same type of classic slasher vibe and for that reason, they are absolutely similar. The director’s decision to emulate that same style of film is certainly recognizable and in my book, that’s commendable, respectable, and I thoroughly enjoyed this movie for that very reason. What is equally enjoyable, almost more so, is the knowledge that much of the story of Hayride stems directly from Parsons’ youth. Growing up, his family actually ran a haunted hayride. This is plainly laid out from the beginning of the first film, continued through the sequel, and I absolutely love the fact that this film is a tangible product of his fears as a child and all the nostalgia that comes along with it.
The film itself pretty much picks up where the freshman film left off, and for me a sequel is traditionally meant to do just that. No need for twists and turns and sequels that are really prequels, mid-quels, or any of that garbage. Just get on with it and let the slaughter ensue. That’s what I want. That’s what I got.
What began as a brutal killing spree by local legend and escaped inmate “Pitchfork” in the first film has now begun a new chapter, and one detective is hell bent on getting to the bottom of things. A few of the 1st films characters have returned and are still reliving the nightmare, but they soon realize that this is one nightmare they won’t be able to wake from so easily. Hayride 2 is 90 minutes of straight-forward and effective film, riddled with gory murders and a last ditch effort to survive, and guess what? That is quite alright with me. Less is more, right?
Terron Parsons brings a southern flare to not only the horror genre, but to the slasher subgenre. It’s something we are beginning to see more and more of, and something we are very happy about. Yeah yeah, maybe we’re biased originally being Georgia boys and all, but the concept is quietly gaining steam, and I think we’ll continue to see more of this style of movie crawl out from the woodworks.
Not enough of a summary for you? Guess you’ll have to check it out yourself when it’s released on 3/6/15. If you want to get a jump on things, go ahead and grab 2012’s Hayride from Amazon Instant Video now and see how it all begins. If you want to learn more about the director, check out our exclusive interview with Terron Parsons on our Interviews page.
I’m giving this movie a solid 6 of 10 cleavers, and will probably not be going on any haunted hayrides for a hot minute.
What is UP our loyal fans, followers, haters, lovers, etc!! I am sitting here in Atlanta, Ga hating every second of the 1" of snow we have here. Snow sucks! Especially down south. Okay, enough about me, you guys did not come to listen to me talk about myself, but if you ever want to hear me brag on myself, feel free to follow me on Twitter @BClarkF21.
So this past weekend I watched a film titled Hayride 2. It is the sequel to Hayride (duh) which was written and directed by Terron R. Parsons. Hayride was the story of college kid who comes home to ride his uncle's famous haunted hayride. His uncle created a character named Pitchfork for the ride, however this time, Pitchfork was real. Okay, so fast forward through a bunch of blood, gore, and murder and that brings us to Hayride 2. I have seen both films, and where I liked the original Hayride, I think I actually enjoyed part 2 more. The story flowed better, the acting was much better, and I just overall liked it more.
Typically my reviews are much longer and detailed but there is not much more I can go into. This is the sequel to a good film and if you like death, murder, gore, and just a pure fun horror film, you need to check out Hayride 2. I will be honest, I do recommend seeing the original if you have not already, but if you want to jump straight to part two, you will not be lost. They do an amazing job of setting the stage for the sequel and you are not left in the dark.
See this film! Like I say often, it is not an all time classic, but I highly recommend a viewing. It was good enough that I may actually see it again. ANYTIME I say I will watch a horror for a 2nd time, that is a great sign.
I give Hayride 2 6 out of 10 cleavers
I swear, we’re really not trying to do ONLY found footage horror, but we came across Jack Thomas Smith’s bloody trail of revenge Infliction a few months ago and since then, we’ve been straight up NEEDING to see it. Apparently we’re not the only ones. Most recently, they had a successful screening at the Days of the Dead horror convention in Atlanta just 2 weeks ago. This screening follows a laundry list of other convention showings and film festival selections and by all accounts, the film has received favorable reviews. Guess what? We’re here to completely agree.
The film is formatted as assembled documentation of two brothers who set out on a murderous rampage. You’ll soon learn their reasoning, and let me tell you, you’ll effing cringe. Guaranteed.
Me thinks I’ll go with my favorite method of listing the “Yippeeee’s” and the “Ughhhhh’s” to accurately portray my feelings about this film. Three of each, for your reading pleasure (hopefully):
Above all, I loved the story behind the film. Absolutely. It’s definitely a breath of fresh air and a welcome contrast from the stuff that’s being shat forth from every nook and cranny of the horror genre. It goes where few films have gone before, and I loved it.
We tag-lined the photo over on our images page “The family that slays together, stays together”, so the concept of the killers being related was also nice to see. It gave the film a little something extra beyond just two dudes driving around, killin' up folks. Knowing that the bond of family transcends what’s right and wrong was definitely cool to witness. Blood is thicker than water, right? Well, usually…
I enjoyed the kill scenes for sure. Specifically, the last ones are the real trophy winners in this film.
I don’t fault the movie for being found footage. There are aspects you can gain from FF that you can’t get otherwise, and certainly that’s true in this film, but in my opinion I would’ve loved to see this film as scripted narrative. I think it would’ve helped the flow of the film in a different way and also made it so we didn’t always have to see the two brothers holding cameras and adorning their vehicle in action cams. It was a small distraction. I’m really just nit picking here.
While the brothers were certainly committed to their cause, there were times that each of them had a sudden change of heart, but then they’d refocus on their mission. It almost felt too forced. Like, the sequences were just put in there for a change of pace, though I think the movie still would’ve stood strongly without them. I didn’t dislike them by any means, I just didn’t think they were necessary maybe?
As it was FF, there were also little to no soundtrack or sound effects. That makes sense of course, but it also goes back to me commenting on seeing it as a scripted narrative. The silence almost made for awkward silence during a couple of the kill scenes.
All that said, I did absolutely enjoy the film. I love talking about the good points of any film, but if I didn’t say anything about things I didn’t like so much…well, that’d just be shitty and unrealistic. That’s the point of reviews, right?
Infliction is available through many VoD formats, so if you have the time, it’s a solid watch that definitely deserves your attention. Hats off to writer/director Smith and the entire crew for creating a great grassroots horror film with new twists and turns. Don’t miss out on seeing this! You can also check out the film's happenings on Twitter @InflictionFilm.
I'm giving the film a solid 6 out of 10 cleavers, and I'm going straight home and hugging my ma-dukes and pops.
This past weekend, I had the chance to screen a film called Infliction. It is written and directed by Jack Thomas Smith, and stars Jason Mac and Elliott Armstrong. The basis of the film is that two brothers, John and Kenny (played by Mac and Armstrong), went on a killing spree in 2011 and documented each murder. Yea I know, it sounds like your typical "found footage" murder movie. Let's kill as many people as possible and make it look gritty and real. Do not be so quick to pass judgment just by reading the synopsis...this film offers much more than that.
From the get go, you realize that these two men are not just randomly killing people. This is a very well planned attack and each kill is for a purpose and ultimately, revenge. One thing I will say is that at times for me, the acting seemed a tad bit scripted. Not that I am an Academy Award winner myself, but the dialogue was very slow, however, the story kept my full attention. Another minor, and I mean minor drawback for me, was that the film seemed at times to be a little dragged out. I am thinking if they had cut it by 15 minutes, it would have been near perfect, but that is just my opinion, I am sure others may not agree.
There really is not much more I can say, except that the story line is kick ass. I was digging it. I caught myself at times, and not just at times, but the last hour of the film, siding with the two killers. I am not sure what that says about me, but this movie definitely makes you think to yourself and question how you would handle such a situation. That is pretty much all I can say without giving away much of the story.
In closing, I will keep this simple...could the film have been a little better? Yes, but we can say that about 90% of movies out there. With that being said, I am telling you to check out Infliction. You will not be let down. It is just twisted enough to make you say "wow" when it ends.
I give Infliction 6.5 out of 10 cleavers but it was VERY close to being a 7. Good work guys, job well done.
I’m not afraid to admit that this week’s movie Pieces of Talent wasn’t on my radar until we met and spoke with the director and some cast/crew this past weekend at Days of the Dead Atlanta. Boy I’m sure glad we did though. There aren’t enough great things to say both about the movie and the people who helped bring it to life, but I’ll do my best.
I’ll begin with the basics. The film was directed by Joe Stauffer (co-writer) and stars David Long (co-writer) and Kristi Ray. The story introduces a struggling actress Charlotte (Ray) and an…um…passionate movie director (Long). A late night encounter sets forth a chain of horrific events that will change their lives forever.
This is one of those times that I do dearly wish I could wax poetic about all things cinematic, because this film certainly deserves that. Alas, you all will just have to be content with my shit storm of average words to describe a way above average film.
From the first few moments, I was immediately drawn in to the film. No doubt. A multitude of thoughts ran through my head as I juggled being enamored of Ray’s character Charlotte, and being taken aback by Long’s passion (albeit grotesque) for a great film. There is no doubt early on that he has some deliciously sick plans for his movie, and I definitely dug that right away. Its climax undoubtedly hit me with a gasp, even though I had somewhat began to piece together how I thought it might have ended. In retrospect, I’m glad I was wrong. The ending far exceeded anything I could have imagined (this is probably why I stick to writing reviews and not scripts).
The movie is definitely a slow burn with some great nasty jolts of the macabre sprinkled throughout and the payoff, though not as gory as I had expected (no fault of anyone’s but my own, really. My expectations were based on preconceived notions without any real evidence that it was going to rain down and spew blood and guts), was 100% satisfying. Now that I really think about it, the fact that it didn’t culminate into super-mega-uber-gore extravaganza probably did more for the effectiveness of the film overall than anything I was expecting anyway. Wait…I think I just called myself dumb….? It’s all good though. A wise woman told me that gore without story is just bullshit porn flick mentality. It’s a highly dumbed down explanation, but makes complete sense…especially after seeing how effective this film was without having to adopt that tired ass modern horror movie methodology. The story was beautifully crafted and was just as artistic as it needed to be without being pretentious.
Again, I can’t say enough about how great the film was. We were fortunate to get together and talk to Joe, Kristi, and the gang and we are absolute supporters. I certainly give Pieces of Talent the ol’ 7.5 cleavers out of 10, and I know the sequel (OH, you didn’t know?!?!?) will be just as impressive.
Can’t stand that you haven’t seen it yet? Get your grubby grabbers on Pieces of Talent via their website now!
Also, like them on FB here so you can keep up with all the horrific goings-on!
This weekend, we attended the Days of the Dead Atlanta to check out some new films and to work with our partner company, Slasher Marketing, in the promotion of a film called Sorrow that will be released on April 21st. What a great weekend it was. We saw some interesting people, costumes, and exhibits, but we also got a chance to screen a new film titled Pieces of Talent. Not only did we get a chance to check out this movie, but we also got the opportunity to spend some time with parts of the cast and crew, including the director, Joe Stauffer and lead actress, Kristi Ray...very solid people that I enjoyed getting to know. But, new found friendships aside, it is onto our honest review!!! I just pray the friendships remain intact.
Pieces of Talent like I already mentioned, was directed by Joe Stauffer and stars Kristi Ray as Charlotte, a strip club waitress that aspires to be a successful actress. Charlotte not only hates her job, but she appears to hate her mom and their piece of shit car too. The relationship between her mother and her, and the arguing over the car is an ongoing struggle throughout the film and it leads you to wonder just how the two of them even manage speak to each other, much less live together. David Long plays the role of a creepy filmmaker to say the least. Actually, he plays himself, but I am pretty certain that the real David Long is not that strange in real life....or is he? As fate would have it, Charlotte comes to the rescue of David one evening outside of her club and that leads the two of them to become friends. They begin to share dreams, goals, likes, dislikes, and just clicked as two good friends would. David seemed to be truly nice, but yet a weird dude but we later will see that there is more to him than one would think. We see that Charlotte continues to hate every aspect of her day to day life, while we witness David begin to create videos of him murdering random people around the town. His motive is not clear, and that is pretty much the premise of this film. Why is he doing it? And, what will he do to Charlotte?
As the film goes on, you start asking yourself more and more, "what the hell is wrong with this David guy???" Well, at least I did. You knew at some point that Charlotte was going to get dragged into his sinister act somehow and you kept on waiting for that moment. I will admit that there were a few times, and I repeat JUST A FEW times during the film when I could have used a little more action. I did catch myself thinking that it was getting a little slow, but it is not a boring film by any means. Maybe it is just my A.D.D. that was kicking in LOL! But seriously, this film does keep you interested from beginning to end and you wonder what the crazy twist at the end will be, if there is a twist at all. So if you find a solid ten minutes or so that you feel is a little slow, stick with it…do NOT turn away!
I will not go much more into the plot itself; that you have to see on your own. I will say this: the cast did an amazing job. And when I say cast, I do not just mean Kristi Ray and David Long, I mean everyone. It was very well acted and I got the sense that this team had great chemistry on and off set which made it so successful. The only minor thing I would change is, I would have liked to seen a tad more gore during the murder scenes. No, I am not some sicko that wants to see guts, brains, and all that, but I do think the kill scenes could have used a little more from just a visual standpoint, nothing more. Again, a minor detail that absolutely took nothing away from the film for me.
So, I finally get to the end of the film and you see what David's ultimate goal was. Disturbing? Absolutely. Insane? Yep. That is what makes the ending so great in my opinion. Not only will you find the ending very well done, but they will leave you with just enough questions to make you want more...trust me...you will want more.
Good film, well written, amazing people involved....how can you go wrong with that? Find a way TODAY to get your hands on a copy of Pieces of Talent and check it out!
I give Pieces of Talent a solid 7 of 10 cleavers! It is one of my highest ranking reviews yet. Trust me, it’s a good one. Check it out!!
I don't often turn away from a good apocalypse movie. I just don't. I'm fairly certain the reason for this is absolutely the simple fact that it's a totally reasonable thing to happen....at least in my mind. There are some crazy ass places in the world, so would it really surprise anyone if a fat ass mushroom cloud appeared over your daughter's preschool playground? The answer is no. It shouldn't.
I came across 54 Days...hmmm....how?! Probably perusing imdb looking for all great things horror. Regardless, I came across this film, watched the trailer, and immediately started doing my social media homework. I located Tim Lea, mastermind behind the film, and reached out to him asking for a chance for ReelBloody to get its claws sunk into this thriller. He politely obliged, and we were totally happy and proud to have been able to give this one a watch.
There wasn't a part of this film that didn't fall into place smoothly. The cast was terrific, the plot simple, but effective, and the tension was built in such a way that as the movie progressed, I felt immediately in the middle of the struggle. Ooh, yes the plot. 54 Days takes a look at 5 people fighting for survival after a nuclear explosion devastates everything around them. They locate a survival bunker and have seemingly found safe haven. What the viewer gets to enjoy over the next 70 minutes or so is the grueling downward spiral of their health, sanity, and loyalty. All of this culminates into a gut-wrenching climax that will no doubt make you stop what you're doing, look deep inside yourself, and ask "Could I survive? Could I make these decisions?" I guarantee you think you know, but this movie will beg that you reconsider and be honest with yourself.
I really did enjoy the movie. As I said, it's simple, effective, and straight-forward. No bullshit here, just a spot-on film that goes just beyond what you'd expect and causes you to question everything you know about your ability to remain steadfast when faced with certain doom.
I'm not the only one who agrees. 54 Days has already been making the film festival rounds. Most recently, it received multiple awards at the Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema and now has a healthy stack of Mr. T like awards and medals upon which to brag.
Make no mistake, writer/director Tim Lea has managed to tap into a part of your mind you had forgotten existed. His thriller 54 Days is a must see for anyone who wants to challenge themselves with everything they think they know about survival movies.
Keep your eyes peeled for this one, folks. You won't be disappointed. You can catch all the film details here and follow the movie on Twitter @54daysthemovie.
I'm giving this one a solid 6 out of 10 cleavers!