Posted on 26th January 2010 by aaron in News - Tags: , , , , ,


I’m one of the privileged few to own the now out-of-print release of MADMAN Anchor Bay put out back in 2001, but I’ll sure as hell be looking forward to this one if the features are right!  Came across this news at Shock Till You Drop:

We’ve learned that Code Red DVD is in the early stages of prepping a new special edition of the early 80’s “slasher” cult classic Madman. Anchor Bay Entertainment initially put out the DVD back in 2001 which has long since been out of print.

While the new features for this edition are still being worked out, we do know that the original commentary track with writer/director Joe Giannone, writer/producer Gary Sales and stars Tony Fish and Paul “Madman Marz” Ehlers will be carted over from the Anchor Bay release. (Sadly, Giannone and Fish are no longer with us.)

Early word has it the disc will sport new interviews with some of the cast, as well as a featurette visiting the original shooting locations with Madman Marz himself, Paul Ehlers.

Madman pre-dated the original Friday The 13th and has become a “slasher” fan favorite in recent years, especially with frequent plays on IFC. Code Red has released DVD editions of other genre titles such as Don’t Go In The Woods, Beyond The Door and Dead Pit, amongst others.

We’ll keep you posted on more details for this release as they become official. Expect the new special edition Madman DVD later this year.


Saw this post from the Chin himself, Mr. Bruce Campbell, over at Ain’t It Cool News.  This could be either a good thing, or a very, VERY bad thing.  Either way, I’m a BC mark.  I’ll be watching it!

Hello everyone. Bruce Campbell here. This urgent message is short, because my keystrokes are monitored and I fear for my life. My partner at Dark Horse comics, Mike Richardson (normally a very rational and talented man), threatened to have his foot soldiers “crush my spleen” if I did what I am about to do. But the fans deserve to know, so with great trepidation I officially announce Bruce Vs. Frankenstein, the sequel to My Name is Bruce. Principal photography begins this fall in Oregon. I’d like to live long enough to see the cameras roll, so please, for the love of God, do not tell anyone – I can’t risk this announcement getting back to Mike! Thank you.




THIS from Shock Till You Drop:

“Exciting times.” So says “The Walking Dead” creator Robert Kirkman on his Twitter account. Why?

AMC just gave the green light to the television adaptation of “The Walking Dead”! This means Frank Darabont will be moving behind the camera soon to direct the pilot he penned.

Darabont was attached to the property last summer. Genre lover and producer Gale Anne Hurd is overseeing the series with Circle of Confusion.

If all goes according to plan, Darabont may be neck-deep in the undead this spring or summer telling the story of Rick Grimes, a cop who awakens in a hospital one day to find zombies have overrun the world.

In an interview last fall, Kirkman said, “I’ve told Frank flat-out that I do not want him to follow the comic to the detriment of the show. I encourage him to veer off if he has something that will work really well on TV that wouldn’t work in a comic. I don’t want people who enjoy the comic to be watching the TV show and going, ‘Oh, this is leading to that one thing I already know about from the comic.'”

Can’t wait to see what he does…


Chas Balun

It’s so strange that Chas. Balun and Dan O’Bannon should pass within a day of each other…From Shock Till You Drop:

Fangoria reports Chas. Balun passed away on December 18 at the age of 61. He was battling cancer.

Chas. (Charlie) was a multi-hyphenate in the horror biz. An artist, a journalist and a fiction writer, he contributed to the likes of “Fangoria” and “Gorezone” magazines as well as the t-shirt company Rotten Cotton. His books on genre films enlightened readers, steering us clear from the detritus that polluted the horror landscape and pointing us to the meaty, more satisfying entries that, more often than not, shed the red, so to speak.

“Horror Holocaust,” “Beyond Horror Holocaust,” “The Gore Score,” and “More Gore Score” featured his acerbic wit and scathing criticism. The man told it like it is and we loved him for it.

Chas. was a cool cat; I grew up reading his articles and, later, got to know him when I first met the man at a horror convention here in Los Angeles. We didn’t see eye to eye on some films, however, we shared a mutual love for Lucio Fulci’s Zombie. I got quite a thrill when he e-mailed me enthusiastically one day in response to my review of “Beyond Horror Holocaust” when it was first published. Someone I looked up to as a writer was telling me he was a fan of my work.

A bold voice in horror has been taken from us and he will be missed.


I missed a few big deaths, it’d seem.  Dan O’Bannon, genius creator of one of my favorite zombie flicks of all time and the creator of the ZOM-COM at the same time: RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD, died on Dec. 17th, 2009.  Below you’ll find an obituary from REUTERS.

O’Bannon, who also co-wrote the Arnold Schwarzenegger sci-fi action film “Total Recall,” died Thursday, the Writers Guild of America confirmed on Friday. Online media reports said he had suffered a brief, undisclosed illness.

A St. Louis native who grew up on horror films and monster comics like “Tales from the Crypt,” O’Bannon got his start collaborating with director John Carpenter on the screenplay for the 1974 sci-fi cult parody “Dark Star.”

O’Bannon also co-starred in the low-budget movie about four astronauts on a lengthy mission to clear a path through space by destroying planets that posed a navigation barrier.

His screenwriting credits also include the 1995 sci-fi thriller “Screamers,” which he worked on for over a decade, and the 1997 horror film “Bleeders.”

But his best known work was his screenplay for the 1979 space chiller “Alien,” the first of a film series starring Sigourney Weaver as a tough space hero who battles a colony of slimy, parasitic, insect-like creatures with razor-sharp teeth and voracious appetites.

One of the most horrifying characteristics of the aliens was their penchant for gestating inside the body of a human host before bursting out of the victim’s chest to prey on more people.

The original film, directed by Ridley Scott, garnered an Oscar for its visual effects. O’Bannon also shared credit in sequels for the characters he created. The first sequel, 1986’s “Aliens,” directed by James Cameron, won Oscars for best visual and best sound effects editing.

The latest in the franchise, an untitled “Alien” prequel set for 2011, was in production at the time O’Bannon died, according to the Internet Movie Database.


No, not that OTHER flick called MACHETE, the one with THAT SWIMMING SCENE:

No, I mean the flick borne from the Trailer segment of the fantastic GRINDHOUSE.  This from Shock Till You Drop:

Not really horror, but spawned from the horror double feature experiment known as Grindhouse, Fox has won the bidding war for domestic distribution rights to Robert Rodriguez’s Machete, the trailer of which played prior to Planet Terror.

Danny Trejo plays the blade-wielding Mexican ex-Federale who is double-crossed by a crooked politician. The feature-length version was financed by Overnight Prods., who sold off international rights to Sony and several territory distributors. That provided the bulk of the money needed to shoot the film, which Rodriguez lensed last fall in Austin, Texas.

Written by Rodriguez with Ethan Maniquis, Machete boasts an all star cast with Robert De Niro, Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Lindsay Lohan, Steven Seagal, Don Johnson, Jeff Fahey, Cheech Marin and Rose McGowan.



Magnet is going to be releasing George A. Romero’s SURVIVAL OF THE DEAD on Video on Demand this April 30th, to be followed with a limited (of course) theatrical release on May 28th.  Magnet Releasing is a division of Magnolia Pictures.

I wish they’d show Romero a little more love.  Hell, I wish they’d show ME a little more love.  Limited theatrical run means I probably won’t get to feast my bloodshot, horror-lovin’ eyes on the flick in theaters.  DAMNIT!!!

Check out more SOTD news HERE.



I’ve watched Jennifer’s Body about 4 times now.  Normally, that’d be a good thing, the movie being just so damn good, I had to watch it again and again, like, for instance, THE EVIL DEAD.  Unfortunately, that’s not the case here.  The more I saw, the more repulsed I became.  By the very end, I was a bitter, broken mess, driven half insane by what I can only describe as, a not-as-clever-as-it-wants-to-be-cluster-fuck-of-a-flick.  A shame, as I really was looking forward to a smartly-written, intelligent horror film.  I know that’s what the filmmakers, “including Oscar-winning writer Diablo Cody,” tried to do, they just fell WAAAAAAAY short of the goal.

I’m going to go ahead and say it.  What Jennifer’s Body wanted to accomplish, Ginger Snaps already accomplished years ago.  The “teenage girl as monster” allegories were expertly handled in Ginger Snaps, while Jennifer’s Body shot and missed.  While GS set up the physical, mental, and social changes of a teen girl getting her period for the first time (though, I hear, thanks to growth hormones, kindergartners get ’em now) with the werewolf as metaphor, JB botched the job of the changing teen-girl-dynamic with the demonic possession metaphor.  I applaud the attempt, however, especially in regard to the allegorical view of two exceedingly different young girls, bound by friendship at a young age, who face the inevitable destruction of said friendship due to social status (and in this case, demonic possession as well).  That’s a decent set-up, but the movie just couldn’t pull it off.  Why?

Well, the direction was competent, so I’m not going to fault Karyn Kusama.  Unfortunately, directors are blamed for bad writing, bad acting, etc.  Of course, it IS the director’s job to make sure the actors are right for the parts and to make something workable from the script.  But then, there’s that expression, you can’t polish a turd.  I wasn’t a big fan of JUNO.  I mean, it was okay, but Oscar-Worthy?  Lowered standards seem to be a given with film these days.  At least it was somewhat competent, but I don’t think Diablo Cody really understands teenagers.  Given, I haven’t been a teenager for 8 years now, and I’ve already gone right into OLD MAN “Get Off My Lawn!” phase, skipping all others to the point where I LOATHE today’s teens, but I still doubt I have more of a false, skewed perspective than Diablo Cody.  It seems the woman writes her teenagers as caricatures of teens.  Perhaps she bases her teenagers off teen magazines, written, also, by 30-something year old women who should know better.  The dialogue was simply atrocious, pandering and ridiculous.  Cutesy phrases were made up for the sake of cleverness, but continually failed.   Awful writing can make or break a film, and, in this case, it was 60% responsible.

30% goes to terrible acting.  I mean, sure, the actors here only had so much to work with, but I’m certain Megan Fox can’t act anyway, and works only as a pretty face and, due to said face, name recognition.  Her saving grace in Transformers was that she only said about 3 words in the movie.  This time, she actually had to, you know, ACT!  Cardboard boxes have better acting chops.  Then there’s Amanda Seyfried.  She looked like she was quoting Shakespeare beside Fox, but that’s not saying much.  At least she was able to show real emotion and, I felt, had to carry the film upon a poorly written script.  Given more to work with, perhaps she could’ve done a better job, but as it was, there was simply no chemistry between her and Fox, nor her and her on-screen boyfriend who I could’ve sworn was in the “special-kids” class.

Now let us delve into the HORROR aspect of Jennifer’s Body.  There was a bit of gore (including a ridiculous scene where an herbivorous DEER was eating human intestinal tract), but nothing to write home about.  There were one or two jump scares, the most frightening thing in the movie being the repeated exposure to a fake Emo band’s fake Emo song (not to mention exposure to many other popular…I guess…Emo bands and THEIR songs).  Then, ok, and this may seem crass, but it’s a horror flick, dammit, no boobs.  None.  When you have a flick marketed to teens, with a trailer that begins with a naked chick in a lake, and you have nothing in the topless category, what the hell are you doing?  Do these people never even WATCH horror flicks?  Anything that would’ve made this an actual horror film went right out the window.  Gore alone won’t do it.  Saving Private Ryan had more gore in the first few minutes.

All in all, if you’re curious about the flick, go ahead an check it out and make up your own damn mind.  If you want my opinion (and why ELSE would you be here if you didn’t), stay away from Jennifer’s Body and go watch Ginger Snaps instead.

0 out of 5 skulls.