Thursday, 29 September 2016

Grave Walkers (2015) - Zombie Horror FIlm Review

Sometimes a film just pops up out of nowhere and blows you away despite any faults it may have, I think Grave Walkers (also known as Live Evil) may just be one of those special films. It was directed by Ari Kirschenbaum (Bat $#! Crazy/Fabled) who also wrote and edited this quite strange comedy horror.

Responding to reports of a disturbance at a manor on the outskirts of the small town Deputy Hancock (Charlene Amoia) is based at she discovers a whole bunch of dead bodies as well as a strange person with glowing eyes. She takes this being back to the station and locks it up only to discover it seems to exert a strange force on those around it, making them hallucinate that it is their worst enemy. This is just the start of the weirdness as soon people start coming back from the dead as unstoppable zombie like creatures who descend on the station. Teaming up with her fellow officers and a couple of F.B.I agents Hancock must try to survive this undead uprising as she awaits the arrival of the state police.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Holidays (2016) - Horror Anthology Film Review

Every time I watch an anthology film I say the same thing and that is that man, do I have a soft spot for anthology horrors! Saying that I just got flashbacks to Zombieworld which was terrible...but anyway, Holidays features eight different short films tied together not by a central story, but around the fact that, as the title hints at, each of these eight films takes place during a different holiday event.

Things start off with Valentine's Day which was written and directed by Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer. This is about a bullied girl named Maxine who has fallen for her swimming coach, her delusions make her perform a grisly gesture to him on Valentine's Day. Things got off to a rocky start for Holidays as this really wasn't anything special. I found a lot of the acting of the young girls to be pretty awful, the way Maxine's delusions featured where interesting in their execution but overall left me feeling a bit cold.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Most Likely to Die (2015) - Horror Film Review

Most Likely to Die (directed by Anthony DiBlasi who also directed the competent Last Shift) is a slasher that I spotted on Netflix, it is up for nomination in this years Fright Meter Awards so gave it a gander. Despite a low score and featuring one of the most ridiculous killers in recent memory I went in with somewhat of an open mind.

A group of friends meet up the night before a 10 year high school reunion. They all happen to have been part of the senior yearbook committee who just so happened to have played a nasty prank on one of the students in their year. Soon they find themselves on the receiving end of a sadistic killer dressed in a graduation gown and cap who seems determined to butcher them. Is it the work of the student whose life they ruined all those years ago, or is it someone who is closer to the group?

Sunday, 25 September 2016

Dead Rising 2: Case Zero (2010) - Zombie Horror Video Game Review (X-Box 360)

As a promotion for Dead Rising 2 rather than give a demo instead we were treated to a mini prologue taster called Case Zero set in a self contained area that would show off what the main game was going to be like. However I never was able to complete the roughly hour long game, time and time again I tried but always gave up, as a result I never did play Dead Rising 2, Dead Rising 2: Case West, Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, or indeed Dead Rising 3. With the fourth numbered game coming to X-Box One this December I thought it was high time I played through all the existing ones.

You play as Chuck Greene who arrives at the sleepy town of Still Creek with his daughter Katey having escaped a zombie outbreak at Las Vegas. While looking for petrol to refill your car it gets stolen taking with it the essential Zombex medicine that your infected daughter needs to take once every 12 hours to stop her turning into one of the undead. Now you have one day to search the town for more medicine, as well as an alternate mode of transport, all before the military turn up. Things are made harder by the fact that there has also been a zombie outbreak in Still Creek...

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Dead Island Retro Revenge (2016) - Zombie Horror Video Game Review (PS4)

By all accounts one of the best things about the release of Dead Island: Definitive Edition earlier in the year (which was Dead Island and Dead Island: Riptide smartened up for current consoles) was the inclusion of a free bonus game; Dead Island Retro Revenge. At some point after this was made available to purchase as a stand alone game, randomly seeing it for around £4 I picked it up.

You play as a Jack Black look-a-like named Max who at the games start has his RV stolen that just so happens to have his beloved cat inside it. With no alternate option Max must now run across zombie infested California in order to retrieve his stolen possessions.

Friday, 23 September 2016

A House Is Not a Home (2015) - Horror Film Review

A House Is Not a Home is an award winning horror (Best Horror Feature at the Burbank International Film Festival among others) directed by Christopher Ray (Two-Headed Shark Attack, Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus) that after a limited theatrical release is going to be coming to DVD and digital platforms later this month. It is a haunted house film that despite seeming quite low budget still has some genuinely good ideas going for it.

Ben Williams (Gerald Webb), his wife Linda (Diahnna Nicole Baxter), and their two teenage children Ashley and Alex have moved into a new home with the hopes to getting a new start due to marital problems Ben and Linda have had in the recent past. As it turns out their choice of new beginning was not the best one as this place is host to all sort of spooky goings on; glimpsed ghostly figures, objects moving of their own accord, and bizarre nightmares plague the family. In desperation they call in a Hoodoo Priest hoping that he will be able to help them put a stop to the evils of the house...

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Larva Lumps and Baby Bumps (2016) by Controlled Bleeding - Music Album Review

I don't really review music here at The Rotting Zombie, mainly because I know virtually zero about it and I find that music more than anything is extremely subjective. Larva Lumps and Baby Bumps is the latest album from Controlled Bleeding who formed in 1985 and over the years have dipped into many different genres, this is their first album since 2002.

I wouldn't say this music is horror focused at all really, I received an email from a PR guy with a link to the album and to my sheer embarrassment I promptly forgot about it until I received a follow up email a few weeks later. This review comes from my guilt at having forgot to reply to the initial message. Larva Lumps and Baby Bumps as the blurb describes it is 'an eclectic mix of industrial, progressive rock, jazz and heavy metal influences'. Over two sides there are 12 tracks, most of these are around 6 minutes in length though the side one finisher The Perks of Being a Perv is a meaty 22 minutes in length that was an experience to get though, at times it reminded me of a boss battle theme from the Silent Hill videogame.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Class Four: Those Who Survive (2015) by Duncan P. Bradshaw - Zombie Book Review

A few weeks back I had the pleasure of reading Class Three; Duncan P.Bradshaw's first zombie novel, and in fact his first novel ever. Now I have finished reading the sequel to that one; Class Four: Those Who Survive which is the first in a follow up trilogy. The world in which the book takes place in is one where overnight (and I guess some places overday) the planet was plunged into complete zombie armageddon thanks to a returning space probe. Both Class Three and Class Four are set in the U.K, mainly England.

This time around rather than follow the two brothers Jim and Philip we instead follow Francis; a man they briefly met and who in the many months since zombie apocalypse occurred has been looking after a young boy called Nathan. A chance meeting with one of the brothers gives Francis hope for he is told of a commune in Wales where survivors have banded together, so he decides that is where he shall go. Meanwhile in a different storyline we follow the fates of a group of people led by a stern man called the Gaffer who have holed up in a biscuit factory.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Blair Witch (2016) - Horror Film Review

With the shock announcement of the third Blair Witch film a few months back I got quite excited, even the trailer looked good, yet in the days leading up to me going cinema to watch this I had heard nothing but bad things about it. The Blair Witch Project propelled the (now) much reviled found footage genre into the mainstream and so it made perfect sense that Blair Witch too would be from that sub genre of horror. Now Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 is one of my favourite horror films of all time, but this is in no way a sequel to that, it doesn't even reference that classic, instead this follows on from the story of the original film.

The film starts with a note saying that what we are about to see is pieced together from footage found from a group of people who went missing in the woods near Burkittsville in 2014. The film then follows James (James Allen McCune) who we soon discover is the brother of Heather from The Blair Witch Project. After someone posts some newly discovered footage found in the Blair woods of a girl running through a ruined house James comes to believe it is his sister. He decides to follow up this new lead and so has arranged to meet the guy who put up the footage and be shown where in the woods it was found. So James, his friend Ashley (Callie Hernandez) who wants to record the expedition for a project, his best friend Peter (Brandon Scott) and his girlfriend Ashley all head to the woods along with locals Lane and Talia. Predictably things soon take a turn for the doomed...

Friday, 16 September 2016

Call of Duty: Black Ops III 'Revelations' (2016) - Thoughts on the Final Zombies Map

Well the time has finally come and the very last Zombies map for the much loved Call of Duty mode has been released. I expected great things for this final map which wraps up the entire Zombies plot that started all the way back in 2008 with Call of Duty: World at War. As usual with this I in no way profess this to be a complete look at the map, more my impressions of it so far.

A fantastic intro shows how the four dimension travelling heroes finally ended up in a dimension that was perfect and more importantly totally zombie free. However not too long after arriving the summoning stone they had been carrying reveals itself to have a being of evil known as the Shadow Man residing inside it. This being tricks Dr Maxis into releasing him and in a final showdown he brings chaos and destruction to all realities. With numerous dimensions all bleeding into one our four heroes must battle the undead and the demonic forces and find a way to end the Shadow Mans plans of total annihilation...

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

The Invitation (2015) - Horror Film Review

Right off the bat I am going to say I don't really know how I am going to review this, much of The Invitation's one hour forty minutes run time it is one thing but becomes something else entirely. I guess if I had to compare it to anything it would be a Shakespeare play. Now I've never been to a dinner party, but bizarrely despite The Invitation being very tense I now kinda do want to go to one.

Will (Logan Marshall-Green) and his girlfriend Kira have been invited to a dinner party that his ex-wife Eden (Tammy Blanchard) and her new husband David (Michiel Huisman) are hosting. It has been two years since Will saw her and their old friends, so that coupled with the fact the party is hosted at his old house where their son died takes his toll on him. As the night proceeds Will starts to get more and more suspicious as to the intention of the hosts, but are his fears warranted or is it all in his mind?

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Don't Breathe (2016) - Horror Film Review

I had heard good things about Don't Breathe (directed and co-written by Fede Alvarez) and so I was excited to see it. I knew the general gist of the movie as a podcast I listen to had talked of it but for once previously at the cinema I hadn't seen a trailer for it.

Set in Detroit and three amateur burglars; Rocky (Jane Levy), Alex (Dylan Minnette), and Money (Daniel Zovatto) have decided to rob the house of a war veteran (Stephen Lang) as they suspect he is keeping thousands of dollars there. Despite discovering that he is blind they go ahead with the break in. Things don't go according to plan though as they discover the blind man is very far from helpless and soon they must fight with their lives to escape his tomb of a house.

Monday, 12 September 2016

Slashening 2: The Final Beginning (2017) - Comedy Horror Film News and Trailer

Brandon Bassham; the writer and director of comedy horrors Fear Town, USA and The Slashening is looking to make his next feature film Slashening 2: The Final Beginning. This is obviously a sequel to 2015's The Slashening which I felt was ok but relied too much on jokes revolving around sex and bodily functions rather than poking fun at horror tropes.

Slashening 2 takes place five years after the events of the first film. Madison Santangeli (Addie Weyrich) moves to Brooklyn after her fathers suicide and becomes caught up in a series of murders committed by a familiar looking killer.

There is currently an Indiegogo campaign going to raise funds to make the film. Fear Town, USA had a budget of $10,000, while The Slashening had $6,000. For this sequel they are hoping to raise $10,000. Currently $3,465 has been raised and with 19 days left there is still time for them to reach their goal. As well as Weyrich a few of the actors from the previous films are on board, including Patrick Foy who was a stand out of the other films, both times playing the same character, I really hope for this one he again plays Pat. Lloyd Kaufman (co-founder of Troma Entertainment) is also going to be in the film in what I assume will be a bit part.

It is hoped Slashening 2 will be bloodier and dirtier than the films that came before. For me while they were not bad I did feel more focus on the horror aspect of the comedy would benefit them so hope there is more of that this time around. Gotta say I dig the title, very in line with traditional horror sequels. If you want to contribute to the campaign then head on over to the Indiegogo page (here) where there are a series of perks based on how much you donate. I wish them all the best on their campaign, check out the teaser trailer below...


Sunday, 11 September 2016

Der Bunker (2015) - Horror Film Review

Der Bunker is a very strange award winning German black comedy that takes place entirely in a small bunker with a cast of just four people, directed by Nikias Chryssos. I didn't really know what to class this as, as it certainly isn't horror, but it has a sense of unease and peril throughout that contrasts with the ridiculous nature of the piece.

Pit Bukowski stars as Student who has travelled to a remote house built inside a bunker deep in a forest. He hopes for peace and quiet so he can work on a groundbreaking new scientific formula but soon finds himself caught up in the goings on of the place as he is pressured in to teaching Klaus (Daniel Fripan) by his parents; Father (David Scheller) and Mother (Oona von Maydell).

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Blackburn (2015) - Horror Film Review

I was surprised to see that not only was Blackburn (also known as The Blackburn Asylum) not a film about the life and times of DJ Tony Blackburn, but it was also nothing to do with the football club Blackburn Rovers. Instead it is an indie B-movie horror based at a gold mine that was filmed in just 14 days and directed by Lauro David Chartrand-DelValle.

Jade (Sarah Lind of WolfCop) and her four moronic student friends have travelled to the remote wilderness to stay at a cabin, however they find the roads they need to take blocked by both a rock-slide and a forest fire. Eventually out of petrol the group decide to go take a look in a disused mine, but they are unaware it is home to a group of homicidal maniacs and soon find themselves hunted.

Friday, 9 September 2016

Estranged (2015) - Horror Film Review

Well when my best friend said she had recorded a horror film on her TV for us to watch I assumed she had obviously made a great choice. As is the way I like to do things I went into Estranged with no clue as to the premise. Afterwards I was surprised to see it was just last year this sparse film was released.

After a motorbike accident with her boyfriend Callum leaves January (Amy Manson) wheel chair bound and with near complete amnesia she returns to her stately childhood home with him to recuperate around her estranged family who she apparently hadn't seen for years. She is met by her mother and father (James Cosmo), as well as her brother Laurence (James Lance) and sister, all of which are very odd people. The dad enforces stern rules on the household, while Laurence is very inappropriate to her, plus it seems the nervous butler is just itching to tell her some dark secret but is too afraid to do so. Not long into her stay and her boyfriend vanishes, the family tell her he left due to an offer made that he couldn't refuse. Some time passes and January starts to suspect these four people (who to her with amnesia are perfect strangers) may not be exactly who they state they are...

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Morgan (2016) - Sci-fi Horror Film Review

First off a few truths about this film. Number 1, when I first saw the poster for Morgan on the side of a bus stop I assumed it was a biopic about the life of Morgan Freeman. Secondly I was in two minds over whether to see this or not, it was only due to the fact that today was the last day it was showing in my local cinema that I decided to go.

Lee Weathers (Kate Mara from American Horror Story) is a risk assessment consultant for a private company who is assigned to visit a remote compound. At this facility an A.I construct named Morgan (Anya Taylor-Joy from The VVitch) had been created; a blend of human DNA and robotic intelligence which after an incident in which it viciously attacked a staff member is up for a psych evaluation to decide it's future. Things don't proceed smoothly however and Weathers finds herself in a deadly cat and mouse game against the being...

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Class Three (2014) by Duncan P. Bradshaw - Zombie Book Review

At last years UK Festival of Zombie Culture I met the friendly author of Class Three; Duncan P. Bradshaw and brought a book of his that was made up of both Class Three, and it's sequel. This review will be of the first book itself but I have to say the tome this came in was of high quality and had some bonus content such as an alternate ending and a short Christmas themed tale that I assume isn't in the stand alone novel but added to my enjoyment of it.

The day after being dumped by his long term girlfriend Sophie, Jim leaves his house for work only to (eventually) realise undead apocalypse has swept the globe over night. His zombie film enthusiast manic brother Phillip soon joins up with him and together they set out on a pre prepared plan, they are to check in on their parents, then Jim is going to check on his ex, finally they are going to head out to a remote area of Wales to sit out the apocalypse. With hordes of undead, psychos and a Doomsday cult in the way though things don't go quite as smoothly as planned...

Sunday, 4 September 2016

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 'Blood and Wine' (2016) - Expansion Pack Review (PS4)

Ok back in my review for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt I stated I had all but finished the Witcher trilogy of games, now about three weeks on and it is totally complete. I started playing the trilogy at the start of June and is all I have been playing, so in all it has taken me just over three months to do, this third game including the expansions has taken me 136 hours. The first smaller expansion Hearts of Stone was very horror focused, I had a feeling this final expansion Blood and Wine would not be so much inclined.

Set some time after the events of Wild Hunt Geralt (a monster hunter) is called to the Kingdom of Toussaint by Duchess Anna Henrietta and given a contract. A strange beast is terrorising the idyllic place and so it is up to him to stop it. However things are not as straight forward as they seem as it seems the beast has just cause for it's killings...