REICH OF THE DEAD aka ZOMBIE MASSACRE 2

6.5 out of 10

UK/Italy co-production

REVIEW COMING SOON

Release date: 8th June 2015

Directors: Marco Ristori & Luca Boni (House of Evil)

Cast: Aaron Stielstra, Andrew Harwood-Mills, Ally McClelland, Lucy Drive, Michael Segal, with David White and Dan van Husen

Writer: Marco Ristori & Luca Boni

Trailer: REICH OF THE DEAD aka ZOMBIE MASSACRE 2

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

THE CUTTING ROOM

4 out of 10

Release date: 1st June 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Warren Dudley (The Bromley Boys / Cage)

Cast: Lucy-Jane Quinlan, Parry Glasshouse, Lydia Orange, Jason Rhodes, Louisa Adams and TJ Herbert

Writer: Warren Dudley

Trailer: THE CUTTING ROOM

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Director and writer Warren Dudley has surrounded himself with a decent cast for his formulaic if lively debut. His horror is yet-another ‘rats in a maze / found-footage’ flick that offers nothing new. It gives the game young cast a bit of variety for their showreels though as the plot tells the full story of how they met their horrific ends at the hand of a serial killer. We rewind, wayyyyyy too far, to the minute the film camera was hired from their college.  So we see our lead trio, fart about, talk relationships, project ideas and much more in the lead up. Most of which should have hit the Cutting Room floor because nothing worth keeping. The plot background slowly put together and yet feels unnecessarily laboured and over worked.

Three media students team up to make a documentary. They choose the subject of bullying which somehow morphs into an amateur missing person’s case. All this ends up in a spooky museum / castle / derelict military facility – with our daring trio chased by a killer with a penchant for slow torture.

We’ve been here before many times, and there’s nothing much I can write to say this distinguishes itself from the pack apart from a solid cast, natural performance, naturally obnoxuious characters and competent enough execution. As a debut, the director shows he has the basics to build on, and he has proved that with his second film, another horror called Cage. Hopefully, he will continue on this upward swing, as Dudley’s not a bad writer and director, who needs to work on becoming a bit more imaginative.

4 out of 10 – The Cutting Room won’t be one anybody’s list of top 10s. Even a short time after watching it, I find the details, and soon to follow, the whole film, fading from memory.

Second review below by Matt Usher

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

  • Lucy-Jane Quinlan: The Bromley Boys, Cage
  • Parry Glasshouse: Hollyoaks (TV), Hollyoaks Later (TV)
  • Jason Rhodes: The Bromley Boys
  • TJ Herbert: The Bromley Boys, Perfect Break, A Dark Reflection, Family Affairs (TV)

DEMON BABY

3 out of 10

Release date: 2nd June 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Coz Greenop

Cast: Carina Birrell, David Wayman, Cameron Jack with Lee Harris and Bhasker Patel

Writer: Coz Greenop

Trailer: DEMON BABY

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Demon Baby is an unusual horror as it seems to duck the central issue by not presenting us with anything chilling, demonic or ghostly. Demon Baby is a baby film though in that it’s scale is that of a postage stamp. It’s short, has a small cast and will slip from the memory as soon as you’ve gone to bed for the evening.

You’ll see worse films but to see a film that’s almost a ghost itself is something else, so vapour like is everything about it. The actors are fine but don’t seem to do anything to make you pay all that much attention. If I was being cruel, you may even think the TV has switched itself off in a bid to entertain itself. As it is, here’s the plot. A young couple hire a mobile home and dash off to Scotland. The girl (CARINA BIRRELL – JACK SAID) is suffering from visions of a ghostly lady and this weirds her vaguely creepy boyfriend out, played with steady footing by David Wayman (VENGEANCE). He may not be creepy though because he just wants to have lots of sex and she’s seemingly up for it, then not up for it, which gets him cross. A weird policeman (CAMERON JACK – DEATH RACE 4) begins to bother them, but he’s just a normal copper in there for triangulation purposes. A phone rings and gets ignored. Could this issue be the source of the mystery? It solves some of it, but it’s much like the rest of the film, a giant non-sequiteur designed like a ghost story but it’s too polite to conjure any real doom and gloom. OR did the production run out of money and they finished it by bringing in Bhasker Patel (WILD WEST) as a doctor to read a bunch of belated exposition to the watchers? Who knows? You’ll forget you’ve seen it anyway before trying to solve what went on.

3 out of 10 – A non-ghostly ghost story with fair acting and an elusiveness that can’t be accidental. Vapid.

Read another review below, by Matt Usher

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

SURVIVORS (2015)

3.5 out of 10

Release Date: 26th October 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Adam J Spinks (Extinction – Jurassic Predators)

Cast: Joanne Gale, David Anderson, Simon Burbage and Adrian Annis

Writer: Adam J Spinks & Lawrence Timms

Trailer: SURVIVORS (2015)

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A reasonable attempt at a no-budget zombie flick that is a cut above the rest because plot momentum is kept. Well-performed in the main by two of the three leads, its certainly an improvement on the majority of z-grade apocalypse movies. The camera man seems to be strong enough to hold the camera steady, the editor seems to know what he’s doing and there are some interesting supporting characters in the mix.

Joanne Gale’s Reporter stumbles on a government conspiracy to keep an ongoing outbreak of a virsu that turns everybody into mind less killers. She contacts her exboyfriend, Duke (SIMON BURBAGE – KNIGHTS OF THE DAMNED) to be her camera man. He annoys the hell out of her before they literally spilt up. Then in a later parallel story, Joanne is paired off with a mysterious man called Michael – the slightly wooden David Anderson (ADULT LIFE SKILLS) – who may have something to do with the virus. In parallel storylines both duos set off across England trying to survive.

Some scenes work better than others, depending on the supporting actor wheeled in to run the scene. Are they friend or foe? etc. The unknown Adrian Annis impresses the most as a muddled-up thug who’s gone past the point of return. The music and the locations are generally good as well for this kind of thing.

So whilst Survivors is far from brilliant, it’s at least watchable and once it ditches the annoying ‘found-footage’ framing after 15 minutes it begins to become more and more involving. You even begin to get used to Anderson’s weird non-acting style. Its the closest thing to a middle of the road zombie flick I’ve ever seen because it has no original ideas but it accomplishes more than the average low-grade zombie flick by concentrating on the characters and their predicaments and the gore and zombies are kept on the fringes, seen all too fleeting until it’s too late. Not a bad debut.

3.5 out of 10 – Above average, no budget flick made in the main by wanna-bes and amateurs.

Also see Matt Usher’s review below for more insights

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

ESTRANGED

3.5 out of 10

REVIEW COMING SOON

Release Date: 29th August 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Adam Levins

Cast: Amy Manson, James Cosmo, Craig Conway, Eileen Nicholas, Nora Jane Noone, James Lance and Simon Quarterman

Writer: Simon Fantauzzo

Trailer: ESTRANGED

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

 

SILVERHIDE

1 out of 10

Release Date: 6th April 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Keith R Robinson

Cast: Kelly Wines, Lucy Clarvis, Matt Brewer, Jordan Murphy, Phil Stone, Sean Hayes and John Hoye

Writer: Keith R Robinson

Trailer:SILVERHIDE

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This film is on-par with Steve Lawson’s creaure feature Killer/Saurus in that it was shot in a garage and features a glove puppett for a monster. OK, so even with no expectations this film still couldn’t be worse if it got help.

Several conspiracy buffs trespass onto a top-secret military base the same evening a top-secret military experiment goes out of control. Project Silverhide is a wolf that can turn invisible in the moonlight. A fence falls down and the wolf savages all the cast in such a boring fashion I gave up trying to follow the plot (for what it was?) How a monster flick with a standard plot template could end up a confusing mess is quite an achievement but here’s the proof. Throw in a missing Dad, to one of the trespassers who happens to work at the base (or something) and a photographer that whispers (or got given the broken microphone) all of the exposition is lost. All that’s left for the viewer to do is laugh at the bad special effects and a pre-occupation to replicate JJ Abram‘s famous lense flare with a go-pro.

To say the only positive aspect to Silverhide is that you never see the monster very often or out in the open is a bonus. You see it’s eyes, a paw or a tail. You do see the wolf savage a soldier near the end and it reminded me of the famous TV interview when Burt Reynolds got on the wrong side of Rod Hull & Emu to comedic effect. It’s a joy to watch some amateur actor get wasted by a fluffy sock puppet.

The dialogue is a ripe as Joe Pesci II’s underpants, as soldiers question their superiors with such dopey insolence it’s a wonder they’re not in thrown in the stockade. They’re not even reprimanded. When the soldiers begin to get picked off you realise that you can’t tell who was who? Who was Starbuck? Who wars Red Killer?

The leads are terrible. Only Lucy Clarvis (THE CURSE OF THE WITCHING TREE) was previously known to me and she’s a lot worse here than she was in that lame horror. She looks relieved to be picked off relatively early and it’s a shame because I thought the film must be nearly finished but alas the she bails before the tedium quadruples.

1 out of 10 – Utterly unscary, badly written, badly acted, poorly produced piece of sci-fi twaddle. This makes Killer/Saurus look like Jurassic Park.

Review by Matt ‘Silver Bullet McMonobrow’ Usher below in the darkness…

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?

BLOOD MOON

5 out of 10

Release Date: 5th October 2015 (DVD Premiere)

Director: Jeremy Wooding (The Magnificent Eleven / Bollywood Queen)

Cast: Shaun Dooley, Anna Skellern, Corey Johnson, Amber Jean Rowan, George Blagden, Raffeolo Degruttola, Eleanor Matsuura, George Webster, David Sterne with Kerry Shale and Jack Fox

Writer: Alan Wightman

Trailer: BLOOD MOON

review by Matt ‘ Silverbullet’ Usher below

WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?