31. Spring (2014)

As the great Barry Manilow once said, “Looks like we made it…” The month of October is done, and we watched 30 movies, more or less. I watched more, but sadly a few were just too horrible to post. This, however, is not one of those films. This is a request from JDF, but it is the perfect film to round out our month of horror.

While this film has traditional horror elements, it is not a film about terror and dread. Quite the opposite, it is film about acceptance, life, and renewal. It is a reminder of us to not think of this as the end, but as a new beginning. Only 364 days until Halloween…

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30. Night of the Living Deb (2015)

As we limp across the finish line, I give you a fluffy little piece of cotton candy. Night of the Living Deb is written in the style of Shaun of the Dead, but from the woman’s perspective — sort of a zombie chick flick. The story centers around cute but socially inept Deb who goes home from the bar one night with the hottest guy in their town of Portland, Maine. After an uncomfortable wake-up (well, for the guy), things take a turn for the living dead.

There’s no more here than that. Basically, if you find Maria Thayer, who plays Deb, cute and funny, then you’ll probably like this movie. If you don’t, well, there’s not much more there. So, if its a cold, rainy Sunday, grab you best girl or boy and settle in for some mindless fun.

Let’s not try to make more of this than it is.

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29. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014)

Sometimes life doesn’t turn out like you planned it. Take last night, for example. I planned to watch and post a lovely little British horror movie that seemed to have the warm approval of at least some who viewed it. Instead, what I got was utter dog’s bollocks. I will admit that, in the spirit of this experiment, I almost posted it anyway as a reminder that there are bad movies out there. But then I thought, what if someone wasted their time seeing that film and they never see this one. Well, that would be a tragedy.

So here it is. My favorite hipster, Middle Eastern, Vampire, Western Romance. Flowers can bloom in the unlikeliest of places.

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29. Bone Tomahawk (2015)

OK, first things first. While this is technically a horror movie — and there are horrific things that happen — you will probably forget that about 10 minutes in. That’s OK. It’s a good story with good actors — Kurt “mothafrackin” Russell, Patrick Wilson, Richard Jenkins, and our old Extinction buddy Matthew Fox. Crazy Sean Young, Sid Haig, and 90s B-movie stud Micheal Pare even appear for about 5 seconds each.

The story is straight-forward enough — think 13th Warrior set in the Wild West and you’re getting close. The West was a brutal place, and John Wayne wasn’t always around to take care of the bad guys — and ol’ Rooster Cogburn never saw anything like this…

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27. Children of the Night (2014)

Let the Right One In alerted us all to one of the lesser known social problems of our time: vampire babies. If you are like me, it left you saying, “Look, I know that there is a problem, but what can I do?” Thanks to our friends in Argentina, now you know — you can sign up to work in Baby Vampire Land a/k/a Limbo, a haven for all the little monsters who were bitten in their prepubescent years and will never get old enough to vote. Well, “old enough” physically…mentally they are adult enough to really creep you out. It’s sort of the opposite problem that Twilight had — there, you could ignore how creepy it was that a 90 year old man was macking on a teenager because he looked like a teenager. It is far less creepy that two 30 year olds are making out, but not, it turns out, when they have the body of 12 year olds.

Anyway, the movie has an interesting premise, even if it doesn’t do much with it. Worth a watch.

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26. Rigor Mortis (2013)

For some reason, Asian countries make the best ghost stories. Maybe it is because ghosts are important to their cultures, but whatever the reason, they make some creepy, stylish stuff from the dreaded Shutter to Ju On and The Eye. Rigor Mortis is a nice Chinese addition to the genre. Not that it is completely a ghost story — it’s more a ghost, vampire, kung fu story. Or is it something else altogether?

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25. Extraordinary Tales (2015)

This is our second animated offering and is, I believe, quite appropriate. We have been focusing on recent horror movies, and while this is a recently produced film, the material is drawn from the original master or horror, Edgar Allan Poe. A labor of love from animator Raul Garcia, presented are five of he best known and beloved tales of the macabre, artistically illustrated and lovingly narrated by some of the greatest names in horror, including Christopher Lee, Bela Legosi, Roger Corman, and Guillermo del Toro.

So, as Halloween approaches, let’s use this film to remind us of the real reason for the season: mortal terror and our inevitable doom.

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24. Tales of Halloween (2015)

JDF recently affirmed his love of the horror collection, I thought this would be right up his alley. In the tradition of Trick ‘r’ Treat and the recent A Christmas Horror Story — I give you Tales of Halloween, a group of inspired, Halloween-related tales that often twist convention, a la’ O. Henry.

Be on the lookout for some familiar faces, including Lisa Marie and Barbara Crampton from We Are Still Here and Alex Essoe from Starry Eyes, among others.

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23. Curse of the Witching Tree (2014)

What is it with people moving into new houses — or in this case, farms? This time, we’re up for a bit of British horror with a tale of the revenge of a hanged witch. Adapting the story of Para-Norman…oh, wait, apparently it’s not an adaptation… Anyway, a billion years ago, a witch was hung…hanged, I mean, and now she’s come beck to extract her revenge by locking a boy in a cupboard and scaring the shit out of bullies. Oh, and killing people – can’t forget that.

So, enjoy this story of latchkey kids and their pigs.

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22. We Are Still Here (2015)

Playing an little catch-up after being out of town for a couple of days. After the accidental death of their son, and older couple — having never seen Poltergeist or Amityville Horror — does the most insane thing possible and move into an old house without doing an exorcism or anything. Predictably, they begin experiencing the usual problems people have with older houses: the electricity goes on the fritz, the basement is too stuffy, and evil lurks in every corner. Top that off with creepy neighbors and a downright hostile small-town atmosphere and the obvious answer is to call in pot-smoking hippie friends. After all of that, death would be a warm release.

While certainly nothing new, the film is helped by the presence of a smattering of scream queens and character actors. Just don’t go down in the basement…in 30 years or so.

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