Showing posts from February, 2011

"Twilight" Dad goes bad - in a biiig way !

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - Cage, Heard, and Fichtner in a panel for "Drive Angry"."][/caption]

The other day my boyfriend and I went to see the new Nicholas Cage movie, "Drive Angry 3D".  I had purposely not seen the trailer for it prior to going, because I have found that lately the trailers show the entire movie.  What a disappointment it is to then go and see the movie, realizing you've seen the whole thing before - just not in the correct sequence.

There's not a really deep plot to "Drive Angry".  Nicholas Cage is going after the man who killed his daughter (masterfully played by Billy Burke - who has now officially broken out of the stigma of being "the dad from Twilight". Not that I have anything against the "Twilight Saga", lord knows I've seen the movies and read the books, but still - he's a great actor and needs to be in mo…

A So-So Zombie Game, Revisited.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="245" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

I have no idea why, but I can't get that stupid game, "Blood Drive" out of my head.  I didn't wind up trading it like I thought I would.  I thought that I would be able to get rid of it because it's so awful, but I have a strange, inexplicable wish to go back and try my hand at it again.  There is a horrifying possibility that I will spend more time on it, getting to know it better and ::gasp:: unlocking some of the features that shouldn't have to be unlocked.  Is it possible that this terrible game has some voodoo charm on me !?  Quite possible !  I will keep you posted.

A So-So Zombie Game.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

I purchased "Blood Drive" for the XBOX 360 pretty much as soon as it came out.  (I might add that I spent $49 or so on this game.)  It was a fairly obvious choice for me - it was a zombie game.  When I went home and told my friends about it, they were horrified.  One particular friend even admitted to having it on his to-do list to tell me not to purchase the game.  I couldn't figure out why, and I looked up some reviews of my own.  Without going into detail, the results were disappointing.

I've been playing it for a little while now (about an hour) and there are some obvious disadvantages with the game, as well as a few pluses.

In many ways, "Blood Drive" is a rip-off of the "Left 4 Dead" franchise.  This game features zombies that look and act uncannily like the Boomer, Hunter, Charger, and Tank.  The gameplay became monoto…

My Hero, Vincent Price.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - Dashingly handsome !"][/caption]

When I was a child, I had a terrible crush on actor Vincent Price.  I don't remember exactly how it began, but I think it had to do with my viewing of an AMC showing of "House of Wax".  Which ever movie it was, I remember Vincent Price starring, and a skeleton with obvious wires being lowered into a vat of acid.  [If anyone remembers which movie that is, please let me know.  I want to get it on DVD if possible!]  Anyhow, I saw "Tower of London" tonight for what I thought was the first time, but apparently I had seen it before because I remembered the ending.  I thought it would be in keeping with my recent leitmotif to write a blog post about it, being that it is a retro horror film.

In the 1962 movie "Tower of London", Vincent Price gives a virtuoso performance as the mad King Richard III of England.  Why…

A house to "Offer" a zombie besieged society...

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="240" caption="Image by mstephens7 via Flickr - That's an image of the house - beautiful isn't it ?"][/caption]

Yesterday I happened on "Burnt Offerings" on my Netflix and decided to watch it.  For some reason, lately I've been leaning towards watching older horror movies (ie Poltergeist, Legend of Hell House).  My dad came in while I was watching it and said he remembered it being a really good movie, and I found at the end that he was right.  Incidentally I went to and bought the book while I was watching the movie, so at some point you will see that review here, though just not yet.

I thought the movie was great.  Karen Black played the mother, Oliver Reed was the father, and Lee Montgomery played their 12 year old son.  A nice suprise was an aging Bette Davis as the aunt.  Together the three rent an old house for the summer for only $900, which appears as a steal at first…

When sushi strikes back...

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - Show some respect for your dinner !"][/caption]

I recently finished reading an anthology titled "Dead Bait Anthology", published by Severed Press.  I think its a real blessing that I don't eat fish regularly, or at all, for that matter.  I lost my taste for it some years ago.  Having a hermit crab for a pet has caused me to not be adventurous where crab are concerned, though I did have lobster pizza once and liked it.  (Mostly because I couldn't see what animal it came from while it was on the pizza...when someone tried to cook lobster for me once, I cried for an hour.)

It seemed that with every page I turned, this anthology continued to outdo itself.  Before picking up this anthology, I had no idea that there could be so many fresh ideas centered around supernatural fish, or that the water really wasn't a safe getaway from zombies.  Every story was …

NEVER let Liam Neeson be your undertaker.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - actor Liam Neeson"][/caption]

Tonight I watched a really odd movie (surprise, surprise) starring Christina Ricci, Justin Long, and Liam Neeson.  The movie, called "After.Life", was released in 2009.  The premise is pretty straight forward: Ricci is a young woman who is killed in a car accident and taken to the mortuary where her body is prepared by Liam Neeson, who has a penchant for talking with the dead.  Ricci is convinced she's not dead, but Neeson says otherwise.  Her funeral is in three days and the race is on to figure out exactly what's happening.  Will her almost fiance Long be able to save her?

This movie was billed as a thriller, but to be honest it didn't get really unsettling until the very ending, as things started to come together.  Up until then, I spent the movie trying to figure out what was happening - was she dead or alive? Was Ne…

Matheson 101

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - Meet Richard Matheson, the father of horror."][/caption]

Being a somewhat rabid Stephen King fan, I was immediately interested when I found out that Richard Matheson was his horror hero.  I vowed then and there to find out what had caused the hype.  When I found out that the film "I Am Legend" starring Will Smith was based on a Matheson tale, I decided to make that my starting point.

I went to the bookstore and picked up a copy of "I Am Legend" which also contained other stories.  It took me forever to find a copy of the book that didn't have the movie cover.  (I like books in their purest form - not with an actor or movie cover on them.)  I went straight home and read the first story, "I Am Legend", and realized that its nothing like the movie with Will Smith.  The movie was alright, but the story was better.  I realize that other versio…

Candy-munching zombie hordes...of women.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

Lisa Cach is the final author in the book "My Zombie Valentine", and her story "Every Part of You" was certainly worth waiting for.  I think, without stretching too far, that this is one of the oddest zombie tales I have ever read.  The zombies in this tale hunger for anything sugary, going so far as to mob the nearest stores.  Putting an unusual spin on the zombie mythos is the idea that they groan for whatever they are craving.  The main character's best friend Karen, for instance, insists on procuring "Junior Mintssss" the entire time.  Pretty funny stuff !

Our story begins with Angelica, a girl living in L.A. working on special effects corrections on movies.  While waiting in the office of a plastic surgeon (her friend Karen is the receptionist) she meets a surfer bum named Tom.  After a few accidental insults, she is led in…

Rule #597 - NEVER film a low budget film on an island.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia - This is George Romero in 2007 at Comic Con."][/caption]

The third tale in "My Zombie Valentine" is from Marianne Mancusi.  Titled, "Zombiewood Confidential", it tells the story of a production crew for Romeo George's next big zombie film.  (Yes - that's right.  Not George Romero, but Romeo George - very nice nod to the zombie fans.)

Scarlet is a makeup artist working on Romeo George's next movie, along with her teen idol Mason Marks.  Standing between their romance is Cissy, the whiny diva that Mason has to date (it's in their contract).  What starts out as a low-budget zombie flick turns into total chaos and mayhem as the production crew, extras, and other unfortunates begin to turn into zombies.

Overall, the story was pretty entertaining.  However, its a little more tedious to read than the other stories in "My Zombie Valentine&qu…

Zombies, romance, and a dragon...

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

"Gentlemen Prefer Voodoo" (written by Angie Fox) is the second novella in the paranormal romance book "My Zombie Valentine", which I promised to read before Valentine's Day.  (I just finished today and now I'm getting around to posting...)  In any event, the story is by Angie Fox, and it's pretty good.  The characters are interesting, and the story is pretty funny, all things considered.

The story's principal character is Amie, a love-lorn voodoo shop owner who doesn't even realize she's looking for a man in her life.  After being harassed by her ancient dragon-pet Isoke (a Kongamoto), she decides to try a love spell that will summon her perfect mate.  There's only a few problems, not the least of which is the dashing Dante is dead, and has been for about 200 years.  He only has three days before the spell wears of…

When good dead go bad...

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="200" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

One of my favorite books by Stephen King is {and most likely always will be} "Pet Sematary".  I believe this was the first zombie-themed book I ever read, and I read it somewhere around my 7th or 8th grade year.

This book scared the life out of me !  The story begins with Doctor Louis Creed and his wife Rachel, who move to Ludlow, Maine with their two small children, Ellie and Gage.  They also move with Churchill, Ellie's cat.

The first day in their new house they make the acquaintance of Jud Crandall, who lives across the street from them.  During their first meeting, he explains the dangers of the road they live on, how trucks drive well above the speed limit and pass day and night.

Jud also shows his new friend a very interesting landmark.  Past the deadfall in the Pet Sematary and up a trail lies a Micmacburial ground with an unusual ability.  An…

All the zombie fragging you can handle...and a little you can't.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="258" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

"Left 4 Dead 2" follows four different survivors through a series of zombie infested maps.

The game was an overall improvement from Left 4 Dead (which in and of itself was still an awesome game!)  There are numerous notable changes for the better which include more staggered spacing of the infected.  Instead of running into a constant mob and then nothing, the mobs are well spaced enough so that there is no time to relax and wait for the next mob.

The special infected are bigger, better, and more badass as well.  Hunters, witches, boomers, and tanks all were re-done with more detail including (but not limited to) extra boils, more slime, and more detailed clothing.  New notable specials include the Jockey, who sits atop your character and rides them around while screeching, and my personal nemesis, the Spitter.  Spitters have disjointed jaws and are cap…

Raising more cuddly undead...

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

Next up is "Zombie Felties: How to Raise 16 Gruesome Creatures from the Undead" by Nicola Tedman and Sarah Skeate.  Whew !  What a title !  And yes, there is another story to go along with "Zombie Felties".  I was looking for the "Creepy Cute Crochet" book at a bookstore when I came across this book and I had to have it.  As a kid, I loved the "Thriller" music video, and still listen to it all the time today.  The picture of the Michael Jackson feltie was all it took to get me to buy the book.

So I bought the book thinking these little felties would be the easiest thing to make in the world.  A "feltie" is made from cut out felt pieces with buttons, beads, sequins, embroidery floss and other embelishments.  I regret to admit that there is, however, one little catch that nearly cost me my dignity at work.

I sat dow…

Romantic zombies?

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia   Valentine's Day - and zombies !?"][/caption]

Now, I'm going to be very clear about something - I do not read paranormal romance novels.  Or any romance novels, for that matter.  However, a friend found this book for me at a library sale and bought it for 25 cents, based on the fact that its a zombie novel.  I'm currently reading it because it's almost Valentine's Day, and I figured that now would be a good time to post something about this quirky book.

"My Zombie Valentine" is divided into four mini-novels, each by a different woman.  I started (and finished) the first one today.  It's called "Bring Out Your Dead" and was written by Katie MacAlister.  Far from being an annoying story, I thought it was interesting and boasted a rich cast of characters.  The central character, Ysabelle (or Belle, for short) is a double-souled coun…

Recommended for a cheesy good time !

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="295" caption="Image via Wikipedia"][/caption]

"House on Haunted Hill" is one of my favorite go-to movies when I'm not feeling well, or when I'm up for some cheesy good fun with decent acting.  Among the cast members are real screen gems - one of my favorites being the snarky Geoffrey Rush, who is to be able to take on almost any role seamlessly.  Taye Diggs and Ali Larter are also unexpected (and I believe at that point, relatively unknown).  Chris Kattan showcases his diversity - as the current owner of the haunted asylum and not as the usual funny man.

The plot is rather simple - the spoiled wife of an amusement park tycoon wants to host her birthday party at the most haunted place on earth - which just happens to be Vanacutt Psychiatric Institute for the Criminally Insane.  The spoiled wife, Evelyn (played by Famke Janssen), sends her guest list to her husband Stephen (Geoffrey Rush).  …

Don't take that call !

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="180" caption="Image by Tojosan via Flickr"][/caption]

I would like to preface the following review saying that when I grew up I lived on a steady diet of Stephen King books and hot dogs, washed down with Kool-Aid.  From the time I entered middle school until I graduated from high school.  No lie.  So, it goes without saying that I would read "Cell", widely accepted as Stephen King's take on the zombie culture.

I just finished the book last night and I'm honestly not sure what to think of it.  I didn't get the distinct "zombie feel" from the book.  I think of it more in the vein of science fiction, rather than horror, but that could be because of a numbness I feel towards certain books.  For over a year now I've been almost exclusively reading zombie books filled with missing limbs, violent deaths, and reanimated eating machines.

The story begins with graphic artist Clayton…