Saturday, April 30, 2016

Echopresent: Til Blood Do Us Part

Author(s) - Jessica Ingalls and Jesse Wilborne
Release Date - 2016
Genre - Horror
Format - ebook (review copy)

Rating (out of 5):
     I have been reading more this last year than I have my entire life combined.  I started work for a new company and instead of myself doing all the work while everyone else sits on their ass and gossips, I work with an actual team that takes turns doing their job.  This has granted me some free time at my place of employment.  Instead of killing time on social media like my co-workers, I have decided to pick up reading.  After working my way through the bibliography of my favorite author Terry M. West., I set my sights on the Vampire Hunter D series.  While I wait on the other volumes in the series to arrive I took the time to check out the short story Echopresent: Til Blood Do Us Part. This was one sent over to review from co-author Jessica Ingalls.  Ingalls befriended me on Facebook where she is very outspoken and stands her ground when it comes to her beliefs.  Gotta respect a strong woman like that.  Thanks Jessica for sending this one my way!
     The story for this one follows the dead Tshilliah who reaps souls. While out looking for a man that drowned she finds a dog carrying the carcass of a baby.  Intrigued by the sight, she attacks the dogs and kills it before retrieving the baby so she can reap it as well because reaping two souls is better than one.  When she picks it up she realizes that this child is the reincarnation of someone she has been waiting for.  She decides to save the child and feeds it her demon milk before taking him to an orphanage to be raised where she continued to nurture the child creating something very different.
     When Jessica first contacted me about reviewing Echopresent she warned me that it was graphic and disturbing. I didn't have the heart to tell her that I read the works of Kevin Strange and she could not touch the depravity his sick mind comes up with.  It was still a solid read but not as vile and disgusting as I was hoping for.  The writing in this one was awkward to read.  I don't know if this was just a draft I was sent to review or not but it was a little blocky and somewhat hard to follow.  The story is set up into sections that work like chapters but are not numbered and are rather confusing to be honest.  They almost feel out of order.  Also, there was several errors throughout the short story.  These are errors that we see everyday on social media and the like.  We see the wrong use of 'to' and 'too' along with no punctuation.  As I stated earlier, I don't know if this is a rough draft or not but these are things that can be easily fixed to improve the quality.  The story for this one is great once you adjust to the way it was written.  The dead reaping souls, sexually aroused, nursing a human child that was once dead, all was fucking brilliant.  I can see so much potential with this story and it would be a damn shame if we don't get more following it.  Hell, I would love to get my hands on a longer version of it.  Finally, this short story has several characters that are enjoyable and you really rally behind.  We have the human child living on the milk of the dead, the reaper who loves to masturbate on couches, and more.  Some really memorable characters are in this one.  Overall, Echopresent: Til Blood Do Us Part is a great effort from co-authors Jessica Ingalls and Jesse Wilborne.  The story is roughly written but has so much potential.  It may not be the most disgusting thing you will read but you won't soon forget it.  Head over to and check it out.  It is well worth your time!

Winners Tape All: The Henderson Brothers Story

Director - Justin Channell (Raising the Stakes, Die and Let Live)
Starring - Zane Crosby (Bleeding Through, Basic Slaughter), Josh Lively (Faces of Schlock, Faces of Schlock Volume 2), and Chris LaMartina (Grave Mistakes, Call Girl of Cthulhu)
Release Date - 2016
Genre - Horror/Comedy
Tagline - "They blurred the lines between Hollywood and the backyard"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection)

Rating (out of 5):

     I started really coming into horror when I was a freshman in high school.  I took an interest in horror at an early age, around 8 or 9, when Goosebumps hit the scene.  I found the genre interesting and fun but it was not my obsession until high school when I started collecting the Evil Dead trilogy.  Then I was hooked and started collecting regularly.  I met some friends that were just as in to horror as I was but we were pretty much considered weird for our love of the genre.  Unbeknownst to us, there was several indie directors in the state that were making horror that would inspire others to do the same.  In 2005 we had Eamon Hardiman and Razor Sharp Studios working on Catholic Ghoulgirls and Vampire Whores from Outer Space creating the legend of Burt Flemming.  At that same time we had another filmmaker, Justin Channell, working on his film Raising the Stakes.  This was not something that I was aware of at the time but over the years I became good friends with Eamon and recently became acquainted with Justin after seeing friends share Winners Tape All on their social media pages.  Sometime ago I purchased a Justin Channell double feature but I was unaware he was from my state.  I was very interested in Winners Tape All but knowing the filmmaker was from the mountain state made me want to see it even more!
     This mockumentary follows obsessed fan Henry Jacoby (indie director Chris LaMartina) who has brought together his favorite two filmmakers, the Henderson brothers, for a documentary about their two shot on video classics Curse of Stabberman and Cannibal Swim Club.  Henry grew up in a small town in West Virginia and regularly visited the local video store where he came across both films.  He became obsessed and over the years made contact with them where he now is interviewing them about what it was like filming these two forgotten films, as well as, where they are now forming another production company to make even more S.O.V. mayhem.
     Mockumentaries are usually shit in my opinion.  This is Spinal Tap and Tight both had their moments but were very lackluster for the most part.  In fact, they pretty much bored me until the humor kicked in which was very light.  I honestly had no idea what Winners Tape All had in store for me but I was not expecting the oddball comedy that we got.  The acting in this one is brilliant.  The Henderson brothers, Zane Crosby and Josh Lively, were amazing together.  They have a great on screen chemistry and fed off each other like some of the greatest comedy duos in history.  These two need to star in more horror films and soon.  The remainder of the cast is rather small.  We have director Chris LaMartina who does a great job as an obsessed fan.  He is very convincing and gives a solid performance but he is nowhere near as animated as Crosby and Lively.  The story for this one is simple, fun and downright brilliant.  Though it is not entirely original, it still appeals to the horror fans out there who collect slashers and the rare S.O.V. horror flicks.  Most of the mockumentaries out there follow a fictitious character, band, creature, and so on as they talk about their make believe life.  This one is no different but it dives deep down into what real horror fans enjoy and gives us the minds behind two faux films that really needs to be made.  Finally, though this is a mockumentary it still has some kills when it plays scenes from the fake films.  These kills were cheap and not meant to be taken seriously.  The effects are not that great but that is not the point of these kills.  The kills, along with the clips they are in, are meant to parody the S.O.V. boom of the late 80s and 90s.  Overall, Winners Tape All: The Henderson Brothers Story is one fantastic film that shows there is still originality and fun in the indie horror scene.  The film has laughs, some of the best acting I have seen in a no budget feature, and pokes fun at something horror fans really love.  I can not recommend this one enough!

Friday, April 29, 2016


Director - Jorg Buttgereit (Nekromantik, Der Todesking)
Starring - Florian Koerner von Gustorf (Nekromantik 2), Monika M. (Nekromantik 2), and Micha Brendel
Release Date - 1993
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "Today I'm dirty...but tomorrow I'll just be dirt"
Format - Bluray (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     German born director Jorg Buttgereit has more than made a name for himself among the horror community.  His films are legendary.  Though I don't care for a few of his films I still have to give the man credit.  He knows how to leave a lasting impression.  His film Nekromantik is a film I have heard about for years.  Fans fucking love it.  Jorg took on a topic that most would never dare and the result was history.  That film spawned a sequel which is just as liked among horror fans as the first film.  Jorg did not stop there.  He released an anthology film of sorts titled Der Todesking which followed several individuals who then died in various ways.  Personally, I am not a fan of the Nekromantik films but Der Todesking was very entertaining.  Recently Cult Epics released another Jorg Buttgereit film on blu.  That film was Schramm and looked like one of the better Jorg films.  I reached out to them and they were kind enough to send a review copy my way.  Thanks guys!
     The film follows Lothar Schramm (Gustorf) who lives alone.  He is an avid jogger and is constantly pushing himself.  He also has a deep, dark sexual obsession with killing and mutilation. He has sick fantasies and carries them out on unsuspecting victims.  He often kills his male victims quick as possible and then lives out sexual desires with the women.  Sometimes he will kill them before he fucks them while other times he will sedate them and just masturbate on their unconscious body before he murders them. When he can't murder someone to fulfill his sexual desires he turns to self-mutilation.  We follow Lothar through his daily routine and end with him laying in his own blood as his life slips away.
     I've always felt that Jorg Buttgereit was a filmmaker and not a storyteller.  His films were mostly made to shock with very little story.  Nekromantik 1 and 2 was proof of that.  The film centered around fucking a corpse.  Nothing profound to these films but they were groundbreaking.  However Der Todesking does take us away from that and gives us some story.  Sure, its an anthology that keeps repeating itself but it was nice to see something truly depraved follow a story regardless of how simple it was.  Schramm was a departure from all this and actually gave us a story to follow that was honestly not that shocking considering the other films from the same mind.  The acting in this one is not the best.  If you have seen the other Jorg films then you know the acting is not top notch and this one is the same.  The acting is consistent from scene to scene but the experience was just not there to make the characters believable.  The story for this one is a very intense character piece that shows how dark and sick the human psyche can be.  The story is very simple but it is able to pull the viewer in with anticipation.  Finally, those of you looking for blood will find it here.  The kills are not that amazing but the blood comes freely in this one.  Some decent practical effects and some unique kills would have set this one over the top.  Overall, Schramm is one demented horror film.  It is easily one of the best serial killer horror films that I have seen and Cult Epics really did an amazing job on this release.  Check it out immediately.  


Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Director - George Lazopoulos
Starring - Thanos Amorginos (Ferryman), Vana Rambota (Think it Over), and Eleni Filini (The Final Payoff)
Release Date - 1998
Genre - Horror
Tagline  "A surreal and disturbing exploration of myth and mystery"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     When I was in elementary school, years before my horror fixation, I had an interest in Greek mythology.  Hell, what 2nd and 3rd grader doesn't?  Something so alluring about the titans, Zeus, Hercules, Medusa, Hades, and so on.  These stories were endless and really sparked my imagination.  As my life took the horror route I often found myself wondering why we don't have more horror films centered around Greek mythology.  We have the Ray Harryhausen films and a few horror flicks centered around the ferryman but that is about the extent of it.  Recently I came in contact with Mondo Macabro and they sent me their newest release, Medousa.  This 1998 flick was one I had never heard of but I was glad they sent it my way.  Thanks guys!
     The film follows a young boy who lives with his mother, an older man, and a strange woman that hides in her room.  The young boy is fascinated with magic and throwing knives.  One day he kills his mother's chicken and she disappears along with everyone else in the house.  The boy grew up alone and is now doing illegal things to put food in his belly and money in his pocket.  His gang catches wind that a rich lady is leaving her castle for a few days so they decide to head out into the country and rob her while she is gone.  They arrive and find several wallets full of cash and driver's license stashed inside the home.  It is then that the young man tell's everyone that this was once his home and the mystery of the older lady is revealed.
        Medousa was explained to me that it was an art film of sorts that focused on the Greek legend of Medusa.  I was expecting something that I would honestly not be interested in.  My mind immediately jumped to the conclusion that the film would be incoherent and difficult to follow.  Luckily, I was wrong and Medousa turned out to be a very entertaining film.  The acting in this one is not the best.  The film's lead, Thanos Amorginos, plays Perseus.  His character is void of all emotion and really comes off as unsettling.  He is like a statue which is ironic considering the film's plot.  The reminder of the cast does a decent job but the film is still awkward to watch when Thanos has the most screen time.  The story for this one is pretty great.  It mixes daytime crime dramas with Greek mythology resulting in a very well polished horror thriller.  With that being said, the Medusa angle was not fully explored.  When people think of Medusa they think of hair made of snakes and a deathly stare.  Sadly, we only get the stone statues from legend and that is about as far into the mythology as we go.  Would have loved to see her snake hair!  Finally, those of you looking for the gore will not find it here.  The story of Medusa is one riddled with bodies but they are not mutilated or butchered.  The dead simply turn to stone and that is what we get in this film.  The effects are simple and the stone statues are creepy but does lack gore.  Overall, Medousa is a very entertaining film.  Horror fans that are wanting a break from the mindless blood and gore should really check out this story rich film that takes an unusual path and explores some Greek mythology.  Check it out!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Killer Workout

Director - David A. Prior (Zombie Wars)
Starring - Marcia Karr (Maniac Cop), David James Campbell (Scarecrows), and Fritz Matthews (Deadly Prey)
Release Date - 1987
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "The workout will kill you"
Format - Bluray (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     I was born in 1986 and grew up mostly in the 90s.  I was 4 when the greatest decade for movies ended and the 90s began.  Most assume that I know a great deal about 90s pop culture and horror because I grew up during that decade.  Well, I do know a great deal about 90s pop culture and horror but the 80s always held my attention.  I loved everything 80s and 80s horror will always have my heart.  Out of all the trends to come out of the 80s the slasher sub-genre has, and always will, be my favorite.  I have been collecting movies in one format or another for almost 15 years and my goal is to own every slasher regardless if they were studio, independent, or S.O.V.  One film that I always wanted to see and never could was Aerobicide, aka Killer Workout from 1987.  I never could find the film on VHS for a reasonable price and no official release of the film hit DVD.  Recently, Olive Films and Slasher//Video teamed up and released the film on bluray.  I had to see it so I reached out them and they were kind enough to send a review copy my way.
     The film follows fitness instructor Rhonda who owns her own gym.  She has a lot of stress running the gym where she is often hit on by a local douche and her employees are constantly late forcing her to pick up the slack.  She thought things were bad but they soon turn worse when someone is murdered in her gym.  The police start investigating and quickly suspect it is Rhonda due to her past.  Things turn even worse when her partner sends in a private eye to find the killer before more bodies turn up.  Things come to a bloody boil when the real killer is discovered...but was it a cover up?
     Slashers could take place anywhere.  Most people, like myself, love the slashers in the woods while others love them on college campuses.  I have seen them in laundromats, nightmares, churches, planes, but I have never seen one take place in a gym.  The gym setting worked very well but the film did not use the setting to it's full potential.  The acting in this one is what you would come to expect from an 80s slasher.  The cast does put forth an effort, a valiant one at that, but they are far from winning awards.  The story for this one is your standard slasher fare set against a rather unusual setting that we never see slashers go.  The story follows someone wronged killing people to justify being wronged.  This worked very well in the gym setting but I was expecting to see more kills centered around the gym equipment and exercises.  This was a bit of a let down considering that the killer mostly killed with a giant safety pin.  I somehow missed how it was relevant to the killer but was lame nonetheless.  Finally, those of you looking for original kills with amazing practical effects will not find them here.  The kills have some blood but were very tame in comparisons to the other slashers released around this time.  We get the unoriginal throat slit, hanging, and people stabbed in the forehead with a needle.  Nothing fun or unique.  Overall, Killer Workout is a slasher for slasher fans but the everyday movie goer and mainstream horror fan will not enjoy it.  The kills or boring but the story has it's moments.  Well worth the watch.

Monday, April 25, 2016


Director - David W. Warfield (Deep Sea Detectives)
Starring - Hannah Schick (Feast), Lauren Lakis (Witch's Brew), and Kenneth Hughes (Death Becomes Her)
Release Date - 2015
Genre - Horror/Thriller
Tagline - "No one can escape"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     When I review a bad movie it usually comes in pairs.  I can't just watch one movie I dislike.  I usually have to watch two or three films that just don't sit well with me.  Recently, I reviewed the sci-fi alien film Conspiracy Encounters.  The film was poorly edited and written but did have a plot that could have been pretty fucking fun.  I then followed that one up with the dark thriller Rows.  This one was sent to me randomly by MVD under their new Indie Rights Movies.  The film actually came recommended by other horror reviewers.  This excited me and I tossed it on the pile to check out when I could.  I want to thank Clint for sending this one to Horror Society to check.
     The film follows a young girl and her friend who are tasked with going through a giant cornfield and delivering an eviction notice to a squatter living in an old, dilapidated home.  Her father plans on tearing it down for a business project.  They give her the notice and soon find themselves in a murder conspiracy that keeps repeating while they are lost in the cornfield that seems to go on for day.  They have to work things out and learn why they can not get home.

     Dark thrillers and dramas are good at giving the viewer some amazing stories that are just too complex to be your run of the mill horror flick.  However, sometimes complex can turn into distracting not only for the viewer but for the director as well.  The acting in this one is not the best I have seen.  The cast has chemistry with each other but they just feel awkward to watch on screen.  I have seen so many indie horror productions over the years and have seen the heart of soul of thousands of actors get poured into their performances but this one just did not feel like their all was delivered.  The story for this one is a solid concept but poorly executed.  The whole Groundhog Day curse got old pretty quick when you watch the same thing unfold over and over again with the cast not doing anything different.  At least in Groundhog Day the film's lead is aware of what is going on and acts accordingly.  In Rows, the cast does the same thing over and over again which becomes boring very quickly.  If this only happened twice and then dived deeper into the story then it would have worked well but the film would have been drastically shorter.  Finally, those of you looking for blood and guts will not be happy with this one.  This thriller focuses strongly on story rather than bloodshed.  Personally, a little blood and guts would have made this one better.  Overall, Rows is a film that tries a little too hard to be different.  It wants to be a film that people will remember as being story rich and unusual but fails to deliver.  The story is very repetitive and leaves the viewer bored.  I recommend skipping over this one.