Welcome to the third and final part of our journey to the darkest fringe of the underbelly of modern cinema. If this is the first you’ve heard of this, best to begin with the first two parts here – [Part 1] & [Part 2]. If you’ve already made your way through those crackpot classics and mutated masterpieces, here are your last dirty dozen. And it only gets weirder! Turn the lights down, and brace yourself for dodgy dinner parties, alcoholic werewolves, and the end of the world, vampire style! Hit the lights!…
NOVEMBER transports us into the seriously weird fairytale realms of Estonian folklore, where occult automatons rebel against their masters, lovelorn maidens transform into wolves, and peasants avoid the plague by putting their pants on their heads. Bizarre, bleak, oddly beautiful, and bewitching – and black and white – you’ve never seen anything quite like this before.
If you think zombies have literally been done to death, then ONE CUT OF THE DEAD is the film to prove you wrong. This ghoulishly effervescent horror-comedy, which came from nowhere to become a smash hit in Japan, is best approached knowing nothing, aside from that it’s worth sticking with it past the clichéd opening sequence.
David Hyde Pierce, best known as Niles from the US sit-com Frasier, gets to take centre stage in THE PERFECT HOST. He plays a house proud perfectionist, planning a chic dinner party, who unknowingly finds himself on a collision course with a desperate criminal, leading to an edge-of-the-seat cat and mouse game, packed with wicked twists.
In SATANIC PANIC our heroine is a newbie pizza delivery girl who finds herself with the duff job – not only are these customers consistent lousy tippers, but they worship the Devil. Before you can say “Hail Satan”, we’re up to our ears in geysers of blood, icky black magic, and bad taste jokes, in this fiendishly fun horror comedy.
A post-holocaust movie with a difference, a modern spaghetti western-style, survival horror saga. Our ‘man with no name’ hero is known simply as Mister, an ice-cool taciturn survivor in a world overrun by vampires, STAKE LAND is a little like Will Smith’s I am Legend, but with a fraction of the budget and gallons more class.
Five former university buddies reunite to commemorate the death of a friend, a reunion that takes an unexpected turn. TALES FROM THE LODGE is an anthology flick, with several faces that’ll be familiar to British TV viewers – such as Johnny Vegas and Mackenzie Crook – in a series of interlocking horror stories with a cool Brit sit-com vibe.
If you crave something scary but different, then how about the Hindi period horror TUMBBAD? If you’ve previously been put off Bollywood, fear not, for there are no cheesy song and dance numbers in this impressive chiller, but rather elements of Clive Barker’s Hellraiser atmosphere, and maybe even Indiana Jones adventure, in what must surely be the strongest horror movie from the Indian subcontinent to date.
The shadow of John Carpenter’s classic relentless 1976 action thriller Assault on Precinct 13 falls heavily over the pacey, punchy action thriller VFW. When an inner city military veterans’ bar is besieged by a murderous, drug-fuelled street gang, the grizzled regulars – including some familiar faces – are obliged to resort to extreme measures to survive the murderous onslaught.
A love letter to 80s horror, THE VOID is a Lovecraftian bad trip of gory practical FX, interdimensional demons, and blasphemous cults. If you still yearn for the golden age of VHS-era horror – or want to know why it still makes some fans so nostalgic – then surrender to this weird, sticky wallow in old school splatter.
WHY DON’T YOU JUST DIE? was conceived when some Russian filmmakers wondered if they could make a spaghetti western set in someone’s front room. They succeed, though the manic, breathless finished product owes as much to Roadrunner-style cartoonish violence, torture porn sadism, or even the violently dysfunctional family dynamics of a Scorsese gangster movie.
WITCHING AND BITCHING is the second film on this list from Alex de la Iglesia, the Spanish director also responsible for The Bar, and is every bit as exhilaratingly original and wickedly subversive. This time he dramatises the battle of the sexes, as a desperate divorcee dad falls victim to a coven of cannibal witches in this wild, award-winning horror comedy.
Our hero is an alcoholic cop who’s given up even trying in his corrupt, lawless town, when a chance encounter with a werewolf gives him fur, superhuman strength and ferocity, without losing any of his appetite for booze and broads. WOLFCOP is a knockabout tribute to the drive-in, grindhouse cinema of the 70s, boldly crossbreeding the hard-bitten crime flicks and lurid horror movies of the era with engagingly vulgar charm.
Words by – Gavin Baddeley
If horror’s your passion, and you were looking for a new way to express it, may we draw your attention to our new collection of miniatures? In particular, the Demon Skull [VM5], the Cat Skull [VM3], the Raven Skull [VM7], and Pumpkin Skull [VM10].