Mortals: if you haven’t been to a Hudson Horror Show, let the recriminations commence! Geography is no excuse. Sickness? Merely your neglected will asserting its place in your frail, sniveling body. As a kindness, here are the films you missed at Hudson Horror Show XV. Thanks are owed to our friends at HHS for putting on the event, to Empire South Hills 8 for renting out two screens, to the vendors for reserving space, and to Jordan at the B-Movie Film Vault for sponsoring the print of The Hidden.
Welcome to the first part of our 31 Days of Fright! Every October, I watch 31 horror films that I’ve never seen before, and this year I’ve stitched together my thoughts on them into a shambling, sentient beast. 10 reviews are below the cut. Enjoy! – Joel La Puma
Dir. Susan Seidelman
Inside Llewyn Davis
Dirs. Joel & Ethan Coen
It’s unlikely Smithereens was on the Coen Brothers’ minds when they made Inside Llewyn Davis, but the base similarities are striking: an abrasive, irresponsible artist wanders New York City, living on the charity of other people while trying to wedge themselves into a spot in a crowded music scene. Yet the plot is so much more persuasive in Seidelman’s film. Maybe it’s because Susan Berman’s Wren is such an interestingly broken person, fun and exasperating, a keen robber and naïve ingénue, obsessively making herself an artistic statement and building a reputation on nothing. Oscar Isaac is magnetic as Llewyn, cool in ways most actors can’t even dream of being, but that’s kind of the problem. He’s not the boor that the Coens seem to believe he is. The film runs on informed characteristics: it surrounds Llewyn with embarrassingly shrill female characters to screech and flap at him and it rejects him after performances that would move the dead. The door was locked from the start, so why blame the guy for smashing a few windows?
The tale of a tv series now newly alive online and hosted by Mr. Roald Dahl, and a review of its scariest episode. Hit the jump and take a journey creepier than any boat ride with Mr. Wonka.
Survivors’ Club 1-6
Art: Ryan Kelly
Writing: Lauren Beukes and Dale Halverson
Covers: Bill Sienkiewicz
If you’ve kept up with non-superhero comics in the past few years, you know the High Concept Kids, that IP-obsessed band of visitors using comics as barely disguised pitches for movies or TV shows. Survivor’s Club isn’t quite that, but it ain’t quite quill, either. The story is halfway between the High Concept and the mash-up: six survivors of adolescent horror movie trauma gather to discover that the Past Isn’t Past. The tribute to B-horror is the biggest draw here, but there are enough smart inversions and twists on well-worn tropes to sustain interest. A young boy suspecting his attractive neighbor of seducing and killing victims doesn’t find a Fright Night vampire, but a ravenous insect queen who turns him into a walking hive. Girls live alongside J-horror vengeance spirits and killer dolls, carrying them into adulthood. And in the story’s loopiest thread, a South African gamer finds that the Polybius-like haunted arcade game that destroyed her childhood is still alive and searching rebirth on the internet.