Monthly Archives: October 2016

THE LAST KNOCK presents: Dead on Arrival: Halloween

The Last Knock

Happy Halloween! Hey…

“Wait a minute, you’re saying John Carpenter’s 1978 horror classic is overrated?!”

Yup. We take a look at Carpenter’s renowned Halloween film that launched Jamie Lee Curtis’s career, helped solidify the writer/director as a burgeoning horror icon, and added another bloody feather to the amazing cinematographer, Dean Cundey’s cap. Now, don’t think we’re stabbing you in the heart – or stomach – because we both have a ton of creepy love for The Thing, Prince of Darkness, and more from the master of the macabre. Yet, just because Halloween‘s loved by many doesn’t mean it’s free of scrutiny – or flaws.

Join us as we go beneath the William Shatner mask of Michael Myers to find out what’s wrong…

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@dixiefairy @isaacrthorne @MelanieMcCurdie @machinemeannow @flcamera @AnnThraxx @XcentricModels @LianeMoonRaven @LoudGreenBird @FriscoKidTX @RealJillyG @RonGizmo @Talk2Cleo @BleedingCritic @d_m_elms @RSBrzoska @corybrin and Paul J. Williams on Facebook.

THE LAST KNOCK presents: Physical Media

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Physical media = Scary stuff! Okay, Billy Crash did his damnedest to weave horror into this one, but it doesn’t mean Jonny Numb and very special guest, the man from his own magnificent world, Dave K, didn’t have cool things to say about the on-going digital revolution and the recent surge in retro-media. So if you’re a collector of horror DVDs, VHS, or any bloody thing you can hold in your hands (insert your own image!), this show’s for you.

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@OfficialBlondie @OfficialSting @themisfits @NinaHagenoficia @2ndandcharles @GoodwillIntl @booksamillion @abel_ferrara @ArrowFilmsVideo @ShoutFactory @Scream_Factory @Criterion @Blunderground @88_Films @WarnerArchive @SonyPictures @GCDB @amoebamusic @FamilyVideo @RSBrzoska @LoudGreenBird and Paul J. Williams on Facebook.

Check out the Magnificent World of Dave K, follow him on Twitter, and don’t miss his horror and noir art at Finis!

 

THE LAST KNOCK presents: Shriekfest

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Shriekfest celebrated its “Sweet Sixteen” on the first weekend of October in the City of Angeles. A labor of love for founder and director, the talented actress, Denise Gossett, she’s created a fantastic festival for horror and science fiction fans. If you couldn’t make it, Billy Crash did, and Jonny Numb interviews him about the folks, the films, and the frolicking that made the festival rock – and left everyone shrieking throughout the Hollywood hills.

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@CatLaCohie @TheDames @BrookeLewisLA @GorillaProducer @CarryOnJohn @RECTORYFILM @KileyEberhardt @badchopsuey2 @MichaelTStrode @RussellEmanuel @girlsNcorpses @Raleigh_Studios @SamesCarolyn @SMByshAuthor @CierraKillerArt @Tammysdragonfly @doloresquintana @PromoteHorror @lloydkaufman @Uber @d_m_elms

And take in the sites…

Shriekfest Denise Gossett Annette Sowell Kiley Eberhardt The Rectory CatLaCohie The Dollface Dames Brooke Lewis Distribber

THE LAST KNOCK presents: Exorcizing Possessions

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As with any other horror sub-genre, tropes abound, and exorcism and possession are no different. How often have we seen the possessed girl or woman bound to a bed to endure torture from demonic forces and patriarchy alike? But we’ll take a closer look at those tales that move beyond copying William Friedkin’s renowned film The Exorcist. Get ready to dive into the bodies (or something like that) of different kinds of possessions and exorcisms, from Session 9 and Oculus, to 1920, The Entity and more. Growling demons and puke fetishists need not apply.

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@inthenightdoc @dixiefairy @RSBrzoska @SiaraTyr @TheNightGallery @ValeriePrucha @madbradpotts @OwenMcCuenQuest @aicforever @Israel_Finn @isaacrthorne @RonGizmo @GARVEY66 @machinemeannow @iamgoreblimey @HalloweenQueenW @RealJillyG @seams16 @TheresaSnyder19 @ChadSchimke @SugaryLove09 @Kent_Harper

The Italian All Night Splatterfest 5 – September 3, 2016 – Event Report by Jonny Numb

all-night-splatter-fest-5Gazing at the façade of the Colonial Theatre in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, is like being transported through a black-and-white filter and entering a vision of small-town America in the 1950s – something out of a Twilight Zone episode, perhaps. Or one of the theatres the Losers Club frequented in Stephen King’s nostalgic classic, It.

It’s fitting, then, that the Colonial hosts “Blobfest” every summer – in celebration of the gelatinous monster flick from 1958 – because the theatre is one of the locations director Irvin S. Yeaworth, Jr. used in the film. Historic, indeed!

The Colonial’s warmly-lit marquee is an inviting beacon nestled within a quaint downtown of shops and restaurants. Even before setting foot inside, it’s easy to tell why this venue has been home to the Italian Splatterfest Film Marathon for five years running.

Walking through the big, welcoming doors consummates the time-warp experience. The lobby has red carpet, a chandelier, and a functional facsimile of an old-school concession stand; flyers for local attractions, businesses, and artisans adorn tables. Reminiscent of York’s Capitol Theatre or Philadelphia’s Trocadero, the Colonial is a 3-story building that has been well-preserved through the years (its website proclaims it “a community treasure,” and I can’t argue that).

A quick scan of the Colonial’s Facebook page shows a revolving-door lineup of current independent films coupled with classics and unconventional cult flicks. This clearly attracts a diverse crowd of film buffs who look to the theatrical experience as something more than going to the multiplex “because it’s there.” (I attended Splatterfest with my best friend, who had attended the screening of Barbarella at the Colonial several months prior.)

That’s what makes it the perfect place to host a mind- and eyelid-testing marathon of Italian horror flicks. The 5-film lineup was all over the place, which lent itself to an interesting viewing experience: first up was Claudio Fragasso’s notorious Troll 2; followed by Juan Piquer Simon’s Pieces; Michele Soavi’s contemplative and surreal Cemetery Man; Massimo Dallamano’s dramatic giallo What Have You Done to Solange? (under an alternate title, The School that Couldn’t Scream); and concluding with the gut-munching spectacle of Lucio Fulci’s Zombie.

My friend and I had splurged on a VIP pass that included a catered, Italian-themed buffet prior to the marathon. Cooked with care by Shorty’s Sunflower Café and Truckstop, menu items included homemade meatballs and sausage in red sauce, eggplant chili, and Rigatoni Frizzi. During the two 20-minute intermissions, VIPs were also given snack packs containing items as varied as almonds and olives, cupcakes, mini chicken bruschetta wraps, and chips & salsa.

Oh, and coffee…plenty of coffee. The biggest thanks in order may be to the Splatterfest gods for giving us willing fools the liquid perseverance to plow onward!

In addition to the delicious treats, the Splatterfest showrunners also had raffles for both the VIPs and regular attendees. The prizes included DVDs and Blu-rays from Arrow Video and Blue Underground, among others: T-shirts from Fright-Rags… and the periodic six-pack of beer. I was lucky enough to win a copy of the Cannibal Holocaust soundtrack on vinyl during the pre-show VIP raffle. Nobody had to leave empty-handed, though: for those looking to purchase mementoes of the event, there were great, newspaper-ad-style T-shirts commemorating the 2016 lineup (it bears noting that these sold out before the second intermission).

While I began the marathon with apprehension over whether my mind and body would stay awake for the duration, I made it through with the aforementioned liquid and food assists, not to mention the energy of the crowd. As the films progressed, the logic of the order became clear: the unintentional badness of Troll 2 gave everyone a chance to laugh and groan; but Pieces garnered the night’s greatest guffaws, due to the horrendous Spanish-to-English dialog translation. Cemetery Man’s overt strangeness, genre-jumping, and slick polish produced a mostly quiet viewing experience, which continued with Solange, easily the most serious (and stately-paced) of all the films. By the time Zombie was threaded through the projector, I think most of the audience had succumbed to marathon fatigue, though those in attendance sprung to life to applaud the film’s meatier kills.

Before the lights went down, one of the festival runners requested that those in attendance “laugh, clap, and yell – but don’t do the Mystery Science Theater 3000 thing,” which everybody respected. Say what you will about horror fans, but they enjoy a shared experience as much as anybody else, and are reverent toward the genre they love. And perhaps, with the films being projected in scratched and dirty 35mm prints (in other words, beautiful), everyone realized how special and sacred this event was.

The Colonial Theatre is certainly a community treasure, but Splatterfest is like a second treasure nesting within. For anybody in the central Pennsylvania area, I would highly suggest marking your calendars for next year’s event – where fun and thrills are included in the admission cost.

Crash Analysis Support Team:

Jonny Numb (aka Jonathan Weidler) spends his days clowning around for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and writes horrific movie reviews by night. His work can also be found at loudgreenbird.com. He judges other things via antisocial media @JonnyNumb (Twitter and Letterboxd), and co-hosts THE LAST KNOCK horror podcast with @crashpalace.

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Take a look at the fantastic Colonial Theatre for horror fans and cinephiles alike, and learn more about Blobfest and next year’s Splatterfest. You can also find them on Twitter,  Facebook and Instagram.

(Splatterfest 5 photo from B Movie News Vault, and Colonial Theatre photo from U Wish U Nu .)

THE LAST KNOCK presents: Evil Ed(ucation)

The Last Knock

For many, being in school is like running a gauntlet: puberty, acne, rebelliousness, sometimes raging hormones, bullying, confidence issues, and the coming realization that the outside world’s scary, because once one graduates, shit gets real. But nothing ramps up the anxiety like a crazed killer roaming the halls, or an outbreak of disease, or radiation that mutates. We’ll help you survive the rigor mortis of education horror. Now, open your notebooks and write this at the top of the page: School’s in for Autumn, and you’re dead forever!

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@GerettaGeretta @marthaperez0609 @LynnLynnlowry @DebbieRochon @FreidaSmith4 @kreepazoidkelly @TDJefferson1998 @MrHorror @jerryWalach @IvonnaCadaver @RiverCityOtter @GorillaProducer @CarryOnJohn @good_tidings666 @AFiendOnFilm @dixiefairy @OwenMcCuenQuest @AmandaBergloff @d_m_elms @KeyzKeyzworth @machinemeannow @FriscoKidTX @LoudGreenBird @GTGMcast @Israel_Finn @isaacrthorne @deesnider