Book Review: The World of Lore. Volume 1, Monstrous Creatures.

I received an e-arc copy of The World of Lore. Volume 1, Monstrous Creatures for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley.

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I skipped over this title a couple of times. It kept popping up everywhere I looked. When the series appeared on Amazon Prime that cinched it for me.

If you’ve ever read the Fortean Times magazine, Lore might be for you. It looks at the stories and folklore of the things that go bump in the night. There’s the story of Robert the doll and Annabelle. There are vampire origin stories, werewolves and spring heeled Jack. Elves and sea creatures and all sorts in between make an appearance. I have quite a lot around this subject so some of the stories are familiar to me. However, there was enough content to remind me of things I had forgotten and new material. It was written in a conversational tone and was easy to dip in and out of. Some books of this nature can be quite dry and hard to read. This isn’t one of them and I think my 14 year old son would like to read it after me, it would be quite accessible for him. There is even interjections of humour, which make me laugh out loud at times. It inspired me to watch the series, which has attracted the attention of the husband and the son too. The book has lovely and creepy illustrations. It would make a great gift for the right person. It’s certainly a book I would want to keep on my shelf to dip in and out of.

5/5 for real life creepiness from Aaron Mahnke and he has a podcast too.

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What we’re watching as the nights draw in……

With the colder nights and my candles lit, we don’t always watch movies. Sometimes we need a break. Currently the watch list includes:

Lucifer: We’re already onto to Season 3. Last nights episode, with Makizeen as the main focus was great. I LOVE Mazikeen. If you haven’t jumped on the Lucifer bandwagon yet, let me give you some background. Lucifer, the character came from Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novels (which if you haven’t read…do so….now). He later became a spin off series Lucifer  by Mike Carey. Mike Carey, by the way also wrote the Felix Castor series of books (The Devil You Know ) about an exorcist. Both me and my husband recommend these. Anyway, I haven’t read the Lucifer spin off so I don’t know how close the series is to the graphic novel. Lucifer Morningstar has given up hell and with his chief bodyguard/torturer, Mazikeen, has set up a nightclub in LA. He meets Detective Chloe Decker and becomes a consultant for the police. The series is part police drama, part fantasy with a good bit of humour. It’s on Amazon Prime HERE .

Lore: We’re just started season one of Lore on Amazon Prime, which came out on the 13th of October. I am already reading the book at the moment which is excellent. Lore is a kind of documentary about fortean topics such as vampires, haunted dolls and folklore. It’s just long enough. The storytelling is great. My 13 year old requested it to watch last night as he’s seen me watching it and he wanted to watch the haunted doll episode. I’d recommend giving it go if you like this subject matter but the book is more detailed and I enjoyed it more (Lore).

Salem: I am late to the Salem party. We’ve just started season one. It’s dark as it should be, with sexual content and gruesome scenes. It does not paint us witches in a great light but it is a fictional series so I’ll let them off 😉 It’s based at the time of the Salem witch trials and involves curses, covens, magic and vengeance. I certainly wouldn’t take it as an historical account but it’s good viewing if you like dark supernatural programs. I think Marilyn Manson did the theme song which I also like (He did. I just googled it. It’s called Cupid Carries A Gun) 😉

 

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The Babysitter (Movie Review) 2017

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The Babysitter is a new to Netflix horror comedy. In these dark times, a horror comedy is what we all need (especially as I watched Saw 2 the night before and felt uninspired to write a review).

Twelve year old Cole (12? really….in American movies 12 still seems so young and naive. In my home town of Grimsby, 12 year old’s are drinking, smoking and terrorising the town. Yes they may egg a few houses but they might also stab you as well) is being babysat by Bee, who seems to be the most awesome and gorgeous babysitter in the world. She’s the babysitter every 12 year old boy (and every male before and after) dreams of. He knows she wants to get him to sleep after a certain time and after talking to his love interest, Melanie, he is informed that she probably getting her boyfriend round for hanky-panky.

She comes round. They have a great night. Then she wants him to go to bed and tries to give him a shot of alcohol to help him sleep. He wants to see what happens when he goes to sleep so he pours it away when she’s not looking. He pretends to go to sleep but then sneaks up to see what’s going on. He finds there’s a group of her friends playing spin the bottle. This progresses into a Satanic rite as it does (what do you mean you’ve never  summoned Satan as part of Spin the Bottle?! I’m obviously doing it wrong.)

I won’t tell you anymore. But obviously the film progresses to a fun, horrific romp through the night as Cole tries to escape the Satanists and his babysitter, with the undertone of coming of age and finding your inner strength. The boy and I really enjoyed this movie with it’s 80’s vibe and humour. It may not have been particularly scary but it was a good story. I thought Samara Weaving (her uncle is Hugo Weaving!) was excellent, fun and not too cheesy. It was well acted throughout. A 9/10 from me and worth a fun Halloween watch.

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Movie Review: Southbound (2015)

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Southbound is a 2015 horror anthology. I love horror anthology’s for example Trick R Trick but have had some bad experiences this October, for example ABCs of Death and Horror Hotel. Southbound is five connected stories (think pentagram) of people on a isolated stretch of highway in the desert. It starts with two men, covered in blood driving down the highway. They pull over to wash up but when they get back in the van, they can’t seem to get away from the gas station. They are also being stalked by strange creatures. They find themselves at a motel. I won’t go on and spoil the story but there is a rather gruesome death involved.

At the same motel, 3 girls are waking up with a hangover. They’re in a band and travelling to their next gig. When they get a flat tyre, a strange, old fashioned couple pick them up. Back at house, the girls eat with the family only Sadie seems worried and only she does not eat the meat. Her friends start to change and they start blaming her for their friend, Alex’s death. She wakes up to find the girls have crept out. When she follows them she finds them participating in a strange ritual with their hosts. She runs off to escape, being chased by her friends.

The next character, Lucas is on his phone, driving down the highway chatting to his wife. Distracted, he does not see Sadie trying to flag him down. He hits her. Sadie is badly hurt and Lucas calls 911. He’s advised to drive to the next town where there’s a hospital. Lucas follows directions but when he gets there he’s alone. The voices on the phone then start to direct him to carry out surgery on Sadie. It’s pretty bloody and gruesome.

Sandy walks away from the phone booth near the hospital. She goes to a bar for a drink. A man bursts in with a gun demanding to know where his sister is. The patrons of the bar are not human. He finally finds his sister but it’s not the welcome he expected.

A girl sees the mans sister walk away. She then joins her family. They’re celebrating her going to college. When they get home, they are subject to a home invasion.

The stories have a supernatural theme, very much like going to hell. There is the right amount of gore and storytelling. The stories solidly interlock with one another. It was a really enjoyable anthology and I’m surprised I haven’t come across this one before. This is a clever little movie with lots of hidden meanings. 8/10.

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Book Review: Halloween Carnival Volume 3

I have thoroughly enjoyed the reading run up to Halloween with these anthologies and Halloween Carnival Volume 3 is no exception to this, added to the fact this one features a story by one of my favourite writers, Kelley Armstrong. There are five stories included.

The Way Lost is by Kelley Armstrong. This story is about a strange town where children disappear onto the forest every Halloween and nobody asks any questions. Dale, a young boy, promises his mother he won’t go into the forest but will he be able to resist?

La Cavalera is by Kate Maruyama tells the tale of a different kind of cultural appropriation of a sugar skull and when friendships turn bad.

The Devils Due by Michael McBride is the story of a town that has made a deal with the devil and the repercussions of not paying up.

A Thousand Rooms of Darkness by Taylor Grant is a story of the fear of Halloween and the things that come with.

The Last Night of October by Graham Chapman tells a story of loneliness, lost friendship and a strange Halloween night visitor.

5/5. I enjoyed every story. The Last Night of October, I felt could have been shorter and I nearly took a mark off for that but amongst such good stories it didn’t seem worth it. The last book I reviewed in the Halloween Carnival series, I noted there wasn’t much in the way of supernatural. This volume, I felt was more in keeping with a horror element, ghosts, killers and monsters. There was certainly some supernatural to satisfy me. The Way Lost had a twist I didn’t see coming. La Cavalera had some gore and madness and The Devils Due made me want to watch it as a movie. It was impossible to pick a favourite out of these. The first three stories I felt were the strongest but I loved them all.

Thank you to NetGalley for this arc copy for an honest review.

 

 

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13 Cool Vintage Horror Board Games

Wish I owned these babies!

Rare Horror

Here are some of the coolest vintage horror board games we’ve stumbled across over the years.   We can’t say they’re all necessarily fun to play, but we like their board designs or novelty value. Please comment and tell us about your favorite games from the past.

1.  Séance (1972)

sceance 1972

2. Mystic Skull (1964)

Mystic Skull - 1964

3.  A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Freddy Game (1989)

A Nightmare On Elm Street The Freddy Game (1989)

4. Voice of the Mummy (1971)

Voice of the Mummy (1971)

5.  Jaws (1975)

Jaws (1975)

6. Alien (1979)

Alien (1979)

7. Shrieks and Creaks (1988).

Shrieks & Creaks (1988)

8.  Haunted Mansion (1972)

Haunted Mansion Game (1972)

9. Doorways to Horror:  The VCR Game (1986)

10.  Which Witch?  (1970)

Which Witch (1970)

11.  Superstition (1977)

Superstition 1977

12. Boris Karloff’s Monster Game (1965)

Boris Karloff's Monster Game (1965)

13.  Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb (1988)

Curse of the Mummy's Tomb (1988)

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Zombies on a Train! Review: Train to Busan (2016)

Train to Busan, 2016 is a South Korean zombie horror movie. Seok-Woo is a workaholic father struggling to connect and take care of his daughter, Soo-An. Making a mess of her birthday gift, he feels he has to give her what she really wants. She wants to spend her birthday in Busan with her mother. They get on the train to go and even then there are signs the world is falling apart around them. As the doors are closing a girl crawls in and starts having convulsions. She turns into a zombie and panic ensues. On the train, there are a pair of elderly sisters, a baseball team, a pregnant woman and her husband, as well as a douche of a business man who only cares about his own survival as he is more important than anyone, and a traumatized homeless man.

The zombies are terrifying. They turn fast. The cracking and contortions as they turn, the grey eyes and their speed all combine to make frightening opponents. The claustrophobia of being trapped in close quarters with potential death is real. There is also the fear of the unknown as the characters wait to see which station is overrun and waiting for help.

The film portrays human nature well, the sacrifices people make for those they love and the selfishness of survival. There is the underlying theme of corporate greed. Soo-An played by Kim Su-An is amazing. She is amazing!!!! She needs to win an award. The characters are so well developed and you do care what happens to them. I LOVED this movie. Having been awash with cookie cutter films films with no real story recently, this movie was a breath of fresh air.

I give this a rare 10/10. Watch this if you like your zombie flicks. You won’t regret it. It’s available on Amazon Prime subscription. TrainToBusanFeatured2a

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Silent Sunday: Tree Spirits

This gallery contains 7 photos.

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Movie Review: Friday the 13th (2009)

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I’d recently introduced the boy to the original Friday the 13th and so it was actually Friday the 13th he wanted to watch Friday the 13th (2009). I couldn’t remember the 2009 one and it has Jared Padalecki in so we choose it.

The story starts with a flash back to the original and Jason’s mummy. Then we’re back in the present with a group of teenagers looking for Camp Crystal lake. The slutty one, the stupid one, the good boyfriend, the final girl and the geek all sit in the dark woods. Obviously, the stupid one and the slutty one have sex (as an aside I wish we’d see some natural boobies for once. I’m sick of these ice cream scoop boobs bobbing around). Jason turns up, people die. The end. Well no, Jared Padalecki turns up as  Clay, who is the concerned brother of the final girl. She’s missing (although nobody seems to be looking for the rest of the group). He bumps into another group. There is a nice girl, a rich privileged douche, the geek, the stoner, slut number 1 and slut number 2 and the stupid jock. (I don’t condone calling people sluts by the way, this is highlighting their cookie cutter characters). People die. That’s the movie in a nutshell.

We gave it 4/10. I wouldn’t recommend it. Son gave it negative points for being associated with Michael Bay.  It’s not a new story. It brings nothing new to the Jason story line for me. We also deducted points for the darkness. This film was so dark, we couldn’t see what was happening. We couldn’t see the deaths. Hell, we didn’t know who was alive and who was dead because everyone looks the same in the dark. As we couldn’t see what was happening I don’t think we had a single jump scare. I wanted Dean to come and shake things up but I think he was filming My Bloody Valentine. Go back to Supernatural boys, all is forgiven.

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Movie Review: Gerald’s Game

 

 

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It’s taken me a little while to watch Gerald’s Game even though it kept popping up on my Netflix watch list. Mainly because the son kept saying, “Yeah but it’s a movie about a woman on a bed and they’re old ewwwww, what’s scary about that?” However, I read the book by Stephen King (Gerald’s Game) many moons ago and as I mentioned in my last post, if it’s done right, the storytelling wins the day with a Stephen King story.

As mentioned, the movie is about a couple who decide to go to a cabin, in a remote area to participate in a bit of bondage, works for me. Gerald is probably more enthusiastic than his wife, Jessie, as he pops his Viagra. Jessie just wants to be a good wife. Unfortunately, she starts to change her mind and Gerald starts being a dick about it. The stress of this and the effect of Viagra cause him to have a heart attack. Poor Jessie is still handcuffed tightly to the bed and the keys are in the bathroom. The neighbours are away and there’s a stray, hungry dog wandering the house. That’s scary to me. The thought of being trapped, vulnerable and alone makes me shudder. She starts to hallucinate her dead husband and a more confident version of herself. Flashbacks help to give you more background on Jessie and her life choices. The actress who plays Jessie (Carla Gugino) is really good, I felt her vulnerability and her pain. There is also something else in the house watching Jessie. You’ve probably heard about there’s a gory scene that people have been passing out over or vomiting (google it…I’m not making it up)….It did make me swear (f****ing hell!) but be assured there was no passing out or vomiting.

The storytelling is excellent. We both really enjoyed it (and the boy was relieved there was no old people having sex). 8/10.

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