Blu-ray Reviews: Redemption Presents the Original ‘Burke & Hare’ and Cushing in ‘The Blood Beast Terror’


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It’s a good time to be a Blu-ray collectin’ horror fan. Almost all of the classics of modern horror have gotten solid high-def releases, while classics and curiosities continue to get released in a steady stream that reminds me of the heyday of DVD and companies like Anchor Bay. Kino-Lorber has really stepped up their game with the Redemption line, which I’ve praised before, most recently with the release of the forgotten Marquis De Sade adaptation Justine. The movies are unusual, the special features are robust when offered, and the picture quality of these films is taken from the best possible sources (some fare better than others).

There’s not a real unifying element in the Redemption line, other than the films’ European origins, and I appreciate their grab bag nature. Eight of the fourteen current releases are Jean Rollin films, but there’s also trash like The Virgin Witch and underrated chillers like The Asphyx. Burke and Hare (1972) and The Blood Beast Terror (1968) have only a director in common, Vernon Sewell, but they still feel right at home with the Redemption branding. Both have been forgotten by time, and both are worth viewing by curious horror fans.

Last Week in Horror News: January 17th to the 24th


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Theatrical Trailers and Clips

  • ZOMBIES OF MASS DESTRUCTION – After Dark rolls out a new trailer for their Horrorfest titles.
  • HIDDEN – One of the ADF Horrorfest titles I’ve seen.  Not bad, kinda slow.
  • THE REEDS – Chalk up another ADF title.
  • THE FINAL – One more ADF Horrorfest trailer.
  • BURIED – I believe I read earlier today that Lionsgate just bought the Ryan Reynolds trapped-in-a-coffin flick.

Studio News and Attachments

  • PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 2 – Kevin Greutert, who made the surprisingly solid SAW 6, is directing PA2.
  • SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL – Sam Jackson and Josh Duhamel may be stuck battling heaven and hell in Boaz Yankin’s Louisiana-set supernatural thriller.
  • Spielberg’s new Alien TV show – No title yet, but Spielberg will be throwing down for another Taken-esque miniseries; this time for TNT.
  • DREAM HOUSE – Naomi Watts joins Jim Sheridan’s “city folk shouldn’t move to creepy houses in the country” flick alongside Daniel Craig.
  • BURKE AND HARE – Casting for John Landis’ graverobbing comedy gets more awesome.  Joining Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis are Tom Wilkinson and Isla Fisher.
  • THE FURTHER – James Wan’s next film to be produced by Oren Peli.
  • THE WALKING DEAD – Frank Darabont’s TV-series adaptation of Kirkman’s comic got the greenlight at AMC.
  • DRACULA: YEAR ZERO – Alex Proyas is budgeting and scheduling his take on the origin of Dracula.

Remakes

  • THE WOLFMAN – Danny Elfman’s score has been re-instated for Joe Johnston’s WOLFMAN.
  • PLANET OF THE APES – Despite recent news to the contrary, Fox does indeed still plan on rebooting PLANET OF THE APES.  Again.
  • CONAN – Marcus Nispel’s CONAN THE BARBARIAN remake gets its hunk.  It’s that guy from that STARGATE show you never watched.
  • FRANKENSTEIN – Not so much a remake as another adaptation, but Danny Boyle will be directing a stage play of the classic tale in London.

Indie, Foreign and Random News

  • BLACK SUNSET – The Butcher Brothers, AKA the guys who made THE HAMILTONS and THE VIOLENT KIND, have pegged their next project about a “betrayal-filled nightmare” that plays out during a surfing trip to Mexico.
  • BLACK DEATH – Christopher Smith’s movie about the bubonic plague slips a little on its UK release.
  • MY NAME IS BRUCE 2 – Bruce will be fighting Frankenstein.  I’d be interested if MY NAME IS BRUCE was anything less than a clunking piece of shit.
  • ENTER THE VOID – IFC picks up Gasper Noe’s latest film for US distribution.

Non-Theatrical Trailers and Clips

  • EATERS – Italian zombie flick produced by Uwe Boll.

Last Week in Horror News: 8/23 to 8/30


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Theatrical Trailers and Clips

  • THE DESCENT: PART 2 – I’m just going to assume this is going to end up in theaters.  A lot of people are shitting on this trailer, but I dig the idea of having her go back down in the caves, which is surprising considering I still hate that stupid movie.
  • SURVIVAL OF THE DEAD – New promo clip.

Studio News and Attachments

  • DEADMAN – Guillermo Del Toro will be producing for Warner Brothers an adaptation of the DC Comics series Deadman about the vengeful ghost of a slain trapeze artist.  Someone named Nikolaj Arcel to direct.
  • LAKE MUNGO – After Dark films announces Australia’s LAKE MUNGO will be it’s third title for January’s Horrorfest. It joins THE GRAVES (shitty poster here) and Clive Barker’s DREAD.
  • DREAM HOUSE – Daniel Craig is the next big name actor to relocate his family to a house in the countryside that was previously, but unbeknown to the new owners, host to all kinds of cheerful murders.  Get a new fucking storyline, Hollywood.
  • MY SUPER PSYCHO SWEET 16 – MTV gets in on the slasher game.  No one else wants in.
  • VANISHING ON SEVENTH STREET – Hayden Christensen is heading towards Brad Anderson’s return to horror by way of a ghost town that specializes in making, well, more ghosts.
  • BURKE AND HARE – Simon Pegg joins John Landis’ return to feature length horror, a “true-story” period piece about men who sell the dead to universities.

Remakes

  • SWAMP THING – I suppose this might not technically count as a remake of the previous film(s), but Joel Silver wants to bring back Swamp Thing.  And it being 2009, he of course would like to do that in 3D.
  • THE BLOB – Rob Zombie will be remaking THE BLOB, though he’s sick and tired of that stupid, big, red, blobby thing killing people.  He’ll just leave that part out.

Indie, Foreign and Random News

  • SPAWN – Not a lot of solid facts here, but according to Todd McFarlane’s Twitter feed, SPAWN will be returning to the world of TV animation.
  • PHANTASM V? – Seems there is a new PHANTASM project on the horizon, but there are no solid details as to what that means.
  • STAN HELSING – Because we all need non-theatrical SCARY MOVIE wannabes in our life, STAN HELSING comes out October 27th.
  • HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN – The GRINDHOUSE competition winning fake trailer HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN, from the gents behind TREEVENGE, is going feature length.
  • HOUSE OF THE DEVIL – The new poster is a beautiful work of art.
  • THE SHOCK LABYRINTH – Japan’s first live-action 3D movie, directed by JU-ON’s Takashi Shimizu, picked u p international distribution.
  • “FEAR ITSELF” – FEARnet will be airing the five unaired “FEAR ITSELF” episodes starting early september.

Non-Theatrical Trailers and Clips




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