Friday, December 27, 2013

Top SIXX Horror Films of 2013

Everyone has been posting their favorite films of the year and I want to join in on the fun!  But it seems more appropriate, for me, to pick out my top 6 horror films.

I also included my favorite moment from each.  If you have not seen the film, DO NOT READ my favorite moment.  (SPOILERS)!


1.  THE CONJURING
Directed by James Wan.

Favorite Moment:
After the middle daughter (Joey King) is woken up from the foot-tugging, and she sees something behind the door.  The sees nothing, but with her performance and the power of suggestion it is terrifying.  I can't remember the last time I was that scared in a movie theater!  This film made me feel like a kid again.



2.  STOKER
Directed by Chan-wook Park.

Favorite Moment:
THE shower scene..... !



3.  HERE COMES THE DEVIL
Directed by Adrian Garcia Bogliano.

Favorite Moment:
The parents revenge, they think they've found the reason as to why their kids have been acting so strange. And when they do, Sol (Laura Caro) not only slits Lucio's neck, but then proceeds to completely rip out his throat.  BRUTAL.



4.  AMERICAN MARY
Directed by Jen and Sylvia Soska.

Favorite Moment:
A security guard finds Dr. Grant, or what's left of him, and Mary (Katherine Isabelle) beats the guard to death with his baton.  This scene looks like a MARTYRS nod and is a huge moment in the film, where Mary truly "loses it".



5.  V/H/S/2
Directed by Eduardo Sanchez, Gregg Hale, Timo Tjahjanto, Gareth Evans, Adam Wingard, Simon Barrett, and Jason Eisner.

Favorite Segment:
SAFE HAVEN by Timo Tjahjanto.  He also did L is for Libido in  The ABCS of DEATH, which happens to be fucking insane and great.



6.  GRAVITY
Directed by Alfonso Cuaron.

Favorit Moment:
The first time Ryan (Sandra Bullock) gets detached, she is spinning and spinning, freaking out, losing oxygen, until she remembers how Matt (George Clooney) taught her to pull it together.


 _____________________


Random Mention:

BEFORE MIDNIGHT
Directed by Richard Linklater.

The final film in the disgustingly romantic trilogy with Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy was very satisfying.  The style of all three of these films (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset) being told in real-time, really sets them apart from anything I've ever seen.  And with almost ten years between each film, we only get a glimpse into these characters lives, a little catch-up.  And we are normally left hanging, with huge questions, but not with this one.  MIDNIGHT opened in not the happiest place and I was very distraught, praying this wasn't all there was and, of course, it wasn't.  I feel very personally attached to this story and I was not let down.  This trilogy restored my faith in love.


I was going to make a list of everything else (non-horror), but than I realized there's too much I haven't seen yet.  Especially with all the stuff that has released recently like Dallas Buyers Club, American Hustle and The Wolf of Wall Street!

______________________


Most Anticipated Horror 2014:

THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE 3 by Tom Six
THE EDITOR by Astron-6
THE SACRAMENT by Ti West
THE GREEN INFERNO by Eli Roth
THE ABCS OF DEATH 2 by The Soska Sisters and at least 25 other directors!

Oh.. and my movie, CALL GIRL!


Thanks for stopping by.  XOXO!
Jill

Monday, September 30, 2013

I'm BACK

Wow.  Where has the time gone?  I'm so sorry!  It's almost OCTOBER!  I HAVE SO MUCH TO SAY!  I've acted in a film, went on a lot of trips, worked on a photo shoot for Joshua Hoffine, and am now directing my very own film!  And between all of that, I've continued with Slaughter Movie House.  We had our first anniversary in June.  To say I'm on a 'high', isn't cutting it!


I am a DIRECTOR!

Me, Eric Havens, Jeff Chitty, Laurence Harvey
& Tristan Risk at Screenland Armour.

We just (last week) wrapped shooting my first short film, CALL GIRL.  The script was written by a great friend of mine, Eric Havens.  I took on the project in May and worked all summer building a crew.  Last minute I had the chance to use an all-star horror cast: Laurence R. Harvey (The Human Centipede 2 & 3) and Tristan Risk (American Mary).  So I threw together a Kickstarter campaign in what had to be record time, launched it and almost doubled our goal $$$!  Most of that money was to bring in my international cast, Laurence is from England and Tristan is from Vancouver.  I had a blast showing them around Kansas City.

The film will be released early 2014 and I am so looking forward to all the travel ahead of me (film festivals, horror conventions and more)!  Follow CALL GIRL on Facebook and Twitter for all the fun updates and photos.

I am premiering the teaser this coming weekend at the Oshkosh Horror Film Festival!


American Mary premier in LA

May/June 2013.
Laurence invited me out to LA while he was there filming The Human Centipede 3 and it also happened to coincide with the American Mary US premier.  How could I not have jumped on the opportunity to meet THE TWISTED TWINS, Jen and Sylvia Soska (directors)?!?  That is also how I met with Tristan, who played Beatress in American Mary.

While out there I connected with a lot of the filmmakers whose film's I've shown here at Slaughter Movie House, but hadn't yet met in real life.  I spent a lot of time with Vito Trabucco (Bloody Bloody Bible Camp) and we got along like we had known each other forever!  I also met Eric England (Madison County) for coffee and invited him and his actor/producer, Ace Marerro, out to the American Mary after party.  It was surreal to be at a party with filmmakers I admire and I was the connection between them all.

Eric England, me and Ace Marerro at Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood.


I did a ton of sight-seeing, explored the Charles Manson ranch and hiked to the Hollywood sign.  A blog with my travel explorations is coming soon!


HorrorHound Weekend Cincinnati 

March 2013.
I drove myself all the flippin' way to Cincinnati (9.5 hours), but I stayed the night in the exciting town of Bloomington, Indiana on my way.  And yes, this was on purpose.  Last summer I attempted to go to and climb the Hickory Ridge Fire Tower in the Hoosier National Forest but the weather and time didn't allow it.  This seemed like the perfect way to break up my drive.  Again, I will post a blog shortly with photos of my explorations!

I truly went to HHW to see my out-of-town horror friends (John, Adam, Alyssa, Kyle and Scott) and hoped to catch some awesome movies.  The Maniac remake had a limited screening and we made it in!  The environment you see a film in can make all the difference.  I really, REALLY enjoyed the film.  The score is f***ing fanstastic, very retro/synth-y, a trend I'm noticing in film!  The Walking Dead took over the entire convention and kind of threw the vibe off.  It was much bigger, in multiple buildings, so it lost a bit of the close community feeling.

This coming weekend I am headed up to see the crew (pictured) at the Oshkosh Horror Film Festival!  John and I will be on WAPL 105.7 Thursday afternoon discussing his fest, independent horror, and our upcoming films.

Joshua Hoffine's "The Last Stand"

March 2013.
Kansas City's horror scene is very tight and we all work together on a multitude of projects.  You probably have seen Hoffine's work.  It work is very well known and he is from KC.  Please, go now, and look at his work.  You will NOT be disappointed.  This guy is seriously talented and unique.  He creates his photos with almost all practical FX.  He preps for his photo shoot like a film production, he tries to do very little post-FX.

For this project, he wanted to create a scene with zombies attacking the last family on earth.  He had a very successful Kickstarter campaign and brought in an incredibly talented practical FX artist, Anthony Kosar.  You may recognize his name as he was the winner of Face/Off season 4!  I went in to help with hair and ended up basically assisting Anthony.  It was f***ing cool.


Michael Baldwin (Phantasm) starred in the photo!  My great friend Erica Kauffman is playing the wife, on the ground.  For more info, check out Joshua's blog.


House of Forbidden Secrets

February 2013.
Allan Kayser and me on set!
This past winter I had the honor of acting in Todd Sheet's new film, House of Forbidden Secrets.  Todd started back in the 80s and has made over 30 films.  HOFS stars my favorite red-headed southern gentlemen, Lew Temple (The Devil's Rejects, Walking Dead).  And if you're a horror nerd, you'll appreciate cameos from Allan Kayser (Night of the Creeps) and George Hardy (Troll 2)!

I had many friends on the crew and I told them, 'When you guys need an extra, CALL ME!"  They did.  HOFS is about a man and his first night working security in the haunted old Shadowview Manor. And I got to play one of the ghosts!  More than that, I got to kill!  My official title is a 'killer siren', a seductive ghost.  I got to work WITH Lew Temple and Allan Kayser and WOW.  What an amazing first film experience.

I went in for 3 nights of filming, 3 scenes and a lot of blood.  There are a couple trailers out now and I made it in there!

We screen Saturday, October 12th at Horror on the Boulevard!  Come hang out with the cast and crew and see the film at the DRIVE IN!!!  How fun??


I PROMISE I will keep up better with blogging in the future!  October is destined to be a great month.  Slaughter Movie House is screening Don't Go to the Reunion (October 7th) and hosting The Blair Witch Project at Screenland Armour (October 25th)!  Not to mention, Screenland is showing bad-ass horror classics all month long.  Check out the schedule HERE.  That is where you can find me.



Thursday, March 14, 2013

Slaughter Movie House: 'ABCs of Death'

Friday, March 8th, 2013

I first heard about ABCs after seeing V/H/S, which I loved.  I was very excited for another anthology film that also included Ti West (among many others).  ABCS of Death was released onDemand a month before the theatrical release, but I held out to get that first time experience with the crowd.  And I think I made the right choice.

ABCs of Death is exactly as they describe it, "26 ways to die."  Twenty-six directors from all over the world each made a short film depicting a death that represented a letter of the alphabet.  Most of the shorts were funny and some very, very strange.  My friends and I really enjoyed trying to guess what word was going to be.  They got a couple right, I was never even close.

Adam Roberts (Screenland Armour) asked me if I wanted to host opening night and my response, "I'D LOVE TO!"  Check out the photos HERE.  Our next event at Screenland Armour is Slaughter Prom and we are showing Carrie.

Still from Marcel Sarmiento's segment 'D is for Dogfight'.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Slaughter Movie House: 'House on Haunted Hill'

Monday, March 4th, 2013
@ Czar Bar

It has been busy around here lately.  With our Dead Weight screening being held at Screenland Armour only a week prior and wanting to devote all our promoting efforts to that, I decided to show a classic at our first Monday Czar event.  There are plenty of people who have never seen any black & white horror flicks.  There also happens to be quite a few good ones that are public domain, like House on Haunted Hill, Carnival of Souls and Night of the Living Dead.  Which means anyone can screen it for free!

Our next event at Czar Bar is Monday, Arpil 8th and we are screening Girl Gone Dead and Popularity Killer (short).

Flyer by Atomic Cotton

Monday, March 11, 2013

Slaughter Movie House: 'Dead Weight' + Q&A

Saturday, February 23rd, 2013
@ Screenland Armour

I was first introduced to Dead Weight through working for DownRight Creepy.  They received a screener of the film and I was lucky enough to borrow it.  I was blown away.  The cinematography is breathtaking.  It is one of those movies that leaves you speechless, shocked, and empty.  Eric Havens (DownRight Creepy) describes it best, "A pretty damn bleak and troubling story."

Last summer/fall I went to a ton of horror conventions and got to know the Dead Weight crew pretty well.  They are, for the most part, from Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
July: I met John Pata (co-director, co-writer, editor) and Joe Belknap (lead actor) at Days of the Dead Indianapolis.
August: John came to KC for Crypticon.
September: I went back to Indianapolis for HorrorHound Weekend where I finally met Adam Bartlett (co-director/co-writer) and Aaron Christensen (actor).
October: The weekend before Halloween, on my way home from Minneapolis, I met up with John in Iowa City at the Landlocked Film Festival.  There, I met another member of the DW crew, Nick Elert (composer).
I am now proud to call these guys friends.  Mr. Pata helps me a lot, especially with booking films for Slaughter Movie House.

I wanted to bring DW to Kansas City.  I normally play independent horror first Mondays at Czar Bar, but I thought this was too heavy for the bar.  I wanted to wait until we had the option to use a theater.  And, honestly, I would barely consider this a horror film, more of a thriller/drama.

In November I emailed John and told him I was ready to get serious about putting this screening together and that if at all possible I would love for him, Adam and whoever else could make it to come!  I asked Adam Roberts (owner/operator) if he would be interested in letting us host it at Screenland Armour.  Not only did he say yes, he offered us a Saturday evening!

The event was an OUTSTANDING success.  Screenland Armour has 2 theaters and we originally planned to use the smaller of the two.  I was so nervous with them traveling all this way, but the turn-out was so great that we had to move into the larger theater!  After the film, Eric lead a Q&A with John, Adam, Joe Belknap, and Jess Ader (actor).  It was such an honor that they made the trip down here.  I couldn't have asked for more.  Thank you everyone!

Check out all the photos by Anna Perry HERE.

Adam Bartlett, John Pata, Joe Belknap, me, and Jess Ader.  Photo by Anna Perry.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Quick Reviews: Winter Horror

SPOILER ALERT!

There have been quite a few horror-ish films to come out in the last couple months and here is what I think about them.


Alexandra Daddario in 'Texas Chainsaw'
Texas Chainsaw 3D 
5/10
I am a huge fan of the TCM franchise, it is my favorite.  I would like to give this film another shot because I was not impressed.  The opening is great, when we get to see all of the footage from the original.  Then we see the outside of the house, which was dead-on and I appreciated that.  We go inside and it looks almost brand new, like someone forgot to dress the set?  The people don't fit in,  it doesn't look like 1974.  These kind of details kill me.  Beyond all my shit talking, I did like the new story/angle.  I just don't know if I can personally handle TCM being set in present day.


Mama:
5/10
The story had potential and there was some freaky imagery but I hate CG.  It's bad enough looking at the ghost, but they can't even go outside and shoot a scene ACTUALLY in the mountains?!  Is that asking too much?  This isn't Lord of the Rings.


Nicholas Hoult & Teresa Palmer in 'Warm Bodies'

Warm Bodies:
7/10
I'm kind of embarrassed to admit that this movie is right up my alley, even more-so if I was 14 when it came out.  It's a star-crossed lovers story, with zombies.  I grew up loving Romeo and Juliet, thanks to Leonardo DiCaprio.  It is a very sweet movie that has the simple message: love and unity can heal the world.







Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters:
5/10
This was just your typical action movie, with horror elements.  It was entertaining but shallow.  The most memorable part was this big scene towards the end with tons of witches and their make up was INCREDIBLE.


Dark Skies:
7/10
This set up seems very familiar: the house in the suburbs, the family and then the kids turn creepy.  The difference being that it's aliens, not ghosts or the devil.  The first glance we get of the alien made me yell, "OH MY GOD", and shrink back in my chair.  The whole movie was pretty terrifying.  I think the trick to making monster/aliens/ghosts scary is only getting a tiny glimpse of them.  It's best to leave most up to the imagination.

Keri Russell & Josh Hamilton in 'Dark Skies'