Saturday, October 31, 2020


Ghostkeeper is a 1981 Canadian horror film based on the Windigo legend.

I watched it online at Tubi TV. Here's a trailer: calls it "highly atmospheric".

Friday, October 30, 2020


Horns is a 2013 dark fantasy horror film based on the novel by Joe Hill. Daniel Radcliffe stars. I watched it on Netflix. This gets off to a slow start, but I'm glad I kept watching.


USA Today says, "Radcliffe gives it his all and makes the film worth seeing". Joe Hill, who wrote the book the film is based on, praised Radcliffe's performance calling it a "wrenching, vulnerable, emotionally naked performance that isn’t like anything he’s ever done on screen before. He is such a wonderful Ig Perrish". The Hollywood Reporter calls it "A fable-like horror mystery with strong comic and romantic tendencies".

Roger Ebert closes with this:
Radcliffe, through his sheer presence and the piercing honesty of those big, blue eyes, makes this mixed-up material watchable. He’s scuzzy and tormented, drunk or hung-over most of the time, but his directness and his down-to-Earth demeanor give us something to latch onto, even though the Devil made him do it.

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Tragic Theater

Tragic Theater is a 2015 Philippine film about a theater built on the site of a construction accident where more than a hundred died. It's partially in English. Subtitles would help -a lot- but I can still tell what's going on. After all, it's not like it breaks new ground.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (2010)

Don't Be Afraid of the Dark is a 2010 horror film written by Matthew Robbins and Guillermo del Toro and directed by comic book artist Troy Nixey. It's a remake of a 1973 made-for-tv movie.

I watched it online on Crackle at this link. It's not there anymore, but it's on Netflix. Here's a trailer:

Roger Ebert gives it 3.5 out of 4 stars and closes with this:
This is a very good haunted house film. It milks our frustration deliciously. The adults are forever saying and doing the wrong things, and making stupid decisions, and Alex is bullheaded, and Kim is conflicted. And the shadows are deep and dark, and the screws in the grating of the flue seem to turn themselves, and no one will pay attention to little Sally, and somewhere in the audience will be a kid who gets inspired to make his own horror films.

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Winchester (2018)

Winchester is a 2018 haunted house film based on a true story. It stars Helen Mirren. I watched it on Netflix.


Not well reviewed, but I thought it was fun.


In these last days of early voting in our state I have a few things to say: 
  • Coronavirus is a real thing, people are dying, and a mask will help keep you from killing people. 
  • Trump is an amoral lying bully.
  • Republicans don't have a lock on god or patriotism.
  • Biden is an honorable man.
  • Constitutional originalism is idolatrous.
and don't get me started on the Electral College or the Supreme Court.

I'd love any actual evidence you might have that contradicts any of these statements. Not I-saw-it-on-Fox or Trump-said, but actual evidence. I'd love to actually discuss it with you in a way that doesn't mean you call me a constitution-hating, baby-killing, godless commie demonrat libtard intent on the destruction of our country as you turn your back and walk off refusing to discuss the actual issues. Feel free to speak your mind in the comment section below or send me an email and you can be my FB friend.


Please share a cuppa with me:

and join me at the weekly T Stands for Tuesday blogger gathering hosted by Bleubeard and Elizabeth.

Monday, October 26, 2020

Wicked Little Things

Wicked Little Things is a 2006 horror film about a recent widow and her two children who move to her husband's old home place which is in an area haunted by the children who died in a mine disaster. I liked this one. You can watch it online at Tubi at this link. Here's a trailer:

Sunday, October 25, 2020


Hereditary is a 2018 horror movie. Some are calling it this generation's Exorcist. It's tense, with much to say about family relationships, and scary in that traditional horror movie way. I watched it on Amazon Prime.


The Hollywood Reporter concludes by calling it "an immaculately crafted, black-hearted horror-in-the-home fantasia that, like its director, is destined to make a mark." The New Yorker says, "“Hereditary” is far more upsetting than it is frightening, and I would hesitate to recommend it to the readily traumatized" and cautions against seeing it if you're recovering from trauma.

Time Out calls it "A harrowing story of unthinkable family tragedy that veers into the realm of the supernatural". Roger Ebert's site gives it a full 4 stars and says, "The movie sustains a throb of dread throughout its first 90 minutes, and its final 30 are off-the-rails in the best way." Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus score of 89%.

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Rabid (1977)

Rabid is a 1977 horror film directed by David Cronenberg. After a motorcycle wreck a woman undergoes an experimental medical procedure. The results are unexpected. Well, not to us -we're watching a horror movie, after all- but certainly to them.

This film takes place during the Christmas season and has the occasional scene of Christmas-themed shop windows as well as a scene in a department store with kids seeing Santa.

Horror News closes with this: "this movie is still worth a look and is far considerably better than some of it’s era counterparts."

Friday, October 23, 2020

Suspiria (2018)

Suspiria is the 2018 remake of the classic Dario Argento film by the same name. It didn't need remaking, but then few films do. I watched it on Amazon Prime.


Reviews are all over the place, so it'd be best not to judge by any one review. Of course, that's always wise.

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Kilometer 31

Kilometer 31 is a Mexican horror film. IMDb has this summary:
While driving through the kilometer 31 of a lonely road, Agata Hameran hits a boy. She leaves her car to help the victim and another car runs over her and she falls in a deep coma. Her twin sister Catalina telepathically feels the pain of Agata and hears her whispering for help....

Eye for Film concludes, "It may not be a masterpiece, but it is solid and slick and augurs well for his future projects."

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

The Crown Derby Plate

The Crown Derby Plate is a horror short story by Marjorie Bowen. It was first published on Christmas Eve in 1931 and takes place during the Christmas season. I find it delightful, featuring as it does three cheerful old women sitting at a big cozy fire and wondering about the rumor of a ghost. You can read it online here. You can have it read aloud to you at the bottom of this post. It begins,
Martha Pym said that she had never seen a ghost and that she would very much like to do so, “particularly at Christmas, for you can laugh as you like, that is the correct time to see a ghost.”

“I don’t suppose you ever will,” replied her cousin Mabel comfortably, while her cousin Clara shuddered and said that she hoped they would change the subject for she disliked even to think of such things.

The three elderly, cheerful women sat round a big fire, cosy and content after a day of pleasant activities; Martha was the guest of the other two, who owned the handsome, convenient country house; she always came to spend her Christmas with the Wyntons and found the leisurely country life delightful after the bustling round of London, for Martha managed an antique shop of the better sort and worked extremely hard. She was, however, still full of zest for work or pleasure, though sixty years old, and looked backwards and forwards to a succession of delightful days.

The other two, Mabel and Clara, led quieter but none the less agreeable lives; they had more money and fewer interests, but nevertheless enjoyed themselves very well.

“Talking of ghosts,” said Mabel, “I wonder how that old woman at ‘Hartleys’ is getting on, for ‘Hartleys,’ you know, is supposed to be haunted.”

Tuesday, October 20, 2020


Ouanga is a 1936 zombie revenge horror movie. It stars Fredi Washington,
an American stage and film actress, civil rights activist, performer, and writer. Washington was of European and African admixture, being one of the first people of color to gain recognition for their film and stage work back in the 1920s and 30s.
Washington never tried to "pass" as white and spoke against it as dishonest, but
her best-known role was in the 1934 movie Imitation of Life; Washington played a young, light skinned black woman who chose to pass as white to seek more opportunities in a society restricted by legal racial segregation in some states and social discrimination in others.
In Ouanga she plays a black plantation owner who uses voodoo to raise zombies to use against her male neighbor and former lover who has chosen a white woman to marry. I sometimes see this available online.


It is interesting for its time and in what it says about power dynamics during the period. It's less than an hour long and easy to watch.

Perhaps you'll join me for a cozy beverage:

while we visit T Stands for Tuesday, the weekly blogger gathering hosted by Bluebeard and Elizabeth.

Monday, October 19, 2020

Insidious (2010)

Insidious is a 2010 horror movie about a family who thinks their house is haunted. There's a sequel and two prequels. I watched it on Netflix.


The New York Times has a mixed review. The Guardian calls it "hokey". Horror Freak News has a positive Review. Roger Ebert's site calls it "an affectionate visit to the Haunted House Movie".

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Two Monks

Two Monks is a 1934 Mexican horror film directed by Juan Bustillo Oro. I can't find a version with English subtitles, which makes it hard to make sense of some of it. I watched it anyway, enjoying the look and the atmosphere. Reading the plot synopsis here helped a lot.

MoMA says of it: "Stylistic and structural experiment abounds in this early example of Mexican Gothic".

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out

Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out:

by Memphis-born Alberta Hunter, who died on this date in 1984

Friday, October 16, 2020

The Conjuring

The Conjuring is a 2013 award-winning horror film based on a true story and is the first in an ongoing series of films about hauntings. I watched it on Netflix. This film skips the gore and concentrates on increasing tension.


Variety calls it "A sensationally entertaining old-school freakout and one of the smartest, most viscerally effective thrillers in recent memory." Cinema Blend says, "The Conjuring is an impressively frightening and engaging journey." Empire Online says, "A strong cast and an atmosphere of real dread mean that despite a catalogue of immediately recognisable ghost devices, The Conjuring amounts to more than the sum of its scary parts." There's an 85% consensus score at Rotten Tomatoes.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

The Host (2006)

The Host is an award-winning 2006 South Korean monster movie. You can watch it here on TubiTV.


IndieWire calls it "The Defining Monster Movie Of The 21st Century" and says, "A lack of subtlety isn’t just one of the film’s charms, it’s also the core of the film’s purpose. This is a story about the sheer brazenness of evil." Deep Focus Review begins its positive review by saying, "A unique mix of blockbuster entertainment and anti-government social commentary, the South Korean film The Host will forever raise your expectations for monster movies."

Slant Magazine gives it 3.5 out of 4 stars and says, "Bong Joon-ho’s The Host delivers high-octane thrills while cannily exploiting contemporary political fears, with some inspired visual humor amplifying its overriding mood of popcorn-movie excitement." has a lengthy article with screen shots.

Roger Ebert's site opens a positive review with this: "A horror thriller, a political satire, a dysfunctional family comedy, and a touching melodrama, Bong Joon-ho's "The Host" is also one helluva monster movie." Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus rating of 93%.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

The Mist

The Mist is a 2007 horror film based on a Stephen King book. Thomas Jane stars. Wikipedia says, "an unnatural mist envelops the town and conceals vicious, Lovecraftian monsters as extreme tensions rise among the survivors."


Screenrant says, "The Mist's ending is still one of the most shocking final scenes ever featured in a movie." Empire Online says it is "is one of the best horror movies of the last few years."

Tuesday, October 13, 2020


Braindead (or Dead Alive) is an award-winning 1992 New Zealand comedy zombie film directed by Peter Jackson. The gore is over the top in this one.

Moria has a glowing review and says, "Braindead achieves something that approaches inspired genius in the heretofore unknown artform of human carnage". Horror Freak News recommends it. has screen shots of the gore and recommends the Bluray release.

Classic Horror notes that
initial rentals of the New Zealand indie zombie-flick, Braindead (released here in the states as Dead Alive), came supplied with vomit bags, but having just watched the film, I now know that the video retailers just had their customer’s best interest in mind. But this little tidbit should not discourage viewers. There is much to admire about a film like this

Rotten Tomatoes has a critic consensus rating of 86% and 87% for the audience score.


I love horror films in October, and there are so many different kinds it's hard not to find some type you can enjoy. I'm not a particular fan of comedy horror films or gore, but I do like to sample a variety of what's out there just to broaden my horizons.

Here's a seasonal cuppa:

as I join the T Stands for Tuesday blogger gathering hosted by Bleubeard and Elizabeth.

Monday, October 12, 2020

The House That Screamed

The House That Screamed is a 1969 Spanish horror film. This English title is a sensationalized one, and the original title La Residencia is best translated The Residence. Some countries translated it The Boarding School. It is a story of bullying and worse at a 19th century girls' finishing school. Lilli Palmer stars. I watched it with Elvira's occasional comments interspersed at Tubi TV. This one is lacking in gore but has nicely mounting building tension.

watch it without the comic interludes here:

AV Club says it "fits nicely into the haunted-house genre".

Sunday, October 11, 2020


Housebound is an award-winning 2014 New Zealand comedy horror film about a young woman who has been sentenced to house arrest at her mother's home after failing several programs intended to help repeat offenders. She and her mother don't get along and then she finds the house is said to be haunted.

The Guardian opens a positive review with this: "This low-budget Kiwi offering is a rare thing: a horror-comedy with a premise that works both ways." Variety says, "This near-flawless mix of laughs and scares is one of the genre-related highlights of the year." Horror Freak News says, "Housebound actually manages to be the scariest haunted house film of the year. It’s also the funniest".

Roger Ebert's site says,
New Zealander Gerard Johnstone, in his feature debut (he also wrote the script), handles all of the horror tropes well, and has a lot of fun creating a mood of almost unbearable tension. "Housebound" is a standout, though, because of its satirical mood and its multiple scenes of almost screwball comedy. It's a strange mix. It works.
Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus score of 95%.

Saturday, October 10, 2020

We Have Always Lived in the Castle (2018)

We have always Lived in the Castle is a 2018 mystery film based on the book by Shirley Jackson. The book is better, but isn't that usually the case? You can watch it on tubitv. It's also available on Amazon Prime


Variety calls it solid and faithful. Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus rating of 86%.

Friday, October 09, 2020

The Evil (1978)

The Evil is a 1978 horror film about a rehab center in a mansion built over a gateway to Hell. It stars Richard Crenna, Andrew Prine, and Victor Buono.

Moria likes the "memorable" ending and praises Buono's acting.

Thursday, October 08, 2020

Scream (1996)

Scream is a 1996 horror movie I had never seen before I watched it on Netflix so I could include it on my horror movie list. It is important in the genre -according to Wikipedia, "Scream was credited with revitalizing the horror genre in the 1990s, which was considered to be almost dead following an influx of direct-to-video titles and numerous sequels to established horror franchises of the 1970s and 1980s"- and spawned a series of sequels. At this point I think Scream is too dated to be effective. Also, these teen slasher movies just aren't my thing.


Horror Freak News says, "Scream is an intricate who-dun-it that has lots of characters, creative kill scenes and twists and turns that make it difficult to tell who the killer really is. Nobody can be trusted. I really love this one..." The Telegraph says it "remains a cult classic". Empire Online concludes, "The once hip irony of Scream is now something of a cliche, but after all of the imitations, have another look at the real thing. Clever, quick and bloody funny. 'Bloody' being the operative word." Oh the Horror says it "it stands as one of the slasher genre’s few true masterpieces."

Roger Ebert gave it 3 out of 4 stars and closes with this:
As a film critic, I liked it. I liked the in-jokes and the self-aware characters. At the same time, I was aware of the incredible level of gore in this film. It is *really* violent.

Is the violence defused by the ironic way the film uses it and comments on it? Forme, it was. For some viewers, it will not be, and they will be horrified.

Which category do you fall in? Here's an easy test: When I mentioned Fangoria, did you know what I was talking about?
Rotten Tomatoes has a consensus rating of 79%.

Wednesday, October 07, 2020

The Werewolf vs. the Vampire Woman

The Werewolf vs. the Vampire Woman is a 1970 Spanish horror film.

Moria has a review noting the disappointment
that it sets up a great title fight and then squanders the opportunity. For all its promised title match, the script does almost nothing to establish the rivalry and enmity between the two of them or give much reason for their fated confrontation. has a negative review. Weird Wild Realm closes with this: "A silly film throughout, sure, it nevertheless has a decent degree of shlock appeal."

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Breakfast in the Garden

Breakfast in the Garden:

by Michele Gordigiani, who died on October 7, 1909.

Please join me in sharing a drink-related post at the T Stands for Tuesday blogger gathering hosted by Bleubeard and Elizabeth.

Monday, October 05, 2020

A Photograph

A Photograph is a 1977 teleplay, one of the episodes of Play for Today, a British anthology TV series. It is described in reviews as a psychological thriller. The ending is certainly unexpected.

I watched this online but see no evidence of so much as a single clip from it now. What a shame.

I do see this trailer for an upcoming blu-ray release of the series, and a clip from "A Photograph" is included:

Sunday, October 04, 2020

A History of Horror Films

A History of Horror is a 2010 three-part documentary series made for the BBC by British writer and actor Mark Gatiss. It was divided into parts based on the major eras. It's a wonderful idiosyncratic overview.

part 1, begins with the 1925 Phantom of the Opera:

part 2, Home Counties Horror, which focuses on the Hammer Studio films:

part 3, The American Scream, in which he looks at American horror movies of the late 1960s and 1970s:

In 2012 it was followed by Horror Europa, a 90-minute exploration of European horror

Saturday, October 03, 2020

Strange Impersonation

Strange Impersonation is a 1945 film noir, but there are some elements of horror to it, including a facial disfigurement and a scientist with a plan. The DVD costs about $30 at Amazon, and they charge $2 to rent it on Prime. I watched it at Internet Archive, but that link is dead now. I don't even see a trailer online. Here's a scene:

DVD Talk calls it "a fun oddity". TCM has some information. Rotten Tomatoes has a critics consensus score of 60%.

Friday, October 02, 2020

Happy Birthday, Theremin!

image from Wikipedia

The theremin was invented 100 years ago this month. Here's a 2-minute introduction to this instrument: