• Leptirica

    Leptirica

    ★★★

    Yugoslavian made for television vampiric folk horror, based on a story from the 1880s - apparently serving as the first Yugoslav (Serbian) horror movie. A mysterious, hairy, fanged creature halts production at a mill and savagely attacks the miller in the dead of night. Elsewhere, a romance sparks between young man ’Strahinja’ and the beautiful daughter (‘Radojka’) of landowner ‘Zivan’. When Zivan refuses to allow Strahinja to marry Radojka, the despondent Strahinja sets off to work at the mill -…

  • Eyes of Fire

    Eyes of Fire

    ★★★★

    “If they don’t believe in magic, they’ll believe it to be an exaggeration”

    Supernatural / fantasy / folk horror. Set in 1700s colonial America. A small group of persecuted pilgrim settlers flee their community. The group are tracked by hostile Shawnee Native Americans who justifiably view them as trespassers, to a deserted valley - where the Shawnee fear to tread. It becomes apparent the valley is deserted because it is inhabited by malevolent spirits… 

    A creepy, moody, earthy, creative, nightmarish,…

  • Witchhammer

    Witchhammer

    ★★★★★

    Unflinching Czech drama. Set during the Czech witch trials of the 1670s. Inquisitor ‘Boblig von Edelstadt’ is brought to the town of ‘Moravia’ to adjudicate. Using the 'Malleus Maleficarum’ as a guide, he goes about brutally persecuting the accused. Priest ‘Lautner’ criticises Boblig for his despicably torturous methods, before finding himself accused.

    A grim, cruel, immersive and nihilistic piece - based on real life events. Exploring themes including corruption, futility, superstition, injustice, morality, persecution, vilification, inhumanity, greed, power and control.…

  • Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror

    Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror

    ★★★★★

    A comprehensive and extensively detailed documentary which seeks to define the 'folk horror' sub genre. Told in segments, writer / director Kier-La Janisse packs this near 3 and a half hour documentary full of information, including - its genesis, analysis, cultural influences, impact, lore, and contemporary output. Boasting a thorough and fascinating array of interviews and insights. Examining a blend of well-known and lesser-known folk horror films from across the world. Exploring a wealth of themes generally found within the sub-genre. An exhausting, impressive and profoundly rewarding deep dive. Loved the animated sequences. Severin Films Blu-Ray viewed, it is also currently available on Shudder / Amazon.

  • Scream

    Scream

    ★★★

    Slasher sequel. Set 25 years following the Woodsboro murders. High school student 'Tara' receives a phone call, the caller asking her horror movie trivia - prompting the return of sadistic killer 'Ghostface'. A relatively fresh, funny and grisly sequel. Self-aware and loaded to the gills with meta commentaries, easter eggs and wider criticisms relating to violence, reboots and fandom. A neat relaunch for the most part - introducing new faces, while honouring its roots. A comparatively darker affair, littered with…

  • Eternals

    Eternals

    ★★

    Epic superhero ensemble. A group of alien entities (‘Eternals’), who have been living separately on Earth for millennia in secret, re-team to do battle with their evil counterparts; ‘The Deviants’. Writer / Director Zhao spins many plates, and the film winds up being a mess of threads / characters for the most part. ‘Eternals’ offers a slight tonal departure within the Marvel Studios cannon. Packed with a wonderfully diverse group of characters portrayed by a stellar cast. An interesting approach,…

  • Memento

    Memento

    ★★★★

    Psychological mystery / noir from Christopher Nolan. ‘Leonard’ suffers from amnesia, causing short-term memory loss. Using photographs and tattoos, Leonard seeks to identify the person who killed his wife. A complex revenge story, brought to life by an inventive non-linear structure - whereby events and revelations fall into place, in and out of order. This creates a wonderful sense of disorientation in tandem with Leonard’s memory loss. A gripping ‘puzzle box’ exploring themes including grief, guilt, deception, truth, self-destruction, perception.…

  • Sleep

    Sleep

    ★★★

    Atmospheric psychological / folk horror mystery. ‘Marlene’ lives with her daughter ‘Mona’, and suffers from vivid nightmares. Marlene believes she has found the real-life location of her nightmares, a rural hotel, and travels there - only to be confronted by her fears, which leads to her being treated in a psychiatric hospital. Mona seeks to help, and travels to the hotel - only to begin suffering nightmares herself. 

    Intriguing, surreal, compelling, ambitious, nightmarish. A disorientating, challenging and creepy trip -…

  • Licorice Pizza

    Licorice Pizza

    ★★★★★

    Coming-of-age comedy / drama from Paul Thomas Anderson. Set within the San Fernando Valley in 1973. 15 year old actor and entrepreneur ’Gary Valentine’ strikes a unique partnership with a 25 year old photography assistant named ’Alana’. We follow the duo through a series of clashing events (including a fiery motorcycle stunt, encounters with an ageing film star, a waterbed venture, a mayoral campaign, and the spectacular wrath of Jon Peters) amid an on-going fuel crisis - watching as they…

  • Another Round

    Another Round

    ★★★★

    A group of teachers (‘Martin’, ‘Peter’, ‘Tommy’, ’Nikolaj’), finding their lives / practices becoming increasingly stale, experiment with a theory suggesting that having a blood alcohol content of 0.05% sparks calmness and creativity. The four friends drink during the daytime, revealing its positive and negative effects. Excellent comedy / drama from Thomas Vinterberg. A moving portrait concerning the highs and lows of alcoholism, stresses, and friendship. Suitably intoxicating - ranging from funny, playful, to profoundly devastating. Straightforward in its portrayal…

  • The Stranger

    The Stranger

    ★★★★

    Noir / Thriller from Orson Welles. United Nations agent ‘Wilson’ (Robinson) hunts Nazi war criminal ‘Franz Kindler’ (Welles), a fugitive hiding under the new identity of ‘Professor Rankin’ in the United States. Meticulously assembled, ballsy, tense, briskly paced and well performed. Beyond the charm of Professor Rankin lies the most despicable evil, eliminating those who come close to revealing his true identity. Beautifully presented, boasting an array of thoughtfully composed shots - including a smart use of light, bathing Kindler…

  • Ghostwatch

    Ghostwatch

    ★★★★

    British supernatural horror / pseudo-documentary / mystery. A fascinating TV movie, produced by the BBC. Structured as a straightforward live BBC news broadcast, featuring a roster of real-life personalities of the era - including Sir Michael Parkinson, Sarah Green, Craig Charles and Mike Smith. A ‘live’ investigation follows a North London family as they deal with a malevolent paranormal entity in their home. Events quickly spiral - causing mayhem in the house, and within the BBC studio. 

    Essentially the ‘Enfield…