Monday, April 17, 2017


¡QUÉ HORROR2017
Candidate #13

THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE
(September 2016)


"Mommy told me something a little girl should know.
It’s all about the Devil and I’ve learned to hate him so.
She said he causes trouble when you let him in the room.
He will never ever leave you if your heart is filled with gloom.”
--“Open Up Your Heart”

The body of an unidentified young woman found under strange circumstances is brought in to the Tilden Morgue & Crematorium, where father and son Tildens, Tommy (Brian Cox) and Austin (Emile Hirsch) set about to uncover cause of death.
But this is far from a cut and dried post mortem, as the Tildens soon discover…

The Autopsy of Jane Doe is a rousing “Welcome Back!” for director André Øvredal (who was last seen ‘round these parts in the 2011 ¡Q horror! rundown, with Trolljegeren).
This time though, there are no amusing, humorous chuckles to be had. This is dark and disturbing stuff, courtesy of a script by Ian Goldberg and Richard Naing, which is, honestly, a welcome surprise.
Familiar with some of Goldberg’s work on Once Upon a Time and Dead of Summer (for which Naing also wrote an episode), I hadn’t expected him capable of horror of this grimness. I’m glad to be divested of that impression.


So effective is the film that no less than Guillermo del Toro (“A fun, stylish, beautifully built funhouse of horror!”) and Stephen King (“Visceral horror to rival ALIEN and early Cronenberg. Watch it, but not alone.”) have sung its praises.
¡Q horror! can do naught but agree…

“Whatever the hell happened in here… we are way past possible.”

(The Autopsy of Jane Doe OS’ courtesy of bloody-disgusting.com & mondotees.com.)

Saturday, April 15, 2017


¡QUÉ HORROR2017
Candidate #12

SEOUL-YEOK
(SEOUL STATION)
(April 2016)


Yeon Sang-ho's animated prequel to Busanhaeng (Train to Busan) actually plays better than its live-action sequel, and that’s probably all down to the fact that it’s a more atypical zombie cinema viewing experience than Busanhaeng.
Why is that, you may ask?

To wit:


A: Animated zombies are far more uncommon than live-action ones.

B: Unlike Busanhaeng, we don’t really see your usual zombie cinema character types here.

C: The social commentary is far more satisfactorily evident, with some barbed rants against country and government. And the class divide is likewise more overt here.

It should be noted though that there are some rather cruel and vicious moments in this one, some moments having nothing at all to do with the zombies…
If that all still sounds like your cup of (zombie) tea, then take heed: ¡Q horror! strongly approves Seoul-yeok!

(Seoul Station UK quad courtesy of impawards.com.)


¡QUÉ HORROR2017
Candidate #11

THE VOID
(September 2016)


"You'd be surprised at the things you find when you go looking.”

Co-written and co-directed by Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski (art and make-up veterans on the sorely missed Hannibal, among other things), The Void is the kind of horror film that does not f*ck around.

As per this excerpt from the synopsis on the film’s Indiegogo page (more on that later), In the middle of a routine patrol, officer Daniel Carter happens upon a blood-soaked figure limping down a deserted stretch of road. He rushes the young man to a nearby rural hospital staffed by a skeleton crew, only to discover that…
Dot dot dot indeed.

 
“… [T]he body has to adjust, of course. Adapt. We weren’t… built for this kind of thing.”

Suffice it to say that experiencing The Void is like having rotting, putrid gobbets of Carpenter, Fulci, and Cronenberg (along with some stringy bits of Lovecraft) flung right in your face… in the best possible way.
There’s plenty of dread and gruesome practical effects (to which the Indiegogo funds went), and if you’re in the mood for some disturbing cosmic horror, you’d be well advised to step right up and into The Void.

“I defy God. There are things much older. Older than time. And they blessed me.”

(The Void OS’ courtesy of impawards.com.)

Saturday, March 25, 2017




2017 SUMMER KOMIKON FLOOR PLAN + 'VERSE RELEASES

Six days to go till this year's SummerKon, and here's the treasure map! (Click to embiggen!)


You'll find us there (next to THE LOST JOURNAL OF ALEJANDRO PARDO creative team colleague, Mervin Malonzo), with the new 'Verse releases!
In case you missed the previous post, they are as follows:



DAKILA / KADASIG: Balat
Issue 3 (of 4)
By David Hontiveros and Romnick Magbanua

Dakila and Kadasig finally realize they’re on the same island! Just in time for the Dweller and the Yokusuru to gather for a nice family meal.
Wait, what?


DAKILA: Makadaot
Issue 2 (of 3)
By David Hontiveros and Carl Corilla

Your name is Brandon Ramirez and you’ve been a geek your whole life: comics, movies, RPGs, cosplay.

And now you’re officially the world’s first superhero, as evidenced by the cape, the mask, the totally ripped physique, and those crazy-awesome powers.

Higher agencies seem to have conspired to steer you right into that skintight outfit.

We have only one question:
How’s that working out for you?

Dakila has to face rains that are gradually sapping his strength to find a missing child.
AND his kitten!
PLUS, see exactly what happened to Grundle after issue 1’s ending.
Oh!
And the saitan goons show up here too!
LOTS’A stuff going down!!!

Dakila. 18 years old. Cosmic champion.
All of a sudden, acne and getting a driver’s license are so not a big deal anymore.


URIEL: Hekhalot
Issue 4B (of 4)
By David Hontiveros and Michael Urbano

Uriel is a mighty arel, held in reverence and awe by his fellow arelim, feared and despised by the shedim hordes.
And right now, his fate and existence lie in the hands of his seven-year-old mortal charge, Maleck de los Santos.

It all wraps up here, with the final pages planting the seeds for Maleck’s appearance in DAKILA: Siyudad.
Boom.

There might also be one other new release, if the stars align properly.
As I've always made it a point not to definitively announce anything if the copies aren't already ready, let's just say it's a potential surprise release.
We'll see this coming Saturday... 

Aaaand there you go.
Set the date: April 1, at the Bayanihan Center on Pioneer.
#SK2017 #komikonph

Hope to see all you mighty fine folk at SummerKon!

you can’t drink just six,

Dave

Tuesday, March 21, 2017





2017 SUMMER KOMIKON 'VERSE RELEASES

Eleven days to go till this year's SummerKon, and yes! 
New releases!



DAKILA / KADASIG: Balat
Issue 3 (of 4)
By David Hontiveros and Romnick Magbanua

Dakila and Kadasig finally realize they’re on the same island! Just in time for the Dweller and the Yokusuru to gather for a nice family meal.
Wait, what?


DAKILA: Makadaot
Issue 2 (of 3)
By David Hontiveros and Carl Corilla

Your name is Brandon Ramirez and you’ve been a geek your whole life: comics, movies, RPGs, cosplay.

And now you’re officially the world’s first superhero, as evidenced by the cape, the mask, the totally ripped physique, and those crazy-awesome powers.

Higher agencies seem to have conspired to steer you right into that skintight outfit.

We have only one question:
How’s that working out for you?

Dakila has to face rains that are gradually sapping his strength to find a missing child.
AND his kitten!
PLUS, see exactly what happened to Grundle after issue 1’s ending.
Oh!
And the saitan goons show up here too!
LOTS’A stuff going down!!!

Dakila. 18 years old. Cosmic champion.
All of a sudden, acne and getting a driver’s license are so not a big deal anymore.


URIEL: Hekhalot
Issue 4B (of 4)
By David Hontiveros and Michael Urbano

Uriel is a mighty arel, held in reverence and awe by his fellow arelim, feared and despised by the shedim hordes.
And right now, his fate and existence lie in the hands of his seven-year-old mortal charge, Maleck de los Santos.

It all wraps up here, with the final pages planting the seeds for Maleck’s appearance in DAKILA: Siyudad.
Boom.

Aaaand there you go.
Set the date: April 1, at the Bayanihan Center on Pioneer.
#SK2017 #komikonph

Hope to see all you mighty fine folk at SummerKon!

you can’t drink just six,

Dave

Sunday, February 5, 2017

SANTA CLARITA DIET
(January 2017)


"... On the other hand, maybe nothin’s impossible. Who would have ever thought an octopus and a kitten could fall in love?
"It’s on YouTube. You gotta see it. It’ll give you hope.”

There’s a select group of actors who, because of a Single Fantabulous Film (or TV Show) that they helped shepherd into reality, have got a lifetime Pass from me; they can choose to come out in whatever kind of film or series they want, and I will have no right to look at them askance or criticize them, because I’m eternally grateful for that Single Fantabulous Film (or TV Show).
Nicolas Cage immediately comes to mind. Because he produced E. Elias Merhige’s Shadow of the Vampire, I can forgive him for a lot, even (gulp) The Wicker Man remake.
There’s also Drew Barrymore, who now has two lifetime Passes from me: the first, for Donnie Darko (executive producer), and the second, for Santa Clarita Diet (again, executive producer). And she backed both up with her star power by appearing in the cast.
Thanx, Gertie!

“No. Don’t do anything, okay? Just relax.
“I’m dead. It can wait until tomorrow.”

Barrymore and co-star (and co-executive producer) Timothy Olyphant are husband and wife realtors, Sheila and Joel Hammond, doing their best to cope with Sheila’s new titular diet, which is (gasp!) human flesh.
Seriously, I haven’t had this much fun with anything zombie since Shaun of the Dead.
Which is why I’m talking about it here, outside of the ¡Q horror! rundown, since this isn’t really a horror show, so much as it is a comedy with some horror elements.


“Maybe we should just keep driving. Go home, get some clothes, and just never come back.”
“Well, that’s crazy! We can’t just run away. Where would we go?! Oh, we have so much equity in our house!”
“Ah! I didn’t think about the equity! I’m a monster.”

The beauty of the show though is, as much as it’s about the hijinx that result from Sheila’s zombiefication, it’s just as much about the way a family deals with seismic upheavals, about finding family wherever you can, and embracing the reality that, even if something’s changed, that doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful.
And not only do we have Barrymore as the newly confident and energetic Sheila, and Olyphant as the weed-smoking, occasionally manic Joel, but there’s an excellent supporting cast here too, starting with Liv Hewson (as their headstrong daughter Abby) and Skyler Gisondo (as lovable creeper next door, Eric), and stretching out to the two cops who live on either side of the Hammonds (uh-oh), Richard T. Jones and Ricardo Chavira (who also happens to be the jerkface stepfather to the aforementioned lovable creeper Eric).
Oh! And a 2-episode appearance by Grace Zabriskie! So awesome, ‘cause we all know there is No Such Thing As Too Much Grace Zabriskie!
And for another dose of awesome, Portia de Rossi shows up at the tail end of the season (in a role that was apparently written specifically for her).


“Hello.”
“I’m sorry. I’m not in the mood.”
“Just saying ‘Hello.’”
“I know your ‘Hello’s, honey, and that one was pouring me a glass of wine.”

If you’ve frequented the Iguana in the past, you’ll know that we’re pretty big here on atypical titles of bone-tired genres, and most everything zombie these days is so SO tired. So I wasn’t going to pass up the chance of trumpeting Santa Clarita Diet just because it wasn’t full-on horror. (Here’s hoping Netflix renews it for a second season.)
I dubbed I Am a Hero “the perfect antidote for those all-too-relentlessly grim soap opera zombie titles.”
I was wrong.
Santa Clarita Diet is the perfect antidote for those all-too-relentlessly grim soap opera zombie titles.
Boom.

“I really don’t think I bit him.”
“But what if you did? And what if that makes him turn, and then he bites someone, and they bite someone and pretty soon, we’re like the biggest a$$holes ever!”

(Santa Clarita Diet OS’ courtesy of bloody-disgusting.com & impawards.com.)

Saturday, January 28, 2017


¡QUÉ HORROR2017
Candidate #10

THE MONSTER
(October 2016)


Right out of the gate, writer/director Bryan Bertino carved out a slot for himself on the 2008 ¡Q horror! rundown with his feature debut, The Strangers.
Though circumstances have thus far prevented me from checking out his 2014 follow-up, Mockingbird, he is back ‘round these parts with The Monster.

As with The Strangers, Bertino balances character with the tense thrills produced by a horrific set-up; in this case, it’s a mother and daughter stranded on a lonely road, at night, in the rain, with the titular (and savagely hungry) beast lurking in the woods.

There are strong performances here from Zoe Kazan and Ella Ballentine, and Chief Tyrol himself, BSG’s Aaron Douglas, also shows up for the fun.
If you’re in the mood for some suspenseful and moving horror, then hunt down The Monster.

(The Monster OS courtesy of screenanarchy.com.)