Unliked & Unfollowed: UNFRIENDED: DARK WEB (2018) Review

After a young man steals a laptop, he unknowingly puts himself and friends in danger when he discovers the secrets held within the computer and the original owner willing to do whatever it takes to get it back.

The first Unfriended I admit I needed to watch a second time after being disappointed. Upon second viewing, I enjoyed it much more and found it to be an entertaining supernatural slasher film. With this sequel, like its predecessor, it’s all on the main character’s laptop as he Skypes with his friends, browses the web, and uses Facebook. This aspect in both the original film and Dark Web are still well-done in its appearance. The acting in this film is also extremely well-done, most particularly from Rebecca Rittenhouse as Serena. Sure this movie is much more darker than the first movie, but it’s also much more boring, uninteresting, and unengaging. It had some great ideas going for it, but they seemed to make the events happening extremely ridiculous. A better movie depicting a similar concept was The Den. Appearance-wise that film may not be as good, but it gets the point across much easier and wasn’t as far-fetched, on top of that it was much more disturbing. Even the movie Ratter was a better film. Both Unfriended movies are supposed to be cautionary tales of the internet and social media, but the original film develops its themes a lot better than this one. As far as characters go, the ones here are just as bland and boring as the film itself, which made me not care about their fate. While the characters in the original weren’t likable either, at least we were essentially SUPPOSED to not like them, and even when there wasn’t horror happening they were at least entertaining to watch, and even more so during the horror.

Essentially I think this sequel tried to take itself too seriously to the point where it became a bit too ridiculous and they put way too much thought into it. There were points were when the villains appeared on-screen and they turned to static (similar to the segment in V/H/S with the static killer). Maybe I don’t know how much power hackers actually have, but much of the stuff that happens via the internet seemed way too over-the-top for me to believe to the point where a plot twist involving the supernatural would have made more sense.

If you want a better film depicting hacking or dark web type of stuff, watch the superior films The Den or Ratter. Both better and much more disturbing. The passable acting and visual presentation do nothing to make this a good film.

–Cody Landman

This Weekend Only: $8 Slasher Studios DVD Sale

A huge thank you to everyone who took advantage of our huge Don’t Go to the Reunion limited edition blu-ray sale. If you missed out, don’t worry because we have a brand new sale for you! From now through Monday, we have both Don’t Go to the Reunion and Dismembering Christmas on DVD for just $8 each or buy both films for just $15. This is the lowest price either film has ever been so don’t miss out on this killer deal. Supplies are limited!


DVD




Make America Purge Again: THE FIRST PURGE (2018) Review

Taking place before the first film, this prequel gives us a glimpse of how the infamous Purge came to be. The citizens of Staten Island find themselves as the test experiments with prize money rewarded to them if they choose to participate. But as we already know, this doesn’t end too well for these citizens and America.

After a terrible first film, and two fun and thrilling sequels, it was almost inevitable that a prequel would come about. And like most prequels, this one isn’t exactly necessary. Granted it is interesting to see what the initial purpose of the Purge was and how exactly it came to be the terrifying blood both we’ve come to know it for, as well as see reasons why some would participate. This whole idea was made up by Marisa Tomei’s character to be used as a psychological experiment, but it ultimately goes awry in way she couldn’t imagine. This film is easily the darkest entry of the films, going in some pretty hefty territories, especially a sequences involving Purgers dressed as KKK members, just to give you an idea. Of course it wouldn’t be Purge film without its politics thrown in. Some work, and some are a bit groan-worthy. We have a scene where Purgers dressed as policemen surround a wounded black man, presumably ready to beat him to death. And while I suppose this could be said for the other films, this movie doesn’t really have much of a plot and is pretty all over the place.

Now, we do have some likable protagonists and you do root for them, even if they’re particularly all that special. However, I love the sassy black woman played by Orange is the New Black actress Mugga, she was the comic relief that didn’t overstay her welcome. Our leading male played Y’lan Noel I actually found a lot more likable than Frank Grillo’s character from Anarchy and Election Year. Granted they both were the tough bad ass heroes, Noel’s character felt at least a bit more real and not a tough federal agent guy. Lex Scott Davis however comes off as the most real character of them all. She shows great care for those around her and is willing to sacrifice herself in order to save them. Both Noel and Davis really deliver with their performances. Now we get to one of the more unfortunate aspects and that is the fact that Marisa Tomei is totally wasted in this film. She gets about 7-10 minutes of screen time and she doesn’t get much to do with that screen time besides talk to a news camera in her first scene and watch surveillance footage of the mayhem for most of her scenes. It’s only when her character develops an arc and might actually get to go somewhere, her character gets tossed aside. This ultimately made the casting of Tomei a slap in the face and they could have just cast a nobody in the role.

The thing with The First Purge is that, as a prequel, it’s exactly what you would expect, however, I think this would have been so much better had this been the actual first film in the series as opposed to the one we got. This movie does have what you want from a Purge film however, crazy violence, and protagonists giving Purgers their just deserts. It also helps the main guy and girl are very likable. If you’re a fan of the franchise, I can’t imagine you won’t like this one. Those who aren’t fans won’t be won over.

–Cody Landman

In Defense Of: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer

It’s that time of year again to break out the I Know What You Did Last Summer films. Obviously we have the original as the primary watch, but we also have I Still Know, and for the daring, I’ll Always Know. We all know the original film is a classic and many still love it, I know I still love it, and it is the best film of the three hands-down. However, I have to give some defense to I Still Know What You Did Last Summer.

One of the biggest complaints about the original film is how useless Julie James is. I 100% agree with this. Jennifer Love Hewitt’s performance was solid, but all Julie did was whine, mope, and scream and was basically a slap in the face to true final girls. However, in I Still Know, I see a much better version of Julie than we got in the original film. Sure she can still be mopey and whiney, but unlike the first movie, she has more of a motive for this. The events of the first film made her extremely paranoid, and it work well here in how it’s portrayed. But as the events of the film progress, we start to see Julie become a stronger character and willing to face Ben Willis as opposed to run and hide like she did in the first film. I always love her big moment at the end when she’s shooting the hell out of the Fisherman and yells “JUST! FUCKING! DIE!” I honestly think they really redeemed the character of Julie after the first film, and Jennifer really delivered the performance even more than she did in the first movie.

Apart from Julie, the character of Ray also is at least given more to do other than be a pathetic excuse of a lead male. Granted he is spending the majority of the movie just trying to get to Julie, but at least here he’s given more to do and has a heroic enough moment at the end.

In addition to the returning characters, we’re given some fun supporting ones. I think Brandy was a great addition to the cast as Karla, Julie’s new best friend. Now she’s definitely not Sarah Michelle Gellar/Helen. But Karla was a character that I felt Julie needed. She didn’t let Julie push her around and she basically was telling Julie to stop moping, get off her ass, and enjoy herself. It’s unfortunate that we didn’t get to see Karla using her kickboxing put to the test against the Fisherman, but she at least gets a decent, but brief chase scene. Again, this pales compared to the classic chase and fight scene Sarah/Helen gets, but it’s something. Mekhi Phifer’s character Tyrell, while he is dick for his last portion of screen time in the movie, at least he’s a dick you don’t get annoyed by unlike Barry who was spoiled rich boy who thought he was tougher than he was. Tyrell actually had some comical moments even when he was being a dick, mostly when he’s trying to bone his girlfriend. Matthew Settle’s character, the love struck Will was also likable. You did feel for the guy who really seemed to try be a friend for Julie but also trying to win her affection. Though when it’s revealed he’s “BEN’S-SON!” Settle does give the performance a bit too much cheese. And a huge shout out has to be given to Jennifer Espositio as the snarky bartender Nancy. For me was the best character of the film, and I really wanted more bad ass moments from her, she did not deserve the lame death she got. Like for real, how hard was it to push the guy off of her? She deserved a better death than that.

Unfortunately we also have our weak character in Jack Black’s stoner character Titus, and we have the boring “red-herring” characters of Estes and Mr. Brooks, the creepy voodoo guy and the douchebag manager of the hotel.

One thing also worth praising about the movie is the great location. The character’s being trapped on an island during storm that conveniently leaves them without safety boats and power, as cheesy as it is, it work for the film. The only real downside is that we don’t get the July 4thfeel like we did in the first movie. We only get a mention that it’s the 4thof July and that’s it. But anyway, within the island we get some great chase sequences around the island, I already mentioned Karla’s, but the prelude to Karla’s chase scene comes in the form of another great chase scene involving Karla, Nancy, and Julie. They run from the kitchen following Tyrell’s death, up the stairs, and ultimately up into the attic where they have to stay on the beams so they don’t fall through the floor/ceiling(?) that ultimately leads to Karla’s chase. And then we have the extremely creepy scene in the storm shelter.

It’s also a plus that we have higher body count.

To sum up this whole article, I really think I Still Know What You Did Last Summer gets too much hate. Is it in the same league as the first or have the intensity? No, definitely not. But when you think about it, there are some things that it does improve on from the first, primarily Julie as a character, the body count, and slightly more likable characters. When it comes down to it, I think it’s fair to say that even if I Still Know isn’t a particularly good movie (besides those 3 annoying above characters, the dialogue and farfetched plot points can be cringe-worthy), it’s pure, cheesy fun.

–Cody Landman

Summer of FEAR: Free IRRATIONAL FEAR Shipping

To celebrate a summer of fear as well as our three Irrational Fear screenings this month, we are proud to offer you FREE shipping on all copies of Irrational Fear for the month of July. Purchase the film on either dvd or limited edition blu-ray and you’ll receive free shipping on your order. Even more of a fearful bonus? Purchase a combo pack and you’ll also receive a free 11×17 poster with your order. Spread the fear!!

Limited Edition Blu-Ray Art created by Austin Hinderliter.
DVD Artwork created by David GIron.

Format




$10 Limited Edition DON’T GO TO THE REUNION Blu-Ray Sale

For a limited time only we are offering a killer deal on our first feature, Don’t Go to the Reunion. Pick up the film on DVD or limited edition blu-ray for just $10 each. Only 200 of these have been printed on blu-ray (with only a small handful left) and each one is hand numbered for a special collector’s touch. Featuring exclusive extras not available anywhere else, don’t miss your last chance to down our first slasher feature in glorious HD.

Brand new special features include:
* All three Slasher Studios short films (Teddy, Popularity Killer, and Blood Brothers)
* Filmmakers commentary
* Exclusive cast & crew interviews on the making of Don’t Go to the Reunion
* Don’t Go to the Reunion Video Review
* Don’t Go to the Reunion promo video
* Don’t Go to the Reunion trailer
* Don’t Go to the Reunion teaser trailer
* Dismembering Christmas trailer
* Theatrical World Premiere Interview With Director Steve Goltz & Writer Kevin Sommerfield
* Slasher Studios Horror Podcast audio feature (A Look Back at Don’t Go to the Reunion)
and MUCH MORE!


DVD or Blu-Ray




FREE Limited Edition Slasher Studios Shirt With Purchase

From now until June 20th, we are offering a killer deal that all you slasher friends will definitely want to take a stab at. Simply purchase $40 or more through our Slasher Studios store (any of the killer items listed below count) and you will automatically receive a FREE limited edition Slasher Studios tee with your purchase. Supplies and sizes are limited so don’t delay! If you have a request for a specific size, simply leave a message along with your order and we will make sure you get your gory gear. Thanks again horror friends and we hope to see you next week at Days of the Dead!

Irrational Fear Blu-ray Special Features:

Hand numbered (out of 200) limited edition
Cast & Crew Commentary
Filmmaker’s Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Cast & Crew Interviews
What’s Your Fear? Featurette
Slasher Studios Horror Podcast: The Making of Irrational Fear
Theatrical Teaser
Theatrical Trailer
Indie Horror Trailers
Photo Gallery


Irrational Fear




Irrational Fear DVD Special Features:

Cast & Crew Commentary
Filmmaker’s Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Cast & Crew Interviews
What’s Your Fear? Featurette
Slasher Studios Horror Podcast: The Making of Irrational Fear
Theatrical Teaser
Theatrical Trailer
Indie Horror Trailers
Photo Gallery


Irrational Fear





Limited Edition Irrational Fear Shirt:

Featuring Exclusive Art by Austin Hinderliter
Slasher Studios Exclusive
Limited Run of 25 Shirts
High Quality Screen Printing


T-Shirt Size




Don’t Go to the Reunion Blu-ray Special Features:

Hand numbered (out of 200) limited edition
Filmmakers commentary
Cast & crew interviews
Don’t Go to the Reunion audio “reunion”
International Video Review
Promo video and trailers
Dismembering Christmas trailer
All three Slasher Studios short films in HD


Don’t Go to the Reunion




Don’t Go to the Reunion DVD Special Features:

Audio Commentary with the filmmakers
Teaser Trailer
Blooper Reel
“Class of 2004” Yearbook
Audition Reels
Slasher Studios shorts (Teddy, Popularity Killer, Blood Brothers)


Don’t Go to the Reunion



Dismembering Christmas DVD Special Features:

Audio commentary with Actor/Director Austin Bosley
Audio commentary with Writer/Producer Kevin Sommerfield
Behind-the-scenes documentary with exclusive clips
Bloopers
Fly on the Set: Making Of Dismembering Christmas
Interview with Writer/Producer Kevin Sommerfield
Teaser & Theatrical Trailer

 


DVD Options



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Buy Both DGTTR and Dismembering Christmas on DVD, Save $5. Special features:

Audio Commentary with the filmmakers
Teaser Trailers
Blooper Reels
“Class of 2004” Yearbook – Don’t Go to the Reunion
Audition Reels – Don’t Go to the Reunion
Slasher Studios shorts (Teddy, Popularity Killer, Blood Brothers)
Behind-the-Scenes – The Making of Dismembering Christmas


DVD Combo Pack



VHSART-Edited

Limited edition Dismembering Christmas VHS:
Collectible Clamshell White Case
Limited Run of 50 Copies
Hand Numbered
Featuring the Artwork of Jeffrey Quick
Includes Mini Dismembering Christmas Poster


Dismembering Christmas VHS Options



xmas

11×17 Dismembering Christmas Poster:

Featuring Artwork by Austin Hinderliter
Limited Blu-Ray Box Art Design
High Quality Card Stock Ready For Framing
Only Available At Slasher Studios


Dismembering Christmas



Limited Edition Slasher Studios T-shirt
Limited Run of Only 15 Shirts
Screen Printed, High Quality Design
Show Your Slasher Studios Pride


SS Logo



Growing Pains: HEREDITARY (2018) Review

Following the death of her mother, a woman finds her family and life unraveling as one horrific event after another begins to happen to them. As all of this unfolds, she begins to uncover secrets about her mother she never knew.

Hereditary is being raved as the scariest movie as The Exorcist and completely horrific and disturbing. While I can probably understand this for some viewers, this movie didn’t really do much for me. After personally being terrified by A24’s other horror film The Witch, Hereditary’s trailer gave me the same vibes and hopes that this would be just a scary. Unfortunately, this movie really didn’t do much for me, however, that’s not to say this doesn’t feature some pretty horrific and disturbing imagery, it definitely succeeds there. There is a depiction of decapitation towards the end that easily is one of the more horrific things I’ve seen in horror in a long time. The only thing is, when it comes to the horror, this doesn’t occur until roughly around the last half hour or so. Everything prior to that is a slow-building exposition of the family and their troubles. This whole first half to me gives way more exposition than I felt we needed. After a while I grew tired of all the family drama. To be fair, it’s all done extremely well and the actors are all fantastic, but it just felt like it took up more of the movie than it needed to. When the horror finally does happen it picks up more and does a good job of hooking you. But at the same time, we have just been watching a dark family drama and when the horror comes, it feels a bit uneven tonally.

As far as the horror goes, it is engrossing, but when everything begins to happen, and especially in the final act, it all feels so familiar and not exactly original. I couldn’t help but think about how much of it reminded me of Paranormal Activity 3-6. But to Hereditary’s credit, that plot-point works better there. As far as that aspect goes, I feel like they had to pack in a bit too much in order to get to the horror side of things, essentially they over-complicated things more than they should have. All of this aside, I do love how they took the elements of grief and mental illness to help push it towards the horror side, this aspect of the movie is what I loved the most about it.

Finally, we have the performances, Toni Collette knocks it out of the park as the lead, she gets so into character and we see her struggles as the matriarch trying to keep her family and sanity together the best way she can while all of this mayhem is going on around her. Ann Dowd also turns in a great performance as a woman whom Collette meets at a grief counsel meeting. There is something so intriguing with Dowd’s character and performance and it’s a shame we didn’t get more of her, especially towards the end. Newcomer Milly Shaprio stars as Collette’s peculiar daughter Charlie. Charlie is also a character who is so interesting and one you want to learn so much more about, which we unfortunately don’t get a whole lot of, especially when she’s a key point to the story. Alex Wolff was hit or miss as the oldest son, in some scenes he does a great job, but in some scenes he’s laughable, but that probably has to do with how poorly he’s written as a whiny and bratty child. Gabriel Byrne does a fine job as well as really the only normal member of the family and sells the part of the husband/father at a loss of what to do as his family falls apart.

I can definitely understand why many are loving Hereditary and why many can find it terrifying. Unfortunately, this one didn’t do much for me, but I most certainly don’t find it a bad movie at all. It has some great ideas at hand, can be pretty horrific, and the acting is solid, but there were issues I had with the tonal balance/transition, the pace of the film, and aspects of the script.

–Cody Landman

$5 Off All Slasher Studios Tees While Supplies Last

For a limited time only, all Slasher Studios shirts are $5 off! Score a killer limited edition Irrational Fear shirt or pick up a Slasher Studios logo tee for just $15 each and help us celebrate the slasher love! Pick up both shirts and receive two FREE 11×17 posters with your order while supplies last.


Irrational Fear





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IRRATIONAL FEAR Scares Up Two Upcoming Screenings

We are thrilled to announce that our latest horror film, IRRATIONAL FEAR, has been chosen as an official selection at two upcoming events. On June 22nd, IRRATIONAL FEAR will be screening at Days of the Dead – Indianapolis as part of their film festival experience. We will be there all weekend long with a table selling the film as well as a bunch of other Slasher Studios goodies.

But, wait…the fear doesn’t end there! We are also excited to announce the Chicago premiere of Irrational Fear. As part of a bloody good double feature with the creature feature SLUGS, the fun begins (with some awesome cast/crew in attendance) at Bucket O’ Blood Books and Records on July 3rd at 7PM.

Big thanks to Days of the Dead, Horror Society Movie Nites and Bucket O’ Blood Books and Records for the screenings!

If you can’t attend, don’t worry! You can still pick up your very own copy below on either DVD or limited edition blu-ray while supplies last.

LOTS KILLER BONUS FEATURES!
Cast & Crew Commentary
Filmmaker’s Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Cast & Crew Interviews
What’s Your Fear? Featurette
Slasher Studios Horror Podcast: The Making of Irrational Fear
Theatrical Trailer
Indie Horror Trailers
Photo Gallery
Hand numbered, limited edition (out of 200) – Blu-Ray Only

Blu-Ray Cover Art

Irrational Fear




DVD Cover Art

Irrational Fear