Starring: Paul Kelman, Lori Hallier, Neil Affleck, Keith Knight, Cynthia Dale, Helene Udy, Alf Humphreys
“Roses are red, violets are blue, one is dead… and so are you.” (killer’s note, My Bloody Valentine)
Valentine’s Day can be a pain in the arse at the best of times.
If you’re single it can be a thoroughly depressing affair as you hear countless tales of lovebirds wooing each other with gifts and other tokens of their adoration.
Meanwhile, being one of said lovebirds is no picnic either, what with the stress of having to buy your partner a present and hoping it’s the right size, or the right colour, or the specific type they asked for.
Starring: Paul Le Mat, William Hickey, Irene Miracle, Jimmie F Skaggs, Robin Frates, Matt Roe
“Metaphysically speaking, I killed myself.” (Neil, Puppet Master)
Over the past few months many of my reviews have been dedicated to films by Full Moon, one of my favourite B-movie studios.
Full Moon were responsible for a raft of low-budget 80s and 90s horror films and while the majority were as atrocious as you’d expect (hence exhibits A, B, C, D and E here), every so often they’d come up trumps with a gem.
Starring: Paula Sheppard, Linda Miller, Niles McMaster, Mildred Clinton, Brooke Shields
Also known as: Communion (original title), Holy Terror (re-release title)
“Maybe you are afraid that God will send St. Michael to take another of your loved ones. When St. Michael took my little girl, I only thought of how cruel God was.” (Mrs Tredoni, Alice Sweet Alice)
It’s generally a bit of a taboo in film to combine children with murder. Usually that means filmmakers are wary of killing a kid in a movie – that’s crossing the line – but it also works the other way too.
That’s why it’s difficult to come up with a sizeable list, off the top of your head, of films which feature a scene in which a child murders someone.
Alice Sweet Alice isn’t scared of such taboos. Not only does it include a child being killed mere minutes into its runtime, its entire plot also revolves around the notion that another child may be killing people. Continue reading “Alice Sweet Alice (1976) review”→
Starring: Brian Matthews, Leah Ayres, Brian Backer, Jason Alexander
“They never found his body, but he survived. He lives on whatever he can catch. Eats them raw, alive. No longer human. Right now, he’s out there. Watching, waiting. Don’t look: he’ll see you. Don’t move: he’ll hear you. Don’t breathe: you’re dead!” (Todd, The Burning)
Although there were a number of slasher films before Friday The 13th (most notably Halloween and Black Christmas), it was that film’s success which led to the birth of a sub-genre that was by far the most oft-imitated during the ’80s: the camp slasher.
(Obviously, by that I mean slasher films set in a summer camp, as opposed to films where a killer prances around going “oo-er missus” before stabbing someone.)
Everybody’s got to start somewhere, and not every actor saunters straight into an Oscar-winning role in their debut performance.
No, most start off doing cheap or independent films: mostly just to get work and have some actual acting roles to put in their resume, but also in the hope that their performance will get them noticed by one of the big studios.
Everyone in this feature has two things in common. Firstly, they are (or were at one point) all considered major actors or actresses.
Secondly, they all starred in horror films very early in their acting careers. A rare few struck it lucky with horror movies that would become hugely successful: Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween springs to mind.
However, the vast majority instead featured in cheesy low-budget B-movie horrors, the sort of pish they’d rather forget they were ever in. You know, the sort of stuff I review on here.
Here, then, in order of surname, is my handy list of major actors and actresses who found themselves in (usually extremely low budget) horror films early in their careers. Just to make sure they won’t be able to forget them.
Starring: Olivia Hussey, Margot Kidder, John Saxon, Keir Dullea, Marian Waldman
Also known as: Silent Night, Evil Night (USA title)
“Little baby bunting, daddy’s went a-hunting, gonna fetch a rabbit skin to wrap his baby Agnes in.” (The Killer, Black Christmas)
Although Halloween is credited as the film that kicked off the slasher genre and Friday The 13th is the considered the one that inspired a slew of imitations, Black Christmas pre-dates them both by nearly half a decade.