Tag Archives: Horror

Charlie’s Back… (audio)


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C.J. Henderson, a late farewell


C.J. Hudson, RIP December 26, 1951 – July 4, 2014

I just was on the BALTICON website and noticed C.J. passed away last Summer.  I won’t let me being late to the party dissuade me from saying a few nice things about this man.

“C.J. doing what he liked to do,
shamelessly huckstering books
at a convention.

C. J. Henderson might not be a name to conjure with for SF, Noir and Horror fans, but if you are a regular attendee of East Coast Science Fiction conventions, chances are you have met C. J. Henderson, and if you’ve met him, you’ve chatted with him.   C.J. was a fixture in the dealer’s room, author panels, and autograph lines of most East Coast Cons that I attended from the early 2000s onward.  I admit, I am a spotty SF Con attendee at best, and my focus is usually on the book dealer’s room.  C.J. was usually to be found there, willing to go that extra mile to sell something, anything.. and engage in polite palaver along the way.  I could tell his health was not great at the last Balticon I attended, but I had no idea how serious it was.

I don’t know much about C.J.’s personal life, other than my observations about him being a genuinely nice guy that I liked to talk to about once a year at Balticon.  I do know he wrote the kind of stuff I like to read.   Pulp Stories.  Science Fiction stories.  Occult Detectives.   Horror in all formats, including comic books.  Weird Fantasy.  He was an acknowledged master of revisiting (but NOT rebooting) established pulp heroes of yesteryear and breathing new life into them.   He wrote stories featuring the Spider (Master of Men!), Green Lantern, and other pulp stalwarts.  He was fascinated with Kolchak, the Night Stalker TV show, and wrote several novels with Kolchak as a main character.  He had his own occult detective, Teddy London.  He wrote Werewolf Stories and Steampunk Stories and Vampire Stories and pretty much anything you can conjure up in the genre fiction field.  And yet,  I don’t think he got the notice or acclaim he deserved in his lifetime.

If you have a Kindle device, try him out for a piddly .99 cents.   I think you’ll be glad you did.

Sincere (and late) condolences to C.J.’s wife Grace and daughter Eric.   My deepest sympathies.

Video

The best Treehouse of Horror Couch Gag ever


Guillermo del Toro, director of Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboys 1&2, Blade II and many other stylish horror films, was the director of the recent annual Simpsons TREEHOUSE OF HORROR. His treatment of the the three minute “couch gag” piece that is the start of every episode is simply masterfully done. Can you name all the classic horror movies in this amazing title sequence ?

The Stalker (1979)


Years after SOLARIS, Russian filmmaker Andrey Tarkovskiy ventured into an almost Lovecraftian mode of storytelling with the little known movie THE STALKER. I just heard about it on Lovecraft Zine. One of the nicer bits about the Youtube boom is that I’m discovering full length movies cropping up now and then (especially ones in foreign languages, which is just ducky with me). Here, then, is Andrey Tarkovskiy’s THE STALKER, in two parts, courtesy of Youtube.

Part 1

Part 2

Enjoy!

reblog: There Will Be Blood (And Tentacles): A Review Of “Arkham Horror”


I personally love playing Arkham Horror and own the base game plus three expansions: Dunwich, Kingsport and the Curse of the Mummy. It can be quite a time commitment to play and thus I don’t see it on the table more than just once in a while, which is a shame.  This post is from the Lovecraft E-zine Blog and I’m reblogging it because I love the game.  

Lovecraft eZine

This post written by Repairer of Reputations.

Vincent Lee’s hand shook as he focused on the gun he was loading.  He gave a shudder when he heard Sister Mary scream.  It was cut off abruptly by a sickening rip the doctor knew to be the tearing of flesh. That was followed by the patter of the nun’s blood raining down on the street.  Lee tried to steel his nerves as he crouched behind the car, but the serpent god Yig let out a roar that made Lee start to tremble violently.  He took a deep breath and thrust out his guns as he stood, unloading both barrels into the Ancient One.  The great snake howled in rage as the bullets struck, leaving a bloody pulp where its eye had been.  Lee saw his opportunity and started to hobble for a nearby doorway.  The beating the monster had already given…

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Free HPL Movies online


An excellent list of FREE online Lovecraftian video shorts available for anyone who clicks on them. Reblogged from the LOVECRAFTIAN E-ZINE.

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Lovecraft eZine

I’ve remarked before that the “little guys” seem to do better with Lovecraft stories on film than the big studios.  They do it out of love, trying to stay true to the story.

With that in mind, there are quite a few Lovecraft movies that are free to watch on Youtube.  I thought it would good to organize them all in one spot.  If I missed any, please let me know by commenting below, or email me: michaeldaviswriter@gmail.com

Enjoy!

The Haunter of the Dark – film by Biggstrek.

The Haunter of the Dark – film by Demon Skull Studios.

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Pickman’s Model – film by Mark Philip Lichtenstein.

The Shadow Out of Time – film by lenneers kanal.

The Music of Erich Zann – film by Jared Skolnick.

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The Shadow Over Innsmouth – film by NueArtPictures.

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The Gibbering Horror of Howard…

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Spooky Movie 2010


The Spooky Movie Festival, the D.C. area’s very own horror movie festival,  is wrapping up for 2010 with the usual awesome parade of low-budget, no-budget indie horror and supernatural subject short films. I was unable to see everything, as usual, but I did drop by on Sunday for a lot of the short film fare.

There were many standout excellent short films this year. My particular favorite was TUCKER AND DALE VERSUS EVIL, a fantastic role reversal story:

Two bumbling hillbillies, Tucker (FIREFLY’s Alan Tudyk) and Dale (Tyler Labine), are mistaken for crazed backwoods psychos by a group of college kids on spring break. Everything the duo does feeds into the fear and paranoia of the preppie campers, who see no other choice but to confront the hayseeds, leading to a series of grisly accidents that Tucker and Dale interpret as suicide attacks. Sharp, funny and original, TUCKER & DALE VS. EVIL has proven, since its debut at Sundance earlier this year, to be one of the most hysterically entertaining horror/comedy epics to come along in years, receiving South by Southwest’s 2010 Audience Award and the Best First Feature at the 2010 Fantasia Film Festival.

At 86 minutes, Tucker and Dale must be a challenge to find a market for outside of the CHILLER network, but that’s okay, this is a film that will find its spot in the world.

Another outstanding role reversal picture is the POV zombie transformation film COLIN: Colin is bitten by a zombie; he dies and returns as one of the undead. We follow him as he wanders through suburbia during the throes of a cadaverous apocalypse. Through his encounters with objects, places and people, we learn who Colin was and more pertinently, what he has now become. Including a broad daylight zombie versus human street battle, an epic housebound siege and bags of gore. Already a worldwide phenomenon with huge media coverage since its premiere at Cannes, COLIN is the first zombie movie told from the zombie’s perspective.

This is a little heavy on the jump-cutty, stuttering camera approach that directors of zombie flicks are using these days, but I can’t get over the audacity of the central concept. Smart and wonderful!

Other standouts include MONSTRO DEL MAR! which appears to be a retread of FASTER PUSSYCAT! KILL, KILL! combined with THE BEAST FROM 20000 FATHOMS.

and the UH OH SHOW! a new film by the grandfather of gore films, Herschel Gordon Lewis, which looks like a cross between the Gong Show and Bloosucking Freaks:

There’s actually a more conventional, Nickelodeon style show out there called “the Uh Oh Show”, I wonder what they think of it?

Probably the film with the best shot at distribution outside of the film festival circuit was EVERYTHING’S EVENTUAL, based on a Stephen King short story from Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine. Everything’s Eventual is a short story about a high school dropout that finds a use for his special power to kill by email. Eventual was part of the Stephen King DOLLAR BABY program, a scholarship where aspiring filmmakers can acquire permission to film Stephen King stories for a dollar.

A slightly more conventional offering was THE ECHO GAME which reminded me of a very old movie called THE FURY. A mother must protect her foster daughter from a deranged scientist hell bent on recovering her psychic powers. I found it dragged a lot in the middle but reached a very satisfactory conclusion.

That’s about all I managed to cover. EVERY OTHER DAY IS HALLOWEEN had its Virginia Debut, and many other short film pieces were screened.

A big thank you to C.W. Prather for putting this show on every year. He put in a lot of work to make it happen. I am glad it gets a steady crowd but I hope the word spreads far and wide for D.C.’s very own Horror and Supernatural Film Festival.

Don’t Worry… We’ll Hug it Out..

Details:

Spooky Movie Festival website
Spooky Movie 2010 Program

Weird Tales sold off to Wildside Press


but it’s a Good thing… really!

I noticed with some sadness that DNA Publications, a small pulp press that publishes some of the best genre fiction stories in the USA (and located nearby in VA) has ceased publication of one of my favorite magazines, Weird Tales. The “Unique Magazine” has been in existence since 1922 and has had many owners and publishers during that time, including a time
when they were publishing in cheap mass market paperback (Zebra) and in gorgeous trade digest format (Terminus Publishing company.. I have all of these), to a couple of cheap bedsheet style pulps (Bellerophon Company.. I have one of these, incredibly rare). It was even reconfigured as “Worlds of Fantasy and Horror” briefly, when the Terminus group lost the rights to the Weird Tales name. In any event, WT, in all its incarnations, was the preeminent source for creepy gothic tales of horror and mayhem. Such great authors as Robert Howard, Clark Ashton Smith, Henry Kuttner, Robert Bloch, H.P. Lovecraft, Ben Hecht, August Derleth, Hugh Cave and Fritz Leiber all got started with Weird Tales.


For a great discourse on the entire history of WT until the DNA/Warren Lapine era, check out this site, here.

Back in the Terminus days, the magazine was being run by Darrell Schweitzer and John Betancourt. Before the license went to DNA publications (1998), these two gentlemen, both authors in their own right, contributed mightily to the modern reshaping of the Unique Magazine. Mr. Schweitzer really never left his post as contributing editor and frequent fiction contributor, and Mr. Betancourt went on to found Wildside Press, a primarily reprint house of great pulp fiction and some modern collections.

So it’s with mixed emotions that I sniff farewell to Warren Lapine and DNA Pubs, because Wildside Press has bought the license to print Weird Tales magazine. In general, I think this is a fantastic idea. The history is there with both Betancourt and Schweitzer, and Wildside has a host of complimentary products (pulp novels, collections, etc.) that will work very well in tandem with the magazine.

I just bought the newest issue (337) and the look and feel is identical to the DNA Press editions. Functionally, this is almost like a homecoming for Weird Tales, since the two chief editors spent so many years with the magazine in its prior existence at Terminus. I intend to subscribe!!!

(editor’s note, from 2015) Weird Tales was published by Wildside Press for about 4 years.  It has since been sold again to an editor that is very slow to get out issues.