Che Gilson’s Netflix Roulette #21 – Blood Glacier (2013)

Join Che as she plays Netflix Roulette and watches a randomly selected horror film. Will it be awesome? Will it be torture? What horrors await?? Find out every month with Netflix Roulette!

Title: Blood Glacier

Year: 2013

Director: Marvin Kren

Starring: Gerhard Liebman, Edita Malovic, Brigitte Kren, Hille Bessler, Peter Knaack

Netflix Percentage that I’ll like it: 57% I’ll like it.

Seen it before: No

First Impressions: Back when Harbinger Down was my monthly Netflix Roulette someone told me I should watch Blood Glacier because it too was reminiscent of The Thing (The Carpenter version) and made a better prequel to The Thing than the actual prequel to The Thing (which I think everyone can agree was terrible). Which sounds pretty promising. So I may like it more than Netflix thinks I will. I have been promised monsters in the movie blurb and there better be monsters.

The Verdict: In the same way that Harbinger Down was a better The Thing prequel than the The Thing prequel, Blood Glacier is a better Prometheus than Prometheus was. The mutations have an explanation (not just monster making soup) and the scientists aren’t all dumb as doorknobs. Also, no one is going around touching alien penis-snakes. Also, there are no penis-snakes. Though I will say that the characters in Blood Glacier are as unlikable, if not more so than Prometheus.

A small group of climate scientists are studying the melting glaciers in the Alps. They are accompanied by drunk and irascible technician Janek (Liebman). When the glacier they’re studying starts “bleeding” the scientists are stunned. Not as stunned as Janek though, who discovers a mutant fox-beetle thing rooting through their garbage. Turns out the “blood” coming from the glacier is actually a single celled organism that recombines the DNA of anything it comes into contact with after being consumed. The three scientists demand Janek keep his mouth shut about their astounding discovery. Especially when they find out a government minister Bodicek (Kren) is on her way to see how their research is going. With a VIP and Janek’s ex-girlfriend, on their way, the mountain mutants chooses now to unleash hell. They find themselves trapped by all sorts of cheapish looking mutant animals, including a mutant bird that looks like it could have come right out of Birdemic.

Blood Glacier, despite cheap mutant monsters is a heck of a lot of fun. The Minister is the most badass bureaucrat in the history of cinema. The movie is worth it for the scene in which she takes she a giant drill to a mutant ibex, alone. There’s also a nameless female victim of the mutant bird who spends the entire film passed out then dies in a fire. Yes, a fire. Along with the mutant monsters, there is a good amount practical gore effects including blood spurting boils and a very nice impalement.

If you haven’t seen Blood Glacier yet, then go check it out. Especially if you like cheesy monster flicks with an ecological message (Thaw anyone?). If you have seen it, I only hope you had as much fun as I did. The only warning I would issue is for dog fans. Yes there is a dog. And no, he doesn’t survive.

Rating: 7/10

Super Dark Times (2017) Fantasia Film Festival Review

SUPER DARK TIMES (2017)

Starring Owen Campbell, Charlie Tahan, Elizabeth Cappuccino, Amy Hargreaves, Max Talisman and Sawyer Barth

Directed by Kevin Phillips

Written by Ben Collins and Luke Piotrowski

Reviewed as part of the Fantasia Fest Line-Up

A harrowing but meticulously observed look at teenage lives in the era prior to the Columbine High School massacre.”

Hey there friends! Listen up! If you and your chums accidentally kill somebody, don’t try to cover it up. If the movies have taught us anything, it’s that doing so never, ever ends well…

It’s the 90’s. Before the millennium. Before smartphones. Before high definition television and before social networks ruled everyone’s lives. Teens Zach (Owen Campbell) and Josh (Charlie Tahan) are best friends. They finish each other’s sentences, know what the other’s thinking and always have each other’s backs. But their lives are irreparably torn apart when a silly argument with another friend escalates accidentally and fatally. But covering up their crime will affect them both in very different ways, and times are about to get super dark…

From its foreboding opening shots of a trail of blood and destruction in a deserted high school, the confident filmmaking here is striking. Super Dark Times is an absolutely fantastic film. I’ll say that straight up. This is masterful cinema.

Writers Ben Collins and Luke Piotrowski are coming off the moderate success of Siren, a fun but fleeting creature feature. Yet their script here is something else. Super Dark Times is driven not by plot and exposition but by its characters and their decisions, their psychology. It’s full of authentic details, from the banter between the boys, the relationships with elders, even the design of the town, all of it feels too specific to be anything but personal. This is a great script. But a great film needs to be more than that…

Leading to Kevin Phillips direction. Fucking hell. Imagine if you will, if David Fincher was stripped of his budget and made something smaller outside of the studio system, but no less beautiful and daring. With his feature length debut, that’s what Phillips achieves here. Everything is wonderfully under-lit, often to the point of silhouette, creating a foreboding, super dark atmosphere that, combined taut editing and a searing ambient soundtrack, create a visceral and psychologically immersing experience.

It also helps that the filmmakers got the cast they did. The actors here are truly spellbinding right across the board, I didn’t see a false note in one of the young cast. Charlie Tahan is no stranger to genre fare, his talents developing with turns in The Harvest and Wayward Pines, and he’s coolly chilling here. Owen Campbell is manic as his paranoia grows, coming off like a young Ryan Gosling or Jake Gyllenhaal at his most bug eyed. The whole cast is completely natural, so human.

If I had to nitpick, it would be one particularly expository sequence which leads into the finale that is slightly at odds with the natural flow of the rest of the film.

Although we have seen this story before, we rarely see it done with such skill and conviction. What could’ve been 90’s nostalgia exploitation instead chooses a different route and is all the more haunting and memorable for it. Visually stunning, audibly unnerving and emotionally devastating, Super Dark Times is a brilliant, brutal piece of work. Expect it on a few Best Of lists come December.

9/10

We Have 1 x Blu-Ray of The Strange Vice of Mrs Wardh to give away from Shameless Films.

Thanks to our good friends at Shameless Films we have 1 x BluRay of Sergio Martino’s stunning The Strange Vice of Mrs Wardh to give away to a lucky UK reader.

An ambassador’s wife discovers that one of the men in her life – either her husband, an ex-lover or her current lover – may be a vicious serial killer. This beautiful hypnotic film depicts a series of grisly murders, the victims of which all have some connection to our heroine, Mrs. Julie Wardh (the stunning queen of 1970’s Italian Giallo cinema: Edwige Fenech)

Voted one of the top Giallos ever, not only for its surreal S&M imagery featuring plenty of suspense, sleaze, nudity and gruesome killings but also because it this is the film which placed Edwige Fenech (Strip Nude For Your Killer) in the hearts of besotted fans around the world.

Out now at the Shameless Films shop here – http://www.shameless-films.com/shop/The-Strange-Vice-of-Mrs.-Wardh-Bluray.html

To win the Blu-ray simply email your name to comp@ukhorrorscene.com and put VICE in the subject line . The winner will be randomly chosen and contacted for their address. UK readers only!!

The competition will run until August 20th 2017.

A Life in Blood: Tales of a Horror Queen August 2017 – Mr Bones

A Life in Blood: Tales of a Horror Queen August 2017 – Mr Bones

This horror queen recently had the pleasure of starring in a dramatic short horror film, Mr. Bones. This film was filmed in New Jersey with some talented newcomers to the horror genre. In this film, I play a mother taking her young daughter to a garage sale where they encounter a mysterious doll. It was really spectacular to be involved with a film that had such an interesting script and storyline. My character was unique and challenging.

Directed by Joseph Meli with cinematographer John Piekos. Starring: Genoveva Rossi, K.J. Hopkins, Albert Moschetti Sr., Alexa Diaz, Yossef Seddiki, Justin Diaz, Alyssa Taylor, Hugh Macleod, Joseph Meli, Ivette Cardenes, Jennifer Rasbold, and Tina Dellorusso.

It was a pleasure to work with K.J. Hopkins on another film. Hopkins is both known for his acting and special effects makeup in a variety of horror films including my short film, Attack of the Killer Chickens which has been accepted to 16 film festivals so far. He is a great horror friend and collaborator.

It was a lot of fun working on Mr. Bones. I especially enjoyed my dramatic scenes with my on-screen boyfriend Albert Moschetti. We had great chemistry and intensity in our scenes, which definitely translates well in the film.

Alexa Diaz, a very young actress who is very new to the acting world, did a surprisingly amazing job as my troubled daughter. We had a great relationship on and off screen. It was fun helping her through her scenes. As an experienced actress, it can be really inspiring to work with a beginner and see the world of filmmaking through her eyes. It takes you back to you own first few films and shows you your past and what it took to get you to where you are today. Really inspiring.

with director Joseph Meli and cinematographer Jon Piekos

with director Meli and actor Albert Moschetti Sr. from Mr Bones

Mr. Bones was recently completed. I was heavily involved with this film not just an as an actress, but I also coached the other actors on their scenes, especially their diction and body language. I also met with our editor and gave a lot of input on how the film should be edited, and many of my suggestions ended up in the final film.

It has had its packed premiere party and was just screened at its first film festival The Brightside Tavern Shorts Fest in a horror shorts block that sold out a week before the film festival. It received two nominations; Best Actress Alexa Diaz and Best Horror Film. In the end, we walked away as the runner up for Best Horror Film! Stay tuned for more updates on Mr. Bones!

While at the film festival I ran into fellow Italian actor, Joseph Donofrio from A Bronx Tale and Goodfellas. Such an honor to have a film of mine screen at the same film fest with such a talented actor who won an acting award at the event. An amazing actor and a great guy.

Thanks for reading this month’s A Life In Blood: Tales of a Horror Queen! See you ghouls next month for more tales of horror.

Running  into Joseph Donofrio from A Bronx Tale and Goodfellas at film festival.

Yours in screams,
Genoveva Rossi
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