Tony Sands

About Tony Sands

Tony Sands Trained actor. Wannabe writer and constant daydreamer who loves a little bit of evil. Even Saints can be sinners

Charismata (2017) Review

rsz_charis1Charismata (2017)

Written & Directed by Andy Collier & Toor Mian

Starring: Sarah Beck Mather, Andonis Anthony, Jamie Satterthwaite, David J. Peel, Ethan Chapples, Johnny Vivash.

What’s it all about?

When a ritualistic serial killer strikes the streets of London a young detective finds herself struggling with her sanity, questioning what’s real and what isn’t.

Is it good?

This was a very nice surprise. With smart direction, an engaging story and a solid cast ‘Charismata’ holds the attention until the end. From the off we meet detectives Smith (Andonis Anthony) and Faraway (Sarah Rebecca Mather) on their way to a gruesome murder scene. Soon they find themselves on the hunt for a serial killer, joined by slightly bumbling duo Perkins and Lawrence (David J. Peel & Ethan Chapples). They make for a very likeable team and, if anything, we never see enough of them all.

rsz_charis2The team’s investigation leads them to Michael Sweet (Jamie Satterthwaite) a charismatic, smooth talking and cocky businessman. He’s a prime suspect, but they have no evidence and despite doubt being cast over his guilt, with other suspects popping up such as security boss Tony Dewire, a slightly wired Johnny Vivash putting in a fun performance, and Ross Mullan as Doug, a shady salesman, Faraway finds she cannot let it go, becoming more and more obsessed with the dubious Sweet. Her sense of reality starts to blur and the film undergoes a change in tone from a straight forward serial killer thriller to a study of a tormented mind. It’s not an uncomfortable change of tone, although it loses the nice interplay between the investigation team, laced with some decent humour, and leaves us with a confident and emotional performance from Mather.

With her world crumbling, Faraway’s name is never more appropriate. As the story whirls to its conclusion it’s never clear how far it will push itself and there were some genuine surprises making it a satisfying journey. It leaves a number of questions behind, but that may be part of Collier and Mian’s master plan. They have put together an entertaining low budgeter here, one which I really enjoyed.

rsz_charis3The cast put in great shifts, Andonis Anthony’s ‘Smith’ is smug, but has an affable charm, which is balanced nicely in his performance.  Mather connects well with the audience and there is a real sense of pain and anguish in her struggles. As for Jamie Satterthwaite as the prime suspect, well, he looks like he’s having the time of his life as he fills his performance with glee and menace. He is conceited and arrogant, perhaps representing the ‘one percenters’ of the real world. Sweet makes for a good villain in a film that deserves some attention to come it’s way.
Keep an eye out for it!

3.5/5

The Eyrie by Thom Burgess – Graphic Novel Review

rsz_theerrieThe Eyrie (Graphic Novel) Review

Written by Thom Burgess
Illustrated by Barney Bodoano

Available here – http://theeyrie.bigcartel.com

What’s It All About?

From the writer of Malevolents ‘Click Click’ and illustrated by the talents of Barney Bodoano comes a whole new haunting tale of terror.
‘After accepting a last minute job request from an old client, New York based photographer, Rebecca finds herself alone in one the remote parts of Britain’s South Coast. Amidst the mist swept fields and superstitious townsfolk, Rebecca will soon find out that there are worst threats than simply not finishing her job on time….’

Is it good?

I’ll be honest, I don’t read many graphic novels, in fact the last one I did read was Burgess’s Malevolents: Click Click. However, due to the quality of ‘Click Click’ I was looking forward to seeing what he would produce next. ‘Click Click’ had an old fashioned horror vibe about it, the story moved at a good pace and all in all was a very satisfying read. No pressure here then, Thom!

Fortunately, it turns out that Thom Burgess is no flash in the pan and he has again given us a story that moves along briskly and smartly, throwing in characters that wouldn’t be out of place in a seventies horror movie. We get a cool, isolated, old town setting and a heroine who is out of place. All could have collapsed into cliche, but the writing keeps it fresh, lively and interesting with Bodoano’s illustrations lending to the atmosphere. The story pulls you in and races off coming to a neat conclusion giving us some nicely crafted characters and menacing supernatural villains along the way.

Burgess is compiling a cool series of stories, all feeling grounded and all compelling. I know he has a number of projects in the works and based on his last two works I’m very much looking forward to seeing what he comes up with next.

By the way, ‘The Eyrie’ has a foreword penned by Reece Shearsmith. Not a bad feather to have in the cap.

A good 4/5!

UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… James Webber

UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… James Webber

Welcome to a series of video interviews as UKHS writer Tony Sands and his crew hang with talented British folk from across the horror spectrum. They will be bringing a number of interviews across 2016 that will hopefully give you an insight into the UK indie horror scene and you will hear just what it takes to get a project to fruition.

Here the UKHS Crew Hang With James Webber – James is a UK Director, Producer, Editor, Writer and much more. James talks about his career making short films and also talks about his new feature – watch to find out more!!

Twitter: @DirectorJWebber

IMDB http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3662284/

Film links: Prey: https://www.facebook.com/CryptTV/vide…

Hushy Bye: https://vimeo.com/201697987

lnstagram:
https:// directorjwebber

…………………………………………..

TONY SANDS (host/producer)
Twitter:
https://twitter.com/TonyRDB?s=09

TONY SANDS
Official website:
https://tonysandsofficial.com

……………………………………………………..

DAVID CHAUDOIR (titles) twitter: @TheChaudoir www.badacidf|lm.com

ANDY DEEN (associate producer)
Twitter: @AndyDeen666

IVAN TROOPA (sound/producer)

Twitter:
IvanTroopa  https://twitter.com/IvanTroopa?s=09

lnstagram:
IvanTroopa
https://www.instagram.com/p/4mOfSIPLu5/

YouTube:
IvanTroopa: play on Troopa
https://youtu.be/gL2lHRqnwCE

ANTOINE LASSALLE (camera/ producer) Flickr.com/antoinelphotos/sets

lnstagram:
ANTOINE LASSALLE
https://www.instagram.com/antoinelpho…

SARAH D’CRUZ (make up) http://www.sarahdcruz.com

lnstagram:
SARAH D’CRUZ
https://www.instagram.com/sarahdcruzmua/

OLIVER TURNER-LEES (composer) http://www.olivertlmusic.com

UKHS:
http://www.ukhorrorscene.com

Twitter: @UKHorrorScene
https://twitter.com/UKHorrorScene?s=09

……………………………………………………..

Everyman Cinema
Location: Fortis Green Rd, Muswell Hill, London N10 3HP

https://www.everymancinema.com

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UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… Stephanie Price !!

rsz_1488969150652UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… Stephanie Price !!

Actress Stephanie Price, star of ‘Cleaver’, joins The Hanging With Crew for a chat, some of it even about film! Stephanie was born in San Antonio, Texas.  Since her move to London in late 2012, she has performed in leading roles at various theatres across London and, more recently, in independent films.

Links:
http://www.stephanieaprice.com/

Crew:
https://tonysandsofficial.com/
https://www.flickr.com/photos/antoine…
http://www.ukhorrorscene.com/

Twitter:
@ivantroopa
@TonyRDB
@antoinelphotos
@ukhorrorscene

UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… MJ & Anna Dixon

rsz_mychoUK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… MJ & Anna Dixon

Welcome to a series of video interviews as UKHS writer Tony Sands and his crew hang with talented British folk from across the horror spectrum. They will be bringing a number of interviews across 2016 that will hopefully give you an insight into the UK indie horror scene and you will hear just what it takes to get a project to fruition.

Here the UKHS Crew Hang With MJ and Anna Dixon the team behind Mychos, an independent film label, where they have crafted a horror universe spanning over half a dozen movies already.

MYCHO Entertainment Group are producers of Horror features and Music Videos for distribution into the Televisual, Online and International Markets.

Awarding Winning Filmmakers whose Shorts like ‘EyeSpy’ and ‘Thorn’ have taken away prestigious prizes from Some of the biggest names in the Horror Community. Mycho produced Acclaimed Indie Feature Slasher House and its follow up Legacy Of Thorn as well as several brand new features for the world wide market. Mycho also offer production services including Promotion Videos, Graphic and Web Design, Photography, Music Production and Original Online Content.

Mj Dixon and Anna Dixon

Twitter: @MychoPictures
https://twitter.com/MychoPictures?s=09

IMDb
Mj Dixon
http://imdb.com/rg/an_share/name/name…

Website:
http://mycho.weebly.com

lnstagram:
Mj Dixon
https://www.instagram.com/mychoeg/

Slasher house 2
https://youtu.be/f4o26ULJyXg

YouTube channel:
Mj Dixon
https://youtu.be/-ckQ5sFrb-U

……………………………………………………………….

TONY SANDS (host/producer)
Twitter:
https://twitter.com/TonyRDB?s=09

TONY SANDS
Official website:
https://tonysandsofficial.com

……………………………………………………………….

DAVID CHAUDOIR (titles) twitter: @TheChaudoir http://www.badacidfilm.com

ANDY DEEN (associate producer)
Twitter: @AndyDeen666

IVAN TROOPA (sound/producer)

Twitter:
IvanTroopa https://twitter.com/IvanTroopa?s=09

lnstagram:
IvanTroopa
https://www.instagram.com/p/4mOfSIPLu5/

YouTube:
IvanTroopa
https://youtu.be/gL2lHRqnwCE

ANTOINE LASSALLE (camera/ producer) http://www.Flickr.com/antoinelphotos/sets

lnstagram:
ANTOINE LASSALLE
https://www.instagram.com/antoinelpho…

SARAH D’CRUZ (make up) http://www.sarahdcruz.com

lnstagram:
SARAH D’CRUZ
https://www.instagram.com/sarahdcruzmua/

OLIVER TURNER-LEES (composer) http://www.olivertlmusic.com

UKHS:
http://www.ukhorrorscene.com

Twitter: @UKHorrorScene
https://twitter.com/UKHorrorScene?s=09

……………………………………………………………….

Everyman Cinema
Location: Fortis Green Rd, Muswell Hill, London N10 3HP
https://www.everymancinema.com

The Eyes of My Mother (2016) Review

rsz_eyes1The Eyes of My Mother (2016)

Written & Directed by Nicolas Pesce.

Starring: Kika Magalhaes, Will Brill, Olivia Bond.

In UK Cinemas from March 24th

What’s it all about?
Francisca spends most of her life isolated from society. Her surgeon mother teaches her skills and when she is brutally murdered by a passing stranger (Will Brill) Francisca soon finds those skills to be handy when it comes to keeping ‘friends’.

As a debut picture this is an impressive one. I’m not sure if I enjoyed it or not, but, I stayed with it, curious as to where it would ultimately go. It’s a strange one, the performances are good, but are they great? I’m still not sure. Did I like Francisca? Did I sympathise with her or not?

I’m baffled. Now, don’t misunderstand, it’s not a weight I will carry with me. It’s no burden, but, sitting here, writing this…well, I’m lost. There are moments when you feel for Francisca (played as an adult by Kila Magalhaes) as her life has been twisted tragically as a child. Then, there are times when she seems to show understanding that what she is doing is wrong. Still, Magalhaes does a nice job in the lead role as do the rest of the cast.

rsz_eyes2The script, though not moving along quickly enough, is fine. Overall, Pesce has done very well. Shot in black and white, there is a nice mood to it and it feels like the right choice for the film, rather than a pretentious one. The story is tragic, it’s characters pained, but, there’s just not enough to make you love it. I imagine a lot of viewers will like it, a few will not. I wonder if many will join me in my befuddlement.

Still, here at the end of my musings, I just don’t know if I liked it or not. I doubt I’ll watch it again, but, I’ll certainly keep an eye out for Pesce’s next movie ‘Piercing’.

6/10

UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… Damon Rickard !

tour1Welcome to our series of video interviews as UKHS writer Tony Sands and his crew hang with talented British folk from across the horror spectrum. They will be bringing a number of interviews across 2016 that will hopefully give you an insight into the UK indie horror scene and you will hear just what it takes to get a project to fruition.

Here Damon Rickard (writer & director of short films such as The Tour and The Package)  joins the crew to chat about films, women screaming at his Mum’s house and thumbs.

Blood Money (2016) Review

bloodmoney1Blood Money (2016) 78 mins

Director: Luke White

Writer: Rosy Deacon

Starring: Klariza Clayton, Ollie Barbieri, Scott Chambers, Sabrina Hansen, Nicholas Bourne.

What’s it all about? A botched robbery by a group of close friends in France sees their friendship and trust severely tested as they hide away in a remote house.

This is director Luke White’s first feature, he’s made several shorts, but this is a big step up for him and although not a bad film, it may just be a step taken too early. The film never really takes off, the tension needed isn’t really there as your attention wanders, not at any point fully engaging you with the characters or their mounting problems. The script by Rosy Deacon, again a feature début, feels like it’s been influenced by Tarantino’s ‘Reservoir Dogs’, itself influenced by a film called ‘City on Fire’.

bloodmoney2Although the set up is nice, though very familiar, we are never truly drawn in. The actors too are slightly lacking in performance, never poor, but never offering enough to keep the viewer interested or care about their fates. The most engaging of the cast was the debut of Sabrina Hansen as Mia. She struggles slightly with some of the dialogue, but out of all the characters, hers is the one that is the most likeable as she makes Mia the groups most conscientious, and thus tragic, member.

Klariza Clayton as Kasey has a struggle to balance her characters manipulative qualities with her nicer ones and never manages to succeed. The others, Ollie Barbeiri, Nicholas Bourne and Scott Chambers round the numbers up as White and Deacon roll out a game of ‘who is it?’ rather than ‘whodunnit?’ but it’s never really a question that matters and when all is revealed its more a relief than a revelation.

I don’t want to be too harsh, I know from talking to White and some of the cast and crew that they put a lot of hard work into making the movie, shot in Normandy, France, which saw the crew camping in tents on location, not always in the best of conditions.

bloodmoney3It’s never easy to work on a very tight schedule (it was shot in under a fortnight) on such a tight budget, so all involved deserve a lot of plaudits for that.

Unfortunately, for me it didn’t really work. However, this is a brave first effort for a number of the talent involved so onto bigger and better things for them all.

5/10

UK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… Eric Elick

Album Cover - Seize the NightUK Horror Scene Frightsight – Hanging With… Eric Elick

Welcome to a series of video interviews as UKHS writer Tony Sands and his crew hang with talented British folk from across the horror spectrum. They will be bringing a number of interviews across 2016 that will hopefully give you an insight into the UK indie horror scene and you will hear just what it takes to get a project to fruition.

The Crew are ‘Hanging With’ prolific film composer Eric Elick who discusses his latest films, his experience at London’s FrightFest and cheese and chips. Special guest Scott Lyus joins the chat too.

Enjoy, share, subscribe and support UK indie filmmaking !

Guest links:
ERIC ELICK
http://ericelickmusic.com
Twitter: @EricElickMusic
https://www.facebook.com/ericelickmusic

SCOTT LYUS
twitter:
@ScottLyus
Crossroad Pictures@Crossroad_Pics
YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/user/Crossroa…

Crew Links:
IVAN TROOPA (sound/producer)
Twitter: @IvanTroopa

ANTOINE LASSALLE (camera/producer)
Flickr.com/antoinelphotos/sets

OLIVER TURNER-LEES (composer)
http://www.olivertlmusic.com

DAVID CHAUDOIR (titles)
twitter: @TheChaudoir
www.badacidfilm.com

ANDY DEEN (associate producer)
Twitter: @AndyDeen666

TONY SANDS (host/producer)
Twitter: @TonyRDB
Facebook: @TonySandsOfficial

UKHS:
http://www.ukhorrorscene.com
Twitter: @UKHorrorScene

Lights Out (2016) Review

lo1Lights Out (2016)

81 minutes

Directed by David F. Sandberg

Written by Eric Heisserer based on Sandberg’s short film.

Starring Theresa Palmer, Maria Bello, Gabriel Bateman, Alexander DiPersia and Billy Burke.

UK Cinema release – August 19th

What’s it all about? Martin isn’t sleeping and it’s not because he lives on Elm Street. His Mum has a friend called Diana, who isn’t exactly…well, alive. Martin calls on his big sister Rebecca for help and she soon realises the nightmares she had as a kid were real. With her kinda, sorta boyfriend in tow, they start digging into the mystery of the scary woman who lurks in the shadows.

Keep those lights on.

L.O.00185.dngDavid F. Sandberg makes his feature début here, basing it on his own 2013 short of the same name. It’s a basic premise, the fear of the dark and, although it’s not a perfect film, he delivers a solid entry into the genre.

It starts off well, quickly introducing the characters and set up. We are on our way, without pause for thought. Thankfully, it’s not rushed. Sandberg knows how to build tension and hold an audiences attention. Though the film feels padded in places, there are some genuine jumps and real tension where it’s needed. The story gets a bit silly, producing a couple of unintentional giggles with some shaky dialogue, but it’s not enough to spoil the experience.

Production value is high with nice visuals, great use of sound and Diana, our creepy, dark loving, light hating spooky woman, is very well realised. On top of that the films cast really deliver. Gabriel Bateman, as Martin, is a likeable young actor, conveying fear of Diana and love for his going a bit cuckoo Mum, Sophie, played by Bello, who manages her role well, never going too far with the crazy.

LO-01970.dngTheresa Palmer, as Martin’s sister Rebecca, makes for a credible heroine. She takes the biggest emotional journey of all the characters in play going from an emotionally repressed screw up to someone who is ready to give everything to save her little brother. Rebecca leads the fight, taking with her Bret, DiPersia, who is trying hard to win her heart. Bret could have been a messy, annoying chap, but, DIPersia plays his part nicely and has the two best moments in the whole movie. You’ll know them when they come.

Overall, it’s a good, solid film achieving what it sets out to do. Likeable performances, a few jumps and a creepy spook.

You might think twice about looking in your closet.

7/10