Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Top 20 Favorite Horror Movies of the Decade

The end of the year is fast approaching, and that means it's time to make some tops. I've pondered about what kind of top to make for a while, and finally decided to make a Top 20 favorite horror movies of the decade, with the help of my brother, since it's by far our favorite movie genre and we watch a ton of horror movies. Notice this is not a list of the best movies, merely our favorites.

Making a top is kind of a tricky business, and so there are a lot of movies we ended up leaving out, for a variety of reasons: we decided not to include horror-comedies that relied more on humor than on horror (and so we were forced to leave the likes of Shaun of the Dead - which I love dearly - and Zombieland out), to only include movies we had both seen (so a lot of movies that are potentially great, like Ils, The Orphanage, Á L'interieur or Martyrs don't fit the list, simply because we didn't get to see them yet), (and to try to stick to a more specific definition of horror, leaving out movies like Cloverfield, Battle Royale or Pan's Labyrinth, that despite having horror imagery or moments, are not straight up horror). Still, we did this just for fun, so check out the top, and let us know with what you agree or disagree.

20. The Eye - Gin gwai (2002)

The original, of course. It probably suffered from being another one in a wave of ghost movies that were popular in the early 00s, but it's an intensely atmospheric and creepy tale that definitely deserves to be watched.

19. The Last House on the Left (2009)

One of those remakes that are actually good. Tense, dark and violent, the movie is well-acted and crafted, and deserving of a place on this list.

18. Wrong Turn (2003)

Yes, we've all seen the "canibalistic inbred mountain family" movie made more than once. But a solid cast, tense atmosphere, and grisly deaths make this one a little better than most. It's not groundbreaking, but it's almost guaranteed it'll deliver horror entertainment. We can forgive it for having spawned sequels, the last of which is downright unwatchable.

17. May (2002)

Definitely one of those gems that deserve to be discovered by a bigger audience. Good story, great performances, especially by the lead, Angela Bettis, who manages to keep her character sympathetic even at the craziest parts of the movie. It's really best not to reveal too much about it, because it'll enrich the experience of watching it. Rent it, buy it, just make sure you give May a chance.

16. The Others (2001)

This is an extremely atmospheric movie, beautifully shot, and very creepy. It's also very subtle, and it will unsettle you without ever showing much.

15. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

A remake of the 1974 classic. A bit torture porn-ish at times, it does have some strong performances, especially by R. Lee Ermey, who plays the deranged sheriff, and all in all managed to be entertaining all throughout.

14. The House of the Devil (2009)

To me, this was one of the surprises of 2009. A highly atmospheric movie that is a throwback to 70's/early 80's horror. It's a slow burning movie that suffers from a rushed ending, but that didn't detract from the experience, and I highly recommend it (besides, I love all the posters for it). Maybe it should be a little higher on the list, but it does get tougher and tougher to pick favorites.

13. The Mist (2007)

A big-budget adaptation of a Stephen King story, The Mist had a strong cast and a very compelling script. I was totally immersed in this story and I was quite fascinated by the behavior of the group of people stuck in the supermarket.

12. Saw (2004)

I don't care what anyone says, the original Saw is a solid horror movie, which managed to both scare me and surprise me. Forget about all the sequels (most of which are horrendous), the first Saw definitely deserves a place on this list.

11. Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

A very entertaining dissection of the nooks and crannies of the slasher genre, anyone who is a horror fan should enjoy this. It does have some comedic elements to it, but it doesn't fully rely on comedy, so it was still able to make its way onto the list.

10. Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Even with the fast zombies (that I know a lot of people don't like at all), this was a solid zombie movie that, despite being a little more focused on action than on scares, pleased a lot of horror fans worldwide. It was energetic and fast-paced. It was also a good remake, that never wanted to outshine the original material, but instead gave it a different spin. The opening scene remains one of my favorite openings of any horror movie.

9. Splinter (2008)

Some may disagree with this movie being in such a high position, or even in the list at all, but we greatly enjoyed it, and it serves as a testament how sometimes straight-to-DVD movies are better than big-budget, theatrical release horror (as was the case this year with movies like The Haunting of Molly Hartley and The Unborn, which were beyond bad and still got significant theatrical runs).

8. Trick 'r Treat (2008)

Another movie that I honestly don't understand why was kept under wraps for so long, never seeing a theatrical release. It's been a while since the last horror anthology film came along, and Trick 'r Treat is a very solid revival of that sub-genre, in which all tales intertwine and play along with the various traditions of Halloween. Bound to become an Halloween classic.

7. The Ring (2003)

One of the rare cases when we prefer the remake over the original. It was tense, it was unsettling, creepy and scary. And on top of that, it was elegant and mature. It may have spawned a landslide of J-Horror remakes, but to this day it remains the best re-telling of the original story, and a modern horror classic.

6. Dead End (2003)

A family on their way to Christmas dinner decide to take a short cut. That's the premise of this movie, and that might get you thinking you've seen it done a hundred times before, but this is actually a pretty original take on the "wrong way" movies, with a hint of Twilight Zone, a solid cast, and gripping plot. The ending and the way it relies on twists was a bit disappoint, but the ride there was great.

5. 28 Days Later (2002)

While technically speaking this is not a zombie movie (it's more an "infected" movie), this compelling flick marked the return of the zombie sub-genre, and, not only that, still remains one of the best entries on it. Unrelenting, vicious and a fantastic horror movie.

4. Drag me to Hell (2009)

Hands down my favorite horror movie of 2009, Drag me to Hell marks the return of Sam Raimi to the horror genre. His directing style is almost like a character in the movie. Raimi combines horror and gross-out humor like almost no other (I wish Peter Jackson would also return to his roots!), and the result is an amazingly fun movie that makes us laugh and gag in turns.

3. Paranormal Activity (2007)

I already discussed this movie at length so I won't do it again. All I will say is: this movie scared the bejeezus out of me, and so it definitely deserves to be on this list.

2. The Descent (2005)

One of the most claustrophobic movies I ever saw. This movie manages to be tense and scary at almost every turn, it literally keeps you in the edge of your seat. Filled with dread and very unforgiving, this is horror at its best, from this, or any, decade.

1. [REC] (2007)

If the hand-held camera style was ever used to its full potential, this movie was the one that did it. It throws you right into the middle of an apartment building where a zombie outbreak is taking place, and the acting is so good that it's easy to forget you're watching a movie. From then on, it doesn't stop. It may not be the most thought-provoking movie, but it's incredibly visceral and, most of all, it is scary and it'll stay with you long after it's over.

And so we conclude this list. Like I said in the beginning, there are some movies that didn't make the cut for one or other reason, but there are plenty other horror movies that were good this decade. Let's hope the next brings us more of the good, and less of the bad!

Happy New Year to everyone!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Paranormal Activity

As you know, I don't really like reviewing most current movies I see in my blog. I think there are far better writers and reviewers out there that undertake the task of tackling the newest box office hits, and so I don't really need to do it. I prefer to write my occasional review on old or poorly known movies that people may enjoy knowing about.
Anyway, sometimes I feel like breaking the cycle and this is one of those cases. What caused it? The much hyped and talked about Paranormal Activity.

Like I already mentioned, this movie was super hyped. It reminded a lot of people of the Blair Witch Project, a comparison pushed even further by the hand-held camera style that most of the movie was shot on (although, in my opinion, the publicity for Blair Witch was a little more complex - the directors even created a documentary totally separated from the movie, created all these websites and basically bet a lot of resources into tricking people to believing the events they would eventually see on camera were real). But, to be honest, I disconnected from a lot of the hype. I'm not one to jump in bandwagons, and when I start hearing about a movie left and right I get really turned off to it most of the times. Especially when the movie gets branded with labels such as "scariest movie of all time", like this one was. It pretty much just makes me want to dismiss it as a bag of bullshit. I didn't even see the full trailer. Still, when the movie opened in theaters in Portugal and opinions started rolling in on twitter, I got curious again. A couple of people there mentioned how they thought the movie could be more effective if watched at home... and that, coupled with me being a little sick, led to me watching this movie at home, in the dark. I was pretty torn about it, because I knew the version I had featured a different ending from the current version, but curiosity just spoke louder, so I settled in with my boyfriend in the bedroom and we popped in Paranormal Activity.
I think most of you are probably familiar with the setup: Micah and Katie are a young couple who started living together a little while ago. They start experiencing an array of weird events in their house and, since Katie reveals that she has suffered paranormal experiences on and off since she was a kid , Micah decides to go out and get himself a camera to document whatever is happening in their house. He gets a full set up together in the bedroom, not just the camera but devices to capture EVP and all sorts of gadgets like that. What we see is what they got on camera over the course of about 3 weeks.

You guys know I love horror movies, and I watch all sorts, from every subgenre out there, old, new, doesn't matter: I watch them all, I watch a LOT of horror movies. Not that much scares me anymore. But Paranormal Activity managed to scare me. Maybe it's because I'm a little bit of a scaredy cat in real life, when it comes to weird noises around the house and stuff like that. That door creeking, those faint footsteps you can't really place, that bump you think you hear... all of that freaks me out. I mean, I'm not really a believer in paranormal things, but it freaks me out and I actually love to read books about it, or watch documentaries, whatever I can get. I guess I like being scared. Well, along with me, I think a lot of people share the same deep-rooted feelings of being alone, freaked out in their house by unidentified noises, and that's where I think Paranormal Activity comes in as effective. The things you will see will make you wonder , deep down, if it has ever happened to you but you just don't know about it because you didn't set up a camera in your bedroom to record it. That, and the unseen, are the biggest things playing in favor for this movie. It was effective for me, it might not be for other people but to me it was.
The movie develops pretty slowly. In the beginning you kind of think "Well, that's not really that scary", but things definitely take a turn for the worse and it becomes increasingly terrifying, in a very effective way. Katie becomes desperate and Micah becomes borderline idiotic, making bad decision after another. I almost wish his character wasn't as full-blown alpha-male as he was, but well. They were believable to me, they may not have been the best actors ever, but they mostly came across as a believable couple. Katie's friend, for example, didn't work well for me at all, and whenever she was on screen she kind of took me off the movie - fortunatelly she was only there for a short time.
The filming style worked very well for me. I know a lot of people have problems with the hand-held camera, but I honestly believe if this movie was made any other way it wouldn't have been as effective. There's not a lot of shaky cam because plenty of times the camera is set on a tripod, so you get a stable shot. And, when the characters are carrying the camera around the house, you're actually scared again by what could appear when the camera is swiping left to right, to the dark corners of the house. The camera didn't detract from the movie at all, in fact it contributed a lot to the feeling of reality of the movie. I can tell you that watching it with my boyfriend, in a set up pretty similar to that of the movie, in the dark, it almost felt voyeuristic, almost like we were really watching a lost home movie from a real couple. It made it all feel very palpable, very real. And very creepy.

You know those internet games that were pretty popular a few years back, where you were asked to focus on a photograph, or look for something, or listen to a song very attentively, just to stand there like a jackass for 30 seconds and then have something jump at you? That scared the shit out of you, didn't it. Yeah, it scared the shit out of me too. A lot of parts in this movie reminded me of that - especially the parts at night, in the bedroom. The director managed to create such tension, you're just there thinking "oh my god, something's going to happen right NOW", but then it's never a cheap jumpscare, like you'd expect. It's just continuing tension, and anxiety. You're bracing yourself for that scare, but then it's never what you think. It really gets on your nerves and you only imagine how those people can even sleep in that fucking room, I know I wouldn't be able to sleep. There is some fantastic, I mean fantastic creepy imagery here. Things so simple that you think for sure someone must have used this before - but no one did, and it works perfectly. I won't say what it is because I don't want to spoil it, you'll have to see it and try to guess what I mean.
There were a few things that I didn't like all that much. To everyone who's seen it, the "Diane" plot point and the way it's shown in the movie was overkill for me. That took me right out of the movie - up to that point everything felt pretty real to me, but that didn't look real to me and it made me think of another movie, which is not good, when you're reminded of a movie that is superior to the one you're watching. But that's probably all I can think of, off the top of my head. I've heard people mention pacing issues, which I can understand, but to me it worked perfectly, I wasn't bored for a second.
The movie ending I saw was the original one, not the Paramount/Spielberg cut, though I have now seen both endings. Both are good - but I don't know if it's because I saw it first or if it's geniunely better, but I lean towards prefering the original ending. They're both good, shocking and very bleak.
All in all, I really, really liked this movie. I don't know if it lives up to the hype, but it comes damn close and it sure deserves the recognition that it's getting. It's pretty remarkable that a movie made with only 11.000 dollars is getting a worldwide distribution, and I hope it continues succeeding at the box office, because it's probably one of the best horror films to have come out this year, or in the last 10 years for that matter. It IS scary. Watch it in the dark, try watching it alone, in your house, and see if it doesn't stick with you. You'll be wanting to sleep with the door closed. 4 out of 5 stars from me.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Geocaching T-shirt

Do you like Geocaching? Do you like cool t-shirts (and, hopefully, the show LOST)? Well, that's awesome, because this t-shirt is now available for pre-order:

Good ol' Jack is not lost, contrary to everyone's beliefs, he's just having some fun geocaching. Created by me and Kasovitz, this t-shirt will be available in sizes S, M and L, and stay tuned for a girl's version of this tee. The price is 10.90€, plus shipping, and if you'd like to order one, you can leave me a comment right here, e-mail me at, or go to this page or e-mail

Hope you like it!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloween Picks 2009 - Splinter (2008)

A lot of horror films are released directly to DVD these days, and most of them are a heaping pile of crap. It's tough to search through all these movies and find one that is remotely well done and worthy of your time, but there are certainly some gems out there that deserve to be found, and last year's Splinter is one of those movies.

Directed by Toby Wilkins, Splinter starts with a sympathetic couple, Seth and and Polly, who are celebrating their anniversary with a camping trip. Since this is a horror movie, you know things have to start going wrong, and they do, when Seth and Polly are carjacked by Dennis and his cokehead girlfriend Lacey. Turns out that being crajacked really ruins the mood, and, obviously, having two armed robbers in your car is enough to disturb your focus on the road. They end up running over a dog. They stop to check on the animal, but what they find is more of a mangled mass of hair and blood, with black splinters sticking out of it. Unfortunately, contact with this dog gets one of them infected with the spikey-like thing (turning into a sort of zombiefied, violent, bloody, walking sea-urchin) and, soon, they have to barricate themselves on a gas station and try to avoid getting infected by the splinters.

The movie starts out pretty slowly, but once it gets going it doesn't stop. Since the story is set mostly in a gas station, with only a handful of characters, it could get pretty boring, but the characters are actually interesting and well developed enough to keep you interested. They also don't make stageringly dumb decisions, like so many horror movie characters: their ideas make sense most of the time, and they really work with all they've got to keep the monster at bay. The setting is also effective, because imagining yourself alone, in a gas station in the middle of nowhere, trying to keep a splinter monster from killing you, is pretty scary.
Effects-wise, the movie is a low budget, but pulls off the gore really well. When a person is infected with the parasite, you'll see bones break, joints bend in ways they weren't meant too, bodies cracking, and it'll make you squirm in your seat. All of that is really well achieved, especially keeping in mind this is an indie, low-budget film.

To sum it up, Splinter is a great indie effort, and deserves its praise. With so many washed up horror remakes coming out these days, it's refreshing to see an original horror movie that, although it has its flaws, manages to present solid characters, a suspenseful story and a disgusting monster. It gets 3.5 out of 5 Splinters from me.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween Picks 2009 - Wild Zero (2000)

Asian cinema is a wonderful thing. When you think you've seen it all, asian cinema comes around and kicks you in the ass with all kinds of weird stuff you never thought you'd see in this lifetime. I've had plenty of "WTF" moments related to asian cinema - notably with Takashi Miike's trilogy Dead or Alive, or with any of Takashi Miike's movies, for that matter - but I don't think any of those were as much fun as Wild Zero.

This movie is just unbelievable from start to finish. It's a rock and roll movie with zombies, aliens and everything else in between. There's no real point in explaining the plot, because that doesn't really matter. Guitar wolf and his band just basically walk around being the coolest, most bad-ass guys ever. Besides, this movie is so over the top that it's not constrained by vague notions of plot. It laughs in the face of good editing and logical continuity. All you need to know is that this movie has loud music, cheesy acting, zombies, aliens, exploding heads, guitar swords and shuriken-like guitar picks. To quote a reviewer from " It honestly doesn’t get better than this! It’s like watching Rock 'n Roll High School if the filmmaker was on acid while directing". It is stupid, yes, but the good kind of stupid. It'll make you laugh and it'll make you wonder just what the hell you're seeing. And that's why I recommend it - while it's not a horror movie, it has horror elements (the main element of the "plot" is a zombie plague, after all) and it's pretty hilarious and crazy, so it's a guaranteed good time. I give it 3.5 out of 5 guitars.


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Halloween Picks 2009 - Demons (1985)

Well, it's that time of the year again. The temperature drops, the leaves fall and you start feeling an uncontrollable urge to watch horror movies. Yes, Halloween steadily approaches, and, seeing as last year my Halloween Picks section was somewhat successful, I decided I'd do it again this year. Except I'll just make one recommendation per post - time is a precious thing, and this days I haven't had a lot of it free to spend blogging. So let's dive right in into the first recommendation, which is...

Dèmoni (in english, Demons) Lamberto Bava's 1985 classic.
The story is quite simple: a group of people go to the cinema to see a movie about a group of young adults that find a tomb and, with it, a prophecy to the end of the world. The catch is that what is happening on screen, soon starts happening in real life, and these people find themselves trapped in the theater, with more and more of them turning into revolting, violent demons (one bite, one scratch was enough to turn anyone into a demon).

Simple enough, and maybe that's why it works. We never get an explanation as to why these people turned into demons in the first place, what's behind the strange mask in the lobby or how exactly they got trapped in the theater in a matter of minutes - but none of that matters. The action on screen is so unrelenting that all this never crosses your mind. It's just craziness on top on more craziness. This is a splatterfest in the best sense of the word, the gore level is crazy: it's a rollercoaster of mutilations and gross-out moments, with pus and blood flying everywhere on screen. This movie preceded some of my favorite humorous gorefests, like Evil Dead 2 and Braindead, and it's easy to see that those movies drew some kind of inspiration from Demons.
The characters are an interesting blend of people: we get the somewhat likeable main characters (the two girls, Cheryl and Kathy, and the two boys they meet at the cinema) , and in addition to them we get such colorful characters as a bickering couple, a blind man and his cheating, shameless wife, and, my favorite, a pimp that I swear is straight out of a grindhouse movie. His acting and his lines were always delivered in such an over the top way that he was incredibly funny and I found myself rooting for him to stick around for longer.

The plot is, of course, sort of ridiculous, but the movie is so repulsive, hilarious and exciting that it doesn't really matter. It's rare this days to see a horror movie so incredibly fun an entertaining (Drag me to Hell is the most recent example that comes to mind, despite it being fairly tame when compared to Demons), so this is a welcomed trip back to the non-sensical hilarity of the 80s.
If you like gore and 80s style horror - look no further. I guarantee Demons will be right up your alley. It gets 4 out of 5 Demons from me.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

(500) Days of Summer

Last weekend me and Cosmic watched a total of 3 movies: Sexy Killer - Morirás por ella on Saturday, (500) Days of Summer on Sunday, and Dragon Wars on Monday. While the first one was a nice little horror/comedy romp from the neighboring country of Spain and the third one was a senseless, ilogical turd with giant snakes and dragons, the middle one was just right. (500) Days of Summer not only immediately won a place in my list of favorites from this year, it is in my permanent list of favorites, period.

In a time where Hollywood craps out counteless vapid, empty and stupid romantic movies a year, it's movies like (500) Days of Summer that remind you that some filmmakers do have a beating heart and actually know how humans act and feel. This movie was funny, moving, and above all, relatable. I think that anyone can see this movie and find something that speaks to them: be it the elation of falling and being in love, the pain of loss and unrequited love, and everything in between (I know this all sounds horribly cheesy and lame, but you couldn't be more wrong). The writing was fantastic, the acting was really good, with great chemistry between the leads (Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel), and the non-linear way the movie is "told" works awesomelly well.

I can't talk about this movie without mentioning the soundtrack, that is absolutely brilliant. I haven't stopped listening to it. With a mix of Regina Spektor, The Smiths, Wolfmother, The Temper Trap and Hall & Oates (yes, those Hall & Oates) the soundtrack takes you on a journey through the movie again and again.

This all being said, I needed to do a little drawing of this movie, so I quickly whipped this up.
The likenesses are super-off, but I had to get it out of my system!

All in all, (500) Days of Summer was a beautifully crafted, tender movie about love. I definitely recommend this to everyone, even if you're not convinced by my pseudo-review: this movie deserves to be seen and praised.

And allow me to be cheesy now...
I love you, Cosmic <3 "You make my dreams come true!" :)

Thursday, October 01, 2009


I went to see District 9 last weekend.
The whole hype around the movie made me a little fearful. I thought that it probably wouldn't live up to its expectations and it would just ultimately disappoint. But boy, was I wrong. District 9 turned out to be a fantastic sci-fi movie, with a great story to tell and some of the best action sequences of the last years. More astounding even when you realize this movie was made with "only" 30 million dollars: the special effects are fantastic and really pull you into the movie. You actually get the feeling that these can creatures exist outside the screen, something that rarely happens with something created by CGI. I don't mean to write a full review, just say that I enjoyed it a LOT, and that I definitely recommend it. It was one of the best movies to hit the big screen this year, that's for sure.

Since I liked it so much, I couldn't help to put pencil to the paper and do a little sketch. I know, it's a bit lazy... but it's all I had time for. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Zona Negra @ MOTELx

I know, I know, I've been abandoning the blog again. I don't mean to do it, but I've been so incredibly busy with college work that I can hardly breathe, let alone blog. But this deserved to be posted.

On September 4th the official release of the illustration/comic project Zona Negra, in association with MOTELx - Lisbon International Horror Movie Festival, took place. I was very excited to be able to attend, and it surpassed my expectations. Not only did the presentation go very well, but I got to meet a fantastic group of talented people that were, on top of talented, extremely nice and fun to talk with. The whole experience boosted my will to improve myself, to learn more and draw better, so I can keep showcasing my work alongside other artists. I'm very happy to have contributed, and all I wish is to keep contributing to Zona in the future.

Here are some photos from the event:

This is boyfriend Cosmic and me, paying attention to the speaker. Notice our geek t-shirts. I even look like I could do the truffle shuffle.

Unfortunately not all the authors could be present, but this was the group at the presentation. Fom left to right: Raz, Cosmic, me, André Oliveira, Paulo Marques, João Maio Pinto, Fil and Maria João Careto. Make sure you give them all a visit.

This is me (once again, looking about 1 second away from truffle shuffling), Cosmic and Paulo, holding proudly our Zona issue. Doesn't it look great?

I'll finish by saying that if you want an issue for yourself, you can order one at the Zona blog, here.
Thank to everybody who made this possible :)

And I promise I'll try to update this more regularly. Maybe even with some sketches! (or is that wishful thinking? hmmm...)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Zona Terror

The project ZONA came from the mind of author and editor FIL, who created this anthology as a way to showcase his and other artists work in the world of comics and illustrations. The first installment came out this year and it was a success, filled with great works from many portuguese artists.
Now, in association with MOTELx – Lisbon International Horror Film Festival, a new edition of ZONA will be released, this time under the theme of Horror.

This is the cover, done by the artist Eduardo Monteiro.

I wanted to contribute, not only because I am very passionate about horror movies, but mostly because this is an awesome publication and a one of a kind way to contribute to something with some portuguese artists whose work I admire. I made an illustration for it, and you can see a sneak peek here:

A lot of kick ass artists contributed for it, like my cosmic boyfriend Pedro Carvalho, Hugo Teixeira, Roberto Macedo Alves and many others.

This special issue will be released in September and some of the artists (me included, probably) will be in Lisbon, at Cinema São Jorge, for the launch, but more details on that soon - that way, if you're in Lisbon in September, you can drop by, have a word with me and the gang, see a movie and buy a ZONA!

Friday, July 24, 2009

A Scott Pilgrim side-scrolling old-school beat-'em-up game? YES PLEASE

In what is probably my favorite piece of news to leak out of Comic Con this year, Oni Press announced that UbiSoft will be developing a downloadable Scott Pilgrim side-scrolling beat-'em-up game to coincide with the release of the movie. Since it's downloadable, I imagine the game will be pretty short and simple, but still, I'm excited. I always thought that with all the gaming analogies present in the comic, a Scott Pilgrim game would be nothing but adequate, and it seems the good people at Oni Press felt the same. Hooray!

Go here to check out the video announcement at Attack of the Show, along with a few more comic-related news.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

First look at the new Freddy Krueger

And it's pitch black.

I do get that it's a teaser - but isn't this a little too much? I want to know how the new Freddy looks already. I'm secretly hoping it doesn't step too far from the original - I can see the outfit is the same, the only difference I can tell from this is that new Freddy seems to have a smaller build.

I don't know why I'm so interested in this, because I feel pretty reticent about this remake. Nightmare has always been my favorite horror franchise, I own all the movies in DVD and I can find something to like even in the ridiculous mid-installments of the series, when Freddy is basically a one-liner spewing clown, so it's only natural that I'm afraid "they"'ll ruin the whole thing with a remake. On the other hand, I think it will be interesting to see how Jackie Earle Haley plays Freddy - no one will ever beat Englund, but after seeing Haley play Rorschach, I know this guy can pull off a very creepy Freddy and I'm kind of anxious to see it. Plus, it will be fun to see a Nightmare movie in the theater, because the only one I got to see on the big screen was Freddy vs. Jason, and I don't really count that as part of the series.

We'll see how this develops.

Thursday, July 02, 2009


I know I watch a lot of crazy, nonsensical movies all the time, but the craziest ones I watch always come from the mind of our asian friends. Not necessarily the best kind of crazy, just the "what the fuck am I watching" kind of crazy. I think it was Story of Ricky that really made me parcial to them, and now I have a soft spot for these movies.

I don't know what's going on lately, but they seem to be coming out at a faster pace than before - that, or they're just getting more publicity in movie blogs and slowly crawling out of obscurity. I've seen Machine Girl last year (that, to me, didn't live up to the hype), and Tokyo Gore Police a few months ago, and already there's a new movie in the works called RoboGeisha. Yeah. It'll be hard to top Tokyo Gore Police in terms of sheer ridiculousness of what goes on on-screen, but since the main character in RoboGeisha seems to transform into a tank and there are bleeding skyscrapers, I think it's safe to say this might be a little more insane than TGP.

Check out the trailer at /Film (I can't seem to be embedding it properly here) and let me know what you think!

PS - I'm hoping I can write a new review here soon. I've been seeing a fabulous batch of bad movies lately, and really want to write a few words either on Troll 2, or Manos the Hands of Fate... Hopefully I get time for that soon.

Friday, June 26, 2009


I confess I was never a big fan of Michael Jackson. Yeah, I liked a few of his songs, but I don't have any of his albums and those songs, although excellent in beat, melody and danceability never left a mark on me.

However, one of his videos did. Few things scared me more in my life than the Thriller video. I remember watching it at a friends house and just being petrified. You know when you're a kid and things terrify you but fascinate you at the same time? Well, I'll always think back to when I first watched zombie Michael dancing with a zombie horde with a smile. In that sense, Michael really did make a mark on me - especially since now I love zombie and horror movies, and that was most likely my first exposure to it.

Maybe in the end, it was the dancing I was scared of.

(the sketch is a little old, yes)
We should all dance the thriller now.

*Cause this is thriiiilleeeeer... Thriiiilleeeer night*

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Night of the Living Dead: Reanimated

As you may or may not know, I've been working, along with many artists worldwide, on an animated re-envisioning of Romero's zombie classic Night of the Living Dead. Curated by Mike Schneider of Neoflux Productions, this project features a wide range of styles and techniques, which makes it very interesting and appealing to horror and art fans alike. It's been a few months since I started working on this, producing illustrations, and now I'm working in post-production, actually created an animated sequence (my very first!), and it's being challenging but very exciting, and Mike has been of great help.

The project has been recently mentioned on Fangoria's website, here, and the first teaser poster has been released. It's a great poster and a few more will be released, so just wait and see because there will be more eye candy. Here is the poster:

There is one of my drawings in there, Ben, which you may recognize after I post a couple of other illustrations I did for the movie.

You can find these and some others on my redbubble store, here. They're for sale as prints as official merchandise for the movie, so go over there and snoop around all you want!
As always, go to the movie's official website to know more about the project.


Monday, June 01, 2009

Nightmare City (1980) Review

Well, well, well. This weekend I saw a movie that made me want to write a good old fashioned long review. What movie was it, you might think? Was it "Choke"? Was it "The Ruins"? Was it "Let the Right One In"? No, it wasn't any of these, although I saw them all - and actually felt like reviewing The Ruins just to really dwell on how impossibly dumb it was. The movie I saw that made me want to spend a few minutes writing in the internet about it like anyone actually cares was... Nightmare City.

Nightmare City is an Italian horror movie, also known as Incubo sulla città contaminata, City of the Walking Dead or, my personal favorite, Invasion by the Atomic Zombies. Being a lesser known Italian zombie movie, you know you have to expect horrible acting, atrocious dubbing, muted colors, and lots of gore and boobs, and this movie delivers on all of this. If you're not yet convinced that this movie is an awesome pile of cheese, check out the tagline:

"An airplane exposed to radiation lands, and blood drinking zombies emerge armed with knives, guns and teeth! They go on a rampage slicing, dicing, and biting their way across the Italian countryside."

If by now you still don't want to see this movie, go away. We can't be friends anymore.

Directed by Umberto Lenzi, Nightmare City begins when a reporter and his cameraman head to the airport to interview a very famous nuclear scientist, who is about to arrive there. The plane he's traveling in does not respond to the airports requests for identification, so the crew prepares a landing strip for an emergency landing. The plane lands, and immediately the airport's security heads there, shouting to the pilot to open the doors to the plane and to come down and explain why he didn't respond to the control tower. They eventually notice there is no one in the cockpit, and in a matter of seconds a whole military squadron is in situ (as well as the reporter - who happens to be our hero - and the cameraman). There is still no answer from inside, even though now there is some high patent military guy shouting to the plane. After a few minutes of shouting, the door of the plane starts descending, and... out bursts a gang of, I guess, zombies, armed with machine guns, knifes, revolvers and whatever else, and they just start butchering the military (which is ridiculous, because these military dudes, supposedly expert shooters and what not, can't kill a zombie for shit. Really, they just don't hit them! Shoot them, you fuckers, geesh!!). You have realized by know that these are not ordinary zombies, because they are really fast, they punch you, shoot you, strangle you, and stab you instead of just gutting you with their teeth or whatever zombies usually do. They run, plot and scheme. They also drink blood, which makes them a weird mix of zombie and vampire. But they don't eat the victims, they just leave their dead bodies on a trail through the airport. I guess these zombies aren't very hungry, they crave blood instead of brains.

Since we're on the topic, I'll take this chance to say that this has to be the worst zombie make-up I've ever seen. In most of the cases they just look like some mud (best case cenario) was thrown on their faces, and in most of the cases their hands don't even have make-up, so you're looking at a bunch of dudes with brown faces and clean hands. It's just stupid.

Back to the plot, the reporter and his cameraman manage to escape the maiming, and head to the TV station, where some sort of dancing program is being broadcast. I think the director was really gung ho on making sure we knew there was a dancing program going on, because there must be about 5 whole minutes of just these guys and girls dancing in blue spandex, to the sound of some of the cheesiest music I've ever heard. The show has no host whatsoever, just these guys and girls dancing on a stage. Fascinating. At one point, they stop dancing and actually talk to each other, which I found hilarious because the movie is dubbed in english, but the dubbers somehow found it was necessary to try and make voices with Italian accents!

Well, when the reporter gets there, he orders some guy to interrupt the Dancing broadcast because he needs to make an emergency news broadcast. The guy obbeys and the reporter starts saying that some shit went down on the airport, but his job description apparently didn't include "interrupt the awesome Dancing show", because 10 seconds in, his annoucement was cut again and the TV was back to broacasting the Dancing show (to the delight of thousands of viewers, I'm sure). He goes around shouting for a while, until his boss, along with another dude from the military, tell him that he shouldn't cause panic in the population until they were sure of what was going on. DAMN THE GOVERNMENT!
Our brave reporter (who, by the way, is one of the worst actors I've ever seen in my life - his emotional range is zero, I've seen cardboard boxes with more emotional versatility than this guy) thinks the public had the right to know, he resigns his job because he is all badass and the government can't tell him to do, and then decides to go look for his wife so they can flee to the countryside. And so, the movie goes on.

I won't describe the whole movie here because that would probably ruin any pleasure you might derive from watching this, but what happens is probably what you're guessing - the zombies just go around killing while the survivors try to escape the overun city. Yeah, pretty much that. I won't even describe the ending, but I can tell you you'll probably want to stab the director in the eyes with a fork, because it's so outstandingly lazy and lame.

This movie is filled with vapid, one-dimensional characters trying to act natural but appearing fake as hell. There is a lot of moralizing dialogue about how we cause all this crap by living in out concrete jungles or something, but it all falls in deaf ears because by this point the movie is so utterly devoid of plot and coherent dialogue that you just have to laugh at the drivel the characters spill out from time to time. It also stars the most incompetent military I've ever, ever seen. It's hilarious.
The soundtrack is another remarkable source of cheesyness, it's so bad that some of the times I didn't even know if we were listening to the "music" or just to shit falling around on set.

All in all, this movie really has to be seen to be believed. I don't think you can tell how cheesy and bad this flick really is just by a blog post - you need to go out and get it. Bad as it was, it's awfullness was hilarious and actually entertaining - which is more than you can say for some big budget horror movies of these days like, oh I don't know, The goddamned Ruins. And if you are at all a fan of zombie or cheesy flicks, gather around a bunch of friends, pop this on and I guarantee 100% that you will have a laugh riot. Me and my boyfriend sure laughed a lot :D

Thursday, May 28, 2009

White Winter Hymnal

A very quick and sloppy sketch done after listening to Fleet Foxes' White Winter Hymnal. It's late and I don't even know why I'm posting this crap, to be honest. Brain Fart! :D

"I was following the pack
all swallowed in their coats
with scarves of red tied 'round their throats
to keep their little heads
from fallin' in the snow
And I turned 'round and there you go
And, Michael, you would fall
and turn the white snow red as strawberries
in the summertime... "

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Dead Snow sketch

That movie was asking for it. Just a puny little doodle on my sketchbook.