Thursday, October 31, 2019

Happy Halloween! Here's 18 Short Horror Films You Need To See! (2019 edition)

October Challenge Day 31:

Happy Halloween everyone!! Here is 18 brilliant short horror films to spook up your day.

Why 18 you ask? Because this is the 8th month of the old Roman calendar and the 10th month of the current calendar. BRAINS!

So without further ado, below is my pick of some of the best out there. With a review of 18 words or less, and in no particular order, please enjoy Horror Habit's 2019 Short Horror Film Festival.

Pictured: Short film scream queen Lotta Losten (of the shorts Light's Out, Coffer, and Attic Panic) delights again!

Holy F__K: Oh, holy sh_t this one is hilarious!! Stellar and hilarious!

Salt: Best keep those salt shakers handy for this fast and furious bite-sized morsel!

The Fisherman: SCARY SEA MONSTERS ARE SCARY! This one is so, so good!

Smear: All the ladies love going in for their annual pap exam - amiright?!! Ladies?!?!

Homunculus: A bizarre animation/stop animation about rotting food...

There Comes A Knocking: A solid, ghostly chiller! Someday we might even see this be turned into a feature film!

Self-Assembly: Wowza! This one's a devilish delight. Warning - the opening scene is intense.

Mother DiedWell, this one is sure a shocker! Possibly poetic even...

Meow: Well this one is a lot of fun! Perfect for cat lovers. 

Lilith: Made in 48 hours, this moody and spooky film will leave you with chills!

Undress Me: Dear christ almighty! Gruesome, gruesome, gruesome!

Shhh: This one is inspired by Guillermo del Toro's childhood nightmares - and the monster does not disappoint!

Reverse: Evil garages are evil! This one is especially spooktacular. 

Cliché (Short Horror Film): The title says a lot - but the scares are still pretty good!

Deadpan - An Awkward Comedy Horror Short Film: Shout to these kids who put this bizarre concoction together in a couple of hours. Hahaha!

Momo: A disturbing little thriller about love, loss, and madness!

Big Bad Wolves: I too have theorized the story of Little Red Riding hood is a cautionary tale about sexual predators...

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)

October Challenge Day 30

I sat on this film for a while and didn't think I would get a chance to review it - but here I am on a late night on October 30th and with little chance to get a new movie in this evening - so I thought I would dedicate some time to a film that I hope is never forgotten.

Sequels are hard to really appreciate. Especially when they get to the third round, etc, like A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. I get it, they often suck. That's why I wanted to give a special shout out to this one.

A Nightmare on Elm Street is my youth! Wearing over-sized cat imaged shirts, sitting on shag carpet in front of a large television that guarded pretty much the entire floor, late night Saturday nights when the parents were asleep - MY JAM!

That was not my experience with this film, however. I saw this one just a few months ago. Now I'm in my 40s and cynical of franchise films, I approached this one with apprehension and low expectations - imagine my surprise when I found this film *dare I say* better than the first? At the very least, a close second!

Bonus: One of the first films where we see Patricia Arquette (Love You So Much Gurl!). Call me.

Overall, this film still follows the children of murderous parents, but these children are not having it. At all. Nor should they. They kick ass, take names and  Nancy is back to help. This is a really fun film and deserves a view for all, and all generations. This is not your parents or grandchildren'ts 3rd film of a franchise.

Pairs with food recommended by your doctor and best watched with a few of your close friends. I watched this film on Shudder. Use the Find It! Watch It! links on Horror Habit's sidebar to locate where else you can find this surprise feature.

Midsommar (2019)

October Challenge Day 29

I'm reviewing this film in October, even though I didn't watch it this month, because I received such an overwhelming response from friends wanting to know my opinion. Most questions came this month. Oh, Midsommar. We fellow Scandinavians are f*cking crazy sometimes.

I'm stupidly Scandinavian - STUPIDLY. My blood flows with farming, snow peaks, and fjords.

So my brother and I went to see this film in the theater and I was immediately uncomfortable with the somber yet "friendly" greetings the strangers in this film were met with. It felt like Thanksgiving or Christmas in my family. I'm American enough to know what's happening and it's stupidly Scandinavian.

Panic set it quickly.

It doesn't help that we have "strange" traditions in our family. We try to warn visitors about the dancing and singing around a Christmas tree and trying to find odd objects in food as a game... there's no amount of warning. Nine years with my husband and he magically disappeared when these traditions were called upon.

So when I saw this film as I was all like, "Oh hell, yeah. We're weird sometimes...."

Then this film got really WEIRD and I was all like, "Oh, hell yeah no.".

I'm equal parts Danish and Norwegian - with a very scandalized history revolving a Swedish grandparent. This movie revolves around Sweden. Sorry Sweden! We don't talk about you at dinner!

No, in all seriousness, this film is a nature horror story and those stories are scary no matter where they come from. I react to nature god horror stories like this one or the Yellow King as I would finding a gigantic spider in my kitchen.

Kill it with fire. 

There is a very specific anxiety about nature god stories that I've never been able to understand, and I'm not sure I want to. But that anxiety is very, very real for a lot of people - it helps make this movie a truly horrifying show.

I, in the mean time, am going to continue being a quiet ale drinking occasional fun-loving berserker with a I'm uncomfortable hugging problem - and stay far, far away from those nature gods.

Pairs with anxiety masked as friendliness. I watched this film in the theater. Use Horror Habit's Find It! Watch It! links on Horror Habit's side bar to locate where else you can find this really disturbing film.

The Birch (Television Show, 2019)

October Challenge Day 28

When I started seeing ads for a horror film to watch exclusively on Facebook - on Facebook - I was extraordinarily hesitant.

Then I learned it was a series, and the ads kept coming, I decided to watch The Birch, finally, in the only way I thought reasonable considering the context. In a bar and on my phone.

What happened next still blows my mind. 

The World Series is playing this week (go Nationals!) and bars are erupting. I'm sitting there, with my huge Bluetooth headphones - at the bar - watching a horror film. Like a normal person.

But it's what happened next that blew my mind: I loved it. I absolutely loved it.

Acting, execution, cinematography, and creature feature amazingness - all blew my mind. It's heady, dark, and crosses boundaries in horror that I very, very rarely see in quality work. Crosses boundaries in what is 'okay' normally for a certain platforms. Let's say, regular TV. Not uncommon in cable or specialty streaming channels, and maybe that's what really struck me. This show is on Facebook for free and showing some deep sh*t. Ballsy, scary, serious sh*t. 

This show follows a collection of teens as they navigate life though an unceremonious and unjust world thrown to them. You know, life. Except, in this one, they summon a beast from the Oregon woods and things get very, very interesting from there. 

Gaddam. This is a brutal and visceral show. Well done!

Best watched on your phone, in a crowded, loud place. Pairs with the sad memories of your youth. 

I watched this - for the first time ever saying - on Facebook Watch. As of today, there is nowhere else to see it. 

Monday, October 28, 2019

Tragedy Girls (2017)

October Challenge Day 27

I stared at this one for a long time before I decided to watch it. I stared at it with my head tilted and I honestly couldn't figure out if it was going to suck, be really interesting and original, or be one of those films that just tries too hard. In its own weird way, Tragedy Girls is all these things - and I liked it.

I looked at some IMDB user reviews and I quickly realized that everyone is [sometimes] a [bad] critic, and it seems that this film is just too 'modern' for some horror fans. Like some food dishes, sometimes the meal tastes better after it has sat in its own juices overnight.

Shutout to leftovers!

This film is also quite original - it's an extremely macabre story about the addictions of social media (in a way). Not sure where to file that one, but I can say that in the era of true crime podcast galore and murder porn everywhere, this film was birthed at just the right time. It is in its element and knows exactly what it's doing.

Here we have high school best friends who run social media accounts about a murder spree in the area. But you gotta get those 'likes', you all!! So what are you going to do ... or rather, how far will you go for them?

Despite some not liking this film, I honestly think this one holds a solid hold in the cult classic favorites just as soon as it simmers a bit - eventually sitting on the same honors shelf as Heathers, for instance. It just sounds like it's going to take some time, however.

Overall, I really enjoyed the film and I particularly enjoyed the risks it took. The acting was fun, the plot was a striking, and the ending births a new idea for monsters. Best watched with a frienemy, and pairs food you loved in high school. Or something made in a slow cooker.

I watched this film on Hulu. Use the Find it! Watch it! links on Horror Habit's sidebar to locate where else you can find this YOLO feature.