Our editor-in-chief Nate Yapp is proud to have contributed to the new book Hidden Horror: A Celebration of 101 Underrated and Overlooked Fright Flicks, edited by Aaron Christensen. Another contributors include Anthony Timpone, B.J. Colangelo, Dave Alexander, Classic-Horror.com's own Robert C. Ring and John W. Bowen. Pick up a copy today from Amazon.com!

Posts by Brandt Sponseller

Review: Bloody New Year (1987)

Bloody New Year 1987

I watched Bloody New Year today -- December 30, 2000 -- with the idea that it would be nice to write about a topical horror film after basically taking three weeks off from writing reviews. Unfortunately, aside from extremely superficial plot points, this Norman J. (Horror Planet, Satan’s Slave) Warren directed, Frazier Pearce written film has little to do with our most temporal of holidays. However, it wasn’t a complete loss, as I found Bloody New Year to be a modest but entertaining melding of slasher films and more traditional haunted house yarns.(read more...)

Review: Nosferatu (1922)

Nosferatu 1922 poster

An unauthorized (strongly unauthorized, as we'll see in a minute) version of Bram Stoker's novel, Dracula, Nosferatu is at least the earliest surviving cinematic appearance of that famed vampire, if not vampires in general (the first vampire appearance award probably goes to Georges Melies' short, Le Manoir du Diable, from 1896).(read more...)

Review: The Fly (1986)

Fly 1986 poster

After director David Cronenberg released his version of Stephen King's The Dead Zone in 1983, he took almost a three year break from directing before tackling an even more unusual project - a remake of a highly successful 1950's horror/monster film that featured Vincent Price, among others.(read more...)

Review: Witchcraft (1988)

Witchcraft 1988

As a small token of the problems that are inherent with trying to make a quality film on a miniscule budget like director Robert Spera's Witchcraft, notice that the title credits contain the word, "Origional." It's not the most serious gaffe, perhaps, but it's representative of the problems that plague this film -- which is not half as bad as its reputation has it -- namely, that the lack of budget resulted in a finished product that is two rewrites short of a decent script, two takes short of quality scenes, two razors short of effective editing, and two staves short of a good score.(read more...)

Review: Demon Knight (1995)

Demon Knight poster

Demon Knight contains just about everything I want in an ideal horror film -- a great story, mystery (in a wide sense), tension, atmosphere, mythology, scares, action, gore and a sense of humor. That's not to say that it's the perfect film or even my favorite, but Demon Knight might serve as a textbook case of what makes horror. As such, it at least earns a place on my list of the 40 or so best horror films of the 90s.(read more...)

Review: The Tommyknockers (1993)

Tommyknockers poster

Although I love many of the Stephen King feature films that have been made over the years, there are many things I prefer about King miniseries. For one, any cinematic adaptation of a novel, if we compare the media, is going to necessarily be slimmer in content and characterization, unless we're talking an extremely long film or a very short novel. Occasionally, a film comes along for which that's a benefit -- say, the 1999 filmed version of The Haunting compared to Shirley Jackson's novel The Haunting of Hill House. But King is one of my favorite authors, and I like that most of the miniseries versions of his work have tried to compensate for the literary loss due to compression that the features have unfortunately, but understandably brought about.(read more...)

Review: The Reptile (1966)

The Reptile poster

Filmed primarily on the same sets as one of Hammer's masterpieces, The Plague of the Zombies, by the same director, John Gilling, with some of the same cast--most notably the gorgeous Jacqueline Pearce (the equally beautiful Jennifer Daniel, a veteran from Hammer's Kiss of the Vampire, appears as well), and featuring (read more...)

Review: The Kiss of the Vampire (1963)

Kiss of the Vampire poster

Hammer Film's Kiss of the Vampire is a classic of the genre. Its historical place -- released in the early 60's during the spate of vampire films in the wake of Hammer's hugely successful 1958 version of Dracula starring Christopher Lee -- gives it the characteristically Hammer atmosphere between the more grandiose Universal horror the 30's and 40's and the more intimate, in your face bombast of the 70's and beyond.(read more...)

Review: The Plague of the Zombies (1966)

Plague of the Zombies poster

Filmed back to back with The Reptile, another Hammer film, The Plague of the Zombies features not only members of the same cast and crew, but also some of the same sets and a similar premise. It's another fine example of misconceived conventional wisdom notions of what leads to quality, as the duplication would usually suggest low-budget, problem-infested films, but instead, Plague, at least, is a minor masterpiece by one of the finest horror studios to date.(read more...)

Review: Jaws (1975)

Jaws poster

Like most of director Steven Spielberg's works, Jaws straddles more than one genre -- horror/monster film, drama, even sci-fi at a stretch-and like most of them, it is a masterpiece in any genre.

Produced by David Brown and Richard D. Zanuck (who have done such quality, diverse films as Neighbors, Cocoon and Driving Miss Daisy together), the idea for the film first came from Helen Gurley Brown, David's wife and longtime Cosmopolitan editor, after she discovered Peter Benchley's novel. Brown and Zanuck had both worked with Spielberg as producers of his 1974 film, The Sugarland Express, so when he approached them to also work on Jaws, they agreed.(read more...)

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