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 John Dubrawa

Review: Tremors (1990)

Tremors poster

Never have I seen a small town setting work for a movie as well as Perfection, Nevada works for Tremors. Sure, the actors are top-notch and the right choice for their characters, the effects are convincing, and the script is ripe with sarcasm and wit, but the setting is what ties all of these elements together. Perfection is an ex-mining town of 14 residents; if it truly existed, it would be on a map just so vacationers could drive through it and count all the people.(read more...)

Review: Dead Alive (1992)

Dead Alive poster

It might seem like a clever marketing technique that initial rentals of the New Zealand indie zombie-flick, Braindead (released here in the states as Dead Alive), came supplied with vomit bags, but having just watched the film, I now know that the video retailers just had their customer’s best interest in mind. But this little tidbit should not discourage viewers. There is much to admire about a film like this; Dead Alive pulls no punches when it comes to completely disgusting the audience. Dead Alive possesses some of the best stomach-churning visuals and gag-inducing sound effects ever put to celluloid, not to mention one of the most underrated comedic performances. All of this comes from the mind of director Peter Jackson, far removed from his turn as the multiple-Oscar-winning director of Lord of the Rings - but still making great films.(read more...)

Review: The Host (2006)

The Host 2006 poster

Bong Joon-ho’s The Host is the best political monster movie to come along since the original Gojira, but don’t think the film is content on being just a biting satire on government policies of both the United States and South Korea. No, there is so much more to uncover that each aspect of the film could be its own separate review. There is a subtle, almost dark comedic undertone to this movie, as well as a few scenes of poignant drama and sincerity. But above all else, it’s a serious horror film, a thriller packed with scares and screams as a result of an amphibious creature with a vicious temper and carnivorous tendencies. Don’t expect this monster to ever have a showdown with Mothra or King Kong. It just wouldn't be fair to those two.
(read more...)

Review: El Vampiro (1957)

El Vampiro poster

At the time of its release in 1957, Fernando Méndez’s El Vampiro was the first film about vampires that dared to show the creatures’ now-famous fanged incisors. This seemingly minor inclusion helped craft the modern vampire. Yet, time has certainly not done El Vampiro any favors, and while this film is a landmark in horror history, genre aficionados will remember the use of light and shadow in F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu or the swagger and charm of Bela Lugosi’s Dracula before remembering the teeth shown here. There is an excellent plot unraveled in El Vampiro, complimented by an equally excellent score; however, it is is filled with (mostly) uninteresting characters, misguided pacing, and constricting camera movements. El Vampiro is not a bad film - it’s just not a particularly interesting one.
(read more...)

Review: It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958)

It! The Terror from Beyond Space poster

Though its title might evoke a bit of laughter and thoughts of a schlocky man-in-a-rubber-suit monster movie, It: The Terror From Beyond Space is more than just a standard creature feature. Not allowing his film to be hindered by a shoestring budget and relatively short runtime, director Edward Cahn (along with screenwriter Jerome Bixby) crafts a taut, science fiction thriller with issues and themes that require no special effects in the confines of a story that takes little time to tell.(read more...)

Review: Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan poster

In the wake of New Line Cinema’s announcement that it will be rebooting the Friday the 13th series, there will be some filmgoers that will be introduced into the famed franchise for the first time and will want to check out the previous eleven entries. Those newcomers will be hard pressed to find a worse film in the entire Friday the 13th collection than Friday the 13th Part VIII:  Jason Takes Manhattan. If the name of the film itself doesn’t evoke just a bit of laughter, then perhaps the poor character development, shameful plot, and careless ending will do the trick. Please keep in mind that the Friday the 13th series started with a serious horror film.(read more...)

Review: Damien: Omen II (1978)

Damien: Omen II poster

In 1978, 20th Century Fox looked to recreate the box-office success that it found with 1976’s The Omen by producing a sequel, Damien: Omen II using many of the same components: a supernatural and suspenseful tale of the Devil’s son, Oscar-nominated actors, and the music of Jerry Goldsmith. Behind such a solid and substantiated formula (the original film grossed $60 million in the U.S.), Damien: Omen II is ultimately not quite able to live up to its own expectations, due to the plot being filled with unanswered questions and overly obvious foreshadowing techniques. It is, however, supported with the aforementioned score from Goldsmith (as spot-on as ever) and an honest performance from newcomer Jonathan Scott-Taylor.
(read more...)

Review: The Mummy's Hand (1940)

The Mummy's Hand poster

In the 1940s, Universal Pictures sought to bring another horror franchise to life (as it had with Dracula and Frankenstein previously) with the production of four films based off their 1932 film, The Mummy. After a rushed shooting schedule (less than a month) and last minute editing[1], the first of these films was released. Titled The Mummy’s Hand, the film is a less suspenseful reworking of the deliberately slow-paced psychological thriller that served as the framework for the original Mummy, opting instead for an over-the-top action and adventure flick with bits of supernatural elements tossed in to maintain a swift — and oftentimes erratic — pacing.(read more...)

Review: The Mist (2007)

The Mist poster

It takes an unnatural (oftentimes supernatural) occurrence to send mankind teetering into a state of mass paranoia, and films about such situations often follow the same paths as their characters. At first, there is much running around, little explaining, and even less reasoning. During these tumultuous times, the characters are scared and frenzied, and often make irrational decisions, and the film, much the same, is all over the place, focusing on too much at one time while being swept up in all the commotion. But then, as the characters calm themselves down and begin to make sense, the film finds its focus and hones in on a common thread that ties all the events and all the characters together under one theme. Here is such a film.(read more...)

Review: Masters of Horror: The V Word (2006)

Masters of Horror: The V Word

Credits above are only for personnel unique to this episode. For credits relating to "Masters of Horror" as a whole, see the Masters of Horror review gateway.(read more...)