“The dead of night, on a desert highway, Sarah McCall is on the road to freedom, escaping a life of government sponsored torture. If she drives non stop untill morning she’ll be free, but will an encounter with a biker reveal to her that no matter where she runs to pain will follow.
The Loneliest Road is the first story in Blood Lines, a macabre collection of short horror stories in the tradition of Clive Barker’s Books of Blood and Stephen King’s seminal Night Shift. These tales of terror feature voodoo, necromancy, ghosts, prurient demons and a bizarre crop of psychomaniacs.”
Two of my all time favourite acts are coming to London to perform two classic albums. These two acts are King Diamond, the Stephen King of metal, and Blue Oyster Cult – ‘Don’t Fear the Reaper’ is not there only song!
BOC haven’t played London in years, and it’s great that Albert Bouchard will be joining them. Bouchard was fired (or quit) from the band in 1981, after they recorded probably my favourite BOC album ‘Fire of Unknown Origin’. He was the bands drummer, but he also helped pen some of their best songs. And on ‘Agents of Fortune’, the album they’ll be performing in its entirety, he took the lead vocals on three songs. So they really couldn’t do these 30th anniversary shows without him.
It’s a shame that Blue Oyster Cult seem to be a bit of a forgotten band nowadays, they’re not even in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, which shows what a crock of shit that thing is. Currently without a record deal, their last album was fifteen years ago, 2001’s ‘Curse of the Hidden Mirror’ (most of the lyrics for that album were written by sci-fi/fantasy writer John Shirley). Unfortunately, I think the reason they get overlooked is because a lot of people think of them as being a one song band – Not True! Their song catalogue is amazing. Five favourite BOC songs – excluding ‘Don’t Fear the Reaper’: Astronomy, Veteran of the Psychic Wars, Black Blade, Flaming Telepaths, Transmaniacon MC.
As for King Diamond, five years ago he was rushed to the hospital and ended up undergoing triple-bypass surgery, and apparently it’s been a long road to recovery since, so it’s great to see him healthy and out touring again.
“Grandmaaaaaa!! I got a fever and the only the prescription is more cowbell.”
“It’s My Party … And I’ll Die If I Want To is an anthology of party themed horror stories. When sweet sixteens turn sour and dream presents turn into nightmares, you may not live to regret missing this collection of stories that are guranteed to frighten and entertain in equal measure.”
I’m a massive Tobe Hooper, he is without question my favourite American genre director, I’ve seen all his movies, all, that is, except for 1990’s I’m Dangerous Tonight. Based on a novella by crime writer Cornell Woolrich (1903-1968), this was a made for TV horror movie that aired on the USA Network on 8 August 1990 and then released on home video. It stars the gorgeous Madchen Amick (Shelly from Twin Peaks), which makes me all the more desperate to see it. VHS copies have always alluded me, they’re incredibly rare, and my scouring the internet for a copy of the film to stream has never been successful. But now finally, on 18 July 2016, it’s getting a long overdue DVD release, thanks to Final Cut Entertainment.
This has been a long time coming, it’s terrible how this movie, directed the man who gave us Texas Chain Saw Massacre (and Crocodile) and starring one of the hottest women ever to have a camera focused on her, has been pretty much forgotten about for twenty-six years! And sure, the plot about an evil Aztec cloak sounds corny as hell, but, even so, I can’t wait to finally get my hands on a copy and see what craziness Hooper did with this one. Now can we please get a DVD release for 1999’s The Apartment Complex.
“Psycho star Anthony Perkins stars in this brilliant supernatural thriller. When a college student turns an ancient Aztec cloak into a party dress the results are catastrophic. The death toll mounts as supernatural powers cause the deaths of anyone who comes into contact with the dress. Directed by horror legend Tobe Hooper.“ Product Description from Amazon.
Also, John Carpenter, probably my second favourite American genre director, has just released Lost Themes II, the follow up to his amazing Lost Themes album, which I’m really looking forward to sitting down and listening to, and Danzig has put out an awesome music video for his cover of Black Sabbath’s NIB. Typical of a Danzig video, it features a lot of scantily clad models. It’s what music videos would look like if Jean Rollin directed them. Good stuff!
Starring: Christopher Lambert, Diane Lane, Tom Skerritt, Daniel Baldwin, Katherine Isabelle
Plot: Christopher Lambert stars as Peter Sanderson, a chess champion who is implicated in a series of murders of women – one of whom he recently slept with. Police psychiatrist Kathy Sheppard (Diane Lane) is assigned to build up a profile of the killer. However, she begins to believe that Sanderson is not the killer and helps him outwit the two cops, Sedman and Wagner (Tom Skerritt and Daniel Baldwin), who are hot on his trail. (Synopsis from Amazon)
Verdict: I had a good time with this film. It had been years, probably sometime in the mid 90s, since I had last seen Knight Moves and so when I stumbled upon it on Youtube I simply had to watch it. This movie had quite a presence in my childhood. When I was a kid, I used to have the poster for it tacked up to my bedroom wall; my dad worked in a video store and so I used to get given posters for all sorts of movies. Therefore, as I sat down to watch it again, I knew that even if the movie was lame, so many films I loved from my youth don’t hold up today, the nostalgia hit from it would still make Knight Moves worth my time. But Knight Moves isn’t lame. It’s actually quite good.
Going into this one again I had pretty much forgotten the entire plot, which was fortunate because this movie is a giallo-like whodunit. Who the killer was didn’t come back to me while I watched it and so the red herrings the movie kept throwing at me really did keep me guessing. And though the ultimate reveal of the killer was a little disappointing at least the movie didn’t fall apart like a lot of whodunits do when the killer is revealed. I didn’t say “that don’t make sense” to myself at all during the final act, which is so often the fatal flaw of a whodunit’s final act.
Knight Moves does, however, have some daft moments. Near the end, chess master Sanderson far too easily escapes from police custody. At the time of his escape he’s in a police station manned by only two police officers, but all the other times we see the station throughout the movie it is swarming with cops, where’d they all go! Also, for someone being harassed by a serial killer Sanderson never seems to care that much about what his young daughter, Erica, is up to (we have here an early performance by scream queen Katherine Isabelle), when ever she’s not being allowed to open the hotel room door to complete strangers Sanderson is quite happy to let her be looked after by his blind chess coach. That’s who I would want keeping an eye on my kid when a serial killer is playing games with me.
I would have also appreciated a little bit more gore. The kills in this film are quite literally over in a flash, a bit more horror and suspense for these scenes would have been nice. I’m an Argento/Fulci guy, I’m not big on subtlety, and I think less is less. A bombastic Goblin score would have been excellent, too, though Anne Dudley’s score does work well, particularly for the great black and white opening.
Christopher Lambert, one of my favourite actors, like always, gives a great performance as the brooding chess Grandmaster, Peter Sanderson. That creepy glare of his (caused by the actors real-life severe myopia) adds a lot of menace to his character and never allowed me to rule out the possibility that Sanderson actually might be the killer. The entire supporting cast do good jobs. At the time, Diane Lane was Lambert’s wife, and so, unsurprisingly, the chemistry between them is good.
Knight Moves is a solid thriller. I would say it’s probably one of the best American giallo-like thrillers not to be made by Brian de Palma. It’s definitely worth watching. 7/10
By the way, Knight Moves’ writer, Brad Mirman, and lead actor, Christopher Lambert, would go on to write 1999’s Seven-esque thriller Resurrection together, a movie that more than makes up for the lack of gore in this one. I recommend that movie, too.
Black Bed Sheet Books have just released a new anthology of road based horror tales called Bumps in the Road. Edited and compiled by the brilliant Chad lutzke, check out his book Death Dealers, the anthology includes my story ‘No Good Deed’. It is available in Kindle and paperback editions. US/UK
“Roads have been around for centuries, allowing mankind a convenient path to arrive at their destination—be it a lengthy vacation getaway with family or merely to their own inviting home after an exhausting day at work. These roadway treks can bring with them a lifetime of memories. But not all memories are good. And some things are best left forgotten. Join our storytellers as they share the morbid, woeful, and disturbing outcomes of an otherwise normal commute, as we watch each of these unfortunate souls fall victim to their own little bumps in the road. A unique horror anthology.”