Graveyard Groove: The Haunted History of Monster Music from “Monster Mash” to Horror Punk – book

Graveyard Groove: The Haunted History of Monster Music from “Monster Mash” to Horror Punk is a self-published book by David Acord (Success Secrets of Sherlock Holmes; When Mars Attacked: Orson Welles and the Radio Broadcast That Changed America Forever), released on August 26, 2018.

“In the mid-1950s, a new genre of novelty music emerged that mixed humour and horror. The result: Monster Music! Suddenly, jukeboxes were filled with songs about Frankenstein, Dracula, the Wolf Man, creatures from outer space and a multitude of supernatural terrors.

The genre reached its peak in 1962 with Bobby “Boris” Pickett’s smash “Monster Mash,” but there are many more songs worthy of rediscovery — and Monster Music still lives on today, thanks to the influence of punk pioneers like The Cramps and the Misfits. Here is the complete, untold story of Monster Music — the genre that refused to die!”

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A Cadaver Christmas aka Zombies at Christmas – USA, 2011

‘Zombies for the holidays’

A Cadaver Christmas – aka Zombies at Christmas – is a 2011 American comedy horror feature film directed by Joe Zerull from a screenplay co-written with Daniel Rairdin-Hale and Hanlon Smith-Dorsey who also star.

Plot:

United by terrifying and bizarre circumstances, the janitor, the drunk, the bartender, the cop, his perp, and the student security guard must fight to undo the professor’s work.

A dark force is at work in the cadaver lab this Christmas and this unconventional band of heroes are the only hope the world has against an army of living corpses that are quickly recruiting new members….

Reviews:

“The film focus mostly on the slapstick comedy element and doesn’t have a lot of gory scenes. The comedy is hit or miss and I didn’t think it was very funny. It should be said that I rarely do find that horror / comedy films work very well though, so I’m not surprised that I didn’t care much for this one.” Torstein Karlsen, Cinema Terror

“Mixing elements of Braindead and Feast, with a few other splatterific titles referenced along the way, A Cadaver Christmas tries hard for most of its runtime, but it becomes clear after the first few scenes that this is a slight film built around a few set-pieces that aren’t as memorable as they were in the minds of the men writing the script…” Kevin Matthews, For It Is Man’s Number

“Co-scenarist Hale does the angry-nerd-turned-superhero to perfection, but Smith-Dorsey is particularly funny as the dimmest bulb onscreen. Feature directorial debutant Joe Zerull keeps the silly tale just pacey, deadpan and loopy enough to buoy it several degrees above Troma-style low camp.” Dennis Harvey, Variety

“There are some great scenes that get punctuated by some genuinely funny lines (“He stabbed Eddie in the neck with a desk!”) and some visual gags that actually made me laugh. Credit should also be given to Hale (who also produced as Daniel Rairdin-Hale) for his committed performance as the janitor.” William S. Wilson, Video Junkie

Main cast and credits:

  • Daniel Rairdin-Hale … The Janitor (as Dan Hale)
  • Hanlon Smith-Dorsey … Tom Tunninbum
  • Yosh Hayashi … Sam Sheriff
  • Ben Hopkins … Eddie
  • Jessica Denney … Kristen Stable
  • Andrew Ryan Harvey … The Perp (as Andrew Harvey)
  • Michael Kennedy … Professor Hildencress
  • Mark Weitzel … Zed Cadaver
  • Matt Cox … Plunger Face Cadaver
  • Megan Cox … Broken Foot Cadaver

Filming locations:

Blue Grass and Davenport, Iowa, USA

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Christmas with the Dead – USA, 2012

‘The Christmas spirit never dies’

Christmas with the Dead is a 2012 American  comedy horror feature film directed by T.L. Lankford [as Terrill Lee Lankford] from a screenplay by Keith Lansdale, based on a story by Joe R. Lansdale. The movie stars Damian Maffei, Brad Maule and Chet Williamson.

Plot:

In his quest to fulfil a promise made to his wife, Calvin sets out to right his wrongs and make it the best Christmas ever for his family. If only it weren’t June and the majority of the population, including his wife and daughter, hadn’t been turned into flesh-eating snappers by a mysterious atmospheric phenomenon, he’d be in pretty good shape.

Driven by guilt in a race against the apocalyptic clock, Calving teams up with G.M., a wily ex-garbage man turned undead slayer, as together they attempt to deck the halls during the most magical time of the year. It’s Christmas in June. And snappers be damned… The lights and decorations are going up.

Reviews:

“…clever, and quite funny, tongue-in-cheek humor abounds herein, from the snappy, knee-slapping dialog…the caustic, albeit laughable interaction of the characters…even to the zombies themselves, who shamble, jerk, spark and ‘pop’ about, as if they were uncontrollably plagued by perpetual body Tourette’s Syndrome…” Kevin Moye, Cinema Head Cheese

“Hilarious, scrappy, and even creepy!” Chris Alexander, Fangoria

” …comes to life with some snappy dialogue and a crafty sense of humor. This shouldn’t be much of a surprise as legendary scribe Joe R. Lansdale wrote the short story of the same name. Adapted for the (small) screen by his own spawn Keith Landsale, we finally have a shot-on-video, amateur acted, low-renter that is actually well-written, through no fault of its own.” Thomas T. Sueyres, Video Junkie

Cast and characters:

  • Damian Maffei … Calvin – Haunt; The Strangers: Prey at Night; The House That Cried Blood short; Night of the Pumpkin short; Nikos the Impaler
  • Brad Maule … G.M.
  • Chet Williamson … Reverend Mac
  • Clyde Williams … Driver
  • Madeline Brassell … Tina
  • Marsail Carlo … Snapper
  • Katie Chambers … Snapper bride
  • Adam Coats … Ray
  • Jennifer Daniel … Snapper
  • David Evett … Snapper
  • Kristen Hall … Gate snapper
  • Sheri Hambrick … Nana zombie
  • James Harris … Santa snapper
  • Jaime Hedrick … Snapper
  • Christopher Shea Howard … Man with shotgun

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Catskill Park – 2012

‘Visitors welcome’

Catskill Park is a 2012 American science fiction horror found footage feature film written and directed by Vlad Yudin. The movie stars Lauren Francesca, Wen Yann Shih and Katelyn Pearce.

Plot:

Halloween, 2011: A camping trip turns into a living nightmare when a blizzard traps four friends in 36 inches of sudden snow… with shrieking alien sounds outside of their tents. A race for life ensues as they are hunted by horrific monsters, discovering a larger alien conspiracy with every terrifying stride…

Reviews:

Catskill Park has some genuinely creepy sequences that make use of both the dark woods and sound effects. Even if we don’t see anything, we know they’re there […] When we do see the aliens and their ship, the effects by visual effects supervisor/producer Wayne Harry Johnson Jr. (Ahockalypse) and his team are excellent.” Jim Morazzini, Voices from the Balcony

Cast and characters:

  • Lauren Francesca … Sam
  • Wen Yann Shih … Karen
  • Katelyn Pearce … Girl – Clinton Road; Gravedigger
  • Alexander Cendese … Ex
  • Brittney Lee Hamilton … TBC
  • Gregory Lay … Tommy
  • Rajesh Nahar … Dr. Charles
  • Gio Perez … Mike
  • Conan Marchi … Ranger
  • Derek Solomon … Town Resident
  • Tom Dunn … Local Man #1
  • Tim Schumacher … Jimmy
  • Melissa Haley Smith … Monica
  • Joseph R. Duguay … Town Resident
  • Katie Wilbur … Town Resident

Release:

Catskill Park was released on VOD and Digital HD via Freestyle Digital Media on November 27, 2018.

Image credits: Voices from the Balcony

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Scary Story Slumber Party – USA, 2012

Scary Story Slumber Party is a 2012 American horror anthology feature film comprised of eleven shorts directed by John Johnson [as Johnny Johnson], Jonathan Moody, Myke Wilson and Coven Delacruz. The movie stars Devanny Pinn, Sierra Holmes, Jackey hall, Heather Dorff, DaNae West, Jay Gates and Lindy Starr.

Plot:

Three friends gather together to throw an old fashion slumber party like they did in the old days. They begin to tell each other scary stories to liven up the fun. But the fun leads to something a bit more sinister…

Reviews:

“Editing, cohesion and story placement issues aside, that still wouldn’t resolve all of the film’s problems. The wraparound segment feels like a complete and utter throwaway. Some stories just aren’t fleshed out enough (Valentine’s Prey, Capture & Kill, Imaginary Fiend). Scary Story Slumber Party needed a better overall sense of direction from under developed stories to poor story placement.” Brandon C. Sites

“In terms of quality of film for Scary Story Slumber Party, everything was great. All of the short films looked like that had a lot of hard work and dedication. I particularly enjoyed that each piece wasn’t just a “blood and guts” short. It seemed like they had a theme.” Horror Society

“A bunch of amateur actresses tell stories which are very limited in terms of horror content and merely full of wooden acting, boring line delivery, and trite dialogue.” Leofwine_draca

Cast and characters:

  • Faron Brown … Jeep (segment “Valentine’s Prey”)
  • Russell A. Bryan … Evan (segment “Bashed”) (as Russ A. Bryan)
  • Takiah Coleman … Erin (segment “The Pledge”)
  • Brittany Colley … Erin (segment “Noise Complaint”)
  • Henry D’Alonzo … Jack Bradford (segment “The Deadly Hook”)
  • Lauren Dawson … Bar Girl 4 (segment “UnLucky Night”)
  • Jessica Dole … Danielle (segment “The Slumber Party”)
  • Heather Dorff … Becca (segment “Event Invitation”)
  • Jay Gates … Brad (segment “UnLucky Night”)
  • Jackey Hall … Holly (segment “The Dare”)
  • Sierra Holmes … Rachel (segment “UnLucky Night”)
  • Sarah Kaminski … Hilary (segment “The Pledge”)
  • Casey Lane … Party Boy (segment “Noise Complaint”)
  • Rachael Lang … Melissa (segment “The Pledge”)
  • Vince Martinez … Matt (segment: “Backstabber”)
  • Brandon McPherson … Aaron (segment “Noise Complaint”)
  • Jonathan Moody … Tommy (segment Valentine’s Prey”)
  • Mathew Moore … Steven (segment “Noise Complaint”) / Jeff (segment “Imaginary Fiend”)
  • Amberly Pecsek … Karissa (segment: “Slumber Party”), Courtney (segment: “The Pledge”) / Tiffany (segment: “Noise Complaint”)
  • Devanny Pinn … Lindy (segment “Valentine’s Prey”) / Kate (Segment: “The Pledge”)
  • Brittney Scalf … Brittney (segment “Slumber Party / Grave Misfortune”) / Megan (segment “Noise Complaint”) / Kristen (segment “Imaginary Fiend”) (as Brittney M. Scalf)
  • Diane Sokolowich … Amy (segment: “Backstabber”) / Emma (segment: “Noise Complaint”)
  • Elizabeth Spaetzel … Party Girl (segment “Noise Complaint”)
  • Lindy Starr … Claire (segment: “Noise Complaint”) / Jaclyn (segment: “Imaginary Fiend”)
  • Ashley Vetere … Jenna (segment “The Pledge”)
  • DaNae West … Kristen (segment “Bashed”)

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The Dead and the Damned aka Cowboys & Zombies – USA, 2010

The Dead and the Damned – aka Cowboys & Zombies – is a 2010 American Western horror feature film edited and directed by Rene Perez (It Hungers; From Hell to the Wild West; Playing with Dolls trilogy; The Obsidian Curse; et al) from a screenplay co-written with Barry Massoni. The movie stars David Lockhart, Camille Montgomery, Rick Mora and Robert Amstler.

Plot:

1849: During the California Gold Rush, Mortimer receives a bounty for Brother Wolf, a Native American accused of carnal crimes. Mortimer ostensibly buys a young woman, Rhiannon, as a wife but in reality as bait to lure out Wolf. However, once he meets Wolf, Mortimer becomes dubious about the charges against him.

Meanwhile, a group of prospectors unleash a zombie virus when they attempt to mine a meteorite. Mortimer, Rhiannon, and Wolf must band together to stop the zombies…

Reviews:

“With a small principal cast of solid actors, effective use of a standing frontier town set, and skilful direction that manages to be clever without pretentious, plus a well-honed script that doesn’t waste a word, Cowboys and Zombies is great viewing. Exciting, sometimes scary, never silly or self-indulgent and a commendably taught 82 minutes.” MJ Simpson, Cult films and the people who make them

“With too little plot and too little visual imagination to justify a feature runtime, we’re left with plodding scenes of predictable exposition, poorly executed action and lingering gazes at bare breasts peppered with occasional minutes of something approaching genuine entertainment.” Gareth Jones, Dread Central

” …The Dead and the Damned must get kudos for trying. The Old West town set is a bit questionable, but everything else — the horses, the gunfights, Brother Wolf — is definitely above the standard “Hey, let’s put on a show!” feel which some low-budget indies have. The acting is pretty good, most notably Lockhart, although there are some moments where I felt as if the actors were waiting for their cues.” Mike Long, DVD Sleuth

“The film’s low budget is obvious but not too much of an impediment. The sets are on par with those of a western theme park. The costumes, although far from historically accurate, serve their purpose. The dialogue is obviously not chronically correct, exacerbated further by inexperienced actors. The score is all over the place…” Alex DiVincenzo, Horror News

“Another problem with this film is the pacing and quick habit of advancing the story by way of montage or music video […] The Dead and the Damned had a lot of potential, on both sides of the camera, and it could have succeeded with a bit more experience.” Horror Talk

“Soundtrack and the usual lower budget film jitters aside, there is a certain level of fun to be had with the mix-up of genres. The western aspect supersedes the horror tangent, but it’s a nice character driven change of pace that seems iffy at first but proves to be a winning idea come climax.” Brett H., Oh, the Horror!

Filming locations:

Near Yosemite National Park, Central California

Release:

The Dead and the Damned premiered at the Another Hole In the Head film festival on July 17, 2010. It was released on DVD in the US on July 26, 2011, and in the UK on August 1, 2011.

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Gila! – USA, 2012

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Gila! is a 2012 science fiction horror feature film directed by Jim Wynorski (Chopping Mall; Sorceress; Transylvania Twist;  Piranhaconda; et al) from a screenplay by William Dever, Steve Mitchell, Jim Nielsen and Paul Sinor. It is a remake of The Giant Gila Monster (1959) and a pastiche of ’50s monster movies in general.

Gila_Still_2

The movie stars Bruce Munson, Adrienne Atkins, Brian Patrick McCulley and Brian Gross. Terence Knox and Kelli Maroney have cameo roles.

Plot:

A young couple are parked in a bleak, rural locale when a giant gila monster attacks the car, sending them running for their lives. Chase Winstead (Gross) , a young mechanic and hot rod racer and his girl Lisa (Voges), meet up with Chase’s former nemesis, Waco Bob (Janzen) and his sidekick Carla (De Rosa).

Prompted by calls from Mayor Wheeler (Pauwels), the local Sheriff (Knox) enlists the help of Chase, locates the crashed car in the ravine and finds evidence of the giant lizard. They attempt to destroy the creature, but that only makes it more vicious…

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Reviews:

“Looking more cheaply made than your average Syfy channel movie, Gila! is undemanding and fairly entertaining with an amusing CGI creature (designed by Killer Klowns from Outer Space’s Charles Chiodo) and a cast imitating the cheesy earnestness of small town characters in fifties and sixties monster movies (with nods to old-school sexism, the Communist threat, and polio).” Eric Cotenas, DVD Beaver

“First off, it’s set in the 50s and is a remake of the 1959 The Giant Gila Monster. So that’s cool, a throw-back to the old style, but they only got it half right. Sometimes the extras are dressed in modern clothes and it always seems like a high school set that someone who didn’t even live during the 50s designed. It’s part homage, part spoof, a mix of silly and serious that could have been much more solidified.” Olie Coen, DVD Talk

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“The monster attack scenes are fun, especially when they involve two drunk Irishmen driving away from the giant lizard in reverse. But they’re spread thin. There are endless scenes involving the characters figuring out what the monster is, making you say, ‘get on with it, already!’ There’s also entirely too much driving around and inane dialogue.” Horror News

” …Wynorski pulled off a very rare feat in making a pic of this ilk entertaining. And to his credit, he’s got a clear, albeit basic vision that he brings to life relatively well. He certainly siphons some memorable performances from a series of relative unknowns, and he keeps a certain degree of synergy coursing through the cast. That’s respectable. Matt Molgaard, Horrorfreak News

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“The effects work here is sub Syfy quality which is likely why the creature is glimpsed for mere moments. When the film is titled Gila! that’s gonna be an issue now don’t you think? Set in the 1950 the low-budget of this one didn’t exactly make it easy to capture the vintage aesthetic – they give it a good try but the styles sorta come and go from scene to scene.” Ken Kastenhuber, McBastard’s Mausoleum

 

“There are some historical anachronisms that pop up occasionally, but Gila! is a low-budget monster movie playing 1950s dress-up, and it doesn’t aspire to be much more than that. If that doesn’t sound like fun to you, then it probably won’t be.” Christian Bates-Hardy, Rock! Shock! Pop!

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“The soundtrack is all rock n’ roll music, lots of muscle cars are used that are fun to look at, and again those two female leads make for an entertaining yarn that just about doesn’t outstay it’s welcome […] Gila! does nothing at all original and has really bad special effects but it is feel good and a great B-Movie, the acting is decent also which is a big plus in my book!” Daniel Simmonds, The Rotting Zombie

Cast and characters:

  • Bruce Munson … Johnny Langostina
  • Adrienne Atkins … Betty
  • Brian Patrick McCulley … Don
  • Brian Gross … Chase Winstead – 2001 ManiacsBuffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Chase Adams … Pike
  • Madeline Voges … Lisa
  • Bone Ramsay … Dave
  • Vinnie Van Dolsen … Rick
  • Jesse Janzen … Waco Bob
  • Christina De Rosa … Carla
  • Dave Haney … Joe (as David Haney
  • Tom Sparx … Bill
  • Callie-Nycole Burk … Elsa
  • Robert Hay Smith … Lars
  • Micheal Price … Clete
  • Terence Knox … Sheriff Parker
  • Kelli Maroney … Wilma – Hell’s Kitty;Transylvania Twist; Not of This Earth (1988); Chopping Mall; Night of the Comet
  • Jenna Ruiz … Missy Winstead
    Ellen Kingston … Dorothy Winstead
  • Julie McCullough … Vera
  • Gerard Pauwels … Mayor Wheeler
  • James Wolford Hardin … Karl Swenson
  • Judy Joseph Crippin … Maybelle Swenson
  •  Steve Anderson … Injured Driver
  • Jeff Bodart … Ambulance Driver

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The Awakening – UK, 2011

The Awakening is a 2011 British supernatural horror feature film directed Nick Murphy (The Mist TV series; Dracula TV series) from a screenplay co-written with Stephen Volk (The Guardian; The Kiss; Gothic). The movie stars Rebecca Hall, Dominic West, Imelda Staunton and Isaac Hempstead-Wright.

Plot:

In 1921, England is overwhelmed by the loss and grief of World War I. Hoax exposer Florence Cathcart visits a boarding school to explain sightings of a child ghost. Everything she believes unravels as the ‘missing’ begin to show themselves…

Reviews [may contain spoilers]:

“Cinematographer Eduard Grau maintains a healthy, overcast atmosphere throughout, even when things go indoors, helping give the ghosts, in all their forms, an expectedly welcome place to manifest themselves within.  Everything feels like a nice British chamber Guignol, mildly stodgy and claustrophobic…” Kyle Saubert, Allusions of Grandeur

” … a ghost story with a nice kick and deeply felt emotions. The surface details suggest a banal return to a formulaic haunting, yet The Awakening, while imperfect, captures an intensity of gradually eroding conviction that carries the iffy material all the way to the intriguing head-scratcher of an ending.” Brian Orndorf, Blu-ray.com

The Awakening unfolds in a purposely calculated manner that matches the supernatural literature of its setting’s post-Victorian era. Some call that boring; I call it a slow ratcheting of suspense, and the lovely, headstrong Hall serves as a terrific guide through the good ol’ ghost story.” Rod Lott, Flick Attack

“I found the final, colossal revelation to be contrived, but there are some nicely creepy moments, and director and co-writer Nick Murphy interestingly dramatises some of the neuroses feeding the appetite for ghostly phenomena…” Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“Some of the creepiest stuff actually happens outside of the ghost hunting and what you don’t see.  It’s not a scare-fest, but it’s intense and well-written. It’s absolutely stunning to look at in that gloomy, foggy, muted colors way you want your British ghost stories to be.” Horror Honeys

” …the film has a strong and well-written series of themes that run throughout about fear, loneliness and the guilts of the past. Perhaps the least satisfying section of the film is when it feels the need to have to throw in a M. Night Shyamalan-esque conceptual spin…” Richard Scheib, Moria

“The trouble was, there was a very decent ghost story that could have been drawn from this groundwork, it’s just that the filmmakers chose to plump for sensation (loud music courtesy of Daniel Pemberton overemphasising every fright) over a nice, creepy atmosphere.” Graeme Clark, The Spinning Image

“Rarely does a horror film make the back of your neck tingle with the calibre of its performances as well as its jumps and jolts – but The Awakening, a beautifully mounted ghost story in the style of The Turn of the Screw, provides chills of both kinds.” Robbie Collin, The Telegraph

” …familiar goings-on featuring the requisite dank shadowy halls and dead children mouthing CGI-stretched Edvard Munch screams. Nick Murphy’s big screen directorial debut has good atmospherics that only go so far to prop up a mystery whose overdue explanation is convoluted and underwhelming.” Dennis Harvey, Variety

Cast and characters:

  • Rebecca Hall … Florence Cathcart
  • Dominic West … Robert Mallory
  • Imelda Staunton … Maud Hill
  • Isaac Hempstead Wright … Tom Hill
  • Shaun Dooley … Malcolm McNair
  • Joseph Mawle … Edward Judd
  • Diana Kent … Harriet Cathcart
  • Richard Durden … Alexander Cathcart
  • John Shrapnel … Reverend Hugh Purslow
  • Cal MacAninch … Freddie Strickland
  • Lucy Cohu … Constance Strickland
  • Anastasia Hille … Dorothy Vandermeer
  • Andrew Havill … George Vandermeer
  • Tilly Vosburgh … Vera Flood
  • Ian Hanmore … Albert Flood
  • Steven Cree … Sergeant Evans
  • Alfie Field … Victor Parry
  • Felix Soper … Julian Dowden
  • Sidney Johnston … John Franklin

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James Karen – actor

James Karen – November 28, 1923 to October 23, 2018 – was an American character actor. He was best known by horror/fantasy fans, and probably by the wider public too, for his roles in Poltergeist (1982), The Return of the Living Dead (1985) and Invaders from Mars (1986). He died, aged ninety-four, having appeared in over two hundred TV and movies roles including a cameo appearance in 2018 comedy horror Cynthia.

Karen was born Jacob Karnofsky in Wilkes-Barre, in northeastern Pennsylvania, the son of Russian-born Jewish immigrants Mae (née Freed) and Joseph H. Karnofsky, a produce trader. As a young man, Karen was recruited into a production at the Little Theatre of Wilkes-Barre. He later attended the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre in New York.

His big break came when he was asked to understudy Karl Malden in the original Broadway production of A Streetcar Named Desire. Beyond theatrical roles, Karen went on to play numerous characters on popular TV shows such as Starsky and Hutch, The Bionic Woman and The Rockford Files. He once remarked: “People don’t know my name, but they know my face because I’ve done so damn much work.”

 

His first notable film role, billed as Jim Karen, was in 1965 in the low-budget Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster playing Dr. Adam Steele. Often cited as one of the worst movies of all-time, Robert Gaffney’s sci-fi pic is undeniably great fun for fans of trash cinema.

As previously mentioned, one of Karen’s best-known roles were in the low-budget horror comedy The Return of the Living Dead, in which he starred as the manager of a medical warehouse who inadvertently releases a military gas that re-animates the dead. Karen and Thom Matthews proved so popular with audiences, they both returned for the sequel in 1987, playing different roles because their characters were both killed in the first movie.

In the original 1982 Poltergeist he played Mr. Teague the greedy real-estate developer who built the Californian community of Cuesta Verde on the site of a former cemetery.

In a 2006 interview about The Return of the Living Dead (1985), Karen said that he helped write most scenes of his character: “It was the deal where he figures out he’s becoming a zombie and decides to incinerate himself in the crematorium…He kisses his wedding ring as he goes in. It was a very emotional scene, but it also got me out of being one of the rain-drenched zombies milling around outside the place at the end of the film. I didn’t really want to do all that muddy stuff”

Selected filmography:

Cynthia (2018)

Bender (2016)

America’s Most Haunted (2013)

Dark and Stormy Night (2009)

Trail of the Screaming Forehead (2007)

Mulholland Drive (2001)

Piranha (1995)

Congo (1995)

Future Shock (1994)

The Unborn (1991)

The Willies (1990)

Girlfriend from Hell (1989)

Return of the Living Dead Part II (1987)

Invaders from Mars (1986)

The Return of the Living Dead (1985)

Jagged Edge (1985)

Time Walker (1982)

Poltergeist (1982)

The China Syndrome (1979)

Capricorn One (1977)

The Bionic Woman (TV series, 1976)

The Invisible Man (TV series, 1975)

Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster (1965)

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President’s Day – USA, 2010

‘Hail to the Chief… or he’ll hack you to pieces!’

President’s Day is a 2010 American dark comedy slasher horror feature film directed by Chris LaMartina (Call Girl of Cthulhu; WNUF Halloween SpecialWitch’s Brew) from a screenplay co-written with Jimmy George. The Midnight Studios production stars Bennie Mack McCoy IV, Lizzy Denning, Nicolette le Faye and Ryan Thomas.

Plot:

It’s campaign season, and the students of Lincoln High are buzzing about who’s going to be class president… But when a psycho dressed as Abraham Lincoln starts hacking up students, the candidates must run… for their lives.

One-by-one, the mighty Lincoln Lambs are being slaughtered by the merciless maniac in the stovepipe hat. Everyone is dying for a vote…

Reviews:

“While the film is populated with the requisite amount of blood and boobs, it’s a shame that some of the FX work comes off as even less natural than a certain pair of breasts in the film. Chris does a fair job at cutting around a few of the lesser gags, but, with a film that takes place mostly in broad daylight it’s hard to disguise all the flaws in the lackluster gore gags.” Bloody Disgusting

” …the giddy splattery tone is set and stays on course for its swift, well-paced 81-minute running time. With a body count in the double-digits and several doses of busty top-popping, this is a tasty beer n’ chips programmer with a barrel of blood and a whole lotta heart.” Horror 101 with Dr. AC

President’s Day is a solid entry that deserves a place amongst the slasher elite. There are many new-age stalk and slashers that get lost in their attempts to either try something different or pay endless tributes to the hits of the eighties. Chris LaMartina proves here that all you need to do is include enough of the recognised ingredients and have a bit of a ball with them.” Luisito Joaquin Gonzalez, A Slash Above…

Cast and characters:

  • Bennie Mack McCoy IV … Barry
  • Lizzy Denning … Joanna
  • Nicolette le Faye … Chelsea
  • Ryan Thomas … Officer Kennedy
  • George Stover … Mr. Wright
  • Shawn C. Phillips … Dennis
  • Ruby Larocca … Michelle
  • Paul Fahrenkopf … Detective Kurtz
  • Andrea Hearn … Jenna
  • Lee Armstrong … Janitor
  • Chris Magorian … Eddie Mills
  • Mary Jane Oelke … Mrs. Frederica
  • Ron LaMartina … Mr. Roemer
  • Matthew Bowerman … Merv Perkins

Production:

Shot in 21 days for a budget of $5,000 in the Baltimore area.

Release:

The film had a limited release on Presidents’ Day in 2010 and was released to DVD on April 9 the same year.

Trivia:

Not to be confused with the 2016 movie of the same name which features past-presidents as zombies.

Related:

President Evil (2018)

The Tripper (2006)

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