Movies For Halloween: HBO Documentary Edition

October 2, 2015

There are three types of people in this world; Those who by the grace of God can afford HBO, people who are crafty enough to steal HBO, and people who are really missing out. If you are one of the first two, these are two documentaries that are on HBO.

The Jinx:The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst (2015)


My friend and fellow Off the Edge collaborator/HBO fanboy, Peter, came over to my place one day to have an HBO Chromecasting session. He raved about this six part Documentary series called The Jinx and suggested we star watching it. I was a little reluctant to start a six hour long Documentary, but Peter was convincing. We ended up finishing it within 24 hours.

The Jinx is a Documentary that fell into place by fortune. Andrew Jarecki directed a movie All Good Things in 2010. It was based on the story of a suspected murderer named Robert Durst. Robert Durst is a member of the Durst family, one of the richest families in Manhattan. They own the real estate for a good portion of lower Manhattan including but not limited to, the fucking Freedom Tower. My point is, they are super wealthy. Durst saw All Good Things and contacted Jarecki with the desire to tell his side of the story.

The Jinx tells the story of the murders and disappearances of people that all have one thing in common; Robert Durst. It chronicles several different cases involving Robert Durst as a suspect. I don’t want to say much more then that because the way the story unfolds throughout the series is downright shocking. This is one of the most chilling documentaries I have ever seen. The interviews with none other than Robert Durst himself are riveting and will make the hair stand on end the way a really great true crime story will. The Jinx isn’t necessarily horror but it does give a great look into the life of a real life  monster, It is definitely worth the six hours it will take you to watch it.



Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (2015)

Ok,this one is not horror or related to horror in any way. I felt compelled to mention it because it did two things for me; it made me live in actual fear of Scientology, and it renewed my fear of religion in general. This film is basically the definitive piece on Scientology. It tells you everything you need to know to completely understand the modern debacle that is Scientology. It provides a condensed history of the organization and an introduction to Dianetics, which is the principle belief of Scientology. It contains tell all interviews with former high ranking members of the church, which highlight the abuses and misdoing of the church as a whole. Going Clear is a fantastic documentary that I found to be very unsettling and downright creepy. It is definitely a must see.




The Green Inferno (Eli Roth, 2015)

October 1, 2015

I can’t say that I am a huge fan of Eli Roth. I did like Hostel (2005) but I really despised Hostel: Part II (2007), so I wasn’t really sure what to expect going into this film. I decided I needed to see it just to see what all the buzz was about. Much like past Roth films it was criticized for being over the top in violence and gore. I went in with a pretty open mind. I gotta say I do enjoy a good splatterfest from time to time.

The Green Inferno definitely delivers on gore, like all things with Greg Nicotero’s name attached to it. The gore effects were downright beautiful, if you find that sort of thing beautiful. Nicotero once again shows us that he is the best in the business for gore effects. I gotta give credit where it is due and commend the special effects. That being said there isn’t much more for you other than that. The movie lacks almost everything else. The characters are one dimensional, and the story is in parts downright silly.(I’m talking diarrhea gags and one of the dumbest marijuana jokes I have ever seen.)  I had a really hard time trying to decide if this movie needed to take itself more seriously or less seriously. If it were either of those it could have been a lot better. A lot of folks will say “come on man, it’s an exploitation piece, what do you expect?” To those people I say “fuck you dude, movies are supposed to be first and foremost stories.” If I’m being honest I really didn’t find this movie scary or even suspenseful. By the end of this movie I was really just waiting for it to be over. I had no emotional attachment to any of the characters and didn’t really care what happened to any of them. This movie is highly influenced by Cannibal Holocaust (1980) which if you are an avid reader of the blog you will know I really fucking hate that movie. If Eli Roth set out to give us another film like that he totally succeeded. He made a really gross shitty movie with an even shittier ending, just like Cannibal Holocaust. So good job there Mr. Roth, mission accomplished.

If you are looking for a movie to watch with your friends and be completely disgusted by violence and gore, it might be worth the watch. It could be called a novelty at best. If you’re like me and like a little bit of substance in your films (yes, even in horror) this film probably isn’t worth your time or money.



The Night of the Hunter (1955, Charles Laughton)

October 9, 2014

Danny- Oh dear readers, what a way to start off the countdown!! Charles Laughton, golden age Hollywood actor, directed only one movie in his life and this was it. The Night of the Hunter is a film the Joe has been telling me to watch for years. I’m here to say that I was a fool for not listening to him. This film is one of the best pieces of art I have ever had the pleasure to view in my entire life. I know what you’re thinking, “wow, really selling that shit aren’t you?” Yeah, Yeah I am. Rarely have I seen a film that’s aesthetic value is as great as the story and the social commentary. Let’s start with the visual style. If you are a frequent reader of our blog or a personal friend, you’ll know that both Joe and I are huge fans of the German Expressionism art movement of the 1920’s. These silent films use visual distortion of reality to convey mood. Notable films in the movement include Metropolis, Nosferatu, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, and M. These achieve a very surreal distortion of reality by employing a few different methods including; asymmetrical and geometrically distorted set pieces, high contrast dark and light visuals (chiaroscuro, for all you art geeks), low key lighting, and dynamic use of shadows. All of these things are played with to convey various moods. German Expressionism directly gave rise to the American Gothic Horror films, (Frankenstein, Dracula, The Wolfman ect.) and Film Noir (Double Indemnity, The Big Sleep, The Maltese Falcon). I would always joke to Joe about making our own German Expressionism piece, and he would second the motion. We talked about giving new life to the art form and bringing it to the English Speaking world again (because we are that cool). I said all these things not knowing that Charles Loughton did that very thing in 1955. The Night of the Hunter was a box office flop and was not very well received by audiences or critics at the time. That’s all fine and good because it quite clear that this movie was either way ahead of its time or way behind. This film uses Expressionism to create what I can only describe as an American fairytale nightmare. It tells the story of a young boy whose father robbed and back and was hung for murdering two people in the process. While in prison he meets a mysterious man who claims himself to be a preacher. The Preacher finds out that only the man’s small children know the location of the stolen $10,000. When he is released from prison he sets out to reclaim the money. This film is really a scathing critic of American society, (which hasn’t changed as much as we like to think since the 1950’s in some respects) it challenges the roles of women, the way in which children are treated by society and also the way religion is used to control people in various ways.

I knew it was gonna be hard to not just write a paper on this movie instead of just a mini review and I was totally right. This is the best movie I have seen in a very long time. It speaks across the generations and delivers a message that is still relevant today. This is the only American art film from this particular area that I have seen that can stand toe to toe with it foreign contemporaries (Ingmar Bergman and the like). Not only does it have and amazing story and social commentary its visual style is downright breathtaking. During this film I said to Joe, “Every frame of this movie is like a painting that I would hang in my house.” Seriously see this fucking movie.

I am very proud to give this film a 10/10

Joe –

The Night of the Hunter is one of the most unique films I’ve ever seen. It defies classification, but if pressed I’d call it a gothic horror fairy tale which owes a huge debt to German Expressionism. I could write a paper on the cinematography alone. It expertly blends realism and surrealism. At times buildings appear too long and obtuse, while shadows appear stretched and out of proportion. At the same time the essence of Night of the Hunter is very real and American. The story addresses and comments on religion, power, and gender roles in society. These are all themes that are very American at heart. This film was released in 1955 and was truly ahead of it’s time. The story is told through the eyes of two children, whose father leaves them stolen cash, before he is imprisoned and hung. The Hunter (Robert Mitchum) then enters the film and woos the newly widowed mother of the two children. He does this to try and get close to the children in order to figure out where their father’s money is. The world that is portrayed in this film is dark and twisted. As one character says, “It’s a hard world for little things”. The children try to get away from the Hunter, but are again and again chased down and forced to run again. Robert Mitchum’s character becomes the embodiment of evil as he continuously haunts the children. There is no safety in Night of the Hunter. Only temporary respite, before another nightmarish encounter. This is what really brings the horror to the movie. We see the world through the eyes of these children and see how helpless they are. The adults around them are either blind to the evil following them or completely helpless to stop it. The Hunter is religious to a fault and believes a woman’s job in this world is to bear children and that’s it. However, there is a hypocrisy that lies underneath these surface values. We soon realize that the Hunter doesn’t believe what he’s saying. He’s simply saying what he has to in order to empower himself further. The Hunter is a monolithic giant that embodies traditional American values and power structures. He is an unstoppable giant that steamrolls past everyone and everything. However, at the end of the film a confrontation takes place in which someone finally stands up to the Hunter. It is a powerful commentary on the power of the individual. Change can happen, but not if the people are blind to what needs to be changed. This review has barely touched upon the surface of what The Night of the Hunter has to offer and I strongly urge you to check it out for yourself! Sadly, this movie was a flop in 1955 and Charles Laughton (the film’s director) never made another movie again and died seven years later. The Night of the Hunter endures though and it still holds up as a unique masterpiece that was decades ahead of it’s time.




Horrathon 2014: Horror International

October 7, 2014

I know what you’re thinking, it’s October already and Off The Edge hasn’t been posting for their annual Halloween Horror countdown. Well we’re totally still doing it, better later than never I guess. Our list this year is mostly films from around the world (countries that still make actual horror films) because The English speaking world seems to not be able make decent ones these days. A few of these are supposed to be really really disturbing so watch along at your own risk.

1. The Night of the Hunter (1955)

2. Maniac (2012)

3.Pandorum (2009)

4. Troll Hunter (2010

5. Frontier(s) (2007)

6. Macabre (Darah) (2009)

7. Calvaire (2004)

8. Beyond the Black Rainbow (2010)

9. The Collection (2012)

10. August Underground (2001)

11. Irreversible (2002)

12. Resolution (212)

13. Confessions (2010)

14. Man Bites Dog (1992)

15. Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

16. Shivers (1975) “They Came From Within”

17. Visitor Q (2001)

18. They Eyes Without a Face (1960)

19. Sleep Tight (2011)

20. Extracted (2012)


Movies For Halloween: The List

September 21, 2013

I know what you’re thinking. Every year the Halloween season seem to get longer. We here at Off The Edge have already completely hijacked the entire month of October with our yearly countdown of horror films. Truth be told we really look forward to this shit all year. We usually start thinking about our choices sometime in the summer. This year we have decided to post the list a few weeks before October begins in case you want to watch along with us. Both of us have chosen a dozen horror films and we have arranged them in an alternating fashion. Many of our selections are of course on Netflix Instant play but I will also link you to a place where you can Torrent the film (for those internet thieves out there). Without further ado here is the list. Watch along if you wanna be cool like us. Have an awesome Halloween!


Alligator (1980) –


Mother (2009)


Creature From the Black Lagoon  (1954)


Jug Face (2013) –


Frankenstein’s Army (2013)


Taxidermia (2006)


Freaks (1932)


Noroi: The Curse (2005)


Event Horizon (1997)

Inside (2007)


The House on Haunted Hill (1959)

Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)


Badlands (1973)


The Wicker Man (1973)


The Hour of the Wolf (1968)


American Mary (2012)

Absentia (2011)

Kiss of the Damned (2012)

The People Under the Stairs (1991)

Pulse (2001)

Blood Runs Cold (2011)

Red, White and Blue (2010)

Resolution (2012)

Berberian Sound Studio (2012)


Sinister (Scott Derrickson 2012)

October 20, 2012

Welcome to Movies for Halloween Bonus Edition: Part 2: Return to Bonus edition. This Film is not on the list but I saw it in theaters this weekend and thought I’d write a review for it.

So it’s about 2 A.M. as I am writing this and I just got back from seeing the movie Sinister at the good ole cinema and it left quite an impression on me. First off this movie was pretty damn scary. It’s one of those movie that stay with you when the lights finally come back on at the end. You can always tell by that moment how good a movie was. The hair on the back of my neck was still standing up well into the parking lot.

This movie has a lot of typical annoying horror movie behavior but that can easily be forgiven. It usually is among the horror viewer. Not only does the main character like to investigate creepy shit and then find said creepy shit and never tell anyone about it, while he does it he never seems to want to turn on the lights while doing so. (who can blame him though electricity is fucking expensive these days) These extremely dark scenes really contribute to the atmosphere of the film. Much like in Neil Marshal’s The Descent but to a lesser extent. This film also has great cinematography while only serves to contribute to the sense of terror throughout the film. There is one scene in particular right when the shit starts to hit the fan so to speak that uses long steadicam shots following our main character down the hall ways of his pitch black house. I don’t wanna give this scene away but you will most likely know it when you see it. It is one of the more frightening scenes in the movie.

The plot is also just plain creepy and makes a shift from the natural to the supernatural in a way that I really enjoyed. I really didn’t know much about this movie going into it so I had no idea if it was going to be a supernatural horror or not. The plot is that of a washed up true crime novel author that is trying to recapture the success of a book he wrote a decade ago. He moves his family to a small town where the murder that is the subject of his next book took place. What he doesn’t tell his family is that the house that they are moving into is the very same house where the murder took place. He then finds a box of old 8mm home movie in the attic that depict graphic murders including the one that he is writing his book about. Instead of calling police to report the new evidence he decides to figure it all out himself because, hey it would make a great true crime book right? We then get to follow the main character on his investigation that becomes more and more disturbing as more information comes to light. We see him get consumed by the mystery and we are consumed right alone with him. The whole story also has a looming sense of doom to it. Through out the film you slowly realize that it is not going to end well for these characters and we can do nothing but watch it happen. It sort of reminds me of the novel The Ruins Scott Smith. (which is the shit. I highly recommend the book, the film adaptation sucks hard compared to the novel)

Another unique thing that I like about this film is that probably around 80% of all the scenes are just us watching the main character, played by Ethan Hawk, unraveling this disturbing web of murders. So much of the film rests on the ability of this one character to hold our attention and bring us along on the road to obsession. Ethan Hawk does a great job of this. You actually feel yourself being drawn into the whole mess just as much as he is. When he is investigating creepy shit going on in his house you feel like it is your own house and you are right along side of him.

This film also uses found footage sequences to terrifying effect but not completely relying on them like so many of the horror films today that they seem to make in some lame ass factory somewhere, probably in Utah. It’s has traditional story telling but uses found footage to enhance the story, which is great because it is really the best of both worlds. You get the really strong scares from the restricted narration of the found footage but you don’t have to sit through prolonged scenes using the technique that aren’t scary and do little to build tension. Lets be honest watching many found footage films these days is exhausting. Some scenes in the Paranormal Activity franchise have all the thrills of sitting and watching fucking surveillance footage from a bank or some equally boring shit.

All in all I thought this movie was great and it is money well spent to go see it in theaters, which is really the most exciting way to watch horror films provided you go when there aren’t too many goddamned teenagers screaming and making all kinds of noise because the consideration for fellow human beings part of their brain has yet to develop. Anyways that’s a whole other subject. Definitely see this movie. 8.5/10


Black Sabbath (Mario Bava & Salvatore Billitteri. 1963)

October 20, 2012

Danny- We here at Off the Edge Productions love horror anthologies. We even have our very own horror anthology about 75% written and early reviews say it’s the greatest one ever made once it’s made. For those that don’t know what an anthology is, take a goddamn literature class. Just kidding. Anthologies are a single film made up of several independent stories. Many times each story is done by a different director, which are the coolest kinds in my humble opinion. Black Sabbath is an Italian Horror anthology from the early 60’s. A Black Sabbath is the day which Satanists perform the Black Mass which is a parody of the Catholic mass. It is traditionally done at 3:30 A.M. on Friday morning. The more you know.

And yes the English Rock band took their name from the English title of this film.

Of all the horror anthologies I have seen Black Sabbath is probably more toward the bottom of my list of favorites. That is not to say that it is bad there are just a lot of great horror anthologies out there. I really like the first two parts but felt the third part “the Wurdulack” I felt was too long and dragged. For some reason it was twice as long as the other two segments I wish they would have just shortened it and done a fourth segment.

The bottom line for this film is that time really wasn’t kind to it. It isn’t quite old enough to have the classic thing going for it and the atmosphere just isn’t there. I’m sure I would have loved it if I saw it in the 1960’s. If you are looking for a good Horror Anthology I would point you in the direction of Trick R’ Treat, Creepshow, Three Extremes or the greatest yet Off the Edge untitled Horror Anthology slated to be released sometime in the next decade.

I would recommend watching this film unless you can get a hold of the European version because not only is the version on Netflix the Censored American version and it is also overdubbed into English which fuckin sucks. 6/10

Joe- Like Danny said we both love horror anthologies and if you’re fiending for one look for Trick R Treat or the classic film Creepshow. And if you’re really, really desperate I guess you could watch Black Sabbath. This movie tells three different stories that involve ghosts and vampires. The film is Italian made, but the version we watched on Netflix is the American version which features less gore and subtle story alterations to get past American censors. Oh, and on top of all that it was dubbed. All of this definitely contributes to a less than satisfying viewing experience. The other problem I have with Black Sabbath is that it’s not really scary and it doesn’t have the atmosphere that early horror films had. It’s kind of a middle of the road experience where you can tell most of the twists and nothing is really shocking.

I think I might have really loved this movie if I was a 20 year old Italian kid in 1963…but I wasn’t. I would like to see the European version of this film uncut to see if it makes a difference, but as is Black Sabbath is an average film that does a decent job of holding your attention, but it doesn’t do much else.


Watch it and judge for yourself on Netflix: