The last Horrrah of October 2017

Okay, it’s time for a bunch of modern horror quickies, from creatures to clowns, to ghosts and girls.

CIRCUS KANE (2017)

circus kane cover

It’s killer clowns, reality show horror, and haunted attraction horror all wrapped into one film. And it’s fast-paced and atmospheric enough to entertain.

circus kane cast

Plot? Simple. Internet celebrities score a chance to be on the reality show of a has-been horror personality making a comeback. The one to make it all the way through the haunted attraction scores a load of money.

Doesn’t take long for the group to realize that contestants are actually being killed, and orchestrating most of the horrors is a freaky clown. The clown handles some of the killings slasher style, but the place is also loaded with booby traps the group must avoid.

circus kane clown

Gore is good, guys are cute, atmosphere is nice and horroresque. Hell, just watch it to fill some down time with horror.

BE AFRAID (2017)

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Our boy Leo of Charmed stars, so you immediately feel at home with this horror flick. Brian Krause moves into a new home with his wife, young son, and teen son and they are soon being terrorized by ghosts or supernatural entities of some sort.

be afraid krause and teen son

The young son keeps seeing a “man” in his room, Krause has dreams of a big demon hand attacking him, and several locals start chipping away at the family, trying to warn them of some sort of danger. The kid is obsessed with an old train tunnel in the woods, shown to him by a ghost girl.

be afraid ghost

It’s all standard haunted house crap, but then the teenage son goes to a party in the woods and everyone starts getting slaughtered by a monstrous presence! That was an unexpected change of pace.

be afraid tub

The plot definitely become overinflated from there, but at least there’s a cool creature and some gore. My guess is this one will show up on SyFy at some point.

THE DIABOLICAL (2015)

 diabolical cover

The Diabolical is another easy one to digest since it stars horror fave Ali Larter .She’s a single mom with a young son and younger daughter. The young son complains of a man in his closet, and pretty soon the closet case is terrorizing them, showing in spurts before disappearing in a burst of light each time.

diabolical ali larter

While the creature man is fricking creepy as hell, I couldn’t help but be distracted by the fact that because he was bald and wearing a white shirt, he also kind of looked a lot like Mr. Clean. But there are some seriously nerve-racking scenes of him chasing the family that makes this fairly average haunted house/supernatural entity flick scarier than the usual.

diabolical washing machine

There’s also an undeniable theme about the absence of a male figure in the home that reminded me of The Babadook a bit, yet it’s better because there’s no screaming brat. The only thing that ruined the movie for me was a cheesy “spiritual” sequence near the ending.

PATCHWORK (2015)

 patchwork cover

This is a goofy fun horror comedy, in which several young women find themselves living as one being after their various body parts are sewn together by some psycho to create one perfect woman. The premise alone makes this stand out in the horror heap.

patchwork 3 girls

The girl(s) decides they must uncover the truth of who did this to them. Along the way, they have fun killing off various scumbags they had run-ins with the night they were all murdered.

patchwork axe

Pretty much in the tradition of teen horror spoofs like Idle Hands, Boltneck, and My Boyfriend’s Back, this one doesn’t have a lot of meat to it, but just takes you for a silly horror ride. The soundtrack rocks, with loads of modern new wave tracks from the likes of StaG., Corsica Arts Club, Shy Youth, and more. And this dude is hilarious…too bad he doesn’t last.

patchwork victim

EXTRATERRESTRIAL (2014)

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OMG, it’s Emily Perkins of Ginger Snaps in an alien movie.

Well, that didn’t last. But still, this flick from the director of Grave Encounters is sort of a tongue-in-cheek, teenage version of alien abduction films like Altered or Night Feeders.

extraterrestrial cast

Gil Bellows of Ally McBeal fame is a cop in a small town where there have been various cattle mutilations. So it’s no surprise to the viewer when a group of friends comes to a cabin for a weekend getaway and sees a major UFO crash into the woods nearby…and footprints leading away from the craft. Uh-oh…

extraterrestrial ufo

Luckily, horror icon Michael Ironside is their crazy neighbor, and he knows a thing or two about aliens. Because these fuckers are relentless. It is alien insanity as the kids are chased and mutilated for over an hour of the film. But shit gets really trippy near the end, and there’s an anal probing of the hot guy in the film that puts some gay fisting porn to shame…

extraterrestrial probe1

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extraterrestrial probe3

THE SANDMAN (2017)

sandman cover

Hilary Duff may be the bigger star, but Haylie Duff has become the horror queen, so she gets my vote as the ultimate Duffster (although “Beat of My Heart” is still a kick ass Hilary song).

sandman haylie

Here, Haylie plays a woman who takes in her young niece after her brother’s death. Right from the start, some sort of supernatural force begins messing with shit in Haylie’s house. Her niece is convinced she has the ability to make “The Sandman” come to life from one of her favorite books.

How right she is.

sandman monster

There’s some good creepy atmosphere and a spooky Sandman for a while, complete with some kills.

sandman tobin bell

Then shit gets all Firestarter, with Tobin Bell playing the big bad head of the organization that wants to harness her powers. Amanda Wyss, Freddy Kreuger’s very first victim from way back when, has a cameo as a therapist. She’s the best part of the second half of the film, which takes a ridiculous turn after the initial setup.

STICKMAN (2017)

stickman cover

One of 2 Sheldon Wilson films that premiered on SyFy for October 2017, this is the one to skip. Go right for NeverKnock, considering the premise is essentially the same; a bunch of teens are chased around town by a creature. NeverKnock takes place on Halloween and has a cooler monster, so that would be my pick.

In this one, a young woman locked away in a mental institution for killing her parents when she was a child is transferred to an all-girl facility. She reads a poem with her new friends an unleashes the creature that killed her parents.

stickman finger bite

But she never expected Stickman to step outside her dreams. Yeah, there are some ElmStreet elements to the film, but as the girls spend the whole film running away from the creature while trying to figure out how to kill it, only one moment entertained me – Stickman attacks them while they’re in a car.

stickman gore

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES.

I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at www.facebook.com/BoysBearsandScares.

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