Thanks for checking out my annual Halloween special! I know everyone’s busy today carving pumpkins and stalking babysitters and punishing all those who don’t make the annual tribute, so let’s dive right in!
Appears in: When the World Stopped: A Collection of Infectious Stories (Owl Hollow Press)
Release Date: October 2020
Summary: Sophie’s quarantine takes an odd turn when she develops a telepathic connection with the sketchy guy loitering near her building. A pseudoscientific rom-com about these weird times.
Buy a copy of When the World Stopped from Owl Hollow Press.
Appears in: On Time (Transmundane Press)
Release Date: Sept. 27/2020
Summary: A dimension-hopping war arrives at a downtown police station after a trailer on cinder blocks materializes in the middle of traffic. The young woman in the holding cell has a strange story to tell – if she lives long enough.
Buy a copy of On Time from Transmundane Press.
Appears in: Night Frights Issue #1 (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing)
Release Date: Sept. 13/2020
Summary: Concerned about its influence on students, the teachers at Miskatonic Elementary School decide to cancel Halloween. Deprived of their annual tribute, a cabal of monsters and demons plot their nastiest trick yet.
Buy a copy of Night Frights from Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing.
Appears in: Weird Mask (Issue 24)
Release Date: May/2020
Summary: Two globetrotting academics, one British, one American, get stranded in a storm. As the rains fall and the sky darkens, they find shelter in a mountain shack, realizing too late that this sanctuary may be more dangerous than the wilderness they sought refuge from.
Buy a copy of Weird Mask, or keep reading below.
Reading Brendan Vidito’s Nightmares in Ecstasy is like entering a basement laboratory to find hundreds of unspeakable things sealed in jars, peering through the murk to glimpse eyeballs and tentacles and other mutated appendages that appear unnervingly human, but somehow not.
Richard Stanley’s H.P. Lovecraft adaptation The Colour Out Of Space is a wonderfully weird cosmic horror freak-out featuring Nicolas Cage at his most bizarre.
If you believe the reviews, The Turning is a turn-off.
Audiences and critics seem to be united on that. The ghost story earned an “F” rating on CinemaScore. One writer for the Irish Times claimed that the film was such a “waste of time,” readers shouldn’t even bother to skim his review.
I’m not going to say these people are wrong, just that it would be a mistake to listen to them. While not perfect, The Turning is visually striking, well-acted, consistently scary and surprisingly potent, with a palpable sense of menace building throughout.
One Cut of the Dead is a brilliant long con of a movie, with a lot of heart and even more guts.
It’s probably best to go into Robert Eggers’s latest film blind – although after seeing it, I’m happy to report, I still couldn’t tell you what precisely was going on.
IT Chapter Two won’t make a lot of sense if you haven’t seen the first installment, but it’ll be immensely satisfying for fans – and may even win over franchise agnostics.
Bong Joon-ho’s black comedy Parasite starts out quietly clever and builds to a carefully orchestrated mayhem.