Monday, 30 January 2012

Nefarious Films Update

No reason for this picture - I just like spiders.  And skeletons.
January Update

Hello there good people who read this blog.  Just thought I'd write a quick message explaining what's going on here at Nefarious Films currently.

You may have noticed a bit of a drop off in new articles just lately.  Whilst that hasn't been entirely un-Skyrim related, there has also been a few major changes going on 'behind the scenes' as it were.  Whereas, the site has in the past included writing from regular contributors and some one-off guest writers for the time being I'm stripping it all right back and making it simply my own reviews and features.  We are not pone of the major horror websites and I don't really want to be either.  I'm not here to cover news stories on each and every new horror release or to keep you updated on all the news stories about them.  There's plenty of other sites that do that and quite frankly, I haven't got anything new to add to the mix.

Instead, I'll be concentrating on keeping up a steady supply of reviews, features and new TBDB entries.  There's also some new and exciting developments on the way for Nefarious Productions which is kicking back into gear after a rather sparse year of inactivity.

So, plenty new stuff coming - thanks for reading, please keep doing exactly that.

Inkubus Review


Director: Glenn Ciano
Writer:  Glenn Ciano, Carl V. Dupre
Robert Englund, Joey Fatone, William Forsythe

At an old police station operating with only a bare minimum of officers due to its scheduled demolition the following day, a strange and threatening being casually walks in carrying a severed head and a bloody great big knife.  It's a great set-up  with great potential for a lot of gruesome fun which this low-budget little production only narrowly misses out on delivering.

The villain here is the eponymous Inkubus (played by Robert Englund), a demon with a taste for murder and mutilation and the slight problem that his 100 year tenure in his current body is coming to an end and he needs to find a new human shell to inhabit.  In truth, it is the sort of role that Englund can play in his sleep and while it certainly won't be earning him any originality awards it is an effective enough performance.  Englund imbues the character with the requisite malevolent charm and a playful malice which suggests that despite the fact that this demon has been doing this a long long time, he still really enjoys it.  Much the same could no doubt be said of Robert Englund himself.

Of course, every homicidal demon with a penchant for chopping people into pieces needs some good guys to terrorise and these come in the form of (amongst others) Joey Fatone and William Forsyth.  Fatone does a surprisingly good job and Forsyth is his usual impressive performance though he is not given enough to work with here to really let rip.  That's the nature of his character however to be fair and he plays it well.  The villains in horror movies are usually the most interesting characters  by definition and this film is no exception though there is certainly a good amount of backstory and depth to these characters.

The overall plot is a bit hokey but serviceable enough and  certainly deserves kudos for delivering something more interesting than the standard 'monster kills everybody' fare.  The grudge match that plays out between the lead character and Inkubus works quite well even if it is a little obtuse at times.

This isn't an enormously gory film with the exception of a couple of very memorable scenes.  One in particular, involving a macabre inversion of the old magician's trick of sawing a lady in half is especially well staged and conceived.  In fact it provides one of the movie's most arresting scenes and is played with a really creepy nonchalance by Englund.  It would have been great to see and, most crucially, feel more of this throughout the film but a lot of the time it just doesn't quite hit the heights you are willing it to.

Inkubus is no game-changer but it is a quiet little piece of nastiness which introduces a surprisingly detailed and developed new villain along with a pleasingly bleak and nihilistic tone and feel which is, at least to this reviewer, oddly refreshing.

INKUBUS, will be released by Trintiy X on DVD in the UK, Monday Feb 13, 2012.

The Stink of Flesh - Review

The Stink of Flesh

Director: Scott Phillips
Writer: Scott Phillips
Starring: Kurly Tlapoyawa, Ross Kelly, Diva, Kristin Hansen

In recent years the zombie movie has fittingly enough come shambling (or in some cases running) back from the dead – bad news to some, bloody marvellous news to others. Though the majority of the new entries to the zombie sub-genre are so bad they seem intent on killing it off again this wonderfully titled movie is certainly not one of them.
Despite its bizarre plot, camp feel and perverse sense of humour The Stink of Flesh takes its source material surprisingly seriously. These zombies are of the traditional slow and shambling stable and are a real threat to the characters, even the fist-fighting, undead slaying Matool (Tlapoyawa) whose favourite method of zombie dispatch is to hammer large nails into their heads up close and personal. The make-up effects used for the zombies in this film are a clear homage to Romero’s Dawn of the Dead with lots of grey’s, blues and greens being used for their skin tones. As with that film, the effect, while not terrible, is not hugely convincing though this hardly matters when the obviously low budget is taken into account.
Much is made of what budget was available with most of the story wisely taking place in one location. It is refreshing to see a zombie movie dwelling on the story of the characters rather than centring on the undead outbreak as so many seem to make the mistake of doing. It is fairly obvious that the filmmakers have tapped up as many friends and acquaintances as possible in making this film. Sometimes it does run dangerously close to looking like a bunch of film-school friends mucking about on camera with some distinctly hammy acting going on but for the greater part this works for the movie rather than against it. The soundtrack is a masterstroke and the odd country/punk/folk music contributes greatly to the film’s sense of individuality and style.
The script is a real oddity but a well crafted oddity, this screenplay is as tight and lean as they come. That alone is unusual enough in low-budget genre movies but the sly and knowing wit which pervades nearly every line of dialogue really sets it apart from its contemporaries. There is a clear sense of fun present in every aspect of the film and fortunately the audience is nearly always included in this fun. The film makers are fans of these types of movies and have made this film for other fans, there is lots of gore, a bit of nudity and the only zombie faeces examination scene ever committed to film (probably).
This is a sick and crazy movie that will certainly not appeal to all tastes but then again, is that particularly surprising for a film titled The Stink of Flesh? The flaws it has are easily overlooked in light of the freshness, energy and sheer love of it all that oozes out of every seedy frame. This is the way all movies should be made.