Tuesday Terrors: Mockingbird Lane Lives! (Mania.com)

By:Tim Janson
Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Source: Mania.com

Mockingbird Lane lives after all!  After earlier rumors that NBC had shelved the Munsters re-imaging, it looks like Herman, Lilly, and Grandpa will arrive after all.  As Halloween nears, NBC turns Friday, October 26 into Fright Night when it premieres the pilot of the much-anticipated Mockingbird Lane (8-9 p.m. ET) - based on executive producer Bryan Fuller’s script and directed by executive producer Bryan Singer.  The special program leads into a haunting “La Llorona” Halloween episode of Grimm.  I think obviously that the future of the series is riding on how well it does with the pilot.  Here is a teaser preview: 

Diamond Select releases the Metaluna Mutant!  Diamond Select continues their hit Universal Monsters line with an extra-terrestrial terror! The Metaluna Mutant, from the 1955 film "This Island Earth," stands over 7 inches tall, is fully articulated and comes with the Interocitor device from the film, which is exclusive to this version. Whether you're a fan of the original film or the Mystery Science Theater 3000 takedown, this toy is a must-have! The Mutant and interocitor come in oversized collector packaging, and the interocitor is only available on the specialty market! Sculpted by Jean St. Jean!

Malcolm McDowell and Robert Englund to star in new Horror anthology.  Sanitarium is now in post-production and will star alcolm McDowell, David Mazouz, Chris Mulkey, John Glover, Lou Diamond Phillips, Robert Englund and Lacey Chabert.  Three half-hour stories make up Sanitarium and each segment is based on particular patients of a mental institution.  The episodes begins with Dr. Stenson, the primary physician at the Sanitarium, commenting on the recent arrival of a new patient.
From Beyond Collector’s Edition Blu-ray/DVD coming.  Shout Factory has been increasing its line of Scream Factory releases and the latest to get collector’s edition treatment is From Beyond.  There will be new extras along with the older ones which were on the prior 2007 DVD release. 
The second H.P. Lovecraft adaptation by Stuart Gordon FROM BEYOND is pure Lovecraftian science-terror. Out-there scientist Dr. Pretorious (Ted Sorel) and his assistant Dr. Tillinghast (Jeffery Combs) are working towards breaking through earthly perceptions and revealing a new alternate universe. They do this by stimulating the pineal gland of the human brain which enables people to see the strange creatures that inhabit a parallel dimension. Unfortunately these creatures can now see humans as well and they are none too pleased with it. Dr. Pretorious is killed by the floating monstrosities but the police blame his assistant for the murder and lock him up. Only Dr. Katharine McMichaels (Barbara Crampton) believes the insane tales of Dr. Tillinghast and it’s up to her to shut down the experiment that threatens to unleash the other-dimensional creatures on this universe forever. Great special effects and solid performances by Combs and Crampton complement a near-perfect realization by Gordon of Lovecraft’s vividly detailed and chilling vision of scientific possibilities.
First Teaser for Joe Lansdale’s Christmas with the Dead.  Produced by Joe R. Lansdale (and based on his story), the film is directed by Terrill Lee Lankford.Calvin had not bothered with it the past two years, not since the death of his wife and child. But this year he decided quite suddenly, that tomorrow was Christmas Eve. And zombies be damned, the lights and decorations are going up...

Clip from Grave Encounters 2.  Grave Encounters was a found-footage horror phenomenon that many people believed was just a movie.  Film student Alex Wright is out to prove them wrong in the sequel.  Alex is as obsessed with the first film as the 20 million people who viewed its viral trailer on YouTube.  While he and his friends research the events and visit the real psychiatric hospital depicted in the original film, they find themselves face-to-face with unspeakable evil, banking on the hope that their knowledge of the original film will help them survive the sequel.

Trailer for Uwe Boll’s Zombie Massacre.  Hasn’t been much heard about this latest Uwe Boll effort in a while but we do have a new trailer to pass along.  In the film, a bacteriological weapon – developed by the U.S. Government to create a super soldier – spreads an epidemic in a quiet little town in the middle of Eastern Europe, Roznov. All citiziens have been turned into infected zombies. The town is in quarantine, but the Government wants to destroy it to avoid the propagation of the epidemic.  The rest of the world is in the dark about everything. The plan is: to bring an atomic bomb into the nuclear plant of the city to pretend a terrible accident. No one has to know the truth.  A commando of mercenaries is hired to do the mission. The leader is Jack Stone, an ex soldier now in jail to have murdered his brothers in arms during a mission. If he accomplishes the mission he will be free. The battle is on. 

Teaser trailer for Rec 4: Apocalypse.  Quick teaser trailer for the latest Rec sequel with Jaume Balaguero returning to direct this entry.


The Barrens Blu-Ray Review (Anchor Bay)
Grade: C-
True Blood’s Stephen Moyer stars in this low energy psychological thriller based on the myths of the Jersey Devil.  The film is directed by Darren Lynn Bousman who directed Saw II, III, and IV, and the recent Mother’s Day film.  Moyer is a bedraggled husband and father Richard Vineyard who is taking his family on a camping trip to New Jersey’s Pine Barrens…largely against their wishes in order to bond.  He also wants to scatter the ashes of his late father where they used to camp when he was a child.
The camp isn’t exactly the serene outing he had planned.  The camp is filled with rowdy students who party late and one takes a liking to Richard’s daughter Sadie.  Richard decides to move the family deeper in the forest, away from the other campers.  They come upon an abandoned campsite with a tent that is shredded and find the body of a dog that was left chained up to die.  Richard begins experiencing troubling dreams and hallucinations and claims he saw the Jersey Devil as a kid.  
Richard reveals that several weeks back he had been bitten by the family dog and the bite was apparently infected with rabies.  As Richard becomes more unstable his family begins to fear for their safety.  Richard begins to see the Jersey Devil and these may or may not be hallucinations.
The Barrens is a slow moving film and never gets out of 2nd gear.  Other than Moyer the cast is weak and brings little to the table.  The film is mired in plot holes.  If Richard had been bit by a rabid dog weeks earlier why wouldn’t his wife be aware of the wound on his arm?  Doesn’t he take his shirt off?  Shower?  Bousman also wrenches his own film by turning the psychological horror into a creature feature by revealing that the Jersey Devil does exist, although hideously designed.  Worth a view only if you’re desperate for something to watch.


Evil Ernie #1 (Dynamite Entertainment)
Grade: C
The classic Chaos Comics character lives again (or dies again might be more appropriate) in this new series from Dynamite Entertainment.  Ernest Fairchild’s origin is changed from the original Chaos Comics version due to the fact that Dynamite doesn’t have rights to Lady Death who was tied into his original background.  Instead, this Ernest Fairchild starts out as a teenage boy whose mother was murdered by his own father.  Ernest goes to visit his father in prison and proceeds to attempt to kill him.  His father Buford survives but it’s soon discovered that Ernie murdered 665 residents in his town by poisoning the water supply with arsenic.  
Ernest is sentenced to die in the electric chair for his crimes although his psychiatrist believes that Ernie genuinely believed that the town residents were evil.  But as the switch is flipped and the electricity courses through his body, burning flesh and exploding intestines, Ernie doesn’t die by rises up more powerful than ever, intent on finishing the job of murdering his father.
I think part of what made Evil Ernie, Lady Death, and the rest of the Chaos characters so popular in the 90’s was that it WAS the 1990s.  It was a period that stressed style over substance and there’s no dought that Chaos had a ton style with the overt sexuality and gore of late artist Stephen Hughes.  I’m not sure people really read their comics as much as they looked at them.  But it’s 20 years later now…The art of Jason Craig isn’t in the same league as Hughes’ and without that brash, in your face style to drive the book, there just isn’t a whole lot of appeal of Evil Ernie in 2012.


If you’re looking for even more horror fun, be sure to check out Chuck Francisco’s Shock-O-Rama every Saturday right here at Mania:  Shock-o-Rama

Tim Janson is a columnist and reviewer for Mania Entertainment. He writes Level Up, the weekly look at videogames, From the Vault, a dig into genre films of years gone by, and the horror dedicated column, Tuesday Terrors. Tim has written for Fangoria, Newsarama, City Slab Magazine, Twitch Film, and Cinefantastique. He is a member of the Horror Writers Association (HWA). Be sure to follow him on Facebook and Twitter.