Tuesday Terrors: We Review Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (Mania.com)

By:Tim Janson
Date: Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Source: Mania.com

This week in Tuesday Terrors we’ve got a review of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, the new Series 2 Walking Dead action figures from McFarlane Toys, as well as a coffin full of new horror trailers.
 
THE HORRIFYING NEWS
 
Starz to bring Da Vinci’s Demons to Cable in 2013.  We all know The best genre shows are on Cable TV, and now get ready to make room for a new one from Starz in 2013 called Da Vinci’s Demons.  
 
In a world where thought and faith are controlled, one man fights to set knowledge free. The secret history of Leonardo Da Vinci's tantalizing life reveals a portrait of a young man tortured by a gift of superhuman genius. He is a heretic intent on exposing the lies of religion. An insurgent seeking to subvert an elitist society. A bastard son who yearns for legitimacy with his father. 
 
He finds himself in the midst of a storm that has been brewing for centuries. A conflict between truth and lies, religion and reason, past and future. His aspirations are used against him by the opposing forces of the time—luring him into a game of seduction where those who despise his intellect need him most. Leonardo must take up the fight against foes who use history to suppress the truth. 
 
A hero armed only with genius, Da Vinci stands alone against the darkness within, and the darkness without. Facing an uncertain future, his quest for knowledge nearly becomes his undoing as he explores the fringes of his own sanity. Da Vinci throws himself into his genius and emerges as an unstoppable force that lifts an entire era out of darkness and propels it into light. His story becomes a mirror into our own world, calling us all to join his fight to Free the Future. 

 
Official trailer for Silent Night.  Here is the  first look at Steven C. Miller's update of Silent Night, Deadly Night.  The film stars Malcolm McDowell, Jaime King, Donal Logue, Lisa Marie, Brendan Fehr and Ellen Wong.  a small-town sheriff and deputy go on the hunt for a murderous Santa Claus terrorizing their community on Christmas Eve. But with the streets full of Santas for the annual Christmas parade, the killer is hiding in plain sight. He’s made his list, checked it twice, and the naughty are going to pay with their lives.
 

 
Shout Factory to release Beetlejuice The Animated Series on DVD.  You just have to love Shout Factory who continues to rescue wonderful forgotten films and TV series from the dustbin of history.  The latest is Beetlejuice the animated series that ran from 1989 – 1992.  They will release all 94 original episodes on DVD although no date is set.
 
 
Tobe Hooper’s “Djinn”.  Tobe Hooper is Back!  In Djinn, Emirati couple return home from a trip and discover that their new apartment has been built on a site that is home to some malevolent beings.
 

 
Trailer for Maniac remake starring Elijah Wood.  Wood plays Frank, a man - haunted by seedy memories of his promiscuous mother - who works in a mannequin shop by day and stalks 'n kills women by night.  Things take a turn in his life when he meets a beautiful photographer (Nora Arnezeder).  Franck Khalfoun directs.
 
 
The Seasoning House Trailer.   The Seasoning House is a grim and soulless place where young girls are bought and sold for men’s pleasure.  Here we meet Angel (Rosie Day), a young, orphaned girl enslaved by Viktor (Kevin Howarth).  Unbeknownst to her master, she moves between the walls and crawlspaces of the house – silently observing, learning and planning for her escape. When her closest confident is savagely killed, Angel can no longer contain her rage and sets out through both ingenuity and brutality to seek justice.
 

 
Gangsters, Guns, and Zombies trailer.  Gangsters, Guns and Zombies will get a November 15th VOD release with a December 11th DVD debut to follow.  The Matt Mitchell-directed undead thriller is set in post-zombie England where a botched robbery leads a motley crew of thieves into an apocalyptic battle with a zombie horde.
 

 

Clip from new found footage film The Garlock Incident.  Check out the first clip from a new found footage film, The Garlock Incident.

 

 

A Field in England!  Kill List director Ben Wheatley is in post-production on A Field in England.  The film follows a small group of deserters fleeing from a raging battle through an overgrown field. As they are captured by O’Neil, an alchemist, they are forced to aid him in his search to find a hidden treasure that he believes is buried in the field.
 
Crossing a vast mushroom circle, which provides their first meal, the group quickly descend into a chaos of arguments, fighting and paranoia, and, as it becomes clear that the treasure might be something other than gold, they slowly become victim to the terrifying energies trapped inside the field.
 
Resident Evil: Retribution Blu-ray Specs.  Sony has announced a December 21st DVD/Blu-ray/Blu-ray 3D/Ultraviolet release for Resident Evil: Retribution.  Here is a list of the special features:
 

 

Death Race 3: Inferno release date.  Death Race 3: Inferno is coming to Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and On Demand on January 22, 2013, from Universal Studios Home Entertainment.  The newest Universal Studios Home Entertainment DVD Original finds the legendary Frankenstein in an unimaginably vicious new competition that pits teams of hardened convicts against each other in a blood-spattered, winner-take-all race through South Africa.  Luke Goss, Danny Trejo, and Ving Rhames return 
 
The Thompsons trailer and release date.  XLrator Media has announced that The Hamiltons follow-up, The Thompsons, will be making a VOD debut on November 22nd with a DVD release to follow on January 1st.  In the sequel, a bloodbath at a gas station in the desert puts the Hamilton vampire family on the run, eventually seeing them resurface in the U.K. under a new identity as "The Thompsons." Desperate for protection in this unfamiliar country, the Thompsons seek out the help of a shadowy underground rumored to be sympathetic to vampires.

 
Diamond Select Announces Universal Monsters Black-and-White Legacy Series 2.  Between 1923 and 1958, Universal Studios released over 60 different monster movies, all in black-and-white, that gave the film world some of its most iconic characters. In honor of that legacy, this deluxe collectors' box set presents three of the most famous Universal Monsters -- Dracula, Frankenstein and the Bride of Frankenstein -- in their original-black and-white appearances! These exclusive 7-inch scale figures will only be available as part of this set, and come in a display-quality window box. Designed and sculpted by Rudy Garcia, Gabriel Marquez and Jean St. Jean!
 

 

THE TERRIFYING REVIEWS
 
Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter (20th Century Fox)
Grade: C-
 
Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter is based upon the Seth Grahame-Smith novel of the same name.  It was Grahame-Smith who started the whole trend of combining classic literature with modern horror in Pride Prejudice and Zombies a few years back.  The film imagines an alternate history where a young Abe Lincoln intends to get his revenge upon the man who killed his mother, Jack Barts.  After putting a bullet into the man’s head however, Barts keeps coming.  Abe is rescued Henry Sturges who reveals that Barts is just one of many vampires who inhabit the U.S. Sturges trains Abe to hunt them and Abe takes up his old rail splitting axe as his weapon of choice.
 
Abe moves to Springield, Illinois where he takes a job as a clerk in a local score and begins hunting vampires by night.  He eventually gains the notice of Adam, the leader and most powerful vampire who is aiding the South’s effort in the Civil War by lending vampire troops to Confederate President Jefferson Davis.  There’s a clumsy attempt to tie in the vampire’s motives to the Civil War and slavery because the vamps essentially, and somewhat distastefully, use slaves essentially as cattle to feed on so Adam is determined to help the South win the war.  
 
Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter is like a really beautifully wrapped Christmas present that has expensive paper, and pretty bows and ribbons, but when you open it you find socks or underwear.  It’s one one of the most visually enticing films of the year that features some fantastic effects sequences including Abe’s battle with Barts through a stampede of horses, and the final climactic battle against the vampires on a train crossing a burning bridge.  
 
But the story itself is flat.  For such a silly premise the film takes itself far too seriously.  Director Timur Bekmambetov fails to make us buy into the characters.  There’s a serious disconnect between the tone of the script and the style of the film.  The film goes for the kind of style of the Underworld film series in regards to its action sequences but the characters lack color and personality.  Not an epic fail but no one is going to be emancipated after seeing this film.
 
The Best of From the Tomb (Twomorrows Publishing) Peter Normantan
Grade A
 
Twomorrows Publishing once again proves why they are the first name when it comes to publishing books about the comic book industry.  Twomorrows collects some of the best columns and articles from the UK Magazine From the Tomb, a magazine specializing in the history of horror comics and brilliantly edited by Peter Normanton.
 
The book covers the whole history of horror comics from the Golden Age to the present.  The book looks at some of the earliest horror comics, those which even predate E.C. Comics by over a decade and examines the influences that pulp magazines had on early horror comics. 
 
The book delves into every era of horror comics.  Barry Forshaw’s Journey Into Mystery Atlas era Archives looks at Journey into Mystery in the pre-hero days when it was primarily a mystery and horror title and reprints many of the great covers.  One of the best articles in the book looks at the Archie Goodwin Years at Warren Publications when Goodwin helped usher in a new age of modern horror as editor of magazines like Creepy and Eerie.  Goodwin was responsible for attracting some of the greatest artists in the business to Warren and created some of the greatest horror comics of the 1960s and 1970s.
 
There are also gorgeous gallery articles spotlighting themed covers like witches and electric chair executions..which were remarkably prevelant back in the day.  There are several full color gallery articles in the book, one of which is dedicated to the fantastic art of Steve Ditko.  Other features include interviews with EC Comics legend Al Feldstein, Joe Sinnott, and perhaps my favorite piece, a detailed history of The Spectre.  
 
If you have the slightest interest in horror-themed comics this book is an indispensable must have!

 

If God Doesn’t Show (Permuted Press) R. Thomas Riley & John Grover
Grade: A-
 
I’m a sucker for Cthulhu Mythos stories and the pulpier tone of the story the better.  And If God Doesn’t show is pulp fiction at its best and I mean that as a compliment.  Secret Service Agents, evil cults, mysterious oceans popping up in the middle of the ocean…If God Doesn’t show is a freight train smashing its way through its 200 plus pages.
 
An evil cult is attempting to make Great Cthulhu rise again, spelling doom for the world.  But in opening the portal for the Big C, the invade  Earth seems bound for total destruction.  The only opposition is an ex-cop named Thaddeus Archer and an agent for a secret government agency.  And what role does Archer’s missing daughter play in the plot?  
 
Two things I love about this book is that Grover and Riley giver their own take on the Cthulhu Mythos and they don’t try to be, or even worse, outdo Lovecraft at his own game.  The best Mythos fiction comes from writers who give it their own slant and take off running.  That’s what these guys do with a fast paced story filled with intrigue as well as fantastic characters.  Lot’s to ingest in a relatively short novel but you’ll never be bored.

 

Diamond Select Toys This Island Earth Metalua Mutant Figure
Grade: B+
 
When you think about Universal Monsters you likely forget about the classic 1955 Sci-Fi film, This Island Earth, but there’s no denying that the Metaluna Mutant is one of the great creature designs of the 1950s.  This is part of Diamond Select’s third wave of Universal Monster figures which also includes The Invisible Man, and The Phantom of the Opera.  The Metaluna Mutant was created by legendary Universal Studios make-up supervisor Bud Westmore.  In the film they were the lumbering slave labor of the Metalunans.  While its part was small, it’s design is one of the most memorable of the 1950s.

 
The figure has an incredible 21 points of articulation.  However, the figure’s screen accurate design tends to restrict its movement despite the articulation.  A back shell restricts the head from moving back and thus basically gives you only side to side movement.  While the shoulders apparently have ball joints, the armored shoulder pieces barely allow any movement at the shoulder.  There is a bit more movement at the double elbow joints that allow you to pose him with his menacing claws.  The hip joints allow him to move his legs forward or back as well as straight out to the sides to be able to widen his stance.  This is all a good thing as the character is extremely top heavy and this allows him to be posed and stand up without toppling over.
 
It’s a fantastic sculp.  It stands around 8” tall and is dead on accurate to the film with his large, bulbous brain-like head with veins running through it and the arms.  He’s got his oddly insectoid mouth and overlapping plates of armor over his chest.  His arms and feet end in his bony claws.  There’s some very nice fine detailing on the chest and arms giving it a true textured look.  The paint is also nicely done but there’s a distinct lack of detail in the lower torso than there is in the upper torso.  In addition to the figure it also comes with the Metalunan communication machine known as the Interocitor.  It doesn’t do anything but it does look cool in the background.  I only wish this had a bigger base as it is also top heavy.
 

 

Overall, This Island Earth Metaluna Mutant is a welcome and surprise addition to Diamond Select’s series of Universal Monsters figures.
 
Walking Dead Series 2 Action Figures (McFarlane Toys)
Grade A
 
Series 2 Walking Dead figures are hear from McFarlane and everything is right with the world!  Series 2 consists of five figures: Deputy Rick Grimes, Shane Walsh, Bicycle Girl Zombie, Well Zombie, and RV Zombie.
 
Deputy Rick Grimes has 11 points of articulation.  He comes wearing a non-removable sheriff’s hat.  Rick comes with a pistol that can be gripped in his right hand. Rick has a holster for his pistol.  Both of his hands come with interchangeable accessories. He has an optional right that holds a rifle with scope, and an optional left hand that holds a zombie leash.  Solid sculpt but an average likeness of Rick.

 
Shane Walsh has only 6 points of articulation so he has limited options for posing.  Basically all Shane can do is raise and lower his shotgun.  There’s limited movement at the hip and upper legs.  While movement is limited Shane is a great sculpt.  Likeness is great and he has that stressed, overly aggressive scowl on his face.
 
The Bicycle Girl Zombie is the crawling upper torso that Shane encountered in the very first episode of The Walking Dead.  She has 7 points of articulation, as she crawls along dragging her intestines.  She comes on a base with a button that you can push that causes her to push her body up off the ground.  Very cool!  She comes with a cell phone and a pair of blue jeans that she has apparently just crawled out from.  Great sculpt with a sorrowful expression of agony on her face.
 
The Well Zombie comes from season two and it is the rotted, bloated, festering corpse found in the bottom of one of the wells on Herschel’s farm.  It’s highlighted by 9 points of articulation and comes with a rope around its midsection that can cause it to split apart in half, revealing its putrefied guts.  Comes with a canned ham!
 

 

The RV zombie is the one that Andrea killed in the first episode of season two by plunging a screwdriver into its eye.  He has 8 points of articulation and comes with a flip back head action and removable screwdriver.  Great paint job.


Series: