This strange new movie has arrived now, an sort of alternative or hidden history of the life of the much respected American historical icon. the premise being that alongside running America, changing political history and liberating many opressed people, he also apparently slayed many a wild fanged blood thristy vampire on a regular basis.

Curiously, this was a movie produced by and overseen by the legend of Gothic kook Tim Burton, from the mash-up genre novel of Seth Graham-Smith. It does not seem to turn out to be anything like the almost overly camp spook horror scares of Burton’s classic Sleepy Hollow, as it seems to aim straight for an almost too serious tale of Abraham is troubled vampire Hunting legend, missing the chance for more entertaining and obvious spoof moments that could have been.

Was it wrong that this movie is not all out stupid or slapstick parody along the lines of Shaun of the Dead? Could it have been?

There is talk around that the other similarly named genre mash-up novels also from the last few years might head to the cinema screen, and will those too miss the mark, not quite take the opportunity to make us laugh out loud at the unexpected surreal genre imagery put together?

This may be a fine enough movie, strange, bizarre, and not the usual kind of horror flick you might go along to these days, but does it actually seem to be the movie that the book could have been? If you have seen it already, I hope you liked it, but expect that it is not what you might have hoped it would be. That might be a shame.


Personal Fiction…printed horror

This month I have one of my own short horror stories featured in KULTUR magazine. My tale called ‘The Unlikely Saint’ looks at a woman who knows sin, and is ashamed of her life, a vicar in denial and evil forces around them.

There might well also be another featured in the next issue in July. KULTUR magazine features articles and spreads on alternative art/music/fashion/ fiction. For fans of metal/rock music, steampunk, industrial, gothic music/clothing, fetish, fantasy imagery and horror/fantasy fiction.

V/H/S-A horror movie mash-up to start a trend?

Right, I might have been slow on the up take here, but just a few short days back I finally caught the very intense trailer for the shocking and possibly fantastic new horror movie heading our way very soon. Then I found that it is some kind of anthology movie, with sections put together by various respected young horror directors including Ti West, David Bruckner, Joe Swanberg, Radio Silence and more.

This kind of approach is not at all a new one, but it really has been a long while since it has been taken and used in a new way. This does look like it really could be one hell of a nail-biting fear inducing scare-fest flick for sure. It least, that is the trailer.

I certainly do hope that it does live up to the trailer, because it really is quite audacious and bold, so much going on, many different kinds of classic horror images but shown in very modern intense ways. Could be such an experience. It kind of even reminded me of another recent very hugely impressive movie, Cabin in the Woods which was very clever indeed and a whole lot of crazy fun.

In the past we have seen classic anthology horror films from the seventies onwards including the likes of The House that dripped Blood, Stephen King’s Cat’s Eye, Creepshow-one and two really great, Romero and Argento’s together for Two Evil Eyes, Tales from the Crypt-way before the television series, John Carpenter and Tobe Hooper together on Body Bags, Tales from the Darkside: The Movie, possibly the most influential-Mario Bava’s Black Sabbath 1963. So with all of those many very great anthology horrors there is always the chance that this new modern attempt could set a new strong standard or at least provide something different.

How about a science fiction version I say, with a number of great sci-fi film directors on board? Let’s see what happens…

Joe Cornish to adapt Stephenson’s Snow Crash

The talented Uk director could be returning soon with a movie adaptation of the classic cyberpunk novel…


Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish is to write and direct an adaptation of Neal Stephenson’s 1992 novel Snow Crash for Paramount Pictures.

According to Deadline, Kathleen Kennedy and Kennedy/Marshall will be producing the movie, which centres around Hiro Protagonist, a computer hacker/samurai swordsman/pizza delivery driver, who investigates and tries to stop the takeover of postmodern civilization. Snow Crash is the name of a new drug which is both a computer virus and a mind-altering virus in a virtual reality world.

Stephenson’s third book featured in Time magazine’s Top 100 best English-language novels since 1923 and was nominated for both the British Science Fiction Award and the Arthur C. Clarke Award.

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I eventually made some time to view a few episodes of the very much hyped new television series from the states. Such an over the top, grand full blown fantasy series, incorporating the most classic and well known fairy tales from our childhoods, this series has gone beyond many of the other recent American fantasy or horror drama shows, forgetting or simply not caring if it might seem just way too camp and embarrassing. It is not really subtle with the narrative, you have to really go with the high concept plot-the fairy tale world of classic characters connected to our real modern world. Just reading of that premise months ago almost made me feel sorry for the producers if it likely just sank badly with it being television and not a huge budget film.

Well, actually a few episodes into the series and there are actually a good few reasons to keep watching. The look and effects can often be really rather impressive and can draw you into the story surprisingly well. The music, score, lighting and choice of actors all helps it very much also. There have been a continuing glut of differing fantasy/horror series hit our screens over the last couple of years, one after another, then many axed, one after the next with little stop between to look back and consider which were actually worth keeping.

This one is actually just maybe worth continuing to watch, and most definately to see Robert Carlyle as the scene stealing creepy green skinned Rumplestiltskin, but also the dual characters in each world that the main characters portray is now becoming much more interesting to watch, having built up some emotional and personal relationship tensions and drama. It is a little camp, but this is a fairytale inspired drama we’re talking about. Go with it for what it is. Despite that, it is becoming clear that the writing is now shining through but can it hold on strong like this without decending to thin character types and simple good versus evil?

BOOK REVIEW – Anno Dracula: The Bloody Red Baron by Kim Newman

One of the UK’s finest genre writers and a well respected and known legend film and horror buff

Alternative Magazine Online

By Marty Mulrooney


The Bloody Red Baron by British writer and film critic Kim Newman is the sequel to the critically-acclaimed alternate history vampire novel Anno Dracula. Set 30 years after the end of the first book during World War 1, the Diogenes Club investigates a secretive German flying operation that exchanges aircraft for monsters, the most fearsome of which is known as the Red Baron. Titan Books reprinted Anno Dracula in a brand new paperback edition in 2011 that included a wealth of extra material. They follow suit with this new version of The Bloody Red Baron, which includes a lengthy new novella, detailed annotations and an action-packed film outline.

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Right then, yes that most certainly is a very bold statement or just question. Who has seen it already? Hey, anyone not seen it?

So with so many reviews coming along now, from practically everyone, every magazine, blog etc. I right now am just going put out some thoughts on how I saw the film, my view, some of my opinion.

So then, I saw it in 3D, which I usually do keep well away from most of the time, but after keeping AVENGERS safely a 2D experience, and knowing how visually stunning RIDLEY SCOTT movies are, I just decided to try it. Thankfully, my experience was not absolutely ruined, and thought the 2D did not massively enhance the viewing, at times-definately the first ten minutes- it did make it amazing, or just more so.

So we have a film that was probably more highly anticipated than any or film for such a long time, yes much more so than THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, however great that might be when it comes. This was RIDLEY SCOTT’S first sci-fi flick in decades. That is an absolute neccessary thing worth heading to the cinema for. On top of that, he was returning to the ALIEN franchise, which many people have wished that he had done long, long ago.

There were so many hopes, so many rumours about this vastly important science fiction movie for many months leading up to the release.

Did it and could it please us?

I personally, have to say that yes, I am very pleased with the movie that I saw. But remember, so many people were hoping that this would be such a huge thing, a total revelation and specifically a huge link and connection to the ALIEN movies. Would it reveal many things alluded to in the very first movie? Did it?

PROMETHEUS is a huge film. In many ways, obviously. It is epic. A very amazing, impressive film, probably the best SF movie in a very long time for sure.

The question is, with all the trailers, teasers and rumours suggesting many possibilities, many directions it might have gone in, did it explain ALIEN? More specifically-the origin of the ALIENS?

Well, did it have to do that? Really?

It did certainly give some kind of answers, and information, but like many good tales, or sequels, (and prequels) it then provided a number of more questions once again. Guess, that makes us think about some sequels to this kind of prequel then.

There is now much space ahead, a long way, narratively leading up to the time of the original ALIEN movie, leaving space for more to come, more answers, or more questions. Either way, if RIDLEY SCOTT is involved in more to come, it will continue to be worth waiting for.