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Indie Shark Movie Therapy

I have just finished compiling my upcoming book, Encyclopedia Sharksploitanica. I realized I have watched and reviewed 85 shark movies (and counting!). I thought I might run out of movies to review. Not yet. I might have to dive a little deeper into the hodgepodge of pseudo-legitimate streaming services to find them, or buy an obscure DVD from the distributor, but godammit … I’m gonna find them ALL!

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Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘Sputnik’ (2020)

Not another Alien knockoff.

You know what I found to be particularly disappointing about this movie? It wasn’t an Alien (1979) ripoff like I was promised. I was told this would have elements of The Thing (1982) and even Life (2017), in the good old-fashioned tradition of Russian Knockoff films. What I got instead, was an intelligent, interesting, and even complex, standalone film that holds itself upon its own merits. I was expecting Xtro 2 (1990) at worst, and Leviathain (1989) at best. I wasn’t expecting this to actually be GOOD.

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Land Shark: Boop! Boop!

Yes, folks, this is another movie written and directed by the notorious Mark Polonia. I just realized that I’ve never mentioned his brother Anthony. Anthony is in charge of the special effects on many of the Polonia Brothers productions including this one. Anthony is responsible, I assume, for the shark in this movie. The shark is a claymation puppet type thing. Therefore, I love Anthony Polonia. My adoration of claymation shark effects runs deep and is almost pathological. I can’t explain it, but even in the worst shark movie, a derpy shark makes my heart sing. 

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Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘Anything For Jackson’ (2020)

Anything for a decent Shudder flick…

Shudder is starting to up their game with their exclusive content. This is good, because so far I’ve been pretty unimpressed. Out of the several selections I’ve already viewed, most of them were boring or outright bad. But I can honestly say that Anything For Jackson (2020) is damn good. Good enough, where I’m sure it will find a spot somewhere on my top 50. Not high, but on there, and that’s an impressive feat.

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Wolves of the 1980s: It’s a Jungle Out There (Part One)

And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?

“The Second Coming,” William Butler Yeats

As we all know, 1980 was the year that Ronald Reagan materialized within a sacred pentacle constructed from cocaine and junk bonds, dispatched to Earth on a mission of economic renewal, eternal morning, and orbital defense. I kid (or do I?), but the 1980s certainly left their mark on American – and world – culture. Emerging from the funky bellbottomed depravity of the late 70s, culture and politics took a different tack: a hypercapitalist, conservative, Police State tack, not to put too fine a point on it. As is ever and always the case, this seismic cultural shift was richly represented in horror, and fortuitously it happened to coincide with the pinnacle of practical effects work in horror cinema. At the time, some of the best work of SFX wizards like Rick Baker, Tom Savini, and Stan Winston was used to portray (in grotesque and loving detail) the hairy, gooey transformations in what would turn out to be another staple of the 80s: werewolf movies.

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Bad CGI Sharks: The Answer to Everything

Someone has apparently reached into my brain and created a movie. This movie is the self-aware and self-deprecating love letter to all terrible sharksploitation films. From the opening scene to the closing credits (seriously I read them and even they are hilarious), every detail of Bad CGI Sharks is corny and amazing. 

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Review: ‘At The Gates of Chaos’ (2021) Edited by Scott Dyson.

In the general vicinity of Chaos…

I think the first thing that was really fetching about this anthology wasn’t just the solid collection of stories, but also the fantastic collection of artwork proceeding each story. Kinda gives it the feel of a Scary Stories to Tell In the Dark, except for adults. The artwork was fascinating and I appreciate the added effort.

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