After some hiatus… NEW EPISODE!!!!

Sorry for the Hiatus Horrorfiends! Technical difficulties…
A NEW EPISODE OF HIDDEN HORRORS IS HERE! and just for the incredibly hot summer. This episode is all about an underrated little talked about Summer Camp Slasher movie…no its not Friday the 13th…no its not Sleepaway Camp…. its THE BURNING !

ATTENTION HORRORFIENDS! New Episode of Hidden Horrors to get your “Space Horror” fix this weekend.

in honor of Alien Covenant out this weekend, Here is a NEW episode of Hidden Horrors where Yours Truly sheds some light on a little known Nightmarish Space Horror from the early 80s.
Watch and enjoy
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HIDDEN HORROR – Panic Beats (1983)

28 Panic Beats           If you havent discovered the wonderful Spainard horror movies starring Paul Naschy. I highly suggest you seek them out now! One Paul Naschy horror movie from the early 80s is a particularly fun, gory and haunting one that practically plays itself almost identical to the plot of a Tales from the Crypt episode. That movie is PANIC BEATS.

Desperate to salvage his crumbling financial empire. Paul Marnac (Paul Naschy) decides to kill his heiress wife with the help of the sexy and ambitious maid. The heiress has a heart condition so the pair decide to slowly and psychologically scare her with a ghost story connected to the manor in which they are all staying. Soon the heiress is scared to death but for the maid just one murder is not enough to satisfy her greed and more murders happen. As the corpses pile up, the ghost story from earlier becomes true and the evil woman is then haunted and hunted down by the very ghosts whom she convinced the heiress were real.

Now with a plot like that you can pretty much say that that sounds like a Tales from the Crypt episode and it pretty much is. But the strengths of this film is that though we dont get the true ghosts n ghouls till the very end. There is enough to intrigue us throughout the rest of the film. We slowly see the murder plots unfold and almost every character is plotting against one another.

Also peppered throughout the whole film are rather old-school, ghostly and rather fun dream sequences and scenes involving the husband and maid trying to scare and convince the heiress that the ghost legend is real. This scenes bring back memories of late night creature features with horror hosts. Believe me these scenes alone deserve to be watched at night with candles or near Halloween.

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Also along with those fun “Spooky” scenes the crime aspect of the film is entertaining and always making twists and turns. And with its own share of gory death scenes. There are chokings, Bludgeoningsevered eyeballs, multiple face mutilations, an electrocution and even an axe to the gut with intestines coming out. The film doesnt skip on the splatter but one has to wait for it.

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Finally the ending is where the films supernatural side really starts the shine. The spooky, atmospheric and fun hauntings start to happen once there is only one character standing. There filled with rotting corpses returning from there graves, fog filled cemeteries, bloody skulls appearing, shower faucets oozing blood all leading up to the main ghost returning to exact gory revenge on the final character A’la very Tales from the Crypt like.

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Now if you are an older horror fan who appreciates the “Spooky” vibe of old horror films along with a good side of splatter then i urge you to see out the horrors of Spain and Paul Naschy from the 70s and 80s, The film PANIC BEATS being a prime example.  – James J. Coker

 

 

HIDDEN HORROR – The Being

Being-The-Poster-1So its been a little while since the last review dear horror fiends…I apologize, but the Hidden Horrors crew is planning some new features coming this way so that is one reason its been awhile.

anyway, I would just like to share with you a fun little monster movie from the early 80s that surely gets over-looked by the horror crowd quite often.That film is Jackie Kong’s THE BEING! a fun and very “Small town atmosphere” monster movie.

The plot is extremely reminiscent of 50s horror movies, A cop and a scientist (played by Martin Landau) team up to save their rural town from a boy mutated into a monster by hazardous pollution.

Now dont let the IMDB reviews fool you into thinking this film is trash…its not!…its FUN trash! the characters are lively yet incredibly inept to a entertaining point, the creature which leaves gallons of slime where ever it goes stays in the shadows up until the end except for when it flies out of nowhere into the characters. I am not kidding, certain scenes it looks like the filmmakers just throw a dummy version of the monster into the actors for several shots!

But the three best aspects of this film is the atmosphere which has a very strong very dusty small town in Idaho vibe with a foreboding sense of dread looming in. The look of the monster is a tiny bit nightmarish yet cheesy in a very fun way. And finally a extremely tense yet cute scene involving a adorable little baby girl who during an Easter egg hunt runs into the monster! you think the monster will devour this poor child but luckily she is saved while no one notices the monster and she waves bye-bye to it. It is a strong scene that starts off very tense only to end cutely.

So if you want a fun 1980s monster movie that has “B-Movie” written all over it but in the best of ways. This is a good saturday night with a couple of beers horror movie. Check out THE BEING      – James J. Coker

HIDDEN HORROR – Guinea Pig series – Mermaid in a Manhole

Mermaid in a Manhole I have been a horror fan since about 5 years old due to showings of the classic monster movies and episodes of Tales from the Crypt for about as far as i can remember. So normally the more disturbing horrors that the genre has to offer does not really disturb me because i have become as you say “Jaded” but recently are very obscure and very rare Japanese horror movie from the late 80s that was apart of the notorious Guinea Pig franchise actually did something that hasnt happened to me in a good while. I was genuinely disturbed and grossed out by a horror film…it was Horror manga artists Hideshi Hino’s ” Mermaid in a Manhole”.

Now in my defense this was my first time seeing a Guinea Pig movie, and what i have heard about the Guinea Pig movies were quite notorious so my expectations were high and it did not disappoint. Now granted I have seen Last House on the Left, Cannibal Holocaust, Henry Portrait of a Serial Killer and a few other notoriously disturbing horror films, but there was something about this little obscure gem from Japan that truly did it for me.

This hour long gem is about a lonely painter who just lost his wife and who gets inspiration for his paintings by visiting the sewers below his street finds a Mermaid trapped in the sewers down below, he rescues her but discovers that from living in the sewers for so long that she is sick and is developing sores and boils all over her body that begin to bleed pus and pulsate. The painter is grief stricken yet again and tries to help the poor mermaid but the mermaid instructs the painter to use the different colors of pus coming from her boils to use as paint for his painting of her. As her sickness gets worse and worse, a variety of different things start to pulsate from her boils like a variety of pus, guts and even worms! as the mermaid is dying in agonizing pain the painter slowly loses his mind and begins to dismember her with a cleaver!

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Now right in the first few frames of Mermaid in a Manhole you are treated to atmospheric yet very unsettling shots of the sewer and the many different debris that is in there including a dead baby floating in the sewage. From that beginning you know you are in for a unsettling and disturbing right and it only gets worse from there. The painter we are introduced to is a lonely man whom we feel sorry for and even reminiscences about when he was a boy and the sewer was once a beautiful river (more on that later) but when he finally takes the mermaid back to his home and discovers the boils is when the true gross out really begins.

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A variety of different pus oozes from her boils as she screams, the body horror only gets worse from there as the pus gets worse with gross close up shots of it and even one scene that almost started to make myself gag! it is when worms start to pulsate out of the poor mermaids boils and the lonely painter has to pull out those worms! now even with all the gross out horror happening director Hidishi Hino gives the viewer some breather time when the mermaids sickness stops and theres a bit of calmness, the sounds of the painter painting from the mermaids pus or even a clock ticking. These moments for the audience to breath still manages to let you register what you saw and yet still be a bit unsettled.

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Finally during the end the painters mind breaks down and he begins to hack up the mermaid with a cleaver, it is during this moment that a shocking twist is revealed and then even furthered by the painter reaching into the bloody mangled corpse and pulling “something” out of it. This truly disturbing ending actually left me heavy breathing from being unsettled. It is truly a dark and extremely grim film that strikes right at the heart and yet stays in your head for a good while.

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Horror manga artist Hideshi Hino’s Mermaid in a Manhole (which is also is adapted from his own manga of the same name) is truly a obscure piece of Japanese horror cinema that is truly disturbing and grossly unsettling. 1980s Japanese horror cinema was the stuff of uncomfortable, disturbing and nightmarish visions of hell and this film is no exception to it. Watching this film will truly make you feel like you need to take a shower afterwards and put on some Disney movies to get your mind off of it. It is a damn shame that Hideshi Hino did not go on to direct more Japanese horror cinema (he also did one other Guinea Pig film before Mermaid) for if he did he would of have a filmography of some of the most disturbing and nightmarish horror movies ever made and would of been a household name to the horror community the world over. And it is an even bigger shame that the american dvd for Mermaid in a manhole which was put out by Unearthed films is long LONG out of print with copies ranging up to $100 !

Watching this japanese horror gem is in a emotional way like looking into hell. I dont usually say that watching a particular horror movie should come with a warning but for the Guinea Pig movie “Mermaid in a Manhole” i have to say…

PROCEED WITH CAUTION

– James J. Coker

 

HIDDEN HORROR FOR HALLOWEEN – Black Devil Doll from Hell

Black Devil Doll from HellBack in the 80’s underground filmmaker Chester Turner made an extremely bizarre, low budget film  shot on a VHS camera called “Black Devil Doll from Hell”. The film for years was a extremely sought after and only available on VHS and occasionally the film would be on Ebay selling for ridiculous amounts of money. People also began to wonder what happened to Chester Turner (he made another film called “Tales from the Quadead Zone” but in my opinion Black Devil Doll is a better film) some websites claimed that he has died and rumors spread like wildfire. It was not until Louis Justin, owner of independent video releasing company Massacre Video tracked Chester down in Chicago. He then worked out a distribution deal with him to put his two films on DVD, and now a new generation of fans are able to see this infamous underground classic.

The film tells the tale of Helen. She is a wholesome God fearing Christian woman who regularly attends church. She doesn’t have much of a love life and she’s saving her virginity for her husband who she is yet to find. One day, that all changes when she goes into her local thrift store and finds a ridiculous looking black ventriloquist doll complete with dread locks! The store owner tells her that the doll can grant anyone their “most heartfelt wish”. She also tells Helen that every time someone buys the doll, it always ends back up at the store. Helen decides to purchase it and brings it back home. The doll comes to life, knocks Helen out and then ties her down to a bed and proceeds to graphically rape her! The doll also can talk and says repeatedly “How do ya like dat, bitch?” As the doll rapes Helen, she starts to enjoy it! The doll even stops and makes her beg for it!

After the rape is over, Helen realizes that she has become a whore! She becomes promiscuous and starts hanging out at the local bar and bring men back home. She realizes that they do not satisfy her like the doll did, and to her dismay, the doll is no where to be found. Helen then decides to go and find the doll, resulting in a very decision that ends her life.

This film is ridiculous. If you are looking for some cutting edge polished film made by filmmakers that are technically proficient,  you will NOT find it here. But then again, would you expect that from a film called “Black Devil Doll from Hell”? However, just because the film is horrible from a filmmaking stand point does not necessarily  mean that Chessr Turner is a horrible filmmaker. No way. It was an ingenious idea to shoot it on VHS and he has a very unique vibe to his films, and this film is just downright badass. Also there’s a badass soundtrack to this film as well, particularly the main theme of the song called “I’m Your Nightmare” by David Ichikawa. Somebody told me that that’s Chester Turner who did that and that was just his pseudonym. I’m not sure, so don’t hold me down to it.  The film is also very DIY. The main character Helen was played by Chester Turner’s girlfriend at the time named Shirley L. Jones.

This Halloween, If you want to experience real underground cinema, then this is the way to go. This film is guerrilla filmmaking at its finest.  – Dakoda Bailey