11/18/2017  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Jennifer Esposito Is Your Newest NCIS Agent in Season 1...
Critics Are Split on Ghostbusters Reboot ...
'Respect is key': The Game, Snoop Dogg lead march to LA...
Kristen Stewart's Sheer Dress At 'Equals' Premiere -- S...
"A Slow Slipping Away"-- Kris Kristofferson's Long-Undi...
Fox News' Roger Ailes Sued for Sexual Harassment by Ous...
Garrison Keillor Retires from 'Prairie Home Companion' ...
Jennifer Aniston is Pregnant: Star Steps Out in Loose D...
Hiddleswift Is One Big Song Promotion -- A Theory...
Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie Presley files for ...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Elite Entertainment presents
Horror (2002)

"Your mother sold her soul to your father. Do you know that, Grace?"
- Reverend Salo, Sr. (The Amazing Kreskin)

Review By: Rich Rosell  
Published: December 11, 2003

Stars: Lizzy Mahon, Danny Lopes
Other Stars: The Amazing Kreskin, Vincent Lamberti, Christie Sanford, Jessica Pagan, Raine Brown, Felissa Rose, Chris Farabaugh, Kevin Kenney
Director: Dante Tomaselli

MPAA Rating: R for (gore, violence)
Run Time: 01h:16m:01s
Release Date: May 27, 2003
UPC: 790594666620
Genre: horror


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A B-C+B+ B

DVD Review

About three-quarters of the way through Horror (2002), one of the tormented characters screams out "This s*** can't be happening!" That about sums it all up in five words, and with his second film writer/director Dante Tomaselli has concocted a horror tale that does what so few can do, which is to not only create an off-balance, flippy-floppy nightmare where it is impossible to predict where the story is heading, but to scare the crap out of you at the same time.

The less said about the details of the plot the better, but suffice to say it relies on the convergence of two separate storylines, both of which are told with limited backstory or explanation (at least to a point), and as stranger and stranger events unfold the loose ends are tied up, then untied, but by then things have gotten really, really bad for the people in the story.

I made the mistake of reading the DVD backcover blurb, which revealed too much of the plot too soon, so I'll refrain from that same indiscretion here. All you really need to know is the story centers on a disturbing, murderous faith healer (Vincent Lamberti, sporting a diabolic Stevie Ray Vaughn moustache), his heavily-mascaraed wife (Christie Sanford), a girl with weird visions (Lizzy Mahon), an aging faith healer (The Amazing Kreskin), a group of drug-addled teens (led by Danny Lopes), a freaky little ghost girl, and a creepy black goat with long horns. If that's not a cast of characters designed to give you the heebie-jeebies, then you're far more jaded and cynical than I.

I don't mind saying that there are moments of sheer visual genius in Horror, something that Tomaselli seems to have a natural knack for. He's still burdened with spotty acting from his cast, but the guy really has a feel for staging and capturing images that are dreamlike, off-kilter, and more often than not frightening, and on low-budget film it is doubly impressive. Even with that big buildup from me, I can see a film like this splitting horror fans right down the middle. No doubt some will find the repeated use of a menacing horned goat to be laughable, but I'll bet those are the same folks who said The Ring didn't creep them out.

The specifics of the plot are inconsequential when compared to the visual tapestry and skin-crawling punch of Horror. Shrieking jack-o-lanterns, violent thunderstorms, projectile vomiting, mysteriously slamming doors, and paintings that take on a life of their own are a few of things that Tomaselli uses to build the weirdness, and at one point he even hauls out an army of the undead just when things seem to be falling within reason. All of this truly great, atmospheric material makes such things like an overdone scene with Johnny Carson-era mentalist The Amazing Kreskin's character performing an extended version of what is essentially his stage act tolerable.

Tomaselli really nailed it this time. This is great, great stuff.

Note to fans of Sleepaway Camp: Cult icon Felissa Rose has a brief cameo near the end, and even gets to do a slight homage to her 1980s horror classic.

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: B-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Horror is presented in a 1.85:1 nonanamorphic widescreen print, and its 16mm roots reveal the limitations of the format. Grain is a frequent nuisance, with some scenes looking pretty blocky. On the other hand, and I really want to stress this point, Tomaselli stages a number of truly gorgeous sequences that don't seem to fall victim to the grain issue, and it is during these moments you will really be scratching your head wondering how one scene can look so good, while others look so bad.

Colors are slightly muted, but remain largely consistent throughout the film. Black levels hold up better than is normally seen on most low-budget films, and Horror's couple of pivotal outdoor nighttime sequences show strong shadow delineation.

Image Transfer Grade: C+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: For a low-budget horror film, the 5.1 Dolby Digital audio mix is an impressive one. Tomaselli has intentionally built his film as some kind of disorienting, lopsided experience, and the sound mix really reflects that. Granted, much of the glory goes to ambient sounds and sudden music stingers, which move around all available channels to help generate the feeling of a bad dream. The attic sequence, when someone makes the mistake of venturing up there alone, is very, very well done in that regard.

Dialogue is reproduced rather weakly in comparison, and sounds comparatively flat and drab next to the score and unnatural sounds that Tomaselli used so extensively.

A Dolby Digital "show off your sound system" bumper plays before the feature, and is the one with the helicopter circling the movie theater, if you're into that kind of thing.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+

 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 24 cues and remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
1 Other Trailer(s) featuring Desecration
3 Featurette(s)
1 Feature/Episode commentary by Dante Tomaselli
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. Photo Gallery
Extras Review: Writer/director Dante Tomaselli offers up a full-length, scene-specific commentary, and though it often becomes one of those "here's character "X" walking into a room" kind of tracks, his content actually does serve to explain some scenes and clarify the crazy goings-on a little more succinctly. Even the with the frequent silent gaps, Tomaselli provides a more focused explanation for his film, and how it serves as the unofficial sequel to his 1997 debut Desecration. If you happen to check out Horror, you owe it to yourself to give Tomaselli's commentary a listen, if for nothing else to fill in the blanks.

Behind the Scenes (09m;37s) is a typical handheld video collection of footage, and includes fragments of comments from cast members and production crew. No major revelations here, but there are a few comments that do help explain the intent of one of the outdoor scenes that somehow flew over my head. On the Set with the Amazing Kreskin (012m:51s) is just what the title says it is, and gives the famous mentalist a few moments to stress that what he does isn't hypnotism, but actually power of suggestion. The segment wraps with footage of Kreskin supposedly actually causing cast members to fall to the floor as if paralyzed, and features comments from the participants to make it seem all the more legit. According to Kreskin, his big mass "power of suggestion" scene during chapter 17 is real. You decide. There is also an eleven minute clip from Tomaselli's creepy looking Desecration, from 1996.

In addition to a brief photo gallery and a couple of Tomaselli trailers (Horror, Desecration), there are a healthy 24 chapter stops, and there are no subtitles.

Extras Grade: B

 

Final Comments

Writer/director Dante Tomaselli shows himself to be one gloriously twisted individual, and he has brought his own undulating knot of creepy nightmares to life with Horror, a film that brings to mind the best moments of Lucio Fulci or Dario Argento.

Dramatically unsettling and laden with scenes that play out like bad dreams, Horror rises above its own occasionally clunky dialogue and flat line reads to pummel you with moments of dark beauty.

Highly recommended.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, jennifer esposito, blue bloods, ncis, mark harmon. duane henry, wilmer valderrama, michael weatherly, bull, movie, ghostbusters, comedy, chris helmsworth, melissa mcarthy, kristen wiig, celebrity, rap, game, shoop dogg, jayceon terrell taylor, alton sterling, kristen stewart, equals, jonathan simkhal, nicholas hoult, music, kris kristofferson, country music hall of fame, alzheimers, lyme disease, fox news, gretchen carlson, fox and friends, steve doocy, roger ailes, the real story with gretchen carlson, radio, garrison keillor, a prairie home companion, jennifer anniston, baby bump, justin theroux, taylor swift, tom hiddleston, calvin harris, lisa marie presley, michael lockwood, riley and benjamin keough, danny keough, michael jackson, nicolas cage, tom affleck, boston fan, bill simmons, hbo show, any given wednesday, tom brady, deflategate, hamilton, lin-manuel mianda, periscope, heart tweet machine, hamilton mixtape, cable, hbo, curb your enthusiasm, larry david, bernie sanders, saturday night live, maya and marty, christina grimmie, murdered, plaza live, before you exit, marcus grimmie, nashville, cmt, president brian phillips, the tonight show, jimmy fallon, president obama, the roots, hillary clinton, tim mcgraw, faith hill, maggie mcgraw, humble and kind, ellen degeneres show, titi pierce, coldwell banker robbins & free realty, hairspray live!, tracy turnblad, york theatre company, john waters, jennifer hudson, harvey fierstein, martin short, derek hough, j.k. rowling, harry potter and the cursed child, noma dumezweni, emma watson, judd apatow, paul freig, melissa mccarthy, romance, history channel, roots, remake, anika noni rose, t.i., malachi kirby, josh duhamel, transformers, fergie, black eyed peas, axl, double dutchess, abc, music city, grand ole opry, chip esten, lennon stella, the voice, alisan porterm, christina aguilera, ceelo green, ariana grande, sia, the little big town, 2016 billboard music awards, pink, just like fire, pamela neal, warrior princess, send my love (to your new lover), billboard music awards, adele, patrick daughters, bryan cranston, lbj, all the way, melissa leo, frank langella, todd weeks, hard sell, kristin chenoweth, wicked

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store