Tuesday, May 20, 2014

In Honour of McNally and Florescu

Historian Radu Florescu died this week. Along with his colleague Raymond McNally, who passed away in 2002, the two scholars were the first to bring the life and times of the historical Vlad Tepes to public consciousness. Their ground-breaking book, In Search of Dracula: A True History of Dracula and Vampire Legends (1972), forever changed the landscape of Dracula scholarship--and proved that the vampire myth could be a serious, and viable, area of study. Seeing as I wasn't blogging back when McNally died, I thought this would be a good opportunity to honour both men, who were often as entertaining as the topics they studied.
(Pictured here is my abused, and cherished, copy of their first book.)

Afflicted coming to Blu-Ray this July

The Canadian vampire movie AFFLICTED comes to Blu-ray on July 1. This found-footage horror, by co-writers/directors Clif Browse and Derek Lee (who also star in the film), follows two friends as they take a once-in-a-lifetime trip around the world. But things take a turn for the worse after they meet a beautiful woman in Paris.

The film won several awards at Fantastic Fest, and was featured at both the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and the Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival.

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Supernatural: Bloodlines - What were they thinking?

This week's episode of Supernatural, "Bloodlines," is a backdoor pilot for a potential spin-off series on the CW. The story focuses on five rival monster families vying for control of Chicago, and a vengeful young man who's a Hunter in the making. Although this takes place in the Supernatural universe, the story feels so out of step that it's more like Monsters, 90210 or Twilight: The Embraced. Clearly, this is aimed at a much younger (and narrower) audience than the parent show--so one has to wonder, what were they thinking?

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Sneak Peek: Penny Dreadful

This week, Showtime released the first episode of their much-anticipated Gothic horror series, Penny Dreadful, on both YouTube and Sho.com, even though the television premiere isn't until Sunday, May 11 at 10 PM ET/PT. It's a smart move, and will surely generate buzz about the series, which takes place in Victorian England and features characters from classic literature including Frankenstein (1818), The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890), and Dracula (1897). Created by John Logan and Sam Mendes (Skyfall), the series stars Eva Green, Josh Hartnett, Timothy Dalton, and Billie Piper.

Although there are some familiar faces and places, this is an original story, featuring a core group of new characters who are on a quest to save a young woman's soul--and as this first episode shows us, the journey will likely be dark, horrific, and completely engaging.