To the point review.
Watch the film!




Rigor Mortis blew my mind. Hands down Takashi Shimizu‘s best work to date. An extremely well thought out film. Many character plots that unravel into a set of circumstances that makes perfect sense in a realm where near anything seems possible. Complicated as all hell but, easy to follow.

22298746_Still_Rigor%20Mortis_7I’m not going to bother trying to find a flaw in the cinematography, it was fucking beautiful to watch. The ghosts were typical of Takashi Shimizu‘s earlier work (pick any Ju-on) but had something special that set them apart. While on film, the spirits and those possessed had a veiny, liquid like aura that didn’t seem evil but, like the twins themselves, a product of their demise. There is one scene where it feels like Shimizu is giving homage to Stephen King’s “The Shining”. There are no other parallels between the films than one shot. Or, perhaps…

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Rich and Benny are having trouble with the ladies, until they befriend a demon named Az. It’s a non-stop party until a soul hungry beast leaps through an open portal from the underworld and starts terrorizing the town. It’s up to Az and the boys to send the creature back to the depths where it came from, and look good, while doing it in Cool As Hell.

coollickedBeginning with a great intro song by Bloodsucking Zombies From Outer Space and some quirky violence Cool As Hell; is cool as hell.  James Balsamo, with a strong will throws down the sword on this flick. …and I like it.  I now fully believe that any movie that has the line “…this is a sausage fest” within the first ten minutes is going to kick ass.

Taking a new avenue with Cool As Hell,

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The Living Corpse has been  “Kicking Ass and Eating Brains” for 3 years.iZombie has been  “Kicking Ass and Taking Brains” for a month.

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This is not a question of whether or not the tagline Kicking Ass and Eating/Taking Brains was stolen by upcoming comic book turned serial iZombie from the masterminds behind The Living Corpse comic book and film The Amazing Adventures of The Living Corpse (Buz Hasson/Ken Haeser), it is a question of what are they (iZombie) going to do about it.

548606_390766454344801_1600408869_nOne could chalk it up to flattery, however, it’s not. It is very sad when creators from the same genre are stealing from one another. If anyone knows, it should be fellow comic book artist/writers. It isn’t an easy job and getting attention for your comic books, no matter how excellent it may…

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Movie extras are my thing. I seek discs that have documentaries, behind the scenes footage and short films. A few years ago when checking out the extras on the DVD Seed, I found an incredible short, Criticized, written and directed by Richard Gale.

The film, for me, was appetizingly sadomasochistic. One major fear I have is shit happening to my eyes. Never, ever, do I want to see the insides of them. Will be more than pleased just to make it through life without that happening. And, as it turns out, strong suggestion of such an occurrence gives me a visceral reaction, almost panicky (I gag and barf when stressed, probably wasn’t the prettiest sight watching this film) which perfectly details the intensity Gale‘s Criticized encompasses.
Truly, I have boasted about this film for years like a drunk Town Crier.

Criticized is a film best watched during the night, dark and, alone. Brian Rohan and John Lynd had to be good at their craft for this short to work. Totally dependent on their ability to emote. Both worked well together, the story is bound by Gale‘s stylish directing. There is really nothing wrong with the short. It is terrifying and it’s purpose to scare is realized. I highly recommend to genre lovers to give Criticized a viewing. It’s awesome. The plot is likely something that passes through every film makers imagination at some point, it is devious and sick.
From the first to the last scene Criticized is a fully impressive movie.

Time passed between finding Criticized hidden as the ultimate extra on a DVD and the growth of my savviness via social media. I opened up a Youtube account (my channel is basically all snail videos, I’d link it, but why bother?) and started following Richard Gale Films. Initially I thought it was the wrong Richard Gale as the front page of his channel was full of videos with stills of spoons.
Like the Girl Friday I am, my curiosity took over. Further investigation revealed a sinister plot featuring a creature* named Ginsoaji (Silver Spoon), who slowly tortures a man with an extremely inefficient weapon. OF COURSE this is the same Richard Gale! It makes perfect sense! The themes are nearly identical although the shorts themselves couldn’t be more polarized. “Hizzah!” I shouted (in this version of my experience) as IMDb confirmed my suspicions.

Quickly I followed Gale on Facebook and messaged him hoping to build up a rapport before I requested an interview. True to his art he put me through a few months of anticipation before I received a response.
Not only is Gale talented but intelligent. Able to discuss the genre in-depth which is more rare than you would think with those involved in the horror industry, also quick-witted and kind.

Seriously, if I wasn’t leaning towards boobs these days I would have accumulated a major crush by now.

There you have it, one of my favourite directors whom I have total respect for that granted me the interview I so desired.
High five, read below.

-As someone with your occupation, how did you reason with yourself to write Criticized? You had to of known its potential was either an epic blood-curdling horror (which luckily you ended up with) or, the creepiest shelved screenplay ever. Was it difficult to write or did you somehow get in touch with your darkest angst as a filmmaker and let loose?

11349009_10205905646073662_1795106036_nI wrote Criticized in one day. I wanted to do something about a character living on the outer fringes of Hollywood, an outcast. It was largely inspired by a cruel movie review I had seen many years before, in the L.A. Weekly. I don’t remember the film it was for, but the critic wrote “Hopefully this will be the final nail in the coffin of this hack filmmaker’s career.” That was so vicious, it stuck with me. The impetus to do Criticized was I had just purchased a new camera, the Panasonic HVX200, and wanted to test it on something dramatic and suspenseful, so instead of shooting a camera test, I made Criticized. Also, Screamfest had a deadline in three weeks. So the entire film was made in a little over two weeks.

Criticized is not a blood and guts film. It relies on the plot and the actors much like in the golden days of Hammer Films. What was behind your choice to keep the gore out of the short and do you feel it was the correct decision for this already solid story?

Well, there are extreme closeups of gore, but only in very quick flashes. It was absolutely the right decision for what I wanted, which was a focus on terror and dread and not nausea or disgust, which detracts from real psychological impact. I’m a student of Hitchcock, and I’m also not as interested in gore for gore’s sake.

11356184_10205905507190190_1756374977_n-Because I’m a huge fan, I have to ask, is there any chance that Criticized will be made in to a full length feature film or, are you over paperclips and focusing on spoons? Do you have plans to return to cover-your-eyeballs-horror?

I have the complete screenplay. I’m very happy with it, and have had some meetings with some producers but it hasn’t happened yet. One day, I hope to make it.

-What inspired the theme of your work (Criticized, The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon) having characters violated leisurely with common household items? Where did this idea form?

I just wanted to do something different. So many movies use guns and knives… I wanted to do something that had not been seen before. That’s what I find interesting. I love the idea of something normally very ordinary and innocuous becoming menacing. Like the number 2 pencil through the ankle in Evil Dead.

-From your perspective how was switching from a full on horror to comedy-horror?  Which do you find more challenging and do you have a personal preference?

Comedy-horror is more rewarding when sitting in a theatre hearing the audience react, though it was fun to see crowds of people react to the paper clip in Criticized… hearing people laugh is the best. But I still have the ambition to make the scariest Goddamn horror film anyone’s ever seen.

-What is Spoon Wars and does it have anything to do with The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon?

Spoon Wars is one of the many videos on my YouTube channel Richard Gale Films, which continues the epic saga of Jack (the victim) and the Ginosaji (the Spoonkiller). Ginosaji is Japanese for “silver spoon”. Spoon Wars is also the first film to ever show a live-action underwater light saber fight.”

-For those who do not know what The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon could you please explain what this is about?

11349805_10205905646513673_944167100_nIt’s a fake movie trailer, 10 minutes long, for a film that is allegedly over 9 hours long. It’s the story of one man’s encounter with the most relentless murderer of all time, a strange character who hits him, with a spoon, and chases him all over the world, for years, and can’t be stopped. In some ways, it’s actually a very disturbing film. But I think of it as 90% comedy, 10% horror. I made it for film festivals, but then when I put it on YouTube it went viral, recently topped 28 Million views, and has a cult following. Some of our diehard fans have permanent tattoos of the spoonkiller! Now we’re planning a full-length feature film, and a Kickstarter campaign in the near future, so the faux movie trailer will actually become real!

-Noting your acting credit in The Human Race, you are very much a renaissance man in the entertainment industry.  What position is closest to your heart? The solidarity of writing, the fuss of directing or, make-believe of acting?

I enjoy all three, but if I had to choose one, it would be writing/directing, which I consider all one thing really. Storytelling.

-What keeps you working in the oft-fruitless industry of horror entertainment and, who are your inspirations that spurred your passion to scare people through your written work, film and acting?

My Mother used to tell me Edgar Allan Poe stories when I was a kid, and every Halloween my brother and I would write scary stories, trying to out-scare each other. From an early age, I learned to appreciate the joys of good scary stories. I don’t think of myself as a “horror” filmmaker, since I also love suspense, comedy, sci-fi– I like to mix it up.

-There are tons of videos on your YouTube channel, Richard Gale Films, have you found that a good way for indie-filmmakers to get their product out to the masses?

11291835_10205905476829431_608136315_nI never planned on it, but YouTube has turned into a wonderful career booster for me. I think it can be amazing for a filmmaker, if your material fits the audience’s tastes. In my case, I lucked out because Horribly Slow Murderer is a great fit — extremely fast paced, funny, strange, dark– it’s perfect for an audience with a short-attention span. The ones that thrive on YouTube are usually comedies, but I think there’s always a place for well-made work to be appreciated.

-For your fans, please list 5-10 of your favourite horror flicks.

The Shining, Alien, Psycho, Dawn of the Dead (original), Evil Dead (original!!), Halloween (ORIGINAL!!!), The Fog (ORIGINAL, Jesus.), John Carpenter’s The Thing, Carrie (ORIGINAL), Audition, Poltergeist (original, sigh). My God, how many remakes there are. I didn’t bother to write “original” after Psycho because, come on. I also love Suspiria and Texas Chainsaw (original). I just wish there was a rule that if you make a remake, you have to put an asterisk on the title to warn people. It’s not fair to young people who won’t know the difference. It’s such a disservice to the originals.

-The Fog? Really? Not an official question but, what do you like about that film. Just re-watched it last week and barely got through it. Too slow for me. Think I ended up cleaning the aquarium while it was on.

Ok, El, time for some appreciation tips for The Fog.
#1. It must be seen on the largest screen possible, preferably the Big screen. D.P. was Dean Cundey, bar none, one of the best A+ cinematographers of our time, who did the most gorgeous widescreen lensing. To enjoy his work, the small screen is not your friend.
#2. You have to be in the mood for it, it’s a brandy that you sip. Sounds to me that you were more in the mood to do some shots of tequila.
#3. All real locations– It’s all about atmosphere– literally, the atmosphere is the monster! The Fog rolls in slowly, gently, before it knocks on your door with a meat hook.
#4. Janet Leigh and Jamie Lee Curtis (mother & daughter) together in the same film, is fun. Other reasons: It’s near and dear to my heart because I saw it first when I was a kid, on Halloween night, so there’s that. The climax when Adrienne Barbeau is on top of the lighthouse is still scary as fuck (as is the music in that scene, which was clearly an inspiration for some of the cues in It Follows.) And it’s got Hal Holbrook! I once had the pleasure of talking with Mr. Holbrook about working on that movie, and so again, I guess I just have fond memories tied to that film. And the final moment / cut to end credits is so badass.

-…And, on that note I am much more of a Long Island ice tea kind of girl – I guess that means I like the Scream and I Know What You Did films. Haha..

Haha, I love Scream, works so brilliantly.

See what I am talking about? It’s nice to be surprised by a person whose work you are total impressed by. Guess that makes me a fan-girl? Sure, I can deal. Can even accept he thinks The Fog and Suspiria are excellent horror films. They’re not, but I can accept these two mistakes if they spur on his delight to horrify his audience.
Can’t wait to see what Gale comes up with in the future.
Check out the links below or click on any red words and pictures on the page to be directed to videos and official sites.


Criticized (18 and over only, must be logged in to YouTube) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=innHwdDWuxs

Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VDvgL58h_Y

Save Jack – Interactive https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VenEVnc3vqg

Richard Gale Films channel (all my videos) https://www.youtube.com/user/RichardGaleFilms/videos?flow=grid&view=0&sort=p


For an added bonus…
Yesterday my Pop’s came to the City and we watched The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon. Needless to say, my Father found it hilarious.
He stopped in today before heading to work this afternoon, walked right up to the drawers in my kitchen and grabbed a spoon and started hitting me in the head with it.
Goodbye Justice from Manborg and hello to Ginsoaji’Pa.





PC games are something of a hobby of mine and I’ve played them as far back as I can remember. Nothing more fun than jumping into a new universe and solving mysteries, puzzles and interacting with extravagant characters. Point and click is my thing, heck, DOS games are my style. Recently I have ventured out of my norm and am experiencing new worlds. For the most part it’s been a fun ride.


Max Caulfield, Artist: Sky

Last week I started and finished both released chapters by Dontnod Entertainment‘s, Life is Strange. The third person game revolves around Max Caulfield, a uncertain and awkward 18-year-old returning to her home town of Arcadia Bay for a photography class taught by a former famed photographer, Mr. Jefferson. It begins on Max’s first day at Blackwell Academy, which she points out hasn’t notably changed over her five year leave. It’s an average first day at school until Max has a spell in class and realizes she possesses the power to reverse time. This happens at the precise moment when she has the opportunity to save the life of her ill-fated friend, Chloe Price. The game went pretty fast for me. Other than introducing the characters nothing major happens yet. Yes, Max is able to turn back time to save Chloe but, after the first ten minutes it’s a lot of drama queen nonsense as for episode one and two. Max does take note in missing persons Rachel Amber and takes it upon herself to inquire to friends and factuality about what may have happened and who could be behind her disappearance. This will hopefully play out well like a good who-dun-it. We’ll have to wait for later episodes to see what happened to Rachel and how Max is connected to the upcoming tornado.

For Max, living the dorm life was acceptable enough, although she would rather not have to maneuver between the Jocks, the Pot Head, the Geeks and the élite crowd 11148321_390811201110544_2120163933261187629_nknown as the Vortex Club.
And, the ever bad, Chloe, whom she seems to both admire and question the reasoning of her often negative actions.
A best friend to Max, left behind years earlier and someone she didn’t contact when she returned, Chloe is a strong female lead with anger issues and, insecurities of being abandoned. She feels like every one in life has left her and there is lots of evidence in the game that she took Max moving away very badly. Chloe’s step-father is a military man and it seems a part of the bigger plot. Five bucks says Chloe turns out to be part of the anonymous bad on campus and her step father will be an ally.

11150582_389481387910192_3475059427812719725_n Life is Strange is a game riddled with heavy metaphors. A doe that appears not only in dreams but at opportune times, butterflies which seem to hang around clues or obstacles that must be completed and, a tornado that is seemingly the biggest threat headed to Max and all of Arcadia.
I assume the most intense moments of the five part series will take place closer to the time the tornado hits. It’s to early to hypothesize what the doe, butterflies and tornado are symbols of but I’m sure it will all become clear as the Life is Strange game comes to a close.

Between obstacles like going from room to room looking for a memory stick or figuring out how to outsmart the Vortex Club and get inside her dorm (
don’t get me started on searching for bottles), Life is Strange is a slow burn. Though, through these drawn out chores there are a number clues all around that help deepen the plot. The character build up is well done using this strategy. Tthere are a lot of opportunities to learn about Max’s past living in Arcadia, as for anything truly intense, maybe they are waiting for the later episodes…

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Striving for what Telltale Games has made an art of, in Life is Strange you are able to make choices for Max which will affect the game play later on through the opportunities to turn back time and change actions or behaviors. Basically, you feel like you are in control of the outcome of the game.
For me, I like this. Will often play twice, how I would normally choose (generally pretty nice person) and then the total opposite of my choices. Yes, I get game guilt, like when I didn’t feed the stray cat in Shenmue Chapter 1: Yokosuka but, sometimes it’s nice play the bad guy.

The navigation is relatively easy, the main problem with it would be that the POV doesn’t always follow along with Max turning around and has made me a little crazy, Life is Strange is oddly addicting. A bonus to the game are the graphics. They’re excellent and at times, beautiful and serene. The look of time-jumping was spot on though hard to watch. Happy there is a key to speed up the function, but have noticed a few times there have been bugs where I went further back than intended.

As a horror fan it was fun to see nods to The Shining and Twin Peaks. These help to solidify the Life is Strange universe. Having characters that are fans of the same things I am got me hooked, even though this was done quite subtly, I can’t wait to see similar discoveries in upcoming episodes. The score was another treat that kept in line with the feelings of the game. Something for everyone.


Overall, it’s an enjoyable game getting to explore a number of settings, the characters were all pretty solid and it is fun to see different consequences to what you choose to do before setting actions in stone. Odds are I will finish the series, though I hope for more action and obstacles that further the story line and not just have me hunting for Easter Eggs (and bottles).





Art is a really hard concept to define. At its simplest, it’s a man-made product that invokes reaction from its viewers. But, what if the emotions the art raises are ones people do not tend to want to feel? Ocular is a strange film, the soundtrack is ear-piercing and difficult to listen to. Visually, the images on the screen are horrible to watch. This is a short that makes people queezy, look away in terror, scream, shutter and, often gag. This film is art!

ocualr34Without the use of excessive blood and guts, director David Brudie created a short film that very few people have been able to watch in one sitting. Being a huge supporter of Ocular, I helped distribute the film at Shock Stock 2014 (a position I asked for by begging Brudie to enter the short and attending the festival as a representative). Arriving late I ran to the screening room and watched the audience take in what they could. It was awesome. Most would keep their heads down while their eyes peered up at the screen. Others were screaming with loving-disgust. Co-creator of Shock Stock, Jake W. Grimbro, loved the film and was quoted as saying “It’s putrid.. Definitely earns the title of short shocks… This film epitomizes what our convention and festival is all about… Intensity, Originality, and Horror in all it’s forms… HANDS DOWN THE SS (Shock Stock) 2014 FAVOURITE SHORT SHOCK!” From my own feelings, the reaction of the viewers combined with selling out every DVD, I totally agree with Grimbro.

11016657_1010742538940804_543206305_n When asked about how the reception Ocular has received, David Brudie responded genially, I feel that it is a love/hate sort of film… The people who like it are very adamant about it and supportive, but there are also others that see nothing redeeming about it… Ocular has been called a lot of things; “Satanic”, “Incoherent” and “Demented”, all spring to mind… However, there are people who look past the obvious shock value and see that there is more in it than meets the eye… I have already had a few people question me about what I was trying to get across in the film, basically they wanted to know (from my point of view) what the film meant… I have no problem explaining certain motivations for Ocular but I also point out that it is something each viewer must interpret for themselves… I think that the people who ‘get it’ see the film in a whole different way, but sadly there are many that ONLY see the repulsiveness in it… That’s kind of a shame, but I knew that it was likely as I was going into this project… Ocular is hard for certain people to watch for a few good reasons, the most prominent one’s are the disgusting acts that the film deals with and the horrorific tone that the movie has… I wanted to grab the viewer right away and keep their attention… On the surface Ocular comes across as a series of unrelated gross acts, and some people like to show their friends and watch the reactions they get… Kind of like a dare or perhaps initiation into the twisted and disturbing nature of the film… I call it being ‘Ocularized’ and I’m cool with whatever reasons people are interested in Ocular, but I’m just saying that if you look deeper there are other things going on…While discussing what the audience was taking from Ocular, Brudie quipped That really depends on what the audience brings with them before watching the film… Everyone will get a different feeling or impression from Ocular and will likely come away with something individual… However, if (at the very least) I give the viewer a unique and perhaps thought provoking experience for 15 minutes, and they walk away wondering what the fuck they just saw, then I’ll feel like I accomplished something…”  Brudie seems to have accepted all opinions on the film, which is a rare trade for a director, be it a new one in the field.

Why am I not getting in to the plot? Why not discuss the actors? Because it is irrelevant. The film is like a sculpture without a solid form, not every one is going to have the same experience seeing it. The plot, it’s what you think it is, no opinions is wrong. I find those who say they hate Ocular seem to hate the intense emotional and often physical affect the movie has, not the film itself. These are also the same people who don’t seem to be able to sit through a viewing. And, it is fucking hard to do. I will admit it, I put my hands over my eyes, turned down the volume and gagged when I popped my Ocular cherry.

People in the genre are raving about Ocular. It is fresh, artsy and mega-repulsive. After watching Ocular, Chris Alexander, editor of  Fangoria, supplied the following quote An eerie, abstract collection of strange, haunting images held together by an unnerving and unyielding sound design.”

I questioned Brudie about what directors he found inspirational hoping to futher understand where he was coming from with Ocular, “There are three director’s (and three films) that greatly influenced Ocular… First off is David Lynch and his film “Eraserhead”… I think much of Ocular‘s nightmarish and haunting qualities can be attributed to Lynch’s film… Secondly, is “Begotten” by E. Elias Merhige, which not only inspired the cinematography and post production filters and effects in my film, but also the significant religious overtones… Like Begotten, Ocular speaks mostly through its silent and cerebral imagery… Lastly, I have to give recognition to John Waters and his film “Pink Flamingos” for destroying any inhibition I may have had in filming some of this unsavory material…”  His response didn’t yield any concrete information in relation to the explosive style Ocular exuberates, but, I accept that. Brudie is a complicated man, thus it makes sense his artwork would be the same.

I highly recommend Ocular to any horror fan. Would I recommend it to my Aunt who relishes thrillers on the Women’s Network? No, she would beat me silly. This is a very intense experience one should be prepared for. Do you think you could make it through the entire film in one sitting?I’ve seen grown men walk out regurgitating.

ocualr3As for what Brudie is working on now… “At the moment I am working on a collaborative effort with a facebook (secret) group called HORROR GEEKS…
We are trying to get a Horror anthology going, featuring the short films of various members of the group… They will all be linked together by a wrap around story… I am very much looking forward to this project because I am a huge fan of horror anthologies and in my opinion there just isn’t enough of them being made anymore… Some of my favorites are “Tales From The Crypt”, “Asylum”, “Dr. Terror House of Horrors” and of course the more recent “Creepshow”, by George A. Romero… My plan is to make this film reminiscent of those great one’s of the past…
When I’m not filming you will usually find me writing and I’m happy to say that I just released a new book last December called “Dribs n Drabs“… It is a series of short stories and poems that deal with a variety of scary and disturbing things… I’ve recieved some really great reviews (which are available at the Amazon order page) and am thankful that people enjoy my work…
By the way, one more thing I’d like to mention, is that OCULAR is finally going to see a public release!!
It will be available shortly on Amazon’s ‘ ‘Instant Video’ site… I’m very excited, and hope you take the time to check it out… I’d love to hear YOUR opinion, so drop me a message on my IMDb page or at the Official Ocular facebook site…


Ocular is a great short to shock people and I am putting out a dare. Would love to know what horror fans out there are able to sit through and entire viewing of the movie. It’s the kind of flick that people make videos of themselves watching. Please let me know if you are able to watch it  and, if you make a video of yourself watching Ocular  please post it here as a comment. If you can do it, you’re probably one sick mother-fucker.

Should also comment on Dribs N’ Drabs, I have read a short story from it and I thought it was a smooth ride. Great read.