Sleepaway Camp (1983)

There have been many unexpected twists in the slasher canon; in fact, a shock finale is pretty much a prerequisite for a sub-genre that relies so heavily on jump scares and gross-out shock factor.

Also known as Nightmare Vacation, Sleepaway Camp is a very different animal—different in the sense that it not only relies on its twist, it lives and dies by it. It is because of that twist—one of the most shocking and unexpected in all of cinema—that the movie would go on to spawn several increasingly shitty sequels, achieving the kind of cult status that most low-budget schlock can only dream of. So monumental was the movie’s shock reveal that […]

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Darkest Before Dawn: The Best Horror Trailers of the 80’s

Question: What do you miss most about those halcyon home video days?

Cover art is something that stands out – it made that oh so joyous experience of choosing your rental all the more joyous. Choice is the second thing that springs to mind. Sometimes you would arrive home on a Saturday evening and be thoroughly disappointed with a movie that promised so much and delivered so little. But that was part of the fun, particularly when you unearthed the kind of gem that you couldn’t wait to rent again […]

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This Month in . . . 1983 (February)

The month of February would get off with a bang for horror fans. Released on the same day, The Entity would go head-to head with David Cronenberg’s body horror classic Videodrome. Directed by Palm D’or nominated director Sidney J. Furie (The Ipcress File), The Entity was based on the real life Doris Bither case and tells the story of a malevolent poltergeist who purportedly raped and tormented her for years […]

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Riding with the Griswolds: National Lampoon’s Vacation

Long before The Simpsons made their mark on American culture, Warner Brothers gave us the Griswolds.

Sure, there had been dysfunctional families before, but as a symbol of America’s faltering moral climate Clark and his band of three proved something of a landmark in outlining the reality of the time-honoured cross-country road trip in all of its failed glory. Time may have diluted the movie’s irreverence, and events may border on the caricaturistic at times, but these are very real and relatable characters caught in an all-too-familiar environment of outdated sentiments and eternal disappointment […]

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Operation Endor: Return of the Jedi and the Decline of Star Wars

After the swashbuckling adventure of A New Hope and the dark turn taken with The Empire Strikes Back, there was feverish anticipation to see where the ‘Star Wars’ universe would go next.

Relinquishing directorial duties once again, this time to relative rookie Richard Marquand, ‘Return of the Jedi’ remains a bit of an oddity. It’s cute, fun, silly, adventurous, but marks the beginning of the decline of ‘Star Wars’ under George Lucas […]

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