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REVIEW: Never Hike Alone

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It’s amazing what can be done regarding media creation these days. With the advancements of cell phones, cameras and gadgets, more people are empowered to create.

It’s immediately impressive to see just how well-shot the Friday the 13th fan-made film ‘Never Hike Alone’ really is.

Great landscapes, solid clarity and good use of sound really make you forget that this is a fan-made films and not another entry into the series.

With that being said, the movie’s story is a bit straightforward, as hiker and survivalist Kyle McLeod (Drew Leighty) ventures into the woods on another one of his video-documented hiking adventures.

Kyle experiences some interesting things during his adventure, including hearing a pack of coyotes getting into a confrontation with “something” while he is in his tent (obviously they encounter Jason) and his stumbling upon a ‘No Trespassing’ sign that he , of course, ignores, which leads him to stumble upon ‘Camp Crystal Lake’.

The movie pays homage to the original films at various points throughout the movie, so the hardcore fans will be happy to see these moments (I certainly was).

It’s clear that the makers of this flick really love the franchise, it shines through and through many times throughout this film and it’s great to see the franchise handled with such love, especially considering a lot of the film’s entries were thrown together for the sake of gory kills for box office money.

If future films took this approach, this series could really have one hell of a 2nd life.

With all of that being said, the film starts losing it’s appeal, sadly, when Jason (Vincente DiSanti) arrives. While we are used to a hulking, towering character who is visibly a physical force, ‘Never Hike Alone’ provides us a skinny, normal-looking version of Jason. It’s just not the way Jason should look.

I give the film credit for trying to compensate for this by adding sound effects such as monsterous, earth-shaking footsteps when Jason walks, but this is where the film starts to unravel a bit. The sound effects do not match the visual.

It just doesn’t connect and thus, reminds you that this film is a fan-made flick, and you start to lose interest.

While it sounds like the film dies a slow death after this part, it doesn’t, but it doesn’t hold interest beyond a certain point, when the excitement of seeing a new take on Friday the 13th wears off.

What the film does well is certainly worth applauding. For example, I love the odes to the classics, the new take on Jason’s face without the mask (which almost made up for Jason’s flawed physical look), the love put into the film, a new angle on the series, and the cameo of Tommy Jarvis (Thom Mathews) will leave fans pretty satisfied.

For the hardcore Friday the 13th fan, this move checks a lot of boxes and will make you smile in a lot of ways, but it lacks anything else beyond nostalgia and initial excitement.

I doubt anyone who isn’t a diehard fan of the series may enjoy the film, as I see it clearly made for a specific audience.

I applaud the efforts and it can be argued that the acting was better in this film than a lot of it’s predecessors, even some of the writing.

For under an hour this film was timed beautifully, had a nice pace and took a fresh take.

Most importantly, it proved that the Friday the 13th series is indeed in demand, so, hopefully this film will help push big picture companies to green light a new film and, more importantly, put folks who actually love the franchise at the helm.

No more Platinum Dunes garbage. Give us something new, creative, and most of all, scary.

Fright Nerd Score
50 frights
Summary
For the hardcore Friday the 13th fan, this move checks a lot of boxes and will make you smile in a lot of ways, but it lacks anything else beyond nostalgia and initial excitement.
Fright Nerd Score50

Anthony DiMoro is the leader writer and founder of 'Fright Nerd'. DiMoro has written for popular websites such as Forbes and The Huffington Post. DiMoro cites Friday the 13th, A Nightmare On Elm Street and Halloween among his favorite horror movies of all time.

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Uncork’d Entertainment Drops Trailer for ‘The Darkness of the Road’

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The Darkness of the Road

Uncork’d Entertainment has unveiled the brand new trailer for their brand new horror ‘The Darkness of the Road’ which will make it’s premier, just in time for the holiday season, on DVD and Digital on December 14th.

Directed by Eduardo Rodriguez and starring Najarra Townsend, the film is about: “A single mother and her young daughter are driving on a desolate road in a moonless desert. After meeting a young female hitchhiker at a gas station, the mother realizes her daughter is missing. As they search for her, a merciless force begins to torment the two women, unraveling a world of terror they must survive if they are to discover the terrifying truth behind the daughter’s disappearance.”

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Hammer Films Forms Hammer Studios Ltd.

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Hammer Films

Hammer Horror is synonymous with the horror genre in a way that not many brands are, with Hammer Film Productions behind the releases of a number of horror classics with their spins on iconic characters such as Frankenstein, Dracula, and the Mummy.

Despite being in the horror game for as long as they have they are still churning out movies, some of which include ‘The Woman in Black’ and ‘Let Me In’ in recent years, and a now they are taking another step towards the future.

According to Variety, Hammer Films has teamed up with Network Distributing to form Hammer Studios Ltd.

Per the report: “The new entity will manage and control Hammer’s interests in its vast library of content such as “The Woman in Black” (2012), “Let Me In” (2010), “Dracula” (1958), “The Abominable Snowman” (1957) and “The Quatermass Experiment” (1953).”

“Hammer Studios will invest substantially both in restoration and new production development from both its owned and newly created IP.”

“This partnership is a really exciting opportunity to merge Hammer’s amazing library with Network’s infrastructure” according to a statement by Network Distributing’s Tim Beddows. Whilst we work our way through restoring its entire back catalogue for future generations’ enjoyment, we’re equally excited about the development of new productions from the Hammer canon.”

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ARROW December Lineup Includes ‘The Last Matinee’

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The Last Matinee

Arrow Video has unveiled the December lineup of horror movies set to his their new subscription-based platform, which is available for subscribers in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Ireland.

Among the films arriving to the platform include Maximiliano “Maxi” Contenti’s stylish neo-giallo love letter ‘The Last Matinee’, which made its US premiere at Panic Fest and screened at Sitges and the Cleveland International Film Festival. The movie will make its debut on ARROW on December 1st.

Here is the full press release:

ARROW Stories will be home to a number of exclusive extras this December. Extras for The Last Matinee include an interview with director Maxi Contenti and Killer Attractions: Maxi Contenti & Ricardo Islas in Conversation, a discussion between the film’s director and star Ricardo Islas, director of Frankenstein: Day of the Beast.

December 1 will see the arrival of The Last Matinee (UK/US/CA/IRE), Santa Sangre (US/CA), All the Colors of the Giallo (UK/US/CA/IRE), King Boxer (UK/US/CA/IRE), The Boxer from Shantung (UK/US/CA/IRE), Five Shaolin Masters (UK/US/CA/IRE), Shaolin Temple (UK/US/CA/IRE), Mighty Peking Man (UK/US/CA/IRE), Challenge of the Masters (UK/US/CA/IRE), Executioners of Shaolin (UK/US/CA/IRE), Dirty Ho (UK/US/CA/IRE), Heroes of the East (UK/US/CA/IRE), Chinatown Kid (UK/US/CA/IRE), The Five Venoms (UK/US/CA/IRE), Crippled Avengers (UK/US/CA/IRE), Apprentice to Murder (US), and Mill of the Stone Women (UK/US/CA/IRE).
December 1’s Seasonal offerings begin with The Sublime Gothic: Edgar Allan Poe adaptations, cursed crumbling castles, decaying minds and ancestral homes, mad untethered emotions and lashings of overwrought doom and mystery – we love to wallow in the sublime gothic at ARROW, and with The Mill of the Stone Women joining our ranks, this seemed the perfect opportunity for a season devoted to the wild, the tormented, the possibly haunted and the aching romance of all things deliciously dark and gothic.
Titles include: Mill of the Stone Women, Your Vice is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key, The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave, The Black Cat, and The Shiver of the Vampires.
Also bowing on December 1 is The Dark of the Matinee, inspired by The Last Matinee. A season full of thrills, chills, smiles, tears, scares and buckets of blood, with films from across the service that are set in the cinema or theatre, The Dark of the Matinee highlights the refuge that the cinema can be for us, but also all the scary things that could happen in there… once the lights go down.
Titles include: The Last Matinee, Blood Theater, Cinema Paradiso, and Tale of Cinema.
December 6’s Season delves deep into the land of monsters with the Kaiju Collection, the best selection of the biggest and baddest city, village and bad guy stomping giant monsters around. Whether it’s heartbroken and angry hundred-foot tall apes, world-saving friend to all children turtles, enormous injustice smiting stone warriors, or even a gaggle of freaky looking spirits – ARROW’s got it covered. Make sure you’re wearing a helmet as we unleash the Shaw Brother’s spin on King Kong: Mighty Peking Man; all of the spinning, flying and fire-breathing baddie battling Gamera’s adventures; the full trilogy of peasant protector Daimajin’s feudal fights for fairness; and the original three strange and spooky Yokai films, as well as the legendary Takashi Miike’s recent reboot.
Titles include: Mighty Peking Man, Gamera vs. Viras, Wrath of Daimajin, and 100 Monsters.
December 10th debuts Paranoia (US/CA), So Sweet so Perverse (US/CA), A Quiet Place to Kill (US/CA), and Knife of Ice (US/CA).
In the run-up to Christmas Day, ARROW offers up an absolute gift of a curated season to give your cheeks a warm and rosy festive glow. So open these presents early (we won’t tell), finish that drink, clear your throat and bust out your best carol-singing voice for our take on a yuletide classic starting December 14, The 12 Slays of Christmas:
On the Twelfth Day of Christmas, My ARROW gave to me: Twelve scissors slashing, Eleven cultists chasing, Ten ghosts a-waiting, Nine ladies loving, Eight men under tables, Seven creepy hotels, Six censors snipping, FIIIVE GWILL-I-AMS!, Four crawling guys, Three metalheads, Two cannibals, and a shunt into So-ci-e-ty!
Titles include: The Stylist, Threshold, A Ghost Waits, Jumbo, Man Under Table, Sleep, Video Nasties, Gwilliam, The Bloodhound, Heavy Trips, The Hills Have Eyes, and Society.
December 20 closes out 2021 with ARROW’s release of The Brian Lonano Collection, Volume 2. The second half of the lineup launches even more mind-breaking shorts from one of our most favorite ARROW contributors, Brian Lonano, onto the service. Get excited as for the second collection of his stability shredding shorts Brian takes you to insanity… and beyond! 8-bit beats-dropping moon ghosts, giant killer robots, interplanetary war, monsters, grooving in graveyards, Martian visions, Absinthe-fuelled spectral transmissions from beyond the veil, effed up funerals, experimental animation and even a head-thieving witch, hold on flipping tight as Brian Lonano is about to go off and we ain’t stopping him.
Titles include: 8bit Ghost Hop, Attackazoids!, Attackazoids, Deploy!!, Casket Climber Insect God, Electrical Skeketal, Martian Precursor, Welcome to Dignity Pastures, Memorial, Don’t Lose Your Head and The Transmission.
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