Posted on Wednesday, January 25th, 2017 by Jacob Hall
I saw Sadako vs. Kayako at Fantastic Fest last year under the best possible circumstances: in a movie theater packed with horror fans after midnight while I was just weary enough for every jump scare to jolt life back into me. The film itself is pretty fun and a good time if you have any investment at all in The Ring, The Grudge, and their many sequels, but I do wonder how it will play at home. After all, that’s where most people are going to see it, as horror streaming service Shudder has locked down the rights and will release it tomorrow, January 26, 2017. In the meantime, you can check out a new clip from the film that shows off some of the earlier scares.
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When the smoke cleared, I ended up seeing 27 movies over eight days at Fantastic Fest 2016. The Austin-based genre film festival always has a strong line-up of odd, unusual, and unique movies from around the world, but this year was truly exceptional – I saw very few movies I wouldn’t recommend in some capacity. I even saw a handful of movies that are in serious contention for my end-of-the-year top 10.
For the sake of completeness, I have compiled all of my Fantastic Fest coverage into one place, with links to my reviews and smaller capsule reviews for everything that didn’t get their own post. If you’re looking for a something terrifying or unique or action-packed or tear-jerking or just plain unusual, there is something here for you.
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Posted on Monday, September 26th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
“Who would win in a fight?” is the great conversation starter. You yell about it on the playground. You debate the finer points in the bar. Who you back in a match-up between two fictional characters can sometimes say a lot about you and your tastes. Batman or Superman? Freddy Krueger or Jason Voorhees? Alien or predator?
And now we’ve reached peak versus with the arrival of Sadako vs Kayako, which pits the evil spirits from The Ring and The Grudge against each other in an absurd supernatural throwdown. In one corner, you have a longhaired young woman with a penchant for possessing outdated physical media. In the other, you have a broken-bodied, frog-throated demoness who really doesn’t like visitors. And when they do fight, will anyone care?
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Posted on Friday, February 26th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
Since the early days of horror movies, audiences have always taken great pleasure in watching our most iconic monsters battle it out. In 1943, Frankenstein fought the Wolf Man in the appropriately titled Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man. The two most famous giant beasts of all time threw down in 1962’s King Kong vs. Godzilla. The kings of the ’80s slashers turned their bladed weapons on each other in 2003’s Freddy vs. Jason. In 2004, intergalactic supremacy was (kind of, sort of) decided in Alien vs. Predator.
And just when you thought every potential horror match-up had already come and gone, Sadako vs. Kayako arrives to remind us that cinematic monsters will never stop crossing over into each other’s movies so they can fight each other. If that title doesn’t ring a bell, just know that this film is essentially The Ring vs The Grudge, pitting one evil stringy-haired Japanese ghost against another. This isn’t a joke – there’s a trailer and everything.
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