Vampires vs. the Bronx: A biting, socially conscious horror comedy

By Tom Moore Netflix is full of horror gems that generally get lost within its vast, ever-growing library of content. There’s honestly so many movies that go unseen, we could probably cover a movie each day and have a couple months’ worth of content. There was one film last year though that most horror fans and Netflix users shouldn’t have slept on – “Vampires Vs. … Continue reading Vampires vs. the Bronx: A biting, socially conscious horror comedy

Nosferatu: A Bold Vision of a Familiar Story

a story become too familiar? After almost a century of Dracula narratives, whether they are adapted directly from the Bram Stoker novel or not, the character and his arc feels as familiar as a family heirloom, passed down the generations. This is part of why F.W. Murnau’s “Nosferatu” is the adaptation of the
story I come back to more often than any other- Murnau’s film feels like an oddity, like that weird uncle you don’t really want to talk about. And yet, it still has a place in the family, because the DNA remains constant. Continue reading Nosferatu: A Bold Vision of a Familiar Story

Welcome to the Blumhouse: Black as Night Review

Year: 2021 Runtime: 87 minutes Director: Maritte Lee Go Writer: Sherman Payne Actors: Asjha Cooper, Fabrizio Guido, Mason Beauchamp, Abbie Gayle, Keith David By Tom Moore The second part to Amazon and Blumhouse’s collaborative effort, “Welcome to the Blumhouse”, features Maritte Lee Go’s feature directorial debut telling a New Orleans vampire story with “Black as Night” (2021). The film takes viewers into a post-Hurricane Katrina … Continue reading Welcome to the Blumhouse: Black as Night Review

Supernatural Beauty and its Cost: Cinema Witchcraft Over the Decades

The family Halloween flick “Hocus Pocus” (1993) became a cult hit due to its iconic New England aesthetics and the flamboyant performance of Hollywood veteran Bette Midler, but didn’t charm a huge audience at the time of its release. Moviegoing youths of the 1990s were more primed for darker materials, snatching up tickets to see a teenage coven of goths rock the dark arts in “The Craft” (1996). Both films have stood the test of time, and make great autumnal rewatches; But how drastically do their spellbinding stars differ in terms of feminist appeal? And have our pop culture perceptions of witchcraft changed much since the turn of the century? Continue reading Supernatural Beauty and its Cost: Cinema Witchcraft Over the Decades

It’s Just a Bunch of Hocus Pocus: A Love Letter to my Favorite Witches

Every year, for as long as I can remember, from September to November I look forward to the lighting of the Black Flame candle (by a virgin of course!) so you can return from the dead. As a child, my sister and I would sit down in front of the television to take note of the days on the calendar that “Hocus Pocus” would air (on ABC Family, of course) so we could plan our schedule accordingly. I could always count on 24-hours worth of you on a loop on Halloween day. How could I count on this you wonder? Well, that is because you are the best Halloween movie witches to ever exist. Continue reading It’s Just a Bunch of Hocus Pocus: A Love Letter to my Favorite Witches

Witchcraft Month: A salute to Hermione Granger

Harry Potter is the boy who lived, the hero of his eponymous series, but over seven books and eight movies, Hermione Granger is the MVP. There’s no magical puzzle, spell, or dilemma that she can’t figure out, even if she needs a Time-Turner to be in multiple places at once. As Professor Lupin (David Thewlis) once noted admirably in 2004’s “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of … Continue reading Witchcraft Month: A salute to Hermione Granger

Retrospective Review: Witches of Eastwick

Year: 1987Duration: 118 minutesDirector: George MillerWriter: Michael CristoferStarring: Cher, Susan Sarandon, Michelle Pfeiffer, Jack Nicholson By Juli Horsford “The Witches of Eastwick” is not necessarily a Halloween movie, but it’s zany enough that it might help you get into the spirit. Despite the title containing the word “witches,” that word is never actually mentioned in the movie. We’re left with the opportunity to interpret the … Continue reading Retrospective Review: Witches of Eastwick

Witchcraft Month: “The Witch: A New England Folktale”

For the month of October, ITOL have decided to focus on the representation of witchcraft in film. From the early silent days of cinema, the theme of witchcraft has been a constant presence in film. In today’s culture, the term “witch hunt” has taken on a different meaning, mostly in a response to cancel culture and moral outrage. However, the term has existed for a lot longer than the digital age. From the period of 1450 to 1750, Europe and Colonial America witnessed between 35,000 to 100,000 executions of those who were declared “witches”. Continue reading Witchcraft Month: “The Witch: A New England Folktale”

A Look Back On Sally In The Nightmare Before Christmas

We love Jack Skellington for not staying in his lane, for that exuberance that makes this Pumpkin King of Halloween want to wrap himself in Christmas like a kid flopping into a snowdrift. But Sally, the clever ragdoll who first loves Jack from afar, gives “The Nightmare Before Christmas” a conscience and an extra dose of heart.

Jack and Sally have been bridging two of the biggest holidays for more than 25 years now. Tim Burton, director of “Beetlejuice”, “Batman”, and “Edward Scissorhands”, first conceived of the dapper skeleton with an existential crisis in the 1980s, writing a poem about a spooky fellow who wants more out of life than just saying, “Boo!” (A book version with Burton’s illustrations was released for the film’s twentieth anniversary.) Continue reading A Look Back On Sally In The Nightmare Before Christmas

Sex and Living- Death in Thirst

2019 was the year that Andrew Scott’s Hot Priest seized the zeitgeist with full gusto. The Fleabag character had people all over the world fanning themselves to avoid a case of the vapours, with his actual name remaining a mystery. He was merely the latest – one of the most libidinously triumphant – in a line of on-screen hot priests. Others include Father Brian Finn in “Keeping the Faith”, Father Grandier in “The Devils”, Father Andrew Kiernan in “Stigmata”, Reverend Adam Smallbone in “Rev” and, perhaps most obviously, Friar Fuck in “Sex and the City”. One of the finest men of the faith was given to us by Park Chan-wook in his 2009 vampire romantic-horror, “Thirst”. Continue reading Sex and Living- Death in Thirst