SCREAMING AT HAPPY DEATH DAY 2U!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks, and Happy Valentine’s from all of us here at your favorite waterin’ hole for animated horror hostin’! While normal folks packed out fancy restaurants and fell out in diabetic comas from an overdose of sweet gestures, we spent our romantic evenin’ over bags of popcorn and smuggled red champagne in a dark movie theater. Yup, with our seats reclined all the way back in the last cineplex without assigned seatin’ in our parts, we enjoyed each other’s company and our own private screenin’ of Happy Death Day 2U!

If ya been keepin’ up with our R-Rated Review Blog these past few years, then you know we love the first Happy Death Day which is basically the horror version of Groundhog Day with a time limit for how many times a sorority bitch turned loveable last girl Tree can reboot her day before solvin’ her own murder. In Happy Death Day 2U, Tree learns a student’s science project is to blame for her temporal problems, and the doo-hickey throws her back into the same repeatin’ day all over again, but the twist this time is it’s now happenin’ in an alternate dimension with a different killer and outcomes. For an unprecedented sequel to a typical one and done kind of movie, this is just as fun to watch as the original, but is apples to oranges in comparison.

Understandably the filmmakers are ridin’ a fine line to keep such a familiar story fresh given the repetitive theme and end up steerin’ Happy Death Day 2U away from horror and closer to a sci-fi comedy. We’ve got no problem with that, of course, and are reminded of the twist and turns movies like the Evil Dead trilogy took from its hardcore horror beginnin’s to the fantasy adventure Army of Darkness endin’ up bein’. In fact, the characters even reference their situation to Back to the Future 2 which explains this Robert Zemeckis kind-of tonal shift, and echoes of Back to the Future’s theme in Happy Death Day 2U’s score.

The biggest reason why this ain’t as much of a horror as the first movie, however, is mainly ‘cause Tree’s not even the baby face killer’s target in this thing which robs the movie of that whole who-dunnit mystery thrill that was so engagin’ before. And what little murder mystery is revealed by the end is so bafflin’, we were shoutin’ in the theater for the filmmakers to take their asses back to the drawin’ board! So, without Tree needin’ to fight to stay alive, she spends the majority of the flick figurin’ out ways to close the time loop and stressin’ over which dimension she prefers to stay in which offers its own kind of tension, but not as much as someone avoidin’ an inevitable death sentence.

And without the killer sendin’ her back in time with every murder, it’s up to Tree to reset her own days with a music video montage of laughable suicides which raises its own questions. With every fatal reset, Tree’s body undergoes a form of trauma that diminishes her chances for respawnin’. She had no choice but to accept this toll on her life force when the killer was always catchin’ her in the first movie, but now that she’s not a predestined victim, why doesn’t she simply ride the day out instead of puttin’ herself at risk with all these needless suicides? We get she’s impatient to end the never endin’ day and laugh at every outrageous expiration she comes up with, but it just doesn’t make any sense when you think it through.

Despite these couple of forgivable sours, this is still a sweet follow-up to the first Happy Death Day we highly recommend fans of the first one see. It ain’t as scary or thrillin’, but it makes up for it with laughs and suspense with a amazin’ tour de France performance by Jessica Rothe as Tree that made us fall in love with her for the first time again.

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

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SCREAMING AT ESCAPE ROOM FLICKS!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! If you’re claustrophobic, hate riddles, or rather gargle glass than solve puzzles, then you probably ain’t a fan of escape room attractions. Seems to be one of the biggest fads of the 21st century so far, and their numbers continue to grow ‘cross the world as more and more yahoos get their kicks payin’ strangers to lock them in a room with clues that will supposedly release them before a set deadline. It doesn’t take a lot to imagine this scenario as a perfect set-up for a horror movie, and plenty of filmmakers have done just that with varyin’ degrees of success. Makes us wonder how this whole craze got started . . .

At first, we thought Saw might have inspired it all with its story ’bout two guys chained in a gloomy basement full of clues that could help them escape. That’s what we instantly thought of, at least, the first time someone explained what an escape room was to us years ago. To our surprise, however, the origin of escape rooms actually stems from video games.

Blindly throwin’ our trust into the fallible resources of wikipedia, seems the concept of an escape room was first conceived ’round the late ’80s with escape-the-room themed computer games. These point and click adventures then blew up in 1993 with the arrival of the CD-ROM Myst games which took the buddin’ sub-genre a major leap forward with fully interactive puzzle solvin’ environments players could immerse themselves in. From what little research we’re willin’ to do, we can’t find any evidence these games influenced Saw‘s story, which the filmmakers claim was actually inspired by their limited resources, but the similarities Saw shares with escape rooms is there. Regardless, we still think Saw had to have partly stirred some folks’ interests in escape rooms as a pastime, and help develop it from TV and computer screens to a live-action experience.

Escape rooms really started catchin’ on toward the late 2000s as small business and megachain corporations alike were exploitin’ this novel attraction. To compete and stand out from other escape room businesses, companies kept tryin’ to up the ante with more interactive puzzles and crazy themes gamers could pretend to escape; prisons, mummy’s tombs, locked down labs with actors playin’ hungry zombies on chains – you get the picture. It was without question escape rooms would eventually become their own sub-genre of horror, remindin’ audiences of booby trapped escape flicks like the Cube trilogy, the Saw series, and maybe even The Collector movies.

With the premier of the newest escape room flick, Escape Room (such an original title ain’t it?), we’d like to share what few escape room horrors we’ve seen up to this point to compare this newest movie to.

ESCAPE ROOM (2017)

If you take all the grit and twists out of SAW, you get this flick ’bout a rich bunch of yahoos celebratin’ a friend’s birthday in a hush hush escape room that turns out to be some sicko’s unfair game of elaborate booby traps. This film looks amazin’ and boasts some creative kills, but there’s a major lack of tension ’til the last half of the movie, and the endin’ falls flatter than street pizza with accusations and/or reveals that go over my skull. Blind trust birthdays, folks guillotined in the vents, complex puzzle solvin’, crushed wrists, acid shower make-out scenes, caged nudies, stabbin’s, and poisonin’s! 3/5!   

NO ESCAPE ROOM (2018)

A travelin’ daddy daughter duo check into a small town’s escape room with other tourists for fun but eventually figure out they’re all stuck in some haunted time travel experiment with a ghost or somethin’ after them that’s never really explained enough. This is one of them frustratin’ kind of Syfy movies that has a lot of promise but ultimately drops the ball with the escalation of danger draggin’ its feet, scenes spinnin’ its wheels with the same ol’ actions, and me not understandin’ the exact nature of who or whatever’s after the players. Not a bad movie, but you may as well watch folks escape those Cube movies for a more satisfyin’ story. Guts full of keys, severed toilet bowl hands, creepy corpses, offscreen creatures, shadow people, hidden clues, haunted houses, time loops, time travel, ventilation crawlin’, blood drippin’, ghosts I think, calls from the future, hangin’s, wet sirens that are really chain entanglin’ gears, A-Ha paintin’s, time trippin’ restrooms, yanked fingernails, and never drink the complimentary tea! 3/5!

ESCAPE ROOM (2019)

Like nearly every other escape room movie I’ve ever seen, a gang of strangers are mysteriously invited to escape six puzzle rooms for money, but learn soon enough the danger is real, and they gotta be smart or be dead before time runs out. The difference between this and all the other Saw inspired knock-offs, however, is this flick has an ass-load of money behind it and elevates the scope and tension of the rooms and their traps like I’ve never seen before, easily makin’ this the best escape room themed flick I’ve seen to date. That said, as wildly creative as the rooms are, the deaths aren’t anythin’ memorable, even with an all-star cast keepin’ you on the edge of your seat with their performances. Oven baked rooms, freezin’ wilderness simulations, explodin’ ice, upside down bars, musical floors, electric shock paddle deaths, gassed infirmaries, bullets to the head, crushin’ walls, ball trippin’ rooms, needle stickin’, fatal freefalls, and stabbin’s! 4/5!

Reads like the same story over and over again, don’t it? Guess somethin’ with this simplistic of a plot can only have so many outcomes, which burdens the actin’ and creativity behind the danger with how successful one of these flicks can be.

Now, as far as we know, of all the escape rooms reported ’round the world, there’s only been one recorded incident that resulted in a death, and that was just a few weeks ago. An escape room in Poland had a gas leak and five 15-year-old girls suffocated in a fire 1/4/2019. While it’s not the work of some psychopath, these deaths still created a shockwave through the escape room community (specifically Poland) regardin’ safety hazards, and several have been shut down after failin’ inspections.

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

 

SCREAMING AT PREPARATION!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! Boy, when we committed to finally makin’ our first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party next month, who knew it’d be so much work?! But it’s all worth it, ’cause we ain’t simply slappin’ a bunch of photos on a table with an iPad playin’ our show for curious bystanders. No, sir! We’re aimin’ to make some big impressions with nothin’ less than a show stopper and help spread the word ’bout our show the ol’ fashion word-of-mouth kind of way for a change.

For y’all who’re curious or maybe even plannin’ to attend a con for the first time as a guest/vendor, it’s a little overwhelmin’ at first. You got the cost of the table, there’s hotel reservations, decisions on what kind of promotional materials you’ll use to advertise your booth like banners and such, and of course, figurin’ out how much you’re willin’ to spend on producin’ merch that’ll hopefully make back some of the money ya invested into the event. Luckily, we decided to do this convention months in advance and strategically pulled it all together bit by bit so our time and finances were never strained.

It’s excitin’ to watch our convention booth come together and finally see this longtime vision come true. The core of it is the saloon doors from the Howl-Inn Grub & Spirits, and it’s topped with two attached TVs playin’ Screaming Soup! with a 6′ Deadwest prop standin’ armed and ready in front of it all. We plan on attendin’ more cons in the future, so we made it versatile for differin’ event spaces with detachable banners featurin’ more promotional material that can be hung off the sides of the door. In an effort to really shoot for the sky, we even printed a light weight sign to fly as high as we need to with a balloon so folks can find us no matter where they are in the con.

As for the merch we decided to produce, this was a lot of painstakin’ research and preparation. T-shirts are just too much trouble, so we stuck with sellin’ artwork and tried slappin’ it on things we think y’all want. Namely stickers, magnets, tradin’ cards, and postcard size prints. We say “painstakin’ research,” ’cause we searched hell and high water for the most we could get for the cheapest price which got super frustratin’ at times. Especially when tryin’ to make our work meet all the different print specs so nothin’ comes out cropped off or with a bunch of white borders. For anyone interested in which services we found gives the most bang for your buck, we recommend PrintRunner for stickers, Primoprint for tradin’ cards, Staples for postcard size prints, and Zazzle for banners.

But as impressive as all this sounds, however, it’s still a stationary booth that depends on convention goers swingin’ by our corner of the room to hear ’bout the web’s #1 animated horror host show. To grab more folks’ attention beyond our designated 6’x6′ patch of carpet, we had to get creative. We first decided to go the most common route for advertisin’ at a convention and designed a stack of fliers we can dump on tables and post ’round the con. The next step we took for constant promotin’ is get a customized leather vest with Screaming Soup! printed all over it, so whether we’re walkin’ the floor or takin’ a piss, people are readin’ what we’re representin’. The best move we made, though, is makin’ contact with the coordinator of the con’s film festival and offer condensed versions of our vids for them to use as time fillers and buffers between the films that were submitted for competition. Now, filmmakers and movie buffs will get a surprise taste of our show, and hopefully follow up with us for seconds! We’re incredibly thankful for that arrangement and extend our sincerest “Yee-haw!” to the Mad Monster Party and Mutantville Productions!

That weekend is promisin’ to be a scary good time that can’t get here soon enough, and we’re especially thrilled to see the celebrities listed for appearances. This pool of talent includes horror hall of famers Kane Hodder, Doug Jones, Danielle Harris, James Jude Courtney (the newest Michael Myers), Adrienne Barbeau, Bruce Campbell, and freakin’ Ray Wise who we’re def gettin’ a picture with the booth if we can! Be there or else, Scream Freaks!

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT A NEW YEAR!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! We’re a few steps into the new year and already deliverin’ a two step combo of blows for upholdin’ our claim as the web’s #1 animated horror host show. If you’ve been readin’ these blogs, then you already know our regularly scheduled program fell behind due to financial and promotional opportunities we couldn’t ignore. Full Moon Empire was cuttin’ us checks for art they published in their Dollman Kills the Full Moon Universe comic, we submitted interviews for upcomin’ documentaries we hope make the cut, made cameos on fellow hosts’ shows, and been heavily preparin’ for our first official convention appearance.

It kills us everyday a new episode or review doesn’t go up for y’all to enjoy, and we’re thankful for you loyal Scream Freaks stickin’ ’round to see what happens with Billy and the Iron Horsemen of Doom. With things settlin’ down after the holidays now, we’re firin’ on all pistons and dropkickin’ our tailbones into gettin’ this latest episode out. In the meantime, we still have a review of every Halloween comic ever published lined up, and even been developin’ ideas for vids we can produce quicker between the main episodes to sate your appetites for more Screaming Soup!

In the spirit of the new year, we’re also takin’ the plunge to try some things we’ve been meanin’ to in the efforts of promotion and the fun of experimentation. The biggest one has been makin’ convention appearances to spread the word ’bout our show. This has been on our bucket list since the first season, and we decided to make this happen at Mad Monster Party in North Carolina. We always hesitated ’cause the vision we have for our booth is a lot of work to pull off with all the bells and whistles of TVs playin’ the show and props of our set and characters, but we strategically pieced it together little by little these past few months and pretty happy with how it’s shapin’ up. We’ve been buildin’ a section of the Howl-Inn Grub & Spirits, editin’ safe for work versions of the show, printin’ banners, and designin’ new merch to sell. We’re comin’ into that con hard and makin’ sure no one walks out without knowin’ who we are!

Something else on the bucket list our friends the Horror Addicts motivated us to check off is doin’ somethin’ more live-action. They just invited us to be guests durin’ a viewin’ of a killer tomato flick they have planned with their patrons on 1/14/19, and we couldn’t say no. Problem is, when you’re a cartoon, instant animated commentary ain’t always possible. This calls for somethin’ more practical like a puppet which is somethin’ else we’ve been draggin’ our boots on. That said, we think y’all will be pretty damn impressed with the results if ya decide to participate. It’s only $5 to join and it’s through their Patreon page HERE.

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT THE YULETIDE SEASON!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! Did the holidays just blow by us this year or what? Feels like yesterday we were just bobbin’ for razor blade apples to the tune of Monster Mash, and here it is Christmas already!

Anywho, ‘cept for our rowdy reindeer games and Krampus runs here at the Howl-Inn Grub & Spirits, everythin’s been pretty quiet. But don’t mistake that for procrastinatin’, ’cause we’re hurryin’ to bring ya the next excitin’ episode of Screamin’ Soup! with every spare second we got. We’re at the turnin’ point of the season and we’re goin’ BIG as we introduce y’all to the Crosslands’s version of hell. You’re goin’ to meet new characters, see some familiar faces, and even watch how Deadwest and Mandy first met as Billy’s rescue mission continues to the ass end of hell and beyond.

But, despite the extravaganza we’re promisin’, the time between episodes is gettin’ ridiculous, and we’re just as frustrated as you are. That said, we’re definitely gonna be puttin’ our heads together to think of more smaller vids we can do to sate your appetites for the animated mayhem we’ve hooked you on. We certainly wanna get back to pumpin’ out more Re-Animated Reviews and Screaming Soup! Presents vids, and finally have the scripts completed for a review of the Halloween and Toxic Avenger comics which will be put up sometime soon.

In the meantime we’re jugglin’ the animation of the new episode while continuin’ to build the Screaming Soup! booth for our first official convention appearance. This thing is lookin’ pretty damn sweet if we say so ourselves and can’t wait to reveal it to y’all in an upcomin’ post. We’ve go the banners printed, touchin’ up the lifesize props, and assemblin’ the very saloon doors to the Howl-Inn as the backdrop to what’s gonna be an unforgettable display.

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT CHRISTMAS HORROR 2018!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! You know, I hate to admit it, but as fun as it is to watch our traditional holiday horrors this time of year, we’re startin’ to feel a little burned out on them. We still love ’em as much as we ever have, mind ya, like Silent Night Deadly Night, Krampus, and Black Christmas, but it’s just after watchin’ them umpteen times for so many years in a row, we start to lose that enthusiasm for throwin’ them up on the TV ‘less it’s for background noise. That’s why this year, we’re not content to simply watchin’ the same ol’ killer Santas and snowmen. No sir, we’re committed to checkin’ out everythin’ new under the tree this Christmas, and see what’s worth startin’ new couch potato traditions for!

Minus a flick called Anna and the Apocalypse (which isn’t available to us yet), we’re pretty sure we’ve seen all 2018 has to offer this yuletide season and thought we’d share what we found with ya in one sweet list of what we consider the worst to best. Judged on storytellin’, level of fun, and amount of Christmas spirit, here’s what you should avoid and enjoy!

POOKA (2018)

A strugglin’ actor gets a gig makin’ exclusive appearances as the holiday season’s hottest new toy, Pooka, but things get weird when the mascot uniform starts fuckin’ with his head with trippy visions headin’ for a homicidal turn. While this flicks starts off on a promisin’ boot I hoped would be somethin’ ’bout evil corporations ruinin’ young’ns lives like in Halloween III, it quickly detours into one of them pointless artsy metaphor kinda flicks where everythin’s an inconsequential dream in the actor’s head to help him cope/remember/fight to forget what an asshole he is in real life after destroyin’ some folks’ lives. Without more cues regardin’ his real life for a more meaningful comparison, the twist endin’ falls miserably flat and leaves me feelin’ like I wasted my time. The only memorable thin’ you’ll take away from this is Pooka doin’ the dirty between the sheets for a brief second, and a tasteful shot of the actor masterbatin’ in the corner while wearin’ the Pooka mask. 2/5!

HOT SPANKING ROD (2018)

Direct from Krampus’s homeland, this artsy fartsy flick features a gang of cosplayin’ yahoos catchin’ and releasin’ a bunch of dirty mouth beauties for repetitive spankin’s, and that’s ’bout all I can understand among all the weird Euro antics played for laughs. This is actually an 11 part series, but if ya binge it all at once, it’s feature length and will either give ya a good laugh watchin’ ladies try to keep a straight face while wooly boogers whip their bottoms or leave ya at a complete loss for what’s exactly happenin’ story wise. Somethin’ ’bout range shootin’ friends feudin’ over the same ass while the town dances with the very creatures they jeer on Krampus night? I dunno . . . I still can’t figure out why there’s a pumpkin smashin’ muscleman threaded throughout the whole thing! Kidnappin’, women in cages, whippin’, women in trunks, Krampus employed tractor drivers, Krampus dance parties, melodramatic fireworks, repetitive music and sound effects, and poor edits galore! 2/5!

UGLY SWEATER PARTY (2018)

A pair of horny yahoos are duped into attendin’ an ugly sweater party at a jeerful Bible camp, and one of them is wearing an eyesore that’s haunted by the ghost of a serial killer who possesses him to slaughter the doomed Bible thumpers in the name of somethin’ called Sweaterface. A fresh take on Christmas horror that surprises ya with every twist and turn, this is kitchen sink filmmakin’ at its most metal with manic edits, kinetic camerawork, and a shameless ensemble of actors that includes horror hottie hall of famer, Felissa Rose. The only thing that can make this flick better than it already is is developin’ more of the relationships among the characters to give the story arc more trajectory. Bum beatin’s, head crushin’, police brutality, cursed Christmas attire, dick rippin’, blood squirtin’ facials, disgruntled employees, random rock videos, ray guns, head explosions, pub shavin’ in bowls of cereal, minimum Christmas decor, homo showers, ghosts, psychic visions, baptisms, dick props, evil time jumpin’, monstrous sweater transformations, zero boobs, skinny dippin, and Felissa Rose guest stars as a cheatin’ milf! 2/5!

ELVES (2018)

In this Hispanic sequel to The Elf  that openly compares itself to It Follows and Truth or Dare, a gang of yahoos are duped into playin’ some confusin’ game involvin’ a misfit toy Elf who instructs them to hurt folks or suffer their own grisly fate. First and foremost, the posters and descriptions for this sucker are only half true. There is more than one evil elf, but they’re each runnin’ their own separate games with very little cohesion or overlap with the core group of gamers who’d rather split up to finish the movie than stick together. The only thing worse than the convoluted game rules is the elves’ biblical backstory I can’t begin to understand, and that the filmmakers must have chosen to spend their effects budget on Instagram face distortions over killer CGI elf animations like the first movie. Evil whisperin’ elf dolls, gouged eyes, possessed suicides, wrenches to the head, Christmas light strangulation, seances, unknown copies of naughty lists, car wrecks, roofied drinks, random therapy group massacres, slit throats, elf possessions with twisto morph faces, stabbin’s, homicidal home runs, lots poorly hidden lapel mics and battery packs, folks rollin’ ’round the floor while huggin’ elf dolls to their chests, folks beaten with Christmas trees, and unexplained helper elf hench wench assassins with unclear motives! 2/5!

KRAMPUS ORIGINS (2018)

A World War 1 soldier’s spoil of war becomes his wife’s burden as she inherits a spell book for summonin’ Krampus, unleashin’ Christmas carnage at the orphanage she works at when curious young’ns dick ’round with its passages. I’m gonna warn ya right now, there’s barely any Krampus in this sucker! After a snooze worthy hour of Ruin My Lifetime drama with widows, orphans, and nuns, Krampus is FINALLY summoned and seen the last third of the flick, but just barely with most if not all his action happenin’ off screen with only the sudden aftermath of dead bodies cluin’ me in to what happened. This flop has all the ingredients for bein’ a good movie, but it’s soured by its lack of Krampus, energy, Christmas, and the sound quality sucks too. Peepin’ toms, World War 1 battles, shnookered priests, practicin’ alchemists, interdimensional Krampuses, jump cut massacres, incantations, bullies, and mean girls! 2/5! 

CHRISTMAS PRESENCE aka WHY HIDE? (2018)

A convoy of miserable Brits have a intimate Christmas reunion in the middle of bumfuck nowhere and are eventually attacked by a shapeshiftin’ spider ghost. This Shudder original is one of them kind of flicks that has a lot of the right elements for a decent horror, but it fumbles its establishment of the lead character and loses a lot of momentum and holiday appeal as soon as Christmas day arrives midway through. Cool monster, though. Song and dance boo-gers, kidnappin’ spirits, button vomitin’, evil mirror twins, sacrificial rituals, lingerie runways with proud muffin tops, stiffs in the snow, hypnosis, and folks killed with a sofa bed! 2/5!

ALL THE CREATURES WERE STIRRING (2018)

A black box theater presents an anthology of holiday horrors on Christmas, but we’re luckily shown the cinematic interpretations of each short to make it to the take it or leave it endin’. All in all, this ain’t a bad way to spend bein’ scared of Christmas, but there’s not a lot to take away from it since everything’s presented as pure fiction a bunch of yahoos are strugglin’ to sit through. The shorts are creative none the less, but I’ve seen several of them done better when watchin’ YouTube Red’s 12 Deadly Days. Weirdo stares, Rudolph-Vision, tinsel snortin’, out of body experiences, E.T. Christmas guests, Twilight Zone nods, office parties gone Saw, throat slittin’, suicides, cursed vans, clingy demons, Scrooge parodies, roadkill reindeer, dark spirits, booby trap yankee swap, and bullets to the head! 3/5!

MOTHER KRAMPUS 2: SLAY RIDE (2018)

If ya thought ya felt gypped when the first Mother Krampus turned out to really be ’bout the Christmas witch Frau Perchta, you’re gonna be doubly pissed when I tell ya neither she nor Krampus is in this sequel! This Christmas Eve horror features an ax happy mental patient in an altered Michael Myers mask who slaughters an entire family and assumes their granny’s identity. Shortly after, the soup kitchen sends an entertainin’ gang of community service criminals to clean the family’s house and the crazy ol’ loon invites them in for more holiday hackin’. Despite the misleadin’ title, this flick’s got a lot of good ideas and decent enough actin’ to stand as its own flick outside of the Mother Krampus series. The film’s biggest short comin’ is how long the interval between the openin’ and closin’ kills is, almost makin’ me forget this is even a horror film. Eye gougin’ with glass decor, poisoned soup, merry drag queen musicals, axes to the faces and back, stab happy overkill, stiffs in the attic, girls in lingerie, cripple deaths, undercover police operations, bangin’ in the car without nudity, and booger sugar! 3/5!

MS. CLAUS (2018)

In this throwback to formulaic slasher movies that defined the ’80s, some psycho cosplayin’ as Santa’s duller half crashes a sorority’s Christmas party and slaughters guests with yuletide yard decorations. Caught somewhere between low budget and no budget, this is a respectable attempt at a holiday horror that hits all the plot points for a decent scary flick. It’s got tragic backstories, damaged last girls, and, most importantly, a masked killer graphically hackin’ folks to an unexpected twist endin’. Far from a masterpiece, there’s plenty of little things that can be punched up to make this more excitin’ to watch, like the camerawork and lightin’, but it ain’t nothin’ spiked eggnog can’t help ya through. Deep throat candy canes, slumberin’ stabbin’s, mellow yellow hazin’, dildo initiations, pasty boobs, strangulation, skewered lovers, decapitations, fatal gunshots, wacky tobacky, suicidal hangin’s, bullyin’ PSAs, upset mothers on emotional rollercoasters, tree topper eye gougin’, and Brinke Stevens guest stars as Snoopy Tits! 3/5!

SANTA JAWS (2018)

Brace yourself for a nutty mash-up of ideas as a teenage artist accidentally doodles a Christmas shark to life with a magic pen and spends Christmas Eve rescuin’ his friends and family from bein’ eaten by the imaginary killer. Part Cellar Dweller, part Krampus, and all silly shark, this has to be one of the craziest TV shark movies I’ve ever seen. That said, the CGI’s decent, the filmmakers do a good job keepin’ things Christmasy from scene to scene, and there’s a solid story from beginnin’ to end, but the actin’ ain’t convincin’ when it comes to realistic reactions, the rules for Santa Jaws are all over the place, and the family barely has chemistry. Bikini trophy wives, fantasy Russian girls, greedy comic shop owners, explodin’ ornaments, bunch of folks eaten whole, impalements, senseless sacrifices, magic pens, explodin’ turkey dinners, medieval defenses, bitch mamas, fist fightin’ Santa fantasies, mulligan endin’s, and yes, Santa Jaws wears the hat the whole time while wrapped in Christmas lights and even gains a candycane horn and busted ornaments for teeth! 3/5!

SLAY BELLES (2018)

Three bubbly urban explores take their web show to the boonies on Christmas Eve to check out an abandoned Santa Land, but find out it’s the real Santa’s retirement home, and he needs their help stoppin’ a recently escaped Krampus from deliverin’ toothy hairball critters to young’ns ‘cross the world for reasons only he knows. I’ve seen a lot if not EVERY Krampus movie to date, and by far, this is horns and shoulders above the majority of them. The production’s slick and crisp, Krampus’s make-up is amaze-balls, every character from biker Santa to a disenchanted Ms. Claus is engagin’, the story’s fresh and excitin’, and overall, this is just a lot of fun to watch! Slay Belles is the closest thing to my idea of what a Krampus movie should be. The only sour is the dime store lookin’ cop uniforms. Krampus-vision, air-borne slay rides, explosions, decapitations, monstrous transformations, gift wrapped puppet creatures, Christmas magic, cookie addictions, magic staffs, wardrobe change with boobs, disemboweled young’ns, horns through the chest, tasers, and Krampus dong! 5/5!

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT CAMEOS AND NEW REVIEWS!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! The turkey’s been gobbled up, and Christmas is upon us once again! Time for erectin’ fire hazards in our livin’ rooms, coordinatin’ family get togethers for gift card swaps, and breakin’ out all the holiday horrors that remind us things ain’t as stressful as a killer Santa on the loose.

It’s been a while since our last episode, but don’t panic, a new episode of Screaming Soup! is comin’ to town. Things were a little held up by a lot of side projects and payin’ gigs we couldn’t say no too like designing more parody ads for Full Moon new comic series Dollman Kills the Full Moon Universe. Yup, only two issues left, and we snagged us a page in each one with parody ads featurin’ a Dungeons and Dragons spoof and a page from a ’80s toy catalog featurin’ never before seen Full Moon merch. That’s been a lot of fun, and it feels really cool to have Charlie Band bless all our work for his studio’s first in-house funny book publication.

Aside from the freelance work, we’ve also been workin’ on appearances and exposure for the show. We’re steadily buildin’ an impressive booth for our first official con appearance at Mad Monster Party next year, preparin’ new promo material for online reviewers, and researchin’ new platforms we can share our show on to help grow the fanbase. As much time as all this is takin’ up, though, we know y’all need somethin’ to fill that void in your life between episodes, so we did manage to make another cameo on Your Final Answer which has become Mondopiece Theater, and our favorite ghost girlfriend Mandy scared up a review of a new zine from the UK she’s very excited to promote. You can find both of them below, and be sure to check out the rest these mad talents have to offer.

As far as anythin’ else is concerned- We still haven’t heard back from El Rey Network regardin’ our animation edition submission, the Screaming Soup! comic is still in the works, and the Graphic Violence review of the Halloween comics is still happenin’, we just have to put the final touches on the script.

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT DINNERS OF DEATH!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! When the drive-in’s favorite critic Joe Bob Briggs gave his final goodbye at the end of a 24+ hour marathon on Shudder this past summer, he left such an impression that it literally wrecked the internet for a bunch of folks fightin’ to tune into a streamin’ service that was nowhere near prepared for an onslaught of server crashin’ fandom. Recognizin’ success when it assaults their customer service, Shudder quickly went back on their promos advertisin’ this as Joe Bob’s Last Drive-In and booked him for two more holiday themed marathons, the first scheduled for Thanksgiving.

Titled Dinners of Death, Shudder learned its lesson from all the technical hiccups and couch potato feedback the first time ’round, and made sure this mini-marathon ran smooth as a Vegas stripper’s thighs. We could hop on and off the live stream without a problem, the different movie segments were made available as on demand vids the very next day, and Joe Bob got waaay more screen time than he did the last marathon, givin’ him all the breathin’ room he needed for social rants and insider horror trivia from new corners of the set resemblin’ his old MonsterVision digs. The movies featured (in the order they appeared) were Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Hills Have Eyes, Dead or Alive, and Blood Rage.

Joe Bob brought his A-game like always and freely acknowledged and poked fun at all the technical misfires last marathon that gave so many viewers headaches while freely admitting he preferred a flawless broadcast to the popularity of crashin’ the internet. Kickin’ things off on the right foot, Joe Bob was over the moon to finally host his favorite movie for the first time, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which was always considered too violent for the networks he previously hosted on. Havin’ personally known director Tobe Hooper and even starrin’ in a cut scene from Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, Joe Bob is a walkin’ wikipedia of Chainsaw trivia he couldn’t regurgitate fast enough from the ins and outs of the movie’s success to the influence it has over every horror since its premier. After an enlightenin’ summary of Toby’s roller coaster career, Joe Bob turned his attention to another late master of horror who recently passed away, Wes Craven.

To introduce The Hills Have Eyes, Joe Bob gave an insightful lecture on the gang of historical cannibals Wes based the movie’s villains on and even shared tales of Wes’s rocky rise to becomin’ a big shot filmmaker. Halfway through the movie, actor Michael Berryman dropped in and shared his own stories from behind the scenes of the movie. One of his funniest stories is a failed publicity stunt that involved Wes directin’ him from a van to spook a drive-in audience as his cannibal character while they were watchin’ The Hills Have Eyes. The best part of his visit was signing a doll of his THHE character to be auctioned for canine charities thanks to returnin’ mail girl Diana Prince.

The final two flicks of the night, Dead or Alive and Blood Rage, might have been my favorite moments watchin’ Joe Bob, ’cause these were movies he wasn’t as familiar with and brought him back down to our level as average movie goers versus horror aficionados with steel trap memories. ‘course this slight lack of trivia meant he needed somethin’ for filler here and there, and he recycled some older rants from his weekly Taki’s Magazine articles. This is where we first read his stories ’bout that theater in Greece and the incident with the explodin’ bottle of intestinal monsters. So, old news to us, but there’s plenty of Joe Bob fans out there we doubt are readin’ his online commentaries who it’s all new too.

All in all, Dinners of Death was the perfect dessert to end a belly bustin’ turkey day with. We especially enjoyed the moments between Joe Bob and Last Drive-In’s mail girl Diana Prince more this time ’round. It was nice to see them butt heads a little bit and argue over terms like elder millennial and just how many Thanksgivin’ horror movies are out there. For the record, we have only known three horror movies that actually take place on Thanksgivin’; Home Sweet Home, Blood Rage, and the first Thankskilling.

Congrats on a successful marathon Joe Bob. Can’t wait to see what ya got waitin’ for us come Christmas!

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT THANKSGIVING!

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

SCREAMING AT DEATH HOUSE!

Howdy there, Scream Freaks! Y’all remember a long time ago when the horror community was buzzin’ with all this hype over a film bein’ made that was promoted as the be all end all event of horror hall of famers? Just like The Expendables gave audiences an excuse to see their favorite action heroes of yesteryear packed into one thrill seekin’ blowout from the retirement home, Death House promised to rally just as many villains of horrors past on a scale even Rob Zombie would be intimidated to attempt. For months, fans like us cheered to watch this highly anticipated mash-up, growin’ more anxious with every delay that prevented its widespread release. Finally, after a year or more of impatience, Death House finally saw the light of day . . . and we’ve never been more regretful!Here’s what little bit of plot we managed to recognize in this shitstorm – There’s an hush hush underground super prison packed with the world’s most evil bein’s, someone engineers a prison break, and fresh fish Kane Hodder leads an army of forgettable extras to meet the baddest super villains of them all in the pit of the facility. In the meantime, the stars are supposed to be these two nobody agents fightin’ to escape the chaos, shatterin’ any sense of story with every scene they’re in. This mess doesn’t just fall short of the hype surroundin’ it – it belly flops in the shallow end of WTF! For all its efforts, this problematic flick feels like it was abandoned after the filmmakers took their first swing at a rough cut with run on scenes, criminally underdeveloped characters, a scattered script, confusin’ action, a non-existent score, and shoddy effects that include a lot of green screen misfires. Most these sours can be overlooked so long as the movie’s entertainin’, but the poor storytellin’ and shitty editin’ robbed it of that.

The biggest short comin’ regardin’ the story has got to be its abysmal attempt at settin’ up its central characters, Kane and the two agents. When the movie opens, Kane is tryin’ to influence Agent Eye Candy to shoot innocent people in some kind of VR simulation for unknown reasons, but she turns on him and sends the sucker on his merry way to the Death House. As Kane’s bein’ processed for his new digs, Agent Eye Candy meets Agent Buff Stuff, and they’re given what seems like multiple tours of the facility with awkward shower breaks in between ’til an attack on Death House in the second act derails their sight seein’. At this point, we don’t have a clue what Kane’s deal is much less how or why he’s a bad guy. There’s no clear understandin’ what his relationship is with Agent Eye Candy, and she and Agent Buff Stuff share these fake lookin’ VR backstories that tease us with Matrix bullshit, questionin’ what’s real or possibly a computerized trainin’ exercise. But, much like the details to whoever planned the attack on Death House, this hinted twist at a mulligan endgame is never revisited, and we blindly barrel on through the movie one confusin’ scene at a time.

Besides a lack of character development, Kane and the agents’ motives are sorely missin’ as well. It’s easy enough to understand everyone would be fightin’ each other to escape Death House when shit hits the fan, but why do the agents think their salvation lies in askin’ Death House’s worst inmates, the Five Evils, for help? Doesn’t that make the run of the mill psychos more evil if the agents are more afraid of them than the posse made up of folks who are seen as threats to the world? It’s even more mind numbin’ when Kane leads a homicidal exodus to these Five Evils, revealin’ he’s some kind of follower at the last minute who wants to join their club. Was this always the game plan from the moment he was captured? Was he the one who hired the Nazi dumpster youth to shove an EMP in a guard and shut down Death House so he could beg to join the Legion of Doom in their basement of existential babblin’? Spoiler alert – we never find out!

There’s a lot of cinematic sins this film commits, but these issues we have with the story and its characters are the only ones we find inexcusable, next to the agents shootin’ wildy at a CGI elevator shaft they’re flyin’ down while a metal tune blasts the speakers off our walls at 11. It’s upsettin’ ’cause this movie has such potential but just doesn’t live up to any of it. In an effort for damage control, we personally would have looked to movies like Escape from L.A., Demolition Man, and Con Air for a storytellin’ blue print, cut down a lot of the philosophical nonsense, and toss most of the VR stuff out. If we had our way, the agents would be newbies at Death House, shit breaks thanks to the Five Evils tryin’ to escape, and the agents would team up with super powered Kane, an reformed anti-hero inmate with a heart of gold, who halfheartedly helps them escape while stoppin’ the Five Evils and their armies of crazies.

But what do we know . . . we like killer tomato movies!

Other than that, be sure to catch up on all past Screaming Soup! Seasons, check out this week’s Howl’n Hottie, read recent reviews for the newer horror films and comics we’re checkin’ out in our blogs, R-Rated Reviews and Sequential Slime, and help us get the word out about the web’s #1 animated horror host show! Please use our social buttons in the upper right corner of the site and follow our tweets, subscribe to our video channels, like our Facebook, watch and share all our vids, and keep that fan mail comin’. You can also warm up some Screaming Soup! leftovers with reruns currently playin’ on Beta Max TV and Sluggo’s The Vortexx!

For all you fearmakers out there workin’ on your next scary feature, remember to shoot it our way as an entry in our Scream Freak Film Contest! Three winners will be reviewed in our 50th episode and promoted to all the Scream Freaks lookin’ for the next big thing Hollywood’s too scared to capitalize on. The deadline is open ’til we publish our 49th episode!

And remember to deface your calendars for Screaming Soup!’s first official convention appearance at Mad Monster Party Carolina Feb. 22-24 2019 where you can meet and greet the talents behind your favorite animated horror host show for free autographs!

See ya later, Scream Freaks!

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