Monday, January 7, 2013

Paranormal Pop Culture Winter Movie Preview


With so many cool looking movies coming out in the first three months of 2013, who can even think about the rest of the year yet? So instead of doing a 2013 paranormal movie preview, we're focusing in on winter time. While some might rock, and others stink like a zombie, there is no shortage of witches, zombies, aliens, ghosts and other unexplained goodies to heat things up until the temperatures rise.

Texas Chainsaw 3D
Jan. 4 (R)
Starring: Alexandra Daddario, Scott Eastwood and Tania Raymonde. Director: John Luessenhop.
Topping the box office after it opened last Friday, the new year has started out with the roar of Leatherface’s chainsaw. This is not so much of a rehashing of the original in 3D, but a continuation of the original Tobe Hooper story into modern times when a young girl inherits a relative’s Texas home, as well as its secrets. Die-hard fans may not be as satisfied as the casual audience member may be, but this new film in the series will no doubt elicit some cringes.

A Haunted House
Jan. 11 (R)
Starring: Marlon Wayans, Essence Atkins, Nick Swardson. Director: Michael Tiddes.

In this Paranormal Activity spoof written by Wayans, a couple enlist the help of a Chip Coffey type psychic and ghost hunters to help defeat a demon that's interrupting their home (and sex) life.

Storage 24
Jan. 11 (R)
Starring: Noel Clarke, Colin O’Donoghue, and Antonia Campbell-Hughes. Director: Johannes Roberts.
This London-based film stars Doctor Who’s Noel Clarke and focuses on a group of unsuspecting victims trapped in a storage facility with an unwelcomed and terrifying monster-of-a-guest. However, it looks like this film’s reviews are more horrific than the actual movie.

Jan. 18 (PG-13)
Starring: Jessica Chastain and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. Director: Andres Muschietti.

Mama is a Spanish horror film that boasts Guillermo del Toro as executive producer. Based on Muschietti's short, it tells the story of a couple, Annie and Lucas (played by Game of Thrones' Jaime Lannister, Coster-Waldau), who are challenged with raising Lucas’ two nieces. The glitch is, these girls were lost in the woods for 5 years and managed to survive. How? Could it be because they had help from something supernatural that they think is their "mama"?

John Dies at the End
Jan. 25 - available on-demand now (R)
Starring: Chase Williamson, Rob Mayes and Paul Giamatti. Director: Don Coscarelli.

A trippy film based on a popular horror-comedy novel - and directed by horror fave Coscarelli - the coolness of this film garnered it a full write-up on our site. Check out what we had to say and watch the awesomeness.

Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters
Jan. 25 (PG-13)
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton and Peter Stormare. Director: Tommy Wirkola.
Jumping on the popular trend of darker fractured fairy tales, this re-imagines the almost-witch food siblings as badass heroes.

The Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia
Feb. 1 (R)
Starring: Katee Sackhoff, Chad Michael Murray, and Abigail Spencer. Director: Tom Elkins.

This "based on true events" ghost story’s origin is in Georgia so the second half of the title is accurate but the Connecticut reference? Odd. Anyway, the film focuses on Heidi Wyrick and if you’re familiar with the Discovery Channel show, A Haunting, you might recognize the name and story. But when a family moves into a rural Georgia home atop the Underground Railroad, they experience ghostly going-ons. Certainly Starbuck (Sackhoff) is up to the task of kicking ghost butt.

Warm Bodies
Feb. 1 (PG-13)
Starring: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, John Malkovich and Rob Corddry. Director: Jonathan Levine.

A zombie love story? Can love actually cure zombies? This movie will be a perfect Valentine’s Day date film and is based on Isaac Marion’s novel. Cutie-pie "R" (Hoult) finds love in one of the few living humans left in the zombie apocalypse and it's quite transforming. Although the movie has been called "Twilight for zombies," the four-minute preview recently posted (and embedded here) looks quite funny and gives a glimpse as to what goes through a zombie's mind.

Beautiful Creatures
Feb. 13 (PG-13)
Starring: Emma Thompson, Jeremy Irons, Emmy Rossum, Alice Englert and Alden Ehrenreich. Director: Richard LaGravenese.
Another "paromantic" film is being released just in time for Valentine’s Day but this one involves witch... er, "casters." Based on the novel of the same name by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, Lena is an almost 16-year-old mystery-gal who comes from an interestingly dark family. Of course, a young man is drawn to her but he doesn’t know what he’s in for. Lena’s 16th birthday isn’t too sweet, especially because her fate of "Light" or "Dark" will be determined on that day.

Dark Skies
Feb. 22 (Not yet rated)
Starring: Keri Russell and Josh Hamilton. Director: Scott Charles Stewart.

There’s just something about a young couple living in the idyllic suburbs that screams, "come get me," right? From the producers of Paranormal Activity, Insidious and Sinister comes this new supernatural thriller. Daniel and Lacey Barrett are faced with a plethora of disturbing events and a relentless force. They try to tackle the evil themselves, so that should go well.

The Last Exorcism Part 2
March 1 (Not yet rated)
Starring: Ashley Bell, Spencer Treat Clark, and Andrew Sensenig. Director: Ed Gass-Donnelly
It looks like Eli Roth has returned to produce the sequel to the 2010 found footage movie, The Last Exorcism. It also looks like uber-bendy, Nell Sweetzer (Bell) is returning and attempting to put her life in some order since the horrific events that occurred at the end of the last film. That shouldn’t be an issue, right? Or will a more vicious evil return to wreak havoc on poor Nell? Yeah, probably that.

Jack the Giant Slayer
March 1 (Not yet rated)
Starring: Nicholas Hoult, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci and Bill Nighy. Director: Bryan Singer.
Another twisted fairy-tale film, except this time it is courtesy Bryan Singer - and starring up-and-comer Hoult. The title says most of it but instead of one giant, Jack has to join a kingdom-wide battle against a race of giants in the sky in order to save a girl...and yeah, all of mankind too.

OZ: The Great and Powerful
March 8 (Not yet rated)
Starring: James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams. Director: Sam Raimi

This is a big one folks. Stars galore, amazing special effects, witches, faeries, flying monkeys and lots of green and gold. Franco plays a magician who is striving for greatness but when a storm hurls him into another world, he finds that greatness isn’t an easy thing to come by. You have to see this one in 3D...check out the Disney trailer to see why. And yes, since it is directed by Raimi, expect a Bruce Campbell cameo.

The Host
March 29 (Not yet rated)
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Diane Kruger and William Hurt. Director: Andrew Niccol
Awww, another young adult love story ... only this one is set in the future - and there are aliens that have taken over the world by inhabiting us. Sound romantic? Did we mention this film is based on a Stephenie Meyer (The Twilight Saga) novel of the same name? A brave young gal named Melanie Stryder gets injected with a parasitic alien and becomes "Wanda." Instead of aiding the alien race, she ends up fighting for the humans. It’s complicated, so check out the trailer see what you think. Will it be another box office hit for Meyer?