Archive for American Mary

Twisted Twins go Plastic..!

Posted in Press Release, Women in Horror Recognition Month with tags , , , , , , on June 10, 2015 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Jen and Sylvia Soska are one of the hottest things about current horror, from grindhouse to body modification to WWE, the Twisted Twins have put their own unique and versatile stamp on the genre. Over the weekend they generated much excitement for fans with the announcement of their next directorial project titled Plastic;  just in time for the release of their latest WWE collaboration the action-packed Vendetta on June 12th in the US (UK DVD release is August 13th). An image of a script with a lipstick mark emerged online said to be written by Frank Strausser that simply screams female-centric horror.

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As it stands, a brief teaser of the plot has been revealed:

“A celebrated Beverly Hills plastic surgeon risks everything to uncover the truth behind a crime, the disfigurement of an international pop star.”

If one things for certain, the Soska’s and surgical horror are the perfect fit after them stunning audiences in 2012 with American Mary. No doubt in the hands of Jen and Sylvia, Plastic will be a grizzly yet stylish effort. Can’t wait to hear more about the project. Plastic has to be the most exciting news in horror this year!

tumblr_npe3qdDxHT1t0demio2_1280Keep updated with Plastic on the Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Plastic/1442681832700533?pnref=story

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.

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See No Evil 2 (2014)

Posted in Women in Horror Recognition Month with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2014 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

**WARNING: MAY CONTAIN SOME SPOILERS**

Earlier this year I discussed which genre films I was eager to see in 2014 and anything with the Soska name on it was most definitely going to appeal. Twisted Twins Jen and Sylvia have brought something groundbreaking to a male-dominated genre with their unique and versatile films, Dead Hooker in a Trunk (a love letter to Grindhouse and proof of what you can accomplish on a low-budget) and of course the beloved American Mary, the darkly stylish, character-focused and empowered 2012 hit. Since then the Twisted Twins have been hot property on the horror scene and fans around the world anticipated their next project. When it was first announced that they would be collaborating with WWE studios on a sequel to a forgettable 2006 slasher, See No Evil the scepticism set in. Working within the confines of a studio would place restrictions on the twins creatively dark minds, however one thing’s for certain, their take on See No Evil would be far superior than the original.

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Prior to watching Jacob Goodnight’s latest slasher outing, I decided to check out the 2006 instalment for background as admittedly I hadn’t heard of the film until the sequel was announced. See No Evil is arguably one of the laziest slasher films ever created. It came at a time when the horror genre was dominated by extreme, shock cinema most popularly Saw and Hostel. While there’s nothing wrong with taking a stab at the sub-genre much like Adam Green successfully achieved with Hatchet, See No Evil added nothing. Its story is flimsy to non-existent, its poorly acted and Jacob Goodnight (played by WWE Superstar Glenn ‘Kane’ Jacobs) can’t be taken seriously as a villain, especially with the bits of dialogue he gets that comes off as unintentionally hammy. Kane comes across as a really awesome guy but there isn’t much material he could really work with. Clearly all that was expected was for him to emulate a Jason Voorhees type-monster because its proved successful in the past. See No Evil was as if Friday the 13th met Carrie in a really bad way and let’s not forget the cartoonish CGI effects. When going in to the first one, I had been pre-warned that its as generic as they come however I didn’t expect it to get my back up as much as it did. Therefore, it was certainly going to be interesting to see how Jen and Sylvia would improve on what can be described as a tedious and poorly-executed film.

See No Evil (2006)

See No Evil (2006)

The result:  What’s most striking about the sequel is how flawless the cinematography and direction is, the twins demonstrate their love and appreciation for the genre as well as blending in the stylishness of American Mary, especially in the wonderfully constructed opening sequence which is a true treat for fans. Visually the film has a certain edge about it, there’s some excellent performances on show and some chilling, unexpected moments but despite this, I wasn’t entirely sold on the film which partially could be down to high expectations from two of my favourite female filmmakers and dismissing the fact that they didn’t have full creative control as with their previous projects. Or maybe because I wasn’t a fan of the first one this was also unlikely strike a chord.

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See No Evil 2 picks up literally where the first one left off. Jacob Goodnight and the bodies of his unfortunate victims are rushed to the morgue following the bloodbath at the Blackwell hotel. Amy (Danielle Harris) is then forced to abandon her birthday plans and deal with the aftermath of Jacob’s massacre. Her friends decide to bring the party to her, their a quirky group who get more than they bargained for when a few drinks turns into a fight for their lives after Jacob mysteriously wake’s up ready to slaughter all over again!

The morgue setting is a great choice, its dark, confined and death is everywhere, Jacob has a string of different weapons at his disposal as the latest bunch of characters attempt to run and hide! In this sense the film really does show a glimmer of promise.

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While See No Evil 2 is an improvement on the first, some of the same problems remain in the sense of it being generic and a million miles away from what the Soska’s are truly capable of. The characters have very little to offer and are stereotypical to the point that they could be found in any slasher movie. There were suggestions in the trailer that this would probably be some kind of satirical commentary on typical slasher films and that it would potentially push the boundaries due to the Katharine Isabelle dry humping Kane’s body scene. But sadly it is what it is, a conventional slasher made to cash in on the genre, a financial boost for WWE. As its so formulaic, by the time the film challenges what its set up, it comes in too late.

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With that said, seasoned Scream Queen Danielle Harris is phenomenal as Amy, she’s a character we care for and the twist on her final girl status is interesting. Amy is the only real character is written with any depth with the others as throwaway. Harris of course shows us why she is incredible at the leading female role. Kaj-Erik Eriksen is sympathetic as love interest and co-worker Seth, probably the nicest character in the film, which is again superior to the original as there wasn’t one likeable character in it. Katharine Isabelle plays Tamara vastly different from Mary Mason which proves her talent as an actress. She clearly has a lot of fun with the role as its completely over the top but for me that was to the point of obnoxiousness. Tamara is similar to Gibb, Isabelle’s ‘party girl’ role in 2003’s Freddy Vs. Jason but a bit more kinky and twisted, its a shame that wasn’t expanded on some more.

The whole premise of See No Evil 2 and the original does just feel senseless. Its a forced plot with a generic killer. There’s attempts at ‘humanizing’ Jacob but he’s just too underdeveloped for that. The repressed ‘mummy issues’ as a motive has been done to the death . There’s something about it that feels rushed and not thought through very well. Its a shame the twins didn’t get the opportunity to write it as we could be seeing a much greater film. Seeing them work with another screenwriters script is interesting. Their signature style is there but the content itself doesn’t match up to it.

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The disappointment is that I really wanted to like this a lot. Jen and Sylvia Soska are incredibly talented people and idols to women within the genre and fans of the genre alike. It just seems that they are worth more than a run-of-the-mill slasher. See No Evil 2 is wholeheartedly better than the original and its clear a great deal of effort was put in this time round but its fair to say Jacob Goodnight should really say Good Night!

Hayley Alice Roberts.

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.

See No Evil 2 Trailer (2014)

Posted in Press Release with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 25, 2014 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

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Forget 50 Shades of Grey, the first trailer for See No Evil 2 is now available online. Twisted Twins Jen and Sylvia Soska’s eagerly anticipated follow up to their 2012 hit American Mary looks set to be a crowd pleaser, full of dark humour,  tongue in cheek slasher references and entertaining performances with an equally grim tone. The film also marks their first collaboration with WWE, with wrestler Kane reprising his role as psycho killer Jacob Goodnight. This time round sees him terrorizing a group of unsuspecting medical students. A major highlight will be seeing Scream Queens Katharine Isabelle (American Mary, Ginger Snaps) and Danielle Harris (Halloween IV & V, Hatchet II & III) on screen together. Isabelle looks as if she’s set to bring in an entertaining and comedic performance while Harris proves why she plays the strong horror heroine incredibly well. October 17th sees the On Demand and Digital HD release while it will be available on Blu-Ray and DVD on the 21st according to Bloody DisgustingSee No Evil 2 looks a real treat for fans, and I’m sure Jen and Sylvia once again will show us why they’re growing icons of the genre.

Check out the trailer here:

Hear from the Twisted Twins themselves discussing the movie at the San Diego Comic Con, where they announce that See No Evil 2 contains a never before seen murder sequence in any movie!

 

Hayley Alice Roberts

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.

Women In Horror Month: Final Girls and Psychotic Women. (3-1)

Posted in Women in Horror Recognition Month with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 19, 2014 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Here is part five and the final piece of coverage celebrating the fifth annual Women in Horror Recognition Month. Earlier this month I began a countdown of who I consider to be the bravest final girls in horror as well as the most psychotic and deadly women. Narrowing it down out of a vast range of characters that have made an impact on our blood-splattered screens for decades has been tough and there’s plenty more I’d have liked to have included. A follow-up countdown next year may be a possibility. Now we’re onto the top three, it’s time to analyze my ultimate favorite genre women. The criteria set for these three is down to the impact they’ve had on the genre and on myself, their iconic status within Horror, how they’ve either set up recognizable tropes or challenged them and just for being downright awesome.

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I want to thank everyone for their support in reading my work. For all the shares, likes, re-tweets and comments. Your feedback is always more than welcome and its always brilliant to speak to like-minded fans. Let me know if you agree or disagree with my choices. Who do YOU think should be THE Woman of Horror?

I’d also like to give a personal thank you to Hannah Neurotica who has set up this amazing cause to address the restrictions and prejudices that many women have faced in the industry and to celebrate a genre that has so many phenomenal female contributors. Let’s all keep raising awareness for Women in Horror Recognition Month. Long may it continue…!

WARNING: There will be Spoilers!!

3. Mary Mason, American Mary (2012)

  • Played By Katharine Isabelle
  • Written and Directed By Jen and Sylvia Soska.

amermary01  It shouldn’t come as a surprise that sadistic surgeon Mary Mason (Katharine Isabelle) slashed her way onto this list. Interestingly, she is the first character included in this countdown who has been written and directed by women, which to a degree emphasizes the lack of strong, iconic female characters written by women for women within the genre. But when Mary splattered onto the Horror scene back in 2012 she certainly made her mark as the fabulous filmmakers Jen and Sylvia Soska (aka. The Twisted Twins) worked incredibly hard to promote the film, generating plenty of interest via social media and the film wound up being one of the most ‘must-see’ events in the horror genre that year. It also resulted in major studio Universal acquiring the rights to the film making it’s female directors a modern day industry success story. The film itself actually laments the disheartening experiences the Soska’s went through as striving filmmakers echoing the negativity and sleaziness they encountered amongst the film system.

One of the most fascinating pieces of horror to emerge this decade, American Mary is a modern day Universal Monster in every sense of the word. She is a deeply complex character with so many layers its hard not to be compelled by her story arc within the film from promising medical student to rogue body modification surgeon to psychotic woman. Mary is the embodiment of a woman who can be both highly intelligent and sexy. With an array of stylish yet provocative outfits, Mary looks amazing whether she’s covered in blood in a PVC apron or in the designer green dress created for her by Ruby Realgirl (Paula Lindberg). She knows what she has to do in order to survive and is not to be crossed with as deadly consequences will arise. The majority of the time Mary is cool, calm and collected which is vital as she carries out some obscure and unconventional methods of surgery in order to either please her clients or torture her victims. When a horrific incident happens to her she takes matters into her own hands enlisting the help of smitten club owner Billy (Antonio Cupo) and gentle giant, bodyguard Lance (Twan Holliday) in order to act out her revenge.

A master at her craft, its evident she relishes in the work she does, which molds her into a creative, beautiful yet feared woman. The majority of the time Mary is sarcastic and deadpan which underlines her disillusion with her unfortunate experiences. Her relationships with the other characters in the film is interesting. She doesn’t quite let them in and deals with her problems mainly alone. Her quasi-friendship with Betty Boop lookalike Beatrice (Tristan Risk) is one of the film’s highlights, with contrasting personalities and attitudes Beatrice tries her hardest to get to know what’s behind Mary’s exterior more so than other characters. Through Billy’s eyes she is seen as sensual yet frightening, comparatively to other women he hires at the club he holds more respect for Mary and there’s a genuine fondness on his part. She also manages to deceive Detective Dolor (John Emmet Tracy) for as long as she can demonstrating how double-crossing she can be while protecting herself and her unique body modification “business”.

A complex and compelling character, Mary continues to gain cult and iconic status providing Scream Queen Katharine Isabelle with another memorable role under her belt next to Ginger from Ginger Snaps (2000). Whether feared or admired, there’s certainly something about Mary!

2. Laurie Strode, Halloween Series (1978, 1981, 1998, 2002)

  • Played By Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Directed By John Carpenter
  • Written By John Carpenter and Debra Hill

laurie strode  Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) is one of the earliest examples and arguably the most famous of the ‘final girl’ trope. Despite not being the first horror heroine to come up against and survive a maniacal killer in the slasher territory (See. Jess, Black Christmas (1974) and Sally, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) as earlier examples) she holds a great deal of significance. Laurie’s character and status as ‘the final girl’ has been famously examined by Carol Clover in Men, Women and Chainsaws and its become pretty much concrete that Halloween (1978) set the standard for the slasher films that came after it and coined several of the tropes that have been recognizable ever since. The term ‘Final Girl’ came from Clover who stated the attributes as being a strong female character and one that was distinct from other females within slashers. As us horror enthusiasts know if you’re the slutty blonde cheerleader your more likely going to die but if you’re the shy, bookish, virginal girl, you’re going to survive! The final girl is the one who realizes the extent of the threat facing her and its even suggested that once she confronts the killer and more than often stabs him with a knife (a penetrative motion) its used as a metaphor for her sexual frustration.

It seems as if ‘Final Girls’ during this period of horror were constructed as masculine, with their feminine qualities suppressed, they were in place more as an experience for cinematic terror. By having a female figure rather than a male the intent was to convey fear as women aren’t viewed as physically strong as men. It created more vulnerability when the final girl would face up against a killer twice her size.

Another attribute of ‘The Final Girl’ is having a gender neutral name which supports this idea that the role of the female in slasher films is for a male audience to be able to identify with. Clover’s theory however has been criticized for being problematic as it doesn’t suggest that the heroine reflects female identity and anxieties. Laurie in fact does display several of the characteristics Clover set out. Despite thwarting the killer at the climax and surviving, Clover’s focus on a male outlet has been argued against as Laurie is ultimately rescued by a male character Dr. Sam Loomis (Donald Pleasence). Through this she is not entirely an ‘active’ final girl who seeks out the killer herself but she is one step ahead of the other characters as she remains continually cautious and is smart enough to keep herself alive. Laurie is an early reference point for the trope however she does evolve over the years. In the sequel she is hospitalized but still displays more awareness, warning others about the boogeyman who attacked her, the doctors dismiss her fears and continue to sedate her. In Halloween II (1981) Laurie makes the connection that her attacker is in fact Michael Myers and also her brother. With that knowledge she is able to defeat him once more with the help of Loomis. During Halloween IV (1988)V (1989) and The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) she is presumed dead leaving behind a young daughter Jamie Lloyd (Danielle Harris) who becomes Myers next target. In Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998) its discovered that Laurie is alive and living behind a secret identity. Fragile and unable to cope with her past, she is on medication and a shadow of her former self, which makes her more human. This time round she has her teenage son John (Josh Hartnett) to protect as Michael targets his little sister once more. By the end Laurie gains the courage to fight back and finish off Michael Myers once and for all, beheading him with an axe. By this point Laurie had molded from the vulnerable teenager in the first installment to a stronger woman. Unfortunately Halloween:Resurrection (2002) exists, destroying everything the previous film had intended with the evolution of Laurie’s place as a final girl, by having Myers kill her off in an asylum in the films opening minutes. Allegedly Laurie had decapitated a security guard rather than Myers in H20.

As stated Laurie Strode is one of the most emblematic heroines to emerge from the genre. Even though she does fall into several categories that make up the traditional final girl, its not to say that she doesn’t display any feminine qualities. She begins as a teenage girl with insecurities and becomes a strong woman which is plenty for a female audience to relate to. Laurie is without a doubt the first notable final girl in the slasher sub-genre and a huge influence on all the strong horror females that came after her.

1. Sidney Prescott, Scream Series (1996, 1997, 2000, 2011)

  • Played By Neve Campbell
  • Directed By Wes Craven
  • Written By Kevin Williamson

scream4_06  The countdown has now reached an end and its time to finally discuss the feistiest female in Horror and that is Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) from the slick, post-modern Scream franchise.

If Laurie Strode was responsible for evoking ideas about ‘the final girl’ then Sidney Prescott was in place to challenge them. The 90’s were upon us and the horror genre was in dire need of a re-vamp. Precisely everything had been done by this point and filmmakers needed to find a way to keep on terrifying audiences who were now all too aware of the cliches and tropes thrown at them. Enter Kevin Williamson, a complete godsend. Williamson re-invented the genre with his quick-witted, self-aware but also brutal Scream (1996) along with the experienced genre director Wes Craven on board. Instead of re-hashing the same tired conventions, Williamson challenged them by creating a slasher film where the characters were conscious of being in one yet still met a bloody demise at the hands of an all new sinister serial killer, Ghostface (voiced by Roger L. Jackson) who knows these movies inside out and through the knowledge of the conventions is able to outsmart the targeted teens.

As a final girl Sidney on one hand does qualify for some of the attributes Clover discussed. She has a gender-neutral name and has intimacy issues. On the other hand she is clued up on how females in horror are constructed yet when faced with a slasher-type situation she acts on instinct rather than logic. That’s until the sequels where she becomes even more savvy on how to outsmart the knife-wielding masked murderer. The previously mentioned intimacy issues are down to trauma rather than just playing the good girl. Sidney’s mother was brutally butchered before the events of Scream (1996) however she eventually bows down to pressure from suspected boyfriend Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) and sleeps with him right before the blood-curdling climax. Even more of a turning point is Billy does turn out to be one of the killers meaning in this instance rules have changed and Sidney not only has sex, she has sex with the villain which establishes what audiences thought they knew about horror conventions is about to change.

By Scream 4 (2011) Sidney has encountered and defeated seven serial killers that donne the Ghostface disguise all out for her blood. Sidney achieved somewhat of a sick, celebrity status as ‘everyone’s favorite victim’ even though she yearns for a normal life where she doesn’t have to look over her shoulder. She overcomes more than most, the death of her friends and her only stable boyfriend Derek (Jerry O’Connell) as well as family members attempting to massacre her yet she still comes out on top. There has been rumors over the years that if another Scream installment was to be made there is the possibility that Sidney may be killed off however that would be disrespectful to her character and legacy and would be taking it down the previously mentioned Halloween:Resurrection route, which would just be awful! What’s empowering about Sidney is she isn’t afraid to pull the trigger and takes no second chances when eliminating the threat. There has been criticism that technically Sidney is as bad as the killers in the franchise as in self-defense she murders them in equally bloody measures however given the situation any rational person would react similarly in order to save themselves and remaining friends. She does all she can to protect herself, in the sequel she stays around her friends and is given two bodyguards, in the third installment she is a broken woman who isolates herself in a highly-secured house before deciding to come out and face the danger rather than pushing her surviving friends away. By the fourth and most recent film Sidney is wiser and displays more confidence, she even becomes an author recounting her traumatic experiences as a way of catharsis.

Sidney Prescott is my number one female of horror because she is strong, empowered, determined, will always fight back and has a well-rounded character arc. Sidney is a survivor who has left just as much as an impact as Laurie before her through turning conventions on their head and giving genre audiences much more to expect from what a final girl is capable of.

Hayley Alice Roberts.

Hayley’s Horror Reviews.

Hayley’s Horror Highlights of 2013!

Posted in Horror Attractions, Horror Festivals with tags , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2013 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

After discussing the horror movies that stood out most this year, this article will take a look at the more personal achievements for Hayley’s Horror Reviews. 2013 on the whole has been a big year which has seen me develop new skills in filmmaking and gaining more confidence in the genre that’s very close to me. Over this passed year I’ve met and worked with some wonderful people on some fantastic projects and made more contacts from all over the globe who are equally as passionate about Horror as I am. Here’s an overview of some of my best horror memories of 2013 in a diary-style/picture format.

January 2013: American Mary trip to Sheffield (Fright Fest).

When I heard Twisted Twins Jen and Sylvia Soska were taking their uniquely dark, hit film American Mary on a UK tour, there was no way I was going to pass up the opportunity to see my favorite film of 2012 on the big screen once more; as well attend a Q&A featuring three of my female role models in Horror. I rallied up some of my close friends together including my co-reviewer Caitlyn Downs (of Scared Sheepless), Sally Jones, Ross Hunt, Martin Lakin and Nia Edwards-Behi (co-director of Abertoir) as we took an awesome road trip down to Sheffield for the night to attend the screening. Following a very entertaining Q&A, I had the opportunity to finally meet the Soska’s as our communication up to that point had only been via email. They were amazing as expected and incredibly friendly. Katherine Isabelle was also in attendance and it was equally as awesome to meet the actress behind Mary and the iconic Ginger from Ginger Snaps (2000) in the flesh. After an eventful evening, we enjoyed a few drinks in the hotel and caught up with Rob Nevitt (director of Celluloid Screams) and a few of the Sheffield festival regulars. The American Mary trip kicked off a great start to the year.

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January 2013: The Ascension Shoot. My first professional filmmaking experience.

Later in the month I took a trip to Redditch after being asked to create a making of  documentary showcasing the short film Ascension. In the previous Summer I had interviewed Writer Dave Jeffrey and Director James Hart about the project that tells the story of a small English community, devastated by the zombie apocalypse while coming together in the hope for survival. I was incredibly grateful to be offered the opportunity to work on such a creative project as well as gain an insight into the behind-the-scenes side of filmmaking. Despite horrendous weather conditions of heavy snow, the cast and crew did an amazing job to bring the film together and achieved it especially well. My role was primarily to provide some exposure of life on set as well as interview the main cast which included Derek Melling and Mark Rathbone (who both starred in my favorite recent horror movie, Inbred), Laurence Saunders (The Seasoning House, Deadtime) and Jacky Fellows (of Fizzog Productions), who are all very talented actors. I shot the documentary on my SD80 Panasonic camera and despite a few sound issues due to the wind, the quality turned out pretty well. Venomous Little Man, the company behind Ascension have recently produced some limited edition DVD’s that includes the behind-the-scenes featurette which I am extremely proud of, to have my film released on DVD. VLM are working on some new projects for 2014 which sound equally exciting and I’m sure their future offerings will grow from strength to strength.

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June 2013: The Ascension Premiere. Screening Ascension:Behind The Screams!

I was invited to Birmingham in June along with my cinematographer/co-editor Ross Hunt to attend the premiere of Ascension. Screening at the Electric Cinema, the premiere was a great opportunity to catch up with the cast and crew in warmer weather conditions as well as get some feedback on the Making Of documentary we had created. Along with the film itself and VLM entry into the 666 Shortcuts to Hell competition, the behind-the-scenes featurette was screened to the audience and achieved positive feedback. For many in attendance it was nostalgic, looking back at all the hard work that went into making Ascension.  It was wonderful to see everything finally come together, following a problematic time during the editing process where a lot of technical issues arose but we eventually overcame. Following the premiere, we attended what could be described as an epic night out to celebrate all our achievements. Even though there is plenty that could be improved with the documentary, it was my first professional filming experience and I feel I took a lot away from it which has helped build my confidence. Working with VLM and gaining an insight into the behind-the-scenes aspect of a film has been inspiring.

All the hard work most definitely paid off as James Hart won the best director award at the Bram Stoker International Film Festival in October. Massive Congratulations and well-deserved.

For my full coverage of the premiere, Click Here.

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July 2013: Graduated University.

Out of everything that’s happened this year my proudest accomplishment has to be graduating from Aberystwyth University with a 2:1 BA Hons degree in Film and Television Studies. I was nearing the end of my first year when I begin this site as a side project which helped me improve my writing skills and critical thinking. Graduation luckily fell on a beautiful summer’s day, it was a relief that all the hard work paid off and I managed to obtain the mark I always aimed for. During my time on the film course, my favorite aspects had to be studying the horror genre (of course), screenwriting, children and the media and writing my most challenging piece yet, my dissertation on the representation of the teenage girl using US television shows to illustrate my argument. I would like to thank all my family, friends and followers for supporting me during my time on the course which has helped adapt my knowledge of film.

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October and November 2013: Celluloid Screams & Abertoir Horror Festival Coverage.

For anyone who works within the genre, these months are usually the busiest! This year I had a fantastic time working with Caitlyn on the two festivals I have been regularly attending for a number of years. Please check out our videos below which developed our presenting skills further as well as my editing skills as I got to grips with using Sony Vegas. We thoroughly enjoy providing reviews and festival coverage each year and aim to support the latest in indie cinema. Expect more from us in 2014!

December 2013: Wrote my first Screenplay!

The final goal I reached in 2013 was finishing the first draft of my feature film screenplay. Currently going through re-writes, I’ve kept the script I’ve been working on for the passed year very secretive until now. Thanks to my university scriptwriting course I began developing the film I’ve had in mind for the passed two years and continued the writing process following graduation. I managed to make the changes I wanted to suit the audience I’m writing for rather than just for the purpose of the course. I’ve had a lot of support from some friends within the industry that have read my work and see its potential, so fingers crossed that I will one day get to make it.

A brief overview of the plot: Following a traumatic experience from her past, Katie vows to make a new life for herself at university. Soon, she meets Jason, an enigmatic and appealing young man who pursues her. When things finally begin to take a turn for the better, Katie stumbles on a dark, horrific secret that could threaten everything she holds dear. The screenplay is a twisted tale of romance, horror and misogyny that combines a series of genres that have been influential on me as a writer.

Happy Horror New Year and keep your eyeballs peeled for more from the site in 2014!

Stay Safe and Don’t go into the woods!!

Hayley Alice Roberts.

Women in Horror Recognition Month 2013

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 2, 2013 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

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Head over to my facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/HayleysMovieAndTvReviews for plenty of discussion on Women in Horror recognition month. Unfortunately due to university work including my dissertation and script work, I am unable to dedicate as much time to film reviewing currently however by May time I plan to be back making this blog more active, so directors, producers and writer’s out there please send me your horror movies to review! Next February I have big plans to mark this awesome occasion which draws awareness to the under-representation of women within the genre but for now please comment here or on facebook and tell me what is your favorite female orientated film and why?! Let’s generate some discussion!

However, I do believe that thanks to the recent Soska storm with their increasingly popular body-modification, Asian and European influenced American Mary that women direction in horror is being put on the map, which is very inspiring for me. The Twisted Twins have managed to create a powerful female film and have managed the balance between remaining sexy without being gratuitous and exploitative! We need more of this please!  There is definitely plenty of room for talented women in horror and hopefully I can achieve my dream of becoming a horror presenter, writer and director!

Below are a few pictures of the genre women that have inspired me!

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Sylvia & Jen Soska (The Twisted Twins)

582770_509316209118802_1399237812_nEmily Booth.

johartleyJo Hartley

imagesKatharine Isabelle

sophiadisgraceSophia Disgrace

tristan riskTristan Risk

If you’d like to send me a screening via vimeo of your film’s for a future review, please contact me on hayley_roberts1989@hotmail.co.uk

or send a message via the facebook page!

Hayley Alice Roberts

Abertoir 2012: The Vlogs (Day Four-Six)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 11, 2012 by Hayley's Horror Reviews

Apologies for the delay but here are the remaining vlogs that capture 2012’s goretastic Abertoir Horror Festival.

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Day Four

Caitlyn and I summarized all the wonderful film sights we saw on Day Three & what to expect from Day Four, including an Italian cinema legend and doing the time warp in style at the special Rocky Horror Picture Show screening and party!

Festival Director Gaz joined us to introduce a night of suspenders, drag, aliens and mayhem!

Day Five

Following a successful screening of Jen and Sylvia Soska’s visually stunning take on surgery and body modification, Nia, Gaz and I decided to send them a video response to the one they made especially for us straight from Australia.

While losing my voice I interviewed Gavin Baddeley on all things horror including its origins, issues of censorship and moral panics and what makes a horror film truly horrifying.

Day Six

Yep…voice totally gone, a big thank you to Caitlyn for keeping everyone updated on the shenanigans of Abertoir’s final day!

Our final summary, Caitlyn discusses our overall highlights and the winning films as well as general thanks. Also thank you to Jimmi Johnson (Editor of Night Breed: The Cabal Cut) for filming our last video.

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We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who supported our coverage at this years festival. We are so grateful to Gaz, Nia, Rhys and Becky for giving us this opportunity and of course a thank you is in order to all those involved who helped us with various pieces including filming and photography, Sally Jones, Lewis Gibson-Grainger and Janie Roberts. We hope those of you who have never been to Abertoir have enjoyed what you’ve seen and will consider attending next year and for those of you who were there you can look back on this piece of nostalgia with all your amazing memories. Caitlyn and I have some more projects under wraps for next year so keep an eye out!

Coming Soon…

MY TOP TEN HORROR FILMS OF 2012!

Hayley Alice Roberts.