Simon Alderwick watches and shares his thoughts on the gruesome pick and mix of horror movies available on Shudder. This week he looks at Hellraiser 2, Dachra, We Are The Night, The Mortuary Collection and Hell House LLC.
Surreal, strange & nightmarish, Hellraiser 2: Hellbound (1988) belongs to the exclusive club of sequels which are better than the originals (alongside such classics as Terminator 2:Judgement Day & Monsters University).
If you liked Hellraiser, this sequel offers more gore, more fantasy and more messed up characters, as well as an opportunity to go deeper into the twisted world of the Cenobites.
Dachra (2018) is a Tunisian horror film that takes viewers far beyond what they might expect. Starting out with three friends making a film for a school project, this is no found footage film. Instead the group interview a witch in the local asylum before taking a walk into the woods, stumbling on a village where the locals cook up a strange but plentiful meat whilst serving up increasingly dubious reasons why their guests can’t leave.
Aside from great cinematography, the film offers some entertaining banter, with the two male leads exchanging an impressive string of insults.
Those with weak stomachs should approach this movie with caution as some scenes may be hard to digest for those of a sensitive disposition.
We Are The Night (2010) is an entertaining and unique film, constantly moving the story to new levels, but it is no way near as exciting or sensual as the blurbs make it sound.
The film never takes itself seriously enough to be frightening but can be enjoyed as a crime thriller with vampires.
The idea of Berlin as a natural habitat for vampires is a good premise, but 2008’s cult classic techno drama Berlin Calling gives a much more realistic look at the city’s hedonistic underbelly. We Are The Night is relatively conservative and feels more Hollywood than European.
The Mortuary Collection (2020) is a collection of four short stories set in 1980s island town, Raven’s End. The stories are linked by a creepy mortician who regales a cynical potential assistant with stories that range from far fetched to absurd.
A strong message of morality runs through each story. Viewers are also required to suspend their disbelief. The stories get darker and more gruesome as the film develops. At almost two hours long, the pace does drag a little in the middle, but overall this is a fun way to spend a dark night. The mortuary’s library is extensive and it would be great to hear more tales from his collection.
Hell House LLC (2015) is a genuinely terrifying haunted house/found footage/mockumentary that will keep you up at night and invade your dreams. This movie is complete with shaky footage, killer clowns, disappearing people and lots of things going bump in the night.Tense, unpredictable and horrific, Hell House LLC is a must see for any horror fan. But whatever you do, don’t watch it alone.
Simon Alderwick is a poet and songwriter from the UK. His work is featured or forthcoming in Whatever Keeps The Light On, Re-side and the Squiffy Gnu anthology, among others. Follow him on Twitter @SimonAlderwick.