Sunday 22 September 2013

Film: No One Lives

A young couple travel across rural America as they move to a new home. Along the way they encounter a violent group of Rednecks but it looks like these guys have picked the wrong person to mess with.

A series of brutal killings and cheesy one-liners ensues with Luke Evans (Fast & Furious 6) perfectly cast as the seemingly unassuming traveller who turns the tables on the outlaws.

Director Ryuhei Kitamura’s previous work includes the under-rated The Midnight Meat Train and anyone who enjoyed that film will like this one too. It’s a crazy mash-up of films like Wrong Turn, Friday The 13th and Saw so most horror fans should be satisfied, although after the initial surprise it delivers no more twists.

No One Lives is available on DVD in the UK from 23rd September 2013.

Ric’s Rating: Good 

Saturday 14 September 2013

Book: The Paradise Trees by Linda Huber

Alicia Bryson returns to the village of her childhood when she hears that her Father’s health has deteriorated. Unfortunately she does not have many happy memories of the house or the man himself, as he was often abusive and violent towards his daughter.

This time though her own daughter, Jenny, is with her and hopefully the little girl will create better memories for herself during the summer spent at Granddad’s.
Unbeknown to Alicia is the fact that their arrival has not gone unnoticed. A stranger has seen them and begins to formulate a plan that will send them both to “Paradise”.

The story is told from the perspectives of Alicia and The Stranger and quickly becomes a bit of a guessing game as to who The Stranger is. Could it be the local Doctor, the pet shop owner, the care home manager or even Jenny’s own Father who comes back into her life after a long absence.

Told from the alternating perspectives of Alicia and The Stranger the story moves along swiftly towards the tension filled finale.

Often uncomfortable but totally compelling The Paradise Trees is an excellent debut novel by Linda Huber and I’ll certainly look out for her future work.

Available now from Legend Press.

Ric’s Rating: Highly Recommended.

Wednesday 11 September 2013

Film: Citadel

Following a brutal attack on his pregnant partner, Tommy (Aneurin Barnard), is reduced to a nervous wreck who can’t leave his house, but he must overcome these fears if he wants to keep his baby daughter.

This UK horror film opens with a scene so nasty I wasn’t sure I could continue to watch but Aneurin Barnard’s performance as the distraught Tommy is so compelling that I just couldn’t switch off.

Tommy consults guidance councillors and the local Priest (James Cosmo) in a bid to tackle his fears but they are soon realised when his daughter is taken and Tommy is forced to take action.

Like a lot of horrors these days Citadel starts really well and, in this case, the tension continues until the true identity of the hooded villains is revealed. It’s all a bit silly after that but this remains an enjoyable British horror.

Citadel is released on DVD in the UK on 30th September 2013.

Ric’s Rating: Good