SHORT: ‘Girls Night’ (2017) Halloween finds three girlfriends at a party gone wrong

SHORT: ‘Girls Night’ (2017) Halloween finds three girlfriends at a party gone wrong

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Filmmaker David Teixeira wrote, directed, shot, and edited this modest short, which is in French but offers English subtitles. Here’s the official synopsis:

Girls Night is a short horror film that takes place in Halloween. Three girlfriends stay home for a slumber party that goes bloody wrong. Literally.”

It’s a variation on the venerable “Bloody Mary” legend. You’d think most folks would know better by now.

Teixeira leaned in to the inherent constraints of a shoestring budget, and came up with a mostly good-looking film that underdelivers in the scares department. There are some lingering shots that could be tightened up a bit. But the score is effective, the three main characters are colorful and engaging, and the central antagonist, in creepy mask and blonde wig, has an eerie menacing quality that makes this short worth a look.

So how can you take such a look at Girls Night? Currently, you can’t – but that will soon change. We touched base with Teixeira on the subject:

“It’s been submitted to 15 film festivals internationally. It will be online soon, still waiting to see how it goes with the film festivals and then I’ll put it online. Maybe in April.”

Stay tuned.


SHORT: Check out ambitious new episode of ‘Scary Endings’ anthology: ‘The Water Rises’

SHORT: Check out ambitious new episode of ‘Scary Endings’ anthology: ‘The Water Rises’

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Online horror anthology series Scary Endings kicks off the new year with what may be its most ambitious episode yet, The Water Rises. Writer/director John Fitzpatrick (Skypemare) and the usual gang of suspects have put together an intense, nasty piece of work set aboard a cruise ship. Two newlyweds find themselves trapped in one of the ship’s elevators when disaster strikes. As the water rises, so does the tension… and the terror.

From a technical standpoint, this was clearly a challenging shoot, as evidenced by the “Behind the Scenes” video below. The Scary Endings team’s efforts really pay off, giving us a claustrophobic, heartbreaking entry in what has grown to become one of our favorite horror anthology series.

The Water Rises co-stars Empire‘s Kaitlin Doubleday and co-producer (and frequent Scary Endings actor) Adam J. Yeend. It also features voice-only cameos from horror veteran Cerina Vincent (Cabin Fever, Skypemare) and co-producer Ryan Dillon.


“Behind the Scenes” look at the making of The Water Rises, featuring the cast and crew:

SHORT: Horror anthology ‘Scary Endings’ S2E02 gets seasonal with ‘Santa Claus is a Vampire’

SHORT: Horror anthology ‘Scary Endings’ S2E02 gets seasonal with ‘Santa Claus is a Vampire’

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Addictive online horror anthology series Scary Endings has released the second epsiode of its sophomore season – and it’s a holiday special! Santa Claus Is a Vampire strikes a tone midway between comedy and horror, with a liberal dash of holiday spice. Writer/director John Fitzpatrick (Skypemare) and his team tell a tale of a less-than-jolly St. Nick wrestling with a thirst that just cannot be quenched. Here’s the official synopsis:

Happily married couple Sharon (Hannah Marshall) and Cody (Ryan Dillon) are returning home with this year’s Christmas tree when an unexpected encounter with Vampire Santa Claus (Casey Kooyman) leaves Sharon sole defender of her home where no one is safe, not her son, the babysitter Holly (Charlotte Chimes) or even herself. Can she stop Santa from coming down that chimney? Traditional vampire rules apply…

It’s good to see Scary Endings return from hiatus. Look for a new short from them each month – they’re worth waiting for.


Vengeance thriller ‘Tonight She Comes’ to make festival debut October 9th at UK’s GRIMMFEST

Vengeance thriller ‘Tonight She Comes’ to make festival debut October 9th at UK’s GRIMMFEST

TAGLINE: “Yesterday… she was chosen. At midnight… she was sacrificed. This morning… she was buried. But tonight… Tonight She Comes. Everyone else will die.

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: I really love the bold colors and stark lines of this poster, created especially for the Manchester, UK horror festival GrimmFest (AKA Grimm Up North), where this film debuts early next month. And the stylish, synth-drenched teaser trailer (see below) reveals very little, but sure looks cool as hell.

Here’s the official synopsis:

After a girl goes missing, two of her friends and a mysterious set of strangers find themselves drawn to the cabin in the woods where she disappeared. They will laugh, they will drink, they will kiss, they will make love, and THEY MUST ALL DIE.

Tonight She Comes was written, directed, and edited by Matt Stuertz. He previously directed the feature horror / sci-fi film RWD, created the Sixty Second Slashers anthology series, and directed Mindless, part of Bloody Disgusting’s World of Death horror short film curation.

The film features a pulse pounding synth score composed by Wojciech Golczewski (We Are Still Here, Beyond the Gates, Late Phases) and intense, hard hitting sound design by Shawn Duffy (Darling, Carnage Park). The special festival poster shown above was crreated by Marie Bergeron.

The cast includes Nathan Eswine, Larissa White, Jenna McDonald, Brock Russell, Cameisha Cotton, Dal Nicole, Adam Hartley, and Frankie Ray. Theatrical, DVD, and VOD release dates have not yet been announced.


Aging pinup displays appetite for destruction in ‘Model Hunger,’ out on DVD/digital July 12th

Aging pinup displays appetite for destruction in ‘Model Hunger,’ out on DVD/digital July 12th

TAGLINE: “Revenge is a dish.”

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Genre veteran Debbie Rochon (Return to Nuke ‘Em High, Phobia, The Theater Bizarre, and several hundred others) moves behind the camera for her directorial debut, Model Hunger. Here’s the official synopsis:

Former pinup model Ginny (Lynn Lowry – Shivers, The Crazies, Cat People) had been cast aside by the heartless and exploitative modeling industry.  Ginny didn’t take rejection well and grew into a revenge-seeking, bloodthirsty, broken woman. When her new neighbors Debbie (Tiffany Shepis – Tales of Halloween, The Violent Kind, Sharknado 2) and Sal (Carmine Capobianco – Galactic Gigolo) move in, Debbie begins to notice strange things going on. Sal believes she is mentally unstable, but Debbie becomes determined to figure out what secret life Ginny is leading. Her new nosy neighbor throws a damper on Ginny’s private life: her cannibalistic addictions and ever-growing body count. Both women become determined to put an end to the other’s obsession.

Model Hunger was written by James Morgart, shot by Wolfgang Meyer, and features a score by Harry Manfredini, who has worked as composer for the Friday the 13th franchise. It comes out in both DVD and Digital HD formats on July 12th. You can get a… um, taste of the film, in all its lurid glory, in the trailer and gallery below.


Director Debbie Rochon
The Gourmet Horror Review: Short ‘Brentwood Strangler’ (2016) works by sticking to basics

The Gourmet Horror Review: Short ‘Brentwood Strangler’ (2016) works by sticking to basics

TAGLINE: “It’s a blind date. Keep an open mind.”

WHAT’S ON THE MENU: Finding that special someone can be challenging, even under the best of circumstances. But throw a serial killer into the mix, and all bets are off. From John Fitzpatrick, the writer/director of hit horror short Skypemare and the Scary Endings horror anthology series, comes something a little different: an old-fashioned cat-and-mouse thriller in the vein of Hitchcock or Wilder. No gratuitous stingers or jump scares here – Fitzpatrick plays it straight and simple while delivering a stylish, satirical dissection of the modern LA dating scene.

Here’s the synopsis:

It’s the holiday season in Los Angeles and women are being strangled to death in the Westwood area: Maggie (Jordan LaddDeath Proof, the original 2002 Cabin Fever, Grace), a lonely woman goes on a blind date unbeknownst to her that her date is an active and notorious serial killer, the “Brentwood Strangler” (played by frequent Fitzpatrick collaborator/co-producer Adam J. YeendSkypemare, Liz & Dick). Is love in the air? Or is Maggie in for the worst (and last) date of her life?

BEST SCENE: The climactic sex/murder scene is wonderfully weird and twisted, with an outcome that is both unexpected and completely logical.

BLUNDERS/GAFFS: It’s difficult to swallow that this attractive, seemingly self-possessed woman wouldn’t pick up on the many warning signs that Richard is most certainly not who – or what – he claims to be. Also, the newscaster “Sasha Greene,” who appears on the TV in the restaurant to announce another victim of the strangler, moves her head in an odd and far too theatrical fashion for a professional journalist. It comes across as mannered and actor-ly. And in the aforementioned sex/murder scene, the foam around “Richard”‘s mouth magically disappears and then reappears. And this is a tiny quibble, but if this film was intended to hearken back to the Hitchcock era, it should probably have been titled The Brentwood Strangler. They really liked their leading prepositions back then.

EVALUATION: Brentwood Strangler is beautifully framed and shot, with a cool underlying LA holiday vibe reinforced by the mostly eidetic sounds of Christmas music throughout. The two leads generate some real chemistry, and their breezy, back-and-forth banter is one of the best things about the film. The manner in which serial killer Floyd Garrison assumes the identity of Richard Chase just in time to embark on a blind date with Ladd’s Maggie is inventive and clever. And the closing lines are hilarious. Try and catch this on the festival circuit – it’s a great looking film, worth seeing on the big screen.

Four Knives

EFFECTS (1-5): 3
SCORE (1-5): 5
OVERALL (1-5): 4

TITLEBrentwood Strangler
YEAR OF RELEASE: 2016 (though it played some festivals in 2015)
STUDIO: Strangler Films/Where is the Rockhammer/Far From Everything Films
MPAA RATING: NR (probably R, for strong language, violence, profanity)
LENGTH: 18 mins.
DVD? (Y/N): N


  • Motor City Nightmares (Detroit) – September 16-18, 2016 (exact date TBA – will feature Q&A session with star Jordan Ladd)
  • Additional festival appearances TBA