Could ‘American Horror Story’s Michael Langdon Be Both Antichrist and Supreme?

US viewers got their first glimpse of a grown-up Michael Langdon when American Horror Story: Apocalypse premiered this week. Season 8 of the long-running anthology horror series is a unique proposition, which continually brings back the same cast members in later seasons… usually in different roles. However, creators Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy have long acknowledged that the seasons are linked, and Apocalypse is set to be an overt crossover between Season 1, Murder House, and Season 3, Coven. It will feature characters and other elements from both seasons – starting in Episode 1, entitled “The End”, with Michael Langdon — who is going to be pivotal to the events of Season 8.

Who is Michael Langdon?


American Horror Story Murder house
The young Michael Langdon with grandmother Constance in Murder House.

Michael Langdon is the child of Murder House’s Vivien Harmon (Connie Britton), conceived when she was raped by the ghost of Tate Langdon (Evan Peters). Remember him dressed in that rubber S&M suit? Of course you do. Anyway, the foetus killed its twin in the womb, which was conceived as a result of superfecundation, or fertilization by the sperm of two different fathers. The second twin, Vivien’s husband Ben’s (Dylan McDermott) child, was stillborn — and because the unborn baby’s death occurred inside the ‘Murder House’, it returned as a ghost. Meanwhile, the surviving offspring – Michael — was taken in by the next-door neighbour, Tate’s mother, Constance (Jessica Lange), after Vivien died during childbirth and Ben was killed by the house’s ghosts.

We learned from Sarah Paulson’s medium Billie Dean Howard that the baby could be the Antichrist. She told Constance about the phenomenon of the Pope’s Box, a locked receptacle containing the details of the end of the world, which would be ushered in by the Antichrist who would be the offspring of a human and spirit.

The finale of Murder House jumps forward three years, and we see Constance return home to discover the nanny apparently murdered by toddler Michael, who is smothered in blood and grinning. This is the last time we saw Michael, who returns in Apocalypse to play a major role in the End of Days.

Why Could He Be the Next Supreme?


american-horror-story-fearful-pranks-ensue.04-Fearful-Pranks-Ensue-Promotional-Photos-11_FULL
Sarah Paulson as Cordelia Goode with Jessica Lange as Fiona Goode in Coven.

During Season 1, Constance drops the names of distant cousins Eveline and Steve DeLongpre from Virginia as the family from whom she adopted Michael when weaving the story of how she came to have a baby. As Constance’s grandchild, Michael is a Langdon, and so Eveline and Steve — if they exist — are blood relations of his.

The name DeLongpre is one which recurred in Coven: a certain Mimi DeLongpre was once a Supreme. With Coven demonstrating that the qualities and powers required for the role of the Supreme Witch can potentially run in families – Sarah Paulson’s Cordelia Goode succeeded her mother Fiona (Jessica Lange) as Supreme – it’s possible that Michael could possess the necessary powers too, as a descendant of Mimi.

But wait, aren’t Supremes always women? As far as we know, yes. But with rumblings that Miss Robichaux’s Academy has opened its doors to magical men, it adds credence to the notion that Michael could take on the mantle of Supreme. And even if he doesn’t become chief witch, if he has any of the powers that his possible distant relative possessed, he’d be a very powerful proposition indeed in combination with his status as the Antichrist.

 So what’s his role in Apocalypse?


American Horror Story: Apocalypse
Cody Fern as Michael Langdon.

We caught a glimpse of a grown-up Michael Langdon at the end of Episode 1 of the new season. He rolls up, horse and carriage-stylee, to Outpost 3, where survivors of the nuclear attack witnessed at the start of the premiere are stationed. 18 months have passed and sustenance is apparently dwindling at Sarah Paulson’s Wilhelmina Venable-run fallout bunker. The assembled group of wealthy occupants and specially selected chosen ones are concerned about what’s next, and the shady Ms Venable greets their visitor. Langdon is a representative of the mysterious ‘Cooperative’ organisation behind the evacuation. He claims to have been “assigned to evaluate the people here and select the ones most worthy of survival.” We’re told that they’re the last remaining humans after survivors in other Outposts perished.

“I could take all of you, or none of you,” he says. “Those who make it live, those who don’t end up like my horses.” The horses, incidentally, were shot outside by lackeys after succumbing to the nuclear fallout. Langdon’s ultimate motives are unclear, but the Circle of Hell theory that’s been bandied about for some time – and which Ryan Murphy once shared on Twitter – could hold the key.

The Eighth Circle of Hell

According to the theory, the Eighth Circle of Hell was explored in Season 2, Asylum. In the Eighth Circle, according to Dante’s Inferno, fraud is punished. But could the eighth season of AHS actually correspond with the Eighth Circle?

The Eighth Circle is known as ‘Malebolge’, which translated means something akin to ‘evil ditches’. The Eighth Circle is a large, funnel-shaped cavern divided into ten concentric circular ‘ditches’, or trenches, or – dare we say – underground bunkers. We know from Episode 1 that there are ten outposts in total. Could Apocalypse be a literal representation of the Eighth Circle of Hell? And after Michael is done assessing the occupants of Outpost 3, will he take those that “pass the test” onto the Ninth Circle? Is everybody already dead? We’ll find out more as the season progresses.

Why Does Michael Look Like Tom Cruise in Interview with a Vampire?

Apart from Cody Fern’s Michael Langdon bringing a touch of gothic horror to proceedings, we don’t really know. Suffice to say that Ryan Murphy reportedly tweeted “Eyes like his Dad…Hair like his Mom”. That doesn’t explain the outfit, of course. But we dig it.

On that, though, there’s some confusion over why Langdon appears as a fully grown man if the show is set in 2019. He’d still be a boy if he was governed by the usual laws of nature according to the timeline of American Horror Story. So we’re guessing that the supernatural/demonic aspect of him is responsible for his accelerated growth. After all, even though he was about three years old at the end of Murder House in line with the passage of time, we do know that he developed at an alarmingly fast rate in the womb. With this in mind, it could be that he’s arrived at fully-grown Antichrist outside of the normal development rate for a human child. We don’t yet know the rules governing the Antichrist within the AHS universe, but if Langdon is immortal, he’d have parallels with Cruise’s Lestat that would include longevity as well as, perhaps, fashion sense.

6 Things We Learned On Set To Suggest ‘Ravers’ Is the Year’s Maddest Horror

The post Could ‘American Horror Story’s Michael Langdon Be Both Antichrist and Supreme? appeared first on FANDOM.

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Exclusive: ‘Venom’ Director Ruben Fleischer Talks Horror Influences, Eminem, and a Potential Unrated Version

Exclusive: ‘Venom’ Director Ruben Fleischer Talks Horror Influences, Eminem, and a Potential Unrated Version

On October 5, the next official Marvel movie arrives in theaters, but it’s quite unlike anything we’ve ever seen from a Marvel comic movie before. Venom, starring Tom Hardy as the iconic antihero with the huge eyes, gnarly teeth and vicious tongue, looks to bring a refreshingly different approach to the comic genre. It’s darker, edgier and features a character fans have wanted to see in a standalone movie for decades.

“I was a huge Venom fan, and so that's why I…

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‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’ Is the Craziest, Best Installment Since ‘Coven’

FX

It’s the end of the world as we know it, and it’s a hoot. At least it is through the prism of Ryan Murphy’s mind—a harrowing hoot, really, which is what we’ve come to crave from a season of American Horror Story.

Wednesday night’s premiere of American Horror Story: Apocalypse marked a welcome return to camp for the long-running FX franchise. Murphy apparently hates that word, which is fair. It’s become lazy shorthand that’s siphoned meaning from the descriptor and minimized the scale and ambition of his work, not to mention dismissed its quality in homophobic fashion. Recent seasons of AHS have been more baroque and stylized than they are truly campy.

But when the opening to your show has Leslie Grossman, playing a wealthy aspiring Instagram influencer named Coco St. Pierre Vanderbilt, spitting “This tastes like turtle shit!” at an assistant who gave her a green juice right before a ballistic missile siren sounds and the entire world is demolished…pitch a tent because you’ve arrived at camp.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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TV Review: ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’

In the first episode of its new season, “American Horror Story” made a case for itself, once again, as a series designed to make us our greatest fears, even if the cure it provides at the end of the journey is merely witty distraction. Caution is warranted: The previous season, subtitled “Cult,” had seemed in […]

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The horror behind ‘The Real Lolita’

All she wanted was to be one of the cool girls.

Sally Horner was not quite 11, an honor-roll student and kind of a goody-goody. So in 1948, when a popular clique dared her to shoplift from the Camden Woolworth’s, she held her breath and pocketed a five-cent notebook.

And stumbled into nearly two…

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The New Fashion Brand That Is Also a Horror Movie

Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast

If you associate futuristic fashion with Joan Jetson’s gravity-defying triangular collar, Simon Huck would kindly ask that you rethink things.

The publicist and longtime friend of Kim Kardashian West just launched A. Human, a body modification line and immersive theater experience.

The designs include bulging neck implants (as seen on Kardashian West), stilettos built into heels, and vestigial tails growing every which way out of a ribcage.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Connie Britton and Dylan McDermott Returning to American Horror Story After Starring in Season 1

American Horror Story will see two familiar faces return to the franchise when the FX series’ eighth season airs.

Connie Britton and Dylan McDermott, who starred on season 1 as husband and wife, have signed on for AHS: Apocalypse, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The outlet reports that photos and videos from the Apocalypse set leaked on social media Wednesday night — and have since been deleted — showing McDermott on set.

On season 1 (American Horror Story: Murder House) of the Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk-created series, Britton, 51, and McDermott, 56, starred as husband Dr. Ben Harmon and wife  Vivien Harmon, who move across the country with their daughter Violet into a mansion that they learn is haunted.

Apocalypse will include a crossover of Murder House with season 3’s Coven.

WATCH: Sarah Paulson on the craziest thing she’s done for American Horror Story

In January, Murphy revealed the FX horror anthology’s upcoming edition will be set … in the future!

“All I’ll say about it is I want to go to the future — still topical, but the future, which I’ve never done,” Murphy said at the Television Critics Association’s semi-annual press tour, Entertainment Weekly reported.

“I pitched it to John Landgraf today right after his TCA panel, and he loved it, but he’s asked me not to say what it is,” Murphy added. “I told him and he fell out of his chair with joy. I think people will like it, it’s different from what we’ve done before, but I always try and do the opposite of what I’ve done on that show.”

At the time, Murphy was optimistic that many of the original AHS stars would return for the crossover, including McDermott and Britton, the latter of whom starred on Murphy’s Fox drama 9-1-1.

“I want all of them,” he said. “I want Dylan, and Connie and Jessica . They’ve all said — Kathy Bates, too — everybody who is involved in the show has always said, ‘Yeah, that sounds like fun, let’s get the band back together again.’ So that is one of the reasons why the writing process of that season is taking longer because it’s literally 25 people’s schedules. But I’m hopeful they will all be back.”

Earlier this month, franchise star Sarah Paulson revealed that Jessica Lange will return as Constance Langdon from Murder House in an episode that Paulson will actually direct, EW reported. Apocalypse will find Cody Fern playing Michael Langdon, the antichrist that Vivien Harmon (Connie Britton) gave birth to and then Constance adopted,


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7 Members of the Same Family Killed in Horror Crash: ‘My Heart Hurts Like It Never Hurt Before’

Seven family members were killed in a head-on car crash in eastern Oregon on Monday.

Erika Boquet, 29, her three children and Boquet’s stepmother Kyla Brown, 28, and her two children were all killed when a 1999 Toyota 4Runner driving on the other side of the road, crossed into their lane and smashed into their 2016 Toyota 4Runner, Oregan State Police confirmed.

Boquet, her children Isabella, 11, Elisabeth, 9, and Tytis, 6, as well as Brown and her children Arianna, 10, and Xavier, 2, were all pronounced dead at the scene, police said in a statement.

The lone driver of the 1999 Toyota 4Runner, Mark Robert Rundell, 48, also died in the collision.

The young family was on their way to Las Vegas from Washington during the time of the fatal accident, which took place at around 10 a.m.

Boquet’s father and Brown’s partner Louis Johnson was flying to Nevada to meet his family when tragedy struck.

The devastated father and grandfather posted on his Facebook that his “world came crashing down.”

“My heart hurts like it never hurt before. I have no answers to a 1000 whys,” he wrote, asking friends and family to join him at a vigil held Wednesday. “We lost 7 loved ones and the pain we feel is deep. I need to see the love I lost in you.”

Boquet’s brother Jessie Tate has set up a GoFundMe page in hopes of raising money to cover the funeral costs.

“Our family is at a complete loss. We are trying to come up with enough money to bring them home and give them the proper burial they deserve,” the GoFundMe page reads.

“Erika was kind and always giving to others. Her heart was big and full of compassion. Words can not describe how much Erika, Bella, Elisa and Tytis will be missed.”

So far, the page has raised over $ 30,000.

RELATED ARTICLE: ‘They’re All Gone:’ Car Crash Kills New Jersey Father and 4 Daughters, Leaving Mother Behind

Tate also opened up to The Oregonian about his sister’s devastating death.

“It’s a tragedy I wouldn’t wish on anyone else,” Tate explained to the publication.

“She was outgoing, personable, made friends everywhere she went, and her kids took after her,” Tate continued.

“They all just cared about everyone around them.”

The accident remains under investigation.


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‘Hereditary’ Director Casts Jack Reynor and Florence Pugh in Next Horror Movie; Here’s Everything We Know

'Hereditary' Director Casts Jack Reynor and Florence Pugh in Next Horror Movie; Here's Everything We Know

Ari Aster, the first-time writer/director of Hereditary, is setting up his sophomore effort. Reportedly, the currently untitled feature will again be distributed by A24 (Hereditary has become their top-grossing release). 

According to Collider, the movie has just cast its leads with Jack Reynor (Macbeth) and Florence Pugh (Lady Macbeth) and is now filming in Budapest. The Maze Runner's Will Poulter, who also recently co-starred with Reynor in Detroit, will play another main…

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Here’s who from Murder House is returning for American Horror Story: Apocalypse, and hold onto your rubber suits

Here’s who from Murder House is returning for American Horror Story: Apocalypse, and hold onto your rubber suits


Here’s who from <em>Murder House</em> is returning for <em>American Horror Story: Apocalypse</em>, and hold onto your rubber suits

Have you spent the last seven years of your life wondering whatever happened to li’l baby Michael? You know, that adorable (demon) baby, the child of the very alive Vivien Harmon and the very dead Tate? You know, that baby! That baby who killed his babysitter, while Jessica Lang coo’ed and caa’ed at it. Wondering what’s happened to Michael Langdon? Well, wonder no more, because he’s officially coming back for American Horror Story: Apocalypse.

All along, Ryan Murphy has dropped clues as to how each season of his anthology series are connected to one another. Some are pretty obvious (like Pepper popping up in both Asylum and Freak Show) while others are subtle (like Madison Montgomery having the same last name as the OG owners of Murder House). Well, the biggest connection is finally here, as Murphy has revealed that a very adult Michael Langdon is returning for Season 8.

Posting to Twitter Thursday afternoon, the showrunner dropped the big news:

FX

And since Murphy always loves to keep it in the family, he’s filling the role of Michael with Cody Fern, who played David Madson on American Crime Story: Versace. That means we’re somehow picking up roughly 15 to 20-ish years after the events of Murder House, which introduced us to a 3-year-old Michael. Murphy has already revealed that the events of Apocalypse take place 18 months in the future — whatever that’s supposed to mean.

Season 8 of the series, which is set to premiere in September, is the long-awaited “crossover season.” As for which seasons are crossing over? Well, Murder House is one of them, and the other is Coven. Long-time AHS cast members Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters are set to return, playing brand new characters. As for returning characters, in addition to adult Michael, Emma Roberts will reprise her role as Madison, originally seen in Season 3’s Coven.

While all of this is great, and it’s super exciting, one very important question remains: WHERE IS JESSICA LANGE? The AHS queen hasn’t been seen since Season 4’s Freak Show. And listen, last time we saw baby Michael, he was being watched over by next-door neighbor Constance. It only makes sense that she’d be back for Season 8 now, right? We can’t have the Apocalypse without Ms. Lange.

The post Here’s who from <em>Murder House</em> is returning for <em>American Horror Story: Apocalypse</em>, and hold onto your rubber suits appeared first on HelloGiggles.

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Kim Kardashian Shares Unbelievable Horror Film She Made With, Wait For It, The Cheetah Girls

What a throwback — and it’s only Tuesday! Kim Kardashian graced the internet with a video she filmed with the Cheetah Girls back in the day, and it’s scary for a lot of reasons — namely how close Adrienne Bailon really was to being part of the family!

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American Horror Story Season Eight Gets A Premiere Date, But Which of the First Seven Seasons is Currently Your Favorite?

Jessica Lange, American Horror Story, Murder House, CovenMark your calendars American Horror Story fans, because the terror continues this September!
On Thursday, FX announced that season eight of American Horror Story, which will be a…

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American Horror Story Season 8: Should the Crossover Actors Play Their Murder House or Coven Characters?

Jessica Lange, American Horror Story, Murder House, CovenSurprise, bitches! The American Horror Story crossover you’ve been waiting for is coming this fall.
Ryan Murphy surprised fans last week when he revealed that a crossover season of…

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The Visceral Horror of ‘Resident Evil 2 Remake’

I didn’t know I wanted a “Resident Evil 2” remake. After spending almost an hour with it at this year’s E3, it’s one of my games of the show. The thing that “Resident Evil 2 Remake’s” trailer doesn’t properly convey is the oppressive stress of the entire experience, at least with the demo that Capcom […]

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‘Hereditary’ Review: A Punishing Horror Film That Must Be Seen

Horror is often viewed as a genre that exists only to entertain. Some audiences watching a horror movie only want a thrilling experience that allows them the fun of being scared with none of the actual danger that fear represents. Hereditary shirks that approach and delivers a horror experience that is genuinely uncomfortable. This isn’t a fun time at the movies.

That doesn’t mean it isn’t necessary viewing. Because it is.

Emotional Horror


hereditary funeral
Steve (Gabriel Byrne) and Charlie (Milly Shapiro) attend Ellen's funeral.

Hereditary centers around the Graham family shortly after the death of the family matriarch, Ellen. Her daughter Annie (Toni Collette) is trying to cope with the loss. She’s afraid of the mental disorders she’s possibly inherited from her mother and she’s starting to sense a presence in her old home. There’s also Steve (Gabriel Byrne), Annie’s sympathetic but frustrated husband, and their two children Peter (Alex Wolff) and Charlie (Milly Shapiro).

Much like The Exorcist and Rosemary’s BabyHereditary isn’t a film that is centered around big jump scares. Instead, it focuses on intensely emotional moments to drive home its feelings of terror and dread. This is a film where people reacting to a tragedy is as skin-crawling as a possible specter lurking in the shadows. A lot of credit goes to the superb cast, especially Toni Collette who gives a performance worthy of all the awards.

Nightmare Logic


hereditary dollhouse
Annie (Toni Collette) builds miniature dollhouse models that reflect moments in her life.

Another impressive element of Hereditary is its ability to present surreal imagery without coming across as pretentious or obtuse. For example, there are multiple times in the film where a strange light pulses across the screen. We aren’t told what this light is but we get a sense of its intention. It’s off-putting and bizarre but not in a non-sensical way. Because of this, it feels both creepy and strangely understandable.

And just wait until the movie ramps up as it heads towards its climax. The levels of hysteria and insanity in Hereditary reach such a fever pitch that you start to feel as if you’re going mad. Considering the film is using its story as a metaphor for mental illness — particularly dementia — this is an appropriate escalation. And boy, it works too well. By the end of the film, it feels like you’ve woken up from a nightmare.

Characters You Cry For


hereditary family
The Graham family is not alright.

Honestly, the strongest part of Hereditary is its success in creating truly human characters. The Grahams feel achingly real. You’ve known these people and they are probably in your family. What’s great is that none of them are heroes or villains. They are just people. That means they have interesting qualities — Annie is an artist who makes miniature models — and believable flaws. There are moments of devastation and danger that will have you gasping for these people. That’s powerful.

And it bears repeating: the actors in this are at the top of their game. Toni Collette is doing work that most will pass off as pure histrionics. Those people would be missing how gut-wrenching her character’s perspective is during the film. Her reactions and fears come across at completely genuine. And young Alex Wolff has a difficult job in presented Peter as an apathetic teen whose relationship with his mother is more disturbing than we first know. Plus, young newcomer Milly Shapiro is the secret, sad heart of Hereditary and she demonstrates an emotional intelligence that few child actors ever reach.

The Nitpick

Okay, so there is one thing about Hereditary that doesn’t quite click but it’s not possible to talk about in depth without spoilers. So, in the interest of keeping this review spoiler-free, we’ll just say that Hereditary is very vague with its motives for most of the film. It’s towards the end that an explanation begins to take shape. And honestly, it feels somewhat out-of-place for the movie you’ve been watching.

It doesn’t sink the film at all but it does try and give a clear-cut reason for the supernatural shenanigans going on. The film works without this explanation and that’s a testament to its narrative strength. The ending actually makes things more confusing by trying to give a somewhat easier answer. It works but it’s not nearly as interesting as when things were kept unknown.

Is Hereditary Good?

Full of nightmarish imagery and emotional terror, Hereditary has the makings of a horror classic. There is true evil lurking inside this film. The acting is superb, the atmosphere is unsettling, and the tension is nigh unbearable. When it comes to making an unabashedly horrifying experience, writer/director Ari Aster has knocked it out of the park. See this immediately but don’t expect to sleep well that night.

The post ‘Hereditary’ Review: A Punishing Horror Film That Must Be Seen appeared first on FANDOM.

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Joshua Leonard on His Horror History, Terrifying Claire Foy in ‘Unsane’

Although actor Joshua Leonard has successfully avoided being labeled as “the horror guy” ever since bursting onto the genre scene in 1999’s The Blair Witch Project, that doesn’t mean he’s sworn off scares forever. Movies like The Town That Dreaded Sundown (2014) and Shark Night 3D kept a big toe dipped in terrifying waters, but his work as Steven Soderbergh’s nice-guy stalker “David Strine” in this year’s Unsane might be this former found footage victim’s most terrifying portrayal yet. Once an urban legend’s prey has now become the hunter, as Leonard’s lovestruck maniac finds himself at the center of Claire Foy’s incarceration nightmare. Sometimes it’s just fun to be bad — though, as you’ll read below, David is far from a lighthearted comic book antagonist.

FANDOM sat down with the performer and picked apart what it took to create David from scratch. As you can expect, Joshua Leonard “the man” is nothing like his on-screen representation in Unsane. This led to discussions about what classic movies were watched to inspire his wicked ways, what creepy art project may or may not have totally freaked Claire Foy out, and how it felt to be a joyous new father whose alter ego was as dark as La Brea’s tar pits. It certainly wasn’t an easy role to stomach, but who can say no to Steven Soderbergh?

FANDOM: In Unsane, you take a typical movie stalker role and make it your own. Were you inspired by any other films or societal occurrences throughout your preparation?

Leonard: When I first got offered the role — and rapidly accepted — I put a call out on social media for stalker film recommendations. I didn’t realize — until doing so — that there is an entire subgenre of stalker films. I don’t think I’d made that correlation in my mind. You start with Misery, then Fatal Attraction, Single White Female, Play Misty For Me, King Of Comedy. There were some others, too. Chuck And Buck — shout out to my dear friend Miguel Arteta for making one of the more epic, awkward indie stalker films.

I watched all of those and then – on a more serious note – talked to female friends of mine who had been the victims of stalking. It’s just a petrifying thing to have happen to you. A true violation of personal space and safety.

Then I spent a couple days cutting pictures of Claire Foy out of magazines and printing them out from the internet. I made a five foot by five-foot collage of [Foy’s character Sawyer Valentini] and David’s life together. That kind of really put me in the headspace.

FANDOM: Method acting is what they call that, I think?

Leonard: [Laughing] That was as method as I got on this one, luckily. It did help, and it was funny because I made this really upsetting, super creepy collage that I didn’t want my wife or our housekeeper to see so I kept hiding it.

FANDOM: Behind a drape or something?

Leonard: Oh yeah. Then I took a couple pictures on my phone and sent them to [Steven Soderbergh] just to say, “Doing a little character work. Hope you appreciate it.” He loved them and texted right back.

Unfortunately I forgot about them entirely until a week into production after a very long day of work. Claire and I were having a dinner bonding session after shooting all day. We were showing each other pictures of our babies on our phones and she scrolled right by one of those. I jumped for my phone…

FANDOM: Did it get a reaction?

Leonard: [Laughing] She said, “What the f–k is that?” I think I had her convinced I was a pretty decent guy by that point, but the picture of the collage that I made destroyed any such notion of that. To her credit, she proceeded to spend another ten minutes zooming in and staring at it, laughing hysterically. Then she made me send her copies of it.

FANDOM: So a happy ending.

Leonard: A happy ending, but it could have gone either way.


Unsane Joshua Leonard Claire Foy
Leonard takes mind games to the next level in ‘Unsane’

FANDOM: Did you know what you were getting into when you accepted the role of David? Did Steven Soderbergh prepare you for the darkness, or provoke more madness on set?

Leonard: I had read the script before I talked to him for the first time. Unsane is one of those projects where the movie we made was in the script.

[Steven Soderbergh] brought together such a wonderful, weird group of actors. Everybody brings something very special and specific to their own part, but in terms of the feel of the piece and the twists and turns and who the antagonist is, we used the script as a blueprint. I totally knew what I was getting into. I don’t mind playing bad guys. It can be a lot of fun. David was not necessarily a fun character to play because he’s not a fun villain. He’s a very sad villain.

FANDOM: Sadly somewhat more realistic, too.

Leonard: A guy with some real problems of his own and a real sense of empty loneliness who then takes that and really destroys other people’s lives with it. It’s not…

FANDOM: You’re not a Tarantino villain or something.

Leonard: Exactly. Or I’m not a Daniel Day-Lewis in Gangs Of New York — Bill the Butcher.

In our first conversation, I told [Steven Soderbergh] that he’d been a hero of mine for 20+ years. I said I would come out and played a chair in his film if he wanted me to – but I’d never played a role like David. I was curious what he saw in me because the script came in as a straight offer. I wanted to know what the qualities were that he thought that I could bring to David specifically that would help him tell his story.

He said it was more a sense of earnestness and the fact that I wasn’t inherently threatening that interested him. In terms of what I worked on when I got on set, I just did the best I could. It’s a film. Some of it’s really heightened, some of it could happen and some of it probably wouldn’t – but in terms of the character work itself, I just tried to keep it as rooted in David’s brokenness as possible as opposed to going outside of that and making him scarier.

FANDOM: Let’s dive into the filmmaking style a bit. How strange was it not to see these giant camera rigs on set because Steven Soderbergh is using cellphones the whole time?

Leonard: For me it was really exciting. I’ve kept a toe in the indie world long enough that I’ve had some cool opportunities to do some big, behemoth productions, but I think the truly unique experience on Unsane that I didn’t even anticipate going in was the fact that we’re so used to iPhones in our lives that they become really easy to forget. That there’s even a camera there.

FANDOM: You just see people on their iPhones.

Joshua Leonard: It’s an omnipresent piece of technology. The iPhone itself doesn’t feel threatening or sacred so I think it gave us a lot more room to play and be in these rooms with each other. You almost forget that you’re making a movie sometimes.

FANDOM: From an audience perspective, framing was a lot wider. Bigger spaces in focus. Rooms were captured in their full view. Someone would enter all the way on one side and have to walk across the whole area in a static hold where you eliminate the tracking of characters.

Leonard: There’s still certain limitations to shooting on the iPhone that I think will be worked out within the next couple years. You’re capturing in 4K native so you’re capturing a very high quality image, but in terms of focus pulling it’s still very tricky. Because of the chip size you’ve still got this huge depth of field on the cameras where everything’s in focus so [Steven Soderbergh] — being a master filmmaker — understood the medium that we were shooting on. He organized the aesthetic of the film around these kind of tableaus where we could walk in and the scene could play out. When he would move the camera it was so fast.

That’s the other thing about shooting on an iPhone and shooting with almost entirely natural light – you’re never waiting between setups. On a traditional movie you’d shoot half a scene then walk away. Maybe grab a burrito? An hour and a half later you come back to shoot the other side of the scene – yet in the case of Unsane, it would sometimes be two minute turnovers. He would just literally take the phone, put it on the other side of the room and go, “Okay. Let’s go.” You move so fast and that also helps to mitigate any self-consciousness that can build.

So for those who might balk at the idea of filming cinema-quality projects on a smartphone, what immediate benefit would you use to convince them otherwise?

Leonard: Speed and price.

FANDOM: Do you think Unsane would have been made without the benefit of smartphone cost savings? Does Unsane then become a harder sell?

Leonard: I think if Steven Soderbergh wants to make a thriller, Steven Soderbergh can make a thriller. He just finished another film that he shot on an iPhone.

FANDOM: So much for his short-lived retirement plans.

Leonard: He was wrapping his film the day before our Unsane premiere, and we just shot this one a little over six months ago. The man is prolific. He’ll put normal humans to shame.

FANDOM: He might have even written Logan Lucky, if rumors are true.

Leonard: [Smirks] He might have.

FANDOM: I can only imagine how many pseudonyms he has at this point.

Leonard: I know of three and I’ve only worked with the guy once. I’m guessing there are some more out there that I don’t know about. I’m not even in the inside circle.

FANDOM: I question the crew size on every Soderbergh movie now.

Leonard: “It’s a funny thing about that actor, Josh Leonard. Not really Josh Leonard. Josh Leonard is just Soderbergh’s pseudonym for his acting.”


Joshua Leonard Blair Witch Project
‘The Blair Witch Project’ kicked off the found footage movie craze.

FANDOM: I wanted to bring up your role in The Blair Witch Project, next. Even though Unsane is a narrative film, were there similarities to shooting a found footage movie versus something on the iPhone? Is it still that guerrilla-style even in traditional formatting?

Leonard: The direct line I would draw between The Blair Witch Project and Unsane is that we were trying to do something that there wasn’t much of a set precedent for. In both cases, the budgets were low enough that creators had total autonomy over their own projects. These filmmakers lived, died and created on their own instincts, under the set of constraints that they had. On The Blair Witch Project, our biggest constraint was that none of us had two nickels to rub together. On Unsane it was that [Steven Soderbergh] chose to use the iPhone and – I believe – used his own money. He was going to make damn sure the project didn’t inflate.

FANDOM: It feels like a natural evolution in cinematic experimentation.

Leonard: Both were experiments. Both had real chances of falling flat on their faces. If they had, not many people would be the wiser but you and I wouldn’t be sitting here talking about them now. Or many other found footage films to this date.

FANDOM: I want to bring up your acting choices because after The Blair Witch Project, you could have become “the horror guy” — but you didn’t. Was that a conscious path or one based on opportunity?

Leonard: A little bit of Column A, a little bit of Column B. Sometimes when you work in a freelance profession, the choices you make are based on the opportunities in front of you while others are made because you need the rent to be paid. There’s certainly a lot of stuff that I’ve chosen not to do over the years. I just think what keeps me interested does not necessarily translate into good branding. Such is the path that I’ve chosen for myself.

FANDOM: I bet you didn’t have a crisis of conscience when Steven Soderbergh asked you to be in his film.

Leonard: I’ll say anecdotally that when I got the call from Carmen Cuba, who’s a friend of mine and [Steven Soderbergh’s] longtime casting director, the project was so top secret that in the first phone call she didn’t even want to tell me that he was making the movie. She said, “I’ve got this indie thriller that’s being shot on an iPhone with a really cool group of people,” but I had an eight-month-old baby at the time. It felt like if I came to my wife and said, “I’m going to go three thousand miles away to make a film for two dollars shot on an iPhone,” that I would have come back with one less testicle.

FANDOM: The leash would tighten, alright.

Leonard: So I said, “I would love to, but with a new kid it’s just not a good time to go do a little movie on the East coast.” She said, “You should at least talk to the director.” I was like, “Come on. You know the director’s just going to convince me to do it. I don’t even want to.” And she said, “It’s Steven Soderbergh.” I was like, “Okay. You’ve convinced me. When do I show up? Fuck the baby.”

FANDOM: So next to Soderbergh, if you had your choice of a filmmaker to work with, who would it be? Who haven’t you worked with that you’re dying to?

Leonard: Robert Altman, but that’s not going to happen.

FANDOM: Nope. That you *can* work with. Let’s caveat that.

Leonard: That I can work with? There’s so many out there. What’s the guy’s name who did Rust And Bone and A Prophet? Jacques Audiard — I think he’s spectacular. I also think Jeremy Saulnier is one of my favorites out there right now. He’s next level.

The post Joshua Leonard on His Horror History, Terrifying Claire Foy in ‘Unsane’ appeared first on FANDOM.

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‘The Endless’ Is One Wild, Trippy UFO Sex Cult Horror Movie

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The Endless is, in one sense, about a crazy UFO sex cult situated in rural California. It’s also, however, a rumination on rebellion, the cyclicality of life, and the dangers of becoming trapped in corrosive, repetitive patterns of thought and behavior. Moreover, it functions as an intricate portrait of the ties that bind siblings, and the way those familial bonds can both hold us back—from finding ourselves, and a place in this world that we can call home—and set us free.

And it also features a demon god that may or may not be malevolent.

Suffice it to say, The Endless (in theaters April 6) isn’t your run-of-the-mill scary film. However, it is most definitely recognizable as a work by writers/directors Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson, whose prior collaborations—2012’s Resolution and 2015’s Spring—similarly mashed up genres in ways that were unexpected and exhilarating.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The 3 Best Horror Homages in ‘Ready Player One’

Ready Player One is filled with movie references, featuring stone-cold classics like Back to the Future, Jurassic Park, and Saturday Night Fever. Alongside the blockbusters however, horror films also play a surprisingly prominent role in proceedings. Even though Ernest Cline — writer of the book and co-writer of the screenplay — isn’t a horror guy.

“That’s the one weak spot in my ’80s knowledge,” he told FANDOM during the film’s London junket. “I’m like Aech in the film; I didn’t like scary movies. I would force myself to watch the ones I felt I had to. Usually, science-fiction horror was what I would be familiar with, like The Thing or Aliens.”

In spite of Cline’s aversion to the genre, multiple horror Easter Eggs made it into the movie. With the following FANDOM’s favourites.

Though one is a MASSIVE SPOILER. So click away now if you haven’t watched the film yet.

Alien


The Alien chestburster.

Following Wade Watts’ triumph in the street race quest, his avatar Parzival becomes something of a celebrity in the OASIS, with fans clamouring for selfies and autographs as Blondie’s One Way or Another plays on the soundtrack.

A man approaches Parzival and takes him to a room around the corner, away from the crowd. Where an alien promptly bursts out of said bloke’s chest. In homage to the iconic chestburster scene in Alien. Though while the sequence kicks off scary, it’s then played for laughs, with the now chest-free fellow revealing himself to be Art3mis in disguise.

The Shining


The Shining twins.

We’ve already covered how and why changes have been made to the quests in the movie version of Ready Player One. With the biggest departure being our heroes having to survive the events of The Shining for quest two. Meaning they encounter the creepy twins. Get taken out by that ocean of blood. And confront the horrors of Room 237.

Cline says the inclusion of the film was largely director Steven Spielberg’s idea. “We made a list of ’80s films, and Stanley Kubrick only made one or two movies in the ’80s,” he explained. “When Steven saw The Shining on our list, he immediately started to geek out about the thought of recreating The Shining.”

Horror Icons

Our third choice is a bit of a cheat as it concerns multiple movies and characters. But they are making the briefest of cameos. And kind of fit into the same category. As Cline told FANDOM: “I would avoid Freddy, Jason and Chucky [when I was a kid]. But Freddy, Chucky and Jason are all in our movie.”

So if you’re paying close attention, particularly during the final battle, you’ll spy Krueger, Voorhees, and the doll from Child’s Play slashing their way through the crowds. Meaning three icons of 1980s horror are all in the mix.

Ready Player One is out now.

‘Ready Player One’: The Easter Eggs Even the Writer Couldn’t Find

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Movie News: Octavia Spencer Reuniting with ‘The Help’ Director for Horror Thriller

Movie News: Octavia Spencer Reuniting with 'The Help' Director for Horror Thriller

Ma: Octavia Spencer will star in Ma. She will be reuniting with director Tate Taylor on the film, which reportedly mixes horror with psychological thrills; the two previously worked together on The Help (above). Juliette Lewis and Luke Evans will costar; Jason Blum (Get Out) will produce. [Variety]

 

Leonardo Da Vinci: Back in August 2017, we heard that Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant, above) will star in and produce a movie about the legendary painter and scientist Leonardo da…

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How ‘Insidious’ Changed the Horror Movie Game

Horror has long been a more progressive genre than it’s been given credit for. It’s the genre that gave birth to both scream queens and final girls, after all, and one of the rare spaces where monstrous, “unlikable” women have been allowed to let loose instead of being hemmed in. It should be no surprise, then, that the Insidious franchise, which has just debuted its fourth installment The Last Key, is forging into territory that you won’t see anywhere else.

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20 Horror Movies to Scare You Senseless in 2018

Featuring killer sharks, killer zombies, killer nuns, killer ghosts, a killer wolf, killer parents and more, these are the 20 scary movies FANDOM is most excited about this year.

Mom and Dad

Release Date: US January 19, UK TBC


Selma Blair and Nicolas Cage in Mom and Dad.

This truly bonkers horror-comedy is a novel spin on the zombie sub-genre, with a mysterious psychosis hitting the parents of a small American town, convincing them to bump off their offspring. Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair star as a couple desperately trying to kill their kids, while the combination of hardcore violence and jet-black humour allows Cage to go FULL CAGE. If you want to know more, check out our Fantastic Fest review here.

Annihilation

Release Date: US and UK February 23

Writer-director Alex Garland’s follow-up to the brilliant Ex Machina is an adaptation of Jeff VanderMeer’s sci-fi novel of the same name. Natalie Portman is a biologist who enters a mysterious ecological disaster zone to save her husband, and judging from the trailer, it all goes horribly wrong. Weirdly, Annihilation will be released in American and Chinese cinemas in February, while it will stream on Netflix everywhere else.

The Meg

Release Date: US August 10, UK March 2


Jason Statham and Li Bing Bing behind-the-scenes on The Meg.

Here it is. The Jason Statham vs a giant prehistoric shark movie that you’ve been waiting for all your life. The plot sees Statham playing a former navy captain hired to rescue a team of scientists who have been trapped by the big fish. But let’s be honest — The Meg doesn’t need a story. Just lots of bloody Stath-on-shark action.

A Quiet Place

Release Date: US and UK April 6

Silence is golden in this high-concept horror about a family who — to avoid the evil entity that terrorises their farmhouse — has to remain silent, and therefore communicates with each other via sign language. As well as being a seriously tense affair, A Quiet Place also marks a couple of firsts for John Krasinski; the first time he’s acted opposite wife Emily Blunt, and the first time he’s directed her.

Ghost Stories

Release Date: US TBC, UK April 13

Based on the hit play of the same name, Ghost Stories is a terrifying horror anthology about endeavouring to debunk the supernatural. Andy Nyman — who both co-writes and co-directs alongside the League of Gentleman‘s Jeremy Dyson — plays a sceptic whose investigations into tales of the undead take a seriously nasty turn. Martin Freeman and Paul Whitehouse co-star.

Slender Man

Release Date: US and UK May 18

The Internet meme which became a cultural phenomenon now gets its own feature film. Slender Man is a mysterious, tall, thin, featureless figure who wears a dark suit and has unnaturally long arms. And that’s about it in terms of back-story, with this new movie filling in the blanks via a plot that concerns high school girls performing a ritual to debunk the myth, then discovering it to be real. If you want to find out more about Slender Man, check out our ‘Quick Guide’ here.

The Nun

Release Date: US July 13, UK August 10

The ‘Conjuring Shared Universe’ continues to expand. We’ve already had a pair of Conjuring movies and a couple of Annabelles. And this summer sees the release of Conjuring 2 spin-off The Nun. This one journeys back to 1952 and revolves around the mysterious death of the title character. Corin Hardy — whose last film was the visually arresting The Hallow — directs, while Taissa Farmiga stars.

The Little Stranger

Release Date: US August 31, UK TBC


Early still from The Little Stranger.

Lenny Abrahamson — the director of Room — helms this supernatural chiller set in 1947. Last Jedi star Domhnall Gleeson plays a doctor asked to visit a patient at Hundreds Hall, a country pile where his mother once worked as a housemaid. But it soon becomes clear that the good doctor is treating less a sickness, and more a haunting.

Slaughterhouse Rulez

Release Date: US TBC, UK September 7


Pegg and Frost, back in their Shaun of the Dead days.

Shaun of the Dead stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost re-team for this tale of a British boarding school that becomes a bloody battleground when a mysterious sinkhole appears, unleashing what the official synopsis calls “unspeakable horror.” Michael Sheen co-stars, while Crispian Mills directs.

The House With a Clock in Its Walls

Release Date: US September 21, UK October 19


The original ‘House’ novel.

Hostel helmer Eli Roth has made a horror movie for kids! The House With a Clock in Its Walls is based on the bestselling book of the same name by John Bellair, and stars Cate Blanchett and Jack Black. The story concerns a 10-year-old orphan sent to live with his uncle, who just happens to be a warlock. Living next to a good witch. All of whom end up trying to stop black magic from destroying the world.

Halloween

Release Date: US and UK October 19


Michael Myers with Jamie Lee Curtis.

Pretty much the biggest horror release of the year, the new Halloween will be a direct sequel to the original, with Jamie Lee Curtis again playing Laurie, and Nick Castle returning as her masked assailant, Michael Myers. The film is about to shoot in South Carolina, with David Gordon Green directing a script that he has written with Danny McBride. And John Carpenter is crafting a brand-new and soon-to-be-iconic score for the flick.

Ravenous

Release Date: US and UK TBC


Marc-Andre Grondin in Ravenous.

Also known as Les AffamésRavenous is yet another zombie flick, though this French-Canadian effort is a little more cerebral. On the surface, the film revolves around the residents of a small town in rural Quebec dealing with the return of the dead. But there’s much more to Robin Aubert’s satire, the zombies seeming to form their own society and culture, and the film dealing with the threat that group thought and mob mentality pose to minorities and the individual.

The Endless

Release Date: US and UK TBC

Justin Benson and Arron Moorehead — the dynamic duo behind indie horror hits Revolution and Spring — make it three-for-three with their latest effort The Endless. And they star in this one too, playing a pair of brothers who return to the cult they escaped from as kids, only to discover that they might have been wrong about their former family. As it’s these guys, expect a thoughtful horror flick, combined with a few twists and turns.

Possum

Release Date: US and UK TBC


Sean Harris in Possum.

Writer-director Matthew Holness (Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace) cites Martin, Dead of Night, Don’t Look Now and The Innocents as influences on Possum, so we’re expecting great things. The always terrifying Sean Harris plays a disgraced puppeteer who returns to his childhood home to confront a cruel stepfather and face the traumas of his past. Possum meanwhile, is the hideous hand-puppet who joins him on his journey of self-discovery.

Mandy

Release Date: UK and US TBC


More Nic Cage.

Another Nic Cage horror, though this one sounds a bit more serious. Panos Cosmatos — of Beyond the Black Rainbow fame — writes and directs, with the film set in 1983, and starring Cage as “a broken and haunted man who hunts the religious sect that slaughtered the love of his life.” The brilliant Andrea Riseborough co-stars.

Lords of Chaos

Release Date: UK and UK TBC


Lords of Chaos debuts at Sundance later this month.

Jonas Åkerlund (Spun) co-writes and directs this tale of Norwegian black metal pioneers Mayhem, a story that features violent stage performances, churches being burnt down, and murder. Rory Culkin plays guitarist Øystein Aarseth, who co-founded the band and was a major player in the black metal scene until he was stabbed to death by musician Varg Vikernes (Emory Cohen) in 1993.

The Cured

Release Date: US and UK TBC

More zombies! Set in Ireland soon after a virus has wiped out much of the human race, The Cured examines that aftermath, as mankind struggles to rebuild. Survivors deal with PTSD as they struggle to come to terms with their violent actions against the walking dead, while the rise of a terrorist movement threatens yet more conflict. Ellen Page both produces and stars.

Suspiria

Release Date: US and UK TBC


Suspiria teaser poster.

Dario Argento’s Suspiria is one of the greatest horror movies of all-time, so Luca Guadagino (I Am Love, A Bigger Splash) is a brave man endeavouring to remake the tale of strange goings-on at a dance academy. But he’s assembled a top-notch cast in the shape of Tilda Swinton, Dakota Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz and Mia Goth. And Swinton has recently gone on record to say that this new version — which is set in Berlin in 1977 — will be a completely different movie.

Hold the Dark

Release Date: US and UK TBC


The book on which Hold the Dark is based.

Blue Ruin and Green Room collaborators Jeremy Saulnier and Macon Blair re-team for this thriller about a rogue wolf terrorising an Alaskan village. Based on a 2014 novel by William Giraldi, the film shot in Alberta, Canada, with a cast that features Alexander Skarsgård, Jeffrey Wright, James Badge Dale and Riley Keough. Hold the Dark hits Netflix sometime this year.

Overlord

Release Date: US and UK October 26


Might Overlord feature an early appearance by the Cloverfield monster?

In April we’ve got the third film from the ‘Cloverfield Shared Universe‘ in the shape of God Particle. Then in October — if the rumours are correct — we’ll get a fourth in the shape of Overlord. Produced by Bad Robot and J.J. Abrams, the film is set during WWII and concerns two American paratroopers shot down over Normandy and discovering that the Nazis are using supernatural forces against the Allies. Cloverfield or not, it sounds awesome.

The Most Anticipated Movies of 2018

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Inside Ocho Tijax: Meet the Women in Guatemala Offering Support in the Face of Horror

Five friends were watching the horror on the news from their homes on March 8. A shelter was going up in flames with girls inside. Stephany Arreaga picked up the phone and called her mom. “Are you seeing this?” she asked. “What can we do?”

“Let’s go down there,” Mayra Jimenez suggested. And so, Arreaga and Jimenez gathered their friends—Maria del Carmen Peña, Hane Herrera and Kimy De León—and went to help.

Until this moment, these women weren’t really activists: They were a graphic designer, a journalist, a sociologist, a dentist and a photographer making the nearly hour-long drive to Hogar Seguro Virgen de la Asunción, just outside Guatemala City.

By the time they arrived, emergency workers were bringing out survivors and bodies.

The women started to help by meeting the families as they arrived and going with them to the hospital or to the morgue. “I knew, at that moment, that people were suffering and that I could be useful, somehow, for those families,” Jimenez told Ms. “But in relation to the girls, it was a tremendous feeling of pain and love; it was wanting to be with them in their final moments, even knowing that they were dying one by one.”

By the time it was all over, 41 girls were dead, and 15 were severely burned.

The girls were in shelter because they had been reported missing at some point—running away from abuse, kidnapped, trafficked. They were not criminals. They were there to be protected as the government sorted out a safe space for them to go. But at the shelter, they were mistreated. They were physically and sexually abused, medicated against their will, forced to undergo abortions and fed spoiled food. Some were even trafficked again.

Things weren’t much better at the boys shelter. The children tried to escape, but the national police were waiting. Rather than help these vulnerable children, Guatemala’s President Jimmy Morales and other government officials abdicated responsibility and turned them over to the police. The boys were locked in an auditorium; the girls in a small 22’-by-23’ room with a few mattresses but no blankets.

When the girls begged to be allowed to go to the bathroom, the police refused. They built a makeshift bathroom using the mattresses that had been left on the floor to create some small place of privacy. Quickly, however, the area overflowed, and the stench became unbearable. Again, the girls begged to be released. They refused the food the police brought because they suspected their food at the shelter had been drugged to make them compliant for abuse and trafficking.

Finally, with no other apparent options, officials think some of the girls moved a mattress near a window and set it on fire, believing the police would respond to the smoke and let them out. Instead, the police kept them locked in the room as it burned.

As the five friends accompanied the families of the victims through the medical and legal processes, they quickly realized that the Guatemalan government was taking little responsibility for assisting the survivors or the families or seeking justice by identifying and prosecuting perpetrators—and that they needed a longer-term strategy to address the atrocities of the fire and its aftermath.

They founded Ocho Tijax, an organization to accompany families, support survivors and seek justice—a “collective of love that is born in the midst of pain.”

The author with members of Ocho Tijax.

“Love is the purest emotion, and the one that has sustained me for more than six months working alongside these families and girls,” Arreaga told Ms. “At the moment of the tragedy, my first instinct was that of providing protection, as a woman and a mother. Offering my solidarity from afar, to the families and the survivors, was not going to be enough. There was so much need and zero government support. This is still the case today.”

Ocho Tijax currently coordinates with lawyers from the Human Rights Law Firm to provide legal aid for four survivors and their families, as well as for the families of eight victims of the fire. They provide counseling for the families of these 12 girls and facilitate counseling and physical and emotional healing therapy for the four survivors in coordination with “Camino de Sol” and a psychologist from the Human Rights Law Firm. They also create media campaigns to dignify the memory and lives of the 56 victims with the assistance of Prensa Comunitaria.

As the cases move through Guatemala’s legal system, they offer support and accompaniment during the hearings and trials of the Hogar Seguro case, provide financial aid to cover transportation and other costs for the families, facilitate testimonies to serve as evidence for the Public Prosecutor’s office and help the survivors and family members understand and navigate the complexities of the legal case and their search for justice.

“These women are true heroes,” Rob Mercatante, co-director of the Human Rights Defenders Project in Guatemala, an organization that provides support for human rights activists, said of Ocho Tijax. “When they became aware of the fire, instead of posting about it on social media, they went to the scene of the tragedy. They were present with the grieving families during moments of unimaginable loss and suffering. They provided loving support—to these complete strangers—in the hospitals, the morgues, and the funeral parlors. But it didn’t end there. These courageous women continue to stand in solidarity with the young girls who survived the massacre and the families of those who didn’t make it out alive.”

One of the survivors, Cynthia, was only 14 years old at the time of the fire. Over 60 percent of her body was burned. She was in a coma for months, and she had to undergo multiple surgeries to address the physical damage from the fire. Now, she hopes for the quinceañera celebration many Latin American girls experience to mark their coming of age—and since her family can’t afford the traditional party, the women of Ocho Tijax are raising funds for her celebration.

Ocho Tijax is still devoted to the legal battles ahead. “Their next challenge is to bring to justice those government officials responsible for this horrific crime,” Mercatante said. “This is a very dangerous endeavor, as seeking truth and justice in Guatemala is a high-risk activity… especially when those implicated are high-ranking government officials, including the president of the country.”

Mercatante, however, has faith. “The women of Ocho Tijax,” he declared, “are the very definition of selfless courage.”

 

Susan M. Shaw, Ph.D., is a Professor of Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Oregon State University.

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American Horror Story Characters Ranked: From Cult Leaders to Coven Members & Everything in Between

American Horror Story SplitsOver the course of seven installments, American Horror Story has introduced the world to all manner of crazy characters, from witches to vampires to insane cult leaders and everything else in…

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‘Thelma’ Review: Psychic-Female Horror Movie Can’t Make Up Its Mind

In terms of opening scenes, Thelma – Norwegian director's Joachim Trier's toe-dip into horror, albeit one burdened with footnotes – kicks things off with a doozy. A girl and her dad (Henrik Rafaelsen) are walking across a frozen lake. She keeps peering under the ice at the fishes swimming below, a slightly distressed look on her face; he doesn't seem so carefree either, for that matter.

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: ‘Thelma’ Review: Psychic-Female Horror Movie Can’t Make Up Its Mind

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Movie News: ‘Truth or Dare’ Horror Thriller Set for 2018

Movie News: 'Truth or Dare' Horror Thriller Set for 2018

Truth or Dare: Supernatural thriller Truth of Dare has now been set for theatrical release on April 27, 2018. Lucy Hale (Scream 4, above) and Tyler Posey star in the movie, which follows what happens when friends playing what should be a harmless game suffer deadly consequences for telling a lie or refusing a dare. Jeff Wadlow (Kick-Ass 2) directed; Jason Blum (Get Out; Happy Death Day) produced. [Coming Soon]

 

Let Her Speak: Sandra Bullock, who starred as a political…

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Pharrell & ‘Girls Trip’ Writer To Produce Horror Film Together

Musician and fashion icon Pharrell Williams is joining forces with Tracy Oliver the writer of the hilarious Girls Trip are bringing an adaption of the YA book Survive The Night to the big screen.

According to the Hollywood Reporter,  Warner Bros. got on board with the film right away. Oliver will write the script and direct while Williams will produce the film alongside Mimi Valdes his partner at I Am Other Entertainment.

The two worked together on the sensational film Hidden Figures which told the story of three amazing Black women essential to the NASA in the 1960’s.

The films about a group of college girls who get trapped inside an underground warehouse festival on Halloween. They have to survive the night, pun intended, from an attacker who tries to hunt them down in the night.

Williams, Valdes, and Oliver are very familiar with each other as they worked together on the on the YouTube show Awkward Black Girl that starred Issa Rae.

Oliver is no stranger to directing as she totes a short film under her belt that featured R&B singer Jhene Aiko.

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(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)


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Not-So American Horror Story: How Italian Horror Is Responsible For Your Favourite Dark Fashion Looks

Horror is enjoying a catwalk Renaissance — but we have to look beyond Hollywood to find the root of horror movies’ sartorial appeal.

The post Not-So American Horror Story: How Italian Horror Is Responsible For Your Favourite Dark Fashion Looks appeared first on sleek mag.

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‘American Horror Story’ Inspired Australian Woman to Kill Her Grandfather

An Australian woman who has been accused of stabbing her grandfather and then letting him bleed to death in his kitchen as she washed the dishes claims that American Horror Story inspired her to commit the crime.

At a pre-trial hearing Wednesday, Brittany Jane Dwyer's attorney said that the hit TV series is to blame for his young client's horrific act, which took place in August

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: ‘American Horror Story’ Inspired Australian Woman to Kill Her Grandfather

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‘The New Mutants’ Will Kick Off an ‘X-Men’ Horror Trilogy With Practical Effects

'The New Mutants' Will Kick Off an 'X-Men' Horror Trilogy With Practical Effects

Last week we got our first look at The New Mutants with a trailer showcasing the X-Men spin-off as a full-fledged horror movie. Around the same time, cowriter/director Josh Boone shared some additional info about the teen superhero movie with IGN, including the fact that he's planning a trilogy. Here's what we learned from the interview: 

Will the New Mutants trilogy continue the horror elements?

Yes, this was always pitched as a horror trilogy…

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‘Happy Death Day’ Cast Competes in Horror Movie Trivia

Happy Death Day opens in theaters today. The cast — Jessica Rothe, Ruby Modine, and Israel Broussard — along with director Christopher B. Landon recently visited FANDOM, where we tested their horror movie chops.

We thought Landon would win this easily; he’s a horror movie buff and written/directed numerous horror films including multiple Paranormal Activity sequels.

We threw them a couple softballs before getting into some more obscure movie trivia. You might be surprised to see who took this one in the end.

What’s also evident in our cast interview is just how well they get along, which is also apparent in the film. Happy Death Day has an interesting plot. The main character, Tree (La La Land’s Rothe) gets murdered by a masked killer on her birthday (hence the title). But after she “dies,” her birthday — and her death day — resets, and she gets killed again.

You can learn more about what makes Happy Death Day unique from other slasher flicks here, and read our review of the new horror film here.

And if you like quizzes yourself, take this FANDOM quiz here to see what horror film you’d find yourself in.

QUIZ: Which 2017 Horror Movie Are You Living In?

The post ‘Happy Death Day’ Cast Competes in Horror Movie Trivia appeared first on Fandom powered by Wikia.

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Ryan Murphy Says American Horror Story: Cult Mass Shooting Scene Edited After Las Vegas Tragedy

American Horror Story: CultApparently some things are too graphic for Ryan Murphy…
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Ryan Murphy Says American Horror Story: Cult Mass Shooting Scene Edited After Las Vegas Tragedy

American Horror Story: CultApparently some things are too graphic for Ryan Murphy…
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The Last Horror Blog: ‘It’ Sequel,’ ‘Found Footage 3D,’ ‘The Ritual’ and More

The Last Horror Blog: 'It' Sequel,' 'Found Footage 3D,' 'The Ritual' and More

It sequel locks down a release date – New Line’s adaptation of Stephen King’s It is still kicking all kinds of butt at the box office, but many of us have been wondering when we’ll actually get to see the second film in the series. Well, wonder no more.

Mark your calendars for September 6, 2019 – because that’s the date when the Losers Club reunites to do battle with Pennywise the Dancing Clown with the hopes of ending his reign of terror once and for…

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Review: Slick and Entertaining, It Can’t Match the Horror of Stephen King’s Classic

The best or at least the most memorable movie adaptations of Stephen King novels—like Carrie or The Shining—create a vivid universe unto themselves while channeling King’s fearlessness in exploring the dark side of human nature. King’s novels, with their seemingly infinite layers of detail and meandering, entertaining asides, are difficult to adapt. But whatever you do, locking into King’s tone is essential. For all his willingness to stare down the darkest horrors and put them on the page, he’s also blazingly sympathetic to human insecurities and flaws. He doesn’t just show us a bunch of scary stuff. He challenges us to confront why we find that stuff scary in the first place.

Director Andy Muschietti’s It, adapted from King’s disquieting 1986 epic of the same name, doesn’t cut very deep and isn’t very scary. At its best, it’s a sometimes-entertaining evocation of the way kids think and talk within their little cliques, and of the way they protect one another with fierce loyalty. Rob Reiner’s 1986 Stand By Me is the obvious comparison point. It’s the end of the 1988 school year in the small Maine town of Derry, and a bunch of the nerdier, less-popular kids are looking forward to a summer of being picked on by the town bullies. There’s asthmatic mother’s boy Eddie Kaspbrak (Jack Dylan Grazer), gangly Jewish kid Stanley Uris (Wyatt Olef), whose religion puts him in the minority in small-town Maine, and wiseguy comedian Richie Tozier (Finn Wolfhard). Bill Denbrough (Jaeden Lieberher) is one of the quieter, more thoughtful members of the gang; he has a stutter he can’t control, and he’s still reeling from a recent family tragedy. His six-year-old brother, Georgie (Jackson Robert Scott), disappeared earlier in the year—the event is dramatized with chilling precision in the movie’s opening sequence.

The boys’ chief nemesis is teenage bad apple Henry Bowers (Nicholas Hamilton), and he’s not your average harmless misguided delinquent. At one point he attempts to carve his name into the stomach of another local kid, Ben Hanscom (Jeremy Ray Taylor). Ben is saved by Bill and the others, and two more kids end up joining the group: Mike (Chosen Jacobs) lives on a nearby sheep farm, where his chores include some of the more challenging work farmers need to do. He is also black, and so, like Stan, he’s another small-town Maine rarity. Beverly (Sophia Lillis), the only girl in the group, is slightly older, and she’s living a secret nightmare life at home. At school, she’s been branded “fast,” though there’s no truth to that accusation. She’s just a smart, considerate girl who tends to keep to herself.

Muschietti, who directed the effective 2013 horror thriller Mama, starring Jessica Chastain, does a fine job of sketching each of these kids as individuals, a challenge that even more experienced directors sometimes fail to meet. The problem is that the plot escalates in its ridiculousness, and Muschietti can’t control it. The kids learn that their town is in the grip of an evil force—the It of the title—who emerges every 27 years to feast on the locals, particularly the children. This It generally takes the form of Pennywise (played by Bill Skarsgård), an old-school circus clown with menacing eyes who lives in the town’s sewers and whose presence is sometimes announced by an ominous, free-floating red balloon.

Once the kids realize what It is up to, they want to stop It once and for all. Pennywise is one scary clown, a creature with red greasepaint stripes that trail from his eyes to his leering lips like bloody tears. The first time you see him—in the movie’s genuinely unnerving but also poetic opening, which hews closely to King’s beautifully written first chapter—he’s so scary you wonder if you might be in for a masterpiece. But by the tenth or twelfth—or perhaps twentieth?—time he shows up, the novelty has worn off. Muschietti relies too much on your garden-variety jump scares and now-standard special effects, things like ghoulish limbs twisting every which-way and innocent figures shape-shifting into malevolent ones. As always, the horrors you get a close look at are much less terrifying than those that remain unseen.

And that’s the chief problem with adapting any Stephen King novel: Nothing ever looks as scary on-screen as it does in our minds, when we’re sitting alone with a book. With It, seeing isn’t the same as believing.


Entertainment – TIME

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Irma Survivors Describe ‘Horror Movie’ as Deadly Monster Storm Heads for the U.S.

The survivors spoke of vehicles being tossed through the air; of roofs being sucked clean off buildings; of clinging to their bathroom doors as the winds threatened to drag them out of their homes.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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‘IT’ Review: An Epic Horror Film That Will Scare a Generation

In 1989, seven young teenagers come together to defeat an ancient evil entity that lurks beneath their small town. The monster takes many forms but prefers to appear as an eerie clown called Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård). After Pennywise claims the life of young Georgie Denbrough (Jackson Robert Scott), his older brother Bill (Jaeden Lieberher) gathers his friends and goes hunting for the monster they call IT.

Horror Treated Right


it movie pennywise stephen king andy muschietti director
Director Andy Muschietti (Mama) does Stephen King’s book justice.

Stephen King’s IT is an epic tome that treats the horror genre with reverence and respect. It’s only fitting that a big screen adaptation of the book should do the same. And by every measure, IT does exactly that.

Director Andy Muschietti approaches the material as if he’s making the Lord of the Rings of horror movies. Elements of dark fantasy and perilous adventure are ever-present and that elevates IT into something much more than your usual horror movie. This isn’t a typical date night spookfest; IT utilizes jump scares effectively but sparingly, choosing instead to hone in on terrifying imagery and oppressive atmosphere.

And that imagery is HARSH.

Unflinching Violence


it pennywise stephen king clips feature
The infamous storm drain scene is going to give you nightmares.

The 1990 miniseries was handicapped by virtue of being a television movie, and it wasn’t able to accurately display the horrendous consequences of a monster who feeds on children. Muschietti’s film steps out of the gate with one of the most shocking scenes in modern horror history. And the film doesn’t let up; there are multiple moments of jaw-dropping violence and bone-chilling gruesomeness in regards to children in this film. That dedication to the gut-churning evil of the movie makes the terror feel so real. You get the feeling that anyone could be killed, and that makes every tense scene that much more nerve-racking.

Plus, it really helps when you have characters you love.

The Losers’ Club


it losers club
The Losers’ Club are going to be your new film friends.

And trust me, you are going to love the Losers’ Club. All seven kids get to act like real children instead of child actors, and that makes them feel like they stepped right out of some ’80s film. It’s not exaggerative to say these kids evoke the camaraderie felt in Stand By MeThe Goonies, or the recent IT-inspired Stranger Things. Admittedly, some of the members shine more than others, but that’s never so damning that it derails them as a cohesive unit. This is the first time in a while that kids have felt like genuine kids in a horror movie.

But what about their adversary, Pennywise?

The Next Freddy Krueger


it pennywise bill skarsgard
Bill Skarsgård has created a new horror icon.

Pennywise the Dancing Clown is one of the greatest villains in all of fiction. It’s the role that makes or breaks the entire story. Bill Skarsgård was a left-field choice for the role, but it was absolutely the right choice. Skarsgård has created a monster that will become the horror icon of an entire generation. There are clear inspirations from A Nightmare on Elm Street in the film — including a cute theater marquee nod — and it’s not hard to see Skarsgård as this generation’s Freddy Krueger.

Everything about Skarsgård is perfect; his vocal performance is bubbly and childlike but conceals a growling beast underneath, his body language feels spry and utterly inhuman, and his clear love of being evil bursts through at every possible moment. Much like Heath Ledger’s Joker or Anthony Hopkins’s Hannibal Lecter, Skarsgård’s Pennywise will become an immortal screen villain that will haunt us for ages to come.

Is IT Good?

No joke: IT is an all-timer. This is a film that has been given the A+ treatment and that shows in every frame. If this had been made in the 1980s, we’d be hailing it as a horror classic. The production, the performances, the visuals, the story, the horror, and everything else gels together into one of the best Stephen King movies ever made.

I’m actually worried about the eventual second part of the story because the bar has been set very, very high. If the studio bumps up the budget even more and lets Muschietti go truly wild, we could be looking at a duology of films that are game-changers for the horror genre. Bring it on.

The post ‘IT’ Review: An Epic Horror Film That Will Scare a Generation appeared first on Fandom powered by Wikia.

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Which ‘Annabelle: Creation’ Cast Members are Terrified of Horror Films?

Annabelle: Creation opens in theaters this weekend, with horror film fans lining up to learn the origin of the demon-possessed doll.

But just because the cast members star in a horror film doesn’t mean they enjoy watching them.

Take the adult actors, for example. Anthony LaPaglia and Miranda Otto play the Mullins, a married couple who are tormented by the demon. Neither is a fan of slasher films, which thankfully Annabelle is not (although the film “gets dark and monster crazy,” according to our FANDOM review).

Both Otto and Stephanie Sigman — who plays Sister Charlotte — physically retreat into their seats when watching horror. The young stars, however, love to be scared.

Talitha Bateman, who plays Janice, boasted, “I love horror movies. I’ve been watching them since I was little.” (Note: the talented young actress is just 15).

Lulu Wilson, who at age eleven has already starred in three horror films (Deliver Us From Evil, Ouija: Origin of Evil, and as Linda in Annabelle: Creation), is a genre pro. “I don’t really get scared,” the pre-teen stated.

However, Wilson did find the Annabelle doll scary, especially the scene where she had to shoot under the stairs in the Mullins’ home.

“It was just me and Annabelle. It was really creepy,” Wilson admitted. “The moment they called ‘cut’ I bolted out of there.”

For LaPaglia, the most terrifying scene was when his character confronts the demon with a crucifix. But the scare came in an unexpected way.

“There was no evil entity to act [opposite] to. My fear was ‘is this going to be too much. How big can you go with this?’ As it turned out, I did it and then I fell on the floor, and I split my pants,” the veteran actor explained with a laugh.”So that was the most terrifying thing about the whole thing, as I had no seat in my pants anymore.”

How do you watch horror films and will you be seeing the sequel? Annabelle Creation is in theaters now.

The ‘Annabelle: Creation’ Cast Found the Doll Creepy AF, Too

The post Which ‘Annabelle: Creation’ Cast Members are Terrified of Horror Films? appeared first on Fandom powered by Wikia.

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Why Google really fired that guy, Newark’s Whole Foods horror & other comments

Security desk: Why US Kept Bluffing on NoKo Threats President Trump “has inherited a mess” on North Korea, largely caused by the failure of his three immediate predecessors to take out Pyongyang’s nuclear facilities when they had the chance, says Eli Lake at Bloomberg. Why the hesitation to strike? Because “the North has enough artillery…
Opinion | New York Post

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Watch New ‘It’ Trailer, Soaked in Dread and Horror

Watch New 'It' Trailer, Soaked in Dread and Horror

Back in 1986, Stephen King's massive fright novel It was a runaway bestseller. Just four years later, it was adapted for television as a popular miniseries that starred Tim Curry as a demonic entity that transforms itself into the murderous Pennywise the Clown.

A big-screen version has been under development since 2009. Cary Fukunaga (Beasts of No Nation, True Detective) was attached to direct in 2012, with the idea that the story would be divided into two installments covering past…

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Watch Terrifying, Clown-Filled ‘American Horror Story: Cult’ Teaser

A horde of creepy clowns implores you to join their clan in the terrifying first teaser for American Horror Story: Cult, the latest chapter in FX's horror anthology series.

The promo features a young woman besieged by a bald, sad-faced, similarly dressed clowns, which calls back to the murderous

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: Watch Terrifying, Clown-Filled ‘American Horror Story: Cult’ Teaser

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Horror Stories from the Grossest Apartments We Ever Lived In

Twenty-somethings are repulsive.

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Horror and Horizons: Five Stories of Horror, Science Fiction, and the Supernatural

Horror and Horizons: Five Stories of Horror, Science Fiction, and the Supernatural


Buy five short stories for the price of three!A variety pack of short stories from S.E. Lee spanning a range of moods and genres from horror, literary fiction, to science fiction and the supernatural: a teen’s disgruntled bunker tale. A lost Roman legion in space revealed. Fate and three women, a cursed inheritance and two men. and seeking justice after death. Stories Included: One Last Look – Why did Johnny have to have a paranoid freak for a dad? While other kidsplay video games, Johnny is helping his dad build a bunker that no one’s ever going to need. until the day they do.A short story YA dystopia at a moment of crisis. The City in the Desert – Two mech-suited Space Marines encounter hostile fire on what is supposed to be an uninhabited planet. Will they survive attacks, capture, and a death by gladiatorial combat sentence, or will they disappear without a trace, and doom their shipmates, if not their entire civilization, to a certain death as well?A military science fiction adventure short story featuring a gladiatorial combat scene with mech suits. Fray – When lives unravel, who pays the price?Three women share their work, their lives, and their silence: the burden of power weighs heavy on them all.A literary fantasy short story. Spider-Cursed – Two cousins. One fortune. And one doesn’t want to share.A short supernatural thriller story. The Ghost Girl -When a ghost haunts the mountain getaway of a doctor recovering from a gunshot wound, he thinks he’s going crazy until he starts to dig deeper and finds the truth. Will he be able to find her body and the killer and bring the murderer to justice, or will the killer succeed in making the doctor the next victim?A short supernatural mystery story.

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Watch 52 Movies Literally Star In This Horror Movie Crossover

We’ve seen our fair share of crossover productions in cinema before, from the “Alien vs. Predator” franchise to “Marvel’s The Avengers” to just about anything featuring Jay and Silent Bob. But it isn’t very common that 52 movies come together in one.

The folks at Portal Party added the fifth episode to their “Movies Starring Movies” series, crafting a horror short just in time for Halloween. Starring literal movies (you’ll see), we watch as “The Good Girl” makes its way through a creepy forest and castle, filled with “The Wolfman,” “The Evil Dead” and “Bats,” all while “One Good Cop” does its best to combat these dreadful DVDs. Watch the clever video above.
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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‘American Horror Story: Coven’ Episode 11 Recap: Blood Ties

Note: Do not read on unless you’ve seen “American Horror Story: Coven,” Episode 11, titled “Protect The Coven.”

Sometimes when I settle in to watch “American Horror Story: Coven,” after the first few major developments of each episode, I feel like I’ve returned to the start of the show. It’s like I forgot to save a video game and I’m back several chapters and achievements, with all that time wasted. In other words, nothing that happens on “Coven” has any consequence; the words “dead,” “alive,” “magic,” and “witch” basically have no meaning. Queenie’s alive? OK. She was dead (at least gone for us) for quite some time. Kyle’s here! Where has he been? The Axeman? Ugh, you’re still here? You girls have what magic now? I can’t even keep track. Spalding?! Spalding’s … er … still dead, but alive in the attic?! Everything is just so nonsensical and convenient that it can be downright infuriating.

OK, whew, I had to get that out of the way. Now, if I look at tonight’s episode in a completely detached manner, I have to say I enjoyed it way more than last week’s mediocre midseason return. This week had gore (and plenty of it), scenes that were actually difficult to watch (some for a bad reason), and several great lines of dialogue. Approaching “Coven” as a series of insane vignettes is really the only way to do it justice. It simply cannot be judged as a normal TV show would. With that in mind…

Madame LaLaurie and her bloodlust are the obvious focus of this episode. Is she truly a monster? Yes, it turns out she is. This passive housemaid of the past few episodes is nothing like the LaLaurie we first met on “Coven,” when she was torturing her slaves and daughters down in the cellar. We flash back to 1830 and witness her moving to New Orleans from Paris, and see how her penchant for cutting off limbs and disemboweling living creatures has manifested. By cutting a head off a chicken (nice, cute touch: my thoughts immediately went to her head in the box), LaLaurie’s remorseless violence is unleashed. She finds an injured slave and, well, does what she does.

(This is a total aside, and probably best to discuss in a bigger forum, but two things really bothered me about the slave/gardener torture sequences in this episode. One, they were really gratuitous, and this is coming from a horror fan. Slave torture isn’t something I’m comfortable watching. Ever. And to draw it out, showing most of it, is tasteless. Which leads me to the second thing: in this particular climate, where the issue of slavery is very prominent in current pop culture, I’m having trouble understanding why Murphy & Co. are so blatantly displaying slavery torture. It’s almost like a slap in the face to the seriousness of it. Also, if you’ve recently watched “12 Years A Slave,” as I have, the torture scenes will be just unbearable in the context of a campy, oft-comedic show.)

Thank goodness there’s nothing but levity in between the gory bits, or else this would have been a really tough slog. Indeed, the greatest ability of “Coven” is to push you to the brink (i.e. – turning your head away from the screen) and then back again (i.e. – your face hurts from laughing at Angela Bassett’s latest remark). Even at Nan’s funeral, all the players get together and say goodbye at what’s supposed to be a grim occasion. Instead they barely care about Nan’s passing (Madison: “Have you met me?”), and Queenie interrupts whatever actual mourning is going on when she arrives with LaLaurie on a leash. Queenie has also somehow gotten LaLaurie’s head back on, which is a new power she seems to have attained, among others that we’re not aware of yet.

Back at Robichaux, LaLaurie is forced to return to her housemaid status. In one of my favourite scenes so far on “Coven,” we take a delightful romp through the house with LaLaurie as she takes care of each of the houseguests, cleaning, cooking and tidying. It’s fun to watch her deal with each character’s eccentricities and attitude, and then watch it come to a head when the poor gardener cuts his hand with shears. LaLaurie sees his bleeding, dripping hand and it all comes back to her: the torturing, slicing, the thirst for blood. She tells Cordelia that she’ll take care of the gardener, and proceeds to take him upstairs to Spalding’s doll room and basically mutilate him. Again, sorry, this scene I couldn’t watch.

When she looks up from her dirty work, there’s Spalding. Dead? Yep. Alive? Yep. I can’t tell you what’s going on with him. No idea. Regardless, he’s there, and he admires LaLaurie’s work, calling it “art.” Hmm, OK. In exchange for her retrieving him a rare doll from 1895, he tells her he’ll give her pills to make Marie mortal, so LaLaurie can kill her. When he busts out the Benadryl and LaLaurie couldn’t possibly know what the pills actually do, I thought Spalding was punishing her for her gruesome act. But no, he was just doing that so she’d get Marie out of the way. He knocks Marie out, she falls down the stairs, and advises LaLaurie to bury her. The cock of her eyebrow indicates that that’s probably exactly what she’s going to do.

Queenie has moved back into Robichaux, but you’d barely know it (where was she as Marie was being attacked by Spalding and LaLaurie?). After she tells off Cordelia in a very harsh way (and might I add, undeserved), she doesn’t appear again. I guess she’s on reserve for next week, when her random powers will come in handy. Straight-up, I hated Queenie in this episode. How does she have any reason to be angry at anybody? She abandoned the coven. Ugh, she’d better not be Supreme. Anyway, her vitriolic chat with Cordelia sends the headmistress over the edge. She takes a pair of gardening clippers to the eyes, re-blinding herself so she can regain her second sight. For future reference, Cordelia, there has to be a better way — couldn’t you just ask one of the other witches to put you into a deep sleep and do it humanely? Geez.

In another part of town, Delphi is pissed. Hank’s father is certain the witches are behind his company’s disintegration, and he’s right. In what isn’t the best move in these circumstances, he vows to make a deal with them, and when they finally trust him, kill them all. Talk about gross underestimation. These guys are the worst witchhunters ever! When he and his partners meet with Marie and Fiona, it’s clear that it’s he and his business buddies who’ll end up dead, not the witches. In a “fun” gore scene (this is the kind of “AHS” I love), the witchhunters get picked off by Fiona’s lover, The Axeman, while Marie texts on her phone and Fiona sips a filthy martini. I always enjoy a good boardroom killing scene. Nothing says love…

And speaking of love, what in the hell was that end scene? We’re supposed to believe that Zoe and Kyle are some star-crossed lovers, fated to be together. Why? Because she kills every man who sleeps with her, and Kyle is the only one who can survive it? Because she accepts the fact that he’s already died, and now he’s not all there? I don’t know where this suddenly came from, but when Myrtle was talking about their pure and true love, I was trying to think of where and when Zoe and Kyle ever outwardly displayed it. It’s been lukewarm in public at best, right? Anyway, Myrtle gives them bus tickets to Epcot (classic), and they’re on their way in a bizarre episode-ending running shot as they get on the bus to Orlando. Not like it matters anyway, because you know those two will be back next week. As much as I want to believe it, we’re not going to see them enjoying the World Showcase at Epcot.

Witch, Please: (every week I’m going to award the witchiest witch of them all) This is a tough one, since no one really used their powers this week. I guess it has to go to Madison for fighting with Zoe and knocking stuff off the wall, and nailing Zoe in the head with a light fixture. Say, were there any repercussions from that? Guess not. Also, Madison had some amazing lines this week.

Random Thoughts:

  • The plotline involving Fiona and The Axeman is too boring for me to get into. They were talking about moving to some farm or something, to be free from his axe and her coven. I sincerely hope the last scene of “Coven” isn’t the pair driving out of New Orleans in a pickup or sitting on the farm’s porch. Oh God, that’s totally how it’s going to end, isn’t it?
  • The second-last scene, of Spalding back in his nightie holding the baby Marie was supposed to give to Papa Legba, was so disturbing I think I repressed it. I don’t care if a man is obsessed with dolls, but there’s a creepy line to cross, and “AHS” spewed blood all over that line. It’s also clear what’ll happen here: Spalding will be left in the coven with the little girl to raise, ensuring the coven lives on.
  • When Myrtle is explaining that Zoe must leave, Zoe’s quote is the best: “I’m so lost here.” Yes, we know. That phrase works on so many levels.
  • When Spalding turned the 1895 doll around in his hands and smelled its bum, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cringe.
  • Madison: “You flush my shit, bitch.”
  • Come to think of it, LaLaurie’s preceding comment, “You left your dirt in the commode,” is actually funnier.
  • Myrtle, who’s writing your dialogue? “In the fall, the rotting leaves smell like an Olympian’s ejaculate!” I’ve never heard anything like that — ever — in my 30ish years of TV watching.
  • LaLaurie: “Well, turds on that!”

Episode 10 Recap
Episode 9 Recap
Episode 8 Recap
Episode 7 Recap
Episode 6 Recap
Episode 5 Recap
Episode 4 Recap
Episode 3 Recap
Episode 2 Recap
Episode 1 Recap


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‘American Horror Story: Coven’ Episode 5 Recap: Mommy Dearest

Note: Do not read on unless you’ve seen “American Horror Story: Coven,” Episode 5, titled “Burn, Witch, Burn.”

The overarching theme in tonight’s episode is the relationship (or lack thereof) between mothers and daughters. It couldn’t have been easy for Cordelia to grow up with a mother like Fiona, what with the philandering, the absenteeism, and the whole “Youngest Supreme Ever” thing. But I would take Fiona as a mother any day over LaLaurie. In the opening flashback, we see LaLaurie treating her daughters like absolute s**t, even threatening to fill one of her daughters’ mouths with … yep, s**t. The other two don’t fare much better, with one hanging by both arms and the other in a cage down in the slave dungeon for a year. (It’s hard to reconcile the former brutal LaLaurie with the current timid LaLaurie, but that’s a whole other topic.)

Once we’re back at Robichaux Academy, we see that the cast of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video is still gathered on the lawn, but nothing’s happening. The zombies stand in place, seemingly awaiting some sort of instruction. Flash quickly to Marie Laveau, who’s levitating over a chalk drawing in the back room of her hair salon. Her eyes flick open, and she says in her great, threatening voice, “Begin!” That sets the zombies in motion, who immediately head towards the Academy. Sexy neighbor boy (his name is Luke, but for whatever reason I can never recall it… OK, Luke. Luke. Luke) tries to be all brave, thinking the zombies are just teenagers in costume, but oops. They’re not. He gets injured pretty severely, but not bitten, and is rescued by Nan and Zoe.

Let’s talk for a minute here about Zoe. It’s one thing for Nan to go running out there to save her love interest, and besides, she’s never been one to shy away from anything. But Zoe? The meek, mild girl with the overly modest wardrobe, taking charge? Something is happening to Zoe, and it’s evident here as she wields a bloody chainsaw, hacking away at the zombies like some “Evil Dead” renegade, that she’s evolving. She must be the next Supreme, absorbing some of Fiona’s aggression and confidence along with her magic — which we also see. After being cornered by the zombies, Zoe utters one phrase and every single zombie falls to the ground, once again lifeless. Marie also plummets to the floor of her salon, her spell rendered useless. Marie expresses fear at the unknown power, which lets us know that damn, whatever Zoe’s got, it’s nothing to scoff at.

Inside the house, Spalding, Queenie and LaLaurie are hiding in the bedroom, and then LaLaurie stupidly tries to communicate with one of her zombie daughters, Borquita (quite the name), who proceeds to strangle her, throw her to the ground and head upstairs for Queenie and Spalding. Queenie’s voodoo doll magic is useless, and Spalding is only good at cleaning up dead bodies, not actually making them dead, so LaLaurie is forced to “kill” her own daughter, for lack of a better word.

The other mother-and-daughter combo is, of course, Fiona and Cordelia, and the latter is still in a hospital bed recovering from the acid attack. It completely destroyed her optic nerves, yet left the eyes physically intact. Fiona’s informed that Cordelia will be blind for life, and it sends her into a tailspin. She attacks the doctor, finds the Medication Room at the hospital and opens it with her fingernails (natch), and treats the room like it’s a pill buffet. Completely high, she wanders the creepy hospital in a stupor. And then it’s Obvious Metaphor time as Fiona stumbles upon a room with a woman who just gave birth to a stillborn baby girl. The doctors apparently just left the corpse of the dead baby in the room with the mother, since they do that in hospitals. Fiona revives the dead baby after making the mother recite every cliché mother-daughter saying in the book, and we know that this is Fiona’s way of making up for her terrible treatment of Cordelia.

As I predicted last week, this injury has brought out the power in Cordelia. Whether it was deliberate by the attacker to bestow this gift upon her, or if it was in her all along, we don’t know yet, but one thing we do know is her new power kicks ass. When her asshole husband finally shows up at the hospital hours later, he takes Cordelia’s hand, and she immediately jolts up in bed and opens her (now white) eyes. She sees it all — the sex, the murder, all of it. It seems, like Zoe, that Cordelia has gained some serious powers here.

We can’t forget that the Council is still in town, too, and they’re back at the Academy while Fiona, Zoe, Nan and LaLaurie are incinerating the zombie bodies in a big bonfire. Fiona shuts down LaLaurie’s attempts for them to bond over their failings as mothers, which is just classic. Fiona’s on her A-game now (must’ve been all those pills), and she manages to sway the Council against Myrtle, who she accuses of murdering Madison and blinding Cordelia. In the presence of overwhelming evidence — the burned hand, the very incriminating photo collage on the hotel room wall (seriously, criminals, stop making collages of your intended victim), and her obvious resentment — the Council condemns Myrtle to death by fire. “I go proudly to the flame!” she proclaims, and doesn’t try to defy Fiona, which I found a little odd.

So it’s off to the pyre/stake/death pile. In their funereal best, the ladies and the Council all head to the quarry to bid farewell to the seemingly treacherous Myrtle. Fiona lights the fire with her cigarette, and into the eternal goes Myrtle. Or so we were led to believe, though I knew this wasn’t the last we’d see of her. Our favorite bayou queen, Misty, saunters over to the pyre and resurrects Myrtle. Uh oh, this is quite the pairing. Nothing a little swamp mud can’t cure.

At the end, we see an exchange between Queenie and Fiona, and learn that it was Queenie’s voodoo witchery that made the burns appear on Myrtle’s hand. Myrtle didn’t actually do anything, except make that creepy photo collage. Fiona assuages Queenie’s feelings of guilt by making her believe that she’s the next Supreme (a “Supreme of Color”), in yet another faux mother-daughter moment. Fiona makes false promises about taking Queenie under her wing, which seems to work for now.

Spalding can just spray air freshener over Madison, his dead prize, to clear the air, but unfortunately Fiona doesn’t have that luxury. Soon, she’ll have to face the music about what she’s done. It may just be too late for her to make amends, which I’m not too convinced she wants to do anyway. Remember, folks: her ultimate goals are to retain her youth and keep hold of her powers, which are both slipping away each and every episode.

Witch, Please: (every week I’m going to award the witchiest witch of them all) At the risk of being repetitive, it has to be Fiona this week. She resurrected a dead baby, commanded the Council: “You will sit!” (which was incredible), and did the whole nails-as-ID-card swipe at the hospital. So cool.

Other Random Thoughts:

  • A “Medication Room” at a hospital? Clearly marked? I can think of so many reasons why that’s a terrible, terrible idea.
  • One more thing about that hospital: Is it just me or is it the worst hospital of all time? Nearly every single light was either flickering or out altogether. And I don’t think pediatric doctors would leave a dead baby corpse in a room with a traumatized mother. Seriously. Unless the whole thing was a hallucination, which I suppose is possible. There was a guy wandering the halls wearing just a diaper, after all.
  • Did anyone else hear Fiona say that she would be back to Cordelia’s room in 15 minutes? If so, that’s some bad editing, because before we know it, she’s back at the Academy burning the bodies in the bonfire.
  • Full well knowing that a lot of crazy stuff has been happening in New Orleans lately — you know, the zombies, the Minotaur, Madison “missing,” voodoo priestesses on the hunt, etc. — the coven leaves Myrtle’s charred corpse just LYING there?! Fully open and available for anyone or anything to come calling? Honestly, after that screw-up, they deserve anything that comes their way. At least wait until the body is ash, or take it with you. Geez.
  • Where, exactly, does one buy stylish witch-burnin’ funeral clothes? The witches seem to have a good selection of dapper outfits, especially Zoe rocking that hat.
  • I’m a fan of Dr. John’s “Right Place, Wrong Time,” and yes, the title makes complete sense in the context, but that song is forever and always associated with “Dazed And Confused,” so it felt out of place while the witches were walking to the burning. But that’s just a personal opinion.
  • I loved Fiona telling off Hank: “You’re a loser. You’re one step up from the men who stand in front of Home Depot.”

Episode 4 Recap
Episode 3 Recap
Episode 2 Recap
Episode 1 Recap


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‘American Horror Story: Coven’ Episode 4 Recap: It’s War

Note: Do not read on unless you’ve seen “American Horror Story: Coven,” Episode 4, titled “Fearful Pranks Ensue.”

It’s pretty much an all-out war in New Orleans. At the very least there’s a big one brewing, and this week’s episode pits multiple warring factions against each other: Fiona vs. Delia, Fiona vs. The Council, Fiona vs. Marie (OK, so it’s mostly everyone against Fiona), and the voodoo witches vs. the Robichaux witches. Also the battle between the “living” and the dead — but we’ll see more of that next week.

To start things off in the ugliest possible manner, we flash back to New Orleans in 1961, where a young black boy is lynched and hanged by a bunch of white men. Marie is understandably pissed, especially after the boy’s mother expresses her optimism for the future of racial integration. So it’s time for snakes, blood and raising the dead, at which Marie is obviously very skilled. Did she just drink an urn of flaming blood? Yes, she did, and corpses tear out of their graves and attack the lynchers, ripping their limbs off and disemboweling them. Welcome to Episode 4 of “American Horror Story: Coven”!

After the flashback, we return right where we left off at Robichaux Academy, with Spalding unceremoniously rolling up the deceased Madison in the sitting room rug. It’s priceless to see her sparkly high heels sticking out at the end, like some filling in a ridiculous corpse fajita. Fiona alleviates any possible guilt or remorse (which she probably didn’t have much of) by saying that Madison would have made a terrible Supreme anyway — and then proceeds to find Queenie almost dead in Delia’s greenhouse. Never a dull night for the Supreme!

She shuttles Queenie up to a bedroom and literally breathes the life back into her. LaLaurie is grateful to Queenie for saving her from the Minotaur, and is absolutely beside herself, not knowing how to be kind to this black girl who she was calling “slave” in Episode 3. Power shifts are the best, especially when we know how vitriolic Queenie can be. Fiona has to wake Delia up and let her know about everything. I mean, honestly Delia, how did you sleep through someone getting killed on the floor below you, as well as a Minotaur attack? Fiona isn’t far off when she says Delia is a useless headmistress; Fiona is usually drunk and traipsing around town, yet she has a better handle on things at the Academy — and has a solid lock on revenge when she sends the Minotaur’s severed head (still blinking) to Marie.

This, of course, does not go over well, and despite attempts by a fellow salon worker to get Marie to let it go, Angela Bassett‘s flared nostrils tell us exactly what she’s going to do: gather up all those snakes and blood again, cuz it’s time for another corpse raisin’! Things are also going from bad to worse back at the Academy, where The Council on Witchcraft has come a-calling. I was overcome with joy seeing Frances Conroy’s Myrtle Snow sashay into the house, with that outfit. (There’s nary an actress I enjoy more, and she is all aces here.) At her side are two fellow Council members, Quentin (Leslie Jordan), who specializes in sarcastic, witty rejoinders, and Cecily (Robin Bartlett), who appears to be the keeper of minutes. They conduct a series of interrogations of the Robichaux inhabitants, who basically perform as we expect them to: Delia spills every single bean (sigh), Zoe puts us to sleep with her testimony, Nan is straight-forward and inadvertently hilarious, and Queenie tosses it all out there, calling the missing Madison a stone-cold bitch.

Before Fiona takes the stand, we’re treated to a delicious 1971 flashback, right after Annaleigh’s death. It introduces us to the young, jealous Myrtle, who is willing to do anything to take down Fiona. As a “guardian of veracity in the vernacular,” Myrtle is a defender of the truth. In the end, her scheming to trap Fiona ends up trapping her; on the stand, between cigarette drags, Fiona denies all wrong-doing, and sasses the Council. In the flashback, we learn how Spalding really lost his tongue (he cut it off to protect Fiona). Is it just me or was that actually really touching? OK, it was gross and extreme, but romantic in “AHS” terms. Young Fiona’s look of shock when he does it shows that she’s no monster, and there’s at least a semblance of caring on her part. So when Spalding’s questioned by Myrtle, he ends up implicating her instead of Fiona. So great — and when Myrtle yells, “This will not stand!” I smiled, mainly because it’s been so damn long since I’ve seen a Frances Conroy freak-out.

Other than the main plot, we’re treated to two totally superfluous sideplots — one of which is Delia’s cheating husband, Hank, who we see is clearly unbalanced. His rough sex and weird sidelong glances tell us something is definitely wrong here. And when he breaks out a silenced pistol (which indicates he planned to kill his mistress all along) and shoots her in the head, I threw my hands up in the air. No clue what’s happening there, and more importantly, why should any of us care? Secondly, we revisit FrankenKyle, who’s slamming his head against the bathtub repeatedly. Sure, Zoe, go make him some tuna salad. That’ll make him feel better. When she returns to the bathroom, he’s gone, off into the night on Halloween. At least he’ll fit right in. I guess it’s wishful thinking that this is the last we’ll see of FrankenKyle.

Thank goodness the final two scenes are both creepy and titillating, as LaLaurie’s three zombie daughters show up at the door with a league of other zombies waiting on the front lawn. How is Fiona going to stop this insanity? (She’s out drinking with Delia playing “Three Questions,” and Delia is blinded by something in the washroom. Maybe this will finally bring out Delia’s powers.)

I’ll leave you for this week with a nod to (easily) the creepiest scene of the episode, which was Spalding having tea parties in a room filled with scary dolls. When he takes out that lace gown and brings it over to the chair and we see Madison’s dead body holding a teacup, several thoughts rushed through my mind: Oh no, is this a necrophilia thing? Does he just play dress-up with her? Is he dressed like a baby? What. Is. Happening. I refuse to believe that Spalding is that sick — for now — and just hope that his unrequited love for Fiona is what’s causing him to do it.

It’s war now, “AHS” fans. Let’s see how this thing pans out.

Witch, Please: (every week I’m going to award the witchiest witch of them all) Damn right a voodoo priestess counts as a witch, and Marie Laveau takes the crown this week. She spends most of her screen time writhing with snakes, blood and fire, so no one can really compare. Plus, raising the dead multiple times is a pretty amazing feat.

Other Random Thoughts:

  • Interesting that Madison wasn’t the next Supreme (heart murmur!). Who is it, then? Nan? Zoe? Delia? So many interesting possibilities.
  • We now know two of the Seven Wonders: transmutation and pyrokinesis. Once we figure out all seven, we should be able to figure out who the next Supreme is.
  • Loved the “hot guy” neighbor showing up with baked goods for Nan. All together now: awwwwwww!
  • Myrtle’s red leather gloves. Could any of you avoid staring at them?
  • Angela Bassett rocked multiple hairstyles tonight. From the braids to the afro, this woman is capable of any ‘do.
  • Spalding’s fingernails nearly made me puke. The poor guy needs a major overhaul … though the creepy doll scenes helped me understand why no one screws with him. He also cut off his own tongue, so yeah.

Episode 3 Recap
Episode 2 Recap
Episode 1 Recap


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The Simpsons Episodes, Season 12: Treehouse of Horror XI, Homr, Day of the Jackanapes, Children of a Lesser Clod, a Tale of Two Springfields

The Simpsons Episodes, Season 12: Treehouse of Horror XI, Homr, Day of the Jackanapes, Children of a Lesser Clod, a Tale of Two Springfields


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