The Wireless Mystery Theatre Presents Frankenstein

With their frequently spooky and always spirited productions, which conjure the ghosts of vintage radio suspense plays, the Belfast-based Wireless Mystery Theatre have been delighting audiences for almost a decade now. A ‘typical’ performance takes the form of a live radio drama 'recording’, as the actors speak their lines directly into microphones placed around the stage, create their own sound effects and perform their own music. Previous productions have included adaptations of Edgar Allan Poe’s Murders in the Rue Morgue, Bram Stoker’s Dracula’s Guest and Sheridan Le Fanu’s Green Tea. Their latest production is a nifty adaptation of Mary Shelley’s classic novel of Gothic horror and science-fiction, Frankenstein.

Shelley’s ground-breaking work tells of Victor Frankenstein, an ambitious young scientist whose unyielding, unorthodox experiments result in the creation of a living, sentient creature assembled from parts of stolen human cadavers. Horrified by his creation, Victor rej…

The Strangers: Prey at Night

Coming 10 years after Bryan Bertino’s haunting home invasion horror The Strangers (2008), this belated sequel offers the same taut suspense and chillingly downbeat domestic horror as its predecessor. When a family of four stop off at an eerily deserted trailer park for the night, they fall prey to three masked psychopaths. Those who admired The Strangers will find much to enjoy in this lean, mean, terrific exercise in nerve-wrecking tension.

Head over to Exquisite Terror to read my full review.

Book Update: Film International Review

The latest review of my Devil’s Advocates book on The Company of Wolves comes courtesy of Jeremy Carr over at Film International, and it’s another really positive one. According to Carr, 'Gracey does his part to add to the legacy of The Company of Wolves, strengthening the film’s importance with a thoughtful monograph that is detailed and accessible, presenting arguments with deliberation and validity, never forcefully or self-righteous. Jordan’s film isn’t perfect by any means, but Gracey’s ultimate achievement is in making the case that it still warrants and welcomes further examination.'

I’ve copied the full review below, and you can also check it out (along with a wealth of other film related reviews, news and features) over at Film International...

Review (by Jeremy Carr)

James Gracey’s Devil’s Advocates entry on The Company of Wolves (Auteur Publishing, 2017) does everything a book of its scope should do. In about 120 pages, Gracey takes what is a generally regarded cult …

Giallo Book & Crowdfunding Project

I have contributed an essay to a forthcoming book about Italian giallo films*. Giallo un libro sobre terror italiano (Giallo: A Book about Italian Terror) is the latest project from the Buenos Aires-based Colectivo Rutemberg (Rutemberg Collective), a multidisciplinary group of artists and writers dedicated to the creation of exciting audio-visual and journalistic content. This publication, which features work from over 20 authors from Latin America and Europe, is particularly unique as it will be the first ever Latin American book solely dedicated to Italian terror cinema. Exciting!

With Giallo un libro sobre terror italiano, Colectivo Rutemberg will contribute to the dissemination and critical analysis of the giallo, which, at present, is the subject of a very limited bibliography in the Spanish language (the only other Spanish language book specifically dedicated to analysing the giallo was published in Spain in 2001 and is currently out of print).

Giallo un libro sobre terror itali…

Knockbreda Cemetery

Situated on a long, sloping hill between Church Road and Saintfield Road in south Belfast, Knockbreda Cemetery is one of the oldest cemeteries in the city. I lived quite close to this cemetery for five or six years and, naturally, found myself wandering through it fairly frequently as, rain or shine, day or night, it not only offered peace and quiet, but pretty views of Belfast city, Black Mountain and Cave Hill. The cemetery is built around the little parish church nestled on the pinnacle of the hill, which was consecrated in 1737. It was designed by Richard Cassels, a lauded Palladian architect, and built by Lady Middleton, mother of the first Viscount Dungannon, Arthur Hill-Trevor. According to a nearby information board, Knockbreda Cemetery was a ‘fashionable place to spend eternity’ as it became renowned for its funerary monuments and exquisite mausolea which were erected by some of the wealthiest, most influential families in Ulster at that time. 

Amongst those buried here are…

Hopeful for Halloween

So the new Halloween trailer was officially released today, and you can check it out here. From what we know of this new instalment of the Halloween series, it’s set 40 years after the original, ignores events depicted in all the subsequent sequels (which essentially creates a cool sort of ‘choose your own adventure’ of the series as a whole, with at least three distinct narratives), features the much-loved character of Laurie Strode, now a mother and grandmother, and is being scored (and executive-produced) by John Carpenter himself. Sadly however, he will not be joined by Debra Hill, who produced and co-wrote the original Halloween back in 1978, and whose vital contributions to the film are so often overlooked, as she passed away in 2005. Carpenter and Hill had no involvement with the series past the third film, so his involvement here is hopefully an indication of the film’s credibility. He noted: ‘Thirty-eight years after the original Halloween, I'm going to help to try to ma…