Sunday, February 19, 2017

A Showcase of the art of Travis Mullins

 
  By -Steve Mezo


The first time I had seen Travis Mullins sculpture "CRACKED" I was blown away by how cool it looked and was able to get in touch with him on Facebook about it and then found out about his ETSY store with even more of his creations.

 

Once I checked out his ETSY store with my wife we loved so much of what he's created we had to agree to buy a piece that represented both of us and the one we decided on was "Zahhh".

 

When Zahhh arrived my wife had seen it first after shen unpacked it she absolutely loved it, and when I saw it my jaw just about hit the floor because it looks amazing and is a monster size slice of pizza!
 


 
After I contacted Travis to thank him for doing such an incredible job I asked him to type a little about himself for his showcase.

*Travis Mullins*

I make the MONSTERS that make YOU smile... www.etsy.com/shop/travismullinsart www.facebook/travismullinsart My name is Travis Grant Mullins. I am based in Warsaw, Indiana. I'm inspired by everything and everyone around me. I see everyday objects and think of how to turn them into monsters.
My first monster, in this series, was a commissioned piece. It was a killer tomato for a local tomato festival. I like to use any everyday object, sculpt jaws with teeth and a tongue, and then figure out a way to incorporate the two together to create something both fun and terrifying.
Monsters are something that I find to be a great subject because of the seemingly endless ways to create them. That, and I love creating something that is interesting to look at, that is fun, disturbing, and original. The art form I prefer to use in creating monsters is sculpture. I like the 3D form because of the many ways to examine the artwork. I enjoy the physicality of sculpture. It is something you can touch and hold as well as view from afar. 
*

 


 

 












 



Talking about Ryan D. Blazic's Monsters Among Men

 
By - Steve Mezo





I had received an advanced Blu - Ray copy of Ryan D. Blazic's modern vampire film "Monsters Among Men". And I really enjoyed the story starting out with a dude getting a cup of coffee and getting ready to purpose to his girlfriend in a nice woodsy setting just to wind up having a real bad day with a plot twist to boot.

It was produced by Ryan along with Thomas Berdinski and Johnathan David. With a music score by Thomas Berdinski of The Giant Rubber Monster Movie and The Italian Zombie Movie fame.

So I put it on and readied myself for some kind of vampire action and got plenty of it. I'm talking vampire attacks, undead familiars, thrill killer helpers, guns and blood. And of course the plot twist that really made it worth the watch. I mean most of the time Indie vampire films are a quick shoot that rely on boobs and fake blood with a simple plot of some kind of lead vampire doing a bunch of turning and getting destroyed at the end. 
But Ryan went the extra mile and actually typed an awesome story line and a plot that you actually got into with a couple of twist that you won't see coming. 

Yes I'm typing about the twist a lot, because like I said I was really impressed with Ryan caring enough to put that much work into the script of this movie.
And I love the nods made by Thomas Berdinski to a couple of Warren F. Disbrow's movies that I had worked on and appeared in with some of the cinematography he had done.

All around it's a cool watch and definitely a must have to your Indie Horror collection.     

 

Friday, January 6, 2017

Talking about Five Nights at Freddy's VS. Ghostbusters


By - Stephen Mezo

Once again I've seen the results of the old saying "If you want something done right do it yourself!" And it's been done by Eddie Lebron of Blue Core Studios. 

I've always been a huge fan of Fan Films and Five Nights at Freddy's VS. Ghostbusters is my new all time favorite.
 


Eddie Lebron's original idea and story combined with Gary Lee Mahmoud and Artie Brennan as a screenplay is brilliant. They had taken the great creep factor of Scott Cawthon's survival game and successfully combined it with the tongue in cheek comedy of Aykroyd, Ramis and Moranis.

And I can tell you that it's no easy feat. I mean horror is easy because a lot of people are frightened of the same stuff, but comedy is very subjective and varies like you wouldn't believe. But they manged to create a great homage to both franchises and their fans.

(A little backstory here)
A long time ago I worked for a pizzeria called Razz-Ma-Tazz that was along the same lines as ShowBizz Pizza Place with the Rock-Afire Explosion or Chuck E. Cheese for the fans out there that missed both of those. And my job was maintaining the animatronic characters on the stage while another guy would update the software and the audio/computers that ran it. It was great extra money while I was at The Costume Shop and it was all done late at night so I had the place pretty much to myself to get everything done. 

Of course my friends would always ask me "What if they came to life and you were the only one there?" And I would answer "They're bolted down to the stage and hooked up to power sources so they wouldn't get far, besides I build monsters so how much of a threat could a dopey cat and dog be?"

Well Scott Cawthon definitely answered that one for me with a little modification to the animatronic characters...

Then I've watched every version of Ghostbusters from the original live action in 1975 with Bob Burns in his infamous gorilla costume all the way up to Ghostbusters 2. 

(Just in case anyone needed to know if I was a fan of either franchise.)

Now back to the Fan film.

It opens up with Michael Mann as one of the last of a long line of Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria Security Guards meeting a horrible end by Freddy Fazbear himself. 

Then we see Gary Lee Mahmoud as "Victor Owens/Beckett" on his way to an interview of a lifetime.

*Now if you're stellar at interviews that's awesome for you. But if your half a mess like myself you'll laugh your ass off watching the exchange between Artie Brennan as "John Cambell" and Victor Owens. I couldn't stop laughing because I have gone through an interview like that myself.*

In a later scene Samantha Jane Gurewitz as "Karolyn Hewitt" request the help of the Ghostbusters to take care of the problems happening at Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria. And the showdown happens from there!
I want to tell you more but it is a great watch and I really want you to enjoy it and take it all in. Gary, Artie and Samantha really made me like their characters and they had great timing with the humor. 

And the cinematography of the city establishing shots draws you right into all our first intro to the world of a soon to be haunted New York City where three P.H.D. Scientist bought a run down firehouse and a used ambulance to start a business,   

Like I said before Eddie did a fantastic job of keeping the creep factor high and his attention to detail goes to eleven. The Castle Fun Center in Chester, NY is an excellent backdrop as Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria and Eddie even had the Security office built that is dead on to the games look. 
Even the CGI animatronic Freddy and friends have you forgetting that that's what they are throughout the feature. 

And the Ghostbusters equipment is accurate enough to have you convinced that they were borrowed from Ivan's set. Along with a cameo of Tom Gebhardt's own ECTO 1 - NJ
  



Tom Gebhardt founder and leader of Ghost Corps NJ and the lead Cosplayer in the Ghostheads documentary, also makes a cameo appearance in the Ghostbustes commercial spot playing in the Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria security office before Freddy's attack. 

  
 
   

Five Nights at Freddy's VS. Ghostbusters is on YouTube
and you can watch it by clicking on the logo below.
https://youtu.be/PBrZEXuFP50

And make sure to give it a thumbs up and tell them that I sent you! 

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Some Face Time with FX Artist Salem DeVane


By - Steve Mezo

Another October has come and gone and even though it didn't feel like the others between the weather and upcoming election, I still found ways to enjoy it. And one of those ways was by getting something cool created by an Independent F/X Artist.

And that F/X Artist is Salem DeVane
 


And what I got was his "BUTCHER" mask.
 

When it came in the mail I was blown away by the detail Salem put into it and the quality of the material. And this is one of the main reasons why I make sure to buy custom mask from Independent Artist.
Seriously, I had paid almost as much for mass produced masks which are not only outsourced but made out of low grade latex that rots within a couple of years. And the last that I made the mistake of buying rotted in less than a year. I'm aware that latex doesn't last forever, but I've owned and seen mask that were poured back in the late 60's and were sold in the back of comic books still around today and pretty flexible. 

But Salem DeVane just like my close friend and Indie Mask Maker Ray Charland make their mask with quality latex that are definitely worth the investment for Movie, Stage, Haunt and Cosplay use or Collecting. 

And Salem has even more than mask available on his website www.cellardoorfx.net along with props and costume extras that can be made to order. I had asked Salem to tell me a little about himself and here's what he had to say.


As a kid I've always been fascinated with horror and Halloween, I come from a small town so Halloween was always a big deal and all the houses on my block would go all out decorating and it was just an awesome time.
I loved masks of all kinds and was obsessed with horror movies and villains in particular. We weren't poor but wasn't rich either so I began modifying masks and make paper mache masks. And back before internet we had these things called magazines lol, and my dad scrounged up some money to order me the mask makers handbook. I was so excited to get it, but was let down and disappointed because the cost of supplies and the sheer complicated process of doing it discouraged me immensely.
So it sat on my bookshelf for many years til later on. Continuing my love for the macabre I became a grave digger and eventually a funeral director, along with being an artist on the side.

And then one day I had clay, I had plaster and soon after I made my first mask. It was a disaster, but we make mistakes to learn. And eventually I got the hang of it. Pretty soon through other connections I'd made with art I was soon was making masks and costumes for film and musicians. And by the time I had enough of a portfolio I created filthmirror.com (no longer up) and it ran it for 6 years. But then I had some tragedy in my life and I dropped it for many years. And through help of family and friends I got back on my feet and Cellar Door F/X was born and here to stay!

Salem does some killer work and has main designs that can be made to order at www.cellardoorfx.net or he can be commissioned to make custom (full head and face) masks as well as costume accessories and props. 

Check out his gallery and make sure to tell him that Tattooed Steve sent you.
  
 
  

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

He's David S. Pumpkins! Any questions?



By-Stephen Mezo


I'm David Pumpkins!!! Any questions!?

It's been a real long time since a SNL skit made me laugh really hard, but a simple skit with Tom Hanks and an elevator with a hundred floors of horror with "David S. Pumpkins" did just that.

The big question that everyone has (including the theme park guest in the Hellevator) "Who is David S. Pumpkins?"
And what makes it even funnier is even Tom Hanks himself has no idea who the character is or why he was at this fictional haunt.

My wife and I were sitting there laughing and we wound up making our own backstory for David Pumpkins. Our theories ranged from if it were an independent haunt he might have been an entertainer with a lot of money that wants to be part of a haunt in the worst way. And he made an agreement with the haunt where he would cover insurance, the space rental, props and costumes - but he would be able to perform as his character David Pumpkins with his Beat Boy Skeleton Dancers. And since he fronted so much of the cost he would be allowed to appear on seventy three floors of the haunts one hundred.

But when we heard that it was a theme park in the skit it became even funnier because then we had to change his backstory. This time the park only had so much money to pay for licensed characters and needed a filler, was afraid of offending visitors and wanted to keep the it the monsters and gore to a minimum and once again needed filler.    

Sunday, September 11, 2016

The Storage Unit of Terror 2 XL!!!


By - Stephen Mezo

Remember on Gilligan's Isle how you never seen the other side of the island and the Professor said not to bother going there because of how overgrown and dangerous it was?
Well I've always took heed of his televised advice over the years and I have to say it's kept me pretty safe. And it's a big reason why in the five years I've owned The Storage Unit of Terror I've never ventured around the building past the side due to all of the overgrowth.
 

But with this super hot Summer the overgrowth dried up and died off. And I was finally able to walk around to the back of the building.

And to my surprise the back of the building was actually the front!
 

You should have seen the look on my face when I found out that the Storage Unit of Terror has it's own video store, a huge parking lot and a highway sign frame that I had a sign made for.
 

Now if you're wondering where I got all the money to get all of this signage made, all I'm going to say is there was enough bottles and cans laying around to pay for it and enough left over to keep the power on for years. 

I guess you're saying to yourself "You mean you've never walked to the back of the building in the five years you've been there?" The answer is the only way through was a locked and chained door at the end of this hall. And all of us that watched horror movies know better than to mess with doors like that.

I think the best part about the extra space is I don't have to do anything at all because it's perfect! And I can do any setup I want or need at any time! Of course I had to invite Father Evil over to give it a blessing.
 
I can build temporary backdrops for interviews and set up stages for concert performances.

Have friends over for F/X tutorials, set up a huge screen for premiere showings or just ride one of those Razor motorized things back and forth till I get bored.

The best part is it has it's own connected video store that I named TERRORVISION VIDEO. 
 
 And I can make the whole thing The Horror Section
 (Which I plan on doing).
 


With the old Mom and Pop Viral Video Store building being sold and turned into a health food shop I was at a total loss, but now I have my own with power and running water!

Yup, it's great having all of this extra space and just in time for all new interviews and reviews coming up right before this Halloween!
 
 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Talking about the movie "Reichsfuhrer - SS" (2015)

 

By - Stephen Mezo 

I have to start this one with a thank you to Manny Serrano of "Blood Slaughter Massacre" fame for telling John Martineau to let me view a screener of "Reichsfuhrer SS". 

 Written/Directed by David B. Stewart III

Reichsfuhrer reminds me of Grindhouse favorites like "Isla Shewolf of The SS" with a anthology segment kind of feel to it. 
The movie opens with Heinrich Himmler meeting up with a demon by the name of Erebus who is making him aware of why he is Hell.
And one of the many reasons is a murder he had to commit because of a treacherous move by Nazi General Hans Shellenberg. 

I'll save you a lot of film school blah, blah review yaddda yadda yadda, and just talk about what I liked about it. I'll start by saying with the budget they had for production they did pretty damn good and had a story line that kept me watching. 
The director of photography (Okay I have to use a little) really made use of a lot of different camera angles instead of falling back on static shots and saying "That'll work..." because nothing brings the watchability of a movie to a screeching halt faster than that.  And the lighting was excellent as well, hey don't give me "Dude really?" For me to sit there and take in the story going on I want to see what's going on. Nothing aggravates me more than having to try to make out what's happening because the director is trying to hide imperfections or just under light everything out of sheer lazyness. 
Don't get me wrong I enjoy atmosphere, but you can tell the difference when watching any kind of thriller or horror. 

I was impressed with Erebus look along with his Minion and there are some great Russian soldier zombies as well. And there was plenty of gore to go around for everyone as well. Add to that an hour and a half run time and it was definitely worth the watch. 

Reichsfuhrer - SS is availible on Blu Ray, DVD and VHS through SGL Entertainment .

Also on Blu Ray and DVD through Amazon .com

Check out the trailer for Reichsfuhrer - SS on YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jo_V9VErsQE

Reichsfuhrer - SS on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Reichsfuhrer-SS/651743651603326

Reichsfuhrer -SS on Twitter
https://twitter.com/RFSS_Movie