AMV Of The Day: Blood In The Water (Castlevania)

It’s been a while since we last shared an AMV of the Day here on the Shattered Lens.  So, let’s change that right now with this AMV inspired by Castlevania!

Anime: Castlevania

Song: Blood//Water by grandson

Creator: MrSyltastic

(As always, please consider subscribing to this creator’s YouTube channel!)

Past AMVs of the Day

Horror On TV: Baywatch Nights 2.10 “Space Spore” (dir by Richard Freidman)

The 2nd season of Baywatch Nights was pretty clearly designed to duplicate the success of The X-Files and that’s certainly true of tonight’s episode, which finds David Hasselhoff, Eddie Cibrian, and Angie Harmon dealing with “space dust.”  It turns out that, in its way, space dust is almost as dangerous as regular dust!



Witchcraft (1988, directed by Rob Spera)

In this low-budget movie, Grace (Anat Topol), her husband John (Gary Sloan), and their newborn son, William, move in with John’s mother, Elizabeth (Mary Shelley).  It’s only supposed to be temporary but Grace soon comes to feel as if Elizabeth never wants her or her son to leave.  Even though John supposedly owns “half of Massachusetts,” he’s clearly not willing to stand up to his mother and, at times, it seems like he’s closer to her than he is to his own wife.

Meanwhile, Grace is haunted by visions of a puritan couple being burned at the stake.  When the local priest has a vision of his own and sees William’s crib surrounded by super-imposed flames and he tells Grace that William needs to be baptized as soon as possible, Grace suspects that something strange is happening.  When the priest ends up hanging from a tree in the backyard, Grace knows that witchcraft must be afoot.

Obviously influenced by both Rosemary’s Baby and The Amityville Horror, Witchcraft isn’t terrible but it’s not very good either.  For a low budget film, the acting is surprisingly adequate and Elizabeth’s creepy mansion is a good location for a cheesy horror movie.  The film’s plot, though, is predictable.  You will guess what’s going on long before Grace does.  What’s strange is that the film is full of references to things that supposedly happened but which we didn’t see.  For instance, Grace says that she had a vision of the priest hanging before she actually saw him.  That’s the way things usually happen in a film like this but how come we didn’t get to see that vision too?  How come Grace doesn’t mention it to anyone until after the priest is actually dead?  Did the movie run out of money before they could shoot the scene?  Did it just slip someone’s mind to include the scene in the film?  What’s going on?

The most amazing thing about Witchcraft is that this forgettable film was a big enough hit on video that it got a sequel.  And not just one sequel.  As of right now, there have been fifteen sequels to Witchcraft, each one of which is a direct sequel to the one that preceded it.  (There are 18 films in the Amityville franchise but few of those films share a direct connection beyond the use of the word “Amityville” in the title.)  Compared to the later films in the Witchcraft franchise, the first one is pretty tame.  Later installments would play up the sex to such an extent that they became notorious for it.  The first Witchcraft discreetly fades to black whenever Grace and John are in the mood.

Witchcraft is forgettable but, as the first entry in an apparently unkillable franchise, it’s an important landmark in direct-to-video history.

Game Review: The Pinecone (2020, Joseph Pentangelo)

The Pinecone is one of the entrants in this year’s Interactive Fiction Competition.  In this work of flash fiction, you’re waiting for the school bus to arrive.  It’s another cold and boring morning.  You’re running late but so is the bus.  It’s while you’re waiting for the bus that the goats arrive.  How you react to the goats will determine whether or not you make it to school.  That my sound simple but there’s more to it than just standing to the side while they walk by.  You never now where a goat might show up.

This is a brief but well-written and frequently funny game.  Because of movies like The Witch, I was expecting the goats to act in a certain and more sinister way.  While they didn’t (and this is not a horror game, despite the presence of goats), the game still did a good job of showing why you wouldn’t necessarily want to mess around with a goat.  Towards the end of the game, there is a literal laugh out loud moment involving a goat and a school bus.  The game’s worth playing just for that.

The Pinecone is simple but it’s also a game that rewards being replayed.  Unlike a lot of Twine works, your decisions really do affect the outcome of the game.  Making the correct choice early on in the game will give you more options later on.  Making the wrong choice will lead to your options being limited and you missing school.

It’s not a difficult game but it probably does help to know something about goats before playing The Pinecone.  After you’ve done research, The Pinecone can be played here.

Horror Scenes That I Love: The U.S. Army Takes On The Flying Saucers in Plan 9 From Outer Space

I’m disappointed to say that, for whatever reason, YouTube has been yanking down all of the Plan 9 From Outer Space videos that used to be available on the site.  That’s just strange to me.  From what I’ve heard, it’s for copyright reasons.  The people who currently have the rights to Wood’s films are very aggressive about searching YouTube for any unauthorized videos.  Ed Wood’s films are financially much more lucrative today than they were when he was alive, which is kind of depressing when you consider that Wood basically drank himself to death and died in total poverty.

That said, there was no way I was going to let Mr. Wood’s birthday pass without sharing at least one scene from Plan 9 From Outer Space!  So, in this scene, the flying saucers face the might of a lot of a stock footage.  Meanwhile, Tom Keene plays the colonel who casually watches the battle.  The narration, of course, is provided by the amazing Criswell!

It’s amazing how close we came to getting conquered.


4 Shots From 4 Ed Wood Films: Bride of the Monster, Plan 9 From Outer Space, Night of the Ghouls, The Sinister Urge

4 Shots From 4 Films is just what it says it is, 4 shots from 4 of our favorite films. As opposed to the reviews and recaps that we usually post, 4 Shots From 4 Films lets the visuals do the talking!

This October, we’ve been using 4 Shots From 4 Films to pay tribute to some of our favorite horror directors!  Today we recognize not only the talent of Edward D. Wood, Jr. but we also honor him on what would have been his birthday!

4 Shots From 4 Films

Bride of the Monster (1955, dir by Edward D. Wood, Jr.)

Plan 9 From Outer Space (1956, dir by Edward D. Wood, Jr)

Night of the Ghouls (1958, dir by Edward D. Wood, Jr)

The Sinister Urge (1960, dir by Edward D. Wood, Jr.)

Horror on the Lens: Nosferatu (dir by F.W. Murnau)

Today’s Horror on the Lens is a classic film that really needs no introduction!  Released in 1922, the German silent film Nosferatu remains one of the greatest vampire films ever made.  It’s a film that we share every October and I’m happy to do so again this year!