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Nightbreed
Cabal

USA 1990
produced by
Gabriella Martinelli, James G. Robinson (executive) for Morgan Creek
directed by Clive Barker
starring Craig Sheffer, Anne Bobby, David Cronenberg, Charles Haid, Hugh Quarshie, Hugh Ross, Doug Bradley, Catherine Chevalier, Malcolm Smith; Bob Sessions, Oliver Parker, Debora Weston, Nicholas Vince, Simon Bamford, Kim Robertson, Nina Robertson, Christine McCorkindale, Tony Bluto, Vincent Keene, Bernard Henry, Richard Van Spall, David Young, Mac McDonald, Richard Bowman, Mcally Sagal, Daniel Kash, Bradley Lavelle, Stephen Hoye, Tom Hunsinger, George Roth, Peter Marinker, Lindsay Hiliday, Kenneth Nelson, Carolyn Jones, Ted Maynard, Mitch Webb, Scott Gilmore, Eric Loren, John Agar, Charles Bodycomb, Tony Gardner, Paul Jones
screenplay by Clive Barker, based on his novel Cabal, music by Danny Elfman, special effects by Chris Corbould, special makeup effects by Ian Brown, Keith Murray, creature effects by Chris Fitzgerald, Martin L.Mercer

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Aaron (Craig Sheffer) has been visiting a psychiatrist, Doctor Decker (David Cronenberg) for years, mainly because of his dreams of a place called Midian, a derelict graveyard on the outside, but on the inside, the place where the monsters live. Lately, his visits to Dr Decker have taken a turn to the worse though, when the good Doctor - who is really a raving and murderous maniac - has convinced him that he has been involved in some gruesome killings. Finding himself on the run from the law, Aaron goes to Midian - but at first he is rejected by the monsters. What's worse though, Doc Decker has set up a trap for Aaron, and before you know it, Aaron ends up riddled by bullets.

But somehow, during his visit to Midian, Aaron has been initiated into the monsters' ranks, and has somehow become one of the - and thus he is revived and brought to Midian.

Aaron's girlfriend Lori (Anne Bobby) hasn't given up on him though and goes searching for him, event hough logically she has to believe he is dead (it makes sense in the movie) - but unfortunately, she has teamed up with Doctor Decker, and before long, the good Doctor has lured Aaron into another trap and thrown him into county jail. Then he gathers the local authorities, led by a redneck Sheriff (Charles Haid) and the local militia with the sole purpose of destroying Midian once and for all - and soon enough, it looks as if the monsters have breathed their last.

But there's still Lori, who has made it to Midian ahead of Decker and his bloodthirsty friends, and she has persuaded a few of the monsters to help her free Aaron - and when Aaron returns to Midian he turns the tide in favour of the monsters, and even though in the end, Midian is destroyed, so are all its enemies, and the monsters can start life anew elsewhere.

Doug Bradley plays the leader of the monsters.

 

Cabal, the novel this film was based on, is probably Clive Barker's best book - so it was sort of a gamble to bring it to celluloid, especially because of its monsters are the better people-subtext, that could have easily been turned into pure kitsch. Fortunately though, Barker, being a talented horror director in his own right, took up direction of Nightbreed himself - and came up with a bizarre masterpiece, a weird but likeable blend of violence and gore, monster- and serial killer-motives, intentionally weird philosophy and enough shocks and action to keept things going at a steady pace. Add to this David Cronenberg (who himself did not think much of his performance) as a really creepy villain, and you're left with something that shoulc satisfy every true horror fan.

Recommended.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD