Monday, December 13, 2010

Review: Grace

Dir. Paul Solet, 2009, Madman Entertainment

While eight months pregnant, Madeline's dream of motherhood becomes a nightmare when an horrific car accident leaves both her husband and her unborn child dead. Refusing to acknowledge the tragedy, Madeline brings the child to term - only to discover that, impossibly, baby Grace has survived. But is it truly a miracle, or something rather more sinister? For Grace is a strange child, with unthinkable needs. And baby needs to feed...

Grace is one of those utterly uncompromising horror movies - and I can think of few other movies that so absolutely deserve the epithet of 'horror' - that begins immediately with the more mundane horrors of strained spousal and stifling familial relationships before graduating to the truly awful horror of the death of a child, and onwards to the supernatural horrors at the centre of the plot. The script is tight and almost unbearably tense throughout; the cast performances are all excellent and masterfully understated; production values are superb.

There's likely to be some argument amongst fans of the walking dead as to whether Grace is truly a zombie movie; to my mind, though, any film revolving around a dead (and apparently decaying) child who requires blood (and more) to survive certainly qualifies.

In a nutshell, Grace is one of the most genuinely horrific and emotionally upsetting pieces of cinematic horror I've ever seen, and one likely to become regarded as a minor masterpiece by those who appreciate style and substance over in-your-face scares and gore.

Christmas Competition: Pitch a Zombie TV Show!

Last week, AMC's premier season of The Walking Dead concluded with a ratings bonanza, and the news that a second season will be hitting TV screens next distant October. Still, zombie fans everywhere must be hoping that somewhere, in rival TV stations across the globe, commissioning executives are saying to themselves: 'Hm. Zombies, eh? Maybe that's where the money is. Anyone got that Maberry guy's phone number?'

So: for our final competition of the year, we're giving YOU the chance to pitch your zomfic TV adaptation concept!!! Just to us, admittedly, which means very little in terms of getting the thing actually made. Still, you never know, maybe some televisual bigwig will shamble past the site and...

But enough of pipe dreams. Details! Prizes! Rules!

What we're looking for is your suggestion of a zombie-related book, short story or graphic novel that you think could be successfully adapted for TV, and - just as importantly - why you think it'd be a sure-fire winner. Be sure to mention whether you envision the production as a series, miniseries or telemovie, and feel free to suggest such details as cast, crew, scriptwriter, location, etcetera.

The suggestion that most appeals to us here at NecroScope will score an awesome prize-pack (too late for Christmas Day, but that's slow zombies for you), comprising a selection of zombie-related books, DVDs, comics, and other gruesome offcuts.

Rules are:

# Competition is open to anyone and everyone, not just Followers (although we do hope you'll sign up as a Shambler - see right-hand menu - if you enter)

# Entries to be submitted in the body of an email (via the NecroScope address), preferably no more than 500 words long, with your full name and postal details included.

# Competition closes December 24th, 5.00pm EST. The winner will be announced here on Dec 26th. A selection of worthy, non-winning alternative suggestions will also be posted at that time.

Gotta be in it to win it, zomfans, so start thinking zombies on TV right now!