It’s a slower week for streaming with theatrical releases ramping back up, but Netflix and Shudder still dominate the scene with numerous horror gems
Inspired by Moroccan folklore but set in modern-day Paris, Shudder’s new original, Kandisha, takes place during a sweltering summer break for best friends Amélie (Mathilde Lamusse), Bintou (Suzy Bemba) and Morjana (Samarcande Saadi). Nightly, they have fun sharing scary stories and urban legends. But when Amélie is assaulted by her ex, she remembers the story of Kandisha, a powerful and vengeful demon. Afraid and upset, Amélie summons her. The next day, her ex is found dead. The legend is true and now Kandisha is on a killing spree— and it’s up to the three girls to break the curse. It’s a new must-watch for the horror streaming service.
‘Blood Red Sky’ (Netflix)
Peri Baumeister stars in this action horror flick that pits a deadly vampire against a group of hijackers. Baumeister plays Nadja, a mother who is traveling with her son, Elias (Carl Anton Koch) on an overnight flight to the United States when terrorists seize control the plane. She realizes that she has no choice but to unleash her true monstrous nature in order to protect her son. It’s a high-octane thrill ride with plenty of blood to spare.
‘The Empty Man’ (HBO Max)
Based on the graphic novel of the same name, The Empty Man follows an ex-cop (James Badge Dale) on the trail of a missing girl. His search leads him to a secretive group attempting to summon a terrifying supernatural entity. The film faced a rough production due to the studio not understanding the project, and was dumped into theaters in the thick of the pandemic last October, where it was quickly buried. But writer and director David Prior’s horror gem has begun to gain itself a cult following – fitting, considering it’s literally about a cult – and should be best judged for yourself.
‘She’s Allergic to Cats’ (Shudder)
A mixture of horror, comedy, and pure romance, She’s Allergic to Cats follows a lonely dog groomer (Mike Pinkney) living in Hollywood searching for love, but his true passion is making weird video art that nobody understands. His menial routine spirals out of control when he meets the girl of his dreams (Sonja Kinski), crossing boundaries between reality. It’s a bizarre and quirky sort of movie, but one with tons of charm and undeniable entertainment value.
‘Masters of the Universe: Revelation (Part 1)’ (Netflix)
The Power returns in this animated series from none other than Kevin Smith, who has revived He-Man in a new imagining of the classic show that serves as a direct sequel to the original 1983 cartoon. The Guardians of Grayskull face Skeletor in a final showdown that changes Eternia forever. It’s sure to satisfy old fans and bring in new ones as well, and with a booming score from Bear McCreary, it’s guaranteed to feel massive in scale.
‘100 Foot Wave’ (HBO Max)
This new miniseries for HBO Max focuses on renowned surfer Garrett McNamara during his quest to conquer a 100 foot wave in the town of Nazaré, Portugal. Directed by Chris Smith, who recently helmed Netflix’s Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, the six-episode series shows how the initial journey led to McNamara transforming the town alongside its residents into a surfing destination known around the world.
‘Here Comes Hell’ (Shudder)
A dinner party in the 1930s descends into carnage, demonic possession, and gore in this mix of horror, comedy, and period drama. Here Comes Hell is just the kind of kitschy low-budget fun that cult movies are made out of. It’s got charm, guts, and buckets of blood, and is just downright strange in all the best ways.
With an impressive perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes, Cousins comes from New Zealand and follows three Maori cousins who live three very different and tumultuous lives, after one of them is taken from her family and raised in an orphanage. Heartbreaking and compelling, the film is a moving look at three ordinary lives and why they matter; a family drama if there’s ever been one with larger social themes at play.
‘Mass Hysteria’ (Shudder)
A group of Salem witch trial reenactors find themselves the target of an angry crowd of tourists when someone dies on Halloween Night in Salem, mounting a modern-day witch hunt. Funny, smart, and satisfyingly gory for horror fans, Mass Hysteria is the perfect kind of streaming discovery.
‘Cosmic Sin’ (Netflix)
Bruce Willis and Frank Grillo star in this new epic sci-fi adventure set in the year 2524, four hundred years after humans started colonizing the outer planets. Retired Military General James Ford (Willis) is called back into service after soldiers on a remote planet are attacked by a hostile alien fleet. The threat against the human race escalates into an inevitable interstellar war. General Ford teams up with General Eron Ryle (Grillo) and a team of elite soldiers in a race to stop the imminent attack before it is too late. There’s nothing too complicated here. Willis and Grillo take on hordes of aliens in schlocky B-movie action, and that’s exactly what you get.
CONTINUED WEEKLY EPISODES:
‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch’ (Disney+)
The Bad Batch is the latest of Star Wars’ various animated series, and the first to premiere on Disney+. Originally introduced in the prior series, The Clone Wars, the Bad Batch are a squad of clone troopers that had genetic mutations occur during the cloning process. This has given them unique abilities that other clones do not, and together they form an elite squadron to battle on the front lines of the war. The series begins with the squad dealing with the galaxy-shattering events of Order 66 and the end of the Clone Wars. It will certainly be interesting to see what happened to the clone army in between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, and the series also introduces a new female clone named Omega (Michelle Ang) who joins the Bad Batch on their missions. The first thirteen episodes are now streaming.
Also streaming now:
Netflix – ‘Sexy Beasts’, ‘The Movies That Made Us (Season 2)’, ‘Trollhunters: Rise of the Titans’
Shudder – ‘Vigilante’, ‘ROT’
HBO Max – ‘Through Our Eyes’, ‘Corazon de Mezquite’
COMING NEXT WEEK:
Netflix – ‘Django Unchained’, ‘The Walking Dead (Season 10)’, ‘Fantastic Fungi’, ‘Bartkowiak’, ‘The Flash (Season 7)’, ‘The Snitch Cartel: Origins’, ‘Tattoo Redo’, ‘Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy: Kingdom’, ‘Centaurworld’, ‘Outer Banks (Season 2)’, ‘The Last Mercenary’
Hulu – ‘All the Wild Horses’, ‘B.B. King: On the Road’, ‘The Beatles: Made on Merseyside’, ‘Bees Make Honey’, ‘Closing Gambit’, ‘Gloves Off’, ‘I, Dolours’, ‘In Extremis’, ‘Into the Night: Portraits of Life and Death’, ‘The Last Animals’, ‘Lost in Vagueness’, ‘Painkillers’, ‘For a Good Time, Call…’, ‘The Good, The Bad, The Weird’, ‘Like Someone in Love’, ‘Mad Detective’
Shudder – ‘The Boy Behind the Door’, ‘Etheria: The Series’, ‘They Remain’, ‘Der Bunker’, ‘Adoration’
HBO Max – ‘Freaky’, ‘Batwoman (Season 2)’
Disney+ – ‘Jungle Cruise’