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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Pagan Festival Shout Out: Lammas/Lithasblot

 August 1 is Lammas Day , the festival of the wheat harvest, and is the first harvest festival of the year. I start my celebration on July 31st, which is also the Nordic festival Lithasblot. Lithasblot The harvest festival; giving thanks to Urda (Ertha) for her bounty. Often alms are given to the unfortunate at this time, or loaves in the shape of the fylfot (the Sun-wheel, which fell into regrettable disrepute during the dark times of the second World War when the symbol was perverted as a symbol of chaos and darkness).

(Frey Fest/Lughnasa/Lugnasad/Lammas) is an Irish Gaelic name for the feast which commemorates the funeral games of Lugh, Celtic god of light, and son of the Sun.  In the mythological story of the Wheel of the Year, the Sun God transfers his power into the grain, and is sacrificed when the grain is harvested. Lammas is a festival celebrating the first fruits of harvest, the fruits of our labours, and seeing the desires that we had at the start of the year unfold so rituals will be centred around this.  Lammas is an early Christian festival, "lammas" means loaf mass and represented the first loaves baked from that years crop. These were taken to church and laid on the altar.
It's a time for bread-making and corn-dollies. Goddesses celebrated around this time include Demeter and Ceres. Trees associated with Lammas are Hazel and Gorse and herbs are Sage and Meadowsweet. Colors associated with Lammas are golds, yellows and orange for the God and red for the Goddess as mother.

Lithasblot has long been associated with ceremonial magic and magical workings. Urda is one of the Norns in Norse mythology. Along with Verðandi (possibly "happening" or "present") and Skuld (possibly "debt" or "future"), Urðr makes up a trio of Norns that are described as deciding the fates of people. Urðr is attested in stanza 20 of the Poetic Edda poem Völuspá and theProse Edda book Gylfaginning. Urðr is together with the Norns located at the well Urðarbrunnr beneath the world ash tree Yggdrasil of Asgard. They spin threads of life, cut marks in the pole figures and measure people's destinies, which shows the fate of all human beings and gods. Norns are always present when a child is born and decide its fate. The three Norns represent the past (Urðr), future (Skuld) and present (Verðandi). Urðr is commonly written as Urd or Urth. In some English translations, her name is glossed with the Old English form of urðr; Wyrd.

Incidentally the holidays fall on a rare Blue Moon which doesn't happen again until 2018. A “blue moon” has nothing to do with the lunar orb’s color but commonly refers to the second of two full moons that occur in a single calendar month. According to the “Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins,” the first recorded English usage of “blue moon” dates to 1528. Maine Farmers’ Almanac defined a “blue moon” as the third full moon in a season with four full moons instead of the typical three. The third, and not the fourth, full moon was considered to be the extra one in order to keep named moons, such as the harvest moon, linked to proper times of the year.
There is no real significance documented in paganism historically that would suggest the blue moon is mystically endowed with more power, but I choose to see it as pretty significant. It is a rare event. And since it is taking place during the first harvest festival I find that pretty special. So I think that the magic of the moon will have a little extra "umpf" in it this weekend. I plan to celebrate starting tomorrow with making a few crafts, a feast based on my go-to country garden foods. Wheat Bread, Butter beans, potatoes and onions, collard greens, and ham. I will have enough for both Lithasblot and Lammas. I will decorate my altar and light the candles. Do a little cleansing and send out good vibes as I meditate. Plus I will write down a prayer, some wishes to be sent out to the universe and declaration of devotion and thanks to gods and goddesses. I usually wrap the message with incense and dried flowers and tie it with hemp twine. I place it deep within the bonfire and focus on what I have written down as the fire burns and smoke washes over me! It has become my personal tradition. Anyway I hope all have a blessed festival weekend!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

After Dark Films Announces the Re-Launch of it's Famed '8 Films to Die For'

Press Release:
After Dark Films Announces the Re-Launch of it's Famed '8 Films to Die For' Horror Brand and New Partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
Contagion Horror Epic Re-Kill Spreads Fear as the First Film Released in the Bloody New Series
The Terror Hit Theaters October 16th, 2015
Los Angeles, July 28th, 2015: - After Dark Films has established a new working partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment to release
'8 Films to Die For' a teeth-shattering line up of 8 terrifying horror features. This agreement is a huge step forward for the horror giant, After Dark Films, and famed media distributor Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.
"We are excited to be showcasing these films with Fox. They are such an experienced and enthusiastic partner and we know that '8 Films to Die For' is in the most capable of hands." Courtney Solomon, CEO of After Dark Films
The first in a panic inducing line up of horrors is Re-Kill, the epidemic horror film written by Michael Hurst (Room 6) and directed by Valeri Milev (Wrong Turn 6: Last Resort). This highly anticipated and terrifying film focusing on a devastating outbreak is the perfect pick to kick off the highly touted '8 Films to Die For' re-launch.
"With this new line up we are delivering to our fans the film they have been waiting for, Re-Kill. This post-apocalyptic feature is our most highly anticipated horror film to date," says Stephanie Caleb, EVP, Creative Affairs & Acquisitions of After Dark Films.
Re-Kill Synopsis:
It's been 5 years since the outbreak that wiped out 85% of the world's population, but the war between Re-Animates (Re-Ans) and Humans wages on, as most of the major cities are still uninhabitable. Within the few surviving cities, the Re-Ans have been segregated into "zones" and are policed by the R-Division of the QUASI S.W.A.T. Unit who hunt to re-kill the Re-Ans in the hope of quelling a second outbreak.
'8 Films to Die For' and Re-Kill will have a limited theatrical release, nation wide, on October 16th, 2015.

'Scream The Series' Renewed For Season 2!

MTV has renewed 'Scream' for a second season. MTV said the series has generated 7.9 million streams across platforms and averaged 60% increases in L+3 over L+SD ratings weekly.
Mina Lefevre (MTVs EVP of Series Development and Head of Scripted Programming) said "It has been a wonderful experience working with Bob Weinstein and his team who are such connoisseurs of this genre and we are thrilled by how our viewers have responded to the reinvention of Scream."
Bob Weinstein (o-chairman of The Weinstein Co. and Dimension Films) added "We promise even more scares, surprises, romance and of course kills in season two."

Trailer And Release Details For "From Parts Unknown: Fight Like A Girl"

Press Release:
Strongman Pictures Entertainment announce the release of the long awaited female wrestling, exploitation action flick, FROM PARTS UNKNOWN: FIGHT LIKE A GIRL (aka FIGHT LIKE A GIRL) on DVD and VOD platforms across Australia on August 19th, and the UK and USA early 2016.
After almost 9 years the wrestle-apocalypse has finally arrived. FROM PARTS UNKNOWN : FIGHT LIKE A GIRL is a back-breaking body slam of exploitation movie madness no fan of alternative cinema should miss. With it’s combination of beautiful wrestling women, slimy corporate monsters, blood soaked everything, and a quirky sense of humor, FROM PARTS UNKNOWN: FIGHT LIKE A GIRL seems destined to take a place in the annals of HollyWeird cult cinema.
FROM PARTS UNKNOWN: FIGHT LIKE A GIRL is distributed by MONSTER PICTURES AUS and will be available through JB HIFI and selected retailers from AUG 19. It can be preordered from JB Hifi here MONSTER PICTURES UK will release the film in the UK and CAMP MOTION PICTURES will release in North America early in 2016.
The wrestle-apocalypse is nigh. As a young girl Charlie sees her Daddy, a Pro Wrestling Champion, die in the ring. It starts her quest to become a wrestler in his memory. No easy task in the face of disapproval from her boyfriend, a pesky day job, and a boss who runs her into the ground. It doesn’t seem like Charlie will ever find time to chase her dreams.
When Charlie’s psycho boss steals unstable military technology and unleashes homicidal minions on an unsuspecting world Charlie has no choice but to bring the body slams and take these murderous Jabronis for a stroll down smack down boulevard.
Fight like a girl, it’s the end of the world.
Premiering in Melbourne, Australia at The Thornbury Theatre in January this year FROM PARTS UNKNOWN: FIGHT LIKE A GIRL entertained a sold out audience with it’s 80s aesthetics, sense of fun and action, and ambitious scope for a DIY film project.
FROM PARTS UNKNOWN was produced by Melbourne based production company Strongman Pictures Entertainment, and written, directed and edited by Daniel Armstrong. Armstrong’s previous film is the international cult hit MURDERDROME – the world’s first roller derby horror movie, which hit a chord with alternative cinema fans world wide.

Release Details And Trailer For "Tremors 5: Bloodlines"

Press Release:
A deadly threat resurfaces halfway around the world when giant, man-eating worms attack a South African wildlife park in the sci-fi comedy "Tremors 5: Bloodlines", available on Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD, and Digital HD on October 6, 2015. from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.
Michael Gross (“Family Ties,” “Suits,”) returns as Graboid hunter extraordinaire Burt Gummer, with Jamie Kennedy (“The Cleveland Show,” Scream franchise) as his new tech-savvy second-in-command, in this all-new adventure. The latest chapter of the franchise known for its campy humor and voracious monsters features thrilling new special effects, 25 minutes of bonus features, extended scenes, and outtakes, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film.
The stakes are raised for survivalist Burt Gummer (Michael Gross) in his most dangerous monster hunt yet. When Gummer’s hired to capture a deadly Assblaster terrorizing South Africa, he and his new sidekick, Travis Welker (Jamie Kennedy), find themselves in a battle to the death against the fiercely aggressive Assblasters and Graboids. Discovering that the monsters have evolved into even more lethal creatures, their mission takes on a whole new level of unseen terror — far more than they bargained for.
Special Features:
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes
  • Outtakes
  • Tremors 5: Behind the Bloodlines featurette

Crowd Funding Starts For Indie Slasher "Pi Day Die Day"

A crowd funding campaign is underway right now over on for indie slasher "Pi Day Die Day". The film is directed by Michael E. Cullen II of Cullen Park Productions, in conjunction with One Stoplight Productions. "Pi Day Die Daytells the story happening March 14, 2016 and a serial killer is on the loose in a small Ohio town.  The students of Euclid High fear for their lives as their classmates disappear, falling victim to this elusive murderer.  With the help of Euclid High's math teacher, Mr. Douglas, Detectives Mahoney and Beecher find clues to solving this circle of bloodshed. 

The film will feature the original Jason Voorhees from Friday the 13th, Ari Lehman. There is also a teaser trailer that has been released for "Pi Day Die Day" you can check out. Lindsey LaForest and Michael E. Cullen II recently talked about "Pi Day Die Day" on Fred LeFebvre's morning show on NewsRadio 1370 WSPD. Click here to listen to the podcast after you check out the teaser, and while you are check out the campaign page on Indiegogo. 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Official Trailer For "Attack Of The Killer Shrews" Remake

Check out the official trailer for remake of cult creature feature, "Attack Of The Killer Shrews". The film is directed by Ken Cosentino and is a slapstick, no budget version starring Jonathan Rogers, Bill Kennedy, Elizabeth Houlihan, Baird Hageman, Marcus Ganci-Rotella, Cheryl Szymczak, Mick O'Keefe, Bill Brown, James Ventry and JB Aaron. Not sure when the release date is on this one but I will be glad to put it right next to the original and 2012's "Return Of The Killer Shrews" on my shelf. I love b-movies, and especially low budget b-movies.

A group of misfits, including a small town sheriff, a high-brow professor, and a B-movie scream queen, must defend the world against an invasion of monstrous, killer shrews! Complete with awful shrew puppets and a special cameo by the creator of the Toxic Avenger, Lloyd Kaufman, "Attack of the Killer Shrews!" combines Mel Brooks style humor with a classic drive in creature feature plot to bring the world the "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!" of the new millennium! 


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