Horror Grinder

Horror Movies Horror Books Horror News

DREAD: THE UNSOLVED Explores the Alien Abduction of Travis Walton

Posted by Jans Holstrom on July 29, 2021 Dread the Unsolved Travis Walton - DREAD: THE UNSOLVED Explores the Alien Abduction of Travis Walton


November 5th, 1975, Travis Walton was working as a lumberjack in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest. After a hard day at work, he loaded up in a truck with six of his coworkers and headed back towards the nearest town, Snowflake, Arizona. As they drove on, with night settling in, they witnessed a saucer-shaped object just a hundred feet in front of them.

Related Article: DREAD: The Unsolved Plumbs the Claustrophobic Case of Josh Maddux

The truck was stopped and, after an argument, Travis decided to approach the strange craft. As he got closer, he says a beam of light struck him and he blacked out. His friends, terrified at this development, left Travis where he lay, and sped off into the night.

Once they had gotten about a quarter of a mile away, they say they saw the alien craft zip skywards. They returned to look for Travis but according to them, he was gone.

Meanwhile, Travis claims he awoke in what he thought was a hospital. He looked up to the doctors working on him and realized they were short, bald, humanoid aliens. He says he fought with them for a time before they placed a plastic wrap over his face, and things went dark again. Other times, when Travis tells this part of the story, he runs away from the aliens and gets into a control room, where he claims that he was approached by a human wearing blue coveralls and a helmet. He explains that this strange person led him through the ship, showing off the hangars and other amenities, before bringing him back to an examination room, where he’s knocked unconscious by one of the earlier aliens.

Also Read: DREAD: The Unsolved Looks for Extraterrestrial Life Underground in Dulce, New Mexico

Travis’ co-workers returned to town and spoke with authorities, who were skeptical. They believed that the 6 other workers had murdered Walton due to a disagreement earlier in the day. With no evidence supporting their claims, all they could do was work the investigation, and wait.

November 10th, 1975: Travis Walton states he woke up in the forest where he was abducted. His clothes were on backward. He states that he remembers seeing the craft close its doors and float into the distance. He wandered to a phone booth in Heber, Arizona, roughly 30 miles southwest of where he was taken. He claims the town was strangely completely empty. He places a call to his brother-in-law on the payphone and is back at home within an hour.

His attempts at recovering quietly at home were quickly thwarted. Travis Walton was on the lips of every UFO researcher and tabloid journalist in the country at that point. A man had seemingly been taken for five days and returned. No one was going to leave Travis alone. He was immediately put on the defensive, and given a lie detector test. He failed spectacularly. Some say this was due to the fresh trauma of being abducted, while others claim he had been hiding in the wilderness for five days and hadn’t gotten his story straight just yet. He would go on to pass subsequent tests.

Related Article: DREAD: The Unsolved Delves Into the Delphi Murders

Not everyone believed Travis. His most vocal detractor was UFOlogist Phillip Klass. He noted that the Sheriff that was familiar with the case stated that Walton, along with his mother and brother-in-law, were huge fans of alien media. He posited that just two weeks earlier, Walton had watched The UFO Incident, a fictionalized portrayal of the abduction of Betty and Barney Hill. Details in Walton’s story allegedly closely matched what was shown in the film.

According to Travis, the area where he was abducted began acting strangely. UFOlogists and Walton claim, without concrete truth, that the trees in the area have begun growing faster. They claim that core samples have shown increased growth at least 15 years after Walton’s abduction. Tests were allegedly done that show a chemical change in the soil in the area. The tree trunks that faced the UFO reportedly have incredibly wide and elliptical rings in their cores.

Walton maintains he was abducted. He thinks it wasn’t on purpose though. He believes that he wandered too close to aliens studying the environment, and got accidentally knocked out by their tools. He thinks he might have been airlifted onto the ship to make sure he was okay.

Also Read: DREAD: The Unsolved Explores the Case of Henryk Siwiak–The Only Recorded Homicide in NYC on 9/11

These days, the area where the event happened is a very different place than it was in 1975. In 2002, a wildfire destroyed the area. The logging road Travis and his friends were on that night has since been decommissioned by the Forest Service.

In 1979 Travis wrote a book about his experience called Fire in the Sky, which was adapted into a horror film in 1993 (trailer below). Travis Walton never went back to logging and has spent the last 40+ years touring the country, giving talks at UFO conventions. He occasionally takes groups up to the area in the  Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest where something extraordinary, whether it was extraterrestrial or a hoax, happened all those years ago.

So what do you think? Was Travis Walton abducted by aliens? Or maybe this whole thing is just a hoax between friends gone wrong. I’ll leave it up to you.

You can give me your theories in the comments or on Twitter @DreadUnsolved or on Instagram @DreadTheUnsolved. I’m also on Facebook. You can send your tips to TheUnsolved@DreadCentral.com

Thanks for watching.

Related Article: DREAD: The Unsolved Searches for a Killer in New Bedford, Massachusetts

13 Scary Horror Movies Based On True Stories / Real Life

Posted by Mike Sprague on May 8, 2021 13 Scary Movies Based on True Stories - 13 Scary Horror Movies Based On True Stories / Real Life

Can’t get enough scary horror movies? Me either. And what makes a movie scary? Like really scary? I’m thinking a big contributing factor is when it’s based on a true story. This not every time. But I think it helps. And it is with this in mind that we wanted to write up our list of 13 Scary Horror Movies Based On True Stories.

Check out the full list below!

Scary Horror Movies

The Girl Next Door

The Girl Next Door is a 2007 film directed by Gregory M. Wilson based on Jack Ketchum’s 1989 novel. It’s inspired by the real-life murder of Sylvia Likens. The producers dedicated the movie to her. It tells the tale of a teenage girl who suffers horrible abuse at the hands of her caretaker and some neighborhood boys.

Scary Horror Movies

The Sacrament

The Sacrament is a 2013 found-footage horror thriller film. Tie West wrote and directed. It centers on two VICE journalists who document their co-worker’s attempt to locate his sister after she joins a reclusive religious commune. The plot is based on the real-life events of the Jonestown Massacre of 1978.

Scary Horror Movies

The Town That Dreaded Sundown

The Town That Dreaded Sundown is a 1976 thriller. Charles B. Pierce directed and also produced from a script written by Earl E. Smith. The film is based on the 1946 Texarkana Moonlight Murders. The actual Phantom attacked eight people in or near the town of Texarkana, Texas, which is on the Texas border with Arkansas. As in the film, police never identified or caught the real killer.

Scary Horror Movies

The Exorcism of Emily Rose

The Exorcism of Emily Rose is a 2005 supernatural legal drama. Scott Derrickson directed. The film is based on the story of Anna Elisabeth “Anneliese” Michel, a German woman who underwent 67 Catholic exorcism rites the year before her death of malnutrition. The film also follows a lawyer representing the priest accused of negligent homicide after her final exorcism.

Fire in the Sky

Fire in the Sky is a 1993 sci-fi mystery. Robert Lieberman directed from a script written by Tracy Tormé based on Travis Walton’s book The Walton Experience. It describes an extraterrestrial abduction in 1975. Five men were driving in a forest and also saw a mysterious light. One left the truck and disappeared. The other four reported the event but police suspected murder was behind the disappearance… Until the man reappeared five days later.

The Haunting In Connecticut

The Haunting in Connecticut is a 2009 supernatural horror film. Peter Cornwell directed based on Ray Garton’s In a Dark Place: The Story of a True Haunting. The film is about Carmen Snedeker and her family as they move into a house (a former mortuary) and soon becomes haunted by supernatural forces occupying the house.

Scary Horror Movies

Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is a 1986 psychological horror film. John McNaughton directed based on real-life serial killers Henry Lee Lucas and also Ottis Toole. Michael Rooker gets out of prison following his mother’s murder. He begins a series of violent murders with Otis (Tom Towles). But as the depravity escalates, Henry forms a bond with Otis’ sister and things get out of hand.

Scary Horror Movies

The Conjuring

The Conjuring is a 2013 supernatural horror film. James Wan directed the script by Chad Hayes and also Carey W. Hayes. It stars Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga as Ed and Lorraine Warren married paranormal investigators who assist the Perron family, who experienced disturbing events in their farmhouse in Rhode Island in 1971.

Scary Horror Movies

The Amityville Horror

The Amityville Horror is a 1979 supernatural horror film. Stuart Rosenberg directed based on Jay Anson’s 1977 book of the same name. The story is based on the alleged experiences of the Lutz family who bought a home in Amityville, NY. The home of an 18th-century satanist and the scene of a mass murder committed the year before.



Veronica is a 2017 Spanish supernatural horror film. Paco Plaza directed based on true events from the 1991 Vallecas case. The case takes its name from the Madrid neighborhood where a young woman, Estefania Gutierrez Lazaro reportedly performed a seance at school. A nun broke her Ouija board, interrupting the ritual. She later experienced months of seizures and hallucinations, particularly of shadows and presences surrounding her.


The Exorcist

The Exorcist is a 1973 supernatural horror film directed by William Friedkin based on William Peter Blatty’s 1971 novel. It was inspired by the 1949 exorcism of a young boy known as “Roland Doe” or “Robbie Mannheim.” It was one of three exorcisms sanctioned in the US at that time. Friedkin accessed the diaries of the priests and also discussed the events with Doe’s aunt in great detail.

Nightmare Wes craven

A Nightmare On Elm Street

A Nightmare on Elm Street was directed by Wes Craven. It was inspired by an incident in the 1970s with Hmong refugees, who, after fleeing to the US because of war and genocide in Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, suffered disturbing nightmares. Some died in their sleep soon after. Medical authorities called the phenomenon Asian Death Syndrome. The condition afflicted men between 19-57.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre was inspired by Ed Gein aka the Butcher of Plainfield. Gein’s crimes gathered notoriety in 1957 after authorities discovered he exhumed corpses from graves and also fashioned keepsakes from their bones and skin. Gein also confessed to killing tavern owner Mary Hogan in 1954 and hardware store owner Bernice Worden in 1957. Bonus: Alfred Hitchock’s Psycho was also based on Gein.


Which scary horror movie based on a true story do you find the scariest?

Make sure to let us know in the comments below or on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram! You can also hit me up over on Twitter @MikeSpregg325.

Who Goes There Podcast: Episode 112 – Fire in the Sky

Posted by Matt Smith on April 21, 2017

Does anyone older than 25 remember, in the early 90’s Fox was overrun by shows about aliens? It seemed like Fox just decided it wasn’t enough for everyone to simply “believe”; they wanted you to believe these skinny grey bastards were right outside your door!

Well, sometimes a child will watch to much of these shows and grow into a full blown nerd, much like our dear Jorge. Well Jorge has put his stubby little sci-fi cock into our hot horror pussy and we gave birth to a review on Fire in the Sky, a UFO abduction movie “based on actual events”. Right…

Fire in the Sky

I can see your dirty pillows. Everyone will. It’s the Who Goes There Podcast episode 112!

The Who Goes There Podcast is available to subscribe to on iTunes right here. Not an iTunes user? You can listen on our Dread Central page. Can’t get enough? We also do that social media shit. You’ll find us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, Twitch, and YouTube.

The post Who Goes There Podcast: Episode 112 – Fire in the Sky appeared first on Dread Central.

The Story of Travis Walton and the Fire in the Sky

Posted by Matt Molgaard on January 11, 2017

We’ve all long wondered the legitimacy of the countless claims of alien visitations. Some will tell you they’ve seen big eyed, elongated, blue in hue creatures lurking about in the woods. Some will tell you that mysterious ships have been seen hovering over rural regions, no apparent concern with being spotted by us feeble humans. Hell, some will tell you they’ve actually witnessed those ships land right in their backyards.

And then there’s the case of Travis Walton, a logger putting in long hard hours in Arizona, only to be abducted – allegedly – by those strange creatures.

Fire in the Sky

It was November 5th, 1975. Walton and a handful of his co-workers were stuffed in a truck, in motion, when they suddenly spotted something unidentifiable hovering in the air a mere 110 feet away. The UFO emitted a high-pitched buzz, and apparently, that buzz called to the curious side of Walton, who left the truck and approached the floating ship. If the story is true, Walton’s curiosity fueled departure from the vehicle led to a uniquely horrifying experience.

A sizable beam of light, or energy, as Walton described it in his book, “Fire in the Sky, The Walton Experience” descended from the ship lingering in the sky, focusing directly on Walton. Within seconds the man had been essentially sucked through the air, into the ship. He was gone, just a work truck full of Walton’s fellow co-workers left to witness the anomalous abduction.

What followed for local residents was a five-day manhunt, a massive search party that yielded nothing. Walton’s body wasn’t found mutilated or lifeless; the man seemed to have disappeared from the earth we know. But nearly a week after Walton’s strange disappearance, he came back. And he came back with a terrifying account of what transpired during his time away from our reality.

What followed for Walton was a tornado of questions from media and locals. He also endured the terror of reliving an encounter with beings not of this world. As Walton would tell it, in the wake of that brilliant light emitted by the craft, he found himself in a makeshift hospital room, strange, short aliens leaning over him, examining. Although Walton’s memory of the entire ordeal would prove blurry at best, he did carry the memory of being suffocated with a plastic material of some sort.

That sounds pretty fucking creepy (if you ask me), and a bit out of bounds when contemplating innocent human study.
According to Walton, and to the chagrin of nonbelievers (whom Walton contemplates but ultimately dismisses with an air of acceptance, not everyone is prepared to accept the possible reality of the situation), the abduction seems as though it did indeed happen. And if that is undeniably the case, it was certainly a paralyzing ordeal that changed one man’s life on November 5th, 1975, and forever after.

That great beam of energy, or light, that Walton carelessly approached out of morbid curiosity and a temporary lapse in self-preservation, would have long lasting effects, a few of which weren’t exactly terrible. Walton was able to write a very successful book chronicling that initial night’s occurrences (and some of the challenges that arose on the heels of his reported abduction) and some of the things he directly endured at the gangly hands of alien lifeforms. He also eventually saw his story picked up by Paramount, which means he pocketed a fair load of change in the cinematic deal. I’ll reiterate: for as harrowing as his journey may have been, he did eventually walk away with a paycheck large enough to ensure he ate well for many a moon.

Travis Walton

Travis Walton

Could that financial influx been the truest motivation for what may have been a brilliantly planned hoax, or did Travis Walton go where few – if any – ever had before?

Walton was adamant that the fire in the sky that eventually “beamed him up” was no hoax, joke or elaborate prank. According to the man, what we’ve seen, and what we’ve read in his novel, his recounting of those terrifying incidents were not fabricated, and as for Walton’s work buddies and witnesses to the strange occurrence – who were also subjected to polygraph tests – no blatant signs of deception were detected. The whole ordeal left everyone rather mystified, perplexed by the understanding that the abduction incident might actually be a complete truth.

Walton’s life would forever change following the events of November 5th, 1975, and while writing a successful book can help to establish some financial security, Walton was already employed in a field that isn’t exactly known for shortchanging laborers. Why fabricate such a wild and unlikely occurrence? Was it an unquenchable thirst for fame? Could stardom have been the greatest driving fact behind setting up such a well-executed occurrence? It’s possible, but it’s impossible to write the story off without at least a bit of curiosity.

Even if you believe this story is entirely manufactured – possibly for financial gain – there are thousands of individuals who disagree, standing firm behind the belief that Walton was abducted by aliens and subjected to rigorous, often uncomfortable tests by little blue men. But there are a number of other specialists in the law enforcement and medical fields that believe the whole ordeal to be a meticulously planned hoax. And supporting those disbelievers are polygraph tests in which – while initially passed – eventually helped to exploit some inconsistencies in the men’s’ stories.

Well known UFO researcher, Philip J. Klass shared his opinion that the tests were “poorly administered” and that Walton used “polygraph countermeasures” (holding ones breathe, for example) to beat the test. Klass also managed to uncover an earlier failed polygraph test administered to Walton, by an examiner who concluded the test involved “gross deception.”

So where does it all leave fans, the curious and the skeptical alike? It essentially leaves us nowhere, pondering the legitimacy of the case. The more time that passes only helps the memory of this disturbing story to slowly fade.

But the number of the disbelievers continues to grow, fueled by curiosity, and a goal of torching all obdurate beliefs. But on the flipside of the very same ccoin, there are countless paranormal and extraterrestrial specialists who will more likely than not know whether Walton’s story is entire truth, or a complete hoax, or even a blend of both. The Fire in the Sky story remains America’s highest profile case of this nature. And on one hand, I’d love to know – definitively – the truth or fabrication of the haunting tale.

The post The Story of Travis Walton and the Fire in the Sky appeared first on Dread Central.

10 Awesome Alien Invasion Movies That Are Worth Your Time

Posted by Kieran Fisher on June 24, 2016

With Independence Day: Resurgence upon us, aliens look set to invade the box office this summer.  It’s been 20 years since Roland Emmerich’s sci-fi blockbuster crash landed and grossed over $800 million worldwide, showcasing extraterrestrial threats at their most bombastic, brainless, and bodacious. Now, with the sequel, he looks set to continue in that vein, providing the type of big budget extravaganza audiences appreciate during the summer season.

However, throughout the years, alien invasion flicks have come in all shapes and sizes.  In America they gained traction midway through the 20th century during an unrest period, a time when people lived in fear of foreign ideologies imposing themselves on their culture.  As the decades progressed, the alien invasion film would continue to prove itself as a popular hallmark sub-genre in science fiction, evolving in many forms.


Now is a better time than any to look back on some of the great alien invasion movies.  Limiting the list to 10 was damn near impossible, but the aim was to make it diverse and cater to a wide array of different tastes.  Still, I’m overridden with guilt due to the amount of incredible flicks I had to leave out.  Now I know how it feels to leave a pet store with an adorable bunny rabbit knowing that the others will remain there alone until someone comes along to home them.

What are some of your favorite alien invasion movies?  Which ones should I be imprisoned for leaving out?  Are there any unseen gems you’d recommend?  Sound off in the comments, and let us know.

Earth vs. the Flying Saucers (1956)

The alien invasion movie was at its peak in American cinema during the 1950’s following the outbreak of Cold War panic and fear of Communism.  Much like a real extraterrestrial invasion would be, Communism was perceived as an otherworldly threat to American culture, and these films encapsulated the hysteria by posing allegories of totalitarian rule trying to impose itself.

Earth vs. the Flying Saucers had no qualms about striking that fear in American audiences.  There is even a scene where a UFO attacks the White House and other capital monuments – which many interpreted as a metaphorical attack on democracy by foreign regimes.  However, in the film, it’s American soldiers who are first to fire and start the conflict between humanity and the beings from outer space, which says more about our race’s fear of lashing out against the unknown instead of trying to understand it.

Most impressively, the film boasts some outstanding special effects courtesy of the wizard Ray Harryhausen, who animated the flying saucers with impressive stop-motion animation.  Some scenes also served as stock footage for subsequent sci-fi films and television shows, most famously appearing in an episode of the 1985 revival of “The Twilight Zone.’’  Earth vs. the Flying Saucers is an intelligent science fiction film that still holds up remarkably well by today’s standards.

The Mysterians (1957)

The Mysterians is a Tokusatsu film directed by the legendary Ishirô Honda.  Honda was an iconic filmmaker in his homeland, renowned for directing many popular Toho Godzilla movies – along with other kaiju and science fiction fare.

In The Mysterians, an endangered alien species arrives on Earth to demand a tract of land for their race to live on.  They also want to breed with the human women so their race can repopulate.  As we all know, alien demands never go down well in films of this ilk – and naturally, it leads to a disagreement and subsequent warfare ensues.  There’s also a giant robot for our heroes to contend with on top of the horny alien invaders.

The Mysterians is up there with some of Toho’s finest pictures, and while it might be camp by today’s standards, it’s one of the few color sci-fi films of its time period.  It also showcases some wonderful special effects that deserve to be marveled at.  Plus, did I mention there’s a giant robot?

Alien Raiders (2008)

Ben Rock’s Alien Raiders is a movie that’s criminally overlooked.  Don’t let the corny title put you off; it’s anything but silly.  In fact, it’s actually an effectively taut heist thriller with an extraterrestrial twist that keeps you on your toes throughout.  Think John Carpenter if he decided to blend Assault on Precinct 13 with The Thing.  That being said, it’s very much its own self-contained menacing beast.

The story takes place on Christmas Eve in a small town supermarket known as Hastings.  Just as the store is about to close, a group of armed militants invade and kill several of the employees and shoppers, while holding the rest hostage. Though the assailants at first appear to be criminals, they reveal themselves to be a team of scientists on the hunt for an alien infestation they’ve tracked to the store.  Are they crazy delusional conspiracy theorists?  Or is an alien invasion afoot, trying to take over the human race at a grassroots level?

Alien Raiders is perfectly paced, brilliantly acted, and constantly intense.  Those who have seen it tend to sing its praises – and deservedly so.  This is the embodiment of the term “underrated gem,’’ and I urge every horror fan to check it out.

The Hidden (1987)

The Hidden, directed by Jack Sholder, is a cocktail of some of the best genres cinema has to offer: horror, sci-fi, action, and buddy crime comedy.  If Shane Black and Fred Dekker penned The Terminator and let the latter direct, it’d probably turn out something like this.  And yes, it’s as awesome as it sounds.

The story centers on an FBI agent (Kyle MacLachlan) and a homicide detective (Michael Nouri), who are pursuing a shapeshifting alien life form on a crime spree throughout ‘80’s Los Angeles.  The alien has a penchant for violence, car theft, and stripping, depending on which unfortunate host it’s overtaken at the time.

If it’s fun aliens you’re after, then The Hidden contains arguably the most rebellious in history.  This creature doesn’t need a fleet of flying saucers to fuck shit up.  In a decade of horror excellence, The Hidden stands out as one of the best offerings produced from those glorious halcyon days of cult cinema.

Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988)

An homage to the alien invasion flicks from the 1950’s, presented in the form of the camp ludicrousness that encapsulated the majority of 1980’s horror comedy, Killer Klowns from Outer Space is the quintessential B movie.  There’s a reason why this is one of the most celebrated films out there among genre fans.  It’s everything you could ever ask for and more – that is, unless you suffer from Coulrophobia or are devoid of a childish sense of humor anyway.

The story follows the events in a small town terrorized by extraterrestrial clowns, who have traveled to Earth in a big top spaceship to unleash hilarious havoc.  Better yet, there isn’t a circus gag that isn’t incorporated into the madness: These range from man-eating shadow puppets, popcorn guns, and flowers you don’t want to be sprinkled with if you value your life.

To summarize: This is one of the very best things to ever happen to humanity, even if it did seek to wipe us all out.

They Live (1988)

Throughout the ‘80’s, John Carpenter was a cinematic steam train, a true powerhouse of genre filmmaking who was churning out classics like Madonna was hit singles.  However, unlike Madge, most of his films didn’t enjoy instant success; but they would find their audience over time, with the majority now enjoying immortal legacies.  And they did it without constantly flaunting their crotches for 30 years as well.

The story centers on Nada (Roddy Piper), a drifter without much purpose in life.  That is, until he discovers a pair of sunglasses which show the world the way it truly is – a hub for elite aliens who use subliminal messaging to control humanity.  That doesn’t sit too well with Hot Rod so he sets out to free the human race, and much ass-kicking ensues.

They Live was Carpenter at his most satirical, making statements about class divisions, the wealthy ruling class, and the power of the mass media.  Its message wasn’t exactly subtle, but one of the reasons why it still holds up is because the same themes are still relevant today as they were back in ’88.  It’s a cinematic Marxist proletariat uprising for those who want to kick ass and chew bubblegum.  Throw this one on during the current political season, and it might light a fire in you.

Fire in the Sky (1993)

Fire in the Sky is based on a supposed true story about a man named Travis Walton from Arizona, who claimed to have been abducted by aliens.  He recounted the events in his book The Walton Experience in 1978, though many skeptics have dismissed his story as a hoax.  That being said, if you believe in extraterrestrial life forms, it’s well worth checking out.

The film follows a group of five men who discover a mysterious light in a forest after working one night.  Intrigued by the site, Walton (D.B. Sweeney) decides to investigate, only to be sucked up by a flying saucer.  The other four men escape and report the strange event, but nobody believes them.  Local law enforcement suspects that murder is behind Walton’s disappearance – until Walton reappears five days later to recount his story of alien abduction.

Of all the alien invasion and abduction movies in existence, this one scores the most points due to its realism.  As far-fetched and unbelievable as the source material might be, Robert Lieberman set out to make a harrowing horror film about aliens and succeeded triumphantly.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

Almost every telling of the Body Snatchers story has been told well.  The 1956 original is a hallmark of science fiction and horror; the overlooked 1993 Abel Ferrera remake is a masterful horror film by a brilliant filmmaker.  Heck, even the Robert Rodriguez reinterpretation for the MTV generation, The Faculty, is an absolute gem.  The Loony Toons version?  Gimme a “HELL YEAH!’’  The Invasion in 2007 starring Nicole Kidman?  Meh.  However, for the most part, it’s made for some effective films no matter how many times it’s told or the guise it comes in. But the 1978 version is petrifying perfection, and most tend to agree it’s one movie that validates the existence of remakes.

The story follows a group of people in San Francisco who discover the human race is being replaced one by one with emotionless alien clones.  As the invaders increase in number, it’s up to the gang to stop them.  But whom do they trust?  Nobody, that’s whom they freaking trust.

The original Invasion of the Body Snatchers was rife with paranoia.  But here it’s cranked up to 11 to tangible effect.  The 1970’s was a popular decade for conspiracy thrillers following the Watergate scandal.  Movies like The Parallax View, All the President’s Men, and The Conversation were prime examples of filmmakers reacting to national hysteria and distrust of government agencies.  Invasion of the Body Snatchers is a brilliant parable for the violation of human rights that’s on par with any film in history for creating sheer tension and pummeling paranoia.

The World’s End (2013)

Camaraderie.  Friendship.  Overcoming the odds.  All the while trying to accomplish personal goals as the years advance on you.  Being in a state of pure inebriation as you try to cope with the loss of youth.  Yearning for a time of living carefree with the world at your feet.  This is what it means to be human, ladies and gentlemen, and Edgar Wright showed us that with The World’s End, to cap off his outstanding “Cornetto’’ trilogy.

The film sees Nick Frost and Simon Pegg team up once again to save the day, only this time they’re joined by Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman, and Eddie Marsan to make up the posse of elite British character actors at their comedic best.  The story follows a group of high school friends who reconvene 20 years later to embark on a pub crawl they could never complete back in their heyday, only to find that their town has been overtaken by alien invaders.

Like previous films Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, The World’s End expertly blends hilarious comedy with genre tropes to create a film that authentically homages the type of movie it’s parodying, while subverting expectations just enough to keep it fresh and unpredictable.  It works as both a comedy and as a sci-fi/horror film, with a few scenes that are quite emotionally hard-hitting and touching as well.  It’s not the best film in the trilogy, but it’s still a perfect addition nonetheless.

Dark City (1998)

Dark City isn’t your typical alien invasion flick; but as it involves a city overrun by a mysterious alien race, it totally counts.  It was directed by Alex Proyas, four years after he scored a huge hit with The Crow. It also boasts an all-star cast of cult icons featuring the talents of Rufus Sewell, William Hurt, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly, and Ian Richardson.  The talent involved speaks volumes – and bear in mind this was when Proyas was still an acclaimed director.

Rufus Sewell plays John Murdoch, an amnesiac who finds himself at the center of a murder mystery in a nightmarish world where the sun never rises.  As he sets out to clear his name, he must evade the police and a mysterious group known only as “The Strangers,’’ who are dissecting people’s memories and replacing them to suit their own agenda.  With time running out, Murdoch must find a way to stop the threat before it’s too late.

Dark City is a smorgasbord of influences that intrinsically weaves steampunk, film noir, science fiction, horror, and mystery.  The film is a one-of-a-kind experience that’s as engaging and captivating as it is unique and otherworldly.  It also explores some fascinating philosophical themes, such as “Last Thursdayism” – which presents the theory that the world could have been created at any time and we wouldn’t know about it, as it was designed to seem historic – and Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave” theory – which explores the quest for educational enlightenment.  Yet, it’s not a pretentious film that pushes ideas at the expense of entertainment either.  Whether you just want to kick back and enjoy a fun mystery or you want to delve deeper beneath the surface, it provides both options in abundance.  A true masterpiece.

The post 10 Awesome Alien Invasion Movies That Are Worth Your Time appeared first on Dread Central.

Chiller TV’s Real Fear 2: The Truth Behind (More) Movies Premiering in September

Posted by The Woman In Black on August 21, 2013

On Friday, September 6th, at 9pm ET, Chiller TV will present the second installment of its successful "Real Fear" franchise with the premiere of "Real Fear 2: The Truth Behind (More) Movies."

read more

Top Seven Alien Abductions in Cinema and on TV

Posted by Doctor Gash on February 23, 2013

Are we alone in the universe? Pondering upon the vastness of the universe, we'd have to be incredibly self-centered to think we are the only life form in existence. And although we haven't seen proof of our intergalactic brethren, there have been plenty of films and TV shows about their clandestine (and more demonstrative) visits to Earth.

Now we have an entirely new horrific vision about one of those alien visits and the havoc they cause in Dark Skies. Keri Russell and Josh Hamilton star as the married couple whose life becomes derailed by mysterious happenings caused by a disturbing malevolent force…and it isn't a domestic disturbance by any means. This one is imported. Way imported.

To celebrate the release of Dark Skies this weekend, we have compiled a list of some of the best alien abduction stories we've enjoyed over the years. Come reminisce with us to get into the mood for this new, creepy tale about extra-terrestrials…and they're not the good Reese's Pieces-eating kind either!

"American Horror Story: Asylum"
Perhaps you forgot the alien abduction part of "American Horror Story: Asylum." With all the other stuff going on…a Nazi doing human experimentation, demonic possession, a serial killer…it's easy to see how one could forget that alien abduction was a big part of the story. But yes, indeed, amid all the other madness, Kit's wife, Alma, was stolen away…and that wasn't the only tinkering the greys did. Although we never got a good look at them, alien abduction certainly helped to shape this entertaining season of the upstart "American Horror Story" anthology series.

The Fourth Kind
Bad things happen in Alaska, folks. Not to say that it isn't a beautiful part of the world, and we certainly love our Dreadies from the north, but come on, you're ripe for the pickin's up there. Just look how those vamps took the place apart in 30 Days of Night. And then apparently the extra-terrestrials got wind of the goings-on in Alaska, and in The Fourth Kind we saw just what kind of damage they can do. This mockumentary is based completely around alien abduction and the damage and aftermath it caused to one doctor's life. As part of the film was intended to be reenactments and part actual footage of the events, The Fourth Kind manages to conjure up some skin-crawling moments. And that whole owl thing…I’ve never been a fan of those creepy, round-faced bastards anyway.

Ever wonder what happens after an unsuspecting hillbilly gets sucked into an alien spacecraft tractor beam? You wouldn't initially think of Predators as an abduction film, but that's exactly what it is. However, what we get in Predators is what happens to the victims after they’ve been stolen away without a trace. The film received mixed reviews, but you have to admit it’s a great premise. The predators abduct the most skilled and vicious fighters from around the universe to hunt in training exercises. And what a unique cast. Aside from Adrien Brody you had Danny Trejo, Topher Grace (who didn’t appear to fit with the rest of the murderous characters…but surprise, surprise), Laurence Fishburn, Walton Goggins and one of the original UFC fighters, Oleg Taktarov. Nice to see the predators at play, unwinding with their guests.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Here’s an example of another type of abduction…the abduction of the personality. In Invasion of the Body Snatchers the aliens didn’t take anyone anywhere; they just stripped humanity of their... well… humanity. Whether you're talking about the original from 1956 or the well-received remake from 1978 (both based on the novel The Body Snatchers by Jack Finney), both films dealt with the same general concept: the loss of our emotion. And in reality, if stripped of emotion, what are we? This may be a scarier concept than actual physical abduction because you can survive a good anal probing, but what becomes of you when you lose yourself?

Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Just to prove that all alien abductions aren’t bad, Steven Spielberg brought us the iconic film Close Encounters of the Third Kind. And just in case you still didn’t believe that aliens weren’t necessarily our enemies, he followed it up, of course, with E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, but no one got snatched up into space in that one. Although Close Encounters did end up on a positive note, it was quite harrowing along the way. Richard Dreyfuss' performance is one of the most memorable of his career (who could forget his mashed potato Devil's Tower sculpture?). And have we ever really gotten that five-tone song out of our heads? Do-do-doo-do-doooo.

Fire in the Sky
Based on the real-life story of Travis Walton's personal tale, Fire in the Sky does for alien abductions what The Amityville Horror did for haunted houses. That is, taking an incredible tale of a supernatural experience, one that is believable but not able to be proven, and making an incredibly powerful book and, ultimately, movie about it. Many fans of the genre feel that Fire in the Sky is indeed the scariest alien abduction film they've ever seen, and that's an opinion that's hard to argue. If you really dig this movie and would like to check out more on the real-life abduction claim, track down a copy of Travis Walton's book, The Walton Experience.

"The X-Files"
Well, folks (and this one goes out to you younger readers), long before "The Walking Dead" was the must-watch genre show on TV, there was a little program called "The X-Files" that managed to hold our attention for a few years. In actuality, we all know that Agents Mulder and Scully and "The X-Files" was THE show for horror/sci-fi fans for a long time. And although the weekly episodes had our favorite agents chasing all kinds of supernatural baddies, there was that huge underlying story arc about Mulder's sister and his belief that she was abducted by aliens. The series spawned a pair of movies that both landed in the "meh" department, but if there was ever a show that piqued our interests in alien abduction, "The X-Files" was it.

Dark Skies Synopsis
Dark Skies is a psychological thriller about a suburban couple whose lives become a nightmare when a terrifying alien presence enters their home each night to prey upon their children. Increasingly isolated from skeptical friends and neighbors, the couple are forced to take matters into their own hands to save their family.

Read our Dark Skies review!

Got news? Click here to submit it!
Enter another dimension in the comments section below!