Shudder fans can relax a little, the full January schedule has finally been released. I don’t know about the rest of you, but with the AMC shake-ups that took place in December (including the layoff of Shudder GM Craig Engler), I was getting a little nervous. Normally, the full scheduled is released around the middle of the month for the following month, and all we got was a brief PR email about Possession, Chucky and The Lair.
In addition to those three (which we wrote about last week), the following films will be added to Shudder in January:
Lake Mungo – This 2008 Australian found footage-style film has acquired a bit of a cult following over the years. After 16-year-old Alice drowns, her family begins to experience some supernatural activity, and her brother sets up cameras around the family home.
Near Dark – Shudder has added Near Dark to their streaming platform a couple of times, and it’s good to see it back. I have already gone on record stating that it’s my favorite vampire film, and even asked actor Lance Henriksen about his experience working on the film. Released in 1987, this Western-style vamp flick stars Henriksen, Bill Paxton and Jenette Goldstein (all three of whom also appeared together in Aliens that same year). Young Caleb (Adrian Pasdar) is bitten by a vampire named Mae, who then tries to make him part of her gypsy vamp family.
Undead – Billed as a “zombie science fiction comedy horror” film, this Australian film sees Rene (Felicity Mason) making the decision to leave her small town after she loses the family farm. Some falling meteorites get in the way of her plan, wreaking havoc and turning people into zombies, and she and some others end up sheltering with a kooky alien abductee. This sounds like prime Shudder material!
Q: The Winged Serpent – When an Aztec god moves into the spire of the art-deco Chrysler Building in Manhattan, he periodically dives down to messily chomp on New Yorkers. Detectives Shepard and Powell are already investigating some ritual murders, which seem to be linked to an Aztec cult, so it seems fitting that they try to solve the mystery of these gory murders.
Possession – This 1981 film stars Sam Neill and Isabelle Adjani as a married couple. When she begins to show some pretty disturbing behavior and demands a divorce, he follows her to try to find out what is going on.
The Wolf of Snow Hollow – Released in 2020, comedy horror flick The Wolf of Snow Hollow was the last film actor Robert Forster worked on shortly before his death. When a woman is attacked and killed by what appears to be a wild animal, Sheriff John Marshall (Forster) is called in to investigate. What follows are several more attacks, and rumors spread that the killer is a werewolf.
Dawn Breaks Behind the Eyes – Dieter and Margot, an unhappily married couple, visit a castle inherited by Margot. When Dieter goes down into the basement, he sees something that causes him to flee, and Margot starts to experience visions.
Countess Dracula – This Hammer film was released in 1971, and stars Ingrid Pitt as a 17th-century Hungarian widow who discovers she can stay young if she bathes in the blood of young women. The change is only temporary though, so she has to keep killing more women in order to maintain her youth.
Chucky season 1 – Now you can binge the first season of the tv series Chucky, which is a sequel to Cult of Chucky (and the rest of the films in the franchise). When a teenage boy buys a vintage red-haired Good Guys doll at a yard sale, it all goes horribly wrong. That is to say, it goes wonderfully wrong for horror fans.
Take Back the Night – When social media star Jane (Emma Fitzpatrick) is attacked by a demon-like creature after a night of partying, she has to try to find the attacker before he strikes again. Though her injuries make it clear that she was indeed attacked, her history of substance abuse and mental illness are held against her by the police, her social media followers and the media.
Road Games – This 1981 Australian thriller may be the Jamie Leigh Curtis film you not only haven’t seen, but probably haven’t even heard of. Stacy Keech is truck driver Quid, running his route along a busy highway where some nasty murders have recently occurred. Curtis is a hitchhiker named Pamela, and when he picks her up, the two begin to investigate the serial killer.
Sorry About the Demon – A comedy-horror film exlusive to Shudder, Sorry About the Demon is directed by Emily Hagins, who was one of the directors of Shudder’s Scare Package. A young man named Will moves into a new home after a breakup, and finds that he has several roommates in supernatural form. Interestingly, Hagins says the first horror film she saw was Undead, which began streaming on Shudder on January 2.
Let the Wrong One In – We have another horror comedy here, this one out of Ireland. When teenager Matt discovers his big brother Deco is a vampire, he has a decision to make: should he help Deco, or kill him? The Evil Dead-type gore has gotten some positive reviews, with its mix of CGI and practical effects, and Anthony Head actually appears as a killer of vampires. That’s right, the actor who portrayed Giles in the iconic Buffy the Vampire Slayer series appears as…a vampire slayer. I will definitely be watching this one!
Isolation – When Irish famer Dan Reilly is offered big bucks to allow DNA experiments to be made on one of his cows, he reluctantly agrees. It seems Dan is in dire financial straits, so the money comes at a good time. But, when some newborn calves emerge from the womb only to bite the attending veterinarian, Dan realizes something is afoot.
The Lair – In this Shudder original, Royal Air Force Pilot Kate is shot down over Afghanistan. Desperate for shelter, she ends up ensconced in an underground bunker that at first seems to be empty. It’s not. The Lair was directed and co-written by Neil Marshall, who brought us Dog Soldiers and The Descent.
Death Spa – OK, this film has a pretty kooky premise, but it’s an 80s flick, so of course it does. Michael Evans owns a high-tech health club run by computer. When his wife Catherine takes her life, her spirit possesses the club’s computer, causing all of that heavy equipment to murder those who use it.
In Search of Darkness: Part III – You would think the comprehensive 80s horror film doc would have covered anything of importance in its first two installments, but apparently not! It all began as a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign back in ’18, and horror fans were so excited that the campaign met its first goal in only two days. So now, In Search of Darkness is back on Shudder with a third installment, chock full of commentary and film clips. Past commentators have included the likes of Joe Bob Briggs, Tom Atkins, Mick Garris, Lloyd Kaufman, Greg Nicotero, plus a slew of other horror notables. Count me in!
Do you think Shudder’s January schedule was worth waiting for? Give us your thoughts in the comments section.