Dark and scary Banshees and Tasks?  Yup, it’s on this week’s terror ticket as we check out the new to DVD After Dark Originals "Scream of the Banshee" and "The Task" from Lionsgate hitting shelves July 26. 



Check out the ear piercing and deadly assignment details below!




   Title: "Scream of the Banshee"

   Grade: 4

   Cast: Lauren Holly, Lance Henriksen, Leanne Cochran

   Director: Steven C. Miller

   Rating: R

   Runtime: 90 minutes

   Release Company: Lionsgate

   Website: www.lionsgatedvd.com




The Flick: There are some seriously cheesy moments in Banshee that cry bad SyFy channel, but also some surprisingly creative tense moments as well.  (The whole opening the box scene brings back the "Creepshow" crate cool!)  So what you’ve got is a mix of both good and bad scares (banshee sex awesome, finger through hole in door lame!) and performances (Lauren 'Mary Swanson' Holly as a hot archeology professor tasty, Lance Henriksen as a pot-bellied eccentric not so much!) that make for either another lame horror outing or a notable cult classic – you decide.

Best Feature: The feature-length Commentary track by Director Steven C. Miller (and to a lesser extent his composer Ryan Dogson) not only wins the Jack Sholder "The Hidden" honesty in commentary award, but it bests it.  From facts that boggle the mind (he shot the medieval opening in one day, the whole film in twelve!) to his candor about everything from stock footage (he stole establishing shots from a Muppets movie!), influences (he admits the getting ready scene is pure Sam Raimi homage!), mistakes (he points out a wire that didn't get taken out!), on-set battles (he fired the effects guys right before shooting!) and most of all his palpable distain for the wishy-washy folks over at After Dark Films (they wanted crap like the finger through the door hole!) for taking the blood, gore and scares out of his movie, this one is a must listen whether you like the flick or not.  

Best Hidden Gem: Again, the commentary may seem like a boring prospect to the average joe movie, but even the busy Banshee would shut her hole to listen to this one.

Worth the Moola: Broken record, but the commentary track makes this a must have for all those who wish they could tell it straight to their 'breaking the back' boss – the bold and beautiful Miller does it proudly for your listening pleasure.




   Title: "The Task"

   Grade: 2

   Cast: Tom Payne, Texas Battle, Amara Karan

   Director: Alex Orwell

   Rating: R

   Runtime: 94 minutes

   Release Company: Lionsgate

   Website: www.lionsgatedvd.com   




The Flick: Yet another horror flick trying to cash in on the whole reality TV craze with a bunch of misfits thrown together in an old abandoned prison who find that the creepy building is the least of their worries.  (Is that the ghost of Vic Mackey walking around as the murdering jail warden?!)  A ho-hum staged, mildly amusing outing that is made slightly better by some interesting, amid being cardboard cutout ridden, characters.

Best Feature: Only one 'Behind the Scenes' featurette that’s as middle of the road as the flick it speaks of. 

Best Hidden Gem: There is one clever twist that I didn't see coming in Task –not telling you what it is, but it’s what gave this one the extra star.

Worth the Moola: Nothing else on the shelf and your desperate to lose a few bucks on a mediocre films experience?  Your ship has come in!