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Shudder: What to Watch – August 2020

The dog days of summer are finally here. As we begin another scorching month, Shudder is dropping a spine-tingling new movie line-up guaranteed to put a winter chill back into your bones.

August’s programming highlights include Rob Savage’s Zoom-séance flick (which was shot-in-quarantine) Host, Jaryo Bustamante’s festival darling La Llorona, and Jay Baruchel’s ultra-violent comic book adaptation, Random Acts of Violence.

Last week That Shelf caught up Baruchel to talk about writing and directing Random Acts of Violence, and you can check back tomorrow to read the interview.

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Shudder August programming highlights

(Titles available on Shudder Canada and Shudder UK as noted)

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Shudder Original/Exclusive Movies

HOST (premieres Thursday, July 30)
Six friends hire a medium to hold a séance over Zoom during lockdown but get far more than they bargain for as things quickly go wrong. Host was shot remotely during quarantine and features practical scares, stunts, and surprises, all filmed by the actors in their own homes. Director Rob Savage (Dawn of the Deaf) never set foot in the same room as his actors at any point during production and instead directed them remotely. Starring: Haley Bishop (Deep State), Radina Drandova (Dawn of the Deaf), Edward Linard (The Rebels), Jemma Moore (Doom: Annihilation), Caroline Ward (Stalling It) and Emma Louise Webb (The Crown). A SHUDDER ORIGINAL (Also available on Shudder Canada and Shudder UK).

LA LLORONA (premieres Thursday, August 6)
Winner: Venice Days. Official Selection: TIFF, Sundance Film Festival
Indignant retired general Enrique finally faces trial for the genocidal massacre of thousands of Mayans decades ago. As a horde of angry protestors threatens to invade their opulent home, the women of the house—his haughty wife, conflicted daughter, and precocious granddaughter—weigh their responsibility to shield the erratic, senile Enrique against the devastating truths being publicly revealed and the increasing sense that a wrathful supernatural force is targeting them for his crimes. Meanwhile, much of the family’s domestic staff flees, leaving only loyal housekeeper Valeriana until a mysterious young Indigenous maid arrives. Starring María Mercedes Coroy, Margarita Kénefic, Sabrina de la Hoz and Julio Díaz. Directed by  . (Also available on Shudder Canada and Shudder UK).

RANDOM ACTS OF VIOLENCE (premieres Thursday, August 20)
Official Selection: Fantastic Fest
Comic book creator Todd, his wife, assistant and best friend all embark upon a road trip from Toronto to New York Comic Con, and bad things start to happen: people start getting killed. Is a crazed fan using Todd’s “SLASHERMAN” comic as inspiration for his stylized slaughter? Starring: Jesse Williams (‘Grey’s Anatomy’), Jordana Brewster (Furious 7), Niamh Wilson (Saw series) and Jay Baruchel (This Is the End). Directed by Jay Baruchel. (Also available on Shudder UK).

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THE SHED (premieres Thursday, August 27)
Official Selection: Sitges International Film Festival, Brooklyn Horror Film Festival
Stan and his best friend Dommer have put up with bullies their entire lives. All of that changes when Stan discovers he has a ravenous vampire living in his shed. Seeing the bloodshed and destruction the monster is capable of, Stan knows he has to find a way to destroy it. But Dommer has a much more sinister plan in mind. Starring Jay Jay Warren, Cody Kostro, Sofia Happonen, Frank Whaley and Timothy Bottoms. Directed by Frank Sabatella. (Also available on Shudder Canada).

New Specials for August

THE LAST DRIVE-IN: SUMMER SLEEPOVER SPECIAL (Friday, August 14 at 9pm ET/6pm PT)
Fire up the popcorn and slip into your PJs: Joe Bob Briggs, America’s foremost drive-in movie critic, is back for a special summer sleepover double-feature. Joining Joe Bob and Darcy in the trailer park will be director Adam Green (Frozen, Hatchet series) along with other surprise guests.

New Movies for August

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August 1
SQUIRM (Director: Jeff Lieberman)
Beware the crawling terror! A surge from a downed powerline mutates a seemingly endless population of worms into a bloodsucking, man-eating onslaught.  Starring Don Scardino, Patricia Pearcy, R.A. Dow.  (Also available on Shudder Canada).

URBAN LEGENDS: FINAL CUT (Director: John Ottman)
A film student’s thesis project runs into production problems when her cast and crew members start turning up dead. Starring Jennifer Morrison, Eva Mendes, Anthony Anderson, Joseph Lawrence.

August 3
AMITYVILLE 1992: IT’S ABOUT TIME (Director: Tony Randel)
An antique clock brought back from New York brings supernatural terror to a California neighborhood. Starring Stephen Macht, Shawn Weatherly, Megan Ward, Damon Martin.

August 6
LA LLORONA (see above for details).

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August 10
RING (Director: Hideo Nakata), RING 2 (Director: Hideo Nakata), RING 0 (Director: Norio Tsuruta)
In the film that kicked off the franchise as well as a Western surge in interest in so-called J-horror, a group of teenage friends are found dead, their faces twisted in terror, supposed victims of an urban legend about a cursed videotape. One year after the success of his horror classic, director Hideo Nakata returned to the world of viral video to deliver his own follow-up. And in the prequel Ring 0, a journalist tracks a young woman who uses her supernatural powers to kill members of an acting troupe. (Also available on Shudder Canada).

August 14
THE LAST DRIVE-IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS: SUMMER SLEEPOVER SPECIAL (see above for details).

August 17
JAWBREAKER (Director: Darren Stein)
Teen girls must cover up the accidental murder of a friend in this twisted ‘90s classic. Starring Rose McGowan, Rebecca Gayheart, Julie Benz, Judy Greer, Chad Christ, Carol Kane, Pam Greer.

HELLMASTER (Director: Douglas Schulze)
A mad professor at a rural campus injects students with a drug to make them superhuman mutants. Starring John Saxon, David Emge, Amy Raasch (Also available on Shudder Canada).

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 UNCAGED (Director: Dick Maas)
A zoo veterinarian is caught up in a grisly adventure as she leads the hunt for a monstrous lion terrorizing Amsterdam. Starring Sophie van Winden, Abbey Hoes, Mark Frost, Julian Looman.  (Also available on Shudder Canada)

August 20
RANDOM ACTS OF VIOLENCE (see above for details).

August 24
THE EVIL (Director: Gus Trikonis)
A psychologist and his wife turn a house of the devil into a drug-rehabilitation center. Starring Richard Crenna, Joanna Pettet, Andrew Prine (Also available on Shudder Canada).

MORTUARY (Director: Howard Avedis)
Christie has been having terrifying nightmares ever since her father drowned, causing her to re-evaluate the circumstances surrounding his death. Starring Mary Beth McDonough, David Wysocki, Bill Paxton, Lynda Day George, Christopher George (Also available on Shudder Canada).

ONE DARK NIGHT (Director: Tom McLoughlin)
As part of an initiation into a club called The Sisters, a young girl must spend the night in a mausoleum. Starring Meg Tilly, Melissa Newman, Robin Evans, Leslie Speights, Donald Hotton.  (Also available on Shudder Canada).

30 MILES FROM NOWHERE (Director: Caitlin Koller)
When five college pals return home for their estranged friend’s funeral, what begins as an uneasy reunion becomes a terrifying fight for survival. Starring Carrie Preston, Rob Benedict, Birgundi Baker. (Also available on Shudder Canada).

August 27
THE SHED (see above for details).

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