When life stresses me out, I turn to horror movies as a way to decompress. And given the state of 2020, I’ve been watching Shudder on a nightly basis.
Shudder is one of the coolest streaming services around. It’s custom-tailored for people who love horror, thrillers, and all things supernatural. This month Shudder is celebrating Pride with a Queer Horror collection, including the Shudder exclusive documentary, Scream, Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street.
And as an added treat, Shudder is now streaming the classic Blaxploitation flicks, Blacula, Scream Blacula Scream, and Sugar Hill.
I’m most excited to catch a movie that has evaded me for the past year; Jennifer Kent’s (The Babadook) tense Australian Western-thriller, The Nightingale.
June 2020 Programming Highlights:
Shudder Original/Exclusive Movies
SCREAM, QUEEN! MY NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (premieres Thursday, June 4)
Some have called it the ‘gayest horror movie ever made,’ but for Mark Patton, the star of A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge , it was anything but a dream come true. 30 years after its initial release, Patton sets the record straight about the controversial sequel and the experience that halted his career before it even began. Detailing the homophobia and AIDS-phobia of 1985 as a closeted actor in Hollywood, Mark retraces his obstacles, missteps, and detractors on the pathway to stardom.
Confronting the cast and crew for the first time, Mark attempts to make peace with his past as well as embrace his legacy as cinema’s first male scream queen. Starring Mark Patton, Robert Englund, Kim Myers, Robert Rusler, Marshall Bell, Clu Gulager and Jack Sholder. Directed by Roman Chimienti and Tyler Jensen. A SHUDDER EXCLUSIVE (Also available on Shudder US).
WARNING: DO NOT PLAY (premieres Thursday, June 11)
Aspiring director Mi-jung struggles to come up with ideas for a new horror film until her friend Jun-seo tells her about a mysterious film rumored to be shot by a ghost. While researching it, she begins to write a new screenplay about her hunt for this “ghost film.” But as she gets closer to the truth, the line between her film and her life begins to blur. Starring Seo Ye-ji and Jin Sun-kyu, directed by Kim Jin-won. A SHUDDER ORIGINAL (Also available on Shudder US and Shudder UK).
SCARE PACKAGE (premieres Thursday, June 18)
7 directors. 7 tales of terror. Zero working cell phones. In this gleefully ghoulish anthology, Chad, the owner of Rad Chad’s Horror Emporium, recounts a series of bone-chilling, blood-splattered tales to illustrate the rules of the horror genre to his newest employee. Starring Noah Segan ( Knives Out ), Chase Williamson ( Beyond the Gates ), Jocelyn DeBoer ( Greener Grass ), Jeremy King ( Camera Obscura), wrestling legend Dustin Rhodes, Toni Trucks ( SEAL Team ) and Hawn Tran ( Watchmen ). Directed by Hillary & Courtney Andujar, Anthony Cousins, Emily Hagins, Aaron B. Koontz, Chris McInroy, Noah Segan and Baron Vaughn. A SHUDDER ORIGINAL ( Also available on Shudder US and Shudder UK).
THE NIGHTINGALE (premieres Thursday, June 25)
Set during the colonization of Australia in 1825, the film follows Clare, a 21-year-old Irish convict. Having served her 7-year sentence, she is desperate to be free of her abusive master, Lieutenant Hawkins who refuses to release her from his charge. Clare’s husband Aidan retaliates and she becomes the victim of a harrowing crime at the hands of the lieutenant and his cronies. When British authorities fail to deliver justice, she is forced to enlist the help of a young Aboriginal tracker who grudgingly takes her through the rugged wilderness to track down Hawkins. Starring Aisling Franciosi, Sam Claflin, Baykali Ganambarr, Damon Herriman and Ewen Leslie, directed by Jennifer Kent. A SHUDDER EXCLUSIVE.
QUEER HORROR — available 6/1
Celebrate Pride with a curated collection of must-see LGBTQ+ horror, featuring films with queer themes, characters and/or creators. Includes the Shudder premieres of the documentary Scream, Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street (see above) and Stewart Thorndike’s Lyle , starring Gaby Hoffman. Featuring Alena , All Cheerleaders Die, Better Watch Out , Hellraiser , Lizzie, Lyle (premiering June 8) , The Old Dark House, The Quiet Room , Scream, Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street (June 4) , Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama and Sweet Sweet Lonely Girl.
THE LAST DRIVE IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS season 2— Fridays at 9pm ET / 6pm PT
Proving once again that “the drive-in will never die,” iconic horror host and exploitation movie aficionado Joe Bob Briggs is back with an all-new season of weekly Friday night double features streaming live exclusively on Shudder. Over the course of ten episodes, The Last Drive-In series will offer an eclectic selection of movies running the gamut from horror classics to obscurities and foreign cult favorites along with the occasional surprise guest. Also on Shudder US; some episodes also available on demand on Shudder UK.
New Movies and Series for June
BLACULA (Director: William Crain)
SCREAM BLACULA SCREAM (Director: Bob Kelljan)
SUGAR HILL (Director: Paul Maslansky)
Three blaxploitation horror classics join our Horror Noire collection this month. In William Crain’s Blacula , an 18th Century African Prince (William Marshall) pays a visit to Count Dracula seeking his support in ending the slave trade. Instead, the Count transforms him into a vampire and entombs him until the disco era. In the scintillating sequel, the son (Don Mitchell) of a late high priestess seeks revenge on the cultists who have chosen his foster sister, Lisa (Pam Grier), as their new leader. Hoping to curse her, he unwittingly resurrects Blacula’s (Marshall again) earthly remains. And in Sugar Hill , after a nightclub owner gets taken out by the mob, his girlfriend, Diana “Sugar” Hill (Marki Bey), calls upon the voodoo high priest Baron Samedi (Don Pedro Colley) to summon the undead to carry out an unholy plan for revenge. (All three films also available on Shudder US).
HOUSE OF 1,000 CORPSES (Director: Rob Zombie)
This gore fest follows two young couples on their quest to find the truth about a mythical character known only as “Dr. Satan.” Set in rural Texas in the 1970s, the group gets more than they bargained for when they find themselves stranded in an all-too-realistic house of horrors. The introduction to Zombie’s now-cult Firefly clan, the director’s debut remains a vicious funhouse imbued with the savage quality of 70s terror. Starring Sid Haig, Bill Moseley, Sheri Moon, Karen Black, Rainn Wilson. (Also available on Shudder US).
SCREAM, QUEEN! MY NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (see above for details)
THE LAST DRIVE-IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS, ep. 207
INSIDIOUS CHAPTER 2 (Director: James Wan)
James Wan and Leigh Whannell return to deliver this follow-up to their franchise-launching creep-out, Insidious , which focused on a family haunted by a demon. Starring Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Lin Shaye, Leigh Whannell.
INSIDIOUS CHAPTER 3 (Director: Leigh Whannell)
Go back to the beginning in this chilling prequel that takes place before the unforgettable haunting of the Lambert family. When paranormal investigators Tucker and Specs team up with the psychic Elise to help a teenage girl contact her late mother, Elise is forced to venture back into The Further where she finds a ruthless supernatural entity craving the souls of the living. Starring Dermot Mulroney, Stefanie Scott, Lin Shaye, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson.
LYLE (Director: Stewart Thorndike)
Expecting couple Leah and June move into a Brooklyn brownstone apartment with their toddler daughter, Lyle. Despite the strange baby-obsessed landlady downstairs and the group of female models who live above them, the two are happy with their new apartment until a bizarre accident leads to the death of their daughter. Months later, Leah is still grief-stricken, trying to make sense of Lyle’s death, her landlady’s odd behaviors, and her attraction to one of the models upstairs. As Leah prepares for her home birth, she begins to suspect the neighbors are involved in a satanic pact and fears for her unborn baby. Starring Gaby Hoffmann, Ingrid Jungermann. ( Also available on Shudder US).
WARNING: DO NOT PLAY (see above for details).
THE LAST DRIVE-IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS, ep. 208
THE BONE BOX (Director: Luke Genton)
After stealing from a number of graves, Tom begins to hear and see strange things that seem to coincide with the dead people that he robbed. Starring Gareth Koorzen, Aaron Schwartz, Jamie Bernadette, Michelle Krusiec, David Chokachi. ( Also available on Shudder US and Shudder UK).
MAUSOLEUM (Director: Michael Dugan)
The Nomed Family has been the victim of an ancient curse in which the first-born daughter of each generation has gone violently mad and then suspiciously dies. No one can explain the Nomed madness, but some say it’s because of a terrible demonic force. By way of an unnatural urge during her Mother’s funeral, Susan entered her family’s mausoleum, and ever since an evil presence has been lurking inside of her, waiting for a chance to come out. Now an adult, something is hiding inside Susan’s body, coming out to grotesquely murder anyone who comes too close to uncovering her terrifying secret. Starring Bobbie Bresee, Marjoe Gortner, Norman Burton, Maurice Sherbanee, LaWanda Page, Chu Chu Malave. (Also available on Shudder US).
SCARE PACKAGE (see above for details)
THE LAST DRIVE-IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS, season finale
PSYCHOTIC! (Directors: Maxwell Frey, Derek Gibbons)
A group of hard-partying Brooklyn hipsters are stalked and savagely murdered by a masked maniac known as the Bushwick Party Killer. Starring Kristen Martin, Clint Keepin, Maxwell Frey, Derek Gibbons, Cirocco Dunlap. ( Also available on Shudder Canada and Shudder UK).
THE NIGHTINGALE (see above for details).
DIG TWO GRAVES (Director: Hunter Adams)
A young girl obsessed with the death of her brother goes on a nightmarish journey where she must face a deadly proposition in order to bring him back. Starring Ted Levine, Samantha Isler, Danny Goldring. (Also available on Shudder Canada).