Reviews

Books

Review: A deep dive into Vancouver Island’s mysteries

The Haunting of Vancouver Island: Supernatural Encounters with the Other Side by Shanon Sinn Touchwood Editions, Canada, 2017 4/5 Much like entering an allegedly haunted house, with little knowledge of the skulking revenants, Shanon Sinn’s book The Haunting of Vancouver Island has that je ne sais quoi that’s only apparent […]

Movies

Review: America’s own Faust fable reaches a crossroads

ReMastered: Devil at the Crossroads Director: Brian Oakes Studio: Netflix 4/5 Mississippi’s own Faustian tale of Robert Johnson has been given its due documentary treatment. Remastered: Devil at the Crosswords shares what little there is about renowned blues musician Robert Johnson through academics, musicians (Keith Richards and Bonnie Raitt among […]

Movies

Review: Folk tales are our guilty pleasures

The Curse of La Llorona Director: Michael Chaves Cast: Linda Cardellini, Raymond Cruz and Patricia Velasquez Studio: Warner Brothers 4/5 Folklore has its roots in the real world. Something inexplicable occurred that the locals didn’t have an explanation for, and thus took it as an opportunity to teach through the […]

Books

Review: A revealing look into Victoria’s secrets

Victoria’s Most Haunted: Ghost Stories from BC’s Historic Capital City by Ian Gibbs Touchwood Editions, Canada, 2017 3.5/5 As I dipped my mental toe into the waters of Ian Gibbs’ Victoria’s Most Haunted, I realized the opening vignette was very familiar. Back in 2013, my wife and I had stayed […]

Movies

Review: Revealing the bad seed of reincarnation

The Prodigy Director: Nicholas McCarthy Cast: Taylor Schilling, Brittany Allen, Jackson Robert Scott Studio: Orion Pictures 4/5 Much like Dr. Elaine Stasser (Paula Boudreau) and Arthur Jacobson (Colm Feore) explain in the film, The Prodigy, reincarnation has been around for quite some time either through Buddhism, Hinduism and Sikhism. But it’s not just […]

Movies

Review: Painting a lurid picture of flesh and bone

Velvet Buzzsaw Director: Dan Gilroy Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Zawe Ashton and John Malkovich Studio: Netflix 3.5/5 There is a painting called “The Anguished Man” that allegedly has the blood of its artist used within its own acrylics. Of course, it could be that it’s part of a creepypasta that is continuously drumming up more believers affixed to the […]

Books, Ghosts

Review: A window — by a cosy fire — into Canada’s unique ghost stories

Great Canadian Ghost Stories by Barbara Smith Touchwood Editions, Canada, 2018 4/5 Each page turn of Barbara Smith’s Great Canadian Ghost Stories was a finger pull on a View-Master’s lever. Rife with viewports into Canada’s supernatural tales, Smith refrains from her traditional provincial campfire tales and cups her hand over her eyes to view for miles nationwide. […]

Movies

Review: This cryptid endears itself to a younger audience

Smallfoot Director: Karey Kirkpatrick, Jason Reisig Cast: Channing Tatum, James Corden, Zendaya Studio: Warner Brothers 3.5/5 As warm and fuzzy as the Yeti is in Smallfoot appear, there is a very sobering message about organized belief systems and human nature snuggled into the narrative. The Yeti, a.k.a. Abominable Snowman, a.k.a. […]

TV

Review: Home is where the haunted heart is

“The Haunting of Hill House” Creator: Mike Flanagan Cast: Carla Gugino, Michiel Huisman, Timothy Hutton and Elizabeth Reaser Network: Netflix 4.5/5 If there’s a lesson to be learned from the recent interpretation of Shirley Jackson’s highly influential novel, The Haunting of Hill House, it’s don’t have more than two kids. […]