V/H/S/85 (2023) [Fantastic Fest 2023]

I’ve been an avid fan of the “V/H/S/” movie series since its initial release, and it’s been fun watching it evolve and run through the aughts over time. With Lo-Fi horror still a big deal in the modern internet stratosphere, “V/H/S/” has a surefire shelf life of at least two or three more entries. However, I do hope we get a much better installment than what “V/H/S/85” ends up becoming. It’s not to say that this newest entry in the series is terrible, it just feels so confused and lacking in the chaos and scares that make the original first two films so exciting.

Continue reading

VHS Massacre Too (2020)

“VHS Massacre” was one of many looks back at the golden age of VHS and how physical media is dying in the age of streaming. Thomas Edward Seymour produced a very good and insightful glimpse at a time where the death of physical media seemed imminent. So it feels only logical that he’d follow it up with a further look in to the death of physical media. The problem though is that “VHS Massacre Too” is a less focused and somewhat confused successor that never quite knows what it’s trying to tell its audience.

Continue reading

VHS Massacre: Cult Films and the Decline of Physical Media (2016) [Blu-Ray]

It’s important that we look back on the history of physical media, since the beginning of physical media for movie collectors was never Hollywood’s biggest plan. Since the creation of the home reel projector, studios have been working hard to fight the appeal of physical media, and now with its decline, we’re reverting to digital copies of films that can be monitored. With its introduction, comes the potential decline of honest independent filmmaking, and filmmakers that have an even playing field with Hollywood. That becomes an uphill battle as the physical media that does exist is nothing but overstocked Hollywood dribble, with stores openly refusing to stock independent cinema.

Continue reading

VHS Massacre: Cult Films and the Decline of Physical Media (2016)


For other documentaries about the VHS resurgence and the nearing end of physical media, a lot of directors have spent their time trying to figure out where it all began and celebrate the idea of the VHS boom of the modern era. “VHS Massacre” seems to be standing in ground zero of the end of physical media and trying to figure out where it’s all going, rather than where it all began. For many of us that have reveled in the new wave of VHS appreciation, we all know how it began. VHS won over Beta, despite the latter have more quality simply because VHS had more appeal to its product. It cost less, the tapes stored more footage, and porn became almost exclusive to the format. But with the rise of digital media, VHS has gone the way of the dodo, now relegated to good will bins and mom and pop stores deep in small towns and counties.

Continue reading

Adjust Your Tracking: The Untold Story of the VHS Collector (2013)


Dan M. Kinem and Levi Peretic really manage to pay amazing respect to VHS collectors with “Adjust Your Tracking,” an entertaining and raucous documentary that chronicles the joys and pitfalls of VHS collecting. Kinem and Peretic are the founders of one of my favorite websites “VHShitfest” and put their rabid love for the VHS format to use by profiling some of the most hardcore VHS collectors in America. The interviews and glimpses in to the collecting of the arguably defunct format never lull, and directors Kinem and Peretic manage to really give audiences a look at why this is such an appealing past time.

Continue reading

Rewind This! (2013)


Director Josh Johnson pulls off an ingenious move with “Rewind This!” Truly, it’s about the age of VHS and recalls many of the fond memories of buying VHS and learning how to enjoy the spoils of the hunt for the perfect Friday night entertainment from your local mom and pop video store. But by the end of the documentary, director Johnson is wise to warn about how personal media and art is slowly becoming impersonal and is gradually breaking from our grasps.

Continue reading

V/H/S 2 (2013)

Like the first “V/H/S,” the sequel to the acclaimed anthology surely won’t re-invent the wheel, but it still manages to be a very good horror film with a killer series of stories. Meshing the found footage sub-genre with the anthology film. “V/H/S 2” learns from the mistakes of the first film by reducing the number of stories and lengthening them for more exposition. There are still inherent flaws and plot holes injected in to this sequel, but for this outing there’s a better sense of coherency, and a lot less filler. Rather than the more confusing premises from the first film, this time around the four stories are much easier to follow. To wit, they’re much more entertaining.

Continue reading