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House By The Cemetery Review

Friday, September 8th, 2017

I absolutely love Italian horror films, and The House By The Cemetery is definitely one of my all time favourites. So let us discuss this Lucio Fulci masterpiece from 1981, and the reasons why it made such a big impression on me.

The House By The Cemetery was first released in Italy with the title Quella Villa Accanto al Cimitero. It tells the story of a married couple, Norman and Lucy Boyle who, together with their little blonde son Bob, move into a new but dilapidated Boston house (a house that, as it turns out, has a very dark history) by a cemetery. The next day, Norman goes down into the cellar, whereupon he is attacked by a large bat (shades of Dracula here, methinks) which has just been inflicting similar harm on his traumatised wife. After much screaming and struggling, Norman finally manages to extricate himself from the bat’s viciously tenacious grip and stabs it to death. Blood then oozes copiously from the bat’s lifeless body as it lies on the floor.

And yet more blood flows – this time even more shockingly and horribly, as it is shed by a human being – later on in the movie, when the estate agent that sold the couple the house meets a grisly end when her foot falls through a piece of rotted floorboard, trapping her there as some mysterious, sinister figure slowly emerges from the shadows and attacks her with a poker before frenziedly ripping her throat open. This, for me, is the movie’s most disturbing scene, as you can really feel the woman’s utter helplessness and terror as her assailant slowly, malevolently, skulks, nearer and nearer, towards her, weapon in hand.

There is another gruesome death when the babysitter, Anne, ventures down into the cellar… only to be slaughtered by the still unknown lurker. When the young boy, Bob, enters the cellar, he is shocked to see Anne’s severed head tumbling down the cellar’s metal stairs.

When Bob returns to the cellar (foolish boy!) later that same night, he gets trapped in there and is confronted by a pair of glowing eyes. Roused by his terrified screams, his parents rush down to the cellar, and when Norma takes an axe to the door in a desperate attempt to get his son out of that hell hole, the full secret of the house’s dark, bloody history begins to unravel.

I won’t give away any more of the plot of this fantastic Italian horror classic. Suffice to say that if you a big fan of The Shining movie, as I am, then I am sure you will enjoy this film, as it holds many similarities to Stanley Kubrick’s classic 1980 shocker. Oh, and the movie has a great, albeit rather poignant, ending too.

The House By The Cemetery is actually the third part in Lucio Fulci’s Gates From Hell trilogy, the other two being City of The Living Dead and The Beyond. Just as he did in the first two movies in the series, Fulci really creates an oppressive, edge-of-seat atmosphere, and you can certainly see the Lovecraftian influences here too. The haunting musical score also enhances the generally foreboding atmosphere of the movie to a most pleasing degree.

The House by The Cemetery is definitely a movie that all fans of not just Italian horror but of horror in general should have in their collection. There are plenty of moments which will make you jump out of your skin, and the overall images projected from the camera panning of the house adds to this, creating an extremely tense and terrifying atmosphere. But be warned: it may, just may, put you off venturing down into cellars of old houses with dodgy histories for life!

The 15 Best Venues for Outdoor Weddings in the USA

Friday, September 8th, 2017

There are many perfect outdoor wedding venues all over the country. We have narrowed it down to the fifteen of the best spots for an outdoor wedding in the country.

1. Maui, Hawaii
Hawaii is the perfect go-to destination for wedding locations because of its stunning beaches and very hospitable people. This island is known to be the most romantic island in Hawaii because of the waterfalls and lush landscape. Winter and early spring are the peak seasons so be sure to book your wedding when there are fewer guests.

2. Laguna Gloria in Austin, Texas
This ideal location is referred to as one of the best wedding venues by The Knot. It offers an Italian Villa-inspired aura that attracts patrons from all over the country. The winding Colorado River can be seen from the villa and adds to the perfect view. The building is lit in different colors after sunset, which adds to its appeal.

3. Kauai, Hawaii
Kauai is the least developed island in the state of Hawaii. The untouched flora and fauna abound in the island and is a good choice for nature-loving couples. The waters in the beaches are also clear as crystal. This is perhaps one of the best choices for beach weddings. The lush tropical landscape of the island earned its moniker “The Garden of Isle”.

4. Napa Valley, California
Napa Valley is known for producing some of the best wines in the country. The picturesque valley offers a nice backdrop to the romantic vineyards of Napa. The sunny weather of California offers additional warmth to your outdoor wedding. During the month of September, many people come to visit since it is the harvest season. It is best to book during months when there are few visitors.

5. Rimrock Ranch in Pioneertown, California
This wedding spot is perfect for a couple who desire a Bohemian-inspired wedding. The ranch resembles a scene out of the wild, wild west and there are plenty of cabins are available for guests. A good barbecue is ideal for the reception.

6. Miami, Florida
Miami is famous for its weather and its beaches. There are many nightclubs around the city and this is perfect for couples who want a Caribbean-inspired wedding but on home soil. The city is also known for its amazing food which blends American culture with a Latin American kick.

7. San Francisco, California
The Golden Gate Bridge and the Palace of Fine Arts are two of the most iconic wedding landmarks in the country. Aside from the nice weather and rolling hills, the old Victorian architecture adds to the perfect view. There are many parks scattered around the city which can be rented and used for your dream wedding.

8. Jackson Hole, Wyoming
The Teton Mountains are a majestic backdrop to that wonderful wedding that couples look forward to. The breath-taking view of the snow-covered mountain makes it extra special. This is perfect for guests who want to do some hiking and go to museums and bars. It is important, however, to check the weather update before you book as the area is prone to a lot of storms.

9. Jardin de Buis in New Jersey
The magnificent topiaries and labyrinth of Jardin de Buis is an excellent choice for couples who look forward to a romantic and glamorous garden wedding. The estate grounds feature green houses, a barn and tall, mature trees.

10. New York City
New York City has many facilities and hotels that can be used for weddings. What makes New York City a perfect outdoor wedding choice is its urban landscape. At night, office building lights add to the romantic mood of a perfect outdoor wedding location. Although some hotels may be expensive, there are many parks and rooftop wedding venues in this big city.

11. The Big Island, Hawaii
The biggest island in Hawaii, The Big Island is a perfect destination for couples who want to tie the knot amidst the breeze of Hawaii’s blue waters. Suggested activities are snorkeling, horseback riding, nature trekking and of course, strolling through Hawaii’s perfect beaches.

12. Little Nell in Aspen, Colorado
The snow covered mountains of Aspen Colorado is a perfect background for couples who would like a change for the usual beach wedding. Guests can go skiing and do other outdoor snow activities. The view of the mountains with the pine trees are scenic additions to that picture-perfect wedding that couples dream of.

13. Newport, Rhode Island
Newport, Rhode Island is a simple yet fulfilling choice for couples. The lighthouses in the backdrop relive the glory of New England. Newport is warmest during summer so it is highly advised to book at these times.

14. Froggsong Gardens in Seattle, Washington
For couples who are planning a garden wedding, this is a good choice with an amazing garden landscape. Guests can also explore the richness of Seattle as there are many good restaurants and museums in the city.

15. Dunton Hot Springs in Dolores, Colorado
This is a unique wedding destination since this is a restored ghost town. As a matter of fact, couples can rent the entire town for their own liking. There are also spas, fitness centers and a hiking trail for your wedding guests. Plus, during the winter, its picturesque snow-scapes are a perfect backdrop to your wedding ceremony.