This morning, through a FaceBook comment, I happened upon the horror-only streaming service Screambox. Netflix Instant has no lack of low-budget horror movies, but for some reason I was intrigued by the service, which has a few hundred movies and costs a paltry $3.99 / month.
The question is: does the streaming subscription model work on such a small scale?
The reason that, say, Netflix or Amazon works is that each is bolstered by a whole slew of movies not related to horror, so you’re less likely to notice when the selection feels…limited. What those companies have that Screambox doesn’t have is a ton of money, too, so they’re ill-equipped to be able to pay the licensing fees for big budget horror movies.
There are plenty of new movies on the service, but most of them are b-grade, at best. My first viewing experience will be the film Devil Seed, directed by Greg Sager.
In my first viewing, I got ABOUT 12 minutes in before we hit the “gypsy fortune teller,” and so I had to pump the brakes. I’m going to try again later, but so far it’s kind of thin, story-wise. There’s an interesting b-plot involving a cheating boyfriend.
UPDATE: I’m working on watching the rest of Devil Seed. It’s got a few lively touches to it, but the problem with the movie is that it’s not a story we haven’t seen before. The “possession story” has been overdone in the last several years, even — it seems — back in 2012, when this movie was released.
I could spend the entirety of this post pulverizing Devil Seed, but that’s not necessary. I knew almost precisely what I was getting into with this movie, so instead I’m going to focus in on what’s okay about it. First of all, the sound design is not bad. The movie’s loud noises and jump scare starters are pretty effective, and the music is also pretty good.
The weird love triangle from the very beginning of the movie basically disappears for a while, and it gets replaced by the proper A plot. While we’re talking about it, I’m not sure why the main character is possessed; I just know that she is possessed and doing very Paranormal Activity-ish things.
The verdict: I didn’t quite finish it, so I can’t give it a rating. I gave it 45 minutes, and something about it turned me off. Maybe I’ll get through it later, but for now I’m going to have to say pass on Devil Seed.
The next movie: Bigfoot: The Lost Coast Tapes (2012)