Cover Image: It Came from the Multiplex: 80s Midnight Chillers

It Came from the Multiplex: 80s Midnight Chillers

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Member Reviews

I'm transported back to my childhood when horror meant monsters. So totally 80's, creepy yet entertaining, I LOVE IT!
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Some of these stories were really good and some were just ok.
I love the 80s feeling I got reading this and the cover is truly amazing! 
Overall a good book!
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4 stars for the entire collection. This is a SOLID horror collection and I gave five of the short stories 5 stars, so it was definitely a good time. Review to come!

Due to being a high school teacher, I often fall behind on writing reviews. Here are my initial thoughts.
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Wonderful collection of short stories all centered around movie theaters. Every theater from a drive in to magnificent modern marvels. The stories are fun throwbacks and new twists on classic horror movie tropes. The different writers and quick stories make this a fast read that ends too soon. Well done to all those involved.
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Super enjoyed this one! If you're  fan of campy, B-rated horror movies from the 80s- this one will definitely be up your alley! Stephen Graham Jones knocked it out of the park with his story (as did almost everyone else)!
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2.5 stars rounded up to 3 for Net Galley/Goodreads

I was really excited at the prospect of a collection of 80s horror-themed stories. I’m an 80s baby, and this is the stuff I grew up on.

Since I’m still trying to figure out how I want this new blog to look, bear with me while I try something a little different (again). No stars on each story, just an explanation of whether or not it worked for me, and stars at the end for the whole collection. Let me know if you hate this, please – I’m undecided and could use the help.

The Stories:
Introduction – Paul Campion
I have nothing to say about this. It was a fine introduction, but not memorable.

Alien Parasites from Outer Space – Warren Hammond
This story takes place at a drive-in, and revolves around alien parasites. I assume you already guessed that based on the title. Good job!

I didn’t love this story. It was written competently, but it just didn’t really grab me.

Return of the Alien Parasites from Outer Space – Angie Hodapp
This is a poorly fitted sequel to the first story. I say it is poorly fitted because there are some mental gymnastics required of the reader in order to figure out how certain alliances came to be.

Negative Creep – Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
A group of friends reeling from the death of one of their own are stalked by an unseen presence. Dammit, I didn’t like this one either. We are not off to a great start here.

Helluloid – Dayton Ward & Kevin Dillmore
Ok, I love the name of this one. It sounds like an 80s movie. It centers around a necromancer whose ritual awakens something. I was with this one right up until the ending, which I didn’t feel worked at all.

Seriously with this book…


Rise, Ye Vermin – Betty Rocksteady
Teen lovers try to escape their narrow-minded, shitty town. Finally a story I could get into. LGBT-friendly and filled with gross bugs!

The Cronenberg Concerto – Keith Ferrell
I thought this one was going to be right up my alley. They had me at ‘Cronenberg,’ but then lost me at the story. This is about a dude who has been performing weird rituals at video nasty showings for most of his life. Conceptually it was interesting, but there was something about the execution that left me wanting.

Creature Feature – Gary Jonas
A theater is all that stands between humanity and a bevy of Eldritch horrors.

This one was okay. I enjoyed it well enough.

Invisible – Mario Acevedo
A serial killer discovers that he’s not as unnoticeable as he believed himself to be.

I rather liked this one as well. Finally this book is starting to pick up!

Screen Haunt – Orrin Grey
A filmmaker makes a movie to honor her best friend who went missing many years before.

Yet again, this one was pretty good. Woo!

The Devil’s Reel – Sean Eads & Joshua Viola
The Devil in a multiplex. Not much more to it than that.

This one was pretty fun. I no longer want to yeet this book, which is great!

On the Rocks – K. Nicole Davis
Things get crazy at a showing of Howling II. You know, as they do. This one struck me as insanely funny because Howling II strikes me as insanely funny. And things don’t get crazy in the way you might think if you’ve seen that movie.

Sibyl Danning in werewolf porn - aka Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf
Coming Attractions – Stephen Graham Jones
4 young friends decide to hide out in a movie theater in order to see what goes on there after it closes for the night.

I don’t think SGJ is capable of writing a bad story. This one is a lot of fun.

Late Sleepers – Steve Ransic Tem
A college student has a shitty holiday at home with his family and decides to stop in for the last showing at the local theater before he heads back to campus.

I didn’t connect to this one at all. It was a well-written story, but I don’t feel like I really “got” it.

Special Makeup – Kevin J. Anderson
A Romani makeup artist uses “special makeup” on a difficult actor. Two things about this story bothered me. First, the dude’s name is Zoltan. Does he moonlight as a fortune-telling-automaton?

Second, he is repeatedly referred to, and repeatedly refers to himself as a “gypsy.” The former of which unfortunately works because of the time setting. Back in the 80s we were way less woke. But the latter is the one that really gets me. As far as I know, the term has always been considered by the Roma to be a pejorative term, so why the hell would he consistently refer to himself using a slur? I feel like the character read as having more pride in himself and his heritage than that.

It sucks, because it was otherwise a pretty good story, but that felt like a pretty big hurdle for me that kept knocking me out of the tale.

There were some hits, a few total misses, and a lot of middling stories here. The cover is great though, and honestly I would have probably blind-bought this if I came across it in a bookstore. If you are looking for 80s movie-themed stories, you should at least give this one a shot, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.
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I really enjoyed this book. It was very entertaining and made me very nostalgic for the 80s! I will be recommending to all of my friends who also grew up in the 80s
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The cover is adorable and irresistible.  I'm a 70's baby, and a child of the '80s.  I even worked at a run-down, local video rental store in the VHS era.  So reading the tagline of this anthology - 80s Midnight Chillers - of course I had to read it.  I'm not sure exactly what I was expecting, but this was definitely smarter than anticipated.  I had to look up two words (lagniappe - small gift with purchase  and zeitgeist - spirit of the age) in just the first three pages of the foreword.  That's got to be a record, and I wondered at that point what I'd gotten myself into.   What followed from there was a bit less cerebral, but a lot of fun.  All of the stories revolved around the theme of 80's horror movies and were set in 80's style theaters or drive-ins.   As is the case with any anthology, some were more memorable than others, and I thought the tension and my interest grew as I made my way through the collection.  I really enjoyed the diversity of the stories and the authors.  A quick and enjoyable read, especially for fans of 80's horror movies.  Thank you to NetGalley and Hex Publishing for this galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
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This was awesome. It had a very strong feeling of 80s B movie horror and it was just plain fun. This one is a gem.
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*thank you to Netgalley, Hex Publishers and all participating authors in this collection, for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*


2 stars.


I quite saddened that I didn't enjoy this more. That cover alone is 5/5 stars so I guess my hopes were high. 

Being an 80s child and a horror fan since the famous 'Goosebumps' series by R. L. Stine came out, this was right up my alley. 

80s horror definitely has a unique feel to it. The stories are told differently and you either click with it or not. The stories in here were either a miss from me or just barely enjoyable. Maybe it was more about the themes that were told, but this just wasn't for me. I wish it the best.
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Short Story collections always seem to be very hit or miss. As I scanned the authors, none of them popped out at me, so to be honest I wasn't in a big hurry to read through. But I was pleasantly surprised! I was reminded of American Horror Story's 1984 with all the well-loved tropes of 80s slasher films. The stories are fairly quick to get through, and you can pick up and put down inbetween them which is great for those sporadic readers out there.

Good chillers without being downright terrifying horror stories. Some of them could have been much longer in my opinion, the ideas were that good!
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I grew up in the 80s and learned to love the horror genre in literary and cinematic form thanks to the blind eye of librarians and parents who never paid attention to the stuff this tween was gorging on. As such, I was really looking forward to this collection, despite the fact that like most anthologies, it was hit or miss.

The hits include Alien Parasites from Outer Space (with a great ambiguous ending immediately undone by the sequel story that follows), Creature Feature, Coming Attractions, and the truly unsettling Cronenberg Concerto.

None of the stories would be considered by "bad" per se, just not very memorable. Looking back at the table of contents a few weeks after I finished reading and I struggle to even remember the plot of most of them,
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Have you stood in front of your bookshelves wondering what you may have that could spark some long overdue nostalgia? Maybe your library is digital and you’re swiping through thinking that you could go for some stories that may remind you of growing up. This compilation is just the right amount of terror in the form of one common factor – 80’s style horror movies. This book of short stories really opened my eyes to quite a few authors that I haven’t even heard of, which is the beauty of books like this.
 
Alien Parasites from Outer Space & Return of the Alien Parasites from Outer Space, in my opinion, were of the strongest stories in the book and unfortunately are the first two in the volume. These are the stories I remember the most with character building, familiarity by coming of age, and overall weirdness. I found the plot to be a great mixture of sci-fi and horror, inventive, creative, and just plain old weird!
Within the rest of this volume two more stories stood out to me which used an excellent pay on senses, diversity, gore, and plain old nasty villains.
For me, this one started out with a bang, but there were some stories in here that I wasn’t a huge fan of, which is not uncommon by collections of any kind. I think in all honesty that my expectations were too high for this one. A couple of these stories were legit creepy and really turned up the volume in horror, but there were more stories that were lacking or felt rushed. I really like short story collections though, because you can tell a lot about the author and their style throughout. I do believe it is harder to write a short story than it is a novel because of the limits that exist for the story on a whole.
I rate this one 3.5
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Every anthology is a mixed bag, that's what they are designed to be. Some stories are going to work for a reader, some aren't. In this case, I would say overall the trend was more good than bad, but ultimately no one story particularly drew me in. It was a fun collection, but I honestly expected a little more considering many of the contributors.
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This was a fun read, with all of the stories sharing a theme of movie theaters or drive ins in the heyday of 80s classic cheesy horror films. There are aliens, serial killers, demons who steal souls through movies and then possess their victims, and more. Some of the stories were scary while others were more of a nostalgic and campy good time. As someone who grew up in the 80s spending most Friday nights at the drive in theater and most Saturday mornings in the video store poring through the new releases on VHS this was like a trip back in time to my youth.
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I have spent so many nights watching old horror.  The good, the bad, the scary, and the laughable.  It helps me stay sane, keeps me from getting overly sentimental in an already emotionally draining time.  

This book had the same feel to it, and served the same purpose.  The nostalgia it brought, the way I could almost hear the crickets chirp at the drive in, I could feel the sticky feel of soda stained floors.  The whir of the projector.  

Each story had its own life, own horrors.  Despite their common theme, I was never bored, each one original.  Some were good, some were great.  A couple slightly laughable, but none bad.  

Perfectly snack sized, a treat or two before bed to help me settle on for the night, and distract me from the real horrors of the world.
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This is a brilliant read.
Wonderful well written plot and story line that had me engaged from the start.
Love the well fleshed out characters and found them believable.
Great suspense and found myself second guessing every thought I had continuously.
Can't wait to read what the author brings out next.
Recommend reading.

I was provided an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher.  This is my own honest voluntary review.
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I have recently begun to read more short story collections. I used to sigh away from them for no reason. I can say that I've seen the error of my ways. Small stories can pack a punch. Loved the vingettes of several writters and seeing what they can do with such short time.
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Tons of gory, creepy fun in bite sized pieces.  A wonderful collection of little horrors with something for all fans of the genre.
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Remember the days of horror anthology films? Things like Creepshow, Cat's Eye Tales from the Crypt (It was a movie before it was a show, look it up)? While the stories in those sometimes varied in quality, they were always a blast to watch.

Same with this loving homage to 80s horror cinema. I can't say that every story in here was a gem, but the entire presentation and most of the stories were great fun. A loving nod to all things 80s horror. Well worth a read for any horror fans (particularly those with a background in Slashers and Cronenberg).
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