Happy New Year (of Horror Movies) iHorror readers!

As the calendar turns over, the horror fan is once again graced by a few more titles finding cinematic release this month, including a terrifying look at the isolation of post-modern man as seen through some sort of voodoo cursed doll in Paddington

Or, you know, these three actual horror films are also coming to cinemas this month:

January 2:

The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death

Right out of the gate in January is the release of The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death, which we first told you about here. Seeing that the original The Woman in Black (loosely based on the superbly creepy novel by Susan Hill, and incredibly successful stage play by Stephen Mallatrat) was the most financially successful British Horror film in 20 years, it is little surprise that Hammer Film Productions decided to make a sequel.

Angel of Death returns to the creepy Eel Marsh House during the Blitz in World War II (for those you of wondering, that is roughly 40 years after the events of the original film) as a young schoolteacher named Eve, played by Phoebe Fox (Switch) escorts a group of children out of London to Crythin Gifford and the long abandoned estate.  Once they are settled into Eel Marsh House, the children begin acting strangely and, with the help of the young, locally stationed pilot (played by Jeremy Irvine– War Horse), Eve sets out to protect the children in her charge, and find out the truth behind the eponymous woman in black.

Check out the official U.K. trailer below:

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With a new director at the helm in Tom Harper (The Scouting Book for Boys), and a new screenwriter in Jon Croker (Desert Dancer), with story assistance from Susan Hill, it is hard to know what to expect in The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death.  What we can hope for, however, is another tense and well told ghost story which is not overly reliant on jump scares, but builds its’ tension and power through an exceptionally creepy atmosphere, which if the trailer above is any indication, could make Angel of Death another surprisingly good horror film to start off our year.

[REC]4: Apocalypse

The fourth and final entry into the Spanish horror series [REC] will come to cinemas (limited release) and VOD on January 2, 2015.  We told you about it here, and again here, because Zombie Monkey…

Abandoning it’s ‘found footage’/P.O.V. roots, Apocalypse runs a more regular horror movie route as you can see in this trailer:

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Manuela Velasco returns as reporter Ángela Vidal for what is Jaume Balagueró’s direct sequel to [REC]2 (after the divergence of [REC]3: Genesis).  Vidal has finally been removed from the apartment block of the original two films, and taken to what should be a highly efficient quarantine facility aboard a re-purposed oil tanker.  Rather than make a dull movie about the effectiveness of disease control measures, perhaps adding some light romance to it, the virus escapes and wreaks havoc on the crew of the ship.

Basically the way to look at [REC]4 is: do you like [REC]?  Then here you go, more [REC] for you.  If you were not a fan of the franchise, they are not going to be re-inventing the wheel with the fourth installment (aside from the move away from the P.O.V. style), so you may as well move along…

January 9:

Preservation

An indie horror film from director Christopher Denham (best known as an actor in Argo & Shutter Island), Preservation is coming to cinemas in a limited release on January 9.

The film follows three people: married couple Wit (Wrenn Schmidt – Boardwalk Empire) and Mike (Aaron Staton – Mad Men), and Mike’s brother Sean (Pablo SchreiberVicky Cristina Barcelona) on a hunting trip in a closed nature preserve.  The next morning the group wakes up to find all of their stuff is gone, and they have big, black X’s marked on each of their foreheads, causing suspicions to run rampant between the three of them, before they are faced with the prospect of being hunted themselves.

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Originally finding something of an audience in the festival circuit (including a showing at Tribeca), Preservation has received mixed reviews, but it could be worth heading out to see if it avoids the more common ‘people being hunted in the woods’ horror movie cliches we have already seen a million times.

There you have it; hopefully there is a film there that interests you as there is a nice balance in horror types coming out this month. Between the more classic, Gothic ghost story stylings of The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death, the hard R rated zombie stylings of [REC]4: Apocalypse and the more naturalistic survival horror of Preservation, there is a little something for everyone this month.

Or you could brave the terror of Paddington…

Happy Horror!