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Raymond Hill Mortuary Review

October 26, 2014

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Now in it’s second year running, the haunt at the Fremont Centre Theatre has raised the bar for what a scary haunt should be.  This year’s theme goes back to the building’s roots as a mortuary.  The maze portrays the theme well with everything from a waiting and viewing room to a pyre and crypt.

The haunt is interactive and will have you crawling over dead bodies, entering a coffin and interacting with the recently deceased.  The maze doesn’t use many hi-tech animatronics or props, but it doesn’t need it.  The newly themed attraction catches every detail and the energy of the haunted building adds a spookiness to the atmosphere.

Many reviews have stated the Raymond Hill Mortuary is one of the scariest haunts around and we have to agree.  We have to admit we were startled and spooked on more than one occasion.  There are many pitch black areas where you don’t know what’s around the corner until a ghost or ghoul jumps out at you to scare you.  The reality of the sets is amazing and like we previously stated, the natural environment feels haunted and will have you wondering what’s real.

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Sherwood Scare Will Possess You

October 26, 2014

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Sherwood Scare takes visitors into Stage 23 of Sherwood Studios where they will see a news clip from the 1930’s.  The clip shows the young Hollywood child star Hildy Cotter who while on one of her films people say became possessed.  A series of unsolved murders broke out and Hildy disappeared.  People talked about not going into the basement of Stage 23, saying that it was haunted by the young girl.

That is the theme of the this year’s Sherwood Scare, one of the most impressive home haunts you will find anywhere.  The haunt takes you room-to-room throughout Stage 23, such as the dressing room, the editing room, the screening room and of course the basement.  The haunt pays careful attention to detail and is just as scary as any of the mazes you’ll find at the theme parks, if not more.

We were impressed with the theme and how each room progresses you further and further into the story.  There’s a lot of classic scares inside, as well as some new ones.  If you were at Sherwood Scare last year you know how well these people put together a maze and you will definitely not want to miss this year.  The haunt is also for a good cause as all proceeds go to Big Worm’s Cystic Fibrosis Life Foundation.

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Reign of Terror Review

October 26, 2014

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Recently we visited Reign of Terror located in Thousand Oaks, California,  We weren’t able to go last year so we were able to see all the new elements added over the past two years.  Needless to say we were impressed with everything we saw.

ROT is a 15,000 sq foot haunt that seems much larger.  This is due to the creative use of the space and the many twists and turns that are inside it.  The maze is actually composed of five different sections.  They are in order: The Haunted Mine Shack, The Victorian Haunted House, Blood Manor, Quarantine and the Asylum,  These themes take up seventy rooms in the haunt.

Not only do the monsters, ghosts and ghouls come at you from the sides, but also from behind you and on top of you as well.  The scares are well placed with the actors constantly hitting  their marks and the reality and attention to detail of the sets.  Both the Victorian Haunted House and Blood Manor are two of the most realistic haunted house themes we have ever seen.

The Haunted Mine Shack has you exploring a haunted mine with deceased miners all around you.  The Victorian Haunted House recreates that abandoned home down the street that you were dared to go into when you were younger.  Blood Manor is another haunted house, but it has more of a chainsaw theme, with disfigured creatures and granny herself.  Quarantine is some kind of experimental lab where experiments have gone seriously wrong and the Asylum has a mental hospital theme complete with doctors doing terrible things to the patients.

Reign of Terror continues to be one of our favorite haunts and we highly suggest you check it out.  Lines can get very long, so we suggest you consider the VIP ticket which at $25 is a reasonable price for this haunt that takes at least 20 minutes.  As one of the people we were with said, “This should be a $50 maze”.

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Alone: An Existential Haunt 2014 Review

October 19, 2014

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This year Alone wasn’t quite as extreme as it seemed last year, however, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its startle and scare moments.  This year’s edition of the minimalist haunted attraction actually told the story of the Enola Foundation, something that it didn’t seem to portray as pronounced last year.  The haunt takes you in and out of a nondescript building in Downtown Los Angeles that at first glimpse some people might miss.  The actual address is a clothing store on Olympic Boulevard, but walking down the alley on the side of the building one can see where they’re set up.  They use the building extensively bringing visitors in and and out of it, creating some fear inspiring confusion.

We don’t want to give any spoilers as the attraction plays on one’s fears for what is seen as well as what isn’t.  Some moments are spooky or disturbing while others are actually comical, such as a scene where one will find themselves dancing in a small room with a strange, costumed character.

One of the people we went with on media night thought the haunt was incredible.  They mentioned a few of the scenes were really cool and that they loved the background music.  The music as well as the setting really played well on the whole Enola theme which seems to be some kind of pseudo research society.  Before going through the haunt, participants must fill out a sheet which asks questions such as, have you ever had an out-of-body experience?  When first starting the walk-through a lady asks everyone to do deep breathing exercise and meditation.  This it seems is to get you open for what comes next and plays with the overall theme which we think has to do with some kind of spiritualism or psychic experiment.

Alone is an experience that plays on the edge of the psyche.  There are parts that are really scary, but it leaves you feeling really good at the end, once you get past the creepy ending which will have you questioning everything.

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Los Angeles Haunted Hayride Goes to Hell

October 12, 2014

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The Los Angeles Haunted Hayride: Echoes from the Rift had a new theme this year.  Well, it actually seemed like a few new themes.  The themes we noticed were hell, death, the 7 Deadly Sins and the Apocalypse.  The themes were consistent and were portrayed in the Hayride itself as well as the two new mazes (actually one of them was a sideshow

The Hayride seemed more simple this year than it has in the past.  That doesn’t mean it wasn’t as good.  It seemed to succeed in its bare knuckles approach to everything death (this is different than the paranormal theme of last year though).  Prevalent seemed to be not only demons and ghouls, but everything one would imagine to see if they were to visit the seven layers of Hell.  A few of our favorite scenes were gone this year such as the demonic church that came to life, the three singers that move in slow motion and the Christmas scene.  New this year was a scene with characters on a giant swing pole which was kind of cool.  Other than that it seemed things were toned down from prior years although there were some really cool special effect (such as a giant eye that follows you while a monster crawls up from the ground).

The In-Between maze once again was one of the best dark mazes we’ve ever been in.  Our group got lost more than once in it.  There was a new maze called House of the Horseman which depicts the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse which sticks to the overall theme.  Although not one of the scariest mazes we’ve ever been it, it was a decent, interactive maze that did have some startling moments.  I don’t know if they were supposed to, but the monsters in the maze touched us on more than one occasion.  Also new was the Seven Sins Sideshow which displayed the 7 Deadly Sins.  This was an entertaining walk-thru, but we don’t know how scary it was meant to be, unless one takes each of the sins as a precaution.

Other attractions included the Blood Drums which was new for this year as well as an interactive macabre show.  We only saw part of the show but it looked like they were having audience members portray scenes from various horror films.  The act we saw was Alien.

Overall, the Los Angeles Haunted Hayride continues to be a fun event and the only one of its kind.  Although to us they seemed to tone down the Hayride itself, it still was productive in achieving scares.

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Six Flags Magic Mountain Fright Fest Delivers with Effective Scares

October 12, 2014

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This year Fright Fest went all out with improved and impressive mazes and scare zones.  To compete with the other local theme park haunts they have been continuing to up the ante and 2014 looks like they’ve hit on all cylinders.  Returning mazes this year are The Aftermath, Chupacabra, Toyz of Terror 3D, Willoughby’s Resurrected and Total Darkness.  The returning Scare Zones are Demon’s Door, Zombie Xing, City Under Siege, Exile Hill, Nightmares and The Wastelands.  There seemed to be more monsters in both the mazes and the Scare Zones and the returning mazes all seemed to have something new done inside of all of them, making them seem fresh and relevant.  The new mazes are The Willoughby’s Garden of Darkness, Red’s Revenge, and Vault 666.  The new Scare Zone is Ravenstitch which is filled with creepy scarecrows and ravens.  One other thing that we need to point out is that there seemed to be more sound effects throughout the park as well as more fog.

New Mazes

Willoughby’s Garden of Darkness, a dense labyrinth of man-eating plants and evil apparitions, is inhabited by Innocence, the Willoughby’s youngest daughter, who is always looking for a ghostly playmate…so keep loved ones close.

The camouflage netting inside a labyrinth garden provides great scare opportunities.  The monsters blend effectively into the setting and the video apparitions found throughout the garden give this maze a creepy feel.

Enter the world of Red’s Revenge…over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother’s house you go, but in this fairytale, guests and the wolf are hunted by Red and her demonic minions.

This is the most impressive maze that Six Flags has ever done.  When you first enter the maze you’re shown on a TV how Red has turned evil.  Throughout the maze you encounter characters such as the Wolf, Grandma and an evil Red.  There are quite a few animatronics situated throughout the maze that would equal anything seen at Knott’s.  The actors in this maze are also impressive as they stay in character and seem to know when to provide a fright.

Vault 666 is an old abandoned research facility where genetic experiments crossing humans with animals were once conducted and just recently the frightening secrets have been unearthed, exposing terror and mayhem from deep within the unsecured vault.

This maze is different from other Fright Fest mazes as it actually tells a complete story.  Visitors explore a laboratory where experiments are being done on both animals and humans.  After a pre-show to the maze that goes wrong, guests must find their way out of the elaborate set pieces and freakish characters.  The special effects and sets have really been paid attention to in this maze,  This is another maze that’s comparable to anything at Knott’s.

As far as the returning mazes, Aftermath is a post-apocalyptic themed maze that really impresses while Willoughby’s
Resurrected is one of the best “haunted house” themed mazes around.

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Raymond Hill Mortuary Haunted House We deal in the DEAD

October 4, 2014

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Evil Twin Studios’ Haunted House “Resurrected” at South Pasadena’s Fremont
Centre Theatre (South Pasadena, CA)
This Halloween season, Evil Twin Studios will transform South Pasadena’s Fremont
Centre Theatre back to its original mortuary roots, where the operators of the Raymond
Hill Mortuary have a very, shall we say, “unique” way of dealing with the dead.
The Raymond Hill Mortuary is a follow-up to Evil Twin Studios’ “Theatre of Terror”
which was ranked as one of LA’s top ten haunts in 2013. It garnered rave reviews online
and received extensive coverage in mainstream media including KIIS FM and
KCBS/KCAL News. The haunting industry has embraced Evil Twin Studios as a rising
star, inviting them to speak at the New Haunts Panel at ScareLA, Southern California’s
premiere Halloween convention. Read the rest of this entry »

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