Long Gone

Chris and Amanda begin their grim search.

In a quiet rural area of England, people are disappearing. This is bad enough by itself, but in this case two of the missing are police officers. It can’t be reassuring when the very people who are supposed to be dedicated to protecting you are slowly becoming victims themselves.

Enter intrepid reporter Chris (Drew Horsley) and his photographer Amanda (Hannah Walker). Well, actually Chris is rather a pompous jerk who greatly enjoys talking down to Amanda, but to be fair he is clearly determined to get the story and he thinks he has a fresh angle that might get results.

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The Spirit Machine

The spirit machine in action. That Edison knew his stuff.

Almost a century ago, Thomas Edison (Steve North) invented something he called The Spirit Machine. Also almost a century ago, that machine was lost and it has now passed into the realm of myth and urban legend. But as it turns out, not only is the machine still around, it can actually do what Edison claimed: allow the user to talk to the dead.

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Movie poster. We could all use a little more clarity in life.

Clarity begins with a family party in a mansion in Las Vegas, headed by matriarch Sharon (Dina Meyer). Vegas isn’t really run by the mafia anymore, but it seems that not so long ago Sharon’s husband had a lot of shady dealings and his widow is still extremely wealthy. Once apparently an enforcer, Malcolm (Tony Denison) now acts as unofficial uncle and deeply intimidating guardian to Sharon and her four kids — three biological sons and adopted daughter Maggie (Dana Melanie), now embarking on med school.

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The Basement

The seance, just before it goes horribly wrong.

Somewhere in Budapest, there’s a mysterious basement, though ‘basement’ seems too tame a word for something that spreads out for blocks and is filled with twisting hallways, dead ends, and doors that unlock only when they feel like it. The basement is private property and difficult to find, but rumors of its existence are everywhere, attracting ghost hunters and thrill seekers from all over the world.

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Die! Sitter! Die! Rupert

Alison discovering that babysitting isn't such an easy gig.

It’s probably a touchy subject to bring up, but all questions about health insurance aside I think pretty much everyone can agree that the cost of medical care is crazy-high. Ask Alison (Caitlin Reilly), who’s just been handed the bill for her mother’s chemotherapy, the part that insurance won’t cover: $12,868.75, because heaven forbid it should ever be a round number. That extra 75 cents just feels like a slap in the face.

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Holly is having some trouble adjusting to her future mother-in-law.

When caring for a loved one in their final days, that person can easily become the entire world to their caregiver. This is exactly what happened to Holly (Roxy Bugler). who’s just lost her mother after a long and painful illness. Now Holly is at loose ends, and among her mother’s last words were a wish for Holly to find someone she could be happy with, the same way her parents were happy together.

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Fighting Belle

Delilah and Tandy get off on the wrong foot.

Southern beauty queen Delilah (Jessica Harthcock) has gone all out for her wedding day. The guests are assembled, the attendants are ready, and the $5,000 cake is waiting to be eaten. Granted, her mother (Carol Ann Scruggs) is slightly terrifying in her mood swings, and Charlene (Mallory Hynes) is being a typical younger sister, but Delilah is marrying Kelvin (Ryan Czerwonko), the man of her dreams, and all’s right with the world.

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The Night Watchmen

Because you need that nice, dramatic cast picture.

It’s all over the news — the nation is mourning the death of the beloved clown Blimpo (Gary Peebles), struck down along with his entire clown troupe by a mysterious disease while on tour in Romania. I didn’t think there were any beloved clowns anymore, unless Pennywise counts, but for purposes of The Night Watchmen assume that Blimpo was indeed beloved. Due to the suddenness of these deaths, the troupe’s bodies have been shipped quickly back to the US for autopsy.
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