Monday, March 30, 2009

Its time for More FILLER FUN with Cins!

Hey folks!
Sorry I haven't been around this week. Life has gone from HOLY CRAP BUSY! to now Eh...not to bad busy which is good. But I didn't want to just neglect my posting duties so I'm slingin' two recommendations at you until I can sit and write the damn article I want to write!

Monsters Vs. Aliens
Okay I know. Its not a horror film. But the movie DOES pay homage to some of the great old black and white monster movies like Creature of the Black Lagoon, Godzilla, and Attack of the 50 Foot Woman. It has some fun inside jokes for monster movie fans and some of the greatest voice acting I've ever heard. I'm usually not a big fan of DreamWorks Animation since the writing used to be pretty crappy. But since Kung Fu Panda their writing has gotten fantastic and I think this is their best animated film to date. Don't go expecting a bunch of pop culture jokes. Go expecting a really great, hilarious, and touching movie.
Oh...and Incectosaurus steals the show....I so want a plushy of him.

Garth Marenghi's Dark Place

I have a feeling I'm one of those people who missed the boat on this series when it first came out. And now I'm shouting "You have to see this!" to people who already have. Regardless, you have to see this! Dark Place is a hilarious British comedy series that only ran about six episodes. The whole premise is horror writer Garth Marenghi "Author. Dreamweaver. Visionary. Plus actor." created a horror TV show called Dark Place in the 1980's. It was never aired because it was too "Edgy". But he treats us to six episodes. What you see is probably the cheesiest, most low budget, horribly written TV series ever created. Its all intentional and the series really goes over the top to make it as authentically bad as possible. I believe you can catch episodes on Friday night on Adult Swim on Cartoon Network.
You can see a little snippet of it here.
If you're a fan of bad cheesy horror fillms, this is a great series to watch.

And that's all for now!
But I leave you with this thought....I just watched the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre again this weekend. I believe the movie is BRILLIANT and I always have loved it....but don't you think LeatherFace kinda runs like a fat kid in socks?

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Personal Ghost Stories or: WALL O' TEXT AHOY!

I had a friend once tell me I'm a ghost magnet. Do I believe that? I dunno, all I know is that when something gets my attention I tend to pay attention. I drive people crazy because everything catches my attention, and no matter how insignificant it is, I have to mess with it. Bugs, toys, shiny scraps in the gutter; I think maybe I'm part magpie. As a result of this I have sometimes noticed when things in my living environment have been a little.. off.

It seems to be a family thing, at least on my mom's side. See, you have to understand my maternal genetic material: my mother has eleven brothers and sisters, and of the twelve, there are three sets of twins. So you know, Grandma only MEANT to have nine. Mom is a twin. I have a sneaking suspicion I'm going to have twins (mostly out of karmic retribution; I do the "ha ha, you got TWO babies in there" dance every time a sister or sister in law gets knocked up.) Simply put, that side of my family is a touch spooky at times. My cousin D.C. swears to God he saw a big foot. Normally we'd just make fun of him and tell him he was full of pot/ shit (in fact.. we did do that.) but whenever someone would talk about it, he would get pale and sweaty, and not want to talk about it. Whatever he saw scared him badly, and Grandma's old place wasn't far from where the infamous Patterson-Gimlin film was shot back in the 1960's. Is that film legit? Fuck if I know chief, and really, I don't care. But another story that was told at family get togethers was about the big Cat tractors that were all tipped over one night, in a clearing up in the redwoods, again, not far my my grandmother's house. These tractors are probably half a ton or more in weight, and all around them were gigantic footprint, and the only vehicle tracks were from the night before. Is this true? I have no idea. But when you're sitting around a campfire with a million cousins, high in the Red Woods, it really doesn't matter how true it is in the daylight. I promise, you'll believe it at night.

One of my afore-mentioned aunts, Peggy, died before I was born. She was in a car accident, and then died in her sleep that night. Her twin, my aunt Penny, found her, if my memory is correct. (EDIT: My memory is NOT correct; she drowned after losing control of her car and veering into Willow Creek. Her friend survived, but was paralyzed from the waist down. Peggy drowned, something about a heavy sweater.) According to family legend, she haunted my grandmother's house. Grandma's house would have been creep regardless; she lived several miles up Kneeland mountain, in a ramshackle home smack in the middle of the Red Wood forest, as I have mentioned several times. It was a three bedroom house that housed fourteen people: my grandparents, nine daughters, and three sons. Because of the location, night doesn't fall up there, it crashes. There are no street lights, etc. You can clearly see the stars up there, or at least you could a few years ago. The house was also a touch dilapidated when I was a kid-- peeling paint, rusting cars, rotting lumber, the whole look, all of it being swallowed by blackberries and ferns. Inside the house was a nightmare of clutter-- my grandmother didn't like to throw anything away, including food, but that's a horror story for another time. Stacks of magazines on every surface, all over the floor, broken down couches and chairs covered by afghans, pictures all over the walls, and a blanket hung over the entrance to the hallway, to keep the house warm; for a long time I'm pretty sure the house was only heated by the little pot-bellied wood stove in the front room. The blanket was creepy; it was electric purple, and had singed holes int he middle that looked exactly like eyes were peering out at you from something hidden in the hallway.

My siblings and cousins all lived with Grandma on and off, sponging off of her and getting stoned. This is Humbolt County; getting stoned there in an everyday activity, really. At one point my older brother and his wife lived there. My sister-in-law told me that it was a really spooky place to be at night. She said she constantly heard noises, and their two dogs Nick and Bull, would bark at nothing, or lay and track things through the air, things that weren't there.

According to my family members, it's Peggy, watching over us.

My older sister also lived with our grandmother, for a time. She was still smoking, and it drove her crazy because her cigarettes would constantly go missing. It wasn't Grandma taking my sister's coffin nails; Grandma didn't care if anyone smoked. We liked going to Grandma's when we were underaged because she always let us drink up there. She has admitted to smoking pot, even. When I asked my sisters if she thought it was Grandma, my sister scoffed, and then said that she even asked Grandma, to be sure. Grandma's response? "No love, it was probably Peggy." Then our grandmother would go back to reading whatever it was at the moment. (Grandma will try to read while driving. I think I get my biblio lust from her.) Mag said she would usually then find her cigarettes in the closet of what had been the girls' bedroom, up on the top shelf, and shoved all the way into the back. My sister is a very no nonsense, type A kind of person, and she told me that the feeling she would get hen she found her nicotine tubes was a sensation of disapproval, like someone was silently telling her "These aren't good for you!" Mag was young when Peggy died, and spent a lot of time with her.

The last story of the moment comes from my uncle Steve, Peggy's brother, of course. Steve got drunk, something he did a lot, and stole a bunch of postal flags. He then took them up the hill, as he was living with Grandma at the time. He had pinned all of the flags up all around his room (the boys' room, originally), and was glad to be done, or so he said, as his arms were aching a bit from having them up over his head. Then, one by one, they fell off the wall, one after the other. It was a very playful kind of thing, but it scared the hell out of Steve, and I don't know that he ever slept in there again.

Through it all, Grandma has been fine with the idea of Peggy haunting us-- I'm sure most mothers would be that way. She was very young when she died-- I don't think she was even thirty or if she was it was not by much. She also had small children, another incentive to hang around. But I think it comforts Grandma, that Peggy pops in every now and again, and looks in on us.

There are other stories about this-- allegedly there was a phantom dog, too, the remnant of a former pet who ran under a burning porch, and no one was able to get him out in time. My cousin Lisa even claimed that the Ouija board told Peggy she as going to die, and it also told Lisa the same thing. I asked my sister about that and she shot it full of holes. Since the board allegedly told Lisa she was going to die before thirty-five and she's now over forty, I think I agree with my sister. Honestly, the real story s creepy and sad enough on it's own, don't you think?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


THIS was a fun quirky little movie that I stumbled upon.
It somehow was mysteriously added to my Netflix. I have no clue how. The husband claimed I added but I have no recollection of adding this movie nor have I even HEARD about it until he turned it on at random.
Regardless, it ended up on the cue and we watched it. And luckily it wasn't a waste of time.

Otis is a strange little comedy horror film about a serial killer (named Otis, natch played by Bostin Chistopher) who has a habit of kidnapping young blond high school girls, then killing them when they don't want to cooperate with his little games. He keeps his pretty young things in a locked room and subjects them to such horrors as forcing them to call themselves Kim, dressing up in a cheerleader costume, and making them dance with him at his imaginary prom night. Things tend to go a bit askew when he ends up kidnapping a young girl named Riley Lawson (Ashley Johnson).
Otis contacts Riley's family to continue his ritual of torture and taunting. But he doesn't expect the Lawson family to go off the deep end like they do. After Riley escapes, The Lawson's decide to take matters into their own hands and give Otis a taste of his own medicine. Only things take a turn for the hilariously horrible after Otis' older foul mouthed brother Elmo (played by Kevin Pollak) gets in the way.
And surprisingly enough, all of this is pretty dang funny.

What I enjoyed about Otis was how unexpected it was. The serial killer/revenge scenario is one we're all familiar with in horror but you never really considered how that would all feel if it went horrible HORRIBLY wrong. And it does. BOY does it.
The performances is what makes his movie as entertaining as it is. Bostin Chistopher's performance as Otis is fantastic. He is creepy, pathetic, yet very human and by the end of the movie you begin to see a more sympathetic side of Otis and you almost start to root for him. On the other side of the spectrum The Lawsons are hilariously broad and by the end of the movie they become more horrible than Otis. With Daniel Stern as the wimpy father Will, Illeana Douglas as the blodlustful mother Kate, and Jared Kusnitz as vengeful brother Reed you got yourself quite a trio. Illeana Douglas is definitely a stand out the moment she shouts "I'm going to tear out your intestines and feed them to our neighbor's Shitsu!" to Otis over the phone. Trust me, she's hard core. Another stand out performance is Jere Burns as the smarmy and slimy Agent Hotchkiss, the FBI agent assigned to find Riley. Talk about a bastard. I'm still trying to figure out who is worse, Otis or this guy.
Otis asks the question on who is worse, the serial killer or the suburbanites?

Overall Otis is an unexpected gem. I don't think I'd own the film myself but I found it very entertaining. If you're looking for a different style of horror/comedy to check out toss this up on the Netflix!

And just a quick note on posting. The next couple of days I'll be a bit quiet. I'm heading up to visit my family this weekend as well as getting tons of other stuff done. So hopefully I'll be back on my posting of irrelevant horror nonsense by next week.
Thanks for reading, ya'll!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

New Addition to the Mad Men I'd Kinda Like to Wrassle Nekkid With!

Halloy Halloy!

Let it be know that I, Stac, have finally A: completed my finals for the quarter, thank you Holy God, and B: seen Repo: The Genetic Opera.

I really enjoyed this movie, and loved the soundtrack. And the costuming. Holy cow, the costuming was AWESOME. Sarah Brightman got the lion's share of the neat wardrobe, including her awesome holographic eyes. I think she was given that role because her face in real life is about forty-five percent eyeball.

But what did I love the most? This guy:

The grave robber, our de facto narrator (and drug dealer, and pimp). He's played by the guy who wrote Repo as a play, the screen play, and composed the music.

He's also smoking hot, and I have no real idea why. Traditionally I am attracted to neither druggies or man whores, but DAYAM am I ever here.

Is it his hair? His gloves? Maybe his coat? Or is it his cynical world view and refusal to justify his his actions?

I think it was his coat, really.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Am I the Only One Who Loves Grindhouse?

Because I can't be the only one. Yet I always find bad reviews and complaints about this movie. And I really can't agree with them.

You know? I never understood why Grind House flopped. I don't know, maybe it was just me but I didn't think it was the pile of self indulgent pretentious crap every movie nerd and critic on the interwebs says it was.
Wait, I take half that statement back. I DO think it was self indulgent. But that was half the fun for me. Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez made the film because they could. And I'm glad they did. They did a rather loving homage to the cheesy awesome Grindhouse movies and also happened to have one hell of a budget to do it with. With that they created one insanely fun movie. Now I'm not a Tarantino acolyte. I don't think all his films are the end all be all of cinema. I also think he's kind of hideous and not that great of an actor so his usual roles in his films tend to bug me. But one thing he DOES know is how to make an entertaining movie.
His films are obviously labors of love and you just don't see that too often in any genre, let alone horror. And Robert Rodriguez needs to do more horror films. I know he has kids and I understand that when you have kids you want to make movies geared towards them. But dude, Robert, over the top wacky horror is your niche. Do MORE.

When I talk to people about Grindhouse I always tell them "Its not really a movie. Its an experience". And for me, it was a great experience. I went with my husband and three of my closest friends about a week after it opened. We were in a theater that was full of people who really didn't seem to know what they were in store for. And neither was I. I did my research on the film. I knew it was a double feature and that there would be mock trailers through out the movie. I knew about the missing reels. I knew about the original movies that they were attributing. So I thought I was prepared. When the movie started, it began one of the most memorable, exciting experiences in a theater I ever had as an adult.

Once the first trailer 'Machete" played, everyone in that theater knew that what we were going to see was not a typical action/horror movie. What started as a rather mild mannered audience turned into a bunch of rowdy nerds, whooping, laughing, and cheering the entire film. Usually I'm not into rowdy movie crowds but the five of us sitting together found ourselves shouting along with them. I remember my good girlfriend Ty and myself turning into the loudest of the bunch with our laughing, cheering, and throwing popcorn at the screen. It was contagious. You know when you're a kid and you go to see an event film for the first time alone without your parents? You're sitting in the front row with your pals. You're excited and bouncing in your chair. You've been waiting so long to see that movie and you're young enough to not try to contain that excitement because you don't care what people think of you. And once the lights go down you just explode in cheers and claps. That excitement, that thrill of the theater experience was captured in Grindhouse.

One of the main reasons I loved Grindhouse so much was the fact that the women characters were so strong and memorable. Yeah, I know, here goes Cins back on her soap box. But come on, How can you not fall in love with Cherry and her machine gun leg, Dr. Dakota Block, The Crazy Babysitter Twins, and my favorite, the three bad ass chicks from Death Proof. All of these women were great characters.

I really have to give props to Tarantino for his women in Death Proof. You know, not all us ladies are all Sex in the City types. He created a chick flick for us chicks who don't always discuss clothes and how our next relationship will define our lives (Okay so I'm blasting Sex in the City but GOD I hate that show). The girl talk in Death Proof was more akin to conversations I've had with my gal pals than ANY chick flick I've seen in the last five years. I remember looking at Ty during the film and saying "THAT is us. Holy Crap!". Women curse, women talk about sex casually, women drink beers from bottles, and women can get very VERY angry. Death Proof give us less refined women our version of Sex in the City. The satisfaction I get when Kim, Abernathy, and Zoe decide to chase after Stunt Man Mike and beat the ever loving crap out of him knows no bounds. Maybe its my deep seeded need to seek justice against men who are douche bags.
Not that Stunt Man Mike wasn't a great character. It was great to see Kurt Russel play a bad ass again. And Stunt Man Mike was one of the best movie villains ever. He was charming, deadly, and sniffling all at once. You hated to love him and you loved to hate him.

Not to forget the women in Planet Terror. The movie was much more of a melodrama than Death Proof so everyone was an over the top character with some sort of extreme drama in their back story. But Cherry was a great character for the ladies who were never sure where they're supposed to be in life. She had her insecurities, and she had her issues but when the chips were down, you did NOT want to mess with her. Cherry and her gun leg became the iconic image from the film and lets face it, who wouldn't want to see a movie that has a woman with a machine gun for a leg? I know I was sold the moment I saw the poster. Mostly because I wanted to know how the hell she got it. And while Dr. Dakota was a weaker female character, she was so hilariously soap operatic that you couldn't help but love her over the top drama. She was not the typical throw away whiny female in a film but a very strong supporting character that was never annoying and always entertaining.

Have I stood on my female character soap box long enough? I'm sure I did.

Sometimes I feel like I'm one of the very few people who truly loved Grindhouse. I'm still extremely miffed it hasn't been released as the full movie on DVD yet. My hope for Grindhouse is that it will eventually become a cult classic that you can catch at midnight showings at your local art house theater. You really need to see it in a theater to truly appreciate it. Until then, I will hold seeing Grindhouse as one of the best movie experiences I've had in my adult life.

Monday, March 16, 2009

More of Cin's Filler Fun!

Yeah...I've been called to Jury Duty. YAAAAAAY! So the usual dead time I get at work to write my articles here are occupied by sitting in a room next to a fat guy with a squeaky chair who farts in the court room.
I wish I was making that up.
ANYWAYS, A couple pals of mine like to point out to me that just about anything can be made funny just by putting the Benny Hill Theme Music over it. And frankly? I completely agree. This goes double for horror films.

For Example....

And I rest my case.


Children of the Corn

American Psycho

The Shining

Why, yes I am easily amused. Why do you ask?

Friday, March 13, 2009

Final Destination Death Scenes

The Final Destination movies are a bit of a guilty pleasure for me. Yeah I know, they're pretty lame and they're all the exact same movie with different characters. But lets face it, I don't watch these movies for the profound character arcs and amazing stories.
I watch it for the completely improbable accidents.
The Final Destination movies have some of the most creative clown gore scenes I've seen in main stream film. These insane Rube Goldfarbian deaths are constantly entertaining even when the movie itself is just a large pile of poo. Thank God for DVR and DVD so I can fast forward though any pesky plot and get to the amusement. They are pure escapist entertainment and they never pretend to be more than they are and that is sensational, over the top, pop corn horror. And Damnit, I respect that.
Anyways, I just finished watching the first Final Destination (and in my opinion, the best one of the series but 3 had some of the best gore.) and I wanted to share some of my favorite gore scenes from the series.

Obviously, these clips contain spoilers, so if you rather not be spoiled. don't watch.

I found this great montage of some of the best gore scenes from the trilogy.

But this one is my favorite. Its so insanely convoluted! From the first Final Destination Film.

I highly recommend any of the first three Final Destination movies if you just want some fun gore effects and not have to think. These are prefect for drunken horror movie parties or just to turn on when you want to turn your brain off and watch some goofy horror.


It's Friday the 13th, and a happy one to you all! Today was the last day of classes for the quarter at my college (have some alliteration), and I'm currently trying to figure out how the fuck I'm supposed to identify and then write to formula for acid-base conjugations.

Afterward though? I'm going to take off my bra, wear a tight t-shirt and very short shorts, then wander out into the woods, get hammered, light up a wee bit, and then get hammered again, IFYAKNOWHUTIMEEEEEN! Wink wink! Then I'm going to go skinny dip, and possibly pee on Pamela Voorhees' grave.

I'm sure eeeverything will be juuuust fine.

EDIT: The fine folks over at the Cake Wrecks blog have a whole article posted to Jason Voorhees cake. Go see the delicious horror!

Direct link

Or go and click on the Cake Wrecks link to the right of this post; should be their top post, at least today.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Let The Right One In.

I had an opportunity to sit my butt down and watch this movie.
I'm glad I did.
If I could use three words to describe Let the Right One In its subtle, haunting, and heartbreaking.

I found out about this movie when I first started reading Freddy in Space. It sounded interesting. I was intrigued! But then I find the majority of vampire movies I find are usually less than satisfying with the exception of a few. This one goes on the list of satisfaction.

Let the Right One In is a simple Swedish film about a young outcast boy Oskar who befriends a young girl Eli. Eli happens to be a vampire. And that's pretty much the entire movie. But honestly, I don't believe it needs much else since its a beautiful character study of two outcasts finding each other in a cruel world.
Here's the Trailer

If you're planing to see this movie, keep in mind its not a balls to the walls horror film. In fact I consider it more of a drama with supernatural elements than a horror film. That doesn't make it any less interesting though. What I loved so much about this movie was hoe subtle it was. There were no major splashy effects or gore. Just little moments here and there that made you blink, then fill you with a strange eerie feeling. The subtleness of the effects and the vampire moments made Eli come across extremely creepy, especially moments when she showed her more animalistic side.
The music score was beautiful and rich but never overdone. I remember more scenes in silence than I do with incidental music which made many moments more tense. The cinematography was beautiful in an almost nihilist way. Vast canvases of white, grey and washed out hues covered the screen and only small accents of red used here and there to symbolize life and passion. It was a clever use of color but never hit you over the head with its statement.
But the real power of this movie lies in the acting. The two child actors portray their characters with all the reality and skill as any established adult actor. With weaker actors, I really doubt I would have liked this movie as much. But both were so charming, sweet, and ordinary you couldn't help but be sucked into their world. I heard they are remaking this for the U.S. which could be interesting. But I really hope that the powers that be both cast unknown children as well as cast children who are not overly cute but in that awkward gawky phase. I believe that is very important to the story and without it, you get another run of the mill vampire tale.

I highly recommend this movie. I believe its on par with movies like The Shining, The Exorcist, and Pan's Labyrinth. If you're looking for something more subtle and different, with wonderful characters and very subtle horror, this one is for you!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Creepy Guy or Tree?

..or ...
Stacy Will Hurt Me Eventually If I Don't Tell This Story.

If you all have been reading this blog for a while, you'll notice that Stacy has a large number of weird things happen to her. Enough weird things to truly make me wonder if she's some sort of magnet for the strange and unusual. Me? I don't really attract strange and unusual unless its a very strange and unusual person who wants to make me their special friend.
I'm fly paper for freaks. I don't know why. It's been this way as far back as I can remember. So where Stac has tales of the supernatural, I have tales of the guy who could have a severed head in his back pack and wants to give me a hug. My stories though tend to be pretty short and sweet. This is because I don't stick around long enough to find out if any of these people could be threatening. But there is one story that Stac would like me to tell. Granted, I don't think it translates to the written word or even to me telling it in person very well. It may just inspire some "huh.."s in you. But All I know was at the time? It scared the shit out of me.
So Flash back to when I was about 19. I grew up in a relatively small city that was interconnected with another small city by a busy main road called Appian Way. Now Appian is a pretty busy street day and night. It connects to some main shopping areas and such but there was a section of just eucalyptus trees and dirt walks as it lead into the suburbs. Considering one of my best friends lived in the neighboring small city, I drove Appian all the time. Day, night, whenever. Its really not a creepy road in any way.
I was driving Appian on a really rainy night. A couple of friends and I were coming home from the movies and I decided to take Appian because I really hated driving the freeway in the rain at the time. I was still a pretty novice driver. So we're putt-putting down the road in my little 1987 Ford Escort. We're all high on sugar and popcorn and laughing and talking loudly. The usual event after a movie for us. We're passing through the barren part of Appian and I'm not giving much thought to anything other than the conversation and the road in front of me.
As we're driving, I hear my friend in the back seat say "Umm...What's that?" I glance up ahead to where she's pointing and I see what looks like a man. He looks tall, probably about six feet. But that's about all I could tell you about him in detail. He appeared to be wearing a raincoat, a hat, and some sort of scarf or muffler that covered the bottom half of his face. He was just standing on the side of the road half in and half out of the bushes, completely dead still and looking straight ahead at nothing. Seriously. I don't even remember the wind even touching his coat. I kinda laughed it off and said "Oooh, phantom hitch hiker" to mask the fact that I suddenly got really creeped out.
Obviously there was no way in Hell I was stopping that car. Why? Because that's how stupid people in horror films behave. So I continued on by. We drove past this figure and as we passed, the man slowly turned his head and watched my car go by...ONLY my car. And we were not the only car on the road. The three of us went quiet for a moment all of us feeling the collective heebies.
"Did he just look at us?" A friend said.
"I..think so" I said.
"Was that even a guy?" My other friend asked.
"I have no fucking clue" I said.
We drove a bit further then curiosity got the better of us and we decided to turn around and see if we really saw what we saw. I was young and stupid though and feeling adventurous. so I flipped a U-ie and went back the other way to see if he was still there.
We were on the other side of the road now and I slowed down ever so slightly and we tried to take a good look. Yeah, he was still there. And damnit, if he didn't watch my car AGAIN going in the other direction. JUST my car...again.
"Yeah....that was a guy" I said.
Unfortunately we were now going the wrong way. And the stretch on Appian we were on was one where there were no major turn offs to lead us to an alternate route back to my place. So after a long while of quiet driving, and realizing we were getting more freaked out since the road gets more rural the further we wet down I pretty much said "Oh fuck this.", flipped a bitch in the road, hit the gas, and sped down Appian to just get out of there.
And he was there again. Standing in the rain and looking across the road at nothing. My friend squealed at me to gas it and I did. We whipped by the guy at a speed I really should go to jail for. And as we passed, I looked over and notice his head snap after my car. I caught him staring after us in the rear view mirror.
Needless to say the rest of the ride was pretty quiet.

I still have no idea what I saw. He could have been some freaky homeless guy, some joker screwing around, or something else entirely. Hell, he could have been a tree. It was dark and raining after all and my imagination has a nasty habit of running away with me.
Its been almost fifteen years since that happen. And damnit, sometimes I think I see that same figure on the side of the road on my way home from work at night.
I don't even live in the same city anymore.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Orphanage-- a Shockingly Serious Post from Me.

I just finished watching The Orphanage, and I'm really tired from crying.

Now, I'm going to confess to an open secret: I absolutely adore kids, and eventually want to have a few munchkins of my own. I also plan to adopt a few. Too many people these days either idolize kids or hate them irrationally, and I have no patience for either. I don't know if it's just because I never lost my child eyes, or if it's because I've been around them my whole life, but kids are something special that MUST be protected. They are so small and physically helpless, and I remember all too well what it's like to be afraid of something under my bed-- it still happens to me at 31 occasionally.

So children in peril is something that affects me, strongly, I still whimper (I am not speaking in hyperbole, either) when I watch Poltergeist. I loved The Host, but don't know if I can ever watch it again. The Orphanage has a lot of kids in it, and bad, bad things happen to many of them. You also have a heart-broken mother and father, and they are trying desperately to unravel the upsetting mystery that their home seems to be suffocating in.

A big part of this movie's tone is also the loss of bright possibilities. When you have a wonderful future in your hands, it's horrible to have that knocked away, taking your heart with it. I'm not going to reveal too much of this movie-- it's beautiful and heart breaking and wonderful, and the end really needs to be experienced as it unfolds, instead of knowing what's coming.

Tonally this movie reminds me a lot of Pan's Labyrinth, another gorgeous film that made me sob in the theater. It's a lot like a faery tale, but more cautionary that fantastical, and with ghosts instead of fantastical creatures.

See this movie.

10 minutes of Terror-Jeepers Creepers

Wow! Two 10 minutes of terror in two weeks? I'm on a ROLL here!

Yes, I have a love/hate/borderline abusive relationship with the movie Jeepers Creepers. And I have mentioned it here on the blog many times. But this isn't a post talking about what pisses me off so much about the movie. No, this is a post discussing what I loved the most about Jeepers Creepers. And that was the beginning of the movie.
Lets take a look, shall we? This is a pretty long clip divided into to parts. So I guess you can call this installment 20 minutes of terror instead. Hang on, because this is a long clip.
Part 1

Part 2

Now I posted both clips because the first 20 minutes of this movie are brilliant. Not only is there a wonderfully intense chase scene but some of the best brother and sister banter written. I was pleasantly surprised to not only see two characters in a horror film have natural chemistry but also come across as so likable. Making Trish and Dery likable made the terror you feel during the car chase even more intense. You became genuinely scared for the characters instead of waiting for a gory kill or the next cat scare. This goes likewise for the lull in the middle of the scene. It was a great moment of character development that lures you into a false sense of security before you spot the creeper dumping things down the sewage pipe.
The car chases were also wonderfully executed. The way the truck sneaks up on you in the beginning, the horrific horn that sounds almost like an animal, and the rusty nasty appearance of the truck all call back to the movie Duel but without outright copying it. Also, that brief moment when The Creeper looks up from his work to watch the passing car from a distance is a moment hailing back to a very creepy personal story about a weird hitchhiker on the side of the road I drove past once. It genuinely gives me chills.
This of course leads up to the pipe. Though that wasn't intentionally a part of what I considered the opening of the movie, its definitely a wonderful moment and leads all sort of "OH SHIT!"-ery.

So with Jeepers Creepers I'll have to say the first half of the film is brilliant. The very last scene of the movie is extremely chilling. Its the middle parts I have issues with. Regardless, people do think it is a masterpiece and I will admit it has some wonderful moments in it. Give it a whirl if you haven't seen it. Or at least watch up to the point where the black Psychic lady calls.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

An Extremely Rambling and Unfocused Discussion on Vampires.

Its Sharing is Caring time here at Creepy Kitch!
In other words, I'm trying to spark a discussion in the comments section.
Warning, I am completely unfocused and thinking a lot of the up coming Pedicure I have after I get home from work. So read at your own risk.

I was listening to a Cadaver Lab Podcast episode about the Vampires( Oh and if you're reading this. Sam. I feel your Noob pain, man. I am in the same boat). I'll admit, I originally started listening to it because Stac left the guys a rather hilariously perverted message on there. Lets face it, the woman is completely obsessed with her magoo. Really. I mean it. Its actually quite charming. But then I believe most of us are a little preoccupied with our genitals at one time or another. But I digress. This article is about Vampire discussion, not Stac's ax-wound..

Now overall, I'm not a huge vampire lover. I'm a zombie girl. Keep in mind when I am talking zombie or vampire I mean in terms of what appeals to me as an audience not which one would I rather do the horizontal bop with. Because if those were my only choices?Yeah, I'd go celibate. And for some reason each paragraph is going back to sex. I'll stop. I promise. I am, as usual, split focused since I'm writing this at work and trying to give good customer service while thinking of blood suckers. Am I babbling? I'm babbling.

Yet despite that vampires are not my #1 ghoul of choice I still like to see vampires in films and I love it when people play with their mythology. Like zombies, the mythos is broad, sweeping, and can pretty much be adapted to anything if you know how to tweak it the right way. In fact, there was a crazy vampire series Stac, her roomie Bevin, and I put together called Wax Lips where we really did one heck of an overhaul on the standard vampire mythos.
I find that there are three types of vampires in the horror genre. At least there are three types that I know about. We have the animalistic vampires (30 Days of Night, John Carpenter's Vampires), the suave angsty vampires (Interview with a Vampire, Dracula), and the bad ass mother fuckers(Blade, Underworld). While all three have their place in the horror world I tend to lean more towards the animalistic style of vampires. What can I say? I like my vamps mean, bitchy and ruthless. I think 30 Days of Night gives us some of the best vampires ever. Overall I think its an okay film (the graphic novel is better) but talk about ruthless, angry, scary mother fuckers! I love the mouth full of shark like teeth and that they had their own if only they could have casted someone else other than Josh Hartnett as Eben...I mean come on. You're WAY too pretty to be that character, man.
The main reason why the animalistic vampire is the most appealing to me is because its the one I find the most scary. To me, having someone tear into you like a rabid badger is far scarier than someone trying to seduce me...well not completely. You should have seen some of the gems that hit on me at comic con. But still. Like zombies, the looks human, seems human but is definitely NOT human factor in the animalistic vampires is what gives me the creeps.
Of course I still have yet to watch Let the Right One In (which hopefully will be my main activity tomorrow since its my day off). So my entire perspective may change after that.
Anyways, Lets start some conversation, shall we?
-What do you like best: Animalistic, Bad Ass, or Angsty vampires?
-What is one of the best combos of the three you've seen on film?
-Any style you hate?
-Any style you love?
-Any films to recommend to me? I'm always looking for new things to watch.
-What vampire cliche's do you hate or love?
-What is your ultimate favorite vamp flick?
-What about Stac's magoo? Actually no..that shouldn't be up for discussion.
Feed my Lust for Knowledge!!! I promise I will respond to your comments...after my pedicure. Promise!

Bonuse Material!
Here's some trailers of my Favorite Vamp Films

30 Days of Night. (not as good as the graphic novel though. I'll stand by that)

John Carpenter's Vampires. (Its just a lot of fun and worth Watching JUST for James Woods alone.)

Fright Night (So Cheesy, so 80's, so fun.)

Night Watch (Not completely about Vampires but its' freakin AWESOME!)

Near Dark (One of the Best Vampire Movies ever made)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Like that nonsense word there? I have a deep-seated need to combine words like that; it is an illness, and I have no cure. SO COMBINE I SHALL!

I have literally just finished with Dance of the Dead (like, I'm watching the credits roll and listen to the strangely sweeping score as I type this). I am in love. I'm going to marry this movie, you see, and have horrible half human half DVD babies with it that beg the world for death. It's gonna be pretty memorable.

Simply put, this is a movie about a small town living under the literal shadow (and toxic output) of the local three tower power plant. Zombies become a serious problem on prom night, with some of the COOLEST grave rising I've ever seen. I think they launched the actors out of the ground on pneumatic rams. These actors would shoot out of their graves horizontally, then land on their feet, running. I wanna learn to do this-- I would freak my nieces and nephews out daily.

In a rare touch, I liked all of the characters in this movie, and was genuinely sad (and even surprised a few times) when a character would die or be zombified. Most of the survivors are the kids who never made it to prom to begin with, like the science fiction club, who really looked and acted like they should have been right along side John Cusack, Darren Harris, and Anthony Micheal Hall in Sixteen Candles. You also have a very angry redneck/punk played by Justin Welborn, who was also in The Signal another movie I absolutely loved. I've really lucked out with NetFlix lately!

This is an ensemble cast-- the sneering amateur rockers, the main smart ass and his long suffering girlfriend who has one of the few legitimate falls while fleeing I've seen in horror. She also uses her shoe as a weapon very effectively, which has me rethinking my "no chunky/awkward yet fabulous shoes" stance in the ensuing zombigeddon. A heavy platform would do some serious damage, and it's already in red, so no staining!

There are some great, creative kills, and seriously, ZOMBIES AT THE PROM. What more do I have to tell you?

I also have to reveal some serious geekage here. Now, I lust for Mike Rowe, of Dirty Jobs fame; he is a hunka-hunka burnin' LUV, and he can sing, too! He did an episode around Halloween of 2007 where he met a guy who does special effects for movies, specifically horror. He turned Mike into a lumbering homunculus, and then shot him. He also threatened Mike with physical harm several times, which amused Mike so much he pushed the man's buttons more. I squee'd with some seriously nerdery when I realized that same FX guy, Toby Sells, had a bit part in this as "The Kwiki Mart Attendant". He also did a lot of the FX for this movie! EEE!!! I'm a dork!

All of the actors were great choices for their parts-- no one had that air brushed, squeaky, toothpaste commercial "attractiveness" that isn't all that attractive (to me anyway), though Hollywood and Fox t.v assure us repeatedly that they are the pinnacle of human evolution. Everyone was interesting looking, which made them more believable in their roles. Of course the cheerleader was blond and perky, of course one of the Sci Fi geeks was a ginger. No one seemed out of place or miscast, and the zombie makeup was great, too.

Best part of this movie, though? Zombie sex. Yep. Total zombie nookie. Come for the chaos, stay for the undead bumpin'.

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and the Exorcist

I love The Exorcist.
Yeah, I guess that means you can call me old school but I love that movie. Its definitely in my top ten horror films of all time. Its one of those films that I can pop into the PS3 at any time...which has proven a little annoying to the hubby since now I know this movie by heart. I know a lot of younger horror fans really don't see what the big deal is with The Exorcist. And looking at it by today standards, it can be considered pretty tame. But as a person who was born in the 70's and as a Catholic (Well, Catholic Lite. Not quite Catholic enough.) this movie still gives me the heebies even after the 200th viewing.
Unfortunately AND fortunately The Exorcist spawned two sequels and two prequels. I consider The Exorcist to be one of those magical movies. It was a film that had all the right elements. Great acting, great screenplay, great source material, and a fearless director is what put this movie in a special breed of horror that is reserved for films like The Shining and Let the Right One In. So trying to duplicate it is pretty close to impossible. Do I think any of the movies equal the original? Not really, no. But I have to say two out of the four are pretty darn good. Yeah...I was as surprised as you are.

Lets Start with The Bad...

Exorcist II: The Heretic
Well, this movie works for a good drunken horror film night for sure. The movie is generally about Linda Blair's Regan having grown up and SURPRISE! The demon decides to come back and fuck with her again. It has some unintentionally hilarious moments such as Linda Blair trying to be sexily demon possessed, that very bizarre hypno mirror light machine do-hicky, and Richard Burton saying Pazuzu so much that it should be made into a drinking game. I love camp and bad horror films but since I have such a love for the original, well, it just doesn't do it for me. Exorcist II: The Heretic is a product of the studio machine. You can just picture the meeting for this movie:
"We'll do a sequel! But we'll make it SEXY!"
"Yeah! Sexy!"
"Yeah! Linda can sex it all up! And we'll put some more action in it. The Exorcist needs some more action. How about Locusts!?"
"Oh! And the Demon should have a name! I mean we should make it a character and all! Get into its skin! Market some dolls to the kids!"
"I got a great name! Pazuzu!"
"Perfect! Kids will LOVE it!"

I will admit, the locust scene is pretty fun to watch, but the whole movie leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I would say more about it but...well...there really isn't a whole lot to say. Most of it is ridiculous and what isn't is so unmemorable that I can barely write about it. I don't hate it but I really don't love it either. But one thing it did give us; that great Futurama episode were Dr. Farnsworth howled "PAZUUUUZUUUUU!" to call back his beloved pet demon.
I may revisit this movie after a pint of rum.

Exorcist: The Beginning
This movie makes me angry...violently angry. We're talking Jeepers Creepers rage here. I remember planning to catch it in the theaters. Luckily, my brother in law (who is also an Exorcist fan) stopped me. And I'm so glad he did. I ended up renting it for a buck from Blockbuster months later out of curiosity. I believe they found me on top of a clock tower with a cross bow and several hostages after the viewing. Stac managed to talk me down via cell phone with promises of rainbow bunnies and chocolate covered hugs. I don't want to think about the aftermath if I had seen it in the theater.
The movie is suppose to cover Father Merrin's younger years when he performed his first exorcism on a young boy in Africa. Or so that's what the original Exorcist said happened. In this movie there really isn't a little boy and Father Merrin is a priest in the same way you can call Paris Hilton a good role model for the kiddies.
A little background on the prequel of the Exorcist. This movie was in development Hell. It went through several directors and writers before it was finally written by William Wishing and directed by Paul Schrader. But during a studio viewing the powers that be apparently though that it needed more sex and violence (see above discussion in Exorcist II) and tossed him off the project. In comes Renny Harlin who has done such prestigious films like Cliffhanger, Deep Blue Sea, and The Adventures of Ford Fairlane to direct. Because if one thing the Exorcist is known for, its its thrilling action sequences, sharks, and Andrew Dice Clay.
Now the new screenwriter, Alexi Hawley apparently likes to write by braille because I seriously doubt he even saw the original Exorcist at all. The continuity with the original film is non existent, the characters are completely off mark, and the story makes no sense what so ever. You can practically see poor Stellan Skarsgard as Father Merrin rolling his eyes with every line delivery. Combine all that with an unnecessary opening shot of a bunch of CGI guys crucified upside down and the need to make Father Merrin Indiana Jones, complete with putting on a Fedora and walking off into the sunset and this is the perfect movie to induce rage in me.
If anyone ever happens to run into any studio execs who worked on this film, please hit them....with a cast iron skillet...then feed them to rabid monkeys...then laugh at them.

NOW on to the good...

Exorcist III: Legion
You may all pick your jaws off the floor now. Seriously, this movie was actually GOOD. Exorcist III: Legion is much more on par with the original, not only with its tone, but with its storyline as well. The movie picks up years after the original film and follows Kinderman running into Father Karris's body possessed by something nasty. That nasty is brilliantly portrayed by one of my all time favorite creepy men, Brad Dourif. The demon popped itself back in Karris's body and brought it back to life just because it enjoyed the irony....that's pretty fucked up.
The movie is a lot like the original with its build up being very character driven. A good deal of the movie is spent between Kinderman (now played by George C. Scott) and the Gemini Killer Demon (Dourif) talking...or actually Dourif talking and Scott looking genuinely freaked out. That is interspersed with crazy old people, freaky dream sequences, and a little old lady crawling on the ceiling. The movie is directed by William Peter Blatty, the writer of The Exorcist novel. I believe this was his first film. And while it does suffer from first time director clumsiness in places, the movie itself is extremely well done. I'd say the weakest part is the ending exorcism scene. The original scrip did not end with an exorcism. But the studio felt that if you're going to name a film Exorcist III, you better damn well have an exorcism in there! Though its not a bad scene, it does feel a bit tacked on. But a priest getting his skin ripped off and George C. Scott giving a great speech about how he now believes in evil keeps it entertaining.
I'd have to say the best part of the movie is what is called "The white sheet scene". I believe this scene was featured in Bravo's Even Scarier Movie Moments. What is so masterful about that scene isn't the scare but the build up. The long lingering shot, the silence of the room, the mundane activities that seem to go on and on and yet you're positive something is going to happen. So positive that you start grinding your teeth while waiting.
It's not as brilliant as the original but it is a well crafted film worth watching.

Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist
I must not have been the only one on a clock tower after watching Exorcist: The Beginning. Because shortly after it was released on DVD, Dominion was released. Dominion is the original prequel directed by Paul Schrader before the studio infected it with their film herpes. Schrader actually shot and cut the complete film together before the studio decided to scrap it. And its a much more in depth, exciting, and meaningful ride than the original prequel ever was.
Once again, we follow the beginning years of Father Merrin but unlike Exorcist: The Beginning, Father Merrin is in character. He is still a priest, but struggling with his faith after a horrible tragedy that he took part in when the Nazi's invaded his town in Europe. The movie feels more like a World War II drama with supernatural elements more than a horror film. But then, to make an Exorcist film you need to have a drama at heart to build the horror off of. I never realized what a butcher job the original prequel was until I saw Dominion. There were some great stories, subplots, and wonderful acting cut from the film. Some of the great characters that were lost include Father Francis a young optimistic priest who is the antithesis of Father Karris in the original movie, CheChe the possessed boy in question, and Sargent Major a hard British Sargent who starts to go off the deep end. You also get to see Stellan Skarsgard's wonderful performance as Father Merrin which was lost in the re cut prequel. The whole film is extremely tense. There is tension between the African natives and the Christian missionaries, tension between the local tribes and the British soldiers, tension between the locals and the outcast CheChe, as well as tension between Father Merrin and his slipping faith in his religion. This in turn effects the viewer and you feel completely wound up as you watch the movie. It can be slow moving at times but it never gets boring. The films major short comings are a really bad score which sounds like it was recorded on a Casio keyboard, and its God awful CGI. But I chalk both up to the fact that the film was never 100% completed and both those elements were slapped on for the DVD release. I can overlook that but for those who cannot stand bad CGI, beware.
Once again, its not as good as the original and actually I don't think its as good as Exorcist III. But its a movie that does justice to the character of Father Merrin and its worth the watch.

Yeah, I got a bit long winded there. Thanks for sticking around this far! But The Exorcist is one of those films I feel pretty passionate about. Hopefully you'll give Dominion and Exorcist III a chance if you haven't before. They are definitely worth a peek. And even Exorcist II would be worth a watch after excessive alcohol and a bunch of friends.
But I still stand by my conviction of feeding the execs for Exorcist: the Beginning to rabid monkeys.
Outbreak spider monkeys.
I live by a zoo.
I can do this.