Friday, October 03, 2014

Halloween Horror Fest #2: Quick Notes on "You're Next" (2011)

You're Next (2011) Poster

I have a big sappy grin on my face. The gorehound is fed and my inner fanboy was given a big bro hug. Some movies are better after you sit through a million terrible ones. Long suffering horror nerds, don't turn away from your genre. Take a breath and watch this first. "You're Next" makes all those terrible slasher movies worth it.

I learned that rich people are terrible. They have no connection to themselves or others. It's all about the cash. Poor people are terrible too. Willing to do anything to get a taste of the good life. The only decent people are not from America. I learned New England makes terrible people. Australians are awesome.

In the movie, up tight rich people act snotty and treat each other terribly. Imagine a typical episode of Dynasty. Now imagine in the middle of Dynasty, a gang of slashers right out of an 80's movie crash the party and start killing everyone. It's the greatest final episode of any soap opera ever. The only thing missing is Joan Collin's head rolling down the stairs.

This movie is a secret handshake to horror freaks. In the first ten minutes of the movie, Barbara Crampton knows to leave at the first sign of trouble. Points. The good taste to cast Barbara Crampton. More Points. Ti West plays an auteur filmmaker in a pretentious hipster scarf. Larry Fessenden stops by for an embarrassing love scene. Having the most over qualified final girl ever... you win, movie.

This may be "Not Another Home Invasion Movie", but it's great. Lots of blood, guts, and painful moments. Blender. Nail. The running joke of the pop song playing on repeat. So much good stuff in this movie to soothe the jilted fan. See it if you've seen too many.


FIGHT EVIL
Sam Drog

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Thursday, October 02, 2014

Halloween Horror Fest #1: Quick Notes on The Wolf Man (1941)



This came out right after Pearl Harbor. The attack of, not the Michael Bay Movie. While Lon Chaney Jr. was stalking Universal's backlot, the Japanese Army was stalking us! War and Werewolves have a connection. There's even a movie call War Wolves (wish I had thought of that).

Nazi's were symbolized as wolves. In American Werewolf in London, Nazi Wolves bust into a suburban home and kill the family inside. In Wolf Man, people marked with a pentagram are doomed to die. Larry Talbot seemed like a nice guy, but became a snarling beast. Men acting like beasts.

Wolf Man is different because he wants nothing to do with his condition. He was just fine being a suave man of the world. Now look at him, cold blooded murderer. Dracula loved being Dracula. Frankenstein was born that way, and so he was playing the hand he'd been dealt. Larry Talbot is great because he's the self loathing monster.

Lon Chaney Jr. was a heavy drinker and a real brawler. He and his drinking buddies would get sloppy drunk and destroy their dressing rooms. Heavy drinking would eventually kill him. If you see his later roles, it's pretty sad to see the effect all this self abuse. When he died, they dissected his body to show students the damage a lifetime of heavy drinking does.

Not a lecture on sobriety or the horrors of war, but this subtext makes The Wolf Man a favorite of mine. Werewolves are a hard nut to crack. The make up has to be convincing or you wind up with a guy in a bear costume. Wolf Man's big game show host hair and puppy nose looks silly, but Lon Chaney Jr. sells it. The real scary stuff is his human form, wrestling with what he is. Existential horror!

FIGHT EVIL
Sam Drog

Clown Versus Monkey! Check It Out Here!

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Watch Short Films Here!