Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

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Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 4:58 am

A day late but only a few dollars short motherfuckers!
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Yeah, I may be on vacation on the Pacific Coast, but I be damned if that's gonna keep me from my Horrorthon, and from sharing it with you.
There may be some compromise, just like last year, I got West Coast travel and some call I gotta take too, but that's not gonna stop me from gettin' deep in the vibe and bringin' it to you, wherever you may be, even now, from the Pacific Ocean, where I am stationed but reaching out to you!
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'Cause you know how I am...
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So, don't try to get away, Ima getcha...
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Just step right up and take the ride...
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... And let's get this Halloween started, half-ass or not!!!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:00 am

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Fuck yeah!!!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:01 am

Let's get it ONNNN!!!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:06 am

As I do every year, I'd like to start things off with a little Bloodletting...
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 6:15 am

Honestly, folks...
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Stu » Thu Oct 03, 2019 6:15 am

Bring it on, baby!!!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 8:17 am

First up, a nice way to ease into the season, black and white, Bela Lugosi, and Zombies!
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This has been a favorite of mine for about a dozen years, since it aired on TCM during October 2007 and for the first time in my life I knew what "White Zombie" was about. I'd heard about it in my life and heard it referenced in various ways (most obviously with Rob Zombie's band), but didn't know where the phrase came from, only that there was a movie out there somewhere. When I finally saw it, it instantly became a Halloween favorite for me.
The story of the pale American woman who, due to the desperate love of a lonely man and the evil witchcraft of "Murder" Legendre (Lugosi), becomes the walking dead! (Eek!)
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...doomed to do the bidding of her wicked master.

The movie is in pretty rough shape at this point. I've seen better prints than the one I watched last night but overall it's some pretty grainy, put back together business. The soundtrack switches around a good bit and there are parts that seem like they should have music and don't, but ultimately, all of that only adds to the gritty charm of this creepy film.
A wonderful combination of mood and design lend the film numerous visuals that appeal to the horror-fan. I wish I had more of them here, the sequence inside Legendre's sugar-cane plantation, completely operated by zombie workers, is frightening stuff for 1932 to be sure, but so many of the settings and images work throughout the film...
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And, of course, Lugosi, giving one of his best performances here (really, he does a great job, even moreso in smaller moments when you can see that he might actually have been able to act), gives the movie its gravitational center and force.
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And let us not forget Chauvin, the iconic (everyone will recognize him instantly for god knows how many horror references throughout however many media) Head Executioner of Haiti, now reduced to a zombie slave!
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Perhaps most importantly for me, Voodoo-based zombies are the zombies I grew up being afraid of, being from New Orleans (which got much of its Voodoo tradition from Haiti. The dead raised from the grave by black-magic, dark medicines, burning candles, walking the night with no sense of what they were... as far as we can tell - this is one of the things that scared me into cleaning my room or maybe kept me up nights. And I love seeing one of the prime examples here (we might see another great one later).
All of these elements combine to make an eerie film that is a classic for the month of October a real Halloween film rather than just a horror movie. I recommend everyone gives this short film, a mere 67 minutes, a good spin this October to get in the right frame of mind. I chose to open with it to put me in the right place.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Thief » Thu Oct 03, 2019 12:44 pm

Haven't seen that one, but heard/read good things about it. Should probably bump it up on my queue.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Captain Terror » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:19 pm

Yes that bit inside the mill, when all you hear is the creaking of the gears, is one of my favorite classic horror moments.

And I agree about the voodoo stuff. Viral rage zombies can be fun, but I'll always prefer the ol' risen-from-the-grave variety:
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Also, I whole-heartedly approve of everything that has happened in this thread so far. :up:
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:21 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:19 pm
Yes that bit inside the mill, when all you hear is the creaking of the gears, is one of my favorite classic horror moments.

And I agree about the voodoo stuff. Viral rage zombies can be fun, but I'll always prefer the ol' risen-from-the-grave variety:
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Also, I whole-heartedly approve of everything that has happened in this thread so far. :up:
Awesome, there will be more!

(Next write-up after lunch, a movie that I think many of us agree on that needed a re-watch).
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:29 pm

When I was about 10 years old, and my older brother was into D&D, I purchased this TSR offering!
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Obviously this was even more up my alley than dragons and wizards (which are pretty far up my alley, honestly) and it's a little simpler to play (though a more full game than you might think at first glance.
In the game each player is one of up to 6 vampire-hunters, setting out separately for Castle Dracula to finally put an end to the King of the Night. As you search the countryside to destroy his coffins and drive him back to his castle for a final confrontation, you can be set upon by wolves, vampire bats, ghosts, demons, werewolves, vampires, shit even bears! The cool part is that if you are bitten multiple times by vampires or werewolves, you become one and then begin to hunt the other players unless you can be turned. Ultimately, the survivors of the countryside end up in Castle Dracula to finally vanquish him (no easy feat then either).

The point of all this? That's my copy of the game in the picture! I lost mine years ago and searched the internet (intermittently) for maybe a decade looking for a game I couldn't even remember the name of and I finally found two and only two copies of it on the interwebs.
And now one of them is mine!
And some friends have agreed to play it this October! I'll keep you posted.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Death Proof » Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:50 pm

I want a Monster Lolly. :(
Ain't no grave gonna hold this body down
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 7:10 pm

I hear you're lookin' for Candyman, bitch.
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We've talked about this movie many times and yet, whenever I see it, and I think this is only my fourth viewing, I feel like we don't talk about it enough.
For those who don't know (if there are any left), Clive Barker's "Urban Horror" movie about a privileged white grad-student who decides to "brave" the projects to study an Urban Legend known as "Candyman". Without permission of any kind, she invades the world of the people who must live in the Chicago tenement known as Cabrini Green, in order to write a "more real" thesis than anyone has on the subject and put herself on the academic map. Her plan backfires horrifically when she learns, in multiple ways, that this Urban Legend may be for real.
There is a LOT to unpack with this film as it has a fairly complex narrative for a "mainstream" film (if anything associated with Barker can be considered mainstream) and layers of commentary on race and privilege and gender.
For starters, the protagonist of the film is a seemingly innocent white woman, Helen, who is fighting to gain credibility in the male-dominated world of Academics. We are set up to root for her for this reason, so we initially overlook how incredibly selfish her plan is in the broader scheme. And to make this more effective, especially as the events of the movie unfold, we have Virginia Madsen giving a strong performance as a woman possibly more capable, certainly more determined, than the snickering males that find her amusing (including her condescending husband), but also as a woman of almost angelic innocence (for which she was a brilliant choice, physically, as well).
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I mean, she looks like an angel, right? So you, the audience (particularly the white audience), can be forgiven for seeing her as the innocent even as the righteous hero of the film, which is how you are set up. And then everything gets tossed on its ass after Helen has an encounter with the real-world Candyman and suffers a head-injury that knocks her unconscious and leaves that angelic face pretty battered. From that moment on, the movie goes into territory the audience cannot expect and cannot rightly explain away as the supposedly recovering Helen finds how deep this well goes when she has her first encounter with the Candyman of myth.
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Which brings us to the great social subversion of the genre, the first Black horror arch-villain, the first Black slasher, Tony Todd's Candyman. Very importantly, Candyman does not appear to Helen when she summons him early in the film. He turns up after two other events, one being that Helen has suffered the assault and been victimized in the Cabrini Green project and suffers the head-injury, the other being that Helen has trespassed in a world that does not belong to her. She is warned by her African-American colleague not to, repeatedly, but she ignores it and has now transgressed, stepping into a world (here in the film's most iconic shot) in which she does not belong and has no right to be.
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To go any further into the story would be too spoilerific, so I'll do it concealed below, but at this point the dynamics are already more complex and fascinating than most horror movies you will see. There is a lot about the transgressions of white privilege but unlike modern films that address this, it's just not obvious, or certainly wasn't at the time. It's absolutely there and our contemporary eyes can't not see it, but it does not interfere in any way with the flow of the narrative, there are no pauses to point it out, you see it or you don't. It's very much about who owns culture as, in this case, Helen tries to steal the culture of these people in Cabrini and she is mercilessly punished for it. And it is very much about female victimization in a male-dominated world as Helen is cheated on by her husband who clearly thinks she's not smart enough to figure it out, snickered at by male academics in her field, and then physically victimized during her assault. This is all rendered in startling clarity when Candyman's words to Helen are, "Be my victim". And even moreso
when the film ends with Helen taking the male villain's place as the new Candyman, but even with her own name!
In all of this it should not be lost that this is a VERY effective horror movie, filled with dread and blood and death (not to mention fucking bees), that remains gripping right up through its finale and the looping back on itself. The cinematography is very good to great and the score, by none other than Phillip Glass, is legendary in the genre.

Now, before I go, I would like to have the brief, critical discussion with those who have seen the movie, as it is a movie that leaves itself open to interpretation, that we all know we have to have, because this movie goes deep! (in spoilers below):
Is it all in Helen's head?
In the beginning of the film, when Helen calls Candyman into the mirror 5 times, he does not appear to her, living in her swanky apartment, which of course turns out to be the white-privilege mirror-image of Cabrini.
He only appears to her after, as I've said above, she has trespassed into the world to whom his Urban Legend belongs, but also after she is victimized in the assault at Cabrini, during which she suffers head-trauma enough to knock her unconscious.
Obviously, every murder in the movie is set up to seem as if she committed it, but did she or did Candyman?
On the one hand, there is this critical moment in the film that would seem to decide it...
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... but then the movie also hints that "it was always you" could also refer to her being like the white woman he fell in love with so many years before, who thought she could have an affair with a free-man of color without consequences, just as Helen could have her flirtation with poor, urban-black culture without consequences.
Additionally, the way the film ends, with Helen's name being spoken in the mirror 5 times and her appearing to kill her husband, with the girlfriend set up to appear to be the murderer in the exact ways she was would seem to suggest that it was all real and she has just become the kind of ghost he was, a white version for the white-privilege world.
Or does he actually die in that fire, as the movie seems to show and she becomes the new "Candyman" but the curse has now been transferred from the poor urban-black culture to the white-privilege world? She has taken it over from him as she refused to "be his victim" and now she has actually become and Urban Legend herself?
Was there ever a Candyman at all or does she actually become a manifestation the character she imagined?
Like I said, a LOT to unpack!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 7:15 pm

Death Proof wrote:
Thu Oct 03, 2019 5:50 pm
I want a Monster Lolly. :(
I know, right?
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Thief » Thu Oct 03, 2019 7:56 pm

That's a solid film right there. Thanks to a lot of you for insisting on it on my thread last year. I think the film's conclusion is a bit muddled, particularly regarding Helen's actions at the climatic bonfire, but it's still a very solid film.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Thu Oct 03, 2019 10:47 pm

Thief wrote:
Thu Oct 03, 2019 7:56 pm
That's a solid film right there. Thanks to a lot of you for insisting on it on my thread last year. I think the film's conclusion is a bit muddled, particularly regarding Helen's actions at the climatic bonfire, but it's still a very solid film.
Well, I think it's all a little clearer on repeat viewings.
The film really didn't agree with me when I first saw it (on its original theatrical run). But it has improved since then and a lot of things I thought maybe didn't work before now seem to work just fine in the better-understood context.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Jinnistan » Fri Oct 04, 2019 1:02 am

So far, I've gotten to Venus in Furs (Franco is such a goddamn mess), The Boogyman (I'm a fan of Ulli's undisciplined indie style and all hail Suzanna Love), Always Shine, an admirable recent indie psych-thriller, and My Mom's a Werewolf, because .... I'm going to go with 80s nostalgia (not a good film, btw).
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Rock » Fri Oct 04, 2019 2:27 am

Jinnistan wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 1:02 am
So far, I've gotten to Venus in Furs (Franco is such a goddamn mess)
Have you seen The Diabolical Dr. Z? It's no lost classic or anything, but I was shocked to come across a Franco that felt halfway attentively made.
The Boogyman (I'm a fan of Ulli's undisciplined indie style and all hail Suzanna Love)
Yeah, I'm a fan of this one and the way it contrasts its artificial, picturesque qualities with the darker aspects. The sequel is interesting for pushing a meta angle on the material, although I'd hesitate to actually call it "good" (almost half of it is footage from the original for one thing, and the kills are much clumsier). I don't think it's that easy to get ahold of legally, as the version out on DVD is a completely different cut (that's basically Lommel mumbling in front of a camera cut in between fast-forwarded scenes from the actual sequel and reused footage from the original). There's a Betamax (lol) rip on YouTube if you feel so inclined. (Also, shameless plug for my blog post reviewing the movies.)
Always Shine, an admirable recent indie psych-thriller
Is this the one with Mackenzie Davis?
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Rock » Fri Oct 04, 2019 2:40 am

I think two years of half asses make a whole one. *squeezes*

Anyway, I'll be reading. I saw Candyman last year I think? I liked it a lot but don't have a lot to say about. Think I might check out White Zombie though. I haven't really planned this month like I normally do so I'm on the lookout for ideas.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Captain Terror » Fri Oct 04, 2019 2:59 am

Watched Candyman tonight (for the first time), and you can consider me a fan. Funny, I was going to use the word "solid" but I see Thief had the same idea.
This was a film that was nowhere near my radar when it came out or in the ensuing years. I knew virtually nothing about it, including that it's a Barker story. It wasn't till I saw some folks around here mentioning it all the time that I ever thought about giving it a shot and I'm glad I finally did.

I feel like it's a bit early for me to tackle any of the questions, but I just love that there are questions, if you know what I mean. Mostly what impressed me is that this doesn't feel like any other film, really. I'm not trying to oversell it, like it's some avant-garde masterpiece, just that it feels very much like its own thing. It kept me guessing throughout, including the final scene, and never felt like something I'd seen a million times. (Which I don't have to tell yall is very rare when you watch too many horror films). Very impressed, and I predict I'll be thinking about this all day tomorrow. My "All-90s October" is off to a good start.

I've never read any of Barker's stuff but this has inspired me to check some of it out. Anyone read this particular story?
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:02 am

Anybody else have one of these coloring books when they were kids?
If not, y'all are a lame. :P
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:07 am

Check it out:
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I colored the shit outta those!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Rock » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:07 am

Captain Terror wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 2:59 am
I've never read any of Barker's stuff but this has inspired me to check some of it out. Anyone read this particular story?
It's in one of his Books of Blood collections (which are all worth checking out, although the earlier volumes are better). If I remember, the story is a lot more generic in its setting, whereas the movie gets a lot of its character from the way it sets the story in the projects.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Captain Terror » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:12 am

The Vampyre game looks awesome, by the way. I had a D&D kit when I was a tween, but my introverted personality resulted in my having like one friend per year, so I didn't have a big enough squad to actually play. But I pored over the book all the time, drawing pictures of the various characters/monsters.

A relative of mine used to have a Voice of the Mummy game, ever see that? He was older than me so I never got to play it, but man does it look cool.
Video:
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:16 am

Captain Terror wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 2:59 am
Watched Candyman tonight (for the first time), and you can consider me a fan. Funny, I was going to use the word "solid" but I see Thief had the same idea.
This was a film that was nowhere near my radar when it came out or in the ensuing years. I knew virtually nothing about it, including that it's a Barker story. It wasn't till I saw some folks around here mentioning it all the time that I ever thought about giving it a shot and I'm glad I finally did.

I feel like it's a bit early for me to tackle any of the questions, but I just love that there are questions, if you know what I mean. Mostly what impressed me is that this doesn't feel like any other film, really. I'm not trying to oversell it, like it's some avant-garde masterpiece, just that it feels very much like its own thing. It kept me guessing throughout, including the final scene, and never felt like something I'd seen a million times. (Which I don't have to tell yall is very rare when you watch too many horror films). Very impressed, and I predict I'll be thinking about this all day tomorrow. My "All-90s October" is off to a good start.

I've never read any of Barker's stuff but this has inspired me to check some of it out. Anyone read this particular story?
Exactly, Captain, exactly.

And I think the best place to start with Barker is Books Of Blood, Vol.1 or The Inhuman Condition or, alternatively for a different feel, Abarat. Here's some of Barker's art from that title:

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Another thing that might be a good idea, if you're looking for a full novel, would be to read his book Cabal. It's the one that the film Nightbreed is based on and, while that film doesn't come off perfectly, it is some damned interesting content, no?
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:21 am

Captain Terror wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:12 am
The Vampyre game looks awesome, by the way. I had a D&D kit when I was a tween, but my introverted personality resulted in my having like one friend per year, so I didn't have a big enough squad to actually play. But I pored over the book all the time, drawing pictures of the various characters/monsters.

A relative of mine used to have a Voice of the Mummy game, ever see that? He was older than me so I never got to play it, but man does it look cool.
Video:
Yeah, I can dig that. Used to pore over the books constantly just like you.
And I'd be all in for some Voice Of The Mummy.

The Vampyre game really was a lot of fun when I was young but I think I was too young to play it properly. I re-read the entire rule book and read some reviews of it and I think it's really gonna be a hit.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:16 am

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Yup. I love me some C.H.U.D.
Not too much C.H.U.D., mind you, just enough, once every five years or so, starting in 1984 when I had the pleasure of seeing it at the Plaza Theater in Lakeforest (way out in the East, as we say in New Orleans).
Why do I love C.H.U.D.? Because I love gritty urban movies, especially low-budget ones, as evidence in previous threads I've done, and I love monster-movies, and C.H.U.D. is both. It's about the underside of New York City in the early 80s with rampant homelessness and corrupt police, at least as much as it's about anything other than Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers. And they're coming up to get you!
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Yes, the government has done something really stupid under the streets of Manhattan and the police are covering it up. But when people start to go missing - including a young Captain's wife - our ragtag cast of oddly fairly well-developed characters for this thing begins to blow the lid off the story. Something is lurking in the sewers and when there numbers become great enough, they will rise up and eat John Goodman, among others.
Don't let them in your apartment, they're hungry, merciless, and totally fucking awesome!
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Yup, when you're 11 1/2 years old and getting to go see a horror movie at the theater and that motherfucker with his glowing eyes and gnashing teeth comes around, you know you've struck some kind of gold.
Now, I will admit, that when you're a grown-up and the movie ends with an astonishingly unsatisfying fizzle, you may not be as thrilled. But the movie does get me in the mood, because it is a monster movie with cool monsters and sometimes, that's all I need. I may have one more bad monster movie with a cool monster before all is said and done.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by crumbsroom » Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:21 am

CHUD was the first movie I ever recorded off the TV with my VCR

Too many acronyms in that sentence.

This free movie off of You Tube is my contribution to the world this Halloween.



It's possible that it's a horror movie. Or something.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 6:50 am

crumbsroom wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:21 am
CHUD was the first movie I ever recorded off the TV with my VCR

Too many acronyms in that sentence.

This free movie off of You Tube is my contribution to the world this Halloween.



It's possible that it's a horror movie. Or something.
The Black Thing?!
You have my attention.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by crumbsroom » Fri Oct 04, 2019 12:39 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 6:50 am
The Black Thing?!
You have my attention.
Like anything I stumble upon late at night, it's got a litany of problems. But for a movie that takes a basically idiotic premise and then just builds and builds upon it until it becomes total lunacy, it speaks my kind of language.

As is always the case, patience is a virtue here.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Death Proof » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:09 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:16 am


Yup. I love me some C.H.U.D.

Well you know my feelings towards CHUD.

It's fucking awesome. There's just enough dark comedy to keep it fun (Thank god they deliver...)

Something else I like about it is that Daniel Stern and Christopher Curry did uncredited rewrites to the script. A good article about it here:

https://sciencefiction.com/2014/10/23/t ... -u-d-1984/


Finally, here's the commentary track featuring John Heard, Daniel Stern, Christopher Curry and director Douglas Cheek:

Ain't no grave gonna hold this body down
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:39 pm

Death Proof wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:09 pm
Well you know my feelings towards CHUD.

It's fucking awesome. There's just enough dark comedy to keep it fun (Thank god they deliver...)

Something else I like about it is that Daniel Stern and Christopher Curry did uncredited rewrites to the script. A good article about it here:

https://sciencefiction.com/2014/10/23/t ... -u-d-1984/


Finally, here's the commentary track featuring John Heard, Daniel Stern, Christopher Curry and director Douglas Cheek:

Oh wow, sweet dude.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Fri Oct 04, 2019 4:49 pm

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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Shieldmaiden » Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:29 am

crumbsroom wrote:As is always the case, patience is a virtue here.
I have patience to burn, and this was fun. Pretty sure they made up the dialogue (and maybe the plot?) as they went along, save for a few flashes of brilliance: "Get the children and cats inside!"

Looks like this was made just a few miles from where I grew up!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:54 am

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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sat Oct 05, 2019 7:20 am

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Here's a movie I have often championed over the years.
Now I feel kinda bad for anybody who took my advice.
I'm having a struggle between what was wrong with my mood last night that I didn't enjoy The Gate and what the fuck was wrong with me all those years that I actually enjoyed The Gate.

For anyone who doesn't know the movie, imagine if someone tried to make an 80s kids-movie in the style of The Evil Dead. Sounds like it could be cool, no? Eh...
Glen (Stephen Dorff) and his sister, Al (for Alexandra), are left home for a 3-day weekend when their parents go on vacation, the day after Glen and his friend, Terry, discover a hole in the back yard with a strange geode in it. Gobbledy-gook, mumbo-jumbo, demons coming to rule the Earth, something, something, Old Gods, blah, now we're fighting stop-motion and forced-perspective demons in a suburban house and if we 3 kids don't stop them they will actually take over the world and everyone on Earth will be living in Hell. Or something.
There's just a lot of half-bakery and abandoned ideas and just throw whatever on the screen and it's fine. I mean, really, C.H.U.D. has a better script. Seriously.
And Glen is just the worst kid, just everything that would make me sob in whiskey if I'd ever had a whiney-ass kid like that. You will hate him by the time anything actually starts to happen in this movie. Which is about 45 minutes in.
But then there is a lot of demon tomfoolery of various shapes and sizes:
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Some of which is fun, actually, really the strength of the movie, along with its frantic, slavish devotion to Raimi's Evil Dead films; they definitely love those movies. And hell, so do I.
But not much of this makes sense and it's really a lot of stuff like, "This metal band sang about The Old Gods and the spell for sending them back to Hell is here on the record. Whup, it just burst into flames, let's just forget that we talked about that for 40 minutes. Alright lets say prayers. Ok, that did nothing, let's just throw a bible in the hole. Oh, that worked! Wait, never mind it didn't but no explanation for any of that. Fuck it, let's just have the kid kill the big demon with a model rocket, we'll say that fixes everything, and we can all go home."
Yeah, just doesn't work. You gotta come solely for the silly demon stuff and really ignore the script altogether. If you're up for that fine, but I'm not recommending this movie anymore.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by crumbsroom » Sat Oct 05, 2019 7:58 am

Wooley wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 7:20 am

Here's a movie I have often championed over the years.
Now I feel kinda bad for anybody who took my advice.
Don't feel bad!

It's good.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Jinnistan » Sat Oct 05, 2019 9:07 am

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Re: Wooleys Half Ass Horrorthon 2 Horrorthon 14

Post by Death Proof » Sat Oct 05, 2019 2:09 pm

blealkeft wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 1:18 pm
I think, that you are mistaken. I can defend the position. Write to me in PM, we will discuss.
Can I buy a Kazakhistan passport and some Tibetan hash?
Ain't no grave gonna hold this body down
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by crumbsroom » Sat Oct 05, 2019 4:45 pm

Shieldmaiden wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:29 am
I have patience to burn, and this was fun. Pretty sure they made up the dialogue (and maybe the plot?) as they went along, save for a few flashes of brilliance: "Get the children and cats inside!"

Looks like this was made just a few miles from where I grew up!
Yes, it's that ramshackle almost improvisatory style that tumbleweeds towards bigger and bigger ideas, and stranger and stranger images, that is part of its charm. It is a movie that feels alive as it fumbles towards discovering what it is. It manages to be dopey without being stupid, amateurish without being incompetent. It is very much my kind of thing.

For those willing to just go with it (which is very much my motto with kinda junky, handmade films like this) it is a pretty worthwhile watch.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by crumbsroom » Sat Oct 05, 2019 5:02 pm

Wooley wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 7:20 am

Alright lets say prayers. Ok, that did nothing, let's just throw a bible in the hole. Oh, that worked! Wait, never mind it didn't but no explanation for any of that. Fuck it, let's just have the kid kill the big demon with a model rocket, we'll say that fixes everything, and we can all go home."
For me their way of fighting back has always been the way I imagine children would fight back against an unexpected show of demonic evil in their life. There wouldn't be a roadmap to victory if such a thing happened. You'd just cobble together any ideas you think could work. Does a model rocket make any real sense to be the ultimate crucifix in their battle. Not really, but through the eyes of a child (which is when I first say this) why not?

Of course, a similar approach was used in It Follows when they tried to deduce how to kill their nemesis. But that shit at the pool didn't work for me at all. So, yes, I'm a hypocrite and choose my defenses of films arbitrarily
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Takoma1 » Sat Oct 05, 2019 5:49 pm

I think that The Gate is a lot of fun, and strikes some good melancholy/weird notes at time (like the scene with the dog).
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Captain Terror » Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:16 pm

Wooley wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:16 am
And I think the best place to start with Barker is Books Of Blood, Vol.1
Dragged my lazy butt to Metry today and bought something called "Books of Blood Vol 1-3". :up:
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:40 pm

Captain Terror wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:16 pm
Dragged my lazy butt to Metry today and bought something called "Books of Blood Vol 1-3". :up:
Disco.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:42 pm

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Sweet Corn! :P
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Death Proof » Sun Oct 06, 2019 3:07 am

Wooley wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:42 pm
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Sweet Corn! :P


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Ain't no grave gonna hold this body down
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sun Oct 06, 2019 4:04 am

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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:13 am

Baby Jesus!
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I got wolves in mah thread!
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Wooley » Sun Oct 06, 2019 5:11 pm

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Oh my god.

How much did I love Spider Baby? How much is too much? All the muches.

What an amazing little movie! Fills in so many gaps for me, I can see the influence all over the place, obviously in Hooper and Rob Zombie (I mean, is House Of 1,000 Corpses just a sort of updating of Spider Baby?) So, to me, and I don't think I'm way off here, this is the film that bridges the gap between Psycho and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. In sequence, you can completely see a progression, a sort of totally unofficial trilogy of madness.
The story is very simple and very Psycho: Greed runs into Crazy and predictable results ensue. Greedy distant relatives of the Merryes sue to take ownership of their family-fortune and custody of the children, so they come out to the Merrye Home to assess the situation and negotiate terms. When bad people cross paths with genuinely dangerous people, it generally makes for fun viewing.
And you really don't wanna cross paths with these two:
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Honestly, these are like my two new favorite film characters. I was genuinely shocked at how perfectly portrayed they were by unknown actresses. Very believable performances of two young women with a child-like misunderstanding of right and wrong, violence, and death. Their indifference to human suffering is so genuine, as if they cannot understand that there is any consequence to anything they do, only that bad people have to die and sometimes you just have to play "Spider":
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Clearly this is what Zombie and his wife Sherri Moon were going for when they created Baby for House Of 1,000 Corpses. There's no way that the name "Baby" is just a coincidence, once you've seen this movie. Really, the whole Firefly family, just like the Sawyer family in TCM, have to have been based on this group. I'm not sure what inspired this film, but I can't wait to find out. Dialed back for 1968, it has the same kind of craziness and heedless violence that made those films so effective.
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Here, they are trying to saw off the leg of a conscious, struggling victim with a hacksaw, why? Because "we mustn't hurt her". But a spider drains a bug's vital juices and that makes them "stop squiggling".
Begging the question, so innocently asked, "Will that make her stop squiggling?"
And lemme tell ya, when Virginia asks you, "Will you play Spider with me?", you say, "NO!"
And while the movie is grim and at times downright chilling, even, awesomely, including the titular spiders (it is my opinion that every horror movie is made better by the addition of tarantulas, I'm just saying)...
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It's also a fairly funny movie. Intentionally. It is all set up for a wink and a grin, which really just makes the direct nature of the violence pop even more. I think when you combine violence, eroticism (of which there is a bit), and humor you get something that sizzles, whether it's good or not. In this case it is good. There's an amusing moment where the movie acknowledges the theatrical history of its one "star", Lon Chaney.

Finally, I would be remiss if I did not pay homage to the late, great Sid Haig, another direct link between this film and Rob Zombie's Ho1kC and Firefly family films (heh, family-films).
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Another spot-on performance in this movie, Haig is utterly convincing as the most regressed of the family that we actually meet and I was reminded what a long career this strange-looking man was able to construct by bringing something a little bit more than expected to low-budget film roles. He's great here, an essential part of the film, but nothing can really pull you away from the sisters, who are the gravitational force of the movie.
Really, I don't think I can overstate the simple pleasure of this film to anyone who loves horror enough to have seen films like Psycho, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1 and probably 2 as well), The Hills Have Eyes (a much, much grimmer take on virtually the same plot), Rob Zombie's films, etc. Big influencer and a lotta, lotta fun.
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Re: Wooley's Half-Ass Horrorthon 2 (Horrorthon 14)

Post by Popcorn Reviews » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:19 pm

I saw that for one of the Corrie Class Trips. It's quite good.
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