Sunday, March 25, 2012

Eighty Two Horror Films

Artie's favorites..
..and seconds..

2011 - The Thing//Final Destination 5
2010 - Tucker and Dale vs Evil//The Crazies
2009 - Anti-Christ//Zombieland
2008 - The Ruins//The Strangers
2007 - Zodiac//The Mist
2006 - Slither//The Hills Have Eyes
2005 - The Devil's Rejects//The Descent
2004 - Shawn of the Dead//Dawn of the Dead
2003 - Freddy vs Jason//Texas Chainsaw Massacre
2002 - Bubba Ho Tep//The Ring
2001 - Jeepers Creepers//Session 9
2000 - American Psycho//Dracula 2000
1999 - The Blair Witch Project//Deep Blue Sea
1998 - The Faculty//Deep Rising
1997 - Event Horizon//The Relic
1996 - Scream//From Dusk Till Dawn
1995 - Demon Knight//The Mangler
1994 - In the Mouth of Madness//New Nightmare
1993 - Army of Darkness//Body Snatchers
1992 - Bram Stoker's Dracula//Dead Alive
1991 - Child's Play 3//People Under the Stairs
1990 - Tremors//Exorcist 3
1989 - Leviathan//Pet Sematary
1988 - Halloween 4//The Blob
1987 - Bad Taste//Evil Dead 2
1986 - The Fly//The Hitcher
1985 - Fright Night//The Stuff
1984 - A Nightmare on Elm St//C.H.U.D.
1983 - Psycho 2//Christine
1982 - The Thing//Poltergeist
1981 - An American Werewolf in London//The Howling
1980 - The Shining//The Fog
1979 - Alien//Salem's Lot
1978 - Halloween//Invasion of the Body Snatchers
1977 - The Hills Have Eyes//Suspiria
1976 - The Omen//Carrie
1975 - Jaws//Trilogy of Terror
1974 - Texas Chainsaw Massacre//Let Sleeping Corpses Lie
1973 - Exorcist//Wicker Man
1972 - Tales from the Crypt//Baron Blood
1971 - Willard//Let's Scare Jessica to Death
1970 - Equinox//Dunwich Horror

The actual skulls of Golan and Globus..

Now, that was fun as HELL...

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The E X O R C I S T

One of my all time favorite films, and always will be.

Like Citizen Kane, I watched this very late one night...
and it has stayed with me forever. Exorcist belongs not just to a different era in film, but to a very different time in North America. It's pretty hip to hate God these days, but not so much in 1973. Ours was a highly religious society 40 years ago, and this film suggested purely adult horror from a most frightening perspective.. not the end of the world "Damien" type of stuff but smaller, scarier, closer to home horror - real life, and real terror in places it never went before - the suggestion that evil not only exists, but can infiltrate our day-to-day human lives - It can get us - the real us out here.

The performances are 10's out of 10, and I'd be hard-pressed to pick the best chemistry..
Is it Father Karras and Chris MacNeil? Is it Kinderman and Karras ...a friendship I could watch a whole film about..
The scene with Ellen Burstyn chatting with Jason Miller ..she's at the end of her rope, and tries to subtly ask a question about exorcisms ...that moment - Karras' face in response ...brilliant.

I believe Karras' faithless-priest to be the anchor of the film - such a nuanced tightrope of a performance - just amazing.
Then there's Max Von Sydow. Love his European work  ..just one of those actors I'd watch do anything. A genius.

To be honest, the pitch throughout is so reality based it felt almost documentary style the first time watching. I adore these performances - it's such a pleasure to watch 70s movies when everyone in the film is a gifted actor, and Friedkin was an actor's director - one of the true greats of the best decade in film.

Like many of the truly great films of that era, Exorcist does actually keep getting better and better.

I truly believe this to be one of the best American films ever made, holding in it's two hours not just a brilliant story, but unmatched performances and a slice of life we will never see again.

Monday, March 12, 2012

ahhh, now I get it.. Rosemary's Baby


Turns out this is exactly as good as it's legendary standing.
I figured as much, but I hadn't seen it in many years, and it was one in a string of young discoveries including The Changeling, The Exorcist, and The Omen. By compare to these, it is incredibly restrained, and definitely dramatic over horrific, but horror is what my young mind was searching for.
Now, having had some life experience, I can see where true horror lies - in the minds of men.

And make no mistake - this movie is scary.
Watch the insidious takeover of the title-character's mind by everyone else in the film - Mia Farrow's performance is Oscar caliber is Roman Polanski's direction, but I'm a huge fan of his anyway.
Ruth Gordon is brilliant, and as creepy as Hannibal Lecter - love her voice.
The math of this screenplay is perfect - it's just so well-constructed.

The end scene is one of the coolest in film ever.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Fear Itself

Biiig fan of Horror Anthology TV Shows..
..and somehow missed NBC's Fear Itself when it aired a few years back(I was probably drunk) but fear not, horror fans - it's on, and worth watching fer sure.

Basically, it plays like Tales from the Crypt-esque continuation of Masters of Horror, though admittedly it's this 80's horror fan who thought the John Landis episode was the weakest.. yeah, there are a couple o' stinkers for sure, but overall a worthwhile watch - with pretty decent production values too. Shot in Edmonton(how freakin' weird is that?) it pulls off American locales rather well, actually.

The pilot is strong - enough to keep watching..
and New Year's Day and Circles had good basic stories, but a sloppy execution kinda diluted 'em a bit..

Noteworthily nice to see Eric Roberts as something other than a cliched villain for a change, and his episode(Spooked) is one of the more inventive - couple genuinely creepy moments..

It's fun - go get scared!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

s h e r l o c k

I like it.
Liking Benedict Cumberpatch almost as much as his name, and that's saying something.
Is that not the coolest actor name since Tallulah Bankhead?

Great 2o12 version of ACD's most amazing creation. Who doesn't like Sherlock Holmes? Losers, that's who.