Sunday, October 11, 2015

31 Days of Horror 2015: The Madness! - Round 1

You know the drill by now: let's see how many horror films we can fit into 31 days. This year I'm participating in a contest called The Madness, where movies are worth point values, according to various rules and regulations that are way too in-depth to get into here.

Movie 1
A Nightmare on Elm Street - Dir. Wes Craven - Starring Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, Robert Englund
Run Time: 91 Min - Viewed: 10/04/15 - Midnight - Rating: Five Stars
I wached this one twice, so it would count in the contest.
What is there one can say about NOEM at this point that hasn't been covered more eloquently elsewhere? There's no need to explain why Fred Krueger would be every horror fan's first pick for the Horror Mount Rushmore(The other three choices are up for heavy debate), or why many fans are reluctant to accept anyone but Robert Englund slipping on the iconic glove. I myself, was so obsessed with this series back in grade school, that i was banned from watching by my parents. Not because of the violent content, but because it was getting in the way of my schoolwork.
As for the first chapter in the Elm Street series, it's still scary as hell, and I envy any young horror fan who gets to watch it for the first time.

Movie 2
Drag Me To Hell - Dir. Sam Raimi - Starring Alison Lohman, Justin Long, Dileep Rao
Run Time: 99 Min - Viewed: 10/4/15 - 2:57PM - Rating: Four Stars
I completely forgot that you should not eat during this film, as it's very goopy, and has several vomit scenes, one of which goes right into the lovely Alison Lohman's mouth.
Sam Raimi needs to write/direct another horror film asap.

Movie 3
Dawn of the Dead(1978) Dir. George Romero - Starring Ken Foree, Gaylen Ross
Run Time: 127 Min - Viewed: 10/5/15 - 5:23PM - Five Stars
Dawn of the Dead(2004) Dir. Zack Snyder - Starring: Sarah Polley, Ving Rhames, Jake Weber
Run Time: 110 Min - Viewed: 10/5/15 - 8:41PM - Three Stars
Every year I try to compare and contrast a classic film with it's remake, and this one is easily the most fun double feature I've had in a long time.
If Hollywood insists on remaking every classic horror film(and they do insist), then this is exactly how you do it: take the original film's core concept, and twist it enough that, while still being recognizable, it makes it's own mark on the genre. I can't help but feel that this might've saved the ill-fated, shot-for-shot Psycho remake.
Retelling a story is one thing, but recasting classic characters is a near impossibility. the 2013 Evil Dead "remake" was very smart to not recast Ash, but instead created a new bad-ass female character in Mia(whom I hope pops up in the upcoming Ash Vs. The Evil Dead tv show).
A Day of the Dead remake is not far off, I'm sure, and it would behoove them to find the right people to help the project, ala James Gunn/Zack Snyder on the DOTD remake.

Movie 5
You're Next - Dir. Adam Wingard - Starring: Sharni Vinson, AJ Bowan, Joe Swanberg
Run Time: 95 Min - Viewed: 10/6/15 - 6:08PM - Rating: Three Stars
You're Next gets better and better with each viewing. Even more than the story, I love all the people involved with it. They're the new crop of young horror filmmakers who respect the genre and don't act like entitled children, or wannabe rock-stars(not a Rob Zombie knock; I actually like him).

Movie 6
My Bloody Valentine 3D - Dir. Patrick Lussier - Starring: Jensen Ackles, Jaime King, Tom Atkins
Running Time: 101 Min - Viewed: 10/6/15 - 9:36PM - Rating: Two & a Half Stars
Another good example of a remake done right. Plus, this is still the only 3D movie that I've seen in cinemas where the 3D was actually really well done, added to the story, and actually lasted the entire film, not just certain action scenes. There's no doubt in my mind that MBV3D was Hollywood's way of testing 3D on audiences, as it now infests every mainstream film that gets released these days.

Movie 7
The 'Burbs - Dir. Joe Dante - Starring: Tom Hanks, Henry Gibson, Carrie Fisher
Running Time: 101 Min - Viewed: 10/8/15 - 7:29PM - Rating: Three Stars
One of the problems with filling the month of October up with nothing but horror films, is that it sometimes leaves me feeling empty, what with all the blood and the viscera bombarding me, and I was kind of feeling that on this night, so I decided to watch The 'Burbs, even though people have argued with me that it's not a horror movie, not even a horror comedy.
False. False false false. While Tom Hanks and company are absolutely not the horror, the Klopeks, who move in next door and are likely cannibals, are the horror. There's nothing comedy about them. The comedy is all the neighbor's reactions to the Klopeks and the oddness they bring.
The 'Burbs perfectly fit the October/Halloween motif, and I recommend everyone give it a watch this month.

Movie 8
The Mist - Dir. Frank Darabont - Starring: Thomas Jane, William Sadler, Marcia Gay Harden
Running Time: 126 Min - Viewed: 10/9/15 - 7:20PM - Rating: Two & a Half Stars
Good, brooding adaptation of a Stephen King short story, that's well acted, and violent as hell, but I can't get past the terrible CGI tentacles that terrorizes the store. This film would've really benefitted from some practical effect monsters, with a CGI-sheen added in post.
I watched this with my Mother, who's a huge fan of King's work. She liked it. We had pizza. I gave the pizza Five Stars.

Movie 9
Frankenhooker - Dir. Frank Henenlotter - Starring: James Lorinz, Patty Mullen, Joseph Gonzalez
Running Time: 85 Min - Viewed: 10/10/15 - 9:15PM - Rating: Three Stars
I had to find a Horror film that I could watch with friends who aren't into Horror films, which normally isn't easy, but when I came across Frankenhooker on Showtime On-Demand, I knew we had a winner.
They enjoyed it enough, based solely on the movie's constant bizarreness. I wonder how they'd respond to one of  Henenlotter's other films, Basket Case?

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