Tuesday, November 3, 2015

31 Days of Horror 2015: THE MADNESS - Final Round

Movies 18 & 19
The Hills Have Eyes(1977) - Dir. Wes Craven - Starring Dee Wallace, Michael Berryman, Janus Blythe - Run Time: 89 Min - Rating: Two Stars
The Hills Have Eyes(2006) - Dir. Alexandre Aja - Starring Ted Levine, Emilie de Ravin, Michael Bailey Smith - Run Time: 107 Min - Rating: Four Stars
Here's likely an unpopular opinion: I like the Hills Have Eyes remake more than the original. Despite being(mostly) a shot-for-shot retelling, I like the style of the 2006 version. The family is better. The gore is better. The "final battle" in the abandoned town improved the story tenfold. The only thing that carries over is the mutants; they're great in both films.
Blasphemy perhaps, but this here is one remake that counterpoints the argument.
-Madness Bonus Points: Underground shenanigans.

Movie 20
Dawn of the Mummy - Dir. Frank Agrama - Starring Barry Sattels, George Peck, John Salvo - Run Time: 93 Min - Rating: One Star
Exhumed Films showed the trailer for this terrible gem at this year's 24 Hour Horror-thon, and the crowd loved it. I obviously had to hunt down a copy, and I was not disappointed in the least. Honestly, it's a pretty terrible movie, but it was still very entertaining, and the full film would work really well inserted into the middle-of-the-night slot at next year's Horror-thon.
Bonus Points: There's an pyramid which I think counts as underground caverns.

Movie 21
Halloween III: Season of the Witch - Dir. Tommy Lee Wallace - Starring Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin, Dan O'Herlihy - Run Time: 98 Min - Rating: Four Stars
There seems to be three films that have fans arguing over whether they're good/terrible: Nightmare on Elm Street 2, Texas Chainsaw Massacre The Next Generation, and Season of the Witch. The latter is certainly the best of the group. Halloween III's main issues are it's release date and movie title, and that is all. It was released in the middle of of horror's "sequel-mania" of the 1980's, and instead of being an original story with it's own identity, they slap HALLOWEEN 3 on the film reel, hoping that people would just accept a movie without Michael Myers; boy were they wrong.
SOTW seems to have finally found the audience it so desperately wanted 30 years ago, but it still receives opposition from people who simply hate it based souley on the name, which is a real shame.
Bonus Points: Having to watch that kids face melts should be worth something.

Movie 22
The Brain That Wouldn't Die(Mystery Science Theater 3000 edition) - Dir. Joseph Green - Starring Jason Evers, Virginia Leith, Adele Lamont - Run Time: 120 Min - Rating: Four Stars(for the MST3K episode)
MST3K is my favorite tv show, and this episode was a heartbreaker when it aired, because I missed the episode where Joel left(the week prior), so I had no idea who the hell this new guy was and it almost ruined the show for me. Luckily I've always been an open-minded guy, and Mike Nelson ended up being a worthy successor.
As for the movie from this episode, it's an odd one for the aired-on-Saturday-mornings Mystery Science Theater, because of it's sleaze and violence, which makes The Brain That Wouldn't Die stand out as a good start for a new host, and one hell of a funny episode.
Bonus Points: Watched on an old VHS; worth a fist bump?

Ash Vs. Evil Dead - Dir. Sam Raimi - Starring Bruce Campbell, Ray Santiago, Lucy Lawless - Run Time: 30 Min - Rating: Five Stars
I'm going to write a bigger piece on this, as I have a lot to say about it. I'll say right now that if you haven't seen the first episode, it's free to watch online, and it's worth seeking out.
Bonus Points: Lucy Lawless is all the points I need.

Movie 24
Hellraiser - Dir. Clive Barker - Starring Andrew Robinson, Clare Higgins, Ashley Laurence - Run Time: 94 Min - Rating: Five Stars
This was a Halloween night choice viewing by a friend of mine, yet we both fell asleep watching it. It's a good movie, obviously.
Bonus Points: Zzzz...

The Simpsons' Scare-A-Thon - Creator: Matt Groening - Starring Dan Castellaneta, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith - Run Time: 120 Min - Rating: Five Stars
While digging out my winter clothes, I discovered an old VHS tape with 2 things on it: the above watched MST3K episode, and the first 9 Simpsons Halloween Specials.
The first 4, recorded WITH original commercials(!!!) on a Sunday night in 1993, were part of a two hour Scare-A-Thon, hosted by Bruce Campbell dressed as Brisco County Jr(!!!). This was an awesome discovery, like finding buried treasure, and it made for the perfect end to 31 Days of Horror.
Bonus Points: The Frogurt contains potassium benzoate. 
Upcoming Blogs:
-2015 Exhumed Films 24 Hour Horror-thon
-Ash vs. Evil Dead full review
-Hellraiser: The Scarlet Box DVD set discussion