23 October 2010

October 23rd

They craft crazy things at daycare.
J & C return for week 5's Saturday o' fun.  Pizza and beer and candy and Chicago-style hotdogs were enjoyed by all as we spun up some more horror.  It was C's first visit since I got the new projector, so there was some intense discussion as to which blu-ray we should pick.  Ultimately, it wasn't a choice with the best transfer in the world, but, ah well, it looked better than the videotape-mangled Crypt episode, anyway.

Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter (1974) trailer
House (1985) trailer
The Simpsons: "Treehouse of Horror IV: Bart Simpson's Dracula" (1993)

Tales from the Crypt: "House of Horror" (1993) directed by Bob Gale
Kind of a meh episode about a frat initiation gone wrong.  It was amusing to see Wil Wheaton crawling around in his tighty-whities (I suggested that this would be prime for a screencap to take to an autograph signing).  Other than that, it's a story that takes entirely too long to get to the point.  The point, as is the case in most of these, is for the asshole to get what's coming to him.  I will say Kevin Dillon -- who looks a eerily like his brother -- plays the asshole to perfection here.

Tentacles (1977) TV spot
The Worm Eaters (1977) trailer
Happy Tree Friends: "Boo Do You Think You Are?" (2003)

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) directed by Francis Ford Coppola
I'm not sure Stoker would recognize the story in this movie -- his demon of disease made sympathetic -- but I suppose they needed to alter the title in some way to differentiate it from all of the other Dracula adaptations out there.  What stuck me, watching this tonight, was how different it is from most vampire movies of the past, say, 30 years.  Modern vampires movies seem to be desperate to cast vampirism in a scientific light.  Vampires are just people infected with a disease.  Their aversion to silver and garlic and sunlight are merely severe allergies.  There's undoubtedly an injection out there that will cure them.  It's refreshing to watch a vampire movie that takes it old school  In this world, all of our old legends are true.  Dracula walks the earth neither dead or alive because he cursed God.  He can change into a wolf or a bat or rats or mist.  Why?  Because those things scared our ancestors and Dracula is scary.  He can control the weather and the creepy-crawly creatures of the night because he is a force of nature and a creature of the night himself.  He enjoys a psychic connection with Mina because she is his soul mate.  If you need any further explanation than that, too bad.  It's sometimes hard to drop a logical analysis of what you see on-screen -- I had that trouble with Paranormal Activity -- but it's enjoyable just to dive into superstition and the supernatural once-in-a-while.

Coppola's clearly enjoying the hell out of himself with this movie.  You can tell he always wanted to make a Universal horror movie.  I love his use of shadow in this movie.  Easy to make fun of, sure -- see the Simpons episode above -- but fun to watch, nevertheless. (8/10)

Invasion of the Bee Girls (1973) trailer
Rubber (2010) trailer
The Wildflower (2007)

The Lair of the White Worm (1988) directed by Ken Russell
It turned into an unofficial Bram Stoker night purely by coincidence.  I've never read the story this was based on, so I don't know how far off the movie is.  I'm going to guess there's quite a bit of difference.  I can't see Stoker having the snake-lady's venom providing acid trips that have the affected person imaging Christ being attacked by a giant snake.  That is the type of thing I want to see in a Ken Russell movie, though.  I can't help but love his wild abandon: he's going to insert large chunks of purely symbolic imagery into his movies and to hell with anyone not down with that type of thing.  In fact, I think these trips into id save the film from being just a typical monster movie.  Without them, we just have the heroes chasing a snake-lady and her pet giant snake.  And the ending is kind of cheezy too, with the snakebite-infected Angus agreeing to "have a bite to eat" with unsuspecting Lord D'Ampton.  Then again, I don't think we're supposed to take the film so seriously as to not enjoy the puns in it.  (7/10)

Stripe makes sure no foo' steals my Ernest Goes to Jail.

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