07 October 2011

October 7th

The Raven (2011) trailer
Frankenhooker (1990) trailer
The Simpsons: "Treehouse of Horror II: The Monkey's Paw" (1991)

The Innocents (1961) directed by Jack Clayton
Miss Giddens accepts a job as a governess to two orphaned children and moves into a huge country estate.  Slowly, things begin to seem off.  She hears weird noises at night, she learns that the previous governess drown in the nearby lake and the former valet froze to death outside, and the children sometimes act peculiar.  She also begins to see the spirits, she believes, of the dead governess and dead valet.  Connecting the spirits with the children's behavior, she thinks she can fix things...

Quite an interesting movie.  It's very well shot, with beautiful compositions and lighting.  Martin Stephens as Miles is the best child actor I've ever seen in a film.  He's utterly believable as a slightly off, spoiled little boy with secrets behind his eyes.  Though a bit slow and talky at times, there's a good amount of creepiness in the film.  Particularly effective is the first time Miss Giddens sees the ghost of the valet, who appears out of the darkness outside of a window, slowly moves towards the glass, and then recedes into darkness again.

I blind-bought this DVD based on comments from guests at Flashback Weekend a few months ago.  When asked what some of their favorite horror movies were, both Robert Englund and Doug Bradley (at separate panels, mind you) mentioned this film.  Helluva recommendation.  And, they were right.  It's pretty damned good.

Like many great horror films, the story is ambiguous.  Were the ghosts real or was Miss Giddens insane?  I'm leaning towards insanity, myself, though I can't explain Miles' sudden death.  Looking at it that way, it's a horrifying picture of what happens when an otherwise normal person begins to lose track of reality. (8/10)

R.A. The Rugged Man: "I Should'a Never..." (2004)
John Dies at the End (2011) trailer
The Growth (2009)

Antfarm Dickhole (2011) directed by Bill Zebub
And then we watched this, partially just to complete the most unlikely double feature in the entire history of cinema.  I now want to invent a time machine just so I can go back to 1961 to tell people about this and make them weep in despair for their future.  This was a featured movie at Wasteland and as soon as I saw the title, I told my friends "I don't care what you guys do, I'm seeing this."  Well, I didn't, because it ended up overlapping with the much more important Henenlotter panel.  Instead, splitting the $10 cost evenly, my friend and I bought the DVD from Bill Zebub himself.  He always has a table at these things, selling a mix of his own movies (other titles he's made: Assmonster, Jesus Christ: Serial Rapist, Forgive Me for Raping You) and regular horror movies.  He also let me pick out a free Antfarm Dickhole mini-poster, all of which featured a naked woman (I chose the naked lady covered in ants).

Shockingly, it was well worth my $5 cut.  It's absolutely Z-grade in every way, but packed with enough weird line deliveries, strange character moments (many from Zebub himself, who plays a neurotic grammar nazi), hilarious visuals and unnecessary female nudity to make it quite entertaining.  As the story goes, a thirty-something man is beaten up by bullies in the park, lands face down in the dirt and army ants decide to nest in his weener.  Lucky for him, the army ants fight to defend their nest, and start killing people that bug him.  He uses this to his advantage, and can be seen at various points in the movie raping both a car and a house to kill the people inside with his dick-ants.  Meanwhile, Zebub continual cuts to scantily-clad or nude woman, ostensibly playing a role of "scientist" or "antomologist" who spew genuinely funny and odd exposition, while the camera glides mostly around their naughty bits.  It's pure, distilled exploitation filmmaking and I loved it. (7/10)


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