Saturday, January 31, 2015

Creepshow III and what went wrong...

 Creepshow III and what went wrong...

In 1982 two horror masterminds came together and became a force to be reckoned with the EC comic book anthology Creepshow. Here Stephen King (Carrie, and The Shinning.) and George A. Romeo (Night Of The Living Dead, and Dawn Of The Dead.) teamed up making five colorful horror stories of ghouls returning from the grave in search of cake, strange alien like growth, a vengeful murdering husband, a man eating monster, and killer bugs. This film featured an all star cast, awesome effects, and a memorable score. A living breathing horror comic book brought to life, Creepshow became an instant classic and a staple for horror fans. Five years later, a sequel was made with a new director in the chair with King and Romero supervising. Instead of 5 tales, the film was limited to 3. A wooden storefront Indian goes on a rampage after watching it's owners get murdered in a robbery. A group of teens are stranded on a raft in the middle of a lake while a flesh eating mass of goo surrounds them, and a hitchhiker returns from the grave to haunt the woman who killed him. All of these stories memorable, but not nearly as classic as the original. 

Years passed and as popular as the films remained, many would ask. 

Where's Creepshow III?

Many have argued that the 1990 film Tales From The Darkside (which was a spin off idea of the original Creepshow, turning into a weekly television show that lasted 4 seasons with Romeo and King backing it.) Even Tom Savini himself has claimed that Tales From The Darkside the movie is the unofficial Creepshow III. 

Years passed and then finally after many rumors of a part III, a remake, a reboot, ect, ect, ect. What could be called a blessing or a curse was announced. 

Creepshow III.

Let's start off with how this even fucking happened. Creepshow III was released direct to DVD in 2006 seriously out of nowhere made by Ana Clavell and James Glenn Dudelson better wise known as the STD's of idiots as far as "writers" and "directors" go. In fact it down right sickens me that you could even say they are writers or directors. I think their mission was simple. Take great original ideas, steal the title, and legit shit all of them. These two sickos owned a company that would wait until certain films or their names were cheap enough so their sorry excuse for a production company could buy the title and the title alone. Here they would make complete hack jobs of whatever movie they had, making sequels that had ZERO involvement with the original companies, directors, writers, and producers. Pretty much these low budget assholes would come on, buy the title and make a movie so bad and low budget it's painful to watch. In fact I've seen better production value in middle school media classes before. 

Or maybe I should just tell you how I really feel?

Not only did these assholes do this to Creepshow III, they also made a "direct" sequel to George's 1985 cult zombie classic Day Of The Dead by naming it Day Of The Dead 2 Contagium. This mess has a 2.2 ratting on the IMDB (Creepshow III has a 2.9) These movies feature terrible acting, shitty CGI and effects, and stories that are so bad they made my head ache. Creepshow III has NOTHING and I mean NOTHING going for it. In fact I heard about how down right awful it was for years and still was stupid enough to buy this DVD for 3 dollars (I over paid) even if some of this stories sound cool, or so stupid they must be amusing don't be fooled. They are awful, simply awful. 

All of these stories are "connected" and make zero sense. One story is about a girl Alice who changes not only her race, but her family's race by a television remote, but each time it's used she begins to transform into a large tumor (not even joking) and somehow that makes her turn into a rabbit. (...)

Another story I recall was about this older neighbor who has this pretty pretty wife and how two local boys don't believe she's real, and chop her up to prove she's a robot (...)

Another is about a radio that tells a man to kill, another is about a hooker who's supposed to kill a guy (are you asleep yet?) and last but not least, the final story is called "The haunted dog" which is about a homeless guy who chokes to death on a hot dog and haunts the doctor who gave it to him by holding up the half eaten hot dog (...)

I can't express enough how BAD these stories are. In fact I broke down and made the stupid choice in buying this for shits and giggles after watching a video review on this movie and how bad it was. Somehow I laughed so hard at how stupid it sounded I thought just to say to Hell with it and buy it for a few laughs. I got nothing, complete zip out of this buy besides feeling angry with myself that I did it. This movie is a complete slap in the fact to the first two and fans can't stress enough it has NOTHING and I mean NOTHING to do with the first two. In fact, it's more like the bastard wannabe cousin of them.

Since then rumors have been flying of a remake to Creepshow or in fact a third movie. Sadly the IMDB page keeps getting pushed back and it seems to be floating in development Hell. There have been rumors of Stephen King's son Joe Hill (little boy who fucks with Tom Atkins in the wraparound story in the original, as well as being a published writer like his father in such works as Horns) in maybe remaking the TV series Tales From The Darkside which featured some works of his father. I feel a third Creepshow made by Romero or the right person would be awesome but more than likely have to be released on either Netflix or direct to DVD. Creepshow 2 didn't do that hot at the box office more than 25 years ago, and films like this as much as a following as they have sadly don't do well. I believe just calling it Creepshow would be fine enough. People could say it's a remake or a retool but feature brand new unused stories. I would have them back to 5 and maybe have a different director direct each segment. If not have Romeo come back and go back to his roots (none of this new bullshit, but Romeo back when he was on fire in the 70's and 80's.) If they did do different directors via ABC's of death or VHS pick the right directors, no hacks. Maybe Ti West, Eli Roth, Edgar Wright, ect. 

As for stories they could think of original ones or borrow/remake some of King's short stories (The Jaunt, The Monkey, even Granmma...I'm still in mourning over Mercy) If not think of all those episodes of Tales From The Darkside. Some of those are just dying to be remade! I would feature the whole movie littered with classic iconic horror stars from the past and present and yes, go old school with practical effects even with the creep himself (sorry no Savini in a mask) maybe have KNB do it.) With this, I feel Creepshow or the new Creepshow III would not only be a final chapter or installment in the series, but something that would be a gift to so many hard core fans and wash away that horrible taste of the 2006 movie.

I mean come on, these movies are just as popular as they were when they were first released. Look at all awesome those records sold!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Best episodes of Tales From The Darkside season 1

Best episodes of Tales From The Darkside season 1
If you are around my age than you must remember either watching episodes or catching re-runs of Tales From The Darkside. Darkside came to be after George A. Romero's 1982 comic book hit Creepshow was a huge hit at the box office. Bringing back horror anthologies, Romero thought of turning this idea into a weekly television show. After a few years, the title was changed to Tales From The Darkside, a very popular show that featured weekly stories of murder, death, ghouls, witches, demons, and zombies. Darkside lasted 4 seasons and even had it's own feature length film. Here are my choices for my all time favorite episodes in season 1!

Trick R Treat

Inside The Closet

A Case of the Stubborns

Anniversary Dinner 

Snip Snip

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Dawn Of The Dead (1978) - A splashy colorful comic book adventure.

 Dawn Of The Dead (1978) - A splashy colorful comic book adventure.

Plot - The world has become overrun by flesh eating zombies in just the matter of weeks. All of the major cities in America are falling apart, and everything is complete chaos. Two Philadelphia S.W.A.T members, a traffic reporter, and his television executive girlfriend take off in a news helicopter only to seek refuge in a massive shopping mall.

Lowdown - It sorta stuns me that it's honestly taken this long for me to truly take the time in covering George A Romero's epic follow up to Night Of The Living Dead. One of the greatest sequels and greatest zombie movies of all time. The colorful "fun" film in the original Dead Trilogy. The movie that got me into Romero's zany way of filmmaking in Pittsburgh, as well as makeup effects. This of course being...

Dawn Of The Dead.

I can't exactly say when I first really saw Dawn. I believe I either rented or bought it as a blind buy. I was young, and the story on the back of the tape caught my interest. I was just starting to really get into horror at the time and branch out into what I liked. Dawn was a movie that instantly caught my interest, and was the main reason why I found Day Of The Dead (my personal favorite) shortly afterwards. If it hadn't been for Dawn I wouldn't have discovered so many other classics, as well as ones involving zombies.  I can't even begin to tell you how many times I wore out that old VHS. So many people say that Dawn is a depressing movie. I disagree. Now I may get some major hate here from saying this, but I've never truly been a huge fan of the original Night Of The Living Dead. I loved the 1990 remake, but really never truly fell in love with the first. Dawn and Day on the other hand, HUGE staples in my growth as a massive horror fan. I think Dawn is the lightest film in the entire trilogy. It can be light hearted at times, as likeable characters, it's colorful (gotta love that orange blood and blue zombies!) and the few moments that make you chuckle, or feel like you're watching an epic adventure. The best by far has to be when the four leads are trying to lock down the mall, jumping into one of the cars, and shooting away at the zombies. Thanks to Goblins' electric sore, it seriously is a stunning visual piece of artwork splashed on film.

This movie was a favorite of mine, and thanks to watching this I befriended a ton of people back at school when I went to Savini's school. This is a fun film to watch with a huge group of people, mostly if they are all ready massive fans of the original films. Thanks to Romero, this just isn't some gory zombie movie, but yet another film that deals with heavy issues that reflects on the time it was made in. It was 1978/79. They dealt with racial issues, the downfall of society, abortion, woman's rights, and of course the buyer beware underline tones with the new indoor malls. How everything you need is under one roof, and how the zombies still flock to them in massive crowds, remembering that they want/need to be in here.  I love showing how quickly the leads grow bored and stir crazy under the roof of the mall, and how it has twisted them into being zombies themselves. How having all this stuff, honestly isn't everything. I could go on for hours about the underlining meanings in this movie, but to sum it up, this is honestly a smartly written film that captures moments that makes you think more about what exactly your seeing.

The film's setting/score/and leads are what truly makes the film. 

The setting is by far the best in all of the films. First the farm house in the middle of nowhere in Night, and in Day the underground bunker, the mall on the other hand is one of the perfect places you would think about going if zombies did in fact take over the world. The only major issue I had with the 2004 remake (which I loved) was how neatly and quickly the leads took over the mall. It was as if they didn't even have to work at it. There was "shatter proof" glass, and all they did was lock doors. Really? In this film it's much more realistic with them getting the trucks to block the exits, sounding the alarms, killing the zombies inside, storing the bodies, and of course making sure that the living quarters they live in are blocked off.

Also the four of them were great characters. You got Fran, who many may argue was the "weak" link in the group. I disagree. She was a huge step up from the Judith character from Night who just sat there crying and screaming the entire film. Fran first comes off as frightened and weak, taking a backseat while the guys all bond together on making the mall their own. Fran after being left behind more than once, and coming across as weak and useless speaks up after the truth of her pregnancy is revealed by her boyfriend Stephen aka Flyboy who's trying his hardest to prove/earn his keep among Rodger and Peter. She straight out tells them that just because she's pregnant doesn't mean she wants to be treated any differently. Second, she wants to be treated as an equal, as in knowing what the plans are, and lastly she doesn't want to be left without a gun. I do like how Peter straight out tells her that he thinks everything she said is fair enough, but as for being allowed to go out with them she needs to learn how to handle herself. In fact I really like how Peter honestly as the strongest member of the group not only physicaly but mentaly keeps his head the entire time, having to speak with the others at least once. Which is what I'll move onto when I reach his character. Fran on the other hand is logical, she sees the mall right off the bat as being "too good to be true" and quickly learns how to handle herself by practicing with a weapon and speaking up that she wants to learn how to fly the chopper just in case anything ever happens to Stephen. I love how despite the fact she's wounding her boyfriend's ego, she really does make a good point. If you listen to the cast commentary (which is one of my favorites) the actress who plays her remarks that George and her agreed that Fran should never scream, and slowly start to come out of her shell as a stronger character. I love the moment months after being in the mall how she sees they have made themselves their own zombies by being trapped in this mall.

Stephen, my favorite character gets a lot of shit for being such a clumsy useless character. Many people have pointed out that Stephen acts like what pretty much almost anyone would if this was happening in the world. If you ever or rarely had practice with weapons and guns you would have a hard time being a good shot, and making foolish mistakes. You would most likely trip, fall, make stupid mistakes, and try your hardest to prove to your group that you weren't completely useless. Stephen or nicknamed "Flyboy" for his one main use as being able to fly the chopper, really does come across as the every day Joe of the group. There's more behind his character, how he tries so hard to fit in with Peter and Rodger, and is able to logically figure out problems and listen to Peter after he clearly believes that he knows best. After the Rodger are wounded, Stephen steps up, like Fran practicing his shooting, and showing he was truly just starting to become a great fighter and protector. I love the scene where Peter asks him if he wants to abort Fran's baby, and how he simply just shakes his head. How it's clear his relationship with Fran is very complex (the heart breaking marriage proposal) or how he swallows his pride and ends up teaching Fran how to fly the chopper. Sadly due to seeing the home he worked so hard to taking over get destroyed, he falls victim to a tragic death. I always thought Stephen made one of the best zombies in the entire trilogy, and just love his shuffle walk getting out of the elevator. Long before Bub, he was a zombie that showed big signs of memory by slowly remembering where his living quarters were, and slowly limping back to see his pregnant girlfriend one last time. I would love to get Flyboy tattooed on me some day since he is by far the most attractive zombie out there.

Rodger plays a smaller role, but seems like another down to Earth friendly likable guy. How he's kind enough to try and watch out for his fellow S.W.A.T members, and how fast thinking and calm he is in the beginning. I loved his relationship with Peter, and hated his stupid tragic downfall. Who doesn't forget his epic line "We got this by the ass!" It's so heart breaking seeing him get weaker and weaker in the mall, not even able to truly enjoy the pleasures of it before transforming into one of the living dead. His returning scene is one of the most haunting. 

Peter, another strong African American in the trilogy is like I said one of the strongest physically and mentally. I love how he quickly puts Stephen in his place letting him know that the old way of life is gone, it's all down to surviving. Or how you never point a gun at a man unless you plan on killing them. How he's the only one to put Fran in her place when she finally speaks up, letting her know that everything she said is far, but he won't have her go out with them until she's able to handle herself. Or last but not least when he speaks to Rodger who seems to be getting too carried away while moving the trucks. Here is a man who clearly is smart, and always stays level headed. Just little things such as not trying to shoot at the store gates, or how they should go about making the mall safe. I love how while during the raid he's smart enough to know to stay put, and after everything hits the fan he kicks the most ass. A good friend, Peter is a very likable character who hides the fact that he barley hanging on, yet is able to escape the mall and have a happy ending as unknown as it is.

These characters were a huge reason why this film worked. How you follow them escape the city, find the mall, make the mall theirs, become over taken by it, and then watch as the bikers destroy everything they have worked for. I feel the final chapter with the raid be a little more epic (more bikers should have gotten eaten!) but never the less this is a great smartly written elegant horror film with deeper meanings, characters you become attach to, memorable moments, gray and blue zombies, and some truly amazing moments.

I urge anyone to see this film. Not only is it a horror masterpiece, but also a film you could watch over and over again without getting sick of it. Now mind you, Day is my all time favorite, but Dawn is a lighter out look of the 1970's that in my eyes is one of the greatest sequels of all time!

5 stars!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Hills Have Eyes 2 (1984) Why all the hate?

 Hills Have Eyes 2 (1984) Why all the hate?

Plot - 8 years after the events from the first film, Bobby is still in recovery from the brutal murders and attacks on his family. Grown, Bobby now owns a garage that sponsors dirt bike racing. Happily married to Rudy, he's desperately trying to pick up the pieces of what happened and live a normal life. It isn't until he finds out that several young men who race on a team he sponsors will be competing in a series of races across the state. Which means...the bus they have to take will be crossing the desert. The same desert where everything happened. Frightened out of his mind, he backs out of the trip which the racers will be going along with the team mechanic, and their girlfriends. Assuring him that everything will be fine, Ruby (now known as Rachel) will accompany them and bring their beloved dog Beast.

It isn't long before the group ride their bus across the vast desert as they begin telling ghost stories of the hills that have eyes. Clearly bothered by this, Rudy doesn't speak up that the very thing they were taking about happened to her and her husband. It isn't long before it hits them that it's daylight's savings time, and they are actually running late, as well as running low on gas. Deciding to take a short cut, the bus breaks down leaking fuel in an old mining town. The group split up, riding their bikes and looking around as the original clan from the first movie slowly pop up. It seems the survivors have healed up, and haven't forgotten the family that wronged them. One by one they begin to pick the group off one by one.

Lowdown - Ah the movie that's known to feature a dog having a flashback. Yep, you heard right. A dog...having a flashback. Hey, listen...I've seen worse, and I for one really am stunned that this movie gets the bad rap it does, even from Wes Craven himself. Sorry Wes, but you've made some reallllll winners in your career which make The Hills Have Eyes look like a complete masterpiece. It's taken me years to get around to watching this movie, and it wasn't until today being snowed in that I decided to finally check it out since it was streaming on Netflix for free. Now I'll be the first to admit, I really didn't give this viewing a fair chance since I was border line exhausted, as well as checking my phone, I wasn't exactly paying attention. Still, for the most part I followed the movie and actually didn't mind it.

It's been years since I've watched the original Hills, but I've always loved it and it features one of my all time favorite taglines.

"An all American family didn't want to kill, but they didn't want to die either."

Wes Craven knocked out classics between the original Hills, Last House On The Left, and A Nightmare On Elm Street before directing a few truly underrated gems in the 80's and 90's before going off and directing Scream. Some of these films were good, some bad...others ugly. This sequel, made shortly before his 1984 hit Nightmare On Elm Street is almost like the filthy bastard child of his career. He's since disowned it since the production ran out of money and he was forced to use lots of footage from the first film before going on to make Elm Street. He's even said that the only reason he decided to make this movie was simply because of the money. Sorry Wes, from what I saw for the most part it seemed as if you heart was really into this. Sure the film has some pretty awful clichés (they all forgot it was Daylights Savings?!) Also the group of young adults running out of gas in the middle of nowhere. How about the character of Ruby/Rachel. Why on Earth would you ever agree to go through the desert let alone take a short cut?! At least the Bobby character had sense!

The movie features a pretty great cast of new and old faces. There's Kevin Spirtas (Friday The 13th part 7 The New Blood, and Subspeices 2 and 3), and Peter Frechette (The Kindred, and The Unholy) As well as returning actors Robert Houston, Janus Blythe, and of course Michael Berryman.

I feel the set up of this film was all wrong, it held promise but the script was very weak. I think it would have been better maybe having it focus more on the Bobby and Ruby characters. I was interested in their relationship and would have loved to see more of it. In fact I was down right bummed that Bobby was just in the beginning. Also the Ruby character seemed to be the only good character for the rest of the movie. I loved the scene of her and her brother fighting again, I feel that scene could have been much more epic but nevertheless great to have them see each other again.

The deaths were so-so, and everything was super dark. I felt the explosion in the end was trying too hard to beat the original, and the over all final chapter just didn't add up to much. It was a slasher pretty much with these teens getting knocked off one by one. Instead Wes should have focused more on the film's original roots and maybe have it be about Bobby and Ruby returning to the desert ti face their fears.

Still compared to the the remake's sequel this is MUCH MUCH better.

The film had great returning actors, lots of cheesy 80's action, and of course Beast the dog! Trust me, that dog kicks more ass than any human in both movies.

So if you have Netflix, go and check it out. It's a good enough time, and really not Wes Craven's worse.

3 stars

Monday, January 26, 2015

Breakdown of my horror wall.

 Breakdown of my horror wall.

Due to the blizzard of fricking 2015 upon us, my work was called off for tomorrow, so I'm nice and cozy in my downstairs den listening to the cast commentary of Dawn Of The Dead, my heater buzzing, and a nice tall glass of wine beside me. So why not bore you all with a breakdown of my "horror" wall. I keep almost 80% of my movie/horror collection downstairs in my house in my den. A lot is in my office (as well as things I've made) and some are in my downstairs kitchen, as well as in storage. Still, I keep a good amount of it down here where I watch most of my movies. What can I say? I have a Stacy cave. Years ago, back in the 1970's, this served as my parent's den and one side of the wall served as a gun rack for my dad's guns when he used to hunt. Many years later this den became my bedroom in high school and I pretty much took most of the pegs down turning it into a massive display for my VHS tapes and other odds and ends. Now that it's my den, I have it as a wall that displays some of my vinyl records, VHS collection, action figures, and other favorite and most near and dear pieces that I've collected over the years.

Every once in a while I post different shots of my den because I'm sure I'm not the only nerd here that has to dust and rearrange the displays to our own liking every once in a while. So here is a quick run down of what's shown in this photo.

1) Zach Galligan's personal Waxwork II crew shirt - I won this back in 2013 for Adam Green's One Fund. This was Zach's very own Waxwork II crew shirt he got after filming wrapped, it is also signed to the "Ultimate Waxwork fan!" #betyourassitis
2) Waxwork II crew shirt - This was a second Waxwork II shirt that I found online over in the UK last December. It came with paperwork showing that it was in fact legit, and given to only the cast and crew after filming. This is the shirt I have worn once or twice. Feels like the 90's every time I wear it!
3) Waxwork Italian lobby cards (5 in total) - Two of which are signed by Zach Galligan.
4) Waxwork/Waxwork II double feature DVD
5) Horror 8 Pack - Waxwork, Ghoulies III, Class of 1999, The Unholy, 976 Evil II, Slaughter High...and I'm sure I'm forgetting one. This is by far one of the greatest horror packs ever on DVD. Even though it's the cut version of Waxwork, and it's super dark. #bitchingandmoaning.
6) 2 Waxwork comic books, one of which is signed by Zach Galligan.
7) Deborah Foreman black and white autograph from Waxwork.
8) Waxwork II Japan VHS tape signed by Zach Galligan.
9) Waxwork II signed VHS tape
10) Japan Waxwork II VHS tape
11) 2 VHS copies of Waxwork uncut, one of which is signed by...yep you guessed it Zach Galligan.
12) Waxwork laserdisc signed by Zach Galligan, Deborah Foreman, and Dana Ashbrook.
13) Zach Galligan autograph from Waxwork.
14) Two European magazines with both Waxwork and Waxwork II on the covers.
15) Day Of The Dead mini poster from Fright Rags box set.
16) Friday the 13th part II poster by Jeff Zornow.
17) Mini Gremlins figure with Gizmo...appearing to be on a small stripper pole.
18) Pumpkinhead action figure from Movie Manics.
19) Two promo masks from The Strangers from 2007.
20) Two mini Ghostface candle holders.
21) Day Of The Dead rocks from the filming location - Thanks Fright Rags!
22) Custom sketch of Amityville 1992 by Nathan Thomas Milliner. 
23) Custom painting of Amityville 1992 It's About Time.
24) Amityville 1992 VHS tape.
25) Day Of The Dead poster signed by 3 of the effects artist who worked on the film.
26) Fright Rags Popcorn poster.
27) They Live postcard
28) 8-Bit Freddy doll still in package.
29) Jason figure from Friday the 13th part 6 Jason Lives.
30) Retro Pinhead figure.
31) Saw 5 promo lollypop.
32) Jaws Hallmark Christmas figure.
33) Deadite Ash figure still in box.
34) Intruder blu-ray promo flyer.
35) Custom sketch of myself dancing with a young Sam Raimi with critters watching by Jeff Zornow.
36) Gorezone magazine with Intruder on the cover.
37) Freddy retro figure.
38) Cujo clamshell.
39) Zach Galligan autograph from Hellraiser III.
40) Another Pinhead retro figure still in packaging. 
41) Class of 1999 VHS tape/Ghoulies II VHS tape.
42) Jaws 1-4 VHS tapes.
43) Freddy from part 4 still in package.
44) Freddy from Freddy's Dead figure still in package.
45) Debbie from Nightmare 4 still in package.
46) Tarman figure still in package.
47) Freddy figure still in package signed by Robert.
48) Christine original VHS
50) Gremlins/Gremlins II trading cards still in package.
51) Custom framed piece of artwork based on Tales From The Crypt episode Strung Along by Tara Sasarak.
52) Rue Mourge Twin Peaks magazine signed by Sheryl Lee.
53) Two Ghoulies II autographs signed by William Butters.
54) Freddy from Nightmare 3 still in package.
55) Custom MBV prints/cards by StayGoldPress.
56) Day Of The Dead VHS tape, Cupid VHS tape signed by Zach Galligan, Dangerously Close VHS tape, Jaws 3 VHS, and The Midnight Hour VHS tape signed by Lee Montgomery.
57) Jaws 3 on vinyl.
58) Chopping Mall on vinyl.
60) Christine on laserdisc.
61) Creepshow vinyl.
62) Firestarter vinyl.
63) Ghoulies II laserdisc.
64) Fright Night laserdisc.
65) Intruder laserdisc.
66) Last House On The Left on vinyl.
67) Friday the 13th the series on vinyl.
68) Friday the 13th on vinyl.
69) Summer School unreleased radio soundtrack on vinyl.
70) Dangerously Close on vinyl.
71) Dee Wallace Stone autograph.
72) Leigh Whanell autograph.
73) Trick R Treat Shane Murphy.
74) Oliver Parker autograph. 
75) Monster Squad cast/crew signed autograph.
76) Tom Atkins autograph. 
77) Man's Best Friend on VHS
78) Scream Factory buttons.
79) 3 Clamshells, along with Rotten Rentals Nightmare On Elm Street case.
80) 342 horror VHS tapes. 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Nightbreed - Restored love scene

 Nightbreed - Restored love scene

Just the other day on the Facebook group Occupy Midian, a fellow member of the Tribes Of The Moon restored one of the most famous lost scenes out of Clive Barker's 1990 classic Nightbreed. I'll be the first to admit, I was a little shocked that this scene never made it into the final cut of the re-stored director's cut that Scream Factory restored this past autumn. I think it's clear to anyone who's friends with me, or follows this blog that there's a special little place in my heart for the monster Peloquin played by the ever so dashing Oliver Parker. Peloquin is by far one of the most underrated creatures in this movie and steals the entire show. The fact he didn't get more screen time blows my mind. Still, many fans were wondering what happened to two certain scenes that flashed across the the main titles scrolled over the screen. These were little glimpses into Barker's original vision. There was Peloquin transforming, jaw opening wide as flashlights shine on him, and little clips of Peloquin and Shuna Sassi having a twisted romp involving snakes, and dancing. These scenes weren't restored for the director's cut and many people asked why?

I for one was a little disappointed, but after hearing the facts behind why both scenes didn't make the final film made sense. First off, they were originally just shot for the titles. Second, the scene of Peloquin transforming with his jaw opening was a failed effects shot that just didn't seem to look right on camera. I've seen the heads used for this shot, as well as on the extras on the blu-ray of Mr. Parker wearing the massive head and turning towards the camera. If you notice Peloquin sorta disappears in the final act of the movie after talking to Lori down below. You have to look closely to see him badly wounded in the barn at the end. I think the only reason we see him is because Barker truly believed there would be a sequel and this character would have carried on. Still, I feel much cooler way since this is after all the only film that maybe if Peloquin shape shifted into this final massive form he couldn't change back resulting in his death. I mean how awesome would it have been to see him go into a blaze of glory. Still, the scene that so many people couldn't believe was...

The love scene.

The reason why this ended up not making the final cut was because they would of had to go back and re-record the sound getting the original actors back. Due to time and money, the scene was left out much to the disappointment of the fans. I met the actress who plays Shuna Sassi at Rock & Shock and expressed how bummed I was that it didn't make it into the blu-ray. She agreed and even tho her memory wasn't the best on filming the movie, she told me it was simply because she was so exhausted making this movie due to long hours in makeup. She did express to me, and in other interviews that she did remember filming this scene, on a hard platform that served as the bed, and how quickly her and Parker learned how to work with the snaked and chase after them as they slithered away. Only brief clips of this lost scene were shown in the extras of the blu-ray and finally a hardcore fan decided to restore it. The only thing missing of course was the dialog. Still, it's mind blowing to see the scene complete.

So here it is in all it's glory...

Ah, romance is in the air...

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Mercy (2014)

 Mercy (2014)

PLOT - A single mother is forced to take care of her elderly mother with her two young sons. It isn't long before the truth behind the grandmother's past is revealed and the youngest grandson discovers that his grandmother withholds deadly powers of dark magic.

LOWDOWN - I guess it would be safe to say that I'm a Stephen King addict. Ever since I could remember his books and films were a staple in my house growing up. As years went on I devoured nearly every single work of his, including short stories. One of my all time favorite collections of his short stories has to be Night Shift. This book had such classics as Strawberry Spring, The Boogyman, Gray Matter, The Ledge, and even Sometimes They Come Back. I can't even tell you how many times I re-read those stories. In fact, my copy I had back in high school was in complete tatters by the end I decided to upgrade to a newer book. It wasn't until shopping at a discount book store that I stumbled upon an original copy of King's follow up collection of short stories. This being Skeleton Crew. Instantly I dove right in discovering such classics as The Monkey, The Jaunt, The Raft, and finally my favorite...


I read this short story within a half an hour and couldn't believe how down right scary it was. In fact, I would even go so far to even say this is one of King's top five best short stories ever.

Gramma tells the story of a dark and windy October afternoon in the famous Castle Rock Maine where a single mother has to leave her youngest son George home alone while she tends to her eldest who's gone to the hospital due to a sports injury. This takes place in a small house on the outskirts of town, near the very same farm featured in King's works as Cujo and Needful Things. The entire short story is told in George's POV since he's left to look after his bedridden over weight grandmother who's senile, and half mad. Over the course of the pages George putters around the kitchen nervously, hoping his grandmother won't wake up before his mother returns. Isolated, he begins to think back on his family's history and how scared his grandmother actually makes him. King's talent of vivid detail puts you right into George's shoes as he describes how his grandmother transformed into a large monster of a woman, with flabby elephant skin, poached egg colored eyes, and how often she would always hold her giant arms out beckoning for him to go to her. The biggest plus with this short story is the family's history, talking about how after the grandmother became senile and too sick how George's uncles and aunts all ganged up on his mother since she was the only single one and forced them to take care of her. The stories about grandmother's speical books, and how she used them to finally be able to have children is truly amazing story telling. The story is a slow burn, and more clues begin to link together as you feel yourself that you're all alone in this creepy dark house with a mad woman who very well could be a monster. The story's climax is truly awesome, and was translated onto the screen in the 1980's with the Twilight Zone re-vamp. 

This was a clever way to shoot the short story, and really captured the over all look and fell of the film (mostly with how gramma looked as over the top as it was.) Sadly nothing besides that was done with this piece of King's work until just a year or so ago I heard the rumors of Mercy...

I thought it was interesting that they were actually trying to make this into a feature length film. I mean just by reading the short story, it was rich with backstory. Without spoiling too much, it pretty goes deeper into the family history. There's a part where the character of George recalls one holiday when his uncle got drunk and he overheard him talking to his mother about gramma. That for years she was unable to have children, in fact at least several times she either had miscarriages or the babies were stillborn. Devastated, believing she was unable to ever have children, she finally found this "magic" books that suddenly had her able to carry a baby to full term. The doctors weren't able to explain it and after many more children, more strange things began to happen because of these books. Both her and her husband were able to have jobs during the depression. It also talks about how once one of her sons angered her and magically he died due to natural causes, then another time when the town church discovered these books she was using and kicked her out of their parish as well as firing her from her job at a local school. How one time when she was getting sicker, she had what her children would call one of her "bad spells" and all the tombstones at a graveyard in town blew up. How once gramma got so bad her other children forced George's mother to take care of her since she was a single mother, and could handle her whenever she had one of her "bad spells". 

Well, I heard about the casting (Chandler Riggs) and thought "Well, that's okay." I've met Chandler before, nice little kid but acting wise. I know all these Walking Dead fans will kill me, far as child actors go, I feel a stronger actor could have made a big difference. 

The movie captured a great overall feel and was beautifully shot. It had some great moments, one of my favorites being George's little girl friend. In fact the twist behind that was eh "so-so" but my favorite scene in the entire movie had to be them talking on the porch on what to do and how suddenly she leans forward, showing how horrible her face/eyes look. Truly a haunting moment that sadly seems to fall into a pretty stale movie.

I think a lot of it was a rushed cheap cop out on a lot of the original story. It held so much promise but the grandmother wasn't scary, the acting not that good, and the final part downright a complete slap in the face to the short story and original Twilight Zone segment. I never wave away a happy ending, but this really didn't belong in this sort of story. In fact King writes how terrified George is of his grandmother, in this they seem like best friends. Sorry, the grandmother was possessed by an evil power, don't try to make her a good guy.

The movie like I said had it's moments, but if you want to check out this story, read the original (which has one Hell of an epic ending, in fact the last few pages are amazing. I love George calling his aunt, and the aftermath when his mother comes home.) Or watch the Twilight Zone segment.

2 Stars

Sunday, January 18, 2015

My choices for The Stand and Doctor Sleep cast

With news of The Stand in development of turning into a feature film, there has been tons of rumors about casts. Now mind you, I have my dream cast for this book. I have for years. These are all different actors raging from different periods of films I saw them in that I believed would play the part best. Here on the other hand is my realistic choices if King's epic is finally made. 

As for the IT cast, my choices for the adult cast will have to wait. Gotta do my research first. So instead, I picked a few choices in case Doctor Sleep would ever get made. So enjoy, and please let me know who you would pick!

The Stand

Stu Redman - Matthew Fox
Frannie Goldsmith - Emma Stone 
Randall Flagg - Jeffery Dean Morgan 
Nadine Cross - Jennifer Lawrence 
Mother Abigail - Angela Bassett 
Lloyd Henreid - Joseph Gordon Levitt
Harold Lauder - Haley Joel Osment 
Trashcan Man - Mathew McConaughey 
Larry Underwood - James McAvory 
Glen Bateman - Scott Wilson 
Nick Andros - Sam Clafin 
Ralph Brentner  - Sean Astin 
Tom Cullen - Channing Tatum 
Julie Lawry - Brie Larson 

Doctor Sleep 

Danny Torrance - Jensen Ackles
Rose The Hat - Famke Janssen
Crow Daddy - Zach Galligan 
Barry The Chink - Joseph Gorden Levitt 
Snakebite Annie - Chloë Sevigny
Abra - Bailee Madison

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Most underrated horror sequels from the 90's.

Most underrated horror sequels from the 90's.
Some people call it the decade of death for the world of horror. I on the other hand have a disagree. There are tons, and I mean tons of hidden gems from the 90's of great horror fun. Some of the best of course came in the version of sequels that were just as good or dare I say it even better than the original films that came before it. Long live the 90's!

Candyman II Farewell To Flesh

Hellraiser III Hell On Earth

Waxwork II Lost In Time

Warlock II The Armageddon

Leatherface The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Class of 1999

Jason Goes To Hell The Final Friday

Wes Craven's New Nightmare

The Exorcist III

Child's Play 2

Scream 2

Amityville 1992 It's About Time

Psycho IV The Beginning 

976 Evil The Astral Factor 

The Howling VI The Freaks 

Puppet Master II

Return Of The Living Dead 3

Phantasm III Lord Of The Dead

Bloodstone Subspecies II

Bloodlust Subspecies III

Phantasm IV Oblivion