Thursday, October 28, 2010

F This Movie! - Poltergeist

Patrick and Doug nail the coffin shut on Horror Movie Month at F This Movie! with a discussion about just who directed 1982's Poltergeist, whether or not ghosts are scary movie monsters, hamper clowns and space vampires.



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Also discussed this episode: Tropic Thunder (2008), Young Frankenstein (1974)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

F This Movie! - Halloween (2007)

Patrick and Mike take on Rob Zombie's dirty, bloody, f-word laden "re-imagining" of John Carpenter's classic Halloween and learn what evil eats.



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Also discussed this episode: A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010), Dolls (1987), The Crazies (2010)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

F These Stephen King Movies

Few authors have had more of their novels, short stories and grocery lists turned into movies as Stephen King. Many of them (most of them?) don't survive the translation to the screen, but they're all worth seeing. And f'ing. No made-for-TV movies, which eliminates about half of the list.

Monday, October 25, 2010

F This Movie! - The Blair Witch Project

Patrick and Alex are lost in the woods.



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Also discussed this episode: Misery (1990), Cloverfield (2008), Paranormal Activity (2009)

F This Movie! Fan Art for Horror Month

As part of Horror Month on F This Movie!, artist Miguel Angel Sanchez has conjured up some Scary Movie-inspired art. Because he is super cool.

See more of Miguel's F This Movie! art here and here.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

F This Movie! - Let the Right One In/Let Me In

Patrick and JB discuss the merits (or lack therof) of the 2008 Swedish vampire masterpiece Let the Right One In and its 2010 American remake Let Me In, lamenting the latter's omission of things like pedophilia and castration. It's more tasteful than it sounds.



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Also discussed this episode: Tremors (1990), High Tension (2005)

Monday, October 18, 2010

F Werewolf Movies

Werewolves are awesome movie monsters, so it makes sense that there would be so few actual good werewolf movies. Time to learn that the hard way.

1. An American Werewolf in London (1981) - One of the best werewolf movies ever made. Actually, one of the best horror movies ever made. Anyone who complains about the way the horror mixes with the comedy is a stupid wrong person.

2. The Wolf Man (1941) - The original Universal monster movie remains one of the best, thanks in large part to the iconic makeup, a great cast of character actors and the fact that it fully understands the weight and tragedy of the werewolf.


3. Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf (1985) - Sometimes, there just aren't words for a movie's shittiness. The sequel to Joe Dante's terrific original features Christopher Lee in New Wave eyewear, Sybil Danning toplessness and a werewolf threesome and is still the fucking worst. The whole thing looks like it was made for the price of compact car. What few effects shots there are are recycled over and over and over again. There are barely any werewolves in the fucking thing; mostly it's just a little bit of hair and some teeth leading up to a monster we never see. The one in the picture below is barely glimpsed, but is still the most complete and elaborate werewolf in the whole movie. It's so not worth the wait. I hate this movie.


4. Bad Moon (1996) - Michael Pare wolfs out and tries to kill Mariel Hemingway's kid, who is also his nephew. It's as forgettable as it sounds. This has the distinction of being one of the only werewolf movies released in the '90s, alongside Wolf and An American Werewolf in Paris. Truly the best decade for werewolf movies.

5. Dog Soldiers (2002) - Neil Marshall's debut movie is a little overrated in horror geek circles, but there's still a lot here to like. It's nice to see a movie that has a bunch of werewolves instead of just one, and one which avoids making the monsters CGI even though it came out after 2000. Worth seeking out.


6. Curse of the Werewolf (1961) - Hammer's sole entry into the werewolf genre casts Oliver Reed as a tortured lycanthrope in 18th century Spain, and though it's well acted and features a lot of nice production design, the movie is fucking tedious. It takes half the movie for Reed to even appear on screen, and another half before a werewolf shows up. They should have called it Cameo of the Werewolf.

7. Silver Bullet (1985) - This adaptation of Stephen King's Cycle of the Werewolf is almost universally shit on, but that's unfair. I actually really like the mix of hard monster horror and syrupy nostalgia (it's the only werewolf movie I can think of that ends with a character narrating that she loves Corey Haim). This is one of my favorite werewolf movies, which makes it all the more frustrating that it has one of the worst goddamn excuses for a werewolf ever to hit the screen. Just look at it. Fucking horrible.

8. I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957) - Michael Landon stars in the movie that suggests you can make a werewolf through hypnosis. Crazy, man. Crazy.

9. Cursed (2005) - Congratulations, Wes Craven. You have become the worst.


10. Teen Wolf Too (1987) - Wait. Let me get this right. There's another teen wolf? What are the odds? And is that why it says "too" in the title? Because usually in sequels to other movies, they would just say "2" or sometimes "Part II." But here it's "too" instead of "two!" A play on words! I get it! I still want to kill myself.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

F This Movie! - The Saw Franchise

Mike P. returns to F This Movie! only to be shackled to a death trap alongside Patrick while they F the divisive Saw franchise. Let the games begin.



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Also discussed this episode: The Fly (1958), Horror of Dracula (1958), Fright Night (1985)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

F These Horror Franchises

The lifeblood of the horror movie is the sequel, the remake and, now, the "re-imagining" (which makes me re-barf). It's Horror Movie Month, so let's F some of horror's most popular and enduring franchises. Because this time it's personal.

Don't forget to participate in the F This Movie! F Horror Movies! Challenge!

1. Friday the 13th (10 movies + 1 crossover + 1 remake)
High points: The first movie is still kind of a grungy classic. Part 3 is gloriously stupid and has hilarious 3D effects. Part IV has Crispin Glover and Corey Feldman. And I would argue that Jason Goes to Hell is intentionally funny.
Low points: Anything involving going to space, taking Manhattan or versusing Freddy.

2. A Nightmare on Elm Street (7 movies + 1 crossover + 1 remake)
High points: The original, obviously, and there's a lot to like about Dream Warriors and (especially) New Nightmare.
Low points: Everything else. Freddy's Revenge is only worth seeing because it's the gayest movie ever made.

3. Hellraiser (8 movies)
High points: Again, the original movie is grisly and intense, and the second movie is batshit crazy and actually does a good job of recreating Hell.
Low points: The next six direct-to-video sequels, though a movie with the subtitle Deader can't be all bad. It's descriptive, at any rate.

4. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (4 movies + 1 remake + 1 remake prequel)
High points: The two Tobe Hooper movies are classics, and I actually prefer the sequel to the original.
Low points: Despite the starpower of the franchise -- including Renee Zellweger, Viggo Mortensen and Matthew McConaughey -- the rest of the movies are barf on toast. At least the remake explains that Leatherface wears a mask of human skin because he's insecure about his skin condition. Fuck that movie with a chainsaw.

5. Halloween (8 movies + 1 remake + 1 remake sequel)
High points: John Carpenter's original is the classic template for every slasher movie. Season of the Witch is pretty terrible but fascinating in its insanity. Return of Michael Meyers (Part IV) is an underrated redo of the first film. H20 is better than it has any right to be. Rob Zombie's remake and its sequel don't quite work, but at least try something different and are worth a look. Actually, the Halloween series might have the best batting average of any franchise.
Low points: If not for Curse of Michael Meyers, about Druids, and Resurrection, which is worse than cancer.

6. Phantasm (4 movies)
High points: The Phantasm films have the distinct advantage of all being helmed by the same guy, series creator Don Coscarelli. That means that even though they're not all good -- and they're not -- at least they all exist in the same universe and attempt to tell one long, unfolding story instead of just being a bunch of rehashes.
Low points: A lot of what works about any of the Phantasm movies -- dreamlike imagery, bizarre pacing, Reggie -- is also the stuff that works against them. None of them are terrible, but there's not a great film among them, either.

7. The Living Dead Series (6 movies + 4 remakes + 1 spin-off + 4 spin-off sequels)
The first three Romero films, Return of the Living Dead and the Dawn of the Dead remake.
Low points: Everything else. Romero is the George Lucas of horror, directing a trilogy of films that are held in the highest esteem and creating a template for an entire genre, then making a second trilogy in the same series (years later, too) that makes us wonder how the fuck they were made by the same guy.

8. The Howling (7 movies)
High points: The Joe Dante one.
Low points: Anything not directed by Joe Dante.

9. Saw (7 movies)
High points: The first movie is a watershed horror movie for the 2000s, like it or hate it. Saw III is where the series started to get interesting because it's actually about something; same goes for Saw VI. This is a series that gets more interesting the longer it goes on.
Low points: Saw II and Saw IV are particularly mean-spirited and, worse yet, dull.

10. The Amityville Horror (8 movies + 1 remake)
High points: Can anyone believe there were eight of these fucking movies?
Low points: There were eight of these fucking movies.

11. Alien (4 movies)
High points: Forget what I said about Halloween; the Alien series actually has the best batting average. Each film takes a new approach to the material, from the slow-burn monster-movie dread of Ridley Scott's original to the combat hell of James Cameron's follow-up to whatever the hell Alien: Resurrection is, and every movie in the series is at least directed by a genuine artist with a vision.
Low points: Even the movies that don't work -- Alien3 and Resurrection -- are interesting and not total failures. They're low points in comparison to the impossibly high standards of the first two films, but I wouldn't suggest that either is a bad movie. Except Resurrection, which is kind of a bad movie.

12. Children of the Corn (7 movies + 1 remake)
High points: There aren't any. This series began as shit and somehow only got worse.
Low points: Any of them that have the words "children" or "corn" in the title.

13. Child's Play (5 movies)
High points: The first movie is incredibly entertaining and well-done, given the ridiculous premise, and the series found new life when it embraced its campy side (Bride and Seed of Chucky).
Low points: Child's Play 2 and Child's Play 3.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

F This Movie! - F The Music Box Massacre!

Patrick and JB survive 24 hours in a movie theater (or DO they?) watching 13 horror movies in order to F the 2010 Music Box Massacre, the annual horror movie marathon held at Chicago's Music Box Theater.

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