Saturday, October 10, 2015

Weekend Open Thread

Long live the new flesh.

How's #ScaryMovieMonth going for you all? Sound off below on the best and worst stuff you've seen in the last 10 days, plus everything in between.

67 comments:

  1. Well, I finished the Saw franchise. It was touch and go there for a while if I had the willpower to sit through them all but ultimately I'm glad I did. Like Patrick and Mark said in the Saw podcast they recorded years ago (which I obviously listened to after finishing the movies), the later movies become weird police procedurals, which I found pretty interesting. The final movie was quite a letdown though.

    I also watched a Finnish curiosity called Noita palaa elämään (The Witch) from 1952, in which archaeologists find a young woman's remains from a swamp, put there 300 years earlier when she was killed for being a witch. Shortly thereafter a young woman matching the description of said witch appears, and we're left wondering whether it's a coincidence or whether the witch has come back alive. The movie balances between lighthearted comedy and horror, not always succesfully, but since my fatherland has produced so few horror films, it's an interesting curiosity.

    What else? From Dusk Till Dawn and Hellboy were fun as always and It Follows made an impression. Thir13en Ghosts and The Faculty were some mindless fun, I Frankenstein and Apollo 18 were just mindless.

    To stave off any sings of a horror burnout, today I opted to watch Charlie's Angels (2000). Back to horror tomorrow (or maybe this evening).

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  2. The best I've seen so far this month would probably be, Deathgasm (2015) , or Blood Diner (1987). I really got a kick out of those two.

    As for the worst, I would hands down have to say it was Reel Horror (1985). I didn't know what I was in for. This film is made up of shots from different movies, that all look like they were shot on a broken camcorder. It is truly the worst movie in my collection.
    Honorable mentions for worst are: The Black Waters of Echo's Pond, and Death Bed: The Bed that Eats. TBWoEP has a bunch of familiar faces, just cashing that paycheck. And Death Bed is just so freaking boring.

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  3. Two that I watched last night - Last Shift and The Vatican Tapes* are perfect examples of good ideas executed well to fairly well but then the filmmakers gotta throw in some stupid shit like body contortion with bone cracking sound effect or super fast head moving shit that we can thank Jacobs Ladder for. They even did something like this in Goodnight Mommy which was totally unnecessary and sucked me right out of the film for that moment. It's really too bad that these kind of "scares" are running rampant and messing up otherwise good films.

    *Last Shift, despite some major flaws and head shaking bullshit, is probably the most pleasant surprise of this month so far. I still like it a lot for a few reasons. It has a great location, the surround sound is SUPER effective and the atmosphere through the first half is exceptional. It shits the bed at one point but then manages to clean up the bed a little before the ending.

    Vatican Tapes wasn't very good, but it could have been great considering they were trying something different within the exorcism genre so I give it kudos for that. I don't give it kudos for taking an interesting idea and making it as generic as possible.

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    1. Edit - now that I've seen Silent Night, Bloody Night (1972) that's the best thing I've seen so far. Can't believe this film predates Black Christmas by 2 years and I've never heard it in a discussion regarding earliest slasher films. It's not a "pure" slasher throughout but certainly has the elements and the "slasher".

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    2. I downloaded this a few months ago because Vinegar Syndrome was offering it pretty much for free (just a minimal donation). You've just convinced me to finally watch it tonight. Thanks!

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    3. Nice! I just checked and looks like they still have that deal available. Hope you dug the flick. I watched an old VHS version that was grainy and beat up but it totally added to the experience so I'm curious how it would be watching a cleaned up version.

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  4. So, getting away from SMM for just a second here, has anyone else seen Sicario yet? I'm a week removed from it, and I'm still having very mixed feelings about it. I simultaneously feel like it's very good, and very bad. It's kind of like the screenwriter watched No Country for Old Men a bunch of times, and thought "well, I can do that" and just wrote a lesser version.

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    1. Is it worth going out to see at all? I'll probably wait until the $4.00 theater.

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    2. I highly recommend it, I agree that the story isn't that original, but the performances and quality of the film making more than compensate. I think it is one of the best films of the year. Denis Villeneuve is quickly becoming one of my favourite directors.

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    3. I'll say it before and I'll say it again. If the Hugh Jackman character from "Prisoners" joined the military/government after his experience in that movie he'd be the Benicio del Toro character in Sicario. As far as I'm concerned "Sicario," while not as good as "Prisoners" and "Enemy," continues Dennis Villeneuve's streak of good, smart and interesting dramas that leave you thinking about the worlds he shows you long after the movie's finished. It's definitely worth seeing in a theater.

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    4. I think it's worth seeing. It's very well made, and looks incredible. The first hour and 15 minutes are pretty gripping. But then it makes a turn in the 3rd act that really left me perplexed. I actually turned to my friend near the end and said "is THAT what this movie has been about?"

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    5. The 'No Country' comparison was exactly what I thought. Like Blask Mass, I thought it was a pale imitation of better films. Its shot and acted beautifully but the script is kind of a mess and very weak. The dialogue is dull and the plot is really unclear and messy. I didn't care for it. But Roger Deakins work was incredible.

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    6. Just saw Sicario right after watching The Martian.
      I liked it very much. Fantastic cinematography, very fine performances, excellent direction. A not so new story, but I really liked how Villeneuve left the audience in the same state of confusion Emily Blunt´s character experienced. We knew as little as she knew, so the story turn at the third act didn´t bother me at all. I´m sure a second viewing will make it even more interesting, like my second viewing of Prisoners did.

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  5. I cant believe I waited so long to see The Cabin in the Woods. Somehow I avoided any spoiler except for the twist that happens towards the beginning. Really enjoyed it from start to finish. I wen't back to read Patrick's review and I would be curious to hear more of his thoughts on the film. Perhaps we could get a podcast about it someday.

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    1. Agreed Mr. McAllister This film seems very ripe for not just a normal podcast but perhaps a podcast roundtable. Special note i would love it if Mike would make an appearance and sing "Train Chain" (in Eddie Vedder....BEST PODCAST MOMENT EVER). I'll stay focused on SSM but just saying really looking forward to next Bond installment.

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    2. Just considered...perhaps Roger Moore is so offensive and horrible perhaps he could be part of SSM. Senior citizens who actively pursue statutory rape and can't fight worth shit are kind of terrifying??

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    3. just realized Scary Movie Month should be SMM (not SSM) Not going to change...deal.

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    4. Haha he has become kind of a character. Some of his films could be considered scary for the wrong reasons now.

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  6. The best thing I've seen this month is "Starry Eyes". I knew with all the reviews that it would be good, but the last 2/3 of that movie...I have a new found respect for the usage of a dumbbell. Amazing acting and beautifully shot.

    The worst thing I've seen is "American Mary". It is so bad, my only review is do not see it. Ever.

    The best-worst thing I watched was Halloween 3: Season of the Witch. I see so much wrong with it, but I couldn't help but enjoy the film. Maybe it was the commentary accompanying it, or maybe it was Ron Atkins' hyper-sexual disorder. I dug it.

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  7. My personal picks for week two of #ScaryMovieMonth:

    Best new-to-me movie: Starry Eyes (2014)
    Best movie I’d seen before: The Omen (1976)

    Worst new-to-me movie: Alone With Her (2006)
    Worst movie I’d seen before: Maximum Overdrive (1986)

    New horror icon: The titular girl from A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014)

    The so-bad-it’s-good award: Blood Diner (1989)

    Most over-the-top performance: Kristy Swanson’s psycho dad in Deadly Friend (1986)

    Best final girl: Bianca Bradey from Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2014)

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  8. Question for JB or anyone who has seen "Exorcist II: The Heretic"....

    At the very end as the doctor is shown looking at the remains for the DC house, a white light starts flashing in her face. It's the same kind of light as from the hypnosis machine.

    So is the movie saying that this was happening in her mind while under hypnosis...and if so, it had to be the first session with Reagan? So her trance included everything including the locusts, Father Marin and the stuff in Africa?

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    1. Just so you know, the ending of "The Exorcist II" (and a lot of footage) was reshot after the movie was already theatrically released at the director's request (to underwhelming results, critically and financially). I distinctly remember seeing a version when I was a kid in the early 80's that's different from the ending you described. In the version I saw the movie faded to white (just white, no hypnotic machine sound) as Regan waves her hands around and the locusts start dropping dead all around her. Then fade to white and credits with the theme song. The ending you describe (which is additional footage after the ending I saw back then) does seem to imply that Regan is coming out of hypnosis, just like the 'ding' at the end of "Total Recall" heavily hints we've witnessed an illusion in Arnold Schwarzenegger's mind. Unlike "Total Recall," though, there is a prequel to "Exorcist II" that left no doubt demonic possession is a real thing in this movie universe, which is further enhanced by the sequel/2000 prequels.

      Man, director John Boorman is still alive and still making movies. I'd love it if somehow Scream Factory got a hold of "Exorcist II" and Boorman for a definitive home video release of this flick. It's a disaster, but an entertaining one that needs context to understand what the people making it had in mind when tackling the impossible task or making a sequel to Friedkin's epics.

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    2. I guess it could mean that Reagan was coming out of hypnosis except the light was flashing on her doctor's face not Reagan's. She'd already walked away with the priest.
      That one time that she was hypnotized with the doctor Reagan disconnected and Father Whats-His-Name-Who-Knows-Nothing-About-The-Machine took over while Reagan and Pazuzu were playing keep away with the doctor's heart.
      The movie is a strange one but that flashing light having the meaning it seems to makes the whole thing absurd.
      But thanks for the answer.

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  9. Best SMM flick I've seen so far is World War Z: Unrated (no longer on Netflix, but streaming on Amazon Prime). It's not that scary, but man, when those waves of zombies build momentum and the shit hits the fan (which is pretty much a few minutes into the story) it's the most got damn amazing disaster movie I've ever seen. I had a blast, especially rewatching it with the Friends in Your Head commentary track. I knew it was worth skipping the PG-13 version and wait to watch it unrated. Other highlights: Blair Witch Project (still scary and slow-burn good after all these years), WolfCop (contemporary low-budget 'B' movie done right), Fiend Without a Face (insect-like brains with spinal cords as bodies = winner), Proxy (slow-burn real-life horror in Jerry Springer's middle America backyard), Waxwork II: Lost in Time (lacking in horror, overperformer in showing its love for classic horror plus a great Bruce Campbell cameo), Killer Klowns from Outer Space (rises above its own ridiculous premise and becomes 'B' movie fun), Interview with the Vampire (gothic horror at its contemporary Hollywood finest) and, less for the movie itself than for the effort that went into making it, Paranorman 3D.

    But man, there's such a thin line between horror and exploitation that I've been saddled with some clunkers. 1986's Breeders would to be the most badly-acted movie I've seen so far, except I saw The Chill Factor (in which a demonic snowmobile chase in bright daylight is the highlight... bleh!) the night before. Man, "Breeders" (streaming unrated on Amazon Prime) has more rape, naked women walking around and cheesy gore than "The Entity," "Lifeforce" and a 'hentai' anime combined. In other words, it's the perfect 'Junesploitation/SMM' crossover flick. :-( Other low points of SMM for me so far: Cursed (the 'meta' werewolf movie that's zero fun to watch), Carrie 2013 (unnecessary, feels more like a supervillain origin story than a "Carrie" adaptation), Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (poisons the prequel if you apply its revelations to explain what happened), Creature ("Alien" ripoff with Klaus Kinsky and an Allan Thicke-lookalike actor), Survival of the Dead (Romero's gas tank in the zombie genre finally reaches it's 'E' mark), etc.

    Does anybody else feel like slowing down? After nine days of SMM I feel ready to take a break and watch normal movies again before dipping back into horror for strong end-of-the-month finish.

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    1. Maybe it's cause SMM is all year for me but I consider these "normal movies" just as any other, no doubt. I'm guessing you just meant non-Horror. No chance I feel like slowing down!

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    2. I watch horror year-round too, but not exclusively. I saw "Steve Jobs" Friday morning, and it felt like the best movie ever just because it wasn't about shitty people (except for Jobs, of course) being shitty and paying a price in blood for their shit behavior.

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    3. Haha! Nice. Of course I don't ONLY watch Horror but I definitely watch a shit ton of it. Steve Jobs looks like one of the Most boring movies of all time. Did you end up liking it?

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    4. As someone with no love for Steve Jobs or Apple, Danny Boyle or latter-day Aaron Sorkin (who peaked with "Sports Night" and "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" as far as I'm concerned), I really liked "Steve Jobs." It's like a three-act theater play in which the artificiality of the premise (so many characters and repressed emotions coming out just hours before Jobs' keynote speeches/product introductions in '84, '88 and '98) is used to maximum effect. Even better, Boyle skews the 'follow characters around talking' visuals one associates with Sorkin movies/TV shows and instead uses cutting to show flashbacks, projections behind the characters and all manner of theatrical effects to condense the complex life and importance of Jobs into two hours. It's not the better Steve Jobs biopic ever made, but it's the more entertaining movie interpretation of his careeer/personal highs and low committed to film. Fassbender is already my contender for Best Actor (and Kate Winslet makes a strong case for a Supporting Actress role), although the movie as a whole isn't as good as its cast at making "Steve Jobs" seem bigger than it actually is.

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    5. I agree about World War Z. I wasn't expecting much, especially in the light of the Zombie burnout we're all experiencing. However, the scene in New York traffic where they become part of the epidemic/disaster/horror was really effective. I don't jump at zombies but having the cop take out their rearview mirror was a better scare than any scene in the walking dead, in my opinion.

      As for SSM fatigue, just remind yourself that it's fricken Halloween! Tis the time to overload on ghosts, ghouls, gore, witches, demons and everything in between. Remind yourself that this is the foundation you'll need to get through the inevitable cheese of Turkey-Day and X-Mas. Thanks for the great 7 word reviews and above recommendations. Stay the course or you may not live to regret it....bahahaha.

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    6. "Where ghouls and goblins, ghosts and mimes come alive and dance and have a great time!"

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  10. This month has been awesome! Its been my goal to watch at least one horror movie a day, and with college and two jobs its not always easy. But so far so good!
    The best new to me this week is definitely the original Carrie. Crazy I hadn't seen it, but its incredible! The performances really stand out as being amazing.
    I haven't watched a lot of bad but the worst is probably Son of Dracula. I've loved the Universal Monsters since I was a kid, but this one always eluded me. Well its terrible. No atmosphere. No creepyness at all. And the characters are garbage. Lon Chaney was the most likeable, and he was Dracula! I was dissapointed.
    As far as future plans I'm seeing Army of Darkness tonight in a theater! Very exciting. Then Monday I have the day off school so I've planned my own Tobe Hooper marathon. I've only seen Poltergeist by him, so its time to learn.

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    1. Please check in and let me know how your Tobe Hooper marathon goes. I'm jealous.

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    2. Texas Chainsaw 1 and 2, Funhouse, Lifeforce that's where I'd start with Mr. Hooper.

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    3. Will do Patrick! And Travis, that's my exact lineup. Perfect.

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    4. ^^^ Please put a coma after "Will do" and before "Patrick!" Otherwise Mrs. Bromley may have a thing to say about you doing her hubby, Daniel. ;-)

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    5. Hooper's "Spontaneous Combustion" is on YouTube in one piece. I plan to watch it soon.

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    6. J.M., I´m sure it´s a little typo writing "coma" instead of "comma". Surely Erika wouldn´t be happy if someone puts Patrick in a coma before doing him... ;-)

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  11. It's been a fun month so far. I don't consider myself exactly a horror aficionado, so it was nice to finally give the classic Night Of The Living Dead a spin. It totally lived up to its reputation. I really enjoyed the characters arguing about what to do and how logically coherent it was. I watched half of Return Of The Living Dead and it's pretty fun. I'll finish it tonight.

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  12. Tales of Halloween.

    From what i can gather this should be released on 10/16. Hoping Patrick can consult horror chick and let me know where i can stream this from (i-Tunes, Directv VOD, Amazon etc). Stay Scary.

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    1. I'll be "horror chick" so, yes, this is supposed to be released on all VOD platforms next weekend.

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    2. Thanks. I'm looking forward to this one hopefully it doesn't dissapoint. Have you seen "The Hallow"? Worth the price of admission?

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    3. Been anticipating this one as well. Have not seen The Hallow. I think other countries are getting it before the US.

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  13. Can anyone recommend some Indian horror? I just stumbled onto my favourite watch of the month so far (Delmonte Colony) and it was an absolute blast. Was it supposed to be scary? Funny? Straight faced? A send up? Yes? Between the musical number, the wild tonal inconsistencies, and the occasional unexpected shiver, I really enjoyed myself, which I can't say about any of the grim contemporary ones I've been watching (my other foreign language watch, Asmodexia, was another wrist slitter). My Indian film knowledge is sorely lacking; any suggestions?
    Also, besides Delmonte Colony, which is fun as hell, I hope people seek out Lake Mungo, the Australian faux documentary. The actors are so naturalistic that it makes the whole thing seem real--this might sound like a redundant observation for the genre, but if you watch enough found footage movies, you realize how rare it is. It's the movie that's lingered with me the longest, because it seems like ordinary people trying to deal with heartbreak and the inexplicable in a believable way.

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    1. Indian Horror is really rare. They barely make Horror films and I can't even think of one. I hadn't even heard of Delmonte Colony til now so thank you!

      Asmodexia is one of the best Horror films I've seen in the past 2 years.

      Lake Mungo is one of the best ever in that genre. Completely agree!

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    2. Whoops, made a typo--it's Demonte Colony, no L. It's bonkers, so I hope you check it out. And Asmodexia definitely has its strong points; I'm just getting a little fried by watching a horror movie every day (I know I don't have to, but I like the challenge). I hit a string where the climax was everybody dying. I think the next few days might need to be horror comedies. New Zealand, you're up.

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  14. If I watch Halloween a couple more times, it's going to be my favorite movie ever. Although, I haven't seen Satan's Little Helper in a while...

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    1. I like this little call back, im with Riske on this one ;)

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    2. Yeah, I know what you mean on Halloween. Every time I watch it I end up loving it more than ever. Its crazy rewatchable.
      "Hey, Halloween is good!" - Fthismovie commenters

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  15. After watching Creature from the Black Lagoon I couldn't help thinking about more recent movies that followed that template to make decent monster movies: Predator and The Ghost in the Darkness came right to mind

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  16. I just Finished my first Smm franchise, The Friday the 13th series was actually much better than i thought it would be or maybe JM Vargas is right and i maybe to forgiving?
    Next up i need a shorter series, tonight i am starting the Wishmaster movies, its bin a while! I cant remember if there good or not?

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    1. More like 'too lenient' than 'forgiving.' No biggie, though, since "Friday the 13th" isn't a series that starts super strong from the beginning.

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    2. I think I need to toughen up for the Wishmaster films, it doesent really start well and with the first 2 and the 2nd two go straight the video so im guessing it dosent get better? ;)
      I do like Andrew Divoff's performance though so im already softening

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  17. Is Mulholland Dr enough of a horror movie to count as an entry for Scary Movie Month? I've never seen it, and I am very OCD about drawing the line between horror movies and thrillers/disturbing dramas and other things like that.

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    1. If you haven't seen Mulholland Dr. you need to watch it now! Patrick lays out the rules for SMM and states that you don't even need to watch a Horror film. Do yourself a favor, watch one of Lynch's masterpiece's.

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    2. I think there's enough horror in MulHolland to make it count. I might be watching Lost Highway and Twin Peaks Fire Walk With Me this week for the challenge. Lynch is always horrifying.

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    3. Fire Walk With Me is my number 1 horror movie.

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    4. I've never seen it and I'm a huge fan of the series so I'm gonna remedy that for sure

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    5. Get ready, sir. It took over The Shining 12 years after for me. Terrified me for years after. Still does.

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    6. Damn well now you got me way excited lol

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    7. It pretty much got written off when it came out didn't it? Why do you think that is?

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    8. It pretty much got written off when it came out didn't it? Why do you think that is?

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    9. Yeah, most definitely. Why? Not too sure but I think it's cause Twin Peaks was on TV and was just "weird" enough but safe enough for the audience. Then - FWWM hits- boom rated R - holy shit what is gong on?! People weren't ready. Being a fan of both the show and Lynch at the time, I was so excited for the movie and when I saw it - it changed my life. It played in normal theaters, meaning not limited release and I saw it at the mall that used to be by my house. Everything about it worked for me on all levels. It's really is the most terrifying and possibly moving film I've ever seen.

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    10. That's awesome, I reserved it from the library so I'm waiting to get it. I can't wait for the new show too.

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  18. My early work schedule has killed my movie watching, ugh. Once my kiddo goes to bed, I usually put on a movie. But getting up at 4:30, I fall asleep soon after she goes to bed.
    Thank goodness for weekends. Trying to cram in movies on the weekend.

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  19. I don't usually watch a lot of horror, but having just started listening to the podcasts and it being Scary Movie Month, I've decided to check some stuff out. Really good luck so far. Loved A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, thought Starry Eyes was a slow bulls to something really effective, and had a lot of fun with Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead.

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    1. Oh, and I made it about a third of the way through Argento's Dracula. My abbreviated review - Well, at least there were boobs.

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