by Anthony King
I haven't been up close and personal with an asshole that doesn't smell like roses. Likewise, not every opinion I have is the most agreeable. There's a much more succinct way of saying that, but you catch my drift. The latest hit horror movie is bringing out the freshest-smelling takes. More on that later, but first, a recap of my Scary Movie Month.
October 2023 was not the best in the King house. Nevertheless, I was able to watch lots of good stuff. On top of previously-written-about gems like The Last House on the Left (2009), Deadgirl (2008), and The Desperate Hours (1955), I re-watched seasonal favorites like House on Haunted Hill (1959, Curious George: A Halloween Boo Fest (2013), The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949), and Halloween III: Season of the Witch. I finally caught up with modern cult classics Death Becomes Her (1992) and Sleepy Hollow (1999). But most of my time was spent watching older movies that gave off the perfect SMM vibe.Murders in the Rue Morgue (1932). I watched Murders for the first time last year and didn't give it a fair shake. This time around I found so much more to love about it. First and foremost, I think this is Bela Lugosi's finest performance. Many times Lugosi is deep within the world of “camp.” Here, though, he seems so committed to and convincing as our mad scientist who is obsessed with proving a likeness between apes and humans. The ending of the ape running across rooftops is some of the most stunningly beautiful artistry ever committed to film. The best part of Murders, though, is Paul (Bert Roach), our romantic lead's roommate. I'm sorry – gay roommate. I seriously doubt Paul is gay, but Roach seems to be having too much fun trying to play him as gay, it was a riot to watch.
Having read several of creator Scott Cawthon's books (to my kids), I've known he's not the greatest writer. While the animatronics are the draw to this thing he's created, Cawthon seems very interested in building a bigger world than just a scary, rundown Showbiz Pizza. While he's not a great writer, he's the one that created this massively popular world and he can do whatever the hell he wants with it. In less capable hands than Ms. Tammi's, this movie certainly could have been a giant disaster. Instead, Tammi was able to take this introductory story to a far-reaching world and contain it within boundaries horror hounds want while also traveling outside those lines to Cawthon's world. I hope we get at least a couple more FNAF movies with Tammi behind the camera. The movie smashed box office records by becoming the biggest Blumhouse global opening of all time; it was the biggest opening for a horror film directed by a woman; and it's Peacock's most-watched film or series ever in its first five days streaming. Can you say blank check?