Thursday, March 31, 2011

Suspiria, My Soul to Take


This is one of those I've always heard of as a classic, but just never got around to watching it.  I imagine I'll finally get around to watching a lot of those during this little exercise.
This movie looks fantastic.  The sets are amazing, and I really loved the way the music worked within the movie (although I did have a problem with it...more on that in a minute).  I wasn't the biggest fan of the story (young American travels to Europe to join a famous ballet school, and people die), but it looked fantastic.  There were some pretty creepy death scenes, which put me a little on edge (rare for an older movie like this). Of course, there were also some scenes that just came off as cheesy, but those were to be expected.
A minor annoyance: I loved the music, but it was a lot louder than the rest of the movie.  The dialog was relatively soft, so I had to turn up the volume...but then the music came on, and it was nearly ear-splitting.  It was a constant battle with the volume throughout the movie.
I liked it, but didn't love it.  It was pretty slow moving, and the payoff wasn't great.  But still, it looked terrific, and I can definitely see that it was far ahead of its time as far as how graphic it was.

Rating: 3 stars

My Soul to Take

This is the first movie written and directed by Wes Craven since New Nightmare.  I loved that movie (and Craven is a legend), so I was looking forward to this movie...even if I was trying to lower my expectations.  The previews weren't great, and reviews were terrible.
Maybe I was just in the right mood, but I really enjoyed this movie.  Sure, it was pretty predictable (there were a couple "twists", and at least one of them could be seen coming from a mile away), but there were a lot of pretty tense moments in this movie, particularly towards the end.  I didn't love all the characters, but I liked them enough to feel a little something when they died (well...for all but one of them).
The movie starts with the story of "The Riverton Ripper", who turns out to be a family man with multiple personalities.  He kills his wife and is shot multiple times by police.  On the way to the hospital, he attacks the ambulance driver and escapes.  He is never seen after that, so he is assumed dead...drowned in the river.  16 years later, it looks like he has come back (the scenes showing the Ripper are actually pretty good).  There were 7 children born the night the Ripper "died", and they start dying - one by one - on their 16th birthday.
It's not Craven's best movie, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.  If you feel like turning your brain off and catching a modern slasher movie, you could do worse than this one.

Rating: 4 stars

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Last night, based on the recommendation of some family, I watched house.  All I knew about it was that it starred William Katt (the star of Greatest American Hero).  I had no idea that it also starred George Wendt (Norm from Cheers) and Richard Moll (Bull from Night Court).  Needless to say, I was excited about this.

I had no idea what to expect from this movie.  80s horror can be a mixed bag.  I assumed this would fall under the category of "so bad it's funny".  As it turns was funny.  It was a terrific horror comedy, in the vein of The Evil Dead and Deadalive.

It's a haunted house movie, following William Katt as Roger Cobb, a horror writer trying to write a memoir about his time in Vietnam.  He moves into the house of his recently deceased aunt...a woman who was assumed crazy, and claimed that her house was haunted.  Cobb finds out on the first night that she wasn't crazy.

Sure, there are some cheesy parts (the freeze-frame ending would definitely be included in this category)...but this was a genuinely funny movie.  I don't know if it's quite as good as Evil Dead 2 or Deadalive...but it's not that far off.  If you enjoy horror-comedy at all, you're sure to love this movie.

Rating: 5 stars

In my search for good Zombie Prom songs, I decided to take Nan Vernon's "Love Hurts" (it ran at the end of Rob Zombie's Halloween II) and add some creepy sound effects behind it.  I think it came out really well...I'm hoping it will work well as a zombie slow dance.  I'm also still searching for a good zombie DJ name.  Right now I'm working with DJ Zombi...but I'm not very happy with it.  Suggestions?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Zombie Prom Preparation

I have been asked to DJ a zombie prom in May.  In preparation of this, I have decided to watch as many horror movies as I can between now and then.  Get a feel for the music that is used.  As I watch them, I'll post about them here.  Maybe only a sentence or two, but it'll be something.  They won't all be zombie movies, but it is to prepare for a zombie event, so I figure it makes sense to post about it here.
If there are any readers out there, feel free to post any movie (or music) recommendations in the comments.  I'll try to get to as many as I can.  I'll end each review with the rating I gave it in Netflix.

Let's kick this off.

April Fool's Day

I had never seen this movie, but I had heard good things.  Also, there was an entire episode of Psych that revolved around it, so I finally decided to watch it.  It was well worth my time.  It started out a little slow, but it was a fantastic take on the slasher genre.  The characters were your typical 80s slasher characters. but it was extremely well done.  When it finally started moving, it was pretty tense for the rest of the way.  It was a unique take on the genre, with some fairly interesting little twists.  I loved it.

Rating: 5 stars


A British movie, following a group of friends who go away for the weekend to a small town.  When they get there, they find that the town is full of women...and those women are all crazy.  I had heard it was a zombie movie, but that's not technically correct.  The women weren't undead...rather, they had all been infected with a virus.  It was bloody and crazy and hilarious.  I loved it.

Rating: 5 stars

Ghoulies 3: Ghoulies Go to College

I enjoyed the first couple Ghoulies movies, so I thought I'd track this one down.  I should've known from the cover that this would be different.  Where the first two were trying to be scary (yet were funny), this one fully embraced the campiness.  The Ghoulies were wisecracking pranksters.  Sure, they killed a couple people (one by plunger to the face), but most of the time they were perfect content to spy on girls in the shower and drink lots of beer.  It made me laugh, but not nearly as much as the first two movies did.  This one was trying to be funny...and that made it not nearly as funny as when it was trying to be a serious horror movie.
That being said, I'm still going to watch Ghoulies 4.

Rating: 3 stars

Child's Play

I don't know how I had never seen this movie...but now I have.  I liked it.  I had seen bits and pieces of some of the later movies, so I fully expected this movie to be goofy.  It wasn't at all.  It was a serious horror movie, and was actually fairly creepy at times.  Some parts were obviously pretty cheesy (it is, after all, an 80s horror movie involving a talking doll), but it was darker than I expected, and I liked it more than I thought I would.  I plan on watching the rest of them at some point, but this was a good beginning to the series.

Rating: 4 stars