Friday, October 21, 2016

October Horror Challenge 2016 - Days 14, 15

Late again - my apologies. I'm going to try and catch up by the end of the weekend -

Day 14 started with a really cool double feature that was totally unintended. SUSPIRIA was first - my favorite film of all time and every time I watch it I'm reminded why. I hope this is the last time I have to watch it before Synapse releases their Blu-ray edition.

That was followed up with my first time viewing of Bert I. Gordon's NECROMANCY which was a really atmospheric film set in an eery town that was full of devil worshippers working for Orson Welles. The film relies more on building tension and subtlety than relying on gore and effects and it really works. This ended up being a great witchcraft double feature with Suspiria.

Then came my first viewing of the Wizard Of Gore remake starring Crispin Glover in the role of Montag the Magician. Glover was fantastically weird and charismatic and every scene with him was better because of it. Unfortunately the movie isn't really centered around him but around a dull investigator character. Coupled with crappy effects which should be criminal when you're remaking a H.G. Lewis film (he's not called the Godfather of Gore for nothin') this one ends up being a stinker with a shining star hidden in it.

I decided to make this a double feature as well - a double feature of HG Lewis remakes with my 2nd viewing of 2001 MANIACS, a remake of Lewis' 2000 Maniacs. This film stars Robert Englund and is really an entertaining movie. Englund is great and you can tell he's having fun. It's a genuinely funny script with a high bodycount and lots of boob action. Not perfect by any means but as far as the H.G. Lewis remakes (or their sequels) are concerned it's the best.

I ended day 14 with a movie I'd only seen bits and pieces of on TV over the years and that happens to be yet another remake - John Carpenter's VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED. Well, Carpenter is one of my favorite directors and this was one of the last films of his that I needed to see. It's a clunker pure and simple. It feels like it was made for television and it seems like everybody including Carpenter was phoning it in. It's a watchable movie but I wouldn't go too far out of my way to watch it again.

Day 15 was equally as busy with another five movies and they started off with DEMON KEEPER. I'll sum up the good and the bad in this movie in two words each. The good: Demon design. The bad: The rest.

Next up was a movie I feel like was destined to be something I could take or leave - THE PURGE: ELECTION YEAR. Much like the first two films in the series the movie is just okay. There's interesting ideas that are used too sparingly and less interesting ideas put to the forefront. I think the idea of this series has always been better than the execution.

THE BOY was up next, the doll movie starring Maggie from The Walking Dead. Excuse me for not looking up her name but I just don't really care enough about this movie to take the time. I was surprised when I heard quite a bit of praise for this movie, at the very least calling it decent because the trailer looked like garbage and aside from the surprise twist at the end that I just couldn't give a shit about by the time it happened it was garbage. This one could barely keep my interest to finish.

And we've arrived at A HALLOWEEN PUPPY.... I've been both dreading and anticipating this moment since watching the movie. Let me tell you dear reader that this movie is a total fucking disaster. And it's also a magical experience. This is the result of a few friends watching movies together and not being able to decide what to watch so one joking puts this on via Netflix and the group watches in amazement at the complete train wreck in front of them. Three grown men watching a movie about Eric Roberts turning into a bulldog on Halloween because his girlfriend's son and his friend (not girlfriend because this fucking dork has no game) say a spell from the Necromicon - No I didn't misspell Necronomicon they mispronounced it in the fucking movie.

I could go on for days about this movie, about how it's called A HALLOWEEN PUPPY and the dog in the movie is obviously full grown, about how Eric Roberts brings donuts to the house in the morning and proceeds to lick the frosting off of each one, about how the movie has more establishing shots than any movie I've ever seen, about how mic packs are visible, about how there are scenes of the dog being walked by the mom but it's clearly and obviously not the mom doing the walking, about how the magic performed by Susan Olsen (Cindy Brady) is nothing more than a puff of color that floats in the air for a second and it's supposed to be this incredibly fascinating and terrifying thing, about how a couple of bullies steal Halloween decorations from the main kid and he tells his mom it's okay because he switched out the decorations for moldy newspaper despite us seeing the bullies rummage through the box for several minutes picking up the same three or four deocrations to make it look like the box was full with no sign of newspaper in site (you little fucking liar), about how Harry Manfredini did the score (yes, Harry Manfredini that did the score to Friday the 13th) and how there is a song that clearly sounds like a song from the Brady Bunch which is further confirmed with the appearance of Susan Olsen minutes later, about how David DeCoteau directed this, about how they use the most obnoxious blue filter for night shots, about how... fuck it. I could go on and on and on. This movie was an incredible viewing experience. It's a complete and utter piece of shit and it will be rated accordingly but don't mistake that I had a total blast watching it and riffing on it.

And finally was SWEET KILL from 1972. Luckily enough time had passed so that I could focus on another movie. This one stars Tab Hunter as a sexually frustrated gym teacher who can't get aroused for sex because of mommy issues. That is until he accidentally kills a woman while trying to have sex with her and realizes the dead body gets him turned on so now he's setting up chances to kill women during sex. It's okay. It's handled sloppily and isn't a very tight film. It was cool to see Angus Scrimm just a few years before he'd become the iconic Tall Man in Phantasm.

Today's Rundown
Suspiria - 10/10
Necromancy - 8/10
The Wizard Of Gore - 3.5/10
2001 Maniacs - 7/10
Village Of The Damned - 5/10
Demon Keeper 3/10
The Purge: Election Year - 5/10
The Boy - 3.5/10
A Halloween Puppy - 1/10
Sweet Kill - 5.5/10

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