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Ack
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by Ack Mon Oct 12, 2020 12:13 am

Back when FilmStruck was still around, I did a piece about Shock, mainly focusing on the exploitation careers of the cast and crew. It's a creepy and effective movie, and I adore it. When you do get around to it, Prfsnl, keep you eyes on the weird hand statue. Trust me.
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Michi
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by Michi Mon Oct 12, 2020 2:33 pm

prfsnl_gmr wrote::lol: :lol: :lol:

Awesome choice, Michi! My wife and I narrowed our movie choices down to two films tonight, Phenomena (1985) and...Shock (1979).


:lol:

The fact that you at least considered it means I'm putting that one in the "Win" column :lol:
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by dsheinem Tue Oct 13, 2020 8:30 am

Trying to get caught up here. I'll try to keep these spoiler-free...


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Vibes (1988) - I was more or less conned into watching this one by a friend who assured me it has "horror elements" and...yeah....I don't know. Yes, there's some murder and mayhem...and yes there's some supernatural elements around a psychic force and plenty of ensuing mystery...but the most horrific thing about this film is its wooden acting and uninspired directing. When I discovered that the budget for the Jeff Goldblum/Cyndi Lauper vehicle was $18 million, I can't imagine that the money went anywhere other than up the noses of cast and crew. Sometimes people get high and make beautiful art, and sometimes they get high and drop a steaming fart. This is the latter. But hey, Peter Falk has a major role in the film and Steve Buscemi has a cameo...and the score isn't half bad, so it has all that going for it...

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The Gorgon (1964) - Even when Hammer films are more campy than creepy, they are typically saved by the over-earnestness of the cast's delivery. Such is the case here - Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee steal the show, both of them attached to the titular central mystery of the movie. I don't know that I've seen another horror film with a Medusa-esque villain, so that was at least somewhat novel. The effects are bad (even by 1964 Hammer standards), the pacing is plodding, and the set and sound design all seem fairly cliche...but I still enjoyed the film nonetheless and am glad to have another "classic" Hammer film under my belt.

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Shivers (1975) - This was a fantastic Cronenberg body-horror film and a nice reminder that I need to dig into more of his catalog. The formalist directing is often quite remarkable (the low-light scenes in the Tudor's bedroom are really beautifully shot), the performances are all competent (with some excellent supporting roles), and the plot - which is certainly the biggest draw here - was really well executed. There are some very disturbing scenes early on in the film, some nice gross-out stuff towards the end, and lots of T&A throughout in a way that seems deliberate and reasonable (as opposed to strictly for audience titillation). If you ever wanted to think of an orgy the same way that you think about a group of zombies eating a victim, this one is for you.

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The House of the Devil (2009) - I've seen this one pop up on a lot of "great horror films of the last decade" lists over the years and I don't think I've seen a Ti West film before...and I know people like him...so I was optimistic. Despite some strong acting performances (especially Greta Gerwig!), this one didn't really come together for me. The setup works well to create mood, but too much of the middle of the movie is taken up with the main character wandering aimlessly through the titular house until she inevitably discovers...well, that the house is "of the devil". I was hoping for a tense final act, but I didn't think that the action was especially well shot or that the major dramatic beats landed with any real force. It is clear that West can put a film together well, but this particular story just seemed flat.

Month of Horror 2020
Let’s Scare Jessica to Death (1971)
The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Vibes (1988)
The Gorgon (1964)
Shivers (1975)
The House of the Devil (2009)
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by prfsnl_gmr Tue Oct 13, 2020 9:36 am

Nice reviews, DSH. House of the Devil is one of my favorite slow-burn horror films, but all of your criticisms are perfectly valid. Have you seen The Innkeepers? It is similar, but you might like it more.

Also, and assuming you haven’t seen it already, I think the horror/thriller film for you this year is The Shout (1978). While it’s not particularly scary, I thought it was great, and despite winning the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival, it’s somewhat forgotten now. It’s available for free on Prime Video, though, and I’m curious to see what you (or anyone else on the forums, for that matter) think about it.
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by PretentiousHipster Tue Oct 13, 2020 10:51 am

I really can't get into the game Blood. The animations of it, and the voice of the protagonist are fantastic, but the best part I can say of it is that it feels like a mod of Doom. The lack of healing items is super grating that I even struggle in the lowest difficulty. I also somehow killed myself by opening a meat locker door?
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by Ack Tue Oct 13, 2020 11:15 am

PretentiousHipster wrote:I really can't get into the game Blood. The animations of it, and the voice of the protagonist are fantastic, but the best part I can say of it is that it feels like a mod of Doom. The lack of healing items is super grating that I even struggle in the lowest difficulty. I also somehow killed myself by opening a meat locker door?

Blood is a very masochistic game. Many of the weapons are self-harming splash damage types or have a delay during which you can get hurt, and there are several instant death enemies and puzzles in the game. Plus, many enemies have hitscan weapons, so you're going to be taking damage pretty much constantly. Expect to be hurt, and spend a lot of time getting good at throwing your explosive weapons and learning what weapons are best saved for what enemies.

It is better than Blood II though. That game is crap.
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by PretentiousHipster Tue Oct 13, 2020 9:15 pm

Ravenous has one of the strangest tones I've seen with a horror film. The super lighthearted music mixed with gore actually made it more effective by contrast. I had a blast seeing it.
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Michi
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by Michi Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:47 pm

And my third movie for my Halloween theme of "Movies I think prfsnl_gmr will like" is:

Poor Pretty Eddie

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Why did I think prfsnl_gmr would like it? It's filled with a bunch of award winning actors and the one description I read said it was 'arty' and reminded them of Americanized version of a giallo. Cool. Plus it described the main baddie as a crazed Elvis Impersonator. Bonus.

Now that I've watched it, do I still think prfsnl_gmr will like it? I'm...not so sure. I don't know what that person was smoking, but this be an exploitation flick. This actually reminds me of some of the stuff Ack or Noise like to watch. I guess there are some 'arty' moments, but it's also a grind house film, so one shouldn't expect to much. There is quite a bit of social commentary in here, and at least the acting is good, and the climax is quite well choreographed. Plus it's another one of those films where the backstory is absolutely fascinating (It was shot near Atlanta, so maybe Ack has some interesting info on it), so it's not a total wash.

But I shall make a mental note to do a smidge more research in the rest of my picks for the month :oops: :lol:
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by prfsnl_gmr Wed Oct 14, 2020 11:24 pm

Good review, Michi, but...nope. Nope...Nope. Nope. Nope. Double-nope. I’ll take a hard pass on that one! :lol:

That said, I did watch something thematically similar this evening...Squirm (1976). In it, an electrical storm topples some power lines in rural Georgia, electrifying the ground and causing the bloodworms in it to develop a taste for human flesh. They then proceed to feast on a bunch of cruel, imbecilic, backwoods rednecks, which I found immensely satisfying. The creature effects are consistently good, and the the acting is consistently horrible. (I have no idea what some of the actors were going for with their accents, and the woman playing the leads’ younger sister sounds like she’s from East Boston, not the Georgia woods.) It is a lot of fun, and it has one of the most kick-ass movie posters of all time:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squirm#/m ... poster.jpg

I enjoyed it, and more importantly, I think Michi would enjoy it and should review it on her website! (It’s available on Prime Video.)

.....

My numbers are pretty good this year, but they’d be better if, on three occasions, I had not watched a movie I thought was a horror movie but is not, in fact, a horror movie. Those three movies are:

The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932) - It stars Boris Karloff under a lot of make up, and it’s really, really problematic. It is a pretty good adventure film, and it may have been a horror film back when people were even more racist than they are today. It is not a horror film by any contemporary measure, however.

Scanners (1981) - Its directed by David Cronenberg, and it’s pretty gory at times. It also shows up on a lot of best horror movie lists. It’s really more of a science-fiction film, however, and nothing about it is scary in any way.

The Bloodstained Butterfly (1971) - My wife and I watched this bloodless Giallo movie over our version of Spaghetti allo Scoglio (http://ruthreichl.com/2010/11/my-favori ... asta.html/). Unlike most Giallo movies, it actually has a remarkably strong script, and it is a really solid mystery/police procedural with a shocking ending. We enjoyed it quite a bit, but despite it’s “how-is-this-not-a-horror-movie?” title, it 100% NOT a horror movie.

.....

prfsnl_gmr’s Halloween Movie List 2020 - Outbreak Edition
Slither (2006) - :)
The Creeping Flesh (1973) - :|
Man-Made Monster (1941) - :|
Doctor X (1932) - :)
Audition (1999) - :|
The Vanishing (1988) - :D
The Return of Doctor X (1939) - :(
REC (2007) - :)
The Devil Doll (1936) - :D
Captive Wild Woman (1943) - :(
The Shout (1978) - :D
Phenomena (1985) - :D
Squirm (1976) - :)
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Michi
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 11: The Pandemic Edition

by Michi Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:09 am

prfsnl_gmr wrote:Good review, Michi, but...nope. Nope...Nope. Nope. Nope. Double-nope. I’ll take a hard pass on that one! :lol:

:lol: Yeah, I didn't get too far in before I went "Hmmm...this not be what I thought it was." But I was also far enough in to already be invested, so...bummer. Which isn't to say it's bad, per say. It's just way off the mark to what you (or I) would look for. Oopsie.

But hey, lesson learned. When the movie summary is only one sentence long, maybe read more than one review :lol:

On the bright side of this abject failure, I've now added The Shout and Squirm to my watchlist :wink:
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