Tuesday, 1 November 2016
The Films I watched to celebrate Halloween 2016
So I said I would most likly do a post talking about what I watched during my Halloween celebrations, Well I started off by watching Maniac Cop. Now Maniac Cop might not be the most famous horror film but I do remember seeing it on several Video Rental store shelves, I remember there even being display stands featuring the main character. Apparently it only had a limited Cinema release but it made enough money on the rental scene to gain it two sequels. Although it never gained the kind of level of fame that the likes of NightMare on Elm Street or Friday the 13th did I think it really has a lot going for it and I would recomend it to anyone looking for a decent horror film to watch after all it stars both Tom Atkins and Bruce Campbell both of which always give good solid horror movie performances and both of them are in fine form here, so if you like either or both of these actors and like the Jason Style unstopable slasher villian kind of thing then you simply need to see this film.
I love having the opportunity to talk about Video Rental shops because they played a very big part in my childhood particularly when it comes to horror movies. There used to be a section in my local rental store where there was an entire rack of horror tapes all of them being available to rent for the night for 50pence, a good weekend would consist of going to this rack and flicking through all of the film cases there looking for 3 or 4 films which took my fancy. Now you have to realise that when I was younger there was no internet so all you knew about films was a combination of what was written or shown on the case and sometimes a little word of mouth. You might rent 4 films and 3 of them could turn out to be real garbage but if you found a good one, one which was worth telling your friends about then you would be a legend when they all rented it, I have always been seen as a sort of authority figure on horror and I guess that started with my weekend rental habbits. Halloween was a chance to invite a small group of friends around and to rent the few films you had found that you throught were real gems and to show them off, to show them how good your taste in films was.
Next I put a film in my disc drive called Let the Right one in, I am afraid to say I then learned that this was a swedish film with subtitles and well I really didnt fancy reading, so I turrned it off and replaced it with a film called The Last Sign. I grabbed this film when a local charity shop was having a half price sale, they had gotten too many DVD's and so they selling them for 50pence instead of the regular £1 they usually ask for, so I basically grabbed a whole pile of horror type films knowing that A) I would get round to them sooner or latter and B) it was for a good cause. I also admit I was attracted to the idea of grabbing random horror to watch for 50pence a film even though some could argue with NetFlix and NowTv and such I should just subscribe to one of those and have lots and lots of films available for me to watch for a flat rate, but there is something so cool about actually having physical media, seeing the cases after all arnt film cases a form of art in there own right? So when I picked up this film the first thing I noticed was the name Tim Roth on the case. For those not in the know Tim Roth is an actor who I rate very highly, a lot of people will know him as Mr Orange from Reseviour Dogs (Marvel fans might recognise him as the guy who goes on to become the ambomination in the Edward Norton Incredable Hulk fiilm) The thing is though I see his name and it is litterally enough for me to give a film a shot, the case also mentioned Andie MacDowell a woman who at one point seemed to be in absolutly everything and who has been decent in a fair few things. So what did I think of it? Well it was an over cliched ghost story, something which could have easily been cut down into a short, it didnt have enough Tim Roth, it was far to slow going, the things which happend which were supposed to be twists could be seen coming a million miles away and there was just so much ''hello, cherio, hows your day going'' stuff that it seemed like watching some kind of soap opera, I would say that it was 50pence wasted but with the money going to charity thats not really fair to say, so I guess I will just say it was 50pence which didnt benefit me. It does kind of circle around to a decent ending but there is far to much filler it would have been much better having 75% of its filler removed and replacing it with 25% more depth and being made into an episode of something like Tales from the Darkside or the Twilight zone.
Next I went on to put on Humanoids from the Deep which is a Roger Corman production. Yes its made by one of the indie film masters known for being able to make movies quick and cheap. The movie is summed up by the blurb on the box saying ''Scientific experiments backfire and produce horrific mutations: half man, half fish, which terrorize a small fishing village by killing the men and raping the women.''reading this and having even the slightest idea of who Corman is you should know the kind of thing your in for. I can best explain this film as being a sort of part Jaws, part creature from the black lagoon,exploitation style B movie. What can I say about this film well it looks like it was recorded on very low quality film stock my DVD looks worse in quality than some VHS tapes I used to own but this doesnt stop me considering it to be a great bit of film making. It is one of those films where there is not one actor I can name in it yet you sit there and go oh its that guy thats in that other thing, oh look its him that yeah that guy, everyone does a reasonable job acting and the monster effects are all very good considering its budget. I strongly strongly recomend that if you havent given this movie a watch before that you get a hold of it and give it a chance, sure its not a genre defining Psycho, Jaws or Silence of the lambs but its a good chunk of B movie horror that shouldnt be missed.
From here I decided to do a double bill of Poltogeist followed by the Texas Chainsaw massacre (the original versions of both). Now I am a huge fan of Poltogeist and I wanted to show it to my daughter as she had seen a lot of modern ghost type films and I wanted to show her a film which I think really paved the way for a lot of these types of movies. I ended things by watching the Conjuring an actually fairly modern film I do respect, in fact I see it as a sort of modern poltogeist but good unlike the actual remake.... I could go into more detail about these films but I figure I have talked enough for one post and if I say much more then this will get to long. Whatever you all did I hope you all had a good Halloween.