Monday, September 19, 2011

Halloween Horror Recommendation Request

I've caught myself wearing a hooded sweatshirt nearly every day over the past week. This means that fall is quickly approaching, and with it, the extended Halloween holiday. While I'm not a big fan of Halloween parties or hitting the town in costume, I do enjoy putting a little effort into decorating the household and staying up late watching scary movies.

In fact, I enjoy horror films so much that I plan on watching a bunch of them over the next forty day or so and presenting my take on them here on this blog.

I always overplan for this annual event, creating lists of film I couldn't possibly finish watching in a year, let alone a month. This year, I'm planning small, but hoping to broaden my horizons.
First, a lite of the movies I'll definitely be watching between now and Halloween:
1. The Funhouse - I saw this a long time ago on an independent Milwaukee TV station that, back then, was called "Super 18." They would usually play one horror film (heavily edited, I'm guessing) each night of the week prior to Halloween. I don't remember much of it, but I recently acquired the DVD, so I'm ready to go.
2. Halloween 3: Season of the Witch - I realize that this is the one film that doesn't fit in with the rest of the series. John Carpenter had originally planned his Halloween sequels to take the form of an anthology, a new story with new characters each October 31st. Audiences hated this idea, and he abandoned it by the time he got to Halloween 4. I'm curious to see how this holds up as a stand-alone, sans Michael Myers.
3. Friday the 13th - For some reason, I haven't owned any of the DVDs until now. This might be the centerpiece of my viewing season.
4. Trapped Ashes - Probably the most little-known film on my list, this showed up in a bulk lot of DVD's I purchased. This appears to be an anthology film, like Creepshow, with five short horror stories held together with a framework story. One of the five directors is Joe Dante, so my hopes are high.
5. Terror Firmer - This looks like it will be more comedy than horror, but it makes the list. Troma always delivers.
6. ...speaking of Troma, Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead - When it came out, it was Troma's first new original film in a long time, and it even took what felt like forever before it hit DVD after making the art house/midnight circuit. Great music, satisfying gore, gratuitous nudity, and a lead character named Arby. Can't wait to re-watch this one.

To expand my list, I'm enlisting your help. In the comments, leave a suggestion or two (or three, or four) regarding a horror film I should try. My goal will be to purchase and view between three and five of your suggestions. In a near future post, I'll let you know which suggestions I'll be taking you up on, and hopefully, some fun reviews will follow. (Oh, and don't bother telling me if something is on Netflix. I am a huge proponent of the continuing existence of physical media, and I will avoid any streaming service as long as that is an option.)

I'd also like to test the waters a bit to see what, if any reaction this idea would have. I'd like to host a live blogging of a televised horror movie. I'm sure there will be a lot to choose from in late October, and I think it would be fun to have anyone who wants to jump in on a rollicking snarky comment thread. Let me know if this interests you.


(...Joe) said...

If you're into the newer horror stuff, check out "Inside" and "Martyrs". They're both French films (coincidence, I don't only watch French stuff or whatever) so you have to deal with some subtitles, but with Martyrs especially, there's not alot of dialog so it's not too bad. These are two of my favorites, I might whip one out tonight!

Mad Guru said...

I'm not into horror movies in the least. But your comment about the heavily edited TV film made me think back to my childhood and Terror Train. Stars Jamie Lee Curtis. I was sleeping over at a friend's house and they aired this late at night but still edited it down enough that they fit it into a half hour time slot including commercials. The movie made zero sense as a result.

Ryan G said...

"Excuse me while I whip this out."

How about Killer Klowns From Outer Space, another one of those campy/cheesy '80s horror movies that's comparable in style (though Klowns is more campy) and quality to Funhouse. Elizabeth Berridge, the lead girl in Funhouse, went on to play Mozart's wife in Amadeus. That's a pretty big jump.

And I just watched Night of the Comet a few weeks ago, more sci-fi than horror but it'll work.

Morgan said...

After a summer spent watching horror movies, I have officially given them up. I am way to jumpy to punish myself by sitting through anymore of them. I believe the last one I saw was 28 Weeks Later (sequel to 28 Days Later and will be followed by 28 Months Later in 2013) and it was the only one I have ever seen in the theater. I think it was about a disease taking over the population turning everyone into flesh-eating zombies.

But speaking of Klowns, what about It? I saw part of it (or It) on TV and if I ever do watch another one again, I may try that one simply because it's older so it might not be too frightening. Oh wait, you like being frightened. In that case, my rambling probably just wasted your time.

SpastikMooss said...

Toolbox Murders. Mostly psychological after the first 18-20 slasher minutes. Weird.

Also Devils Rejects, The Shining, Rosemary's Baby, Gothika, The Ring, Tokyo Gore Police, Evil Dead, Suspiria. If you haven't seen any of those.

Colbey said...

I was just going to suggest Toolox Murders. Wow, SpastikMooss...I like your taste in movies!

I 2nd Killer Klowns from Outer Space. Love it. It doesn't take itself too seriously.

Burning Desire is pretty good. Early Tom Savini special effects. Jason Alexander of Seinfeld fame has a fairly large role. Decent 80's slasher flick no one has heard of.

The original 80's My Bloody Valentine is far superior to the modern remake. Track down the uncut original.

dayf said...

Tod Browning's Freaks. I watch this film every Halloween like most people watch It's a Wonderful Life on Christmas. One of us... One of us...

Equinox - 1970 horror flick with an Evil-Dead like plot, stop motion monsters and Herb from WKRP in Cincinnatti. Choice Cheese.

Second SpastikMooss on Suspiria. There are no words for this film. Commander Troi gets whacked too.

Betty White is on TV right now as I type, so watch Lake Placid in her honor.

This is a personal favorite, but Manos, The Hands of Fate is just plain wonderful. I don't even know where you'd get the non-MST3k version but there's a couple of scenes in there that got cut from the MST3K version. I would give my left nut for the OST from that film. Hell, just for an uncut version of Torgo's theme.

dayf said...

Wait, scratch that... Marina Sirtis wasn't in Suspiria... She was in something else I watched in college at about the same time we watched Suspiria. College messes your mind up. Watch Suspiria, than watch an episode of Next Gen.

SpastikMooss said...

Haha thanks Colbey! And I second Lake Placid as well - so goofy and fun. My brother's favorite horror movie of all time and a classic of the giant animal eats a lot of people genre.

Collective Troll said...

Dang, I was a little surprised to see a Goya painting on the blogroll, very cool Senor Thorzul, very cool...
To throw my fave movie into the suggestion bin - High Tension. For real, scary as fuck and very well done. Make sure you get an English language version, even though its still scary and suspenseful without the words - hell, they don't really talk much, it doesn't matter. Seriously though, I cant recommend High Tension enough... The wifey and i picked it up (on VHS!!!!) at blockbuster a few years back. it was in the 5 for ten bucks bin and we had some time to kill and we picked 5 random movies that we had never heard of. The other 4 sucked, but High Tension was freaking amazing! Happy Halloween!

dayf said...

One more to make up for my Suspiria brainfart.

Tony Brown said...

Wow, Suspiria followed by Star Trek TNG does sound pretty good.