Tag Archives: 30DayHorrorMovie

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 15 & 16 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

(Late posting today. Played a little bit of frisbee last night and today. My body thinks eating and sleeping are really the only two options. And I’m not an advanced-poster-type blogger…)

Day 15 – Your favorite horror film involving serial killers

Confession time: My favorite film about a serial killer is not Se7en (1995). It’s a different David Fincher movie: Zodiac (2007). The rub here is that if Se7en stretches the definition of “horror film,” Zodiac certainly does. But Se7en is a very close second. Fincher at his best creates a strong sense of place, which is something that resonates with me. Bonus points for a screenplay chocked full of literary references and a detective who hits the library for information.

Day 16 – Your favorite childhood themed horror film

I had an internal war about whereΒ Let the Right One In (2008) was going to go on this list. It was a strong contender for favorite vampire movie or favorite foreign film, but the young actors in this film are *so* good. The US remake is good too (Let Me In (2010)), but the original is just a more real feeling and a little more brutal. Oh, and the book’s good too.

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 13 & 14 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 13 – Your favorite horror comedy

There are a certain group of horror comedies of the late 80s and early 90s that I really love. Maybe it was because I was a high-schooler at that time and was more likely to instigate seeing these movies rather than going along with what my family wanted to see. It was also the heyday of my reading Fangoria. Whatever the case, these are a bunch of movie I love, for better or worse. I hate spiders. I do have low-level arachnophobia. I went to see Arachnophobia (1990) in the theater. I mean, Julian Sands being British and intellectual and John Goodman being…John Goodman. How was I not going to go see this movie?Β  It’s cheesy, but takes itself seriously, which is always an attribute I value.

Day 14 – Your favorite zombie film

From an old favorite to a new one. After I tracked down Pontypool (2008), I watched it twice in row. As I said on day one, I don’t really like zombie flicks. (Aside from, well, 28 Days Later and Shaun of the Dead…) Pontypool‘s twist on the genre is the manner of infection: language. How exactly? We don’t know and care about as much as how space radiation caused the hungry corpses in Night of the Living Dead. But mostly, I like this movie because, while it has a few shocks based on gore, it’s a movie of sound, of listening to horror. We experience this as an audience in the same way the characters do.

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 11 & 12 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 11 – Your favorite science fiction horror film

I’m not a super fan of Lovecraftian cosmic horror, but if there is any place in which it’s especially appropriate, it’s the actual cosmos. Space is scary. Let’s leave out what things we might share the universe with. Instead, there is the threat of catastrophe, the internal demons a person might bring, and unimaginable forces that might twist perception. Event Horizon (1997) perfectly embodies this (but see also Danny Boyle’s Sunshine (2007) and the quite a few Doctor Who episodes).Β  Solid cast and setting only bested by Alien3.

Day 12 – Your favorite horror film involving the occult

The Wicker Man (1973) is another movie whose reputation far preceded it and another movie I watched the first time via pretty crappy early internet streaming. Unlike The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, I was immediately impressed with The Wicker Man. I consider myself a fairly sophisticated movie-watcher, but like Sergeant Howie, I had no idea what turn the story was taking other than the islanders were definitely up to something. I can’t think of too many movies that provide such a feeling of suffocating otherness. (Side note: this might be the only film on my list with Christopher Lee!)

 

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 9 & 10 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 09 – Your favorite exploitation/grindhouse type film

Exploitation/grindhouse isn’t really my thing. I’m not easily shocked and that might be because my original interest in horror films was due to my interest in movie-making and special effects. Before I really got into watching horror movies, I read a lot of Fangoria magazines. Knowing how the blood and gore are made has lessened the impact for me, and that’s okay. The first time I watched The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) was on my laptop during the early days of internet streaming. It was probably an illegal YouTube upload. After hearing about the movie for years, I wasn’t impressed. But then, a few days later, I was out jogging in my neighborhood, as I often do, and someone, probably intending to trim the palm trees in their backyard, fired up a chain saw… The film had gotten under my skin.

Day 10 – Your favorite psychological horror film

Yes, yes, I know. The Vanishing (1993) is a remake of a Dutch film with the same name and is generally considered better. But I like this one. I have a soft spot for Jeff Bridges, even creepy Jeff Bridges. I haven’t watched it in a few years, but I think it gets a bad rap due to the comparison. (I didn’t realize that it was the same director. Huh.) And honestly, I did not see the ending coming. It’s also a little funny that Sandra Bullock is a below the title credit.

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 7 & 8 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 07 – Your favorite supernatural horror film

An interesting side-effect to doing this challenge is watching trailers from different eras. How movies have been marketed over time is much more different than the movies themselves. The trailer for The Haunting (1963) makes it look kind of schlocky. Based on Shirley Jackson’s novel The Haunting of Hill House, the story may be many things, but it’s certainly not schlocky. Director Robert Wise’s career included not only The Sound of Music, but The Day the Earth Stood Still; West Side Story and also Star Trek: The Motion Picture. He could work with effects and big sets, but his film-making chops shine in this character-driven haunted house picture.

Day 08 – Your favorite anthology

Is there any other genre that does anthology movies as often and as well as horror? I don’t know. Trick ‘r Treat (2007) is especially good. The stories are well interwoven, each offering twists and chills. A hallmark of horror anthologies is that often the “bad guys” get their due, and we’re not let down here. Plus, Sam, the pajama-and-sack clad ghouly that serves as our connecting thread among the stories, is both cute and unnerving. Perfect character design. (I picked this movie last week when planning and noticed today that Castle Macabre and Unleash the Flying Monkeys both picked it too! I hadn’t read their posts at the time of this writing.)

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 5 & 6 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 05 – Your favorite monster movie

What’s the most dangerous monster of all? Man, of course. But a close second is every other chitinous, tentacled, or behemoth-sized creature that comes out of The Mist (2007). I think the best Stephen King stories are the shorter, simpler ones. The core of The Mist is several dozen people, trapped in a store, with monsters outside. We don’t need a huge explanation about how they got there. I wish the black and white cut of this movie was making the theatrical rounds; they’d easily sell me a ticket.

Day 06 – Your favorite vampire movie

Near Dark (1987) came out the same year as another of my favorite vampire movies, The Lost Boys. While also featuring an appealing young lead in Adrian Pasdar, it is the grittier dark cousin and it’s the differences that make me like it more. Instead of the crowded boardwalks of Santa Clara, it’s set in the desolate southwest. Instead of the Coreys, the rest of the cast is filled out by veterans of James Cameron’s Aliens (Bill Paxton, Jenette Goldstein, and Lance Henricksen). It’s one of Kathryn Bigelow’s first films. She would become one of my favorite directors as well as an Oscar winner.

πŸ“½ 30-Day Horror Movie Challenge, Days 3 & 4 πŸŽƒ

What’s this all about? See the first post.

Day 03 – Your favorite slasher

I know, I know… But Halloween (1978) is another horror film that is so iconic that it spawned an entire sub-genre and a franchise that is still going strong 40 years later. Like Night of the Living Dead, John Carpenter did a lot with a little. I’ve also always been impressed by Carpenter’s movie scores. While not sweeping or melodic, they are the perfect accompaniment to his films.

Day 04 – Your favorite werewolf film

American Werewolf in London (1981) is a great film. Rick Baker’s practical special effects are still a marvel. But my pick for favorite werewolf flick is a sentimental one. The action sequences in Wolf (1994) are…not good, but there are things I find endearing. The cast is great: Jack Nicholson only becomes more Jack Nicholson as the wolf takes over, James Spader is at his skeevy best, I’ll watch Michelle Pfeiffer in anything, and the supporting cast is full of familiar faces. But mostly I think I like Wolf because of its horrific setting…the publishing industry. πŸ˜‰ (Wolf is available on Sony Crackle.)