Friday, August 28, 2009
Culminating, thus far, in an embarassment of riches: today opens Rob Zombie's Halloween 2 and The Final Destination.
Two horror giants (i.e. "studio backed") face off. Who will win this weekend?
There are lovers and haters of both series but let's do a quick Pro and Con tally to see where your horror dollar could go...
THE FINAL DESTINATION:
As the deaths are more about Rube Goldberg extravaganzas rather than hulking men with implements of destruction, I can't think of a better horror franchise that would benefit from Real D 3-D technology.
This is a film where you'll really be missing something if you don't catch it in the theater.
Most importantly: the films are fun. Teens trying to beat death. It appeals to boys and girls, men and women.
Could just be a silly gimmick to get butts in seats. Are there REALLY any new over-the-top ways to kill off teens today? When does it become a parody of itself the way the Saw movies have been leaning ever closer to?
Lastly: Adding the world "The" in the title makes me sound like an old man when said aloud.
"Do you want to go see THE Final Destination? How about listening to THE Led Zeppelin and eating THE Licorice Whips?"
Zombie says (and the media machine would have you believe) that he has free reign on this one.
Crippled by having to tell the origin story in remake form for the 1st, this film allows him to do whatever he wants with the Myers mythology.
Many of his fans do a side by side with House of 1000 Corpses and The Devils Rejects under the same excuses. But many consider Rejects to be the superior film because of these reasons.
Relieving Zombie of rules could liberate the director and allow this stale series to be elevated to something noteworthy.
Early screenshots and set reports say Michael Myers is a homeless hobo for a time, sporting a Grizzly Adams-like beard. Umm... what now?
The horror community is still stinging from turning the remake of one of their beloved series into a screaming hillbilly match and overexplanations that remove the mystery and fear from a beloved um, serial killer. Rob has a lot of work to do to win back these folks. The torches are already lit.
So there it is. Take your pick. Or wait for the reviews and/or box-office returns of Monday do the deciding for you.
If you DO go to something, let me know which and why in the comments below.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
As is evidenced by my posts HERE and HERE, fans of games such as Silent Hill and Left 4 Dead are showing that horror games aren't just for your next-gen system anymore.
With news of an impending Bioshock movie on the horizon, now's a good a time as any to go dressed as one of the many characters from this dark art-deco thriller.
Have kids? Even better.
Get them in in on the action by making the little one a "Little Sister" to go with your "Big Daddy" costume.
They don't have to know what it is. Kids just love creepin' other people out.
Check out this Flickr set to see what I'm talking about HERE.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
See, here's the thing... this was supposed to be a big long post about all the Halloween-related stuff I'd seen at the 2009 San Diego Comic Con.
And then I was only able to attend on Saturday.
And then... well... frankly, Comic Con is so big now with so many people I was only able to see a fraction of what was there.
SO I give you this piddly Halloween Addict roundup instead of "all that I've seen."
As has been recounted on many a blog and website, Mike Dougherty did another well-received screening of Trick 'r Treat and the WB marketing machine began whirling up with Trick 'r Treat sharing the other side of a swag bag with Watchmen.
Good to see them doing some sort of push for this DVD that I canNOT wait for!
Rob Zombie's Halloween 2 was out there too, with some freebie plastic bags and those billboard trucks driving around featuring the violent Myers-centric poster artwork. I'm just glad we don't get "floating faces" on another poster.
The Living Dead Dolls were on display with some Halloween-themed (witches, skeletons and jack o' lanterns) dolls, Licensed Property (like Billy Puppet Saw, Halloween Remake Michael Myers) dolls and new (to me, at least) action-figure-sized dolls.
One of the reasons I've always appreciated the Living Dead Dolls from afar is that I know I would NOT have the room to store and display the larger dolls. Seeing these scaled-down ones make me want to grab a few for my Halloween decorating (both home and office) this year.
What else was there?
I scored a True Blood heart-shaped tin of cinnamon candies.
Annnnd well, see? That's all I've got.
Sure there was ALLLL kinds of other horror stuff going on... if you had gone on Thursday or Friday.
And, to be truthful, it's all been reported on by everybody: New Nightmare on Elm Street footage and poster... True Blood panel that people camped out for... Saw cast signing stuff... etc.... etc.
It was a crazy day. And on Saturdays there are just TOO darn many people to be able to get into anything or physically get anywhere.
In the words of Murtaugh "I'm gettin' too old for this shi--..."
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Like it or hate it, it was a landmark film that introduced the world to viral marketing; proved how strong word-of-mouth can work for a film; and stole the "Most Profitable Independent Film Ever Made" crown from a little film called Halloween.
It's shaky camera style has become commonplace in television (24, The Office) and mainstream film (Cloverfield, Rec).
It's still ranked as one of my favorite horror films of all time. But I was one of the lucky ones who discovered the movie under the most ideal conditions. You can read all about it HERE.
So it would be a crime to myself and HalloweenAddict.com to not at least mention the 10 year mark. Though there are no 10th Anniversary DVD/Blu-Ray releases, there has been a bit of a media blitz of interviews gracing the wide wide world o' webs.
- Check out woodsmovie.com which seems to be the "official" 10 Year Anniversary website with Behind the scenes info, creator journals, cast and crew info and more.
- The Egyptian Theater in Hollywood held a 10th Anniversary screening with cast and crew (as mentioned on the wonderful CreepyLA.com) and though you may have missed it, thanks to DreadCentral.com, you can watch the Q&A with creators, crew and stars right HERE.
- Rotten Tomatoes has a Behind-the-Scenes Making-Of short featuring audition footage, interviews, making stick men and more. Check that out HERE.
Friday, August 21, 2009
Though there are some true Halloween sneakers complete in black, white and orange and adorned with bats, skeletons and the like... many more of the shoes featured are Halloween-inspired like the Green Monsters pictured.
Though I can't blame his picking of the #1 choice (glow-in-the-dark things ARE awesome after all) I can't quite agree with it. I would grant the #1 to the Frankenstein models.
Now if I could only pull off wearing them in public...
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Take a guess.
You'd be decorating your PT Cruiser at the Issaquah Drive-In!
This photo, from HERE, has pics of some of the more creatively decorated vehicles at the PT Cruiser Pumpkin Bash.
It's pretty self explanatory, but I did some research anyway and found this flyer HERE.
There are awards for "Best Carved Pumpkin," "Best Costume" and --what relates to this post-- "Best 'Trunk' Halloween Theme." Can't tell if it's something that extended beyond 2006, or if this was the PT Cruiser Halloween Decorating heyday.
I gotta tell ya, I thought I'd seen it all as a Halloween Addict.
But, hey, if you can have a Halloween Cubicle Decorating contest, why not a PT Cruiser Trunk Decorating contest, right?
I say they bring it back in '09 with Prius Decorating contest. Boom. Halloween decorating and eco-friendly.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
And this guy isn't just putting up a Beistle skeleton and calling it a day. According to the article from the Beacon Journal HERE:
Yep. Sounds like a Halloween Addict.
Ghosts, skulls, ghouls, spiders, rats, zombies, black roses and other devilish items intermingled with strings of orange, purple and black lights, 62 headstones and 13 large inflatables.
The headless horseman galloped toward the road, and a horse-drawn hearse with a skeleton inside marched across the yard while a ghoul played an organ in the background.
Some of the items have flashing lights, move or make sounds — including a large talking mannequin of Lurch from the Addams Family TV show.
As far as his mother-in-law goes, she's interviewed in the article proving it wasn't just an excuse to decorate early.
Seeeeeeeee? Halloween brings families together!
''This is all for her,'' he said.
[Clair] Turner watched from the garage with delight Monday afternoon as Hohne and his wife secured parts of the display.
''He's a wonderful son-in-law. It's beautiful. I was crying,'' Turner said.
I've been saying that for YEARS.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Pros: Looks pretty good for a store-bought costume. With some tweaks and the right weapon you'll definitely get some props.
Cons: Hope you have deep pockets because this baby will set you back $630.
Also: The only size available is a Male chest size of 42-44. So if you're a slim guy, time to start doing push-ups. Lots and lots of push-ups.
Friday, August 14, 2009
I believe they had the same site and contest up last year, but still... it's fun.
You can see M&M's painted like skeletons... play "spooky" versions of games (I played "War" with a Skittles-eating skeleton)... and explore a Victorian haunted mansion featuring a "Hallway of Doom" and a "Starburst Conservatory."
Poke around, there's a bunch of interactive clicky fun for all ages.
It's stuff like this that really starts to get me in the Fall-Halloween mood!
Click HERE at www.halloweenmillion.com
A combination of old and new news!
First, the old news: The box art for the DVD/Blu-Ray release of Mike Dougherty's Trick r Treat was released.
Back on July 15th, Shocktillyoudrop.com shows you one of the covers HERE and Aintitcool.com shows you the hidden cover HERE.
Per my post HERE, it's not the cover I wished for... I really wanted them to use the spooky-yet-simple teaser poster (see left)... but I understand from a marketing point of view that they want to move copies of this shelved movie and the only way to interest the general public is to put stars names and faces on the box.
I understand it... but I don't like it.
I also wish they didn't give away Sam's face on the hidden cover. Not that it's any big spoiler... but do you see a well-lit picture of the Alien on the box art for Alien? No.
But who am I to complain when we FINALLY have confirmation of a STREET DATE! Thanks again to Shocktillyoudrop.com, they've confirmed the long-awaited official release date of Trick 'r Treat on TUESDAY, OCTOBER 6TH!
Well there it is.
I don't know what else to say. Search this site and you'll fine me praising this film.
UPDATE: Also confirmed this through Mike Dougherty's Twitter account and the Trick 'r Treat Twitter feed. October 6th! Woo hoo!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
But wait, there's more...
Frank Darabont (yes, THAT Frank Darabont) will be writing, directing AND Executive Producing the series.
THIS... this is great news.
As someone who's read the first few books of this series, I can say that this is a perfect fit all-around.
As a fan of Mad Men (yes, it's true... I actually watch non-horror stuff too...) I believe AMC to be a network that appreciates good writing and great character development... of which The Walking Dead has both.
AMC also gets kudos for being one of the few channels that regularly schedules Halloween-themed programming every year. Their FearFest horror movie line-up, though not always filled with winners, is consistent and "shows effort"-- as my elementary school report card used to say.
And on top of that, you've got Frank Darabont who has dipped his toe in the horror genre on more than one occasion. The Mist, Tales from the Crypt episodes, The Fly 2, The Blob remake and A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 all give this guy horror street cred. Then throw in his ability to make you care about characters in such human dramas as The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile and this is really adding up to the show to watch when it hits the air.
For those who don't know, if I had to summarize The Walking Dead in a sentence it would be "A human drama set in a world where the dead have risen."
Some may be turned off by this description, but I'm telling you: if you like zombies and you haven't read this series yet... get on board.
Here, I'll make it easy on you: Links are below to the trade paperbacks.
Buy. Read. Enjoy.
Thank me later.
Saturday, August 8, 2009
So imagine my surprise in finding out HERE that the 40th anniversary of the crime is TODAY.
Why am I writing about this?
Well because as a horror movie watcher, I enjoyed Bryan Bertino's The Strangers from last year and as I mentioned in THIS post, I believe it's a good film that I believe to be the beginning of the pendulum swing away from the super-gory "torture porn"-type films that have been de rigueur for the past few years.
What's interesting to note is that if you listen to the Creative Screenwriting Magazine Podcast, there's an interview with Bryan where he reveals that the "Based on a true story." tagline the film has is due to the fact that he (and therefore the script) was influenced by the Manson murders.
It's a fascinating listen where he talks about reading the Helter Skelter crime book and how the film evolved from that and other influences. The Director is very modest and down-to-earth in his interview and I consider it a great companion commentary to the film.
Download and listen to an MP3 from HERE.
You can also check out (using the Amazon links below) the 70s Helter Skelter made-for-TV film or any of the other docs and films based on this famous case. In my opinion the truth will always be scarier than any fiction, and I do sleep a little bit better knowing that Charlie is still behind bars and has recently been declined parole... again.
Carving a swastika into your own forehead doesn't go over well with parole board.
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Well thanks to the Google "Is there anything we CAN'T do?" News Article Search Engine, you can read up on it.
From the creator himself in a St. Peterburg Times fluff article from Oct 23, 1966:
"It all came about," Shulz recalls, "when I was trying to write a sequence for the strip involving Linus' confusion between Halloween and Christmas...The article is an interesting read today as even in 1966 "It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown" was being talked about as a "legendary" television special. Now 43 years later, I still enjoy watching it every year.
"... Linus is a youngster to whom everything must have significance; nothing is unimportant. Christmas is a big holiday and it has Santa Claus as one of its symbols. Halloween is also a special kind of day so it ought to have some sort of Santa Claus, too. That's what bothered Linus. And it bothered me. So, between us, we came up with The Great Pumpkin."
Read the whole article HERE.
If you're a time traveler and want to catch it, it will be "telecast" at 8:30pm on Channel 13 in St. Petersburg, FL on Oct 23, 1966.
Set your time circuits and be sure to have enough road to get up to 88...