Author Topic: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018  (Read 3412 times)

FLYmeatwad

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #50 on: October 02, 2018, 07:37:03 PM »
Hoping to hit Halloween and Friday The 13th at some point too, at least getting a taste for the first entry in these touchstone franchises, and maybe further explore from there. Am I missing anything, or are these the big ones?
Alien
Hellraiser
Jaws
Night of the Living Dead

Alien I should definitely do, and Hellraiser probably (did this spawn a storied franchise?), Jaws I've seen before though when I was younger and didn't have the burning hatred for S. Spielberg that I currently do, so perhaps it's worth a rewatch. NotLD I've tried to watch three or four different times in the past 10 or 11 years and never made it farther than 30 minutes or so. Maybe I'll tough that one out.

1SO

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #51 on: October 03, 2018, 03:55:31 PM »

The Smiling Ghost (1941)
"Clarence, don't tell me you're afraid."
"I ain't afraid, but my feet ain't gonna stand around and see my body abused."


Mrs 1SO's morning Shocktober movies so far have been lighthearted selections from Warner Bros. This is the best of the bunch, perhaps the 2nd best of its type only to The Ghost Breakers. The story involves a serial killer that targets the boyfriends of a socialite (Alexis Smith) and is believed to be the ghost of her first fiancee. The cast includes Wayne Morris, Alan Hale and Willie Best.

Morris has a country bumpkin personality that's quickly grown on me. I wouldn't have thought of him as a lead except for his good looks, but he can carry a film and his overdone niceness balances out the spooky atmosphere very well. Alan Hale (Adv. of Robin Hood) is simply a treasure and his streetwise butler is further proof of this. Willie Best (also seen the Ghost Breakers) will be problematic for some because he's part of a tradition of African-American comedians, but unlike others of this type, he's genuinely funny, doesn't lean on the negative stereotype and the racist jokes in the script are minimal.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ - Okay


- Safe for Sandy
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oldkid

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #52 on: October 03, 2018, 05:31:53 PM »
Les Diaboliques (1955)

Christina is a long-suffering wife, paying for her husband's affairs, as well as their mutual business, a boarding school. She has had enough and rather than divorcing him, she decides to kill him with his mistress, Nichole.  That's a fine beginning for a Hitchcockian film, and it is enough to get me enthusiastic about where this film is going.

Frankly, if this had been a Hitchcock film, I wouldn't have been surprised.  It is a Gothic, a thriller, a puzzle, a psychological mystery, and it is a lot of fun.  The direction is excellent, as is the acting and cinematography.  Frankly, the only weakness I find in this film is calling it "horror".  There is a scene or two that one might label influenced by that genre, but it is misleading to call it that, let alone put on a "best of horror" list. 

Still, I highly recommend it.  Sandy, if you were thinking of adding a very "safe for Sandy" film that is listed as one of the great horror films, this would be a good one.  I think it's right up your alley.

4/5
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

FLYmeatwad

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #53 on: October 03, 2018, 10:04:20 PM »
Hellraiser

Turns out this is a franchise and there are like nine of these things! I knew that there was Mr. Pin, he's been everywhere, but apparently not in this film all that much. But that doesn't mean there's not a lot to like here, because actually I was super taken with what Barker brought to the table. Sure, there are some silly parts (a long hallway chase, and the return of the chaser throwing a mean left jab), yes the acting gets hammy, though after ANoES I am starting to think it may be a mark of the times, hell(raiser), there's even #sex and #violence all mixed together. Yet the framing device worked and this just has such an energy that I gravitated towards. Part of it has to do with the visuals, but not just the glimpses of those demons or whatever, even the early parts with Frank had a tangible feel that I appreciated. That's the wonder of practical effects, and why Pinhead is so evocative, I imagine, so that even when the seams loosen (perhaps a byproduct of the budget, but who knows, could just be dated with age) it's still kind of a blast. The film feels like a short story, in the way something like that Adam Scott Krampus did, and it's just a delight.

Not really all that scary, though it holds a couple of jump scares and scoreless tension building until the end to great effect. I stayed away from horror for so long, but I think I just don't like jump scares.

Either way, on a scary scale I give this...

1SO

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #54 on: October 03, 2018, 10:53:47 PM »
Hellraiser

Turns out this is a franchise and there are like nine of these things! I knew that there was Mr. Pin, he's been everywhere, but apparently not in this film all that much. But that doesn't mean there's not a lot to like here, because actually I was super taken with what Barker brought to the table.

For the first few films there are usually a few minutes spent on Pinhead's backstory and the creation of the cubes, but the films are about a world where these things exist and not the continuing saga of a set of characters. Somewhere along the way, Barker was happy to collect a small check to lend out the Hellraiser name and the films would be non-Hellraiser scripts that stuck in some connection to the world in order to get produced.
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FLYmeatwad

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #55 on: October 03, 2018, 11:22:04 PM »
Like Cloverfield is now, I guess?

It definitely gave me the impression watching it that I wouldn't really be seeing these characters in a sequel, it telegraphs that well with the ending zooming out and pretty much resetting things (also like Krampus), though that's fine by me. The backstory doesn't interest me a ton as of right now, like he and his crew look cool and are a good excuse to kind of let reality and any type of monsters mingle, so I think I'd be down for more if they strike the same tone of this first one while changing the specifics of the situations. Really ended up taking to this way more than I had expected.

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #56 on: October 05, 2018, 09:19:36 AM »

Hell Baby (2013)
"I think you're safer here than in any of the murder-free places we've ever lived at."

Despite mostly terrible reviews, I've always been curious of this one because of the cast. (Rob Corddry, Leslie Bibb, Keegan-Michael Key, Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon, Michael Ian Black, Rob Huebel, Paul Scheer, Kumail Nanjiani and Riki Lindhome.) On a podcast, Lennon (who wrote and directed the film with Garant) said "I love every weird and wonderful minute of this film," which I found sweet, so I gave it a shot.


Closer to something by David Wain than a parody film, the script for this scattershot sketch comedy is never sharp enough to stand on its own. There are a few groans, but a few laughs and thanks to the cast a lot of smiles. Keegan-Michael Key comes out on top as the world's most intrusive neighbor. Garant and Lennon's vice-filled priests never got old and while Nanjiani's part is small, he has some of the best moments.
Rating: ★ ★

- Safe for Sandy, but there's a fair amount of gross-out comedy




The Last Shark (1981)
aka. Great White
aka. Italian Jaws

It's hard to make a good, campy, unintentionally funny shark movie now because that's typical for a killer shark movie. I learned about this film during a podcast - either The Next Picture Show or How Did This Get Made? - about The Meg. Problem with this blatant Jaws ripoff is that it isn't bad enough to be entertaining. It's mostly dull humans up against stock footage shots of sharks. (When they can't find an image of a Great White that works, they use whatever species is available.) Even the robot shark, with its mouth stuck open and clean surface, can't raise this film to a good level of camp.
Rating: ★

- Safe for Sandy
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1SO

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #57 on: October 06, 2018, 01:28:11 PM »

Love From a Stranger (1937)
"Women's weakness is man's opportunity."

From a story by Agatha Christie, Basil Rathbone is the whole film here, playing a charming scoundrel who worms his way into the heart of a recent lottery winner. It's the most scenery-chewing performance I've seen from Rathbone. Starting at the level of Adv. of Robin Hood, as his physical ailments and mental instability are revealed he gets more and more crazed until by the end he's going the full Nic Cage.


Ann Harding (playing his wife) gives him the stage until Christie's pen reveals itself in some final surprises. Those final reveals would've made for a more original story if brought in way earlier, though that would be a different movie entirely.
Rating: ★ ★

- Safe for Sandy
« Last Edit: October 06, 2018, 01:29:51 PM by 1SO »
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1SO

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #58 on: October 07, 2018, 03:17:09 PM »
I've always loved Rosemary's Baby, but watching it today was almost too much because of how well it works as a metaphor for our current political climate. The privileged upper class taking control of a woman's reproductive rights for their own diabolical ends.
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1SO

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2018
« Reply #59 on: October 07, 2018, 08:33:32 PM »

Roar (1981)
"No animals were harmed in the making of this film.
70 cast and crew members were.


Unique experiment of filming a movie while completely at the mercy of large jungle cats. The writer/producer/director/star goes for a family film vibe behind the camera while on screen constantly telling people "it's alright" while lions and tigers destroy property and attempt to maul the rest of the cast. I've read some arguments that this isn't horror, but the unceasing wild animal intrusions put ones nerves on edge and you watch something like a lion on top of a very young Melanie Griffith pulling her hair with its teeth and there's true terror on her face and in her screams.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ - Okay



The Woman in White (1948)

Gig Young plays an artist summoned to an estate of eccentric and dangerous people, headed up by Sydney Greenstreet, who is in peak form. Everyone here is intriguing including a trio of women - Alexis Smith, Eleanor Parker and Agnes Moorehead - with questionable claims on the estate and its fortune. In the style of Rebecca, but more overtly spooky. It would be perfect for Sandy if it were only a bit better. Something lacking either in the casting, aside from Greenstreet who's an endless delight, or the relaxed pace.
Rating: ★ ★



Bluebeards Ten Honeymoons (1960)

George Sanders dispatching women with blades and blunt instruments like he's Jason Voorhees. More of a gruesome slasher than I expected, with its most violent aspect - the dismemberment and incineration of his victims - is only possible because the movie was made in a time where they don't have to explain the heavy amounts of blood that would've permanently stained his wood murder cabin.
Rating: ★ ★


The Phantom of Crestwood (1932)

Murder Mystery set in an old dark house with secret passages, unstable cliffsides and a killer in a glowing death mask. It's not very deep, but the whodunit aspect is very engaging and fun.
Rating: ★ ★
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