15 items from 2013
It’s that wonderful, frightful, cool and creepy time of year again, when everything including the leaves on the trees are dying and our taste buds are craving sugary sweets and pies made from the guts of our jack-o-lanterns. It’s October, which means Halloween is nearly upon us! Get you costumes completed, your home haunts constructed and your candy collected for trick’r treaters, because you have to make time to watch some of the scariest movies this time of year.
In an effort to assist you in your cinematic scare-fest, we’ve come up with a list of the scariest movies to watch on Halloween… with one caveat. We have excluded virtually all “slasher” flicks. Why? Well, let’s just say we all know them, we all love them on some level, but really… don’t we all want something more in our scary movies? In honor of »
- Movie Geeks
With Halloween in the air, we thought it would be fun to reach out to the horror genre's biggest and brightest stars - both legends in the industry and up-and-coming superstars - to ask them two quick questions: What's your biggest fear, and what's your favorite scary movie? Read on for the results!
Some of the results will make you laugh. Some will make you shiver... and some, well some are just too funny for words. Sit back and get ready to hear from the likes of Anne Rice, John Carpenter, Robert Englund, the "Ghost Adventures" crew, cast members from "The Walking Dead," George A. Romero, and many - Many - more. Who knows? You may even find some new movies you should check out or at least revisit.
Let the scares begin!
1) I »
- Uncle Creepy
Hollywood horror has been all about sequels for the last 30-odd years, from the slasher films of Friday the 13th, Halloween, Child's Play and Nightmare on Elm Street, to the modern micro-budget franchise model of Saw, Paranormal Activity and Insidious. In addition to the wild success of the latter approach, studios will occasionally drop a remake that no one in particular asked for (ahem, Carrie). Not all remakes are necessarily bad news, however, as just this week we learned that Clive Barker himself would be writing a Hellraiser remake with Doug Bradley likely reprising his role as the iconic antagonist, Pinhead. All well and good, but there's a huge chunk of Hollywood horror I'd love to see return to the screen: the good ol' fashioned creature feature. Hit the jump to find out more. Hollywood! Adapt this: Them! What It's About: Next year marks the 60th anniversary of this science-fiction film from director Gordon Douglas, »
- Dave Trumbore
One of the greatest genre movies ever made is John Carpenter’s 1982 classic The Thing. Though technically a remake of Howard Hawks’ 1951 The Thing From Another World, it is a much more faithful adaptation of John W. Campbell’s 1938 novella “Who Goes There?”. The story follows a group of men in an Antarctic outpost who stumble across a bizarre alien that has the ability to imitate other life forms. During the course of the film, the characters are plagued with paranoia and terror as they discover that those around them may be the Thing in disguise. Soon, it becomes apparent that they have to do whatever is possible to stop the Thing from getting to civilization. Armed with flame-throwers, shotguns, and a hot copper needle, the team at U.S. Outpost 31 try to keep the thing contained, lest it mean the end of the world. Because we are significantly paranoid, this »
- Kevin Carr
Every year, we here at Sound On Sight celebrate the month of October with 31 Days of Horror; and every year, I update the list of my favourite horror films ever made. Last year, I released a list that included 150 picks. This year, I’ll be upgrading the list, making minor alterations, changing the rankings, adding new entries, and possibly removing a few titles. I’ve also decided to publish each post backwards this time for one reason: the new additions appear lower on my list, whereas my top 50 haven’t changed much, except for maybe in ranking. Enjoy!
Michael Jackson’s groundbreaking dance routines and unique vocals have influenced generations of musicians, dancers, and entertainers. He was one of entertainment’s greatest icons, and like most gifted individuals, he was always pushing boundaries, reinventing himself, and testing his limits. One of his biggest accomplishments was Thriller, a 14-minute »
Air Force occupies an unusual place in Howard Hawks' filmography. As a war propaganda film, its subject matter is necessarily tendentious, with an overt message that is not only coercive but also repetitive. Hawks, whose control over his choice of material was quite unusual by Hollywood standards of the time, shows no sign of resisting the project's wartime agenda, and willingly accepts the character stereotyping and up-front ideology that comes with the package: the eager young recruits, the cynic to be converted, the proud parent set up for loss. In addition, Hawks' streak of dark humor combines with the project's built-in tone of righteous vengeance against the Japanese in a way that can strike peacetime audiences as callous.
On the other hand, »
- Dan Sallitt
A distress signal from deep space. A blue-collar crew of astronauts discover a derelict space craft. A star beast of unknown origin chases them through dark pipe-lined corridors until there's only a few (if one) left. After the blockbuster success of Ridley Scott's sci-fi tinged haunted house movie "Alien" busted some blocks in 1979, it was only a matter of time before the low-budget copycats followed suit.
Not only were many of these knockoff movies kinda cool, but they turned out to be a proving ground of ideas and talent for future entries in the "Alien" franchise, including "Aliens," "Alien 3" and "Prometheus" … for realsimo. The first "Alien" was in itself a shameless "homage" to classic B-movies "Planet of the Vampires" and "It! The Terror from Beyond Space," so it's only fair that flicks like this week's Vin Diesel monster mash "Riddick" should take a page or seven from its playbook. »
- Max Evry
The World's End lands in theaters everywhere on Friday, and the Edgar Wright alien-invasion/drinking comedy featuring Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Rosamund Pike and Pierce Brosnan draws on a number of cinematic inspirations, from Invasion of the Body Snatchers-style sci-fi classics to The Big Chill-styled reunion movies. In fact, Wright recently assembled 14 fave influences (several of which are listed below) in a thematic, double-feature screening series at the New Beverly Cinema in Los Angeles to get audiences in the proper frame of mind.
Related Video: The Beginning of 'The World's End' at Comic-Con
The World's End follows a group of friends (including Paddy Considine and Eddie Marsan) who embark on an epic 12-pub crawl in their hometown in an effort to complete "The Golden Mile," having fallen short two decades earlier when they were teens in their prime. Back to finish what they started, the reunited »
Directed by Gordon Douglas
Written by Ted Sherdeman
In that filled-to-bursting canon of 1950s science fiction cinema, movies range from true film classics – like the Hawksian The Thing from Another World (1951), and that alarm bell about human desensitization, Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) – to cheapie craptasmagoriums like Beginning of the End (1957 – giant grasshoppers crawling over photographs of downtown Chicago), and It Conquered the World (1956 – “It” being an alien that looks like a devil-faced carrot with lobster claws). I’d go as far as to say the consensus is probably there’s just a few of the former, and a whole stinking pile of the latter. But scattered (thinly, I’d have to say) between those poles are movies neither classic nor crap, but made with enough craftsmanship to be eminently and repeatably watchable. You know: just good, damned fun! One of my faves from that group: Them! (1954).
- Bill Mesce
Mick Garris' House of Horrors kicks off this week at Trailers from Hell, with director Garris introducing Tobe Hooper's 1982 film, "Poltergeist.""They're he-eere!" Hooper's fifth feature was his biggest to date, produced on a grand scale by co-writer Steven Spielberg the same year he made Et. Its critical and boxoffice success was undercut by persistent rumors that Spielberg had co-opted the film much like Howard Hawks did with Christian Nyby (on The Thing) and shadow-directed, a claim both filmmakers denied. The untimely deaths of several people connected with the production gave rise in some quarters to the claim the franchise was somehow "cursed". Followed by Poltergest II: The Other Side and Poltergeist III, neither of which involved Spielberg or Hooper. »
- Trailers From Hell
With Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead remake now out in cinema it seems a fine time for the sequel to Raimi’s original cult classic to be given the Blu-ray treatment. The film is actually a remake. More money and fewer production problems result a much scarier, camp follow-up that some may say even surpasses the original.
Bruce Campbell’s Ash is a legendary cult character and this sequel is the reason why. The comedic elements implanted in Ash are far more apparent here, played to emanate much more evidently than before. They’ve managed to improve on the aspects of the first by amping it up to eleven, thanks partly to a much bigger budget. As everything is set up for moments of horror, Ash is locked-and-loaded to fight back against the Deadites attacking the cabin; chainsaw in one hand, shotgun on the other. Groovy!
Ash takes his girlfriend »
- Ashley Norris
Feature James Clayton 19 Apr 2013 - 06:08
What if time were running backwards, and the remake of The Evil Dead actually came first? We'll let James explain this one...
Evil Dead is, according to one of its advertising posters, "The most terrifying film you will ever experience". That may be true, but perhaps not because it has brutal psychological and physical horror in a cabin in the dark woods and various other types of harrowing trauma. What might make it the most terrifying film experience is the actual experience of watching a remake of The Evil Dead - not the content we're swallowing, but the concept itself.
The poster also features the words, "A new vision from the producers of the original classic" and there are a couple of key points in that sentence if you break it down. The credibility of the 'new vision' claim can be contested, but I »
Above: 20,000 Years in Sing Sing (Michael Curtiz, USA, 1932).
When I wrote about the posters of 1933 last week this was one poster I deliberately held back (though 20,000 Years in Sing Sing was released on Christmas Eve 1932, it is included in Film Forum’s retrospective). The early 1930s, no less than today—though the execution was a lot more interesting— was an era of big floating heads in movie posters. While 1920s movies had the occasional floating head poster for their biggest stars, artists and studios still favored the look of early silent posters with their head-to-toe portraits and snippets of narrative. Though Norma Desmond said famously of the silent era “We didn’t need dialogue...we had faces!” it was ironically with the coming of sound that faces started to dominate movie posters and, until Saul Bass, minimalism in American movie posters was almost non-existent.
All that makes the 20,000 Years poster, »
- Adrian Curry
So, the Robocop remake’s probably going to suck.
Presumptious? Not necessarily. There’s something to be said for remaking some films, and some simply are practical: Have you seen “Ringu”? Possibly, but you’ve almost certainly heard of its remake, “The Ring”. Foreign language remakes guarantee a wide American theatrical release – They’re in English. Other occasions, a story may have been very solid but the effects of the time might’ve simply reduced the opportunities to tell it. I don’t think anyone would argue that “The Thing” took “The Thing from another World” into a whole new realm, even though the story’s pretty much the same.
Sometimes remakes take a different tack with their basic story. “The Seven Samurai” has been reintroduced under several times and settings, most famously with “The Magnificent Seven” (Western). “Rear Window” got a Naughties redux as “Disturbia”, and 1960′s horror “Little Shop of Horrors »
- John McGrath
We're halfway through our daily countdowns, with part 15 out of 30 in our listing of the 300 Greatest Films Ever Made. These are numbers 160-151.
157) Pinocchio (1940) Walt Disney USA Animated
155) The King’S Speech (2010) Tom Hooper USA/British
153) The Leopard (1963) Lucianno Visconti France/ Italy
152) Beckett (1964) Peter Glenville USA
151) The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) Orsen Wells USA
Numbers 150-141 coming up next.
film cultureClassicslist300 »
- email@example.com (Rob Young)
15 items from 2013
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