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I finally got around to seeing the cult classic Suspiria and I would say I have mixed feeling about it. There were some genuinely scary moments. The music was creepy and the lighting gave a sinister look to the academy. But some of the special effects are definitely dated and some are even comical. Also I am not a big fan of substituting gore for truly scary moments which Suspiria seems to do at times. The ending came off fairly abrupt and somewhat anticlimactic. Perhaps my expectations were too high going into viewing the movie. Also I watched a dubbed version which made it difficult at times to follow the dialog. I tried to compare Suspira it with other movies around the same time period (1977). Suspiria makes a decent showing and I gave it a 6 out of 10. But I suspect younger horror fans that were raised on slasher movies, CGI, and short attention spans might not be able to get into the movie.
Dead Mary (2007)
Dead Mary: killer of two hours of your life
Dead Mary seems to be a horror movie that misses at every attempt that a horror movie shoots for. First it is very formulaic: a bunch of young people go to a remote cabin where something supernatural will start hunting them. Dead Mary actually spends time in the beginning trying to give you the back stories on these individuals that are meeting for the weekend. The purpose of this you would suspect is so that you get some intrigue on the characters actions, add to the paranoia, advance a plot, or perhaps simply gain some empathy for the characters. By the end of the movie you will realize none of these things happened and thus it was a pointless waste of time. So you might say: "So what, it is a schlocky horror movie. Who cares about plot, character development,etc
?" To that I say I can enjoy a silly B-movie horror movie as much as the next guy. But what is it that fans of, let's say, Friday the 13th want in a movie? I would break it down to things such as: Good special effects, creative kills, scares, maybe a few laughs, and if all else fails some T&A. Dead Mary fails to provide any of these things.
I gave Dead Mary 2 out of 10. In hind sight this might be a little low because the acting wasn't particularly bad and the technical aspects of the film were OK. I guess I rate it so low because there is nothing to speak for in its favor. Often there are bad movies where you say: "The movie really stunk, but there is this one scene..." Not true of Dead Mary. You can go through your whole life without seeing the movie and not have missed anything.
The Creeping Terror (1964)
Hilariously Bad Movie
As I recall I used to see this movie on channel 9 (New York) when I was a kid in the 1970s. My brothers and I used to sit around laughing at the movie because it looked like something we (as adolescence) would have made in our backyard if we had a camera. I'm almost embarrassed to admit but I did recently buy the DVD just for the nostalgia. While this movie does belong in the pantheon of bad, low budget movies like those of Ed Wood, I couldn't give it a 1 score. To me a 1 should be reserved for movies with larger budgets and higher expectations that are still horrible. If within a few minutes of viewing The Creeping Terror you haven't figured out it is going to be a stinker, that's on you. But for those that are connoisseurs of truly awful movies like Plan 9 from Outer Space give The Creeping Terror a shot.