Monday, 1 February 2010

Graeme’s Horror Movie Weekend!

After what I like to call ‘The Chucky Incident' I really have to be careful what horror films I show my wife. My ‘Oh that’s funny’ is her ‘Nosebleed inducing terror’ after all… Because of that I haven’t really watched a lot of horror recently, until this weekend that is. When the wife is away… I get out all the horror movies I need to watch and get busy! I still didn’t manage to get round to watching ‘The Wicker Man’ (the original one, not the one with Nicolas Cage which should be avoided apparently!) but I think I acquitted myself well. Here’s what I managed to watch over the weekend…

‘Night of the Living Dead’

If you’re thinking that I’ve posted about this one before then you’re kinda right. What we’re talking about here is the 1990 remake of the 1968 classic and I have to say… I think this might just be the better version. Everything’s the same as the original (with the notable exception of Barbara who actually gets to talk here and do stuff) but the fear and paranoia is hyped up just that little bit more and the end result benefits from this. There is also a world of difference in the special effects, which always makes for a better viewing experience. Patricia Tallman and Tony Todd are great as Ben and Barbara. Like I said, it’s great to see what would have happened if Barbara hadn’t gone catatonic right at the start. It’s been years since I saw this last and I’d forgotten just how good it was.

‘Brain Dead’

Or ‘Dead Alive’, depending on where you live. Before Peter Jackson got all serious with films like ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘King Kong’ etc, he was all about gory zombie films and exploding sheep. There are no exploding sheep here (they’re in ‘Bad Taste’, watch it if you haven’t already) but there is plenty to make up for that. If you’re a fan of the gore then this cautionary tale of Lionel’s mother is nothing but sheer fun the whole way through. Never, ever get too close to a Sumatran Rat Monkey; your life won’t be worth living! Lionel tries to do the right thing by his mother, even after she becomes a ravening zombie that wants to eat him, but it never quite works for the poor guy. If you’ve ever wondered if a zombie can get pregnant then this film will answer that question for you! I was left wondering though… What is it about me that can laugh all the way through the massacre in the house (it is funny…) but retched slightly at the scene with the custard?

‘Trailer Park of Terror’

I won this in a competition and, having never heard of it, came to the film with no expectations at all. Good thing really as this tale of red neck zombies preying on unwitting travellers was ok but didn’t quite do it for me. There were some genuinely scary/icky moments (boy being made into fried jerky was possibly the highlight here) that were a lot of fun but these were spoiled by the wise cracking demon lady and the gradual decline into stereotypical ‘killing teenagers by numbers’ plot. There was enough to keep me going until the end though and now I come to think of it, the bit with the fat zombie and the junkie made me laugh as well… :o)

‘Mum & Dad’

This was another film where I had no expectations. The difference here was that this film scared the… you know… out of me. A Polish cleaner, working at Heathrow Airport, learns a hard lesson when she accepts an invitation to a new friend’s house. When our heroine regains consciousness, she finds herself a prisoner of the sadistic Mum and Dad in a house where torture and abuse are a fact of everyday life…
I like my gore to be a little bit overdone (in a ‘Brain Dead’ kind of way) and I like my horror to come with a large dose of suspense. ‘Mum and Dad’ is brimming with suspense (I was yelling at the TV on more than one occasion) and while the torture, and various fetishes, are frighteningly realistic that just means you can’t keep your eyes off it. ‘Mum and Dad’ is one of those films where it ends and you realise that you've been sat in the exact same position for eighty-five minutes and you can only just feel the pins and needles in your legs. Well, that’s what happened to me.
One word describes this film and that’s ‘brilliant’. Just don't watch if you have a weak stomach!

That was as many films as I had time to get through this weekend, I’ll let you know how ‘The Wicker Man’ goes…


lee-tyke said...

Good old Braindead : ) I wore my VHS tape of that out long ago..... i love the dinner eating scene.... made me laugh like a drain

Unknown said...

Now you've gone and inspired me to rent Mum & Dad. I'm all for a good bit of British horror. My other half with not thank you for this, Graeme!

My only adice to you would be to get on The Wicker Man as soon as you can. It's such a brilliant piece of filmmaking - from the terrifying island setting to some incredible folk music and yes, a scene where breasts are intercut with frogs mating on a leaf. Unforgettable stuff, and scary as all get-out too.

lee-tyke said...

the 'wickerman ' is one of my favourite films .....the original edward woodwoodward one..the nic cage remake is chronically bad

Esther said...

I think I should introduce you to my husband as you seem to have the same revolting taste in films.
Do you listen to Mark Kermode's film reviews? He is a total horror fan too.