Monday, August 30, 2010

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE FOR HALLOWEEN? THE QUESTION THAT WILL INEVITABLY BE MY DESTRUCTION

As I trickle my way back to the lovely Macomb, IL campus, I've already been bombarded with numerous requests of movie recommendations and my opinions on certain films.  While my course load as well as my  extra-curricular activities have been bearing their ugly little heads and filling up my schedule quickly, my mind has been drifting to quite possibly the most difficult question anyone could ask me.  What in the devil am I going to be for Halloween?  Last year I put up a vote between two costumes that ended up failing as costume companies think it's impossible for someone to have huge boobs but not the huge waistline to match it.  After about three hours of stumbling through costume guides while drowning my sorrows over cold Spaghetti-os straight out of the can, I came across the tutorial on how to make an Army of Darkness inspired chainsaw arm.  I immediately fell in love and spared no time in shelling out the forty bucks it took to obtain all the materials it called for.

An evening with one of my best friends filled with power tools, red spray paint, and funny movies, lead to the creation of the greatest Halloween costume I've ever worn.  Most of my collegiate buddies had no idea who I was, but the ones who did know, were in absolute awe.  I even walked into an unfamiliar party and was photographed with a girl who said "YOU'RE A SEXY ASH?! I MUST TAKE A PICTURE WITH YOU" I was on absolute cloud nine the entire evening, and the fact the chainsaw arm doubled as a purse didn't hurt either.

So, what do I do now?  I had full intentions on being a sexy version of Hit-Girl from Kick-Ass (I'm in college, it's a prerequisite to have a sexy costume), but the only one that would fit me is way out of my budget.  I hate doing cliche "I'm a cop, I'm a cat, I'm a slut with a nametag" costumes, and I almost ALWAYS have to make my own just to fit my proportions.  I'm expected to have an amazing costume after last year, and the fact my site and reputation as "the horror girl" has EXPLODED within my college has inspired just about everyone who knows my name to ask me what I'm going to be.  I want something sexy but scary.  I want something recognizable but not cliche.  I want something I can make myself but doesn't look stupid.  I just want the perfect idea to fall out of the sky and into my hands.  If someone out there could make that happen, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Thank God final exams aren't this stressful.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

SPIDERWALKING AND SPLIT PEA SOUP: A LOOK AT EXORCISM HORROR FILMS

Tomorrow marks the opening for another installment in the exorcism sub-genre of horror films. While the name "Eli Roth" attached to the title has been scaring off viewers, let me be the first to tell you that I highly enjoyed The Last Exorcism.  Now, I try not to review films on Day of the Woman but let me state that while the film is far from perfect, it is an invigorating breath of fresh air in comparison to half the garbage that is force fed upon mainstream horror audiences.

I'm not a devoutly religious person by any means, but I have always found the idea of exorcism and possession to be one of the scariest and horrific concepts in all of horror. There's something about the idea of being completely taken over by a demonic or satanic presence in order to do its bidding that engulfs me with mass amounts of anxiety.


I was born a Roman-Catholic, raised Lutheran, and have the mindset of a Universal Unitarian. The town my high school was in has more churches per capita than any other city in the world. This being said, I've had my fair share of religion as well as experienced the different "types" of religious followers. I've seen everything from anti-christ devil worshipers, to the nature loving Wiccans, all the way up to families performing Quiverfull [the Jesus is my condom method] and having families with 16 home-schooled children. I've encountered a countless number of people that have told me time and time again, that exorcism is a very real and very scary practice.  That being said, here is a showcase of some of my personal favorites that deal with exorcism.


Exorcism and possession films are quite the tender subject, so I've deemed it necessary to start off with something a little more light-hearted.  Leslie Nielsen seriously deserves a lifetime achievement award for his work in comedy films.  Cult favorite, Repossessed is my favorite of his horror comedies. The story tells of a priest called on to perform an exorcism of a possessed woman played by Regan MacNeil herself, Linda Blair.  The entire film is a spoof of the exorcism film that put Blair on the map, but it heavily parodies how ridiculous exorcist films can be.  While it may not be scary, it truly does show how difficult it can be to try to portray an exorcism as anything more than levitating foul mouthed children and angry yelling.


Of all the exorcism films made in the last 30 or so years, The Exorcism of Emily Rose seems to hang on the fence of brilliance or disappointment depending on who you're asking.  More of a court drama than a horror film, TEOER contains many scenes that will be forever haunting and will hopefully become appreciated as years go by.  My favorite is when Emily Rose, who never played piano in her life, slowly begins to play Rachmaninoff's Prelude in C# Minor (which is arguably one of the most haunting piano pieces ever composed).  Jennifer Carpenter is extremely talented in her portrayal of the college co-ed under the control of demonic forces, and proudly admits to contorting her body into the weird configurations herself.  


SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT!!!


[REC]2 (and essentially [REC]) are not about zombies.  They're demons possessions.  There, I said it.  One of the most horrifying movies to come out in the past 5 years is about satanic possessions and there are quite a few instances in [REC]2 that have to deal with the performance of exorcisms.  I just about peed my pants when I first saw these two films and my mind was infinitely blown when it was finally put together that the mysterious disease was not a zombie outbreak, but a religious explosion of terror.  Damn, Spaniards. 


When we are speaking of exorcism movies, Academy Award winning feature, The Exorcist is the granddaddy of all things possessed and satanic.  Arguably the scariest movie of all time, the story of demon possessed Regan MacNeil has become one of the most iconic and the most profitable horror films ever to hit the silver screen.  With more memorable scenes than any 10 horror films combined, The Exorcist has withstood the test of time by frightening generations for the past 30+ years.  Regan's famous "spiderwalk" has established the unwritten rule that possessed girls must have the ability of body contortion, the head spin has been recreated in countless horror films of all sub genres, and even the ever so comedic "green soup" vomit has been recognized as a staple in American pop culture ever since.  The Exorcist truly is the quintessential exorcism film and every exorcism horror film since, has been created in honor and homage to it.  

THIS JUST IN

Monday, August 23, 2010

THE GREATEST CULT FILMS OF THE 1970's

One of the coolest guys out there, The Mike of From Midnight, With Love has graced many horror journalists the world over to come up with five of our Most Essential Cult Movies of the 1970's.  While horror is surely my forte, I would be lying if I didn't confess my undying love for all things campy and feathered.  The challenge is to do a top 5 list, and trying to assemble all of my love for 70's cult films into just 5 was EXTREMELY difficult. That being said, here are my top 5.

05) BEYOND THE VALLEY OF THE DOLLS
One of the most "schlocking" films of its time, Russ Meyer roundhouse kicked down the bar of going over the top with the now infamous sequel.  Following The Kelly Affair (later the Carrie Nations), a overhyped femme rock band, on their route to Los Angeles to track down Kelly's estranged aunt.  On the way they run into rock mogul Ronnie "Z-Man" Barzel and are thrust into the rock and roll lifestyle of raunchy sexual experimentations, drugs up the ying yang, and partying like it's 1999.  The film is ridiculously tasteless and yet I could watch it every day of my life.  Thanks, Roger Ebert
04) I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE/DAY OF THE WOMAN
It goes without saying that ISOYG/DOTW is one of my favorite films of all time.  Rape/Revenge aside, ISOYG/DOTW has gained a cult-like status of near epic proportions, but unfortunately finds itself amongst the ranks of other upcoming watered down and tragically remade horror classics.  I still have my fingers crossed for it to not totally suck, but I'm not holding my breath.
03) DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS
This is by far the biggest cock-tease of any lesbian vampire movie of the 1970's.  It really doesn't get much better though.  The movie is incredibly sadistic and chock full of sexual tension, but never gives a straight up scene of using thighs as earmuffs.  Most people see it as a let down, but I find it to be an extremely effective tool.  I love this movie, and you should too.



02) SUSPIRIA
That video is the reason why. Enough said.

01) THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW
If anyone out there assumed I'd pick anything other than this, they clearly haven't been paying attention to anything in the past two years.  I'm obsessed with RHPS, but the best part is that I'm in good company.  Unconventional conventionalists travel along in packs to spread the love for Rocky Horror even today, 35 years later.  It is THE granddaddy of all cult films, and there's absolutely NOTHING that can even come close to its magnitude of brilliance. 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SCREAM QUEENS 2: A SECOND DOSE OF DISAPPOINTMENT.


A long time ago, in a dorm room far far away, there lived an 18 year old girl full of hope and ambition that someone out there would actually give a rat's ass about what she had to say.  Although a horror fangirl through and through, her recreational activities left her "too different" to be respected as a horror fanatic.  Yet, one opinion article written about a reality television competition changed everything.  Alright, I'm done talking about myself in past tense.  The first article I ever wrote on Day of the Woman, the very first entry on this here blog, was an opinion piece on season one of VH1's Scream Queens. I hated just about everything that had to do with the first season, but I had a slight inch of hope that they could redeem themselves in the second season.  While the first episode gave me a tiny bit of excitement, the second episode has already lost me for the rest of the season.

Meet Rosanna, she was the second girl to leave the Scream Queen competition this season.  While she may have been kicked off, I want to know this.  HOW THE HELL DID YOU EVEN GET ON THIS SHOW?!  All of these girls had to go through an audition process to even get a shot at competing, and she made it in.  Not only does the girl know jack SHIT about horror, she can't act her way out of a paper bag that's even been rolled open to make life easier.  When given an acting lesson with John Homa, which is an experience most actors/actresses would KILL for..the dumb bitch CHOKES.  I literally had to walk out of the room.  It isn't something I talk about on DotW often, but I'm a huge acting buff.  I'm a Theatre major at school, I was president of the Thespian Society in high school, and I've won numerous awards for my performances.  So whenever I see something like this, I am filled with extreme amounts of anger.  The acting business is NOT an easy business to get into, and I can't help but turn into a green monster whenever I see these no-talent bimbos making a name for themselves when they have absolutely zero credibility to back it up.

Speaking of credibility, NONE of these girls know anything about the genre they're trying to break into. When Freddy Kruegar fell from the ceiling, a girl referred to him as "the boogeyman".  Let's be honest here, she called him the boogeyman because she had no friggen clue who he was.  Don't you dare try to tell me she was referencing the "do you believe in the boogeyman?" line from A Nightmare on Elm Street.  I understand that this is an "acting" competition first and foremost, but at least do your freaking research before you show up to the set.  I would bet my college tuition money that none of these girls had any clue who Tim Sullivan was.


So last season's host, Shawnee Smith, didn't return for the show.  While I complained that Shawnee Smith had the same amount of presence as a turkey sandwich on last season's competition, I think she was more deserving of the host role than this season's host Jaime King.  The show is about becoming a HORROR actress, a Scream Queen...and I can count the amount of prominent horror films Jaime King has performed in on one hand.  Jennifer Love Hewitt is desperate for work, why didn't you just ask her?

Despite having a host that hasn't even earned the right to call herself a Scream Queen, the lack of James Gunn is extremely disappointing.  I personally like Tim Sullivan and his work, but I also love really shitty and campy horror movies.  These girls are trying to get a role in Saw 3-D which despite the franchise's dying reputation, is far from camp or cheese.

I just feel insulted as a horror fan that THIS is what we bring to the table when it comes to reality television.  It's hard enough for the horror genre to find respect within the film community as a whole, and this show isn't helping our case at all.  I've said numerous times before that horror acting is a completely different realm than any other form of acting, and none of these girls have any idea of what they're doing.  If you really pay attention to their credentials, they're all models.  Thankyou VH1 casting department for once again showing us that the film industry would rather have nice boobs and a pretty face than someone who can believably portray fear and strength in the same film.  The biggest complaint people express about modern horror films, is the fact that all of the actors are nice to look at...until they open their mouth.  How about for next season (because Saw is NOT going to die) you actually find contestants that know what they're talking about and can actually, you know, act.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

IMAGES OF SMILING IN HORROR FILMS

It seems that it's awards season and meme-season in the blogosphere.  While I don't want to instigate a circle jerk amongst bloggers (sorry versatile blogger award...), I am supporting of all things meme related as it gives content for our readers outside of "HERE'S 15 SUPER FUN FACTS ABOUT ME THAT YOU LIKE PROBABLY KNOW FROM READING MY FACEBOOKS!".  That being said, this meme is entirely image based and is supposed to capture certain staples within horror films. bloggers are urged to come up with a series of screen grabs, all focusing on a specific theme. The whole thing was kicked off a little while back over at the blog Checking on My Sausages, but this meme was bestowed upon me by noneother than my Obi-Wan himself, B-Sol of The Vault of Horror.


For my theme, I've chosen smiling in horror films. While it may seem like I'm taking an easy way out by showcasing something "happy", I think smiling in horror films is one of the more unsettling aspects.  There's something ridiculously creepy about being in a terrible situation and knowing someone is smiling about it.  That being said, here are my selections for the image meme.

The Lost Boys (1987)
The Dark Knight (2008) *not exactly horror, but just as creepy*
The Devil's Rejects (2005)
The Silence of The Lambs (1991)
Near Dark (1987)
The Man Who Laughs (1928)
Scanners (1981)
The Exorcist (1973)
Suspiria (1977)
The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
Evil Dead II (1987)
Stephen King's "IT" (1990)
Fright Night (1985)
American Psycho (2000)
Freaks (1932)
The Evil Dead (1981)
Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Psycho (1960)



Now as requested, I must tag 5 other bloggers to fulfill the massive syphilis like spreading of this meme. Pikachu, I choose you!

1) Billy Loves Stu
2) The Deadly Doll's House of Horror Nonsense
3) Chuck Norris Ate My Baby
4) The Paradise of Horror
5) The Person You Benefit From Knowing

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

TERRIBLE POSTER TUESDAY: Vampires Suck

It has been a long time coming, and I have been waiting for this moment since 2005.  Boils and ghouls, there is finally a major motion picture coming out that is spoofing Twilight.  As much as it pains me to admit the people behind this film are the same "geniuses" behind Epic Movie, I am in full support of absolutely anything bashing on Twatlight.  Dread Central was the source that led me to the deliciously awful one-sheet for the film, and thus my conundrum.  You see, I know this poster is terrible.  It's probably one of the most poorly photoshopped, lit, and fonted poster I've seen in the last year and a half...but I can't hate it.  I can blatantly see all the problems with this poster, and I can't hate it.  Is this what I've come to?  Have I become so absolutely and utterly jaded towards everything Twatlight that I love even the terrible things making fun of it?  This may be the case, but putting my personal excitement over this film abomination aside, this poster is absolutely dreadful.

First of all, the photoshopping skills seriously must have been done with Crayola craft scissors.  I'm pretty sure I could bend the edges around all of the characters and it would look smoother than this does.  Every single person looks like they were superimposed into the positions they were in, and the fact that they're all in different lighting doesn't help the case at all.

The font is by far the WORST attribute of the one-sheet.  You'd think they'd be clever and mock the font of the films the same way they did for the trailers, but no.  They gave us what resembles Verdana aka-a standard Microsoft Word font.  I'm also not sure who thought it would be cool to use Electric Boogaloo looking graffiti in order to write "suck".  I think it would have looked a little more impacting had it just said "Vampires Suck".  Short, sweet, deep, I like it.

Basically, this poster sucks on ice.  I just wish I didn't have such a burning hatred for Twatlight, because then maybe, just maybe, I could hate this poster.  Sorry folks, better luck next time.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

THIS JUST IN

Team Jacob just got a whole lot creepier...
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