The laptop Gods are still avoiding me. Hopefully I’ll be back online soon. How I miss the digital world. But that doesn’t mean I have given up watching horror. Here are the latest films I had the pleasure of viewing over the last few nights.
A killer tire is loose in a small desert town as a group of spectators watch from afar.
At first glance this seemed like a cheesy horror film – so bad its good. But from the very beginning you realise it might be something a little weirder than that. Rubber is a metaphysical horror film that pokes fun at the randomness of movies. It’s an homage to the “no reason” decisions in movie-making. The film doesn’t really have a point, or even attempts to explain why people are doing the things they are doing. I understand this is purpose of the movie, but the film drags at an increasingly irritating pace that you start to lose the joke and give up caring. Also, there are only so many tire tracking shots one can watch before going insane.
Best Line: “Hey, wait! It’s not the end! He’s been reincarnated as a tricycle!”
Best Moment: The killer tire explodes a rabbit for the first time with its physic abilities.
A young man returns home from Vietnam after being reported dead. But something is different about him, he’s not the same person who left.
Based on the short story “Monkey’s Paw” Deathdream is a fascinating horror film. Set during the Vietnam war we witness a young man dying. But he soon returns to his home town and back to his loving parents. Things soon turn nasty as Andy’s behavior becomes more erratic. He no longer feels anything including the act of murder: feeding on life to sustain his physical form. We are treated to some amazing make-up effects and emotional storytelling. It is clear to see the message behind the film. Deathdream deals with themes of family disintegration and the physical and mental trauma that soldiers went through during Vietnam. An extremely striking and poignant movie. It is reminiscent of Frankenstein. We can’t help but sympathise with the monster, despite their acts of violence. They didn’t ask to be who they are. They just exist through means of someone else’s desires.
Best Line: “I don’t feel anything at all.”
Best Moment: Andy’s mother desperately tries to escape with her son before the police arrive, just as her husband shoots himself, unable to live with what his son has become.
A young woman, in the mist of a messy divorce, moves into a new apartment where she gets a strange call from someone from the past who becomes obsessed with her.
Despite being a low-budget sci-fi (horror) The Caller gets a lot of things right. The eerie, threatening atmosphere is well maintained throughout and the story tiptoes along to a satisfying conclusion. Time-travel stories are often met with harsh criticism. However, I really enjoyed The Caller. There’s nothing particularly original about the film, and if you can overlook some obvious contrivances, you might find yourself enjoying it too. And the ending is super dark. Like, Superman: The Quest for Peace, dark.
Best Line: “You’re talking to a Trekkie. I can handle it.”
Best Moment: Mary’s skin changes from an oil burn given to her in the past.
A millionaire puts on a party for his wife at a haunted house. He invites complete strangers to the house and offers them ten thousand dollars if they stay the night. With ghosts, ghouls, and murderers, who will survive the night?
Vincent Price. Vincent Price! VINCENT PRICE! Did I mention Vincent Price? I didn’t care that House on Haunted Hill was a campy, convoluted mess. Vincent Price was exhilarating to watch. I must admit, this is my first ever film to have seen the man in. As ashamed as I am admitting that, at least now I know what pleasures I was missing out on. He is an absolutely delightful actor. He oozes charisma and charm while remaining eerily creepy and menacing. The film itself cannot keep up with him but there are some wonderful, and effective, scares. And the characters are goofy and seem to enjoy themselves in their roles. A classic horror movie not to be missed.
Best Line: “Darling, the only ghoul in the house is you!”
Best Moment: The skeleton at the end on a puppeteer string, performed by Vincent Price.