The Corman-Poe Cycle

 

No, it’s not some stupid new band. Or even some stupid old band. To be honest it does kind of sound like the name of some 70’s super group. But, no. The Corman-Poe cycle refers to a series of films in the 60’s by Roger Corman and based on works of Edgar Allan Poe. There’s a very good reason that I’m talking about it today though. Other than it being Halloween today, of course.

The other week Dave had me thinking about what got me into horror. Not just the things that I love now, but stuff from when I was a kid. I’ve spoken before about my ultra-permissive parents. I was pretty much allowed to watch whatever I wanted because I wasn’t easy to scare. Thinking back on it this might have come from the fact that by the time I was 10 (or however old I was when I started picking out scary stuff to watch) I had already read a lot of creepy books. My father always had tons of books around. While he wasn’t into horror novels he did have things like Lovecraft, Wells, and Edgar Allan Poe. I read all of them, but the Poe stories stuck with me. So much so that some of the first horror movies I ever saw were the Roger Corman films based on Poe’s stories.

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Now most people think of Roger Corman in relation to schlock B-movies of the 50’s or the SyFy schlock of the 2000’s-the nows. There was this lovely time in the 60’s though where he produced and directed some really good schlock featuring Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Basil Rathbone, and many other notable actors of the time. I was drawn in by the stories, but I stayed for the acting. I’m sure you can understand why. If you haven’t seen them I highly recommend you give at least one of them a shot. Clearly Corman and Price worked well together as they went on to do 7 films based (sometimes VERY loosely)on the works of Poe. They aren’t scary, but they are creepy and fun.
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Crawl – Movie Review

lm4xH0YwFbVvTgdtau1thNK5S6JYou know how sometimes your friends suck? Oh wait, some of my friends might be reading this. In that case: you guys suck sometimes. Like when I want them to go see a stupid movie with me. I couldn’t interest a single person in the movie Crawl. We can get a whole group together to see The Meg, but not one person for Crawl? Maybe I love creature features too much. Maybe I’m just more into seeing crappy b-movies on the big screen than everyone else. Whatever it is I’m glad I finally got to see Crawl, but maybe my friends were right after all.

When it was released I didn’t even know that this movie was produced by Sam Raimi, and directed by Alexandre Aja. If you don’t know him that’s the guy who did The Hills Have Eyes remake, Piranha 3D, and High Tension. So maybe the first two on that list aren’t the greatest, but High Tension was genuinely good. The ending was a little wacky, but if you haven’t seen it you definitely should. Anyway, if I’d known all this when Crawl came out I’d have paid one of my friends to go with me. I don’t have a problem seeing a movie alone, but I like company for horror movies. 
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Horror Movies of 1999

I normally like to talk about 30 year old horror movies every October. This year is going to be different for two very good reasons. First: I’ve been doing the yearly old-nerd podcasts with Dave for several years now, and anything truly outstanding (or abysmal) can be discussed there. Second: there just aren’t any horror movies from 1989 that are worth talking about to me. There’s a lot of crap for sure, but I don’t want to spend 1000 words talking about terrible things. Most of them don’t even fall into the “so bad they’re good” category. The best thing about Pet Sematary was song The Ramones did for it. Well Fred Gwynne was great, but that’s about it. Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Halloween had some pretty bad sequels that year too, but I don’t really have anything besides that to say about them.

So this year I’ll be looking at the much more fun horror year of 1999. And while there are no Oscar winners in here, there are certainly several that are fun even if they aren’t great films. There aren’t even any that came out that year I hated. Maybe some that I’m indifferent to or never got around to seeing, but nothing that I just want to trash. It’s always tough for me to judge if horror movies are well known or not because I have so many friends that are into scary stuff too. To me most of these should be fairly well known, but if you haven’t seen any of these then please do so. Everything here has my spooky seal of approval.
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Movie Review – The Dead Don’t Die

hero_dead-dont-die-image.jpgThe town of Centerville used to be “A Real Nice Place” according to the sign that welcomes you to this sleepy farmland. The kind of town where a white farmer wears a hat that says “Keep America White Again” while talking to a black farmer in the local diner. The gas station doubles as a horror themed comic shop, but it’s not so out of the way that it can’t get regular deliveries from WU-PS (because RZA is the delivery man. Get it?). The three local cops are going about their quiet lives on the day that the dead decide to rise from the grave. Nobody seems very surprised though since Adam Driver’s junior cop immediately pegs this disturbance as zombies. What follows is the dead-est of deadpan comedies as the characters all try to survive this outbreak. It isn’t quite a “zomedy”, but it also isn’t too gory for you to watch with the squeamish types. I don’t know a ton of people who have seen this yet so I’ll go easy on spoiling anything. I want everyone to see this movie, and there’s a better chance of that if I don’t tell you how it ends. But, as Adam Driver’s character repeatedly tells us, “this is going to end badly”. Continue reading “Movie Review – The Dead Don’t Die”

Halloween 2018 – Eli Roth’s History of Horror

tvreview-rothhistory-rothzombieYou probably know who Eli Roth is even if you don’t think you do. He directed Cabin Fever (the good one), Hostel, and (the not good homage to Cannibal Holocaust) The Green Inferno. He’s also had acting roles in several movies, but aside from Inglourious Basterds they’re mostly cameos. A quick look at his IMDB page shows that he is not only a fan of horror, but knows a thing or two about it. You’ll also notice that while he only has 16 credits as a director he has 101 credits as himself (or at least it stuck out to me). It also gives me the idea that he’s a guy who likes to hear himself talk. Continue reading “Halloween 2018 – Eli Roth’s History of Horror”

Halloween 2018 – A Different Take on Halloween

d5463562-1063-46a6-864e-c487abba9b75-halloween_2018_jamie_lee_cuThere are probably some spoilers coming up, but since the movie has been out for a week as of the time that this goes up it’s on you at this point. I mean Dave already wrote about it, so I don’t know how I could spoil it more. I’d also apologize for writing about something he’s already covered if I didn’t have such a different opinion. I hadn’t planned on writing about yet another horror movie this month, but I had so many problems with something that I was so excited about seeing that I feel like I need to talk about it. I was really looking forward to this movie, but I sadly didn’t find it as entertaining as Dave did. Apparently we’re going to disagree on movies involving Danny McBride since he hated Alien: Covenant while I liked it, and he loved the new Halloween and I was underwhelmed. I didn’t hate it, and I don’t feel like my qualms are nit-picky, but I had serious problems with the movie that others don’t seem to have. Continue reading “Halloween 2018 – A Different Take on Halloween”

Halloween 2018 Horror at Home – October’s Blu-Ray Releases

While Halloween has been underway since early September for some of us, October is the official start of the spooky season for many. One of the easiest and most fun ways to get into the right frame of mind is by sitting down with a big bowl of candy corn and your favorite adult beverage to enjoy some scary movies and TV shows!

Every Tuesday in October I’ll be running down some of the best spooooky releases coming to home media.

All release info is from the excellent Blu-ray.com. Continue reading “Halloween 2018 Horror at Home – October’s Blu-Ray Releases”