Since I didn't quite manage to keep up here on the blog with my intended daily recap of our October Scary Moviethon, I thought I'd just check in here now that the month is over, with a quick wrap-up.
Aside from the movies I wrote about previously - Infestation, Happy Birthday To Me, Horror Express, Terror Train, Trick 'r Treat and the George Romero Living Dead cycle, we also managed to squeeze in a bunch of old Universal horror classics. Specifically, Ghost of Frankenstein, Frankenstein Meets The Wolf Man, House of Frankenstein and House of Dracula.
And last week, I was able to trade in a few unwanted discs at Bull Moose Music and acquire a few more movies for the marathon: the long-awaited Night of The Creeps DVD, the new Warner Brothers Karloff & Lugosi Horror Classics set, and the last two Paramount Friday the 13th films.
Night of The Creeps was a joy. I love the movie. For my money, it's one of the best of the 80s. The new DVD is crystal sharp, presented widescreen and restores writer/director Fred Dekker's original ending. The bonus features a great, too.
The 2-disc Karloff/Lugosi set includes four movies I'd never seen before: The Walking Dead, Frankenstein 1970, You'll Find Out and Zombies on Broadway. The title of the set is a bit of a misnomer -only the first two are legitimately "horror" films - and only The Walking Dead is a genuine "classic," while Frankenstein 1970 is a fifties exploitation schlocker (good commentary track, though). The other two are comedies - You'll Find Out is a vehicle for now-nearly-forgotten bandleader Kay Keyser that spoofs mystery thrillers. It's pretty fun, though the one-time-on-screen teaming of Karloff, Lugosi and Peter Lorre is its most memorable feature. Zombies on Broadway features the justifiably forgotten comedy team of Wally Brown and Alan Carney in a rather tired spook comedy. As usual in these things, Lugosi is the flick's bright spot, but he doesn't have nearly enough screen time.
Not really essentials (except maybe The Walking Dead), but for a Karloff & Lugosi nut, it's great to have them.
As to the last two Friday flix - Parts 7 and 8 - one was fun, the other boring. Part 7 (The New Blood) pitted the unstoppable Jason Vorhees against a telekinetic teenage girl (the director cheerfully admits to ripping off Carrie) in an entertaining sequel with a bit of energy and a slight twist to the formula. Part 8, though (Jason Takes Manhattan) was a tired, boring mess, with an even more nonsensical than usual script, no imagination, and a plodding pace. So, anyway, now I have the entire series, which is, I admit, a decidedly dubious achievement.
That pretty much covers the month of scary movie viewing. Mixed in there were a few Netflix rentals - some fun Mystery Science Theater episodes, the remake of My Bloody Valentine (which was pretty decent, actually), Sam Raimi's Drag Me To Hell (disappointing), and 1981's twisted crapfest, The Pit.
Both my wife and I love Halloween - and scary movies, 'natch - and while we're going through some rough times, it was nice to escape every evening into the shadowy alternate reality of those movies. Make-believe can be a great refuge, you know?