Archive for October, 2013

What is horror? What is scary? What terrifies people? These are questions that writers have been asking themselves for centuries and that filmmakers have been asking themselves for the last century. The answer is…who knows? What defines horror varies from person to person because what is scary changes from person to person. What may chill one person to the bone may be laughable to another. That makes it very difficult to say whether or not a story, book, TV show, or film is scary simply because it depends on the audience.

Let’s narrow down the medium a little and discuss horror a little more. For the last month we here at the You Don’t Know Shit About Fuck blog have been discussing some of our favorite horror movies in celebration of Halloween which has raised the questions at hand. From the early 20th century, filmmakers have attempted to scare audiences with both adaptations of other works, literary and cinematic, and with original stories. From early silent works such as Nosferatu, through the Universal Monsters, and slasher Icons Michael Myers and Jason Voorhees, all the way through recent films such as The Conjuring, the film industry has always had a thing for trying to scare audiences and the audience has always been there for horror.

Horror, specifically cinema, has a wide range of sub-genres under the main umbrella genre because as we said earlier, scary things change from person to person. Some of the highest grossing and most loved horror films are in the “Slasher” sub-genre, which to me is pretty self explanatory. Characters such as Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, Leatherface, and the various incarnations of Ghostface have been scaring the crap out of audiences for decades. Lets face it, what’s not terrifying about a 6’5 300lb unstoppable guy in a hockey mask weilding a machete? For many though, that just doesnt cut it, pun very much intended.

In 1968, horror got a new face…a dead one. Rising cultural tensions in the United States inspired young filmmaker George A. Romero to create what is now an iconic genre of horror, the zombie film. With Night Of The Living Dead, horror as we knew it changed forever. That original film spawned hundreds of imitators and inspired hundreds more to blaze their own trail. Romero himself made several very successful, high quality sequels and they all had something to say unlike many of his contemporaries. The zombie genre has come a long way from midnight shows to big budget, prime time TV shows and blockbuster films. However, all of them owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Romero, without whom the genre most likely would not exist.

Other sub-genres include the always popular ghost/demon based supernatural genre. With terrifying classics such as The Exorcist, Poltergeist, and Child’s Play and more modern films like The Exorcism of Emily Rose, The Innkeepers, and the Conjuring, paranormal films have always kept audiences covering their eyes as well. Other popular styles of horror include monster movies like the classic Dracula and Frankenstein films, Sci-Fi films such as Alien, Event Horizon, and Cloverfield have kept audiences screaming as well.

Thankfully for cinephiles and horror enthusiasts such as us here at YDKSAF, there is alot of shit that scares people. We are lucky enough to live in a time when studios try their best to pack the most scares into a horror film. Sometimes they hit, other times they miss and that goes back to the definition of horror changing with every individual. Over the years there have been a lot of great, and a lot of terrible, films made in an attempt to make people check their closets or turn on a light before entering a room and for that I am very thankful. A few of them have even made me check around corners or get scared at a bump in the night. Mostly though, horror is a great escape because unfortunately, the world is alot more terrifying and ugly than anything Hollywood can crank out. Thanks for being along for the ride with us this month, we have really had alot of fun and can’t wait to do it again next year. Don’t worry though, Halloween isn’t quite over yet…

-Heath

Follow us on Twitter

@ShitAboutFuck
@onetripdown
@dhbates87

“I see dead people”

Those four words became iconic in the summer of 1999. With The Sixth Sense, M. Night Shyamalan made his first real splash in the film industry after making a couple of heartfelt yet largely ignored films. It was a cultural phenomenon that summer raking in large sums of money and making stars of Haley Joel Osment and Mr. Shyamalan as well. As several other films we have discussed this month, this isn’t necessarily a horror film but it shares a similarly terrifying tone. It certainly scared the shit out of the 12 year old me when it was released.

The film tells the story of a young boy named Cole Sear who is dealing with being at an awkward age and having divorced parents. Oh yeah, theres that whole being able to see wandering and sometimes angry spirits as well…that can’t really help matters much. It is simultaneously telling the story of psychiatrist Dr. Malcolm Crowe who, a year after being shot by a disturbed former patient who then turned the gun on himself, takes Cole’s case. Dr. Crowe is trying to deal with the fact that his marriage is deteriorating while trying to avoid failing Cole the way he did with the patient who shot him. After some very well written and performed dramatic cinema came the incredible twist ending that nobody stopped talking about for months, which I won’t spoil in case you’ve ignored this gem.

Mr. Shyamalan went on to make a couple more decent films, even one or two with a decent twist ending. Unfortunately for all of us, he never quite matched this film in quality. Fortunately for some and not so much for others, this was a high point in their career. It revitalized Bruce Willis’s lagging career and made him a huge star. After a couple of relatively well known films, Haley Joel Osment disappeared into the indie cinema abyss. Luckily, all parties involved left this gem for cinephiles to enjoy for years to come. For a film that will make you never look at a kitchen full of open cabinets or drawers the same, give this one a shot. Stay terrified, Happy Halloween to all!

-Heath

Follow us on Twitter
@ShitAboutFuck
@onetripdown
@dhbates87

“Lets do the Time Warp again”

What can we say about The Rocky Horror Picture Show that hasn’t already been said? This film is a cinematic, musical, and pop culture phenomenon. It ignited my love for a certain campy, slightly over the top flair in cinema and music as well. Originally conceived and performed as a stage production simply known as The Rocky Horror Show by British writer and musician Richard O’ Brien in 1973, it was so popular it spawned the film adaptation. The film adaptation was such a cult hit, that it spawned a brief revival of the show this time on Broadway.

Let us dig a little deeper, shall we? Brad and Janet are a recently engaged couple who’s car breaks down in a rural area on a stormy night. Naturally the only place around to to take refuge is a creepy mansion on a hill. The sketchy hunchback butler answers the door and brings the couple in and the fun begins. After a few more colorful characters are introduced, the star, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, makes his appearance in all of his trashy, over the top glory. After that, the real fun begins. Throw in a suspicious professor, a muscly Frankenstein, a dead biker delivery man, and a colorful cast of supporting characters and you get the piece of art we know and love today.

This really isn’t a horror movie but to me the tone fits the season really well. On top of everything, its just a trashy good time. If by some random sequence of events you have never seen TRHPS, it still shows at midnight showings in theaters all over the country or you can get it at pretty much any store that sells DVDs. Give this one a watch if you want a new favorite movie.

-Heath

Follow us on Twitter

@ShitAboutFuck
@onetripdown
@dhbates87

The House Of The Devil

Posted: October 28, 2013 in Movies, Op-ed, Reviews
Tags: , , , ,

“During the 1980s, over 70% of American adults believed in the existence of abusive Satanic Cults. This film is based on true and unexplained events.”

Ok, so thats not really true…but it does give the film a little more mystique doesnt it? Written and directed by up and coming indie filmmaker Ti West, this movie was shot on a tiny budget and released straight to home video. It was envisioned by West as a throwback, vintage 80s style horror film. The fact that it is set in the 80s helps a little too. He sets a very different and specific tone that really captures the 80s spirit including a vintage soundtrack and vintage style zoom ins.

Lets dig in, shall we? Samantha is a broke college girl who just found the apartment of her dreams and the deal is almost too good to be true. The only problem? Shes a broke college student with no money for deposits. After seeing an add for a babysitter and setting up a meeting, the man never shows up. Back to square one I guess…wrong. The man gets more sketchy but eventually hires her and reveals that he was lying and sweetens the pot by quadrupling her pay. Despite her best friends protests, she agrees and things get really bad from there. To say the least, things never get happy.

In my humble opinion, in 20 years Ti West will be one of those directors that we look at like Craven, Carpenter, and Romero. Which is to say, a master of horror. He executes the vintage look and vibe expertly. This is a must see for any true horror fan. It will most likely make you never want to babysit again.

-Heath

@ShitAboutFuck
@onetripdown
@dhbates87

“People are strange, when you’re a stranger.”

Its always difficult when your parents get divorced. Add to that having to move with your mother and older brother, oh and your moving in with your eccentric grandfather. Did we mention that gramps lives in wonderful Santa Carla, which just happens to be the murder capital of the world. What makes Santa Carla the murder capital of the world is the one thing that gramps could never stomach…all the damn vampires.

Mike and Sam are just trying to make the best of a bad situation. Sam befriends the Frog brothers and they inform him that the town is crawling with blood suckers. Meanwhile Mike falls in with a bad crowd, they show him their hangout where he drinks Davids blood thinking its wine. Did I mention that David is a vampire. Side effects of drinking a vampires blood include: aversion to sunlight, sensitivity to sound, loss of reflection and ability to fly. The brothers Frog tell Sam if he wants to save his brother from becoming a suckhead they must kill the head vamp…if only they knew who that was.

The Lost Boys is one of those great 80’s movies that was able to mix horror with just the right amount of laughs thrown in the mix. I know Joel Schumacher directed it, which makes it even harder for me to say good things about it (I still hold a grudge after the Batman fiasco) but I really do enjoy this film with its all star cast and amazing special effects. For those reasons and more The Lost Boys gets a rating of: Theres no Tinker Bell here. Till next time friends, stay entertained.

-D

@ShitAboutFuck
@dhbates87
@onetripdown

“I’m you’re number one fan.” How many celebrities have had chills sent down their spine upon hearing those words. Seems everyday theres some new cocka doodie stalker invading the privacy of someone famous. Maybe they don’t all get to this extreme but every one of them have the potential to escalate. Lets talk Misery.

Meet Paul, a successful writer on his way home to New York after finishing his latest novel but Mother Nature has other plans in the form of a blizzard. Paul ends up off the road and upside down and surely would have died if not for Annie. Back at Annies house Paul meets his number one fan, who can’t help but snoop around in his belongings until she just happens to find his latest unpublished work. All is well until she discovers that her favorite character is killed off and then Annie snaps. I warn you friends, it doesn’t look good for our pal Paul, especially after she hobbles him.

I know there are some of you that will argue that Misery isn’t a horror movie and to that I say, let me stick a block of wood between your ankles and swing a sledgehammer at your feet, see how horrific you find that. This marks the fifth entry for Mr. King. in our discussion and the first for Rob Reiner. The reason I picked Misery tonight is because Annie not only terrorizes you psychologically but she will back that shit up like a u-haul truck full of physical torture. For those reasons and more, Misery gets a rating of: Watch it With Someone Thats Committed. Till next time friends, stay entertained.

-D

@ShitAboutFuck
@dhbates87
@onetripdown

Boys and girls of every age, wouldn’t you like to see something strange? Come with us and you will see, this our town of Halloween. This is one of those movies I have to watch at least once around Halloween. It may not fall into the horror genre but it deserves honorable mention here in our month long discussion. So Zero light the way as we fly into The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Another Halloween has come to an end and Jack Skellington, A.K.A The Pumpkin King, has grown bored with the same old routine. While out for a walk and song one evening he discovers the portal to Christmas land where he finds everything he thinks he’s been missing. He goes back to Halloween town with the plan of taking over Christmas. Jack and the citizens of Halloween town spend the next year plotting, planning and creating. Sandy Claws gets kidnapped, Sally tries to discourage Jack and in the end Jack learns that the grass isn’t always greener under the snow. And if by some chance you haven’t watched this gem, then I won’t spoil Oogie Boogie for you.

Celebrating twenty years, The Nightmare Before Christmas is just an awesome film and one that has become a tradition in my home. Even if you ignore the fact that it took three years and a hundred people to complete this stop motion masterpiece, even if you ignore the amazing soundtrack and the Nightmare Revisited version featuring rock covers of the songs you can’t ignore the great story behind it all. For those reasons and many more The Nightmare Before Christmas gets a rating of: This Is Halloween. Till next time friends, Stay entertained.

-D

@ShitAboutFuck
@dhbates87
@onetripdown