Tuesday, June 28, 2011

What if your Neighbors were Zombies? Well, more than they already are...

D. Various
No Distributor as of Yet

This low budget anthology approach to the zombie film manages to do the impossible, find a fresh and original approach to the undead. Let’s face it, zombies are played out. Even George Romero has hit a brick wall when it comes to films about the zombie plague, but here comes a relatively low-budgeted flick from South Korea to finally find the fresh blood in those bloated and rotting corpses.

After a near brilliant animated opening that explains how the virus was unleashed from experiments in trying to cure AIDS we are plunged headlong into the short stories that make up the film, The first one is called CRACK about a young dork man who lives alone all day building action figures who is somehow bitten by some sort of zombie living  in a crack under his bed. Comedic, really disturbing and disgusting hijinks ensue. If cannibalism or feet upset you this segment will not sit well with you. The next segment is called RUNAWAY and is much more serious with a young couple dealing with how their relationship has been affected over the yearlong affliction. The time they have spent with the man slowly rotting away since he has become a zombie.Their relationship has now hit a dangerous snag now he has hit a point were the virus is making the hunger unpredictable.

MOTHER I LOVE YOU deals with the lengths one character will go to keep her loved one with her even though she is indeed a zombie. This segment is easily the most savage and dark of the bunch with a young woman keeping her zombie mother in her apartment. The lengths she has to go to are very difficult for her and the viewer to endure. AGE OF VACCINE deals with the doctors running with an unregistered vaccine that is actually nothing of the sort. In reality it is a suped up accident that turns people into more of a "super zombie" and the rescue mission that stumbles upon them. AFTER THAT...I'M SORRY hits on the unique concept of what life would be like after a person might be cured of being the living dead. This is the most politically outward of the movie, dealing with racism, societies view of the "other" class-ism and ultimately how we process "revenge.  PAINKILLER is sort of a final wrap up of the whole piece that puts it all in perspective.

What makes THE NEIGHBOR ZOMBIE so great is that it has a very different point of view than the average zombie horror movie there days. Those films fall into two very distinct camps now. The Romero inspired political message horror/zombie film or the RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD/SHAUN OF THE DEAD inspired comedy hipster postmodernism take on the whole shebang. Very few other films fall outside of these lines. Only something as offbeat as say PONTYPOOL has the guts to do something different. This however really honestly does have a n unqiue vision and point of view. Yes the film is funny, and yes the movie is a political satire. But it is more often than not a film about people, a film about how relationships either work or fail, about how society reacts when relationships are put under stress and how our personal interactions are really the core of what life is all about.

It is a rare film that can work as a political polemic, a funny satire, a truly scary horror film and a heart breaking look at family and relationships. THE NEIGHBOR ZOMBIE manages to nail all of these and more. Innovated in design, exciting in execution, and digs into your brain to leave you satiated. Now if the movie can just get real distribution we will have something.

Review © Andrew Copp

Babe Overboard!!! KILLER YACHT PARTY sinks like the titanic!!!

D. Piotr Uzarowicz
1.78 non-anamorphic

From the name of the director of this flick you would assume you are getting some foreign slasher action. But the first ten minutes are some L.A. hipster insider look at the club scene. Sort of a how to get into a sleaze club and how it works from the inside. That should be the first sign you have been had. Two fresh on the streets of L.A chicks hit the scene trying to party, one "hot" blonde named Lacee and her "plain" friend named appropriately enough Jane. We see how to pay off the door man, how to let the owner of the club grope you for drinks, how the hot guys deal drugs and how it just doesn't fuckin pay to be plain cause in L.A. that means you are a "dog" and you wont get in free anywhere. Somehow the babe still get invited the Yacht party the next day where some dude who looks like a reject from the TWILIGHT Movies is hanging around the sideline obviously waiting to do something nefarious. Not to mention the really pissed off Gen-X drug dealers that were thrown out of the club who are gonna have to get some action of their own. Could be a KILLER YACHT PARTY. OH SHIT!!!

So the whole interchangeable cast end up out on the water on the yacht we later find out is supposedly haunted by the ghost of its owner that was killed in some insurance scam.  We get an interminable amount of walking down hallways, partying down, and conversations to convince us that Jane is oh so plain and not compatible because she does things like read books and doesn't want to be int he spotlight. A weird thing is that the movie is chocked full of L.A. styled bimbos but none of them take their clothes off or do their duty to fill the movie with skin and sin. The movie takes itself way too seriously, never committing to being the exploitation movie that it really is. The one very brief nude scene has the gal sitting on the toilet for crying out loud. Well maybe some Troma fans are into that type of thing...
"Oh bitch you is so damn Plain! Your name is probably Jane! see this movie is clever like that!"

It is 47 minutes before the first death scene happens and nothing is shown. At least the first dude to die isn't the only black guy in the cast, that is one of the ONLY clich├ęs the movie doesn't hit. Supposedly this is a slasher movie, or a supernatural thriller, but it spends far more time with characters walking around, or moping about because they are having a shitty night, than it does attempting to thrill in anyway.  The movie falls into a very rote pattern of terrible kill scene, then back to the disco party, then more characters walking around looking for a place to fuck, then kill scene, disco, walking around. Repeat. The editing on the kill scenes is so terrible, the dancing so bad and the walking so boring that NONE of it matters at all.
A movie like this needs something special to set it apart. An interesting premise, a memorable killer, or at least a sense of viciousness that makes horror fans want to seek it out. KILLER YACHT PARTY has none of these things. It does however offer a reasonably well mounted production where the cinematography is nicely done, with beautiful lighting all the way around for the entire film. I can at least say that much about it. It is professionally mounted and would look good on, say, cable television. But in the areas where this kind of thing needs to count, the movie falls down more than a toddler learning to walk for the first time. In fact it is a struggle to get through.

One last thought. The final reveal on who the killer is would actually be kind of offensive if the movie around it was better made, but here it is not a surprise at all and just lame.

Review © Andrew Copp

Vezi mai multe din Cinema, movie trailers pe 220.ro

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Remembering the VHS days: MAJOR VIDEO

Seeing how people today watch movies is really weird and frustrating to me. I grew up so enamored with them that seeing people look at movies as such a disposable medium makes me really sad. Going to the movies was such an event in my childhood, such a really special thing, that I have that imprinted on my very DNA I think. I grew up in the era when VCR’s were introduced and it was something my family had to actually SAVE money to get. I am pretty sure we used tax return money or something as we got it at the beginning of the year 1985 and it was a game changer in our house hold. I suddenly didn’t have to wait for movies I loved to be on cable TV or the late show. Something that today’s generation have no concept of. I remember going with my Step-Father to Video Towne and getting our fist membership and begging the clerk for all the horror movies I wanted to see and more importantly my family to see. For some reason I really wanted everyone to see THE STUFF. I think because I saw it in the theater the fall before with a friend but my family did not. Being a newer release no one had it in, it was always rented.

I remember we rented AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON,  THE BEAST WITHIN and I believe TAXI DRIVER and borrowed from our neighbors I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE (which I was not allowed to watch just yet). The game was ON people.

Going to the video store became a pilgrimage for me. I am sure I drove my parents fucking crazy as I would spend hours going through the racks looking for movies to rent. I was mesmerized by the boxes, just taking in the artwork and synopsis. Being a kid I was still drawn to the stuff I kind of knew from commercials or cable, so I made up weird mythology in my head. Those BIG BOX movies were somehow forbidden to me. Because they were garish and titles I didn’t know, I surmised they had to be STRONGER stuff or somehow DIRTY in someway and I stayed away from them. Naturally this made them more fascinating because of  that. It would be a number of years before I would get my balls our of the sling and rent one of them. But that was okay because there were hundreds of other movies to go through first. Often I would find one I liked and I would rent it over and over again. THE EVIL DEAD for example I kept taking back to the store and asking to rent right back out, doing so for three rental periods straight. CREEPERS aka PHENOMENA was another one I did that with. Mind you this was when I was a young teen and couldn’t drive yet, so my Mom was always nice enough to indulge my insanity, willing to take me not only TO the video store, but to return the tapes too. Knowing full well that once I got there, I was jut going to want to rent more of the damn things. But she almost never complained. Honestly, I am not sure how we did it because we were super poor. But somehow we found money to rent movies. I’m sure conservatives today would find a problem with that and say we shouldn’t been allowed to.

I was also lucky in that Dayton had a wealth of video stores that had lots of movies. Looking back on it now some of the crazy shit I was able to see is astounding. This whole blog today was triggered by a discussion I was having on Facebook were a friend and I were remembering a couple of old video stores. Those memories made me want to write a little more in detail about said stores. I could probably get a few blogs out of each store if I so choose, so lets see how it goes. The one we were talking about was a place called:


Major Video was a chain store that was located in Huber Heights in a shopping center on Old Troy Pike and Chambersburg by a K-Mart that only recently went out of business (the K-Mart that is). As per usual Major Video was driven out of Business when Blockbuster built a brand new store in the fucking parking lot in front of Major Video. But the years they were open I found myself renting there quite often. I mistakenly posted on facebook that I rented there when I was 14, but that isn’t true. I think I started renting there when I was 15 and continued to do so until they closed when I was around 18 or 19 years old.

They were a very cool store that had a wide variety of the typical stuff any chain store would have. But the one thing that made them unique was they had a very large enclosed horror section. A giant room with two entrances that was always kept really dark and lit by can lights so you could see the boxes but not much else. In truth they probably did this so stuffy parents didn’t have to let their kids see all the scary and gruesome boxes of the movies they had. But it also functioned nicely as atmosphere, and made you feel like you were looking at something forbidden. The horror selection there was fantastic. They had all the Charles Band WIZARD VIDEO big box releases. I remember when they got that second wave of stuff they put out that included MUTANT HUNT, ROBOT HOLOCAUST and HEADLESS EYES.

I never actually rented them, because I was just convinced they were junk (I was actually a fairly snooty renter in my younger years. Now I have mad love for those movies) but I would just stare at the cover art for a long time as it was endlessly impressive.  But the movies only ever got one mention in Fangoria, which was my bible on the matters at the time and it was a brief mention in the article on the making of the movie BREEDERS (which they had too) so I passed on them. I did however take a chance and rent DARIO ARGNETO’S WORKD OF HORROR, a title that no other video store in Dayton EVER had. What a find that was! I watched that thing so many times it was insane. As was the routine at that point I ran a dub of it off and would watch it anytime I needed a little inspiration. I was well beyond the renting a title multiple times. My collection had begun and I would buy movies if I found them afford ably enough. Major Video also had the unrated STREET TRASH in the horror section, another one I took home and shared with my friends who had not gotten to see it with me theatrically.

I remember one title Major Video had that I was afraid to rent was COMBAT SHOCK. For all the gore movies I devoured at the time, I was still pretty uncomfortable with violence that had too much reality to it. I was very familiar with the movie thanks to DEEP RED magazine and Chas Balun’s and Steve Bissette’s praise of the film. But I was just certain that the real life milieu of the film was going to be too much for me so I always left it on the shelf. This was the unrated/uncut VHS of the film too, which is now VERY hard to come by.  But around this time I began to work with Jim VanBebber on what was to become THE MANSON FAMILY and we talked films all the time, and COMBAT SHOCK was one he talked up to me in a big way, along with HENRY PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER which he gave a copy of to me (and not coincidentally was the OTHER movie that at the time I was actually afraid to watch on the same grounds). So I got my nerve up and rented it and watched it one afternoon. I found the movie to be powerful, thought provoking and EXTREMELY disturbing. The low budget did make it a bit easier to watch, but it still gets under your skin. HENRY on the other hand is so real it is almost too much. Both films had a profound impact on me though and were my initiation into the more transgressive side of filmmaking. My baptism by fire into the abyss. I’ve never looked back since.

Major Video provided me with lighted moments too. I remember renting one of my first “dirty” videos there. I want to say it was one of those PRIVATE SCREENINGS late night European import Skinamax type movies. I was probably very taken by the cover which featured some beauty in white high heels and similar lingerie. The memory is fuzzy now, but I had to have driven there, or at least been driven there by a friend, so at worst I was 15 years old, probably 16. I distinctly remember taking it up to the counter with a couple other tapes. Probably horror movies knowing me. Hoping that they didn’t say anything about it. Never really thinking all they would do is tell me I couldn't rent it and put it back on the shelf. What would they have done? Call my parents? Call the police? Put my picture on a some pervert bulletin board? It’s not like I was showing my cock in the store or something. I had yet to actually work a video store so I didn’t realize that the clerks really just don’t give a shit.

A 15 year old kid sneaking skinamax movies is hardly a blip on the radar when there are people stealing movies and REAL perverts masturbating in the actual XXX back room. They never said a word to me and it went off without a hitch. I don’t even remember anything about the movie except that the woman on the cover was NOT in it, and it was BORING as all get it out. It wasn’t even funny like those Fairy Tale rip off movies you would see on late night TV sometimes. After that I made it a point to at least rent the PLAYBOY and PENTHOUSE stuff. I still thought it too risky to actually try to sneak into the porno room…

Major Video was also the ONLY place I have EVER seen a copy of Larry Buchanan’s documentary SEX AND THE ANIMALS complete with Animals about to get busy right on the cover. I always wondered who were the people who rented that tape? Did science teachers rent it to show to their classes? Was there some freaky sex cults that watched it for kicks? I just never understood the demographic for it, or the wherewithal it probably took to make the damn thing…

Like I previously mentioned Major Video was a hot bed of activity and did well until Blockbuster video literally grew out of the ground like a disease infested weed in front of their store almost over night. They last for a short time after that, but the competition killing practices that corporate giant used were too much and eventually they closed their doors. Sad thing is that Blockbuster lasted until very recently with the downturn finally making them go under too.

Major Video was a cool place. One of my favorites to rent at. But not my favorite, there were a couple of other places on the West Side of town that I adored. Perhaps I will write about CASTLE VIDEO or VIDEO NEWS in the near future…

Article © Andrew Copp

* After finding that PRIVATE SCREENINGS picture and realizing that is indeed the very video I rented that day, I now know I had rented a CUT version of a JESS FRANCO movie! The hilarity involved in that is not lost on me...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Feeling nostalgic for the VHS days of old? Look into THE BASEMENT!!!

How many of you big time fans out there still have love for the analogue goodness that is VHS? I know a lot of you do. Lots of you still scour the flea markets and bargain thrift shops looking for discount tapes of those wonderful shot on tape atrocities from the 80's that were labors of love for those creators. Well those crazies are ALTERNATIVE CINEMA heard your cries and are putting out a box set JUST FOR YOUR CRAZY LUNATICS! Check this out a VHS/DVD combo from THE BASEMENT....

Camp Retro ‘80s
“Big Box” VHS / DVD 5-Film Collection
Available Sept. 13, 2011
New York, NY – Camp Motion Pictures, the home entertainment company specializing in 80’s and 80’s-style DIY cinema, unleashes a terrifyingly cool micro-budget cinema collection of five feature films in an exclusive VHS Collector’s Package that Joe Ziemba of BleedingSkull.com calls “A brain-baking vortex of D.I.Y. gore, suburban angst, and trash-gore exuberance!”   
Eye-catching authentically ‘80s VHS poster illustration by noted graphic artist Vince Evans and “Big Box” design contains the never-before-released 1989 feature, The Basement, on VHS and DVD along with SOV cult cinema favorites Video Violence 1&2, Captives, and Cannibal Campout on DVD .    
About The Basement
The Basement is the lost 1989 Super 8 anthology feature film directed by Timothy O’Rawe (Ghoul School ). Restored by director of photography Michael Raso in 2010,The Basement is a shining example of 80’s DIY cinema inspired by Amicus Films’ Tales from the Crypt and features elaborate special make-up and creature effects by Scott Hart.   
The Basement Synopsis.
Four strangers are summoned to the basement of an abandoned house by a mysterious entity known only as The Sentinel.  One after another, they are forced to witness heinous deeds they have yet to commit – and which will damn them for all eternity.
Swimming Pool – An unfaithful woman disposes of the evidence with a little help from a demonic water spirit.
Trick or Treat – Classic monsters exact revenge on a bitter man who refuses to honor Halloween.
Zombie Movie – Cocaine, hookers and reanimated corpses wreak havoc on the set of an independent film.
Home Sweet Home – A young man questions his sanity after purchasing a house where torture and mass murder were committed 6 years before. 
About Captives
Referred to as “the most accomplished SOV horror film from this era”*, Captives, the sophomore effort of director Gary Cohen (Video Violence 1&2), is now available for the first time in this director-approved version.    *Bleedingskull.com
Captives Synopsis  
Taken hostage by three violently deranged criminals, a woman fights back to save her baby and mother-in-law’s lives in this gritty and suspenseful crime drama from Gary Cohen (Video Violence 1&2)
Video Violence Synopsis
In this gore-soaked cult classic, a young couple opens a video store in a small town populated by violence-addicted amateur filmmakers, lead by the demented Howard and Eli.   
Video Violence 2 Synopsis
The sequel to Video Violence finds Howard and Eli pirating a cable TV channel for the purpose of furthering their brand of homegrown depravity, madness and murder.
Cannibal Campout Synopsis
Deranged orphans torture, mutilate and murder innocent campers in this DIY classic from Jon McBride. 
Plus you get all these insane SPECIAL FEATURES!

Frighteningly Enjoyable Bonus Features
The Basement Camp Retro ‘80s “Big Box” VHS / DVD Collection is loaded with new commentaries and spine-chilling extras including:
  • The Basement Commentary
  • Captives Commentary
  • Video Violence Commentary
  • Video Violence 2 Commentary
  • Cannibal Campout Commentary
  • The Basement Outtakes
  • The Basement New Segment
  • Short film: Vengeance
  • Short film: Say No To Drugs
  • Meadowlands Showcase Segment: Halloween Take Over
  • Meadowlands Showcase Segment:  The Long Road to Karaoke
  • Meadowlands Showcase Segment: Long is the Night
  • Interview with director Gary Cohen
Technical Information The Basement 5-Film VHS and DVD Collection  
·        New, functional VHS and DVD copy The Basement
·        DVD The Basement
·        DVD Captives and Cannibal Campout
·        DVD Video Violence and Video Violence 2
·        Street Date: August 16, 2011
·        Copyright: 2011 Camp Motion Pictures , all rights reserved
·        Price:  $34.98
·        UPC: 612385007996
·        Total Run Time Collection:
·        Format:  VHS and Dual Layer DVD
·        Aspect Ratio:
·        Rating: Not Rated
·        English language, Stereo 2.0
Get your copy at Alternative Cinema

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Keep on Walking...

I've only Walked out of Five movies in my life...

Everyone who knows me knows I am an insane movie goer. There was a time in my life when I would see several movies a week theatrically. When I worked several theaters and had the keys to one in particular I had a habit of staying after and running the films for myself or friends and saw plenty that way too (man I miss that place, or what it used to be I should say). But over the years and thousands of movies I have seen theatrically I have only ever walked out of five movies in my life. Some kinda weird circumstances I guess, some just anger inducing. It is late and I thought I would share.

#1 CRITTERS - I was fairly young when this came out, can't remember exactly how old. Early teens, maybe 12 or so. I was dying to see it because of the write ups in fangoria and almost had my Mom convinced to let me see it at the Kon-Tiki theater on a double bill with Lamberto Bava's Demons! I was too young to understand things like Grindhouse theaters and what went on in them. But my Mom wisely understood that the Kon-Tiki was not a good place to drop off a young teen for a three and a half hour stretch. So when it finally landed at the Loews Ames we went and saw it together. Now the Lowes Ames was a second run theater for the most poor in Dayton, Ohio. It was a two screen affair on Main st. in an area that wasn't too hot. But in 1985 it wasn't the ghetto it is now either. The theater charged 80 cents for a ticket. We had been seeing movies there for years. Raiders of the Lost Ark, Escape From New York (my first R rated movie btw) Hardly Working with Jerry Lewis. But it had been a couple of years since we had been there preferring drive ins as the mode of seeing flicks. A lot had changed. It was now the flea pit of Dayton. We made it maybe a half hour into the movie before the Hobos and drug addicts freaked us out too much. The guy across the aisle from us was smoking dope and kept dropping matches and his joint and temporarily setting the seat in front of him on fire. Vagrants kept wandering up and down the aisles. I was the only kid there, and my mom the only woman. we did not feel safe. So we left. Didn't ask for our money back but gave a bitching out to the manager on the way out, but I'm sure they didn't care. No one got killed so it wasn't a big deal. My first time ever walking out of a movie. I was crushingly disappointed too because I wanted to see Critters so damn bad. 

2# THE FIRST POWER - Years later when I was 18 or 19 I went to see this occult horror flick with a huge group of friends at the new multiplex in town. Once again I made it about 20 minutes to a half hour before outside forces made me leave. When I was younger I had a hell of a temper. Really bad. I would go off like a motherfucker about shit and not care about who saw it. I didn't give a fuck who I scared the shit out of. I've gotten much better as I've grown older and am pretty mellow now. But then, watch out! So my friends and I are chilling before the movie when a group of teenagers, probably 16 years old or so all crowd in behind us. Now I have this power in a movie theater to attract the biggest douschbags in the place just by my presence. I can be in an empty theater and the biggest, loudest dumbfuck will come in and sit behind me. Happens all the time, to this day. It was in full force that night. These kids were obnoxious, rude, loud, spoiled little fuckwits and wanted the world to know it. We all prayed they would shut the fuck up when the movie started. They didn't. About ten minutes into the movie I hear them behind me discussing the ACID they have brought with them and distributing it amongst them. Clearly they were about to get fucked up and make more noise. Now earlier before the movie started, we had moved once previously because another group of idiots were being loud and we didn't want to be around them during the movie. So this was the SECOND group of fucktards we had encountered. They continued to talk and get louder and louder. I finally lost my cool, spun around in my seat and got about two inches away from the face of the kid directly behind me, who was also the loudest, stupidest of the bunch. I screamed at the top of my lungs "SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU FUCKING RETARD OR I'M COMING BACK THERE AND RIPPING YOUR FUCKING HEART OUT!!!" I stared at him for about thirty seconds and then just sat back in my seat. My friends were mortified. The theater was staring at me in silence and fear. I was far scarier than the piece of shit movie we were all watching. Some people were glad the kids were now shut up. But I think most were just terrified. There was a consensus amongst my friends it was a good idea that we leave just in case someone tried to shoot us later. We went and got our money back. The funniest thing is that the movie was shitty anyway and to this day I've never seen the rest of it.

#3 ARMY OF DARKNESS -I'm gonna commit horror fan heresy here. I detest this movie. I think it is a big load of shit. let me start by saying I LOVE the first EVIL DEAD. it is one of the movies that made me want to become a filmmaker. I love EVIL DEAD 2 a lot as well for different reasons. I didn't mind it was a comedy because it was still a horror movie too. I was stoked to see ARMY OF DARKNESS. really, really excited. My friend saw it earlier in the day and told me it sucked shit but I had to see it myself anyway. he even came with us to see it again just to see if a second viewing would change his mind. I was working a theater at the time so i got in free. Within five minutes I felt totally cheated as the whole mythos of the other films was replayed for laughs (though I appreciated seeing my then current crush Bridget Fonda) by the crucial half hour mark I literally felt like Sam Raimi was standing at the front of the theater cackling that horrific laugh of his and flipping me off. I felt like that movie was one long fuck you to me because I loved the original so much. I wasn't just disappointed. I was offended. My girlfriend thought it was stupid and my friend was just convinced his first prognosis was right. So we left and saw a different movie. Unfortunately that was the American remake of The Vanishing which wasn't much better.

#4 SLITHER - This story is not as interesting or exciting. I used to go see movies with my mom every Sunday. We haven't lately because her health is not so good and the cold weather makes it harder for her to get around. But anyway, we would normally go to the Danbarry Cinemas which are our local second run houses which only charge $2.75 a ticket. Basically they are current grindhouses with crappy seats, rowdy customers and spotty projection and sound, but they are a deal. We went and saw SLITHER and immediately I noticed the sound was fucked up. It sounded like the soundtrack was running through sand. I hoped it would get better but after about fifteen minutes it never did, so we left and went into the movie 16 BLOCKS instead, which was alright. Weird thing is that no one else in the theater left at all. Another Danbarry story was when we went to see the Lindsey Lohan movie I KNOW WHO KILLED ME.

We didn't technically walk out because we never got to see any of the movie at all. We walked in and sat down and the only other people in the theater were the worst, most intensely frightening white trash family I had ever seen. And I grew up in a white trash ghetto. What made it so bad was that there were like five kids with them varying in ages, none of them being monitored or watched. It was in the smallest theater the place has which is about as big as a large living room anyway. And these kids were spread out over the entire theater. Some in the front, some in the back, some to the side of us etc. The family was right across the aisle from us and were hardcore. The "dad" looked like he just got out of prison that day and had spent all his time pumping iron and getting tattoos. He was clearly making up for lost time drinking. "Mom" was fairly nice looking... from behind. She looked good in fact. But then she turned around and had on a tank top shirt that allowed her sagging muffin stomach to hang out. Which looked like a popped weather balloon of sagging disease ridden skin. There was another fairly normal woman with them. I suspect it was a parole officer. They ALL were talking at the top of their lungs and clearly didn't care they were in public. So we hightailed it the fuck out of there. No way were we gonna watch a white trash thriller with a white trash family cheering it on. We saw SHRECK 3 instead.

#5 THE HILLS HAVE EYES REMAKE - I actually saw this at the drive in with SILENT HILL. I was fucking stoked to be seeing a horror double bill at the drive in. Something I had not done since the 80's. Drive ins only play family friendly fare now so this was a rare, rare occasion, I was pumped. I didn't care if both movies sucked ass. I was watching horror movies the place they were meant to be seen. I was there with my girlfriend at the time and she had gotten babysitting for her son overnight so we could go. It was all good. She wasn't a horror fan, but would watch them occasionally with me. SILENT HILL went over fine. We both liked it manly because it was artistically done. I was biased against THE HILLS HAVE EYES going in because it was a remake of a movie I considered to be pretty damn close to perfect as it stood. The movie started off REALLY strong with the montage of mutated babies and children during the opening credits. Real mutated babies and children. I think that set the tone for my girlfriend right there. 

I wasn't giving the movie much of a chance really and was kinda picking it apart, not noticing the profoundly disturbing effect it was having on my girlfriend. By the time the camper attack happens. She was toast. She was shaken and crying. Not hysterically, but still enough that it upset me. Here was this movie I wasn't taking seriously at all, but it freaked her out completely. She didn't ask for us to leave, but she made it clear she was not liking the movie and it was upsetting her greatly. So I offered for us to go and we left. The ride home was awkward at best, I'm not sure what was said and that night was uncomfortable as well. I felt like an asshole. It wasn't my fault, but I felt like it was. Like I had subjected her to something horrible on purpose and then didn't have the decency to even notice. Our relationship got weird after that. She started taking much more notice of what I was into and how I reacted to it. How much I let it infiltrate into her world and especially the world of her kid. We didn't make it very much longer. Six months maybe. We tried again later down the road, but it was a dead end. I did see the movie a few weeks later, shockingly enough, at the Danbarry with a friend that I hadn't seen in many, many years. We both really, really liked it. The second viewing I found it to be a well made, powerful horror film with a lot of balls. The script is bad, but it has a lot of verve and menace and totally plays it straight. It never fucks with the audience and is mean as hell. The very thing that upset my girlfriend. Funny thing is when we first started dating she rented Last House on the Left just to get a feel of these kinds of movies and was gonna watch it on her own. I dunno if she ever did. I kinda warned her not to.

So that's some stuff out of my brain pan. Just some memories to fondle for a while. It's almost 5:00 am so if there are misspellings and shit, forgive me. I'm tired, sore and going to bed.

(Post script: I wrote this article in 2009 for Facebook. What you are seeing here is a slightly edited and cleaned up version. Also my Mom who appears several times here passed away in 2010. She was the person who often was my movie going partner in crime from a very early age. She was often willing to go to movies most parents would never go to and I owe most of who I am to her.)

© Andrew Copp 2009