Learn of the Legends

For fans of the horror movie genre, as well as science fiction, fantasy, action, crime, dramas, and every single other genre out there, makeup effects have been around since the beginning of the art form. Turning actors into someone different, whether it be into someone older, a different gender, or something that doesn’t exist in our reality, it was the job of the makeup artist to make that transformation happen. In the beginning, sometimes it was the actor themselves that did it, especially ones like Lon Chaney who constantly turned himself into different characters. Eventually, the craft was taken on by individuals that not only carried on the art form, but created techniques and the makeup products themselves, advancing the artform even more. They allowed writers and directors to show filmgoers something they’ve never seen before onscreen. And a century later, these talented people are still doing it. Now, thanks to authors Howard Berger and Marshall Julius, you’ll be able to learn even more about them!

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Friday Favorites: Dick Smith Remembered

Dicksmith 1 (1)

For this Friday Favorites, we’re going to do something a little different. On this day in 1922, Richard Emerson Smith was born, in Larchmont, New York, and would grow up to become one of the greatest makeup artist of all time. When it comes to the horror genre, while he did work on a few, it was nowhere near as many as some of his contemporaries or the next generation of artists, such as Rick Baker, Stan Winston, or Tom Savini. But the ones he did work on, literally changed movie history. For the longest time, I thought 44-year old Max Von Sydow was a much older man because of the old age makeup Smith did on him for The Exorcist (1973). Not only did he do the character makeup for Marlon Brando in The Godfather (1972), but also the realistic bullet hits as well. Continue reading

Movie Review: The Alligator People (1959)


The Alligator People (1959)
Directed by Roy Del Ruth
Starring Beverly Garland, Bruce Bennett, Lon Chaney Jr., George Macready, Frieda Inescort, Richard Crane, Douglas Kennedy.

As a young movie fan, we would get used to the fact that sometimes, just sometimes, the movie title didn’t exactly live up to what actually took place in the film. Yes, I know it’s hard to believe, but it did happen every now and then. Still does today, to be completely honest. But not with The Alligator People! So for that fact alone, you have to give the makers of this one credit! An alligator head on a human body now may get a snicker or laugh, but as a kid, it was just awesome. Even excluding that, there are many things about this film that still make it enjoyable today. Continue reading

Midway’s Dusk to Dawn Horrorfest

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At the recent Flashback Weekend, they announced the date for this year’s Dusk to Dawn Horrorfest and 3 out of the 4 features they will be screening. And as always, it is one you are not going to want to miss.

Taking place on Saturday, Sept. 21st, they will be screening undoubtedly one of the scariest films ever made, The Exorcist (1973). I know the first time I watched this was on TV in the severely edited version and it still kept me awake at night. It is a film that still packs a punch and has not lost any of its effectiveness to creep into the audiences’ psyche. With great performances from Jason Miller, Max Von Sydow, Lee J. Cobb, Linda Blair, and of course, Ellen Burstyn, who gives a performance that I think is one of the reason this movie is so powerful, since we are living through her character. Not to mention the incredible makeup effects by Dick Smith (and his young assistant Rick Baker). Seeing this one the big screen will really be a religious experience! Continue reading