Horror scholar David J. Skal has a new book coming out this fall, just in time for Halloween, entitled Fright Favorites: 31 Movies to Haunt Your Halloween and Beyond. Presented by Turner Classic Movies, Skal takes on 31 films ranging from the silent era, hitting a few titles from each decade through the ’80s, and a few beyond that. Most of these everyone will agree are classics, with a few comedies listed in the later day titles. The description in Amazon says they are “family-friendly” but not sure The Exorcist (1973) and The Thing (1982) are ones I would be screening for 8-year old Timmy! Continue reading
Fecund Horror: Slashers, Rape/Revenge, Women in Prison, Zombies and Other Exploitation Dreck
Self-Published in 2016, 158 pages.
By Noah Berlatsky
This was a tough one. I had a feeling that this might fit into one of my Psycho-Babble categories, and boy, was I right. Granted, when you have the word “dreck” in your title, after naming a few sub-genres, it kind of gives you the feeling that these are not spoken with any fondness. Which is even stranger because it does seem like Berlatsky likes a lot of the films he’s writing about.
As with many of these types of books, the authors are very smart, educated, and like to quote a lot of different material, giving credibility to their speculations and theories. But once again, I feel a lot of what is read into these films is just pure Freudian fiddle-faddle, trying to point out anything that could remotely be taken for or looked at in a sexual manner. Therefore, anything that is long and hard is always going to be taken as phallic symbolism. I’m sure it might be in there in some cases, but for the most part… I still call bullshit. Continue reading
Taking Shape: Developing Halloween from Script to Scream
Published by Harker Press, 2019. 439 pages.
By Dustin McNeill & Travis Mullins
The Halloween series, as a whole, is not one that I would say I’m a huge fan of. I love the original and really like its sequel. This might have something to do with it playing at the theater I worked at upon the sequel’s initial release, where I would get to see parts of it over and over and over again, seeing its effect on the audience time after time. And yes, I was one of those original haters on Season of the Witch, but have since gotten over that and realize the pure genius of that entry. But from then on, there was never a sequel that I got excited over, or was waiting for its release.
Sacrilege, you say? I just felt the sequels got dumber with each entry. When Rob Zombie took his turn, while I thought the first one was better than the last several, I still didn’t care for it. And I still am confused at the reaction to the latest one, when we saw the re-re-re-return of Jamie Lee Curtis, with fans acting like it was her first return since the 1981 film.
Now you might be asking yourself why am I stating how much I really don’t care for the Halloween series as a whole? Because even with all of that being stated, I devoured this book! Continue reading
Do we really need yet another book on the Halloween series? Well, since one of the authors is Dustin McNeill, who gave fans so much more insight into the Phantasm series with his book Phantasm Exhumed, then I would say YES! Not to mention that there is always more to learn about movies, especially a series that has been going on for over 40 years.
Just released and available on Amazon, Taking Shape has escaped from Harker Press and has over 400 pages of information about the Halloween series, including Rob Zombies two films, and the recent return of Laurie Strode in H40.
But what can this book bring you that we haven’t gotten already? How about a comprehensive story analysis of each of the films in the series? Or a rundown of all the deleted scenes, as well as the alternate ones. You’ll also get comparisons of early versions of the scripts to the final product, an in-depth dissection of the official novelizations (which could always be quite different than the films), and so much more.
The book is available now through Amazon and is a perfect title for the season. Priced at only $23.99, it’s a killer deal.
Never too early to start making your plans for the Halloween season right? I mean, stores are already starting to put out the decorations, so makes perfect sense to me. Granted, for a lot of us, the Halloween season is all year round!
The Egyptian Theatre in Dekalb, IL has announced a Horror Film Series in October, showing a classic horror film every Tuesday throughout the month. Tickets are $8 each and the movies will start at 7pm. Here is what they will be screening: Continue reading
Just as a reminder, tomorrow at the DePaul University Loop Campus, they will be holding their annual Pop Culture Conference, with their Celebration of Slashers. Starting at 9am and going to 6pm, the day will be filled with movie screenings of titles like Sleepaway Camp, Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon, Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, Candyman, Black Christmas, Halloween, Friday the 13th Part 3 in 3D. There will also be a variety of panels from scholars discussing such topics as Questioning the Slasher, Gods and Monsters: Religion and Politics in the Slasher, Feminism and the Final Girl, Under the Mask: Characters in Slashers, and many more.
Released by Silva Screen Records
34 Tracks, with a running time of 109 min.
Composed and performed by John Carpenter
Today is the day. The last day of the year when all of us horror nerds actually don’t stand out in normal society like we do every other time of the year. Not that any of us really cares to fit in, since we’ve long since gotten used to following our own dark and twisted path. But this is the day to celebrate our love and passion for this unbelievable entertaining genre of films that have kept people like us entertained since the birth of cinema.
But tomorrow, when the rest of the world starts to get prepared for that big commercial holiday and give praise to the fat man in the red suit, we know that we will just continue on with us celebrating our love for horror movies. Okay, maybe taking a little break for a while because of all the movies that we’ve watched in the last 31 days, but you know what I mean!
So from Kitley’s Krypt, we wish everyone out there a safe and Happy Halloween! I know we’ll be trying to get a few movies under our belt today since it has been a pretty light month for me viewing wise. But I hope to make up for some of that today.
See you on the other side…
Sometimes I really regret asking for a book to review. Especially when I had just finished reviewing one epic size book of Psycho-Babble, and then along comes this relatively new book by David Roche. He is a professor at the Université Toulouse Le Mirail with some publishing credentials under his belt. In other words, he’s no slouch. In fact, Roche is a very smart man and can do some amazing fact finding research, which he puts to use in this book. The concept of the book is to try and figure out the differences between the original ’70s versions of Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Dawn of the Dead, Hills Have Eyes, and Halloween, and their remakes that were all made in the 2000s, or what makes them better or worse and for what reasons.
That initial concept is what intrigued me at the start. But once I dove into it, I quickly realized what I had gotten myself into once again. This is not written for the casual fan, but for a very academic crowd. In fact, I had a dictionary opened most of the time when I was reading it to make sure I was getting the point he was stating. Gotta say though…even that didn’t help a lot of times. These University style books love to go way out of their way to explain something about a movie that really doesn’t need it or even have an explanation other than what is at face value. Here, Roche does a lot of quoting from other works of this sort, as well as giving his own insight, which I frankly think all of which is putting way too thought on this stuff. Let me give you a couple of examples.