June 29, 2010

Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film (2006)

Adapted from a very popular book, this entertaining albeit interesting documentary slightly delivers what it promises: a look into the world of slasher cinema. Such as how it started, stayed popular, and what very well may have led to its downfall with audiences and reviewers.

One positive thing I can say about this Documentary is that it tries hard to include as many Slasher flicks as possible, but sometimes it felt a tad bit rushed. I wished they had focused a bit more attention on the era that they were chronicling, rather than saying a few things and then jumping into the next bit. While it was great to see and hear what many of those who played a part in the creation of these films had to say...I didn't really learn anything new, something I was hoping would happen.

It would have great to learn the history of gore in movies, and to learn about the influences for American slasher in exuberant detail. Instead we're vaguely told about Italian horror then before you know it they've skipped on into "Halloween," which they've also practically labeled as the first slasher movie, when "Black Christmas" came before it. Also, it seemed as if "Friday The 13th" was given more credit than it truly deserved as an original movie. Now, I'm not trying to imply that those movies aren't important when it comes to this genre, but I would have liked to have seen a fresh approach while taking a closer look at their origins.

I think they tried to cover a little too much ground with such a short running time, I really feel that this documentary could have, and should have, been fleshed out a bit more.

June 23, 2010

The Horror...the Horror... (a visual piece)

Just some great scenes from a few (of many) of my favorite Horror films.

June 16, 2010

Two Documentaries...

Here are the trailers for two Documentaries I am REALLY looking forward to!



June 15, 2010

Never Sleep Again (2010)

"Early Rise and early to bed
makes a man healthy and wealthy
and dead."
-James Thurber.

Just like the nightmare films, the DVD kicks off with a nostalgic bang with that opening quote. It's words dressed in red on a hard black background. With this, you definitely get the sense that your're in for something special already.

We're then treated to an amazing opening credit sequence featuring great stop motion animation by Michael Grenberry, as well as being set to music by Charles Bernstein...which I'm pretty sure was a new piece of music done solely for this documentary.

"Even though I've had lots and lots of people tell me, "You've given me nightmares," for years, they always have a smile on their face." - Wes Craven. The Documentary starts off very solidly with many past cast members, directors, and FX crew guys sharing their opinion and views on the Freddy Krueger character.

The 'Nightmare' movies, I believe, held a special place in the world of Horror cinema due in large part because they were a bit more complicated and ambitious than say 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre,' ' Friday the 13th' or 'Halloween.' They attracted a certain audience (teenagers) because that's who the characters were. You have a certain group of friends, who are so close that they will always have each others backs and are they for them more than their own parents. So, when Freddy comes in to the picture, the typical parental responses of "get some sleep" are probably the worst thing to hear, so, the teens can only count on each other to survive.

Everyone has had a bad dream, a nightmare, and knew some form of a bogeyman. The 'Nightmare' films worked best with that because it latched onto something that everyone can somehow be linked to.

The documentary covers the entire 20 year history of the 'Nightmare' films, starting with the genesis of the first, all the way up to 'Freddy vs Jason.' We even take a quick look back at the ever-so-abysmal days of the 'Freddy's Nightmares' television show. We're treated as to how each film came to be, along with MANY interested anecdotes for each film. Regardless of the length, each section keeps your attention and never drags on or seems boring. Every thing is laid out there, whether it be the technical side of things, or how the cast and crews worked together. Something I enjoyed quite a bit was hearing what Bob Shaye had to say about each entry, especially the old days of New Line Cinema...before it turned into a Money Hungry company, rather than what it once was...a company willing to give everyone and anyone a chance.

The extended interviews with cast and crew were great to watch as well, giving you even MORE than you expected.

This documentary, beginning to end, is quite the trip down memory lane, while also being a great informative look back on one of the most well known Horror Characters of all time and the franchise it had spawned.

June 12, 2010

Heads up! CROPSEY

I have been following this little gem of a Documentary ever since I had first seen the little teaser online many months ago, and I have been foaming at the mouth for some sort of review to come to fruition in the Horror Blogosphere.

Well, that day has finally come, as ALL THINGS HORROR has posted quite a review, one which has definitely sparked my attention more so than it originally was.

Living anywhere near the Boston area? Then check out the Boston premier of 'CROPSEY' during it's albeit brief run at the Somerville Theater during the week of June 11th-17th. I would love to make it myself, but I honestly don't see that happening. But, if you do happen to give it a watch, let me know what you thought about it!

June 4, 2010

Something to hold you over...

Here's a special feature off of the 'Never Sleep Again' Documentary DVD that, I feel, is the best Special Feature out of them all. I'm posting this here to hold you over until I finally post my review for the documentary.

I remember all of these lines and quips, and to hear the old cast members saying them again after all these years...awesome.