Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Repulsive Roundup... Michelle's week in horror and other weirdness

O hai my fellow horror fiends! It's been a long, hot week here in my 3rd floor apartment with minimal AC, so I've been short on brain waves and long on reading and relaxing! Last night while my munchkin and I slept, however, my lovely partner in crime and parenthood rearranged our living area and put our AC in the room we spend the most time in, so I am feeling sharp and ready to write at you! (Hopefully said munchkin will stay sated long enough to allow me use of both hands for a while!) :)
Aside from the heat, it's been a nicely horror filled week here at Fright Skool!  I've got a nice compendium of blogs and handmade goodies to share with you from around the web. Let's get started!

 So as many of you likely know, The Blood Sprayer is having it's Italian Horror Week, if you haven't checked it out yet, you need to go there now! The world's finest horror bloggers are contributing their thoughts about all aspects of the Giallo genre that we horror fiends know and love!

Highlights so far include:
American Horror Posters Italian-ized Parte Uno
Dear Lucio Fulci Thank You For The Easiest Drinking Game...
Sergio Martino Italy's Unsung Exploitation King

Keep an eye on The Blood Sprayer all week, there's much more where this came from already and more to come all week long!

Since there's so much Italian Horror love happening around here at the moment, let's continue to Handmade Horrors keeping in line with this theme shall we? Here's what I could drudge up to showcase for you...

Suspiria pendant necklace by thebookhousegirrrl on Etsy

Lucio Fulci 5 button set by PinMoonStore on Etsy

Nightmare Castle lightbox by morbiddecor on Etsy (love their shop!!!)

That's about it for now... I didn't watch much of anything yet this week, aside from the first hour or so of Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy... I probably should write up a review of that, but all I'm going to do is go on and on about how amazing and awesome it is and chances are if you're reading this, you already know!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A remake of Maniac, you say? From 1989?

Well I guess I had my nerd glasses on for a change today because I just discovered that one of my favorite horror films, Maniac, has been remade (and is apparently being remade again.)
Surprised? Me too. Apparently it was remade in Greece back in 1989. I couldn't find much about it other than this clip which reminds me of nothing in Lustig's Maniac:

Anyone seen it? I really couldn't find much in my search but it's always possible to dig a little deeper... I'll update if I find anything.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Tribute to Horror in Music Part 1: Nomeansno

Nomeansno is one of my all-time favorite bands. I love their dark sense of humor, their killer bass riffs, and their refusal to die - they've been around almost all of my life and I ain't no spring chicken!
The reason I'm here telling you about these guys at the moment, however, is because they know how to turn a punk song into a horror show that you can't get out of your head. I'm not going to get too wordy about it, I'll let the music speak for itself.

And now ladies and gentlemen, I give you Nomeansno...

To begin, since it's Father's Day, here's a chilling tale about an abusive father that won't leave you with happy feelings when you listen...

One of my favorites, this is what happens when a ransom note becomes an epic punk song:

"Have you heard the news? The dead walk!"

I could definitely include quite a few other songs here, but for now, I will just encourage you to listen to more of this most excellent Canadian band's music. You can find out more at:

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I'm about to watch...

Saw 6. I'm shit at roman numerals, what is it? VI? Yeah? OK, whatever, who cares. Anyway... I missed it in the theater, as I miss most movies in the theater these days. I watched Saw 5 in the theater and that was the last time I saw it (get it? SAW it??? AHHH I crack myself up. Not really.) I'll let you know what I think of it, normally at this point in a horror franchise everything is boring and redundant but I keep hearing good things about this one. Plus, I did something I never do - I followed a reality show. Scream Queens, to be exact. Mostly because I love James Gunn, but also because I couldn't resist a horror related reality show. So of course I'm curious to see how the winner, Tanedra Howard did in the film. I heard she's barely in it, which is too bad. She was pretty damn good for someone with no experience, I was rooting for her. So as soon as I'm done writing here, I'mma hit play and check it out.

EDIT: I watched it. Not bad. I hope it's the end though. That is all.

I also watched Let Sleeping Corpses Lie a few days ago, but honestly it doesn't merit a review from me. I was kind of bored. But hey, that's me. I can't be dazzled every time, I guess.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Human Centipede

Well, I finally got around to watching it. I liked it, but it didn't move me all that much - I'm not in any big huge rush to watch it again. But that doesn't mean I won't encourage you all to take a look. It's certainly original and moves along at a good pace. It's also not as depraved or disgusting as the trailer would have you believe - a lot is left to the imagination, which is something that has been lacking in horror for a while.
We're introduced to the depraved Doctor early on as he abducts a truck driver on the side of the road. Later, when two vapid American party girls get a flat and end up ringing the Doc's doorbell, he drugs them and brings them to his laboratory of doom. He deems the truck driver to be an unsuitable match, kills him, and replaces him with a foul mouthed Japanese tourist. What is probably the scariest scene in the movie follows, where the Doctor shows his victims his plans for them on an overhead projector while they look terrified and make a lot of noise:
 All kinds of happy fun times ensue. 

Supposedly, the director, Tom Six, inquired with real doctors and scientists to see if this would be a legitimate procedure and apparently, it could be done. I'm no scientist, but I think that if there was a tube running through the three, that the two whiny bitches in the middle and end wouldn't have been able to be heard crying throughout the rest of the flick. The Doc even mentions something about how he should have severed their vocal cords.

There is talk of a sequel, we'll see if it actually happens. Again, the movie wasn't a waste of time, it's not as visually disgusting as you'd think, and in some ways, it's pretty damn entertaining. But I don't really see it as being sequel worthy. Only time will tell!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

An Evening Of Edgar Allan Poe with Vincent Price

It's a rainy Saturday, so I figured I'd find something entertaining and creepy, that I haven't seen yet, to watch and share with you folks still coming by to see what I have to say... Hope it is to your liking and that you will share your thoughts with me.

handmade from the dripping, still beating heart...

Some of y'all may or may not know this about me, but I have got a big ole soft spot for anything handmade by a person - maybe because I'm a creative type myself, and definitely because I believe in giving real people my business as opposed to corporations. Besides, you can't deny the power of something that is one of a kind and skillfully crafted. Just look at Freddy Krueger's glove!

One of my favorite places on the net is Etsy - and lest you think that it's all just lace doilys and pastel patchwork quilts, fear not! Or be afraid, I don't care! I plan to showcase some of the cool horror related finds that I come across right here, so if you want to get some cool swag from cool people, stay tuned!

At the moment, I have a widget in the sidebar over this way ---->
it contains items from all over the site that I have marked as a favorite. Every day I will choose 4 items to display. If you have a horror themed Etsy shop and you'd like to be showcased, post your link in the discussions tab on our Facebook page (this way, even if I don't pick your items for a showcase, you're still getting some promotion!) http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?uid=104601316255463&topic=17

Friday, June 11, 2010

Cult & Exploitation Film Posters - Vol. 1

Heart of a Lion
And the wings of a Bat
Because it's Midnite
Heart of a Lion
And the wings of a Bat
Because it's Midnite

Don't Go In The House (2005 review)

I thought this movie was gonna be bad. You know, B-Movie bad. It was released in 1980 and it has one of those cautionary "Don't do this or that" titles.... Boy, was I wrong. This is some fucked up shit right here, my friends. A guy who lives with his mother (Ed Gein, anyone) comes home to find her dead in her chair. She abused him since childhood, often holding his arms over the open flames of the stove. Evil voices tell him that since she's gone now, he can do whatever he wants. Apparently, what he wants is to turn a room of the house into an incinerator, kidnap bitchy women, and burn them alive. He does just that, all the while spiraling further into madness. There are some really twisted scenes in this movie. Perhaps it's a misogynist retaliation on women's lib, but I think it's more of a warning to potentially abusive mothers. Be nice to your kids, or else they're going to leave your dead body in a room and torture and kill young women just like you tortured them!

The Devil's Rejects (2005 review)

Sorry it's taken so long. I went to see it on May 12th, and here it is a week later. Truth be told, after watching it, I didn't want to write anything. It's not being released until mid July, and the preview I went to was more than likely uncut. So the version that you all who are waiting until it's national release to see it may well get a slightly different film than what I saw. It seemed pretty brutal for an R-rated film, but who am I to question the ways of the MPAA?
As I write this, I still am unsure as to what I want to reveal to you about this film. It is a sequel (to House Of 1000 Corpses, for those of you who didn't know) and so therefore it is highly anticipated by fans of that film. At any rate, here goes. I'll do my best to leave out any spoilers.

This film picks up about two weeks after the last one left off. Although how Otis (played once again, brilliantly, by Bill Moseley) grew so much dark facial hair in two weeks is beyond me. I thought he was an albino? Anyway... The Firefly clan sleeps peacefully amongst the evidence of all the brutality they've unleashed over the years, only to have an assload of cops show up for a shootout. Baby and Otis escape - but Mother Firefly stays behind and gets taken in by the sheriff. His brother was the sheriff who got blown away in HO1KC. So, you know, he's got revenge on the brain even more than he does justice. Everything spirals out of control with Baby. Otis, and Captain Spaulding on the run from the cops. Trouble never stopped them none, however - as they proceed to go about doing what they do best - gettin' fucked up and doin' fucked up shit. The longer it takes for Sheriff Wydell to get to them, the more insane he becomes; and when he finally catches up to them, he's got a taste of their own medicine to administer.

I'm not gonna tell you anything else... the end is pretty dramatic (and probably would have benefited from being a little less drawn out) and I don't wanna give anything away for ya.

What I will say is that this film is very different than HO1KC. Where that was following the same template as the Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies, The Devil's Rejects has more of a Western feel.... criminals on the run from the cops. Except the criminals are the Firefly folks, and we all know, they's real crazy-like.
Baby does not once deliver her obnoxious cackling in this film, making her far more tolerable. Otis is just as dark and evil as ever, and in some scenes, even more so than before. We get to see some sides of Spaulding that we haven't seen before (and maybe we don't want to now, but it is pretty funny, at least.)
Zombie has improved as a director, and achieves what he set out to do with House and failed: this film really has a believable 70's feel. There's no Zombie music, no weird hyper-edit music video garbage - its the real deal. There's some areas that could use improvement, but jeeze - it's his second film. Not bad, all things considered. I have high hopes for his next feature, whatever and whenever that will be.

There's more, but really, that's enough. If you are a fan of HO1KC because of the characters, you will enjoy this movie as well.

A Bell From Hell (aka LA CAMPANA DEL INFIERNO) (review from 2005)

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A young man is discharged from a mental institute, and goes forth to unleash strange practical jokes on people, specifically his aunt and three hottie cousins. All kinds of madness ensues.

This film was pretty intense. Shocktacular, if you will. It'll make you wonder about the crazies in your family.

Pretty much a step above the rest in the genre, I thought... just because it's got a more realistic (but at the same time, surreal) sense about it than other films of that time period - no supernatural baddies in this one. Reviews I read around the net described it as Art-horror. *shrug* I guess. When I think of "art-horror", I think of Suspiria. This was arty in a more cerebral way. Where Suspiria was pretty colored lights and a bangin soundtrack, A Bell From Hell had weird camera angles and even weirder situations - but not necessarily out of the ordinary, if you get my drift. If not, you'll get it if you watch it, so go. Watch it. You'll probably like it better than Boogeyman or whatever drecky J-Horror remake they're churning out these days. Cuz, you know, this is better than all that. I think so, anyway.

Aftermath/High Tension (updated review from 2005)

  (original review written in 2005, updated and added to because dammit, I can...)
I first saw this 30 minute film several years back on a crappy video dub. It has finally made its way here on DVD, along with two other short films by director Nacho Cerda. Quite possibly one of the most disturbing films about necrophilia, (as if there's such a thing as a film about necrophilia that isn't disturbing...) this film will dig deep under your skin. Not much disturbs me, dear readers, but this one made me feel more than a little dirty watching it. Highly recommended for those of you who are losing faith in the horror genre - this is absolutely not for the squeamish, and it may make you want to reconsider how your body is disposed of after your death!
I'm not going to tell you too much about it, 30 minutes is not a long running time and I know you folks dislike your spoilers. I would like to add, however, that the DVD release of this comes with another of Cerda's short films called Genesis, which is very strange and creepy but not quite as visceral and disturbing as Aftermath.

Next up is a movie that I'm sure most of you have seen already given the extreme hype that surrounded it upon its release - High Tension (aka Haute Tension).
I had been hearing rave reviews about this film since it was first released, however, I heard many people speaking of cut versions, and being the purist I am, I decided to wait to see it until I could get a definitive uncut version to watch. Oh, and not to mention free - I work at a video store, and that equals free rental city, baby. I'm done taking $20 chances on films that may or may not rule. In the case of High Tension it would have been worth it. Despite a couple of unrealistic deaths (suspension of disbelief is definitely necessary to fully enjoy this film) I thought it was excellent. From beginning to end, there is, just like the title implies, high tension. This film has tons of suspense, and an equal amount of gore, with a twist ending that I truthfully did not see coming. Considering that this is one of the first horror films to come out of France (at least, according to the writers/directors of this film) it's really quite impressive, and it comes highly recommended... Though I know lots of you probably saw this long before it got it's much overdue release in the US, just go rent it and watch it again - especially if you have not watched the original, uncut director's cut version.

old reviews

I started Fright Skool as a MySpace page ages ago. I've forgotten the login information, and I've come to despise MySpace anyway, so I am about to transfer some of my old reviews onto this blog, for posterity.

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