Let's take a field trip over to DANGEROUS MINDS! That cool joint is interviewing our pal AMANDA REYES about her upcoming book entitled ARE YOU IN THE HOUSE ALONE? A TV MOVIE COMPENDIUM 1964-1999! Amanda gives an overview of some of the shiniest jewels in the TV Movie universe and the full flicks are even included so you can catch what you might have missed! It's everything you could possibly want besides an egg salad sandwich and a frosty Yoo-hoo! After you've read the post go mow a lawn and save some money to buy that book! Even if yours truly didn't contribute a tiny portion to it, your favorite shelf would be begging for that lovely tome to sit on it! Jump on over HERE! These TV Movie classics can't watch themselves!
I've got a bone to pick with this new GHOSTBUSTERS! Now that I've seen it I can't seem to get the theme song by living legend RAY PARKER JR. out of my head! This has been going on for days. Help! Besides that valid gripe, I'd say this newfangled GHOSTBUSTERS is my favorite GHOSTBUSTERS movie of the three. In fact, I think new GHOSTBUSTERS makes the original GHOSTBUSTERS look like GHOSTBUSTERS 2. It's like some guardian angel knew my secret assessment of the first movie was, "Needs more ANNIE POTTS!' and totally ran with that concept. I've heard it through the whine-vine that some folks were upset about this movie being made before they even saw it but as it turns out, those people are exactly the same people whose opinions I care nothing about! That really worked out for me. While all the mouth-breathing (STRANGER THINGS shout-out!!) fan boys were busy throwing fits, I was reserving my energy so that I could fight with Aunt John over who got to be BRYCE DALLAS HOWARD in PS3's LEGO JURRASIC WORLD.
I'm not even trying to be contrary here or raddle anyone's cage. I think all four of the women in GHOSTBUSTERS are hilarious. I can't believe anyone would ever even present a spurious debate about whether women are funny. That is an insult to all the times I had to set my VCR to record SCTV as a kid. Sure, I loved every SCTV cast member but CATHERINE O'HARA and ANDREA MARTIN absolutely killed me and they still do. I can say the same thing for RADNER, CURTAINand NEWMAN on SNL and don't even get me started on the cast of MADTV because we'll be here all day (but special shout out to MO COLLINS). I know haters have other complaints involving the purity of the franchise and their oh so noble remake fatigue but I feel like I already heard all that noise when that THE THING prequel came out in 2011. I'm so glad I didn't let that nonsense curdle my experience with that flick because warts and all, I love it oh so much. If anyone should be mad it's me cuz these bellyachers are always jeopardizing my chances for sequels. Damn, I could be watching THE THING 2 or THE THING: GLOBAL CONTAGION right now!
Just so you don't think I'm overcompensating with praise, I'll throw a couple nitpicks onto the fire. I did find fault in the fact that there are not one but two scenes involving the heroes trying out new gadgets. The second one is superfluous and feels like an out of place toy commercial. Also my Jessica Fletcher detection skills are telling me that a spellbinding dance number featuring CHRIS HEMSWORTH was deemed not worthy to be included in its entirety and that hurts me, that hurts me deeply. But outside those quibbles this flick is borderline intoxicating. There's a scene in the climax in which the ladies throw down some impressively elaborate and electrifying ghost-busting as the music swells and it feels about ten times more rousing than anything in the original two. Whenever the flick stresses the value of loyalty in friendship it feels genuine and earned but its most powerful (and supremely fitting) message involves the importance of standing by what you believe in and not allowing the snide opinions of others to sway you from accomplishing your goals.
Feel free to take my opinion with a grain of salt. It's not like I â€˜m a huge GHOSTBUSTERS mega fan in the first place. I certainly liked the first films well enough and I have zero problem spending as much time with BILL MURRAY as humanly possible (SCROOGED & WHAT ABOUT BOB? forever!) but there were a lot more interesting movies vying for my attention back in 1984 (like STREETS OF FIRE and HEAVENLY BODIES for example). Maybe I was a little too old to get the full fan frenzy? I have never in my life tasted a Hi-C Ecto cooler and I have zero plans to change that. Plus truth told, I enjoy the Filmation GHOSTBUSTERS cartoon way better than the "real" GHOSTBUSTERS version (OMG Tina's mom, SUSAN BLU from FRIDAY THE 13TH part VII is the voice of Belfry the bat! I love that guy and all his cousins!). In any case, if being a "real" fan means being a "real" stick in the mud you can count me out. This new GHOSTBUSTERS is a good time. It's fun. It made me laugh. It yanked me right out of the now nightmarish world we live in and set me down in a place where I could not wait to see what happened next. It's a cinematic snow cone and it does exactly what you want a summer movie to do. I can't help it! Busting makes me feel good! Oh no, that song is back…
Anyone who follows these pages regularly surely knows that your Unkle Lacifer is a sworn lifelong member of the CATHY'S CURSE fan club. In fact, early on Kindertrauma was quick to honor its star RANDI ALLEN with the highly coveted (just go with it) title of Official Traumatot right â€˜round HERE! Today being Kindertrauma's eighth birthday (we don't look a day over 5), I am proud to present to you with what's going to go down in my books as my favorite kindertrauma post of all time! Yes, it's an interview with Cathy herself, RANDI ALLEN! And I even got a Traumafession out of her! Yay!
UNK: Our website Kindertrauma is always interested in what films scared people as kids so my first question is…
What is the first movie or TV show that you remember being scared by as a kid?
RANDI: The first movie that scared me was The Wizard Of Oz.
UNK: What is you favorite memory about the filming of Cathy's Curse?
RANDI: Favorite memory on set – being found, sitting on an elevated platform, unable to get down, while the crew was eating lunch.
UNK: What is your least favorite memory about Cathy's Curse?
RANDI: My least favorite memory is contact lenses – Cathy's eyes were supposed to glow, but I could not tolerate the contact lenses on my eyes.
UNK: I'm really curious about the film's release. Did you guys have a premiere party?
RANDI: Cathy's Curse premiere party was held in Old Montreal, in a beautiful Italian restaurant. We sat with the director Eddie Matalon and everyone, the crew was there.
UNK: I know you have at least one daughter. Has she seen Cathy's Curse and if so, how does she feel about it?
RANDI: We have 2 daughters, born in 1992 & 1994, who believe Cathy's Curse, and their mother, is hilarious.
UNK: Although Cathy's Curse as a film has its shortcomings, you are really good in it and had clear talent. Did you have any desire to be in another film?
RANDI: Did I wish to be in another film? No. My brother Bryce, who is also in the movie, and I worked solely to support our single mother.
UNK: Halloween is coming up soon, what horror film would you recommend if any?
RANDI: Cabin In The Woods is my favorite horror movie to date. However, my husband and I went out as an "Amazing Race" couple last year!
UNK: Dear RANDI, it was an honor to get to talk to you! I think I'm going to enjoy CATHY'S CURSE even more now (if that's at all possible) knowing that you are such a cool and good-hearted person, with a wonderful family, a great sense of humor and excellent taste in movies! You will always be royalty around these parts and you have made our eighth birthday the best ever!
WITCHBOARD 2: THE DEVIL'S DOORWAY (1993)
It started out innocently enough. Having recently enjoyed the sequel to NIGHT OF THE DEMONS, I thought it would makes sense to revisit the follow up to another classic KEVIN TENNEY flick, WITCHBOARD 2. I wasn't a big fan when I caught it eons ago when it was released on VHS but maybe it would work better now thanks to lowered expectations and my newfound charitable feelings towards hackneyed, mid-nineties horror.
As it turns out my vague memory wasn't too far off, WITCHBOARD 2 isn't exactly on par with the film it spawned from. The supernatural threat isn't nearly as threatening, LARAINE NEWMAN's grating hippy character is a poor substitute for KATHLEEN WILHOITE's eccentric psychic Zarabeth and there is a howling void where once stood ROSE MARIE.
But wait! WITCHBOARD 2 does contain a charm that the original film can't boast, a sparkling effervescent light that will guide you through the entire inconsequential affair! The adorable creature I speak of is actress AMI DOLENZ! In fact, DOLENZ is so fetching in WITCHBOARD 2 that I forgot I was watching horror and instead found myself admiring her character's swell new apartment, rooting for her career as an artist and strangely invested in the outcome of her romantic entanglements. Yeah, yeah, Ouija boards are dangerous doorways to hell, that's yesterday's news. I want to know if DOLENZ's "Paige" is going to end up with her controlling yet admirably protective ex-boyfriend Mitch or the landlord's creepy but sensitive brother Russell. In the end I had a fine time with the serviceable WITCHBOARD 2 and more importantly it inspired me to go on an AMI DOLENZ binge. Which lead to…
PUMPKINHEAD II: BLOOD WINGS (1993)
Again. I was very unaccepting of PUMKINHEAD II when I first saw it and I don't blame myself because it discards the wonderful southern gothic atmosphere of the first film and offers in exchange for broody LANCE HENRIKSEN, a gaggle of mostly annoying partying teens. DOLENZ plays a relatively likable gal who is new to town and inexplicably ends up hanging out with a bunch of delinquents with no respect for their elders (I think that's a fair assessment because they run over an old lady in their car, break into her house, physically assault her and leave her to burn to death.)
The only positive thing I can say about this group is that they at least have the good taste to include SOLIEL MOON FRY in the shenanigans (although I'd prefer to see her put her Punky-power to more constructive use). Even as the central non-demonic character, poor AMI doesn't have much to do here and gets sort of lost in the shuffle. It doesn't help that the cast is over-bloated enough to include HELLRAISER's ANDREW ROBINSON, LINNEA QUIGLEY, KANE HODDER and BILL CLINTON's brother as the Mayor, among others.
There's no way around the fact that PUMPKINHEAD deserves a better sequel than this hobbled together headache but on the plus side, the monster looks handsome enough, there's at least one striking visual (involving the demon looming over DOLENZ while she screams from a bed) and I have to admit the opening which involves teen bullies killing a physically deformed peer, is surprisingly disturbing.
Director JEFF BURR was several times saddled with the thankless task of sequel-izing beloved horror flicks (STEPFATHER 2, LEATHERFACE, PUPPET MASTER 4 & 5) all of which were doomed to pale in comparison to their predecessors. If you want to see his best work, make sure you check out the awesome anthology THE OFFSPRING (aka FROM A WHISPER TO A SCREAM) featuring legends VINCENT PRICE, CLU GULAGER and SUSAN TYRRELL. And between you and me and the fencepost, I also recently discovered that I have a soft spot for his totally loopy 1995 non-sequel NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW. I had a lot of fun watching it and only wish it opened with the disclaimer "No franchises were harmed in the making of this picture."
I'll be honest, DOLENZ is stuck with a one note, spoiled brat role in TICKS and it's probably not her finest hour but it doesn't matter because I love TICKS! I loved it when I first saw it, I loved it when I last saw it and I loved it every time in-between. TICKS concerns a mutant parasite infestation at a nature retreat for wayward youth run by PETER SCOLARI but all you really need to know is that ALFONSO RIBEIRO portrays a street tough named Panic (Because he never does) and it's a wondrous thing to behold.
I hate to say it but what I really adore about this movie is the incredibly effective special effects. I'm not the easiest person to gross-out but this movie truly gets under my skin in a way many other movies have tried and failed. Eventually you even get a big giant deluxe-sized monster tick and frankly, it's nearly THING– worthy. So, not the best showcase for DOLENZ (that would be WITCHBOARD 2) but this one I truly recommend. Just prepare yourself for phantom itching. (NOTE: Extra points rewarded for brandishing a rare in the world of horror (outside of THE FLY 2 and ANNIE) ginger protagonist in the form of a young SETH GREEN.)
ALSO: TICKS director TONY RANDEL (HELLBOUND: HELLRAISER II) worked with DOLENZ previously on the 1991 horror flick CHILDREN OF THE NIGHT. I'm not going to cover that one because I don't have access to it and I've already given it a couple tries and it never worked for me. It looks like it would be great but it's like it exists on some frequency my brain can't register. You know what I mean?
MURDER SHE WROTE: Season 10, Episode 6: "Bloodlines"
IMDb kindly let me in on the fact that AMI DOLENZ did an episode of MSW and thanks to Netflix, it was on. Can you believe this episode also features one of my other favorite actresses, the equally binge-able SHAWNEE SMITH? Plus it's got TIPPI HEDREN playing DOLENZ's mom!
May I just ruin this episode for you? I need to tell you who the killer is. I know that goes against everything MSW stands for but it must be done. It's too good not to share… not only is AMI DOLENZ the killer but her murder is sublime; she beats MICKEY ROONEY to death with a flashlight! Who would have guessed that my journey through the DOLENZ oeuvre would lead me to witnessing my lifelong fantasy of beating MICKEY ROONEY to death with a flashlight, late at night, on a lonely country road, finally enacted on screen?!
MIRACLE BEACH (1992)
We have exhausted all of the titles in which AMI is surrounded by murder and mayhem but fret not, as there is still one kinder-friendly flick to inspect. How on Earth did this gem go unnoticed by me for so long? In this offering DOLENZ plays a magical genie named Jeannie and the object of her affection is none other than DEAN CAMERON of BAD DREAMS, ROCKULA and SUMMER (and SKI!!!!) SCHOOL fame! This is a fine one to close out with because MIRACLE showcases DOLENZ at her most peppy and plucky and by film's end we finally get to see her walk off into a California sunset with a well earned happy ending.
Note: At one point in the film DOLENZ's character Jeannie is shown watching a movie on TV that features a purple furry monster with one eye and one horn. With my Jessica Fletcher detective skills I was able to discern the oddity was 1988's PURPLE PEOPLE EATER. It stars a young NEIL PATRICK HARRIS and an even younger THORA BIRCH as his sister and it's all about an alien from outer space teaching Earth kids to appreciate old folks like NED BEATTY, SHELLY WINTERS and CHUBBY CHECKER. The purple monster's mission is a success because he wisely avoids trying to sell anyone on MICKEY ROONEY.
And so we come to the close of our spotlight on AMI DOLENZ. What have we learned besides the fact that I have a fervent aversion to MICKEY ROONEY? I'd say it's pretty clear AMI DOLENZ is one underrated scream queen. She did so much in so little time and she brought something different to each performance. She comes off better in some roles than others, but that's true for everyone, and I'd suppose it's more in the hands of the writer or director than her.
It's also worth considering that she dove into the horror pool at a resistive time too late for one boom and too early for another. The genre was floundering in the awkward, early nineties. The decade had yet to find it's own flag to fly and instead tended to feed on scraps left behind by the one before it. DOLENZ's mostly straight to video flicks can be seen as the last gasp of goofy eighties fantasy driven horror right before the nineties decided to get sober, savage and snarky. And I guess that's what I see in AMI DOLENZ the kind of a breezy un-cynical, optimistic vibe that gets more and more rare or hard to come by.
Hmmm, you know you're getting old when you start ranting about how movies have changed or how the world has changed and you're too busy shaking your cane to realize that you are projecting and the thing that has changed is you. But that's life, folks! The past will always look like AMI DOLENZ and the future is all MICKEY ROONEY. Whaaaaaaaaa! Where's a flashlight when you need it?
I was an â€˜inside kid'.
Sure, I went to school and rode bikes and journeyed to 7-11 to pick up comic books and Slurpees.
That was my afternoon. But my night?
Movies. Lots and lots of movies.
My parents gave me a TV time limit. I had a few hours a week. It was sort of an allowance. I had to be smart, and budget my presence in front of the tube.
I used all those hours on Saturday. Here's why:
USA'S SATURDAY NIGHTMARES.
Saturday Nightmares was my youthful gateway into horror films. In an environment where my parents were permissive enough to let me watch some TV, but not permissive enough to let me rent R-rated horror films, Saturday Nightmares provided a mainline fix that my pre-teen (and early teen) self desperately needed.
USA'S Saturday Nightmares was a prime-time (8 PM â€“ East Coast â€“ old school USA network) non-hosted weekly horror movie feature forum that consisted of several elements:
0 â€“ The Intro. As I mentioned, this was an un-hosted venue for horror films but the intros were awesome. In the early days of USA's Saturday Nightmares, it was a little more commando. They were stark black and white shots of grotesque monster movies. It looked cheap, and felt cheap and that informed the scariness of whatever film the show was threatening to air. After a few years, they amped up the budget and it became an early CGI â€˜tour' through a museum of horror icons. Regardless of which intro or bumper I preferred, they were atmospheric and foreboding. In other words, even if the movie sucked â€“ I was still scared to watch it.
1 â€“ The Horror Movie. This was usually some semi-obscure thriller that was molding in a VHS bin somewhere. I'm not industry adept enough to guess where the USA network programmers got their material, my guess is it was whatever they had access to. I mean, â€˜Bloodbath in the House of Death'? â€˜Scared to Death'? â€˜Devil Times Five'?, â€˜Up From the Depths'?, â€˜The House Where Evil Dwells', â€˜Spookies'?, â€˜The Being'?, – I can go on. And I will. But this show dredged up some of the most lesser-known, cheap thrill horror movies that could ever be IMDB'd. For a kid who was only exposed to â€˜Salems Lot' and â€˜Gremlins', Saturday Nightmares was a goldmine. R-rated horrors edited for television. Therefore, parent-friendly.
2 â€“ The Anthology Shows. It wasn't just a horror feature showcase. Oh no. It had frosting on the cake. Following the movie, Saturday Nightmares wasn't done with you. They aired three different syndicated horror anthology shows. Among them: The Ray Bradbury Theater, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and The Hitchhiker.
â€˜The Ray Bradbury Theater' was more of a slow-burn horror anthology. The stories were generally fantastical and had a more broad nature. Not all of the stories presented were from the mind of the great Ray Bradbury, but many of them kept the tone of some of his earlier works. I remember one called â€˜The Playground' with a young-ish William Shatner that haunts me to this day.
â€˜Alfred Hitchcock Presents' had a more crime-oriented atmosphere and a typical just-desserts twist ending. I'd compare the stories presented akin to EC Comics' noir books.
â€˜The Hitchhiker' was probably inappropriate for a kid my age. It was a port from an HBO series, and consisted of a lot of sex and murder. A lone, scruffed Hitchiker tells stories of lust and death. It was heavily edited for TV, so the impact was lost on me. I do remember some of the stories were compelling, but they had to cut out all the naughty stuff.
3 â€“ The Short Films. Oftentimes, one of the Saturday Nightmares features would end early, and they would have to stick in a mysterious short film to fill out the run time. Short films are commonplace these days, especially on YouTube â€“ but in 1988, it was rare to see a cool, scary short flick. Somehow, the USA Network was able to find some frightening brief bits to pad out the run-time. I remember one was about a man engineering a gigantic mouse-trap…for himself. It was his method of suicide. Dark, right?
I WAS 10!
The first film I ever saw on USA's Saturday Nightmares was â€˜The Loch Ness Horror'. It involves â€“ you guessed it â€“ a bunch of people running away from a rubberized Loch Ness Monster puppet. It's…garbage. However, the nostalgia of gunning my BMX bike back from the comic book store to make it home before sundown to watch â€˜The Loch Ness Horror' stays with me.
I think I bought a Hulk comic that day. Memories fade…
My parents had to endure my love of USA's Saturday Nightmares. We weren't a rich family. We had a modest house on Long Island with one TV. So, if I watched something â€“ they had to watch that thing. In a strange way, my parents are well-versed in horror movie trivia because of that environment.
-â€˜Hey Dad, remember â€˜Demonwarp'?
-â€˜Is that the one with the murderous Sasquatch and George Kennedy, and the zombies you made us watch'?
-â€˜Why couldn't have you been a doctor'?
I was a weird kid. I lived for Saturday Nightmares. Whenever my parents had a dinner party, they knew I'd be out of their hair watching something like â€˜Jaws of Satan'. Just to be clear, that's a film about a king cobra possessed by the Devil.
My Dad's buddy, after wandering into the TV room:
â€˜What are you watching'?
â€˜Jaws of Satan. Killer king cobra movie'.
â€˜What the hell is Fritz Weaver doing in this crap'?
As low-grade as many of the movies shown on Saturday Nightmares were, they did expose me to a world beyond the A-list â€˜thrillers' that masquerade as horror movies.
Later on, as USA became more mass-audience oriented, the films became more commercial. â€˜Demons of the Dead' was replaced by â€˜Nightmare on Elm Street 3'. â€˜Girls Nite Out' was replaced by â€˜Friday The 13th V'. Not that there's anything wrong with those particular films, but I could see them anywhere. I respected the unavailability of the unknown titles.
Saturday Nightmares was kicked. USA rolled into original programming, and became the home of â€˜Psych' and â€˜Burn Notice'. I'm sure those shows are fine, but I miss the â€˜go for broke' programming of the 80's. What is â€˜Burn Notice' about, by the way?
I got older and discovered eBay and Amazon and YouTube. I was able to find a lot of my favorite niche horror films on that landscape.
My Saturday nights got booked with grown-up things. Girls, life, girls.
I work as a screenwriter now. I've written the (self-proclaimed) B-movie classics â€˜Fear of the Dark', â€˜Prophecy: Uprising', â€˜Prophecy: Forsaken'. â€˜Recoil' (not a horror film but Steve Austin is kinda scary).
I've got a few new thrillers in the pipeline.
I like to think that USA Saturday Nightmares contributed to my silly career.
I leave you with the Wiki link for USA's Saturday Nightmares.
Every flick is a classic. Sorta.
Now, I'm off to find a VHS copy of â€˜The Loch Ness Horror'…
JOHNNY BLACKOUT (John Sullivan)
I know you're sick of hearing about MILEY CYRUS and well you should be! What is the big deal? Anybody with even a cursory knowledge of horror films could tell you that the girl is simply possessed! She's not the first and she won't be the last. Get over it! It's not like she can't afford an exorcist and really, isn't becoming possessed a natural part of growing up? People who view poor Miley's behavior as some kind of calculated media manipulation need to educate themselves! Thank God I'm here to do just that. Here's proof that Miley is possessed as illustrated by the always informative world of horror cinema…
PROTRUDING TOUNGUE. Sticking out your tongue in a provocative manner is the simplest way to let folks know that you are possessed! AMITYVILLE 2: THE POSSESSION (1982) is a fine example of this but really just about any possession movie will tell you the same!
STAIR SLITHER. Those possessed know that making an entrance is key and nothing leaves a more indelible mark than a creepy crawl down a staircase. One needn't attempt a full EXCORCIST style crab walk to be effective; punished heathen Lucy's crypt decent in BRAM STOKER's DRACULA (1992), for example, looses no steam for being streamlined and straight forward.
DANCING TEDDY BEARS. Do your toys dance on their own accord? Congratulations you are possessed! Sometimes it is not your actions but the actions of the inanimate objects around you that determine how lost you are to possession. There are far too many examples of toys, dolls, teddy bears and other symbols of childhood coming to life in possession films (Not to mention THE WALTONS) for me to name them all so allow me to simply reference the doll in BROTHERHOOD OF SATAN (1971) and assume that title alone is enough to back my theory.
SATAN GOT BACK. Honestly I don't know what the devil's long recorded SIR MIX-A-LOT-like obsession with posteriors is all about. I suppose whatever gets the church folk in an uproar is worth his while. Satyr-horned Cyrus' recent display of fanny fascination fits right in with the archfiend's modus operandi. Maybe just count your blessings that a goat was not involved as depicted in THE ANTICHRIST aka THE TEMPTER (1974).
SIMULATED MASTURBATION. I probably do not need to remind you of little Regan's disturbing repurposing of a crucifix in THE EXCORCIST (1973). Unless you've sprayed SCRUBBING BUBBLES directly into your ear, that's still in your head. Miley doesn't go quite that far but if she thinks wearing a foam finger will save her from the curse of hairy palms, she is mistaken. On the other hand what better way to communicate you are Satan's #1 fan?
BODY COTORTIONS. Be real and admit that Miley's twerking stance is basically just the backwards version of the torso origami showcased in THE LAST EXCORCISM (2010).
BODY MUTATION. When you are possessed your body can do crazy things that seem to go against the laws of nature. Your head can blow up like in THE BEAST WITHIN (1982), you can somehow stick a lipstick into your breast like in NIGHT OF THE DEMONS (1988) or your boobs can turn into monster faces like in MAUSOLEUM (1983)! In other words, if Miley doesn't fit into her costume as well as she might- don't blame her blame Satan!
SHAMELESS BEHAVIOR! Opinion has ranged from "Hey, that's too sexy!" to "Hey that's not sexy!" Dusty professional MADONNA sycophant CAMILLE PAGLIA even called MILEY's performance "cringingly unsexy." (Would-be pop stars take note: If you fail to deliver Jane Hathaway a lady boner, it isn't art!) It's as if disobedient CYRUS thought she could just wing it and have fun while Lady Gaga spent all her days practicing her precision SPROCKETS moves! This love it or leave it attitude and scandalous lack of shame over one's physique can only bring to mind that rude scantily clad attic beast from [REC] (2007)! Don't kids today realize empowerment requires flawless choreography and tailoring?
SEDUCTION OF MEN! If only there was some way to figure out why the first order of business for recently possessed gals is to seduce innocent older men! I know you must be thinking "ROBIN THICKE is not so much innocent as the dude that sang this past summer's smash hit date rape anthem." Yes, but don't you understand that Satan speaks in symbols and codes? ROBIN THICKE is the son of ALAN THICKE and when you hear "son of ALAN THICKE" you subconsciously picture KIRK CAMERON, America's greatest Christian! Oh Satan, you and your mocking trickery! How dare you!
O.K., now I'm just being facetious…but only half so. I truly think if you look under the hood of the hysterical outrage to CYRUS's performance you'll see the same engine that drives your standard possession film. Fear of female sexuality doesn't even begin to cover it (though it's a crucial start), something tells me CYRUS could be as sexy as she wanted to be as long as she respectfully emulated an approved icon like deceased exploited trainwreck MARILYN MONROE (see: MADONNA) or expressed the proper reverence and gratitude toward fame and commerce (see: LADY GAGA). Instead her entire shindig was a goofy, gangly, semi-bratty, free-spirited blow-off to the status quo and no, that's not going to sit well with certain folks.
Because the real fear billowing up here (as in many a possession film) is the fear of uncontrollable youth, the fear of the next generation coming up to bat, the fear that they'll stick their (foam) finger up at the boundaries we've drawn for them, the fear that they will not adopt and be loaded down by our collective neurosis as planned, the fear (resentment, really) of their freedom to make their own path where we were too meek to do so. The fear that they'll have more fun than we allowed ourselves, the fear that we misspent our time worrying about the wrong things. This makes the older generation angry but more importantly, and stingingly, this makes the older generation…older (and "older" by the way, is super secret code for "closer to death").
Damn, CYRUS' Pan-tastic rite of passage ritual was a pagan dance on all of our graves! She even transformed 27-year old LADY GAGA into a haggard crone right before our eyes! Don't believe me? check out this clip of GAGA's opening number…
(alright, maybe she can't be blamed for that but still…) In any case, the point is there are plenty of things to be outraged, angry and scared of in this world and a young woman leaving behind childhood has never been nor ever should be one of them. I have little interest in MILEY's musical output (I'm still trying to adapt to OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN's "Physical" and SHEENA EASTON singing songs penned by PRINCE) but from what I've seen, each generation is slightly less ignorant and hateful than the one that came before it so I'm perfectly fine with MILEY and her contemporaries twerking to their hearts content. I say go for it… go for it, have fun and hail Satan!
Something I can always look forward to is the Monster-Mania convention that visits my neck of the woods a couple of times a year. I'm not big on crowds because I'm always half sure they'll pull a DAY OF THE LOCUSTS routine at any minute but seeing so much horror memorabilia in one place at one time is worth putting my phobias on hold. One of my favorite venders has always been this guy who does original acrylic paintings based on iconic horror imagery. I've always dug looking through his work and appreciating the one of the kind expressive quality of his creations. There's invariably plenty new and he even makes sure to do work inspired by whoever might be appearing at that particular convention. Little did I know until recently that the artist in question PHILIP MERTZ had contributed some excellent traumafessions to Kindertrauma under the name Grimpressions on several occasions. This was too cool to be true but it also made a lot a sense because Grimpression's posts here at KT were just as clever and one of a kind as his artwork.
So at this last Monster-Mania instead of just loitering around his table I finally got to meet PHILIP aka Grimpressions and his lovely wife JAMIE. They were both really cool and easy to talk to and my favorite kind of horror fans; enthusiastic and down to Earth. I came away with two new pals, a FUNHOUSE painting (which now hangs center stage in Kindertrauma Manor) and this great documentary that PHILIP and his wife put together. The doc is called PAINTING BY NUMBERS: 40 PAINTINGS, 40 NIGHTS (CONFESSIONS OF A HORROR CONVENTION VENDOR) and it shows Grimpressions in his natural habitat creating art with special guest appearances by his son Sabian and cat Toxi and a score by Lawrence M. Fischer. I can't help but be incredibly impressed watching PHILIP's paintings come together starting as simple brush strokes and ending as works of art. If you're a horror fan or even just a fan of the painting process you'll probably feel the same way. I posted a few select images below but jump over to PHILIP's Facebook Page HERE to view more of his work and stay up do date with his activities. Also PHILIP is eligible for a Rondo Hatton Award for his work so why not support the arts by casting a vote for him HERE!
Happy Saint Patrick's Day kids! Do not go outside tonight the streets will be filled with drunks! Instead, put on something green and stay indoors and watch the SYFY channel! Tonight they are premiering a brand new horror flick inspired by the holiday entitled LEPRECHAUN'S REVENGE! What makes this movie so promising is the fact that the one and only DREW DAYWALT directed it. Drew has directed many a fine horror short including the perennial "The Easter Bunny is Eating My Candy!" and "There's No Such Thing!" which actually happens to be dedicated to Kindertrauma! (You can even read a traumafession from good ol' Drew HERE!)
With DAYWALT pulling the strings, LEPRECHAUN'S REVENGE is sure to be monstrous good fun so make sure you catch it. Go buy some beer and prepare. SYFY is even going to show the first three unrelated WARWICK DAVIS LEPRECHAUN flicks so that you can make a night out of it! Check out the teaser trailer for DREW'S flick below and remember it premiers at nine. Don't miss it! It's sure to sham-rock!