Here comes one last icy blast of winter! Let me tell ya, one of my most favorite memories of seeing a movie in the theater was when I first saw DEAD OF WINTER way back in the olden days. My first year of college I had no TV but I happened to be renting a room in a small town that had a movie theater that showed second run movies all week and had a magic show on the weekends (shout out to the incredible Cabot Street Theater in Beverly, Mass!). It was great because I went and saw basically everything they played regardless of genre and they changed their movies several times a week.
DEAD OF WINTER has some kind of moody goth-lite charisma that hits me exactly where I grimly live. Iâ€™ve been fascinated by cold and distant HITCHCOCK-worshiping, high-maintenance psychological thrillers since 1982 when I became the worldâ€™s first and only STILL OF THE NIGHT super-fan. Nothing butters my bread better than a dark and stormy night, a female lead who may or may not be losing her mind and a big old dark creepy house with plenty of visual details to repeatedly explore. If the lady in question is playing multiple roles as the great MARY STEENBURGEN does in this, thatâ€™s all the better. Sign me, my cat, my STAR WARS blanket and my whiskey up!
This is one of those special movies that I feel I have to have on both DVD and VHS; the DVD is for serious viewing and the VHS is for me to fall asleep to. Is that wrong? I canâ€™t help it. I love it so. DEAD OF WINTER is all about what happens when you loose your identity trying to be all things to all people (a goldfish in a plastic bag- best symbolism ever!) and how you can never, ever trust people like RODDY McDOWALL. Itâ€™s directed by the brilliant ARTHUR PENN (BONNIE AND CLYDE) and am I the only person who thinks STEENBURGEN looks exactly like KATE BUSH? Thereâ€™s a scene in DOW where she struggles to climb up a steep wooded hillside and every time I watch it I hear BUSHâ€™s â€œRunning up that Hillâ€ in my head. This is one of those go-to comfort movies that I return to over and over again. If you have never had the pleasure before, check it out on COMET TV today at 2pm HERE!
I love this film, too. Eeerie and creepy in all the right ways. Well done and underrated, but I like it that way. 🙂
I’m going to watch Gas-S-S-S at 6:00.
Omg this looks awesome! I have to say I’m glad I haven’t seen it yet because I’m always praying for more obscure 70s and 80s psychological horror.
And I hate to break it to you, but I was OBSESSED with Still of the Night when I was in high school. I had it on Beta and I think I watched that move at least 100 times. The dream sequence is so fabulous. And the central park scene. And pretty much every scene with Meryl Streep.
That theater sounds amazing btw.
Caffeinated Joe= I agree! The ride to the house in the snow is so eerie!The background is pitch black and they could be going anywhere and that goldfish from the gas station always gets me because it is so bizarre to be handing out goldfish in the winter!
Cousin Wil= Gas-s-s rules too!
Carol= Yay! I’m not alone in the universe with my STILL OF THE NIGHT super-fandom!!! i still have the newspaper ads I clipped! That dream sequence= I think watching that dream sequence taught me how to be alert to symbolism in movies! I love that central park scene! And the auction! And that guest house they go to is the best place on Earth. I even love the laundry room scene. Can you believe Streep is not a fan of the movie? Which is crazy because it’s brilliant.
Okay now I have to see STILL OF THE NIGHT. I’ve dragged my feet because of the bad things I’ve heard! And I asked for DEAD OF WINTER for my birthday! Unkle Lancifer you are the most influential cultural arbiter in my life!
I have a strong feeling that you are going to join the SOTN fan club and remain a lifelong member. Itâ€™s all early eighties New York and psychological and wait until you find out who the killer is! One of my favorite killers ever. You are going to love it. I just remembered I even had the movie tie-in novel.