This week was all over the place. There were some really amazing films and then there was one of the worst movies I've ever seen. This just goes to show that you never know what you're gonna get during Creepy Cinema. I'm learning that I can't write off a movie just because it might be a little scary or is a monster flick. I actually like most of the movies we've watched so far, which really surprised me. I'm ready for week three, I think Markus has been holding out on the really terrifying stuff for later. I'm not really looking forward to it, but this is what I got myself into. I have to commit and suffer through every minute.
1. Horror of Dracula (1958)
Before watching this movie, I've never even heard of Hammer Films. Apparently, fans of the horror genre adore them. I never knew that Christopher Lee, Saruman in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, was in so many Hammer Films. In this movie, he portrays Dracula. When he first appeared on screen I was shocked. He didn't look anything like the Christopher Lee I knew. He was young and handsome. Even his trademark voice was a shadow of what it is now.
The Horror of Dracula wasn't anything like I expected. Last week, we watched Bela Lugosi's Dracula and I was a bit apprehensive to watch another telling of the same story, but this film was only reminiscent of the source material. Not only were the characters switched around, but the plot was also changed. The main character of this film is actually Doctor Van Helsing played by Peter Cushing. At first, the film was quite interesting, but after a while it started to drag and I barely saw Dracula. I don't know if it was because I know this story so well and saw another Dracula film recently, but it wasn't anything I haven't seen before. Throughout the movie, we only saw Dracula for about 20 minutes. If you're going to call the movie, Horror of Dracula, you should at least deliver on horror or Dracula, which this movie had barely any of.
2. The Mummy (1959)
As a fan of The Mummy from 1999, I was eager to see the Hammer Film version. Again, this film starred both Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing. I have to admit after watching both of these Hammer Films, I am a big fan of Peter Cushing. He's fantastic to watch.
I liked The Mummy a lot more than The Horror of Dracula. I can see some similarities in The Mummy from 1999, but it was different enough to keep me interested. I really enjoyed this film. I feel like it was a vast improvement from the previous Hammer Film. The tone felt a bit more eerie, and we got to see the Mummy much more than we saw Dracula. I also found The Mummy much more menacing. Every time he appeared on screen, I freaked a bit. Christopher Lee portrayed the Mummy and he's a much taller gentleman than I thought. I loved his piercing stare and how oddly he walked. Since you never see his face, he had to act out all his emotion through his action and his eyes. It was incredible and creepy at the same time. After watching these two Hammer Films, I actually want to keep going and see more.
3. Jeepers Creepers (2001)
This was our first modern horror movie for Creepy Cinema 2012 and to be honest, I really didn't want to watch it. I was ready to spend most of the time screaming and hiding under the covers, which was exactly what I did. Markus has talked about this movie before, and said that it was one of the more clever films he's seen. It was pretty good, but the two lead characters were unbearably annoying. They don't make sense, they make so many stupid decisions and geez, what's with all the screaming? I started screaming at them because they were so annoying.
Despite that, this was a very interesting scary movie. It wasn't the basic slasher or ghost film. I made an assumption half way through the film and was only half correct. The actual big bad was nothing like I imagined. He was much more terrifying. The ending was a complete surprise, and wasn't where I thought they were going, and I'm a bit glad they did. Even though this film starts out a bit like a typical scary movie and has the same elements, they did something a bit more creative and different. I enjoyed that aspect. I appreciate that the creators of this film tried to be original, although I wish they directed the leads a bit better.
4. Beetlejuice (1988)
Beetlejuice was one of my favorite movies when I was a kid. Many of my favorite movies were fantasy movies, especially Tim Burton's films. My mother even made me a Jack Skellington outfit to wear one Christmas. I loved all his movies from the 80's. Although, my favorite was Edward Scissorhands, and the minute I saw it, I forgot about all the other Burton movies. That being said, I haven't seen Beetlejuice in ages. Watching it again after so many years reminded me why I used to love Tim Burton and his films.
His movies as of late have been quite horrible. In my opinion, he hasn't made a good movie since Sweeney Todd. I loved watching Beetlejuice again. It took me back to when I was that little girl that loved the strange and odd. I forgot how delightful this movie was. The acting was great and the story was fresh and different. It wasn't a retelling of some other story, it was intriguing and Burton at his finest. After watching Beetlejuice it made me sad to know that Burton has strayed somewhat far from his own classics.
5. The Invisible Man (1933)
I loved this movie. I was surprised that I liked it as much as I did. I think it had a lot to do with not knowing anything about the story. For most of the movies on the list, I've either seen or knew something about them. All I knew about The Invisible Man was that it was based off the novel by H.G. Wells.
What's amazing is that the movie isn't so much about the main character being invisible, but about what the power of invisibility can do to someone. I loved the struggle of the Invisible Man. It wasn't a clear cut monster flick. Most of the time, monsters are these horrible and dastardly characters. But what happens when you're just a regular man who is striving for something, and the lure of power is within your grasp? This movie explores one man's search for greatness, but instead goes mad with power. I was also surprised at how amazingly, well done the special effects were. I mean this is 1933, how did they make him invisible? It was pretty convincing, not to the standards of today, but still incredible.
6. The Blob (1958)
I have to admit that I was really excited to watch this movie, but for one reason alone, Steve McQueen. I love me some Steve McQueen. He is on my top three list of favorite classic movie stars, along with Paul Newman and Cary Grant. He's a bit rugged, he's manly and best of all he's a bit of a bad boy. You can tell by watching him that he's the kind of guy that does what he wants. Usually, that's not my type, but I just adore Steve McQueen.
I liked The Blob, it wasn't my favorite, but I definitely enjoyed it. I think the idea of The Blob is horrifying. Just thinking about some kind of ooze falling from outer space and consuming everyone in it's path is terrible. The actual blob wasn't that scary, but it really was great watching people run away in the iconic theater escape scene. Another amazing thing about this movie? The theme song. I was running around the house singing my own version. It definitley wins best theme song award for this week, which is a huge achievement since the amazing Danny Elfman scored Beetlejuice.
7. From Beyond (1986)
This had to be one of the worst movies I've ever seen. This film is based off a short story by H.P. Lovecraft, but is nothing like the Lovecraft's original story at all. The concept for this film is actually quite intriguing. Two scientists are on the quest to stimulate the pineal gland to it's full potential. They achieve this through a device that they have created called The Resonator. They succeed, but also tap into an alternate dimension where they can see horrible creatures that attack them. Sounds cool right? Well that was what I thought and for the first 40 minutes or so it was decent, but after it spirals out of control into ridiculousness.
I've seen some awful movies, but this one just wasn't for me. Markus was much more forgiving than I was, but I think he, "enjoys these cult movies for the horrific gems they are." The creatures were gross and the leads weren't very appealing. It seemed like everyone had their own brand of stupidity, and I just wasn't buying it. I'm kind of sad that this film wasn't better. I expected so much more from it, and when it didn't deliver I was left with nothing but disappointment.
Introduction, Week 1, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Hotties of Creepy Cinema