connielane: (books are teh sexy)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 04:06pm on 30/10/2016 under ,
For the third straight year I schlepped up to the Alamo Drafthouse in Yonkers for their annual horror marathon. I had been torn, because the Nitehawk had a pretty awesome lineup (which they announced well in advance), but the two events overlapped and I had to choose. Ultimately, the Nitehawk's event cost more than twice as much as the Drafthouse's and I decided to trust to the Alamo's surprise programming.

My expectations for awesomeness were somewhat lowered, since the programmer for the last two events was now the programmer for the Brooklyn location and wouldn't be involved. But it turns out I needn't have worried. As usual, they didn't announce the titles, letting us find out what we were seeing only when the title appeared on screen.

Read more... )

Another great year, and I wonder if the Brooklyn location will join the fun next October.
connielane: (bride)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 04:06am on 01/11/2015 under ,
For a few years now, I've been lucky enough to live sufficiently close to an Alamo Drafthouse Cinema so that I don't have to get on an airplane or drive for several hours to get there. The theater in Yonkers, though, still takes around 2 hours (one way) to get to, and that Brooklyn location needs to hurry up. Since a trip to Alamo Yonkers and back can take up to five hours (more, if you have to get back late at night), I tend to reserve trips up there for special events -- AGFA screenings of movies I would never be able to see otherwise, usually, and multi-film events like Van Dammage and Dismember the Alamo.

Last year's Dismember the Alamo was super-rad -- Night of the Creeps, Basket Case, Demons 2, and Society were our films -- and I was very happy that they decided to do it again this year. I was also excited that it was happening on Halloween night, as I rarely get to do much celebrating on the actual day anymore. I'd had my ticket for around six weeks, and my only worry was that, with all the horror movie watching I'd been doing this month, I would have seen one or more of the films in the past few weeks/days. I should learn to have more faith in the Yonkers programmer.

Read more... )
connielane: (joss love (dollhouse))
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 04:41am on 18/04/2012 under ,
Okay, this is a full-on SPOILER-tastic post about Cabin In the Woods. I'll be talking about almost everything I can remember about the movie, including the ... it's not really a twist, because it's dropped right up front, but it's the crux of the movie and you might not want it spoiled if you're planning to see the movie eventually.

If you're NOT planning to see this movie, read away. Though I should warn you that finding out more about it might make you more interested in seeing it after all, EVEN IF you don't like horror.

Why do the cut tags look like this now? )
Mood:: 'lazy' lazy
connielane: (nightmare)
FYI, I'm working on a spoiler-laden review, but this post is spoiler-FREE. Yes, even this photo, which is from the first scene in the movie and which I post here as an example of the fact that this movie is not what you might think it is.

1) Joss Whedon produced it and co-wrote it. One of my BNAT friends told me this movie was "like a long episode of Buffy" and while that didn't get me particularly excited (I love Buffy, but it's a show, not a movie), I have to say I agree. It's very "Joss"-y, particularly if you're familiar with his Buffy the Vampire Slayer work.

2) Drew Goddard directed it and co-wrote it. This is his first film to direct, but he has written an awful lot of good television, including several episodes of Buffy, Angel, Alias, and Lost.

3) There are actors you probably love in it, many of whom are nowhere to be seen in the trailers. Let's do a run-down, shall we?

- Superb character actor Richard Jenkins, probably best known for being the deceased father on Six Feet Under;

- Sorkin regular and light of my life Bradley Whitford, a.k.a. "Lemon Lyman" [NOTE: Jenkins and Whitford are actually main characters, though as I said, you'd never know from the marketing. But to say any more is a spoiler.];

- Chris Hemsworth, a.k.a. The God of Thunder;

- A Very Special Cameo from a pretty dang big movie star who is a horror icon;

- and a gaggle of actors from the Joss Whedon stable... Fran Kranz (Dollhouse's Topher), who gives what deserves to be a huge breakout performance; Amy Acker (Angel's Illyria and Dollhouse's Whiskey/Dr. Saunders); and Tom Lenk (ANDREW!!!!! *ahem* Buffy's Andrew)

4) It's so much more than a horror movie. I've seen people classify it as a comedy with horror elements, but to me that's like saying The Exorcist is actually a drama with horror elements, and come on. What it IS is a very clever send-up of the conventions of the horror genre that still heartily celebrates those conventions. This movie is seriously nudging into that precious place in my affections where things like Kill Bill lie. Not even kidding. It's by far the favorite new movie I've seen this year so far, and I would not be a bit surprised to see it in my top 5 at the end of the year. Heck, I wouldn't be surprised to see it at the tippy-top of the list. A lot of folks have compared it to Scream (aside: can you believe that movie came out SIXTEEN YEARS AGO???), and while the movies are pretty fundamentally different, plotwise, the things they're trying to accomplish are quite similar. The lazy Scream knock-offs never got that that movie actually loved the movies it was riffing and commenting on (not to mention that it was a genuinely scary movie, with characters you cared about), and soon people started to look at it as the death of the horror genre. This film does something similar, but really kind of reclaims what has always appealed to us about horror, and does it without the name-dropping and checklisting. I'll be very interested to see what future horror projects this movie inspires. It doesn't seem like the kind of thing that would lend itself to imitation, and the end of the movie pretty much rules out sequel possibilities (though Joss could come up with something if he wanted to, I'm sure).

- This movie *is* pretty gory, especially the third act, so if you're a horror-avoider because you can't do blood and viscera, keep that in mind. In fact, the R-rating is well earned for all the usual reasons associated with the genre. But if you don't like horror because the movies are usually pretty stupid, please reconsider seeing this one, because I think you'll be very pleasantly surprised.
Mood:: 'pleased' pleased
connielane: (nightmare)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 09:45am on 23/02/2012 under ,
It's been a while since there's been a Final Girl Film Club pick, and I *almost* let this one slip by, but thank goodness I didn't because I enjoyed the heck out of this slice of horror from the Golden Year of 1981.

You know it's going to be good when the very first thing you see and hear is a delicious blood-curdling SCREEEEEAAAAM! Okay, that's kind of a fake-out, because we're actually at a wild and crazy frat party. Wet t-shirt contest! Five-gallon hats! Feathered hair! For sure, like, it's the 80s, man!

Read more... )

Fun Factoid: This movie was directed by Tom DeSimone, the filmmaker who also gave us Chatterbox, which is maybe (hopefully?) the only movie to feature a talking and singing vagina. I ... have no more thoughts on that.

THIS movie, however, was pretty great. Thanks for another winner, Final Girl!
connielane: (count von count)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 03:49am on 20/08/2011 under , ,
The original Fright Night came out in 1985 and I was a few weeks from 10 years old. I was decidedly not a horror aficionado and frankly the poster (and matching soundtrack album cover) was the scariest thing I'd ever seen in my life at the time. I stayed well away. I finally caught up with it a couple of years ago, when I did my series on vampire movies (Fright Night post is here, if you're interested) and I LOVED it. It wasn't nearly as scary as I'd built up in my mind as a child (few films are, in my experience), and it was half comedy anyway.

When I first heard it was being remade, I had all the "ehhhhh, why" that everyone has when anything is remade. I've recently been thinking that it's less the idea of something being remade that bothers me and more the idea of it being a lazy artistic choice, which it almost always is. But not *quite* always. I'd love to do a post on that topic some time, but back to business.

Bottom line - I think the 2011 Fright Night is a genuinely good remake, one that honors the original while bringing something new to it (something besides just new actors, that is).

Fright Night (2011)

The script was written by Marti Noxon (yay, women screenwriters - double yay, women HORROR screenwriters!), who many of you know as the woman who took the lead on Buffy as Joss Whedon relinquished some of his responsibilities on that show to start creating Angel and (*wistful sigh*) Firefly. Some of you might also consider her the person who ruined Buffy, but that's neither here nor there. The woman knows her way around vampires. Real vampires, that is. :P Tom Holland, who wrote and directed the original, had story duties here, and it always helps when the original creator has his/her hands on a remake.

Don't do anything I wouldn't do. I guess that doesn't narrow it down much ... just mini-golf and sushi. )
connielane: (don't)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 03:56pm on 22/12/2010 under ,
Time for another round of Final Girl Film Club! This month's selection is the blaxploitation zombie flick Sugar Hill. Indicentally, the neighborhood in Harlem where I live is called Sugar Hill, so I felt a connection to this movie right off the bat. Also, this is a Samuel Z. Arkoff and AIP production (that's American International Pictures, not Amazingly Idiotic Productions), and if that name means anything to you, a) you probably watch too much MST3K, and b) this movie probably just jumped up several points on your AwesomeMeter.

Read more... )
connielane: (movie theater (inglourious basterds))
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 02:27am on 05/12/2010 under ,
I'm still working out exactly how I feel about this movie - meaning that I'm trying to figure out if I merely love it or OMG LOVE it. I'm leaning toward the latter. There was something about the very end that was ... I don't want to say unsatisfactory, but it wasn't quite the "woaaaah" I was expecting after the twenty minutes that immediately preceded it. Twenty minutes which, I must say, make up perhaps the most perfect movie climax I've seen on a movie screen this year. Period.

I just want to be perfect. )

Excellent, excellent movie. Man, I love this time of year!
Music:: "It's My Time" - Black Swan
Mood:: 'sleepy' sleepy
connielane: (don't)
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 11:35pm on 28/11/2010 under ,
It's been several months since I actually participated in the Final Girl Film Club in a timely fashion. I usually either watch the movie too late (which is pretty much every month) or just can't bring myself to write something about it (Hellbound and the annoyingness of Jackson and the dearth of Chuck Norris ass-kicking depressed me to no end). But NOT THIS TIME.

Oh my gosh, you guys! I'm so enraptured with this month's pick, I can hardly express it! But I'll try.

Read more... )

Anyway, despite my misgivings about the plot and the very obvious influence of Carrie, I thought this was awesome. Would watch again.
connielane: (movie theater (inglourious basterds))
posted by [personal profile] connielane at 03:16am on 09/11/2010 under ,
What, you thought I was done posting about horror movies just because it's not October anymore? WRONG! This was supposed to be for today's Final Girl Film Club, but a luxurious weekend sleep schedule kept me from watching this in a manner suitably timely for writing something in time for that. But I kind of dug this and it turned out I had something to say about it, so I'll say it to YOU lovely peeps instead. :D

There was this great video store just off campus when I was in college - Ray's Rent-A-Movie. They were independently owned, so they had a lot of stuff most chain rental stores didn't have. I used to pass the video for this film all the time and it creeped me out like nothing else on the horror aisle. Have I ever mentioned my phobia about standing with my back to the horror aisle? Well, I've got one. Thankfully, I'm all about the Netflix now, so that's not an issue. But every time I passed this on a trip to Ray's...

...I'd get the involuntary heebie jeebies. You see, in addition to my weird rental store phobia, I am also afraid of the so-called "funhouse." Because my impression is that it is anything but fun. I liken it to a slightly less threatening version of the old haunted house. And believe me - you don't want to get me started on my haunted house psychosis. I mean, there are even pop songs I can't hear TO THIS DAY without being reminded of my last disastrous attempt to walk through one. In addition to that, the funhouse also brings to mind the image of clowns, which I hope I don't have to explain are TRUFAX Creatures of Satan. All clowns in my mind are just as creepy and axe-wieldy as the one pictured above, and just no thanks. In addition to THAT, where do we find funhouses? More often than not, they are part of a traveling carnival, a notion which is almost as scary as clowns (obviously NOTHING is actually scari-ER than clowns - that is scientifically impossible).

SO ANYWAY, THE MOVIE. Read more... )
Mood:: 'working' working


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