Happy Halloween! There’s no better time to wrap up my annual Hoop-Tober horror marathon than by re-visiting some old classics and just marveling at how the masters of the genre did it bigger and better all those years ago. The first two entries in the Friday the 13th series may have done more damage than good in the sheer glut of poor copycat films that came after, but they’re still a rip to watch. John Carpenter’s original Halloweenstill stands as a singular achievement in pacing and streamlined storytelling. Wes Craven brings the horror a gleefully evil personality for the first time in the original and best A Nightmare on Elm Street. And to this day there is still no terror like the slam of a steel door signalling you’re trapped in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.
We’re one week into the annual Hoop-Tober horror marathon, and five films in it’s been a bit of mixed bag. On the plus side Andy Muschietti’s adaptation of Stephen King’s It plays like gangbusters on the big screen, building scares more like action sequences and (for the most part) eschewing needless jump scares. And Tobe Hooper’s The Funhouse had a great grimy feel mixed in with its Hitchcockian thriller elements. Alas, Burnt Offerings was too slow and boring despite some truly unnerving scenes and a killer cast with Oliver Reed, Karen Black and Bette Davis. The House on Willow Street took an interesting premise (thieves take girl hostage who happens to be possessed by a demon) and kills it with terrible dialog and performances. And I wish I could say I really enjoyed the meta-commentary in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, but it wasn’t enough to redeem what they did to Freddy.
The guys reel over some unfortunate news from Motörhead over legendary frontman Lemmy’s health, then touch briefly on the Atlas Moth / Vattnet Viskar shows they DIDN’T get to discuss on last week’s pod — because there WAS no last week’s pod. Also, new albums from Nile, Soilwork and, yes, Motörhead!
All that and much, much more in Episode 15, so check it out!