We’re back with another fun list of horror films to seek out this Halloween season with Retro Girl! Jeannie has been a friend for a long time and I’m glad to be able to share some of her tastes around here.
For Halloween this year I decided to put together a sort of fun scavenger hunt for all of you. I’ve asked some friends to put together a list of 5 films that they felt were unknown, under appreciated, or just deserved another look. My hope is that during the month of October maybe we’ll seek out some horror films outside of our usual Halloween viewing. First up is from the ever awesome Sean Keller. Sean is a screenwriter out in LA and in his bio he was too modest to point out that he wrote the Sci Fi Channel (pre SyFy) classic Mammoth. Here’s his list. Enjoy.
1. WNUF HALLOWEEN SPECIAL (2013) – There are a lot of films out there trying to mimic the 80s aesthetic with varying degrees of authenticity and effectiveness, but this film is nostalgia perfected. The conceit of WNUF is that it’s a “videoptaped live broadcast” of a local independent station’s Halloween Special from Halloween night 1987 in which a tv personality hosts a séance from inside a supposedly haunted house. The story is thin, but it’s the attention to detail, specifically the low-budget local ads interspersed throughout the broadcast that ring true and make this piece really sing. Watching this for the first time last year was a revelation and I will be watching it on the night before Halloween for the rest of my life.
2. HAXAN (1922) – This “documentary” is a history of beliefs about witches and has the most witchy scenes ever committed to film (pair it with THE WITCH and LORDS OF SALEM for a perfect triple-bill of witchiness) Yes it it black & white, yes it’s a silent film, but there is a very cool shortened version of the film (and 1960’s re-release) narrated by the inimitable William S Burroughs that makes a great film somehow even greater and helps if you aren’t a silent movie fan.
3. TERROR IN THE AISLES (1984) – While not terribly “Halloweeny”, Terror on the Aisles is a very personal film for me. It played in heavy rotation on HBO in the mid 80s and was a real gateway film for me. It is essentially a clip-show of horror films (and inexplicably a ton of shots from the Stallone/Rutger Hauer crime thriller NIGHTHAWKS) set in a movie theater and hosted a deliciously over-the- top Donald Pleasance and Nancy Allen. The clips are spoiler-heavy and made me want to see every film they show. It’s a great bit of fun and a perfect film to leave on in the background during your Halloween party.
4. THE AMERICAN SCREAM (2012) – Another documentary? Fuck yeah, what about it? If you love the Halloween season (and if you don’t, why are you reading this?) you MUST watch The American Scream. This film is a sweet depiction of three families in the same small Massachusetts suburb who are all home haunters, meaning, they build ornate haunted house displays on their property every year for Halloween. This film hits me in my heart. I cry every time I watch it. If you ever feel like you’re becoming burnt out on the season, this flick is the perfect cure. The three families involved are so uncynically devoted to the glorification of the holiday that you cannot help but be infected with their enthusiasm. I highly recommend this one as an early October viewing to get you into the Halloween mood.
5. CANDYMAN (1992) – This is the most well-known title on my list, but I cannot give it enough love. If there was ever a film that begged to be included into the pantheon of Universal monsters, it’s this one. Tragic, terrifying, sexy, heroic, mythic and the most gothic urban horror ever made, Candyman climbs in my estimation with every viewing. Helen (Virginia Madsen) is doomed from the start and her descent into hell via folklore eventually fuses her soul into the
myth she is researching . Every shot is amazing and the score elevates the already wonderful film into true greatness.
Sean Keller is a horror screenwriter best known for his work with Dario Argento (GIALLO) and John Carpenter (THE WARD) and most recently wrote the book, lyrics, music and starred in the hit Slasher comedy musical SLASHED! The Musical.
This week we take a look at what we didn’t realize was two Roger Corman related movies that deal with fishmen. First up is the Island Of The Fishmen and then followed by Vic Morrow in Humanoids From The Deep. Then we talk about a trip to the drive in by Bryan and Noah. All this and more!
Just about everyone that knows me knows how obsessed with Stephen King I am. It’s not just that I enjoy his work but I obsess over it. It probably came from the 4th Dark Tower book where we find out that everything he’s ever written is connected some how.
My mom was a big King fan back in the day. She had a bookcase full of King books. I’d pull them out and look at the covers. I knew I’d always be too scared to read them, but they sat there and I’d stare at them.
It finally happened when I was 10. The IT miniseries was on TV and even though it looked scary I still watched it. I’m sure my parents regret that. I couldn’t sleep without nightmares for awhile. Then suddenly the urge came over me. I had to read IT. I needed to know more about this evil clown. How I convinced anyone to let me buy a copy of IT I’ll never know but they let me.
I read it within 6 months. I know but it’s over a thousand pages and I was 11. Give me some slack. From that point on I pretty much devoured every King book I could get my hands on. My mom seemed encouraged by my interest and even let me borrow books from her collection. Now the very books I used to get scared just looking at just the covers I was reading one after the other.
I give King credit for a lot of things with me. I feel there is a point in every person’s life where they make the decision “do I keep reading for fun or do I just read because I have to for school and I move on to other things for fun?” He kept me reading. I would keep up to date on his current books. Getting them for Christmas and Birthday presents from family members. I read other authors as well but nothing could bring me to a screaming halt like King.
Then I discovered within this collection of books The Dark Tower. I had avoided it because I’m not really into fantasy novels. But decided to give the first one a shot. I enjoyed it enough I wanted to see where it would go so I got the second book. Then the third. After that the 4th book would change everything.
I was used to seeing references to other King works in his books. Castle Rock of course was a big nexus point but things like The Stand and some of his other short stories like The Mist (yes more a novella), The Jaunt, The Long Walk, etc. took place in worlds that there was no way could be in the same reality as Castle Rock.
In the 4th Dark Tower book a character whom I thought was a stand alone character told another character that he was trying to win over to his side “I once had a man that would pledge ‘My Life For You!'” Everything changed. Suddenly this quest for the Dark Tower now had resonance across every word King had every put to paper. It all mattered.
I continued on the journey to the tower and was sad to say goodbye to the friends I had made in that world but never stopped making friends with his new characters. Some books are better than others as that is with any story. I never quit. King has kept me reading and dreaming. Most importantly King has kept me writing.
I had dreams of being a big novelist. I also had dreams of being a big filmmakers. Age has let me look at the realities of this world and I let myself be content to just write and make movies because I want to with no goal of hitting it big. I’d actually like to avoid that if possible. I just want to enjoy doing it.
This Friday I finally close a circle as I’ll be heading up to the Chicago area to see King and his son Owen talk about their new book Sleeping Beauties. I’ve been holding out going to one of these because I always hoped there would be a chance to meet him at a signing so I could extend my hand and say “Thank you for everything you’ve given me.” It doesn’t look like he does many straight up signings anymore so this may be the only chance I’ll have to at least be in an event with him. I’m going to take it and enjoy every minute I can of him and his son sitting on stage telling stories and talking about weaving stories together. There are worse ways to spend a Friday.
We delve into some dystopian futures this week as we look at 1986’s Charles Band produced film Robot Holocaust and then take a trip to The Bronx to find a lawless society that is fighting against a fascist corporate regime in 1990: The Bronx Warriors. Seems a little too real now a days. We delve into other stuff we’ve been watching which includes a review of IT, Noah’s trips to the cinema using Moviepass, and Bryan’s horror filled weekend.
The highlight for me for Daredevil Season 2 was the new vision of The Punisher. We had up till then 3 big screen versions of the deranged vigilante but none seemed to really connect with audiences. Many claimed they had softened up the character too much to reach a broad audience. For me when I heard him utter “You hit them they get back up. I hit them and they stay down.” I knew they had found the right tone for the character. It was no surprise Frank Castle would end up with his own Netflix series. We’ve seen a few teaser trailers but today the full length trailer hit the internet. It’s exactly what I wanted from a Punisher show. The Metallica music gets the tone perfect. What do you think?
Drive right in and take your spot in front of the screen. Grab a speaker off the pole and sit down to enjoy the first episode of Midnight Drive-In. For our first episode we decided to dive into a topic that is weirdly back on people’s minds. Nazis. We check out Ilsa, She Wolf Of The SS and Surf Nazis Must Die! Then we go into some other stuff we’ve been watching. If you want to contact the show email us at email@example.com or hit us up on twitter @MNDriveInPod. And of course there is always the Facebook group. See you all at the concession stand.
When IT was first announced as being up on the remake slot (or re-adaptation if you want to approach it that way) I was not really that thrilled with the idea. I once met the director of the 1990 TV miniseries version of IT. I straight up told him that I blamed him for the reason I didn’t like clowns. Anyone in my age range will tell you that Tim Curry pretty much ruined the ever enjoying a clown again. For me there was no way anyone could ever do Pennywise justice. Tim Curry had terrified a whole generation with some grease paint and a wicked smile.
The longer it went on I hoped more and more that IT would be put in the old development hell section of Hollywood where things like Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash or such gems as a sequel to Bubba Ho-Tep seemed to live. I wouldn’t get my wish. I began my crusade of denying this movie. Hell no we won’t go . . . . to the cinema to see a new IT! The chant was awkward so I dropped it but I kept saying there was no way a new IT would be good. Then the first trailer hit. Suddenly a slight crack in my facade began to show. I was still adamant that Pennywise wouldn’t be nearly as good as Tim Curry’s but damn did the footage look pretty good.
Trailer 2 hit. The cracks were really showing now. IT actually looked scary. As much as I love the 1990 TV movie version because it scared my 10 year old self senseless it has lost some of the scary luster it once held and now I just appreciate it for how it USED to scare me. These trailers had made it look actually scary again. Yeah but still he was no Tim Curry. What I learned this weekend is that he didn’t need to be.
I’d been waiting to hate on this movie since it was first announced and now here I sit opening weekend telling you I can’t. Don’t get me wrong, it still has some quibbles with me, but I actually can say I really enjoyed it. They took a story I’ve loved all my life and gave it a loving tribute to it’s source material. The time frame is updated to 1989. Making the kids pretty much the same age I was when I saw IT for the first time. Suddenly I’m caught in a nostalgia loop. I’m reliving my childhood through these characters and they were also about to get the piss scared out of them by a killer clown.
The casting is about spot on perfect for me. I have no complaints what so ever. Bill is great as an awkward leader consumed by his brother’s disappearance. Eddie is one sneeze away from being put into an iron lung by his over bearing mother. Richie is the foul mouthed class clown we all wished we could have been. And there’s Bev. Poor poor Bevie. I worry about her a lot.
These kids feel like friends. It’s no stretch of the imagination to see these kids hanging out. The chemistry on screen is near perfect. Henry Bowers has traded in his duck tail hair cut and leather jacket for a mullet and sleeveless t-shirts fitting right into the 1989 setting. Pennywise. Oh let me tell you about this Dancing Clown. Bill Skarsgard brings a new twist onto King’s terrifying shape shifter. He doesn’t try to do what Tim Curry did. He didn’t do an impression. He creates something new. Which is exactly what you need in a remake like this. Something new. This evil clown doesn’t lure you in with his innocent clown tricks. No. This clown lures you in with his smile and then keeps right on smiling as he rips your guts out. If Tim Curry gave 10 year old me nightmares then Skarsgard is going to give the almost 40 year old me some sleepless nights for the next few days.
I am pleading with you if you have been on the fence to give the new IT a try. And this is from a fan who denounced it from the start. Give it a chance. You might just get a few night terrors of your own.
I actually have seen IT twice this weekend. First with a few friends I had made plans with a few months ago and then just today I got a chance to go see IT with an invitation for free passes to try the 4DX version. A new 4DX theater had opened in Illinois and I was curious to check it out so I gladly accepted. With 4DX you get an immersive experience. Your seat will move and vibrate along with the movie. You’ll get fans blowing when the characters are riding their bikes so you can feel the wind rushing past your head. New smells will enter the theater during every scene. There was strobe lights to help accentuate the lightning. Mist and air from the seats in front of you to bring you into the wet and surprising scenes. Seems like a great idea . . .
. . .unless you’re trying to watch an atmospheric horror film. Sadly it didn’t help with this movie. The audience also didn’t help. Lots of talking and people checking phones. Part of me thinks the 4DX didn’t help with this. When you have air blasting in your face and your friends are laughing it seemed to open up the idea that you could just talk about it at full volume. Many times during the film my seat was shaking and moving all over the place and making it hard to pay attention to what was going on on screen. I looked over at my friend Scott who came with me to see him almost a foot higher than me because our seats were moving at such a weird pace.
Also I didn’t smell anything. Nothing seemed to change during the movie. I felt bad as this was Scott’s first time seeing the film and what was supposed to be an immersive experience seemed to be distracting him from actually enjoying the movie. I don’t think it’s a bad idea overall. If I saw Jurassic World in this theater I probably would have enjoyed every second of it but for a movie like this it seemed to make it harder to enjoy the film. I say YES to 4DX but not for something like this.
Outside of that GO SEE IT! From the box office it would seem like a lot of you did which means we will probably see more R rated horror films and more Stephen King in the theater. Both of which can be good things.
On the way home from the theater me and Scott decided to break out the recorder and talk about our experience. There was a lot of road noise so I did best I could to get rid of it but you may hear some bleeps and bloops. Sorry.
Music provided by The Fantastic Plastics.
This week we’re down two co-hosts so Amanda and Bryan venture forth alone to tell the tales of this week’s Challenge XXX: Dirty Thirty. We talk about some drunken shenanigans, if Tony is actually a good player, and state multiple times that Nelson is a punk.
A few weeks ago (I got busy) I rounded up a crew and we sat down to discuss not only the new Netflix series GLOW but also the recently released Spider-Man Homecoming. Joining me is Doug from The Last Horrorcast, Noah from Hero Unabridged, Michael from The Awesome 80’s Podcast, and Mike Patterson of being Mike fame. There is a spoilery section but we denote it in the show so feel free to listen without worry.
Music provided by The Fantastic Plastics.
It’s episode 0 for the 30th season of The Challenge. We run down the cast for this season, speculate on the format, and give our hopes for who comes out the victor and participants we hope to see go home right away.
We’re getting down to the end and tensions begin to rise as the finish line is in sight. Who gets voted in? Who throws the biggest tantrum?
We love ourselves some movies around here but we also love us some video games. Below are trailers just released for some new games coming out of E3 2017. Here is what we’re excited for. What are you excited for?
I’m joined by the guys from The Graveyard Duck Podcast to talk about the newest console from Nintendo the Nintendo Switch. We go over what we initially thought of the console, some of the games we’ve played, and just the use of the switch in general.
Or Subscribe Here to the Geek Nerdery Master Feed for all of our podcasts in one simple feed!
Comet is giving away some swag!
Want it? In the comments below tell us your favorite Harryhausen creation. We’ll pick one winner on June 1st. Enjoy!
May has blasted off and we have an out of this world giveaway for you!
Ray Harryhausen, who we all know pioneered stop motion and visual effects for such films as Jason and the Argonauts, The 3 Worlds of Gulliver and The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, is being honored by Comet TV this month!
We’ve custom designed a limited edition T-Shirt that you can only get via this promotion! There’s all kinds of awesomeness in this set!
The Set includes:
1 – Limited Edition Ray Harryhausen custom designed T-Shirt: The God’s Want Their Entertainment! And So do Comet TV Fans! Show your love of classic Sci-Fi with this Limited Edition T-Shirt you can only get through this promotion!
10 – Skeleton Warrior Mini Figures: The perfect way to plan your own battle is with these skeleton warrior figures. Perfect for your desk, coffee table or as an heirloom to pass down from generation to generation!
2 – Packs of Candy Bones: After you vanquished your skeleton foes, celebrate with these sweet treats!
1 – Comet TV “Space Out” Fridge Magnet: This fridge is rated “S” for Spacey! Show your Comet TV love and love of Sci-Fi with this custom magnet. Only the cool kids have them!
1 – Comet TV “Space Out” Sticker: These are Spacey Times. Show your Comet TV love by sporting this awesome sticker. Great for notebooks, bumpers, to put on people’s backs, you know… the usual!
Coming Up On Comet!
In case you couldn’t tell, we’re pretty big fans of old school movie monsters here at COMET, and no one was more important when it came to making those famous beasts come to life than special effects pioneer Ray Harryhausen. Catch four of his classic films airing this month.
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958)
Friday May 12 at 4P/3C
Monday May 22 at 6P/5C
The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973)
Saturday May 27 at 10P/9C
The 3 Worlds of Gulliver (1960)
Friday May 26 at 10P/9C
Jason and The Argonauts (1963)
Friday May 12 at 6P/5C
Tuesday May 23 at 6P/5C
Jim Henson. George Lucas. David Bowie. When these three legends got together in 1986, an all-time cult favorite was born. We are, of course, talking about the nightmare-inducing puppet-filled ‘80s fantasy masterpiece known as Labyrinth. It’s one of those rare films that seems to get better each time you watch it.
Friday May 12 at 8P/7C
Saturday May 13 at 8P/7C
Thursday May 18 at 6P/5C
Sunday May 28 at 6P/5C
The Bride (1985)
Friday May 19 at 8P/7C
Saturday May 20 at 8P/7C
Sunday May 28 at 4P/3C
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988)
Friday May 26 at 8P/7C
Saturday May 27 at 8P/7C
Wednesday May 31 at 6P/5C
Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987)
Saturday May 13 at 2P/1C
Thursday May 18 at MIDNIGHT/11C
Monday May 8 at 8/7C
Sunday May 21 at 2P/1C
Troll 2 (1991)
Saturday May 13 at 4P/3C
Monday May 15 at 6P/5C
Stargate SG-1 is back on COMET! Your favorite gate-hopping action series returns with back-to-back episodes Monday through Thursday at 8/7C, with encores of both episodes airing at 10/9C. That’s two chances, four times a week, to catch Jack O’Neill and his squad on their adventures across the galaxy. Indeed.
MONDAY – THURSDAY 8/7C
It’s been awhile since we visited the trailer park so let’s get into it.
In honor of the new season of MST3K dropping we’re teaming up with Comet to give away some pretty awesome swag. This is what you’ll get.
Now I want a real MST3K fan to get these so the contest is that in the comments below you have to leave a Space Mutiny nickname for yourself. The best nickname will win this awesome prize pack. A winner will be decided on May 1st. So get to it.
Each household is only eligible to win COMET / MST3K Classic Episodes Prize Pack via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
Also this Earth Day Comet is doing an Earth Day Marathon. Check out their line up below:
PLANET IN PERIL EARTH DAY MARATHON
SATURDAY APRIL 22 STARTING AT NOON/11AM C
Saturday April 22 at NOON/11AM C
Die, Monster, Die (1965)
Saturday April 22 at 2/1C
Empire of the Ants (1977)
Saturday April 22 at 4/3C
Contamination .7 (1993)
Saturday April 22 at 6/5C
I grabbed my co-hosts from Challenged and we sat down to talk about this season of The Walking Dead. One of us loved this season, one of us hated this season, and one of us was indifferent. Things also take a weird turn as this was the second podcast we recorded this night and were already well into our stock of alcohol at this point. It gets weird.
Music provided by The Fantastic Plastics. Catch them this summer at Warped Tour.
The first trailer for Thor Ragnarok was just released. I love it. I feel like it’s taking a cue from the Guardians Of The Galaxy with the flashy retro font and colors along with the music but I don’t care. I still love it. Plus we’re pretty much here on Planet Hulk. Can’t wait to see them battle it out. And Cate Blanchett looks amazing as Hela. We see that Loki will be ringside for the battle of Thor and Hulk. But what is not shown is what role Doctor Strange will play in the film. What do you think of the trailer? Are you excited?
I am once again joined by Sometimes Co-Host Mike and Michael from the Awesome 80s Podcast as we’re breaking down our Top 5 Animated Batman Movies! Some claim to have the best list of everyone, some made their list just before we started.
After all that we chat about Wrestlemania 33. Is it really Undertaker’s final match? And the guys give their reactions to the new trailer for Stephen King’s IT.
In usual podcast chaos Sometimes Co-Host Mike and I knock equipment around and my cat seems to ring its bell a lot which I did not noticed while recording. We aim for high quality here!
Music provided by The Fantastic Plastics. Catch them this summer at Warped Tour.