Creepshow (Second Sight – Region 2)
Before Dick Tracy and Sin City thrilled audiences with its faithful recreation of the comic book aesthetic came Creepshow, a horror anthology in the tradition of EC Comics. This brainchild of horror icons Director George A. Romero and Writer Stephen King is a giddy tribute to the likes of Tales From the Crypt which ran from 1950-1955. These bloody morality plays had a profound influence on them while growing up. It is especially apparent in Romero’s Dawn of the Dead which features comic-style violence and social commentary that wouldn’t look out of place on the pages of EC.
Creepshow is a collection four short stories not including a wraparound tale revolving a strict father and his horror-loving son. This simple set-up is instantly relatable to many genre fans that grew up under similar circumstances (thankfully my parents were super-cool with this obsession of mine). It’s a smart way to draw us in from the get-go. I love how each story is compelling, uniquely different yet still follows the template that runs throughout EC Comics’ books. This includes a tongue-in-cheek, darkly comedic tone and an allegorical pay-off in which the characters usually get their come-upping’s. At the same time it never trickles too far into camp territory that would undermine the spook factor. This is achieved with the assistance of an outstanding ensemble with the likes of Adrienne Barbeau, Leslie Nielsen and Ed Harris, most generally not known for doing genre. They give each segment the gravity required. The ground-breaking, hyper-stylized cinematography is another key component. It captures the look of the comics flawlessly. Special Make-up Effects god Tom Savini does some of his finest work here. The zombies and creatures are beautifully realized. Special acknowledgement needs to be made to John Harrison’s exceptional score. If you’ve somehow gone through life not seeing this classic, you’ll recognize the cues from Eli Roth’s brilliant Thanksgiving faux-trailer found in GrindhouseCreepshow. Its charm still hits that sweet spot to this day. READ MORE
Happy Friday The 13th! As a special treat I have Doc Coyle’s, guitarist for God Forbid, Top 5 horror movies. It’s been a while since I posted a Top 5 and I’m super excited to share this one. There are some fantastic choices past the break which also include tour dates for their Trespass America Tour and their new video for Equilibrium. Also make sure to pick up their new album Equilibrium through HERE. Enjoy!
The unfortunate truth is that most remakes are pre-destined to be awful. I’m not saying they’re all bad, there are some I rather like, but most of the recent ones never really had a chance to be good. Even if a passionate writer, director and cast are brought onboard they’re still essentially fighting an uphill battle against the reason they were hired in the first place. Money. If a studio owns a certain piece of recognizable property, when they opt to remake it they do so because they feel like it’s a secure financial decision (even if many recent ones have tanked). This means it’s already a film by committee even before the creative team is added. That’s an unhealthy, and usually unfixable, power dynamic for any production.
But what if that wasn’t the case? I mean, we can dream right? I know John Carpenter’s The Thing is always cited as one of the times they “got it right” – but the climate has changed a lot since 1982. I need only to point you in the general direction the 2011 version The Thing to illustrate how much. I suppose one of the recent ones that almost got it right was Dennis Iliadis’ 2009 remake of The Last House On The Left. It had the right idea in that most successful remakes update films that had interesting ideas, but weren’t necessarily great to begin with. Wes Craven’s 1972 TLHOTL is one of those films. It’s a totally incompetent mess (Craven got better later). But while Iliadis’ film is far superior in many ways, it bungles the themes and crosses the line. It allows the daughter to survive, which turns it from a revenge film into a survival film. And it also lingers on the rape scene for far too long. It’s a scene that’s even less necessary than it was before because the audience no longer needs to be sold on the revenge motif.
But at least it got close! It took an unwatchable film and made it watchable (again – except for the inexcusable context for that 5 minute assault)! What if we lived in a world where remakes were even better than this and actually hit their marks creatively? What are some of the famous properties that could use a good dusting off? Let’s indulge in the fantasy of a universe where remakes actually happen for semi-decent reasons!
If you can get onboard with that, head inside to check out which remakes we’d like to see! Then let us know yours in the comments! READ MORE