Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Coolidge Corner Horror Marathon, Part I

Seen: At the Coolidge Corner Theatre in Brookline. Everything was 35mm, thank goodness.

Like last year, I stepped out for my annual Halloween shenanigans at the Coolidge Corner Theatre, which hosts a yearly all-night horror marathon for Boston's more discerning moviegoers. There's a costume contest, freaky video compilations from the Whore Church, and most importantly tons of awesome movies! Also I got to meet blogger/twitter buddy Adam in person, who stayed for the first two films. Nice to meet you, guy! Click ahead to HORRORRRRRR.

1 Suspiria (1977)
Though I had watched this fairly recently it was exciting to see it in a theater, with the whispery Goblin tunes and breathtaking color schemes felt more acutely than in a home viewing. I was able to take in more details, such as Argento's high placement of doorknobs to make the girls seem smaller, and Udo Kier's hilarious pronunciation of the word "occult" (although I think he was dubbed?). For my full thoughts, the title links to my original review. Also I'd like to remind you that my Suspiria ink painting is still available for sale.

2 The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
This was definitely my favorite of the films I saw at the marathon. One of two films directed by legendary sci-fi/horror writer Dan O'Bannon, it is a hilarious and often gruesome view of the zombie apocalypse as experienced by a bunch of teenage punks and the bumbling employees of a medical supply company when a deadly gas is released into the atmosphere and a nearby cemetery comes alive- LITERALLY LOL. Within zombie mythology it is notable in its inclusion of sentient zombies who are just overcome by pain and hunger, a sexy naked zombie, and an awesomely gung-ho solution to the problem. AND not only does the black guy not die first, he makes it to the end mostly! And his name is Spider! Basically: this movie rules. It's funny and scary and imaginative and always exciting. Great effects, too.

3 The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)
I was convinced this movie would be super gross and scary and I'd have to avert my eyes for most of the scenes, but actually it's totally watchable and I liked it a lot! The story starts off slowly as five twentysomethings head out to an isolated and abandoned house in rural Texas that two of them used to vacation in as kids (they're brother and sister and the house is owned by their family). They come across strange collections of bones and other unseemly hints at the horror awaiting them, but somehow they still walk right into the titular massacre as a nearby crazy person persists in picking them off one by one. The film really picks up in the last act as lone survivor Sally discovers the true extent of homicidal madness that this area has to offer. It's pretty awesome.

All right stay tuned for Part II tomorrow, involving some vein-y demons, robot terror, gooey undead murderers, and indulgent British lady sex. Hurray!