Archive for Halloween
Sex toy company Fleshlight is getting into the Halloween spirit with the release of their Fleshlight Freaks series. Available in five different models — The Cyborg, The Alien, The Drac,The Frankenstein and The Zombie — the Fleshlights and Fleshjacks are certain to raise your spirits this holiday season.
OPI celebrates the best day of the year — Halloween, obviously — with the release of the the Spook-ettes mini-pack ($16.95 CAN) and the Pair’em Scare’em duo pack ($20.95 CAN) . Available at professional salons and spas, Spook-ettes includes four mini lacquers: He’s My Boo (orange), Mummy Knows Best (white), I Only Date Werewolves (black) and Zom-Body to Love (glow-in-the-dark green), as well as free nail decals.
From the press release: “The Pair’em Scare’em duo pack will bring Zom-Body to Love and OPI’s bestselling Black Shatter together in a hair-raising pair. Inspired by graffiti art, Shatter leaves behind a crackled, two-texture finish when painted over completely dry OPI nail lacquer. Paint Shatter over two coats of Zom-Body to Loveand add a top coat for a one-of-a-kind, glow-in-the-dark manicure.”
Just a reminder that the Halloween party to attend in Toronto this weekend is Rue Morgue Magazine‘s Ceremonia Satanica. Among the fearful festivities…
Starring Andrew St. John, James Immekus and Jennifer Tilly
Directed by Bryce Olson
Written by Jackie Olson
Death by grapefruit is probably one of the more ignominious ways to go in a horror film, and that’s exactly what happens to one of the victims of The Caretaker, a movie killer not likely to remembered beyond the agonizing 82 minutes it takes this execrable piece of trash to play out.
Let’s be clear: bad movies can be fun. Plan 9 From Outer Space, Horror of Party Beach, any of the Mystery Science Theatre flicks (with commentary)… Bad can be good. But bad can also be boring, and The Caretaker is boring.
The very thin story starts with a group of teens (played of course by twenty-somethings) skipping out on their school’s Halloween dance in favour of a limo ride up to the abandoned caretaker’s house in the local grapefruit orchard. Legend has it, the boys tell the girls, that the jealous caretaker chained his wife up in the house, even going so far as to kill her family when they tried to intervene. A baby was born and mother escaped with child, only to be chased down by her crazed husband… who was never caught.
You see where this is going, right? The Caretaker arrives to mow down the “teens” one by one, until only a final girl is left. But there’s a twist ending that throws us all for a loop. Fade out.
How The Caretaker got made is beyond me. Oh wait. No doubt the producers secured funds by casting Hollywood vets Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club) and Jennifer Tilly (Bound) in thankless supporting roles. Throw in a little gratuitous nudity and some very coy, near bloodless kills and you’ve got an inoffensive slasher that barely has the balls to call itself a horror film. The identity of The Caretaker is telegraphed early on, and only Tilly’s carefree performance (and bountiful cleavage) merits a rise in our pulse rate.
HALLOWEEN 2: UNRATED DIRECTOR’S CUT
Starring Scout Taylor-Compton, Tyler Mane and Malcolm McDowell
Written and directed by Rob Zombie
Alliance Home Entertainment
Thank Satan I did not see Halloween 2 in theatres. Every friend and fiend I know shat on it, not entirely surprising given the enmity that met writer/director Rob Zombie’s ill-advised first Halloween film – an enmity I wholly endorsed. Zombie’s rethink of the John Carpenter classic seemed a travesty, from its attempts to explain Michael Myers’ madness to his clumsy telescoping of the original’s plot into his film’s final act. I rarely boo a film, but I did that night in that theatre back in 2007.
But Halloween 2… It’s a good horror movie. Hell, it’s a good movie. Let’s be straight: this is the “unrated director’s cut” of which I speak. Even Zombie, on his commentary track, bemoans his truncated filming and editing schedule, and the studio’s insistence on an ending that left room for a sequel – a sequel of which, I might add, Zombie has washed his hands. This is Rob Zombie’s preferred version, and it’s both bloody and bloody good.
As to plot, Michael (Tyler Mane) is dead… except of course he’s not, and the body has disappeared. Two years later, we find his sister Laurie (Scout Taylor-Compton) is scarred and traumatized. So is her best friend Annie (Danielle Harris). Instead of bringing them together, Michael’s assault has created a rift which is pulling them apart, despite their living under the same roof with Annie’s dad, Sheriff Brackett (Brad Dourif), whose life is unravelling.
Dr. Loomis (Malcolm McDowell), meanwhile, has written a tell-all book that exploits his association with Michael – a book that also reveals Laurie’s family relation to Michael and sends her further down a path towards self-destruction. Always moving closer is Michael himself, prompted by visions of his mother (Sheri Moon Zombie). A family reunion is inevitable.
Watching Halloween II with Mrs. DLB, I asked her thoughts about the film. “Slow and stupid” was her comment, half an hour in. By the end, though, we turned to each other and agreed that Zombie’s attempts to build both suspense and character had worked. The relationship between Annie and Laurie is given room to breathe, and its decay is wrenching. Taylor-Compton is especially convincing as a regular girl whose life has been completely shattered. Even Zombie’s controversial decision to unmask Michael (and give him a word of dialogue) makes sense within the idea that this is a totally different version of the Halloween world. John Carpenter’s movie is still there up on my shelf, safe and sound.
The key extra on this disc is Zombie’s commentary. A lucid, smart man, he explains the differences between the theatrical version and this, his preferred version. Even he has reservations about the version that the studio put out, and while that may be self-serving apology, it makes me grateful that I never saw it.
Overall, this version is haunted, emotionally true and far more intimate (apparently) than what audiences have previously seen. Rather than being Rob Zombie’s worst film (at least as rated on the IMDb), Halloween 2 turns out to be his best.
British buzz act Florence + The Machine’s ‘Kiss With A Fist’ had a prominent place in the recent Diablo Cody-written horror film Jennifer’s Body. Here is Florence Welch talking about the idea of wanting to devour the one you love (which also inspired her song ‘Howl’), Halloween, and her childhood belief in vampires and werewolves: