2. Hidden gem award: Tie -- Ted Bundy & Ed Gein -- The two best of the First Look films. Thoughtful characterizations of the two killers. Two more to add to the honored list of straight-to-video finds. Ed Gein is special because of its quiet sincerity, Ted Bundy because of its audacity. Because of movies like these, I feel I'll need to spend much of December walking around smelling flowers and looking out from vistas just to detoxify. Runner up: Of Unknown Origin
3. Most Disturbing: Ed Gein -- It's absolutely chilling, watching Gein cackle while sorting through his box of noses.
4. Scream Queen: Renee Madison Cole (Ted Bundy) -- 22 films in, I was starting to get a little worried that I wasn't going to be able to pick a good one. I found tons of them in Ted Bundy. All young, all gorgeous. Cole was probably my favorite. She's the one that Bundy chases through the woods.
5. Worst: King of the Ants -- Boring and not horror. Also, if Lou Diamond Philips had worked harder at it, he might have singlehandedly scored this title for Bats
6. So Bad It's Good Award: Empire of the Ants -- Maybe it's not fair to stick Empire in this category; it's not really bad at all. All it really has working against it are some clunky ant effects. Other than that, it's a pretty fun and interesting movie. I guess I just felt it deserved to get mentioned in here somewhere.
7. Goriest: Ravenous -- Quoth Private Toffler, "He was licking me!" Ugh, gruesome.
8. Most memorable death: Quint getting chomped in Jaws.
9. Best-looking monster: Cujo -- I know, right? But I didn't really see that many monster movies, and of all of the Animal flicks, this is the one that made the best use of real animals (although, I hear at least one of the shots featured a guy in a dog costume. Maybe that was the scene in which Cujo was the host of his own Sunday morning kids variety show). That we get to see the dog when he's still cute and normal makes it that much more depressing when he appears latter, muddy and grim.
10. Scariest: Jaws -- When Martin Brody looks out across the water and sees Alex Kintner get pulled under, the camera does a reverse of the Vertigo track-and-zoom trick. Ever have a moment when you got a piece of news so upsetting that you felt like throwing up right there on the spot. When the lens stretches around Brody, it's almost as though the world at that moment were bending. Reality is twisting for people all along the shoreline. For Alex's mom, when she finally makes her realization, it's likely it snaps completely.
I have to extend a big anonymous thank you to a website entitled Agressions Animales (Animal Attacks) -- it's a French website about animal attacks in movies. I don't have screen capture capability and I got most of my good shots from this site. I also borrowed liberally from badmovies.org. If you've never heard of this site, it's definitely worth surfing. There are a slew of reviews and they're all hilarious. Each review is decked out with good screenshots, several soundbites and at least one well-selected video clip.
I began with high hopes, clocking an average of 2 reviews a day for about the first two weeks. Then I kind of fell off the map. I was hoping to build on my totals from last year, going so far as to assemble a longer queue and upgrade to the 8 vids/month plan from Netflix. I fell short of that, but I at least did not fall below a one-a-day clip and I'm relieved to find myself still among the vets.
I'm looking forward to rereading the reviews I only skimmed over the past few weeks. I hope we've still got enough juice to stimulate some lively discussion on some of these.
I'd like to congratulate JPX on his impressive victory. Discussing the upcoming Thon on the way to the Treasure Island Music festival in September, your brother insisted he was going to win. He'll be hungry next year, gents. Watch yourselves.
I'd also like to say I loved the injection of new blood. It makes me smile knowing that DCD's been looking over our shoulders this time. And I have to admit, I was a little worried that AC was going to finish ahead of me. Phew!
And let me once again sing Jordan's praises. I wish you'd found the time to write more and, having just finished my Jaws review, I hope someday you'll give that film some of the old Orlando Magic -- wait...
Happy December, everyone!