Monday, September 30, 2013

A Message From Gretchen



Ok everybody it's time again to take the Horrorthon plunge! I want a good clean fight... scratch that - I want a nasty and bitter battle from everyone.

Once again the rules:

1) Watch as many horror movies as you can stomach from midnight October 1st through 11:59 PM October 31st.

2) Post reviews: a limit of 2 reviews per day are allowed through the month of October. Beginning November 1st until Thanksgiving you can post as many per day as you can. Rate the reviews on a scale of * to *****.

3) We're pretty lenient as to what constitutes "horror" but as a general rule of thumb the movie in question should be intended to scare the audience.

4) Have fun! Or don't! I couldn't care less! If I'm forgetting anything please say so in the comments.

Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day One: HORRORTHON STARTS AT MIDNIGHT BITCHES!!!




That's right it's OCTOBER tomorrow and TOMORROW starts TONIGHT because none of us are KIDS and we can STAY UP.  WHAT am I SAYING?

I'm saying HORRORTHON! That's what I'm saying.  Now gather your garlic and wolfsbane and popcorn and imdb pages and google searches!  Steaming YouTube dvd stack or crappy VHS copy you found in a dark buried box.  DON'T LOOK AT IT.  Except yes, TOTALLY LOOK AT IT.

Because maybe it's this good!

Let's be archaeologists of pop culture nightmare!  Let's discover new and terrible snacks! Let's give some forgotten horrible actors a few more moments to shine!  And also to

SCREEEEEEEAAAAAAM!!!  SCREAM SCREAM SCREAM!!!

I wasn't talking about you, Ron, you were just great. 

There will be moments of badness you will just have to share.  Rubber costumes, red paint, weird synth music, horrible hallmarks of many decades, and maybe, just maybe... some chills.

CHILLLLSSSSS.  That make you SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAM!!!

Shirtless guys in bed SCREAM!

Compound bug-eye action SCREAM!

 Creepy little girl's creepy giant head screaming and what the fuck is that anyway thanks Octo I won't be un-seeing that for a while SCREAM!

I've got five flicks arriving in the mail TODAY and I might check the fabulous VHS rental store Eddie Brandt's Saturday Matinee for something weird.  Take five, Real Life!  It's Horrorthon and I got some movies to watch.

You can't have Horrorthon without HORROR and you can't have Horror without SCREAMS and so now every one of you owes me a goddamn loud Horrorthon SCA-REEEEAAAAM!!!

HORRORTHOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNN!!!

SCREAM LIKE YOU MEAN IT!!!  BECAUSE YOU GODDAMN DOOOO!!!

IT'S ALL ABOUT THE SCREEEEEEEAAAAMMS!!!


And also boobs.

RIGHT.  SURE.  Best we not forget about that.  *A-hem!*

But don't forget to SCREEEEEE---.  Wait, hang on a second.  Gotta find something for the ladies, too. Let's see here....

There ya go.

Welcome to Horrorthon 2013, my friends.  It's scream time.


Daily Spider-Man: Yo Spidey, what's this amateur shit? No web hammock?


Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day Two! Real Life!


Sorry folks!  I totally had this post page booted up ready to go all day and the day got away from me.  Any moment* now Julie will emerge from putting Zack to bed and we'll go watch the final episode of Breaking Bad.

*Amazingly, Julie actually appeared at that exact moment adn now it's a couple of hours later.  Whoah, Breaking Bad, huh?  Good stuff.

So yeah, sorry.  Sorry I started the countdown late and sorry I bailed on Day Two.  I was looking at last year's Day Two and noticed I was announcing the winner of the Horrorthon Countdown Haiku Hump Day contest.  What a great idea!  I should've done that.

So in light of today and the weeks and the year that preceded it, I thought I'd catch you guys up on some of the seismic events that have been kicking around, that being 1) We bought a house and 2) Julie's 91-year-old grandfather lives with us and 3) Zack, who was diagnosed as a high-functioning autistic spectrum kid a year and a half ago, started kindergarten, which has illuminated a lot of ways he's not at the same level as the other kids.  Which we're dealing with but it's a lot.

I don't want to start bitching, because there's a lot of good stuff in there too.  Zack loves kindergarten and is still good at making friends, the house may need work but there's an awesome detached garage that I'm slooowly shaping into an awesome man cave (I keep saying I don't champion that term but it really can't be denied).

And what about you folks?  How are ya?   How are our new parents doing?  Stan?  Trev?  You guys still tuning in?  I feel like we've all got some Real Life kicking around this year, might be worthwhile to give it a nod.

That's if you even get this far...  I'm gonna check out Spider-Man now and then it's time to HOLLA HOLLA HOLLA for day one.  Fucking ONE.  I got five dvds coming in the mail tomorrow...

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Helen Killer



Check it out!  I came across this while searching for random horror images.  Better quality versions on the official site.  The trailer keeps a lot of secrets but it's got some good scary music.

Is there a version of Rule 34 for horror movies?  There should be.

Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day Three! Recommendations!


Happy Saturday, friendlies!  Welcome to the what can be the most useful of pep chats, the recommendations roundup.  Take a glance at your own previous lineups at the Horrorthon score blog and choose a few standouts that you heartily endorse for a rich exchange of future cobloggery.  That's a word cause I said.

Don't forget the wonderful Horrorthon Master List of reviews, so you can check out what's been said about a given movie.  We are serious archaeologists, people!  Dig deep!

I'll start the chatter in the comments (although I posted a hint above).  I'll add more as I think of them.  Remember, blog activity is generally light over the weekend so tune in often.  The perfect item for your Netflix queue (if you still have one of those) may show up at any time.

Monday night at midnight, people!  It's a comin'!


Daily Spider-Man: Elsewhere, Tarantula is giving Spidey the "evil chicks will do the weird stuff" speech


Friday, September 27, 2013

Not Cool! At ALL!

How is it possible that this isn't cool?  A Terror-thon at the local independent theater?  Eight "terrifying" movies for $35?  And prizes?  And on a weekend day?  And during Horrorthon?  And that lineup? Should be the coolest thing ever, or at least the coolest thing all month.

But... Mr. AC and I have a conflict for the day.  A perfectly lovely and fun commitment that we cannot rebook.  No way around the conflict. I am (probably unreasonably) heartbroken about this. I must be displacing emotions from some other realm in my life.  The worst part is that they are showing The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, one of my favorite cult movies ever.  I haven't seen it on the big screen since it first came out, and I certainly didn't appreciate it that first time.  So for consolation purposes Mr. AC and I will watch it at home and review it for Horrorthon, but it just ain't the same.  Guess I should add to my bucket list, "Buckaroo Banzai on the big screen."  And bonus if it's in October!

Michael Bilotta



This summer I attended an open studio event in Somerville, MA where I visited the art studio of a former school mate, Bill Chisholm. Seeing what I do with photo manipulation, he thought to introduce me to the work of his his good friend Michael Bilotta. I became an instant fan. Michael is truly a master of the art of manipulation, his work is virtually flawless. Take a little time to peruse his website at michaelbilotta.com.

Florentijn Hofman

This is the artist that did the Rubber Ducky that Octo posted about below.  I clicked over to his site and the rest of his stuff is crazy and huge too!


One of my favorites is "Slow Slugs".  Check it out!

The Enchanted Forest!


"A Magical place where storybook characters come to life."

That was the idea, at least.  If you were a kid growing up in Rhode Island in the 1970s your parents no doubt took you to the Enchanted forest in Hope Valley, Rhode Island.  The Enchanted Forest had no long lines in the broiling sun because the Enchanted Forest is actually in a forest, with huge trees looming over the remnants of the Old Woman's Shoe, the House that Jack Built, and Humpty Dumpty, along with an assortment of very old rides for very young kids. Adults were too big for most of these rides.

I happened to visit The Enchanted Forest over the summer to see if there was anything left and there was plenty!  I haven't figured out how to send pictures with the new iPhone iOS7 yet so please excuse the borders of these shots,

Time for school

This was once a pirate ship!



Penelope hit the bed dreaming


How about a little mini-golf?







Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day Four! Post something! Use a hyperlink!


Time to express ourselves!  We gotta generate some content soon and we need our blogging muscles flexed, oiled and ready.

I ask for little.  A picture, some words, and for added bonus practice, put a nice hyperlink in there.  Like this one:

Photo source

And now's as good a time as any to acknowledge our new member Grahamdizer GO!!!!  I honestly just noticed you were in there... welcome!  I don't know if you need any coaching, but we'll be discussing any blogging hassles in the comments here.

Now boot up your photo-liking eyeballs and put on your blogging hats!  I posted my answer to this challenge below so I didn't bury this post, but I want to see you guys bury this deep in the blog loam.  I wanna see posts!

GIANT RUBBER DUCK



Say what you like about the world, but there is a giant rubber duck out there.





I first learned about this here

Daily Spider-Man: Stone cold Astella banged Tarantula just for spy practice


Thursday, September 26, 2013

Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day Five! Themes and Sub-Themes!


My homies!  That was a heartwarming turnout for yesterday's late Countdown post and it's good to hear from y'all!  Speaking of remembering to support all things bloggerful, I never commented on this work of art here:



Good GOD I'll be lucky to see a movie half that scary this year.

This year I feel a bit like it's 8pm on Halloween and I just found out I'm going to a party and I don't have a costume.  That is, I haven't really landed on any movie groupings to take on this year.  And how about you, dear viewers?  Hankering for some Italian?  Flicks about bugs?  Specialized murders involving only blenders?  Or are you still thinking about it, like me?  Sometimes these things just happen, you know.

So let's chat about it.  I think I'll lay down an opening comment and then head over to Netflix and see what turns up...

Daily Spider-Man: Newsflash! Tarantula Tramp is really Condor Consort! I didn't call this!


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Horrorthon Countdown Contest Day... uh, Six! Review Bomb!


HORRORTHOOOOOOOOOOOOON!!!

Begging your pardon, my ghastly cronies, for getting my annual pep rally started late.  I've been suffering from Free Lancer's Delimma, that being that I've been loaded with work but I have no time.  That's almost literally true, as I haven't had a day off since Monday the 9th.  Tomorrow will be my 17th straight day of work, which I think is a personal record.  I should get a break after that.

But whatever, because HORRORTHOOOOON!  It is time once again to celebrate our pals the Dark Demons of the Human Experience, to clasp their bloody, decaying claws as we enter the theater and hunker down in the best red velvety seat we find, down there in the dark.

Shake the dust off your rest-of-the-year eyes and work the kinks from your typing fingers, you'll need them strong and supple for when we grab pop culture by the throat and shake it!... then afterwards see what came loose.

It's time to watch some goddamn horror movies.

Our excercise today is meant as a simple bit of kindling.  Did you see any movies over the summer?  Catching up on any TV shows?  Screen an old favorite?  Well let's shout about it!  Short and sweet, review bomb style.  My first thought was to ask for posts, but let's do it in comments instead.  Just follow my lead.

Also, what's been up with you cats?  Chime in!  The best month of the year is coming...

Monday, September 23, 2013

Rumored ‘Star Wars Episode VII’ Casting Call Suggests Chewbacca


From slashfilm, Considering Star Wars Episode VII takes place a few decades after Return of the Jedi, it’s pretty safe to assume many of the original characters will return. Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia all seem to be locked in. But is Han Solo ever really without his sidekick, the mighty Chewbacca? The original actor who played the character,Peter Mayhew, recently had some major health problems so his return seems unlikely. However, a new casting call has been found in the United Kingdom looking for an actor with a build similar to Mayhew’s. Does that mean Wookiees will return? Or is it (shudder to think) the Gungans?
The below casting call, for an “UNTITLED STUDIO FEATURE” by Walt Disney Pictures/LucasFilm/Bad Robot, comes from Den of Geek. They found it on an audition series called Spotlight. Here’s what it says:
Male, 7 ft to 7.3 ft tall with a slim/thin build and upright posture. Not too worked out or too ‘thick set’ especially in the shoulders. Broad facial features would be a bonus.
That certainly sounds like the prototypical body for a Wookiee or a Gungan. With no mention of anything other than physicality, a role in a suit or motion capture seems more than likely. Plus, knowing your Star Wars history, those are the two popular races who are tall and lanky. Meesa think Abrams wouldn’t bring back da Gungans so a Wookiee is the safe bet. There’s always the possibility, too, that Star Wars Episode VIIintroduces a new race. Since nothing is set in stone though, so all possibilities must be considered. (Another possibility? That this casting call is total and utter BS.)
Do you think the fact Mayhew is sick, plus Solo is likely returning, suggests a Wookiee? Would Abrams bring back the Gungans? Could this be a new alien race?

Daily Spider-Man: More Spidey-whining about his clothes, but then again that is the only outfit he brought with him


Dario Argento's latest film looks awful



Sunday, September 22, 2013

9 days...

The Target Halloween machine is up and running...

Box Office



From ew, You don’t need a detective to figure out the biggest winner at the box office this weekend. Prisoners, the R-rated thriller starring Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal, brought in an estimated $21.4 million, easily beating second-place finisher Insidious Chapter 2 ($14.5 million) and blowing away the weekend’s only other new wide release, Battle of the Year ($5 million).

But Warner Bros. smartly tailored Prisoners‘ marketing around the movie’s obvious strengths, not least of which were a compelling premise, strong reviews (the movie gets an A from EW and a 79% from Rotten Tomatoes) and a hugely appealing, awards-caliber cast. Top-billed is Jackman, who’s been on a box office roll since 2008: The WolverineLes MisérablesReal Steel, and X-Men Origins: Wolverine all opened strongly with ad campaigns that put the actor front and center. Prisoners is his best debut ever in a non-musical, non-action drama, outgrossing misfires like 2008′s Australia (which opened with $14.8 million), 2008′s Deception ($2.3 million), and 2006′s The Prestige ($14.8 million). The movie also gives a box office boost to Gyllenhaal, who hasn’t had an unqualified hit since 2005′s Brokeback Mountaindespite consistently earning positive reviews. In fact, Prisoners is the fourth-best opening of his career, behind only 2004′s The Day After Tomorrow ($68.7 million), 2010′s Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time ($30.1 million), and 2005′s Jarhead ($27.7 million). And apparently Gyllenhaal and Villeneuve hit it off: The two also collaborated on the psychological thriller Enemy, which premiered at this year’s Toronto Film Festival and reportedly ignited abidding war after its well-received debut.Prisoners‘ win is even more impressive when you consider some of the challenges it faced on its way to the top of the chart. Straightforward dramas — at least, ones that don’t star Leonardo DiCaprio — can be a tough sell at the box office, especially when they aren’t based on known source material. (Prisoners is an original screenplay by Contraband scribe Aaron Guzikowski.) Director Denis Villeneuve was untested in Hollywood, having made his name with the critically acclaimed French-language drama Incendies. And the movie didn’t promise any musical numbers, splashy action set pieces, or supernatural scares to lighten its grim story about the search for two kidnapped children.
Meanwhile, the curse of the second-weekend-horror-movie struck Insidious Chapter 2, which fell a heavy 64 percent to $14.5 million  in its second frame, down from a fearsome $40.3 million bow last week. That’s not at all unusual for scare pics at the box office, although it could indicate a lack of the kind of strong word-of-mouth that turned the first Insidious into a sleeper hit phenomenon in 2011. But Chapter 2‘s total is already $60.9 million — more than the original made in its entire run.
At number three, the Luc Besson-directed action-comedy The Family, starring Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer, banked a so-so $7 million for a $25.6 million cumulative gross so far, although with its French setting and easy-sell premise (a mafia clan hides in the witness protection program), the movie seems engineered to make most of its cash overseas.
Coming in fourth, the Spanish-language comedy Instructions Not Included continues to defy box office logic, jumping a whopping 17.2% to $5.7 million after studio Lionsgate wisely expanded to 45 more screens. (The movie is now playing at 978 locations, a remarkably wide release for a non-English comedy.) As expected, hefty Saturday and Sunday returns (the movie netted just $1.4 million this Friday) suggest a sizable family audience for the farce. Starring Mexican comedian Eugenio Derbez, Instructions is now the fifth highest-grossing foreign language film of all time at the US box office with a $34.2 million total, surpassing 2001′s Amelie ($33.2 million, not accounting for inflation.) And it will likely overtake 2006′s Pan’s Labyrinth ($37.6 million) before the end of its run.
Rounding out the top  five, the dance pic Battle of the Year had two left feet at the box office, grossing a mere $5 million against a budget of $20 million. Maybe the days of hit dance movies are behind us (2006′s Step Upopened to $20.7 million and 2007′s Stomp the Yard drummed up $21.8 million). Or maybe the dismally reviewed Battle — whose only marquee stars are Lost‘s Josh Holloway and Chris Brown — simply didn’t give audiences any good reason to put it on their dance card this weekend.
1. Prisoners — $21.4 million
2. Insidious Chapter 2 — $14.5 million
3. The Family — $7 million
4. Instructions Not Included — $5.7 million
5. Battle of the Year — $5 million
In limited release, Warner Bros. 3D revamp of The Wizard of Oz in IMAX earned $3 million in ninth place — enough to add a few more rubies to Dorothy’s slippers, but nowhere near the $30.2 million bow of Disney’s The Lion King 3D in 2011 or the $17.3 million opening of Titanic 3D last year. 3D rereleases in general have been seeing diminishing returns lately, with 2012′s Monsters, Inc. 3D bowing to just $4.7 million. (Perhaps that’s why Disney recently canned a 3D rerelease of The Little Mermaid.) Still, these conversions aren’t hugely expensive (Titanic‘s cost $18 million), and the renewed awareness they generate can boost the merchandising and licensing potential of a marketable brand like Oz.
Roadside Attractions’ Thank You for Sharing, a dramedy about sex addiction starring Mark Ruffalo and Gwyneth Paltrow, pulled in $608,000 from 269 screens in its first weekend, for a not-so-sexy per-screen average of $2,260.
But weekend’s buzziest limited-release winner was Nicole Holofcener’s grown-up dramedy Enough Said, which boasted a gigantic per-screen average of $60,000 at four locations for a first-weekend gross of $240,000. The movie marks one of the last on-screen appearances by the late James Gandolfini, who costars with Julia Louis-Dreyfus in her first big-screen starring role (and her first movie appearance of any kind since 1997′sDeconstructing Harry). Good reviews, combined with media attention around Gandolfini’s passing, could putEnough Said on track to be one of the biggest earners yet for indie-minded auteur Holofcener, whose highest grosser to date is 2006′s Friends with Money ($13.4 million total).
Enough Said‘s bow was even stronger than the five-theater sneak peek of Ron Howard’s racing drama Rush, which earned a $40,000 per-screen average for a $200,000 total. But that’s undoubtedly pennies compared to the cash the Universal release, which stars Chris Hemsworth as Formula One racing legend James Hunt, will race away with when it expands to 2,200 theaters next week.
Check back next week to see if Prisoners can hold off Rush and new releases Baggage ClaimCloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, and Don Jon.

Daily Spider-Man: "Actually, I have a couple of spare Thor costumes in the car..."


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Friday, September 20, 2013

Daily Spider-Man: Of course my daydream is that Spidey will put his costume back on but keep the mustache on outside of his mask


J.J. Abrams wants 'Star Wars' sequel to feel real


From ew, What can Stars Wars fans expect from Episode VII?
Director J.J. Abrams says a key component will be a sense of authenticity.
We had the chance to ask Abrams a couple super quick Star Wars questions Thursday at his Bad Robot offices in Santa Monica while discussing his upcoming sci-fi action series Almost Human, which gets underway Nov. 4 on Fox (trailer here). The famously secretive filmmaker has been very quiet about his plans for the legendary big screen franchise since he was announced as the film’s director eight months ago. We keep hearing the stars from the original trilogy (Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill) are on board for Episode VII, which is expected to hit theaters 2015. We know there’s other spin-offs in the works. And not a whole lot else. Since Abrams tends to avoid spilling story details or castings, we asked the following:
Which of the previous Star Wars films best exemplifies what you’re aiming to do in terms of the spirit or tone of Episode VII?
“Impossible for me to say because it’s going to be an evolving thing. I would say we are working really hard to make a movie that feels as emotional and authentic and exciting as possible. Whatever your favorite Star Warsmovie is and how to compare it is really sort of subjective.”
Media and fans have been offering you a ton of unsolicited advice about to how to approach the film. Is there any particular thing they’ve said that you’ve taken to heart?
“It’s been nice see that how important it is and to be reminded how important it is to so many people. We all know that [creator George Lucas'] dream has become almost a religion to some people. I remember reading a thing somewhere, someone wrote about just wanting [the new film] to feel real; to feel authentic. I remember I felt that way when I was 11 years old when I saw the first one. As much of a fairy tale as it was, it felt real. And to me, that is exactly right.”
So that’s certainly an encouraging perspective for longtime fans who felt the franchise became less grounded and more artificial-feeling in the prequels. And though Abrams declined to cite a specific film in the first question, it’s hard not to think from his second answer that he’s aiming more toward fan favorites A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back, which (along with, to some degree, Revenge of the Sith) were probably the most real-feeling of the saga. What do you think of Abrams’ plan?

Thursday, September 19, 2013

It's almost time...

This was my local Target last weekend.  The Halloween display sat empty with promises of joy to come.  Horrorthon is near.  It's almost time.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

"He doesn't juggle. He doesn't twist balloons into animal shapes. He just stares."


According to an article in the Independant, there's a guy who dresses up like a clown and hangs out on the streets of Northampton -- not for any reason, other than just to freak people's shit out.

The tragic, untold part of this story is that 30 years from now, a group of kids is going to come back to Northampton to ritualistically kill this man in a sewer.

JPX made the mistake of going to work with a cold today


Rumor: Arnold Schwarzenegger to Play the Villain in AVATAR 2


From collider, The Avatar series recently expanded to a quadrilogy plus four novels.  First things first: Avatar 2is scheduled for December 2016, but it’s never too early to throw ourselves headfirst into the gray ether of the rumor mill.  Sources tell Latino Review that Arnold Schwarzenegger will play a “bad guy human general.”  It makes enough sense.  Schwarzenegger and Cameron madeTerminatorTerminator 2 and True Lies together, and could be looking to reunite.  The evil military man follows from Stephen Lang‘s villain in the first movie, Colonel Quaritch.  Schwarzenegger’s may be the right actor to portray the escalating human threat.
Yet it feels like a stretch.  Cameron built an immersive fantasy universe in Avatar free from distracting big-name stars (all due respect to Sigourney Weaver).  Casting Schwarzenegger takes the sequels in a different direction.  I trust Cameron, so if he wants to cast Schwarzenegger, I can’t wait to see how he does it.  In three years.  We’ll keep you busy with plenty more rumors in the next 39 months.  Hit the jump for more on the sequels.
Cameron plans to shoot Avatar 2, Avatar 3, and the prequel Avatar 4 simultaneously in 2014 with Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana returning.  Josh FriedmanRick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, and Shane Salerno will collaborate with Cameron on the scripts. Cameron remarked:
“Building upon the world we created with Avatar has been a rare and incredibly rewarding experience.  In writing the new films, I’ve come to realize that Avatar’s world, story and characters have become even richer than I anticipated, and it became apparent that two films would not be enough to capture everything I wanted to put on screen. And to help me continue to expand this universe, I’m pleased to bring aboard Amanda, Rick, Shane and Josh — all writers I’ve long admired -­ to join me in completing the films screenplays.”