October 9, 2012 by misterblank22
*Note To The Reader
This blog is about several horror movies and not video games like my other blogs. This is still mainly a video game blog but it is getting close to Halloween so I feel like writing about some horror movies. I hope you enjoy it.
Since I was a kid I have been watching horror movies nonstop. They are a strange obsession I have. My first was the original Nosferatu which then led to the original Halloween and then the original Friday the 13th and then to the original A Nightmare on Elm Street. Do you see a pattern there? I had to put “original” in front of every title since every single one of them, among countless more, have been remade horribly. If you are looking to get really scared this Halloween then just rent a remake of one of these great classics, they will scare you into a coma.
The Nosferatu remake is the only one I listed that is just as good as the original but saying that is a rare thing for me to do. Prom Night’s name was stolen for a horrible remake in 2008. House of Wax, I guess is supposed to be a remake of the classic Vincent Price movie but it basically murdered it with every character, the horrible story and acting. Luckily the movie is now just a wax figurine on the list of horrible remakes to come out in the past decade. Let’s get Vincent Price to burn down the building that is filled with these horrible wax figurines so we can erase them from our minds.
Remakes are filled with flaws that murder the original. Key plot points are either completely changed or simply forgotten. These movies have clearly been rushed when if a little extra time was taken they could prove to be as good as the original.
The horror movies that are being produced today deal more in shock value than horror much like the exploitation era in earlier films. Herschell Gordon Lewis was an exploitation filmmaker and he is really the king of gore and exploiting the fear of it. He also had the worst effects I’ve ever seen in any movie, but it was the early 60’s. His style is back with a force, bad effects and all. With this trait of shocking the audience ruling recent horror movies there have been some really scary things done.
Hostel took fear to a whole new level, not just with a horrible plot and dialogue but with how real the movie is. What is done in this movie can be and is probably done in the world today which produces more fear in me than anyone in a mask ever could. I do not get shocked or grossed out easy. I never cringe during a movie or look away from the screen to shield my eyes. But I cringed in Hostel, my mouth dropped in Hostel, I was left feeling not only scared of whistles but scared to ever trust a pretty girl again.
Hostel tells the story of a few friends backpacking in Europe. They stop to sleep in a Hostel where several “loose” and alluring girls seduce them, drugging their drinks. The next thing these poor guys know is they are waking up in a dark room alone, tied to a chair next to a table littered with power tools. After this the movie is really filled with only scenes of torture.
After it’s over what did I gain? Nothing apart from reinforcing the terror of being tortured, the movie holds nothing else, just shock value. It will stand the test of time for bringing a new type of horror to audiences but somewhere in it all it lacks what keeps those old horror movies living through the years.
The Strangers came out when I was 18 bringing with it a breath of fresh air. The fear of the voiceless masked killer had returned echoing back to the emotionless psycho Michael Myers. The Strangers also revitalized tension instead of disgust. The killers were always in the shadows behind the protagonists. Knocks came from nowhere as the killers terrorized their victims.
The movie took place in the country after James has proposed to his long time girlfriend, Liv Tyler. She said “No” leaving the poor guy embarrassed and pretty hurt. He brings her back to his vacation home where it is decorated for her, assuming she had said yes to his proposal. After awhile of talking things out a loud knock startles the two lovers so they go and see who it is.
“Is Tamara home?” says the strange woman in the doorway. They tell her no. Everything that happens after this part of the movie to these two “lovers” is bad. They are mentally attacked with loud bangs, items are moved around in their house just to mess with them. Their car is destroyed leaving them stranded. A friend is accidentally shot which allows the killers to write in red on the window “Murderer”.
Then we get to the end which is a copycat of every horror movie that comes out anymore. Our heroes who we have been following through the whole film, rooting for and hoping to somehow outsmart these guys get tied to a chair. They are helpless with their three pursuers standing in front of them staring them down.
“Why are you doing this to us?” Good ol’ Liv Tyler asks.
“Because you were home.” Good ol’ creepy girl answers. The killers then stab the two lovers to death and leave in their truck as two church kids pass by with pamphlets. The killers take one of course.
So what did I learn from this movie? Don’t answer the door for anyone and if someone is looking for Tamara you turn in the opposite direction of that person and run. This movie had a better plot then Hostel which added it tension that produced some great scenes, something lacking lately. It is on my list of “Good Modern Horror Movies” which is pretty slim at the moment.
What I have noticed in modern horror movies is that they have great intentions or a perfect back-story but it is almost never fully realized. This is prevalent in the remakes which flood the market.
The original A Nightmare on Elm Street is a classic which has cemented itself in my brain forever. Freddy Krueger is a great villain that I always want to see more of. So the remake came out with a trailer that showed Freddy acting in a darker manner almost like a bitter old man angry at the kids on his lawn. Only he’s taking his anger out on these kids because their parents burnt him alive not because they are playing baseball on his lawn.
The remake came out after the critical success of the Halloween remake, which I own but really hate (I went and saw both the Halloween remakes in the theatre too). Freddy was actually darker in the remake which was a delight. Though in the end the remake fails in every aspect. The story is horrible, the characters are just plain stupid and the effects are really bad but Freddy saves it from being a -1 out 10 for me, he brought it to a 0 out of 10. He was the dirty diamond that slightly shined through all of the dirt and grime that the rest of the cast covered him in. Here is a scene showing that he is really more evil than the original Freddy.
Freddy has some evil things to say to the poor kid. The claw through the chest ruins the whole scene for me though; it doesn’t shock me it actually made me laugh, in a non sadistic way of course.
So what did I learn from this movie other than that remakes are bad? Killers in modern horror love to torture their victims. Every movie has to somehow throw that little piece of fear into its script. To me it is a really scary element though slightly unneeded. Torture is sadly real in this world, war brings it to soldiers; people bring it to other people out their warped minds. Torture is very scary not just because of the pain being inflicted on the victim or the thought of it actually happening; it’s the one doing the torturing that really scares you. If the killer in the movie you are watching starts to take time on the poor victim with their weapons then all bets are off, there is nothing he won’t do. It makes the viewer sit up to pay attention. They are repulsed by what is happening. They are scared to see what the next scene will hold. When that antagonist appears on-screen accompanied by the intense music the audience will jump because they know that he is capable of anything. The unknown intrigues us and the evil antagonist with the knife is filled with that unknown.