Are you a QUARANTINE fan who lives in the Chicago area? We're headed your way November 19th. Join us for a day of real life QUARANTINE role-playing and then a horror movie screening at the Egyptian Theater in DeKalb.
No, no, not again!
It seemed like we barely had time to recover from the last #31HorrorFilms31Days, but it was time again to subject ourselves to an onslaught of horror. We both tried to watch movies we've never seen before, and both ended up hitting roughly the same numbers as last year. I hit 31 a few days early and could have gotten another four or five in, but I tapped out from horror fatigue. The bleakness and the brutality got to be too draining. Some movies, like Martyrs, were so disturbingly extreme that I wanted to watch Alvin and the Chipmunks for a month to restore my faith in humanity. I watched one movie that was so atrocious that I didn’t even put it on my list because I didn’t want to point anyone toward it.
There were good ones though. The original Texas Chainsaw Massacre was phenomenal. I can’t believe I’d never seen it and now it is a contender for my favorite horror movie of all time. I also loved Calvaire. Exte: Hair Extensions was bizarre and fun and the only evil hair extensions movie I’ve ever seen. The Collector and The Collection were a lot like Saw, and some people don’t like them, but I think it’s a fun franchise. Phantasm was sweet, Tokyo Gore Police was insane, and the Stacy Keach segment of Body Bags was mind-blowing and hilarious.
I can’t say I’m sorry it’s over, and I’ll be feeding my brain with a lot more happy stuff in the next month to balance it out, but I’ve already got a 34 movie list laid out for next year. Bring it on… but not for 11 months.
Here's our lists and some pics!
1) STITCHES - A clown that doesn't finish a party can never rest in peace. And its soul lives inside a painted egg.
2- THE SPELL (1977) - An ostracized, overweight teen uses witchcraft to get revenge on everyone she hates.
3) MARTYRS - I feel abused by this movie. Extreme French torture and dehumanization horror.
4) SHIVERS - Cronenberg knows how to make zombies scarier. Make them horny.
5) FAUST: LOVE OF THE DAMNED - Jeffrey Combs, the Wishmaster guy, fun special effects, and wolverine claws
6) PHENOMENA- She's psychically connected to insects and sleepwalks while a killer stalks. Slow build, great finish
7) PROXY - The assault of a pregnant woman with a brick made me sick. And the rest of the movie was confusing
8) SHAKMA - Locked inside with a murderous baboon. Bad monkey horror. Baboon was cool tho.
9) THE REEDS - Friends take a boat into the reeds, a spooky wetland where plot slows and interest wanes
10) WHEN A STRANGER CALLS (1979) - Carol Kane gets an iconic phone call from a maniac. Great score. No gore needed
11) EXTE: HAIR EXTENSIONS - Evil hair extensions bursting from eyeballs, mouths, and wounds. Gross, fun and weird.
12) VAMP - Grace Jones and her vampire strippers. Whole movie is drenched in pink and green light
13) THE CONJURING - Well executed haunted house/exorcism movie.
14) CALVAIRE- (The Ordeal) Never let your van breakdown in the backwoods of Belgium. Horrific hicks. Pretty great
15) CARRIE (2013) - Imagine the 70's Carrie except remade so that by the end you don't care.
16) FORGET ME NOT- As her friends die, the world forgets they ever existed. Also twitching ghouls wearing duct tape
17) THE KISS - Her estranged fashion model aunt returns and wants to pass the family curse on to her with a kiss.
19) CRAWLSPACE - Klaus Kinski is a nazi landlord who hates privacy and likes to skateboard on his stomach
20) THE CURSE (1987) - A glowing meteor hits a farm, ruins the crops, and drives the people and livestock insane.
21) DEAD AND BURIED- Strangers who die in Potter's Bluff come back as locals. Melody Anderson. Stan Winston effects.
22) CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST - Oof.
23) PULSE (2001) - Solemn people in Japan are haunted by internet ghosts. Awesome scary ghost walks.
24) NURSE - Paz de la Huerta is a steamy serial killer minx who kills married men for succumbing to her charms.
25) THE COLLECTOR - Booby trap gorror inside a house. Pretty sweet
26) THE COLLECTION - The fun continues at the killer's house in the sequel. I'm ready for part 3. The Collectables?
27) CHOPPING MALL - Deadly robots with laser guns are deployed to finally put an end to after hours mall crime.
28) FRONTIER(S) - Like Texas Chainsaw but in France, with brutal gore, Nazis, and every awful thing you can imagine
29) TOKYO GORE POLICE - So enthusiastically over the top that it's amazing.
30) BODY BAGS - Fun John Carpenter horror compilation. The one with Stacy Keach getting hair replacement is amazing
31) PHANTASM - Two brothers are tormented by a tall mortician, hooded dwarves, and flying chrome torture balls.
1) HAXAN - The world according to witches. Lots of old Danish women and WilliamSBurroughs (who oddly looks like an old Danish woman).
2) THE FLY - Girl meets guy. Guy kills baboon, merges with fly, eats tons of candy, & tries to make girl teleport.
3) OCULUS - Siblings fight a haunted mirror. The usual psycho dad bullshit goes down. I was hoping for more Latin.
4) OF UNKNOWN ORIGIN - Peter Weller renovates an NYC brownstone and one vicious rat effs it up. Pretty great.
5) PIECES - College. Where a Dean cuts up girls with a chainsaw and noone catches on. Evidently a college for the deaf
6) CUJO - The dog attack scenes are way more terrifying than the book. And @Dee_Wallace is so watchable.
7) FIRESTARTER - Lil' Drew Barrymore combusts an all-star cast but leaves her numerous superhip 80's outfits un-singed.
8) LETS SCARE JESSICA TO DEATH - Some hippies land in like a really bad scene, man, and discover it ain't 1969 anymore
9) BORGMAN - The devil hangs out.
10) THE MAN WHO LAUGHS - Ladies love a grotesque, surgically implemented smile.
12) LONG WEEKEND A couple go camping and are such assholes even the animals want to kill them.
13) FRIDAY THE 13TH, PT. 7 - Totally original concept. Never knew what was going to happen. They should make more.
14) WITCHING & BITCHING - More witches than you can shake a broom at. A new favorite
15) TENEBRE - Giallo film about a giallo novel that inspires Italian women to be killed while nude. Top tier Argento
16) PSYCHO II - Norman Bates tries hard not to kill again. And fails.
17) BERBERIAN SOUND STUDIO - A sound engineer goes Mulholland Dr working on Susperia. More like Berboring Sound Studio
18) PROXY - What happens when psychos meet at a support group. Unfortunately spirals into Lifetime treatment.
You love food. You love horror. You want to watch three movies and a repulsive reality show pilot. I've got a foodie horror Netflix menu for you.
First up is Omnivores. The original Spanish title is Omnivoros, which sounds much cooler. It's the story of a respected food critic who investigates rumors of a clandestine restaurant that serves human flesh. It's really well done, and it was cool that it was Spanish, and the horror scenes themselves are stark and brutal. I don't want to spoil anything but it's a realistic tension builder from last year about foodies and cannibalism and there's a disturbing villain and an extra disturbing right hand man. Very disturbing. Watch on an empty stomach.
If you were down for Omnivores, you should go ahead and pair it with the flavor of Dumplings. This Chinese horror movie is totally gross and quietly horrific. A retired movie starlet hates that she is losing her looks and she finds a woman who cooks magical dumplings that have the power to make you look young again. Once you discover the secret ingredient you'll want to puke. Like Omnivores there's a lot of focus on cooking and eating and chewing, and on gross mouth noises, but despite how disturbing it is the tone of Dumplings is much calmer and quieter most of the time than than the turn of the screw tension of Omnivores.
Side note- If the part you like about Dumplings is an aging actress resorting to magic to fix her problems, and you're not against melodramatic Bollywood horror movies with song and dance numbers, than you could watch Raaz 3. If you want more Bollywood after that, try the romantic thriller Raavan. One character talks a lot about having knives rattling around inside his skull, which made me like him.
Third is a childhood favorite of mine that is not up to the quality of the first two. The acting isn't great, the budget is small, and the practical special effects look cartoonish by modern standards, but when you're putting together a foodie horror playlist it's hard not to include a movie about a white goo called The Stuff that is marketed as a replacement for all food, and that secretly controls the mind of whoever eats it. All food being replaced by a processed white goo = a foodie's worst nightmare. The movie is a lot of fun, more of a light dessert of ridiculousness after the heartier meal of the first two.The TV commercials for The Stuff that they made for the movie are great too.
And finally, if you've ever wanted to watch real footage of a dead lion being skinned, gutted, and having all the meat flensed from its bones, you should check out Skeleton, Inc.. I think it was a pilot that didn't get picked up because there's only one episode, and I can see why. This stuff is hard to look at. The weird thing about it was once they pull the skin off the lion it looked so much like a monster from a horror movies that had a new respect for makeup artists. It looked like something I might have thought was cheesy if I'd seen it in a movie, but clearly I would have been wrong. The show is about a family business that provides skeletons for medical schools and museums, and it's their job to get all the flesh off of those bones, use flesh eating beetles to clean them, and assemble them back together. They're doing this disgusting work for a good purpose and it's actually pretty interesting to watch how they do it, but the first segment when they take the lion apart is gruesome and real, and bracing to watch, especially for meat eaters.
Also, this has nothing to do with foodie horror but watch from 51:53 to 52:50 of Money Talks (1972). Yikes!
It's been about 4 years since we started working on the Quarantine novel series. I can't believe it's been that long! I was looking through old photos and found a handful of writing pics from that time. In honor of Book 3 coming out today I thought I'd share some.
To celebrate the release of THE SAINTS on paperback (today!) and THE BURNOUTS on hardback and ebook (July 22nd), we'll be all over the web in July. Look for interviews, guest posts and more from us here:
Wednesday, July 9th - Pinky's Favorite Reads
Thursday, July 10th - A Bookish Escape
Friday, July 11th - Icey Books
Saturday, July 12th - Bookaholics Anonymous
Sunday, July 13th - Books with Bite
Monday, July 14th - Bittersweet Enchantment
Tuesday, July 15th - Curling Up with a Good Book
Wednesday, July 16th - Karin's Book Nook
Thursday, July 17th - Ex Libris Kate
Friday, July 18th - Live To Read
Saturday, July 19th - Tales of a Ravenous Reader
Sunday, July 20th - Page Turner's Blog
Monday, July 21st - Young Adult Books: What We're Reading Now
Tuesday, July 22nd (THE BURNOUTS pub day!) - The Children's Book Review
And a few more still to be announced . . .
For every QUARANTINE book, we've created a playlist to accompany your read. The time has come for the third and final one. Play it loud.