ASCENSION frames mental illness as a dark and sinister force from the stars. It makes the behavior understandable on some level. The person you know and love isn’t doing these terrible things. It’s that dark entity. That thing.
It’s never easy moving into a new apartment. Besides the hours of unpacking and settling in, there’s always the question of your neighbors. Will they be nice? Will they play music until four in the morning? Will they be sociopathic killers? Unfortunately, when the protagonist of Gnaw, Jennifer, moves into a new home, she finds that her new neighbors include both the best, and worst, of what you can experience.
This weekend is a very important weekend for genre film. Jordan Peele’s original Horror film GET OUT hits theaters nationwide. I was lucky enough to get into the surprise screening of it at Sundance and it delivers on so many levels. Beneath of all the tension and laughs lies some great subtext about liberal racism.
So, why is it important to see this film at the theater? Here’s a list
Through the years, horror movies have had their fair share of domineering mothers. From Mrs. Bates, Pamela Voorhees, the Xenomorph Queen, to well, Mama from 'Mama', strong willed mothers haven't always gotten the best representation. Well, that has all changed with Charlotte Grissom, played with wit and grit by Annette O'Toole.
It’s not hard to understand why we develop crushes on movie stars. They’re famous, beautiful, rich, talented (sometimes). They exist on our screens, and we know they’re real, but there’s always that disconnect. We’re unlikely to ever meet one, let alone develop any genuine relationship with one… but what if we did?
The real cornerstone of my youth was TNT’s MonsterVision, hosted by the brilliant Joe Bob Briggs (as portrayed by John Bloom.) He sat in front of a trailer set in a lawn chair and introduced that night's line up of films, which could be anything from an all-night FRIDAY THE 13TH marathon, to a John Carpenter double feature to a George Romero-themed lineup to even classics accepted by the public at large. He added such a sense of fun to watching these films, and obviously took a great sense of pride in hosting this series.
Childhood can be a wonderful time. It can also be the critical point in life where horrific fear becomes ingrained, which later evolves into adult anxieties. I am of course referring to my excellent dental care, and the extreme care with which I attend my teeth—all because I watched the 2003 film DARKNESS FALLS at far too young an age.
Somebody thought it would be hilarious to put that creepy antique doll at the end of my bed staring at me while I was asleep. And I would wake up to it looking at me. For years I assumed it had been my brother (sorry Dusty!) playing a prank on me, but when I brought the story up to my father he got a sheepish look on his face and confessed that it was him and mom all along.
To this day, the visage of Freddy Krueger peers down at me while I sleep. A poster of the original A Nightmare on Elm Street signed by Wes Craven himself adorns the wall space above my bed, a meta-reconstruction of the famous scene from the film in which Freddy presses his face through the back Nancy’s bedroom wall. Yes, if I had to pick one of the many horror personalities and series that I devoured in my youth, Freddy and his nightmares on Elm Street would be hands-down my number one choice.