Wild At Heart
Besides decorating at work, I’m not doing much for Halloween (unless you count seeing the Misfits in concert last Wednesday) this year though I still enjoy the holiday very much. I always see top 10 lists for best horror movies and the such so here is a brief listing of 13 must see films I recommend for the holiday.
1) Freaks (1932) – the Tod Browning masterpiece whose cast includes real life circus freaks as actors thus creating a film which gets under your skin knowing that you are not seeing actors in make-up but with real deformities. A wonderful tale of revenge.
2) The Thing (1982) – the polar opposite of the same years ET as John Carpenter at his horrific best as we face an alien horror that could be anyone of us.
3) Near Dark (1987) – a vastly underrated vampire film starring Lance Henrikson and Bill Paxton.
4) Shock Waves (1977) – Peter Cushing as a Nazi scientist watching over a horde of killer zombies on a tropical island. I love watching the zombies walk under water.
5) Vampire Hunter D (1985) – beautiful animated film of dystopian world filled with vampires, demons and mutants.
6) Cronus (1993) – early Guillermo del Toro (Pans Labyrinth) Mexican film involving a scientifically created vampire.
7) Oldboy (2003) – not really a horror film but a tale of revenge that even surprised me by the brutality. Better than Silence of the Lambs!
8) Dracula (Spanish Version)(1931) – filmed at night with a Spanish cast with the same (yet longer) script as the Lugosi version. Since filmed at night, it is more atmospheric and the creepiest Renfield in cinema (and I think he actually is eating the bugs).
9) A Chinese Ghost Story (1987) – a very unique look at ghosts as seen through the famus Shaw brothers as a timid tax collectors meets some ghosts at a temple.
10) The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920) – the great Expressionist horror film about a journey through an insane asylum.
11) Of Unknown Origin (1983) - Peter Weller versus an intelligent rat. Very realistic and I'll never look at a child's birthday party or using the bathroom in the same way again.
12) Nekromantik (1987) – German film about necrophilia and one of the sickest films I have ever seen.
13) Hellraiser (1987) – Out of the mind of Clive Barker, Pinhead is still one of the creepiest horror stars ever.
I know some of these movies are harder to find now that most video stores carry trash. I miss my old video stores where I could go see tons of bad B-movies and not have to hope a film would be a big hit for the store to carry it (like at Blockbuster). I haven't been to Thomas Video recently so they would be a good place to start if they are still open. I picked the above films because ethey all have a certain atmosphere or feel that is perfect for Halloween. There are many more films I could recommend like the original "Nosferatu" or Cronenberg's "The Fly" to the bizarre "Killer Clowns From Outer Space" to any of the Romero zombie films or Hammer horror masterpieces. I hope the above are a bit more off the beaten path for the average viewer and brings you an creepy Halloween.
If you survive Halloween, you might want to spend the week at some of these shows I recommend for this week.
Tuesday (11/01) - folk singer Joan Baez @ Michigan Theatre
Wednesday (11/02) - Bob Seger & Silver Bullet Band @ Eastern Michigan University
Thursday (11/03) - jazz great Stanley Clarke @ Orchestra Hall, New Found Glory @ Royal Oak Music Theatre, singer-songwriter Tom Chapin @ the Ark
Friday (11/04) - Richie Furay (of Buffalo Springfield and Poco fame) @ the Crofoot, the Toasters w/ St Thomas Boys Academy @ Smalls
Saturday (11/05) - California Guitar Trio @ First United Methodist Church (Ferndale), Indigo Girls @ Fillmore Theatre, a capella group Straight No Chaser @ Caesar's Windsor, Herman's Hermits @ Center For Performing Arts Macomb
Sunday (11/06) - Birds Of Avalon open for Wooden Shjips @ Magic Stick, Sting @ Fox Theatre
Have a safe and fun Halloween.