Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Paranormal Activity 2 or The Best Nanny Ever

SPOILERS AHEAD: This post is rife with spoilers since we discuss our thoughts on everything in this film. If you want to be surprised when watching the movie for the first time, stop reading now.

Bloody Blondes: Quick synopsis - Paranormal Activity 2 takes place a few weeks before the events of the original Paranormal Activity. We are introduced to the Reys family. The wife is the sister to Katie from the original PA. The Reys have a new baby boy in the family and strange things begin to occur around him. After the home is wrecked in what appears to be a break-in, the family installs surveillance cameras around the house. These cameras, along with a handheld to chronicle the milestones of the baby, capture the strange occurrences around the home.

Kelly: I thought Paranormal Activity 2 was a good solid movie and managed not to be a total rip off of the original. Granted, you're going to have a general repetition of themes and actions, given that it's basically an origin story, but it still managed to stand on its own for the most part.

Patrice: Going into this movie I did not know it was a prequel to the other story until they showed Micah “days before his death". I did not immediately figure out how the Part 2 story was going to join up with the previous story in Part 1. I had heard it was good without knowing anything about the story line at all, because I did not want to know before seeing it. I was expecting it to feel similar, and it certainly did have that same waiting, waiting, waiting vibe. 

Kelly: I had read the spoilers ahead of time, but it still managed to scare me, even knowing what was coming. Without a soundtrack to clue you in that something's about to jump, and even having read ahead of time about certain things, it still managed to be creepy.

Patrice: I liked the wider camera angles they were able to get with the security camera premise. I did the same thing in the second one that I did in the first one, which is that I kept searching the screen top to bottom, trying to catch a glimpse of whatever was happening. The slow pace, that waiting that made it stretch out into agonizing anticipation really works for me. No doubt why I also like Asian horror so much - it's not about the action so much as the waiting, build-up, and tension!

Kelly: You know what was one of the best examples of that? The very end, when the screen was blank. You just sat there, afraid to look at the screen because you were sure something was going to pop up. People in our theater were getting all antsy and there was nervous laughing. No one was moving because they didn't want to miss anything, so we all sat there staring at a giant black screen.

Patrice: I thought the same thing.... it's like, it can't just end... something else has to happen. Unfortunately for us, the theater we went to was nearly empty. Of course this was a Sunday at dinner time, so...

Patrice: I have some random thoughts and questions: I get that this couple, the Reys, is a second family situation - that is, the father was married to someone else and they had the older girl, and Kristi is the second wife who has the baby with him. So was that a plot point just so that the teenager would be old enough to research the step mom and babysit and all that? Seems rather... contrived.

Kelly: My best guess is yeah, pretty much.

Patrice: Well, I guess I'll give 'em credit for figuring out how to blend those things together.

Kelly: That was the only thing about the movie that I didn't like, that the step daughter managed to figure out the whole first-born-son's-soul-goes-to-the-devil pact and all. It was overly convenient, but I guess you have to throw that in there to keep a big gaping plot hole from being created.

Patrice: Yeah, simply because she was curious and looked it up on line. The story itself was never gonna be able to cover that. 

Kelly: That was really the only thing that was flimsy for me. Other than that, I appreciated the fact that it wasn't a step by step repeat of what happened in the first one. There were only a couple of the same noises, the train-like sounds, that were done in this film and they didn't redo the whole standing and staring by the bed bit. This one had its own creeptastic events. Like the pool cleaner. I caught that immediately. I leaned over to my husband and asked "Is he taking the pool cleaner out or what?"

Patrice: I know! I said from the beginning, WTF? Has no one noticed that every morning the pool vacuum is out of the pool? And then they almost tried to get us to believe that the dog might have been dragging it out. Yeah, I totally caught that right away.

Kelly: Damn we're awesome.

Patrice: I loved the scene where the dad figured out how to get the thing to pop up out of the pool and scared the shit out of the wife and daughter.

Kelly: That was funny, but I couldn't tell if they were trying to show us that the pool cleaner really wasn't the demon, it was just a fluke, another thing to lead the father down the path of doubting Thomas, since he was able to manipulate it himself so easily.

Patrice: I think it was misdirection, like the dog, since the video clearly showed it climbing out of the pool unassisted. 

Kelly: Never have pool supplies been so creepy.

Patrice: Ha ha! Okay, so a couple of other things....The teenager/boyfriend/Ouija thing - any significance at all? Were we to believe it made any difference, other than the fact that it started to spell out "Hunter"?

Kelly: I think maybe that was to help the step daughter figure out the whole first born son connection. That way, when she did her searching, she could put two and two together.

Patrice: Any idea what happened to Kristi in the basement? What was with the scratchings on the door? Did she do it? They never said what it might have spelled out, or if Kristi even did it. She just had a bite mark and then she was possessed.... And my friend Johnny had one good question: if Kristi was possessed by the demon, why didn't she just take off with the baby right then? I was trying to think of a reason why she just sort of went into a trance and the demon didn't act until it was transferred to Katie. Which leads me to my question, arguably the biggest question I have about the movie, and that is: What the fuck was going on in the basement?

Kelly: I think they just did that because there was no camera in the basement, so shit had to go down in there, gotta leave something for the imagination. As for the possession, in the first movie, Katie would stand by the bed for long stints over a couple of days, so her possession took a little bit to take hold, it wasn't immediate, either.

Patrice: I mean, it was just some crashing around, and you see the kid toddling around, and then afterward, what's-his-name burns the photo of Katie. I was thinking that there was some sort of ritual, based on whatever the nanny told him.

Kelly: Maybe we're supposed to take from it that the demon has to learn to be comfortable in the skin and get itself situated before it starts stealing babies? That was a little bit weak for me, but it wasn't too over the top unbelievable, and given that it’s trying to be its own movie while riding the wave of the original, it worked well enough.

Patrice: That was kind of my thought, getting comfortable in the skin first - either that or it couldn't act in the body of the kid's own mother. But that doesn't really make sense either, as it could have just as easily jumped anyone else who was in the house. And going back to the nanny - what was her name again? Since when do you trust a life/death demon situation on a random Mexican nanny? I just thought that was a little bit odd. What was her name?

Kelly: Martine?

Patrice: Why would you not call an expert in demonology, if you really believed that was going on? I'm not saying any of this took away from the movie; I didn't really care how hole-y the plot was.

Kelly: I got a kick out of the fact that in the original, you had paranormal experts that ran kicking and screaming out of there, but here you have a woman who's maybe making minimum wage watching after your rug rat who is willing to risk life and limb to rid your house of demons and you toss her out to the curb!

Patrice: Yeah, especially considering how hard it is to find a good nanny! He changed his tune with quickness when he realized that she was right. Johnny and I were flexing our high school Spanish to translate as they went along... "Oh, she said that they're HERE" "He said we don't BELIEVE", etc. Dorks!

Kelly: So they were regurgitating Poltergeist?

Patrice: Well no, but you know it was pretty much the same convo repeated in English.

Patrice: I had no idea until the credits that Oren Peli didn't do the sequel, which I guess is a compliment for this crew. So, what else about this movie?

Kelly: It gave me nightmares! When the movie was over, I knew it had creeped me out, but I didn't think it had really scared me. However, that night, I kept waking up, seeing Katie's freaky face. And I kept having to check on my baby to make sure no demons had snatched her up.

Patrice: Weird. I got a satisfactory amount of surprise while watching it. I get really emotionally involved when I watch a movie. My pal, on the other hand, never flinched, which is so annoying. With so few people in the theater, you couldn't hear anyone else really gasping or whatever. I'm totally reactionary in movies. I was getting into all the damn previews.

Kelly: We saw it with an interactive audience. The hubby hates that, but I love it for horror movies. "Girl, don't go in the basement, girl!"

Patrice: Oh no, I can only take so much of that. That kind of thing breaks the mood for me.

Kelly: I love watching horror movies in Atlanta! I love that sort of audience, as long its genuine, you know?
It has to be a genuine from the gut reaction, not someone spouting to hear themselves. Toward the end of the movie, there was a lot of that going on and it was hysterical. I was even doing it!

Patrice: I just don't want people talking to the screen - the gasping, squealing, whatever is to be expected, you know, the actual noises you make when startled or scared, but not commentary. Makes me crazy!

Kelly: Final verdict for me - I really liked it. It was worth the money for an evening showing, and being that I'm pretty damn cheap, that's saying a lot.

Patrice: I got exactly what I expected from it, too. It was scary, and creepy, and not completely predictable for me. I had an idea what the deal was, but was not sure how the story would play out. Perhaps a third installment? A franchise?

Kelly: Hmm, I don't know about that. I think the only thing they could do at this point would be to follow the step-daughter or see what actually happens to the baby. But I can't figure out how you'd do that with surveillance and hand held cameras, so that would need to be done in a different format from the original, as in Blair Witch 2, and we know how well that worked out...

Patrice: I was thinking that maybe they could have other families experience the demon thing, but with some different story lines - the same phenomenon, but unrelated to the original family. If there could be multiple Freddies, Jasons, Michael Meyerses, Chuckies, etc., why not?

Kelly: But then the amount of movies would be endless. Great for potential earnings, but as far as the storyline goes, I don't think that would entice me.

Patrice: If they could continue being good... hard to say.

Bloody Blondes: Good movie, good scares, good times. Go see it.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Muppets get a monstrous makeover

Creep Machine is currently featuring prints from the "Of Fur and Felt" series by artist Rhys Cooper, where he has reimagined our favorite Muppets as more than a little on the freaky side. Cookie Monster's eyes now look quite soulless. Head over to Creep Machine to get the full scoop on how you can order your own prints.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

17 minute behind-the-scenes clip of The Walking Dead

I just watched this 17 minute behind-the-scenes clip on The Walking Dead, which is set to premiere on AMC on Halloween. I am so very excited for this show. It combines two of my favorite things: Zombies and Atlanta. The A-T-L, representin'! Okay, I'm done, just enjoy the clip.

Things I need to buy: dragon and flamingo skeletons

Street Anatomy dropped some pretty awesome items into my Google Reader this morning. First up is the art of Alex CF. This gentlemen creates cadavers of mythical and fantastical creatures for your home study or the baby's room, whatever your preference. Each creature comes with a very interesting back story and can be purchased at his site. Here are just a couple (there are many) that are featured on his site:

Next, a little less detailed but still very cool are the skeletal lawn flamingos. Street Anatomy provides a link to Amazon where you can purchase your very own. My garden is seriously lacking and these would do the trick!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Rewind Review: House of the Devil (2009)

Just because we've been remiss in posting doesn't mean we haven't been watching horror movies. Hell no. We've just been really slack about reviewing them, see? But, since we hate to waste perfectly good snarkiness, we're going to post some "Rewind Reviews" of these movies that are no longer current, but are still worth telling you about. They're good, they're bad - and some are so bad they're good. 

House of the Devil (2009)

This movie was released on October 30 of 2009. The debut was at the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC, and after that it had limited release in the US before it was released on DVD in February of 2010.

I had seen promo trailers on IFC and was looking forward to this film being more interesting than the usual crop of modern horror films. The fact that it was purposely styled like an old 70s film look was appealing. I was a kid in the 70s and all the great horror films that had a lasting impact on me came from the 70s. The first Halloween movie (1978) was ground-breaking in many ways and remains one of the best  movie theater experiences of my life. So it was with some anticipation that I sat down to watch this offering.

The opening of the film has the feel of a 70s movie (in the extra features on the DVD, the director says that he was going for the 80s, but this is most definitely 70s) and right off you might think it's some kind of spoof because it's done in such a way that it's clearly emulating a style from another time. That is to say it's cheesy as hell. Freeze frames, old style titling - worse than Starsky and Hutch.

The main character, a college student named Samantha, is desperately trying to find a place to live off-campus because she has a skanky roommate who does nothing all day but sleep and fuck her boyfriend in the dorm room that she supposedly shares with Samantha. I empathized with her immediately on this. Nothing worse than coming back to your dorm room after class, hoping to chill out and maybe take a nap, only to find your roommate and her fixture of a bf holed up in her bed. It's not bad enough that you have no privacy in those horrid little cells they call rooms without having to put up with a roommate and her boyfriend who also has nothing better to do all day than stink up your room.

So perky Samantha (who reminded me of Karen Carpenter in a knit hat) goes looking for a place to rent and finds one that seems perfect. The landlady, played by Dee Wallace, is a huge nod to the 70s. She tells Samantha she has "a good feeling about her," as she reminds her of her own daughter. Fantastic. The only problem now is that poor Samantha is broke and can't possibly pay rent til she can make some money.

As if by magic she spots a sign advertising a need for a babysitter. She calls from a payphone outside the dorm and leaves a message along with her phone number at the dorm and somehow the dude calls her back at the payphone moments later (there was no caller id back then). They arrange to meet up, but the guy doesn't show. Later, he calls her back at the dorm, offers to pay her double and tells her to come to his house.

I give Samantha a little credit for telling her friend Megan about the babysitting gig and having her drive to the house with her and go in to meet the people. Always a good idea not to just go off to meet strangers alone. Megan doesn't stick around though; she's supposed to come back later to pick up Samantha when she's done for the night. Oh well. You'll see how well that works out.

Turns out the house is old and creepy, and the people are weird and creepy. Mr. Ullman is a tall, somber guy (Tom Noonan) with an annoyingly soft way of speaking like some kind of cult leader. His wife is played by a very Joan-Crawfordesque Mary Woronov (who I contend has never gotten enough acting roles and I just don't understand why not).  Once they get Samantha in the house, the Ullmans confess that they have no children, but they need someone to stay there with Mr. Ullman's mother who can't be left alone while they go out. Theys also seem to be very interested in the impending lunar eclipse that is about to happen and keep going on about it in a way that you might suspect foreshadows things that are going to get both ridiculous and freaky.  Most people probably would have said, "Eh, nevermind" but not Samantha, no.  She's so desperate for money that she won't be put off by any of it.

Without telling you the whole plot of the movie and ruining it for you, suffice to say that it gets both ridiculous and freaky.

There are scenes in this movie that made me laugh or scratch my head, and I never could figure out if they were just paying homage to horror films of the 70s (I know they say 80s, but trust me, that's not what the 80s looked like and just shoving a few 80s songs in there won't make it so) or if this movie was just a little bit shitty. Samantha is a girl who can't just sit still and watch tv - she'd rather put on her headphones and dance around the house like some kind of reject from Fame (or Glee for you youngsters). She also has a curiosity that leads her to start exploring the house room by room and rifling through closets. Okay, maybe that's not completely unbelievable, but it's at least bad form. I did a lot of babysitting in my day, and I can honestly say I never pawed through anyone's personal belongings while I was being paid to care for their children. Then again, it is all designed to get you from point A to point B in the plot.

It gets pretty weird, too. The swelling violin music, narrow stairways to who-knows-where, disturbing clumps of hair in the bathtub, pentagrams in blood, and someone in a white van who seems to be lurking around the property.... all these things that lead up to the big climatic scenes at the end when they finally get around to "what the fuck is going on here" are pretty trippy. Rent it for yourself to see what happens. Netflix has it. Really, it's fun.

As mentioned, the DVD does have some extra features, including an interview with the writer/director. That's always fun. Also, the credits were amusing to me, since they basically thanked everyone who ever loaned them a pen or held open an elevator door. I mean eBay is even on the list. Then again, so is Barbizon. Isn't that the famous school of modeling?? Perhaps that's where they found some of the fine acting talent.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Atlanta Zombie Walk this weekend

The Atlanta Zombie Walk will be taking place this Sunday, September 26th. According to the Atlanta Horrorfest website, the exact meet-up location has not yet been determined, but the basic route is mapped and, of course, the zombies will be making a trip through Historic Oakland Cemetery.
Atlanta photographer Josh D. Weiss took some fantastic photos of last year's Atlanta Zombie Walk, which he posted to his blog. Hopefully he'll venture out and get some shots of this walk as well. I've pulled my favorites and posted them below, but be sure to head to his site to check out the rest, there's plenty of great ones.

From Josh D. Weiss Photography:
The parade was lots of people, as you might expect, who were dressed as zombies roaming the streets together.  Their final target was downtown Atlanta at Underground, but they scheduled a detour to the Oakland Cemetery where there was a festival going on.  Oh yeah, they did this unannounced.  Made for some confused festival goers.

We are lazy dumbasses

It's been a few months since we've taken the time to do anything with our blog. I could say "well, I was having a baby and got sidetracked and Patrice was so swamped with work". This was true, but only up to a point, and then I had my baby and Patrice's crazy deadlines came and went and guess what? We still didn't do squat. The reason is that we are two lazy dumbasses who let mindless real world minutia distract us from what really matters: writing dribble on horror related things for a bunch of nerds. We are ashamed.

We humbly ask your forgiveness and will try to do better. If we don't, I'm throwing Patrice under the bus and blaming her.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

Gore Couture: Scary has never been so sexy

I was reading through one of my fave sites, Pretty Scary, when I saw this posting on horror-inspired corsets.  I could do a thoughtful write-up like they did, but I'm supposed to be working right now, so I won't.  Instead, here are some pics and you can link to the designer's site by clicking here to see more awesomely sexy/scary pics.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

"Amityville Horror" House For Sale, Asking $1.15 Million - Gothamist

"Amityville Horror" House For Sale, Asking $1.15 Million - Gothamist

Photo from the actual real estate listing - more photos of the interior rooms and exterior are on the listing.

I like what commenter "stuporman" said:

"I grew up in Amityville. The only horror was taxpayers having to front the cost of having a patrol car posted in the vicinity of the house to keep drunks from screaming ghost noises into the windows at 3am. Also, true story: one time, Rikki Rocket, the drummer from Poison pulled up in a limo and asked some friends of mine where the house was and they got to pile into the limo and take him there, which I suppose was pretty friggin' cool when you're in 7th grade."


Friday, May 14, 2010

Creepy Doll Island

Obsessive crazy people always make for interesting blog posts.

Over fifty years ago, Don Julian Santana left his wife and child and moved onto an island on Teshuilo Lake in the Xochimilco canals. According to some, a young girl actually drowned in the lake, while most others, including his relatives, say Don Julian Santana merely imagined the drowned girl. Regardless, Don Julian Santana devoted his life to honoring this lost soul in a unique, fascinating, and—for some—unnerving way: he collected and hung up dolls by the hundreds. Eventually, Don Julian transformed the entire island into a kind of bizarre, (for some) horrifying, doll-infested wonderland.

For the full story and to view more Flickr images of the dolls, visit the Atlas Obscura site.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

ThinkGeek :: Blood Bath Shower Gel

Blood Bath Shower Gel
  • Great for scrubbing up after all sort of "activities."
  • Cherry-scented and stuffed into a IV-styled, blood bag.
  • Norman Bates approved.
  • Net Wt. 400ml
  • Dimensions: approx. 1.75" x 4.25" x 7"

Friday, May 7, 2010

Cartoon Skeletons

At some point we've all wondered what our favorite cartoon characters would look like if flayed open and their internal skeletal system was on display.  Well, at least I have.  And now we know...

To view more cartoon skeletons, visit the Photo Jobs website.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Deadly Delectables of Daniela Edburg

Who knew common yummy treats could turn on you and kill you?  Apparently artist Daniela Edburg is aware and, lucky for us, was on hand with her camera to catch the malicious munchables red-handed in her Drop Dead Gorgeous collection.
From top left, clockwise:  Death by Coffee, Death by Oreo, Death by Nutella (I've nearly fallen prey to this one myself), Death by Cotton Candy.

In her collection Remains of the Day, never has road kill been so beautiful.
Title: RoadKill 2

Monday, April 5, 2010

Trailer for 'The Human Centipede': Um, Ew!

I was already creeped out and pretty grossed out with the plot of The Human Centipede (First Sequence), but now that I've seen the trailer, take that feeling and multiply it by about a thousand.  Dang, the trailer is intense!  Seriously, watch and try not to be a little freaked out.  Still, sign me up, I'll definitely be watching it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sigourney Weaver to be Queen Vampire in movie 'Vamps'? Yes Please!

Extra extra, read all about it, this just in from The Hollywood Reporter:

Sigourney Weaver, who fought a monster queen in "Aliens," will now act as a vampire queen in "Vamps," a romantic horror-comedy from Amy Heckerling. 
Written by Heckerling, the writer-director behind "Clueless" and "Look Who's Talking," the modern-day story focuses on beautiful young vampires (Alicia Silverstone and Krysten Ritter) who are living the good nightlife in New York until love enters the picture and each has to make a choice that will jeopardize their immortality. 
The UTA-repped Weaver, coming off of "Avatar," will play Ciccerus, the bloodthirsty vampire who turned the two ladies into creatures of the night.

Having read a little about Heckerling's movie, I was already interested in seeing it as I adore horror-comedies, but adding Sigourney to the mix seals the deal.  She's one of the few actors or actresses that I can forgive when they do shit, i.e. her stint in Avatar.  She was the only saving grace for that film, IMHO. (Yes, I'm well aware I may be one of 5 people in the world that thought that film was waaaaaaaay overrated.)  All Hail Queen Vamp Sigourney!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

SXSW 2010 screening of film 'Monsters'

Below is a clip from the movie Monsters that will be screening at SXSW 2010.  I learned about this film and clip via Quiet Earth and had to share it.  Looks pretty interesting.  The film description and the clip don't seem to jive, but that only makes it more intriguing.

Six years ago NASA discovered the possibility of alien life within our solar system. A probe was launched to collect samples, but crashed upon re-entry over Central America. Soon after new life forms began to appear there and half of Mexico was quarantined as an INFECTED ZONE. 
Today, the American and Mexican military still struggle to contain "the creatures"... 
Our story begins when a US journalist agrees to escort a shaken tourist through the infected zone in Mexico to the safety of the US border.

RIP Corey Haim, our little Lost Boy

I hope announcements of death are not going to become a recurring theme in our posts, but I am sad to inform you of the death of actor Corey Haim.  While he's had his issues over the years, I still love him as the spunky little brother in The Lost Boys.  I'm willing to bet that each and everyone of you felt a piece of your childhood slip away when you read the news this morning, I know I did.
The Coreys (Feldman, left, Haim, right)
"My own brother, a goddamn shit-sucking vampire!  Ooh, you wait 'til Mom finds out!"

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Seven Deadly Sins on deviantART

These sins by artist Marta Dahlig aren't so much scary or horrific as they are breathtakingly beautiful and dark!  My favorite is WRATH, namely because it's my typical, daily mood.  Here is the link to view the entire group of seven.  I think what draws me to these prints is that I'm also a HUGE Alphonse Mucha fan, and these seem to be inspired by his work.  If you don't know who Mucha is, check the dude out right now.  Shout out to Braincell Soup for introducing me to my new favorite sins.

Oscar Horror Movie Tribute

Watch it quickly, who knows how long before it's yanked!  The one from YouTube has already been taken down.  I got this one from the Raising Hell site.  Basically someone video'd their TV set, with the Paranormal Activity spoof and all, which is pretty cool.

Scary, but for all the wrong reasons
Personally, while I was happy the Academy Awards did something for horror movies, the segment itself was lacking.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVED that they included Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? and some tried and true classics, but they included alot of clips of not-the-best movies simply for the fact that those movies produced later big names like Zellweger and Aniston and such.  Guess what: we know where they got their start.  Yay, good for them.  But the space those clips took up could have been used for some seriously awesome clips from movies like oh, I don't know, movies that were actually scary like Saw or Hostel and such.  Where were they?  And they included Twilight (barf, that is NOT a horror film by genre, it's scary for it's own teenage melodramatic reasons) and Edward Scissorhands.  Edward Scissorhands?  That is so far removed from horror (though definitely an awesome movie)! I guess I should be happy they did anything at all, but still....

What were your thoughts?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Godzilla waxes poetic

Godzilla waxes
poetic and loves haiku.
Who knew that he could?
I'm a poet and didn't know it.  And so, apparently, is Godzilla.  I first learned of the giant pissed-off Japanese lizard's penchant for poetry through the site Neatorama.  They found it on the Electronic Cerebrectomy blog.  Godzilla has written five haikus so far.  Immediately below is the one that Neatorama featured.  My favorite is below that.  Perhaps the Big G should try his hand at beat poetry?  Cross your fingers that there's more to come.


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wonderland Mania: Tom Petty's "Don't Come Around Here No More"

If you can't tell from previous postings, we're pretty excited about Burton's Alice in Wonderland that opens this weekend.  The original story was odd and creepy enough (I found it to be rather freaky when I read it in third grade) and now Burton gets to take a stab at it.  Marriage made in heaven!
But before Burton got his grubby paws on the Alice story, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers had a rather interesting and disturbing version of their own for their song "Don't Come Around Here No More."  I mean, c'mon, they're hacking into poor Alice at the end of the video.  Cannibalism anyone?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

WONDERLOST: The Alice Project (reinterpretations of Alice in Wonderland)

In honor of the somewhat creepy looking Tim Burton version of Alice in Wonderland opening this weekend, here is another series of reinterpretations of Alice and her cohorts.
The Artist's Statement from the Wonderlost Website:

The Wonderlost series is my artistic interpretation and dark twist on the numerous characters from Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" stories. The theme across the whole series is to give each character the look of a porcelain doll, with very pale bleach white skin and bleached white clothing. To sharply contrast the sterile white throughout the painting, there are elements that are either black or blood red, either on the character's physical self (as in the form of hair) or in their accessories. 

The characters are first visualized and conceptualized using Adobe Illustrator and then executed and painted using Adobe Photoshop. No 3D tools are utilized in the creation of the series, only airbrushing techniques in Photoshop. The final series will eventually encompass the group of major characters in the two stories. When creating the paintings, my palette of choice is mainly whites and mid-grays, with a contrasting dash of red or black here and there. Once I finish a piece, I flood the canvas with an antique wash to add some age and depth in the image. 

Monday, March 1, 2010

Oh dear god: Autopsy Babies

Thank you to Twitter bitch @nathicana for totally ruining my lunch.  I clicked open the link she posted earlier and 'bout lost my sweet potato.  I'm impressed and nauseated all at the same time, which is a good thing in my book.  I've included a quick snippet of what the site has to offer below, but you really need to go to the full site and check them all out, they are amazingly disturbing!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Off the Bloody Path: Andrew Koenig & Depression

I'm going to venture off the path here and post something that's not in line with our other posts, but I feel it's important enough to do so.  If you don't like it, screw you, we never liked you anyway.

After several days of relentless media coverage and tireless searching by friends and family, former Growing Pains actor Andrew Koenig was found dead.  No official cause has yet been released, but it appears to be at his own hand, a result of suffering severe depression.

I heard this comment made: “What does he have to be depressed about?”  He grew up a popular child actor on a highly rated TV show, his father is Star Trek actor Walter Koenig (who played Chekov) and he seemed to have a large group of friends and family who loved him.  Well, here’s the thing, you can have all the fame, all the money and all the love in the world, but clinical depression doesn’t care.  It’s not logical and it makes no sense.

My name is Kelly and I suffer from depression.  And I hate it.  I truly have no reason to be depressed.  I have a loving husband that makes me laugh daily and a baby on the way.  I have a fantastic group of friends who would do anything and everything for me and I have the most wonderful family that ever existed, period.  I have a good job, make good money and have plenty of hobbies and interests that I love and that keep me on my feet.  I want for nothing, and yet, I am depressed.  It’s not something that ever really goes away, though luckily for me, it’s not all-encompassing.  I have better moments and I have worse moments, but it’s something that’s always there.  I can speak from experience that when you get so very down, you have that moment where you go “what do I have to be depressed about”, and then you just feel worse about yourself, because for some stupid reason, you can’t fully appreciate how great your life is, so you must be a bad person, and the spiral just continues.

My heart absolutely broke when I heard about Andrew.  I’d be willing to bet he had those same thoughts, but when you’re sick, those thoughts don’t necessarily help.   In the end, I’m hoping that the media exposure related to Andrew’s battle will help those who still struggle.  He didn’t win his fight, but perhaps his life can inspire others to fight to win theirs.

Depression can affect anyone.  Even if you don’t suffer from depression, it’s important to try to understand those that do.  It’s not just a matter of feeling the blues or being a little down.  It’s a totally different experience, and if you do not suffer from it, I don’t know that I can adequately explain what it feels like.  It’s important not to judge, but to be sympathetic to those who struggle with this.  I’m including this link to a website with information on identifying depression, getting help and coping.  Even if you can’t immediately think of someone in your life that suffers from depression, I suggest you read up on the subject anyhow.  If you think you might be suffering from depression, don’t worry about stigmas or any of that nonsense, go talk to your doctor; it’s an illness like any other.

I hope this post helps someone.  There’s a great big wonderful world out there and I want us all to be able to enjoy it fully!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

If you're tough enough to sit through this scary movie, you might get $10K!

This may end up being the crappiest movie ever made, but you have to give the filmmaker credit for having huge balls and laying down this challenge.  The challenge sounds easy enough on the surface, but let's be honest, even the bravest person has to flinch at a perfectly timed scare in a movie, it can't be helped.   Because this is somewhat unique, I'd be interested to see how it pans out. (Trailer below release)


NEW DELHI (Reuters) - A Bollywood filmmaker has issued a lucrative challenge to horror movie fans: a $10,000 reward for anyone who can watch his latest supernatural thriller, alone, in a cinema until the closing credits.
Ram Gopal Varma's "Phoonk 2," a sequel to his 2008 film of the same name, is about an evil spirit that traumatizes a family. "Anyone who says the movie cannot scare him is going to be put in a theater by himself," Varma told reporters in Mumbai at an event to promote the movie.
Varma said the film fan who steps up to the challenge will be wired up to a heart monitoring machine as well as a camera that ensures they keep their eyes open during the whole movie.
Readings from the machines will be shown live on a screen outside the cinema, Varma said, and if the contestant succeeds, they will win 500,000 rupees (approximately $10,850).
Varma issued a similar challenge ahead of the release of the original "Phoonk" but the promotional contest was withdrawn after allegations the selection process was rigged.
Varma said the contest winner ran out 30 minutes after the film started, but newspaper reports said a film fan in the southern Indian city of Bangalore booked an entire cinema to prove the director wrong and watched the film alone with a doctor on call and security personnel stationed outside.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Universal's Monster Legacy

Here's a great site to play around on, especially if you're into nostalgic Hollywood back-lot horror.  Universal's Monster Legacy site opens with a great video intro, which you can skip if you so choose, but I recommend watching it.

As you move through the site, you can view the synopsis, images and theater art of some of your favorite horror films.  I've included a few of my favorites below.  I love the music playing on the site (I think it may be from the new Wolfman movie, which is part of the inspiration for this site.)

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Alien Symbiote Cometh...

Went to the doctor today & it's official: I'M HAVING A GIRL! An Itty Bitty Bloody Blonde to add to the mix.
She's kind of freaky looking, ain't she?

Now, don't for a second expect me to start lavishing her with uber-frilly garments and lots of nauseatingly girly-cute stuff.  Oh no no no, my little girl will be raised properly!  I'm already shopping for the appropriate garb as we type.

Women in Horror posted on their Facebook page a link to an Etsy seller, AngryBaby.  This will be my first stop.
If you tell me this isn't freaking adorable I will punch you in the skull.

When I put my sweet little shnookums in this next get up, I have a feeling most of my family will be scratching their heads:

And no little girls toy collection would be complete without her very own Ugly Dolls!
This guy, Big Toe, is my fav!

So this is where I'm starting, but I need so much more than this.  This little one has a grandmother that will no doubt be buying all sorts of ridiculous lacey dresses, so I have stock up on the good stuff myself.  If you have any suggestions on great places to shop for horror/scifi themed baby gear, please let me know!

Andrew Koenig Missing (scary in a non-fun way)

From TMZ.com:

Andrew Koenig, who played Boner on the show "Growing Pains," has been reported missing, the Vancouver Police tells TMZ.

He was reportedly last seen a week ago. Koenig was supposed to be on a flight back to the United States on February 16, but didn't make it.

The family is asking that anyone with information contact Detective Raymond Payette of the Vancouver Police Department at 604-717-2534.

Friday, February 19, 2010

You should 'check out' Jennifer's Body

We are not professionals.  We don't aim to go into full-regurgitation mode here in our reviews - if you want to know the storyline, you can read it for yourself, so we're not going to break down the whole plot. It really doesn't matter all that much what the damn story is supposed to be anyway. What you know is going on and what you are watching is the cat and mouse between the character of Jennifer and her best friend Needy and the boys who orbit Jennifer like love-starved satellites. And there you have it.

KELLY:  So, Jennifer's Body. I really liked this movie, although I half expected to not like it because of the poor reviews after it came out.  People seemed very excited about it and then all of sudden it was as though the movie was only mediocre at best. 

PATRICE: Critics really hated it. I think because of Diablo Cody, not the movie itself.  I fully expected this movie to be just an overhyped teenage hormone fest that would ultimately leave me unsatisfied, and maybe even a little disgusted. After all, the marketing for this film concentrated on the sexy bimbo hotness of Megan Fox and what would appear to be a need to eat or at least make out with everyone who wanders within six feet of her. 

KELLY: I need to go back and look at the reviews, but I'll bet you anything most of the so-so reviews were done by men, because they just didn't relate to it or get it.  I think that's why I enjoyed it so much, I could relate to so many of the scenes and dialogue, even given it's about diabolical possession!

PATRICE: Well just being a woman I think we can both relate to diabolical possession sometimes.  The character of Jennifer seemed to be as much a victim of her teenage sexual desires and hormones as she was a murderous demon possessed biatch.

KELLY: Both of whom I've met at some point in high school.

PATRICE: I liked the fact that when she was low on bitchfuel, she got uglier.  It was satisfying!

KELLY: Bitchfuel, I like it. Kind of appropriate that it was the boys that made her bitchy, don't you think? Very appropriate indeed...

PATRICE: Yeah this was definitely the perspective of a woman, no doubt.  Sort of the man-eater stereotype ramped up.

KELLY: There were so many teenage girl parallels to be drawn in this movie: boys make her be bitchy, man-eater, best friends who secretly want to kill each other.  The list goes on and on...

PATRICE:  …the jealousy, the envy, the boys who wanted to be close to Jennifer, the best friend who marveled at her…

KELLY:  This could have just as easily been another John Hughes movie about teenage friendships if you took out the whole demonic possession bit.
PATRICE:  Exactly that - if John Hughes and Quentin Tarantino teamed up.

KELLY: Ooh, that would have been awesome for sure...

So, should we knock out the bit about the girl-on-girl scene?  It didn’t do anything for me one way or the other, definitely just a ploy to get guys to agree to go to the movie with their girlfriend for a chick-centered film.

PATRICE: It was the one scene you couldn't possibly avoid knowing about ahead of time was the much-hinted at bedroom omg-they're-kissing scene Jennifer and Needy. Turns out, that scene isn't any more exciting than what you would see on a Girls Gone Wild commercial, assuming you're old enough to stay up and watch Comedy Central unsupervised. 

KELLY:  I saw an interview with Amanda Seyfried where she said she and Megan Fox just rolled their eyes at that scene and were like, whatever.

PATRICE: I really have nothing more to add about it. I think it was completely unnecessary and any attempt by other reviewers to work it into the whole teenaged finding yourself phase is full of shit.

KELLY: Agreed.

PATRICE:  So there was also the relationship between Needy and her boyfriend Chip.  I wasn't sure exactly how much of that was pertinent to the rest of the story other than to illustrate the stark contrast between the two girls and maybe to create that triangle that ultimately led to Needy attacking Jennifer.

KELLY: Side note: I want to say that I appreciate that high school age kids (or those pretty close) were used for this movie. Made it much more realistic to see them talking the way they did.

PATRICE:  Oh, yeah and I love that boy who played the goth kid -the one from Haunting in Connecticut.

KELLY:  Back on track: yeah, I kept wondering if Needy losing her virginity would somehow play a role, but I don't think it ever really did. I went back through and thought about that, but could never find anything that jumped out at me.

PATRICE: I think it was just to show the contrast - her sweetness and innocence compared to how Jennifer just used boys to her advantage, like the soon-to-be cop boy from the bar.

KELLY: Do you think there was any significance in the teacher having a claw for a hand? I wasn't sure if it was just there simply because they had it in props and thought "hey, this is neat" or if there was something we were supposed to take from it.  It was very random.

PATRICE: I think it might have been just an odd bit they threw in there, random.

KELLY: For me, the best scene in the movie would have to be the fight at the abandoned swimming pool on prom night.  That whole scene had me laughing 1) because the action was fun but more importantly 2) because of the argument the two girls were having.  Here you have Jennifer trying to eat Needy's boyfriend alive and in the end they end up bitching about each other's flaws as a friend.

PATRICE: I told you the line that really cracked me up, when Needy has jammed the big pole thru Jennifer and J is like “Got a tampon?  I thought you might be pluggin’.”  It was almost like she was saying, ‘I thought that's why you might be getting all worked up over me trying to eat your boyfriend,’ like you wouldn’t otherwise.  I liked how it seemed almost ridiculous “Oh, now you're floating?” or something like that.  For some reason that was so ludicrous and so funny to me. 

KELLY: Yes, the floating line!  Chip says something like "she's levitating" and Needy says "she's just floating, it's not that impressive" or something like that.   Just super bitchiness!
This scene alone made me love this movie. The rest was good enough to get a good review, but that sealed the deal for me. Was the dialogue cheesy? Yes. But have I been in a similar situation where you start bitching at each other over nonsense that is totally unrelated to the situation at hand? Absolutely!

PATRICE: It's that particular element that made it so much more resonant for women. We’ve all had friends that we were super close to, but given a stressful situation would scratch each other's eyes out.  Men would never do that. Wouldn't even understand why we would.

KELLY:  Exactly!  And let's be honest, no matter how much we love our friends, at some point we've wanted to just shove a pole through them and tell them to just Go To Hell. I love my best friend to death, but on more than a few occasions I'm pretty sure we could have killed each other were it not for silly laws making it illegal.

PATRICE: Exactly.  So let me ask you about something else:  the band that slips into town to find a victim to sacrifice to make themselves famous, Low Shoulder.  When they roll into this little town in the middle of nowhere, they are there for a reason - which of course we find out later.  They're going to find a virgin to sacrifice so they can basically sell their souls to the devil for fame, etc.

Okay, what I thought about after the fact was...what was the purpose of the club burning down and killing so many people?  Could they not have just played a show, found a girl to lure into their van and gone on with their plan? Did they need a diversion that big? Or am I just missing something?  I realize that the whole "healing" process and the song that becomes tattooed on their brains was tied into that. I get that.

KELLY: I wondered about that as well and finally decided it was to illustrate how 'low' Low Shoulder really was. They are that depraved that they simply don't care.  Because honestly, they didn't make any attempt to try to save Jennifer, so I don't think they did it to have a distraction so they could get to her. I think they just capitalized on her being safe after the fact. They were just assholes, plain and simple.

PATRICE: I also wondered how they even pulled the fire off from the stage. It seemed supernatural, but they didn't have any powers - they were just dorks who were going to try to conjure up some demons.

KELLY:  I can't quite remember how it started.

PATRICE: The fire seemed to start out of nowhere, running up a pole or a beam, wasn't sure what it was, but they were on stage at the time, just starting to play, so they really didn't even get to perform.  And then there was the rumor that they were heroes, helping people... I suppose that's how they elevated themselves.

KELLY: I also kind of felt it was making a statement about how people are so quick to deify celebrities, just as easily as they vilify them. Low Shoulder's music wasn't that great, but they were seen as gods by Jennifer, which led to her demise. And then all the students fell into hero worship for something the band didn't actually do (saving people) and were willing to fight for them.  It was commentary on the cult of celebrity.

PATRICE: Yeah that was definitely meant to be the statement, I agree.  The conversation in the classroom when the nameless girl defends them as having been the freaking saviors come to earth or something.
KELLY: Hmm, wonder if Diablo Cody was fashioning this band after any group in particular?

PATRICE:  They were actually gonna have Pete Wentz or Joel Madden.

KELLY:  I loved the dialogue during the Low Shoulder sacrifice scene. It was ridiculous and nonsense, but it worked. It wasn't overplayed, it wasn't acted as if I'm supposed to take it seriously. It was simply tongue-in-cheek and dumb and worked perfectly.

PATRICE: Oh yeah, and bursting into 867-5309 (Jenny) may have actually been my favorite part of the movie.  I nearly wet myself!

KELLY: Yeah, that scene could have easily made me roll my eyes, but instead, I was laughing and loving it.  That's something else about the movie that I enjoyed: it was campy and schlocky at times and non-sensical but it all worked together perfectly. I feel like this would be a perfect movie to watch with a bunch of girlfriends at a sleepover.  It was just a fun damn movie. 

PATRICE: It was and I thought the special fx were good. 

KELLY: Agreed, the fx were good partly because they were simple and not over the top, so there was little opportunity to screw them up, so you could easily buy everything that happened.

PATRICE:  I mean, just look what they did for Megan Fox's thumbs...

KELLY:  What about her thumbs?

PATRICE: OMG you haven't heard the flap? She's got some kind of malfunction that makes her thumbs look like a caveman’s - so they had a double do the scene with the closeup of her hands, and they 'shopped in the double's thumbs.

KELLY: Huh. Well, hmm, there you go. Caveman thumbs eliminated thanks to the magic of movies.

PATRICE: Actually it wasn't in this movie, it was her Superbowl Ad with the photo-shopped thumbs, but still it is pretty funny.  Just google Megan Fox thumbs and you'll get the idea of the magnitude of it.

KELLY:  What were some of your favorite lines from the movie? I loved loved loved the final fight between Needy and Jennifer when Needy says "Know what this is? It's a BOX cutter!" I about died!

PATRICE: Yeah, that and the other one I already mentioned about pluggin’ were my favorites!  Gross but funny. [For more awesome quotes, click here.]  I also wanted to add that I loved that Amy Sedaris played the trailer trash mom to Needy

KELLY: I kept trying to figure out where I knew her from and then I was like "Is that Sedaris? Nah, it can't be!"  I wonder if her role was cut down from something bigger.I can't imagine casting Amy Sedaris as a narcoleptic white trash mother and then just not doing anything with that.

PATRICE: True, she's bigger than that.

KELLY: Then again, maybe she's pals with Cody and it was done as a friend thing, who knows.  Though, still, as a friend, Cody should have written more for her, so that really doesn't hold any water. Hmm, mysterious...

Okay, so I want to get your take on the beginning/ending, with Needy in the mental hospital.  Do you think she actually became possessed herself or, as she states it, she simply took on some of the powers?  I wondered, because not even Jennifer knew what was going on with her body (yet another teenage girl metaphor) and she was full on possessed, so would Needy necessarily know if she had the devil in her? 

PATRICE: She did all that research to figure out what happened to Jennifer, so yeah, she knew.

KELLY: In the end, I did end up thinking it was just pulling on the powers, not full blown possession.  The primary reason I figured it was just gaining strength was in how she murdered Low Shoulder.  She basically just went in and thrashed the shit out of them, no flesh eating.

PATRICE: I liked when she kicked that woman across the cafeteria. “Just one Toastem, huh?”

KELLY: That was damn funny. 

Something I really liked about the ending: she took revenge  for Jennifer.  BFF 4Ever and all that.  Even though things had gone to hell, literally, she busted out, risking everything, to go find those who had hurt her friend and then took revenge.  She can beat the shit out of her friend, but damnit, no one else better touch her!

PATRICE:  The revenge on the band was awesome!  After all, they were the ones who made Jennifer that way, so it makes sense.  Jennifer might have been a little bitchy, but she wasn't a demon until they came along.  Those douchbags got what they deserved.

KELLY: In the end, it was a film about friendship and the ups and downs and perhaps a little demonic possession.  It was touching in an odd way.

PATRICE: I also wondered if Cody Diablo might not be a fan of boy bands.

KELLY: What makes you say that?

PATRICE:  They were portrayed as lazy, self-centered, misogynistic assholes who would do anything to get famous even without any real talent and then they get slaughtered in the end.

KELLY: Oh, you mean bands with guys, I thought you meant 'boy bands' like Backstreet Boys and NSync and the like.  I was like, uh, what?  Does anyone really like those bands anymore? ;)

PATRICE: I actually looked at the revenge as purely revenge for everything they did to ruin the town and kill so many people and for being the ones to cause Jennifer to become what she was. 

KELLY: Oh no no no no no, dude, it's total 'Bitch is Scorned' action! Typical chick. ;)
PATRICE: Plus her boyfriend got killed in the process.

KELLY: Good ol' Chip...

PATRICE: I loved Chip.  I loved that Johnny Simmons got to play him.  Of course I kept thinking "How the hell are you gonna ignore Chip in favor of a bitchy girl friend?"  Maybe that's just me.

KELLY: Chip’s best line: "I can take care of myself, I'm using the bowflex."

This movie was fun and I enjoyed the hell out of it. I'm perplexed as to why it got only so-so reviews when it came out. I can only figure they were men who reviewed it and that they didn't just get it.

PATRICE:  I think they might have either been expecting too much out of Diablo Cody because "Juno" was so great, or if they thought it was too lightweight by comparison. That plus they just didn't get it.  I loved it, thought it had good effects, effective suspense, an original storyline, and a great cast. Oh and a good soundtrack.

KELLY: I suggest everyone rent it and watch it. If you're a chick, invite some gal pals over, eat junk food and prepare to have fun

PATRICE: Yep, agreed.