Every year since 2011, I’ve made it my personal tradition to watch one scary movie every single day of October (no, I don’t mean the Wayans Brothers kind).
This has allowed me to discover hidden gems that have gone on to become favourites of mine. It’s also a great way to watch the most famous horror movies of all time that I have shamefully never seen before.
From fan favourites to cult classics and J-horror to Giallo – nothing is off the table this October. If the film is horror/Halloween related, it will be viewed and reviewed.
So settle down on your sofa, get your candy ready and join me for the next 31 days and rejoice at the selection of horror movies coming your way.
Day 1: Creepshow 2
The follow up to Stephen King and George A. Romero’s collaboration that was 1982’s Creepshow, the duo were once again at the helm for Creepshow 2.
The first movie featured a compendium of five short films (two of which were adapted from King’s short stories) and was a hit. The collaboration of two of horror’s greatest minds coming together, as well as the clash of comic books, movies and literature to create a unique feeling that has rarely been replicated, proved popular with audiences and critics alike. A sequel was, almost inevitable.
When Creepshow 2 arrived in 1987, it was merely a skeleton of what had once been. Cutting the budget by $4.5 million, as well as reducing the run time by thirty minutes and only including three short segments. Besides this, the roles of both King and Romero were cut substantially, with Romero writing the scripts based off King’s short stories. However, both men were still masters and the three ideas were extremely solid.
The movie follows three shorts: Old Chief Wood’nhead, The Raft and The Hitchhiker, all of which play out with a seperate animated story happening in between.
The three shorts are based upon predominantly great ideas. Old Chief Wood’nhead follows a cigar store Indian statue that comes to life and murders those who have done wrong on his land. The Raft follows four teenagers who are attacked by some form of sludge while swimming in the lake. And The Hitchhiker follows a woman on her trip home that ends in disaster when she runs down a hitchhiker.
Sadly, for the most part, good ideas are the best thing that can be said about each film. For everything that is done well, something comes along to ruin it.
As for the first segment, Old Chief Wood’nhead, it could have been a really fun short that explored the evils that had been unleashed on Native Americans by English settlers, but instead is merely a revenge tale that creates nothing. Chief Wood’nhead killing random kids that had ‘done wrong’.
The second segment goes even further, with the main antagonist being a sludge made up of oil and plastic pollution, the story could have been extremely relevant today and said a lot, but instead features sludge that kills people, just because.
As for The Hitchhiker, it’s genuinely a pretty well-made part of the film and allows for a reasonably good finale for an overly disappointing movie. Opening with a great twist reveal that the lead character, Annie Lansing, has been sleeping with a gigolo, the rest of the story follows the character’s car ride home when all of a sudden she knocks down an innocent hitchhiker. Making the swift decision to get as far away from the incident as possible, guilt soon washes over Annie throughout the journey. That is until she comes face to face with the same hitchhiker on the road and the hitchhiker attacks her.
It’s this moment that causes some serious issues in character development (that, so far, had been good), as Annie goes on to absolutely annihilate the hitchhiker. Annie doesn’t merely run him down once more so she can escape, no. She goes out of her way to completely and utterly destroy the man that has been terrorising her. So much so, that not only does it become hilarious, but the audience begins to question why they should be rooting for this character at all. As for the hitchhiker himself, he proves invincible. Safe to say, this adds to the hilarity.
The stories not being the best is no real surprise. While Stephen King is lauded as one of the greatest writers of all time, he certainly has a large selection of terrible ideas and writings. When he’s great, he’s the best, but when he’s bad, oh boy is he the worst. However, George A. Romero’s writings failing this badly is quite the letdown. But most disappointing has to be the make up. Most of which is ok at best. Shocking considering Tom Savini was the make up supervisor.
Considering just how lauded the original Creepshow was, Creepshow 2 is a massive letdown. Most likely a great laugh with some friends, it’s not one to watch alone if you’re looking for a good, truly scary movie.
Rating = 2/5 flicks