‘Twas the month before…
We recently entered October, in case you were hibernating and didn’t notice. October just so happens to be my favourite month of the year. Is that because my birthday’s in October? No, because it’s not. Is it because my girlfriend’s birthday is in October? No, I don’t have a girlfriend…thanks for reminding me. Why not? Have you read this blog before? Theeere you go.
October is many different things to many different people. It’s Breast-Cancer Awareness Month, Fair Trade Month, Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Filipino-American History Month, Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender History Month, Pregnancy Loss and Infant Loss Awareness Month, Dwarfism Awareness Month, Health Literacy Month, World Blindness Awareness Month, Squirrel Awareness Month, National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and of course the always-on-my-mind…Auto-Battery Safety Month. Jesus, with all that who needs the rest of the year?
For those of you out there who are somewhat gluttonous, like myself, there are some more pressing designations; like National Pizza Month and National Popcorn-Poppin’ Month. I suspect they’re somewhat connected to my real reason for loving October. So, what is my reason? I’ll write it in a way that the emoticon generation can understand:
Fairly predictable, I admit. Being a promoter of Squirrel Awareness Month would probably make me less typical, but I can’t deny that my heart lies in a bucket of candy corn (sorry for the disturbing imagery).
Ah yes, October 31st, the night of virgin screams and smokey moonbeams. This year Halloween falls on a Wednesday, so many people will probably trade in all forms of timely celebration in favour of being fully conscious at work the next day. Will I? Hell nah. I’ll move shifts around to make it fit. I know this sounds like hyperbole, but it really isn’t…I enjoy Halloween far more than Christmas. Those of you who know me know that to be true. Perhaps the fact that every other person in the country isn’t celebrating it at the same time makes it that much more special to me, I don’t really know. Many people associate Halloween with costume parties.
I’m not into parties, much less costume parties. I don’t see the point in crafting an elaborate outfit just so five or six people can point and go “oh you’re that thing!”. Instead I prefer to tell people that “I am dressed up, I’m dressed up as a serial killer with a hatred for people who ask why he hasn’t dressed up.”. That tends to silence them and make sure they avoid me the rest of the night. That’s the point of a party right…solitude? Hmmm, I may be going wrong somewhere.
Alright, I’m a grinch, but even a grinch can have traditions. About six years ago I decided on my own, and now I want to share it with you.
Every Halloween I go out and rent or buy three horror movies. These horror movies can be new, old, big budget, small budget, operatic, tense, english, or in a foreign language. It doesn’t matter what the movies are like so long as they’re generally considered to be scary, but more importantly – I haven’t seen them before. They need to be new to me. Then…I gather nutrients! By nutrients I mean the stuff you find at the top of the food-guide-pyramid. I stock up on fats, sugars…and excitement. After that…I wait for it to get dark.
Once the safety of the sun has gone, and spookiness of the moon begins to settle, I open the bags and pop in the discs. It has now begun, and over the next 6 hours I watch them one after another.
Basically I have a three-movie horror marathon with a feast of crappy foods in front of me, starting around 7-ish and ending around 1 or 2 in the morning. Sorry for taking so long to explain it, but I was trying to get you in the mood.
Alright not that much in the mood, but the point here is to scare myself. I want to dangle my sanity over the edge of a cliff by a dodgy piece of string. Those of you who don’t enjoy watching horror movies because you’re afraid of getting scared…well, I just can’t relate to you. Do you also not go on roller coasters for fear of butterflies in your stomach? Do you skip sad movies because you can’t stand feeling so down? A horror movie is meant to scare you, and it’s a great feeling when it actually does.
So, over the next month I’ll be scrutinising as many fright-flicks as I can to try and assemble my own holy trinity. So far I’m pretty sure I’ve nailed down…one.
I’m not interested in The Woman in Black because of Daniel Radcliffe, although I’m sure “that’s what someone who’s secretly obsessed with hot-Harry would say!”. No, honestly, I’m excited to see it because it’s a return to the classic British Hammer horror movies of the 80’s. A creepy mansion in the Victorian era bravely occupied by a young sceptic; a classic formula that’s been put on lay-by far too long. Bring back to the old dusty cobwebs and creaky doors, I say! It’s also interesting that it’s directed by James Watkins, who’s previous credits include My Little Eye and Eden Lake. Both of them fall shy of greatness but have rich soft nuggets of charm at the centre. Hopefully The Woman In Black will continue that trend. I’m still not 100% sure on it yet, but so far it’s the best first choice I’ve found.
So, here is what I’m proposing: I’m giving a shout out to all the loners out there who love halloween and horror. If you don’t have a party to go to and you’re not getting up at the crack of dawn the next day…join me! Not necessarily literally “join me”, but pick out three movies of your own and have yourself a little marathon. This doesn’t have to be something that you do alone, by any means. In fact it’s more fun when you have a few friends over to partake in the experience. If, maybe, you feel that you’re hopeless at finding good horror movies or you’re just completely unaware of what would indicate a scary one – I’ll help you! Leave a comment below indicating the type of horror movies you’ve enjoyed in the past and I’ll do my best to pick out a few that I think would appeal to you. What’s most important is that you take it seriously and seek out three films which each appear to have high “fright” or “creep” value.
On a different note, I’ll be doing my best to add posts on Cinema-Rant consistently over the next three weeks, giving you updates on how my selection is coming along. Will The Woman in Black make the final cut? Who knows? Who cares? Well…maybe someone out there does. In addition I’ll be jotting down some recommendations for you guys based off of movies I’ve chosen in previous years. I’ll drag you kicking and screaming into the spirit of Halloween even if it kills you!
Then when it’s all over I’ll review each movie and let you know how successful it all was. Sound good? Sound like a waste of your time and you think I’m a “fag”? Fine, I don’t want people like you on my blog anyway!
If any of you want to share you’re own “horror list decisions”, you can do so in the ‘comments’ below. Feedback isn’t exactly overflowing here, so don’t be shy.
Last but not least, if you know of a really really really scary movie that you suspect I might not have seen…let me know. I’m as open to suggestions as ever – there are still two completely empty slots and I have no idea what to fill them with.
– Rant Over