Monday, 18 April 2011

A List What I Wrote

Unsurprisingly I’m ridiculously late to this party. This is largely because I suck, although in my defence, picking favourites isn’t in my nature, my love is vast and all encompassing and there’s room for all in its somewhat disturbing embrace. What I’ve actually managed to cobble together here is a list. That’s it really. It’s a list of things I’ve seen recently and appreciated. Let’s not call them favourites because then I’m going to have call a million movies and apologise for their not being included, and then there’ll be the letter writing to the ones I couldn’t reach on the phone, and the apology cards, it’ll just be a ghastly cycle of misery and guilt and blame and no one wants that. So here is a list.


A

Not a good start, but I really couldn’t commit here. It’s one of these:

American Werewolf in London (1981) Alien !979), Arsenic and Old Lace (1944), Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)





I love them all!

B

Again, I struggled here, there are so many good Bs, but I eventually plumped for my two favourite brides.

Bride of Frankenstein (1935) Bride of Chucky (1998)



C

God, this is hard. I went for Child’s Play because the franchise has suffered something of a bad rep in the UK due to a particular atrocity that occurred in the early 1990s. While I obviously wholeheartedly deplore the associated, and any, real life violence, I think it’s a shame the films have been tarnished.

Child’s Play (1988)


Honourable Mention: Cut (2010)

D

I watch Die Hard at least three times a year, in fact I’ve watched it twice already this year. I unreservedly love it.

Die Hard (1988)


Honourable Mentions: Demonium (2001), Dawn of the Dead (1978)

E

I’m still as terrified of The Exorcist today as I was the first time I saw it. An undisputable classic of the genre.

The Exorcist (1973)


Honourable Mention: The Evil Dead (1981)


F
I remain consistently disappointed that the world doesn’t dress and look like 1980’s Flash Gordon. I think things would make a lot more sense if we/it did. ‘Gordon’s alive?!!!’ I love Brian Blessed and I love Flash Gordon.

Flash Gordon (1980)


Honourable Mentions: The Frighteners (1996), Frankenhooker (1990)

G

I hold Bob Hope responsible for my love of horror it was via his child friendly antics in the spooky realms that I progressed to, well, this. Ghost Breakers is one of my fondest memories from childhood.

Ghost Breakers (1940)

Honourable Mention: Ghostbusters (1984)


H

Another one of my early horror experiences, and, frankly, anything with Vincent Price in it is always top in my book.

House on Haunted Hill (1959)


Honourable Mention: Hold That Ghost (1941), Hellboy (2004)

I

Aside from being great and my favourite film of 2009 it’s got Ron Perlman in it so no further explanation is needed.

I Sell the Dead (2009)


J

I will never get over the amazingness that is Jaws, it’s the daddy of shark movies and I will never tire of watching it.

Jaws (1975)


Honourable Mention: Jurassic Park (1993)


K

Still makes me cry.

King Kong (1933)


Honourable Mention: Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988)

L

Behold the wonder of Bowie!

Labyrinth (1986)


Honourable Mention: Leprechaun 4: In Space (1996),The Lair of the White Worm (1988)

M

Second showing for Vincent Price, this time aided and abetted by another fave Peter Cushing. What’s not to love? Adrienne Corri is also gorgeous and fabulous in it.

Madhouse (1974)


Honourable Mention: The Monster Squad (1987)

N

Not a lot to say here, simply an absolute classic.

Night of the Living Dead (1968)


Honourable Mentions: Night of the Comet (1984), Night of the Creeps (1986),

O

Spawned many sequels and a pointless remake, but the original Omen remains the scariest and best.

The Omen (1976)

P

Too hard to pick, one of these maybe:

Peeping Tom (1960), Psycho (1960), Psychomania (1971), Piranha (1978)


Q

There’s really only one Q

The Quatermass Xperiment (1955)


R

There are many reasons why I should never have children, but Rosemary’s Baby terrifying me is one of the biggest.

Rosemary’s Baby (1968)


Honourable Mentions: Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (1990), Re-Animator (1985), Rear Window (1954)
S

Obscenely politically incorrect MGM musical that ought to offend my every feminist principle, but I love it! I know all the words and everything. Let us never speak of this again.

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954)


Honourable Mentions: Slaughter High (1986), Shaun of the Dead (2004) Suspiria (1977), Swamp Thing (1982)
T

My husband and I consider Nick and Nora Charles our marriage role models; they’re beautiful, well dressed, devastatingly witty, desperately in love and they solve crime while drinking cocktails. That’s the dream!

The Thin Man (1934)


Honourable Mention: Theatre of Blood (1973)
U

Unbreakable makes me cry too, I’m really soft and rubbish.

Unbreakable (2000)

V

The Valley of Gwangi is the movie that keeps on giving. Ever wondered what would happen if cowboys faced off against dinosaurs? What about dinosaur vs. elephant? Want to see a tiny, tiny horse or dinosaur in a church? Look no further.

The Valley of Gwangi (1969)


Honourable Mention: Vertigo (1958)


W

Three words: Naked Britt Eckland.

The Wicker Man (1973)


Honourable Mentions: Withnail and I (1987), Wild Zero (2000)
X

Ok, technically the only ‘X’ I could think of, but it’s still outrageously awesome and it’s got Gene flipping Kelly in it!

Xanadu (1980)



Y

There could only ever really be one here; still unspeakably funny, still awesome.

Young Frankenstein (1974)


Z

I don’t feel any need to explain this. Clearly a scathing diatribe against the Bush administration and a thoughtful and considered discourse on patriarchal attitudes towards the female form.

Zombie Strippers (2008)



So there you go, a list.

Friday, 15 April 2011

My Creepy Right Foot

Most people have something that creeps them out, some kind of physical trauma they find it difficult to watch on screen. I think mostly it’s the smaller, relatable pains that we’ve to some extent experienced ourselves and are inherently aware of the sensation that mannerpain creates. My husband, for example, hates fingernails being torn off, it makes him wriggle about and go all queasy, however, he’s also afraid of spider, clowns, escalators and mushrooms so maybe he’s a bad example. For my mother it’s anything related to Achilles’ tendon trauma, she snapped hers a few years ago and therefore is fully aware of the agony and entitled to be creeped out. I also understand that eye trauma is quite popular one and anything relating to genitalia. I don’t have one these ‘things’, there isn’t one particular screen trauma I struggle with. I don’t know why, I’m probably just weird. I hasten to add that I do feel empathy and I appreciate the pain of others, but there just isn’t one specific that I could call ‘a thing’. Until recently. Recently I started to be creeped out by own foot, my won right foot. I many have mentioned early that I have foolishly managed to get myself a condition known as Morton’s Neuroma. Ruddy stupid, flippin’ Morton’s Neuroma is a tumour that grows on the nerve between your toes. And, as Wikipedia fail to mention, bloody hurts like all hell.


Neato!

Laughingly it is most commonly suffered by stiletto wearers, dancers and athletes, none of which I sadly am, certainly not the last two, which frankly adds insult to injury, it’s like the universe is taking the piss out of me for not being sexy, talented or fit. Also, just to make it worse, because I have to do everything bigger and better than everyone else, I don’t just have one tumour, I have two, one ‘massive’ one (the radiographers words’) between my second third toe and a ‘smaller one’ between my third and fourth. I’m awesome. And I can feel them, I can feel them inside my feet all the time, even when I have no shoes on and I’m just sitting down, I can feel them, the two little buggers sitting in there pinching at my nerves laughing at me. So consequently now my own bloody foot creeps my out. Which sucks. And is a bit embarrassing. Don’t even let me get started on the ‘treatment’, urrrghhh.


What creeps you out?





Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Heck Yeah, Sharks! Part II: The Revenge

Despite having been away for couple of weeks being rubbish, you’ll be relieved to know that nothing has changed in the House of Jinx. I remain a slightly clumsy bundle of ill-contained red headed excitement and nonsense, and, I still have an unhealthy obsession with all things shark.  So, rather than discuss this obsession with a suitably qualified psychiatric professional I thought I’d come back with another foray into the shark cannon and have a look at some more of the gems that lurk therein.  

Malibu Shark Attack (2009)



When a tsunami tragically floods happy, sunny, carefree Malibu, it also, to add insult to substantial injury, inadvertently dredges up a deadly collection of deep-water, prehistoric goblin sharks. Bloody typical. Said Goblin sharks then proceed to chomp the merry hell out of an assortment of lifeguards and construction workers who have found themselves stranded due to this freak chain of largely implausible events.

Had Malibu Shark Attack kicked it old school and gone with some honest to goodness, old fashioned, hella bitey Great Whites, I’d have probably enjoyed this more. Turns out Goblin sharks are bit rubbish. All in all, rather less exciting than that episode of Baywatch where that lifeguard lady that isn’t Pam Anderson gets attacked by a shark while saving a boy, but Hassellhoff saves her and then she dies anyway of something stupid. Also, what the hell happened to poor old Peta Wilson? She looked unwell and frankly miserable as sin, like maybe someone was making her act at gunpoint, but, as it turns out, she is up for a threesome so that’s good to know.


Sharktopus (2010)


Turns out this too is not about sharks and octopi having sex. God Damn it!

The U.S. Navy commission a group known as ‘Blue Water’ or Eric Roberts, whichever you prefer, to genetically engineer a half-shark, half-octopus for combat purposes apparently, but heck who needs a reason to genetically engineer and half-shark half-octopus creature? It’s awesome, that’s all anyone really needs to know or consider. Anyway, whilst testing the aforementioned battle sharktopus, the beast only goes and escapes the control of its fiendish creators and makes a bloody bid for freedom. Who can blame it; it’s half-shark and half-octopus it wants to show itself off. In white-hot pursuit of the deadly creature are Blue Water, or Eric Roberts if you prefer, a bland, muscle bound bounty hunter of some description and a hapless television crew, but most importantly Eric Roberts being evil.

You have may have noticed that I’ve been mentioning Eric Roberts a lot so far. I’m honour bound to do this as penance to my BFF Kev for not being suitably impressed that Eric Roberts was in Sharktopus in the first place. It nearly caused a fight, well, not fight exactly, more an idle bicker. Sorry, Kev, and sorry, Mr. Roberts.

There is nothing About Sharktopus that displeases me. From the wonderfully joyous title theme music to the man, the icon Eric Roberts, from the early morning drinking, sea faring radio DJ (who became my new hero) and his bikini clad assistant to the folk dancing, fire brandishing display team. It was a joy from start to finish. But most importantly it’s about a ruddy shark/octopus hybrid for flip’s sake, I really don’t need to say anything more than that.

I’d like to dedicate this portion of ‘Heck Yeah, Sharks’ to the person who stumbled upon my blog by Googling ‘shark and octopus sex’. Apparently someone else is as inappropriately interested in this as me. Good sir or madam, we live in hope.


12 Days of Terror (2004)


12 Days of Terror is an oddly compelling docudrama that details the real life events that took place in July, 1916 in Central and Southern New Jersey As the title suggests, the film recounts 12 days during which people along the Jersey coast were subject to attacks by a shark (probably not a great white shark as the film depicts, but a ruddy shark nonetheless). Said shark, who may or may not have been a great white, probably wasn’t, killed four people during its reign of terror and badly injured a fifth. Apparently, this odd shark behaviour still keeps scientists occupied searching for answers to this day. Scary stuff.

While 12 Days of Terror may be notable for its not too shabby period detail, some fancy shark action and, sadly, for fundamentally lacking any of the ‘terror’ so blatantly promised, for me, the appearance of SyFy stalwart and budget Brian Blessed, John Rhys-Davies makes it worth the price of admission. Starring as the obligatory salty old sea dog Rhys-Davies provides the kind of colour that keeps this TV movie sharkbuster afloat.

Sharks in Venice (2008)


Err, right, so, Stephen Baldwin’s dad miraculously manages to get himself eaten by a Great White Shark whilst pottering about in a Venetian canal, but no one knows that, everyone thinks he’s just mysteriously disappeared, the eponymous sharks in the eponymous Venice are, I can only imagine, the big surprise revelation later on. Stephen Baldwin, like any good son, sets about investigating the mysterious disappearance and within approximately five seconds spots a massive fin merrily wending its way through the serene waterways of Venice.

What follows is stupid and ridiculous in a way only Raging Sharks can imagine. In a kind of bizarre, insane, badly crafted amalgamation of Jaws, Indiana Jones, any given Mafia movie and any movie starring Stephen Baldwin, our boy Baldwin soon realises that he’s embroiled in a cryptic race against time to recover the lost fortune of the Medici that is stashed somewhere beneath Venice seemingly guarded by ferocious sharks and to complicate matters more his ruddy girlfriend goes and gets herself abducted by Mafia hoodlums in a dastardly ploy to ensure that the Baldwin will risk everything to secure the loot for their own gangstery ends. So essentially, Stephen Baldwin fights sharks, shoots and gets shot at by Mafiosi types, solves cryptic riddles and hunts for legendary treasure all in one movie. Kind of like The Da Vinci Code raping Jaws while The Godfather watches. God, I hate you, Da Vinci Code.

Sharks in Venice is careering car crash of a film and as no one put any effort whatsoever into making it I don’t see why you should put any effort into watching it. Proving this point at one point during an ‘action’ sequence in the film Stephen Baldwin gets his leg noticeably bitten off by a shark, minutes later he awakes in hospital looking no worse for wear and with a full compliment of limbs. This is actually the best bit of the film.

Stephen Baldwin Acting. I find this hilarious.
While I can’t in good conscience recommend you actively seek out Sharks in Venice, I will say that if you are in the mood for some heavy drinking and open to a bloody good laugh at terrible stock footage and the inept acting stylings of a certain Mr. S. Baldwin then Sharks in Venice is certainly a time filler.

God, sharks, I bloody love you! Films in which you star rock my world, even the really bad ones and ones starring one of the more rubbish Baldwins.

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