Welcome to another installment of 31 Days of Halloween! This is our chance to set the mood for the spookiest and scariest month of the year as we focus our attention on horror and Halloween fun. For the month of October we’ll be sharing various pieces of underappreciated scary books, comics, movies, and television to help keep you terrified and entertained all the way up to Halloween.
This year I attended Dismember the Alamo for the third consecutive time. After two years going to the Alamo Drafthouse in El Paso, this year I attended the event in Richardson, Texas. It was another great year that helped me come to a realization. The actual movies are only a part of the fun in going to a horror movie marathon. It is more about the experience and atmosphere. This year’s festivities had a creepy crawly theme. After five movies and ten hours my stomach was wrecked.
Stilted acting and a weird serpent point of view camera angle make the early part of this movie hard to get into. Once they show the giant snake, things get better. Director William Fruet never shows the full beast, making it seem even more terrifying. Great kills and a terrifying demon snake make this a fun watch. The overacting and strange dialogue are simultaneously funny and frustrating.
Centipede Horror (1982)
A skin crawling opening and an awesome title will lead one to believe they are in for a Hong Kong exploitation movie. Suddenly, the film becomes a tedious wild goose chase. It has its moments, but is plagued by random flashbacks. Thankfully, a wacky battle of kung fu spellcasting occurs in an amazing final act that includes hundreds of centipedes, plucked chicken corpses, and a cobra growing out of someone’s head.
The idea of a fallen power line causing worms to develop a bloodthirsty craze is goofy enough to work. Add a New York city slicker visiting the untrusting denizens of a small Georgia town to the mix and you seem to have gold. Somehow, Squirm never lives up to its potential. An unlikely hero and anticlimactic scenes hamper the movie. The whole town speaking in similes never gets old, however.
The Bite (1989)
A slimy take on a werewolf story, this 1989 direct to video release sees a man bitten by a poisonous snake start to exhibit strange symptoms. The movie is almost over before it actually gets fun. A classic case of a lot going on but nothing actually happening. Great special effects and Jaime Farr as the hero save this from being a complete dud.
Before James Gunn won over mainstream moviegoers, he was well known in by genre film fans. Tromeo and Juliet is a whole lot of fun, but it was this 2006 gross out fest that got him noticed. Top notch performances from a cast that includes Nathan Fillion and Elizabeth Banks, great special effects, and genuine laughs make this a must see sci-fi horror film – and the perfect ending to a horror movie marathon.
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