Hi Nick – you always seem to really appreciate
feedback, and seeing as how I haven’t sent any in for a while I thought you
might appreciate this.
Reading CHUD from my desk at the office helps me ease
myself into the working day. As I’m in
site there’s a full days’ worth of news and views for me to read, and it’s a
fantastic accompaniment to my first two coffees of the day. So thanks for that!
I wanted to say firstly how much I enjoyed your review
of The Mist. Ever since first reading the story about 20 years ago, I’ve been
waiting for the film to arrive. Your words – particularly your loving sign off
to Frank D (You bastard) make me believe that I’m going to really enjoy this
experience when it finally hits our shores.
Your review also reminded me of something that I’ve
long believed, a frustration even, namely that the best adaptations of King’s
work are indeed those that understand the human element of his stories. Here in
King still sells lots of books but he is not regarded in any way over and above
being a talented teller of scary stories. Yet the successful films of his work
garner praise from critics and audiences alike. Shawshank in particular is
regularly singled out as a top 100/50/10 movie, even recently named in the top
5 of Channel 4’s
survey to find the 100 Greatest Movies of all time.
The argument goes for every good King adaptation there
are probably five bad ones, right? But the point is (apologies for taking a
while getting there) that that one that makes it, that one movie that escapes
the schlocky bad B-movie constraints and is actually worth a damn, that movie
is undoubtedly one that sticks closest to King’s work. Even down to the
dialogue. There are a couple of exceptions, notably De Palma’s visuals ramping
up the nightmarish finale of Carrie, and of course The Shining, which I won’t
go into again here following the efforts of everyone at CHUD recently.
But those two aside, just take a look at the
adaptations that really work: Stand By Me, Shawshank, Misery, Green Mile, Tobe
Hooper’s 3 hour Salem’s Lot (which I still find pretty fucking scary), and
even, though arguably to a lesser degree, Pet Sematary, Dead Zone and
Firestarter. The reason they work AT ALL is because they follow the blueprint
of King’s original work. Dialogues is transposed from page to screenplay in
great chunks; events unfold once we actually know a little bit about each
character; and we continue to learn about them as some seriously fucked up stuff
happens to them.
And that for me is the key. That we actually CARE what
happens to these characters. They seem to be normal people, living a relatively
normal life, when very bad things start to happen to them. I’m not saying King
should write the screenplays – I think we all remember Sleepwalkers – but I
think it’s about time the guy was given his dues as far as the GOOD movies of
his books are concerned. The screenwriters and directors should undoubtedly be
paid their dues, but I wish more people acknowledged the quality of the source.
And of course, I wish more film-makers would take the time to ensure their
version of the work stays close to the source.
Just for the record, I also think Bag O’ Bones has the
potential to be truly wonderful movie.
I know I’m not saying anything new here, but your
words provoked a response from me – a positive one at that – so here’s your
Nick Replies: Bag of Bones shredded me, it really did. It’s very well suited for the screen but it needs someone graceful to make it. Though Frank Darabont is perfect for it, I really want to see him go back to doing something non-King related. The Long Walk is a book I really didn’t like and it’s a shame he might be doing that, but imagine if Anthony Minghella did Bag of Bones… Damn. Thanks for the letter and the thoughtful text above.
You really believe
Abrams would bring Cthulhu into the mass consciousness in this way?!
Come on Nick it’s just
another stupid movie with a monster in it. Be ashamed of yourself cuz
I sure am.
Nick Replies: I wouldn’t get too ashamed of me. I pretty much get paid to write things about dismembered cocks chasing their owners. It’s a rough gig, but I’ve found myself avoiding too much shame about it. My article on Cloverfield (read it here and comment here) was speculation. A few things seemed possible and it’s as good a guess (and hardly an original one, so perhaps you have a lot of letters to write shaming folks) as any. Plus, it created discussion on the boards. It’s rare a thread exceeds 100 posts without being about a naked starlet or some person being a docuhebag. It takes our regular site-related columns months to get there and that’s with us having to tenderly manage them. Oh, and regarding Abrams taking Cthulhu into the mass consciousness, I think he possibly could because on the best of days of Lost or Alias, his stuff isn’t a microbe on the ass of the work of H.P. Lovecraft and I’m sure he knows it. Being able to parlay the amazing and colossal world of The Old Ones into a few bucks, being able to ride those tentacled coattails… SHIT YEAH HE WOULD! But, either way, whether it’s a lizard or a giant hobo… I’ll be like 13th or 16th in line to see this. It’s gonna be a blast regardless of how great my ideas are.
Great site. Been loving it for years now, but just
started entering your DVD contests for the first time. Thanks for the Karas:
the Revelation DVD (Eileen’s contest). Keep going strong with all the great
news, reviews, humor, comic info, video game specials and what ever else I’ve
forgotten to mention!
Nick Replies: Our pleasure. I take a lot of pride in how much free shit we give away to readers at our own expense (before you criticize our ads, think about the 300 stamps and envelopes and man hours sending out screening passes that doesn’t cost our readers a cent). It’s nice to hear back from a winner, because usually I just get people asking why I don’t announce them publicly all the time or why their prize hasn’t arrived yet (almost 100% of the time when we aren’t the folks furnishing the prizes). I appreciate your appreciation and I appreciate the appreciative nature in which I reciprocated your appreciation with not disdain or puzzlement but mutual appreciation.
I thought I heard that CHUD did music or that there was a CHUD band out there making alternative music. Am I hallucinating. whatever you guys do tends to not suck so what’s the dealio?
Nick Replies: <SHILL>Yeah, there are a few bands but as for the "not sucking" thing I think a majority of the folks who usually dig whatever ancillary ventures we do have made it a point not to listen to the music or like us enough to not tell us that they hate it. Of course, I hate most of the music other people listen to so maybe we are just making this stuff for ourselves which is just about good enough. Maybe I should have just spent less money and gotten Rock Band…
As for the stuff, I usually send copies of the CD’s to anyone who’s interested so readers… PM or Email me your address if you want a copy. I usually comply. Also, it’s all available for free on the site if you don’t want a snazzy CD so here’s the rundown. I actually just tossed up a little sampler of the new stuff we’re working on in the CafePress Store so that’s an interesting little ten buck thing but all of the threads with links to the material as well as the CDs are right below and our MySpace page is right here. Enjoy!
Just want to say
thank you for the passes to see "The Mist" this evening. We had
a great time, and the film was excellent. Three home runs for Darabont
King adaptations, this cements his reputation as one of the best to bring
King’s work to life. He’s the anti Mick Garris.
Consistently great work to enjoy on the site AND free movie passes?
That’s good stuff.
Cheers to you and the CHUD gang.
Nick Replies: I must correct you. The anti Mick Garris is Sirrag Kcim, a half centaur/half salmon being who roams the countryside trying to adapt John Saul novels. It is a dangerous and scary being, I must warn you. So glad you had a good time.
"Yeah, it’s manipulative. Yeah, J.J. Abrams and crew
milked their fanboys a little too hard. Yeah, viral marketing has already
gotten stale. Yeah, the film’s two months away and they still ain’t shown us
Yeah, and where is the part where this is their fault?
Feeling entitled much? A movie is 2 months from being released and its a bad
thing that we (the movie obsessed sub-section of the populace) know nothing
about it outside it’s general conceit, and that’s a bad thing?
All J.J. Abrams and Co. did was release a trailer.
We created the hype.
Granted, they did it in a way that stoked the fires of
fandom to specifically create said hype, but just because I can’t go to a
website and find a complete plot breakdown isn’t a bad thing. The bad thing was
that the fans got played…
by themselves. Movie obsessed fans expect so much these
days that a project that willfully, and skillfully, subverts those expectations
is a rarity, and it turns out, a despised rarity. When I talk to people (in
that subset) about Cloverfield they typically express scorn for the Abrams for
stringing them along. We want it now. We want the goods, show it to us, but not
too much for some because we don’t want to get spoiled. I think spoiled is the
best way to describe a lot of fans right now, but not in the terms they are
I heard about the teaser trailer and got excited. I saw
Transformers (best comedy of the year) and got more excited. I saw the new
trailer before Beowulf and got morer exciteder. I’m going to see this movie.
That’s all I care about.
Nick Replies: I think you missed the point of my article. I’m actually enjoying the whole Cloverfield thing…
are my first choice in online movie news and opinions. I love the humor even
though I don’t agree with the opinions all the time but I have a problem and
wanted to know where you stood on it. I go to other movie websites because I am
a slut but you are my main squeeze. While out whoring I was at
themovieblog.com, I visit this website to see what the fox news of the internet
movie community thinks. The chief dickhead over there John Campea or whatever
the fucks name is posted his views on the writers strike, I disagreed with them
because I am awesome. But my problem is the reasons he gave for not supporting
the wga, I have no problem with not supporting them even though I do. Anyways
this is the last straw for his website, I sent him an email saying I am not
going there anymore. But I recall you guys had momentary beef with that
website, am I correct? Fuck that guy in the manituo.
I felt like I needed to confess my sins of going to that website and my
declaration not to go again.
the time I wrote this email he responded, I questioned his integrity and he
didn’t enjoy that, I did though. I said he sided with the studios because he
didn’t want to endanger his on-set visits or interviews. OH FACE!
want more podcasts, I think you have more listeners than you think.
Nick Replies: The word "Blog" is in the title of the site! Anyhow, thanks for the confession, and as your priest I demand you allow me to suck your son’s nuts for eleven-hundren minutes. I think Devin had some sort of skirmish with the Campea chap, but I lose track of all that stuff. Especially if the guy’s last name seems like it’s incomplete. As for the Podcast… I know Justin and I listen to them. I know Steve doesn’t. Not because he’s too critical of his work. It just requires too much effort. Listeners = 2. Everything else is a bonus.
The Sea Eater/Dr. Phibes link in the
Forgotten Monsters list connects to an image of Phibes.
Nick Replies: It makes me so jazzed when someone reads these lists that we spend hours on to make them fun, attractive, unique and unlike the lists that larger and better staffed and funded sites do that just absolutely suck ass we try and be interesting. It’s so gratifying to get a nice letter, someone having time to…. oh, they’re just correcting a minor gaffe. Never mind.
I’m sending this
letter to show you and yours some general appreciation. I’ve wanted to send an
email but I haven’t been able to think of any profound thoughts to waste your
time with. Lately, the CHUD crew seems to be in need of a little love as there
have been several mentions of not enough mail. Where here it is!
At the risk of becoming fellatious, I love you guys. Not in that bullshit fat
kid and cake way, fuck that. I love you guys like Jean-Batiste Grenouille loves
I first started reading internet movie news in 2002 when I was hardcore into
the Matrix. I started reading on the internet, found news about the sequels and
that evolved into a daily habit of checking on the trade news sites.
Admittedly, AICN was the first site that I checked regularly – but that shit
changed with you guys. I don’t really know how my transition to becoming a
Chewer really happened, but it did. Now CHUD is my homepage and I check it
literally everytime I walk by my computer. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the way the
focus and tone of the site has shifted, and the writers have grown. For awhile
it was the Nick show, then the Devin-shits-on-things-stravaganza!, now we’re in
a renaissance of this weird fucking fuck sense of humor you’ve come up with and
put on this site in a big way. Jeremy brings the pain hardcore from the brain
here lately too. It’s great! If it was a woman – I’d make love to it, if it was
a car – I’d drive it, and if it was a Michael Shannon – I’d blow up my
apartment with it.
You motherfuckers keep it up and I’ll try and let you know how well you’re
doing more often.
Nick Replies: Um, thanks! One thing that is a blessing and curse around here is that though the faces may change around these parts one thing remains and that is my weird fucking fuck sense of humor. Is there a patent on that, because I’m so on it if there isn’t.
To Whom (or Whom it does NOT) Concern:
First and foremost, I dig your website; I’m just
wondering if you have an editor on the movie reviews. I think the writer
(Devin) has a fantastic voice and very interesting points. In fact, I even like
the reviews, but the lack of proper punctuation and incorrect punctuation
bothers me. So, I was hoping to figure out if someone edits the pieces on your
Hell, I’d send my resume if it wasn’t presumptuous and
Nick Replies: We don’t have an editor per se, but we often go through and fix the mistakes after the fact. Our site’s backend doesn’t allow us to preview these things too easily before they go live so part of the problem is that. Another problem is that we’re so anxious getting more content to you, the viewer, that we rush a little. Or we take way too long. Nobody’s perfect God Damn You! The fact is this: This site is populated primarily by white guys with a middle-class background who never really had it all that rough in life. No major forces doing their part to harm us or keep us from doing what we want to in life. With all of this weight on our white, well-fed shoulders… what do you expect?
First I would love to say I truely enjoy your site. I
dont even know how long I have been coming to it but its been years. It only
gets better and better. I love the sense of fun that permeates the site.
You guys all are a pleasure to read.
Now the reason I wrote. I am sure you dont care for the
sexual preference of your readers. Just like I dont care who you sleep with.
I just felt the need to let you know I appreciate the
review of The Lair. I know it is a horrible show. But I just liked you reviewed it, knowing well that the audience
for that was small. I love all the gay jokes. Everyone here are equal
opportunity offenders. There is no other site where I would read a review of
The Lair. Well except, Gay.com. Well anyway thanks for always including the
‘mos. We appreciate it.
Nick Replies: Thanks! I love the gays! I was kind of suprised to start being solicited for reviews by gay publishers but if we’re willing to review the Guinea Pig movies, Tyler Perry dogshit, and seasons of Home Improvement… the least we can do is sauce it up the ass a little. I want to make sure that we mix it up with the reviewers for each title so that we don’t represent the opinions of one person but rather a wide array. If I remember correctly, Eileen Bolender’s got a Guilty Pleasures box set from Dante’s Cove coming your gay. I mean way.