Last weekend I dropped by the New Beverly Cinema to take in some of their 12 hour all-night horror marathon, and I got to thinking, ‘What would I show if I was in charge of this sucker?’ So without further ado, here’s my list of six movies to make a dusk til dawn marathon for this, the spookiest time of the year. These aren’t the greatest horror movies or the most classic, but they’re films I’d like to sit down and watch, preferably with 200 of my closest friends.
In the comments list your own, or tell me why my choices are so bad.
1) Who Can Kill A Child? – Let’s start with a kick to the pants. This 1976 Spanish movie is about a couple who comes to an island filled with violent little shits. When push comes to shove and they have to defend themselves, the titular question comes into play. This sucker was hard to find for years, but now it’s out on DVD – buy it here.
2) Wrong Turn 2: Dead End – I know, it’s a direct to video sequel to a not terribly good movie, but Joe Lynch takes what should have been a throwaway movie and makes a great modern splatstick film. When the first kill of your movie is a woman being cut in half and her guts falling out of her vagina, you know you have something special. And this is a terrific crowd picture – I saw it with an audience at Screamfest last year and had a blast. You can buy Wrong Turn 2 here.
3) Trick R Treat – Okay, I’ve entered fantasy land here a little bit, but after watching this movie last night I’m convinced that this is a seasonal classic. If Warner Bros ever allows this one out into the wild, people will be getting together to watch it every Halloween. In fact, it does (for me) for Halloween what Gremlins does for Christmas. You can’t buy this DVD, but you can buy the tie-in book!
4) An American Werewolf in London – Every time someone asks me what my favorite horror movie is, I find myself trying to decide between a handful of titles. One of those titles is always An American Werewolf in London, a movie so good I still get a palpable thrill when I think of certain things. My first time in London I made a fucking beeline for Piccadilly Circus. You should already own this on DVD, but if not, buy it here.
5) Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon – I think I’m leaning towards tonally lighter horror this year, but there’s no shame in that. Especially when it’s done as well as Behind the Mask. One of the proudest moments of my life: Guillermo del Toro checked this movie out on my recommendation and now owns and loves three copies of it. This is a movie that a crowd of real horror fans will respond to with gusto. Buy it now!
6) Videodrome – It’s late. You’ve sat through five films. Your eyes are slowly closing. The perfect time to soak in the bizarreness of Videodrome. In a half-asleep state you won’t know what’s actually happening on screen and what’s happening in your head. All you’ll know is that you’re really, really creeped out. Another one you should already own, but if not, buy it now!
So that’s six. Again, not the six best ever or anything, just the six I would program if I was programming a festival today. Next year my six would probably be really, really different. I noticed a real lean towards movies with humor here, and a definite lean towards newer films (which is kind of cool – I like that horror is strong enough right now that I am comfortable filling half my program with movies from the last three or so years!). For the record, I struggled with including Bava’s Demons - which is set in a movie theater! – but decided it was a little too meta. Maybe next year.
So what are your six? List em below or get into our message board thread.