I was recently driving through the
mountains of South-East Oregon en route to a hike.  Peering along the roadside, I noticed a sign
pointing to a small town.  The town’s
name was Sleepy Hollow.  I half-way
chuckled to myself, think about the obvious homage to the classic Irving tale.  It also sent a small chill up my spine,
thinking about the coincidence between that and the upcoming holiday.    

                Here in
Portland, the leaves are falling and the smell of October rust is upon us.  A nostalgic feeling of glee washes over me as
we are nearing my favorite trilogy of holidays. 
(Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas.) 
Halloween conjures up some of my favorite past time memories because it
is the best season to watch scary movies in their true essence. 

                In no
particular order, here are a few movies that are on my Halloween watch-list for
this season. 

Drag Me To Hell

I have so much admiration for this
movie.  Sam Raimi decided to make a movie
that showcases his best talents as a filmmaker, and it defiantly shows in DM2H.
He has an artsy, chaotic knack for turning a scene’s intensity up from 1 to 11
within a second.  The movie, which could
have been drab and typical, was a success at chair jumps screas and shock
scares.  Raimi’s directing style was
key;  We have seen possession movies
within the last decade that are far from scary, (Exorcism of Emily Rose) and
genre updates that lost their spark. (Halloween) With the sea of remakes that
have flooded the market, it’s nice that DM2H was around to remind us of what
terror AND humor can accomplish when fused together.  

The Monster Squad

This is a movie I’ve been watching
since the days of dusty VHS and old-school HBO. 
When I was young, I would stay awake until the wee hours waiting for my
horror fix.  During the Halloween season,
HBO would program a shitload of horror flicks back-to-back, and The Monster Squad was always a welcome
gem right between Candy Man and Tales From The Crypt.

Every youngin cherished The Goonies in the 80’s.  In my opinion, TMS was the answer to the
horror loving section of Goonies fans,
and unfortunately, it didn’t quite find its audience until home video.  Many people discovered this movie as I did,
and it didn’t see success until decades later.  
A rare find like TMS became a cool part of being an adolescent in the
80’s.  Access was limited, so like
investigators, we sought out movies. 
(Netflix was a blessing and a curse for that charm.)  Luckily, DVD has ended some of that
headache.  And speaking of which, the DVD
of TMS is filled with great documentaries about the making of the movie. 

Legend Of Boggy Creek

Since this movie is so rare, I’ll
devote some words recapping the plot. 
Shot in a mocumentary style, (See Cannibal
) TLOBC tells the story of a series of mysterious bigfoot
sightings in the town of Fouke, Arkansas. 
Many eye-witness accounts were recreated for the film, which is mixed
with interviews with the charming corn-pone locals to complete the documentary
ruse.  Visually,
this movie looks like a 70’s era film through and through.  There are moments of pure terror (The bigfoot
attack toward the end) and unintentional laughter. (The score and soundtrack
alone send douchechills up my spine.) 
Narrator Vern Stierman is what really gives the film and extra slice of
horror.   His monotone voice whispers
into your ear like a comforting kidnapper. 
Creepy…and very real. 

What I take from this little-known
movie is a horror-filled anxiousness mixed with gritty realism. As a kid I grew
up in the woods.  Movies like this didn’t
help cure a person’s fear of the dark. They
however inject EVERY cell with a respect for the dark.  When you live in the stix, your mind fills in the blanks where your eyes
can’t see.  As you can imagine, I’d look out
the window at times and felt like I saw someone…..or something moving around in
those trees. 

Time to head home. 
My bus is about to come, and I don’t feel like waiting outside next to
some homeless guy for too long.  I’ve got
a few more Halloween themed blogs left in me, and I’m surely seeing a shit-ton
of movies this month.  Looking forward to
writing about them!

You’re fucking out, I’m fucking in – Kenny Powers