This is Horror is a sampling of Horror Movies, Art, Fiction, and Gaming, and more. A little bit of everything to make the horror hound in you feel all fuzzy and warm. Or tingle with anticipation. Whatever works for you. Hope you enjoy!
Horror Movie Suggestion for the Week:
We’re going old-school shark horror for this week’s horror movie of the week suggestion. It seems like the perfect time to watch it, don’t you think? As you won’t be able to actually go in the water for another couple months yet, plenty of time for the fear to fade to a slow boil in your subconscious. But, also, Jaws is just a great movie to watch whenever you can. Roy Schneider is awesome.
Synopsis: A giant great white shark arrives on the shores of a New England beach resort and wreaks havoc with bloody attacks on swimmers, until a part-time sheriff teams up with a marine biologist and an old seafarer to hunt the monster down.
Horror Movies Opening This Week (Feb 24th):
Synopsis: A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.
Watch the official Get Out trailer here.
Trailer to watch:
Annabelle 2 is being released on August 11th, 2017. After seeing the first one, I can’t imagine this one being worth anything, but hey… different strokes for different folks. It might scare the pants off of someone, somewhere. Maybe.
Featured Horror Art
This was interesting, and I saw it as soon as I logged on to DeviantArt. What I saw was that a man had hanged his family as sacrifices, and was showing them off to the sun. What do you think?
Terrorific Trivia (new section!)
William Castle: The Gimmick Master
William Castle’s start in show business came after seeing a performance of Dracula and bluffing his way in to meet Bela Lugosi. Bela Lugosi recommended Castle for assistant stage manager. for the road company. This was also where he started putting his flair for the dramatic to use by propping a coffin outside of the theater. He also suggested a way for the play to have more flair by having Dracula disappear from the stage in a puff of smoke and reappear in the audience.
William Castle’s true forte though was his ‘gimmicks’ used to lure people to the theaters and sometimes broke a fourth wall here and there to get the audience involved. So let’s look at some awesome ones he did.
For this movie William Castle handed out life insurance vouchers for $1,00.00 should anyone die of fright during the movie. He also stationed nurses in the lobby and parked hearses just outside the theater to up the fright factor.
House on Haunted Hill:
At a key point in the movie a skeleton was rigged to swoop down over the heads of theater-goers. I’d imagine that got a shriek or two. It was called ‘Emergo’ vision.
A creature that attached itself to your spine and tingles you to death doesn’t sound very scary I suppose. But what if the film were to ‘break’ and The Tingler was loose in the aisles? In some theaters where this played certain seats had vibrating motors attached to them, making them buzz. From the ‘broken’ movie Vincent Price would tell everyone to scream, The Tingler’s one weakness. The movie would resume, The Tingler defeated for the moment. Until the next theater to experience ‘Percepto’ theater.
13 Ghosts (1960):
Each patron received a ghost viewer/hider. Filmed in ‘Illusion-O’ the viewers could look through the red cellophane lens to see ghosts and the blue cellophane lens to hide them. The DVD comes with the glasses as well.
During a tense scene there was a ‘Fright Break’ with a timer included on the screen. The audience then had 45 seconds to leave and get a refund if they were too afraid to watch the rest of the movie. Some theater goers found a way around this by watching the movie once, keeping that ticket and then leaving during the second half of the second showing to get their refund. Different colored tickets were tried until William Castle took a more…drastic approach. As quoted by John Waters:
“He (William Castle) came up with ‘Coward’s Corner’, a yellow cardboard booth, manned by a theater employee in the lobby. When the Fright Break was announced, and you found that you couldn’t take it anymore, you had to leave your seat and, in front of the entire audience, follow yellow footsteps up the aisle, bathed in a yellow light. Before you reached Coward’s Corner, you crossed yellow lines with the stenciled message: ‘Cowards Keep Walking.’ You passed a nurse, who would offer a blood-pressure test. All the while a recording was blaring, “‘Watch the chicken! Watch him shiver in Coward’s Corner’!” As the audience howled, you had to go through one final indignity – at Coward’s Corner you were forced to sign a yellow card stating, ‘I am a bona fide coward.”
That probably discouraged a few people. In the trailer for the movie, Castle explained the use of the Coward’s Certificate and admonished the viewer to not reveal the ending to friends “or they will kill you. If they don’t, I will.”
Movie goers were given glow-in-the-dark ‘Thumbs Up’ or ‘Thumbs Down’ cards to vote on the fate of the villain. Not surprisingly, the ‘Thumbs Up’ was rarely given so the alternate Merciful Ending was rarely screened.
13 Frightened Girls:
William Castle launched a casting call from 13 different countries (Argentina, Australia, Canada, England, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Liberia, Mexico, Sweden, Venezuela, and China). I count 14 but, whatever. Each version was slightly different to highlight the girl when the movie was played in her country.
Told to rein in the theater theatrics William Castle simply sent out Joan Crawford to select theaters to promote the movie. Unable to resist, at the last minute he ordered cardboard axes to be given to theater patrons.
I think it would be so cool if theaters started doing things like this to get people entertained and interactive with the movies. The way it stands now they act a bit like they’re doing you a favor by letting you pay exorbitant prices to watch their movies. – GracieKat
Horror Books Released February 2017
Ubo: Daniel is trapped in Ubo. He has no idea how long he has been imprisoned there by the roaches.
Every resident has a similar memory of the journey: a dream of dry, chitinous wings crossing the moon, the gigantic insects dropping swiftly over the houses; the creatures, like a deck of baroquely ornamented cards, fanning themselves from one hidden world into the next.
And now each day they force Daniel to play a different figure from humanity’s violent history, from a frenzied Jack the Ripper to a stumbling and confused Stalin, to a self-proclaimed god executing survivors atop the ruins of the world. As skies burn and prisoners go mad, identities dissolve as the experiments evolve, and no one can foretell their mysterious end.
The Devil Crept In: Young Jude Brighton has been missing for three days, and while the search for him is in full swing in the small town of Deer Valley, Oregon, the locals are starting to lose hope. They’re well aware that the first forty-eight hours are critical and after that, the odds usually point to a worst-case scenario. And despite Stevie Clark’s youth, he knows that, too; he’s seen the cop shows. He knows what each ticking moment may mean for Jude, his cousin and best friend.
That, and there was that boy, Max Larsen…the one from years ago, found dead after also disappearing under mysterious circumstances. And then there were the animals: pets gone missing out of yards. For years, the residents of Deer Valley have murmured about these unsolved crimes…and that a killer may still be lurking around their quiet town. Now, fear is reborn—and for Stevie, who is determined to find out what really happened to Jude, the awful truth may be too horrifying to imagine.
A Keene Focus (3 Brian Keene books with a 3.75 rating on Goodreads.)
Covers go to Goodreads.
Horror on the Web
- NPR examines the role of race in horror movies and talks with Jordan Peele about Get Out.
- If little-known horror is your thing, check out this article from DreadCentral on The Crimson Rivers.
- Like to talk about the social commentary in horror films? So does Collider.
- Inverse gives us it’s opinion on 8 horror films that deserve Oscar nods.
- Here’s a fun guest post on Just Dreadfull about Surviving Horror When You’re Scared of Everything.
- If you like old-school horror movie posters, take a look at Geek.com’s feature on Thai Sci-Fi & Horror Movie Posters.