What a vile, vile movie. It could have been worse. Oh, so much worse. But, this flick still managed to plumb the depths of taste, artistry, technique, and every other highfalutin term about film one can come up with. It’s the type of film that counts on awakening the hormonal 13-year-old boy in all of us. I’m not even sure 13-year-old boys would like this trash much, though.
At first glance, Pieces, the 1982 slasher flick from shitty auteur Juan Piquer Simón, is just like every other bottom-feeding Italian film that flooded the American market in the 1980s. Except for one thing. Pieces is not an Italian flick. It’s from Spain. All the hallmarks of a Lucio Fulci or Enzo G. Castellari film are present. The cast is from all over the map. Many read their lines in their native tongue, everyone was dubbed in post, and there was a cavalier attitude towards making sure if any of it synced. The production is low rent, but there’s lots of blood, and it’s so bright one could use it to see by night. And, while it takes place in the United States, it was very clearly filmed in Europe. So, just why does this film have the appearance of cheap Italian cinema of the day? Continue reading “October Horrorshow: Pieces”
Tom Savini is a horror legend. He’s every bit as important to the history of the genre as some of its greatest auteurs. Without Savini, George Romero’s 1970s and ’80s horror work wouldn’t have the same punch. It was Savini’s expertise that allowed Joe Pilato’s torso to be pulled to pieces in Day of the Dead, and Don Keefer to be dragged into a crate and mutilated by a Tasmanian devil in Creepshow. Savini is an artist in the medium of fake blood. And while his work elevated good horror movies, it also made obscure horror flicks, like Maniac, worth watching for the effects alone. Continue reading “October Horrorshow: The Prowler, aka Rosemary’s Killer”
The 1980s were THE decade for slasher flicks. The subgenre of horror really picked up steam in the ’70s, but it was in the ’80s when it matured, like a fine wine. It also, somewhat paradoxically, got less gory. But that’s a subject for another day. For now, it’s enough to know that in 1983, someone made a slasher film called The House on Sorority Row. Oh, the possibilities. Continue reading “October Horrorshow: The House on Sorority Row”
Filmmaker Bob Clark had an interesting career. He started out in horror, as so many others have, but then launched the mostly forgotten Porky’s comedy franchise. His legacy now lives on most memorably at Christmas time, when one of the Turner cable channels shows A Christmas Story, which he directed and helped write, for 24 straight hours. As it turns out, A Christmas Story is not Bob Clark’s first foray into holiday-themed filmmaking. Continue reading “October Horrorshow: Black Christmas”