There’s Something in the Fog!: The Fog (1980)

So I don’t know about you all, but I love the fog.

I actually like driving in it, walking in it, just foggy days in general. I went to school in the bay area and loved mornings (not evenings-as that is a killer’s delight) when the fog would roll in. It just makes me want to drink tea, make cookies, bake or cook something, curl up with a good book, etc.

I hated having to bike in it though-soooo scary. When I went to university, I used to work at a music hall and they used the hall as a class some mornings. The class started at 6, and we had to be there at 5:30.

It was sooo scary biking to work every morning. The way to go from my apartment to the hall I had to bike up the highway. All I could do was pray every morning, please let no one hit me. The fog there was really bad-like mushroom soup bad.

I hope I can do it.

Where I live now we get really bad foggy days and nights too. Back in the 1800s the whole area used to be underwater, the winter rains would come and create a lake on the land, that would recede in the spring. Years later, the area my nieces live in are full of houses but still retain the bog-like quality they used to have hundreds of years ago-so when the fog comes it is really bad.

I like driving out there, as it is peaceful in a way-it almost feels as if you are the only one in the world. However, it is also still dangerous. There were a ton of accidents, a semi completely blocking the road, and I was almost in an accident when someone’s car broke down and they just left it in the road! Seriously, dude. Anyways…with all that in the especially in October-it made me think of:

There’s something in the fog!

Years ago my sister brought The Fog (2005) home for us to watch. It had Tom Welling from Smallville, that girl who was the bipolar superhero in Heroes, and the girl that Elle gets dumped for in Legally Blonde. It was kind of confusing, the effects were blah, and I remember not getting into it at all.

The whole time we watched it, my mom kept saying how she loved the original. Because of that, I have always wanted to watch it, but just never got around to it-until someone donated it to the library.

My time has come!

So this film starts off with a ghost story-no one knows its connection to the town, but we will.

The community Antonio Bay, CA is about to celebrate their 100th anniversary. That morning (12:00am) strange things begin happening. The first is that the minister, Father Malone (Hal Holbrook) in the old church discovers a piece of masonry falling off-for no logical reason-and a diary is discovered and with it an ancient curse!

That’s not good.

Meanwhile, fisherman are out at sea when the fog rolls in-it brings an 1880s ship and ghostly, creepy creatures that attack the ship.

Nick Castle (Tom Atkins) is driving home when he spots a young girl hitchhiking (Jamie Lee Curtis). She is weird.

I know blunt, but she is just so strange. If it was me, I would have kicked her out of my car.

Elizabeth Solley: Listen, I never hitchhiked before. I just really want to be careful. Can I ask you something?

Nick Castle: Sure

Elizabeth Solley: Are you weird?

Nick Castle: Yes, I am. Yes, I am weird.

Elizabeth Solley: You are weird. Thank God you’re weird. The last one was so normal, it was disgusting.

Yes, she basically has no character other than being nothing like a normal person. Like she does not react normal to anything, it’s almost as if Jamie Lee Curtis got a different script, like she thought the movie was about an alien pretending to be human going to a town with paranormal occurrences and trying to figure out “how” to do that without giving themselves away.

The two go to Nick’s place and sleep together. After they re done, something knocks on the large windows that Nick’s place has.

Now that I love-the way Carpenter creates these monsters in the fog-sooooo creepy.

As I mentioned above, I like walking in the fog, but not at night. It is so creepy as you can’t see anything, you don’t know if there is danger lurking there. When I was at university, I hated having to walk across campus at night. There was always that fear when turning a corner or passing an area thick with foliage-could there be someone waiting? Especially creepy when you hear footsteps, but can’t tell who or where they are coming from-or if the person coming your way is planning on hurting you.

I think Carpenter captures those feelings perfectly in his monsters/ghosts. Watching it, brought back all those feelings again.

Spooky…

So Nick is worried when the next morning, the fisherman aren’t back. He sets out, with-ugh-Elizabeth, in tow. When they get on the boat they found the corpse of Dick Baxter, while the other fisherman are missing. While there it seems as if everything is after Elizabeth?

Why? Who knows. She’s from “Pasadena”, maybe, but that’s all we get from her. We know nothing else and she is really bland. Why did Nick even take her along? Or even better, why does he continue to take her along when everything is after her.

Meanwhile, D.J. Stevie Wayne (Adrienne Barbeau) finished up work and visits with her son. He found a piece of driftwood with the word “DANE” on it. He gives it to his mom, who has to go back to work to listen to some tapes, taking the driftwood with her. It begins to seep water, and her tape player playing a gravely voice saying that revenge must take place. The wood spells out that “Six Must Die”. Then everything catches on fire! Stevie puts it out and the wood goes back to Dane.

Back with the fishermen, the doctor reviews the one body they have and discovers a mystery.

Dr. Phibes: [the pathologist has just examined the body of Dick BaxterWhat the hell happened out there?

Nick Castle: There was rust all over everything. It was like the boat had been out there a long time, taking on water. He was down below, near the bunks.

Dr. Phibes: Nick, his wounds are covered with algae, his lungs are full, and there’s silt under his fingernails. I tell ya, I saw Dick Baxter three days ago in Salinas. Now he’s lying there on the table looking like he’s been underwater for a month!

That’s not the only weird thing. While the men step aside to talk, Elizabeth waits by the body. Suddenly, Dick’s body reanimates and attacks Elizabeth. What a Dick move! (LOL sorry, couldn’t resist).

When the men return he is dead again, with the number 3 carved into him.

Kathy Williams (Janet Leigh) is overseeing the centennial celebration, and is worried about her husband’s-one of the fishermen-disappearance. As she moves forward with the celebrations she stops by the church. The pastor is freaking out as he has stayed up all night reading the journal he found and frenzied by lack of sleep and what he discovered!

Father Malone: [reading from Patrick Malone’s journal] “December 9: Met with Blake this evening for the first time. He stood in the shadows to prevent me from getting a clear look at his face. What a vile disease this is. He is a rich man with a cursed condition, but this does not prevent him from trying to better his situation and that of his comrades at the colony. December 11: Blake’s proposition is simple, He wants to move off Tanzier Island and re-locate the entire colony just north of here. He has purchased a clipper ship called the Elizabeth Dane with part of his fortune and asks only for permission to settle here. I must balance my feelings of mercy and compassion for this poor man, with my revulsion at the thought of a leper colony only a mile distant. April 20: The six of us met tonight. From midnight until one o’clock, we planned the death of Blake and his comrades. I tell myself that Blake’s gold will allow the church to be built, and our small settlement to become a township, but it does not soothe the horror that I feel being an accomplice to murder. April 21: The deed is done. Blake followed our false fire on shore and the ship broke apart on the rocks off Spivey Point. We were aided by an unearthly fog that rolled in, as if Heaven sent, although God had no part in our actions tonight. Blake’s gold will be recovered tomorrow, but may the Lord forgive us for what we’ve done.” I couldn’t read any further.

Sandy Fadel: You’re grandfather had a way with words.

Father Malone: The celebration tonight is a travesty. We’re honoring murderers.

Yes the story that was told in the beginning, the truth has been revealed. These lepers cursed the town and have waited 100 years to exact their revenge. They have come to kill the descendants of the six men who murdered them. The six are:

  1. Al Williams
  2. Other Fisherman
  3. Dick Baxter
  4. Father Malone
  5. Tommy Wallace
  6. Mrs. Kobritz

At least that is what I am assuming-the problem with this film is it isn’t really clear on who are those involved and those that aren’t. They kill the other fishermen who were on the boat but if I include him, that would make seven-when there were only six. So did they just kill him for fun?

Hmmm?

The other problem is that no one knew about this secret. It makes it not as interesting in my opinion. Now the 2005 film was really bad, but one thing it does do much, much better is clearly state who the descendants are. That was a much needed improvement-I also liked how the descendants all knew about the murder. I think that made the film more…fulfilling then having the ghosts kill people who have no knowledge and are paying for a crime they had nothing to do with.

So as the night picks up, so does the fog. Stevie sees it and how it is going against the wind. She warns everyone and begs someone to save her son-urging all to flee to the church.

The ghosts kill the nanny, Mrs. Korbitz, and go after Andy (why as he isn’t a descendent), but Nick saves him. Elizabeth is just there, why? Who knows. Why is she even in this film?

I’m done

Now I know this is a small fishing town, but where are all the people? The only ones at the church are Kathy Williams, her assistant Sandy, Father Malone, Nick, Andy, and Elizabeth. Where is the rest of the town? Are they alive? Are they dead? There were a lot at the celebration, but what happened to them?

I really feel like John Carpenter wanted to copy The Thing from Another World (1951), where you have this small group of people being attacked and trying to overcome it-there it made sense as they were on a small research center in Alaska. Here you have a whole town! Where are all the people? What happened to them? Obviously they are not attacking just the descendants as they were going after Andy-yet they left Nick alone? Just doesn’t seem very thought through.

Hmmm…

Anyways, the gang hide out below the church in the room where there is a giant gold cross, a cross made from the stolen gold.

That’s not good.

So the ghosts attack Stevie in the lighthouse-why as she is not from there but moved there. She isn’t a descendent, why are they after her?

Hmmm

And they attack the people in the church. Malone feels the guilt and brings the cross out, begging the ghosts to spare everyone and take him. As he offers the cross-it and the ghosts disappear.

All seems to be fine.

Stevie Wayne: I don’t know what happened to Antonio Bay tonight. Something came out of the fog and tried to destroy us. In one moment, it vanished. But if this has been anything but a nightmare, and if we don’t wake up to find ourselves safe in our beds, it could come again. To the ships at sea who can hear my voice, look across the water, into the darkness. Look for the fog.

But later, Father Malone is thinking over what happened. Why didn’t they take him? Then we have a fantastic twist!

So yeah, I didn’t love it. But I think it was way better than the new one. There was a lot in this film that just didn’t make sense, I mean there were so many unanswered questions.

I also hated the Elizabeth character. She makes no sense! Why is everything after her? Who is she? She doesn’t add anything to the plot and if she wasn’t there, it really wouldn’t change the film.

I do have to give the 2005 film credit for trying to make there be a reason why everything wants Elizabeth, and giving her a reason to be in the film. Even though it was still dumb.

I think the only thing I would watch it for are the ghosts, those are just done so well.

To start Horrorfest VIII from the beginning go to, Count Dracula the Propagator of This Unspeakable Evil Has Disappeared. He Must Be Found and Destroyed!: Horror of Dracula (1958)

For more John Carpenter, go to China is Here Mr. Burton. The Chang Sing, The Wing Kong, They’ve Been Fighting for Centuries: Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

For more Janet Leigh, go to We All Go a Little Mad Sometimes: Psycho (1960)

For more on Jamie Lee Curtis, go to Everyone’s Entitled to One Good Scare: Halloween (1978)

For more horror films with fishermen, go to You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat: Jaws (1975)

How To Survive A Horror Film

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With Halloween approaching and the number of Horror films increasing, I thought it would be a good time to write a post on how to survive a horror film, just in case you happen upon this situation 😉 . Most of us have heard of the “Randy Rules” in Scream (1996), but in this we are going to look a bit more in depth in how to successfully survive a horror film.

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1) Do Not Try Out Witchcraft, Ouija Boards, or any of the Occult for “Fun.” You Will Be Messing with Forces You Have No Control Over

It is never good to mess with the occult, play around with witchcraft, or use the ouija board. When you do such things you are opening a door to a lot of stuff you don’t want to mess with. Often you open yourself or others to demon possession or evil spirits. It is best to just stay far away from such things.

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2) Do Not Make Deals With the Devil, Demons, or Other Supernatural Beings

Never, ever make a deal with the devil. It is like trying to mess with the occult or witchcraft, you are opening yourself up to serious trouble, and the devil will not like to loose his quarry. Besides, the deals/wishes you make never turn out exactly as you hope.

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3) Anything and Everything Can be a Weapon

One of the things that bothers me the most is when people are surrounded by potential weapons and don’t use them. I mean look at Scream (1996), when Tatum is in the garage and attacked by Ghostface, she tries to squeeze herself through a tiny hole to escape rather then use something, anything in the garage. I mean she is in a GARAGE!!! There are hundreds of potential weapons! USE THEM!!! That is one example, but seriously, use anything and everything.

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4) Don’t Stop Assaulting Your Attacker Until You are Sure They Are Not Going to Get Up

Now this is huge. In horror movies, if the person is able to outwit the killer and knock them out, they usually just leave it at that and take off. DON’T! You knock that sucker out until you are sure they are no longer going to try to injure you. Break their legs if necessary. Because if you don’t, they are just going to recover and come after you.

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5) If Someone Gives You a Protective Charm Do Not Give It Away

I have mentioned this in Dracula (1931), The Mummy (1932), The Wolf Man (1941), Scream 2 (1997), and many more. If someone gives you some kind of charm that is supposed to help you and only work for you, DO NOT GIVE IT AWAY!!!! It will only work FOR YOU!!!! That is why it was given TO YOU!! And if you give it away you are just going to get yourself and the person you were trying to help in serious trouble. Keep it and protect yourself so that you can actually help others, instead of accidentally killing them.

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6) Sex = Death

As Randy says in Scream, Sex = Death. Never overlook the purity angle, it is like a protective charm. If you don’t do it, you are less likely to die.

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7) Doctors are Almost Always Evil

Sometimes Doctors can be good people, but if you are in a horror film, forget it; they are usually evil. Such as Dr. Hartz from The Lady Vanishes (1938), he seems kindly and trying to help, but in reality just wants the main character to think they are going crazy! Same thing in Dr. Hollingshead from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947). Then you have doctors who commit horrible things in the name of science; like We have Dr. Frankenstein (from any Frankenstein film) who tries to create life and can’t control his monster. Or  there is Dr. Arthur Carrington from The Thing From Another World (1951), who almost kills everyone as he doesn’t care about human life but scientific discovery is what matters. Not to mention Dr. Alfred Brandon from I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957), who experiments on teenage boy. And lets not forget Dr. Hannibal Lecter, who eats people. I could go on, but there are too many examples to choose from.

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8) Do Not Spend the Night in an Abandoned or Haunted House, Psychiatric Hospital, or Carnival

I mean seriously. Just do not go there. Nothing good will ever, ever, ever come of it! I mean look at The Uninvited (1944), House on Haunted Hill (1959), House on Haunted Hill (1999), The Hunting (1963), The Haunting (1999), etc. I could go on and on, but let’s continue with our list.

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9) If There is a Curse on Something Do Not Touch It

I know curses, many laugh at them; but of you are in a horror film and you see something that says it is cursed DON’T TOUCH IT! It is better to live another day then to have yourself face all kinds of horrors.

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10) Do Not Drink Any Potions or Test An Experiment On Yourself

NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER test a potion or try an experiment on yourself. It always ends badly! I mean you have Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, The Fly, Batman’s Man-Bat he had to fight, even Goosebumps did an episode where the dad ended up creating a plant clone of himself. I know many don’t like animal testing or get under the stress of trying to accomplish something; but just stop! Don’t test yourself or else something bad will be created.

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11) If There is a Murderer Running Around, Do Not Go Out and Party

This drives me crazy! A murderer is running around killing people and people decide to: 1) not take any precautions; 2) go about their lives like nothing is different; and 3) party. If there is a murderer running around, yes it is good to be in a group (rule 12 & 17) but you shouldn’t be out partying, drinking (rule 13) or putting yourself in a dangerous situation.

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12) Never Split Up

splitupScoobyDoo

NEVER, EVER, EVER go anywhere by yourself. There is power in numbers! As a group you could take a killer down, versus as a couple or single. When you split up, all you do us make it easier for someone to kill you.

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13) Do Not Do Drugs or Drink

While some of you might enjoy that type of thing it is never a good idea in a horror film. Anytime you try something that will keep you from thinking clearly, you are in serious trouble as you are likely to make bad decisions that will lead to your death. It is better to just say no.

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14) Always Call the Police

If you are being attacked, threatened, harassed, etc.; call the police. Don’t try and take care of it yourself, don’t try to investigate, call FOR BACKUP! That’s their job!!! They have guns and can make an arrest!

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15) Never Say “I’ll Be Right Back”

Unlike the Terminator here, you won’t be back. Uttering these words is signing a death warrant, as soon as they leave your lips you become next on the killer/creature’s hit list.

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16) Never Say “Who’s There?”

Killer Scary Movie

Never say “who’s there”. If the person was a friend, they wouldn’t be skulking around your house in the first place, trying to scare you. Instead they would knock, ring the doorbell, or call out to you. The only type of person who would be creeping in your house is one who intends on harming you. And if you call out “who’s there”, you’re just helping them find and kill you faster.

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17) Do Not Go Out to Investigate a Strange Noise

When you hear something strange outside, do not go out and look into it. You should wait for assistance or call in the police. If you try looking yourself, you are going to end up in a trap set by a monster, psychopath, murderer, etc. Besides, why unlock the door or turn off the alarm; allowing whatever is watching you the opportunity to come in and attack? Just stay inside snug like a bug.

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18) Do Not Use the Bathroom

Have you ever though of how vulnerable you are in the bathroom? Most have no windows to flee from or they aren’t the most accessible. Some do, but for most the only easy way out is the door, which is where most attackers will come through. Plus the reason you would be in the bathroom; shower or toilet, you won’t have any weapons to help you and it would be extremely easy to kill you. If you are in a horror film, just hold it or stay stinky. You are more likely to live that way.

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19) Never Go Off By Yourself

Like I said before, the less people around you, the easier you are to kill. If you go off on your own to investigate, look around, run away; you are just putting a giant target on your back. Stay together, it is safer.

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20) Always Look Behind You and Above You

Always take a 360 degree look around you. They may be behind, they may be in front, they may even be above you. Search every angle!!!

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21) Be Nice, A Person Scorned or Mistreated Can Do Horror-ble Things

In horror movies, there are lots of people who have been bullied so much and hurt by others they end up becoming homicidal maniacs. And who do they tend to attack first? The last person to hurt them. Look at The Phantom of the Opera (any version), Carrie (1976), Hangman’s Curse (2003), Heathers (1985), etc. So if you don’t want to end up being first on the hit list be kind to those you meet.

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22) If You Are a Girl Or Not White, Be Extra Cautious

Psychopaths and monsters love to kill/eat women and minorities. Because of this if you are either, or both; take extra steps to protect yourself. Be like Ben in Night of the Living Dead.

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23) Don’t Trust Anyone, They Are All Suspects

People can tell you all kinds of things, but that doesn’t mean they are telling the truth. If you find yourself in a horror film, don’t trust anyone. And I mean ANYONE!

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24) Never Judge a Book By its Cover

Never judge a book by its cover. Someone who seems sweet, innocent, impossible to commit cruel acts, etc; could secretly have evil intentions lurking under the adorable facade. Always be watchful and once again, trust NO ONE!

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25) Children can Be Evil too, Never Rule Them Out

When trying to figure out who the murderer is, never overlook kids. I mean sure some will be obvious in their creepiness, such as the one pictured above, but there are many who look innocent and sweet but are actually evil. Don’t be fooled!

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26) Never Try to Create Life

NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER try to create Life. It just does not go the way you plan. You can’t control the beasts you create and they just run amuck everywhere. I mean look at FrankensteinBride of Frankenstein, Jurassic Park, Jurassic World, Alien: Resurrection, the list goes on but I’ll stop here.

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27) Never Try to Control a Monster

In any horror film, whenever they create  life they always think they have complete control over it. Well, that never works out. You see, just because you made it doesn’t mean it will listen to you; every parent knows that. And more often than not, those creations will try and kill you.

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28) If Someone Tries to Make a Deal with You to Kill Someone, Do Not Think it is a Joke

Joking around with the idea of murder might be something you would do with a friend, but be careful, you never know how far they might take it.

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29) Listen to Urban Myths, They Tend to be Right

We all like to hear scary stories around a campfire and about areas. But if you are in a horror film, play very close attention as more often than not, the myths and legends turn out to be true or someone is copying them and making them true. It is always good to pay attention and know the details, it just might save your life.

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30) Never Think You Have Destroyed a Monster, They Always Find a Way to Come Back

You try to kill them and you think you do, but they always come back. Always make sure you keep an eye out for the sequel and their return.

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31) Don’t Be an Idiot

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Be smart! Don’t be stupid and do stupid things. Use your common sense! Bimbos and Mimbos are almost always the first to die.

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So there we are, 31 tips to help you survive a horror film. I hope they help you survive October.

This post is brought to you by a

horrornerd

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To start Horrorfest V from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

Keep tuned for more horror film reviews!

The Enemy of My Enemy is My Friend: Alien Vs. Predator (2004)

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The enemy of my enemy… is my friend

So some of you might be wondering, why am I reviewing Alien Vs. Predator before reviewing Alien (1979), Predator (1987), Aliens (1989), Predator 2 (1990), Alien3 (1992), or Alien: Resurrection (1997).

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Well there are two reasons why: 1) I just saw it last week so it is fresh in my mind; and 2) This was the first movie I saw in either franchise. Although I kind of knew what Alien was about as I had seen Spaceballs.

So Alien Vs. Predator, was an idea that began in back in the ’80s after the films came out. It was then shown in comics, video games, etc. Eventually a script was written, but no studio wanted to make it, so it sat on the back burner for ten years.

It eventually was accepted and is the higest grossing film in either franchise to date. It is absolutely riddled with references to both films, so if you are a fan you will enjoy.

So let’s get started!

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So it is the year 2004, a Predator ship is nearing the Earth, and some scientists detect a mysterious heat bloom beneath the ice on the island Bouvetoya, near Antartica.

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What is it with aliens/monstrous creatures and Antarctica? We have Aliens Vs. Predator, The Thing from Another World, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, etc. I guess some like the cold, although The Blob didn’t. Sorry, moving on.

Billionaire Charles Bishop Weyland (those who are Alien fans should recognize why I bolded that), decides he wants to claim it for himself. He sends out his top man to recruit the best from all over the world.

Alexa “Lex” Woods is the best field guide for Antarctica. They offer her a large sum to come to a meeeting and hear Weyland’s proposal.

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Sebastian de Rosa, is a struggling archeologist in Mexico. He is just about out of money, and the bank won’t supply anymore; when just like in Jurassic Park Weyland’s man comes with an amazing offer.

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I love this man. He is smart, sexy, Italian, and oh…there’s only one word to describe how I feel. Swoonworthy!

swoon dreamy

Anyways, these two and a collection of paleontologists, linguistic experts, drillers, and mercenaries all gather together. Weyland shows the prospective team the discovery, a pyramid that is a blend of three different cultures. He proposes that they all go try and discover what this phenomenon is.

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: Where exactly on the ice is this?

Charles Bishop Weyland: Bouvetøya Island. But it’s not on the ice. It’s 2,000 feet below it.

All will be rewarded handsomely.

AWESOME!!!

AWESOME!!!

Lex is the only one that disagrees, stating that they aren’t ready to make the journey in, they need more time to train the crew. Weyland refuses, saying they need to go now before anyone else moves in.

Lex says she won’t be a part and goes to leave. Weyland agrees to let her go, saying they will go with their number 2 guy.

Good-bye

Good-bye

When Lex hears who it is, she refuses to go. While she doesn’t want to stay and help a group she thinks is doomed for failure, she’d rather go and help them survive.

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So the team moves out. While they are getting there, the Predator ship has entered the Earth’s orbit. They make a shaft from the surface to the pyramid below.

From the film Stargate.

From the film Stargate.

When the team reach the island they discover that on the surface is an old whaling station. A hundred years ago, in 1904, the whole crew disappeared. It is still an unsolved mystery.

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When the team gets ready to drill a cavity to reach the pyramid. The discover one has already been dug for them.

What?

What?

And when the drillers start examining it, they discover that the area was cut with no tools that exist on Earth.

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They decide to head down to the pyramid anyways, with a few near mishaps along the way.

When they get inside the pyramid, they start examining the walls and the rooms. They discover that this civilization must be older than anything they have ever known in history. And one of the rooms, appears to be some mind of sacrificial chamber.

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Noooooooooo!!!!! Don’t go in!

However as this is a film and the characters can’t hear me, they of course go in and start looking around. There they find remains with a large hole on the left side of their chest.

Adele Rousseau: What happened here?

Thomas: It’s common in ritual sacrifice to take the heart of the victim.

Adele Rousseau: That’s nice. But that’s not where your heart is. [pauseBesides it looks like the bones were bent straight out. [Thomas stares at RousseauSomething broke out of this body.

Now this bothered me the first time I saw it, and it bothers me still. THE ALIENS SHOULD NOT BE COMING OUT OF THE CHEST!!!! THEY SHOUD BE COMING OUT OF THE STOMACH!!!!

MeanGirls I know right!

They screwed up one of the best scenes. It is way creepier seeing this:

Anyways, back to the film.

So unbeknownst to them, on the surface, the three predators have takes out the rest of the team. Below them, their presence has begun the preparations for “the game” and awakened the Queen Alien Queen. It is a creepy scene. I couldn’t find a video, but trust me, it is super creepy!

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So back in the sacrificial room, Sebastian has discovered what appears to be a sarcophagus with a calendar lock, set for October 10, 1904.

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He studies it and notices that ten, and multiples of it, seem to be significant to this culture, whatever this culture is. He then moves the date to October 10, 2004; the current date.

Stop stop it now!

Don’t you know better than to touch/mess with things. Like in The Mummy (1999), you never know what might happen.

Some things should just be left alone. But no, these are scientists and they never know when to back off, setting off the spring lock and revealing guns.

Whattheheck

What is an ancient civilization doing with such advanced weapons we don’t even have today? How did they get them? Where did they get them? It just doesn’t make sense.

[the team finds the Predators’ shoulder cannons]

Graeme Miller: Any idea what these are?

Sebastian de Rosa: No, you?

Graeme Miller: No.

Maxwell Stafford: It’s a good thing we brought the experts.

Graeme Miller: Well, yeah, it is a good thing, cos’ this is like finding Moses’ DVD collection.

And then as Lex convinces them it is time to move topside and regroup, they stupidly take the guns, beginning the “game.” Now part of the game is that every so often the pryamid shifts, making one difficult playing ground for either team.

If that was me? I’d start shooting everywhere, killing as much as possible.

For reals, they would all be dead.

For reals, they would all be dead.

So the teams are separated and all are trying to find an exit, but soon they will realize that will be near impossible.

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As Lex’s party makes their way to the exit, they are attacked by the Predators, of which have to switch gears when the aliens start showing themselves.

Yeah two Predators end up getting killed. Too bad they didn’t have their guns.

Soon everyone is being killed or taken to be impregnated by the aliens until they are properly formed. This actually reminds me a lot of the tarantula wasp, who lays its eggs in the spider. When the eggs hatch they eat the spider, then creating a cocoon in the spider body, coming out when it is fully matured. After all that’s what happens here, except no eating. The alien baby goes into the human, emerging only when fully pupated.

ew! Gross Yuck

The only ones left are Weyland (who is slowing them down as he is on his deathbed with his bad heart), Lex, and sexy Sebastian. Lex wants to lighten Weyland’s load, discarding the gun he took from the sacrificial chamber. When he refuses, wanting something from the death and destruction, she switches the heavy weapon to her pack instead. They are then interrupted by Sebastian, who has figured out that the pyramid also goes off the decimal system, and that every ten minutes the pyramid shifts.

AVPSebastian_De_Rosa

Weyland asks to be left behind, to buy them some time from the predator hunting them. Lex and Sebastian don’t like it, but agree and head off to another area trying to escape. Weyland is killed when he attacks the remaining Predator, but Sebastian and Lex make it out. Oh, this scene always stresses me out.

So luckily, they ended up in the room full of the hieroglyphics that tell us the backstory of why these extraterrestrials have come to our planet.

Yes, the whole thing was a trap. They made that heat signal to attract somebody, as this was the only way to begin the hunt as they need the humans for hosts.

After hearing the story, Lex figures out what they must do to survive, is to give the weapon back to the Predator.

Sebastian de Rosa: When that door opens, we’re dead.

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: Not if we set things right.

Sebastian de Rosa: What do you mean?

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: This pyramid, it’s like a prison. We took the guards’ guns, and now the prisoners are running free. To restore order, the guards need their guns.

Sebastian de Rosa: During a big game hunt, the animals being hunted don’t arm the hunters!

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: They’re not hunting us. We’re in the middle of a war. It’s time to pick a side.

Sebastian de Rosa: We are on our side!

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: We have to consider the possibility that we might not make it out of here.

Sebastian de Rosa: The enemy of my enemy… is my friend.

Alexa ‘Lex’ Woods: [pyramid starts to reconfigure] Let’s go find our friend.

So after the pyramid opens, the two go looking for a Predator, but run into an alien. They run away, but reach a collapsed bridge. Taking an Indiana Jones  leap of faith, they jump across the chasm. Sebastian lands rights, while Lex on loose stones and starts falling.

Spoke too soon

Sebastian helps pull her up, until he is taken by an alien.

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

WHY!!! WHY!!! WHY SEBASTIAN?????????

Why

He was an awesome character. He was intelligent, funny, kind, has common sense, and hot. Poor Sebastian. RIP handsome.

AVPSebastian_De_Rosasmilehappy

Back to the review.  So Lex is running away, and runs right into the Predator. He is about to kill her, when she stops him and gives him back the weapon. Before the Predator can do anything else, and alien attacks them.

Having proven her worth, Lex and the Predator head out to finish up.

Alien-vs-Predator_Sana

The two head back to the sacrificial chamber, which we should really call the birthing room. There Lex finds all her team members, including Sebastian, all of which have been impregnated.

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

NOT SEBASTIAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So the Predator scans the room, and sees that the eggs are all going to try and hatch. He activates his bomb, to destroy everything. Then he and Lex run to the lift, planning to get out of there and to the surface, as quickly as possible. They are followed by the Queen, but make it up the surface. The whole pyramid goes Kablooey!

Jaws Backstage Universal tour

But it turns out that the Queen wasn’t destroyed in the blast! She comes topside and knocks the Predator out, chasing after Lex to destroy her too.

You know for a huge environmentalist, Lex just threw a whole bunch of trash into the ocean. She could seriously damage the ecosystem. And I don’t know if that was the best idea as we don’t if the aliens are unable to survive underwater. Maybe they can. I couldn’t find any info on that. Anyways…

So after all the fighting is completed, the Predator ship returns to pick up its champions. They take their fallen warrior inside and are about to kill Lex, when the see the sign the Predator carved into her face. She is a warrior, equal to them.

They leave and in the ship, the crew get a surprise.

Now this was a part I didn’t like either. All the other people when impregnated, had the alien jump out rather quickly. I mean Sebastian got his after the Predator was supposedly infected, and his came out way before. And I looked it up, so don’t say it is because they were in a different species, its supposed to happen for everyone two hours after impregnation. This was just a cheap twist in order to ensure a sequel. And I hate it when filmmakers do that.

I don't like it 11

But on the whole I loved this movie. The story was a great homage to both films, with its own flavor and not giving the vibe of being a remake. The characters were great, and pretty intelligent, making only one big mistake (removing the weapons). The main character, Lex, was a strong character like Ripley: powerful, and in control; but a realistic way, being scared and frightened but using that fear to fight. Great movie.

As for the sequel? We’ll just have to save that for another post.

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To start Horrorfest IV from the beginning, go to You Cannot Conquer It. It Has Conquered You!: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

For the previous post, go to Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?: The Twilight Zone (1961)

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For more aliens, go to It’s Mrs. Archer. She’s On a Rampage!: Attack of the 50 Foot Woman (1958)

For more expeditions gone wrong, go to Eternal Punishment for Anyone Who Opens This Casket: The Mummy (1932)

 

Unleash the Savage Instincts that Lie Hidden Within: I Was A Teenage Werewolf (1957)

 

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I’m going to TRANSFORM him, and unleash the savage instincts that lie hidden within… 

So this is another werewolf film, and a B horror film, that doesn’t end well. And to be perfectly honest that’s how I like them.

Say What

As depressing as that sounds, I like it when the werewolf story ends like that that because it’s closer to the original story. Here we have a good man, who has been turned into something he doesn’t want to be and can’t control. It’s sad and poetic at the same time.

The_Wolf_Man_4Crying sad

So the big reason I watched this film was because it first of all was about a werewolf, which you all know I love. And it stars Michael Landon.

Michael Landon

So the story is about Tony Rivers (Michael Landon) a boy who is known for losing his temper. His dad is constantly telling him he should get help for his anger problems, but Tony won’t listen. He doesn’t believe he has any issues at all. After a really bad fight on campus with a classmate, the police get involved. The Detective urges Tony to meet up with a psychologist. The thing that really pushes him to reform is his girlfriend Arlene (Yvonne Lime). She tells him he has too many issues and she can’t date a guy like that. At a party that night he attacks his friend when he surprises him, and that pushes him into seeking help from the acclaimed Dr. Alfred Brandon.

i-was-a-teenage-werewolf

Now this is what makes the whole story so sad. He is earnestly trying to get help and fix his problems, but everything goes bad as he turns to the evil Doctor. I tell ya, I don’t trust doctors (unless they are Michael Rennie), as they always turn out evil. Dr. Hartz from The Lady Vanishes (1938), Dr. Hollingshead from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947), Dr. Einstein from Arsenic and Old Lace (1944),  Dr. Arthur Carrington from The Thing From Another World (1951), and that’s just to name a few.

No thank you

Anyways, so the Dr. Brandon has no intention of helping Tony out. Instead he wants to experiment on him, testing out this serum he created to bring out people’s primitive instincts. His assistant tries to convince him not to, but Dr. Brandon won’t listen.

“Dr Hugo Wagner: But you’re sacrificing a human life!

Dr Alfred Brandon: Do you cry over a guinea pig? This boy is a free police case. We’re probably saving him from the gas chamber.

Dr Hugo Wagner: But the boy is so young, the transformation horrible –

Dr Alfred Brandon: And you call yourself a scientist! That’s why you’ve never been more than an assistant.”

you're evil

That night the teens all go hangout at a party. One of the guys, Frank, is killed while he is walking home from the party.

Victim #1

Victim #1

The next day the police are studying the scene and trying to figure out what could have done this. The police station’s janitor, an emigrant from the Carpathian Mountains, looks at the photos and determines that it was a werewolf that did it. In his hometown “human beings possessed by wolves” are common, so he declares that nothing else could have killed the boy.

wolfman

The next day, Tony goes back for a second session in which he tells the doctor that he feels like something is wrong with him. The doctor brushes it off and Tony continues on his way. That day his principal calls him into her office and tells him how happy she is with the improvement. She is going to recommend him entry to the State University.

padme-youre-breaking-my-heart-gif-1

I know this won’t end well

It really gets me because he is so hopeful and sweet, yet you know, you know nothing will end well.

ouch Hermione

So Tony is happy, now that he has a future and a ticket to be something. As he walks to class the bell rings, triggering his transformation.

Teenage_werewolf

And he attacks Theresa, his classmate, who is practicing nearby.

I was aTeenage_Werewolf_by_BryanBaugh

Victim #2

Victim #2

Tony flees for his life, and even though he looks wolfish, people recognize him and put out an APB. A reporter goes to his father and girlfriend to find out more about him and get a scoop. Meanwhile, the police follow Tony, siccing dogs after him, but Tony takes them down.

I was a teenage werewolf

In the morning, Tony wakes up in his true form. He tries to talk to Arlene but can’t get anywhere with her as she is too freaked. He then runs down to Dr. Brandon’s office to get his help.  Dr. Brandon lies to Tony, telling him he will help him but in reality injects him with the serum. Tony starts to transform when the phone rings and it causes Tony to go berserk, attacking the Dr. and assistant. Right then the police charge in and take Tony out (even though they don’t use silver bullets. Although they don’t need to as he isn’t a true werewolf but a manmade one). When they do so, Tony returns. But dead.

Doesn’t it just get you in the feels?

right in the feels broken heart

It’s just so sad. He wanted the help, he wanted to be better; but just went to the wrong person and everything in his life went downhill.

aw cry

This was one of the films created by studios to branch into the teenage crowd. They would do “Creature Double Features” at movie theaters (as shown in The Blob) and drive ins. They were usually short films and teenagers were the focal characters as that was who they were trying to appeal to. Other films were The Blob (1958), Invasion of the Saucer MenI Was a Teenage FrankensteinBlood of DraculaHow to Make a MonsterVillage of the Giantsetc. 

Here is a facebook cover I made one year, as part of my countdown to Halloween

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To start Horrorfest III from the beginning, go to Even a Man Pure of Heart

For the previous post, go to Let Them Fight

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For more on werewolves, go to A Monster Race

For more mad scientists, go to In Their Proper Place

For more remakes given a teenage twist, go to You’re Just Too Good To Be True

It’s Alive, it’s ALIVE!: Frankenstein (1931)

Look! It’s moving. It’s alive. It’s alive… It’s alive, it’s moving, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, IT’S ALIVE!

What horror movie countdown would be complete without the film Frankenstein

Frankenstein is an amazing film that tells the story of when one man tries to be more than he is; he tries to be God. It is based on the novel, Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley (FYI: A much better writer than her husband)

Edward Van Sloan: How do you do? Mr. Carl Laemmle feels it would be a little unkind to present this picture without just a word of friendly warning. We’re about to unfold the story of Frankenstein, a man of science who sought to create a man after his own image without reckoning upon God. It is one of the strangest tales ever told. It deals with the two great mysteries of creation: life and death. I think it will thrill you. It may shock you. It might even horrify you. So if any of you feel that you do not care to subject your nerves to such a strain, now is your chance to, uh… Well, we’ve warned you. 

I have always loved this film, but I think The Bride of Frankenstein is much better. I will get more into why that is later.

This movie is terrifying as we see a Frankenstein becomes consumed with creating this being. He won’t listen to anyone else and his behavior frightening his friends, family, and fiancé.

Henry Frankenstein: Crazy, am I? We’ll see whether I’m crazy or not.

Let me just clarify for everyone out there that the name Frankenstein alludes to Victor Frankenstein, the mad doctor who creates the Monster. For some reason they changed his name to Henry in this film. In the film his best friend’s name is Victor, while in the book it is Henry. Go figure. The Monster is never called by a name other than Monster, Creature, or something similar. It’s like  The Creature from the Black Lagoon or The Thing from Another World, no proper names are given.

Anyways, he is helped out by a hunchback named Fritz

Not Igor, FRITZ!

The hunchback named Igor who helps mad scientists isn’t from the original Frankenstein, but comes from one of the sequels, Son of Frankenstein, where his name was Ygor; later translated to Igor.

Anyways, Fritz is the one who makes the mistake of stealing the criminal brain.

My Bad

 

So Frankenstein starts getting ready to bring his monster to life. In the novel, Shelley never tells us how it is done; Frankenstein never wanted to share the details of the experiment for fear that someone would create their own living dead. With nothing to go off of, the writers and directors decided to use lightening, and therefore changeing film culture and film history as this is referenced and parodied in so many films and TV shows.

Clive, Colin (Frankenstein)_02

“Henry Frankenstein: Look! It’s moving. It’s alive. It’s alive… It’s alive, it’s moving, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, IT’S ALIVE!
Victor Moritz: Henry – In the name of God!
Henry Frankenstein: Oh, in the name of God! Now I know what it feels like to be God!”

Frankenstein is so intent on proving everyone wrong, so focused on completing everything that he never stops to think whether he should do this. This is an interesting question posed; how far is too far?

So Frankenstein is able to create his monster:

Played by the very amazing Boris Karloff; extraordinary actor. He almost didn’t play this part as they originally offered it to Bela Lugosi who turned it down. I’m glad it was Karloff, because as much as I love Lugosi, no one could have done this better.

frankenstein

The green makeup that is such a part of the Frankenstein figure was used because it gave Karloff a deadlike pallor of skin. Now it has become such a strong part of culture, we see the green-skinned, bolted monster every October.

After the Monster is created, we see this innocentlike creature. He is afraid of fire and tries to attack Fritz who brings a torch by him. All bystanders fear for their lives and chain the Creature up in the dungeon. Frankenstein and his friend Victor leave and discuss the best way to euthanize him. Unbeknownst to them Fritz is stupidly taunting the creature with a torch; causing the Monster to reach out and kill him.

When Victor and Frankenstein return; they see Fritz’s dead body on the floor, and have to run away from the Monster as it tries to attack them too. Frankenstein prepares a shot to kill him, and Victor gives it him. With all his problems solved, Frankenstein leaves to prepare for his wedding, and Victor begins to dissect the Creature. Unfortunately, the Monster didn’t die; but was only knocked out. He kills Victor and then escapes, running amuck in the countryside.

He runs into a little girl, who is nice and shows him the flowers she is picking up.

She shows him how flowers float in the river, which Frankenstein ultimately does to the little girl. Thinking that if he tosses the girl in the water she will float; he ends up ultimately drowning her.

Little Maria: See how mine floats.
[the Monster picks her up]
Little Maria: No, you’re hurting me! No!”

The farmer finds his daughter’s floating corpse and goes to pieces. He starts hunting down the monster; searching everywhere to find the fiend.

Frankenstein, happily preapering for his wedding is brought news of Victor’s death. He goes out searching for the monster along with the peasants who have their torches and pitchforks at the ready.

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

Eventually Frankenstein tracks the monster down and is prepared to destroy him.

However the Monster knocks him out and carries him off to the windmill where he throws him off. Luckily, Frankenstein is caught by a vane and saved from death. There some peasants carry him home while others destroy the mill and kill the monster. Or do they?

Frankenstein gets home, where we see that he is safe and sound and in the arms of his Elizabeth dear.

After I watched the film a gazillion times, I read the novel and found it to be much more horrifying than the movie. In the book Frankenstein isn’t this bumbling creature, completely innocent and doesn’t understand things; but a criminal mastermind. Having learned to read and talk before he died; he is able to after some time remember how to do this and begins becoming more “human”. The one thing that he never regains is compassion, kindness, etc; all the caring emotions that make us who we are. He has no empathy or sympathy, believing that he was shown nothing but hatred and cruelty so he must show this to all.

wouttruth

What they take from this and use in the sequel, The Bride of Frankenstein, is his want of a mate; his desire to have one like him to spend his life with. He threatens to destroy everyone that Frankenstein holds dear if he does give in to his demands. Frankenstein goes through a constant struggle with himself; knowing that he cannot risk creating another creature being made and mating along with the first. He realizes his mistakes at creating such a thing far too late. The monster doesn’t like hearing no and kills all Frankenstein loves. There is no sweet guy, accidentally killing someone like Lenny in Of Mice and Men, but this is a true psychopath fully aware of the crimes he is committing. Not only is the creature a serial killer, but he has become so intelligent that he is able to plant evidence so that people think someone else is the murderer. He kills Frankenstein’s brother William, and plants a locket on William’s nanny so that she is also killed. Then he kills Henry, Frankenstein’s friend, planting evidence so Frankenstein is arrested. He also kills Elizabeth, Frankenstein’s wife, making it seem once again that Frankenstein is the killer. With all those that he loves dead, Baron Frankenstein dies as well.   After everything is gone from him; Frankenstein devotes his life to hunting down what he created and destroying it.

It’s a great book, I suggest reading it and watching the film.

There’s a classic terror for your Tuesday! More to come!

I almost forgot to mention this. Unlike The Mummy, Dracula, or The Wolfman; Frankenstein has never had a major motion, globally shown, sent to all theaters, remake. However that is all about to change as Guillermo del Toro is planning one, and hoping that it will be coming out soon. To read more up on it go here. We shall have to wait and see what happens and how it turns out.

Here’s poster I made for my cover page on facebook in honor or Halloween. Hope ya love it.

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To start Horrorfest from the beginning, go to I Don’t Belong in the World

For the previous post, go to When Potatoes Go Bad

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For more on Frankenstein, go to A Monster Race

For more on Boris Karloff, go to Eternal Punishment for Anyone Who Opens This Casket

For more films based on books, go to The Only Thing That Matters is the Ending

For more on Jurassic Park, go to Life Finds a Way

For more on the living dead, go to A Tale So Strange It Must Be True

For more on mad scientists, go to A Very Scary Story

For more universal films, go to Universal’s Classic Monster Movies

For more of my fav quotes, go to Insults