I Died for You! I Came Back from the Dead for You! I Love You!: My Boyfriend’s Back (1993)

I died for you! I came back from the dead for you! I love you!

So last year we had Teen Wolf

And Teen Vampire:

While I did cover Michael Jackson’s Thriller, it would have been nice to have a full-length teen zombie film.

Oh, well

But now I do with My Boyfriend’s Back:

I stumbled upon this on Amazon Instant Watch, recommended as I had loved Once Bitten. Well…I think Amazon needs to rethink that recommendation. The films had some similarities, both are teen horror-comedies, but this movie is one of the weirdest I have ever seen. And know I get to share that strangeness with you all.

Johnny (Andrew Lowery) is a nerd who has been in love with Missy McCloud (Traci Lind) since first grade. He tried to give her a dream gift and tell how he felt, but choked on the words, and has been doing so ever since.

When Missy and her boyfriend Buck break up, Johnny sees his in, but before he can ask her out, Buck comes back.

Buck’s minion (played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman) Chuck Bronski is weird guy who has murderous tendencies. He makes sure no one comes around his buddy’s girl and is extremely weird and creepy.

Why is he even allowed in school?

But Johnny won’t give up on his dream and comes up with what he thinks is the best plan ever. He will have his friend pretend to rob the store Missy works at, Johnny will save her, and Missy will fall in love with her.

Why would you do that?

Johnny tries to do his idea, but he ends up being interrupted by a real robber. When the robber is about to shoot Missy, Johnny jumps into the way, saving her, and with his dying words asks Missy to go to prom with him. She agrees.

I got the yes!

But Johnny dies and is buried.

Not really as this is a zombie film.

from Warm Bodies

Yes, Johnny rises from the dead as he has a date with his dream girl and intends to keep it.

The gravedigger tries to warn him that he can’t go back to the and of the living, but Johnny ignores him.

Bad things happen when you don’t listen

He goes home to the shock of his parents, although they quickly get over it as they are pleased to have their son back. He then goes to school and tries to make plans with Missy, but she is in shock. She only agreed to go to prom with Johnny because she felt bad for him, and to be honest, because he was dying.

She didn’t expect him to be a zombie and come back for her. Well Johnny is back and he’s not taking no as an answer. He is more determined than ever to get his prom date.

Buck and Chuck don’t like Johnny as a zombie any more than they did when he was a person. They are continue to bully him

from Back to the Future

And their behavior makes Missy decide to go out with Johnny. In fact she states to really enjoy his company, and become really into him. And I mean into him. As she wants to be with him even though she knows he is DEAD!

Johnny finally has what he always dreamed of getting…that is until Johnny’s ear falls off when he and Missy are making out.

He runs to the doctor, but they can’t do anything to fix him, he’s dead! The doctor promises to try and find a cure, and sends Johnny over to Maggie, the only person who can deal with zombies as her husband was one. She tells him that the only solution to keep him together is to eat human flesh. Something Johnny desperately does not want to do.

At school, he and Missy talk but then Buck and Chuck come into play, and Chuck chases after him trying to kill him WITH AN AXE. I don’t care that Johnny is a zombie, Chuck would probably have done this to Johnny sooner or later if he remained human. Chuck is that insane.

And in some weird twist, Chuck kills himself, and a hungry Johnny eats him.

Johnny is good for a while, but now everyone is after him as he ate Chuck. They come to his house after but are chased out by his mom. Now this is the only thing I liked in this film. His mom.

YES!!!! His mom.

So at first you think Johnny’s mom is just a cliché housewife. She always has food ready, wears her little pearls, and is just perky and cleaning and everything. But she adjusts from having her son be a zombie in no time at all, trying to help him in any way she can. (In fact she is so down with the whole thing she tries to bring him people to eat. That’s crazy!) The best scene is when an angry mob is trying to take her son and this prim little woman in pearls pulls out a shotgun, yes A SHOTGUN, ready to defend her son.

Johnny tries to fix things with Missy, giving her the locket he picked out and saved all those years ago. He wins her heart, but she’s the only non-relative who likes him. Everyone else wants him dead. Well to stay dead.

mob

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

The doctor figures out how to help him, but his nurse convinces him not to waste the serum on Johnny, but use Johnny to make a giant batch of serum and sell it for millions.

So we have everyone in town after Johnny, him being captured by the doctor, while the rest of the storms the area looking for him. Missy and his friend find him, rescuing him as Johnny runs back to the graveyard. They end up in a shootout with his parents, and he manages to convince everyone to leave him alone, as all he wants is to be with Missy for prom.

He goes to prom, but then dies again

Johnny is sent to heaven, and then back as his death was a mistake. He goes to the prom with Missy (as saving her life was a good plan) and gets the girl.

Meh.

Yeah, I did not like this movie.

It was really horrible, it was awful, it was a waste of time.

The jokes were not funny and not on point

There is no explanation for why this was happening to Johnny until the very end.

You got to play me like that?

And most of the plot was borrow from all kinds of films that came before it. Once Bitten, Heaven Can Wait, Teen Wolf, Little Shop of Horrors, Frankenstein, etc. It wasn’t interesting, or avant-garde- just recycled plots.

Andrew Lowery was so unemotional-even before he was a zombie. He was like a monotone John Malkovich.

Ugh.

As I have said before the psychotic and weird redneck Chuck, who no in this universe finds weird or creepy (except Johnny). I mean this guy is not normal! He is a psycho! Why does everyone act like it is okay?

Then there are these weird “dream sequences” the main character has like every five minutes in the film. Okay so it isn’t every five minutes, but it does happen so much that I spent 90% of this film confused as to what was really happening and what was just in Johnny’s mind.

Help me! I’m confused!

And Missy (Traci Lind) is a horrible actress. I can never tell if she is serious, joking, or  what Johnny sees in his dreams. A lot of this film I just felt like what is going on?!

Halfway through I just gave up trying to get it.

The only thing worthwhile was Johnny’s mom:

I mean she is the scariest thing in this film. A sweet, adorable, intense woman who goes from talking about the four food groups to kidnapping children.

It wasn’t funny and the acting was horrible. My suggestion? Pass this one by.

And I know I do a banner thing every year for Facebook, part of my countdown to Halloween, but I couldn’t find a picture large enough. So no banner thing for this film.

Oh, well

To start Horrorfest VI from the beginning, go to One of Our Guests is a Werewolf, I Know It.: The Beast Must Die (1974)

For more zombie films, go to No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

For more Teen Horror films, go to I’m…a Werewolf: Teen Wolf (1985)

For more Teen Horror Prom films, go to I’m the Chosen One. And I Choose to be Shopping: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992)

For more Horror-Comedies, go to That’s What We’re Trying to Find out! We’re Trying to Find Out Who Killed Him, and Where, and With What!: Clue (1985)

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Pride & Prejudice & Zombies

Day 26) Z is for Zombie: Choose a Zombie Retelling of a Classic Novel

Zombies

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies #1) by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith

When I saw what Z stood for I knew that this was going to be the book I was going to review for it. First of all I have read very little Zombie themed books as that is just not really what I am in to. And secondly, pass up a chance to talk about Jane Austen?

Like that's happen

So I remember when this book was first released. It was right as the teen book world was moving out of wizards (Harry Potter) and Vampires (Twlight, Vampire Diaries, Vampire Academy, etc.), and was searching for a new thing to fill this niche. They settled on Zombies.

ZombiefilmsTheWalkinDead

But not just Zombies. They decided to take it one step further and pair it with Jane Austen.

AA_KnightleyDisapproved

And not just her. After this book, almost every classic was getting some kind of overhaul. We had Little Vampire Women, Sense & Sensibility & Sea Monsters, Jane Eyre: Vampire Slayers, etc.

Bad Sequels psycho-1960-alfred-hitchcock-janet-leigh-pic-21

It was a pretty bad time.

Ew Yuck Gross

Anyways, back to this book. So when it first came out it was a big hit. Everyone was talking about it. Everyone was reading it. The library was backlogged in holds.

ineedthis

I wasn’t really interested until my friend Elise recommended it to me. She really liked it and told me she would let me borrow her book. I was a bit wary as I didn’t understand why Austen needed any “makeover” or “spin” as her books were amazing the way they are. But I’m a sucker for a free book and borrowed it.

blanceTea&Books

I should have remembered:

notwopersonsreadthesamebook

So I read it. And how did I feel afterwards?

Guy you suck!

You suck!

I HATED this book. I thought it was badly done and the parts inserted by Seth Grahame-Smith were horribly written. And a lot of it made no sense.

Whattheheck

But that was seven years ago. Could I still feel the same way?

paris-whenitsizzlesaudreyhmmHepburn

Let’s see!

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13 Days Later

I HATE THIS BOOK!

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

IT IS HORRIBLE! JUST HORRIBLE? HOW CAN PEOPLE LIKE IT? THEY RUIN AUSTEN. Grahame-Smith IS HORRIBLE! EVERYTHING IS HORRIBLE. HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

wordICan't say Toy Story

I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT….I could go on for hours.

immatureHowIfeelBones

But you don’t want to hear that over and over, instead let’s dissect everything I hated about this book.

DeanSupernaturalLetsGetStarted

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A) So Seth Grahame-Smith takes Jane Austen’s work and doesn’t really write a new story but just swaps out pieces for zombies.

really?

Really?

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B) Mr. Bennet’s Motivation

So the first biggest problem is Mr. Bennet not wanting his daughters married but “engaged in the deadly arts”. But that doesn’t change that the house and money all revert to their cousin because the estate is entailed.

Lady-Mary-DOWNTONABBEYENTAILMENTSUCKS

So if these girls don’t get married how will they live?

Seriously

Seriously

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C) Mr. Bennet Hates His Children

And the way Mr. Bennet hates his daughters? He didn’t hate them in the original book. He thought they were silly and not worth his time, but he didn’t have an outright hatred for them like in here.

That's not how it was in the book!

That’s not how it was in the book!

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D) The “Warrior” Code

In this world “the warrior code demanded she avenge her honor” for the insult that Darcy gave her when he said she wasn’t handsome enough for her. If they can kill for that why didn’t Darcy just kill Wickham?

ooh!

ooh!

I mean it makes no sense. Yeah, he doesn’t want what happened to his sister to taint her or make her an outcast in society, but in this world you can kill someone for an insult. Why didn’t he just kill Wickham and make up that he said an insult. The rules of this world just don’t work.

uh-no-gifuhno

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E) Elizabeth is a Jerk

Lizzie is so freakin’ cruel. She is incredibly mean to her sisters and everyone around her. Just downright cruel.

you're evil

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F) More “Rules” of Society That Don’t Make Sense

It is “unladylike” to bring more serious weapons than daggers and knives to a ball, but is okay for them to kill, flip around, kicking and showing off their lady parts (no underwear like us), etc. Wow Grahame-Smith you aren’t confusing at all.

confused

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G) No Knowledge of Martial Arts

Does Grahame-Smith know anything about martial arts? He has Elizabeth get into a crane position to attack the zombies, but then does a chop on the thigh. That makes no sense at all. Crane positions are for kicking, kicking! Why would you get ready like that and then chop on the leg? It is completely weird and wasteful of energy.

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H) None of the Characters Have a Heart

Mrs Bennet says all Charlotte Lucas deserves is a “crust of bread washed down with a cup of loneliness.” You see? Grahame-Smith is so cruel. None of these people were that mean. They all had faults but they wren’t downright heartless. How does removing the heart and soul of the characters make them better? Huh, Grahame-Smith? How. Well I’ll tell you, it doesn’t. It makes it horrible.

Or an author

Or an author

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I) Mr. Bennet is Abusive

Seriously, the way Mr. Bennet talks to his wife is downright abusive. Thanks Grahame-Smith for ruining a fantastic book.

I don't like it 11

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J) You Need to Reevaluate Your Career Choices

All the girls say that they could make great lives as assassins, bodyguards, or mercenaries. Really? Really? You think with all those in the military eventually coming out of the service that won’t be a problem? And how many people need a bodyguard or assassin? And if they are rich enough to hire assassins, bodyguards or mercenaries, why wouldn’t they just get ninjas from Japan or something? And to top it all off you are really only trained to kill zombies, not people. Slow moving, barely threatening zombies. Not the same thing at all. You don’t have the same training for the others.

Night of the living dead zombie

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K) You Can Pretty Much Kill Anyone for Anything

Mary almost kills Mr. Collins when he insinuates that one of them did the cooking. Now, don’t get me wrong, that is a serious insult. He implies that they are so poor they have to take on the role of a servant putting them on the same level of a domestic. But hey, if that is open for murder why didn’t Darcy just kill Wickham? I mean seriously, I just keep circling back to that.

Why?

Eh?

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L) People Do Not Understand the Levels of Class

I hate how everyone praises that Mr. Bennet says the girls aren’t trained in the kitchen but are trained as warriors. Only one problem, they were never trained for the kitchen. They were too wealthy for that. I blame the Pride & Prejudice (2005), in which they are made to look really dirty,  muddy, with animals running all over the place. They made them look really poor, but the Bennet family wasn’t. They were well-off; the only problem was the estate was entailed and the wealth they had wasn’t theirs to keep, like in Sense & Sensibility. And the reason there is an issue with marrying Mr. Darcy is that his aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, is in line for the throne. I mean a lot of people would have to die, but still hypothetically she could become the next queen of England. That means it would eventually come down to him, so who he marries is a big deal.

Get it right!!!!!

Get it right!!!!!

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M) Why Wasn’t There a Duel?

So we have Wickham’s big pack of lies about Darcy and how he dishonored himself and Wickham by not giving him the legacy that was originally promised. One issue with that, if in this world you can kill someone for insults why didn’t Wickham do a duel with Darcy or kill him? Why doesn’t Elizabeth think of that?

BraveheartVictorySwordinAir

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N) All the Innuendo

The sexual innuendo. Come on Grahame-Smith, is sex all you think about. I feel like the girls in Grease 2, refocus your mind.

And that’s what makes Austen so great. She didn’t need cheap paltry things. She created a fantastic novel full of great wit and amazing work. Every sentience piece of art, delightful storytelling, Grahame-Smith not so much.

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O) Front Lines? You Mean No Lines

Elizabeth writes to her aunt that she is on the front lines of battle and prefers it to marriage, love, and family. Only one issue she’s on the front lines of nothing. She’s just hanging out in the country. Front lines would be the battlefield with the soldiers, but Elizabeth isn’t a soldier! She talks as if hired by crown but why isn’t she paid? And she’s only battling the village zombies she’s not even out there fighting where the hordes are coming from. Get off your high horse.

Seriously

Seriously

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P) Why/Where Did the Zombies Come From?

And that’s another thing that bothers me. Why did this happen? How? Why don;t they ever explain?

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Q) Grahame-Smith is a Child

Grahame-Smith is a ten-year old boy. I mean think about it. His obsession with body fluids (poop, pee, vomit, farts, etc.) and likes saying balls as much as he can. It’s the only explanation.

Seriously

Seriously

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R) Charlotte a Zombie?

I hated how they turned Charlotte into a zombie. I thought that was a dumb decision. How can no one notice but Elizabeth? Really?!

stupidmoranhmm_yes_i_see_youre_a_moron_trollcat

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S) Fifty-Five? Schfifty-Five

Fifty-Five years of zombie attacks? How are there that many zombies in existence to keep living? Why did zombies even start? Explain!!!!

totalrecallmachinedestroyargh

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T) The Battle Scenes are the Worse

Let’s talk about my least favorite part-when Elizabeth fights the ninjas. First the way that Lady Catherine talks about being taught by Ninjas. False, ninjutsu wasn’t something you were taught, but passed through families as they were assassins.

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Second Elizabeth fights at least three of them according to the illustration, but when she takes the time to strangle one with its own intestine why didn’t the other ninjas kill her?

Really?

Really?

The second ninja she blocks the throwing stars, and then grabs the last one midair and throws it back unharmed. You grab something moving that fast that sharp, no way. She would have cut her hand. And hands bleed like crazy.

ouch Hermione

The third ninja she just throws her katana and kills him. That easy?! Really Catherine with all her money and fame, that’s the best she could hire.

I don't think so

Oh, and I forgot. Elizabeth did that all blindfolded. Hmm, maybe she was hit by the same radioactive stuff that Daredevil was hit with because I don’t think she could have done that.

uh-no-gifuhno

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U) Elizabeth is a Cannibal?

She rips the heart out of the ninja and starts eating it. First that is serious zombie signs right there, I would have killed her. And second, eating human parts, i.e. a cannibal, makes you go crazy and get extremely sick. She should be totally insane right now.

I'm crazy

I’m crazy

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V) Grahame-Smith’s Mind

Ball joke after ball joke and now fingering? Austen is rolling over in her grave. If she became a zombie and hunted Grahame-Smith down, I wouldn’t mind at all.

immatureHowIfeelBones

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W) Why Won’t They Explain About the Zombies?

They travel to the Orient multiple times? Is the zombie plague just in Europe? Western Europe? In America as well? It would be nice if Grahame-Smith gave a moment to EXPLAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

fliptablesangrysurprised

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X) Who?

On pg. 169 Jane and Elizabeth punish Catherine? Catherine who? Do they mean Kitty? Why call her Catherine suddenly? Strange.

SayWhat?BuffyVampireSlayernosense

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Y) Grahame-Smith Does Not Understand Women or Sisters

Elizabeth dreams of cutting off Lydia’s head? Really? Grahame-Smith doesn’t really know how to write female characters or sisters. First he has Elizabeth being mean to Jane, then Mary, and then Lydia. So completely cruel. And that is one of my biggest problems with this book. I hate Elizabeth! She is mean, cruel, harsh, rude, judgmental, and just downright nasty. I dislike her and don’t want to read more about her as I just can’t stand her. Yes Grahame-Smith, you actually took a character I lived and made me hate her. Good job.

dialMforMurder Killer Hate

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Z) Not Hatred, Circumstances

In this book Grahame-Smith makes Mr. Bennet hate Mrs. Bennet as he finds her stupid and dumb. That’s not how it was in the real book. Mr. Bennet married Mrs. Bennet and didn’t realize that they werent well suited until much later on. They lived well together, spending all the money as no need to save, they will have sons. When no sons came each went to the opposite extreme. Mrs. Bennet became so worried and crazed over her “failure” that she threw all her efforts into trying to catch husbands. That’s why she puts the girls “out” all at once, she wants them settled as soon as possible or they will be worse off then the Dashwood sisters. Mr. Bennet took the failure of no male heir and money a different way, he isolated himself in his library and books, trying to escape reality. They didn’t hate each other, they just didn’t really suit each other, drawing farther and farther apart.

The_Wolf_Man_4Crying sad

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AA) Elizabeth is a Freak

Elizabeth enjoys listening to the screams of burning zombies. What a sadist and creep.

Gilmore girls creep

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BB) Return of the Bad Fight Scenes

The fight between Lady Catherine and Elizabeth is horrible as well. Leaping all over the place like they are taking part in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon or something, The way Lady Catherine attacks, Elizabeth should be dead. Elizabeth stabs Lady Catherine in the stomach but Lady Catherine survives? What, that isn’t even possible. She’s dead, end of story.

stupidestThingeverheard

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CC) Ew, Yuck, and Gross

Words some Catherine’s lips “After I behead her, ninjas you can do what you want with the body”, Grahame-Smith has some serious issues.

Certified Creepo Ribbon

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So yeah I hated it.

Hate YOu

Grahame-Smith just plagiarized someone else’s work changing a few words here and there and making it horrible. Grahame-Smith offends me to my very core. Destroying talented writing with his scribbles.

This is what I would like to do to him

This is what I would like to do to him

Grahame-Smith doesn’t even know how to write. His characters are unlikeable, story underdeveloped, and just all around bad, bad, bad.  Only one thing left to do:

DissedP&P

This is one book you should defintely skip!

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to It Was a Pleasure to Burn: Fahrenheit 451

For the previous post, go to Why I Still Love My Fair Godmother

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For more on Pride & Prejudice, go to Austenland

For more Pride & Prejudice variations, go to Is Love at the Thanksgiving Day Parade Really Just Pride & Prejudice?

For more books based on Jane Austen, go to Midnight in Austenland

For more Zombies, go to No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

You Can’t Kill It, It Always Comes Back

So Horrorfest V is over.

The_Wolf_Man_4Crying sad

I know. It is hard to let go of October.

EverydayHalloweenHorrorfanOctober

But while Horrorfest is over for now, you can never truly kill it. It always comes back. Specifically next October with Horrorfest VI. 

Horror Films

It never ceases to amaze me how every October I plan out 26 film reviews, 4 TV reviews, and one post on my personal thoughts; yet what I start off with never matches up with the end result.

The-best-laid-schemes-of-mice-and-men-often-go-awry-erobertFrost

So let’s go over what this Horrorfest V was all about.

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So I started planning my Horrorfest with lots of ’40s films, but it ended up being all about the ’80s. What can I say? You know I love it.

I LOVE the '80s

I LOVE the ’80s

We had Ghostbusters, Thriller, Cat’s Eye, Once Bitten, Teen Wolf, and Clue

And you all remember how I said I wanted to do something different this year? Well I did. This was the most I have ever reviewed Horror-Comedies.

It is horror and funny at the same time!

It is horrorfying and funny at the same time!

We had Ghostbusters, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Once Bitten, Clue, and Teen Wolf.

clueshoutingshouting

My free post, on whatever horror thing I wished to write about, was 31 tips on How to Survive a Horror Film. I got the idea last year, but couldn’t put it into play until this year. I hope it was helpful. 🙂

So Alfred Hitchcock,

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we only covered one of his films, and it was one of the oldest ones he created. I strayed from what had become a tradition of three as I felt I didn’t want to use his works too quickly. Which film will I review next year? I’m not sure. I was toying with maybe doing one of his last films like Frenzy or Family Plot. Then again, The Birds have been on my list from the beginning and I still haven’t reviewed it. I guess we will see what happens next year.

Ringu Watch TV

So we reviewed a TV episode every Friday in October. This year we had a serial killer Wallace & Gromit episode, a cannibalistic killer in Bones, a murderer in Death Comes to Pemberley, and a teenage boy with incredible powers in Star Trek.

We also had our Turtle Saturdays

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Starting with the 2014 version, to 2007, and then going over the original 1990 version and its sequel in 1991. It might not be what most consider horror, but I think it works as each film involves mutation, two have monsters, and one a whole lot of scientific experiments.

So we saw a group of monsters I haven’t really spent a whole lot of posts reviewing, and that is:

Zombies!

Zombies!

We started with the Corpse Bride; then went on to the first zombie film, White Zombie; and ended on Michael Jackson’s Thriller. I had thought about doing Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, but as I haven’t reviewed the book I decided to wait on the film.

Then we had our usual Stephen King film, with Cat’s Eye. Not one I’d planned on reviewing, but happened to see and add to the lineup.

Who knew?

Who knew?

I finally got around to taking on a Tim Burton film, and actually reviewed two, not one. We had the Corpse Bride and Sleepy Hollow. Still haven’t done Edward Scissorhands. Maybe next year.

We also did a lot of teen monster films. There was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with teen turtles; Thriller with teen zombies; Once Bitten with teen vampires; and a teen werewolf in Teen Wolf.

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We also had vampires and Dracula coming back with Once Bitten, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, and Dracula 2000.

This Horrorfest was very different than the ones prior as I reviewed a lot of films and TV shows I had never seen before such as: Wallace & Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death, When a Stranger Calls (1979), Jeepers Creepers, Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter, Cat’s Eye, Death Comes to Pemberley, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Backfire, Dial 1119, Let Me Call You Sweetheart, Corpse Bride, The Cheerleader Murders, & The Girl on the Train; along with films and TV shows I hadn’t seen in years, such as: Fantasia: Night on Bald Mountain and Sleepy Hollow. That was about half the reviews!

AMAZING!

AMAZING!

This also was the first time I could really include Jane Austen in my Horrorfest, not with a made up post but actually review an Austen item.

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I was planning on reviewing Pride & Prejudice & Zombies along with Death Comes to Pemberley, but as I said before, I decided to push it back.

And then there is Vincent Price

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I reviewed two films with him: Thriller and the film I have been talking about reviewing since the first HorrorfestHouse on Haunted Hill. 

Double double yay

So if you missed a day, or are interested in every item I covered; here is the complete list:

How To Survive A Horror Film

You’re a Detective, Let Me Give You a Tip. Don’t Wave Important Evidence in a Telephone Booth. They Have Glass Windows: Blackmail (1929)

Those Aren’t Men They Are the Living Dead: White Zombie (1932)

Night on Bald Mountain: Fantasia (1940)

We’ve Seen Dracula, the Wolf Man, and Frankenstein’s Monster: Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)

It’s A Hard World: Backfire (1950)

The Mad Killer: Dial 1119 (1950)

They’re Coming for Me Now…And Then They’ll Come for You: House on Haunted Hill (1959)

What I Think You Will Think…You are Fully Under My Control: Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter (1966)

 I Can Make You all Go Away! Any Time I Want To!: Charlie X, Star Trek (1966)

Have You Checked the Children: When a Stranger Calls (1979)

No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

That’s What We’re Trying to Find out! We’re Trying to Find Out Who Killed Him, and Where, and With What!: Clue (1985)

I Don’t Want to Be a Vampire. I’m a Day Person: Once Bitten (1985)

I’m…a Werewolf: Teen Wolf (1985)

I’ll Be Watching You: Cat’s Eye (1987)

I Came Upon a Shattered Glass Jar and Four Baby Turtles Crawling into a Strange Glowing Ooze: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)

But If Any of It Fell Into the Wrong Hands…:Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II, Secret of the Ooze (1991)

That Face-I’ve Seen Her Before…: Let Me Call You Sweetheart (1997)

It was a Horseman, a Dead One. Headless: Sleepy Hollow (1999)

Dracula. Not Myth, Nor Ravings of a Mad Irish Novelist, Oh No, He’s Real: Dracula 2000 (2000)

Every Twenty-Third Spring for Twenty Three Days, it Gets to Eat: Jeepers Creepers (2001)

He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

Every Three Thousand Years, the Stars Align. Unleashing an Army of Monsters: TMNT (2007)

A Matter of Loaf and Death: Wallace and Gromit (2008)

The Butcher of Burtonsville High: The Death of the Queen Bee, Bones (2010)

A Murder Has Been Committed on Your Property: Death Comes to Pemberley, Episode One (2013)

Heroes are Not Born, They’re Created: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

It Was the Curse. My Curse: The Cheerleader Murders (2016)

Have You Seen Megan Hipwell?: The Girl On the Train (2016)

Night on Bald Mountain: Fantasia (1940)

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Musically and dramatically, we have here a picture of the struggle between the profane and the sacred.

I know I have already reviewed an animated film with The Corpse Bride, but did you really think I was going to let Horrorfest go by without reviewing a Disney film or TV episode?

NO ONE

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I can’t remember when I first watched Fantasia, but I know I was young because I became very antsy during the watching. In fact I remember trying to leave part way through…

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And my mom stopped me and made me finish watching it.

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Out of all the scenes, there are three that have remained firmly stuck in my memory. The Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Paul Dukas, of course, as it starred Mickey Mouse. Who doesn’t love Mickey?

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Then the ballerina part with the Hippopotamuses, the Dance of the Hours by Amilcare Ponchielli.

Reminds me of Degas

Reminds me of Degas

And the part with the Devil.

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I saw that and had only one reaction:

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was an amazing short, but so terrifying. He was just so EVIL.

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And apparently I wasn’t the only one horrified. To this day Disney receives letters complaining about how terrifying this part is for kids. Because of such massive complaints, Disney actually removed this part from the initial video release, but later restored it.

He is probably the scariest of all Disney villains and animated creations.

I'm getting shivers

I’m getting shivers

So the piece is actually a combination of two musical pieces: Night on Bald Mountain by Modest Mussorgsky and Ave Maria by Franz Schubert.

The Night on Bald Mountain is about witches and demons worshipping their master, the Devil, also known as Chernabog. He comes out of the mountain

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And awaken all his supporters. From witches:

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To zombies in their graves:

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To skeletons and ghosts:

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And they all praise and dance around him. His pure evil is terrifying and frightening.

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Nothing can stop him except for one thing. The church bells ring and a choir sings Ave Maria by Franz Schubert. It’s message of hope, Mary, and Christ destroys the power of the devil and sends him back into the Earth.

“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5

The music is fantastic, the animation exquisite, and an all around great experience; check it out.

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

For the previous post, go to Have You Checked the Children: When a Stranger Calls (1979)

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For more Disney, go to Fan-do or Fan-don’t. There is No Fan-try

For more animated films, go to He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

For more Classic Disney, go to For She Filled Their Lives With Sunshine

For more Disney villains, go to There’s No One Like Gaston

No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

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And though you fight to stay alive, your body starts to shiver. For no mere mortal can resist the evil of the thriller.

So I know you are probably thinking, a music video? That’s not a horror film.

Majorly

This music video is almost 14 mins and a recommended length for a short film, by the New York Film Academy, is 10-15 mins. That makes this “music video” a short film, and perfect for our countdown.

It was directed by John Landis, most known for his film An American Werewolf in London, and he made the film because he wanted to bring back the theatrical short, you know the short film before the movie. Like Pixar and Disney used to do.

“I saw it as a chance to resurrect a genre that had once been a Hollywood staple. Music videos were new in 1983, and MTV was just two years old.”

They even tried to get an Academy Award nomination for Best Short Live Action, but the Academy didn’t have the same love for it as the rest of the world did. However in 2009 it was selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, being the first music video in history to receive that honor.

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It takes place in the 1950s and starts off with Michael and his date (Ola Ray) are driving and the car runs out of gas. They get out to walk through the creepy forest:

Stay out of the forest!

Stay out of the forest!

Michael wears a red letterman that looks a lot like a certain jacket from a certain horror film:

He asks his date to be his girlfriend, and she agrees him giving her a ring to symbolize it.

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How sweet.

But then he warns her:

Michael: There’s something I’ve got to tell you.

Michael’s Girl: Yes, Michael?

Michael: I’m not like other guys.

Michael’s Girl: Of course you’re not. That’s why I love you.

Michael: No, I mean I’m different.

Michael’s Girl: What are you talking about?

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Nothing good is going to come of this.

And then the moon comes out:

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And he changes into a Werecat!

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And the makeup is pretty creepy. You can thank Rick Baker for that. Even though CGI is probably cheaper, I love seeing what people were able to make with such limited supplies and technology. It is unbelievable.

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Back to the video. So Michael the werecat os chasing his date through the forest. Run girl, run!

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Just as the werecat is about to grab her, we cut to a movie theater. Yes this is a film that Michael and his girlfriend are watching.

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Michael loves the film but his date (Ola Ray) is not into horror films. Such a pity.

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She walks out and Michael, being a good date, follows. As they are outside the music starts up and we get those perfect lyrics that are impossible to hate.

It’s close to midnight and something evil’s lurking
In the dark
Under the moonlight you see a sight that almost stops
Your heart
You try to scream, but terror takes the sound before
You make it
You start to freeze as horror looks you right between
The eyes
You’re paralyzed

Now at first this is Michael just joking around with his girlfriend, teasing her. But it will soon change.

You hear the door slam and realize there’s nowhere left to run
You feel the cold hand and wonder if you’ll ever see the sun
You close your eyes and hope that this is just imagination
But all the while you hear the creature creepin’up behind
You’re out of time

I like how in his dance Michael Jackson throws in a Frankenstein monster move and hints at famous “thrillers”.

Frankenstein

Night creatures call
And the dead start to walk in their masquerade
There’s no escapin’ the jaws of the alien this time (they’re open wide)
This is the end of your life

They’re out to get you, there’s demons closing in on every side
They will possess you unless you change the number on your dial
Now is the time for you and I to cuddle close together
All thru the night I’ll save you from the terrors on the screen,
I’ll make you see

Now in this scene it is very apparent that they are taking there time walking home in not the best conditions. There are no streetlights and a ton of fog. You know what’s coming, something bad.

I'm getting shivers

I’m getting shivers

And then we have the best thing in the world. Just as Michael and his girlfriend go by the cemetery, we hear Vincent Price’s voice. Bringing us:

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And then things begin to rise in the graveyard.

Night of the living dead zombie

Darkness falls across the land
The midnite hour is close at hand
Creatures crawl in search of blood
To terrorize y’awl’s neighbourhood
And whosoever shall be found
Without the soul for getting down
Must stand and face the hounds of hell
And rot inside a corpse’s shell

It’s funny to think that this music video never would have had such an amazing voice in it, I mean aside from Michael Jackson, if it wasn’t for writer Rod Temperton’s wife, Peggy Lipton. Temperton had wanted talking at one part and needed a classic horror actor to give the music the edge he desired. Lipton was a good friend of Price, asked him and he agreed.

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So the rest of the dead are waking up; out of every grave, tomb, and casket.

night of the living dead

The foulest stench is in the air
The funk of forty thousand years
And grizzly ghouls from every tomb
Are closing in to seal your doom
And though you fight to stay alive
Your body starts to shiver
For no mere mortal can resist
The evil of the thriller
Can you dig it?!

And of course, they head after Michael.

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They are surrounded! Oh no! Michael’s girlfriend looks to Michael for help, but it is too late:

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AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And then we have one of the most engaging dances ever to be created/performed.

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They actually had to think long and hard how to create the scene where they dance that wasn’t childish or silly, but kept to the mood of the previous scenes; and I have to say they accomplished it. In fact, before Landis agreed to direct, he made it mandatory that all extras spend two weeks in rehearsals with the choreographer; something that had never been done before. This dance has been such a big part of our culture from Thrill Around the World to being referenced in numerous films and TV shows.

‘Cause this is thriller, thriller night
And no one’s gonna save you from the beast about to strike
You know it’s thriller, thriller night
You’re fighting for your life inside a killer, thriller tonight

That it’s a thriller, thriller night
‘Cause I can thrill you more than any ghost would dare to try
Girl, this is thriller, thriller night
So let me hold you tight and share a killer, diller, chiller
Thriller here tonight

Michael’s date is horrified and runs into a creepy old house, with the zombies surrounding her on every side. Very Night of the Living Dead.

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Too bad she doesn’t have a Ben to save her as they start destroying the house to get her.

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Michael grabs her and bam. It turns out they are just in a home, Michael isn’t a zombie….Or is he? We close on Vincent Price’s amazing laugh with  frozen still of Michael’s yellow werecat eyes.

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That was Michael Jackson’s Thriller and it is amazing. From the song, to Jackson, to Price, to Ray, to the dancing, the makeup- I could go on and on but it is just perfect. I mean it gives you everything you want

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Plus a fun dance to do. Check it out for yourself!

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

For the previous post, go to Every Three Thousand Years, the Stars Align. Unleashing an Army of Monsters: TMNT (2007)

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For more on Michael Jackson, go to Haunted Harmonies of Halloween: Top 5 Songs to Play on Halloween

For more Vincent Price, go to A Man Without a Face: The Bat (1959)

For more zombies, go to Those Aren’t Men They Are the Living Dead: White Zombie (1932)

For more music reviews, go to Shook Me All Night Long

For more ’80s music, go to Back in Black

For more ’80s films, go to I’ll Be Back: The Terminator (1984)

Those Aren’t Men They Are the Living Dead: White Zombie (1932)

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We could have been killed. Worse than that we could have been caught. 

By those men?  Those aren’t men they are the living dead!

So zombie films have been extremely popular the last few years, they have encountered many changes; but they all owe it to this movie. Yes this is the first full length feature film about Zombies. Instead of biting or disease; this man makes Zombies through Voodoo, poison, drugs, and his eyes!

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I first became aware of this film when I watched 50 Greatest Horror Classics Collection. I know that I have been reviewing films I didn’t like these past few days, so here we go with one I do.

Now one things that this film doesn’t really do, is explain exactly how he does the zombie-fying and mind control. This was explained in the sequel, Revolt of the Zombies (1936)

This film has a very interesting background. The film was thought lost until found in the 1960s, there it went a serious court battle as multiple people fought for ownership.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

It only took eleven days to film but it was such a hit when it premiered. It did so well, that Lugosi regretted taking a salary instead of a percentage.

Vat have I done?

Vat have I done?

Well I think that is enough talking about it, shall we move on to the review?

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So the film starts off with a young couple, Neil Parker and his fiancé Madeline Short. They have just arrived in the West Indies. Neil has a job out there and went for Madeline. They planned to marry as soon as they touched the port, but they meet Charles Beaumont who presented them with a better job offer, and they are headed to his house and to be married tonight.

If only they knew what was coming.

If only they knew what was coming.

As they are driving in the buggy, they come upon a funeral in the middle of the road.

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It sounds strange, but they do that so people don’t dig them up and use them with voodoo, or turn them into zombies, the living dead.

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Then “Murder” Legendre, Bela Lugosi, come upon them with his group of Zombies. He steals Madeline’s scarf, and stares at her with his creepy eyes.

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The driver, fearful, takes off at the speed of light.

“Neil Parker: We could have been killed.

Driver: Worse than that we could have been caught!

Madeline Short: By those men?

Driver: Those aren’t men they are the living dead. Zombies!

The driver warns them they should leave, but the couple are suspicious of zombies actually existing. Yet at the at the same time:

Gilmore girls creep

They are startled when they come upon the minister, having arrived at the Beaumont mansion for their wedding. They ask about zombies, and the minister, Dr. Bruner,  says he has been a missionary there for over thirty years and he has seen a lot of strange things occur.

Hmm...

Hmm…

 

They tell Dr. Bruner about what happened, meeting Beaumont on the boat, the job, etc. The Dr. thinks this is very odd.

Something strange is going on

Something strange is going on

This Beaumont they describe is nothing like the selfish, pushy, take over man that he knows. Everything about their situation smells bad, and he warns the couple to leave as soon as possible.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

 

That makes TWO warnings! They need to leave!

And run fast

And run fast

When the couple arrives, Mr. Beaumont doesn’t want to see them.

What! Mark Wahlberg that's weird

But then he changes his mind.

Okay this behavior means that there is something else going on here with Beaumont.

Certified Creepo Ribbon

The butler agrees it is for the best to approach them as the minister is questioning why Beaumont is being so kind. He greets them but then has to leave while everyone prepares for the upcoming wedding.

Madeline is getting ready when she looks out the window and sees Beaumont get into a buggy with a man. When we zoom there, the man is emotionless, glazed over, dead eyes, a zombie!

Night of the living dead zombie

Mr. Beaumont reaches a work area and sees 20 or 30 of these same walking dead. All empty eyed, slaves, and ZOMBIES!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Legendre greets Mr. Beaumont and puts out his hand, but is ignored as Beaumont sees him as “beneath” him. Legendre then explains about his little operation: about how the dead don’t care about long hours, breaks, food, money, etc. He tries to sell the idea to Beaumont, but business is not on his mind. Instead his mind is on Madeleine.

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He desperate to have her and is trying to get Legendre to stop the wedding. He thinks that if he took her away for a while she would change her mind. But Legendre does not think that will work, women will not forget so soon.

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Beaumont pleads with him to do something, anything!

Martin: Aren't you ashamed now? Aren't you? Spiders now, is it? Flies ain't good enough! Renfield: Flies? Flies? Poor puny things! Who wants to eat flies? Martin: You do, you loony! Renfield: Not when I can get nice fat spiders! Martin: All right, have it your own way

I must have her!

Legendre says that he has one way to do it..all Beaumont has to do is give her a tiny bit of this potion in her drink or on a flower and it will enable him to have what he desires.

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Beaumont doesn’t want to do it that way but Legendre tells him that is impossible, there is no other choice.

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That might Madeline is getting ready for her wedding, the church is all decorated. Mr. Beaumont walks her down the aisle pleading with her to marry him instead of her fiancé. Madeline kindly refuses.

See ya!

See ya!

He promises to stop, after one last thing, giving her a rose. Madeline accepts, but little does she know that rose has been tainted with poison and will bring only death!

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Madeline takes the hand of her love and the ceremony to twine them begins, but out in the courtyard Legendre lurks getting ready his magic.

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He takes the scarf he stole from her earlier, and wraps it around a wax candle. He looks like the devil with his beard and eyebrows.

Creepy!

Creepy!

He carves the wax candle, quickly creating the figure of a woman. And then he stares with his eyes…

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They all toast and are happy.

Neil Parker [Jokingly to Madeline] “Gypsy read my fortune.”

She looks into his cup and says “i see happiness, love, I see…” But then she sees Lugosi, with fiery demon eyes in her cup…

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AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

She then says “I see death”

Immediately she falls down, and we see Lugosi’s eyes, knowing he is controlling her body and spirit.

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A funeral is held and Madeline is to be buried.

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Neil goes to a bar to drink, upset, heartbroken and seeing her everywhere. All are happy while he is the one in utter misfortune.

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Her apparition appears to him, but he can’t reach her.

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That night Beaumont and Legendre are in the graveyard and they see zombies! Legendre isn’t surprised as they are his slaves. Many have fought against his spells, but Legendre overpowered them all and controls them.

Star Wars Dark side power Darth vader

The zombies remove Madeline’s casket from the tomb. Just then they hear her husband, drunk, trying to approach the tomb screaming out her name. The zombies quickly take her away to conduct the ceremony elsewhere.

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Neil finds the grave empty and is distraught.

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Dr. Bruner explains that there are two ways this could happen.

  1. Her bones were taken away to be used in a ceremony by some natives on the island.
  2. Or she is not dead.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

Neil is in shock! Not dead? But he saw her! The doctor said!

Whattheheck

The minster agrees but he has seen so many strange things on the island, it could be possible!

suspicious Hmm

Neil thinks the idea of her being murdered so someone can steal her body is ridiculous. But then Dr. Bruner tries to explain that she isn’t really dead, but instead a type of parlor trick with drugs to make her appear dead.

WOW

WOW

But Neil doesn’t listen.

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Come on, LISTEN TO THIS MAN! If you had in the beginning you never would have gotten in this mess.

Seriously

Seriously

So Dr. Bruner explains about a type of drug that produces a deathlike sleep, only to have them “awaken later” and be a zombie, one of the “living dead. I knew about this as I had seen it before in The Four Feathers, and read about how historically some witch doctors would do this. Because of that, I figured out a majority of Sherlock Holmes (2009).

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They figure out that Beaumont must be the one behind this. Neil wants to take him to the authorities, but the minister reminds him they have no proof. Besides she died. No one would believe Beaumont pretended to kill her.

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Beaumont has what he wanted and has desired or does he? He has the beautiful body of Madeline but something is missing from her. Her spirit.

She is an empty tomb, a shell of who she was, and it is driving Beaumont crazy!!!

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He gives her the finest things money can buy, all that she could desire, but nothing changes in her eyes or look. Beaumont realizes his mistake and that he made a bad decision. He thought that just having her would be enough, but in reality he has nothing.

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Beaumont begs Legendre to bring Madeline back. Legendre warns that Madeline won’t be happy as he just tried to control her. In fact she will most likely be furious. But Beaumont doesn’t care, he needs her. Legendre promises to bring her back and then the two have a toast. Don’t drink, it is a trap!!!!

After the drink, Lugosi reveals that he has done the same to Beaumont which he did to Madeline. He does not want to bring her back, as he has other plans for her,ones that Beaumont might not agree to.

OMG gasp

Beaumont tries to get his butler to help him, but it is too late, he is under Legendre’s control as well.

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The zombies come and carry the butler away, tossing him off the cliff, and all that is left is Beaumont and Legendre.

Dr. Bruner takes Neil to see the witch doctor.

Whattheheck

Weird, right? He’s a minister. Doesn’t that go against what he represents?

Anyways, there they pick up a guide to take them up the mountain and to where Beaumont is housing Madeline. But Neil won’t listen.

That guy

That guy

Neil is trying to climb up the mountain but isn’t doing too well, he’s sick from a tropical disease or hangover.

Anyways, as they continue, you hear the vulture, the pet of Legendre; looming overhead, always watching. It reminds me of Maleficent’s bird in Sleeping Beauty.

Not gulls but you understand the feeling.

Neil and Dr, Bruner argue over whether he should climb the mountain, Dr. Bruner thinking he is too sick too. Then they see Madeline looking over the balcony.

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Neli calls out to Madeline hoping to reach her, but she still remains in her zombie state.

Beaumont has completely had a breakdown. No longer the powerful one, he too appears in a trance, the guilt of everything weighing down on him.

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Legendre gave him a special type of poison, he is awake but in a trance and can’t talk, can’t move, a slave and awake inside knowing what he is going through and feeling it.

The shots and angles of this are beautiful. From framing Lugosi in the cross architecture, the stairs, etc. There is some beautiful, early, cinematography at play here.

So Lugosi sees Neil creeping up the stairs, but he is not really looking like a threat, as he is practically unconscious. Lugosi takes his hands and tries to work his spells on him, with his eyes, the third eye.

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Madeliene wakes up from her bed and in a trance begins ro walk down thestairs. Searching, searching for what?

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Madeline being framed in a cross architecture while wearing cross on her dress is almost a virginal sacrifice. Beaumont sees Madeline and wants to help but has no control over his body. She takes a knife from the table.

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Legendre wants her to stab her husband Neil. She approaches him and is about to stab him when she stops. Something has come over her and she is unsure, but then Legendre’s eyes they call, her to do it,

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She is just about to stab Neil when she is stopped by a person grabbing her arm and removing the knife.

what what'shappeningSupernatural

A person dressed in black, who is it?

whatdoyouthinkTwilightzoneRealmartianpleasestandup

Legendre continues to try and control her but it does not work. She runs and Neil chases after her.

She runs to the hillside and looks over the water about to jump but stopped by Neil. He is happy to have her but Madeline remains motionless. Legendre comes followed by his zombie army.

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Neil has a gun and shoots at the zombies but it doesn’t stop them or produce blood, as they are already dead.

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The minster was the man in black! He smacks Lugosi in the head stopping him. All his zombies throw themselves over the cliff, as control is momentarily lost and they wish to remain dead! Madeline wakes up, the control has ended.

Double double yay

And all is good.

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But no Legendre awakens, he is not one to be easily thwarted and begins to exact his control.

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Neil and the minster chase after  him, but are stopped when he throws some magic dust, burning their eyes.

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Beaumont creeps dow the steps, and we only see his shadow. He knocks Legendre over the cliff, his vulture/spirit guide thing going too.

Madeline is awaken and reunited with her love.

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And the bride and groom get to go off and have their honeymoon.

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A great film. You should definitely check it out.

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

For the previous post, go to What I Think You Will Think…You are Fully Under My Control: Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter (1966)

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For more zombie brides, go to He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

For more Bela Lugosi, go to I Bid You Welcome: Dracula (1931)

For more zombie films, go to Say Something Human: Warm Bodies (2013)

For more on The 50 Greatest Horror Classics, go to A Man Without a Face: The Bat (1959)

He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

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He’s married to a corpse. He has a corpse bride. There must be some way to undo what’s been done.

Every year I do an animated movie as part of my Horrorfest review. As I was trying to decide which one, I finally settled on The Corpse Bride as I thought it was high time I reviewed a Tim Burton film. I have been trying to do Edward Scissorhands or Sleepy Hollow (1999), for years now but it just seems as if 31 days is never enough time to do everything I wish.

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So I have never seen this whole film from beginning to end. Starting with ABC Family’s 13 Nights of Halloween, and just seeming to continue on, I always only catch the end of this film. So here we go!

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I didn’t like this movie.

Something is not right!

To me it seemed like Tim Burton was trying to recapture The Nightmare Before Christmas with the style and characters, but the story just wasn’t that good.

See ya!

Why didn’t I like it? Well let’s get started.

DeanSupernaturalLetsGetStarted

So the story begins with Victor Van Groot (Johnny Depp), nouveau rich, as he prepares to marry Victoria Everglot, from an old important family (who unfortunately has no money). There marriage is supposed to be one of convenience, but Victoria and Victor have fallen for each other.

iLoveyou

However, even though Victor is in love with Victoria, he is extremely nervous about the wedding and messing things up. He ruins the rehearsal when he drops the ring, (symbolizing his death) and accidentally catches Mrs. Everglot’s dress on fire.

ouch Hermione

He runs away embarrassed and tries to work on his vows. He manages to knock them out of the park, but when he gets to placing the ring on the finger (a stick off a tree) it turns out that he has awaken the dead, a zombie bride.

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He then gets dragged down…I don’t know actually know where. Is it is heaven, hell, purgatory, or final resting place for the townspeople? They never explain.

It works

Is it for everyone or just the village? And how was she even able to drag Victor down if he isn’t dead?

Anyways, they give him the story behind the Corpse Bride, Emily. She was engaged to marry a man her parents disapproved of. She stole all their money and jewels as the two planned to elope. But when Emily arrived, her betrothed strangled her and took off with everything. She then decided she would wait there until her true love awoke her.

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Victor wants to leave, but Emily doesn’t want him too. He convinces her to let him return to the world above so that they can see his parents. They go, but instead of seeing his parents, he tries to tell Victoria what has happened.

Emily follows him, and upset at his betrayal, drags him back down to the underworld.

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Victoria is worried and tries to seek help, but everyone thinks she is crazy. Her parents are desperate for money, so when Lord Barkis, (who has just arrived in town and no one knows him but he gives the appearance of being wealthy and from a distinguished family) offers to marry Victoria, her parents accept. Victoria on the other hand is completely distraught.

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Meanwhile, below the ground, Victor’s coachman has just arrived and given him the news about Victoria. Heartbroken that she would marry another, Victor agrees to spend eternity with Emily. In order to make the ceremony lawful, they must return topside, preform the wedding ceremony, and Victor must take poison so that he can join Emily in the afterlife.

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They come in right after Victoria and Lord Barkis have performed the ceremony. Everyone is terrified including the townspeople.

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However, after they discover that the skeleton/zombie creations are their dead relatives, they are happy to have their loved ones back.

Double double yay

Lord Barkin wants to flee and tells Victoria to get all her family’s money so they can take off. Victoria reveals they have no money, now they both are unhappy.

I am not happy

I am not happy

Victor and Emily are getting ready to perform the ceremony when Victoria arrives at the church. Emily sees how much Victor loves Victoria and stops the ceremony. Victor and Victoria are together, but unfortunately they can’t really be together as she is already married, something Lord Barkin reminds everyone. But as he comes to take Victoria away, it is revealed that he was the one who killed Emily.

you're evil

All the other skeletons and zombies are furious, but there is nothing that can be done by the dead as he is still alive. Lord Barkin laughs at this and takes a drink of the wine set out for the wedding ceremony, making fun of Emily. But the wine he drank was the poisoned wine that was set out for Victor.

Get him!

Get him!

As he is now dead, Emily can get justice; Victoria and Victor get their happy ending; and Emily is released and able to pass on.

Good-bye!

Good-bye!

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So let’s start with what I did like:

1) The Animation

In a world that was moving from 2D animation to CGI, it is nice to see a throwback like this, I actually wish we had more films like it. I know it was becoming too expensive for a lot of studios to do it and will eventually become totally outmoded, but I like it. There is something so real about these puppets.

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2) The Ending

The ending was so cute, it was why I even wanted to watch the film. I mean loved how Victor and Victoria get together and Emily has peace.

I love it

Although, why does she turn into butterflies?

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Now why I Didn’t like:

1) Too Nightmare Before Christmas

nightmare before christmas nothing turn out like it should

I really felt like Burton was just trying to recapture The Nightmare Before Christmas. He just borrowed too much from his earlier film that this piece felt like a poor companion. I mean the creatures had the same style; Emily looked like a Blue Sally; there are two skeleton kids and a dwarf replacing the three trick or treaters; a bone dog instead of ghost dog; and tons of song. Instead of being cute it just seems boring, as if Burton has no new ideas.

Something is not right!

2) Too Many Songs

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Now I love music

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But the songs in a film need to be good and have something to do with advancing or enhancing the plot. These songs were not like that, they were horrible. I mean have the time the people aren’t even really singing but talking their lyrics. It really felt like they were trying to reach a quota of songs instead of adding to the film. I mean this was so bad it was like Frozen.  What are you doing Burton?

Bad. Very bad.

Bad. Very bad.

3) This Was too Short

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Everything felt as if it was moving too quickly. It was like boom, boom, boom, done. It made me feel as if they couldn’t really think of a plot so they just jammed a bunch of songs in and hurried to the ending.

4) The Older Generation is Wrong Theme

Burton has been doing this for a looooooong time and it is getting really boring.

Bones David Bored I;m bored boring

In everything lately, it seems as if Burton is trying to say the older generation is silly, spurious, stupid, cruel, etc. We got it, you don’t like the older generation, move on!

And the weird thing is, Burton is technically the “old generation”, so does he not like himself?

It works

It works

5) Music is Not Right for a Young Lady

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Uh, did he do any research? Victoria wants to play the piano, but isn’t allowed as “music is not right for a girl”. Uh, no. Music has always been something young ladies were trained in. Think of the three acceptable arts: piano, painting, and embroidery. I mean remember Mr. Darcy?

“a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing, and the modern languages, to deserve the word; and besides all this, she must possess a certain something in her air and manner of walking, the tone of her voice, her address and expressions, or the word will be but half deserved.’ Caroline Bingley…’All this she must possess,’ added Darcy, ‘and to all this she must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading.”

6) No Character Development 

Nope, not him.

So Victoria and Victor are cute, but we hardly know anything about them! I mean we know Victoria doesn’t want to wear corsets, or follow society’s rules, but what does she like? What does she want? Who is she? Victor is insecure and frightened, but that’s it. There is nothing else to him.

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7) Why Would They Marry Their Daughter Off to Someone They Don’t Know

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Now don’t tell me “it is because they need money”. Why would a family that was so concerned over their daughter marrying a rich fish merchant’s son, even though they are filthy rich, just send her off with a guy they know nothing about? That is dumb and makes no sense. Why wouldn’t they have looked into his background and discovered he has no money either?

So obs

8) They Couldn’t Just End an Engagement

So as stated before I guess Burton did zero research as you can’t just switch one engagement for another. Since Victor never actually ended his engagement there could be legal steps taken against the Everglots, and a family that has no money would be careful about that.

9) More Research Issues

So again another problem with the time period they set this film in. The Everglots are angry at  Victor and Victoria alone in the room but that wouldn’t be as big an issue, as when a couple was engaged there were a few relaxed rules. I mean Victor couldn’t be in her bedroom, but he could be in the room alone with her for a bit. I mean seriously, Did you do ANY research?

really? I can't stand this movie.

Ultimately, I thought it wasn’t that good until the end and really not worth watching.

See ya!

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And bringing back the facebook covers/mini posters. I haven’t been able to do them for the last few posts as I couldn’t find pics I liked that had a horror-ish feel. But I did make one for The Corpse Bride.

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

For the previous post, go to It’s A Hard World: Backfire (1950)

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For more zombies, go to Say Something Human: Warm Bodies (2013)

For more animated films, go to A Giant Metal Man: The Iron Giant (1995)

For more claymation films, go to A Matter of Loaf and Death: Wallace and Gromit (2008)

For more on Johnny Depp, go to Lookin’ Over a Four-Leaf Clover: 17 More Irish Heroes

For more on Helena Bonham Carter, go to I Don’t Want to Own You, I Just Want to Be With You: A Room With a View (1985)

For more historical fiction, go to Because I Am Mad, I Hate You. Because I Am Mad, I Have Betrayed You: Gaslight (1944)