Part of Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments So about half a year ago, I got in the mood for horror movies and sought out lists that ranked the top horror films of all time. One of the lists was a lengthy 100 movie list that features the scarier horror movie moments called "Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments". It was a special documentary aired in 2004 on the channel, Bravo. The thing that caught my interest was the amount of classic horror films they featured - very old horror films. It wasn't just a bunch of millennial films stringed together for cheap promotional value. So, that got me intrigued in following that list to have an excuse for watching some classic oldies, and here we are, on the countdown to the scariest horror films. Of course, I would skip certain movies on the list that I've already watched or just isn't interested enough to watch it, especially the ones I could tell are blatantly bad and a waste of time.
That said, first up on our list is #99...
The first thing that comes to mind when people saw the trailer to this film would probably be the classic 1989 HBO TV series, Tales From the Crypt. But I doubt a lot of people would know that it was actually a film (released in 1972) before it became a TV series, or even that it was a comic book.
Directed by George A. Romero (the godfather of zombie movies) and written by Stephen King (the master of horror literature), Creepshow was inspired by horror comics of old like TFTC, among other similarly macabre strips produced by EC Comics. Those comics contained very disturbing dark comedies, and ironically enough, kids were their biggest audience. Most of the tales would involve a morality play, where a jerk gets his karmic punishment through some fitting fate related to his sins.
I grew up almost a decade after both TFTC and Creepshow were a thing, and my introduction to such morbid stories was through The Twilight Zone, and it was not even the original version, but the 2002 reboot with only one measly season. Thankfully, through the magic of cable TV, I caught Creepshow one day (still a child barely hitting puberty), or the sequel anyway, and I was instantly hooked. In spite of having a playful and tongue-in-cheek tone, both Creepshows were very disturbing and gruesome, not the kind of stuff you would expect kids to enjoy. And yet, kids dig this stuff for some reason, probably due to adrenaline rush you get when you get scared. It also helps that the practical effects of the movie look very believable, but seeing as "Night of the Living Dead" Romero is involved, I'm hardly surprised.
The first Creepshow featured five stories and a sixth "wraparound" story serving as the prologue and epilogue. One thing I realized as I started analyzing each story separately was that Creepshow works better as a whole rather than the sum of its parts because each story is short and light on content. They are still frightening, don't get me wrong, but they are just more effective when you see them as a package together to build up a series of consecutive scares.
Admittedly, some of the segments did lose their flavor, especially because this was either my first or second rewatch. Some of the surprise elements were no longer there. The first story in particular, Father's Day, did drag the pacing down a bit. A dysfunctional family gets together for a dinner on the same day that the patriarch of the family was murdered, the titular father's day. It doesn't take a spoiler to know where this is heading, but I feel like the father was revealed too soon and takes away some of the suspense.
The wraparound story also added a second problem: important details of the stories better kept under wrap were spoiled in the prologue, and again, taking away the suspense. The notable exception that didn't suffer from this is The Crate. Even though you already know there's something dangerous inside the crate, the story is still done well enough to keep you on edge, making you fear the fate of the characters approaching the crate. It doesn't jump the gun and immediately rush to blood and gore, but takes its time to build the tension. It's probably the best story out of the anthology in my opinion.
Another noteworthy story is They're Creeping Up on You, a very symbolic tale about an agoraphobic with a hatred for bugs - figurative ones and otherwise. This was the hardest part of the movie to watch because it features the insect I'm most frightened of - the cockroach. Just the sight of one made my skin crawl. Surprisingly enough, when they were all gathered together into one unrecognizable flood of roaches, they actually looked less creepy. Go figure.
The epilogue was also quite fun to watch. As part of the unnamed wraparound story, it's about this kid whose father threw away a Creepshow comic book because he didn't want him reading that "horror crap". Naturally, a lot of kids could probably relate this to their own parents wanting to protect their children from the dangers of horror fiction. Being one that isn't always close to my own father, I have to admit it's kinda amusing watching what that kid did to his father. It's something you'll just have to watch for yourself.
As you can tell, I had my share of fun rewatching this film. In fact, I was so excited to watch this tonight, and the sequel too. There's just something exhilarating about being horrified that I still don't fully understand today, but it always makes for a fun movie experience, especially with a series as playful as Creepshow.
My Movie Reviews Watching: Kino's Journey (2017), Tonari no Seki-kun, Zankyou no Terror
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Sept 17, 2020 0:56:16 GMT
Old Man Dream: Update with Three Callaberos. Only about halfway through it at the moment. Because it's a package film with a series of animated shorts, been taking my time getting through it this past week. Never got around to seeing it last night since I got swamped...
Sept 17, 2020 15:44:16 GMT
Old Man Dream: ...in my freelance work. But will try to get through it as I have time to do so.
Sept 17, 2020 15:44:42 GMT
Old Man Dream: Done with Three Callaberos. See if I can do some sort of review for it tonight or if not, tomorrow at the latest.
Sept 18, 2020 1:21:34 GMT