Warning: there will be spoilers and swearing.
So far into this Halloween season I’ve been on a total horror film binge. Which is rather strange since in previous years I’ve been more of the campy kind of “cook your own pumpkin spice lattes” and “candles with Halloween themes” kind of celebrant. This season I decided to delve into my love of slashers, my favourite kind of horror! Although, not all of them were so good. So, if you’re looking for some last minute movies for Halloween, steer clear!
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All the Boys Love Mandy Lane
So, Mandy’s your perfect caricature of popularity; attractive, allusive and, well, psychotic. Spoiler, she’s the one who planned to kill all of her “friends” and then kill the boy she convinced to help her. I hated this film from the start. The back-story – as far as I can tell without much research – is that she decides to kill them because she’s a sociopath. Which is all good and fine for a horror film. If it weren’t the the reason why she is the most boring character in the fucking world.
To me, it was pretty obvious that she was playing the sociopath from the beginning. She just never seemed to care about anything. She doesn’t even go as far as to pretend to have facial expressions which makes it so annoying when all we’re left to do is watch this boring girl Frankenstein her way through countless social interactions.
The plot was mildly unique. I liked the depth of all the other characters and it looked as stunning cinematography-wise as your typical art-house – film festival kind of thang. But in my mind, it would have made a perfect monologue, internally narrated play, anything other than a film in which you watch a girl stare blankly at every situation that she comes across.
Dead Man’s Curve (AKA The Curve) (1998)
first I was attracted by the premise: there’s a rumor that if you’re
roommate in collage commits suicide you in-return get an automatic
four-point-o. So, some kids decide to kill their friend and frame it as
a suicide. But this is another film where the ending ruined whatever hope
it had to redem itself plot-wise. Instead of groundbreaking plot-twists and action, it just spun more web around the point of the film. Sure, the film was supposed to permeate an atmosphere of
confusion, where the audience would question every character due to the
pressures of collage graduates. But what they actually did was bring a random dude back
from the dead – this wasn’t too bad of a twist actually – and turned all
the characters into assholes – but this series of twists was absolutely
Redeeming quality: Matthew Lillard and his totally-kickass acting. Okay, it’s not the best acting but he’ll always be one of my favourite actors.
Dead Tone (Originally 7eventy 5ive) (2007)
Sure, when I was looking for a film to watch I was looking more towards the typical college party thriller with typical horror archetypes: the virginal one, the “slutty” one, the total dick (that’s usually with the “slutty” one), etc. But the characters are a bit of a double edged sword. I loved that they were introduced well and most of them were more than one dimensional caricatures. But the ending ruined anything I could have liked about this movie. A sudden insane-twin brother plot and your typical blame the black guy kind-of-ending. Why was there an along-side-running mystery plot anyway? It didn’t fit with the main genre, it ruined the ending and finished by leaving the characters were paper-thin – thanks random detectives.
Jeepers Creepers II (2003)
When I watched the original film in this short-lived (but apparently continuing onto a third film) series, I hadn’t realised it was supposed to be a
mythical/supernatural flick. The first film I didn’t mind because the beginning was so suspenseful. Back when I thought it was just your typical crazy redneck serial killer. But it turns out it’s a winged-beast that returns to the same highway every twenty-three years for twenty-three days to feast on body-parts of the unsuspecting.
The reason the second film let me down so much was for two main reasons. One, there was no suspense. It would have been interesting to see another group of people coming to terms with the fact that not a man but an immortal beast was hunting them down. I feel that getting-to-know the monster is the most interesting part. Secondly, and most importantly, the lore was mushed together, unexplained and some parts of it were rejected all together. Not once was the song “Jeepers Creepers” played.
Overall, it was a let down, but it was also a let down that I saw coming from a mile away.
My own Halloween will be filled with horror films and hopefully gingerbread men! Do you have any recommendations of films I should add to my own list? Or, more importantly, films I shouldn’t watch? I’m trying to my favourite horror films up on Wednesday. It’ll be a nice reprise from the line-by-line grammar checks that have ruled my life lately (you’re probably sick of listening to me whine about it). But Halloween is extra special for me each year because it’s the same day I finish another year of University.