MeFi Horror Film Club June 7, 2014 6:41 PM   Subscribe

As a spinoff of this discussion about new labels in FanFare, I floated the idea of pseudo-formal FanFare movie clubs, in which threads could be posted for older movies and folks would convene to discuss them, book club-style. Several folks seemed interested, with the idea of a horror movie club on the table. Who's on board for a MeFi Horror Movie Club? I figure we can get together and choose a movie here and reconvene next Monday in a FanFare thread to discuss the film. Ideas?
posted by DirtyOldTown to MetaFilter-Related at 6:41 PM (137 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite

I am totally on board.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:47 PM on June 7, 2014


My thinking is, to insure as much participation as possible, the first one should be available to stream on Netflix and maybe also Amazon Prime, if possible.

You can check that on CanIStream.it.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:49 PM on June 7, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'd be down with that.

THIS POST IS COMING FROM INSIDE MY HOUSE!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 6:56 PM on June 7, 2014 [2 favorites]


I don't do horror really, otherwise love the idea of a Film Club.

moreflicks is good for checking where things are available globally.

Netflix US has much more stuff than Netflix UK unfortunately.
posted by philipy at 6:58 PM on June 7, 2014


Would full movies on YouTube be OK? There's a lot of horror movies from the 70s and 80s that are never taken down that aren't streaming on Netflix or Amazon.
posted by skynxnex at 7:00 PM on June 7, 2014


Aiming for easily/freely streamable stuff is definitely ideal, yeah. Though I will say that having to actually visit one of my few remaining local video stores for some of the less popular horror stuff me and griphus have tackled has been kind of a nice weird trip in its own right.

In that same vein, for a movie that's worth it, dropping $3-4 via Amazon or one of the other streaming rental services has worked pretty well for expanding the roster of available stuff too. Though I don't know if the international availability issues are any better there than with the subscription streaming service selection.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:02 PM on June 7, 2014


Not much of a horror guy, but this sounds like a neat direction to consider taking FanFare in.
posted by box at 7:23 PM on June 7, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yeah i'd def be up for this.
posted by griphus at 7:31 PM on June 7, 2014


Let's collect nominees for a day or so and try and firm up our first pick by Monday. Then, we can take a week to let everyone see it and we can ask for the thread to be posted the next Monday.

Make sense to everybody?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:38 PM on June 7, 2014


I'm in for a film club, and horror definitely works for me.
posted by bfranklin at 7:42 PM on June 7, 2014


I think eventually, there could be several, if not myriad film clubs.

Horror just seemed a good place to start. Any thread that gives any excuse to talk about favorite horror movies tends to get rollicking participation, so we can guess a horror club should work as a test case.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:44 PM on June 7, 2014


I don't know if the international availability issues are any better

iTunes in UK seems to have most everything that is streamable at all.

Of course if you watch a lot via iTunes, the cost adds up considerably.
posted by philipy at 7:53 PM on June 7, 2014


A few things I have noticed that have wide availability:
-The Cabin in the Woods
-V/H/S
-Monsters

CitW may be something we've all seen too recently. V/H/S is found footage, which drives a lot of people bananas, though it's also an anthology with surprising stories from a lot of current horror names. The director of Monsters just made Godzilla and got signed for a Star Wars film, iirc. A lot of people seem to be going back and watching that one... it's on a lot of streaming charts.

We're limited by trying to be streaming-friendly, but let's do that anyway for now, just to encourage initial participation.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:04 PM on June 7, 2014


I guess my vote at this point is for Monsters (link to canistreamit listing). It's got a timely aspect (director is suddenly hot) on Netflix, and can be rented inexpensively on Amazon, iTunes, YouTube, VuDu, etc.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:08 PM on June 7, 2014


I'd be up for this, but can it please be more than just horror?
posted by zarq at 8:12 PM on June 7, 2014


Adding a vote for Monsters!
posted by jamaro at 8:32 PM on June 7, 2014


and try and firm up our first pick by Monday.

It's a great idea, but this is Saturday. Maybe give folks a chance to see this thread on Monday and Tuesday before firming up the first pick? There's not any kind of rush, is there?
posted by mediareport at 9:04 PM on June 7, 2014


DUDE. Horror movies are my jam. I am PSYCHED.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 9:08 PM on June 7, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'd be fine with Tuesday or even Wednesday. Honestly, I'm just psyched.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:10 PM on June 7, 2014


I am so on board with this! I LOVE horror movies. A dedicated club would be awesome. I'd watch everything. For non horror fans I'd also support the forming clubs for other types of films.

I do like the idea of giving a few more days to pick a film the first time round.
posted by oneear at 9:13 PM on June 7, 2014


Since we're talking about FanFare, I'd like to mention that I wrote a Stylish user style for it. You can find it here. White, blue and gray text on a black background with dark gray accents.

I just couldn't handle the screaming white background anymore.
posted by double block and bleed at 9:59 PM on June 7, 2014 [4 favorites]


I think eventually, there could be several, if not myriad film clubs.
Horror just seemed a good place to start.


OOh! I think yes, and yes!
posted by tyllwin at 10:01 PM on June 7, 2014


Yeah, I expect if this doesn't somehow spectacularly crater we'll see a whole fleet of movie clubs eventually.

Am interested in Monsters as something I haven't seen yet, so I fully support that for a short list regardless of how Film The First shakes out. Cabin in the Woods and V/H/S are both very worth seeing and discussing too, mind you.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:25 PM on June 7, 2014


I, too, am interested in this fine undertaking. I haven't seen Monsters but would be happy to check it out. Cabin in the Woods is also one of those things on the "have been meaning to watch, haven't got around to it yet" pile so something like this might bump it up into the "will actually see it" pile.
posted by mstokes650 at 10:35 PM on June 7, 2014


Monsters is pretty solid.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:58 PM on June 7, 2014


I'm definitely down with this.
posted by brundlefly at 1:01 AM on June 8, 2014


I am in, and I vote for Monsters. In fact I am going to watch it right now. Of course I am largely a lurker, so my contribution may only amount to watching the movie and just reading what everyone else writes, but I will be there in spirit. Oh, plus I am a huge scaredy-cat, so probably won't have much to contribute besides mentioning how many times I almost peed.
posted by Literaryhero at 2:23 AM on June 8, 2014


But wait, is Monsters even horror? I mean I don't care about the genre specifically, just curious as it seems to not exactly fit into what I think a horror movie would be. I guess maybe I will have something to discuss on FanFare.
posted by Literaryhero at 2:28 AM on June 8, 2014


I kinda wouldn't call Monsters a horror movie. Not to split hairs, but I just wouldn't recommend it to someone who wanted to watch a horror movie specifically when V/H/S and Cabin in the Woods were the other ideas they were tossing around.

I guess I'd recommend Let the Right One In (if anyone hasn't seen that) or Pontypool, both of which are on Netflix streaming.
posted by bleep-blop at 2:30 AM on June 8, 2014 [2 favorites]


Might I suggest "Session 9", which is available on YouTube?
posted by orrnyereg at 2:51 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Pontypool is outstanding. I don't often get the feeling of not being safe in my own home just listening to a movie...

Not arguing that it should be first, just suggesting it for the queue.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 3:27 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I like this idea. A future suggestion from me: Event Horizon.
posted by Pendragon at 4:03 AM on June 8, 2014


It may come as an earth-shattering surprise to learn that I am absolutely down for horror movie club.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 4:30 AM on June 8, 2014


Ooh, horror movie club, yes please.

Monsters is an interesting flick, though agreed with bleep-blop that it's not a traditional horror movie. Seconding Pontypool, that was a pleasant surprise, as was Session 9. Suggestions for the queue: The Thing (1982), House of the Devil (2009), and The Possession (2012) are all worth discussing and all streaming on Amazon.

I'd love to rewatch and talk about Suspiria (1977) but I don't see it streaming anywhere, doh.
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 5:10 AM on June 8, 2014


I suggest Halloween III, Night of the Creeps, or The Fog, but I will watch something that doesn't star Tom Atkins if I absolutely have to.
posted by troika at 6:23 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I second (third? Wherever we are) Pontypool, Session 9, and Let The Right One In, plus I'll add Lake Mungo to the suggestions, if it can be found streaming. The only title on the table that I haven't seen is The Possession, so I'd be happy to try that one too!

This is a great idea!
posted by doctornecessiter at 6:50 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I didn't realize Monsters was more sci-fi than horror. Bummer.

Pontypool is very, very awesome. But from reading the horror movie threads here over the past few years I can also tell you it is very nearly MeFi's Unofficial Favorite Horror Movie already. Would that many people having seen it already make people more or less likely to participate in a thread?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:28 AM on June 8, 2014


I can't remember anyone on Metafilter ever saying "I watched and developed an opinion about this movie, and so feel I must recuse myself from the discussion", so that's probably not a big worry.

Another thing we can consider if what we end up with in a couple days is a short list of several films each of which a lot of people are interested in seeing is to just put those in a hat and draw one out and go from there.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:41 AM on June 8, 2014 [2 favorites]


Pleeeease thrill me and do Night of the Creeps soon, which recently became available on Netflix streaming.
posted by MoonOrb at 7:43 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Good idea.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:44 AM on June 8, 2014


Yeah after watching it I rescind my vote for Monsters. Not a horror movie. Also, not great. I have no actual opinion on any other movies, but I do like the name Pontypool so am up for that (or anything else, really).
posted by Literaryhero at 7:47 AM on June 8, 2014


Mild derail: I did like some things about Monsters but honestly I feel like District 9 is a lot closer to the movie I wanted Monsters to be than Monsters itself was.
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 7:51 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Nthing interest for clubs in other genres. I'd enjoy a movie club, but I can't do horror movies.
posted by immlass at 8:25 AM on June 8, 2014


A whole bunch of candidates (some listed above, some I am throwing in) all with trailers, links to canistreamit profiles:

Pontypool (YouTube trailer) 2009, Canadian. A radio shock jock is on the air as reports pile in of people developing strange speech patterns and evoking brutal acts of violence. Netflix streaming; iTunes is only rental option

Let the Right One In (YouTube trailer) 2008 Swedish. A 12-year-old fragile and bullied boy, finds love and revenge through a beautiful but peculiar girl he befriends... who is also a vampire. Netflix streaming; for rent on iTunes, YouTube

The Cabin in the Woods (YT trailer) 2012. An out-of-left-field take on the "kids get killed in the woods" genre. Netflix, Amazon streaming; multiple rental options

V/H/S (YT tr) 2012. An anthology of short horror films, built into a frame narrative which acts as its own short horror film. Each short film is linked together with the concept of found footage (each segment is from the VHS tapes found in the room). Netflix, Amazon streaming; various rentals)

Night of the Creeps (YT tr) 1986. Cult favorite horror comedy, a pastiche of alien invasion, zombie, and slasher riffs. Netflix streaming, Crackle streaming (with ads); multiple rental options

House of the Devil (YT tr) 2009. A pretty college sophomore, desperate for cash, accepts a babysitting job even after she finds out there is no baby, just in time for a total lunar eclipse. Streaming on Netflix, Hulu Plus; for rent on iTunes, Vudu

The Possession (YT tr) 2012. A couple sees little cause for alarm when their youngest daughter Em becomes oddly obsessed with an antique wooden box she purchased at a yard sale. But as Em's behavior becomes increasingly erratic, the couple fears the presence of a malevolent force in their midst. Netflix, Epix streaming; Play rental

Citadel (YT trailer) 2012 Irish horror. "Tommy, a widower, must raise his baby alone, after an attack by a gang leaves his wife dead and him suffering from agoraphobia." available for rent on iTunes, Play, YouTube

John Dies at the End (YT tr) Snarky Lovecraftian horror-comedy. An otherworldly invasion is underway, and mankind needs a hero. What it gets instead is John and David, a pair of college dropouts who can barely hold down jobs. Netflix streaming; iTunes, Vudu, YouTube rental

The ABCs of Death (YT tr) 26 directors, including Nacho Viaglondo, Angela Bettis, Ti West, Adam Wingard, and Ben Wheatley, direct 26 short films in this loose anthology. Netflix streaming; various rental options

Black Death (YT tr) 2011. In the time of the black plague, a grizzled band of soldiers armed with torture devices roam the English countryside on a mission to stamp out witchcraft and paganism in the name of the church. Stars Sean Bean. Netflix streaming, rental in multiple sources

Maniac (YT tr) 2013. The owner of a mannequin shop develops a dangerous obsession with a young artist. Stars Elijah Wood. Remake of 1980 film. Netflix streaming, various rental sources.

Ahi va el diablo (Here Comes the Devil) (YT tr) 2012 Mexican. A couple finds their children may have been exposed to something completely evil while on vacation. Netflix, various rental
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:25 AM on June 8, 2014 [6 favorites]


That's every idea I have personally, and most of the ones I've seen above. Some other good stuff was recommended here, but either because it isn't available streaming, or what have you, I omitted a few.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:28 AM on June 8, 2014


Horror is not normally on my radar, but when I see some of the folks that like it I find myself thinking: "Well, I like a lot of stuff they like usually, have I been missing out?"

At some stage as a non-horror watcher I'd be quite interested in having a conversation with y'all along on the lines of: "So what is it that you love about horror? What spots does it hit that other genres don't? What are some classy entry points for the horror newb to check out?"

Probably not a discussion for here, maybe for an AskMe or Fanfare thread at some point.
posted by philipy at 8:32 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I am so excited for this! I'm obsessive enough about horror movies that it's hard for me to find ones I haven't yet seen, but somehow The Possession slipped under my radar and I'm very excited to watch that, regardless of what the official choice might be.

My vote out of the ones I've already seen is for V/H/S - mindblowingly scary, a little more obscure than Cabin in the Woods, and also sort of "meta" about horror in a way that seems appropriate for the kickoff of a horror movie club.
posted by pretentious illiterate at 8:33 AM on June 8, 2014


The "out of a hat" system sounds fine. We can gather up the films with three or more mentions and pick from those in a few days.

Then, assuming we keep going, in the interest of mixing things up, we can certainly make future selections from slightly different subgenres to mix things up. I.e., "We haven't done a horror comedy yet" or "Let's do a retro classic," etc.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:44 AM on June 8, 2014


Oh, man, I really liked Pontypool. I need an excuse to watch it again. That said, I'm down for some horror movie viewing.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 9:35 AM on June 8, 2014


I love horror movies and would totally be up for this. Another suggestion to add to the mix if we do it: I think Triangle would be a great movie to discuss here.

Also, for some reason, I thought that V/H/S was an English remake of REC? Don't know if that's the case, but either way I would love to see either/both of them.
posted by triggerfinger at 11:12 AM on June 8, 2014


Quarantine is the English language remake of [REC] that you're thinking of, I think.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:18 AM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I won't post a list, as my tastes tend toward the old and/or weird (I'm so with you on Suspiria, Two unicycles and some duct tape!), but I'll second/third Session 9 and Let the Right One In.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 11:25 AM on June 8, 2014


Ooh, I like this idea.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:27 AM on June 8, 2014


Session 9 is awesome but isn't streaming or for digital rental anywhere. canistreamit listing
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:31 AM on June 8, 2014


Here's Session 9.
posted by orrnyereg at 12:21 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


This thread is giving me some great ideas for movies to watch. I just started watching Black Death. Monsters has been on my list too, though it sounds like that's out of the running for the horror club. I look forward to the FanFare threads!
posted by isthmus at 12:37 PM on June 8, 2014


I just watched The ABCs of Death and am now convinced we can skip that one. Some of the 26 segments are very good. A few are warped but interesting. But plenty of them stink. And for reasons I do not understand, a good half dozen of them involve toilets and/or farting. Ugh. Pass.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:50 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


DirtyOldTown, thanks for validating my decision to bail on that one. I think I got up to G or H before I gave up on it... loved the idea it but the content and execution weren't working for me at all. Way to take one for the team.
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 2:09 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


The only thing that will stick in my head from that is "Perhaps the black gas is a fart from the ass of God."
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:15 PM on June 8, 2014


Aw, I quite liked ABCs, but then I went into it with low expectations specifically because I was in the mood for anthology horror shorts and had already watched V/H/S and V/H/S/2 (which, the working title for the latter was SVHS and it is a fucking crime that they changed it).

Me and griphus decided on a whim today while finishing up our In The Mouths of Madness episode that we're doing Paranormal Activity next episode, not because it's a superlative horror film (it isn't) but because we haven't really tackled the found-surveillance horror genre yet and there's some really interesting cinematographic implications of making almost an entire film out of static camera shots while accomplishing a good sense of tension. The distinction between that mode and the shakycam/POV-dominant approach of much of the prior body of found footage flicks is something I would love to talk about with mefites at some point, beyond just talking griphus' ear off and vice versa; in the long run it might be fun to do a whole contemporary found-footage festival to look at e.g. Blair Witch onward and talk about the evolution of the form.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:38 PM on June 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


Quarantine is the English language remake of [REC] that you're thinking of, I think.

If we're doing one or the other, please please please let's do [REC]. Quarantine adds nothing and basically removes the expository elements of the ending.
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:00 PM on June 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


in the long run it might be fun to do a whole contemporary found-footage festival to look at e.g. Blair Witch onward and talk about the evolution of the form.

I've got like a whole nascent essay about the subtextual differences between Ishiro Honda's original Godzilla and 2008's Cloverfield because I think it's pretty fascinating.
posted by shakespeherian at 3:02 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Are the [REC] sequels any good? I've only seen the original (which is terrific).
posted by DirtyOldTown at 3:04 PM on June 8, 2014


I have an entire theory that the Paranormal Activity films are about the arrogance of suburbanite white people in how they blithely dismiss the supernatural and the spiritual. It's not a philosophical point I agree with, but it's an interesting starting point for a series of horror movies.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 3:17 PM on June 8, 2014


Is there something specific to suburbia that ties into dismissing the supernatural? White suburbanites are fairly religious, aren't they?
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:30 PM on June 8, 2014


Religious is one thing. Open to the idea of possessions, curses, demonic entities, unholy places and objects... that's something else entirely.

Anyway, I'd love to talk that one over on a PA thread someday. :)
posted by DirtyOldTown at 3:34 PM on June 8, 2014


I have nothing to add but want this thread in my Recent (non-paranormal) Activity.
posted by Etrigan at 3:41 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


> Are the [REC] sequels any good?

[REC] 2 is surprisingly good; almost as good as the first. It's interesting because, IIRC, the events of the second film occur more or less concurrently with the first, in the same building.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 3:54 PM on June 8, 2014


Count me in for the found-footage festival. They're my guilty pleasure. I recently enjoyed Devil's Pass on Netflix, which wasn't a great film or anything but was memorable.
posted by liet at 4:02 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


I, A CREEPY LURKER, AM EXTREMELY ENTHUSIASTIC ABOUT THIS. I'll throw in suggestions for Lovely Molly (trailer) or Absentia (trailer) but would also be psyched for smart discussions on just about any horror movie.
posted by hilatron at 4:21 PM on June 8, 2014 [4 favorites]


Count me in for the found-footage festival. They're my guilty pleasure.

Same! Skip Crowsnest, though- it's irredeemable garbage.
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:34 PM on June 8, 2014


Found footage festival! Yesssss. In which case, may I recommend the very recent UK rural horror The Borderlands which I even mentioned in a previous meta thread because I can't stop banging on about it.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 5:12 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Everyone should watch Monsters anyway. It takes a pretty good stab at deconstructing the giant monster genre.
posted by P.o.B. at 5:17 PM on June 8, 2014


That resource that orrnyereg linked that had Session 9, Reddit: Full Movies on YouTube... it's pretty awesome. I'm currently watching Vincent Price in The Last Man on Earth in 720p, via YT. Pretty awesome.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 5:29 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Are the [REC] sequels any good? I've only seen the original (which is terrific).

I thought [REC] 2 was very good, yes. As EXISTENZ mentioned, there's actually some time-overlap between the end of the first movie and the beginning of the second, which was a really fascinating way to set it up, and it continues to be good from there.
posted by mstokes650 at 7:27 PM on June 8, 2014


I'm not over the moon about [REC], but I fucking love [REC]2, and [REC]3...I mean, okay, it breaks out of the found footage conceit, but who wants to see another found footage movie? [REC]3 is something closer to a less outright comic Evil Dead 2 or Dead Alive, and it's extremely fun on its own terms (that is, as a more or less standalone film that is only nominally tied to the franchise).

Obviously -- obviously! -- I am down for Horror Movie Club.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:59 PM on June 8, 2014


I think Triangle would be a great movie to discuss here.

Hell yes. Christopher Smith's Triangle had been on my list since the great Scream Metafilter Scream! 2012 AskMe, which is a nice resource for this thread. Roomie and I watched it a couple of months ago and thought it was a great little horror film - starts off slow, gets odd, ramps up into seriously disturbing, then deeply horrific, then ends somewhere in the neighborhood of hellish. Lots to discuss about the way it's structured, too.

cortex: there's some really interesting cinematographic implications of making almost an entire film out of static camera shots while accomplishing a good sense of tension

Have you seen Europa Report? It's a solid if not amazing scifi/horror blend (70/30, I'd say). The story gets predictable toward the end but I still liked it, thought the payoff was great, and the Life In Outer Space stuff really well done. More importantly, as an example of the found-footage genre it's near the top. Every shot is from an in-world camera (most of them static so you avoid the nausea thing, thank god) and makes sense in the context of the story. Well worth seeing during any found footage binge.

Oh, I'll also second my previous comment about Absentia. Very nicely done indie horror flick.
posted by mediareport at 9:14 PM on June 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yes! I have complicated feelings about ER, having liked it a lot in terms of some of the use of static frame/surveillance footage and the idea of the explicit after-action documentary framing device (compared to the Someone Mysteriously Edited This And Now We're...Watching It? I Guess? delivery of a lot of found footage films) but also taking exception to a lot of the writing and details. Compare and contrast with Apollo 18 which was I think a better looking film but also a lot less thoughtful all in all.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:22 PM on June 8, 2014


As far as found footage films go, one of my favorites was The Bay, which is currently streaming on Netflix too.
posted by MoonOrb at 9:36 PM on June 8, 2014


Triangle is one of my all-time favorite movies. It's not currently on Netflix, though (though it is on Hulu Plus and a few rental services) so I didn't mention it. But sincerely, I could hardly love that movie more.

Apollo 18 was a turd. I went into that movie in the best mood, popcorn in my lap, cold beer at the ready. I would have been down with a good horror film, clever trash, unapologetic but energetic trash, just about anything really. But i was boring. Bo. Ring.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:46 PM on June 8, 2014


I want to like The Bay, and the plot's certainly more realistic than most in terms of its structure, but I feel like that's its downfall- there's very little tension in it, and it more stops than ends.
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:08 AM on June 9, 2014


Oh yes, I'm in. I've got a weakness for the Paranormal Activity films and similar, and a lifelong fondness for the horror genre overall.

I'd recommend 1980's The Changeling with George C. Scott, it's one of my favorites. Better sleuths than me might be able to find it available online.
posted by Lou Stuells at 5:18 AM on June 9, 2014 [3 favorites]


I wanted to like pontypool, and gave it more of a chance than I normally do for a thing going poorly, but I went in wanting a zombie movie, and by the 50% mark we had not yet seen a single zombie, so I just shut it off. The main actor (Stephan McHattie) was certainly compelling, and I was excited when he popped up in A little bit zombie, but damn, what a slow moving, low budget movie.
posted by garlic at 7:59 AM on June 9, 2014


There's your problem, then: Pontypool is not a zombie movie.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:30 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'd recommend 1980's The Changeling with George C. Scott, it's one of my favorites.

Yessssssss! There are not enough s's to show my approval!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 8:47 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


but netflix told me it was! It says category is "zombie horror movies".
posted by garlic at 8:49 AM on June 9, 2014


Netflix says a lot of things.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:52 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


Horror movies are pretty much my favorite thing about being alive, so I'm hoping to participate in this endeavor with overwhelming enthusiasm.

I'm a die-hard 80s slasher fanatic, so I'll keep my fingers crossed for the eventual inclusion of the criminally-underrated My Bloody Valentine. Entertaining premise, superlatively creative deaths (two words: NAIL GUN), syrupy Canadian accents: What more could you ask for?
posted by divined by radio at 8:54 AM on June 9, 2014


Yeah, I'd definitely like to spend some time on 80s slasher flicks. Can you imagine the conversation MeFites would have picking apart that ending from Sleepaway Camp?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:59 AM on June 9, 2014


...the criminally-underrated My Bloody Valentine.

If MBV is going to be included, everyone should be careful to watch the same cut. cortex and I watched it for the podcast and he ended up seeing the one that had no gore in it whatsoever and like 50% of the appeal of that movie is the gore.

The other 50% is the song about the movie played over the ending credits.
posted by griphus at 9:27 AM on June 9, 2014


Seconding the votes for 80s slasher flicks. It's a genre I love so I welcome the chance to find more gems.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 9:41 AM on June 9, 2014


Pontypool is totally a zombie film, if you accept that there are many different sub-categories of zombies: some fast, some slow, some living, some dead, some infected, some cursed, some pharmacological, some linguistic, etc.

DOWN WITH ZOMBIE PURISM.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 11:07 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


Let's not give away too much of Pontypool. Half the fun is the weirdness of it.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:15 AM on June 9, 2014


DOWN WITH ZOMBIE PURISM.

Exactly. The zombie genre is a big tent. A big, rotten, shambling tent.
posted by brundlefly at 11:32 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


The real question is is there really a Philosophical Zombie genre or are there merely films that resemble that genre in the limited ways we can observe them?
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:36 AM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


nominating Les Revenants for Philosophical Zombie Movie
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 11:40 AM on June 9, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'd say that Pontypool, like 28 Days Later, et al., is in the genre of zombie film, which is not the same thing as it being a film with zombies in it.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:34 PM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


I liked The Signal (2008) speaking of sorrrta-zombie-movies, [exquisite corpse joke]. I also liked Kairo (aka Pulse, the 2001 Japanese movie, not the 2006 US remake).
posted by bleep-blop at 1:14 PM on June 9, 2014


I'm totally up for this, if only because the power of the hivemind can point me towards new (to me) horror movies that I wouldn't have thought to watch.
posted by sparklemotion at 1:34 PM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


Its streaming availability is too low right now, but You're Next is one I am itching to do.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:57 PM on June 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


Hell yes, this needs to happen. Rue Morgue magazine is hit-or-miss, but this promises to be excellent.
posted by quiet earth at 4:38 PM on June 9, 2014


I'd say that Pontypool, like 28 Days Later, et al., is in the genre of zombie film, which is not the same thing as it being a film with zombies in it.

So like Richard Matheson's I Am Legend?
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:03 PM on June 9, 2014


I might be stretching this a bit, but possibly The Day of the Triffids as well?
posted by brundlefly at 6:29 PM on June 9, 2014


I'm totally in for this (though I think I've already seen about 90% of the films mentioned so far). I'll throw in another vote for Absentia.

For a title that's over on the thriller / serial-killer side of the genre, I'll throw in the Korean movie I Saw the Devil (2011), which is streaming on Netflix.

I got some low-budget oldie nominations, too. I quite like Carnival of Souls (1962), available here, and then there is the underrated Incubus (1966), which stars William Shatner, is completely written in Esperanto, and is available on youtube.
posted by whir at 9:07 PM on June 9, 2014 [2 favorites]


So...uh is there a timeline on when we are going to start? I thought it was originally supposed to be yesterday but it seems like we decided to change. Apologies if this has been answered above and I just missed it.
posted by Literaryhero at 3:49 AM on June 10, 2014


I'm going to collect the movies that have 3+ mentions this evening, then draw one out of a hat. We'll announce it tomorrow then we'll all have a week to watch the movie before we ask the mods to post a FanFare thread for us.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:05 AM on June 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Ah, forgot to put in my nominations!

Pontypool (2008)
Theatre of Blood (1973)
House of the Devil (2009)
Carnival of Souls (1962)
Night of the Demon (1957)
The Borderlands (2014)
Monsters (2010)
The Innocents (1961)
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
Kill List (2011)

I suspect the numbers are against me, but FWIW count me as a vote against V/H/S (I will watch all sorts of exploitation filth, but IMO that film is disappointingly front-loaded with weird gender stuff by a bunch of modern dude-directors who ought to know better).
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 6:32 AM on June 10, 2014


Just saw Stephen McHattie in Haunter last night. That dude must be the king of Canadian horror movies.
posted by garlic at 7:55 AM on June 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


So like Richard Matheson's I Am Legend?

Yes exactly.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:12 AM on June 10, 2014


I have a soft-spot for the found footage genre too. I recently saw "The Conspiracy," which is found footage of an incomplete documentary about conspiracy theories. Layers of fun.
posted by jbickers at 10:15 AM on June 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Yes, I saw The Conspiracy last week and found it rather fun. I also couldn't help but wonder if Jon Ronson's seen it, as it's quite obviously inspired by his Bohemian Grove documentary.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 11:25 AM on June 10, 2014


Hey now, count me in on this deal! I love me some horror movies. And I have opinions!
posted by Mister_A at 11:28 AM on June 10, 2014


I'm going to collect the movies that have 3+ mentions this evening, then draw one out of a hat. We'll announce it tomorrow then we'll all have a week to watch the movie before we ask the mods to post a FanFare thread for us.

*tenterhooks*

I am terribly deprived of people with whom I can meaningfully discuss horror movies in my day-to-day life, and they're honestly the only kind of movie I watch on a regular basis, so this prospect makes my heart sing.

Thanks for getting the ball rolling, DirtyOldTown!
posted by divined by radio at 12:19 PM on June 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm going to collect the movies that have 3+ mentions this evening, then draw one out of a hat.

Beetlejuice.
Beetlejuice.
Beetlejuice.

Oh, shit.
posted by Etrigan at 12:26 PM on June 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Alright, I went ahead and opened it up to movies mentioned by two or more people, just to allow the opportunity for a dark horse.

The candidates are:
-The Cabin in the Woods
-V/H/S
-Let the Right One In
-Pontypool
-Session 9
-House of the Devil
-The Possession
-Night of the Creeps

Triangle, The Borderlands, The Conspiracy, and Suspiria all got multiple mentions, but didn't have broad enough streaming options, so I omitted those. Although Session 9 and Carnival of Souls aren't on Netflix or the like, they are freely available in their entirety on YouTube, so those got a free pass.

Each of the films on this list of eight is an interesting candidate in its way, so this should be fun...

Now to find a hat.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:42 PM on June 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


The suspense is killing me here.
posted by MoonOrb at 4:51 PM on June 10, 2014


The list above omits Absentia and Carnival of Souls, but they went into the hat, so no worries.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 5:02 PM on June 10, 2014


And?

*drumroll*
posted by Literaryhero at 5:23 PM on June 10, 2014


The inaugural MeFi Horror Club movie (as literally pulled out of a hat by my five year old) is:

The Cabin in the Woods

I think we should post an official MeTa announcement. But this was my allotted MeTa for the week, so I can't post a second yet.

Volunteer?

Here's the link to its page on canistream.it:
http://www.canistream.it/search/movie/the%20cabin%20in%20the%20woods

That one is very useful as it has links to virtually all legal ways of streaming or renting it online.

And here's a blurb that is mercifully spoiler-free:
"Five friends go to a remote cabin in the woods. Bad things happen. If you think you know this story, think again. From fan favorites Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard comes The Cabin in the Woods, a mind blowing horror film that turns the genre inside out."

Please don't include the trailer. Those are lousy with spoilers for this movie.

And the iMDb link:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1259521/
posted by DirtyOldTown at 5:30 PM on June 10, 2014 [4 favorites]


Yay! I love Cabin in the Woods.

And, because I didn't get this in on time for the drawings, I'd like to submit two additional suggestions for future consideration:

Them - deliciously creepy Romanian horror film. I am totally down with exploring more foreign language horror films in general (I know there have been a bunch suggested here already).

When we watch Let the Right One In, I kind of think Let Me In might be a good companion piece. I thought they were both very good.
posted by triggerfinger at 5:38 PM on June 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Them (Ils) is French, isn't it? Or is there a different film?
posted by whir at 8:02 PM on June 10, 2014


It's a French-Romanian co-production.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 8:28 PM on June 10, 2014


And... Cabin in the Woods! Nice one.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 8:28 PM on June 10, 2014


EXISTENZ, can you make the MeTa announcing the selection? I posted the info you'd need above.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:34 PM on June 10, 2014


Oh dude I would love to but I'm afraid it's 4.45am here in London and I'm in bed literally moments away from sleep oh god why am I even awake
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 8:46 PM on June 10, 2014


GO TO BED. I'll find another volunteer.

Anyone who'd like to, just grab the info off the announcement comment and submit it as a MeTa so people will see it. I'd do it myself, but this MeTa we're in now was mine for the week.

Make sure to mention we'll be having the FanFare thread up next Wednesday. That should give us all a week to watch/re-watch the film.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:50 PM on June 10, 2014


I am literally going to bed in one minute because I have to be at work super early (and my laptop's in the other room or I'd just do it), but if no one has posted it by tomorrow morning when I get into work, I can go ahead and do it first thing. Because of the new queue for meta, if anyone puts the post up could you leave a comment here so I don't double post? Thanks.
posted by triggerfinger at 9:37 PM on June 10, 2014


Apropos of basically nothing, the wife and I just watched Axe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan, and let me tell you what: don't. It's the worst kind of forgettable shit, not even entertainingly bad, just an interminable pile of dreck made by full-grown adults who should have known better. Bad lines delivered poorly, startlingly bad compositing, and even Joe Estevez couldn't keep me feeling generous. And it's got a narrative folk song at the end just like My Bloody Valentine but the song, like everything else in the film, is worse.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:02 PM on June 10, 2014


I loved having Axe Giant at the local Redbox, because it was a guaranteed chuckle every time I left the grocery store.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:56 PM on June 10, 2014


Whoa! Has there always been a one week posting limit to Meta? I thought it was only a day like the front page.
posted by Mitheral at 12:49 AM on June 11, 2014


Okay folks, I dropped a post into the meta queue with DirtyOldTown's info. Apologies if I missed anything, please add some comments there if I did.

[edit: here it is, that was fast, thanks mods.]
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 3:42 AM on June 11, 2014 [4 favorites]


Whoa! Has there always been a one week posting limit to Meta? I thought it was only a day like the front page.

For as long as I can recall, yeah. Probably grew out of some sort of pattern of impulse control problems is my guess.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:27 AM on June 11, 2014


It began in 2002.
posted by zarq at 7:40 AM on June 11, 2014


As a response to MiguelCardoso posting more often than some users were comfortable with.
posted by zarq at 7:41 AM on June 11, 2014


Ha! Come back to us, migs.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:49 AM on June 11, 2014


BTW, while there's no harm in leaving this MeTa open, there's no real need for it either now that the other one exists.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:38 AM on June 11, 2014


Wait don't close it yet. I failed to succinctify this comment, now I just want to shove it out the door.

(Broad general SPOILERS about structures of some horror movies I guess.)

At some stage as a non-horror watcher I'd be quite interested in having a conversation with y'all along on the lines of: "So what is it that you love about horror? What spots does it hit that other genres don't? What are some classy entry points for the horror newb to check out?"

One of my favorite things about horror movies are scenes like this one from Poltergeist (link very SFW).

I feel most like horror movies have.. I dunno, 5 steps.

1) Here we are, just some normal doofuses.
2) Little disturbing things are happening but we laugh it off/don't notice/think someone's imagining it.
3) WTF, things are totally fucked up and some of us are missing.
4) This sucks this sucks this sucks.
(Probably some research happens somewhere in here)
5) We go on a mini-action movie adventure to the final confrontation. (Alternatively, just stumble into it.)

(Of course not all films progress through the steps directly. There's often advancing and retreating. For some films it's like a series of episodes just doing 1-3 or 2-4 over and over again, rinse and repeat. Most slasher flicks are kinda like this, also The Grudge, Hellraiser, the Final Destination movies, etc.)

Stereotypically, I think horror films focus on steps 3-4 and those are the most obviously unique parts of horror movies. In stereotypical horror the characters are pretty character-y, and steps 1 and 2 are done in extremely knowing/winking ways. (I think this helps defuse some of the awful-ness of the horror step and permits (requires?) more shocking violence.) There's a certain meta-ness to the formula itself, and so you can really go crazy with being meta-formulaic and make movies like Scream or Cabin in the Woods. Though I think one of the reasons people really liked You're Next is that it played the formula pretty straight and still worked.

I can like all that stuff too, but I really like stage 1. Horror movies can present mundane reality in a way that is somehow more authentic than other genres. They can get away with very human characters, and you pay close attention because you know steps 2-5 are coming. You're looking for the cracks, you're appreciating small details. Bad films squander this on mirror scares (or my pet peeve, the ol' shadowy figure dashing across the extreme foreground unbeknownst to a main character; (however, unbeknownst figures/faces in the extreme background are legit scary)), while the good ones use it to pull you into the movie.

So, I like the horror films that play up steps 1-2, the slow burn ones like Rosemary's Baby, The Shining, The Omen, or even thrillers that barely move the horror needle like What Lies Beneath. Absentia is a more recent example. The House of the Devil is like this too; it has an abrupt ending that makes some people think there should be more movie (in the terms of steps 1-5, it didn't really have a step 5). But I was okay with it because the slow burn part is my favorite.

The Planet Terror/Death Proof movies were a good example of the two different emphases. Planet Terror is very campy, very much about parts 3-5 being wacky and fun, whereas Death Proof is a lot more about putting in the time in steps 1 and 2 to earn a 3-5 that aren't really quite even horror.
posted by bleep-blop at 1:46 PM on June 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


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