[Film] Vampire’s Kiss (1988)

Vampire’s Kiss, directed by Robert Bierman, is the story about a manager in a publishing company whose sense of reality dissolves as he becomes more and more convinced, irrationally, that he’s turning into a vampire. This is a film about psychological trauma and mental breakdown, in which the subject is both in desperate need of help and is very much a danger to those around him.

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[Film] The Vampire Lovers (1970)

The Vampire Lovers, directed by Roy Ward Baker, is a boring, failed attempt from Hammer Studios to create a sexy, lesbian vampire film. If you would like to see such a film, you will find this one to be the most bland, wooden, and disappointing oneā€¦ perhaps ever. I can’t even get mad about this film, mostly because I can’t bring myself to feel much of anything about it at all.

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[Film] Mr Vampire (1985)

Mr Vampire, directed by Ricky Lau, is five phrases: 1980’s Hong Kong, action, martial arts, jiangshi, and comedy. This list of words precisely detail how this film moves and feels, especially since it became its own genre. Any review I write will end up exploring these five phrases, though it also helps to mention its a good film. It follows the story of a Taoist priest and his two disciples who deal with jiangshi, ghosts, and inept local law enforcement. It’s colourful, action-packed, and funny.

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[Film] The Funhouse (1981)

The Funhouse, directed by Tobe Hooper, is a film about a few small-town teenagers on a couples date night to a travelling carnival, who decide to sneak into the Funhouse ride and spend the night hidden amongst the animatronics. Instead they witness something gruesome and must find a way to escape the locked-up ride before their twisted carnie jailers discover them.

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[Film] House (1977)

House, directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi, is a weird, sometimes confusing film about a group of high school girls on vacation in the country who become preyed upon by the vengeful ghost who lives there. It’s a story painted in broad, bright strokes as if it were a children’s film, and Obayashi has said much of his inspiration came from asking his own young daughter about what scared her.

Re-release poster for HOUSE (HAUSU), designed by Sam Smith.
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[Film] Troll (1986)

Troll, directed by John Buechler, is a film in which a powerful old faerie, a troll named Torok, takes over the seeming of a young girl whose family just moved into an apartment building. Disguised as the girl, he terrorizes the building’s tenants as he pursues his strange, transformative agenda. It’s a great faerie tale film, features maybe the most charming wizard ever, and as a complete coincidence, is about the family of Harry Potter.

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[Film] Night School (1981)

Night School, directed by Ken Hughes, is an American film made in the style of Italian giallo – it is a police procedural whodunit about a stylish serial killer and an all-female night school. I’m a sometimes-fan of giallo films – I have to be in the mood, and there are ones I find tedious, but this was well made and I enjoyed watching it unfold. I also appreciated the photography around the city of Boston.

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[Film] Frankenstein (1931) (Hooptober Revisit)

I rewatched Frankenstein for Hooptober 8, and I have already reviewed it, but wanted to write a little bump for the review portion of the challenge. You can read my previous review here. This viewing I found myself really focusing on Karloff’s hands – he really gave them impression that, even though the monster had been brought back to life, it was still struggling with rigour mortis in its extremities. His performance makes you feel how much fear and pain the monster is experiencing, and yet you feel so much of the monster’s pain at his complete lack of understanding and inability to express any of it.

I won’t lie – I always cry when the scene with Maria comes on, and I see the monster smile. Poor Maria – she was the only person to ever show the monster an ounce of kindness, and she accepted him without hesitation.

[Film] The Evil Dead (1981)

The Evil Dead, directed by Sam Raimi, is a powerhouse of lighting, composition, creative and dynamic camera work, atmosphere, gore, and is one of the few good Lovecraftian films ever made. If you’ve never seen it, you really should. Some friends decide to stay at a cabin in the woods for a few days, and must deal with the demonic evil forces they inadvertently release.

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