Saturday, October 29, 2011
A Fistful of Monsters! (Brad's Picks)
Okay, Halloween is practically upon us. I've been watching at least one horror film a day for the last 29 days. I've seen a lot of monsters. But how can you possibly pick just five...it's a tough task we've given ourselves here at ITMOD. And after several days of careful debate, this is what I've come up with...again, the choices seem sorta obvious--I would have loved to have pulled from left field with The Green Slime or The Sun Demon, but I gotta go with my heart and my heart says...
5. The Gremlin (Twilight Zone: The Movie): I love, love, love the original "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" episode of The Twilight Zone--how could I not being the mad Shatner fan that I am--but I gotta admit that the creature design on George Miller's theatrical short definitely surpasses the fluffy mushface tv version. I believe every ounce of John Lithgow's sweaty fear cuz that slippery beast on the wing of the plane is absolutely freaking terrifying.
4. The Xenomorph (Alien): The first movie monster to really scare the hell outta me as a kid, there is just something primevally scary about HR Giger's Alien design. Sure, the chestburster stuff is terrifying and gross but it's that moment where Tom Skerritt meats the bugger in the vent that will crawling all over the couch. The Alien terrorized Ripley for three more films but it's that first slasher film that I just can't shake.
3. The Werewolf (An American Werewolf in London): The Wolf Man is my favorite of the original Universal Monster movies, and I love John Landis' love letter to Lon Chaney Jr...so much so that I think it easily surpasses the original film. There's a lot of humor to be had in An American Werewolf In London, but it's the tragedy of David that ultimately seals the deal for me...Jenny Agutter crying in the alleyway, it's just brutally sad. And Rick Baker's Werewolf design, yeah the transformation is utterly amazing but I love the big beastie too. Just a big damn wolf munching on Piccadilly Porno patrons.
2. The Thing (The Thing): Whether you're asking me about my favorite horror movies or my favorite movies in general, I'm going to keep bringing up John Carpenter's The Thing over and over and over again. 1. Rob Bottin's effects in this film have yet to be matched and they are out-of-this-world gross. 2. The paranoia and tension produced by the existence of such a creature is endlessly fascinating. 3. The Thing is not just one monster its an infinite collection of monsters. Just freaking terrifying. And of course, it's isolation setting only adds to the creep factor as well as the sense of desperation.
1. King Kong (King Kong): King Kong is the King of Monsters, anyone who says differently just doesn't know what they're talking about--The 8th Wonder of the World! Personally, I grew up on the hindsight is 20/20, absolutely terrible Jeff Bridges version but in college I eventually discovered the '33 Kong and realized the true beauty of the beast. He's a brute you can root for, whether he's cracking T-Rex skulls or absorbing machine gun fire atop the Empire State Building. I Heart You, King Kong. Maybe, next time you'll reign supreme over man.