A scary thing happened on the way to the Movie Forums - Horrorcrammers


And fwiw, Welcome to Nightvale is a podcast, which for some reason, I thought had stopped a few years ago. Looking now... I guess it's still going.
I think it usually leans into the comedy more and wasn't for everyone, but that one particular episode is the one that people say does creep them out.
The YouTube video I linked to is just the episode with their standard logo image for the video.

I go to (or at least, "went to", there are logistics in the post-covid world, not all of which are covid-related, that might make the future uncertain), 24 hour horrorthons where instead of giving you the line-up of movies, give you a line-up with vague descriptions. This started a little over 10 years ago (probably why a lot of my epoch references are, 10 years ago, 5 years ago, or a couple of years ago).* The description of the early, late night movie that would turn out to be Superstition was, "American movie that feels like a euro-horror movie." I also remember crossing my fingers and hoping it was going to turn out to be Messiah of Evil.

Superstition is no Messiah of Evil, but in terms of trying to narrow down what is it about MoE that makes its tone hard to think of comparable examples, it at least crossed my mind on the, "maybe it's the American take on euro-horror." I think one thing that hurts Superstition if you have MoE hopes is that the kills aren't slow-burn type of kills. My memory is hazy on a lot of the movie at this point, but I think I would probably compare the kills more to Fulci's movies, just less gory. I'd trust your take on this one more than mine, but I think I'm landing in the same spot, it's probably not the hidden gem one is looking for, but it's got something going for it.

*: Side note, going to these things is how I also encountered Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker way back when.... and also Boardinghouse.
Surprisingly the group responsible for these things isn't how I came across MoE, that was another random small indoor, public screening thing that a person just kind of... did. Due to time constraints I just had to kind of stop going to that one and I think it had stopped some years later. Which is unfortunate since it was also responsible for introducing me to Funeral Parade of Roses and Girlfriends.

My memories are definitely that Fulci must have been an influence. And I first saw it before I had seen any of his movies, so that tactic of making its violence seem so out of place it nearly becomes otherworldly, is what made it really stand out to me. Now that I'm pretty well versed in the European approach to ghosts and gore, I think it did lessen it's effect when I went back decades later. But still something that should be given a shot, because you never know what might connect

Sounds like those people curating those nights know their shit and how there is a connection between serious film and hard core weirdo junk. To me the two are inextricably linked due to their frequent purity of vision, but it's rare to see it reflected anywhere else but the video store I used to go to. I still don't think even I could do those types of marathons though. At least not unless I was at home by myself.

Victim of The Night
Wow, this is great. Almost makes me think Marty isn't such a wus.
I love Shivers.

I'm now wondering (primarily) about The City of the Dead (1960). (hey! that's on Shudder!).
I keep almost watching this (on Shudder!) and then not.


The Child (1977) - I felt the need to rewatch this because it bugged me that not only could I not remember a thing about the content of the movie, I couldn't remember what my opinion of it was - it is not uncommon for me to forget a lot of the contents of a movie these days, but still remember the impression of "good or bad" it left me with.

I can now see how I'm going to struggle to remember this one in a year or two. The plot, a woman is hired to move in with a family and look after a child after the child's mother has passed away. The child has ghoulish friends/pets in the cemetery and a murderous streak. This is revealed in the opening scene and isn't spoiling much of the movie. I generally try to stay away from plot synopsis because it either feels like I'm recounting the plot to someone who has seen the movie or run the risk of spoiling it for other people who might care about such things, and I get self-conscious about where that spoiling cut-off point is. I don't think I will say much else about the plot because of that, and also, the plot in this movie feels pretty flimsy.

I think the summary of my opinion of the film could be, it feels like the rough draft of a good to very good movie. I'm not sure if the second draft would be an improvement though. The strengths of this movie seem to be the sense of atmosphere and scenes it creates (you'll get a good sense of this within the first couple of minutes). You'll get a lot of fog in this movie, and lots of wind in the soundtrack, accompanied with psychotronic noise. However, if I were to apply one other adjective to this movie, it's "stilted." Like, a lot of the movie is 90% there, but you can't help but keep noticing the 10% off. Like, how 100% of this movie is ADRed, so every line of dialogue doesn't have a sense of place, and doesn't quite match what it sounds like it should be coming out of the body in the scene. Not completely wrong, just, about 5-10% off (the lips do mostly sync up, that's not what I'm talking about). Or how you'll have lots of wind in the sound, but they couldn't mix that in with the ADR, so the wind will drop in the beginning as it briefly switches to a line of dialogue (this becomes less prevalent as the movie progresses). And the dialogue often feels like there's just some type of transitionary sentence missing. Like they realized there were ideas they wanted to express to get through to set up the scene or the idea of foreshadowing, but they didn't quite know how to express it. But it's also just close enough, that you can almost imagine the dialogue fitting together, just... not quite. Which then also lends itself to the plot feeling like an excuse for a sequence of scenes where there were images they wanted to capture.

All of that said, this is still a general recommend. They felt like they were trying to capture an ethereal, haunted graveyard tone, and they did it in abundance (maybe, over-abundance). There's also a scene with a jack-o-lantern that demonstrates the film makers could visually imagine and produce haunting images, which just further makes me suspect they had a high concept of visuals of what they wanted, but not really the details of the whys. I think if you channel surfed across it at 1 am, you'd be pretty happy with this weird, little, movie that's putting you off-kilter. You'd just keep perpetually be thinking you were missing something, like there should be more plot there and you're just not picking up on it (but in reality, it's just not there). (also, "other kids"? there's other kids in this movie? where do they live? are there other houses? are they close to the graveyard? I don't think we're supposed to think about this).

The gore does does seem to clash with the movie, visually reminding me of all things, Humanoids from the Deep. It's not bad, but feels like it should be in a different movie. The ghoul costumes seemed fairly good; maybe that's just the vibe this movie had no budget.
And I think the only great scene environment sin of the movie was, the final chase was clearly shot during daylight hours when it both felt like it should have been taking place at night, only to be confirmed in the dialogue where a character, hiding in a shack says, "it'll be day soon," as the rays of the sun are clearly shining through wooden boards (I think it's safe to say they were going for Night of the Living Dead with that finale).

I normally don't like writing lengthier reviews, but the weird mixed bag of quality on this one is going to be hard for me to remember what it's like if I don't write it down somewhere.

ETA: Ah. I think my mind has put together one of the big flaws as to why it's hard to remember this movie.
That flimsiness of plot and general lack of cohesion, plus going full on atmospherics from the get-go, basically prevents the movie from building up a sense of tension as it progresses, or even a sense of progression of plot. It's more of a sequence of potentially (depending on viewer and frame of mind of the viewer) interesting scenes.

I like The Child quite a bit. A film where budget and lack of skill aren't obstacles that ambition can't overcome. One of the better imitations of euro-thrash made in the US of A. I've actually rated it 3.5/5 and you all (should) know how stingy I am.

City of the Dead has a LOT of fog. Comparable to The Child in fogginess. Worth a watch if you like your movies nice and foggy.

I've never actually watched it myself, I just remembered @ThatDarnMKS complaining about that scene when he talked about the movie earlier, so it must've been pretty bad if both of you bothered to mention it in a negative light.

Victim of The Night
City of the Dead has a LOT of fog. Comparable to The Child in fogginess. Worth a watch if you like your movies nice and foggy.
And, I'm in.

City of the Dead has earned the coveted Captain Terror 4-Star Rating on Letterboxd. But so has Schindler's List and Things, so I don't know how much help that is to anyone. I liked it, is my point.
Captain's Log
My Collection

Having had time to sit on it, I feel comfortable with saying that this is the best body horror film I've seen since The Fly. I can't recommend it enough.

Hi, horror fans. Just wanted you to know that I really liked the last movie Mario Bava made, 1977's Shock.

It's set in a beautiful Italian seaside mansion, which becomes the new home for Dora, her new airline pilot husband Bruno and her young son, Marco. Since we never see Marco at school, it must be set during summer break, which makes the movie an effective advertisement for camp since he becomes the target of malevolent forces that may or may not be linked to Dora's past. Even if you've already seen a dozen horror movies with a haunted house and a creepy child, make this one number 13. For one, if the often bad and/or annoying performances by the child actor in movies like this one make you skeptical, you shouldn't be because David Colin Jr. is neither. It's too bad for us that he didn't continue his acting career after this movie because he had potential. Also, as you would expect from the director, it has style in spades, especially in regard to the editing and music. Not to spoil it too much, but there is a scene with a tree swing, of all things, that has cuts that will give you a shot of adrenalin. As for the score, it’s bound to ignite or reignite your interest in Italian progressive rock, and dare I say it, may be on par with Goblin's classic Suspiria score from the same year. Again, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to anyone who has grown tired of scary kids and/or haunted houses. When it comes to horror about the fear of buried secrets becoming unburied, it may not be the best one I've seen, but it's up there.

Titane was perhaps my favorite movie of last year and while no one would confuse Shock with being Bava’s finest hour, it’s a more than solid spook show with one of the best and often imitated jump scares around.

Registered User

In that case, there's a certain John Carpenter film I might recommend...

Beyond the Door > Beyond the Door 2

Both quality works though.

Also, wasn't Rabid Dogs Bava's last. Or was that a different director? Or was it just released later? Otherwise, Rabid Dogs is good stuff.

Also, it took me about three tries to finally watch The Child, but was very worth it once I got through it all. One of those horror films that is probably a piece of crap, but I think there is something interesting in nearly every scene. It's like this patchwork quilt of weirdness. An absolute mess, but so much fun for these kind of stodgy oddball films.

Also, wasn't Rabid Dogs Bava's last. Or was that a different director? Or was it just released later? Otherwise, Rabid Dogs is good stuff.
Per IMDB, Rabid Dogs was filmed in '74, but it wasn't released until '98.

With this movie and Black Sunday, I can see him becoming my favorite Italian horror director. Blood and Black Lace looks like a good place to continue.

Per IMDB, Rabid Dogs was filmed in '74, but it wasn't released until '98.

With this movie and Black Sunday, I can see him becoming my favorite Italian horror director. Blood and Black Lace looks like a good place to continue.
I would definitely make time for Black Sabbath, Kill Baby Kill and Hatchet for a Honeymoon.