Slash Vault, Bloody Adventures with MoFo Nostromo

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I never really gave the Saw movies much of a shot, probably because I had other hobbies when they came out. I will at some point as I do like nasty horror movies like Hostel, Wolf Creek, etc.



"Money won is twice as sweet as money earned."



I'm a big fan of the whole "torture porn" sub-genre. Unfortunately, that trend has already disappeared, but I wish it'd come back, since it produced several of my favorite horror movies: House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil's Rejects, The Hills Have Eyes remake, Hostel, Wolf Creek, The Descent, etc. I was never a big fan of the Saw franchise. The first one was decent, but they quickly got much, much worse. Not surprisingly, of course, given the public's questionable track record, the Saw franchise was the most successful from a financial standpoint and spawned the most sequels. However, I've always thought that the Saw movies were more similar to slashers than torture porn.

Torture porn was much maligned and labeled all sorts of nasty things, but I find slasher films to be much more morally questionable. In a typical slasher, the audience is rooting for the killer. We watch the systematic destruction of a group of annoying, half-dressed teens and we laugh and/or applaud when their eventual murder arrives in all its bloody predictability.

Torture porn, on the other hand, typically portrays the true ugliness of such acts. Audiences don't react positively and joke about what they're seeing on the screen, because torture porn aims to shock and disturb and make the audience feel as if they're unwilling accomplices in a horrible crime. Like Honeykid said, there's a meanness to it, as there should be, in my opinion. An effective horror film should burrow under the audience's skin. People should gasp and look away and feel a sense of disgust and revulsion, instead of laughing and clapping and joking about the killings as they do for slasher films. I'm down for an occasional horror comedy, but if I'm going to watch a true horror film, I want it to be horrifying. Torture porn films were. Slashers, not so much.
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At least you like HOSTEL, Captain Spaulding. I like it, too. The first one and the second one.



Torture porn was much maligned and labeled all sorts of nasty things, but I find slasher films to be much more morally questionable. In a typical slasher, the audience is rooting for the killer. We watch the systematic destruction of a group of annoying, half-dressed teens and we laugh and/or applaud when their eventual murder arrives in all its bloody predictability.
Well, we did until they went all PG-13,
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5-time MoFo Award winner.



I don't like the term torture porn; it sounds silly to me. I find it hard to label a lot of different movies anyway. I look at movies like The Devil's Rejects, the original Last House on the Left, and Henry, more like crime films. It's just a different way of looking at things. HK is right; PG-13 has ruined many horror films. I think that rating has really made a separation between kid friendly and nasty. There seems to be no in between anymore.

Captain- You might like Train



It's not the rating, it's the producers. Without wishing to provoke bouncingbrick into another thread about cynicism, PG-13 horror exists because, as we all know, kids want to be cool. It's also why many/most of the remakes are PG-13. For the producters, they're tried and tested films which have not only found an audience before, but are still remembered, making them a less risky investment. The second part is important, because it feeds into the other reason I think they're made. Those films have a reputation. A reputation that younger kids know about/find out about/are told about due to the remake and, therefore, want to see. The rating greatly increases the audience by allowing mum and dad to happily wave them off, save in the knowledge their not going to see the version they don't want them to see. Obviously, they don't see the film that made the reputation, but that's not the point.

It doesn't even have to be horror or old films. The best example I can think of is Taken 2. The first, I'm told, had a big reputation for its violence. The sequel came out, but with a lower rating, allowing them to take advantage of the younger demographic who wanted to see it due to the reputation/their love of the first.




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SLEEPAWAY CAMP
(Robert Hiltzik, 1983)

angela baker is sent away to summer camp with her cousin

1983. when these kind of flicks were selling like hotcakes

Sleepaway Camp begins with a melodramatic boating accident which kills little Angela's father and brother. flash forward 8 years, Angela now lives with Aunt Martha and a cousin, Ricky. Ricky is the cocky and sociable type, whereas Angela is shy and different. Aunt Martha sends the two young teenage cousins to Camp Arawak for the summer. and for the record, i have no reservations in saying the aunt is creepier than Mrs Bates in Psycho



once Angela and Ricky get to camp, we meet an array of characters. counselers, campers, a creepy cook, and the owner of the camp, Mel. the campers begin to make fun of Angela. Judy and Meg are the ringleaders and are pretty brutal to our main character. it's kids being kids in a summer camp setting. bad things start to happen. while many slasher flicks have a heavy revenge theme, i'd say this one is a bit more focused on bizarre sexual subtext throughout. the cast is full of amateur unknowns, which adds a fun and unique vibe to the story

Conclusion: this is a movie that would be really easy to spoil. i was lucky enough to not know its twist beforehand, which is pretty freaky. if i go further in depth it will spoil the movie for anyone who hasn't seen it yet. i found it to have its own strange and messed-up charm, and thought it a hidden classic of 80's slashers... as i hadn't heard of this movie until i began searching through titles to watch for this thread. Sleepaway Camp has an ending that is pretty scary and memorable... and adds a whole other layer to everything we think we just watched. would probably make for an interesting commentary movie

Favorite Kill: Mel getting an arrow through the neck may the be only kill where you actually see what happens. a lot of the kill scenes are a bit hokey in the sense that the kill is implied rather than shown. although, if i am interpreting this other one right, Judy is served her dose of karma by way of a burning hot hair curler inserted into her, well, nether regions. that seems to be what happened

Rating:
+ 6.5 / 10



TEAM ANGELA






MY BLOODY VALENTINE
(George Mihalka, 1981)

a decades old folk tale about a masked murderer
killing those who celebrate Valentine's Day


the tale is set in a small Canadian mining town called Valentines Bluff. every year the town holds a Valentines Day dance. that is, until the Curse of Harry Warden came about. what the hell is 'the Curse of Harry Warden?' you ask. well apparently he's the last survivor of a Valentine's Day mining disaster from 20 years ago. the supervisors were so eager to get to the Valentine's Day dance that they didn't bother to check the levels of methane gas in the mine. a massive explosion ensued and five workers were trapped inside. the only survivor was Harry Warden.

Exactly one year later on Feb 14th he returned and murdered the two who were responsible for the tragic mishap. He cut out their hearts, stuck them in candy boxes and sent them to the authorities. but Harry was caught and put into the Eastfield Asylum for the insane. but Warden swore, if Valentines Bluff ever holds another Valentines Day dance he will return and continue the murder spree. you can begin to see patterns of a Halloween-clone film developing

Fast-forward 20 years. Memories of Warden's murders have passed and the town is preparing to throw the first Valentines Dance since the tragedies. we're hanging out with a group of young adults who are looking forward to the festivities. but the night before the event, the town mayor receives a bloody heart in a candy box with a warning. Harry Warden is back !

meanwhile, there's a love triangle with Axel and TJ vying for Sarah, played by Lori Hallier, who i found to be quite easy on the eyes. she begins to get fed up with these two guys always pushing the envelope for her affection



Conclusion: there might have been a good movie hidden somewhere in this concept. there are elements of it i liked, although it feels a little disjointed. i think it'd be fun to get a crack at a re-write of this story. i'd like to re-arrange a few pieces of the jig-saw puzzle, maybe this could have been better than it was. nonetheless it had some cool images that helped make the viewing enjoyable, despite what i thought a middling execution of the narrative. a somewhat decent 80's slasher

Favorite Kill: there are a number of deaths by pickaxe. although Hollis' demise by getting shot in the head with a nail gun was pretty memorable

Rating:
+ 5.5 / 10









HALLOWEEN IV:

THE RETURN OF MICHAEL MYERS
(Dwight H. Little, 1988)

ten years after his original massacre,
the invalid Michael Myers awakens and returns to Haddonfield

it's the 10 year anniversary of Michael Myers' first attack on Haddonfield. one of the opening lines of the film: 'this is where society dumps its worst nightmares.' found that a fitting quote - in the slash vault ! Myers has been in a coma ever since his killing spree was stopped by Dr Loomis and Laurie Strode, and is being transferred from Ridgemont Federal Sanitarium to Smith's Grove. Michael awakens when he hears that Laurie Strode is deceased, but her daughter, Jamie Lloyd is alive and well in Haddonfield. He kills the ambulance crew and escapes. Dr Loomis, burned face and all, is on the trail of his cursed ex-patient, the Father of modern horror

we meet little Jamie, i'm not sure exactly what her age is supposed to be, but my guess is she is 6 years old just like Michael was at the start of Halloween (1978). she was adopted by the Carruthers family and is babysitted by their daughter Rachel on Halloween night 1988. this throws off Rachel's plans, as she was supposed to have a date with a boy named Brady. tough luck, bc Brady goes and hooks up with the sheriff's daughter who is pretty much a smoke show. what a bastard



Conclusion: found it a decently satisfying sequel. i liked Act 1 and Act 2 quite a bit. it's pretty strong on atmosphere. the 3rd act is full of tension, but i'm not sure what i think about the ending
WARNING: "Halloween IV" spoilers below
when Jamie pulls a Michael at the end
. maybe went a little off the deep end there. i did like this more than Halloween II (1981) even tho the only time we see Laurie Strode in this one is in a photograph. it leans more on suspense and atmosphere than gore. this may end up being my favorite sequel in the Halloween series. i'm not sure it has too much competition

Favorite Kill: Kelly pinned to the wall via stabbing with the barrel of a shotgun. that can't be possible. the most memorable one is the spoiler above, tho

Rating:
7.0 / 10







Oldboy 2: Youngman
I have Sleepaway Camp ready to watch. I've seen My Bloody Valentine, good but not great as I remember it. The fourth Halloween aint bad, but that's when his mask started looking wrong.



starting to get a bit of a foundation. it's been fun having a frame of reference with each new entry

my current rankings for the movies i've covered so far in The Vault:

1. Scream 2 (1997)
2. Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI (1986)
3. a Nightmare on Elm Street III: Dream Warriors (1987)
4. Sleepaway Camp (1983)
5. a Bay of Blood (1971)
6. Saw (2004)
7. Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
8. Halloween IV: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
9. Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984)
10. My Bloody Valentine (1981)
11. Halloween II (1981)
12. The House on Sorority Row (1983)

Scream 2 is the King, for now





interested to know if anyone has a favorite, from what i've covered so far



Oldboy 2: Youngman
Saw being higher than Silent Night, Deadly Night?

I did get The House on Sorority Row for my dad yesterday. We'll see how that is.



Oldboy 2: Youngman
but don't like the twist with Laurie being Michael's long lost sis. too contrived. which John Carpenter admits when he wrote this sequel, boozed up on Budweiser, which he didn't really want to do. so he passed off the director's chair to Rick Rosenthal.
Can you explain this a bit? Do you mean Carpenter didn't like making Laurie Michael's sister? If so, why did he put that in the script?



Saw being higher than Silent Night, Deadly Night?

I did get The House on Sorority Row for my dad yesterday. We'll see how that is.
they are pretty different, really. i may need to revisit my rating for Silent Night, Deadly Night, as that was my first viewing for the thread and i had no frame of reference



but don't like the twist with Laurie being Michael's long lost sis. too contrived. which John Carpenter admits when he wrote this sequel, boozed up on Budweiser, which he didn't really want to do. so he passed off the director's chair to Rick Rosenthal.
Can you explain this a bit? Do you mean Carpenter didn't like making Laurie Michael's sister? If so, why did he put that in the script?
i remember hearing that he forced the script through and admitted he didn't really like what he wrote

i think maybe the studio had put it in his contract with Halloween (1978) that he had to at least write the sequel

somebody else may be able to clarify, as i don't have a link. if my memory's accurate i heard it straight from John Carpenter on one of his behind-the-scenes featurettes



Oldboy 2: Youngman
Hmm. I saw the series when I was young, so him being her brother just felt like canon to me and I didn't question it... when you think you it though, it is pretty stupid.



Oldboy 2: Youngman
I already know the twist, so is it okay if I still join?



I did get The House on Sorority Row for my dad yesterday. We'll see how that is.
I turned it off halfway through (I tried watching it recently) but watched some of the ending. It seemed just so-so to me.