Archive for September 30, 2006

Shoot it in the right direction

September 30, 2006

Aside from a misguided slap at Body Double, which is one of the most fascinating films I’ve ever seen even without its diegetic Frankie Goes to Hollywood production number, this LA Times analysis of the work of Brian DePalma is really worth a read. Jeez, I really have to see The Black Dahlia. (Hat tip: the inimitable Jason Adams.)

Welcome back, Barry Sagittarius

September 26, 2006

Ladies and gentlemen…

The State is now on iTunes.

Aw yeah.

(Hat tip: Whitney Matheson.)

“So yeah…we’re werewolves.”

September 25, 2006

Say say my playmate

Won’t you lay hands on me

Mirror my lady

Transfer my tragedy

Got a curse I cannot lift

Shines when the sunset shifts

When the moon is round and full

Gotta bust that box gotta gut that fish

(My mind’s aflame)

We could jet in a stolen car

But I bet we wouldn’t get too far

Before the transformation takes

And bloodlust tanks and crave gets slaked

My mind has changed

My body’s frame but God I like it

My heart’s aflame

My body’s strained but God I like it

My mind has changed

My body’s frame but God I like it

My heart’s aflame

My body’s strained but God I like it

Charge me your day rate

I’ll turn you out in kind

When the moon is round and full

Gonna teach you tricks that’ll blow your mongrel mind

Baby doll I recognize

You’re a hideous thing inside

If ever there were a lucky kind it’s you you you you

I know it’s strange another way to get to know you

You’ll never know unless we go so let me show you

I know it’s strange another way to get to know you

We’ve got till noon here comes the moon so let it show you

Show you now

Dream me oh dreamer

Down to the floor

Open my hands and let them

Weave onto yours

Feel me, completer

Down to my core

Open my heart and let it

Bleed onto yours

Feeding on fever

Down all fours

Show you what all that

Howl is for

Hey hey my playmate

Let me lay waste to thee

Burned down their hanging trees

It’s hot here hot here hot here hot here

(We’re howling forever, oh, oh)

Got a curse we cannot lift

Shines when the sunset shifts

(We’re howling forever, oh, oh)

There’s a curse comes with a kiss

The bite that binds the gift that gives

(We’re howling forever, oh, oh)

Now that we got gone for good

Writhing under your riding hood

(We’re howling forever, oh, oh)

Tell your gra’ma and your mama too

It’s true true true true

We’re howling forever, oh, oh

We’re howling forever, oh, oh

We’re howling forever, oh, oh

We’re howling forever, oh, oh

We’re howling forever, oh, oh

–TV on the Radio, “Wolf Like Me”


September 24, 2006

Paging Bryan Alexander: Dahlia Lithwick has a piece up at Slate and the Washington Post about murderers who blog.

The article is interesting when it uses the web presences of some recent killers as a window on their personalities; patricidal school shooter Alvaro Castillo, for example, listed among the people he’d like to meet one day Tom Hanks, Michael Moore, and John Hinckley Jr. It’s much more dubious when it asserts that networking sites like MySpace or Facebook make criminals’ jobs easier (funny, they seem to have managed just fine before), or that the people killers interact with online via these services are no more real to them than characters in a video-game shoot-’em-up. That may be true, but that’s because, to a violent sociopath, all people are no more real than characters in a video-game shoot-’em-up. In terms of both their development as killers and their view of their victims, the chicken/egg question is an easy one to answer: As the sine qua non of crimebloggers, Steve Huff, once said of wannabe mass murderer Kimveer Gill, “Of course, since he was probably a psychopath and therefore by definition a narcissist, he had to have an online presence.”

All politics is infernal

September 23, 2006

Never let it be said that Venezuelan Castro wannabe Hugo Chavez is good for nothing: His recent rant at the United Nations prompted to explain how Satan came to be associated with the odor of sulfur. Devilishly informative.

Carnival of souls

September 22, 2006

The new Horror Roundtable is up chez Horror Blog, and this week’s topic is a choose-your-own “King Kong vs. Godzilla”-style horror-character mash-up. You’ve probably guessed half of mine already.

Matt Zoller Seitz returns to the Brian DePalma beat by reprinting and critiquing David Thomson’s condemnatory entry on DePalma from The New Biographical Dictionary of Film.

Meanwhile, the comment thread at Seitz’s post leads me to the Chicago Sun-Times’s Jim Emerson, who takes a look at what seems like a pretty whacked-out examination of Nicole Kidman’s career (and naked body) by Thomson. In a weird way I wish more film writing was like this, and in another way I really, really don’t.

If you’ve got yourself an Aaron Sorkin-hating skittle, prepare to have it diddled but good by Jason Adams and Jim Treacher.

Finally, the trailer for Zack Snyder’s film of Frank Miller’s 300 has leaked. Holy smokes.

America’s Next Top Scream Queen?

September 21, 2006

So there I was, happily watching the season premiere of America’s Next Top Model Cycle 7 (what, you weren’t?), when a strange commercial featuring disembodied lips straight out of “Science Fiction/Double Feature” appeared, telling me to go to a YouTube page for something called Miss Horrorfest 2006. How could I resist?

Ultimate Spider-Men

September 20, 2006

Ultimate Spider-Man has been one of the most consistently entertaining superhero comics around throughout its entire 100-or-so issue run thus far. Over at my day job, Dylan Brucie has an absurdly in-depth “director’s commentary”-style interview with series creators Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley, running down every storyline in the comic’s history. Highly recommended.

Black Celebration

September 19, 2006

I haven’t seen Brian DePalma’s The Black Dahlia yet, but I had to chuckle at Dana Stevens’s pan of the flick at Slate, which kicks off by decrying the film’s lack of “moral weight.” An amoral DePalma film? You don’t say! This is like complaining about the shocking presence of dick jokes in a Mel Brooks movie.

Anyway, the great Matt Zoller Seitz has his own review of the movie up at The House Next Door, and while I only got about four sentences into it before a SPOILER WARNING scared me away, the sense I get is that he had a more positive take on the film. As a great admirer of pretty much any DePalma film in which a blonde figures prominently (Body Double, Femme Fatale, Scarface) my hunch is I’ll be on Seitz’s side, but we’ll see.

I’ll be right baaaaaaack

September 18, 2006

Apologies for the lack of update yesterday. As you might have noticed over the past few weeks, I’ve kinda quietly adopted a daily-posting schedule that I’ve had no problem maintaining, and my only reason for not posting yesterday is, well, I forgot. But in general you can expect an update a day, until I get tired of it, at which point they’ll cease without notice because I hate these meta-blogging posts as much as you probably do!

But anyways, Matt at Black Lagoon reviews Scream, the film that, whether we like it or not, revived horror as a viable genre. (Of course, things stalled out at a certain point until The Sixth Sense and The Blair Witch Project opened up some other avenues of exploration in ’99, but yeah, Scream started it.) It’s not necessarily a film I’m interested in revisiting, but I remember finding it scary at the time, and at any rate it’s probably as unfair to blame Scream for its shitty imitators as it is to blame Star Wars for Independence Day or Seinfeld for Caroline in the City, so Matt’s considered praise is worth your time.

Everything’s gone green

September 16, 2006

Or gray, as the case may be: Brian at Giant Monster Blog has posted an in-depth review of the recent deluxe DVD release of Gojira, which includes a subtitled version of the original Japanese film as well as the Americanized Godzilla, King of the Monsters. If Steven’s Horror Roundtable question had been what my favorite afternoon horror-TV experience was, it would have been Godzilla movies on WPIX Channel 11, hands down.

Let the midnight special shine a ever-lovin’ light on me

September 15, 2006

My contribution at Steven’s Horror Roundtable this week details my all-time greatest late-night horror TV experience. Now that I think about it, between the viewing I talk about at the Roundtable and that wee-hours airing of Velvet Goldmine I caught about six years later, my life has been totally and irrevocably changed at least twice because I was staying up past my bedtime and flipping through the channels.

I’m with Al Columbia

September 14, 2006

Kinda-sorta big news for horror fans: Eric Reynolds at Fantagraphics is hinting that Al Columbia, the reclusive, anti-prolific writer-artist responsible for some of the most acclaimed horror comics of the altcomix era (not to mention the album art for The Postal Service’s record), may have a book-length collection on the way.

Speaking of comics, if you’ve ever wanted to hear why I’m rooting for Iron Man in Marvel’s Civil War event, this week’s Thursday Morning Quarterback column at Wizard is your chance!

Now here’s something you don’t see every day

September 13, 2006

A visual mash-up combining a salute to Beyonc

Carnival of souls

September 12, 2006

Good news: MGM is making a live-action film of The Hobbit with Peter Jackson attached to direct. Bad news: That is news to Peter Jackson. Good news: He’s game, though! (Hat tip: Jason Adams.)

Bad news: As previously hinted by producer John Harrison, the Abarat film/theme-park/multimedia-extravaganza project at Disney is officially no longer at Disney, says mastermind Clive Barker. More bad news: Weaveworld the Showtime miniseries is no longer in production at Showtime. Good news: There’s still every intention of making the Weaveworld miniseries and the Abarat films, as well as books 3, 4, and 5, Galilee 2, The Third Book of the Art, possibly Cabal 2 and 3, definitely Pinhead/Harry D’Amour mash-up The Scarlet Gospels (3,000 pages into the manuscript and counting)…all this, plus fascinating musings on writing, theatre, music, painting, and god knows what-all else in this extra-long interview with Barker at official site Revelations. (Hat tip: Pete Mesling.)

More Barker: That little Google Ads sidebar to your right reveals limited edition giclee prints from Abarat for sale at Every Picture Tells a Story.

Frank “Sin City/Dark Knight” Miller waxes patriotic at NPR.

Loren Coleman at Cryptomundo reminds us that the late, great Steve Irwin once took a turn for the cryptozoological when he devoted part of an episode of The Crocodile Hunter to the elusive, presumed extinct Thylacine, or Tasmanian Tiger.

Finally, I’ve posted my picks for the 7 Best Horror Movies of the Past 7 Years (give or take a few films).

Better Eight Than Never

September 12, 2006

After finally catching The Descent over the weekend (in the tiniest gigantic-cineplex theatre I’ve ever seen, Theatre 2 at the AMC 25 on 42nd Street–great place to see a movie, f’real), I finally feel equipped to take part in the meme that was all the rage in the horror blogosphere a few weeks ago: The 7 Best Horror Movies of the Past 7 Years.

Ever the maverick, though, I’ve opted to go with 8 selections. I tried narrowing it down, but I realized that no matter which one I eliminated I’d be cutting something I truly believed belonged on the list. So never let it be said that ADDTF doesn’t deliver something extra for its readers.

The 8 Best Horror Movies of the Past 7 Years (give or take a couple of movies)

1. The Blair Witch Project: The scariest movie I


September 11, 2006

God bless America
Land that I love
Stand beside her
And guide her
Through the night with a light from above
From the mountains
To the prairies
To the oceans
White with foam
God bless America
My home sweet home

As he followed her inside Mother Abagail’s house he thought it would be better, much better, if they did break down and spread. Postpone organization as long as possible. It was organization that always seemed to cause the problems. When the cells began to clump together and grow dark. You didn’t have to give the cops guns until the cops couldn’t remember the names…the faces…

Fran lit a kerosene lamp and it made a soft yellow glow. Peter looked up at them quietly, already sleepy. He had played hard. Fran slipped him into a nightshirt.

All any of us can buy is time, Stu thought. Peter’s lifetime, his children’s lifetimes, maybe the lifetimes of my great-grandchildren. Until the year 2100, maybe, surely no longer than that. Maybe not that long. Time enough for poor old Mother Earth to recycle herself a little. A season of rest.

“What?” she asked, and he realized he had murmured it aloud.

“A season of rest,” he repeated.

“What does that mean?”

“Everything,” he said, and took her hand.

Looking down at Peter he thought: Maybe if we tell him what happened, he’ll tell his own children. Warn them. Dear children, the toys are death–they’re flashburns and radiation sickness, and black, choking plague. These toys are dangerous; the devil in men’s brains guided the hands of God when they were made. Don’t play with these toys, dear children, please, not ever. Not ever again. Please…please learn the lesson. Let this empty world be your copybook.

“Frannie,” he said, and turned her around so he could look into her eyes.

“What, Stuart?”

“Do you think…do you think people ever learn anything?”

She opened her mouth to speak, hesitated, fell silent. The kerosene lamp flickered. Her eyes seemed very blue.

“I don’t know,” she said at last. She seemed unpleased with her answer; she struggled to say something more; to illuminate her first response; and could only say it again:

I don’t know.

–Stephen King, The Stand

Re-enter the Dragon

September 10, 2006

Cult-fave survival-horror manga series Dragon Head is apparently no longer going to be one of the titles publisher Tokyopop sells exclusively on its website (as opposed to bookstores, comic shops, and other online retailers), a move that until this seeming repeal had generated a storm of controversy and is likely to continue to do so. Me, I’m just glad I can buy this thing without breaking the bank–did you see what Tpop charges for shipping? (Hat tip: Tom Spurgeon.)

Let’s Get Lost

September 9, 2006

The Lost Experience ARG has been solved, and this is the result: a “training video” explaining the origin and purpose of the Dharma Initiative, straight from the mouth of Alvar Hanso himself. Needless to say, SPOILERS abound.


I’m still not 100% sold on the way the ARG treated some aspects of Lost the television show as fiction and others as reality, thereby making it pretty unclear how this little video fits into the canon of the TV Lost world. And there are some cringeworthy acting moments there toward the end. But still, pretty bitchin’. Anything that exploits what Infocult might call the Gothic potential of old media as astutely as this does is worth putting up with some problems for.

(Hat tip: This EXTREMLY SPOILERY entry at The Lost Blog.)

Around the world

September 8, 2006

During this week’s Horror Roundtable at The Horror Blog, I make a startling admission.

During this week’s Thursday Morning Quarterback at Wizard, I take a stab at American Splendor #1, Jack Staff #11, The Exterminators #9, Detective Comics #823, The Atom #3 and more. Plus, some of my coworkers work blue.

Finally, thank you David Taylor for letting me know that Dark Horse has been releasing new English translations of Junji Ito’s horror manga Tomie. How did I miss that before?