OHC Day 4 and 5 – Comedies of Errors

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The horror! I’m actually combining two days into one post, because there was only one movie on tap for 5 October, so I figured I’d do one big cram session and take a day or two off from writing. Efficiency! Six films in the lineup today, most of them comedic in nature. Get yer ha-has out!

Hostel: Part III (2011) – FTV
Directed by Scott Spiegel

I kind of have this weirdo love/hate fascination with the Hostel films. The first one annoyed me with is blatant xenophobia and cruelty, the second was pretty much more of the same, except with women in the lead roles. But for some reason, if one of them is on TV, I’ll watch it. I cannot explain why. So when I saw that there was a third one on instant streaming, like a sheep I added it to the queue. I knew it wasn’t going to be good, but I thought maybe it would kind of be entertaining? Oh hell, I don’t know. This time, there isn’t really much of a hostel. Well, there is, but that has almost nothing to do with anything. The Elite Hunting Club is still behind everything, but instead of people bidding to buy the chance to kill someone, the whole thing is set in Vegas and people are now betting on the implements of torture, particular phrases the victims will say, etc, while watching – like keno with chainsaws. But it’s all so dull! There isn’t that sense of bizarre urgency like in the second one, with the bidding war sequence. Anyhow, the story is basically like The Hangover, but with more death and stuff. Rah rah.

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The Faculty (1998)
Directed by Robert Rodriguez

I hate it when this happens.

The Faculty is maybe one of the best-cast teen sci-fi/horror/comedy films of the 90’s, hands down. Oh, the heyday of Kevin Williamson, before we were subjected to JUST SO GOSH DARN CLEVER writing (ahem, Diablo Cody). His scripts really crackle, and they come to life in just the right hands. This one really works, and well, because everyone has serious fun with it, none more so than the faculty themselves, consisting of people like Robert Patrick (who probably is an alien in real life) and Piper Laurie. The story is pretty much your typical alien takeover story, but it knows its roots: there’s a brilliant scene that’s more or less lifted directly from John Carpenter’s version of The Thing, and one of the main characters makes a point of giving essentially a brief history of classic sci-fi literature. Good stuff.

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I Sell The Dead (2008) – FTV
Directed by Glenn McQuaid

A flashback tale told by one half of a grave-robbing duo, I Sell The Dead is an amusing film, with familiar faces to horror fans, but rather unfocused overall. There are funny moments of madcap comedy, and it works hard to overcome its low budget (and generally succeeds), but I still don’t know what to make of this one. It plays out like an introductory issue of a comic book series, to be honest, cramming itself so full of episodic situations that are entertaining on their own, but all together make for an uneven experience. Still, a fun watch and definitely not the worst way to blow 90 minutes.

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From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Directed by Robert Rodriguez

I nearly counted this as a FTV, because the last time I watched this hig-octane vampire action film was (I think) at my aunt and uncle’s house, and the bits I saw of it really freaked me out. But then again, the timing is all wrong for when this movie came out, so maybe it was a different movie I saw. Anyhow, on this viewing, I found it to be the highlight of the Challenge so far. Robert Rodriguez really knows how to tame Quentin Tarantino’s scripts into things that aren’t so goddamn talky, although the movie kind of suffers here and there because of the typical QT dialogue. Oh well. Can’t have it all, I guess. Anyhow, we do get a remarkably sexy Danny Trejo here:

oh what. don’t tell me you’re not turned on right now.

My favorite part, though, is that the film is trenchantly set in the Rodriguez/Tarantino Texas universe, and we get a fantastic cameo early on from Texas Ranger Earl McGraw. If this were chronological, this movie would actually be set after the events of the Kill Bill movies, Death Proof, and Planet Terror. Stuff like that makes me giddy with the silly happy.

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The Invisible Man (1933) – FTV
Directed by James Whale

There isn’t much to say about this one that hasn’t already been said. It’s an early tour-de-force of special effects, and Claude Rains gives the performance of a lifetime. Just go watch it, okay?

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The Comedy of Terrors (1963)
Directed by Jacques Tourneur

trust us, we’re professionals.

Oh man, do I love this movie. I’d wanted to save it to watch on Halloween night, but since it was literally dark and stormy outside, this seemed too perfect to watch any other time. Basically, if a movie touts Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, and Boris Karloff in the cast AND it’s a comedy, it’s guaranteed gold. Price and Lorre play the world’s worst undertakers – Price is a crass lush, and Lorre is kind of sweetly clueless and looking to make a getaway with Price’s wife. They hatch a scheme to kill the wealthy townsfolk and profit from the lavish funerals, but naturally everything goes so terribly wrong. Typical.

I’ll be back with a new post on either Sunday or Monday. Enjoy the weekend, fellow freaks!

Views so far:
11 FTVs
6 repeat views
17 total

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