It started by the time I was about 3 years old. I played with my toys while in the background on the t.v. someone was getting killed. My mom was a horror fan. I reassured myself that the characters onscreen weren't really dying, it was all an act. At that point, it only scared me while it was on, then I'd forget about it. I didn't have nightmares until I watched Salem's Lot. The vampire boys knocking on the upstairs window scared the shit out of me. I'd stare at my window as I tried to go to sleep waiting for them to show up.
My mom was a huge Stephen King fan and enjoyed horror movies. Hell, I saw Alien and Creepshow in the first grade! Ironically, she wouldn't let me watch A Nightmare on Elm Street in the third grade because she thought it looked stupid, however I did watch Faces of Death part whatever that same year at a friend's house.
My mom just didn't really dig a lot of mainstream horror like Friday the 13th, Halloween, or A Nightmare on Elm Street. We watched a lot of obscure flicks. Horror fans a generation behind me probably don't know this, but by the time Jason, Freddy, and Michael got to part 3, it was cheezy even to us too. When you watch those and wonder how anybody could like it, we didn't.
But horror movies offer the same uncertainty as any other genre before letting you down, except that a disappointing horror movie leads to the age old philosophy: Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. In other words, horror movies is what they is; They are movies for special occasions: Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day, Friday the 13th, April Fools Day, birthdays, etc., not to mention genres within the genre: Slasher, supernatural, zombie, vampire, werewolves, aliens... I am never disappointed. I always know what I am going to get. At most, I am pleasantly surprised, whereas when I watch a comedy, I am usually just disappointed. More often than not, even a bad horror movie still has that one line that makes it all worth it.
The beauty is that a horror movie can be about anything, all you really need is a character for something bad to happen to. It could be a job, having a baby, flying somewhere, going to the mall, a funeral, comets, fog, a road trip, cars, mining, going to sleep, camping, working at a grocery store, working at a theater, working at a fast-food restaurant, neighbors, vacations, cheerleading, hitch-hiking, houses, motels, sharks, trailer parks, prank calls, missed calls, viruses, dolls, rest stops, religion, psychos, slugs, slumber parties, minit-marts, high school, babysitting, poor driving skills... They prey on our innate paranoias.
As I get older, considering my girlfriend has no patience for horror movies, it's a chance to see tits without having to be too inconspicuous, like if I were secretly watching porn. That, and the breasts of the 70's and 80's flicks were real and the girls you gawk at in these films were more like girls you had a crush on in high school, not just the cleavage and perfect side-boobs you spy in these newer films that all look like identical manufactured plastic.
The slasher sub-genre is my favorite, probably because I was a teenager when I really started to appreciate horror movies, and the characters were usually high school kids. The slasher was usually an outcast who went after the popular kids and jocks throwing the parties. My friends and I were the outcasts going to the video store every weekend instead of parties, renting movies so we could watch the jocks and cheerleaders die. We didn't use guns, we rented movies.
When I originally began writing these reviews, I had no goal. I had read a couple of fan reviews on IMDB and thought it might be a fun exercise to write some myself. I was working on a zombie screenplay and had writer's block, so I thought analyzing horror movies might help. That was years ago and the script is no further along now than it was then, so if the writing seems inconsistent, it's because I didn't sit down and start watching and writing about horror movies in alphabetical order. I felt compelled to write and it's been an continuous evolution.
As you read these reviews, it may sound like I hate horror movies, but I actually love them, which is why I go to the trouble to write about them. You can be complimentary, or you can be funny. It's hard to be both. If you're funny, it's based on the shortcomings of a film, and if you're complimentary, it's the lack of flaws that you are celebrating.
Other than a synopsis, it's important to point out other milestones:
Quote: Finding that one line that keeps it from being a complete waste of 90 minutes of my life.
Award: Awards are for one of the following: Badass, Badass Bitch, and Gilligan.
Badass is for the dude that saves the day. He keeps a cool head and does what needs to be done.
Badass Bitch may sound sexist because the word bitch is in there, but I think it sounds cool. The Badass Bitch is the chick who saves the day, and as much as it may seem that the horror genre is misogynist or sexist, it's usually a chick who survives and saves the day, hence the Final Girl trope.
Gilligan is based on Gilligan from Gilligan's Island. He's the guy who didn't help, just made things worse. Everything is his fault. Much like on the show, every time they almost got off the island, Gilligan fucked things up so you had to tune in next week for another episode. He is the reason the movie is 90 minutes long.
Survival Tips: Usually based on what the character did wrong that led to their death. It can also be things that aren't a good idea that the film reminds us of. Usually the people getting killed are assholes who deserve it, but along the way, good people die for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Survival tips are a loose moral code of how not to be an asshole and basic rules to keep you away from the wrong place at the wrong time. It's all about preparation.
Cause: Reserved for zombie flicks. I'm always curious of what led to the zombie that led to the zombie apocalypse. What caused Patient Zero?
Anyway, thanks mom.