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Archive for March 27th, 2008

Movie Crack: Zombie

For those of you who remember my previous movie blog, you know that I’ve used the term “movie crack” before. It still applies, so if you don’t like me carrying it over, well, I would say, “That’s too bad for you, friend”.

Movie crack is any kind of movie that I can sit and watch 27,000 times in my life. Movie crack can be bad, movie crack can be good. Movie crack can be really, really bad, like that DVD copy of Broken Arrow I own that I’ve hung on to for years and years.

I told you it could be bad!

So movie crack gets its own snazzy little category here on 1,416 and Counting. Think of it as a fascinating view into my film-addled brain, or perhaps a bizarre commentary on (mostly bad) movies. Maybe you could just point at me and laugh as you say, “Seriously? She likes that movie? Oh god, forget this! I’m going to Cinematical where they know what they’re talking about!” (And to that, I’d like to say in advance: I never promised greatness, only the misinformed opinion of one simpleton here.)

Anyways, I digress. I’ve probably watched Zombie at least once a year since I was seventeen and it never, ever gets old. I don’t think the plot requires much explanation from the title, but basically some zombies get loose on a tropical island where some crazy research is going down, and the people visiting the island for one reason or another have to deal with a combination of dead Spanish conquistador zombies and native inhabitant zombies.

Now, theoretically, you could go anywhere to get that kind of zombie movie. Aha! Oh, no, reader of mine, Zombie has two things that make it fantastically, amazingly crackalicious.

#1: ZOMBIE VERSUS SHARK

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Yeah, it’s an epic battle of undead man versus shark. Every time I see it, I can’t help but giggle. The ridiculousness of a zombie living underwater and attacking a shark never gets old. I could be having the worst day of my life and look at this picture (or watch the scene over again) and be instantly cheered up.

#2: THAT KILLER EYE SCENE

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Okay, is that stressing you out a little? Is it making you cringe? A freaking zombie grabs this poor woman from about two feet away and drags her ever so slowly towards this enormous splinter of wood. Fulci cuts from the side view seen above to a close up of the splinter to a close of up of this poor woman’s face repeatedly. The entire sequence is probably not over 45 seconds, but it feels like hours. Considering I have a monstrous phobia of anything bad happening to people’s eyes, this scene makes me cringe every time. From the photo above, I’m guessing you can draw the correct conclusion as to what happens to this poor woman, and the scream she lets out is decidedly unhuman, which is even creepier.

For its time, the special effects were decent and it’s a freaking zombie movie, so take it as what you will. For some reason, though, the above two reasons separate it from the herd of other zombie flicks out there. It keeps me coming back year after year, which is why I’m understandably upset that my very nice copy has somehow developed a rather large crack in it, rendering it unplayable.

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Happy birthday to one Mr. Quentin Tarantino, that crazy weirdo, whose birthday falls on mine — March 27th. Aren’t you special, Quentin? You get to share a birthday with ME.

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That being said, I’m sure it’s not much of a secret that I totally love and adore your movies. Anyone who knows me well is aware of the fact that I’ve been griping and moaning about the fact that I will be unable to attend the screenings of Reservoir Dogs at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin that are being held just especially in honor of your birthday.

You’re a strange fellow, Quentin. You’re so fugly you’re kinda cute, and your movies are anything but original but yet are somehow new and fresh. I can remember my parents renting Pulp Fiction and being so horrified at the opening five minutes that they switched the movie off, never to be reaired in our house ever again. Imagine if they had made it to the last part of your movie. Needless to say, this made you the epitome of cool for a pre-teen who had spent many hours parked in front of television sets watching all kinds of movies, but it wasn’t until Reservoir Dogs that you really grabbed my attention.

And I will never get sick of seeing your Palme D’Or acceptance for Pulp Fiction, mainly because it features you, Kathleen Turner, the main cast of Pulp Fiction and some crazy French dame in a Hefty-bag dress made of gold lame.

You’ve defined a generation, Mr. Tarantino. Congratulations. Have a drink or several, and for God’s sake, will you hurry up with Inglorious Bastards already?

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