Final Girl Film Club: Maniac

I feel sorry for the every day, common hooker. For most of them it’s not about getting your holes filled just to get another dollar dollar bill ya’ll for drugs. Bitches gotta eat too.
Psychopath Frank takes prey on these ladies of the night. When he was younger his abusive mother used to lock him in a closet while she went out on her whorey shenanigans. Now that he’s older and she has passed on, he resented her for her abuse and whore-esque ways.
In a sick attempt to reform her, he goes on a hunt and kills hookers to punish them for being out.  And just to add on to being a nut-bag, he takes their scalps as souvenirs. When he runs into Anna, a beautiful photographer who seems totally into him, he believes she may have the power to curb his kill cravings.
Anna sees past Frank’s creepy appearance and porno mustache so for whatever reason, she likes him. He warms up to her and feels that she’ll give him the motherly love he’s been missing all of his life. Too bad that feeling doesn’t last very long.
As a chick watching this, I couldn’t help but detach myself from everything for a moment and think 1. Hot damn, here’s another reason why I can’t date a momma’s boy and 2. I feel sorry for these whores.
Thankfully I have so far managed to avoid the “ode to mommy” type of guy and the end of Maniac made me happy for whores. (If you’ve seen it, you know what’s up.)
If I got anything out of watching Maniac, it’s a new found appreciation for whores.

Final Girl Film Club: Spider Baby

It’s time for another round of Final Girl’s Film Club and this month’s selection is Jack Hill’s directorial debut classic film, Spider Baby (or The Maddest Story Ever Told). 

A look into a loving yet demented “family,” Bruno (Lon Chaney Jr.) a caretaker/chauffeur is left to take care of three child-like adults that suffer from “Merrye Syndrome.” The syndrome causes the kids to mentally and socially regress back to a young age though they are fully formed adults.  The children keep to themselves in the seclusion of their family home but they are also kept at a distance from the world because they are dangerous. Distant greedy relatives decide to drop by to claim the property and the revelation of the Merrye family’s mental state turns deadly. 

The thing I love most about this film is the performance of Lon Chaney Jr. The character Bruno shows a lot of restraint and patience with the children. They do bad things and they feel like they will be hated for those things. Bruno can’t fault them because of the raw genetic deal they got. They don’t know any better so he cleans up after their messes and consoles them instead of trying to establish right from wrong. Bruno grows tired of his duties but he promised their father that he would care for them. Chaney’s song in the beginning of the film sets the tone of what crazy wild ride the audience will experience but his character is the glue to the maddest in this story. 

The other performances are masterfully convincing. Virginia, who is known as Spider Baby, thinks she’s a spider. She eats bugs and trap people in her “web.” Ralph (played by the infamous Sid Haig) is the grunting ape-like “dumb” one and Elizabeth is the whiny tattle-tale of the three. All the characters have to illustrate how damaged and youthful the kids are all without recognizing their physical age. 

The end of the film has two important elements. One being Bruno’s final step to taking responsibility and a questionable open ended-ending. Don’t you just love those “The End…?” moments? Well, I do! I’m attempting to be vague to anyone who has not seen this but it’s a great ending! 

Spider Baby’s dark tone and black humor makes this worth checking out. 

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Final Girl The Wicker Man (1973)

I was very happy to see that this month’s Final Girl Film Club was The Wicker Man (do I really have to write “the original” or can we please all forget that the remake ever happened)?

I was happy about this choice because The Wicker Man is in my top 5 favorite movies of all time. I saw this for the first time about 4 years ago and it completely blew me away.

Sgt. Howie, a pure and down-right moral man, travels to the island of Summerisle looking for a missing girl. His noble intentions are not welcomed within the townsfolk and they give him the run around on the existence of the missing girl. He is left to believe that she died but his strong-will drives him to find out the truth.

Summerisle is ruled by pagans, where free love and teaching kids about sex is an every day thing. Sgt Howie, an ex-priest and still virgin, isn’t down with their practices. He’s like the teacher at the dance that makes sure you’re not dancing too close to your date. As he tries to push his “right” ways on everyone, they are trying to break him down to just give in a little.

An example, and one of my favorite scenes, Willow, the landlord’s daughter tries to use her beauty and charm on Howie to get him to flirt with the “dark” side. It doesn’t work though, Howie’s got a job to do and he isn’t going to let some hot naked chick get in his way. It’s too bad that his unbreakable spirit is his one downfall in this case.

The late and great Edward Woodward took on the role of Howie and brought a stern and believable force to the character. It’s important that the audience know that Howie is set in his ways from the start and Woodward gives us that. We know from the beginning that he’s going to go above and beyond to find this girl and he won’t give into any distractions.

Christopher Lee, who plays Lord Summerisle, has the same strong beliefs but on a completely different spectrum. He wants to do everything he could to help the people on the island and he strongly believes that Howie is the key to that.

I guess I’ll take a minute to bring up the remake. It was a complete mess from the original story. Cage’s performance and take on the role seemed like he was sleepwalking through the whole thing. He wasn’t convincing me at all. The island was turned into a breeding ground for man-hungry chicks. So basically, it was awful.

The Wicker Man is an amazingly brilliant occult thriller and the end still gives me the chills every time I watch it.

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31 Days of Halloween- Day 18: Slaughter High

My choice for today was based on this month’s Final Girl Film Club.

80’s slasher movies and high school go together like jocks and cheerleaders. It’s the natural order that the two be together and unite. Slaughter High represents the old slasher days of killing dumb teenagers in awesomely tasteless ways. Popular high school kids pull a cruel prank on Marty, the typical nerd for April Fool’s Day. The end results leaves him burnt and scarred for life, only to crave revenge.

Five years later, the clique returns to the abandon school for a reunion and nostalgic fun. Their good times are interrupted when Marty appears in a Jester mask looking for retribution.

I love movies like these because you’re not allowed to apply logic to any of the kills or how things are done such as getting a toilet to overflow with blood and a character possibly drowning in a hole of mud. Also, why are these actors clearly in their late 30’s playing high school students? (Yes, such things do bother me).

A lot of things are so ridiculous that it’s the perfect fusion for a movie to enjoy for what it is and not expect to be scared or jump watching it.

The ending left room for a sequel but unfortunately Simon Scuddamore who played Marty, killed himself shortly after the movie was released. It’s a shame though the movie does end on a good note, for Marty at least.

Not wanting to disrespect the dead but the female in me has to bring this up- During the prank scene we get to see penis and this pleased me. Not because I’m horned-up looking for free visual schlong action but because for every one penis we get to see in a horror movie doesn’t compare to the 10,704 sets of boobs I’m forced to watch during an average horror movie. Ok, I made that number up but I’m sure I’m not off by much. I find it a small victory (no pun intended) for some wang in a movie just for us girls to enjoy and guy to awkwardly watch.