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Slacker Sick Day

I did not have Lame Post Friday this week, because I wanted to use my Hollywood photographs (are they still called photographs when you do it with a Tablet?) while the display was still, you know, on display, even if just for one more day.  Therefore, I will feel free to have a Slacker Saturday, because slacker is actually a kind term for how I’ve been today.  Don’t judge.

Oh, all right, judge if you want to.  I don’t care.

It’s a cold this time.  I thought I was getting it last weekend and thought it would be gone by now.  I hold onto the hope that it will be gone by Monday.  I suppose it is no great matter.  I’ll still go to work on overtime.  I realized something about myself a long time ago:  I can put up with almost any amount of suck for just about as long as I make up my mind to.  I guess that is not strictly true, since sometimes I find myself quite unable to make up my mind to, but the thought has gotten me through a lot of bad runs and tough times.  You know how I like to pretend I’m bad-ass.

Where was I?  Ah yes, trying to write some semblance of a blog post.  I certainly did not go running this morning.  In fact, after Steven went to work I took a nice nap.  I spent part of the afternoon watching an old horror movie in hopes I could get a blog post out of it (possible preview of coming attractions).  While I watched and crocheted, I had chicken boiling on the stove.  I feel sure chicken soup will help relieve my current discomfort.

And just so you know I am not completely useless, after I put the chicken on and before I started the movie, I washed the dishes.  After the movie and before chopping onions and crushing garlic for the soup, I put the dishes away.  Steven will be so pleased when he gets home.  I feel a little pleased myself.

Now I see I am over 300 words.  I call that respectable. I am going to hit Publish then go make myself a nice cup of tea with lemon and honey.  Oh the joy of sipping hot liquid when suffering from a cold.  I hope you are all having a lovely weekend, and I hope to see you tomorrow on Wrist to Forehead Sunday.


Where’s that Monster?

I did not write my blog post at work today, but I thought that would be OK, because I intended to run so I could do a Running Commentary. As the day progressed, I became increasingly enamored of the idea, because I would HAVE to go running or I wouldn’t have a blog post.

It was a bright, sunny day but not the least bit warm. As I walked from my place of employment to my vehicle, I breathed in the cold air and felt tired. Maybe I could run in place on the mini-tramp. For one reason, my husband Steven was home so I could visit with him as I ran. For another reason, if I was just too tired I could wuss out and already be home. For the main reason, it would be easier to breathe and my nose would not incessantly run.

Even so, I dithered once I got home. Outdoors or in, resolutely keeping the possibility of not running at all off the table. Finally I put on shorts and a short-sleeved t-shirt and hauled out the mini-tramp (it is actually quite handily located in the dining room). I asked Steven to find the silent movie I’ve had on the DVR since October.

The movie was The Monster (1925). The description said something about a Dr. Ziska doing… something nefarious. I was just fascinated by the name Ziska, because I’m quite certain a Dr. Ziska figures in one of the cheesy movies on our 50 Horror Classics DVD. I haven’t tried to look it up yet. Uncertainly sometimes adds zest.

I’m taking a long time to actually get to the run, because the run was pretty dull. Another advantage of running on the mini-tramp is that I tend to run harder. I set a leisurely pace outside. I find it easier to be leisurely moving in a horizontal direction than vertically. So I told myself I was burning more calories and building up my legs, even as I kept looking at my watch. I ran 26 minutes on Monday, while calculating and re-calculating in my head if I would be in shape in time for the Boilermaker. Would I make it for 26 minutes today?

Could that movie take any longer to get to the monster? The first scene is dramatic: a scary-looking guy causes a farmer in a car to have a bad accident. Is the farmer dead? As the next scene opens, the farmer has disappeared, causing much excitement in the village. The movie becomes less exciting as the investigation stalls and a lame romantic rivalry takes over the plot. Let’s go, movie! It’s supposed to be a horror movie! Scare me!

I must say, running around my beloved Herkimer looking at houses, yards and passersby is a lot more interesting. Steven and I chatted a little, which was nice. I moved my arms around, over my head, back and forth. I did a little twist, just for something different. After all, it worked for Chubby Checkers. It could work for me.

I made it for 26 minutes. My cool-down walk around the house was only five minutes, instead of my usual 10 to 12 around the block with Tabby. So I owe Tabby a walk. I owe myself an outdoor run, too. Possibly on Saturday, weather permitting. If the weather is bad, well, maybe the monster will finally show up on that movie.

A Day in the Life of Me

Alas, it is another Saturday without Saturday Running Commentary. I did not even take a walk with Tabby or write post cards to walk to the post office with. It was pouring rain and I had a sinus headache. I must say I felt rather ill-used about it, because I have had one every day this week (headache, not rain. I don’t mind the rain). At least, I don’t know if it’s sinuses. It could be a migraine or tension or cluster or just a common or garden headache. IT DOESN’T MATTER!

In light of my aches and pains, I will offer a brief summary of my day’s activities. I had some coffee and took a hot shower in hopes of alleviating the headache. I know there are also drugs for these things, but I have indifferent success with those so only use them as a last resort.

I spoke on the phone with my mother, one sister and my friend Phyllis. I almost always talk to Mom on a Saturday. I talked to my sister to get some feedback on whether or not I should have a Halloween party this year (probably not). I hoped Phyllis would accompany me to an exhibit opening at Mohawk Valley Center for the Arts in Little Falls (she was busy).

I felt I should try to do something blogworthy in spite of my headache, so I went to a rummage sale going on at Christ Episcopal Church in Herkimer. This is where I go to church, when I go to church, so I knew some of the ladies there. They told me I should return at 11 for the Blessing of the Animals (I didn’t, which is too bad, because I could have written a blog post about it).

I looked all around the sale. I was hoping to find some clothes suitable for ragging up to be my Third Witch costume for the scene from MacBeth I am in later this month. I purchased a purple graduation gown for a person 5′ 8″ to 6′. I don’t imagine I will use it as a witch, but if I do have a Halloween party, can’t you just picture Steven as the One-Eyed One-Horned Flying Purple People Eater?

Returning home, my headache was no better. I thought, black and white movie, cup of hot tea, sit on the couch and crochet the day away. I chose Dementia 13, part of a collection of Horror Classics. I’ve seen it before, but there were many parts I did not remember. I paused it when Steven came home for lunch.

After Steven returned to work and I watched the rest of the movie, I changed my shoes and once again ventured out. For one thing, I had to pick up a prescription. I also got a decongestant. I don’t remember what kind, but I had to bring a card to the pharmacist for it. I haven’t taken any yet.

Then I thought, oh what the hell, and went to Little Falls. It was a nice drive down Route 5S, although with less rain I could have appreciated the colored leaves more. I had a lovely time at the exhibit opening. I intend to write a blog post about it (preview of coming attractions).

Before returning home, I stopped at the grocery store. I had neglected to bring the list with me with the result that I remembered everything except dog treats. Tabby was nevertheless happy to see me when I returned home (she isn’t completely out of treats anyways). My headache had subsided but not left completely. I determined to write my blog post while debating the comparative merits of coffee, tea and wine.

And that bring us to the present time. I think now I will compile a list of all my activities in the last week or so that I intend to write a better blog post about. Or I will watch another horror movie and crochet some more. I hope you’re all enjoying your Saturday.

Don’t Pooh-Pooh Your Wife!

I continue my Halloween week posts with a horror movie that is not cheesy. I find that oddly appropriate for a Wuss-out Wednesday.

I DVR’d Cat People (1942) with high hopes. When I learned it was a low-budget, independent film, that sounded even better. When Robert Osborne said in pre-movie commentary that it was part of their series about monsters who needed a little TLC from the opposite sex, I hesitated. Then again, Bride of Frankenstein falls into that category, so I said, “Bring it.”

It turns out Cat People is one of those movies that rises above its limitations to present a scary, suspenseful story. There are no special effects to speak of, but shadow and suggestion are used with excellent results. So with my usual Spoiler Alert, let’s get started.

The story centers around the marriage between a fine young man (at least, I don’t think he’s so fine as things turn out, but that’s getting ahead of myself) and a mysterious foreign girl. The two meet in front of the panther cage at the zoo. The girl will return to this site as her life goes downhill. The zookeeper tells her the panther is evil and quotes Revelations in support of this. That rather impressed me. I know very few people who can quote from Revelations. He quotes one of the scarier passages, so that is some nice foreshadowing.

More foreshadowing happens when the young man tries to gift the girl with a cat and the cat hates her.

Pause for PSA: Don’t randomly give people pets! First make sure (a) they want a pet, (b) they are able to care for a pet, and (c) they are not cursed from some ancient foreign village thing. Back to the movie.

They trade in the cat for a bird, after every bird in the shop expresses fear and loathing of her. Fighting fate, she says she is certain the bird will love her and vice versa. No more about that bird, because you know how I hate to see an animal come to a bad end.

So the Girl tells some scary stories of the village she comes from and expresses the fear she could be cursed. When an evil-looking, vaguely feline woman greets her as “sister” at their wedding party, the Girl’s fears increase. We never see the evil-looking one again, which of course was a disappointment to me. I greatly prefer a thorough-going evil monster to a conflicted, unhappy, cursed one. Then again, I’m trying to talk about the movie I did see, not lament the one I wish I had seen.

Young Man pooh-poohs his new wife’s fears, and they are off in pursuit of wedded bliss, which naturally eludes them.

I blame the husband, and not just because I’m a girl. You should never pooh-pooh your spouse unless he or she is clearly hoping to be pooh-poohed. Young Man goes on to make a number of stupid moves regarding the attractive, all-American woman he works with, arousing his wife’s jealousies.

Things soon start to get creepy, but Young Man still insists the fears are pooh-pooh-able. He gets the Girl a psychiatrist instead of a priest or exorcist or lion-tamer or somebody.

There are a couple of really scary scenes utilizing footsteps and lighting. The body count is not high, and there are no gruesome scenes of the cat slashing away. I call that making a virtue out of necessity, because it turns out to be a pretty satisfying Halloween watch.

Saturday Movie Matinee

I am hoping that this blog does not degenerate into All Back Pain All The Time, but can I just say, Ow. There was not a chance that I could run this morning and write a blog post about that. I thought I might manage a walking post, but I tried it and no dice. I did, however, watch an old horror movie and I’d like to write about that.

Spoiler alert! I may even give away the ending this time. We’ll see how it goes. I will say right up front that this is not a bad movie; I do not feel you would be wasting your time by watching it. So if you like this sort of thing, you might want to stop reading, go watch Horror Hotel, then come back and read this (clearly I do not feel that anybody’s time is wasted reading my blog).

Horror Hotel (1960) is the first entry in a DVD collection I got for Steven some years ago called “Horror Movie Classics.” It came in a tin box that makes horror noises when you push a little button on top. I purchased it mainly because it included the silent classic Nosferatu, one of the scariest pictures ever made. But I find I enjoy the cheesier entries as well.

The first thing that struck me about Horror Hotel is that the opening scene, a flashback to a witch burning in 17th century New England, was used in The Curse of the Blair Witch.

Wait a minute, have I written about this before? At this point it would behoove me to check. However, that would entail making my painful way up the stairs to the computer, waiting while it boots up and sitting on a chair which totally exacerbates my suspected sciatica for as long as it takes me to search every entry I’ve written about movies. That ain’t gonna happen. Oh well, they show re-runs on TV all the time. And scripted shows recycle plot lines ad infinitum. Anyways, maybe I never wrote about Horror Hotel in the first place.

Where was I? ah yes, the witch burning scene later recycled by the clever Blair Witch people. It turns out that this is a part of a lecture given by a wild-eyed professor who is, I think, getting just a little too heated about his subject matter. Of course a beautiful blonde student is fascinated by it all. She wants to go to the site of the aforementioned burning and do research, over the disapproval of her science professor brother and varsity sweater wearing boyfriend.

Setting aside the wild-eyed professor, this movie is lousy with foreshadowing. For one thing, here’s the ground level fog which never goes away. Seriously, outside of a haunted house with a good dry ice machine, has anybody ever actually walked through this thick, scary mist on the ground? I never have.

Naturally Blondie ignores the gas station attendant who tells her “decent folk” do not go where she is headed. Naturally she picks up the scary hitchhiker who speaks in sepulchral tones using language from another century, apparently thinking he’s a perfectly nice guy that needs a ride even though it is just a bit odd that he disappears abruptly without saying goodbye or opening the car door. And why wouldn’t she explore that dark, cobwebby basement where there isn’t supposed to be one?

I’ve skipped a bunch of stuff, which I think is a good thing if you ever want to watch the movie. I think I’ll skip a bunch of other stuff, too. For one thing, it is probably going to be painful to sit at the computer and type this in (man, I love writing a blog; you can get away with all kinds of stuff).

The climax is exciting. I may be giving away too much by saying that evil is vanquished, but I just wanted to tell you that I sat there asking, “Why didn’t they just do that 300 years ago and save these kids the trouble?”

Well, over 600 words and my back isn’t hurting too badly. I think I’ll go lounge on the couch some more and watch some more horror classics. That way I’ll have something to write about if I’m not up for more energetic Mohawk Valley adventures soon.