Saturday, May 21, 2016

Night Terrors

Terror Train (1980) was a film I had been unfamiliar with until not long before its release on DVD around 2004. The slasher genre was receiving a renaissance after Scream (1996) went on a tear, and so a new generation was interested in what was to offer from the past. Curtis rode this fame train when she reappeared in the genre with her return to the Halloween franchise and Laurie Strode in Halloween H20 (1998). I'm one of those who loves to encounter new discoveries from the past, like a coal miner eking out from the tunnels the right ore. Still this film, Terror Train, wasn't a slasher film that set the world on fire in 1980. It made maybe 4 million of its bank back. In fact, despite what is considered a popular genre item from the same period, Prom Night (1980) didn't exactly hit the mother lode, either making about 7 million. Just the same, both will probably maintain exposure and eyes to them for the foreseeable future. That's all that matters in the end. And Jamie Lee Curtis will continue to attain an audience who looks to her as a type of standard bearer. In TT this film is particularly a good showcase for her. I think, in fact, this film gives her more to do. No doubt, though, she is probably is a bit more iconic--her image anyway--in Prom Night, whereas the train and good ole Ben Johnson add a lot of gravitas to Terror Train's rep.






I don't think this is as mediocre as others feel. Is it bloody enough or salacious enough? Well you get some tits--albeit briefly--from a girl wanting to get busy with Curtis' beau, and there's lots of blood even though not a lot of clear violence spilled on screen. Curtis is more involved in "protective action" in Terror Train than Prom Night as the killer aims for her in the former, attempting to avoid (obviously, for reasons later determined once his mask is removed) her in the latter film. I think of the characters she played during her scream queen era, Terror Train seems to give her a bit more to work with. She's a smart pre-med student about to graduate early and leave behind her gal buddy, Mitchy (the sexy and sadly diminished secondary character played by Sandee Currie). She is in a complicated romance with a guy named Mo (Timothy Webber), friends with fellow frat brother and med student, Doc (Hart Bochner). Doc and Curtis' Alana are at odds, mainly over the affections of Mo. Doc's attachment to Mo, for me, is damn near homoerotic in nature. Mitchy means less than Mo in the end to Doc. Alana spends quite some time running into dead friends, and fighting with Doc. Doc's morbid sense of humor and disregard for what his trick on Kenny Sampson caused the kid tells you all you need to know. The hiring of Copperfield wasn't of his doing and he spends a lot of time at odds with him as well...Doc wants to be the life of the party, in command, and so this charismatic and suave magician crashing his spot is met with discord. The Doc and Alana dynamic is fascinating as the two of them seem to be competing for Mo. Doc will do whatever he can to fracture Mo and Alana's relationship, including motivating her to find him with another girl! But the slasher film offered plenty of night terrors for Alana; Terror Train gave Curtis plenty of final girl prestige, including having to defend herself even after the killer yanked an earring off!

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Battlestar Galactica - And So It Begins

I couldn’t help but think of the unease with AI and ongoing development of cybernetic beings created by man, improvements in the field o...

Ahs

Ahs

Edc

Edc
Blog's Dead all Over
"... perhaps we invent artificial terrors to cope with the real ones."

--host, Donald Pleasence, Terror in the Aisles (1984)

Sbut

Sbut
Snip. Snip

Hal

Hal
There are many things under the sun
---Dr. Werdegast, The Black Cat

hal1

It's Halloween, everyone's entitled to one good scare.

Jtm 2

Jtm 2

Rave

Rave

Mrub

Mrub

Gb

"Back off, man. I'm a scientist."

--Ghostbusters

sm6

sm6

Rv1

Rv1

Nas

Nas

nos3

nos3

Lok

Lok

Po

Po

Ra6

Ra6

dawn

dawn

Dracula's Daughter ('36)

Countess Zaleska: Be thou exorcised oh Dracula, and thy body long undead find destruction throughout eternity in the name of thy dark unholy Master.

mh2

mh2

z2

z2

Hiii

Hiii

Fred

Fred

Ghspo

Ghspo
Movie, so-so, but poster, cool

Enl

Enl

nos4

nos4

gm

To a new world of gods and monsters!


No 2

No 2
Jason Lives

clothes line

clothes line

Ahorr

Ahorr

Cbi1

Cbi1
Case of the bloody iris

Wsha

Wsha

Mouth3

Mouth3
In the Mouth of Madness

Fdfn2

Fdfn2
Freddy's Dead '91

Vyr

Vyr
Vampyres 1974

Sh fr

Sh fr
Friday the 13th Part 2

Vlov

Vlov
Carmilla's kiss

f133

f133

Edpos

Edpos

Ttf2

Ttf2

Jm2

Jm2
El Hombre Lobo

Psycho '60

It's sad, when a mother has to speak the words that condemn her own son. But I couldn't allow them to believe that I would commit murder. They'll put him away now, as I should have years ago. He was always bad, and in the end he intended to tell them I killed those girls and that man... as if I could do anything but just sit and stare, like one of his stuffed birds. They know I can't move a finger, and I won't. I'll just sit here and be quiet, just in case they do... suspect me. They're probably watching me. Well, let them. Let them see what kind of a person I am. I'm not even going to swat that fly. I hope they are watching... they'll see. They'll see and they'll know, and they'll say, "Why, she wouldn't even harm a fly..."

Kife

Kife
Knife is calling, Psycho 2

Meg

Meg
Meg Tilly, Psycho II

ring 2

ring 2
the ring 2002, "the tape"

poster

poster

exor1

exor1
"the visitor" The Exorcist (1973)

Conj

Conj

Tz1

Tz1
"Masks", Twilight Zone

In the kitchen, The Shape

In the kitchen, The Shape
In the kitchen, The Shape

exc4

exc4

Ps56

Ps56

Hun

Hun
Murders in the Rue Morgue 1932

Ps89

Ps89

Cof

Cof
Victor and Paul, with their Monster

pcushig

pcushig

His

His

Efny

Efny

sus

sus
I'm going to grind you down to blood and screams.

--Innocent Blood 1992
Rest in Peace, Robert Loggia

wb

Even a man who is pure in heart and says his prayers by night, may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright.

WZ

WZ

Edfen

Edfen
"Do not enter the city...It belongs to the dead now."

h1

h1
Look behind you!

Bs

Bs
"There is no terror in the bang, only the anticipation of it."
--Alfred Hitchcock

linnea

linnea

Amer

Amer
Taste of metal

The h gang

The h gang

Nlc

Nlc
Old Skool Nostalgia

Hp

Hp

Smoke

Smoke
Got a smoke?

Strek

Strek
Live long and prosper

Hill

Hill

Castle

Castle

SRW

"This seems to be the place where the plot begins to thicken..."
--Spooks Run Wild (1941)

Frere and dummy

Frere and dummy

Mlove

Mlove

Alone/dark

"There are no crazy people, doctor. We're all just on vacation."

--Alone in the Dark (1982)

Lips

Lips

Fhz

Fhz

Ph

Ph

Vestron

Vestron
Vintage VHS

sm 3

sm 3

Monique parent

Monique parent
Erotique in Review

Were5

Were5

f13

f13
November 2015

Bmate

Bmate

--Wes Craven

I think there is something about the American dream, the sort of Disneyesque dream, if you will, of the beautifully trimmed front lawn, the white picket fence, mom and dad and their happy children, God-fearing and doing good whenever they can, and the flip side of it, the kind of anger and the sense of outrage that comes from discovering that that's not the truth of the matter, that gives American horror films, in some ways, kind of an additional rage.

Ms45 w

Ms45 w

Churcvh

Churcvh
The Church 1989

Ww

Ww
The Whip and the Body 1963

Lsho

"Now, no novacaine....it dulls the senses"

--Little Shop of Horrors (1960)

Christopher Lee

Every actor has to make terrible films from time to time, but the trick is never to be terrible in them.

Vampyros lesbos

You are one of us now. The Queen of the Night will bear you up on her black wings

The Unknown 1927

No....not sick. But I have lost some flesh.

Alonzo, the Armless.

Ckvh

Ckvh

Blood of Dracula's Castle (1969)

Glen: We'd like to speak to the Townsends, please.

The Butler: They are not available till after sunset.

Bw5

Bw5

Jill

Jill

Mad Love 1935

Doctor Gogol: Did you ever hear of Galatea?

Lavin - Waxworks Proprietor: Gala - who? Not wanting a statue of him, are you?

Doctor Gogol: I don't want a statue of Galatea. You see, she was a statue herself. Pygmalion formed her. Out of marble, not wax. And then she came to life in his arms.

Lavin - Waxworks Proprietor: [calling to his assistant] Start the motor, Henry. There's queer people on the streets of Montmartre at this time of night.

Doctor Gogol: [handing him his card] Here, a hundred francs if you deliver the statue to my house.

Lavin - Waxworks Proprietor: [reading card] It's a go, Dr. Go... gol. First thing in the morning.