Monday, October 24, 2005

Monster Movie Mon. - Big Critters and Big Laughs

Well, after G'ovich's post, I'm not sure how much more horror you good blog monkeys will want to subject yourselves to, but I have a schedule I have to meet, and meet it I shall, if only just. Read on to see how everything is bigger in horror.

They're Ginormous!

Ah, the Giant Animal sub-genre. How can you go wrong with preternaturally large creatures rampaging across the countryside? Very easily, actually. Not surprisingly, most of my favorites have a pretty big sense of humor about themselves.

Lake Placid: Giant crocodiles at loose in Maine. A movie that was done a huge disservice by its advertising campaign, which tried to make it look serious, when it really, really wasn't. I mean, how can you not love a film that includes a line like "Stop throwing heads at me!"?

Them! : The quintessential atomic-testing-makes-things-grow-big film from the 50s; in this case, it's ants. One of the best of its kind for its time.

Eight Legged Freaks: Another movie that had a lot of fun with its concept; giant spiders. One thing that helps this one stand out from most giant animal flicks is that while it is about giant spiders, it's not just one particular type of spider, but a wide range. Some great effects in this one; the scene where the jumping spiders go after the dirtbikers makes the film worth your while.

Tremors: Don't know what's the bigger draw: the giant worms, or seeing Reba as the gun-toting survivalist.

Mimic : The most serious of my Ginormous Critters picks. Yes, there needs to be some serious suspension of disbelief to accept the camoflauge ability of the giant bugs, but the effects and design work are so cool that I hardly care.

Died Laughing

There are a lot of horror movies with comedic elements, but to make it on this list I have to view them as comedies first, horror movies second. Some people might disagree with my assessment of some of these as primarily comedies, but so what, they can go make their own dang lists.

Shaun of the Dead: One of my favorite movies of last year. I love how easily Shaun adapts to a world overrun by the zed-word. I love the references to classic zed-word movies. I love the gang trying to act like zed-words as they head towards the Winchester. And, even though it's totally ludicrous and over the top, I love the choreographed pool-cue zed-word fight. Cracks me up every time. Why? I can't even begin to tell you, it just does. After watching this movie recently, my aunt asked me what the point of it was. Apparently, the point was to entertain the heck out of me.

Idle Hands: Devon Sawa's masterful job of portraying a hand possessed by a homicidal spirit impresses me every time. And Seth Green and Elden Henson's turn as his zed-word friends cracks me up. Not the most cerebral of comedies, perhaps, but a fun one nonetheless.

Gremlins: Some might quibble with this being on a horror list, but honestly, a bunch of little green monsters running around killing folks? Yeah, that's horror. But again, the horror is secondary to the comedy. This was one of my favorite movies as a kid, with the only misstep being the horrible "why I hate Christmas" speech; my favorite part of the sequel was when they made fun of that with a "why I hate President's Day" speech.

Vampires Kiss: If you haven't seen this early Nicolas Cage vehicle about a man who gets bitten by a chick at a nightclub and then starts to think he's becoming a vampire, do yourself a favor and go rent it now. Cage's unique choices are unforgettable.

Monster Man: Entertaining film about a couple of guys being hunted down by a psycho in a monster truck. Some dark humor, some off-color humor, and one really, really sick darkly off-color scene; again, not a high-brow flick, but it entertained me.


Cap'n Cluck said...

What is with "the zed-word?" Do you have something against using the word zombie?

Cap'n Neurotic said...

I can only assume your questioning of the zed-word usage means you are not overly familiar with Shaun of the Dead, wherein one of the characters gets very adamanet about not using the zed-word, which was a bit of an inside joke to horror fans, since most of the most popular zed-word movies never acutally have the zed-word in them.

Cap'n Cluck said...

Okay, I may get called a blonde for saying this, but that confused me even more! You are right in that I haven't seen Shaun of the Dead. Guess I need to rent that.

Have a Cluckity Cluck Cluck Day!