Monday, September 8, 2008

Terror Needs A New Exercise Program

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The other night I was playing what I like to call horror movie pictionary with my girlfriend where we would take turns drawing up scenes from horror films on a dry erase board and we'd try to figure out what movie the other person was attempting to portray. I should note that i'm a horrible artist, if I can even call myself an artist for one second, and thus my drawings usually came out looking something like this...

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If it weren't such an iconic image, you'd have no idea what in the hell that was, trust me. Maybe you still don't. It's clearly my girlfriend's reaction when I drop my pants. Duh. Anyway, up came her turn and she drew what looked like a large puzzle piece floating on top of the ocean. Obviously, the "puzzle piece" was the blob. Again, duh.

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But I was pretty certain the blob had never been near the ocean and had certaintly never floated on top of it. Although he probably is pretty buoyant. She insisted he had and that led us to popping in the dvd to settle the score once and for all.

I remember seeing that above dvd cover many years ago and being unable to resist. It still remains one of my favorite covers to this day. I hadn't seen the movie since that day a couple years back and I had forgotten just how awesome this movie really is.

This version of The Blob (made in 1988) is a remake of the Steve McQueen classic, which explains The Blob not as a monster from outer space like the original, but as a military germ warfare experiment gone wrong. The ultimate weapon of mass destruction. And mass destruct it does. The large slimy pink thing (get your mind out of the gutter) terrorizes the rural town of Arborville, sucking and gobbling up the townfolk...and fucking up Kevin Dillon's awesome 80's hair. It's up to a few familiar faces to genre fans to send the blob back to wherever it came from.

I did not realize until this second viewing that The Blob was directed by the man who brought Dream Warriors into our lives, Chuck Russell. Bow. He was helped in writing the script by none other then Frank Darabont. Darabont was a writer on Dream Warriors and also wrote and directed The Green Mile, The Shawshank Redemption, and most recently, another government experiment gone wrong leads to crazy killer beasts film, The Mist. Those are some pretty big credentials for this film.

Those familiar faces that I mentioned. Saw's Shawnee Smith, Lost Boys Jamison Newlander, and Devil's Rejects Bill Moseley all show up at one time or another. Shawnee Smith has a starring role while Moseley only has a minute or so of screen time, the entire length of which he spends mumbling dialogue through a large germ protective hazmat suit, but an appearance from ole Chop Top is always a delight.

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Kevin Dillon is the highlight here. At first seemingly miscast in the role of the badass biker dude, you will surely grow to love Dillon and will by the end of the film be rooting for him and all his biking escapades and stunts, which he can never seem to land. Dillon's huge mane of 80's hair is the real star of the movie, however. Even the blob took a step back when he got a look at this :

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The effects, for a movie from 1988, are absolutely amazing. The titular blob, which looks like a living breathing incarnation of a venereal disease (ala Tara Reid) or a slightly exxagerated version of Michael Moore if you prefer, is particularly impressive in its look and the way it chooses to dispatch it's victims. I was reminded of The Thing many times throughout. The highlight comes when a full grown man is sucked down a sink drain. That bitch could suck the bend out of a river! Fargo aint got nothin on this.

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But full grown men and women aren't the only ones done away with in this movie. The Blob breaks one of the key unwritten rules of film...and kills a child. And for that, I bow to you blob. Not that I advocate the murder of a child, but it takes some balls and sets the tone that anything can happen from then on in the film, and should be commended. The kill doesn't even take place off screen. The kid is pulled under water by the blob and is then shown coming up looking like a zombie, gasping for his last breath, before the blubbery mess finally swallowed him whole, or did whatever he does to his victims.

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When it's all said and done, The Blob joins the ranks of films like The Thing and The Fly as one of the best horror remakes of all time. It's not necessarily as good as those two, but as far as remakes go, it's pretty damn good.

O, and I was right. While the blob did a lot of things, he never once stepped foot into the ocean. Fat people never do, though, do they? Turned out it was the Creepshow 2 raft scene she was thinking of, which still haunts me.

6 comments:

trixareforjen said...

Lol. What are you going to do with me? I can't beleive I had made this mistake since I was a child. I was so convinced you were mistaken, but after all you are Mr. Horror Know-it-all. Either way I think I am more afraid of the unknown black mass in the lake of the Creepshow 2 movie than I am of the Blob. XOXO Good Job, so proud of you. <3

whereinchicago said...

I'm just doing some lazy surfing on a Sunday and have been snooping the archives (hence the reply to an old entry).

Anyway, regarding that game of Horror Pictionary, is it possible your girlfriend was drawing that feature in Creepshow 2 with the oil slick/blob thing that was eating the swimmers?

Johnny said...

Indeed that is what she was drawing!

whereinchicago said...

Oh duh! I'm such an idiot. I just realized you went on a sidebar at the end of the post and iterated that it was Creepshow 2.

Sleep-deprivation gets the best of us!

And kudos for the mention of "Burial Ground" in the Top 50 film post (wherever that was in your blog). The people alive were more disturbing than the dead.

jervaise brooke hamster said...

Back in `88 shawnee smith was one of the hottest chicks of all time. She`s still pretty tasty now but when she was 18 she was truly breathtaking.

willy jerk-off said...

i`m assuming that the picture you drew was meant to be linda blair puking green stuff but somehow i can only ever picture her with her mouth filled with white stuff.