Horror. Worldview. Faith.

Plan 9 From Outer Space – Review

Plan 9 From Outer Space – Review

Jun 29, 2010

reviewed by hallo
directed by Ed Wood Jr, 1959
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This is the second review in my series of the movies showcased in Disney’s Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater.

According to Michael Medved, Plan 9 From Outer Space carries the dual distinction of being the worst movie ever made by the worst director of all time.  Of all the movies shown in Disney’s Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater, my hunch is that Plan 9 is the most recognizable name of the lot.  The movie is about a group of extraterrestial beings (who look and talk remarkably like humans) descending to planet Earth in order to prevent the humans from creating a bomb that will destroy the universe.  Unlike Doc Brown’s lesser degree scenario of the “destruction being limited to our own galaxy”, the extraterrestials are convinced that the universe is at risk of being obliterated.  Since their first 8 plans apparently failed miserably, they decide to give the green light to plan 9 which brilliantly involves bringing the dead back to life in order to create mass confusion and stall the work on the bomb.  Despite the fact that they are only able to resuscitate 3 corpses from the dead, they remain strangely optimistic that their plan will prove successful.  Of course, it doesn’t and a group of highly boring army generals, an airplane pilot, and some keystone cops save the day by really not doing anything.  Fortunately, the UFO housing the foreign visitors catches on fire and explodes in space.

One of my favorite parts of the film was the opening narration by “The Amazing Criswell.”  This terribly written monologue features some of the worst, and therefore some of the best, lines of all time.  For example, Criswell prepares the viewer by asserting that “future events such as these will affect you in the future.”  It really has to be seen to be believed.

From there the movie is just one bad scene after another.  Bela Lugosi, who passed away before filming ended, is seen only for a minute or two in the movie.  The rest of the time a stand-in holding a cape over his face plays Bela’s character.  The acting is atrocious and the dialogue is fantastically bad.  Add to all of this the classic philosophical narration that is so typical of Ed Wood.

So, put all of these bad things together and what do you get?  One heck of a good movie!  Plan 9 should be seen by all true horror/Sci-Fi lovers just because it embodies so many of the things we love to make fun:  wobbly flying saucers clearly hanging by a piece of string, martians in shiny pajamas, shadows of boom mics and camera operators, and the kind of acting that made Leslie Nielson turn into a comedy genius!

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Friday the 13th Part 3 – Review

Friday the 13th Part 3 – Review

Jun 27, 2010

reviewed by hallo
directed by Steve Miner, 1982
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This review is part of my ongoing Friday the 13th series.  You can read my reviews of the other films by clicking the “Friday the 13th Series” category link on the right hand side of your screen.

The last time we saw Jason Vorheers, he was in a big time fight with Paul and Ginny from part 2.  Friday the 13th Part 3 picks up closely after the events of part 2 and Jason steals some new clothes from a seriously run down shop and, of course, kills the shop owners.  He then makes his way to “Higgins Haven”, a lakefront property, to hide out in the barn and recover a bit from his romp in part 2.  Cue a van load of young people making their way to Higgins Haven in order to give Chris, the lead actress in the movie, a chance to confront the demons in her past, including being assaulted by a deformed person.  One of these future victims is named Shelly (Larry Zerner), an overweight and highly annoying guy who holds a special place in my heart for being one of the more memorable characters throughout the entire FTT series.   Shelly has a love for the grotesque and keeps scaring his friends by putting on masks and utilizing fake blood.  He also has a hockey mask that he uses at one point to scare the wits out of folks.  That hockey mask of Shelly’s will make Jason Vorhees one of the most recognizable monsters in horror history.

Attempting to elaborate on the plot is pretty pointless.  One by one, people start getting knocked off.  A group of bikers join the scene for a while also getting killed.  The various methods of murder include shooting a girl in the eye with a speargun, slicing a boy in half with a machete, electrocution by way of being thrown on a fuse box, and the squeezing of a guy’s head so hard that his eyes pop out.   The final confrontation ultimately comes down to Jason and Chris, who after taking his mask off reveals himself to be the one who had attacked her previously.  She ends up hanging Jason, but that of course is pointless.  Finally, after Jason is distracted, Chris puts a machete into his head, apparently killing Jason (and creating the famous cut in the hockey mask).

The movie ends with a nod to the original.  Chris gets in a boat and sets a drift in the lake, falling asleep.  When she awakes, she realizes she hasn’t gone very far and she is still near the dreaded barn where the carnage took place.  Jason is seen looking out the window and runs outside to get her.  At this point, in a complete rip off of the final scene in part 1, Mrs. Voorhees comes out of the lake and pulls Chris in.  Of course, it ends up being all a dream and Jason is finally seen in the barn, presumably dead.  Until part 4!

The film was released in 3-D, being the first Paramount Pictures 3-D release.  By this point, the series has established its formula of making sure a bunch of young people are at a secluded place so Jason can kill them.  Interestingly, from this point on, the series will build on people who have mental issues finding themselves at odds with Jason.  This movie is only notable for the introduction of Jason’s hockey mask and a few fun scenes.  Other than that, not too much here to hang your hat on.

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Body Count Podcast #1004

Body Count Podcast #1004

Jun 25, 2010

Horror, Theology, and a Defense of the Genre from Two Pastors:  Hallo and Skot, two pastors and team members for the TheBlackestyEyes.com, enter into a theolgical conversation on horror movies, Christianity, and why they believe the genre has something important to say.

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Body Count #1003

Body Count #1003

Jun 22, 2010

Hallo and Danny discuss the “Horror Cliche they would like to Go Away” as well as an analysis of the 1980 movie The Changeling.

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Body Count Podcast #1002

Body Count Podcast #1002

Jun 16, 2010

Hallo, Danny, and Scott discuss the vampire sub-genre, the impact of Twilight on the vampire world, and briefly discuss their most recently watched horror film.

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