Richard joins canada’s number one mid-morning show “The Marilyn Denis Show” to talk about movies and television show to make your skin crawl on Halloween! We talk about a pair of chillers on Crave, “Come Play” and “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It,” Disney+’s “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales,” the Amazon Prime reboot of “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” the world’s most popular TV show, Netflix’s “Squid Game” and “Halloween Kills,” in theatres now.
A Saturday matinee screening of Paranormal Activity was the first and only time I have ever heard anyone actually scream in a theatre. I don’t mean a quiet whimper followed by an embarrassed laugh or a frightened little squeal. No, I mean a full-on, open throated howl of terror.
The release of Paranormal’s prequel last weekend got me thinking about other big screen scream worthy scenes. So just in time for Halloween are some leave-the-lights-on movie moments.
If Alfred Hitchcock had any doubts about the effectiveness of the shower sequence in Psycho they must have been put to bed when he received an angry letter from the father whose daughter stopped bathing after seeing the bathtub murder scene in Les Diaboliques and then, more distressingly, refused to shower after seeing Psycho. Hitch’s response to the concerned dad? “Send her to the dry cleaners.”
The shower scene was terrifying but at least it was allowed to stay in the movie. In 1931, Frankenstein star Boris Karloff demanded the scene in the movie where the monster plays with a little girl, throwing flowers in a pond be cut from the picture. It’s a cute scene until the beast runs out of flowers and tosses the little girl into the water, leaving her to drown. Karloff, and audiences, objected to the violence against the youngster and the scene was shortened, then removed altogether and remained unseen until a special videotape release 48 years later.
More recently, The Exorcist (now beautifully restored on Blu Ray) so traumatized audiences with shots of the possessed Regan MacNeil’s 360-degree head spinning that in the U.K. the St. John’s Ambulance Brigade were on-call at screenings to tend to fainters. Star Linda Blair says she wasn’t traumatized by the film, but admits there has been one long lasting side effect. “You wouldn’t believe how often people ask me to make my head spin around,” she says.
Blair may have been unfazed while shooting her gruesome scenes, but not all actors emerge unscathed. Elisha Cuthbert was so grossed out while shooting the notorious blender scene in the down-and-dirty flick Captivity she says she felt “physically ill twice” and had to have a bucket nearby.
Scary scenes one and all, but recounting them begs the question, why are we drawn to them?
The quick answer comes from Alfred Hitchcock who said, “People like to be scared when they feel safe.”
Richard joins CP24 anchor Nathan Downer to have a look at the weekend’s new movies including “Halloween,” the late Rob Stewart’s ecology documentary “Sharkwater Extinction,” the drug drama “Beautiful Boy” and the film Robert Redford says may be his swan song “The Old Man and the Gun.”
Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Marcia MacMillan to have a look at the weekend’s big releases, the tricks and treats of “Halloween,” Robert Redford and Sissy Spacek in “The Old Man and the Gun” and the drug drama “Beautiful Boy.”
Richard has a look at the 2018 reboot of “Halloween,” the ecology documentary from director Rob Stewart, “Sharkwater Extinction,” the film Robert Redford says may be his swan song “The Old Man and the Gun” and the political comedy “The Oath” with CFRA Morning Rush host Bill Carroll.
Did you love “Halloween III: Season of the Witch”? Wipe it from your memory. What about “Halloween H20: 20 Years Later”? Fuhgeddaboudit. How about “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers” or any of the other masked killer films that came after John Carpenter’s 1978 slasher classic? They don’t exist. When you lay down money for a ticket to the new “Halloween” you are erasing four decades of slashing and dashing and seeing a direct follow-up to the original film.
Jamie Lee Curtis returns as Laurie Strode, the resourceful babysitter who, forty years ago, bravely stood up to masked killer Michael Myers (Nick Castle). The intervening years have seen her raise her now estranged daughter Karen (Judy Greer) and live in a home fortified with booby-traps in case Myers should reappear. “He’s waited for this night,” she says. “I’ve waited for him.”
At the beginning of the film Myers—known as ‘The Shape’ in the first movie—is still paying the price for killing his teenage sister Judith and the subsequent slaughter of four others. Tucked away in Smith’s Grove Sanatorium he is silent, a man who hasn’t spoken since committing his first murder at the age of six.
When Aaron Korey (Jefferson Hall) and Dana Haines (Rhian Rees), two British true crime podcasters, try to pry and interview out of Myers they arrive just before the Bogeyman escapes on October 31, 2018, put on the famous mask and reboot his killing career with an eye toward the one victim who got away all those years ago.
The 1978 and 2018 movies share more than a title and a leading lady. They share structural DNA and frights galore. The 2018 film feels fresh, timely and like a throwback to the moody low-fi scares of the original slasher flicks.
Castle is as eerie as always but it is Curtis who steals the show. Strode is grown up, suffers from PTSD and by her own words is “a basket case.” What she is not is broken. “I prayed every night for him to escape,” she says, “so I could kill him.” The trauma of 40 years ago has hardened her but she’s a warrior and a survivor who uses the great personal price Myers extracted from her as fuel to keep going. It’s tremendous stuff and in the #MeToo era the kind of heroine reclaiming her power that should make audiences cheer.
“Halloween” is both a reboot and a bloody love letter to the director who started it all, John Carpenter.
Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show with host Andrew Carter to talk about “Halloween,” the bloody love letter to the director who started it all, John Carpenter, the film Robert Redford says may be his swan song “The Old Man and the Gun” and the political comedy “The Oath.”
Richard’s alter ego Zomald Trump reviews the teenage Halloween freak-out “Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse,” and some more adult fare in the ghostly form of “Our Brand is Crisis,” “Truth” and “Suffragette.”