Universal Horror

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HALLOWEEN MOVIES

HALLOWEEN MOVIES – Here are some horror movies coming out in October just time in for Halloween.

Theatrical releases 
October 6 2017
Dementia 13 – A retelling of 1963 horror-thriller film of the same name. 
Better Watch Out – A babysitter defends a boy from intruders, only to discover it’s not a normal home invasion.
The Crucifixion – Did a priest murder a mentally ill person? Or did he battle a demon?
October 13
Happy Death Day – When a college student relives her murder over and over again, with its unexceptional details and terrifying end, she discovers her killer’s identity. 
October 20
The Snowman – A woman’s pink scarf is found wrapped around an ominous-looking snowman.
Nightworld – Investigate a sinister building to uncover a malevolent force desperate to be released into our world.
October 24
Creep 2 – A visual artist can’t resist the chance to take footage of a man claiming to be a serial killer.
October 27
Jigsaw – Evidence of gruesome murders is found, and it seems to be the work of Jigsaw, but how can this be? He’s been dead for over a decade.

DVD releases 
DVD October 10
Wish Upon – A girl finds a magic box that grants wishes … but each one comes with dark and gruesome consequences.
The Poughkeepsie Tapes – Would you be willing to watch hundreds of tapes depicting decades of a serial killer’s work?
DVD October 17
Escape Room – One by one a new victim’s life is claimed, chosen from young couples trapped in a locked room, they’re playing for their lives. 
DVD October 24 
Cult of Chucky – Chucky is back to settle some scores with old enemies with the help of his former wife.
DVD October 23
A Ghost Story – Recently deceased, a white-sheeted ghost returns home to reconnect with his bereft wife.

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MOTHER! MOVIE REVIEW

MOTHER! MOVIE REVIEW – This is a great movie that relies on hidden meaning, symbolism and allegory. On the face of it, a woman busies herself settling into her new house, about ready to enjoy breakfast. When a stranger shows up suddenly at her door, she’s surprised her husband invites him to stay. Soon after, when the man’s wife also shows up, she realizes things are not as they seem. That’s just the surface plot, because there is so much unapparent hidden meaning, when all the pieces tie together. A good percentage of viewers will likely react negatively to the violent imagery. But it’s not gratuitous in the sense of the greater mythos of the story.  Once this subtext is understood more and more audiences will get on board with this movie. Most certainly the script raises more questions than it answers. What is her husband writing? Who are all these people? Why don’t they tell them to get out sooner? What is the purpose behind all the strange behaviors of the houseguests? And many more, I’m sure. I believe this film will be a classic of the horror thriller variety for years to come. 


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EVOLUTION OF IMAGES

EVOLUTION OF IMAGES – The 30,000 year old figurative paintings discovered in the Chauvet cave date back to the Paleolithic age.  The art materials used were sticks, rocks, hand prints, mud, charcoal and red ochre. Fast forward to the year 1665 to peek into Johannes Vermeer’s art studio. His painting, Girl with a Pearl Earring, looks like it might have been shot with a modern camera. His painting materials, techniques and rumored use of a camera obscura have been lost to history. Prior to the 1800’s, photographic attempts resulted in a crude finished product. That changed in 1839 with the Daguerreotype. Whereby a sheet of silver-plated copper was treated, exposed to light inside a camera, subjected to mercury vapor and sealed in a glass case. In 1888, the next evolution in stills was ushered in by the Kodak camera. Now, anyone could snap a photo and pay the company to process the images. First in black and white, then soon afterward in color Kodachrome film. Moving images, AKA movies, were a revolution of entertainment in the silent film era, from roughly 1895 to 1930. The Kinetograph was one of the first, watched through a peephole on top of the device. The word ‘film’ comes from a strip of celluloid material with a series of still shots that run through the projector, displayed on a movie screen with a reflective coating in a darkened movie theater. By the time the Great Depression came about ‘talkies’–otherwise known as sound films–became the standard in American entertainment. Black and white gave way to color but not entirely. The Wizard of Oz was filmed in Technicolor with some scenes shot in black and white. Film Noir employed severe angular shadows juxtaposed against razor sharp light to set a stark mood. Broadcast television was undergoing its own evolutionary process. NBC transmitted a pioneering broadcast in 1941 but earlier crude experimental iterations came earlier. At the time a cathode ray tube captured a moving image by interpreting a signal from a series of lines picked up by the set. NBC was also the first network to provide a color television signal as early as 1953. But the digital age changed everything–for still as well as moving images–beginning in the 1990’s due to computer capabilities. Still images came first, followed by televisions, monitors and portable hand held screens. By 2009 older analog TV systems were obsolete. Not long afterward, high definition televisions and displays became available. Most display screens today rely on LCD technology. Variations on this include 4K Ultra HD, OLED, curved monitors, VR goggles and even transparent monitors. Images are displayed on smart phones, static displays such as the Kindle Paperwhite, and on tablets including the Samsung Note. Images have come a long way in 30,000 years. I wonder what will come next, in the evolution of images? 


IT MOVIE REVIEW

IT MOVIE REVIEW – When a younger brother disappears, a group of friends known as ‘The Loser’s Club’ begins to investigate a series of unusual events, in the fictional town of Derry. Each of them experiences a haunting vision capitalizing on their greatest fears. It’s only then they come to realize the embodiment of IT takes the shape of Pennywise, an old time clown from Derry’s past. This is one of the few Stephen King books I haven’t read. I watched the 2017 version on opening weekend and saw the 1990 mini-series previously. I always say there’s no reason to remake a classic horror movie if there isn’t an improvement on the original. While IT 2017 isn’t perfect, I appreciated many things about this film. The cast of ‘losers’ demonstrated such deep emotion that I’m sure all of them are destined for stardom. And I liked (for the most part) the dazzling tricks and jump scares coupled with the new Pennywise’s acting. If anything, the movie would be stronger with fewer CGI effects.