10: OBSCURE HALLOWEEN TREATS III

PrintE-mail Written by Whitney Scott Bain

Trick or treat, Starburst ghosts and goblins! Here’s your yearly batch of recommendations to make your flesh crawl during the witching hour on all hollow’s eve!

TRIANGLE (2009)

During a freak storm in the Bermuda Triangle, a group of passengers abandoned their yacht and board a drifting ocean liner with even worse results in this creative, brain twisting plot that’s a cross between Memento and Ghost Ship. This is one spooky film!

GODMONSTER OF INDIAN FLATS (1973)

Originally shown as a second feature on a double-bill in drive in theaters in the States, this bizarre film is Night Gallery meets Gunsmoke on acid! A giant, mutant sheep accidentally creates havoc in a local town that includes a series of meandering sub plots and a “what the…?” ending.  Just remember; you can like your sheep, but don’t love them.

THE MEDUSA TOUCH (1978)

Sir Richard Burton stars as Morlar, a man with telekinetic powers that has the ability to cause death or create havoc from a look or by projecting a thought; as well as being the catalyst for the downfall of civilization. Burton chews up the scenery as the dark, brooding Morlar complimented by a great score by Michael J. Lewis keeps the viewer riveted.

THE STONE TAPE (1972)

Written by Quatermass scribe, Nigel Kneale, this is one of the best supernatural stories ever written. A research team enters an old home only to discover that it’s haunted by the ghost of a Victorian maid. Great acting, believable characters and moody lighting make this film required viewing. Stars Michael Bryant and Jane Asher.

THE REFLECTING SKIN (1990)

Bizarre and hypnotic, this is one movie that keeps your attention with its surreal imagery as if David Lynch and Salvador Dahli combined their talents. This strange, haunting film is about a seven year old boy during the early 1950s who thinks that a lovely English widow may be responsible for the death of his friends and is in fact a vampire. The creepy imagery will stay with you long after you’ve watched it. 

JIGOKU aka SINNERS FROM HELL (1960)

Director Nobuo Nakagawa’s visually haunting and nightmarish film still holds up after 50 years where everyone’s moral compass is so far off they need a GPS unit and a road map to find it. Our characters finally realize that if you don’t want to live in hell for all eternity, don’t live in hell now.

KWAIDAN (1964)

Visually stunning, this horror/fantasy moralistic tale of four stories involve a blood sucking witch, a blind musician who plays for the dead, a samurai who abandons his wife for another woman and a man who sees his future in a cup of tea. Wonderfully crafted with twist endings we never see coming.

THE MANIPLATOR aka B.J. LANG PRESENTS (1971)

Mickey Rooney must have been hard up for money to do this because Andy Hardy this ain’t! Looking like a bad Las Vegas hooker,  Rooney plays a deranged make up man who kidnaps Luana Anders to have her “star” in his film. Shot like a three character play with a brief appearance by Keenan Wynn in what looks to be like a prop house, the camera work is haphazardly filmed in slo-mo and speeded up photography that adds to Rooney’s bizarre, over-the-top performance.

HAUSU aka HOUSE (1977)

This movie is cerebrally mind-blowing on all levels! 7 girls spend the weekend in a haunted house that eats virgins! A subliminal, horror-comedy filled with archetypical teen characters, floating bananas, walking dolls and a cat with glowing eyes! Save us, Kung Fu!

MAD MONSTER PARTY? (1967)

 

Rankin/Bass are responsible for creating the Christmas animated films Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and Santa Claus is Coming To Town go all out in this tribute to classic monsters that clearly inspired A Nightmare Before Christmas and Hotel Transylvania.  When Dr. Frankenstein (Boris Karloff) decides to retire he hosts an all out convention to name his successor that includes his normal, nerdy, soda jerk nephew, Felix Flankin. Word gets out that the good doctor has discovered the secret of total destruction, the creatures, including the Monster’s mate (voiced by the late, great comedian, Phyllis Diller). Special mention goes to Gale Garnett as the buxomy, va-va-voom, Lauren Bacall-esque, doctor’s assistant, Francesca. A lot of fun and don’t forget to do the Mummy dance!

For past HALLOWEEN TREATS, read here and here.



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