The Ohio Sci-Fi and Horror Marathons

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 Post subject: A second marathon for me
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:03 pm 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
I just learned that I will be enjoying another horror marathon this year the week after I make my long overdue return to one of Ohio's in a couple short weeks. My local reperatory/grindhouse type cinema event host out here in Phoenix is trying something new this year with an all night horror marathon on Friday, October 21st at Midnight. This is the official description of the event:

"JOIN US for an 8 hour horror film marathon personally selected by each staff member of The Royale!
It's that ghoulishly decadent time again, OCTOBER is upon us. The leaves are falling, the temperature is dropping and most importantly...the macabre dedicated movie watching begins! Here at The Royale, each of us are die-hard horror heads. We live, breath and kill for terror laced celluloid. So we thought, let's spend this celebrated month of tricks & treats by hosting a marathon filled with our personal favorite horror films. We won't reveal the titles we're screening until that night, suspense is killer but absolutely worth it! JOIN US at our proverbial crypt, if you will, for a night of shrieks and screams that you soon won't forget."

That's cool in and of itself, but here's the rub: On the regular schedule that evening before the marathon is three separate screenings whose titles have already been announced. These are Human Centipede 2, The Woman, and finally at 10PM Fulci's Zombie. It may cost me a little more, but I may just have to extend my all-night marathon from a mere 8 hours to 14! I rarely can get two Saturdays in a row off from work, but the timing of my vacation and these events happens to have worked out perfectly.

I doubt they will show any of those three during the overnight event. I've been to a few of her screenings and I know that she mostly works with collector's prints. So keeping the titles a "secret," besides being way cool, is a way to avoid the costs of presentation rights.

I considered posting this in the "Camera Obscura" section, but let's face it none of you guys are coming out here. Plus, the "Midnight Movie Mamacita" as she calls herself, recently opened a new space which she owns outright and the screening room only holds about 60 patrons.

So needless to say, while I am still anxiously awaiting updates to Joe's lineup and am still hoping a couple great premieres can be snagged, it won't be a total bummer for me if neither Human Centipede 2 or The Woman make the cut.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:02 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 9:55 pm
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Location: Chicago
"Leaves are falling and temperature is dropping"? in Phoenix? Do you have leaves there? And what's the temperature drop to? 90? :lol: Glad to see that more cities are having marathons and mini-marathons during the Halloween season. Two years ago, I was able to do Chicago's 24 hour marathon and go to Columbus the following week and see Stuart Gordon as the guest at both. Pretty darn good month. I wanted to last year, but work prevented me. This year, the marathons are on the same date, so I'm going to save the gas money and stay local. Have fun out there.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:28 pm 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
First, the bad news. It appears as if the Midnite Movie Mamacita has given in to the dark side. This was my first visit to the new space, and it appears as if they are not even equipped with any kind of film projector. It's all digital now, baby.

That being said, the space is very intimate and the screen is HUGE, so it is still the best possible experience you can have under the circumstances. At least they never have to worry about problems with delays due to projection concerns.

Now, onto the good news. My night began with Human Centipede 2. Yes, it is every bit as disgusting, foul and unsettling as you have been told, even more so than you could possibly imagine. At the same time, the twisted humor and overall meta sensibility makes for an interesting, albeit discomforting experience. The decision to go B&W I think helped maintain a sense of surreal detachment. There is a disturbing, subtle deep bass underscore that permeates the movie and the silent lead character is also creepy as hell.

Next we have Lucky McKee's The Woman, and I must say this was probably the highlight of the night for me. A lot of the time, a low budget indie can be dragged down by less than stellar acting performances. This was not the case as the acting in this film was one of it's strong points. There is one hell of a plot twist, but I'm still trying to wrap my head around the meaning of the ending. I also admire it's originality and it's ability to convey a strong metaphor and combine some outrageously over the top moments with a mostly realistic environment. Highly recommended for horror and gore fans alike.

There was a selection of trailers during the next intermission because Fulci's Zombie was a part of a "Cult Classics" series. These included Rocktober Blood, Nightmare City, Burke & Hare, a brutally violent spoilerific Dawn of the Dead trailer that was advertised as "Dario Argento Presents Zombie Dawn of the Dead," a German language trailer for Zombie which had it titled as "Woodoo," and an Italian language trailer for Dellamorte Dellamore (more on that later).

This was actually my first time ever seeing Fulci's classic Zombie. It was more straightforward and atmospheric than I was led to believe, shark scene notwithstanding. I understand it's appeal and I am very glad I got to finally see it. Probably liked it better than The Beyond.

Okay, so next the actual "secret screenings" marathon began. It kicked off with an excellent somewhat obscure but not unwelcome choice, Cemetery Man. I had only seen it once, when it premiered at the 1996 SciFi Marathon. I didn't know what to make of it then and neither did most of the audience, but this was a cool re-discovery. Not quite a classic, but a different take on zombies, and a goofy allegorical structure.

Next up, Tobe Hooper's underrated gem The Funhouse, which was the one movie of the four I had not seen. Very cool atmospheric slasher. Don't know how I missed this one.

Next was my only disappointment of the night, Hellraiser. Not disappointing because of the film, which is still great but only because I had seen it last weekend.

And finally, the morning was capped off with Creepshow. Still one of my all time favorites, and it had been a while since I had seen the whole thing.

Unfortunate that everything is now all digital, but I still had a fun night. My highest recommendation would be for everyone to check out The Woman if you get a chance.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 3:44 pm 
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Location: Chicago
I saw The Woman the other day and was pretty impressed. I think the script needed a little more clarity with the ending and the "twist", but an otherwise welcome return to unsettling, straight-forward grindhouse cinema without winking at the audience. Sounds like a good time, but too bad it was digital. I don't want to raise kids in a world without film....

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