Archive for the ‘Horror’ Category

So, we so far served you up two turkeys this month. We’ve given you The Ghost Galleon, but, at best, that’s a minor bird. It may be the film where it was obvious that the Blind Dead franchise was heading off the rails, but it’s still a hugely enjoyable horror film with an absolutely amazing looking threat in the Blind Dead themselves. We then gave you The Bermuda Depths, a much larger bird by far. Despite its saving graces, it is certainly deserving of the label ‘Turkey’ and then some. This week, we give you a giant, prehistoric turkey in the form of The Last Dinosaur.

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Okay, so let’s set the stage for this one. Arthur Rankin Jr.- he of Rankin/Bass Productions fame -decided he wanted to creatively branch out a bit. So, after decades of becoming famous for children’s holiday specials like Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town, Mad Monster Party, Frosty the Snowman, and variety shows like The Jackson 5ive and The Osmonds, he decided he wanted to make more adult oriented television movies with 1977’s lost world adventure The Last Dinosaur and 1978’s horror offering, The Bermuda Depths. There would also be a third film, 1980’s The Ivory Ape, but the less said about this film the better. Having had some luck working with Japanese production companies years earlier with 1967’s King Kong Escapes, and possibly because everyone else laughed at the proposals for the films, he struck a deal with a somewhat past its prime Tsuburaya Productions to handle much of the monster FX works. So, basically, you’re talking about a great recipe for total disaster.

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Assignment Horror returns with a look at a classic Hammer science fiction horror offering.

“John, Jerry, & Becca once again educate one Richard Ewell in the Assignment: Horror Podcast with the film Quatermass And The Pit. Find out Richard’s opinion of the film and ultimate grade that was a bit of a controversy among the group.”

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After two rather successful forays into the world of the Blind Dead, Amando de Ossorio decided to change the formula up a bit and introduce some new twists into the mythos. Not all of this worked as well as he had hoped it would. The Ghost Galleon (also more commonly known as Horror of the Zombies in the 50 films for $20 public domain movie DVD sets) would move our decaying blood drinkers out of their scenic Spanish countryside home and into a broken down vessel drifting on the ocean waves. It also tried to introduce the weird, paranormal pseudo-science that was showing up in a lot of low budget (and the occasional bigger budget) horror films of that time. The former concept was actually enjoyable on a cheesy, so bad it’s good level once the film got past all of the mumbo jumbo buildup of the latter concept, but, still, enjoyable as hell or not, this film was a turkey and then some.

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“I don’t like horror. I just don’t watch that stuff.”

I’ve been told that, or a slight variant of that, more than a few times over the years. Occasionally, they absolutely mean it. Interestingly, more often than not, they don’t realize that what they’re saying isn’t actually true. If you’re wondering how someone can be unaware they like or have been watching horror while saying they don’t like it, you might not realize the levels to which people can in general compartmentalize and separate some things in their own mind. Well, that and how much some people take the “reality” part of reality TV seriously.

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The first episode of The Assignment Horror Podcast. On Soundcloud now, soon to be on iTunes. We’re a little rough around the edges on the first one, but we’re still getting our rhythm as a team.

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It is perhaps one of the most unfairly maligned horror movie sequels ever made. It was the victim of a franchise creator and the creator’s fans not being on the same page when it came to the creation. Thankfully, Halloween III: Season of the Witch has been experiencing a resurgence in fandom and a new appreciation by fans over the last decade. But back in 1982, Season of the Witch unfortunately had a bit of an uphill climb with horror fans when it was entering theaters. It was meant to be a new direction for the Halloween franchise; one greatly desired by John Carpenter and Debra Hill. Fans however wanted none of it.

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