Video Picks

On the whole, horror flicks suck. They have ludicrous plots and stupid dialogue. Most horror movies go directly to the blood and gore without even attempting to create a real story. These films are really not worth watching unless you’re 12 and having a sleep over with your friends. The only thing worse than B-grade, old-school horror movies is new horror movies. I know what I did last summer and that was avoiding going to see another Scream
rip off with the latest star from the WB.

Moviemakers, please stop already with the pseudo-intelligent, “were so jaded nothing scares us” characters and lame plots and find a new genre to exploit. Horror is dead (Pun intended).

When I want to watch a movie that will keep me in suspense, and not on the floor in spasms of uncontrollable laughter, I turn to Stephen King. King is one of the only horror writers who knows how to create a story that can actually be converted into a decent film.

is a classic. Sissy Spacek created a character that is both disturbing and sympathetic. The prom is horrific enough without adding bitchy classmates and mortifying incidents involving sheep blood. The story of Carrie resonates with anyone who ever got picked on by the popular kids. By the end of the film it is much easier to root for her as she creates mass destruction than those she intends to harm. One of the creepiest parts of the film is her Bible spouting mother who tells her, “they’re all gonna laugh at you!” as she heads out the door. This movie is not intended to gross out the viewer or give horrific nightmares, it is meant to be scary, suspenseful and a little disturbing. These qualities make it one of the most perfect scary movies ever.

Another great film adapted from a Stephen King novel is Misery.

Kathy Bates is incredible as Anne Wilkes. When she chastises her captive writer Paul Sheldon (James Caan) about swearing it is both funny and psychotic. “… At the feedstore do I say, “Oh, now Wally, give me a bag of that F-in’ pig feed, and a pound of that bitchy cow corn”? At the bank do I say, “Oh, Mrs. Malenger, here is one big bastard of a check, now give me some of your Christ-ing money!” THERE, LOOK THERE, NOW SEE WHAT YOU MADE ME DO!” Hilarious, now go out and see it you “dirty birdies.”

The third and final worthwhile scary movie is of course The Shining.
This film is great and Jack Nicholson was definitely at his best in this time period of his career. The story of Jack Torrence and his family’s struggle to maintain sanity in the secluded environs of a haunted winter lodge is really SCARY. Stanley Kubrick made the quintessential horror flick and put Olive Oyl i.e.

Shelly Duvall in it too. Most people in the Pacific Northwest have seen this movie because it was filmed at Timberline and most others have seen it because it’s great, so go see it again.

While others are heading to the theater to waste their time and money on horror movies that suck, like 13 Ghosts,
which will undoubtedly have at least one or two boob shots of Shannon Elizabeth, you can be smart and stay home with my picks. The choice is clear, wouldn’t you say?