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Now in our seventh calendar year
PCR #343  (Vol. 7, No. 42)  This edition is for the week of October 16--22, 2006.

The Tampa Film Review for October  by Nolan B. Canova
The Halloween Horror Picture Show 2006  by Nolan B. Canova
Monster Mish-Mash! ScreamFest 2006  by ED Tucker
"Flags of our Fathers"  by Mike Smith
Things Are Changing In Tampa!  by Mark Terry
Remembering Buck....This Won't Get You To Heaven....What's That You Said?....The End....It's Not A Dream, You're Fired....Brother, Can You Spare A Dime....Passing On....My Favorite Films, Part 42: "Used Cars"  by Mike Smith
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Chiller Cinema by Drew Reiber

Attention Movie-Going people!

Dark Castle Entertainment, Ghost House Pictures and Platinum Dunes are nothing but fucking garbage!

Word out of Variety is that Joel Silver and Robert Zemeckis’ Dark Castle Entertainment has just secured $240 million in financing for their next 15 films. That means we can look forward to more insipid “star running around in blue-filtered remote local” CGI fests like Ghost Ship, Gothika and the latest versions of House on Haunted Hill, 13 Ghosts, House of Wax. Never mind that Warner has had a helluva time trying to figure out how and where to dump The Reaping on poor, unsuspecting horror fans, or that you would find a hundred unsold copies of either the standard edition or collector’s edition (now with “Punk’d” footage!) of Gothika on Best Buy shelves for the last few years. No, we can forgive the failures of Dark Castle, because Zemeckis and Silver still have enough name value to convince investors they look better than they actually are. So look out, horror fans… I know you’ve been anxiously awaiting House on Haunted Hill 2 and the return of convicted child molester and mediocre filmmaker Victor Salva. Thanks, Dark Castle!!!!

Sam Raimi and Robert Tapert’s Ghost House Pictures had a better opening than they deserved when the remake of The Grudge 2 pulled in about half the first weekend of the original American regurgitation. Between the god-awful reviews and only a cameo of Sarah Michelle Gellar, I guess that was the biggest dent we could expect. No matter, because Ghost House is still going strong and plans on shoving another Boogeyman down our throats. Just as a bit of back-story, the first Boogeyman tested so poorly that it was going to go straight to video… that is until The Grudge made over $100 million domestically. So they released a film they knew was poor onto the marketplace, thereby screwing over the built-in horror fanbase, and now they’re even going to try tapping that same well again. This only proves what a corporate franchise whoring center their label is. Even more embarrassing, their latest feature, The Messengers, was apparently so poorly made that they had to hire another director to re-shoot it.

Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes just signed an unfortunate deal with Universal Studios’ Rogue Pictures label to develop and produce no less than 3 more shitty remakes. So the morons who brought you the needless remakes of The Amityville Horror and two, count them… TWO remakes of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (fuck this prequel nonsense) will torture us further with re-dos of The Hitcher, Near Dark and Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. You read this right, Michael Bay is remaking Alfred Hitchcock. Now that I’ve made that clear, is there even a point to mentioning how they’re trying to sort out the legal issues to remake Friday the 13th? So say goodbye to the eye of the auteur, form-driven technique and that good old-fashioned low-budget innovation, here comes rapid editing, shitty TV stars and red/orange filters! WOOHOO!!!

If you made it through all of that depressing nonsense, then you’ve come to my simple point. I have done all of you a favor by warning you ahead of time to make their films easily avoidable. Most of their projects will never be remembered outside of their initial release and that’s their strategy. That’s how they continuously bait poor, movie-going suckers into sitting for their crap, again and again. Nobody pays enough attention to which companies make these films and they rotate their crews enough to keep you from figuring out you’re about to get screwed. Even if their victims find themselves obsessively hating these movies for time they’ll never get back, horror gets blamed instead of the company, as there isn’t anything recognizable enough to mark them. So remember, if you ever see the logos or names on the screen for any of those three production companies – Dark Castle, Ghost House or Platinum Dunes – you owe to yourself, your friends and maybe even family to walk them out of the theater and ask for your money back before it’s too late.

"Chiller Cinema" is ©2006 by Drew Reiber.  Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2006 by Nolan B. Canova.