Well, I got several secret bonuses last week for The Madness by being totally OCD and posting right at noon Friday, but lost Saturday and reaping the consequences this week of the lost day and lost momentum. Fortunately I had a lot of time to try to make things up this week or this would have been a lot worse. Plus I didn’t realize how much horror I watch without trying, particularly TV.

Secret Bonuses?

The Shrine – 84 minutes (Secret bonus, mist/fog) – What is with people who insist on doing stupid things that put themselves and others in danger? Some pesky reporter gets her friends to go to Poland looking for a missing person and they stumble upon some unfriendly locals who chase them away. Then they go back and find a dense and very defined fog. That’s where I would say, “Bye!” But no, they enter and right off the bat it’s demon statues that turn and face you when you aren’t looking. BYE, already! Started good but degenerated into shameless Linda Blair ripoff. 2 stars

Pitch Black – 109 minutes (possible secret bonus? Radha Mitchell, Vin Diesel, monsters that attack at night, holed up in cave?) – Great action movie with a new twist on monsters that attack at night, with the unpredictability of a different planet’s solar schedule. So disappointing that Vin and Radha never got to hook up. 4 stars

Dracula: 2000 – 99 minutes (other possible secret bonus from 2000? Wes Craven producer, vampires, destroyed by sunlight) I know it’s kind a cheesy, but I’m a sucker for New Orleans and I love the Judas twist. 3.5 stars

Willow – 125 minutes (Billy Barty, descent into darkness?) I was convinced this was going to be the 20 point bonus, but the descent into darkness element isn’t clear to me. Willow and Meegosh fall through the ground when they encounter the Brownies, so maybe that counts? They all enter Queen Bavmorda’s castle, which is a place of darkness, literally and metaphorically, yet I’m not sure that qualifies? I’m not sure this is the one. There really should have been a Val Kilmer wild card though. This kind of fantasy is not really my thing, but I’ll give it 3.5 stars for having such an unconventional hero.

Madness Viewing party (30 points):

The Darkness – 102 minutes (darkness in title, attacks in dark, secret room, power outage, Anna Paquin, Lena Olin) – Creepy little thriller in Ana’s pre-Sookie days. 4 stars

The creepy clown in The Hole. BURN THE FUCKING HOUSE DOWN ALREADY.

The Hole – 91 minutes (pit) – How many dirty “hole” double entendres can be packed in one film and how many creepy doll attacks before you burn that fucking house down already! 4 stars for creepy doll, even if it did get silly in the end. 3.5 stars

The Ghost and the Darkness – 109 minutes (Darkness in title) – Is it just me or is Val Kilmer popping up a lot? I couldn’t help but think of Cecil through this and it made me sad. 3.5 stars

More Horror Movies

The Company of Wolves – 95 min (Werewolf) This is one of my favorites, directed by Neil Jordan with a twist on the Little Red Riding Hood theme, and some serious sexual tension from the Big Bad Wolf. Dreamy and surreal… 4.5 stars

Ginger Snaps – 109 minutes (Werewolves, Emily Perkins, Mimi Rogers used to be married to Tom Cruise, can that count?) I obviously love weird sisters with the same interests and the photos are amazing in the opening credits, even inspiring me on a photoshoot to make my own poison tea party. Mimi Rogers is hilarious as the clueless mom. 5 stars

Nastasha tea party

Darkness Falls – 85 minutes (darkness in title, attacks in dark, destroyed by light) A sick twist on the tooth fairy legend, which is sort of predictable but I sort of like this one anyway. 3.5 stars

Silent Hill – 125 minutes (attacks during darkness, Radha Mitchell, going down into underground?) I sort of wrote this off when it first came out, not liking the monster in it, but now love the creepy atmosphere and you have to love the skinning scene. 4 stars

The Mist – 126 minutes (mist,) What a cruel, cruel ending. Half the cast of The Walking Dead and yes, Carol is a badass survivor even before zombies. Didn’t love or hate it particularly. 2.5 stars

30 Days of Night – 113 minutes (vampires, killed by daylight, extended darkness) Finally some scary vampires in the age of twinkle toes Edward. That’s how you make a damn vampire movie, and Ben Foster may have had a small role, but was brilliant as always. Am I the only on who thinks Danny Huston sort of reminds you of a vampiric Anthony Bourdain? 4.5 stars

The House that Dripped Blood – 102 minutes (vampires, Christopher Lee) I love these three stories, featuring Lee and Peter Cushing in separate tales. 5 stars

sir christopher lee Oh how we miss you Sir Christopher

Sleepy Hollow – 105 minutes (attack at night, Christopher Lee, horseman and witch buried in tree) Still my favorite Tim Burton film, paying homage to the days of Hammer with Sir Christopher and throwing in Johnny Depp as bonus. Divine. 5 stars

Underworld – 121 minutes (both vampires AND werewolves, subway/underground tunnels, destroyed by sunlight) Vampires vs werewolves. Like vampires could really win. 4.5 stars

The Thing – 106 minutes (Rob Bottin, arctic, hidden tunnel under floor) The winter/arctic movies we did for the warm up were good, but this is the best. When John Carpenter is on he’s really on. 5 stars

Queen of the Damned – 101 minutes (vampires, Lena Olin) I really like this one because I want to live in London and join the Talamasca, so I live vicariously through Jessie. (Yet another use for a degree in demonology) 4 stars

The Ninth Gate – 133 minutes (Lena Olin). Vintage books on the devil. French apartments with massive libraries of aforementioned books on the devil. Johnny Depp. Castles. How can I not love it? 5 stars

The Howling – 91 minutes (Rob Bottin, werewolves) This is still one of the scariest werewolf movies to me, and those smiley face stickers get under my skin. 4.5 stars

Trick ‘R Treat – 83 minutes (werewolves, quarry qualifies as big pit?, Anna Paquin, victim being buried comes to life) This is a modern classic and now a Halloween tradition. Just the right mix of cheeky and creepy. 5 stars

TV Shows

Walking Dead – 90 minutes Season Premiere I wasn’t too impressed with the season premiere, or maybe my expectations are just too high. 3 stars

Fear the Walking Dead X2 “Cobalt” and “The Good Man” – 60 and 60 minutes (power outages) I just didn’t get into this spinoff, and didn’t watch the last two episodes till this week. Pretty strong ending, but the whole season I kept wondering why that girl never did go back and check on her boyfriend. Huge plot issue for me. 3 stars, 3.5 stars

Face Off – 60 minutes The finalists were chosen but none of the makeups really blew my away this episode. Kinda “meh” 2.5 stars

Scream Queens – 60 minutes “Pumpkin Patch” (night vision) More silly, campy fun and sorority hijinks, but the novelty is starting to wear off a little. Need a little more than Chanel being a bitch and Niecy Nash. 3.5 stars

American Horror Story: Hotel – 60 minutes “Chutes and Ladders” (vampires, forcibly walled up, “buried” alive in mattress?, secret game room for vamp kids) Uh-oh, I’m seeing signs of going campy again this season, with Evan Peters’ flashbacks of a serial killer and a fashion show? Oh please, keep it dark and glamorously creepy. 3.5 stars

Supernatural – 60 minutes S11E2 (darkness spreading thoughout world) I love Sam and Dean, but oh, it’s getting really tired. And they are tormenting us with the impending death of Cass, making it look like he’s about to be a goner, then saving him. You are cruel Robert Singer and company. 2.5 stars

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