O.H.M.A.D. Day 14: Witchfinder General (1968)

Film Poster for Michael Reeves' Witchfinder General (1968)

Matthew Hopkins is a very bad man.  Posing as a witch hunter, Hopkins goes around the British countryside executing innocents and using his facade to take advantage of young women — all for a hefty fee.  After his latest reign of terror, Hopkins find himself being tailed by one Richard Marshall, a British soldier seeking revenge for the death of his future father-in-law and violation of his betrothed Sarah. Marshall does this at the risk of being court-martialed for abandoning his post.  The hunt grows more desperate as Marshall tracks Hopkins while also trying to keep up appearances with his commanding officers.  It all comes to a brutal finale as Hopkin’s lays a trap for Marshall and Sarah that they don’t come away from unscathed. Continue reading

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O.H.M.A.D. 2015 Day 29: Halloween 4: The Return of Micheal Myers (1988)

Halloween 4 UK movie posterTen years after they were burned to death, Micheal Myers and Dr. Sam Loomis are once again returning to Haddonfield.  Halloween 4 retcons their fiery death at the end of the second film; this is normally something that would bother me.  Halloween 4 is so good though that I overlook it and I’m glad they kept the two alive. The film opens with an amazing montage of rustic Autumnal landscapes that should be beautiful, but their bareness makes them unsettling.  The first two films opened with a jack-o-latern, and director Dwight Little (Marked for Death, Free Willy 2:  The Adventure Home) is laying down the gauntlet to let us this one will be different.  Micheal (stuntman George Wilbur) has been in a coma since Loomis (Donald Pleasence, of course) blew up a hospital to kill him and is being transported to a new facility without proper restraints because the Smith’s Grove Sanitarium employees are horrible at their job.  Needless to say, Micheal once again breaks loose and returns to finish what he started while Loomis catches wind and gives chase.  Micheal’s sister Laurie Strode has died (Jamie Lee Curtis had other priorities at this time) but not before giving birth to a little girl Jaime Lloyd (Danielle Harris, Hatchet II, Rob Zombie’s Halloween) who is now in a foster home and in Micheal’s cross-hairs. Continue reading

Dr. Loomis: A Quick Appreciation

deathWhat sets Halloween above and beyond all other slasher films is the pivotal character of Dr. Loomis (the creepy Donald Pleasence).  Other than Phantasm, Halloween is the only horror series to maintain the narrative consistency of it’s “Dr. Ahab” character.  Sam Loomis has always been an intriguing character to me, but as I get older I start to understand where he’s coming from a bit more, especially in the first film.  At the opening of the first film, especially, when he is so worn down and tired, strapped with a responsibility he’s learned he can not do because his hands are tied by a bureaucracy that will not listen to him. Continue reading

RIP Christopher Lee

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Like many of you, I woke up to some very sad news today. Sir Christopher Lee passed away at age 93 after having lived a life worthy of a Marvel Comics super hero. As a huge horror fan who grew up with Lee’s work (as well his contemporaries Vincent Price and Peter Cushing), I felt I should write up this piece to pay tribute to the man. In light of such greatness, I feel my words are inadequate; his life was full of adventure and great accomplishments that it makes me feel writing this is somewhat trivial. Despite those things, I felt I should give a somewhat brief statement on what the loss means to our community, and to the entertainment industry in general. Continue reading

John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness (1987)

PrinceOfDarkness-Bluray

This is a film about a metaphysical Satan trapped in green ooze trying to break free to take over the world. A group of college students are brought in by their physics teacher (Victor Wong) to study the ooze at the behest of a Priest (Donald Pleasence). The container holding the ooze is locked in the basement of an old church and has been kept secret for many, many years. The students spend the night in the old church, and from there, things get weird. The ooze starts to break free and possess the students one by one and Alice Cooper leads an army of homeless bums who kill anyone who tries to escape. As the stakes and tension mount, it’s a battle of good vs. evil to save the world that ends on an enigmatic note. Continue reading