Monday, May 26, 2014

Tremors (1990)

This movie is another family classic.

My two youngest brothers (and Horror Habit contributors!) can use quotes from this movie to fit nearly every situation - especially if it's complicated. For instance:
  • Getting all the dishes to fit in the dishwasher: "I'll tell you. Nobody handles garbage better than we do."
  • While attempting to complete a strange and gross yard maintenance task: "Roger that Burt, and congratulations. Be advised, however, that there are two more, repeat, two more motherhumpers."
  • When lost somewhere: "Melvin! One of these days someone's going to kick your ass!" 
*note to brothers - feel free to jump in and add some more*

I'm not so good at this. Using quotes from horror movies when, like, I'm grocery shopping, filling the rental car with gas, giving someone directions, or just trying to stay awake is something I'm  not very good at quite yet.

Instead, I have created my own quotes, best used during awkward silences, at inappropriate times, or for simply no reason whatsoever. Here are some recent favorites:
  • While snuggling with my Husband, I whisper sweetly into his ear: "You smell like Bengay".
  • "Wanna hear something that didn't happen to me today?"
  • When responding to something you don't have the answer to: "Aliens."
Tremors, a not quite B movie classic (more of an A-, in my opinion), about giant desert-dwelling worms that eat people is a horror movie that is mostly fun for the whole family. Mostly because there is quite a bit of swearing. Tuck that in you pocket somewhere.

Cheesy, but not too cheesy - because seriously, giant worms? 
Funny and gross. See also giant worms. 
Scary, but not too scary. Because: think about it, Giant Worms That Eat People! 
Suspenseful and yet, predictable enough to keep you giggling all the way through. Giant worms.
Above all: it's a very quotable movie, and that's fun for everyone. 

This is a great film for a sunny afternoon or at a nightly gathering with friends/family. Although this movie doesn't require your full attention, tuning in to the quick banter is suggested. A good choice for those not totally into really scary movies, and for those who really dig light-hearted horror. 

Recommended pairing: Budweiser or lemonade, hot dogs and beans, gummy worms.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Leprechaun (1993)

Today I began reading Jenny Lawson's (The Bloggess) comedy biography, Let's Pretend This Never Happened, for my book club. And by book club I mean a gathering of my friends to talk about books and build beer can pyramids on the living room coffee table for the kids to find later.

It's a great book club.

Although I'm not quite halfway through this book, I am already thoroughly enjoying the similarities between her growing up in rural Texas between the 1980's-90's, and my growing up in rural South Dakota around the same time.

From deer guts, insane poultry, a loving father who doesn't always understand he is putting his childrens' life in danger, to trying to live in a most inhospitable place - my imaginary new best friend and I are hip to hip on some cherished childhood memories.

Jenny, if you ever read this - I too have fallen victim to nature's "OH NO! That was a Bull Snake and not a Rattler?" trick after killing the poor beast nearly beyond recognition. I'd like to think this happens at least once to the best of prairie folk. Ever since my teen self accidentally massacred the five foot creature, my father has reminded me, nearly every time I visit, not to mess with his big fat "pet" bull snake(s) hanging out in the yard.

Which reminds me, I once watched my father pull a bull snake out of our basement wall. It was so big it took my Dad and my two teenage brothers to carry it out. I tell people this story and they have the shivers - I'm still fascinated that this massive snake lived in our walls for so long. We never had a rodent problem. Ever. But that's another story.

Why am I bringing this all up? What's the connection between this book, South Dakota, and Horror Habit:

That's right folks. This B classic is what ties today's post all together.

In fact, partially into the book, I called my husband and asked him to please find a copy of this film because I wanted to watch it: TONIGHT.

"Why do you - what - I don't understand..." he began asking.

"Because I want to blog about it! There's this book and then South Dakota and Texas. Did you find it!?" I lovingly replied.

"Ah, yeah, I found it - still don't understand..."

"Excellent! I love you!"

He's very patient with my horror movie watching habits - and for understandable reasons he's very confused by them.


So, there's been some controversy about where this movie is supposed to take place: New Mexico, North Dakota, or South Dakota. Watching the movie they state they 'think' they are in New Mexico - for a second - but it's made clear they are in North Dakota. Which is sad and funny at the same time.

Funny and sad like when I tell people I'm from South Dakota, and the person I just spoke to introduces me to someone else saying: "This is my friend from North Dakota!"


How does this happen?! I just said I was from South Dakota - why does everyone think North Dakota when ever I say South Dakota? Why - always - every time?

So here we are people. This is essentially my review: Texas stories, leading to South Dakota stories leading to North Dakota stories leading to the unbelievably delightful tales told by everyone in between. And Leprechauns -  it always comes back to these damn leprechauns.

Leprechaun, is a tall, ridiculous, horribly done story that is sure to please anyone interested in a cheesy, beer-run kind of adventure. I actually enjoy this movie. I enjoy how awful it is, how hilarious it is, how absolutely wrong it is about the Dakota's in general. But that's okay. I'm not expecting anything other than slap-stick entertainment - and that is what this movie is about.

Jenny Lawson's book, on the other hand, is a slap-stick on a whole different level. I highly recommend it for those of you interested in the dirty, nitty-gritty of life's beautiful lessons. Leprechaun, on the other hand, is what you watch when you want to forget about life's dirty, nitty-gritty beautiful lessons.

It all comes together.

This movie is wrong, awful, and delightful - most of you are sure to enjoy it. If you are Irish and live in the Dakota's (all three of you) then I'm sure this will be a side-spliter.

Suggested pairing: cereal. Lucky Charms, actually, sadly... AND while wearing one of my husband's Zombie Leprechaun T-Shirts!!

Order here: Top o' the Moanin'

You're welcome.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Heavy Metal (1981)

The rain let up a bit yesterday so my Husband and I decided to make a break for it and head outside. While running some errands we took a moment to walk through the park, stare at some pigeons, and chase a few ducks around.

That's when we heard the shouting.

Apparently, some band of ruffians had nothing better to do than steal some man's umbrella, and that man had nothing better to do than fight back for it - and this rolling little hoard of anger was coming our way.

From where we were standing, we watched what I can best describe as Clockwork Orange's Meth Friends, walking up the street and tossing around this man's umbrella, while umbrellaless man was shouting, screaming, threatening, hounding them to give it back.

It was ugly. It got uglier when the ruffians began to beat things with the umbrella.

I looked at this mess, looked at my husband, looked back the mess, looked back to my husband and said, "We should do something" and began to walk forward. He took my arm and said, "We should call the cops." Logically, a good idea. I have some sort of Jump In Where Trouble Is Found and Solve The World's Problems vein in me that very well could get me in trouble some day. More on that later.

Cops were called, things got a little uglier but thankfully no further weapons were involved other than fists and a bent umbrella. Everyone walked away before the cops arrived except us. Naturally, I was a little shook up and my Husband looked at me and said, "So, how does a beer sound?" YES.

We saddled up to the bar and told our story of woe to the bartender, and that's when I noticed a bunch of gore-covered skeleton's chasing after a guy on the television screen. WHAT IS THIS? I cried.

What I was watching, my lovelies, was the animated classic Heavy Metal. Not typically categorized as a horror movie - more of rock animated sci-fi film - but the skeletons sold me on the horror interest. That and it's one hell of a crazy film, which suited my one hell of a crazy late afternoon.

We closed up, ran home, and pulled the film up on Netflix. What happened next was me watching nearly two hours of naked women trying to take down or take control of an evil green alien orb. Not what I was expecting. My Husband, who saw it once but long ago, eyed me cautiously when I said I wanted to watch it. "I'm not sure you would like it..." is all he said. I now understand why.

I wanted a comic book-like horror movie, what I got was my tilted head, two squinty eyes, and a big long sigh. No, this was not my favorite film. In all, this movie is a high school boy's day dream - and in the end I appreciated it for that element. Yet, I still had a problem with the women portrayed in this classic. They were either sex hungry succubi or mute ingenues [YAWN]. Ready to move past this now, society. I did my best to push the misogyny aside but it certainly didn't help me put this classic on my movie shelves.

I have a problem with sexism in movies - anywhere, really. I have a problem with jerks in real life. Combine the two and I sometimes sorta kinda wish that maybe a zombie attack wouldn't be so bad...

This over-the-top surreal movie is not typically likened to horror - but it is bloody, graphic, and harbors many horrific ideas. Much like my late afternoon. As surreal as my real life adventure was (umbrella stealing leading to face punches), by the end I was just too exhausted and confused by the portrayal of such behavior to appreciate what exactly happened, ultimately leading to my temporary disappointment in peoples.

I'm sure this is a favorite movie for many. I'm glad - seriously. More movie copies for you. For me - I'll just keep on keeping on, doing my best not to get into too many fights.

Recommended pairing: lots of Surge, or Jolt, or Yahoo. Cool Ranch Doritos.