Hello there boils and ghouls! It’s time for another wild and wacky version of PAUL’S MOTHER FRAKIN HORROR FLICKS! Hell to the yes! The excitement is boiling over isn’t it? You’re just sitting there, laptop on the sink as you wait for the body in your bathtub to be eaten away by the battery acid, just DYING to know what movies we’re going to talk about this week. Well, horror hounds, wonder no more, for today you get THREE horror reviews, of classic (coughmostlyshittycough) 80’s horror madness!
- The Funhouse
- Happy Birthday to Me!
What are you waiting for? A demonic incantation? Continue reading after the jump!
So, really, Madman is entirely nothing special. In fact, the good portion of it is laughably bad. But, unlike a later laughably bad film that just ends up being awful, this one ends up having a certain charm to it. From 1982, Madman tells the story of “Madman Marz,” a backwoods humungo redneck killer who has a thing for chopping up 30-something people who play teenagers.
This movie ends up getting its charm from some wicked bad, definitely 80’s choices. There’s a hot tub scene that involves a man and a woman wandering in circles aimlessly, looking at each other longingly, while 80’s love songs play in the background. There’s a guy who has his initials on his giant ass belt buckle. There’s a guy who gets lost at the beginning of the movie in the woods (after seeing the Madman in a tree and not telling ANYONE around him) who happens to be (spoiler, if you care) the sole survivor of the film.
Really, you end up getting a typical “kids lost in the woods with a crazy slasher” movie, without any of the real imaginative choices. Still, taken for the time period in which it was released….nah, it’s still stupid.
Now this is more like it. Tobe Hooper hasn’t had the most consistently good output over the years (for every Texas Chainsaw Massacre, there’s a Body Bags), but he has had some great stuff and, while I wouldn’t classify The Funhouse as great, I will say that it’s a darn good film for it’s time period and, other than some choices I wish they wouldn’t have gone with, definitely worth checking out.
See, The Funhouse reminds me of the type of film I loved as a kid – stuff like Monster Squad, Poltergeist…films where kids are in danger from all sorts of wacky crazy monster characters. The main problem with The Funhouse comes from some weird choices – an old lady masterbating a monster, some stupid stuff that, even for an 80’s movie doesn’t make any sense. In one scene, characters are spotted spying on the villains and they run away, right? Wrong – they stay and chat more about what they should do.
The problem with watching 80’s films is that you kind of have to take them in the context of their original release. Most of these films are the ones that created the cliches that we can’t stand nowadays, but at the time of their release, they were halfway original. The Funhouse suffers from many of these cliches, but manages to be a good looking horror movie with decent creature effects, halfway decent gore bits, and even a bit of light humor to keep things going. Definitely worth checking out.
Happy Birthday To Me
Wow…someone told me this film was good. Actually, I think a lot of people told me this film was good. Let me be the first to tell you – THIS FILM IS NOT GOOD. Not only does it feel like it’s six f*cking hours long, it has the most ridiculously ludicrous ending of a film I think I’ve EVER seen. So…what happens? Basically, some college kids start getting knocked off one by one by one of their own. The film is very Scream by way of High Tension, but without the tension or intelligence of either.
The film drags at a snail’s pace for a good portion of its running time, with very few redeeming qualities (other than seeing a young Matt Craven and one or two halfway decent, if predictable, deaths) to keep you interested. Then, suddenly, things take a turn and start getting good when you realize who the killer is, and then, suddenly, things go horribly, horribly, HORRIBLY wrong – all of a sudden, we’re in a Scooby Doo movie that left me laughing the point that I had a headache. Seriously, I’d say this film is actually worth seeing because of its ending but, really, it’s not.