Scare tactics: Halloween movies 2012
The seasons, theyâ€™re just flying by. Why, you canâ€™t even peek into a gift shop window these days without seeing some slavering, undead ghoul staring back at you.
But thatâ€™s OK. If you give a Red Hat Lady a nice cucumber sandwich, she shouldnâ€™t be too much trouble.
Meanwhile, itâ€™s time to figure out what youâ€™re going to be watching for Halloween. Turner Classic Movies has its traditional month of fright flicks all ironed out, featuring the typical mix of â€™30s and â€™40s ambience, Hammer horror and Cold War cheese. Tops on my own DVR list are the documentaryÂ Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story, which I missed when it played the Florida Film Festival a few years ago (You too? Whew!), and House of Dark Shadows, the 1970 feature based on the classic afternoon soap.Â That one Iâ€™ve seen, but not for decades, so Iâ€™m eager to be reminded if Dan Curtis was able to make a more coherent narrative feature out of the same daytime-drama story elements that just recently tripped up Tim Burton. (Somehow, I think we both know the answer.)
Thereâ€™s TCM at the theater, too, with the channel sponsoring a double feature of the originalÂ Frankenstein andÂ Bride of Frankenstein (the greatest horror movie ever made, IMHO) on Oct. 24 at three local theaters.
In contrast, TCMâ€™s Halloween night small-screen schedule pairsÂ Frankenstein withÂ Son of Frankenstein instead — maybe to subliminally warn viewers against voting Romney/Ryan six days later?
Maitlandâ€™s Enzian isnâ€™t lying down on the job (or slab) either, rising to the challenge of the season by screening 13 Halloween-oriented flicks at and near the theater throughout the month. Highlights include the premiere of the multidirector found-footage anthologyÂ V/H/S (Oct. 26 and 27), the originalÂ Fright Night (Oct. 9) and a â€śPopcorn Flicks in the Parkâ€ť showing of the delightfulÂ Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein (Oct. 11).
Thereâ€™s also an Oct. 30 screening ofÂ Theatre of Blood, the Vincent Price revenge romp about a stage actor who gets even with his reviewers. Which reminds me of this little nugget of trivia: Several years ago, local experimental-theater director Rocky Hopson was planning on staging a live production of the tale, with the portrayed critics all to be based on real Orlando scribes of the day, like Elizabeth Maupin and â€¦ well, letâ€™s just say you havenâ€™t lived until sprite-like actor Jarred Sharar has bounded up to you at a public event and announced â€śIâ€™m playing you!â€ť like itâ€™s something to be proud of. The upshot of the story is that Hopson blew town before he could mount the production â€¦thus sparing us all from finding out just how few members of the general public are capable of leveling the plaudit â€śThat guy does a mean Schneider.â€ť
Anyway, old Vinnie Price still does this stuff the best. So mark your calendars for October, get a witchâ€™s shawl on, and keep the car keys where you can find â€™em. And if you meet a Red Hat Lady on your way to the theater, burn rubber for Lake Lily: They canâ€™t cross water, you know.