What’s New in Grue
by John Bikowski
illustration by Eric Johnson
Once again, I put my life on the line to attend Fangoria’s Weekend of Horrors in Manhattan in order to bring you some upcoming genre release info. Bad news for pure horror/gore fans: Starting with Screamers, there seems to be a trend toward big-budget science fiction films. The good news is that the upcoming Independence Day looks like it kicks major ass with atomic-tipped boots. Scenes of nuclear annihilation of innocent people and not-so-innocent people (i.e., Washington, DC.) will leave you breathless. It seems that some E.T.s are far from friendly and are out to hammer us much more realistically than in those cheesy, big bug Martian and horror flicks of the ’50s and ’60s. Also worth an eventual look will be The Planet of the Apes re-make starring big old Arnie S., who will probably need a crash course on how to outsmart normal apes.
A highlight of the convention was the interview with Lucio Fulci, a grandfather-type guy who has churned out such nasty classics as Zombie and The Gates of Hell. I had forgotten how twisted folks are until I saw them cheering and howling during a showcase of Fulci’s sickest moments. I was appalled at people leaping with excitement while someone on-screen puked up their intestines, had their brain drilled, or was chain-whipped into jelly. Hmnnn…O.K., I’ll admit to being one of those morons.
On the rental scene, you could do worse than Castle Freak, the latest opus from the creators of the immortal Re-Animator. What?!!! You haven’t seen Re-Animator?!! Then put down this damn magazine and do yourself a favor – either jump in front of a car or get in your car and rent it. Re-Animator is about a high-strung medical student who develops a serum that restores life, but with violent, gory, and classic results. Check out the parallels between this film and the lobotomized zombie-making efforts of Jeffrey Dahmer. I know he saw this film, so don’t be an ass like him and take the stuff too seriously.
As for Castle Freak, they released both an unrated version and an R-rated version for terminal weenies. Basically, a severely deformed whipping-boy is left alone in the cellar of an Italian castle after his captor dies. A married couple and their blind teenage daughter inherit the castle along with the freak below. Mr. Grisly escapes his chains and embarks on some interpersonal mayhem, including a sick, teeth-aided breast removal. The acting and suspense are well done and I personally know the actors and crew went through much physical and mental pain to complete the film, so check it out. Speaking of breast removal (like the transition?), this month’s sickest scene comes from Burial Ground, a killer zombie flick. In the climax, the world’s ugliest adolescent boy returns from the grave to his mother. For some inexplicable reason, she begins to suckle him and he clamps down and tears out a gaping mouthful of boob flesh in extreme close-up. Not even a Wonder-Bra could’ve saved this lady.