FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Jan 17, 2006

Just Call Me Billie

As you may or may not be aware, the website for the forthcoming flick Creepshow 3 is now live and somewhat kicking.

Nope, sorry- Creepshow 3 will not be a reunion for horror maestros George Romero and Stephen King. In fact, they've got nothing to do with this effort. The duo behind this is Ana Clavell and James Dudelson, the pair who brought us Horror 101, Horror 102, and Day of the Dead 2: Contagium. I've yet to see that last one yet, but I must admit, it takes a primo pair of gold-plated balls to hop on Romero's back like a pair of little monkeys as they did. I have seen H-101 and H-102, and I must say- my hopes for Creepshow 3 are quite low. Damn those cheap DVD 2-packs straight to hell!

Back during the Shocktober! marathon, I talked a bit about my love for horror anthology flicks. It's because of this (and plain ol' curiosity) that I'm sure I'll check out Creepshow 3. But like I said, for once I'm not getting my hopes up- though I'll try to view it with an open mind, and maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.

Creepshow has a place in just about every horror fan's heart. Writer Stephen King and director George Romero absolutely nailed the look and vibe they were going for: that of William Gaines's EC Comics of the 1950s. In fact, there's a fantastic original comic book companion to the film, written by Stephen King with art by the amazing Bernie Wrightson.

The movie isn't particularly scary (although soggy, bloated, zombified Ted Danson and Gaylen Ross from Something to Tide You Over really got to me), and hell, maybe it isn't even particularly good. I have no idea, and I can't really be impartial about it. I was 10 when it first appeared, and to a 10-year-old Stacie, that movie was pure fucking gold. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I've seen it so many times I practically have it memorized. I loved it when the mean dad (Tom Atkins) got his at the end of the wraparound story; I loved it when Nate Grantham clawed his way out of the grave in Father's Day; the cockroaches in They're Creeping Up on You grossed me out majorly, and I always laughed when Jordy Verrill yelled "Oh no! Not there!" when he first caught a glimpse of his newly weed-covered wang. But for me, the absolute highlight of the film: Adrienne Barbeau as the obnoxious Billie in The Crate. I already knew and loved her from The Fog and Escape From New York (and yes, from Maude as well), but here she's at her crankiest, her most foul-mouthed, campy over-acting best. Absolutely perfect.

In 1987, Romero and King teamed up once again to write the screenplay for Creepshow 2, while directing duties went to Michael Gornick. There's no doubt that movie, trimmed from 5 stories to 3, isn't as strong as its predecessor. It's missing that comic-book vibe of the first, and so it feels just like any other run-of-the-mill horror anthology: meaning, fun to watch, some bits better than others, but ultimately just... sort of... there. While most people will claim The Hitchhiker- with its famous "Thanks for the ride, lady!"- as their favorite story, the story that's really stuck with me all this time is The Raft. It's certainly the most frightening of the three stories- I mean, who isn't afraid of carniverous goo? And you know the downer of an ending rocks. I wish Clavell and Dudelson all the luck in the world with this effort, I really do. If they do their job right, we all win- and I do love an anthology flick. If they dip into Romero's well yet again and come up dry, though, they may have to hop onto Uwe Boll's back next time.


Anonymous said...

I liked Chief Wooden Head the best.


John Barleycorn said...

The Hitcher and that gooey raft thing scared the shit out of me when I was young. I remember catching it on USA network, or something, and just standing there in front of the TV, afraid to look, afraid to look away. Ghastly!

Anyway, I wouldn't wish these people luck in their retarded sequel. Seriously - if you wanna make a horror anthology, just make one. No need to rip off an old brand. Showtime is doing it with their television series ... I imagine the whole collective stories genre has gained some new attention and respect due to that program. So what's the problem?

Unknown said...

I knew a Creepshow 3 was in the wings, and I knew Romero and King weren't involved . . . But I had no idea the hacks behind Day of the Dead 2 were behind it.

Not too long ago, I tortured my poor DVD player with that awful flick. I had little expectations for the movie, but unfortunately, even those expectations couldn't be met. I only rented it because I wanted to watch another zombie movie . . .

I should have stuck with something tried-and-true instead of taking a chance with this thing. It was nothing more than an inadequately directed waste of video. Avoid this movie at all costs!

Stacie Ponder said...

I know, I know...I musta been smoking too much cotton candy and puppies yesterday- that's the only explanation for my niceness about the whole thing. Or maybe it's because I was thinking fondly of Adrienne Barbeau and The Raft. While I'm always rady for an anthology flick- even a mediocre one- the fact that these two have been sucking at Romero's teat without consent, just to make a buck, fucking sickens me.

Why does this need to be a "Creepshow"? Because that might lure in some unsuspecting fans- same with Day of the Dead 2, which by all accounts should be jettisoned into the sun.

Anonymous said...

Stacie, I am offended that you failed to mention my beautiful Barbie recreation of Father's Day. I think my Barbies were more scary than the original!


Stacie Ponder said...

I know...but your movie deserves its own post. Let's figure out a way to get it up on the Internerds and bring it to the people!