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Scary Movie '12: Valley Cinephiles' Picks

Published: Friday, October 26, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 15:10

"Bram Stoker's Dracula"

Valley cinephiles weigh in with their favorite scary movies and the way they'd wanna be offed in a horror flick.


Kristy Smith, Monsterland actor/spokeswoman

Favorite horror movie: “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”

Why: Gary Oldman is not only my absolute favorite Dracula but I love all the things that a lot of people don’t notice in that movie, like Dracula is doing one thing but his shadow is doing something far more sinister. The costuming in that movie is incredible as well as the makeup. I think Gary is a total of six different versions of Drac in that movie.

One movie that is so bad it should never have (another) sequel:  God, I wish “Paranormal Activity” never happened and certainly none of the sequels!

Best way to go in a scary movie:  I’m a vampire fan. I love the way the vampires die in “True Blood.” It is gory and violent – not sparkly.


Jim McLennan, Phoenix FearCon co-director

Favorite horror/Halloween movie: John Carpenter's “The Thing”

Why: Most movies either have the horror lurking in the shadows or in the viewer's face. While either can work, “The Thing” is a very rare example that goes down both paths and does so brilliantly. It balances suspense and tension with gory effects, which still stand up even 30 years later.

The first time you saw it:Bizarrely, on broadcast television in the UK in the late ‘80s. The f-bombs were silenced, but all the exploding heads and caved-in chests were left intact.

The one movie that is so perfect it should never be remade: “Shaun of the Dead.” Horror-comedy is a notoriously tough genre to pull off successfully, but this is both loving homage to, and satire of, horror films, without a wasted line or scene. I can't imagine anyone but Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as Shaun and Ed.

Best way to go in a scary movie: If I'm going down, I want to be unrepentant for whatever cinematic sins brought about my fate. So I'm with Captain Rhodes from [George A.] Romero's “Day of the Dead,” screaming "Choke on 'em!" as zombies tear me apart and chow down my guts!


Andrea Beesley-Brown, Midnite Movie Mamacita

Favorite horror/Halloween movie: This is so hard, but I would say it's a toss up between “Pieces” and “The Hills Have Eyes Part II.”

Why:I'm a sucker for ‘80s slasher flicks with great ensemble casts. “Pieces” is set on a college campus where a chainsaw-wielding maniac is hacking up beautiful coeds. It was a Spanish attempt at cashing in on the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” craze and stars the awesome B-movie couple of Christopher George and Lynda Day George. “The Hills Have Eyes Part II” follows a bunch of motocross kids as they head out to a rally only to take a wrong turn in the desert. Shenanigans and desert hackings a-plenty arise amongst a cast of really likeable characters including a blind heroine/final female.

The first time you saw it: “Pieces” I saw about 10 years ago. I picked it up on a super cheap DVD at Best Buy. [It] had the most amazing cover art that I was instantly drawn in.

The one movie that is so perfect it should never be remade:For me it would have to be Lucio Fulci's “The Beyond.” It's such a beautiful and timeless piece. They filmed it on location in New Orleans so it has some amazing locations and stunning cinematography. It's a true classic.

Best way to go in a scary movie:I would say that Johnny Depp's death in “Nightmare on Elm Street” is pretty epic. To be sucked into your bed while sleeping, listening to music on your big ‘80s headphones and watching late night TV, only to be splattered all over the ceiling in a cascade of blood – that would be a good way to go!


Jeremiah Wilkenson, Dr. Diabolic

Favorite horror movie:I have a classic and a contemporary favorite. My classic pick is “Evil Dead” and my contemporary pick is “Cabin in the Woods.”

Why: I think I'm just a sucker for horror taking place in woodland areas. “Evil Dead” was a perfect blend of horror and comedy that paved the way not only for horror movies but for low budget films as well. “Cabin in the Woods” is a prime example of that influence and it managed to take all of the best parts of horror and do it in a way that was fresh and surprising.

The first time you saw it: I don't remember the exact first time I saw “Evil Dead,” but I know I was quite young and I loved it. I saw “Cabin in the Woods” for the first time on April 2 at a press screening and was very lucky to meet the writer/director Drew Goddard at the screening. He wrote another favorite of mine – “Cloverfield.”

The one movie that is so perfect it should never be remade: I'm very happy that “Mockingbird Lane” did not get approved because “The Munsters” was too good to be ruined. If I could stop both the “Evil Dead” remake and the “RoboCop” remake I would in a heartbeat.

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