Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Favorite Underrated Horror - Mike McPadden ""

Friday, September 27, 2013

Favorite Underrated Horror - Mike McPadden

Mike “McBeardo” McPadden is the author of Heavy Metal Movies: Guitar Barbarians, Mutant Bimbos & Cult Zombies Amok in the 666 Most Ear- and Eye-Ripping Big-Scream Films Ever!, coming from Bazillion Points in 2014. He’s also the Head Writer at Mr. Skin (active), and publisher of the ’90s sleaze zine Happyland (retired). Tweet away @Mcbeardo.

In chronological order:
Grave of the Vampire (1972)
The shocks erupt early, as buried vampire Caleb Croft bolts to life, rapes a nubile, and sires a son. The young mom casually filling a baby bottle with blood and feeding it to junior remains indelibly unnerving. It also sets up a trippy atmosphere where the highly groovy early-’70s aesthetic regularly gets blown asunder by cruelty and chaos.

The Pit (1981)
Twelve-year-old Jamie, an unpleasant kid to the point of being repulsive, psychically communes with his teddy bear and befriends troll-like mole-men he calls “Trogs” that reside at the bottom of the titular location. Jamie feeds his enemies to the Trogs and spies on his babysitter’s bare nipple. A head-scratcher on every level, based on a novel I’ve been meaning to track down for three decades.

Scrapbook (2000)
From St. Louis it came and to the depths of your most horribly credible fears it will go. Screenwriter Tommy Biondo (who died before the movie’s release) stars as a disgustingly convincing serial murderer who keeps pieces of his victims in his private diary. Emily Haack—nude, abused, and subjected to hardcore miseries unseen outside of German porn—delivers the most fearless performance in all of horror. Director Eric Stanze renders a palpable world of hurt that builds to an unusual ending, providing just one more element for you to try and claw free from your brain after the fact.

Dagon (2001)
Director Stuart Gordon’s greatest triumph this side of Re-Animator returns to the H.P. Lovecraft universe, in this case to a seaside Spanish village where fish-fried locals worship and pay human tribute to the aquatic monster-god for whom the movie is named. Gross, funny, scary, and rousingly exciting.

Inside aka "À l'intérieur" (2007)
The closest moment any movie has ever come to actually making me throw up occurs at the climax of Inside, when witch-like Beatrice Dalle finally catches nine-and-a-half-months pregnant Alysson Paradis. It’s not so much the gore—which is copious—it’s the volcanically visceral, synapse-shattering terror of the previous ninety minutes: a cat-and-mouse chase where slapstick is deadly serious and agonizing to the audience. Paired with the better known Martyrs, Inside proves that France won the kickoff horror movie decade of the twenty-first century.


Will Errickson said...

"A head-scratcher on every level, based on a novel I’ve been meaning to track down for three decades."

Ah yes, the novelization is called TEDDY, it's by John Gault. Apparently it's rather different from the flick, which I liked - so now I gotta find this book too!

Tommy Ross said...

Just saw this recently after seeing reco on well what do you know, it was this blog...yeah, really dug it, instantly became a horror favorite, the casting choice of the kid was spot-on, story great, SO 80's and loved the ending. Thumbs way up for THE PIT 1981!