Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Favorite Underrated Horror - Justin Bozung ""

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Favorite Underrated Horror - Justin Bozung

Justin Bozung is a freelance film writer residing in Detroit, Michigan. He's written for such publications as Fangoria, Whoa, HorrorHound, POTM Videoscope and Shock Cinema magazines. He's one of the co-authors of the upcoming book, The Shining: A Study In Horror to be released in Jan. 2014 and is currently working on a book with notorious filmmaker Uwe Boll. http://www.justinbozung.com/ 
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01. END OF THE LINE (2007)
Creepy and high energy Canadian film set in the Toronto subway system about a group of religious cult members that upon getting a signal attack everyone with knives made out of crucifixes. Throw in a strange dream sequence or two, some unexplained wall crawling faceless blue monsters with light up eyes and END OF THE LINE becomes a super fun underground chase movie with some gory and fun twists and turns that you won't see coming. Just don't expect anything to be explained at the end of 90 minutes.

02. GRIMM LOVE (2006)
Very horrific, creepy, and sympathic story based on the true crime case of Armin Meiwes, a German man who in the late '90s placed an advertisement on a cannibal message board on the internet looking for a adult male who wanted to be eaten. Martin Weisz's film is beautifully photographed and T.S. Faull's screenplay is flawlessly structured albeit typical with its college student researching the case who dives into the Meiwes story via flashback. While the subject matter of GRIMM LOVE aka CANNIBAL is utterly disturbing (especially the penis eating scene), Weisz's film is incredible sympathic, heart-wrenching and visually poetic with a nice salt and peppering of fantasy and dream.

03. HAND OF DEATH (1962)
Thought a lost film by many for over thirty years until the film magically showed up one evening on The Fox Movie Channel at the tale end of the '90s, HAND OF DEATH sees John Agar as a scientist who invents a special serum, tests it on himself, only to turn into a disfigured rock creature with a film noir fashion sense. It's possible that Ager's "Alex Marsh" character served as an inspiration to Stan Lee in creating "The Thing" out of Ben Richards in his Fantastic Four comic book series. They look identical to one another. However, The Thing, created by Stan Lee and drawn by Jack Kirby made his first appearance in late November of 1961 in the pages of Marvel Comics, while Gene Nelson's film hit theaters in early 1962. What makes HAND OF DEATH so cool is how Ager approaches the monster role. For the majority of the film Ager runs around the city as a rock monster in a trench coat and a fedora talking to people while all the time having the ability to kill with a single touch, and he used it too. I've been fantasizing about someone remaking this for at a least decade.

04: WEREWOLF & THE WITCH (2009) and every other David 'Rock' Nelson film ever made
I've been a huge fan of David 'Rock' Nelson's since first seeing The Daily Show with Craig Kilborn where they ironically made fun of him back in the mid/late '90s. Rock Nelson, a monster movie fanatic and Chicago native / former boxer makes epic length no budget monster movies shot on camcorder. The results equal some of the best cinema experiences you'll ever have. Rock's films don't care about structure, plot, acting or traditional narrative or anything really for that matter. They teeter on experimental aesthetics in many ways. The monsters in Rock's movies are plastic models or his friends dressed up in Halloween masks but Rock knows how to make people laugh and entertain. A textual description of a plot from any one of Rock's movies doesn't do him or his films any justice. They all need to be seen to be believed. Rock's films are part cinema verite, theatre of the absurb, and part shot-on-video crapola. Spend some time on YouTube today searching "David 'Rock' Nelson" and you'll be forever a fan. I promise you.
Video Interview with Nelson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdkzSx73NkE

05. EXORCIST III aka LEGION (1990)
There's so much that should be said about E3 but really it can all be left to the 15 minute video below that's been assembled. It tells the complete and tragic back story and butchering of William Peter Blatty's follow-up to THE NINTH CONFIGURATION (1980). Plagued by studio interference, Blatty took the high-road and put out a film that negated his auteur ideals but yet one that at it's very worst now is completely and totally scary as hell. Originally intended as a Part 3 in a trilogy that included THE EXORCIST and THE NINTH CONFIGURATION, E3 was originally to be released under the title LEGION. The film's title was forcefully changed and some pivotal scenes shot were sliced and diced out against Blatty's will by Morgan Creek who was in partership with 20th Century Fox to give the film a connection to the original Freidkin blockbuster. A director's cut will more than likely never surface as all of the outtakes were lost following the film's initial release. In the mid '90s EXORCIST III was citied in a court of law as being a principal influence on the mind-set of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. Upon watching the film several times a day Dahmer believed that if he had the yellow contact lenses as the demon in E3 had that he too would be able to hypnotize his victims and then lure them back to his apartment.

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