Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Favorite Underrated Horror - Tim May ""

Monday, October 28, 2013

Favorite Underrated Horror - Tim May

Tim May is co-founder and writer at VHShitfest:
Twilight of the Cockroaches (Hiroaki Yoshida; 1989) Hiroaki Yoshida’s Nuclear Age Borrowers combined animation and live action photography the same year as Who Framed Roger Rabbit and uses the technique in surprisingly innovative fashion. What begins as a comedy about a slob living in communion with cockroaches turns into a brilliant and terrifying exploration of war in the age of genocide and chemical weapons. (Later remade/ripped off as the infinitely inferior Joe’s Apartment)

The Midnight Hour (Jack Bender; 1985) In simpler times, prolific LOST director Jack Bender made this charming Halloween set TV movie which often plays as a combination of American Graffiti and the “Thriller” video. There’s one particularly exciting scene in a wine cellar set to a loop of the opening riff from the Smiths’ “How Soon is Now.”

Brainscan (John Flynn; 1994) The best video game horror film ever. Edward Furlong’s obsessed horror fan can’t resist the new fully immersive horror game which gives the film its title. A ridiculous creature known only as “The Trickster” wreaks havoc on Furlong and his friends and family all while delivering an abundance of bad jokes. He is the last great villain of the Freddy Krueger era.

The Devil Commands (Edward Dmytryk; 1941) This oft-overlooked Karloff film is a truly terrifying film about the fear of death and the search for meaning in a seemingly meaningless universe. Karloff plays a scientist who has developed a machine which could possibly allow us to communicate with the dead, but when his own wife dies in a car accident, he becomes obsessed and withdrawn. He buys a huge castle and locks himself away, murdering people on whom to fruitlessly conduct his experiments. The film’s final sequence is thrilling and deeply haunting; a terrifying and bleak view of our most repressed fears.

A Name for Evil (Bernard Girard; 1973) Bernard Girard’s often baffling 1973 hippie odyssey is like a scarier and more obtuse variation of Albert Brooks’ Lost in America. A complete rejection of modern life is at its core. It’s a film I found too oblique for its own good when I first saw it, but it has only grown in my memory; many of its images come to me in my darkest moments.

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