A Phantasmic Journey
I don’t know how old I was when I technically saw my first “horror” flick but I know I was probably no more than 5 or 6 (don’t curse my parents, just read on). You can thank my mother and her father for most of my introduction to horror. I suppose if I was to start at the very beginning I could site the classic Universal Monsters (Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolfman, The Mummy and Creature From The Black Lagoon) or the 50s atomic scare giant “creature” films like Them which I would watch on Weekend Matinees with my mother and/or grandfather and sometimes just by myself. When it came to “real” horror films I distinctly remember being unable to watch the 1978 Amityville Horror which my oldest sister delighted in watching just to torture her little brother who would have to leave the room which is probably all she really wanted. Damn sisters! But if I’m being honest the little I saw of that movie’s end with blood dripping down the walls, coming out of the faucets and such as the voice of “Satan” called out from deep below sparked an interest in me. I wanted to see more, I wanted to see if I could be “brave” enough to sit through The Amityville Horror essentially so that my sister could no longer torture me. “I’ll beat her at her own game”, I thought, and watch scarier and nastier films that would drive my two sisters from the room instead of me! It didn’t take me long to do just that *BIG SMILE* plus, as somehow I must have gotten another family’s genetics, by 12 or 13 I was bigger than either of my sisters as they struggled to reach the 5 foot mark and I topped off at 6. But I’m severely digressing here, this piece is supposed to be about horror damn it! So I’ll continue…
Mike begs his older brother and his ice cream truck driving friend, Reggie (Reggie Bannister), to believe him and check The Tall Man out for themselves but it only serves to feed Jody’s fear that he isn’t able to raise his little brother. Mike visits a creepy local fortune teller whose granddaughter is his friend relaying his fears about being sent to live with his aunt and of the mysterious and creepy mortician. Mike is told to place his hand in a little black box to face his fears. The box grips Mike’s hand sending him into a panic but the creepy fortune teller tells him to let his fear go and as Mike relaxes so does the grip on his hand. The idea of fear itself as the killer is established then personified in The Tall Man. Knowing that Mike is spying on him The Tall Man sends his minions, creepy hooded dwarves, after him. He manages to escape of course and is finally able to convince his brother and Reggie to investigate.
For more of my humble horror movie loving roots you can blame the aforementioned The Amityville Horror and its sequel, The Exorcist, John Carpenter’s Halloween, the wonderful Motel Hell and later classics like the first two Friday The 13th films,Toby Hooper’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Funhouse as well as anything else I could find at the time. These classics were where it all started for me so that by today it is rare that something shocks or sickens me. As Cult and I continue on we’ll bring you our takes on classics as well as new flicks. I can’t speak for Cult but as for me what endears a horror film to me, other than the nostalgia for older flicks, is one of two things. Either a film is a great story or it is awesomely gore filled. I prefer well told stories personally but sometimes I just want to see blood and guts spilled everywhere. As we continue here we hope to bring you plenty of both!