Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Quiz Time

I have been waiting for this, it's been a long time - Dennis Cozzalio is back, with a new quiz for Halloween!


Let us away!

1) Favorite Vincent Price/American International Pictures release.

A. I am not sure how many I have seen - bits an pieces, yes, but start to finish? Saw a 16mm print of The Raven when I was in college, a double feature with House of Wax - rather neat, a way of seeing films that seems to have disappeared...

2) What horror classic (or non-classic) that has not yet been remade would you like to see upgraded for modern audiences?

A. While Vampire Lovers (and Vampiros Lesbos, for that matter) have their - let's call it charms - I think the world could use a more straightforward adaptation of Carmilla.

3) Jonathan Frid or Thayer David?

A. I watched a bit of the show, but I can't say it made much of an impression on me.... probably have to vote for Frid, though.

4) Name the one horror movie you need to see that has so far eluded you.

A. The answer is probably The Exorcist - that's about the most prominent horror film I have avoided...

5) Favorite film director most closely associated with the horror genre.

A. This is James Whale, easily.

6) Ingrid Pitt or Barbara Steele?

A. Barbara Steele

7) Favorite 50’s sci-fi/horror creature.

A. Gojira - probably not really close, unless I can count Tor Johnson.

8) Favorite/best sequel to an established horror classic.

A. There are a couple possible answers, I suppose. Bride of Frankenstein is obvious, almost too simple - and I am inclined sometimes to look at it as more a continuation than a sequel (though I know better.) Dracula's Daughter is a very interesting variation on the theme...

9) Name a sequel in a horror series which clearly signaled that the once-vital franchise had run out of gas.

A. For whatever reasons, I find that series' I like I never got to the bad ones - and ridiculous sequels I've seen have tended to be of series' I don't care much about - Hellraiser III? why would I have seen that? Another kind of answer might be Bride of Reanimator - pointless and not very interesting sequel to a great film...

10) John Carradine or Lon Chaney Jr.?

A. John Carradine, though I suppose this goes well beyond horror movies.

11) What was the last horror movie you saw in a theater? On DVD or Blu-ray?

A. Restless is a ghost story and it was pretty horrible - does that count? Take Shelter might be a slightly better answer... DVD - Thirst, watched it for this post - though the Frankensteins will end up in this position.

12) Best foreign-language fiend/monster.

A. I suppose the obvious answer is Count Orlock - I don't know if silent films count, but if not, Kinski works as well as Shrek. Though I'm thinking a good contender might be either the two kids or the television in Funny Games.

13) Favorite Mario Bava movie.

A. Tough, but I'd say Black Sabbath (Three Faces of Fear) - the Verdulak section especially is one of the greatest horror films of all time.

14) Favorite horror actor and actress.

A. Karloff, easily.... And - Brigitte Lin? a case can be made, a good one...

15) Name a great horror director’s least effective movie.

A. I'm not really an obsessive horror fan, so haven't gone looking for a lot of lame films by great directors here - though - Dario Argento's Mother of Tears might count - silly, boring story, though even here, boy, it looks good...

16) Grayson Hall or Joan Bennett?

A. Joan Bennett - I mean, she was Fritz Lang's go to actress for a while! I think more or less any of his films are, in fact, scarier and more disturbing than just about anything labelled horror...

17) When did you realize that you were a fan of the horror genre? And if you’re not, when did you realize you weren’t?

A. I'm not, in any special sense. I enjoy horror films, find the genre interesting enough - but no more so than any other genre, and I don't tend to enjoy horror films because they're horror films as much as, oh - I will watch even a bad western or martial arts film just because it is a western or martial arts film. On the other hand, I suppose I do find the horror genre more interesting to talk about, as a genre, than westerns, noir, martial arts films... it does seem to have a metaphorical interest that I find fascinating...

18) Favorite Bert I. Gordon (B.I.G.) movie.

A. I wish I could answer this, but I don't think I can. If I've seen any of his films, I don't remember them, and I think if I had seen them, I would remember them.

19) Name an obscure horror favorite that you wish more people knew about.

A. Let's go with Dream Lovers - Brigitte Lin and Chow Yun-fat as contemporary characters who start dreaming about one another, and about ancient terracotta figures - they meet, they fall in love of course, there are other people involved who suffer, 8 years or 2000 years, it's still love... shares a lot with the Mummy - plot elements, and a tone of infinite romantic sorrow. Great little film that's not much talked about.

20) The Human Centipede-- yes or no?

A. I suppose I have no inherent objection to it, but I have no interest in seeing it.

21) And while we’re in the neighborhood, is there a horror film you can think of that you felt “went too far”?

A. I am not inclined to think of any film in those terms - art shows what it shows... that is somewhat different from saying that a film fails - or becomes less effective or interesting because it tries to gross people out or shock them - going for cheap effects or whatever the problem is. Something like Organ comes to mind - because it's kind of a dull, underwhelming film (or so I remember it), that tries to make up for its flaws by being grosser than its competition. I suppose by that criteria, Passion of the Christ would qualify... quite well, actually.

22) Name a film that is technically outside the horror genre that you might still feel comfortable describing as a horror film.

A. Being probably more fond of the theory of horror films than actual horror films - I suppose I do this rather a lot. I've done it a couple times already in this quiz - Passion of the Christ - the great mass of Fritz Lang films. My pet theory is that the major theme of horror is the instability of the self - how the self is threatened by forces outside it, that turn out to be somehow inside it - the themes of the Other who is a Double; themes of invasion, especially - loss of bodily integrity, loss of self.... Given that - lots of films, not horror, become very close to horror - from stuff that is, really horror, like Lost Highway - to things like, oh - L'Humanite... Bigger than Life.... Showboat....

23) Lara Parker or Kathryn Leigh Scott?

A. No, I'm well out of my depths now.

24) If you’re a horror fan, at some point in your past your dad, grandmother, teacher or some other disgusted figure of authority probably wagged her/his finger at you and said, “Why do you insist on reading/watching all this morbid monster/horror junk?” How did you reply? And if that reply fell short somehow, how would you have liked to have replied?

A. Well - no, it's never happened. For this sort of thing, you would have to ask me about either the music I listen to, or about people wondering why I watch so many cheap Hong Kong police thrillers - I have had that question...

25) Name the critic or Web site you most enjoy reading on the subject of the horror genre.

A. Siegfried Kracauer? getting there first is a big thing sometimes...

26) Most frightening image you’ve ever taken away from a horror movie.

A. This is a great question - this is the one that justifies the quiz. I don't know the answer though - unless it's that reel-long shot in Funny Games after the first set of abuse... I think, rather seriously, that Funny Games was the most disturbing horror film I have ever seen, and that the most excruciating moment in it.

27) Your favorite memory associated with watching a horror movie.

A. Another interesting one - seeing the whole 9 hours of The Kingdom over 2 nights was certainly up there

28) What would you say is the most important/significant horror movie of the past 20 years (1992-2012)? Why?

A. Significant or best? The best, when push comes to shove, probably comes down to either The Kingdom or Thirst - The Kingdom wins if you count the whole series, I think, parts 1 & 2. Thirst probably wins otherwise... Significant? MIght be something like the Ring films, popularizing Asian horror, touching off a host of American imitators... or Buffy the Vampire Slayer - which seem to be one of the places vampires made a jump into a new realm of pop culture. Though a big part of that jump is out of the horror genre...

29) Favorite Dr. Phibes curse (from either film).

A. Alas, etc.

30) You are programming an all-night Halloween horror-thon for your favorite old movie palace. What five movies make up your schedule?

A. Another great question - all right - going on the themes, Invasions - dissolution of self/other - tragic monsters - doubles - how about this:

Student of Prague
Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde (Mamoulian)
Lost Highway

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