Grady Hendrix’s Horrorstör is clever in all the right ways, but it’s also quite creepy. You can’t ask for much more from a high-concept horror novel.
It’s a little too creepy and clever, honestly.
I used to love our IKEA clothes drying rack. It folds flat and stores neatly in a nook in the laundry room, but it’s quick and easy to set it up and it holds several loads of laundry at once.
“Love” might be over-stating my relationship to any of our household accoutrements, but it’s safe to say I liked this thing a lot. Liked. Past tense.
Horrorstör ruined my laundry rack for me.
Ever since I finished the book I’ve been utterly and completely creeped out by the laundry rack. I’m not kidding. I have such a visceral reaction to the thing that I avoid doing laundry until Husband can set the rack up for me.
This is ridiculous, not least of which because there isn’t a drying rack in the book.
Berman did, however, Executive Produce a couple episodes of Dig, which was truly abysmal in ways that even the narcotics and other assorted drugs I was on while recovering from a long and serious illness couldn’t improve. Seriously, even for television, that was some seriously ridiculous pop culture archaeology. Let’s just hope she learned her lesson from that debacle, because damn. Just…damn.
Sorry for the long absence, I didn’t mean to neglect you so.
My sanity wasn’t devoured by bad SyFy movies, but I was quite ill for most of the Spring and early Summer and it’s taken me much longer to get life back to something even close to resembling normality.
Wouldn’t want things to get too normal, though, so while I continue to sort things out, here’s a hypnotic re-edit of the ending of The Wicker Man.
There are mild spoilers in this post, but with a movie like this, it’s better to be forewarned.
The movie begins with a crawl. Narrated by Slater, who sounds as though he’s drunk or otherwise incapacitated, this crawl is a prodigious display of word-vomit that provides a video-game-esque amount of backstory that leaves you fervently wishing that the poor man’s Nicholson would just shut up already.
Blahblahblah. 10,000 years ago a tribe known as the Abkani opened a gate between the worlds of Light and Dark. Blahblahblah. Something evil slipped through the gate, possibly Uwe Boll. Blahblahblah. In 1967, a bunch of miners found dangerous artifacts left behind when the Abkani disappeared.Blahblahblah. Something about the government’s Bureau 713, a paranormal research agency run by an archaeologist named Lionel Hudgens. Hudgens has a secret lab. Blahblahblah.
“There, he conducted savage experiments on orphaned children in an attempt to merge man with creature.”
Wait, what? What kind of archaeology is that? What creatures?
Me: Isn’t that also the plot of that Kevin Smith movie we just saw a trailer for? Tusk? The one where the guy tries to turn the other guy into a walrus?
Husband: No. This is different. That guy was a podcaster, not an archaeologist!
Thankfully, while we were bickering about Tusk, the crawl ended. Unfortunately, that meant the movie began.
Edward Carnby (Christian Slater), one of the 20 surviving experimental child-creature subjects, has grown up to be a paranormal investigator. He also knows kung fu. Or maybe the artifact he keeps in his leather jacket pocket gives him super-powers. Who can really say? Actually, Lowrent Nicholson will probably say eventually, because it appears he’s also going to be narrating this steaming pile of cinematic stupidity.
Seriously, what kind of science was Ludgens supposed to be doing? You understand that creating human-demonmonster hybrids is not archaeology, right? Right?
Ludgens is still a working archaeologist. Not a respectable archaeologist, obviously, because he works for the same museum that hired Aline (Tara Reid) as an assistant-curator. Let’s be clear here: I’m not mocking the idea of Reid as a scholar because she’s young and dewy and pretty. I’m mocking the idea of Reid as a scholar because she can’t deliver a convincing line to save her life. She can’t even walk convincingly.
Archaeology movie trope alert: Aline is under pressure to finish the blockbuster exhibit about the Abkani for the major museum at which she is the assistant curator.
A bunch of stuff happens.
Edward: Every culture’s got a story about the end of the world, doesn’t it?
Aline: But not every story starts by coming true.
Oh, hey! Sex scene in an exotically appointed artifact-laden warehouse. I guess Edward and Aline live in this warehouse? Oh no! Now Edward and Aline are being attacked by a monster, who chases them around the warehouse.
Luckily, Bureau 713 arrives with an entire platoon of soldiers and they all open fire on the monster in the dark warehouse while heavy metal music throbs and lights strobe and everyone grunts a lot.
Now there are zombies.
Where did the zombies come from? I have no idea. I wasn’t paying attention because I was reading about the 7th Alone in the Dark game (Illuminations), which is scheduled for release this year. Husband, who was paying attention, also has no idea.
We both agree that the games are way, way better that this movie.
We also agree that they should dub Reid’s dialogue. Even if it wasn’t dubbed well her performance would be more convincing. Maybe they could spare Reid the effort of memorizing all of those words. Her dialogue coach could just smear peanut butter on the roof of her mouth like they do when they want to film animals moving their mouth in a way that approximates human speech.
Husband: Well, I believe we should commend ourselves for doing such an excellent job of repressing it!
He makes a good point.
Hang on…the braintrust of Aline, Edward, and Bureau 713 Commander Burke (Dorff) seem to have lead Bureau 713’s special forces to the ancient Abkani temple those miners found in 1967.
No sign of zombies. Lots of monsters, though. And a big battle.
Damn, while I wasn’t paying attention the three stooges opened the door between the worlds of Light and Dark and went into whichever one they weren’t already in. Dark, I guess. Or Light. Who knows?
Some “dramatic” things happen and the movie ends.
I don’t want to ruin the movie for you, so I haven’t described the B story, in which we learn the consequences of the child-creature experiments. You should be grateful I decided not to describe it. Grateful on oh so many levels, the least of which is that you’re avoiding spoilers.
In summary: archaeology plus secret experiments involving human-creature hybrids never end well, not when you’re on deadline to open a blockbuster museum exhibit!