Saturday, October 28, 2017

#27 - American Werewolf in London (1981), #28 - Psycho (1960)

Two classics tonight!  I am behind schedule with the reviews, so without any further build-up, let's get to it!

American Werewolf in London (1981) begins with a pair of guys from America heading out on a hiking tour of europe.  Obviously they start in England, and a sheep truck drops them off in the rainy moors for the first portion of their long hike.  A short stop at a pub called the "Slaughtered Lamb" leaves them a bit spooked, so they head out onto the moors in the dark of night, during a rainstorm.  Straying from the road, the boys are out on the moors when they hear something out there in the night, something growling...

Let's cover the cast.  David Naughton and Griffin Dunne are David and Jack, two buddies just out for a good hike through Europe, when things don't go according to plan.   Jenny Agutter plays Nurse Price, and John Woodvine plays Dr. Hirsh.  Everyone does a bang-up job, and Jenny Agutter looks awesome in a nurse's uniform.  Everyone else does a good job as well, including the locals of East Proctor.  I imagine they'd have used the locals of South Proctology, but they were all getting rectal exams that day.  Odd coincidence.

American Werewolf in London is one of the best werewolf movies of all time, hands down.  The transformation sequence alone was a landmark of special effects for its time, and still looks better than most of the CGI crap they use nowadays.  I love that they use CCR's "Bad Moon Rising" to lead up to the transformation sequence, which is freakishly and awesomely scary.  The effects on the "undead" are awesome, too.  There was even a sequel, American Werewolf in Paris, but it wasn't as good as the first one.  I caught American Werewolf in London on EPIX, one of the premium channels, if you want to check it out for yourself.

Psycho (1960) starts out with a moment of weakness.  A secretary left in possession of $40,000 during a real-estate transaction, perhaps overcome with the heat and her desire to go visit her lover, absconds with the money and heads for greener pastures.  Like most first-time criminals, she makes a lot of mistakes, but perhaps her worst one is ending up at the Bates Motel during a rainstorm.  Norman Bates is the proprietor of the Motel, and the dynamic between him and his mother, does not seem to be good...

Psycho has been voted the second-scariest horror film of all time on numerous occasions.  Much like American Werewolf in London, there's a shower scene that many people enjoyed.  Alfred Hitchcok was obviosuly behind Psycho, and the movie stars Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates and Janet Leigh as Marion Crane, the lady who swipes the 40 grand.  Awesome movie, decent special effects for the time, and kickass acting talent.  As much a classic as American Werewolf in London, if not more so, for most people.  This was on TCM (Turner Classic Movies) if you want to watch it for yourself.

In other news, the Inhumans still sucks.  I hate Maximus, not in the sense that he's a good villain and deserves his comeuppance, but in the sense that he's the most ridiculous villain that I have ever seen, and he should be the comedy relief.  He's powerless, paranoid, and idiotic, and as much as the series tries to make him out to be some sneaky, smart, brilliant master of tactics, none of it makes the least bit of sense.  The rest of the Inhumans have to be absolute morons by comparison, or they'd have dropped this dipshit ages ago.  It's like watching Jon Lovits in Mom and Dad Save the World, ruling a planet of morons, only in this case everyone is an idiot.  I'm not sure who to root for.  Maybe the dog?

That's all for tonight.  Catch you guys tomorrow with another review.  :-)

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