A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET

A CREEPY COLLECTOR’S GUIDE TO SCARY SOUNDTRACKS – “STARTER EDITION”

A CREEPY COLLECTOR’S GUIDE TO SCARY SOUNDTRACKS – “STARTER EDITION”

 

As a deep-dish fan with a love for all things horror, I’ve been collecting certain kinds of memorabilia in “serious” mode since about 1997, if memory serves me correctly. From posters, tee shirts, celebrity autographs and from candid snapshots to professional photo-ops, I’ve amassed quite a bit of “swag.” But it’s easy to say that nothing gives me greater pleasure than my collection of horror film soundtracks – be they on vinyl, CD or some other medium. (And I still do have some of them on cassette. Yep, this hobby for me goes back taking viagra in your 20s writing a case study paper follow url https://dvas.org/different-type-of-viagra-pills-13441/ research study related to psychology go to link watermelon viagra pictures what is a hero essay https://web.ics.purdue.edu/~asub/?doc=university-of-denver-creative-writing free viagra sample pack online research paper sports viagra lahore mathematics essay http://snowdropfoundation.org/papers/pay-for-economics-problem-solving/12/ here how to change my name on facebook on ipad computer science assignment help custom personal statement here coupon code for cheap prescription drugs enter site essay editing online free enter how does lasix surgery work 3d game thesis documentation viagra patent over https://www.newburghministry.org/spring/how-to-write-opinion-essay/20/ https://thedsd.com/exemplification-essay/ prednisone 10mg tablets http://www.danhostel.org/papers/college-paper-for-sale/11/ homework should be banned articles best and quickest viagra online that far.)

Fair warning given now – as in most things pared down to “lists”, this is not at all an objective collection I’m about to outline here. But in all of the years of collecting and enjoying horror movie orchestral and song scores, the ten albums I’m going to mention are the ones that seem to be where I have experienced the most ‘overlap’, when I get into discussions with fellow fans about what the great soundtracks are in genre films. None of these are ‘rarities’; they’re all still fairly easy to obtain from Amazon, eBay, Intrada, Mondo, or whoever your favorite purveyor of collectible music is.  Here they are: the Ten Basic Scream-Worthy Soundtracks that any budding collector should have, to start a well-grounded, basic horror film music collection…

In no particular order (think of this less as a ranking list and more of a shopping list):

PSYCHOBernard Herrmann, composer

 

The Alfred Hitchcock movie that began the Sixties, by forever breaking the horror mold and establishing its own set of rules, proved to be no different with its score. Herrmann’s string section shrieking in horror at the complete out-of-left-field demise of the lead damsel-in-distress, would be imitated in countless horror films to come…but never quite duplicated in terms of the impact this work made upon not just movies, but popular culture overall.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMTrVgpDwPk

ALIENJerry Goldsmith, composer

When you’re speaking of master composers in the genre field, very few have contributed to it as indelibly as Jerry Goldsmith has. One of the most versatile composers in the business, who wrote for practically every kind of picture imaginable, just about nobody did it better when it came to horror or sci-fi than he, and Ridley Scott’s ALIEN gave Jerry and all of us the best of both.
Notoriously finicky about his accompanying scores, Scott actually discarded a lot of Goldsmith’s original score for this deep-space tale of dread and death, opting to use in some spots, bits and pieces of music he liked from Jerry’s scores for a couple of other films that had nothing to do with horror. Nevertheless, enough of the music written expressly for the film was still included, and the result still remains to be probably the second best piece of work he ever did for a genre film. What do I think the first one was? Stay tuned, kids…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ftsJoR1Jys

A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984 version)Charles Bernstein, composer

Following the monstrous success of TUBULAR BELLS, the album created by brilliant multi-instrumentalist Mike Oldfield, of which director William Friedkin used but a snippet from for his iconic chiller, THE EXORCIST, every Tom, Dick and ‘Freddy’ wanted a soundalike theme for their project, to help guarantee its success. Every guy with a pen and a couple of reams of sheet music tried their hand at it, and some of them were more successful than others. Charles Bernstein, of the illustrious musical Bernstein clan, had something a little different in mind. Using the  creepy, sing-songy jump rope melody that became the picture’s signature jingle, what he managed to create was – rather than a slavish knockoff of the Oldfield tune – a theme and accompanying score that was as eerie, surreal and uneasily compelling as the film it anchors; “’An ABC Afterschool Special’ gone very, very wrong…” (The best comment I ever read describing the film in a critic’s review.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxU8veeydI4

THE LOST BOYSThomas Newman, composer; Various Artists

The Eighties. The definitive era when songs for soundtracks were commissioned by movie music supervisors, specifically from groups who were hot at the time, or groups and artists who were angling to get into that spotlight. A separate list could be devoted to these song scores alone (and maybe there will be one in the not-too-distant future, hint-hint), but one of the most popular and well-known of these albums is the one that goes with Joel Schumacher’s too-cool-for-ghouls teen vamp epic, that tossed around contributions from sources as diverse as Echo And The Bunnymen, The Who’s lead frontman Roger Daltrey and super-hot Aussie band INXS teamed up with soul-shouter Jimmy Barnes. But what nobody saw coming, was a little tune penned by singer/songwriter Gerard McMann (now known as “G Tom Mac”), which rapidly became a moody, synth-laden Goth anthem for all things lyrically ‘vampirical,’ “Cry, Little Sister.” More than amply covered by too many bands to count, it has become its own darkly delicious standard.  All this, and a not-to-be-discounted moody-yet-menacing score by Thomas Newman (of that other famed Hollywood musical family), which only has one cut featured on this collection (“To The Shock Of Miss Louise”), sad to say, and which hasn’t ever been released on its own well-deserved disc, to my knowledge. But for now, there’s enough Eighties nostalgia here to keep your ears busy as it is.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raI38f_xMZE

THE OMEN (1976 version)Jerry Goldsmith, composer

Remember when I said that Jerry could do anything? He proved it, time and again with scores as wide-ranging as PATTON, OUR MAN FLINT, PLANET OF THE APES, THE BLUE MAX, the list goes on for what feels like forever. And yet, with all of the acclaim and the Oscar nods he received over the years, how ironic was it that the one time he actually managed to finally grab a Little Gold Man, he had to pen a literal Black Mass To Satan in order to do it?

You heard me. That’s pretty much what the score to Richard Donner’s demonic terror trip was: a Black Mass honoring the Horned One. And every spine-freezing note of that theme and the attendant dark dramatic cues that follow it are what provide the film with its heft, along with the leading performances of Gregory Peck and Lee Remick. Goldsmith would go on to do even more iconic genre work with POLTERGEIST and GREMLINS, but this is the one that is as associated with him, as another memorable score from a contemporary of his is with his name…betcha can’t guess who that is!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nj4o1xhkbG4

JAWSJohn Williams, composer

The low bass string notes hum…the lower end of the piano kicks in, followed by the primitive, threatening drum beats…then those horns start…

Even people who don’t collect horror themes as a whole have this baby in their collections…the score that kept people out of the water in beaches worldwide for YEARS. And with good reason. And yet its popularity resulted in the sale of millions of copies, making it one of the most successful film scores ever to hit the record store stacks.  Not known for horror scores per se (and he did a beautiful job on his one recognizable piece with the London Symphony Orchestra, for Brian De Palma’s psychokinetic suspense thriller, THE FURY), no other composer scared the holy hell out of audiences more effectively, by evoking the feeling of a threat that couldn’t even be seen for the majority of the movie.  Known primarily for his other work with Steven Spielberg, as well as magnificent dramatic and action scores for a wide range of directors (check out his matchless theme for Irwin Allen’s production of THE TOWERING INFERNO), Williams scoring for JAWS (and THE FURY) was indelibly etched into the minds of movie fans for generations to come.

SUSPIRIA (1977 version) GOBLIN, composers/performers

Remember what I said before about knockoffs of TUBULAR BELLS? Some composers managed to take the feel of that timeless theme and create something that felt completely unique, while others just “went with the flow” and cranked out something that sounded just like it. For Dario Argento’s giallo-esque witchy thriller, the famed art-rock troup Goblin managed to steer their work more towards the former category. As much a character in the film as the stunning visuals it supports, this crazy kaleidoscope of bells, hissing voices, exotic percussion and keening synths are almost a required must-have for any serious collector, even if they’ve never laid eyes on the film. (And if you haven’t yet…why the hell not???)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SI7SYh47Ak

HALLOWEEN (1978 version)John Carpenter, composer

Whenever the subject of iconic, recognizable genre themes comes up, PSYCHO, JAWS, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET and THE OMEN always turn up on “the usual suspects” list. But that list would hardly hold water without the inclusion of one of the simplest, yet strikingly effective themes in horror history. Whether Carpenter heard Oldfield’s EXORCIST theme or not is debatable. Based on the 5/4 time signature he remembered using for percussion practice in his younger years, he managed to craft a leitmotif that, like JAWS, is so catchy and obsessively, memorably creepy yet rudimentary, that even someone with no musical knowledge or talent whatsoever can plink it out on the keys of any piano, and just like JAWS, a fan will recognize it immediately, even if they can’t quite remember where it comes from. That is a credit to Carpenter’s talent for composition – keeping it simple and also frighteningly memorable. A talent he would display through a raft of pictures that have scared and delighted us for years since.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n0rSZfDJxpI&list=PL7v_KFM4xhO2ESrrIA9_Y_Hz7qKtq_ssj

FRIDAY THE 13TH (1980 original)Harry Manfredini, composer

Hewing closer to Herrmann’s work on PSYCHO as an obvious influence, Harry Manfredini wasn’t a name known very widely to mainstream horror fans, when this “cabin-in-the-woods” touchstone suddenly took the world by storm, and changed all that. Whether you think the echoing hook of the theme sounds like “ch-ch-ch-ha-ha-ha” or “ki-ki-ki-ma-ma-ma” (and the backstory on THAT debate is one of the most interesting and hilarious in horror movie music history), Manfredini’s inspired choice to use the echoey hook to set the score apart was nothing less than genius. You can’t even mention the name “Jason Voorhees” without people imitating their own preferred version of that cue.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-RjwlplnGg&list=PL7v_KFM4xhO3kSu_dB45ubseBGPzq-qLb

CARRIE (1976 original)Pino Donaggio, composer

It was Brian De Palma’s third studio-affiliated picture, and his last chance to get it right, as his other two films (GET TO KNOW YOUR RABBIT for Warner Brothers and PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE for Fox) had tanked at the box office. CARRIE, based on the blockbuster novel by then-burgeoning sensation Stephen King, was to feature De Palma’s favorite musical collaborator, Bernard Herrmann for the score. Unfortunately, after composing and recording his final masterpiece, the score for Martin Scorsese’s TAXI DRIVER, Herrmann passed away.  Stuck without a composer, De Palma was still searching when he attended a screening of the Nic Roeg psychic chiller, DON’T LOOK NOW. Immediately blown away by the score, he made some calls to find out who the composer was. That call led to a long-term association with Donaggio that began with CARRIE and lasted all the way through virtually every movie he made until BODY DOUBLE.
Donaggio’s score for this unforgettable tale of one girl’s ‘coming-of-rage” works on every level, because of how, in the maestro’s own words, he didn’t write the music for a “horror film”, but rather as if he were writing passages for a “tragic opera.” Which evokes all of the anger, heartbreak, pathos and horror of De Palma’s instinctively accurate translation of Lawrence D. Cohen’s adaptation. Another one that should be in every horror fan’s music collection.

Posted by Samuel Glass in Categories, EDITORIALS, FEATURED CONTENT, HALLOWEEN, Horror Music, HORROR NEWS, MUSIC REVIEWS, OPINION, REVIEWS, SATANIC/DEMONIC, SCI-FI HORROR, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, 0 comments
Robert Englund Wants A Freddy Krueger Prequel!

Robert Englund Wants A Freddy Krueger Prequel!

Robert Englund recently said he’s a little too long in the tooth to play Freddy Krueger anymore, but that doesn’t mean the horror icon won’t support another Nightmare on Elm Street movie. In fact, Englund revealed to SYFY WIRE that he’d love to see a prequel film centering on Freddy’s trial, acquittal, and eventual fiery death.

“I think that the franchise probably deserves a really good prequel,” he told SYFY Wire. “There’s never been an entire movie devoted to Freddy before he was burned and the crimes and getting caught by the police and going on trial and getting away with killing children. We know that he was set free, so to me, the great part in the prequel is gonna be the lawyers, the lawyers that get him off. These ambulance-chasing lawyers (or whatever they are) that get Freddy off and then, of course, the ending would be the vigilante parents burning him. That would be the end of the movie, but I think there’s a great story there somewhere … I think it could sustain 90 minutes.”

Englund reiterated that he’s just too old to carry the franchise (especially if they decided to reboot it again), but would leap at the chance to do a cameo role if asked.

“If, for instance, they remade Part III [Dream Warriors], which is the biggest hit of the franchise, I would love to be invited to do a cameo,” he said. “I think there’s a tradition in horror movies and in remakes for the cameo. It’s a certain kind of valentine to the fans and I know that there’s a part in [Dream Warriors where] the great Priscilla Pointer … played this sort of skeptical dream therapist in the group sessions. I think it would be fun for me to play that part if there was a remake … To have me not believe in collective nightmares. Having played Freddy, everybody’s favorite nightmare, I think it would be fun for me to play a guy that doesn’t believe in nightmares.”

Live-action (beyond a cameo or short guest role on The Goldbergs) is definitely out of the question, but the door for voiceover and animation is never closed.

While there are currently no official plans for the franchise to continue in any capacity, to see the series turn towards animation could offer a lower-stakes opportunity to garner interest in the franchise without fully committing to a more ambitious live-action theatrical release.

“If they did a really expensive animated version, a graphic novel animated version, I would love to go do the voice for it,” Englund revealed to SYFY WIRE. “That would be fun to do.”

Englund last played the character in a film back in 2003 with Freddy vs. Jason, which saw the character face off against Friday the 13th villain Jason Voorhees. The ambition of that film inspired various other franchises to embrace the crossover concept, with some even thinking it helped plant the seed for the current trend of cinematic universes.

The last entry in the series came in 2010 in the form of a reboot, which saw Jackie Earle Haley taking over the iconic role, though the film failed to impress audiences and is largely considered to be a massive disappointment. While that film allowed for the embrace of cutting edge visual effects, Englund noted that the industry has evolved so much since that film that a new entry could explore the horrors of the premise in all-new ways. The actor cited the achievements of Inception and how those techniques could be utilized for horrifying scenarios.

“With the new technologies in special effects, I think there are several sequences in several of the franchise [entries] that would really benefit from a remake with all of the are technology,” Englund shared. “If you remember the effects [from Inception], those effects now have grown by lightyears in terms of what they look like and I would love to see a couple of those effects used in one of the Nightmare movies to really enhance the dream landscape, the kind of nightmare world.”

The Wes Craven estate earned back the rights to the franchise last year, with various reports claiming that they were actively pursuing pitches for how to continue the series. Stay tuned for details on the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise.

Posted by justin orman thompson in Categories, HORROR NEWS, 0 comments
HELLABRATION DELUXE! Thirty-One Days of SHOCKTOBER: Day Ten – 10/10/18

HELLABRATION DELUXE! Thirty-One Days of SHOCKTOBER: Day Ten – 10/10/18

10/10 – 1996: SCREAM/FROM DUSK TILL DAWN

1996…It was a draw for me; too tough to narrow down the list of all the great flicks I had to choose from. I finally managed to whittle it down to two: SCREAM, and FROM DUSK TILL DAWN, and even then, I just couldn’t bring myself to choose between them. Both are as important and influential to the genre during this time, yet both are certainly unique: one redefined what fans had thought of the teen slasher genre, while the other took vampire lore to a whole new place unconsidered up to that point.

Legendary director WES CRAVEN had always been an innovator of modern horror, re-establishing himself in several sub-genres over the course of many decades. With LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT, THE HILLS HAVE EYES, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET and THE SERPENT AND THE RAINBOW, he’d done things that most directors in the field never achieve over the course of their entire careers. So when he was looking for the next big thing, he wasn’t even considering sticking with horror, when he crossed paths with a brilliantly subversive script by DAWSON’S CREEK scribe KEVIN WILLIAMSON; a nicely-nasty little number called “SCARY MOVIE”, which was soon to beretitled…SCREAM.

Snarky, self-reverential, almost to the point of being a bit too “nudge-winky” at times, nevertheless, SCREAM never once forgot to bring the laughs, the scares AND the gore in ample supply.  A slasher of teens begins to decimate the youth population of the little bedroom community of Woodsboro, but if that wasn’t bad enough, said killer seems to be every bit as smart as the “Scooby Gang wanna-be” group of horror-loving kids, who soon realize that their stalker not only knows the ‘rules of horror’ as well as – if not  better than they do, and he’s not only using the playbook to take them out one-by-one, but he (or she?) is even bending and changing the rules! Much like Williamson’s TV creation, the cast couldn’t have been more suited as an ensemble, even though the standout was DREW BARRYMORE, if only for the mere fact that she pulls a “Janet-Leigh-in-PSYCHO” on the audience in the first few moments of the film – a shock that has since become legendary, even though people still remember where the idea came from!

NEVE CAMPBELL, SKEET ULRICH, ROSE MCGOWAN, JAMIE KENNEDY, MATTHEW LILLARD, W. EARL BROWN, LIEV SCHREIBER, COURTNEY COX and DAVID ARQUETTE (who married and divorced over the course of the franchise); JOSEPH WHIPP (who could’ve been playing the same character from A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET – and probably was!), plus unexpected cameos from LINDA BLAIR and HENRY WINKLER going way out-of-typecasting as an asshole of a principal…It didn’t get any better than this! Plus Craven’s direction, with tongue firmly-in-cheek the entire time, could have you rolling your eyes and chuckling one minute, and yes, SCREAMING the next! This film helped usher in a new age, where the movie and the characters were as smart – if not smarter than the audience that eagerly made SCREAM a box office smash!

Meanwhile, thanks to buddy and sometime collaborator QUENTIN TARANTINO, cinematic ‘one-man-band’ ROBERT RODRIGUEZ was having fun playing “Dr. Frankenstein”, by smashing two unexpected sub-genres together, if not three: serial killers, true crime…and vampires.  FROM DUSK TILL DAWN is the kind of film you never expect…until it bops you upside the head from seemingly out of nowhere!

The notorious Gecko brothers, handsome and sarcastic Seth (GEORGE CLOONEY) and ‘quiet, reserved’ Richard (no less than TARANTINO himself) are cutting a swath of robbery, assault and murder across the Southwest.  The “murder” part of their spree is owed mostly to Richard, who just can’t curb his impulses to kill and rape people. Well, to be a bit more specific, he kills and rapes womennot the men, let’s be clear on that (as Richard would probably say himself.)

Their antics – but especially Richard’s body count – has made it necessary to hotfoot it South of the Border, and maybe lay low somewhere in Mexico, until things die down…If they do. Along the way, as they change vehicles, they hijack an RV and the vacationing family inside it and skip town.

The intent was to just keep on going until they reached their objective, but all that changes when they make a fateful detour to a truck stop on the way.  But not just ANY truck stop: The “TITTY TWISTER.” A blood-and-guts dive that definitely lives up to its name…in more ways than one. And its hours of operation are…well, you know the title.

The bar has some of the most gorgeous dancing girls you ever saw, but they’re all woofers compared to the luscious, insanely beautiful main attraction, a hypnotic dancer who goes by the name of ‘SANTANICO PANDEMONIUM’.  No one into women could possibly resist her, and all men should, as Seth and Richard quickly discover, along with the rest of the hapless ‘Twister’ patrons, when the girls, the bouncers, the bartenders, everyone who ‘works’ there, finally reveal their true faces.  They’re all flesh-and-blood hungry vamps, and less the TWILIGHT variety than the FRIGHT NIGHT kind.

Rodriguez knew exactly what the fans wanted from Quentin’s script, and together, they sure gave it to us…stylish, sensual, sexy and soaked in red. And the Tarantino/Rodriguez combo attracted a cast that was instant boxoffice catnip, right down to the cameos: HARVEY KEITEL, JULIETTE LEWIS, FRED WILLIAMSON, TOM SAVINI; the stunning SALMA HAYEK as “SANTANICO”; everybody’s favorite badass, DANNY TREJO, plus CHEECH MARIN, MICHAEL PARKS, JOHN SAXON, KELLY PRESTON, MARC LAWRENCE; even a special appearance by Robert’s favorite “Hell House band”, TITO AND TARANTULA…Hell, you just knew that if he wasn’t already starring in it, Quentin would have probably directed this one, too!

The “Titty Twister” sequences – especially the gore-soaked fight scenes – are now a thing of legend, (check out Savini’s “special weapon” and the reason why his character’s nickname is “Sex Machine”!) and the closing shot is as breathtaking as any iconic final scene from the best and most unforgettable horror films, (I’d compare it for impact to the last shot of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT; in fact, DAWN’S final shot is probably a tad better.)

But for thrills, chills and maximum blood spills, whether you’ve seen these movies a hundred times or not even once…you can’t go wrong with these choices for a monumentally successful Halloween Night of Frights!

Posted by Samuel Glass in EDITORIALS, FEATURED CONTENT, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, HALLOWEEN, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, OPINION, SATANIC/DEMONIC, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, THRILLER, TRIBUTE, VAMPIRES, 0 comments