Top 10 Stephen King movie adaptations


It may seem odd to have one of my categories of film top tens to be based on the work of one author, but in the case of Stephen King it’s easy to make an exception. He is a very prolific author and writes about subjects that interest me in an enjoyable way, this is not just horror by the way, that old adage to his work is fiercely tiresome.  Most of his work has had some kind of adaptation for TV or film. Some have been duffers for sure, but there are some excellence as well. Here is my choice for the crème da la crème of his filmic adaptations.

 

10) Secret Window (2004)

 secret_window

Year of story – (based on the novella Secret Window, Secret Garden from 1990)

What stands out for me – The setting, the twist, the writing cabin along with Jonny Depps dressing gown.

I enjoyed seeing this actor in it – John Turturro

Great quote – Mort: I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t on the verge of doing snoopy dances. Read more of this post

Top 10 Zombie films – Non Comedy


Dancing_Zombie

Given yesterday’s post on ‘How Zombies speed mirrors Society’ of the time, it got me thinking whether I prefer Zombie movies with fast movers or slow ‘traditional’ walkers. Turns out my top 10 list is a bit of a mixture. Take a look and see which ones came out on top.

I decided not to put any films which IMDB classified as ‘Comedy’, as comedy and horror is covered in another post ‘Top 10 Comedy Horrors and Horror Comedies’. That said there are some nice comedic moments in a few of these films.

This top ten list Read more of this post

How the Speed of a Zombie Mirrors Modern Society


Hidden_Clown

Since George A. Romero brought us The Night of the Living dead in 1968, the modern zombie was established. A slow moving undead human with only basic motor functions and a lust for brains or flesh in general. It doesn’t appear to feel pain and only by destroying the brain can it be put down.

Then all through the 70’s 80’s and 90’s zombies followed the same trope, and the fear came more from the sheer numbers of the creatures rather than the speed they could attack.

I see these zombies as an allegory for Read more of this post

5 Interesting points on Halloween


Halloween morning. Rotting pumpkins. Burning leaves. Black cats mating like rats in the alley. It was as if . . . it were as if we felt no fear, as if we were already dead and had nothing to lose by dying. Or perhaps it was because we had lived life so well, and loved life so much, that we fancied ourselves immortal, overwhelming the powers that be with the force of our passion for science. [long pause] Or maybe we were just fucked in the head.

Randall Steckle – Flatliners 1990

 

Halloween is done.  A strange festival that we celebrate, although possibly not the strangest of the year. It is steeped in folklore and one that changed a lot since its inception.

I carved a Pumpkin this year, as did the girl. We put them in our window to display to the world. I caught my self doing this and thought, this is a bit weird isn’t it. So I did some research into the history of this odd tradition and thought I would share some of the more interesting points with you.

1) A jack-o’-lantern is a carved pumpkin, or turnip, There is a common belief that the custom of carving jack-o’-lanterns at Halloween originated in Ireland, where turnips, mangelwurzel or beets were supposedly used.

 Mangelwurzel

This is a Mangelwurzel, in case you were wondering (I know I was).

 

2) Jack-o’-lantern was named after the phenomenon of strange light flickering over peat bogs, called Read more of this post

Fiction, The Billingham Challenge: The Gap between the Willow trees


Sudo One loves a contest, so he set a challenge. A writing challenge. He writes an opening paragraph of a story for me to complete and I write a paragraph to start him off. He named it the Billingham challenge in honour of Mark Billingham the crime writer, who did the same thing for a competition in which I came second. You can see that effort here.

So here is my Short Story with Sudo one’s opener in brown. I’ve called it ‘The Gap between the Willow trees.’ Enjoy…

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The Gap between the Willow Trees – A Short Story by Gary Shaw (AKA the Resident Weebler)

The Willow Trees (Monet)

She waited with baited breath.

With any luck the groundwork had paid off. Tonight was the night it was all going to come to fruition, the stars in the inky night sky were, she hoped, aligned. She deserved it, didn’t she?

It was time... her time, Annie’s time.

Annie had been told about the creatures by Freda Percival, a long time resident of Hillfrome, her place of work, over two years earlier. At first she disregarded the stories as flights of fantasy, even madness. But after what had happened to Freda, what she’d seen with her own eyes, they must be able to do to her what they did to Freda.

Waiting in the woods, which surrounded the Hillfrome Estate, she watched the space between the twisted misshaped willow trees.  It had been a year ago today that Freda had gone missing from the home and Annie had found her here. A year ago today that the creatures had come through the gap in the trees and she had seen those black creatures crawl over Freda.

In her fifties now, Annie had regretted how her life had turned out. She had no real family to speak of. An only child, her parents passed on, she had no children, and the man and life she had always dreamed of had never arrived. She had so much love to give, and now nearing the autumn of her own life, only had the residents of Hillfrome to pour it on.

It was Freda that Annie had warmed to the most. The two ladies would often sit on the wooden bench at the rear of Hillfrome house on warm evenings, looking down on the vast wood that lay at the foot of the hill.  They talked of older, better times and how they both wished they were younger. Annie was reminded of her mother’s kindness as they spoke. So when Freda started to speak of magical creatures in the woods that could make them young again, she felt a terrible heartache. She remembered how her mother had started saying nonsensical things before her mind decayed, and how Annie had to look on as the mother she knew slowly disappeared. Read more of this post

Top Ten Horror Comedies and Comedy Horrors


Braindead

In my ongoing quest to find my favourite film, (see post Top ten Claustrophobic Paranoia Films) I have moved on to another of my favourite genres, Horror Comedy. I have talked about this at more length (See ‘Don’t be afraid to laugh’ post). I have found out since that the reason this genre of films is so popular is because of something known as ‘Gallows Humour’. Which basically means the film, through its story and direction, gives you permission to laugh at your own fears.

Now to my list, or rather lists. Because in my opinion Horror comedies really need to be split into two groups, whereas so often they are compiled as one. Read more of this post

Don’t be afraid to laugh


Horror Comedies, helping you simultaneously shit and piss yourself since 1978

My first memory of a watching a horror film involved being sent to bed by my mother before the film had even got going. If this was intended as a deterrent, then I can assure you it had the opposite effect, and thus my love of horror movies was born.

The film I was watching, before I was absconded to my room by the matriarchal one, was Read more of this post

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