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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Random Ramblings from the Vault...

  • So the big announcement has been made, that Brad Pitt will be playing the lead in the upcoming World War Z movie. I kind of thought this was a foregone conclusion when Pitt's production company optioned the novel about four years ago, but oh well...
  • One announcement which was far less predictable was the news coming out of Comic Con that Guillermo "I Have 683 Movies Currently in Development" Del Toro will be getting to work on a big-screen adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's seminal novella At the Mountains of Madness, to be produced by Jim Cameron, no less. I suppose if Del Toro had to drop out of The Hobbit, this revelation makes it somewhat more palatable. The director's work on Hellboy proves to me that he has a firm handle on ol' Howard Phillips' oeuvre.
  • For all those either too young or not from around my neck of the woods, you may not be aware of it, but beloved character actor James Karen, best known for his roles in Return of the Living Dead and Poltergeist, was for many years the TV pitch man for a supermarket chain here in the Northeast. So that's how I knew him as a kid, long before I saw those movies. Just thought I'd share that bit of random weirdness.
  • After recently debating the eligibility of parole of Mark David Chapman, John Lennon's murderer, I've come to the conclusion that there needs to be a pilgrimage to the famous Dakota Hotel on Manhattan's Upper West Side. And not because it was where Lennon lived--no, there's been quite enough of that. We need to organize a pilgrimage of horror fans, because of the other reason the Dakota is famous--it's where Rosemary's Baby was filmed! So who's with me?
  • Was I the only kid who used to get scared of that giant walking pile of orange hair in sneakers from the Warner Bros. cartoons?
  • I really do feel that the new season of True Blood has been getting better with each episode, which is a good thing. But someone explain to me why we need to have this protracted storyline about Sam and the dog fights? This kind of superfluous storytelling, used to fill time and keep characters busy, is one of the pitfalls of episodic drama. If it ain't vampire-related and doesn't tie into Bill or Sookie in some way, I don't need it.
  • Eight-year-old Zombelina has been begging me to let her watch Jaws as of late, and I must say, I've been hesitant. Seems all the kids at camp have seen it (damn that's a rather hip bunch of fourth-graders, is it not?) and she yearns to join the conversation. But I'm not totally sure she can handle it. The usual parental tactics are not working--I may need to teach this lesson the hard way. Will report back.
  • Some may remember quite a while back, I reviewed a documentary on the history of horror films called Nightmares in Red, White and Blue, from director Joe Maddrey. Well, I'm proud to say that after some time struggling for distribution, the doc is currently available on a number of on-demand platforms, and will also be available on DVD starting September 28. For more info, go to the movie website. Can't recommend this Ken Burns-like look at the genre strongly enough.
  • If you'd like to be the proud owner of a poster from AMC's upcoming Walking Dead TV series (and who wouldn't, really?) then I advise you proceed to The Spooky Brew, where Maweanne, fresh from San Diego Comic Con, is giving one away! Yay, contests!
  • Long-time Friend of the Vault Christopher Zenga will be making his art available to buyers at the Toronto 2010 FanExpo, from August 27-29. It's a great opportunity to buy prints, or even have a custom zombie portrait done. Check out Chris' stuff right here.

24 comments:

Pax Romano said...

I remember the first time I saw Poltergeist and when JK showed up, a bunch of people in the theater stated to chuckle and some one yelled out, "It's the Pathmark guy!"

And I am up for the Dakota Pilgrimage!

Emily said...

You know, there's a fantastic podcast out there called Family Movie Night where a dad and his 10 year old daughter discuss old and new films. They reviewed Jaws a few weeks back and it may be worth checking out. I was never too susceptible to Jaws--one of those movies I had just always seen bits and pieces of so I never had that first sit-through experience--but I do know plenty of people out there whose childhood beach experiences were ruined from it. So ultimately, I have no idea.

On a side note, we just showed my 5 year old niece and 4 year old nephew the original Night of the lIving Dead, which they loved. The only downside was that one of the reasons my niece seemed to like it was because, in her words, "it was so neat when the little girl killed her mommy." Um.

Andre said...

ummmm NO NO TELL HER NO! AHHHH

Tell her the story of a little girl named Andre, who's life was marred by the ever abundant appearance of a shark mouth. Nowhere is safe!

Although kids these days frickin love sharks so who knows. All I know is that I was the only one screaming bloody murder when Marlin met Bruce in Finding Nemo....crummy kids.

B-Sol said...

Absolutely, Pax! James Karen will always be the Pathmark Guy to me.

Thanks for the Jaws advise, guys. It looks Friday family movie night in the Solomon household is going to be featuring Jaws... I hope I'm not creating another little Andre here. Oh wait, that really didn't sound right. Andre, you're a delightful person! :-)

Jason Stroming said...

It was always hard watching RotLD or Poltergeist and not thinking of Pathmark LOL But he was great in the RotLD movies.

As for Jaws, I don't know. On the one hand, a lot of the fear is generated by what you don't see, so it might be ok for kids. But the final scenes are a bit gruesome, so that may be problematic :(

B-Sol said...

Oh, I will most definitely be skipping through the bloodbaths, you can be sure of that. Remote control will be at the ready.

B-Movie Becky said...

That orange-haired sneaker thing was always creepy! I haven't seen that in years.

Oh and most excellent selection of pictures for Brad Pitt.

Tanya said...

Hehehe I was just in Pathmark...I remember that guy...craziness!

B-Sol said...

Becky, that's how I first came to know Brad Pitt, so I had to show a little Johnny Suede love!

Tanya, James Karen will always be the Pathmark Guy.

Planet of Terror said...

I'm probably not the person to give advice on the subject (considering I showed my two 5 year old cousins Poltergeist and they were traumatized for weeks). But I say throw her to the fire. My parents did with me at the ripe age of 5 with Aliens. And look how I turned out.....

Autumnforest said...

I never knew that about James Karen. You had lots of great info and brilliantly written. Thanks!

B-Sol said...

And thank you for such wonderful praise!

Elliot Ibáñez said...

I may be late, but yes, let her watch Jaws. Actually, it was one of my early horror obsessions, my father even paid an "extra fee" so I could watch part 4 in the theater.. maybe I regret that because nowadays I really avoid any shark film (except for the first Jaws)

Pierre Fournier said...

The Dakota was Boris Karloff's longtime New York address. Back when he was doing ARSENIC AND OLD LACE, he would come home from the theater and put in a few hours' duty as the building's Air Raid Warden.

RayRay said...

You just made my week with the knowledge that James Cameron is producing At the Mountains of Madness, easily my favorite HPL story. Holy crapola.

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B-Sol said...

So excited about that you had to say it five times, eh? lol I understand--and with Del Toro doing it, it's bound to be a superb.

RayRay said...

Stupid sticky internet connection.

Who Is Afraid of Alfred Hitchcock? said...

Hi! B-Sol...
Thanks, for sharing..."The Ramblings"...By the way,
very "cute" kids that you, the wife have...(I especially, liked the "pic" when your son was sticking out his tongue.)
DeeDee ;-D

Rabid Fox said...

Oh man, that walking pile of hair that chased Bugs Bunny used to creep me out as a little kid. Those green ostrich-lookin' things that Marvin the Martian unleashed on him, too.

B-Sol said...

Thanks, DeeDee! :-)

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