Tuesday, October 11, 2011
31 days of Horror Nerd Indoctrination- Day Eleven: Documentaries
In 2004 Bravo aired The 100 Scariest Movie Moments. I had my friend John tape(yeah tape) it for me. This became my bible only less embossed. Sure some of the commentators where irritating and some of their choices were different than mine but over all it was a great watch and I would watch the five hour epic repeatedly, in fact I still have the tape and watch it at least once a year.
When we were doing our first big marathon which was cleverly named the forty nine days of horror(guess how many days it was?) I stumbled across a documentary called The American Nightmare on IFC. I was instantly hooked. Interviews with most of my favorite horror directors were highlighted. Carpenter, Hooper, Craven, Cronenberg and Romero, wow. They were discussing everything from stories from the set to social metaphors. I was sold and luckily I had a tape(yeah again) ready and got it recording. This documentary ended with the ending of TCM where Leatherface is spinning in circles while Godspeed You Black Emperor played in the background. At the time they were at the top of the list for music for me so it was like heaven, but I could see it. I would watch this and lend it out to anyone I could for years till I finally got my hands on an official DVD of it. It is still regular viewing for me.
By the mid ought's DVD was here to stay and now most of them had documentaries on them. This made my intake get kind of out of control. I would go out hunting all the time and head home and look at the special features to see what was there. It was always a letdown when you would think you were getting a documentary and it ended up being like a five minute fluff piece. Thank the grog you had companies like Anchor Bay and Blue Underground, among others that pretty much always had extensive docs included. Speaking of DVD this also brought the availability of documentaries higher than a junkie on skid row.
These days horror docs just keep coming out like George Michael. When I can go to the cinema to see a documentary on Troll 2 I know I am happy to be alive. Jim Wynorski got his own and you god damn better know he deserved it and so did many of the other directors that have gotten the doc treatment. Herschell Gordon Lewis, William Castle, Val Lewton, Dario Argento and Fulci have all recieved one as well as many more. Scream Queens, grind house's, slasher films, American films, indie films, and special effects artists have all gotten some love and these days it's all about the franchise documentaries.
Halloween was first to get an overview, then came the in depth look at Jason and finally Never Sleep again took us on an epic Stephen King mini series length trip. Hellraiser, Saw and plenty more are lined up for the retrospectives so keep looking out.