One of The Film Fiend's recent posts, about a startling revelation he had recently got me to thinking.
Back in 1982, my family moved from Binghamton, NY, one of the world's most god forsaken cities, to Marblehead, MA and in this new setting, I discovered The Creature Double Feature and horror movies, in general. It changed my life. Though, schlocky, I'd been pining for horror movies since I first saw that Friday the 13th poster on the way into the theater to see The Empire Strikes Back. Ever since then, I'd been devoted to the genre. I even tried my hand at those vinyl horror movie monster model kits to disatrous results. I've spent a good chunk of my life following horror with righteous dedication. That is, until recently.
I'm getting older. I realize this. I also realize that horror's target market has always been an audience half my current age which still puts them below the age requirements for an R rating. Maybe I've been hanging on in hopes of some renaissance that breathes new life into the genre but I forget that that already happened back in 1996 with the advent of Scream and I was just as grumpy then as I am now, only now I actually qualify as a grouchy old guy.
I seem to be nothing less than annoyed with each new movie announcement, "Oh! Fucking fantastic! They're remaking Leprechaun now! What the fuck is this world coming to?" In spite of the fact that I go on and on about how I really don't give a shit about remakes, I have to wonder, who am I trying to convince of this? Don't bother to comment on this point. We've been over it. But it doesn't end there. I take a suitably bourgeois attitude that is nothing short of ironic when it comes to the market that actually fascinates me. I come off like some art house hipster when trying to explain to someone why the American horror market is a numbers machine and unconcerned with a quality product (yet still puzzled over why no one is going to see the movies). It sounds something like this, "Sure, Weather Report were good, but Jaco Pastrorius' solo work is his most vital and experimental." When I'm actually trying to tell you that you should buy a region free DVD player to watch [REC] instead of the upcoming Quarrantine. The only things missing in this instance are a pencil mustache, a beret and a clove cigarette.
Even the original stuff, or semi-original stuff like the quietly remade Korean suspense flick, Mirrors, fails to capture my attention. What about it didn't have me by the balls? The TV ads make it look like some tame teen friendly picture but I'm told it's everything you're expeting from Alexadre Aja.
I'm hardly hanging up my boots, here, but I am ready to accept the fact that I am a grouchy genre asshole. A elitist prick about horror movies. I'm hard pressed to find a movie from the last 20 years that I actually like. There are a few sprinkled here and there, mostly in the direct to video and indie markets, but as far as theatrical stuff goes, I'm just not as interested as I used to be, still hung up on names like Fulci and Naschy. The foreign market still kills me. For instance, I can't wait to dive into that copy of Dark Floors I just got in from Finland but what happened to the domestic stuff? A recent review run of The Asylum's latest steaming piles of worthlessness convinced me that the low budget scene has nothing much going for it, either (except for Richard Griffin).