ToC Classic: Bride of Frankenstein (1935), directed by James Whale

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By Jacob Slater

Or, The Modern Prometheus 2: Electric Boogaloo

Originally written for thunderplanet.blogspot.com

In a move that no doubt signifies the first step towards my total creative bankruptcy, if George Lucas’ handling of Star Wars is any sort of example I’ve decided that I’ll be going through the backlog of reviews in my oft-neglected film blog and posting them here as well. Some of you might be surprised to learn that I had written a fairly decent amount of film scribblings before I moved on to fame and fortune here, and if you are surprised then this is probably the first time you’ve ever read one of my articles, because I think I’ve mentioned that thing in every single article that I’ve written on this site. In fact it’s been over a year now, ever since the day that my good friend Alec said I should start a blog and I wrestled with self-doubt and indecision for weeks before finally biting the bullet and starting one up. Much like how I confront any and all decisions in my life, which is probably why I never got around to that one year anniversary thing.

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ToC Double Feature: Michael Mann

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By Jacob Slater

Or, Everyone Loves A Good Crime

Well a new year has begun, time has moved inexorably forward another 365 days, leaving us all with another 365 to hopefully get something accomplished for once. 2014 was a bit of a bust for me, what with the job difficulties, friend difficulties, people en masse forgetting my birthday and an ongoing major depression that left me feeling increasingly disconnected with reality, but I suppose there were some good parts as well. I started writing for the Tricycle Offense last year, for example, which has granted me a larger audience than I enjoyed on my oft-neglected film blog (which caused more than its fair share of shame spirals and bitter recriminations, let me tell you). I also got to watch a lot of movies and TV shows, and that probably counts for something to someone somewhere. Also, way too much Binding of Isaac, that game is cocaine-levels of addictive.

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ToC: Scrooged (1988), directed by Richard Donner

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By Jacob Slater

Or, A Very Murray Christmas

I’m not totally up to snuff, or I’m suffering from writer’s block, or my hands have finally caught up to the crap my brain has come up with, so here’s a short article I managed to come up with as my gift to all of you you. No, you can’t return it.

Well it’s that time of year again folks: Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Winter Solstice/Festivus. A time of festivity and joy, where families and friends gather together to enjoy fine foods, exchange gifts with one another, bask in the glow of each other’s company and attempt to not be utterly rancid dicks to each other for at least 24 hours. Or, if you’re the kind of miserable dick that I sometimes tend to be, it’s a disgusting display of consumerism and greed that long since killed any sense of goodwill that the season originally had and replaced it with high suicide rates and naked opportunism. Mostly however, I tend to see Christmas and the assorted other holidays much in the same way I see the life of Batman: Full of childhood trauma, often times drifts into dark places, but ultimately a force for good. If you see any clowns at your Christmas party though, you get the fuck out of there. No good can come of it.

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Thunderlists: 5 Pretty Bad Film Adaptations of 5 Pretty Good TV Shows

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By Jacob Slater

I’m in a little bit of a depressive state at the moment, so hopefully all of my faithful imaginary readers will understand that I couldn’t muster up the will to actually do a new movie write up at the moment. Major depression doesn’t mix well with Seasonal Effectiveness Disorder I suppose. Not putting out something makes me feel like more of a failure than I already do however, so I’ve decided to trot out another edition of everyone’s favorite system of structured and organized information: a list! Because if there’s one thing the internet needs more of, it’s lists. And pornographic pictures of cartoon horses, apparently.

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Thunderbird on Cinema: Metropolis (1927), directed by Fritz Lang

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By Jacob Slater

“The mediator between brain and the hands must be the heart.”

In my little write up of Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages, which you can find on my Long Dark Marathon of the Soul articles, I gave a little explanation as to my feelings on the ‘genre’ known as silent movies. As I said then, it’s not so much that I have an aversion to soundless films as that I’m not very experienced with them as a viewer. I’ve grown up in an age where the ‘talkie’ is a common thing after all, where the context of a film is gathered from the dialogue as much as it is the physical action, and it’s quite to split your attention between other things and still understand the events of the film. Watching silent films took a level of concentration that I wasn’t used to, and so in the past I haven’t been as involved mentally as more modern cinema. Now that I’m principally a ‘movie guy’ however, who is attempting to gain respect and perhaps actual legal tender from writing about films (and maybe making them, if I ever get the opportunity), I decided that it’s best for me and all you out there in internet land if I expanded my horizons as much as I can. You know, rather than try and improve my writing ability or anything like that, because that sounds hard and I’m too lazy.

#truthbomb

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The Long Dark Marathon of the Soul, Halloween 2014: #11-1

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By Jacob Slater

And finally, our epic conclusion. What film shall take the top spot on the list? Will Halloween be saved? Read on and find out.

11. An American Werewolf in London (1981), directed by John Landis

Dracula. Frankenstein. The Mummy. The Wolf-Man. Ever since the original run of Universal horror movies way back in the 1930s and 40s (and before that if you count the 1910 film version of Frankenstein), we’ve seen these four concepts, if not the exact stories  repeated in hundreds of films since. Occasionally it works out okay, like the Hammer Films run in the 1950s (so much Christopher Lee…), but in most cases, like the 1972 shit-fest Dracula vs Frankenstein, it doesn’t. But they have the name recognition I guess, and if you’re in the business of selling movies rather enjoying them, I suppose it doesn’t really matter how you’re using the property as long as you can squeeze a few more bucks out of the audience. The pessimistic world of movies, kids.

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The Long Dark Marathon of the Soul, Halloween 2014: #31-22

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By Jacob Slater

Last year, I decided to do a little thing in celebration of Halloween on my oft-neglected fim blog (which you can find at thunderplanet.blogspot.com if you feel like torturing yourself). It was a list of 10 spooky movies that I thought were really damn good, so I thought I would put a good word in for those with my nonexistent readers, so that they might try the movies out themselves and perhaps a few new favorite movies. I didn’t really give myself enough time to really work on the thing though, I think I wrote and posted it the the week of Halloween, and several of the films were those that didn’t need that much help, like John Carpenter’s The Thing. Like most things in my life, it was ultimately disappointing.

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