Saturday, October 22, 2005

Zen and the Art of the Living Dead:
New DVDs in the ZenFo Pro Collection

Well, its the Halloween season, and that means its time to add a few new DVDs to the ol' ZenFo Pro film library.

Halloween, as I've mentioned before, is probably my favorite season. Maybe it comes from the fact that I watched too much late night horror flicks as a kid. Maybe it comes from the fact that its the only holiday where people are encouraged to give candy to children in return for a bit of a scare.

Scary movies are my thing, regardless of the time of year. Not stupid, dimwit slasher flicks filled with more tits-and-ass than is needed to carry the story, but films that make the pulse race and the heart skip a beat. Tales filled with the supernatural, the conflict between mere mortals and the mysterious forces that stalk them like a demon possessed zombie.

Anyway, I've always loved a good scare. I guess its the closeted Goth kid buried somewhere inside, catalogued in the back of my brain somewhere between the grocery list and my oft-beleaguered inner child.

DVDs added this month so far:

1. Land of the Dead (2005, Dolby 5.1, US and Canada)
You gotta check this one out. Asia Argento is the hottest zombie-killing machine to ever grace the screen. Career character actor Eugene Clark (at right, as "Big Daddy")steals the movie as the lead zombie. Clark has no speaking lines, just gutteral, undead sounds. Yet he successfully turns what the long-feared flesheating zombie mythos on its side, delivering a performance that leaves the viewer feeling more sympathy for the undead than for the living.

2. Nosferatu (1922, silent, Germany, B&W).
Max Schreck created the vampire genre with his chilling, sinister performance as Count Olaf.

3. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1919, silent, Germany, B&W).
A masterpiece of German silent cinema.

4. Night of the Living Dead (1968, B&W, US)
George Romero cast African-American actor Duane Jones in the lead for this film, making it the first horror flick to star a black man...as something other than a witchdoctor or a servant. Jones was not cast to make a political statement against the rampant racism of the era, but, according to some reports, the sight of a black man slapping a hysterical white woman drew more gasps in the segregated South than the gory special effects.

5. Dead Men Walk (1943, B&W, US)
Total cheese vampire flick.

6. The Invisible Ghost (1941, B&W, US)
Romantic ghost story starring Bela Legosi.

7. La Muerte Viviente ("The Snake People" American Title, 1971, Mexico)
One of Boris Karloff's last films. Features the eternally-sensual Yolanda Montes (better known as Tongolele, at right), perhaps the best known exotic dancer in Latin American cinema.

Montes's perfomances in several of these low-budget films is said to have influenced the development of Salma Hayek's character in the Robert Rodriguez/Quentin Tarantino flick, From Dusk Til Dawn.

6 comments:

Lupe said...

Tongolele is such a damned hottie. Muy, muy, muy caliente, baby! Thanks for the mad props to Mexican cinema...my uncle still has a poster of her in his garage!



ummm...you know you kind of look like a goth kid in ur new pic dude... kidding kidding...sorta

Night of the Living Lupe :P said...

o...dude...you watch frigging silent films too?!? What the fuck?!? Classy man classy. Hope you're out having a good time instead of being all artsy and shit :P

Katherine said...

I loved LOTD!!! Big Daddy kicks so much ass!!!

Alice: In Wonderland or Not said...

I admit to loving Night of the Livng Dead

I am not into gore per say but that is a classic.

I prefer the more subtle horror of people themselves.
The Japanese film The Eye
Alfrede Hitchcocks Rebecca and Vertigo

Also an old movie called What Ever Happened to BabY Jane

And that fifteen minute clip Un Chien Andalou

The ZenFo Pro said...

Lupe:
Tongolele- agreed. And your very welcome for the props...in spite of the insult ;-)

Katherine:
Big Daddy kicks some serious ass. Esp. the scene where he figures out how to fire his new gun...

Alice:
I also enjoy suspense flicks, in addition to my wierd zombie habit. Vertigo is a frightening flick. Hitchcock created several wonderful masterpieces.

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