Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Top 6: Killer Animal Films

On Sunday 7th April at The Roxy Bar and Theatre, Classic Horror Campaign are holding another fun filled Double Bill. This time it's a Double Creature Feature of 'Murders in the Zoo' and 'Day of the Animals.'

With that in mind, make yourself a drink, put the pets outdoors and settle down with the Fright Writer Top 6 Killer Animals Films. This list is strictly for real life beast only, no aliens, fantasy creatures, make believe monsters or anthromorphic animals.
Joe Dante's fish feeding frenzy film clearly apes Jaws, resort owner Buck Gardner is clear an imitation of Mayor Larry Vaughan. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and even Piranha's tagline references it's predecessor; Then... you were shocked by the great white shark - Now... you are at the mercy of 1000 jaws! Alexandre Aja ramped up the comedy in his remake in 2010.
Lake Placid
A much underrated comedy horror. A giant crocodile starts picking off tourists and rag tag group are sent to investigate. No man, woman, cow or bear is safe from this killer croc.

A product of the 1950s nuclear fears, Them! is about ants mutated into giant, man-eating insects by atomic testing in New Mexico. Without doubt, the best of the many bug films of the time and featured in a previous Classic Horror Campaign event.

The Birds
Alfred Hitchcock's adaptation of Daphne Du Maurier sees him link up with his muse Tippi Hedren for the first time. The sheer terror of a usually placid animal turned violent and in Hitch's inimitable style leads for an unforgettable classic.

Jurassic Park
Sorry fundamentalists, dinosaurs did exist and nobody brought them to life on screen quite like Spielberg. From the first jaw dropping scene that we see the dinosaurs flocking through fields, Jurassic Park is a breathtaking ride not least the heart stopping T-rex attack.

Another Spielberg classic that may not only be the best creature feature of all time, but may just be the greatest horror film of all time. Based on Peter Benchley's novel of the same name, Jaws was arguably the original summer blockbuster and marked a turning point in American cinema.

And that's the Top 6 Killer Animal Films list. To feel the full force of animal fear be sure to get your tickets to the Double Creature Feature now.

Video Nasties: Part 2?

A certain, unwanted renaissance is happening throughout Britain. With a neo-Thatcherite government, the worst of the 70s and 80s is slowly seeping into everyday life.

Along side the cuts, strikes and recessions, another, more subtle beast is rearing it's hideous head. Could the latest interloper be the return of the video nasty legislation?
The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) has powers to effectively ban films to protect the public from films that "pose a real, as opposed to a fanciful, risk [to] potential viewers." I, personally, have a problem with this concept. I don't believe that, as an adult, any board (government run or otherwise) should decide what I am allowed to watch. However, that is not what this about.

In 2010, the BBFC demanded that 'A Serbian Film' cut over 4 minutes of footage in order to obtain an 18 certificate. It was the largest cuts ordered in over 16 years. A year later, Tom Six's 'The Human Centipede 2 (Full Sequence)' was refused any classification and told that no amount of cuts could redeem it. After an appeal from distributors, the BBFC changed their stance and some 32 cuts laters, granted a certificate.
This is just part of the what may be to come though. Recently, the media as continued to ramp up the links between horror films and vicious crimes. Headlines scream them out to a baying, misunderstanding, misinformed public; "Sadistic Horror Film Fan," "Saw Torture Film Fan," "Horror Fan Jailed." The media, including some very respectable streams, regurgitate the phrase like it is a driving force or motivation.
In a recent case, a judge went so far as to mention it in court, sighting Australian film "The Loved Ones" and comparing a murder to a scene from the film. It is a worrying trend that is building in a society easily lead by a media that often puts sensationalism before responsibility and as history shows, it is not always the reasonable opinion that gets heard, but the loudest and often most hysterical.

Public hysteria coupled with and over zealous certificate board could lead to disasterous consequences for horror. Hopefully, common sense will prevail before such actions commence, but common sense has so far been absent in most other decisions.

So, be aware, you may sit at home and watch horror films right now, but who knows what evil may be lurking around the next corner. Maybe, even another Mary Whitehouse lies in waiting.

With that in mind I guide you to the BBFC Guidelines Review 2013, your chance to input your opinions on the classification process, I implore you to have your say.