Posts by Brendan Foley

CINE-WEEN: THE MORTUARY COLLECTION Is Your Next Favorite Halloween Treat

In justifying why his adaptation of the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark book series would not be an anthology, as the books had always been, Guillermo del Toro spoke critically of the anthology format, saying, “An anthology is only as good as its weakest segment. It’s never as good as its best segment.” While that statement is…debatable (I feel like horror fans are more likely to revere a film for the cherry-picked best moments/segments and simply shrug off the weaker parts. For fuck’s sake, Trilogy of Terror is still listed as a classic and virtually the entire planet
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CINE-WEEN 2020: Who Goes There? The Changing Faces of THE THING

It’s one of the most perfect set-ups in all of horror: an isolated team of scientists in a frozen wasteland discover a crashed alien ship in the ice, along with a frozen alien pilot. They bring the creature back to base where it promptly thaws and begins wreaking havoc on the foolish humans who dared disturb its nap. This was the basic premise of John W. Campbell’s novella “Who Goes There?” which has been filmed three times (not counting all the times the premise has been “borrowed” for unofficial versions): by Christian Nyby and Howard Hawks as The Thing From
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Cine-Ween: Finding Hope in Horror

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” -Neil Gaiman (If you see a movie title here, that movie’s probably getting spoiled) A funny thing happened a little while back. I was on my couch watching Satoshi Kon’s seminal anime horror film Perfect Blue, a first time viewing for yours truly. Perfect Blue’s reputation proceeded it as one of the classics of anime and one of the great modern animated films, a psychological thriller so accomplished that Darren Aronofsky bought the remake rights just
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How CAPTAIN MARVEL Pulled Off That Third Act Twist

This article contains full spoilers for Captain Marvel.   There’s a particular trick we see in a lot of Disney or Disney-affiliated movies these days, going back to the early Aughts, when Pixar was becoming the name of the game when it came to mainstream, “all-ages entertainment that is actually good for all ages” films and their playbook began being widely disseminated throughout the movie industry. I’m sure there’s a proper name for this particular trick, but I’ll refer to them here as Trapdoor Villains. A trapdoor villain is a bad guy who is presented to us as a benevolent, upstanding
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Fate, Up Against Your Will: The Horror of HALLOWEEN (CINE-WEEN)

  I like to believe that I’m an even-tempered film fan, one who understands that not everyone watches movies with the same obsessive bent that I can (and often do) tend to bring to things. Sure, I’m all too happy to get riled up by petty disagreements in the ol’ discourse, but always all in fun. It has to be. If you can’t have fun with the stuff you love, then what fun is there in being in love? But sometimes, you have to draw a line. And there’s one snarky comment that comes up every so often, especially around
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Cine-Ween: OVER THE GARDEN WALL and Embracing the Unknown

Being a fan and supporter of animation goes hand in hand with being frustrated with the seeming paucity of mainstream productions doing something interesting with the format. Which is not too dissimilar from being a horror fan, actually. Being a horror fan means sitting and sifting through an awful lot of junk in the hopes of stumbling over something interesting, whether that’s an under seen gem or just an individual scene or performance that elevates an otherwise lousy movie. If you’re someone with kids or younger relations, you’ll likely find yourself sitting through an inordinate amount of animated fare, and
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CINE-WEEN: Confessions of a Former Fraidy Cat

The house I lived in during senior year of college was a two-story joint, and one day my buddy Pete leaned over the balcony and said, his voice aghast, “What are you watching?” Actually, thinking back on it, it was more like, “What are you watching?” The answer was Peter Jackson’s seminal gore-tastic Dead Alive (aka Braindead), and the scene in particular was that film’s infamous climax which finds Lionel (Tim Balme) our schmucky protagonist strapping a lawnmower to his chest and wading into a cramped parlor filled with zombies. Limbs fly and blood pours by the gallons, at one
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CINE-WEEN: You’ll Never Escape From the DARK NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW

When you’re a horror fan, you have to approach the genre with a Ratatouille-like mindset: not every horror film is going to be great, but a great horror film could come from anywhere. Dark Night of the Scarecrow does not seem like it could be a good horror film. For God’s sake, this thing is a TV movie pumped out in 17 days for CBS. Sure, there’s a long history of high quality made-for-TV movies, but one look at the credits for Scarecrow reveals no luminaries behind the scenes, no name brands like Serling or Spielberg or Chayefsky that might
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CINE-WEEN: An Invitation to the Dance

It was not a Market Basket bag; of that I am certain. Most every other specific detail has flown out of my memory, but I remember specifically that the bag my big sister handed to me was not one of the ubiquitous ones from Market Basket. It was bigger, deeper, and as such held many more books than a Market Basket bag would have. “I don’t want any of these,” she said. “Do you want any of them?” The bag of paperbacks was a gift from the parents of one of my sister’s friends. They’ve long known that both my
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