Posts by Nick Spacek

From the Stereo to Your Screen: Rachel Sweet & Hairspray

“Hairspray,” by Rachel Sweet, from Hairspray Despite its many iterations — musical, movie musical, live televised musical — John Waters’ original version of Hairspray, released in 1988, remains the best. Now, I’m a fan of musicals, and I’ll admit the Tony-winning Broadway version is pretty damned solid, with opening number, “Good Morning Baltimore,” being the best of the bunch. I’ll even cut some slack to “You Can’t Stop the Beat,” despite it being almost insipidly cloying. That said, Waters’ film is just so perfectly bizarre and fun and joyous, with a perfect selection of Cameo Parkway R&B sides soundtracking everything.
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From the Stereo to Your Screen: The Clash at Demonhead & Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

“Black Sheep,” by The Clash at Demonhead, from Scott Pilgrim vs. The World Despite the fact that I’d rabidly followed the Bryan Lee O’Malley graphic novel series on which it was based, I didn’t get to see Edgar Wright’s Scott Pilgrim vs. the World film when it was in theaters. Firstly, I think it ran for maybe two weeks in my town, and it was dead-smack in the middle of back-to-school season.   Given that at the time, I was raising two kids, finances and time were at a premium, and they never became available simultaneously. So, I waited four months
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From the Stereo to Your Screen: John Williams and The Phantom Menace

“Duel of the Fates” by John Williams and the London Symphony Orchestra from Star Wars: Episode One – The Phantom Menace The Phantom Menace was released the day I finished my sophomore year of college. Thanks to some amazing friends who sat in line for weeks, I was able to snag a ticket to the midnight screening in the biggest theater in Kansas City. I moved all of my stuff out of the dorms, drove it home, took it into my parents’ house, and then drove to sit in line for seven hours, in order to secure a seat. It’s
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Films From the Void: Mosquito (CINE-WEEN)

For the record: I feel really uncomfortable referring to something as “from the void” if it was released when I was in high school, but here we are. Accept the fact that you’re aging, Spacek. It’s an inevitability, and rejecting it will only make you sad and pathetic. Embrace the wisdom which comes with experience. Anyhow … Mosquito is one of those films which I missed as a kid, and finding this in a video store closeout sale was me taking a bit of a chance, and man, did it ever pay off. This flick is fun as hell —
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The Well-Read Ghoul: 10 Essential Books for the Horror Fan (CINE-WEEN)

Horror movies are so much more than splatter and jump scares, if you want them to be. While repeated viewings can sometimes yield surprises, there’s nothing quite like an informed opinion from a different perspective to offer further insight into longtime favorites. While the pendulum horror film criticism seems to frequently swing from fannish enthusiasm to academic dryness with little in between, there’s a slew of interesting reading to be had. What follows is a list of the most-readable and interesting books any self-respecting horror fan should have on their shelf. Danse Macabre Stephen King Gallery Books So what if
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Barbara Crampton on the VHS throwback ‘Beyond the Gates’; At The Brooklyn Horror Film Festival 10/15

The term ‘throwback horror’ gets tossed around a lot these days in reference to horror films making the festival circuit. While many may aim for that nostalgic vibe, few manage to hit it on the head as solidly and satisfyingly as Jackson Stewart’s Beyond the Gates. Making effective use of an economical cast and plot, the film walks the line between tightly-wound supernatural horror and cleverly-amusing throwback. While humorous, the concept is never played for wink-and-nudge laughs in Beyond the Gates, and the film unfurls like the kids in The Gate grew up. We spoke via e-mail with one of the film’s
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Jackson Stewart on his VHS throwback ‘Beyond the Gates’; At The Brooklyn Horror Film Festival 10/15

The term “throwback horror” gets tossed around a lot these days in reference to horror films making the festival circuit. While many may aim for that nostalgic vibe, few manage to hit it on the head as solidly and satisfyingly as Jackson Stewart’s Beyond the Gates. Making effective use of a small cast and economical plot, the film walks the line between tightly-wound supernatural horror and cleverly-amusing throwback. While humorous, the concept’s never played for wink-and-nudge laughs in Beyond the Gates, and the film unfurls like the kids in The Gate grew up. We spoke via Skype with director Stewart
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The Grindhouse Sounds of Isaac Williams

Nearly every afternoon last week, my wife came home to me blasting music out of my laptop while I read on the living room couch. Despite a stack of half a dozen vinyl LPs awaiting review, I couldn’t stop listening to Isaac Williams’ Soundcloud mixtapes. Going back four years, Williams’ mixes all cull their sounds from cult and exploitation film scores and trailers, but the shapes they sonically take are astonishingly diverse. The latest is entitled Trailer Trash Vol. 1, and is over an hour of perfectly-mixed movie trailers. That might be some varsity level stuff for mixtape lovers, but
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From the Stereo to Your Screen: U2 & Batman Forever

    “Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me” by U2 from Batman Forever Back in March, Noisey ran a piece entitled “Fuck ‘Trainspotting’! ‘Batman Forever’ Was the Soundtrack That Truly Epitomized the Nineties”, wherein J.R. Moores put forth the opinion that the Trainspotting soundtrack is highly overrated, while Batman Forever’s is highly underrated. He’s coming from a British point of view, but he does make the very astute observation that Batman Forever “wrestled the Dark Knight from the sweaty clutches of graphic novel-reading grownups and rightfully handed him back to the kids.” A good portion of that is
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From the Stereo to Your Screen: The Fat Boys & A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master

“Are You Ready For Freddy” by the Fat Boys, from A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master If you’re not read Ed Piskor’s Hip Hop Family Tree, you can be faulted for thinking that the Fat Boys were just another novelty group, the likes of which littered the ’80s. However, for thems what know, the Fat Boys actually started out as the Disco 3, winning a talent competition sponosred by Swatch in the early ’80s, and gaining popularity through a series of MTV commercials. The beatboxing of Big Buff Love is usually forgotten in the wake of Doug E.
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