Thursday, July 26, 2012

Obscure Horror Film Contest Winner

INSERT: If you don't care for my justification and would like to skip my ramblings which are longer than any of my reviews I'd recommend scrolling down right before the the picture of The Perfect House DVD to see the winner. Who's name and winning film is in bold. 

I was apprehensive towards participating in this DVD giveaway because I honestly didn't believe that anyone would enter. That was basically a truth come Tuesday when the contest had been up for twenty four hours and not a single pending comment waiting for me. However, with the biggest help from a few twitter people and one of my favorite filmmaker friends, Skip Shea, I was able to get the contest out. Mostly though I feel a lot of people found it from which is an amazing site every blogger/horror fan needs to follow as it gives you updates on all scales of horror. In films, books, contests, and blogs.

When I started the contest I didn't put much thought into how I was going to judge this by obscurity as I mean it could be different things to different people. To avoid controversy over the word were going to use the fourth definition from the online dictionary which says that Obscure means relatively unknown. Fair enough? It dividends into how obscure this is. This process is also absurdly difficult for only four films but how else can I make it fair? Basically there's four categories of how Obscure a film is and I rate them based on the information I get via IMDB and maybe Wikipedia, but I don't trust that latter all too much.

First Level - Casual Movie Obscure
This applies to everyone and there moms. The normal average movie goer who sees the big films in theaters and watches the mindless spew, horror or non. In this category most any slightly unknown or not-nominated-for-a-Oscar-Indie film would be considered 'obscure'. People who consider Trick 'r Treat Obscure.

Second Level - Casual Horror Obscure
This is for the very casual fans who's filmography has expanded about as far as Halloween and anything they watch as of recently. Those who like the genre but are not heavy addicts. They've seen the Final Destination films and all the big name slashers back in the day but probably haven't seen Maniac, which would register as Obscure to them.

Third Level - Genre Lover Obscure
This applies to genre lovers like myself but those who are still knee deep in obscure film watching. They've seen Cannibal Holocaust and a few seventies exploitation flicks like Blood Splattered Bride. They also watch foreign films but their list is still fairly low. They likely have heard of a lot of weird films but haven't seen them all. It takes a bit more effort to find an Obscure film for them to watch but not impossible.

Fourth Level - Tarantino Obscure
This is for the avid Obscure horror film watchers who seek out Obscure horror on a daily basis. They go into those weird shops that sell VHS and Records and the guy behind the counter kind of looks like the guy from Titanic in the smiley face shirt. They're knowledge is endless like Tarantino's and they've seen the shit that is too grotesque for the most normal psyche. Basically the only thing they haven't seen is a few illegal films that they are trying to get their hands on and anything short of a snuff film. This is the obscurity that's likely too difficult for me to even reference a film.

The Stone Tape (1972)

~The film cannot be found on Netflix, at all.
~ UK based film
~ Made for TV British Horror film
~ Full wikipedia page

Rating: Third Level Obscure, the film seems fairly unknown for the most part but has had a lot of positive reception to those who've seen it. It's not available on Netflix and there's no one I recognized in the film. However the Wikipedia page has an entire category that discusses it's cultural significance which makes me hesitant whether it's actually a little known cult favorite. Really good recommendation and a definite competitor.

The Sentinel (1977)

~ I've heard of this before.
~ Chris Sarandon, Burgess Meredith, Ava Gardener, and John Carradine are second level and third level recognizable names.
~ Christopher Walken
~ #46 on Bravo's Scariest Movie Moments

Rating: Second Level Obscure, mostly because as I have heard of it before and so have a lot of horror fans that I know of. Not a bad recommendation though and a interesting movie that I can watch on Netflix.

The Horror Show aka House III (1989)

~ Available on Netflix
~ Lance Henriksen, an obscure horror film actor of some sort but not an obscure actor, or we could just say that he likes to star in really bad horror films that never get a following because they suck. But not back then so I believe it's invalid.
~ Movies that go by two names are always a good thing
~ Sean S. Cunningham is a producer
~ Also known as La Casa 7, making it an Evil Dead sequel
~  Not officially part of the House series as it has no plot relation to the prior two films

Rating: Third Level Obscure, I wasn't sure about this one as I've passed House III so many times on Netflix Instant Watch that it clouds my judgement of whether it's widely known or not. The bigger horror names behind it make me weary of such a rating but the three different names and tie ins to two franchises that have nothing to do with the film itself always suggest a low budget shove under the rug film. I'd say it's a fair enough genre lover obscure but only just barely makes it.

Something Evil (1972)

~ Little known Steven Spielberg directed horror film
~ No Netflix
~ Made for TV
~ Can't buy it on Amazon

Rating: Third Level Obscure, this one was pretty clear as there really isn't much on the film. Spielberg as a director makes me question the film's obscurity but with a IMDB and Wikipedia page so small it really does make me wonder how many people have seen it. Often when talking about Spielberg's horror films the references are Jaws, Duel, and Jurassic Park. But with a 5.8 rating on IMDB it may not be because little know of it, but rather because it's not good and not referenced for that matter. I may be over-analyzing this, but still something to think about.

The reasoning as to why Something Evil and The Stone Tape aren't on Netflix might be because they are made for TV films but still, they give off a more positive feeling in being obscure based on the limitations in being able to see them than the other two recommendations. But the fact you can't even buy Something Evil on amazon makes it seem rather obscure, that I may have to resort to a VHS copy on Ebay just to watch the film. Never mind that, I just looked and I can't even buy it on Ebay. I'm torn between the two. The Stone Tape feels the furthest away from anything I've ever heard of but why haven't I heard of Spielberg's early horror film, and is it even possible to watch? This is giving me a headache.

But I have to pick a winner...

I'm giving it to Ronald Oliver who recommend Something Evil.

This was really hard and if I hadn't of already promised two DVD's in the other contest I'd of given one also to Jay who recommended The Stone Tape, just because they were so close. Ultimately though it came down to the fact that Something Evil is entirely out of print which makes it really obscure, especially for a Spielberg film. Now it's just a matter of being able to find the film and watch it.

Thank you to all those who entered, it made me life a little better. I'll probably at some point or another watch all the recommended films as they all managed to be obscure and intriguing. If you still want a copy of the DVD there's a couple ways to go about it. The first is click the banner above this post to purchase a DVD of the film or as it is available for digital download.

The other way is entering my second contest. I'm giving away two DVD's so your chances are even better. Actually outstanding as like last time no one has yet to enter. Here is the official contest page. But a quick summary, all you have to do is write a mini review of the film Black Sabbath and send it to me. It is due Tuesday August Seventh and a I'll also promote the blog/site/twitter account of anyone who enters. So you win a little bit either way.

Thanks again for all the entrants and for all the support.


Jay said...

Congrats to the winner! Also, here is a link to watch Something Evil. It is on Youtube and broken up into 8 parts, but its the whole movie.

Casey8u said...