Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Movie Remembrances

I saw Eight Legged Freaks in the theater.

I know. I know.

My boyfriend has yet to forgive me this transgression. They play the movie on TV sometimes and if I happen to zoom past it while channel-surfing and he notices, I get this glare. This "You owe me two hours of my life" glare.

But how was I supposed to resist a movie called Eight Legged Freaks? I certainly don't have that sort of will-power. There's something buried deep within the very core of my being that makes it imperative that I walk zombie-like into any movie called Eight Legged Freaks. It was beyond my control.

Bonus Fun Fact: It was originally called Arach Attack but they changed it due to the possibility people would confuse it with "Iraq Attack" and, subsequently, the war in the Middle East. Those people, the people who would confuse those two things? I don't want to know those people. Those are the people eating Freedom Fries.

Anyway, it wasn't just called Eight Legged Freaks, it was about ginormous mutant killer spiders. I mean, this was tailor-made for me, right? I grew up watching ginormous mutant killer spiders attack people every Saturday afternoon at my grandmother's. (I mean on television, not actually at my grandmother's house; I didn't grow up in some alternate Hell dimension or anything... unless you consider Upstate New York to be Hell, and some certainly do...)

But movies like Giant Spider Invasion and Kingdom of the Spiders were always playing on the Saturday afternoon local-channel showcases and I watched a lot of that claptrap as a kid. Grr, Argh, the spider is really freakishly big and eats the locals, they build some ridiculous bomb or all die, the end. Good stuff!

As a sidenote I might mention that the spiders are actually normal-spider-sized in Kingdom of the Spiders, but that movie stars William Shatner and therefore everything just seems big. The Shat has that biggifying power.

So... we went and saw Eight Legged Freaks. On opening night. In Times Square.


Opening night for any movie at any theater in Times Square, as anyone (not me!) should be able to figure out, is... an experience. Especially any movie with a horror-ish bent. I made it through a few years of braving such waters - I would make it a habit to see almost any horror movie on opening night; such is my insanity - but have since... mellowed... on this count.

Well, mellowed is one way to put it. The nice way. A more apt description might be "been beaten senseless by the obnoxiousness of every living soul in a two-mile radius until I had to throw my bloodied hands towards the Heavens and cry out for sweet relief."

But when Eight Legged Freaks came out I was still in the midst of my opening-night devotion, so there we were, in the midst of the hysteria, watching what unfortunately turned out to be a big pile of steaming crap. Yes, David Arquette should always clue one in to that level of crappiness (Scream excluded). I did not read the signs, so blinded by the title was I (could I be falling for the same ruse again with the oncoming Snakes on a Plane juggernaut?).

Indeed, there was something about the Eight Legged Freaks theater-going experience that crystallized itself into the very essence of what was wrong with going to opening-night horror-ish movies in Times Square that pretty much set the ball rolling on the end of such self-abusing excursions.

That something? The balls-out insane lady sitting beside us.

I almost wish that the DVD of Eight Legged Freaks could be accompanied by a commentary track by this woman so this experience could be replicated for everyone to... experience. I would own that DVD.

Because this woman... wow. Think "Cat Lady from The Simpsons" crazy. If this woman been covered in cats, cats would have certainly been flung at the screen. As it was, she merely screamed and thrashed in her seat the entire running time. She was filled with helpful comments for the characters which she helpfully shouted at any given moment, such as "OH MY GOD IT'S RIGHT BEHIND YOU LOOK STUPID!". Or "HOLY JESUS OH MY GOD RUN GIRL IT GONNA KILL YOU!".

Okay, so we've all had this experience. There's one in every town, waiting in line for The Dukes of Hazzard or Jackass Number Two (sorry, Johnny).

But something about this woman... she came to represent all the nutjobs out there for me - the ones throwing their Skittles at the movie screen, playing Tetris on their cell phones, telling their best friend five rows in front of them what they're doing after the movie and where they should meet and no you better not invite that bitch I'm gonna kick her ass.

This Eight Legged Freaks woman has become, for me, Crazy Movie Lady Incarnate.

So I applaud her. This crazy, crazy woman. She made me see the err of my ways. She led me to the path of righteousness, where horror-ish movies are usually still in the theater the week following their release, on a weeknight or even a matinee, and David Arquette is only Coco's Pa, no more, no less.

--- JA, My New Plaid Pants
(Happy Vacation, Nathaniel!)



RC said...

What a funny memory.

Anonymous said...

good post

The best relatively modern movie of that type, imo, is 'Tremors.' Good B-style, camp, monster movie that's actually pretty good, very entertaining.

Glenn Dunks said...

I too saw Eight-Legged Freaks in the cinema, but I actually sorta liked it. I bought it on DVD for $5 (like, $3 US)

Tremors is much better though. That was a hoot and a half!

Jason Adams said...

I've seen Tremors more times than I'd like to admit. Great fun.

One of those times I was flipping past ELF (nice acronym!) on TV and the boyfriend wasn't around I did stop and watch a little of it to see if perhaps it'd been colored by the environment of first viewing, but... no, I still really thought it was crap and changed the channel after about ten minutes. I do enjoy the jumping spiders attack the kids on motor bikes scene, though, even if the spiders and all the CG looks like crap.

I think that's the problem, doing a B-movie with crappy CG doesn't have the same fun cheese factor as doing on wiith crappy physical FX. If I'm watching a B-movie I want to see a man wrestling with a stuffed octopus, ya know?

OhMyTrill said...

Ok...maybe a lame comment, but how do you guy rip scenes and screen shots from your dvds? I just got a new Mac and have no idea how to do it! Any advice would be great!

Anonymous said...

Heh. I love being that crazy lady. Seriously...Oh, how I dream of the idea when I turn 70, and can *literally* be a crazy *old* lady!

Serioulsy? Is there nothing more fun than bitching through a god-awful movie? No? Is that just me?


Glenn Dunks said...

Nina, you're completely right. Me and my friends bitched constantly through The Lake House just the other week. That piece of shit made no sense.

Anonymous said...

Hehehe, I went to Eight Legged Freaks opening night also. However, I was in a podunk town, and me and my friend were the only two in the theatre...

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