Horror Movie Posters I Love: Popcorn (1991)

I love me a good horror movie that’s set in a movie theater.  The 1985 Italian gorefest Demons easily being my favorite, but one not far behind is a little genre gem called Popcorn.  Never heard of it?  You might not be alone.  This post however, is about posters and the Popcorn poster graced my eyes back in 1991 at my local Mom & Pop video store.

popcorn

Let’s talk taglines here.  ‘Buy a bag…Go home in a box.‘  That right there folks is part of what’s missing in horror movies nowadays.  Sure, it’s cheesy, but therein lies the charm.  And if you’ve seen Popcorn, you know that it’s full of charm.  Some might say it’s full of something else, but I digress.

I’ve said it before:  throw a skull on a poster and I’ll most likely be down no matter what.  And the Popcorn poster uses the skull wisely, managing to pull you in and give you a 50’s horror vibe at the same time.  I dig the mention of ‘The Possessor’ storyline in the top left corner as well. Overall, I just love the nostalgic feel of this poster!  Seek the movie out (it’s up on Youtube and I recommend it) if you will, or just gaze at the delicious artwork above to get your Popcorn fix on.  And throw some extra butter on it while you’re at it.

Horror Movie Posters I Love: Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

Tis the season to break out your favorite Christmas-themed horror movies! And one that should be on the top of your list is the controversial 1984 slasher, Silent Night, Deadly Night.  But as much as I would love to talk about the actual movie and discuss Linnea Quigley’s super awesome nude ‘antlers through the chest’ death scene, we’re talking posters here and the poster for Silent Night, Deadly Night is a cheesy gem.

Obviously playing off of the whole holiday horror theme, thanks largely in part to Halloween, this poster to me captures everything that was great about 80’s horror movies.  Being that the movie caused a huge uproar, the poster alone was controversial considering what a beloved figure that Santa Claus is supposed to be.  He’s supposed to be jolly and when he laughs he’s supposed to shake like a bowl full of jelly.  So, here we have him holding an axe with blood dripping font in the movie title for the movie poster.  Not exactly family friendly, but therein lies the appeal to me.

This is the epitome of a perfect poster for a not-so-perfect movie though. Gotta love that ‘He knows when you’ve been naughty‘ tagline too!  And being that this is a personal favorite of mine, I’ll be spotlighting more from it in the weeks to come before the big day of December 25th.  To yuletide you over for now, enjoy the poster and this lovely drawing below that Billy did while in Catholic school.  Just precious.

When The Poster Is Better Than The Movie: Mountaintop Motel Massacre (1986)

Let that baby sink in for a minute.  Now that’s a cheesy 80’s horror movie poster!  Effective to say the least, the poster for 1986’s Mountaintop Motel Massacre brought the goodness.  Unfortunately, the movie was straight doodoo.

The plot involves a crazy old lady named Evelyn who murders people who stay at her motel.  And how does she do this?  By popping up from secret contraptions via a tunnel in the guest’s rooms and dropping off rattlesnakes, cockroaches, and rats.  And she swings a mean little sickle too.  Albeit she swings it very, very slowly and it boggled my mind how some of these grown ass men didn’t just kick her old ass down before she ended up stabbing them. Oh well.

Did I mention there’s a black guy named Crewshaw (yes, Crewshaw) who has some snappy dialogue and zingers throughout the movie?  Case in point: Crewshaw is awoken by having about fifty cockroaches crawling all over him thanks to Eveyln and promptly let’s off this jewel – “They shoulda called this a roach motel!“.  Oh, that Crewshaw!  Too bad he gets his hand chopped off and throat slit later.

My biggest reason why the poster for Mountaintop Motel Massacre is better than the actual movie is the classic case of ‘bait and switch’.  Unless my eyes are foggy, the crazy woman on the poster is that the same crazy woman in the movie.  False advertising!  For shame.  And the debate can rage on about whether or not I’ve proven my point with all of this, but there is one thing that I know we can all agree on:  Crewshaw and his awesome name will forever be missed.  RIP.

Horror Movie Posters I Love: Chopping Mall (1986)

Remember horror movies in the 80’s?  It was a time where you didn’t have to watch the SyFy Channel to see something ridiculous like a tornado spewing sharks around Los Angeles.  It was a time where you could have a movie named Chopping Mall that involved killer robots shooting lasers at a bunch of kids having a sleepover in a mall.  And it was a time where you were pretty guaranteed to see Barbara Crampton’s breasts in every movie that she was in. Bottom line:  I absolutely love Chopping Mall.  And it was the poster and VHS box cover art that sparked it all off for me.

Hahaha!  ‘Where Shopping Costs You An Arm And A Leg!‘  Get it?  To me, this poster and movie is the epitome of 80’s cheesy horror movies.  It’s high up on the pedestal, the ladder, and the totem poll.  If you haven’t seen Chopping Mall (a.k.a Killbots), you must.  And if you’ve seen it and have always dreamed of seeing up on the big screen, I have good news!

Director Jim Wynorski has announced that he and others involved with the cult classic are trying to get screenings across the US going on ASAP.  And if there’s a horror movie that needs to be seen on the big screen with a bunch of drunk and stoned people, it’s Chopping Mall. How about getting a special edition Blu-ray while we’re at it?  Stay tuned for more info on the screenings and go grab Chopping Mall on DVD for now to get your cheesy horror fix and see one of the best exploding head scenes ever.

Horror Movie Posters I Love: Hell Night (1981)

The forgotten slasher movies.  1981’s Hell Night definitely falls into that category.  Whether it’s forgotten good or forgotten bad, one thing’s for sure – I love the poster for it!

Yes, that’s Linda Blair.  And yes, this was released 4 years after the debacle that was Exorcist II: The Heretic.  As for the movie itself, Hell Night is standard slasher fare.  It revolves around a sorority initiation and a killer named Andrew The Gork.  Not quite sure what the hell a gork is, but Roger Ebert gave his definition in his review back in 1981:

Gork  (n.) Deformed, violent creature that lurks in horror movies, jumping out of basement shadows and decapitating screaming teenagers.

Thanks Roger.  Anyway, Hell Night hasn’t gotten a decent DVD or Blu-ray release and I think it deserves it.  It’s not mind-blowing by any slasher standards, but it’s enjoyable 80’s cheese.  And I do love me some cheese, especially cheddar.  But the poster for me is head and shoulders above most in the genre. It captures that cheesiness, and grabs your attention, which is what it did when I rented the movie back in the 80’s.  And I dig the tagline too: Pray For Day.  Subtle, but horrifically charming at the same time.  Big thumbs up for the Hell Night poster and a wavy shake of the hand for the actual movie.  And an even bigger thumbs up for Andrew The Gork!  There’s a huge gork shortage in horror today.

Horror Movie Posters I Love: ‘Hellraiser’ Early Promo Poster (1987)

We all know that the big star of 1987’s Hellraiser is the cricket-eating homeless guy who turns into a skeletal winged creature at the end of the movie.  Kidding!  It’s Pinhead and his fancy box.  I had the original poster for Hellraiser hanging on my closet door when I was 12-years-old up until I took it down and replaced it with one for Maniac Cop (a worthy replacement in my opinion).

To my surprise, I came to find out that there was an early promo poster for Hellraiser that looked nothing like the one above.  It contained a quote from Stephen King regarding Clive Barker that said “I have seen the future of horror fiction, and his name is Clive Barker…” and included a different tagline as well: ‘There Are No Limits’.  But the most jarring omission from this early promo poster was that Pinhead is nowhere to be found.  Instead, we have a red demon with a spikey 80’s hairdo and sharp jagged teeth.  And even though this red demon doesn’t appear in the film, I somehow kinda dig this poster.

Captain Obvious will tell you that the tagline for the promo poster is far inferior to ‘He’ll Tear Your Soul Apart’, but I love the red/black combo with a little white thrown in to balance everything out.  It’s always a nice surprise to find an obscure poster for a beloved horror movie like Hellraiser, but at the same time I get why they made the decision to make Pinhead the star of the final poster. Quite a shame that the cricket-eating skeletal winged creature homeless guy couldn’t get any shine though.  Just another sad horror movie injustice for the ages.

Horror Movie Posters I Love: The Curse (1987)

Since I grew up in Indiana, I guess the stereotype would be that I would love any movie that takes place on a farm.  Not true!  I couldn’t stand that talking pig movie that everyone raved about.  But I do have a soft spot for 1987’s underrated horror flick, The Curse.  And for me, it really all started with the poster for the movie, because I can still remember seeing it hanging up on the wall of my local renting spot, Video-To-Go.

Even mediocre horror movies in the 80’s had better posters than anything out today.  Sigh.  The simplicity of the poster is what sold it for me, even though I could have done without Wil Wheaton’s face up in there, but I get it, he’s the star and girls thought he was dreamy back then.  Love the font that the used on the title ‘The Curse‘, and I pretty much love anything that has a giant demonic hand bursting out of the ground and grabbing a defenseless house.

*quit crowding the plate!*

So yes, the poster kicks a ton of ass, but the movie itself kicks medium ass, even though John Schneider from The Dukes Of Hazzard plays a guy named Willis.  Was there really a guy named Cooter on that show by the way?  Sorry – got sidetracked there, but an awesome show like that will do that to you.  In closing, I love the poster for The Curse, and it brings back some good childhood memories.  As for the movie, seek it out for some of that fun 80’s horror nostalgia, and for the chance to see Bo Duke play a guy named Willis.

*his hair wants to have sex with you*

Horror Movie Posters I Love: The Unborn (2009)

While babysitting a boy and his baby brother, Casey Beldon has a dreadful nightmare involving a weird dog and an evil child, and she tells her best friend Romy over the……..oh who gives a sh*t – let’s see that poster!

Asstastic!  Welcome to the only redeeming quality of the 2009 evil possession movie, The Unborn.  Yes, Odette Yustman’s ass.  And the only reason that this poster gains a spot on my ‘Horror Movie Posters I Love‘ ongoing feature. True, the movie sucks bad, but kudos to those involved in the marketing for the movie with this backside heavy one-sheet.  The only way that the poster could have been more effective, would be for her to be looking at her own ass in the mirror instead of that creepy ghost boy.  That way you see, we get double the ass!  We’ll settle for the solo ass though and suffer with a shitty movie to balance everything out.

No way we’re ending this post with that creepy ghost boy!

Better……

Horror Movie Posters I Love: V/H/S 2

In the past in the ‘Horror Movie Posters I Love‘ feature, I’ve stuck with the old school posters that enticed me as a child growing up.  But this time I’m going current, because I damn near blew my horror load when I saw the new one sheet for the upcoming anthology sequel, V/H/S/ 2.  Sorry, might be a little too early in the morning to talk about blowing any kind of loads.  But anyway, feast your peepers on the eye-popping poster below and get ready for V/H/S 2 when it is unleashed on July 12th!

Horror Movie Posters I Love: Halloween II (1981)

Sticking with the Halloween season theme for obvious reasons, the first movie to make it into my Horror Movie Posters I Love feature is none other than Halloween II. Coming out three years after the original John Carpenter classic, this was the first horror movie poster I ever saw when I was a child and it scared the sh*t out of me. The simple meshing of the pumpkin and skull continued that creepy, evil feel from the 1978 movie and immediately gave high hopes to moviegoers that those involved wouldn’t screw up the sequel. More on that in a minute, but here’s the original poster for Halloween II below:

Creepy ass poster, but a terrible tagline.  Wow – I didn’t ever realize how lazy that was. “More Of The Night He Came Home”?  Oh well, we’re focusing on posters here, not taglines.  Without going into a full on review of the actual movie though, I will say that I loved a lot of what Halloween II gave me.   Continue reading