Half Price Horror
By Half Price Horror
Half Price HorrorMay 28, 2023
The Haunting (1963)
Our series on the work of Sam Raimi and his collaborator Bruce Campbell takes a bit of a detour, as we go back to examine the legendary director's roots with a look at the 1963 movie 'The Haunting'! With plenty of eerie cinematography, direction by the iconic Robert Wise, and a story from one of the best books in the history of the genre, there's plenty to look at and talk about. In the night. In the dark.
The Evil Dead (1981)
It's time to kick the march to Episode #100 into high gear, as we launch into the trilogy that made your host John into the horror fan he is today with Sam Raimi's original classic, 'The Evil Dead'! Come dive into every detail, enjoy the reminiscences over one of the legends of horror, and JOIN USSSS for a discussion of the ways this influenced directors for generations to come!
There are some movies that are classics, there are some movies that are cult classics, and there are some movies that are little-known secret touchstones of the genre that inspired all your favorite filmmakers without ever being very well known themselves. And 'Equinox', the first-time effort of future Academy Award winner Dennis Muren, is definitely one of those secret touchstones. So let's jump back to 1970 (and even earlier), and examine a Criterion Collection film that many people have never even heard of, the weird little movie known as 'Equinox'!
The Video Dead (1987)
Anyone who watched late-night cable television in the late 80s is probably familiar with this direct-to-video horror movie... but for the rest of you, here's a work of cosmic supernatural horror hidden inside a zombie flick just waiting for you to discover its low-budget charms. Enjoy a deep dive into an enjoyably shallow movie with this week's episode, 'The Video Dead'!
The Wicker Man (1973)
No, not the bees (not the bees!) - this is the original, accept no substitutes British classic where Edward Woodward travels to Summerisle in search of a missing girl and clashes with the suave and sinister Christopher Lee. And we talk folk horror, conspiracy thrillers, and the terrible misrepresentations of pagan culture as we dig into everything worth discussing about this amazing movie!
The Bride (1985)
Sting as the Baron von Frankenstein! Clancy Brown as his creation! Jennifer Beals as the infamous Bride! Could there be a more 80s take on the Frankenstein mythos? Hard to say for sure, but maybe you'll know by the time you listen to Half Price Horror dive into 1985's 'The Bride'!
There's lurid and there's lurid, there's trashy and there's trashy, and then there's the champion of sleazy exploitation, 'Pieces'! Come and listen to a discussion of chainsaw murders, male frontal nudity, waterbed stabbings, and just about everything else the director could toss into a classic of the Eurosleaze genre.
And if you only watch one thing from it, watch this clip:
Halloween Ends (2022)
Yes, we've heard it before. Yes, the slasher in a slasher franchise can never truly die. Yes, Michael Myers has been blown up, decapitated, shot more times than any reasonable human being can keep track of, and beaten to death with a length of pipe. But in a series that reboots instead of explaining, nobody's invulnerable forever, and it's time to go back to Haddonfield one "final" time as 'Halloween Ends'.
What do you get when you cross 'Boogie Nights' with 'The Texas Chain Saw Massacre'? You get a blood-soaked slasher full of porn stars trying to love free and make money and getting killed for their troubles, that's what! Join HPH for a trip into the Golden Age of Pornography as we examine Ti West's complex, controversial slasher 'X'!
Halloween Kills (2021)
It's still Halloween night in 2018, and Michael's legacy has left deep and serious psychic scars on the town called Haddonfield--no, wait, it's Halloween night in 2018 and Michael's about to unleash the raddest rampage on the sleepy little town of Haddonfield ever! They'll have to band together to stop him... um, in a serious exploration of the true cost of mob violence... and he's going to come home at last. In a melancholy way, of course. That's right, it's time to look at the most disjointed entry in the franchise, HALLOWEEN KILLS!
Day of the Dead (1985)
It's time to conclude George A Romero's classic trilogy with this, the darkest day of horror the world has ever known! We discuss the nuclear bunker mentality, toxic masculinity, and where to find the limestone caverns under Florida (hint: nowhere) in this episode on Romero's bleak, unflinching look into the darkness of the human spirit and the zombies that reflect it back at us.
Guess who's back? Back again! Michael's back! Tell a friend! Yup, it's been forty years now since that legendary Halloween night where Michael Myers attempted to kill Laurie Strode, and this time he's... been in Smith's Grove all forty of those years. But thanks to a pair of obnoxious podcasters (hey....) he's out and back in fighting trim, as we dive into 2018's 'Halloween' requel, 'Halloween'!
What happens when you give one of the most critically acclaimed horror directors of all time a blank check, a promise of total creative freedom, and a stack of pulpy old science fiction novels? You get Tobe Hooper's 'Lifeforce', an American home to Hammer Horror that changes directions every twenty minutes and features a sprawling cast, a big-budget plague of space vampires, and a completely nude villain. And if that sounds wild to you... believe me, it's weirder than you think it is.
Halloween II (2009)
And so another timeline closes in the Halloween franchise, this time with a very different Laurie Strode coping with her own PTSD and survivor's guilt after shooting Michael Myers in the head. But as you might have guessed, he's not dead, and he's coming back to Haddonfield to deal with his baby sister once and for all in this controversial anti-slasher I cannot wait to talk about!
Sledge Hammer (1983)
Hoo boy. I'd like to say you can blame Job Bob Briggs for letting the world know about this obscure little shot-on-camcorder horror movie, I'd like to tell you it's my roommate's fault for gifting this to me for Christmas in the sure and certain knowledge I would do it on the podcast. But the truth is, I like 'Sledge Hammer', faults and all, and I can't wait to tell you about it in every weird and quirky detail!
Time to go back to the beginning, as the spiritual dead end of 2002's 'Halloween: Resurrection' led Dimension Films to remake the original under the creative guidance of... Rob Zombie?! Yes, it's a look at one of the most controversial installments of the franchise, swearing, ultraviolence and all.
Kairo (aka Pulse) (2001)
Time to dig into a little J-horror, as HPH dives deep into legendary Japanese director Kiyoshi Kurosawa and what many believe to be a masterpiece of the genre. It's a heavy film with some heavy topics, including self-harm and suicide, but if you feel like you can handle it there's also a lot of beauty to this movie.
Halloween: Resurrection (2002)
It's time to say goodbye to Jamie Lee Curtis for the second time, and say hello to... Busta Rhymes?!? Yes, it's _that_ installment of the long-running Halloween franchise, the one that ditches the family angle to satirize reality TV and finishes off the story H20 started. Let's talk about killer sharks in baggy-ass overalls, Katee Sackhoff, and possibly the most controversial installment in Michael's story, 'Halloween: Resurrection'!
Horror Express (1972)
ALL ABOARD! Time to take a little trip with those icons of Hammer horror, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, in a Spanish production that mimics Hammer's Victorian aesthetic and adds a lot of production value with repurposed sets, reused models, and the great Telly Savalas to turn John Campbell's classic short story "Who Goes There?" into a thriller set on the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Halloween H20: Twenty Years Later (1998)
Has it been twenty years already? Oh wow. Luckily, Laurie Strode's been busy during that time, establishing a new life and a new identity on the West Coast. But Michael's been busy too... and as we'll discuss, he's ready to finish up old business with his little sister once and for all!
The Being (1983)
What happens when the Atomic Age optimism of the 50s becomes the worn-out, polluted wasteland of the puritanical Reagan era? You get the debut feature of cult director Jackie Kong, that's what! Join us for a discussion of 80s politics, 'Alien' homages, and of all people Ruth Buzzi appearing in a horror movie as we discuss 1983's THE BEING!
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)
Sometimes when you're in a hole, the only thing you can do is dig deeper. And 'Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers' certainly decided to dig in deeper, on the Man in Black and the mysterious runic tattoo and the whole weird mess of a mythos that 'Halloween 5' saddled us with. So join us as we dig as well, into this troubled production and everything that made it the wonderful mess it became!
The Thing (1982)
It's my 75th episode, and what better way to celebrate than with John Carpenter's masterpiece of taut, paranoid body horror! Join us for a discussion of what is widely considered to be one of the very best horror movies ever made, and everything that made it the brilliant piece of cinema it is.
Halloween 5 (1989)
It's been a year since Michael's last blood-soaked rampage through the streets of Haddonfield, and you won't believe what he's been up to in that time! No, literally, you will have a very hard time believing it, and that's not the only problem with the troubled fifth installment in the Halloween series. Join us for a discussion of the very big swerves this movie takes as we cover Dominique Othenin-Girard's Halloween 5!
Chompy & the Girls (2021)
Sometimes "horror" can be a loose term, and perhaps this particular feature would be better suited to a podcast called 'Half Price Quirky Indie Sci-Fi Horror Comedy Relationship Drama Party Movies With Just a Tiny Amount of Found-Family Trauma Bonding Thrown In'. But until that podcast comes along, it's our job to discuss the quirky indie sci-fi horror comedy... well, you get the idea. Join us!
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
It's only been a couple weeks for us, but Michael Myers has spent a decade away from Haddonfield. And when he returns, it's a whole new series as we move into the Thorn trilogy! So let's put on a dodgy-looking mask, hunt some children, and enjoy HALLOWEEN 4: THE RETURN OF MICHAEL MYERS!
Resident Evil: Return to Raccoon City (2021)
Remember how awesome the 90s were? Remember hacky sack, and flip phones, and lava lamps making a weird comeback? Remember how great it was to be there when survival horror was born as a video game genre? Well, if you like taking a trip down memory lane, let's talk about 2021's 'Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City', and its attempt to evoke the spirit of the 90s in a very modern way!
Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)
It's time to go full-out weird with the red-headed stepchild of the Halloween franchise, HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH! Will there be commentary on Dan Challis sleeping with a woman half his age? Will we discuss the obvious lampshading of the Stonehenge Heist? All that and more, folks, on the night where NO ONE comes home!
Some movies can be seen, some movies can be described, but some movies simply have to be experienced. Join Half Price Horror in an effort to understand that strangest of movies, that cultiest of cult classics, that bizarro masterpiece of outsider art... 1989's direct-to-video effort, 'Things'!
Halloween II (1981)
Spooky Season may be over, but Michael Myers is a lot harder to stop! He's still hunting Laurie Strode as we pick up on the night he came home, and discuss what goes wrong and what goes very, very right with the 1981 sequel to John Carpenter's immortal classic.
Elvira's Movie Macabre: The Devil's Wedding Night (1983)
It's Halloween weekend, and you know what that means--time to spend a little while breaking down a classic episode of Elvira's Movie Macabre from 1983! This time out she's showing 1973's "The Devil's Wedding Night", and man. If you love Italian grindhouse cinema, you are in for a blood bathing, twin confusing, vampire fighting, lesbian sex-filled treat! We get into every detail, including the film's connections to Wagnerian opera, and celebrate the end to another year's glorious Spooky Season with the Mistress of the Dark.
It wouldn't be Spooky Season if we didn't cover something legendary, and it doesn't get more legendary than John Carpenter's immortal classic from 1978, 'Halloween'! Listen and learn the location of the three real pumpkins, the identity of the announcer on Tommy Doyle's TV set, and just what makes the ending of the iconic slasher flick so scary!
It's been a while since we've been to Woodsboro, and even longer since Sidney Prescott has visited her old hometown. But there's a new Ghostface and a new round of murders, and that means it's time for her--and us--to answer that old question one more time. "What's your favorite scary movie?" And what do we think of legacy sequels, mental health depictions in horror, and the first sequel without Wes Craven? Time to find out!
Dracula (AKA Horror of Dracula) (1958)
HPH goes full Hammer horror for Spooky Season, with the role that made Christopher Lee a horror icon--Dracula, lord of the undead! We discuss the changes made to this chopped and channeled adaptation, the fantastic performance of Peter Cushing, and everything else that made this 1958 film a classic of the genre.
The Thing From Another World (1951)
Half Price Horror jumps into the Halloween season with a 1951 classic of science-fiction horror that John Carpenter loved so much he almost refused to remake it, 'The Thing From Another World'! Join us for a discussion of Cold War politics and atomic horror as we take on one of the greats of the genre that inspired another one of the greats of the genre.
Phantasm: Ravager (2016)
It's time to bid farewell to the Phantasm franchise, and we end as we begin with a microbudgeted surrealist horror film created by a group of close friends that defies logic and refuses easy answers as it meditates on death, grief, and what lies beyond the world we know. So let's get into the 'Cuda one final time and go out guns blazing as we take on the Tall Man once more in 'Phantasm: Ravager'!
What We Do in the Shadows (2014)
HPH dives into Taika Waititi's mournful, elegiac meditation on aging and loss as seen through the eyes of a group of immortal vampires unable to die even as they see their loved ones and the world they knew pass away. It's full of bleak dread and endless sorrow... oh yeah, and also werewolves not swearwolves, a look they call 'Dead But Delicious', and plenty of arguments over who should do the dishes. It's funny, it's sad, it's scary, it's WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS!
The budgets keep getting smaller, but Don Coscarelli keeps throwing bigger and wilder and weirder ideas at the screen with every installment of the PHANTASM franchise! This time, we look at the fourth installment, PHANTASM: OBLIVION, and talk about Roger Avary's involvement, the brilliant use of archival footage, and lots lots more!
Happy Birthday to Me (1981)
What better way to celebrate a birthday than with an obscure birthday-themed slasher flick from the 80s? That's right, your host is another year older, but giallo-inspired movies about a killer at a prep school will never go out of style. Come for the red herrings and quirky characters, stay for the absoludicrous twist ending that was a clear inspiration to Kevin Williamson's 'Scream'!
Phantasm III (1994)
Half Price Horror enters the later, weirder era of the Phantasm franchise with its first direct-to-video entry, Phantasm III! Do we get more silver spheres? Do we get a return from A. Michael Baldwin as Mike? Do we get a completely unmotivated Home Alone reference? Yes to all that and more! Come see what's going on with the Tall Man as we dig into every bit of it!
The Thing (2011)
Half Price Horror takes a bold stance in this episode, suggesting that the 2011 prequel to John Carpenter's 1982 classic might be... good? Really good? Unfairly maligned, full of sympathetic characters and tight, tense action set pieces good? Mary Elizabeth Winstead with a goddamn flamethrower good? Give the CGI a break, it lets the monster do things it could never have done in the original good? Don't believe us, just listen and find out good? Yes! That good! Don't believe us? Just listen and find out!
Phantasm II (1988)
For Mike and Reggie, it's been almost ten years since they last confronted the Tall Man and his silver spheres. And for us, it's time to look at the bigger, bolder, studio sequel to the original Phantasm and see how the series shifts from dreamlike horror to full-bore 80s weirdness in Phantasm II!
Tucker & Dale Vs Evil (2010)
After hearing about it as a legendary horror-comedy for over a decade, HPH finally decides to watch TUCKER & DALE VS EVIL and see whether this weird anti-slasher really lives up to its reputation. Is the gory farce actually the classic people hold it up to be? Or does the comedy clash with the horror instead of enhancing it? Listen and find out!
There's a Tall Man effortlessly lifting coffins one-handed, strange dwarves in brown robes transporting cargo through a hole in space, and a silver sphere with twin blades that flies through the air on a murderous rampage. It all adds up to one of the strangest cult classics in horror, 1979's PHANTASM, and we're going to dig into every gory detail!
Werewolves Within (2021)
This is an odd adaptation of the classic self-help book 'Healing the Child Within', but I have to say I kind of like--oh. No. Wait. This is the adaptation of the video game 'Werewolves Within', and it's got a lot to unpack. So let's talk social dynamics, fake geek girls, black comedy, and everything else that goes into this 2021 horror-comedy!
Half Price Horror decides to bring a little class to the production by reviewing a swanky foreign film! It's got artsy colors, and ballet dancers, and, um... rains of maggots, and women falling into razor wire... okay, so maybe "class" isn't the best way to describe SUSPIRIA. But as you'll see from this episode, maybe SUSPIRIA is just indescribable.
Bonus Episode - Return of the Living Dead W/They're Terrified and Tipsy
I recently did an episode of They're Terrified and Tipsy with the amazing Courtney and Stephanie, and they've graciously given me permission to post it here! You can repay the favor by subscribing to their highly entertaining podcast, leaving them a nice review, subscribing to their Patreon, and all the other stuff you do for the podcasts you love!
Every horror fan knows that the real scare, especially in Britain in the 80s, were the people willing to use horror's unsavory reputation as an excuse for authoritarianism. But what about the people who truly believed that scary movies could influence society into acts of violence? Could they be the biggest monsters of all? Find out as we do a deep dive into Prano Bailey-Bond's amazing debut feature, CENSOR!
It's time for our crash-bang-boom 50th episode, and we celebrate with the directorial debut of James Gunn! He's famous for Guardians of the Galaxy, but Slither shows he's always had the chops and we're going to go over every wonderful minute of this body horror-comedy.
It's time to CUT OUT the CANCER as we dig into 2021's controversial entry from James Wan, MALIGNANT! There's neo-giallo themes, medical curiosities, and some playful trollery in this movie, and HPH talks about it all!
In the Mouth of Madness (1994)
HPH finally tackles the legendary John Carpenter and his strange, trippy, metafictional before metafiction was cool movie 'In the Mouth of Madness'! Find out how HP Lovecraft, Stephen King, and post-modernism combine to create an apocalyptic threat that even Sam Neill can't stop.
Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Thanks to the miracle of physical media, Half Price Horror finally gets to take a look at a nearly-lost classic of the legendary director George Romero, his zombie epic to end all zombie epics DAWN OF THE DEAD! We dig into the film's social commentary, its inventive use of authentic 70s locations, and its struggles with that thing called feminism.
Carnival of Souls (1962)
It's time to explore another black-and-white classic, as HPH digs into the independent movie that became a staple of late-night television and influenced arthouse horror films for generations to come! Join me as we take a long drive out to Utah, explore the old abandoned carnival, and look at the space between life and death in 1962's CARNIVAL OF SOULS!
The Beach House (2019)
Time to get away from the freezing weather with a relaxing trip to Daddy's beach house! It's nice and warm here... warm enough, in fact, to release trapped microbes from a volcanic vent and usher in the end of the human race as we know it. But hey, don't be scared, right? Don't be scared. Don't be scared. Don't be scared....
Scream 4 (2011)
It's an unexpected return to Woodsboro for Wes Craven and Kevin Williamson, and an unexpected delight for the people who love the Scream franchise! Join in the Stab-a-Thon with Sidney, Gale and Dewey, and find out why this podcast doesn't need friends. It needs FANS!
A Quiet Place Part II (2020)
John Krasinski's follow-up to 2018's 'A Quiet Place' might have been delayed by the pandemic, but this podcast episode won't be! Join me for a conversation about Marcus's real dad, cryptic radio messages that don't need to be, and possibly-cannibals galore!
Scream 3 (2000)
The Scream series goes Hollywood, in an installment that's so meta it's literally about the making of itself! It's also about the generational trauma inflicted by sexual abuse, the interlocking systems of power that protect abusers, and the toxic male entitlement that permeates our culture. And it's time to really talk about what it's saying.
A Quiet Place (2018)
Shhh. Be vewwy vewwy quiet. They're hunting... us! Yep, time to dig into the fictional logic of monsters, complain about inconveniently placed nails, and discuss the debt we owe to our children as we look at 2018's A Quiet Place.
Scream 2 (1997)
Time to spend a little more time with Sidney Prescott and friends, as she goes off to college and runs into a pair of copycat killers with an axe to grind. Features discussion of toxic male entitlement, the last-minute changes that transformed the screenplay, and why Randy had to die. (Um. Spoilers.)
Elvira's Movie Macabre: Legacy of Blood (1982)
As a special Halloween treat, Half Price Horror spends a little time in the company of classic 80s Elvira and her episode on the 1971 movie BLOOD LEGACY, aka LEGACY OF BLOOD! Features discussion of the way Cassandra Peterson's life informed her comedy, as well as the reasons why the movie in question might have ended up relegated to fodder for a late night horror show.
The episode runs a little long as HPH tackles one of the most influential horror movies since Halloween, Wes Craven and Kevin Williamson's meta-slasher classic SCREAM! Features a discussion of 80s video stores and their influence on 90s movies, and a deeper-than-deep dive into the movie's game-changing opening sequence.
As our Prime Time Horror October rolls on, HPH takes a look at probably the most influential work of science fiction horror out there, Dan O'Bannon and Ridley Scott's seminal (although in this context, John Hurt at least might not appreciate that choice of words) movie ALIEN!
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)
Continuing October's deep dive into the classics of horror, we take a look at Tobe Hooper's unrivaled exploitation masterpiece, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. This episode looks at ableism in horror fandom, the value of coming to directing from documentaries, and the origins of the Sawyer family.
Night of the Living Dead (1968)
As we begin 2021's Spooky Season, there's no better place to start than with a landmark of the genre, George Romero's seminal zombie apocalypse film NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD. We discuss fallout shelter etiquette, Vietnam allegories, and the literal and figurative conflict between generations as we tackle one of the finest horror movies ever made.
The Reckoning (2020)
Despite our best efforts, it's hard to stay positive as we look at Neil Marshall's first original movie since 2010's CENTURION, the purportedly feminist but decidedly exploitative witch hunting drama, THE RECKONING! Featuring discussions of historical and medical accuracy and why they normally wouldn't be important but kind of matter here.
Jakob's Wife (2021)
Time to look at another current movie, this one a feminist look at the empowerment aspects of vampiric transformation as depicted by horror icon Barbara Crampton! Let's dig into 2021's sexy gory vamp flick, JAKOB'S WIFE!
The Frighteners (1996)
Before he was the fantasy equivalent of George Lucas, Peter Jackson was a scrappy independent film maker from New Zealand with a penchant for gross-out horror comedies. If you've ever wondered how one Peter Jackson became the other Peter Jackson, come take a deep dive with us into 1996's 'The Frighteners' and see how a movie full of CGI ghosts and relentless pursuit became the failure he needed to make all his future successes!
The Shape of Water (2017)
Time to take a deep dive into the waters of magical realism, as we take a look at what's beneath the surface of Guillermo del Toro's Oscar-winning masterpiece THE SHAPE OF WATER! Don't worry, there's nothing fishy going on here--this production went swimmingly! (I promise, I don't do these aquatic puns in the actual episode. This is just for the halibut.)
Friday the 13th (2009)
It's the end for Jason Voorhees... but the moment has been prepared for. In this case, Michael Bay prepared a flashy 00s reboot with plenty of nods to the original and plenty of unusual choices that we dig into as we examine the final installment of the Friday the 13th series!
The Creature From the Black Lagoon (1954)
Time to take a trip back into horror history, as we tackle one of the legendary monsters of the Universal canon and discuss the wonders of SCUBA diving with 1954's CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON!