31 Days of Horror: Day 3

Day 3: Wes Craven’s New Nightmare
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A movie ahead of its time. In 1994, Wes Craven treated us to the best entry in the Nightmare on Elm Street series. Yes, you read that right. My top three in this series go NN, 3, 1. I recently watched this a couple of weeks ago, and the film still felt good to me. Sure, some of the visuals have aged a bit, but the film still had it. In New Nightmare, we are brought into our world, not a Hollywood created world. The film centers on Heather Langenkamp and her issues surround Freddy. With pop-ins by Robert Englund (who plays himself, original Freddy, and the new Freddy), Wes Craven, John Saxon,and even Bob Shaye of New Line Cinema, we are treated to a vibrant world in which Heather is traumatized by her two NOES films. This eventually bleeds together as Freddy, an actual demon trying to get into our world, begins terrorizing Heather’s son Dylan (Miko Hughes of Pet Sematary fame).
 
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What we get is a new, darker Freddy. No more chuckles. No more wisecracks. Just viciousness. If you have not watched this one, and are a fan of Freddy, take a chance on it. I thought the meta approach to it was spot on, and if it were made today, it would be raved about.
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31 Days of Horror: Days One and Two

I started doing this on my personal Facebook page, and my wonderful wife said “Sounds blog worthy to me,” and as usual, she is absolutely correct. Now these 31 days of Horror aren’t an end-all-be-all list. It’s not even a top 31 list of the all time greats. For me, this is a way to let you into my world a bit more and share with you 31 horror movies that I like. So, without further adieu, here are the first two days:

Day 1: The Babadook

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The community seems pretty split on this one. Some people love it (me) and others do not. The film is an excellent portrayal of someone that is struggling with depression. Amelia (Essie Davis) lost her husband in an automobile accident, leaving her as a single parent to soon to be born Samuel (Noah Wiseman). The kiddo’s a nutter, and at points during the film, you will want the Babadook to just go ahead and kill the kid. The kid’s redemption, however, is that he loves his mother. We are able to witness her spiral into madness, and his attempt to save her. The Babadook is introduced in a well crafted storybook. If for nothing else, watch the scenes with the book. It’s one I wish I had the chance to order when they offered them.

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Day 2: Grave Encounters

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I really liked this little gem by The Vicious Brothers. Sarah (my wife) and I found it one night on Netflix while prepping for one of our annual Halloween parties. Needless to say, we didn’t get much done until after the party. This is a found footage horror flick. Found footage done right. We open with a TV producer talking about how the show, Grave Encounters, was cancelled in 2003 after the team and all their equipment disappeared while filming episode six of the show. They are investigating Collingwood Psychiatric Hospital (a fake location but shot at Riverview Hospital in British Columbia).

The footage was found in 2010 and thus we have our film. What happens next is Ghost Hunters gone to the extreme; a fall into madness for the team. The scares are effective and the film was an absolute blast. If you like Ghost Hunters or found footage films, you owe it to yourself to watch this one.

So, there you have it! Stay tuned for day three tomorrow!

Oranges and Lemons, an Obsession with It (2017)

I went and watched It (2017) for the fourth time this weekend. It was my eldest daughter’s third time, and my wife’s second time; it was she that wanted to go and see It again, and me, loving the movies, wouldn’t pass up the opportunity. For me, It hit all the points for me that made it a wonderful cinema experience. I have had the soundtrack by Benjamin Wallfisch playing on repeat now for three weeks–it’s the music that I am currently using while writing. With each repeat viewing, my joy has not dwindled in the slightest. I am still enthralled by each scene and look to find new things here and there, you know, those things hidings in the corners, waiting to be found.

This weekend, my daughter (the one that went with us, my other daughter has refused to watch It thus far, and that’s her choice) read me an interview with the composer on Thrillist. One of the things that I found most interesting was the use of an old nursery rhyme called Oranges and Lemons. As soon as she said the title, the soundtrack clicked a little in my head. I’ll leave the lyrics below at the end of the post. Make sure you take a second to read them, especially the last stanza. Be sure to read the Thrillist article, too, as it is a good read.

If you haven’t watched It yet, and like a good movie, go ahead, you have my permission. Think of this as Stand by Me with a creepy clown in it. It won’t terrify you, in my opinion, but it will creep you out, and it will be one helluva ride.

Watched It? Leave me a comment below and tell me your thoughts on it!

Oranges and Lemons

Oranges and lemons,
Say the bells of St. Clement’s.

You owe me five farthings,
Say the bells of St. Martin’s.

When will you pay me?
Say the bells of Old Bailey.

When I grow rich,
Say the bells of Shoreditch.

When will that be?
Say the bells of Stepney.

I do not know,
Says the great bell of Bow.

Here comes a candle to light you to bed,
And here comes a chopper to chop off your head!
Chip chop chip chop the last man is dead

So why “The Office in the Closet”?

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I bet you’re wondering why I chose to name my blog “The Office in the Closet”. Well, simply put, it’s because my office is truly in a closet. We have a walk-in closet in our bedroom. The front half of it is still home to my wife’s clothing, but the back half of it has served me well as an office. At one point, my desk was to the left where you see the bookcase (it was where I finished the first draft of my first novel ‘The Girl in the Pink Shirt’ which is still in that first draft state). I have now upgraded from a writing table to the desk you can now see in the very back. I have heeded the advice of Stephen King when he said that first drafts are made with the doors closed. I have tried to make my work area as distraction free as possible, and while that doesn’t always work (damn you, cellular phones), I can at least close the door while I work.

What does your work area look like? Comment below!