For you, dear readers, a tip: when a stranger calls, just hang up! That's my advice. Hang up that phone and save yourself a world of trouble. If the stranger asks if you've checked the children, tell him to mind his own beeswax, then hang up. Easy, breezy, beautiful.
Let's run down Morgan's list and see how I feel about the choices, hmm? I've got nothing better to do today than to throw my opinion around like...like...ok, I was going to make a joke there that would've gone way too far. You'll have to fill in the blanks if you can.
10. The Slumber Party Massacre I think I want to like SPM more than I actually do. It walks a very fine line between satirizing slashers and becoming an exploitation flick, and it raises a few interesting questions- this movie's got more boobage than about any other slasher I've seen, yet it's written and directed by women, so what does that say? Is it still "misogynist trash", or is it "empowering"? Does the fact that the writer (Rita Mae Brown) is a lesbian have any bearing on that answer? Whatever you want to read into SPM, first and foremost, I ask- does it belong on the list of Top 10 Slashers? Remember now, the killer is an inductee into the Final Girl Hall of Infamy...that's not a good sign. Ultimately, SPM doesn't thrill me much...it's not good enough to be great and it's not bad enough to be good. Middle of the road, my friends, is a bad place to be. And one is the loneliest number.
9. Scream This movie's been out of the limelight long enough now for it to get the "props"(as the kids would say) it deserves as a horror movie. Forget the spoofs, forget Jamie Kennedy's 'horror movie rules', forget, if you can, David Arquette. Scream is a damn fine slasher movie. The kids might even call it "dope". "Dope" means "cool", silly- I'm not talking about drugs! Hugs, not drugs, I always say.
8. Friday the 13th Well, duh. What is there to say about this movie? Without a doubt it belongs on this list.
7. April Fool's Day Now we're talking! I fucking love April Fool's Day. Love it. Love. It. First and foremost, it's got Amy Steel. And to me, horror movies with Amy Steel are like bottles of Night Train in brown paper bags are to travellin' hoboes...gimme gimme gimme! It had a twist ending- a good one- before M Night Shamalamadingdong made them all the rage. Deborah Foreman creeps me out through this entire movie, and the whole thing has a wonderful air of unpleasantness about it. Maybe that makes sense if you've seen it. Or maybe it only makes sense to me, as does the bald cap I recently converted into a thinking cap. One of these days I'll do a proper review of AFD, but for now, I commend Kim Morgan for having this on the list.
6. A Nightmare on Elm Street Yeah, OK. But just the first one. It's far more dated than you'd think it'd be, but it still rocks pretty hard. Freddy hadn't become the Henny Youngman of Horror yet, praise Jebus. He was kept in the dark, he mostly kept his mouth shut, and he was scary. Nightmare had a totally original concept- he can kill you in your dreams?
5. Cabin Fever Umm...okaaaaaay. I must confess, I haven't seen this yet. It's on my Netflix list, but I have sooooo many episodes of BJ and the Bear to get through before Cabin Fever arrives- it's gonna take forever! But from my understanding of the genre, this...isn't...really a slasher, is it? It doesn't sound like it, judging by Morgan's plot summary. There's a few entries on this list that are pushing the boundaries of the definition, but Cabin Fever sounds like a horror movie to me, not a slasher.
4. Black Christmas Well, y'all should know how I feel about this movie by now. Me like! My best friend Margot Kidder plays a damn fine foul-mouthed drunk, and I've mentioned Olivia Hussey's shiny shiny hair many times. I love Black Christmas, and of course it belongs on this list; I'd put it higher up, though. This flick is probably going to get frequent mentions and wider recognition everywhere as the remake release approaches. Hopefully people will seek out the source material. I myself plan on sticking up my middle fingers at the remake several times- I may even go so far as to moon it. I don't know who's going to star in it yet, but her hair will look like straw next to Olivia Hussey's! Straw, I tells ya!
3. The Funhouse I watched this movie (for the who-knows-how-many-th time) a few months ago, and I still like it quite a bit. Tobe Hooper uses the setting (inside a carnival funhouse after hours) for maximum effect and there's some real shocks to be found. There's no way I'd put it this high on my Top 10 list, but hey. This ain't my list, now is it?
2. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Wow, Tobe Hooper in the number 2 and 3 slots. TCM pushes the boundaries as to what can be considered a "slasher"...I'm more apt to call it a "horror movie", where undoubtedly it'd be near the top of my list of the best. This movie is really really unsettling. It's visceral, it's relentless, it's disturbing- even today, 30-odd years after it was made.
1. Halloween I've never heard of it. I'll add it to my Netflix list, but like I said, it won't be here for a while. I've got BJ and the Bear, Cabin Fever, and the entire first season of 227 to slog through first. I'll let you know what I think of it when the time comes, though- promise.