December 8, 2014

Hudson Horror Show X - The Night Train Mystery is Boiled while They Creep (or something...)

Hudson Horror Show X is now in the rear view mirror and, once again, it provided to be an eventful day filled with movies, wares, friends, and fun. It is really starting to get repetitive when I write about these shows once they happen. There is a common thread to these recaps, about the fun, the friends, whatever. It is almost like I am writing the same column over and over again, but it really doesn't matter. If you could see the smile I have on my face for the entire day, not to mention as I think about it for days after. It sounds really corny, but it is true, I love this event and I eagerly look forward to each and every one as if it were the first.

Yes, there was some drama leading up to the last show, with the guys potentially losing the venue. Fortunately that speed bump was successfully navigated and it will hopefully be clear sailing for the foreseeable future. If there is one that is terrifying to this horror fan, it is the possibility of losing Hudson Horror Show, I do not want that to happen. Something else that makes this special, five years and ten shows in, is that the great group of folks who founded, organize, and continue to put these shows on are still in awe of their success. They have remained humble throughout and continue to look at it from the perspective of a fan, once you think of it as business the foundation will crumble. These guys do not do that. They are an awesome group I have come to call friends and love hanging out with them watching movies.

Look how happy that guy is!
As for this tenth go around, it was yet another strong lineup. It is funny people ask me how I felt this show ranks with the other lineups, and I had to admit it was not one of my favorites. Still, it was a hell of a lot of fun and it was really special getting to see some of their selections on the big screen. Frankly, I am not sure how I would rank them, I may need to go back and put the lineups side by side and see how it shakes out.

The day started early, as I got to the theater about 90 minutes before the doors opened. So, I got to say hi to the guys running the gig, while watching everyone scramble to get tables set up and wares displayed. It was a cool and rainy morning, so it seemed take a little longer for the line to form, but it was also a smaller crowd as the theater lost 70 seats when they replaced the aging chairs with bigger, comfier ones. Plus, there were a couple of last minute vendor cancellations, so there was less stuff to shop, still, the guys that were there had some awesome stuff to be had. In particular, Vinegar Syndrome was on hand with all manner of disks for sale, except, sadly, they were completely out of Raw Force.

Shirt design based on Iron Maiden's Piece of Mind.

Well, the doors opened and the place filled with people. I made my rounds, talking to the guys behind the scenes, Chris, Dan, Marcos, Bill, Glen, as well as saying hi to Michael Gingold from Fangoria, Jordan Garren of the B-Movie Film Vault, Rob of the Orange Ulster Horror Club, Steve and his selection of uncut horror classics and B-movie oddities, Dan and Inked Up Merch (awesome selection of beanies and baseball caps with horror images and titles), Liberry Man Craig, and a bunch of other people.



The show began and we were treated to the first of two mystery movies. The first movie was sponsored by the guys at Vinegar Syndrome, Night Train to Terror. With this first movie of the day, the streak is intact. It is a streak that will soon rival the one Undertaker had with Wrestlemania. Every one of the ten shows has had at least one movie that I have never seen before in any format. Now, I caught a lot of flak after this one ended because I did not love it (including from the Vingar Syndrome guys, but we made up). The movie is a pseudo-anthology made with three features (two starring Richard Moll) edited down and propped up with connective footage of God and Satan battling over souls while riding a train, which also happens to be carrying a pop band singing one of the most annoyingly catchy tunes ever. Overall I felt meh, but there is some crazy nonsensical stuff, including some claymation. Yes, you read that right.


(No, this wasn't the movie, but one I would not mind seeing at a future show..)

The second movie is a super secret title only to be known for those who were there. It is a classic slasher that got to watch projected from a rare print, and one that is somewhere between the original theatrical release and the uncut version. I will say, you can tell the print was old, colors were almost all blue, but it was great watching this on the big screen. It is not a favorite of mine, but this big screen presentation bumped it up a little in my eyes. No, I will not give you the title, some things are between us and Hudson Horror. Maybe you will think twice about going the next time if you want to know what the secrets are!



The third film stepped away from horror and into the world of foreign action, although it still feels appropriate for the event. It was none other than the John Woo classic, Hard Boiled, which is likely one of the greatest action films ever made. It has been quite some time since I have seen this flick, so it felt really fresh watching it. It is big, explosive, and all around insane. If you haven't seen it, you really need to do so. There is an insane number of bullets fired off and there are explosions to match, plus it is all topped with the immense screen presence exerted byu Chow Yun Fat. While it was great, this film was not without a bit of technical difficulties. It seems one of the reels was mislabeled and halfway through the movie the image flipped upside down. This resulted in a near half hour delay to get things rectified, but that aside, the print looked great and the crowd loved it.



Movie four is also the fourth classic John Carpenter film to play at Hudson Horror (following Halloween, Escape from New York, and The Thing), the only other director represented as well is Lucio Fulci (The Beyond, Zombie, City of the Living Dead, and House by the Cemetery). The movie is none other than They Live (which inspired giving everyone in attendance a piece of bubble gum, don't want any in attendance kicking ass!). It played great on the big screen, and man did that fight scene play even better on the big screen. It was also pretty great having a few in attendance seeing it for the first time!



Finally, the headlining movie was the Stephen King/George Romero team up Creepshow. Now, I have always enjoyed this movie, but it has never been one of my favorites. With that said, it did look great and was fun to see projected. It is also pretty crazy having a movie play a horror festival that features Leslie Nielsen and Ted Danson. This one also played better on the big screen than I was expecting. Somehow, the big screen just makes things better.

It was a long day from when I arrived at 9:30 in the morning until I left somewhere around 1:30 the following morning. Still, it was so worth it. Hudson Horror Days are among the best of the year, the rest of the world just sort of slips away and there is nothing outside of the theater and the vendor filled hallways. Hanging out with friends, catching up, talking movies, buying some cool stuff. Nothing like it.

Hopefully we won't need to wait too long for an announcement regarding Hudson Horror XI.

We also got trailers! Here is a list courtesy of Daryl R.:
TRAILER REEL #1:
The Thing with Two Heads (1972)
Nightwing (1979)
Goldengirl (1979)
Warlords of the Deep (1978)
TRAILER REEL #2:
Nadja (1994)
The Sender (1982)
The Hazing (1977)
Wicked, Wicked (1973) in Anamorphic Duo-vision!!!
TRAILER REEL #3
Die Hard (1988)
Die Hard 2 (1990)
Firewalker (1986)
An Eye for an Eye (1981)
TRAILER REEL #4:
Born to Kill (aka Cockfighter,1974)
The Silent Flute (aka Circle of Iron, 1978)
Cain's Way (1971)
Duck, You Sucker (1971)
The Big Gundown (1966)
TRAILER REEL #5:
Paranoia (1969)
Preacherman Meets Widderwoman (1973)
Sharks' Treasure (1975)
The Treasure of Jamaica Reef (1975)
The Fury (1978)

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