Thursday, July 8, 2010

Ten things you should watch instead of Twilight

Okay, I flat out suck, people. It's hot, I'm feeling lazy and stressed and I'm about six days late posting an article that was my idea to begin with. I apologize, fellow Dollarbin Masochists for my indolence. Here are my ten alternatives to Twilight.

Top Three Vampire Movies

Horror of Dracula

I will not apologize for the glut of Hammer films on my lists. Dollarbin Massacre is committed to cultural diversity. If you look at the sampling of shit that’s been reviewed here, you’ll see that we’re pretty openminded. So, where are the Asian vampires, where is Rockula, Love at First Bite, The Halloween That Almost Wasn’t or (INSERT KITSCHY VAMPIRE TREASURE HERE)? Somewhere the fuck else, that’s where. I take vampires pretty seriously. They are a serious and nasty threat to our wellbeing and strongwilled, smokingjacketed heroes need to take up their stakes and crucifixes to put an end to the undead menace. The moment I knew this was so was at the age of five or six when I first saw Christopher Lee in Dracula Has Risen from the Grave.

I remembered Dracula Has Risen from the Grave pretty loosely over the years, but there were images from it that stayed with me for some time, bodies in a churchbell, glowing red eyes and one tall, thin badass predator who will not take no for an answer. Dracula Has Risen From the Grave had quite an impression on me. Dracula was awesome. Dracula was something to be feared.

Weeks later, I saw an earlier Hammer Dracula that gave me another new lease on the world and a new perspective on the character. I cannot say enough how much I love Christopher Lee’s portrayal of Dracula. He is not a suave gentleman , he is a bloodthirsty barbarian, the man that Stoker said claimed to be a descendant of Attilla the Hun with pride. A hell of a supervillain. It would take a real hero to cross swords with somebody like that. It would take a wirey nerd who wore exquisite smoking jackets and jumped on the furniture. Horror of Dracula is amazing because it reminds us of something important. There are ruthless bastards with big fangs out there and they want to ruin everything, they want to take away our loved ones and poison the world with their malice. And it doesn’t matter if you’re the biggest nerd or fancypants on the planet, if you’ve got knowledge, drive and heart, you can stand up to it.

Mark of the Vampire

This movie has a lot of strikes against it. A lot of the acting is needlessly over-the-top, some of the set pieces are confusing, the dialogue is stunted and the less said about this movie’s absurd plot, the better. The central conceit of Mark of the Vampire is a truly idiotic one and the resolution of the film’s mysteries makes even less sense than an actual vampire attack would. So why is this masterclass in bad writing one of my top three vampire movies?

Three answers: history, atmosphere and Bela Lugosi. There are better Lugosi performances. Better by far. In The Black Cat, The Raven, Murders at the Rue Morgue, Son of Frankenstein and Island of Lost Souls, we see Bela’s best work, oozing with pain, torment and madness as well as malice. But those movies aren’t what people think of first when they think of Lugosi. They think of vampires and they think of somebody who defined horror acting. When we see Lugosi in this movie, we see a vampire, an angel of cold hunger, a haunting moving tableau from our collective Jungian haunted house. He barely appears, he barely says a word but Lugosi is more vampiric than he ever was as Dracula.

It would be a travesty of me to forget to mention the great Carroll Borland. Morticia, Ingrid Pitt, Elvira, that Goth cashier at the grocery store who you find yourself shyly staring at, admiring her dark clothes and neopagan jewelry...all of them owe a little something to Carroll Borland. She matches Lugosi, she makes him up his game and she proves a perfect complement to his role. She’s amazing to watch. And so is Mark of the Vampire.

The Vampire Lovers

Since I’ve breached the subject of great vampiresses, I must bring up this movie. Every time I watch this movie I find myself thinking “damn, I really don’t watch this enough.” If you have seen this, you know what I mean. This is not the first movie you reach for when you decide to watch a vampire movie or the first one you think of, but it’s a great one and it screams for your attention and asks you with sweet succubus whispers “why don’t you watch me more?”

Why not? Because this movie is too rich of a delight to take in often. Although each time you see it, it wants you to enjoy it more frequently, it is a bloodsoaked dessert, a rich plate of enchanted crackfudge that will own your soul. Its leads are gorgeous, its costumes both period and timeless and its visuals frequently surreal and haunting. There is lesbianism, there is blood, dancing with Hecate and Kali. Le Belle Dame Sans Merci shall have you in thrall. Ingrid Pitt is a sinister siren of the highest and the tender naifs she seduces exude a wideeyed vulnerability that seems to be coquettishly mocking the viewer. It’s sexy, it’s rich, it’s just about too much, it enslaves and captivates the senses. All you can do is succumb.

Honorable Mention

Black Sabbath

Mario Bava’s classic makes honorable mention solely on the technicality that only the second of the film’s three segments is about a vampire. But what a vampire it is! In Bava’s adaptation of the story the Family of the Wurdalak, Boris Karloff plays a patriarch coming home from hunting a traditional Slavic monster as one of them. In my opinion, he makes one of the scariest vampires on film. Incest, blasphemy and raw inhumanity fill his haunting words. If you want to see the true nature of the folkloric vampire, watch Black Sabbath and see the hungry revenant in its natural state.

Salem’s Lot

The childhood trauma train hath pulled into the station. I slept with a crucifix under my pillow for a week because of this movie. The German Expressionist inspired vampire makeup of this movie is very impressive, embodying the concept of vampirism as a plague. Salem’s Lot combines the talents of Stephen King and Tobe Hooper, coming together on their common ground and that common ground is America. Nobody captures the violence of the American psyche like Tobe Hooper and nobody does smalltown horror like Stephen King. It’s a match made in Hell and Salem’s Lot takes you right there.

The Wolfman

I was thinking I might find something to replace this because it’s also on Leza’s list. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized I had to include this movie, no matter how many other times it might get mentioned. Like Horror of Dracula, this movie has a special place in my heart for personal reasons. My grandfather suffered from bipolar disorder. About as severe as it got. The kind of bipolar that enslaved Lord Byron and Virginia Woolf, a disease that turned a man into something else, as inescapable as old age, fate, death taxes. And I knew it was hereditary. When I saw Lon Chaney Jr. as The Wolfman, I saw a kindred spirit, a man who through no fault of his own was doomed to lose control. I looked at him and I saw somebody who knew that every person’s a monster and every monster’s a person. I would be a liar if I said that this movie made it easy to deal with living with a person with a crippling mental illness and growing up with the same sickness (though thankfully less severe), but at least I knew somebody understood. The Wolfman is a beautiful movie about human nature and living with one’s inner darkness and it’s moving to see Claude Rains and Evelyn Ankers remaining faithful to this beast until the end, letting love conquer fear. A movie that captures the things we find running through the primeval forest of the psyche like few others can.

Curse of the Werewolf

Curse of the Werewolf is in some ways very similar to The Wolfman. Tragedy, confrontations with the beast within, a strange gothic landscape that feels oddly timeless. While it lurks the magnetism of Lon Chaney Jr., the anguish and concern of Claude Rains or the beatific tenderness of Evelyn Ankers, this movie has a lot going for it, enough to be in my top three even with similarities to a blatantly superior film. What Curse of the Werewolf has going for it that The Wolfman lacks is an edge that you could say Hammer films had over most Universal monster movies and that’s intensity. Certain Universal efforts like The Black Cat and The Raven can match Hammer in perverse subtext but these aren’t really spoken of in the same breath as The Wolfman and the Frankenstein and Dracula efforts. You might think that the only edge a werewolf movie made by Hammer would have over Universal would be the potential for bloodletting, which is something werewolves do in spades. But it’s not just gore.

Curse of the Werewolf begins with a palace maid raped by a lycanthropic drifter. Which is a little much for Universal. Not long after, we see that the bastard child of this union has been tearing up goats. That’s some intensity. Larry Talbot’s curse is bad and not altogether his fault, but Curse of the Werewolf takes it up a notch, to a meaner kind of predestination, a story of a young man that never gets a fair shake at innocence. The child grows up to be Oliver Reed. And we get an unpleasant upgrade from Larry Talbot. You take Larry Talbot’s pain and you heap rage, madness and a hint that this man dying inside that might just take everybody else with him. Larry Talbot shows it sucks to be a werewolf, Oliver Reed hints that it might suck to be human, too.

Monster On Campus

This is not a werewolf movie in the strictest sense of the word, but it’s about everything a werewolf movie is about, a man getting bitten by something and then entering a state of devolution, ending up cursed and unable to control his actions. The cool thing about Monster on Campus for me is how it’s a bridge between two different ages of Universal horror. Universal studios horror didn’t die at the end of Dracula. It stayed strong in the atomic age, as evidenced by Jack Arnold’s classic The Creature from the Black Lagoon. Like Creature, Monster on Campus is also a Jack Arnold movie, also concerns the missing link between modern and primitive man and is also great. The dialogue is cheesy and the characterization a little weak, but it makes a good statement about mankind confronted with its darkside and the caveman monster is very werewolf like.

Another cool thing about this movie is a pop culture connection that might be a coincidence or it might have been a very cool nod to an underappreciate sci fi gem. The scientist turned caveman hero of Monster on Campus is named Donald Blake, which is also the secret identity of Thor from the Marvel comics. Could it have been that Stan Lee and Jack Kirby saw this movie and subconsciously spotted a connection between their hero, a modern man that had become one with something ancient and deadly that would leave his life spinning out of control is it a weird coincidence? Possibly the latter. Either way, it’s a cool piece of geeklore.

Honorable Mentions

Werewolf vs. The Vampire Women
I’m putting this movie as my honorable mention because I’ve only seen a couple of Paul Naschy werewolf movies and this is my favorite of them. The gothic atmosphere and the makeup are almost comically intense, Naschy’s deadly serious disposition and often unwarranted angst made him an awesome camp actor who just plain brought it in the role of Waldemar Daninsky. He was just really cool.

Track of the Moonbeast

Even for an MST3K movie, this is bad, from its terrible opening during which a pretty straightforward practical joke involving hiding behind a mask is explained to death to its performance by brand x countryfried folkie Frank Larrabee. But, there are things to like about this too. Just as Monster on Campus hearkens back to Gothic themes with its atomic age werewolf story, so too Track of the Moonbeast, made in the 70s, hearken back to Jack Arnold’s and Ed Wood’s films and the idea of a weredinosaur, poorly executed though it might have been is great for your inner ten year old.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Twilight is Stoopid, y'all.


So I read the first TWILIGHT BOOK.

See, one of my students wanted to read it and so I had to read it WITH him. It was beyond my control. Now, it was pretty much crap. But it was for 14 year old girls so I can give it a pass... sort of. If that's how it was, being a book just for teen girls, well, okay. But this Twilight thing has become a phenomenon for no reason. Adult women are drooling all over Edward and Jacob (but of course, that's totally okay even though the characters are under 18. Those women aren't deviants. They aren't lusting after Miley Cyrus, after all).

I don't get it.

But I tried. I watched some of the first movie and had to turn it off in stunned anger and confusion. I hate movies that try so hard to force you to feel some sort of emotion like those "tear jerkers" I hate to watch but my wife can't get enough of. Romantic movies do this all the time. Twilight is worse because they are playing with millions of teenage minds, giving them the fantasy of having two "hot" guys after them. It's the fantasy of every sad, unattractive girl with no personality.

I would have preferred they end the series with it all being Bella's dream. She wakes up and realizes she's still unpopular and that no boy would come close to her with a ten-foot pool. Then an ugly vampire pops into her room, tells Bella her poetry sucks and then drains her of her blood. Then an even uglier werewolf comes in and ravages her, telling Bella those fake goth bands she listens to suck. Then the werewolf kills her while singing Bela Lugosi's Dead.

Where was I? Oh yeah. Here's some movies that are better than Twilight.

1.) DRACULA (1931) Two words: Bela Legosi.

2.) HORROR OF DRACULA (1958). Three words: Christopher Fuckin’ Lee

3.) SON OF DRACULA (1943). Four words: Lon Fuckin’ Chaney Jr.

4.) DRACULA’S DAUGHTER (1936). Five words: Gloria Smokin’ Fuckin’ Hot Holden

5.) THE SATANIC RITES OF DRACULA (1974) Six words: Shit! Dracula Has Fuckin’ Biological Weapons!

There’s more of course.
THE LOST BOYS with the brilliant performances by the two Coreys.
NEAR DARK with one of the greatest vampire set pieces set to a Cramps song ever.

What else is better than Twilight? Hmm.. how about EVERY FUCKING VAMPIRE FLICK MADE BY BOTH UNIVERSAL AND HAMMER STUDIOS? Yes, even DRACULA AD 1972.

If I talk about this any longer I’m going to start getting pissed. Edward from Twilight has the facial structure of a circus freak and Jacob looks as dumb as the dumbest rock. Girls find those two wankers attractive? That’s a sad generation, I’ll tell you. If I was into dudes, I’d take elderly Christopher Lee over those two ass-clowns.

And werewolves? Pass over TWILIGHT and move onto SILVER BULLET with Corey Haim or any of the UNIVERSAL wolfman flicks. Hell, I’d even suggest THE HOWLING II which even has the aforementioned Christopher Lee as well as some gratuitous boob-shots of Sybil Danning.

So there's my two cents. I guess you can criticize me for not getting through the whole film or watching the other ones. So what? At least I can say I didn't waste my time. If you've watched these movies, let me ask you something. Do you KNOW we have a limited time on this earth?

Fucking Twilight. Why the hell am I even discussing this? Garret, what the hell did you get me into?

Friday, July 2, 2010

When Vampires Had Balls by Nick Cato

When Vampires had BALLS by Nick Cato

When Dracula (Christopher Lee) managed to con a Catholic Priest to help him do his bidding in 1968's DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE (not to mention threatening he'd also marry his niece), my young mind was alerted to the fact that vampires--while cool--aren't the "nicest" creatures out there. After all, they live on human blood, they live to fulfill their own darkest desires, as they are basically MONSTERS. The Dracula portrayed by Christopher Lee was a classy, intelligent gent who was always a hit with the ladies...but at heart he was the embodiment of evil. His cape was blacker than death. It didn't sparkle. He had BALLS.

The confused young title character of George A. Romero's MARTIN (1977) didn't sparkle, either. Convinced he's a vampire with a lust for blood, Martin (played with wonderful gloom by John Amplas) makes his own set of metal fangs, and being a nerd with limited seduction skills, uses an old-school razor blade to open his victim's veins. He lives and dies (in one of the goriest stakings ever filmed) as a true vampire. A vampire that had BALLS.
Female vampires have balls, too. Take for example Jean Rollin's FASCINATION (1979), where 2 lesbo vamps lure people into their blood drinking cult at an isolated mansion. Sure, they seduce everyone who come within their grasp and parade around nekkid, but they're not lovey-dubby multiplex skanks: they're high-class, gothic MONSTERS bent on doing what vamps do best...feed on grade-A plasma. Elizabeth and Eva (played by Franca Mai and the amazing Brigette Lahaie) may be a couple of hotties (especially under Rollins' killer cinematography), but like venus fly traps, their beauty is only a front. They're vampires with BALLS who don't sparkle.

And if you want to see how a vampire with BALLS can ruin your honeymoon, check out the 1962 Italian classic SLAUGHTER OF THE VAMPIRES. Dieter Eppler's portrayal of the blood-crazed vampire may be a bit campy by today's standards, but he wasn't afraid to ruin what should have been one poor couple's happiest time as newlyweds. As a bonus, our main vampire is killed by a piece of iron fence and turns to gray ash. Even in death this monstrous womanizer didn't sparkle...because he was a V A M P I R E.
Okay...time to go hand some of these DVDs out in front of my local multiplex...




This movie has incredible atmosphere. I know that word gets thrown around a lot. But in this case it is palatable. Remember the cursed videotape in The Ring? Vampyr is that movie, in the flesh.
When you watch this movie, you enter a surrealistic vacuum, where the ordinary passage of time and the traditional rules of causality have little relevance. This film is so masterfully shot that it is easy to forget that a person was behind the camera, despite the innovative, artful angles and the best shadow play outside of a German expressionist movie. This film sucks you in. The thick atmosphere of Gothic gloom and claustrophobia, of dislocation and irreality is unshakeable, even hours after a viewing. It sticks with you. It nags you with feelings of unrest and existential malaise.
The only thing I can recall affecting me in a similar way was Robert W. Chambers collection of short stories entitled The King in Yellow, and certain H.P. Lovecraft passages.
It is the unnameable horror of something that is alien and yet horribly familiar. It is the atmosphere of unrest. David Lynch's Eraserhead also manages to pull off this sort of cacophony of distress quite masterfully. But Vampyr has something Eraserhead does not. True, unshakable, gut freezing eeriness. It is a true original and it is infinitely re-viewable since its one of those movies that seems to reshuffle itself every time you see it.


This movie has an interesting concept that actually works. John Malkovich plays F. W. Murnau, the director who will stop at nothing to make his masterpiece, Nosferatu. He does not even shrink from hiring a real vampire to bring authenticity to his film. Who cares if his staff is in danger, the film must be completed. Willem Dafoe plays Max Schreck, the creepiest vampire I have ever seen. He's ugly, he's a creep, and he doesn’t try to hide it.
I love this film because of the parallels it draws between the obsession of the artist, the drug addict and, of course, the vampire. The power struggle between director and vampire is ironic and intense, as is Murnau's deadly struggle with heroin addiction and his drive to make this film no matter who or what is destroyed along the way. This film is truly inspiring and chilling as well as beautifully shot, with great reverence for its source material. Re-created shots from Nosferatu are especially rewarding and pitch perfect.


This film is like The Rocky Horror Picture Show meets Eyes Wide Shut, in 1963 Hammer style, of course.
A young couple, on their honeymoon end up shacking up at a near abandoned motel, when they run out of petrol, which just happens to be next door to a wealthy family of vampires who take advantage of the cartoonishly proper and naive young couple. They are seduced by the seemingly elegant family, who wine and dine them till they manage to separate the two and take the woman for themselves and leave the poor man, confused, utterly disoriented, and hung over after being plowed down with champagne.
This film is elegant, deliciously satirical, sadistically twisted and genuinely eerie. The costumes and sets are rich confections of velvet and spirals(respectively), the nights are foggy and moonlit, the encounters with the blood-drinkers, brutal. This is classic Hammer at its best.
“It often happens in life that the most beautiful things are made from the most unpromising of materials.” The patriarch vampire bitterly notes when giving the guests a tour of his home, mourning his existence inside its metaphorical coffin.
Their seduction of Marianne is soulless and clinically choreographed, using the son as bait. They take advantage of the fact that the newlyweds are so young and uncertain of themselves and each other.
Professor Zimmer (Clifford Evans) plays the only nemesis of this powerful vampire clan. After his own daughter was claimed by them, he tirelessly watches and does what he can to put back down their newly risen vampire ladies. Tormented by his pain, he's often drunk, and the townspeople assume him to be a lost cause. With such an uncertain adversary and such a perfect pair of vampire bait walking blissfully unaware into their doom, the air of hopelessness is powerful throughout much of the film, adding to the palpable fear and claustrophobia. The inn itself is haunted by the memory of the innkeeper's lost daughter. Another victim of the vampires. It is mentioned how they own the land and there is very little anyone can do against them.
These vampires are able to go about during the day, but only if it is overcast. Mercifully, they do not “sparkle”.


This haunting and gritty gem set in Stockholm really breaks the traditional mold. The vampire, in this case, is a 12 year old girl, Eli, who is more alone than any girl could be. She meets a boy her age, Oskar, who has been bullied and is becoming increasingly alienated. They slowly warm up to each other and form a touching bond that is challenged by his discovery of her true monstrous nature. This story resonates and is shot beautifully in the barren wintry landscape of the city.

This was an innovative and refreshing treatment of vampires set in a natural state of perpetual night, in Alaska. The movie had a cool noir vibe and was very stylishly shot. I was also very happy with the look and the brutality of these tough vampires. They seemed somehow more primal, more like something out of our folkloric or mythic past. I loved the artwork in the comic as well, and was pleasantly surprised at how closely the director came to capturing that vibe and look despite the lack of Ben Templesmith's extraordinary artwork.



This will always be the quintessential werewolf film to me. The moody cinematography is impeccable. But I think its greatest power lies in the achingly human portrayal of a man losing the battle with the beast within by the lumbering, awkward, and always lovable Lon Chaney Jr. as Larry Talbot, the returning estranged son and new heir to the Talbot estate, as a result of the tragic and accidental death of his brother.
Estrangement, a big theme for monsters of all kinds, is established right off, as son a father attempt to patch up after years of absence. You get the feeling, though, that Larry Talbot is never going to fit in anywhere. He is a man followed by shadows he can never shake. Yet he is charming, especially in his moments of supreme awkwardness, as in his first meeting with Gwen(Evelyn Ankers). He is about as subtle as the wolf in Little Red riding Hood in his attempts to seduce her. She is annoyed, affronted, but yet is amused, even a bit seduced, despite herself. Even when he confesses to her, later that night, that he has been peeping at her through her bedroom window with a telescope, she doesn't tell him to get lost, despite the fact that she's engaged.
There is a great air of sadness to this film. A pervasive gloom that is not heavy handed, but it is heavyhearted and somehow almost elemental. This is about a man, alone with his curse. There is no cure and he must face his beast and try his best to not harm those he loves. He must face the judgments of the ignorant and ill informed townspeople, he must hide his pain even though it consumes him. And he must exist in a state he barely understands the nature of.
Lon Chaney embodies the noble qualities of wolves as well as the monstrous. His instinct to protect his own is, in fact, what leads him to being bitten by Bela, the werewolf fortuneteller played by Bela Lugosi. He has an honest and loving heart that he practically wears on his sleeve. Perhaps this is his biggest mistake, but yet it is also his salvation, not for his life, but for his soul. He can't win, though, he's screwed no matter what. As Gwen's fiancee observes: “There is something very tragic about that man.” I think we can all identify with someone who is not entirely beast or man, good or bad, just all too human, cursed and blessed whether we like it or not. Screw Jacob and Edward, Larry Talbot is the original tragic heartthrob.


I appreciate the freshness and honesty with which Mike Nichols tackles the idea of a man turning into a werewolf within a sociological context. When the office politics of a major publishing house cause aging editor in chief Will Randall (Jack Nicholson) to get kicked to the curb in lieu of his much more dishonest and cutthroat protegee Stewart Swinton(James Spader), followed by the discovery that his wife has been sleeping with Stewart, it kicks off a hell of a midlife crisis, and brings out strength and rage he never knew he had, as his whole life spirals out of control.
The bite of the wolf is not entirely a curse for Will. In fact, it enables him to see past the illusions that had barred his success against his backstabbing colleagues in the past. No longer self-doubting, he goes after what he wants. He is essentially quite human, and in fact, the “curse” of the wolf has a humanizing effect upon him. When the animal begins to take him over, he realizes how numb and false he and everyone else around him had become, in a way, this film is about how much socialization robs us of our raw humanity. Initially, Will is a man who plays by the rules(even if they make no sense), a man who debases himself as a matter of course. When the wolf begins to take hold, Will begins to grow a pair, much to everyone's surprise.
Mike Nichols biting social satire is something to sink you teeth into. But inevitably, with the good and the noble also come the darker aspects of the beast trailing close behind. The predator, the murderer inside struggles for dominance also as the light (Will)and dark(Stewart) personifications of the wolf struggle against each other for the woman they both desire(Michelle Pfieiffer). The nature of the man colors the nature of the beast.


Irena Dubrovna (Simone Simon) is a perfectly nice Serbian girl. All she wants is a normal life, but that is not to be. Descendant from a race of evil cat people she can keep her murderous instincts bottled up, but not forever. Trouble comes to her life when she falls in love with a nice young gentleman named Oliver Reed (Kent Smith). She is terrified that passion will bring out the beast that has for so long remained dormant.
Her only comfort is her regular visits to to local zoo, where she stares at the black panther for hours, sometimes sketching him, sometimes just watching. Most animals are terrified of her, but the panther doesn't complain.
At the end of his rope, her new husband sends her to a psychiatrist. Unfortunately, he is more interested in her as a specimen and parrots her husbands words, that it is all in her head. He is also developing a fetishistic obsession with her to boot.
When she sees her husband eating out with his friend, Alice, she snaps. In a spiraling series of events that lead to her own demise, the beast takes hold till the bitter end.
This tragic story about a misunderstood woman at war with her dark side will always be one of relevance, just as evocative and powerful today as it was in 1942. It is an atmospheric and haunting psychological and spiritual exploration of the dark side of the moon we carry within.


Despite the cheesy werewolf makeup I find this to be so classy and haunting that I forgive it for that. I like the focus on the moon flower, who's quest leads Dr. Glendon(Henry Hull) to being bitten, and which he then grows with the aid of artificial light. This is the ultimate civilized man succumbing to his obsessions and coming unraveled, owing perhaps more to Jekyll and Hyde and even Victor Frankenstein, than anything having to do with lycanthropy.

Though heavy-handed and overly decadent I still find this to be a delicious feast for the eyes. Angela Carter's dark retelling of the Red Riding Hood myth is exciting, irreverent, and thick with dark fairy tale atmosphere.

Dollarbin Massacre Guide to Vampires and Werewolves: Introduction

Wow! It seems like another Twilight movie is upon us. And you know what that means: millions of braindead cultural naifs will get a good glimpse into what vampires and werewolves aren't. And some of you out there, who are parents, friends or homosexual partners with these naifs will be subjected to stunted dialogue, sparkling, hairless waxed chests and monsters less threatening than those on Sesame Street. But, you are not powerless. You have duct tape. You have DVD players. You have rope. And you can not only enjoy yourself but you can educate these poor dipshits regarding monster culture if you show your loved one you care by restraining them and subjecting them to the Dollarbin Massacre crew's favorite vampire and werewolf movies. Helping us help your bound,gagged loved one will be Nick Cato, author of Don of the Dead and host of Lair of the Yak. So keep your eyes on Dollarbin Massacre over the next few days and you'll find out what our favorite vampire and werewolf films are.

Still better than the Twilight series.

By the way, Dollarbin Masochist Jordan Krall has been nominated for the Wonderland Book Award, the award for excellence in Bizarro fiction for his book Fistful of Feet. Congratulations, Jordan!