Wes Craven: Celebration Of A True Master Of Horror

August 30, 2015 will always be a sad day in my mind.  It was the day we lost one of the best horror directors/writers/producers/innovators to ever grace our screens.  Wes Craven passed away due to having brain cancer.  I jokingly say that it's because his brain was always smoking with great horror ideas, but it truly saddens my heart.  I remember when I  was a young boy, my parents were a bit more lenient with schooling than they perhaps should have been, and were ok with us skipping school the next day so that we could go see a double feature at the drive-in theatre before it closed down (It was called the stardust and was just a great place).  One day they took us to see a movie called Scream when I was around 12 years old.  I had seen some other horror movies before, had a run in with Jaws when I was younger and definitely felt that nothing could be scarier than a shark with a purpose at the time.  I was only half right, because I found out that you can definitely still be horrifically killed on land, and this movie showed me how.  It was a big memory in my movie history and I credit this movie as the start of my love of horror and things macabre.So when he passed away I decided to do my "Day at the movies" style marathon with movies he has been a part of (Only directed, not wrote or produced), but I found it difficult because he has done some pretty bad movies, but has done some movies that are simply amazing.  His highs are, in my opinion, the highest a horror movie can achieve, and his lows are... well, Vampire in Brooklyn (Sorry Eddie Murphy, you're just awful in this movie).  I also wanted to do him the justice he deserves as one of the top five horror directors of all time.  So I took my time, and I did it, hopefully it opens peoples eyes and is good enough for him. 1: New Nightmare (1994): The seventh instalment in the Freddy Krueger series, although not in the main storyline is a great way to start him off I think.  I don't wanna dive in super heavy with the first, so I did this one because Freddy needs to bookend this marathon.  It revolves around Heather Langenkamp playing herself in the real world and having Freddy Krueger the character invading real life and not just being a charter in a movie.  He terrorizes her and her family to a delightful end to Krueger.  I like this movie a whole bunch and think the addition of "real life" added to it makes it extra fantastic. 1440-112=1328 minutes left.2: My Soul to Take (2010): I went with, in my opinion, the worst of the series next.  Not even necessarily a bad movie, I just found this movie not as good as most others he's done.  I think the biggest problem with this movie is that it wasn't a gore porn movie like most movies were at this stage (Insidious came out this year, saw 7, let me in among others) and this movie fell to the wayside.  But I felt it wasn't without its charm, and was... well, it's about a supernatural schizophrenic who comes back to his hometown to kill 7 teenagers who celebrate his death by "killing" a puppet effigy.  Even the plot sounds lacklustre, but it's not that bad 1328-107=1221 minutes left3: RedEye (2005): I like this movie a lot.  Cillian Murphy plays a terrorist to Rachel McAdams while on a plane.  This movie is fun and has a good couple scary parts, some nice messed up scenes and comes in at a crisp 85 minutes long. Also, the pen scene is a real hoot to watch.  Any movie that is less than 2 hours is a boon to me and I am always willing to give it a chance.  Cillian Murphy needs to be in more movies and is great. 1221-85=1136 minutes left4: The People under the Stairs (1991): Man I love this movie.  It's about a young kid named Poindexter who breaks into a house and gets trapped there by the owners, and in an attempt to escape finds Alice, a daughter who tries to save his life.  You find out some weird and creepy stuff throughout the movie, but also a whole bunch of comedy. I put this one one before a movie that scares a lot of people to show the comedic side of Cravens movies. 1136-102=1034 minutes left.5: The Last House of the Left (1972):  This movie scared a lot of people, as it is regaled as the first and possibly the best exploitation horror of all time.  It was remade into a nice and pretty movie in 2009, but that movie doesn't quite hit the marks that this one does.  Made over 40 years ago, it was gritty and rough, which was scary, VERY scary at the time and because of that it was put on a list called "video nasty", a list of movies that were too violent or controversial to be released in many countries.  That alone makes it real interesting to watch, and it is legitimately terrifying, even to this day. 1034-84=950 minutes left.6: Shocker (1989):  I think this movie is real fun.  I mean, it's pretty dumb and not great, but the amount of fun that I had watching a movie where a dude makes a deal with the devil himself and while being electrocuted he not only doesn't die, but turns into electricity.  Super ridiculous and much less entertaining than the Elm Street series, but it was a blast nonetheless. 950-109=841 minutes left.7: The Hills have Eyes (1977): Most people know this movie due to it's well known actor Michael Berryman, who plays Pluto.  He was born with a disease and stands out in a crowd.  But this movie was also real fun and it's a blast to watch the scene where Pluto attacks a trailer and tries to steal a child from the main actors.  Got voted as one of the scariest moments in movie history. 841-89=752 minutes left.8: Swamp Thing (1982): I threw this on here not because I think it's a great movie, but because it was a comic book movie and has Adrienne Barbeau who's a fox, and Ray Wise, who's the male equivalent of a fox.  It was not great, and really raw and gritty and rough, but was again, quite fun and a big step towards comic book movies being a big thing, even if it doesn't get the credit it deserves. 752-93=659 minutes to go.9: Scream (1996):  As I said, this movie has a large impact on my life and I love it.  A huge ensemble cast, great music, great murders and some really awesome comedy (Mainly by Jamie Kennedy, who is most notable for not being funny).  Sidney Prescott as the unwilling heroine of the movie, and later franchise is just great.  This movie reinvented the slasher flick for a new generation. 659-111=548 minutes left10: A nightmare on Elm Street (1984): As I said, I felt the need to bookend this marathon with Freddy Krueger and I did just that.  I ended the marathon with the best horror movie of all time.  Many people will disagree, but to me nothing beats this movie.  It started big flashy horror franchises (Not including monster franchises because Dracula is a jerk), it created the most well known and iconic horror figure in movies today (so suck it Jigsaw) and has a Johnny Depp death scene that rivals any of the best deaths in movies ever. I can't say enough good things about this movie, and could spend another... 1270 words talking about just this movie, but I won't.  Watch it and love the camp, the practical effects, the scares.  548-91=457 minutes left in your day.Coming in at just over 16 hours of horror gold and comedy bronze I cannot express enough the meaning that Craven has had on my movie watching career, nor the sadness for the loss the world has had.  Rest in Peace Mr Craven.wes