Monday, May 13, 2013

Monster Madness: Kickin' it Old School


For the next week here, and across over 50 blogs, we will be celebrating monsters in all their gory glory. (Linky's at the bottom of this post).

First off, a shout out to the May Monster Madness Hosts:
Annie Wallsr

Something Wicked This Way Comes
Now days if Hollywood wants to create a monster they go running to their fancy computer programs.

Cloverfield
My sister got mad at me when Cloverfield did its big monster reveal and the first words out my mouth were, "They're going to have a hard time marketing that as a toy". I would like to point out how justified my words were though.



J. J. Abrams conceived of a new monster after he and his son visited a toy store in Japan while promoting Mission: Impossible III. He explained, "We saw all these Godzilla toys, and I thought, we need our own [American] monster, and not like King Kong. But I wanted something that was just insane and intense". (Wikipedia)

Back in the good old days, when film was getting started, they had no such options. Everything you saw on screen was literally on screen. 


I love these pioneers of monster magic. Their efforts have withstood the test of time and are universally recognizable to this day. 

One of the true masters of monster making was Lon Chaney. Given license to do his own make up (because he was effing brilliant at it), with some black paint, wire and tape Chaney created one of the most horrifying monsters in movie history. 


The story I heard from Utah's Edison Street (which used to be called the Organ Loft) where they run a production of Phantom of the Opera every Halloween complete with a live organ player (if you ever get the chance to go I highly recommend it), is that the actress playing Christine didn't see the makeup until they were filming the unmasking scene, making her terrified reaction 100% real. 

Reports of audiences reactions included people fainting from the immense shock that is the phantom's face. To this I would like to say, "Suck on that computers!"

And if you don't believe that Chaney phantom can make a much better toy than the Cloverfield monster, then haven't seen this.

This I would actually stick on my desk...
then get creeped out by it and put it into hiding. 



So that ends my gushing for today, but check back throughout the week as I venture through other monsters/ monster movies/ and monster makers that I love.

Also, be sure to stop by the other participants blogs. I know I'm excited to see what everyone will be writing about this week!
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