Previews & Reviews that are Z's Views

The 10 Best Monster Movies of All Time

Recently  Maane Khatchatourian posted in Variety The 10 Best Monster Movies of All Time.

While I don’t think the list was  a great one, I’ll play along.  Here’s my ranking (and comments for their choices)…

  1. Creature from the Black Lagoon – One of my favorite movies of all time.  I don’t know how many times I’ve seen Creature from the Black Lagoon, but I always enjoy it!  Wondering when it will be updated/rebooted?

  2. The Thing (1982) – I saw it on it’s original theatrical run.  Scary then and scary now.

  3. Alien – Another one I saw when it was first released.  I’ve grown to love it even more over the years.

  4. King Kong – The original Kong is still King.

  5. Bride of Frankenstein and Frankenstein The Godfather II and Godfather of monster movie sequels.

  6. Jaws – I have a tough time with this one being labeled a monster movie.  Jaws is a classic though.

  7. Jurassic Park – Still the best of the Jurassic Park/World movies.

  8. The Fly (1958) – “Help me.  Help me.”  Chilling.  Another film that I’ve grown to appreciate more over the years.

  9. Gremlins – Not a fan.

  10. Godzilla (1954) – Not a fan of the original Godzilla movies although I watched them enough as a kid with my grandpa.

“The Nightmare” Trailer – Night Terrors Are Real

Check out the trailer for the documentary The Nightmare and then let’s meet below.

The Nightmare is a documentary that…

… chronicles eight different people who suffer from night terrors and sleep paralysis, that finds them trapped in awakened states of semi-consciousness, where they witness truly horrific visions, but are unable to move.

Night terrors are a real and fairly common.  I used to have them but haven’t in years.  It’s frightening to feel that someone is in the room and worse you can’t move.  I was surprised to see the “shadow man” with the “Undertaker” hat in the trailer because one of my worst night terror dreams had the same guy standing over me.


Source: i09.

The 20 Scariest Movies of All-Time

The Entertainment Weekly staff came up with their list of the 20 Scariest Movies of All-Time.

The EW list is a pretty good one and using just their choices I came up with my top three:

  1.  The Exorcist: Not only scary while you’re watching it, but even more frightening when you think about it later.
  2. 28 Days Later: Fast moving zombies (and let’s not argue the point that they aren’t zombies) and humans that are equally as dangerous.
  3. John Carpenter’s The Thing: Isolated in an environment that can kill and unable to tell friend from monster.

15 Things You Didn’t Know About The Stand

Erik van Rheenen and Mental_Floss have posted 15 Things You Didn’t Know About The Stand.  As is our tradition, here are three of my favorites…

6. Christian Radio Made a Contribution As Well

King revealed a third inspiration for The Stand in Danse Macabre: A single line he heard in a radio broadcast of a sermon when he was living in Colorado. The line “Once in every generation the plague will fall among them” made such an impression on King that he wrote it down and pinned it over his typewriter. Later, when the author was struggling to write a fictionalized account of the Patty Hearst kidnapping (the unpublished The House on Value Street), he saw the gloomy quote and found the inspiration to start a new project that became The Stand.

8. The Extreme Length Led to Logistical Problems

The 1,200-page novel presented a serious problem – King’s publisher, Doubleday, couldn’t print a novel that long. Literally. In addition to whatever qualms the publisher might have had about trying to sell such a hefty book, its printing presses couldn’t create it. As King explained to Time in 2009, “Doubleday had a physically limiting factor in those days because they used a glue binding instead of a cloth binding, and the way it was explained to me was that they had so much of a thickness they could do before the glue just fell apart.”

10. The Cut Pages Weren’t Lost

Of course, when your fans are as rabid as King’s, it’s hard for lost pages to stay lost. In 1990 King restored the text he had hacked away to create The Stand: The Complete & Uncut Edition. King didn’t just slip all the cut pages back into the original manuscript, though – he retyped each one. He told Time he “had the manuscript on one side of an IBM Selectric typewriter and I had the pages of a book that I had torn out of the binding on the other side.” The restored edition had another quirk – King also updated the setting of the novel to the then-present day and included references to cultural touchstones like Freddy Krueger that had not existed in 1978.

10 Practical Tips for Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse

Lauren Davis at i09 presents 10 Practical Tips for Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse.  The three best tips, in my opinion are…

4. Zombies Are the Least of Your Worries
It’s bad enough that you have to deal with the zombified masses, who are tireless, feel no pain, and greatly outnumber healthy human beings. But perhaps even more deadly are the humans who simply can’t cope with the new world order. It’s best if you keep a psychologist on hand who can identify and subdue such persons before they embark on a murderous rampage that makes the zombies look as ferocious as fluffy kittens.

10. Suit Up
Perhaps the best way to prepare for the day the dead rise from their graves is to assemble the perfect zombie-fighting attire. Avoid brain spray-back by wearing goggles and covering your face with a non-porous material. Use plate mail or leather to create a bite-proof body suit. Kevlar gloves (provided to some food industry workers) can be worn as is or refashioned into impenetrable sleeves, allowing you to fend off zombie bites by holding up your forearms. Riot shields also add an extra layer of protection and make the zombie head squishing that much easier.

1. Clear the Room.
There’s nothing worse than stepping into a room only to be set upon by a horde of brain-hungry zombies. A team of four armed shooters can easily clear a room if they all stand against the nearest wall: one body in each corner and two in the middle. This position proves optimal for quickly dispatching of a room full of the reanimated.

14 Things You Might Not Know About “Se7en”

Jake Rosen lists 14 Things You Might Not Know About Se7en.  Here are three of my favorites…

1. From the Mind of a Record Store Employee

Screenwriter Andrew Kevin Walker was a graduate of Penn State’s film program. Several years later, however, he was no closer to achieving his goal of working in the industry. Making ends meet at a New York City Tower Records store, Walker was so depressed that he wrote a bleak and oppressive script about the hunt for a killer who uses the seven deadly sins as inspiration for his crimes.

Satisfied with the outcome, he sent it to professional writer David Koepp, and then followed up with a phone call. Koepp agreed to send it to his agent, who found a buyer in New Line Cinema. (After reading it, Koepp also advised Walker that he “needed professional help.”)

3. Brad Pitt Worked Himself to the Bone

During a scene in which Pitt’s character, Detective David Mills, is chasing the killer through a perpetually rainy backdrop, Pitt slipped and drove his arm through a windshield. The resulting injury (a severed tendon) was so deep it went down to the bone. Pitt had to wear a cast for the rest of filming, which was written into the script; for scenes that had to be shot that took place earlier than the chase, the actor had to conceal his arm as best he could.

4. Kevin Spacey Got No Credit

When Fincher hired Kevin Spacey to portray killer John Doe, Spacey thought it would be more interesting to keep his involvement a secret, figuring that if he were to be billed then it would be obvious who the “mysterious” antagonist was. As a result, Spacey—who had just become a hot commodity for his work in The Usual Suspects—did not appear in any advertising, nor was his name included in the opening credits. While the studio disliked the idea, the part was late to be cast and, in Spacey’s words, “I was either going to be on a plane to shoot the movie or I wasn’t.” He got his wish.

Source: Mental_Floss.

15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About “28 Weeks Later”

Sean Hutchinson at Mental_Floss presents 15 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About 28 Weeks Later.  Here are my three favorites…


Titled 29 Days Later, the original sequel told the story of British marines attempting to rescue the Prime Minister and the Queen of England.


He directed second unit footage of the opening scene.


The filmmakers came up with the idea for the coda just two weeks before production wrapped. Fresnadillo traveled to Paris with a limited crew and only HD cameras to shoot it in one afternoon.