Design a site like this with WordPress.com
Get started

Better Know the Alliance: Halloween Horror Questionnaire Part 3

Halloween is here and that means it’s time to wrap up this Better Know the Alliance segment dedicated to horror movies.

In this final piece, critics Paul McGuire Grimes, Meg Hafdahl, Matt Hambidge, Frank Lee, Matthew Liedke, Ruth Maramis, Mark McPherson, Nicholas Palodichuk, Frank Stanko and Tyler Strandberg share their memories and thoughts on the genre.

For Part 1 in this segment, Click Here, and for part 2, Click Here.

Paul McGuire Grimes

What are some of the horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

My parents never let me watch rated-R movies, so my horror shows and movies were usually at a friend’s house. More kid-friendly titles included “Hocus Pocus,” “Poltergeist” (it’s PG!) and “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”

What was your first R-Rated horror movie?

“Halloween II,” I was sleeping over at a friend’s house and their neighbor recommended stopping by the video store to pick up “Halloween” after we went to a haunted house. The original was checked out, so we got the sequel instead.

Halloween2HorrorAll

What is your favorite horror sub-genre?

I do love devil possession/religious based horror like “The Exorcist,” “The Omen,” “The Conjuring.”

What horror movies have scared you the most?

“The Omen,” “The Shining,” “It,” “The Blair Witch Project” and “Halloween.”

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during awards season?

Toni Collette in “Hereditary” was robbed, same goes for Lupita Nyong’o for “Us.”

Meg Hafdahl

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

I loved “Twilight Zone,” “Tales From the Crypt,” “Tales From The Darkside” and “The X-Files.”

What was your first R-rated horror movie

I think “Dawn of the Dead” (1978), I rented it like every weekend!!

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

A good psychological horror when it’s tough to tell who to trust…

What horror movies have scared you the most?

“Barbarian” recently scared my socks off! As well as “The Ring,” “The Descent” and “Us.”

UsFilmBetterAlliance

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

I think Jordan Peele should win all the awards for his horror films. I also think Toni Collette should have an Oscar for “Hereditary!”

Matt Hambidge

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

I mostly avoided horror at all costs growing up. The “Goosebumps” show was as close as I got to horror as a kid.

What was your first R-rated horror movie?

I think my first was “The Shining.”

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

Definitely slasher, mostly thanks to the “Scream” series. But movies that are more blends of various genres – “Ready or Not” and “Zombieland” as a couple examples – can be lots of fun too.

What horror movies have scared you the most?

I wouldn’t say I get scared watching horror movies; I more so feel the tension, which makes things uncomfortable, but in a fun way. Growing up though, just the idea of the “Child’s Play” movies terrified me.

CHildsPlayBetAll

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

Lupita Nyong’o in “Us” and Florence Pugh in “Midsommar” are two recent ones that come to mind. They received recognition from critics group and some genre awards, but got overlooked at the Oscars.

From this year, “X” would be in my personal Best Picture lineup, and Mia Goth would be in for Best Actress for “Pearl.”

Frank Lee

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

The TV show “The Twilight Zone,” movies like “The Thing,” “Gremlins,” “Aliens,” “Predator,” “Misery” and “The Silence of the Lambs.”

What was your first R-rated horror movie?

James Cameron’s “Aliens,” which I’ve watched countless times since its release and could watch countless times more.

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

I guess by “favorite” I am limited in responding to just one, so I’d have to say “psychological horror” but hard for me to decide between that and “sci-fi horror.”

What horror movies have scared you the most?

“Videodrome,” a 1983 Canadian sci-fi body horror film starring James Woods and directed by David Cronenberg. If I remember correctly, I saw some of it on TV and couldn’t watch the movie in its entirety, solely based on the scene(s) of people inserting VHS cassettes into their midsections. The movie’s tagline, it seems, was “First, it controls your mind. Then it destroys your body.”

videodromepic

Maybe subconsciously, as a young child at the time of the movie’s release, I saw a parallel between the motion picture’s bizarre plot about the frequency of media consumption and the horrific, physiological and detrimental consequences of doing so … and how often I personally watched movies in my own or real life growing up, and maybe that scared me the most and to this day.

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

In my time reviewing ,or writing about, movies for a news publication, horror films that I feel should have received nominations or wins during award season include “Let Me In,” a 2010 remake of a Swedish film about young, vampiric love; “The Witch,” a 2015 folk horror film set in the 1630s; and “Last Night in Soho,” a 2021 British movie about the Swinging ’60s and a serial killer.

I believe child actor Haley Joel Osment should have won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his tour-de-force performance in “The Sixth Sense,” especially by an actor at such a young age. It was in large part on the strength of his acting that carries the film and convinces moviegoers what isn’t real is real. I wasn’t a professional movie reviewer, however, when that film was released.

Matthew Liedke

What are some of the horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

As a 90s kid, I remember watching “Goosebumps” regularly. It’s a very cheesy show in hindsight but it was a fine entry point for our generation to get into the genre.

I was always fascinated by the actual horror films, though. At video rental shops I would spend time looking at the covers of horror movies and reading the backs of them. Even those were creepy.

I grew up along the border of Canada so we had CBC and I remember the channel having a week honoring Alfred Hitchcock. I saw “Psycho” and “The Birds” and that was probably my first entry in real horror.

What was your first R-Rated horror movie

I legitimately think it was 1999’s “The Rage: Carrie 2.” I have a distinct memory of being on a little vacation with my family and at the hotel “Carrie 2” was on HBO. For whatever reason that was the movie we decided to watch as a family.

The first R-Rated horror flick I remember going out on my own to see was 2003’s “Freddy Vs. Jason,” which I still think is a fun, schlocky slasher movie.

What is your favorite horror sub-genre

I have an appreciation for slasher movies, they can be really entertaining and I think this year’s “X” shows that there’s still room for creativity in the category. I also have a soft spot for sci-fi horror and thrillers.

Stuff like “The Vast of Night” from a few years ago or 2009’s “Pandorum” are a couple good examples of the possibilities with that subgenre.

What horror movies have scared you the most?

One of them was 1974’s “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” which is my favorite horror film. That one shook me up for a bit.

Another is 2009’s “Paranormal Activity.” I saw it at a midnight screening and when I was trying to get to sleep in my dorm, I felt like I was hyper aware of any and all noises, it was freaky. I had to listen to some comedy podcasts to fall asleep

ParActivityBetAll

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during awards season?

“Hereditary” certainly deserved some nominations in a few categories, especially Tony Collette for Best Actress. I think “Crimson Peak” also should have gotten some attention in a few technical categories.

“The Invisible Man” should have received some attention as well, and I was happy it earned a win and a few runner-up scores in the MNFCA awards for that year.

Ruth Maramis

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

I actually didn’t watch hardly any horror movies as a kid, I just never gravitated towards horror movies even as an adult.

What was your first R-rated horror movie?

I think the first horror movie was a Chinese film but I can’t remember what the name was, so I guess the first Hollywood R-rated horror movie I saw was “The Exorcist,” purely out of curiosity, and I am still haunted by Regan’s face even to this day!

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

I don’t really have any favorite horror genre, but there have been some zombie movies I enjoyed: “28 Days Later,” “Train To Busan”

DaysLaterBetAll

What horror movies have scared you the most?

“The Exorcist” remains the scariest horror movies out of the few that I have seen.

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

“A Quiet Place” is an excellent horror film that should’ve been nominated. “Crimson Peak” should’ve been nominated in the production design, costume and cinematography.

Mark McPherson

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

“Are You Afraid of the Dark” was a lot of fun. Saturday nights I’d watch the network edit of “Tales from the Crypt” and 1980s “Twilight Zone” episodes with neighborhood kids.

What was your first R-rated horror movie? 


Hard to say. Horror was big in our household so there was a lot we watched. Probably one of the entries from “A Nightmare on Elm Street” or “The Puppet Master” series.

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)? 


Body horror has always been fascinating because it’s equal parts gross as it is an observation of identity and mortality.

What horror movies have scared you the most?

Horror films that feature a greater loss of mental control and manipulation are always terrifying. This includes films like “Possessor,” the recent version of “The Invisible Man,” and a number of entries in “A Nightmare on Elm Street.”

InvisManBetAll

It’s scary when you’re all alone and being chased, but even scarier when nobody present can help you.

In your time reviewing moves, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

“Hereditary,” “Us,” “Titane,” and “Possessor.”

Nicholas Palodichuk

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

“Jaws” “Aliens” “critters” every “a nightmare on elm street” and every “Friday the 13th.”

What was your first R-rated horror movie?

“The Shining.”

ShiningBettAll

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

Psychological thrillers

What horror movies have scared you the most?

I probably saw “The Fly” 1986 way too young.

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

Toni Collette in “Hereditary” and Elisabeth Moss in “The Invisible Man” for best actress, as well as “Ready or Not” for art direction and “Mandy” best cinematography.

Frank Stanko

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

I was actually the kind of kid who would get scared easily at scary movies, so I didn’t watch too much horror. Because it was on Nickelodeon, I watched “Are You Afraid of the Dark.” I have fond memories of that one.

To this day, “It was the anniversary … of THE DAY I DIED!” is a thing between my brother and I when we joke about missing appointments or seeing people. (Those who’ve seen the episode know what I’m talking about.)

What was your first R-rated horror movie?

You know, I think it was “Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice.” I remember seeing that one as a late night movie on a local station.

ChildCornBettAll

If you haven’t seen that movie, the gross-out highlight included one of those little creepers using voodoo to give a guy a fatal, continuous nosebleed while in church. I also remember the kids all menacing an old lady (played by a rather campy actress) in a wheelchair.

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

Supernatural. “Rosemary’s Baby” is my all-time favorite in general. It will never not be creepy for that many people to be so interested in a woman’s body.

What horror movies have scared you the most?

When I was a boy, we got the Columbia House mailer. I remember seeing the cover to “Child’s Play,” the 1988 version, when I was about 3. For a long, long time, that one scared me. I actually watched the movie a year ago — life’s too short to be triggered by stuff from 30 years ago — and it’s better than I expected.

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

I can’t call it awards-worthy, but I did enjoy Rohan Campbell’s performance in “Halloween Ends,” even if it did owe a good amount to Anthony Perkins in Psycho mixed with every portrayal of an incel (even though Corey wasn’t) to date.

Tyler Strandberg

What were some horror shows and movies you watched as a kid?

I wasn’t allowed to watch horror movies as a kid. My mom thought they were “evil” and she said “there’s already so much evil in the world.” I scare pretty easily too, so I was a good kid and never snuck off to watch them at a friend’s house either.

What was your first R-rated horror movie

My first horror movie was when I was in high school, it was a movie called “Triangle.” I remember being impressed by the premise, and it wasn’t too scary, I think it was a good enough introduction.

What is your favorite horror sub-genre (zombie, slasher, etc.)?

I don’t love horror that much as a genre, so I like it best when it’s mixed with other genres I usually do enjoy, such as thriller or psychological.

What horror movies have scared you the most?

Sinister gave me nightmares for months after I first watched it. I think it was the first realization that “I don’t like being scared”, and I stayed away from horror movies for a long long time after that.

I still don’t really like watching them, I’ll watch more light hearted halloween movies like “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” or Disney movies like “Halloweentown” and “Twitches.”

TwitchesBettAll

In your time reviewing movies, which horror films do you feel should have received nominations/wins during award season?

I’m already a huge Toni Collette fan, and I thought her performance in “Hereditary” was incredible. She’s not my personal winner for that awards year, but she definitely makes my Best Actress line up.

Advertisement

Author: Matthew Liedke

Journalist and film critic in Minnesota. Graduate of Rainy River College and Minnesota State University in Moorhead. Outside of movies I also enjoy sports, craft beers and the occasional video game.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: