It’s Mister Nasty Time

December 29, 2010 at 2:37 am Leave a comment

I’m a huge fan of horror films and have been since I was about fifteen. Other than my obvious main love (my girlfriend), horror films are one of my other three favourite things (along with video games and Celtic Football Club). If you’re curious about the difference in visual style between Fulci and Argento or want to hear about the little-known difference between the UK VHS and US theatrical versions of the jail scene in A Nightmare On Elm Street, I’m your man (in case you were wondering, a line was cut out so it looks like Nancy suspects Rod. That’s the sort of knowledge that makes me the life and soul of any party, assuming said party takes place in an empty room).

Some may find it odd, but I don’t actually watch horror films to be scared. While there are definitely exceptions (like .REC and the original version of The Eye) I don’t really jump in my seat or squirm in terror much when I watch films. Besides, given how many slasher films I’ve seen over the years I can usually read the timing of the jump anyway.

No, the reason I like horror is because it’s easily the most imaginative genre in cinema. Whether you’re watching weird and wonderful deaths in the Friday The 13th series, bizarre head-messing dream sequences in A Nightmare On Elm Street or eerie ghostly imagery in Asian films like Ringu or Dark Water, there are some things you’ll see in horror that you just won’t see anywhere else.

While there are a whole heap of different sub-genres within horror, my favourite types of movies are the cheap and cheesy slasher and monster movies of the late 1970’s and 1980’s. This was the perfect time for horror in my opinion, because it came after the introduction of gory movies (with Blood Feast in the late 1960s) but before the advent of CGI, which I reckon ruins many horror effects.

See, there’s something more appealing about seeing a real, physical special effect, no matter how fake it looks. I’m not interested in seeing a CGI skeleton chasing someone or a rendered werewolf mauling some poor chap. Give me a rubbish rubber snake with Freddy Krueger’s face on it or one of Tom Savini’s elaborate prosthetic fake body stabbings any day. Back then they relied on real creative talent rather than just some mouse clicks.

By now you may be frantically searching for the point, so here it is.  There’s a notorious list of 72 films that were banned in the UK in April 1983 (the month I was born). This list was created by the Director of Public Prosecutions as a reaction to a frenzy sparked by the media regarding the rental of horror films to minors. A bit like this:

Rather than imposing a BBFC-style certificate system right away and letting people decide for themselves what they wanted to watch, the government decided to get banning the worst offenders, and so the ‘Video Nasty’ list was born. Anyone found selling any of the 72 films on the ‘Section 2’ list could be prosecuted and jailed for up to three years.

My New Year’s resolution, then, is to watch all 72 of these video nasties and review them on a new film review blog I’m setting up. I’ve already seen 25 or so of them (I covered the media reaction to video nasties in my university dissertation), but I’ll be re-watching them as part of this. The conditions are:

– I need to watch all 72 films
– Each of the films needs to be fully uncut, so they’re seen as they were originally released before they were banned
– I need to write a full review and rate each film out of 5
– When these reviews are finished, I’ll start to review the films in the DPP’s “Section 3” list (aka the list of films that were still banned but could only be confiscated by the police and couldn’t result in their sellers getting jail sentences)
– There’s no set time limit

In case you’re interested, then, here’s the full list of films. Wish me luck!

1.ABSURD
2.ANTHROPOPHAGOUS THE BEAST
3.AXE
4.THE BEYOND
5.BLOOD BATH
6.BLOOD FEAST
7.BLOOD RITES
8.BLOODY MOON
9.THE BEAST IN HEAT
10.THE BOGEY MAN
11.THE BURNING
12.CANNIBAL APOCOLYPSE
13.CANNIBAL FEROX
14.CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST
15.CANNIBAL MAN
16.CANNIBAL TERROR
17.CONTAMINATION
18.DEAD AND BURIED
19.DEATH TRAP
20.DEEP RIVER SAVAGES
21.DELIRIUM
22.DEVIL HUNTER
23.DONT GO IN THE HOUSE
24.DONT GO IN THE WOODS
25.DONT GO IN THE PARK
26.DONT LOOK IN THE BASEMENT
27.THE DRILLER KILLER
28.THE EVIL DEAD
29.EVILSPEAK
30.EXPOSE
31.FACES OF DEATH
32.FIGHT FOR YOUR LIFE
33.FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN
34.FOREST OF FEAR
35.FROZEN SCREAM
36.FUNHOUSE
37.GESTAPO’S LAST ORGY
38.HOUSE BY THE CEMETARY
39.HOUSE ON THE EDGE OF THE PARK
40.HUMAN EXPERIMENTS
41.I MISS YOU HUGS AND KISSES
42.I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE
43.INFERNO
44.ISLAND OF DEATH
45.KILLER NUN
46.LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT
47.THE LIVING DEAD AT THE MANCHESTER MORGUE
48.LOVE CAMP 7
49.MADHOUSE
50.MARDI GRASS MASSACRE
51.NIGHT OF THE BLOODY APES
52.NIGHT OF THE DEMON
53.NIGHTMARES IN A DAMAGED BRAIN
54.NIGHTMARE MAKER
55.NIGHT TRAIN MURDERS
56.POSSESSION
57.PRANKS
58.PRISONER OF THE CANNIBAL GOD
59.REVENGE OF THE BOGEYMAN
60.SNUFF
61.THE SLAYER
62.SS EXPERIMENT CAMP
63.TENEBRAE
64.THE TOOLBOX MURDERS
65.TERROR EYES
66.UNHINGED
67.VISITING HOURS
68.WEREWOLF AND THE YETI
69.WITCH WHO CAME FROM THE SEA
70.WOMEN BEHIND BARS
71.ZOMBIE CREEPING FLESH
72.ZOMBIE FLESH EATERS

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