It turns out I’m not the only person whose horror movie notions might be considered a bit suspect. You might be thinking, “What?!?” Disagreement within the horror community? No surely not.” I know right? I’m as shocked as you are. For example, one of my favorite horror YouTubers, Nightmare Maven, airs her own Unpopular Horror Movie Opinions on a semi-regular basis. It’s always nice to know one is not alone, and so in solidarity, I humbly submit Questionable Opinions Part II.
#5 Bram Stoker was a crappy writer
Clearly Dracula is an important novel. Stoker without a doubt created one of the most iconic figures in literary history. I understand that. It’s also slow, tedious, and heavy-handed in terms of the various contradictions surrounding science vs. faith vs. nature, yada yada yada. And the only thing that could save the marginally more interesting Lair Of The White Worm from itself was Ken Russell.
#4 Plan 9 From Outer Space is not the worst movie ever made
A number of years ago, a close, dear friend of mine gifted me a book called The Fifty Worst Films Of All Time ( BIG shout out to Jorge–poet, host of the Monday night open mic at Venue On 35th, and creator of the annual Gloom House 757 haunt). Now, the book was published in 1978 so that list would no doubt be extremely different today. My point is, this movie is not on the list. At all. Nor is any other Ed Wood movie. I submit that this cliché is more often than not spouted as a knee-jerk reaction to the mere mention of the title or its director. I hasten to add that folks who think this haven’t seen The Creeping Terror, The Giant Claw, Manos: The Hands Of Fate, Robot Monster, or, I dunno, Forrest Gump.
And speaking of Ed Wood…
#3 Ed Wood was not the worst director ever
Ultimately this opinion may not be all that questionable. For one thing, he believed in and loved what he tried to do. Wood put everything into making whatever movie he was making regardless of whether it worked or not. That gets a helluvalot of admiration from me. According to Jim Knipfel over at Den Of Geek, Wood makes some insightful choices in Glen Or Glenda. Plus, come on, there was Tor Johnson. Plus plus, you know you’re watching an Ed Wood movie every bit as clearly as you know you’re watching Kubrick. Or Wes Anderson. Or Shyamalan. Or Hitchcock.
#2 Bela Lugosi was not a great actor
I have never been a fan of the 1931 Dracula. Again, I get that it’s important. It is indeed a landmark film and equally as responsible as Stoker for elevating ol’ Drac to his iconic status–maybe even more so. My dislike is partly because I just don’t groove on vampires, partly because of #1 above, but largely because I just don’t get Lugosi as an actor. Don’t get me wrong. For one thing, I understand that he started out in silent movies. And I love me some Lugosi movies. The Black Cat (the one with Karloff, not Rathbone) is a perennial fave, as are Bowery At Midnight, Bride Of The Monster, and The Devil Bat. But not exactly De Niro.
#1 Zombies have always been able to run
It pains me to admit this, especially since I said the exact opposite in my first round of Questionable Opinions. Specifically, I pontificated thusly:
You might argue that the first zombie we see in Night Of The Living Dead does, in fact, run after the car, but it’s more of an off-balance lunge than a full-on sprint.
Well, in performing my due diligence, I took yet another look at Night Of The Living Dead and, well, there ain’t no denying it. He runs at the car. My apologies. Zombies still can’t come up outta the ground, though, and that’s a hill I will die on.
And that’s my latest list of unsubstantiated, purely subjective insights for you to make of what you will. Feel free to agree, disagree, or air your own grievances in the Comments.