Horror Sommelier: January 12th 2018

Every week join Brennan Klein, your horror sommelier, as he runs through the upcoming theatrical releases and pairs them with the perfect horror film for a killer double feature.

 

PADDINGTON 2

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Directed by: Paul King
Starring: Ben Whishaw, Sally Hawkins, Hugh Grant, Hugh Bonneville, Julie Walters, Michael Gambon, Imelda Staunton

Rating: 1 hour 43 minutes
Run Time: PG

Synopsis: Settled in with the Brown family, Paddington the bear is a popular member of the community who spreads joy and marmalade wherever he goes. One fine day, he spots a pop-up book in an antique shop -- the perfect present for his beloved aunt's 100th birthday. When a thief steals the prized book, Paddington embarks on an epic quest to unmask the culprit before Aunt Lucy's big celebration.


Pairing: GRIZZLY II: THE CONCERT (1983)

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When you’re making a sequel movie about a bear, there’s no way you could pair that with anything other than the notorious unfinished sequel Grizzly II. It’s only available on YouTube in a workprint that devolves into a kaleidoscope of dailies in the last twenty minutes, but where else are you going to see a movie that cuts between bear attacks and full performances from 80’s New Wave tarts Toto Coelo? Where else will you find an unambiguously campy hunter played by John Rhys-Davies who has a grudge against bears because one of them killed his family? Where else will you find early roles from Valley Girls Deborah Foreman, Hellraiser IIs Barbie Wilde, Charlie Sheen, and even Laura Dern and George Clooney as the resident horny teen couple? This movie is a mess, a masterwork, and a must-see.

Bonus: The temp music score they insert into the project seems to be Michael Jackson’s entire Thriller album.


 

THE COMMUTER

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Directed by: Jaume Collet-Serra
Starring: Liam Neeson, Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson

Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 1 hour 44 minutes

Synopsis: Insurance salesman Michael is on his daily commute home, which quickly becomes anything but routine. After being contacted by a mysterious stranger, Michael is forced to uncover the identity of a hidden passenger on the train before the last stop. As he works against the clock to solve the puzzle, he realizes a deadly plan is unfolding, and he is unwittingly caught up in a criminal conspiracy that carries life and death stakes for everyone on the train.



 

Pairing: ORPHAN (2009)

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Jaume Collet-Serra’s previous collaborations with Liam Neeson (Non-Stop, Run All Night, Unknown) have had varying degrees of success, but his previous collaboration with Vera Farmiga was a home run. Orphan is a saucy, campy gem of modern horror with great performances, deranged plot twists, and a nonstop sense of slumber party fun.


 

PROUD MARY

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Directed by: Babak Najafi
Starring: Taraji P. Henson, Neal McDonough, Danny Glover

Rating: R
Run Time: 1 hour 29 minutes

Synopsis: Taraji P. Henson is Mary, a hit woman working for an organized crime family in Boston, whose life is completely turned around when she meets a young boy whose path she crosses when a professional hit goes bad.


Pairing: BLACULA (1972)

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Proud Mary might be trying to emulate the Blaxploitation formula, but for this pairing we’re going to have to go straight to the source. Not only is Blacula a prime example of the genre, full of deliciously 70’s songs and outfits, it’s actually a pretty wonderful vampire movie at the same time. Despite its title, the movie takes its monstrous protagonist very seriously, using his vampirism as a metaphor for racial prejudice and giving him plenty of genuine horror to work with.