The Daily Grindhouse: Halloween (dir. by John Carpenter)

What better way to bring back a new daily grindhouse than the film which started the teen slasher genre. I speak of John Carpenter’s Halloween.

The film was truly a child of 1970’s independent filmmaking. With a budget of just $320,000 (even adjusting for inflation it’s still quite low) Carpenter made what’s considered one of horror’s defining films. Carpenter’s film was a smash hit when it was released in 1978. It played mostly in drive-in’s, grindhouse cinema houses before finally appearing in more mainstream venues. By then the film had become one of those must-see titles that many films both independent and mainstream try for but fail to do.

Some have commented that since Halloween was such a success in the box-office then it shouldn’t be considered grindhouse. I look at such thinking as quite narrow. Grindhouse was never synonymous with bad filmmaking. If one said the term meant cheap filmmaking then I would agree. Carpenter’s film has all the trappings of what makes a great grindhouse. It’s violent (though it really has less blood than what audience really remember) and uses sex as a storytelling tool (again the sex is quite chaste compared to later teen slashers).

While some film historians credit Hitchcock’s Psycho as the granddaddy of the slasher genre it wasn’t primogenitor of the teen slasher subgenre which has become an industry onto itself since Carpenter’s breakthrough hit. A hit that set many of the basic rules of teen slasher horror for decades to come. We get the nigh-unstoppable killer who seems more like a force of nature than human. The notion that teenage girls who have premarital sex will die horribly because of it while the chaste and virginal girl survives and inevitably stops the killer (until the subsequent sequel that is).

Halloween is grindhouse through and through. The fact that Carpenter’s obvious talent and skill as a director, editor, film composer and cinematographer shouldn’t DQ this film from being called grindhouse.

Probicus Parley 003

Probicus Parley
A Starcraft 2 Daily


Here I’d like to just talk about a great source for helping improve your 1v1 game. I’m sure there are plenty of general Starcraft 2 advice columns and videos, and not nearly enough time to track them all. (I certainly don’t expect many readers of this one. <_<) But if you can only keep up with one, I recommend the daily netcast by Sean Plott aka Day[9].

This guy might come off as slightly goofy at first glance, but you’ll catch on fast that he is both really witty and a bottomless source of solid advice. His entertaining commentary makes the replays he dissects fun to watch, and even if his subject of the day seems a bit too advanced for you it’s a great way to get in to watching top league gameplay without feeling overwhelmed or getting bored by your passive role in the matter. Plus the matches he covers are often normal, standard top league games, whereas a lot of the replays you’ll find on forums have been posted specifically for their exceptionality/creativeness.

Note that his post-Beta dailies begin at number 157. Since changes were made to gameplay between the Beta and the official release (I know roaches at least took a major debuff), this seems like a practical place to start watching. His SC2 coverage begins much farther back though, and if you have the time to dig around I imagine he covers much more basic material.