Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 29: Poltergeist (1982)

A Month of Horror

I have always wanted to do a marathon of "HORROR" throughout the month of October, one where I would revisit a new horror movie every day from the first to the thirty-first.  I will revisit the classics as well as new entries into the canon.  There are many movies that define this time of year, and I hope to showcase 31 of them this month...

October 29: Poltergeist (1982)

I was not very old when this came out, but despite the pedigree of the director (Tobe Hooper, of "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" fame), the pedigree of the Executive Producer who was boldly emblazoned across the Beta tapes cover at the local video store (Steven Spielberg, of "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial" fame - also released in 1982) meant that my parents allowed me to rent this spectacular film.

Many of Spielberg`s classic tropes are here: from the idyllic suburban setting, to the less than idyllic family dynamics.  It`s no wonder conspiracy theories abound about just how much of a role Spielberg actually played in the making of "Poltergeist".

The harrowing story of the Freeling family hinges around the young and innocent Carol Anne, played by Heather O`Rourke, who is whisked away into a digital spirit netherworld while her family desperately strikes out against the once mischievous (chair stacking) spirits who have stolen their daughter away.

The story slowly unfolds with the family divided; Carol Anne`s voice echoing out of the snow filled television.  Back in the Freeling home, even with the assistance of Zelda Rubenstein`s medium Tangina, things quickly deteriorate for the family, especially poor Robbie, who is subjected to more horrors than any child should have to endure - from braces, to demonic clowns, to evil trees in the night.

"Poltergeist" is definitely a scary movie, and one that will stay with you for a long time.  It is also a movie with a lot of heart, and an equally large amount of genuinely nerve-wrenching scares.  It is definitely always worth a watch.

Tomorrow I will take a very unique film for a spin.  Viva Cuba Libre!

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