Someone's in the house. He's watching. He's creeping round, only you can't see him. He's watching you from the walls. He's right behind you now. Looking over your shoulder. He wants the remote control. He's a bad boy. He wants to watch bad movies. Bad bad Ronald...

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

BadRonalds likes Women in Horror Month

Did you know?  February is Women in Horror Month?

So, let's celebrate.  Celebrate by watching horror movies that are written, produced, directed by, edited by, and shot by WOMEN and GIRLS. And also horror films ABOUT them  -- and by about, I mean not just about their boobies and bums, but about the social issues that women face.  There are more than you think there are.  Loads more.  Let me give you some examples to start you off:  Lucky McKee's The Woman is now out on DVD and Blu ray, starring Pollyanna McIntoshDead Hooker in A Trunk. written, directed and starring the fantabulous Soska Sisters, is being released by IFC Midnight today!!  Them, while you're at it, go to YouTube and watch The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, featuring the coolest teenager on the Interwebs, as she hunts down ghosts and gobllies.

There you go.  Start your month off right with these selections.  Come back and I'll help you out tomorrow, with more tips.  And yes, I'm open to your suggestions, too.


The other important element of this month long celebration is the MASSIVE BLOOD DRIVE. Spill your blood... Save a life...

Sunday, January 29, 2012

BadRonald: Fango vs Women In Horror Month

I just came across this very interesting tidbit over at Planet Fury, posted by PF's editor-in-chief Superheidi , in which she points out the small-minded editorial that graces the pages of Fangoria's February edition.  As many of you might know, February marks a fairly new annual event called Woman in Horror Month.  It's a few weeks out of the year where we can celebrate the achievements of woman in horror.  Pretty simple thing to do, right?  But, for Fango editor Chris Alexander, taking 29 days of of his busy year seems to be a groin-kicking hassle (maybe it's that extra day we have, this leap year, that's buggin' him).  This is how he explains it:
"Eat it..."

That last phrase says it all.  I'm positive that Chris was trying desperately to sound balls-out hip and disaffected.  But slamming home the point that Woman in Horror Month is trivial because he supports women in horror all year round, with a hearty "eat it!"  Really?  This is how you go about telling women that you support them?

I'm not a Fango reader anymore.  I would read it any chance I could several years back.  But, to be candid, the magazine got to be just another horror fanzine.  Lots of blood, lots of effects, lots of eye candy... but no critical discussion.  Yeah, it's fun to see all of that stuff.  But, I guess with my age climbing up higher, I wanted to have a discussion more than I wanted to be merely entertained.  There were other publications that were more than accommodating for that matter.  That's not to say that Fango is worthless, or that having a peek at some girly-curves isn't fun (just look back at some of my own past articles).  What I'm saying is that I think Fangoria has lost its step in the growing need for more discourse.  Horror is a very effective genre, and historically it's been the genre where taboo and hard to discuss topics have sprung from back rooms to the Main Street theaters and into our homes.

I've been a horror fan for my whole life. I've grown to love the genre even more than when I was a kid, for the simple understanding that horror is more than just gore, girls and guts.  There are so many powerful films out there, with messages and commentary that matter.  And many of those films are made by women.  Yet, in the eyes of young horror fans, women are simply eye candy.  I see this at horror film fests I've gone to.  I see it in the classrooms I work in, where teenage boys worship Anime characters for their bodies, and are not even the least bit informed to their plight within the stories.  I do my part to sway their thoughts to something other than the obvious, and discuss the females within the context of the stories.  Sometimes they get it, but mostly they like to have fun.  But, I don't stop trying, just because nature is winning out.  Just imagine if I had the attention of thousands of horror hungry kids?  Imagine all the positive influence that could be yielded.  It would be such a great honor to influence the zombie youth.  Just imagine having that capability.  You know... like Fangoria does.

So, to Women in Horror Month, I say "eat it... up!!"  Check out a  few genre films from Netflix that have women as writer or director or producer (or all, if you can!!).  Read the blogs written by horror chicks who analyze the movies form a female perspective.  Watch some movies with a critical eye, and really look at how the women are being portrayed.  Take a few moments to think about that scene where the young lady is being assaulted or raped: is it exploiting, or titillating, or thought-provoking?  Go ahead, take some time to dig into all of this.  It's just a month!!  Or, to Chris Alexander -- it's just ONE issue.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

BadRonald Exclusive: The Haunted Sunshine Girl Movie

You might already know that the hit YouTube show The Haunting of Sunshine Girl is turning into a feature length movie.  The show is done in a vlog format, with cool beans Sunshine Girl videotaping her encounters with ghosts and weird people with pillow cases on their heads and her Moms and her Uncle Tommy and.. ghosts. 

Lately, however, Sunshine has been fascinated with the paranormal phenomenon of black eyed kids (BEKs), those freaky little creeps that pop up in Japanese movies and out of closets.  Like that one behind you!  I kid... he's still hiding in your closet.  The past few weeks, Sunshine and her Scooby gang have been digging into some BEK sightings, and have suddenly found themselves way deep in some weird shizznet.Sunshine's a smart little egg, so I think she'll be okay.

Meanwhile, she sent me these exclusive photos from the set of her new Haunted Sunshine Girl film. She also gave me a scoop on a new member of the Scooby gang...

Why can't these BEKs haunt the Bahamas?
Looks like the new kid Andrew might not be around long!

Blah! as it were, sir

The news I'm getting is this is gonna be real creepy.  If you've seen The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, you know how fun it can be, and how spooky it gets.  But, this new movie she's making looks downright frightening!  Stay tuned for more exclusives...

My Great Web page

Thursday, January 19, 2012

BadRonald Peephole Review: Murder by Proxy - How America Went Postal

Back in the day, the Mailman was an icon as American as baseball and apple pie. Praised as one of the hardest working members of the community, who would deliver your mail “through rain, or snow, or sleet, or hail.” Nowadays, that catchy credo has been replaced by a term altogether ugly and demeaning: “going postal.” The once well respected mailman is now often depicted as a pop culture punch line; a stereotype of unchecked anger and mental instability.

In 1986 Patrick Sherrill, a letter carrier at the Edmond, Oklahoma Post Office, went on a violent rampage, shooting 14 fellow postal workers to death, and wounding 6 others, before taking his own life. Since that massacre, in the following 25 years, there have been close to a dozen other violent incidents – some equally as horrific and some much smaller and not so widely-publicized – in Post Office facilities across America. A new documentary Murder by Proxy: How America Went Postal explores the series of infamous post office massacres, and how they’ve changed the way we view violence and the workplace. From these massacres came a new pop culture slang – “going postal.”

The news media, following the lead of the US Postal Service, latched on to the term, and the rogue postal killers were portrayed as madmen, unstable and powder kegs about to blow. Murder by Proxy director and writer Emil Chiaberi would argue that these postal massacres are not simply isolated acts of madmen, but are the systemic result of a hostile work environment. He exposes that it had been documented that postal management was allowed to belittle and terrorize their workers, in order to get more work out of them. It was no coincidence, it appears, that the management team were always among the victims of these massacres. This is not an endorsement of the killer’s acts, but an observation that the news media decided to overlook.

At the center of Murder by Proxy is the story of Charlie Withers, a 39 year veteran of the postal service – still delivering the mail in Royal Oaks, Michigan. After the Edmond, Oklahoma massacre, and a handful of other PO massacres (not all covered in this doc), Withers, who was also the union steward in Royal Oaks, had begun to take the grievances filed by postal workers more seriously. On November 14, 1991 – just a month after the latest PO massacre in Ridgewood, New Jersey – Withers visited the Royal Oaks Post Office, where a carrier by the name of Thomas McIlvane had complained he was unfairly fired just a week previous. Unbeknownst to Withers, Thomas McIlvane was planning a visit that day, as well. McIlvane returned, armed with a sawed-off rifle, and shot 9 people, killing 4. The dead included his former boss, and the labor arbitrator who turned him away when he asked for support. Withers, and others, were spared when McIlvane walked past their locked door. Since that day, Withers has been speaking out about the unfair work conditions his fellow postal workers are subjected to.

Through a series of interviews with fellow workers and massacre survivors, along with analysis from experts in the history of the evolving workplace, and in workplace violence, Chiaberi opens a discussion that even though these individuals may have their own problems, the environment where they work and make their living is where they find the pressure that put them over the edge. And just as the phenomenon of these massacres has moved out of the post office, and into general workplace (as well as in schools and colleges), the discussion expands outward, eventually asking that if the corporate interests towards profit and productivity eclipses the needs of the workers, how far will the violence spread?

At the film’s conclusion, Charlie Wither’s attempts to develop laws to protect workers against a hostile workplace fell on deaf ears, demonstrating how numbed we are, as a society, to these terrible acts of violence.

25 years ago, the massacre in the Edmond, Oklahoma Post Office was a complete shock to the American people. It had unsettled us to our core. We no longer saw the workplace as a safe haven. When the massacres spread to schools and malls and workplaces, we no longer felt safe out in public. And now, frighteningly, these massacres have become regular events in our lives, occurring all over the world.

Chiaberi’s film does what the news media has failed to do for decades, and goes inside the story, exploring the growth of the postal service itself, and the fact that, like most corporations do, it had put productivity ahead of the well being of the workers. America has gone postal, and Murder by Proxy is an unsettling wake up call. Chiaberi’s first-hand accounts of the massacres, with vivid details from the mouths of the victims, and horrific workplace video footage, Murder by Proxy is meant to shock and move us – “us” the people who have grown much too accustomed to horror stories of workplace violence, and who have trivialized it all down to a pop culture stereotype. In the “occupy” climate of today, Murder by Proxy moves beyond these post office massacres, and examines how the interests of profit and productivity eclipses the value and well-being of the workers. Chiaberi anxiously reminds us of how quickly “going postal” moved from the post offices and out into the workplace in general… and then into public places, into the schools and malls. Then, with visions of nuclear power plants coupled with news stories of lax security in vital areas – we can’t help but ask: where will it go postal next?

Go the Murder by Proxy site here.