Wednesday, April 29, 2009
He's a Freak, he's a SuperFreak!
Many thanks to Mitch and the gang over at Horror Society for bestowing upon our own Dr. AC, Aaron Christensen, the illustrious honor of...FREAK OF THE WEEK.
Here's a little taste of our chat:
HS: What types of horror films are your favorites?
AC: Boy, that’s a tough question, Mitch! Isn’t it? You wouldn’t think it would be, but when you take horror as seriously as you and I do, you want to be accurate and honest, not give some crap-out answer like, “Slashers!” or “I love ‘em all.” It depends on my mental temperature of the day, to be perfectly honest. I really do have a passion for the genre as a whole, and so it’s hard to say that I prefer one subgenre over another. I love it when a film or filmmaker can bring something new to the table, especially in this “seen-it-all-before” climate. I recently saw a great little Brit horror flick called The Children written and directed by Tom Shankland (who also helmed last year’s The Killing Gene) and it simply knocked my socks off, because we’ve seen the “killer kids” thing before, yet the movie had my friend and I on the edge of our seats! Definitely check it out once it makes its way Stateside.
I also read a lot of horror reference books, so oftentimes that will shape what I’m in the mood for. I just polished off John Stell’s Psychos! Sickos! Sequels: Horror Films of the 1980s (highly recommended, by the way), so I’m dying to go back and revisit some some old favorites from that decade, as well as giving a second look to films that I might have dismissed upon their first viewing. I’m a big proponent of re-viewing because the old adage about “you can’t step in the same river twice” is so true when it comes to cinema. The movies don’t change but we do, and when we see a film again, we are looking at it with different eyes. It’s happened many a time where a picture that I couldn’t stand the first time around becomes a new favorite or I’ll be less impressed by a flick than I originally was. Again, it’s all part of being a good student.
HS: Are you a fan of the horror remake trend?
AC: Oh, is that ever a loaded question. No, of course not. It annoys the hell out of me that Hollywood is too scared to produce anything without some form of name recognition anymore, even if it’s something like the “in-name-only” remake of Prom Night. However, I will say that 2009 has turned out some halfway decent remakes already, in the form of My Bloody Valentine, The Last House on the Left and The Uninvited (the English-language remake of A Tale of Two Sisters), so this might be the year that remakes don’t suck.
But as we all know, these are the exceptions to the rule and I don’t think that any of these top the original films. It’s sad, because there is some really exciting stuff going on in the foreign and indie horror markets. If studios would put some marketing muscle behind those films, it would cost less than producing some soulless remake and I think they would find that theatrical audiences would respond favorably to these fresh ideas. But nobody’s willing to take those chances, so it all gets dumped to DVD; then it’s up to the brave and the persistent to discover them on their own. It’s really a tragedy...
To read the full interview, click on the link below. And feel free to wander around the Horror Society site to check out what Mitch and the H/S gang continue to serve up. It's a great site for horror fans everywhere, and especially those living in the Windy City!
Aaron "Dr. AC" Christensen - FREAK OF THE WEEK