Friday, August 31, 2007

Boobs-To-Killings Ratio

Wizard Online Interviews Rob Zombie about the important things concerning his "Halloween" remake:

Wizard: What is the boobs-to-killings ratio in this movie?

ZOMBIE: I haven’t done the calculations.

Wizard: So it’s off the charts?

ZOMBIE: Pretty much, yeah.

As a fan of contemporary horror movies -- and a good deal of what is considered to be "trash" horror -- the inevitable question of naked women and grisly murders will arise.

However, as much as I am a fan of Rob Zombie and his past movies, I have to quibble with reducing the "Halloween" formula to boobs-to-killings ratios.

The original "Halloween" certainly linked the sex/death thing but its main protagonist was a tough, studious, vaguely tomboyish teenage girl who fought "The Boogeyman" and won (sort of).

I haven't seen the new "Halloween" but if the "grindhouse" elements of boobs-to-killing ratios are played up at the expense of the journey of the female protagonist, the movie just might miss the point of the original.


  1. I think the finger is better pointed at Wizard than Zombie.

  2. I also point the finger at Wizard in this situation; they're the ones that asked the question (cause they assumed that's what their readers care about).

    Saw a midnight screening last night.

    I like Rob Zombie in general, and I do really love "The Devil's Rejects."

    The movie is really uneven; the new material Zombie has written - the prequel-esque story of young Michael Myers - is the best part in my opinion.
    That's where Zombie's love of grindhouse-style pulp & ridiculous dialogue and characterization works. It's over-the-top and maybe a bit eye-rolling, but I think that's the intent with Zombie, and it does come across with its own twisted charm.
    Zombie kept saying he wanted this movie to be about Myers and not Laurie Strode.
    Amazingly, if he had made this a direct prequel, that builds up to the moment he escapes the mental institution, it might have been surprisingly original and interesting. But as it is, its one big "meh."

    Once it moves into adult Myers territory and he terrorizes Laurie Strode, the movie loses all of its charm.

    It feels like Gus Van Sant's "Psycho" remake, it tells Carpenter's story almost beat-for-beat, in about half the time. It feels like a CliffsNotes style take on what happened.

    Any characterization Laurie Strode had in the original is just jettisoned for lots of kill scenes.
    "its main protagonist was a tough, studious, vaguely tomboyish teenage girl who fought "The Boogeyman" and won (sort of)." - That's not evident. There's really no reason to sympathize or even understand her, except for the fact that all of her friends are murdered about 20 minutes after we meet them.
    She's not really anything. She's the survivor just because that's how it was in the original.
    The entire complex nature of the Laurie-Michael relationship that Carpenter spent two movies explaining, Zombie smooshes into about 45 minutes.

    The whole sex/death thing has an interesting angle in the beginning.
    When Myers' older sister is having sex with her scuz boyfriend, he pulls out "The Shape" mask - for extra kink. Afterward, when Michael walks in ready to stab her, he puts the mask on, and starts to caress her sleeping body - a weird car crash of sex, abuse, incest, and violence in Mike's head.

    If Zombie was going to explore that type of taboo, the film wouldn't have felt so gratuitous. But its never dwelt upon.

    In the end, once Laurie's friends start getting killed (and they're all topless, mind you) the sex and death in the movie has lost all its shock, drive, and meaning.

    It just sort of feels like one of the later "Friday the 13th" movies.


  3. I'd agree with the previous posters; Wizard brings up the topic, and the answers seem to be pretty perfunctory and trying to get away from it as gracefully as one can get away from the question, "What's the boobs-to-killings ratio in your movie?" (Orson Welles, I think, answered it far more cleverly in regards to 'Citizen Kane', but I'm sure you're all familiar with the quote. :) )

    That said, I don't have much of a desire to see the remake of 'Halloween', I'm not a fan of the slasher sub-genre as a whole, and I'm just not the target audience, so I can't comment on misogyny in the film (or misogyny on the part of characters in the film, which is always something I think should be kept distinct. A feminist film can feature a misogynist character, and vice versa.)

  4. Michael Myers and Freddy Krueger are the only slasher types I've ever been into, but the former really doesn't work for me without Donald Pleasance and what was once an increasingly intriguing mythology. I don't care about Laurie Strode, who I've never considered a heroine, because I only recall her saving herself.

    I've had a really tough time with Rob Zombie's movies to date. I saw both of his previous films in the theater, didn't warm (somewhat)to "House" until DVD, and am still averse to revisiting "Rejects." Devin Feraci's review at was the final straw for me. Turning Myers into white trash makes a seminal concept derivative, so I'll be taking a pass until video. Eventually. Maybe. As part of a marathon or something.

  5. Sounds like Wizard just out-Maximed Maxim.


  6. Anonymous3:43 AM

    is porn the only winner during credit crunch?