Category Archives: Universal Monsters

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Halfway to Halloween (2017)”!

Due to technical issues, this Jammin’ with Jamie will happen Saturday, May 6!

Hi, everyone!

It’s time for another annual Jammin’ with Jamie tradition… that started last year.

But it was a ton of freaky fun, so we’re doing it again!

You’ve heard of Christmas in July, now get ready for an early celebration of another holiday!

Six months from now, we’ll be having a ghoulishly good time celebrating, so let’s start now with a haunted house of harmonies reminding us that we’re…

Clear away those cobwebs to reveal…

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Monster Melodies (Halloween 2016: Part 5)”!

Hi, everyone!

This is my one-hundredth blog entry! Woo-hoo!

As I have made clear in so many previous posts here (and on other sites), I’m a big fan of horror (and horror comedy). I have a special place in my heart for monster movies. Monster movie fans often dub ourselves, “Monster Kids.”

This week on Jammin’ with Jamie, we’re unleashing our inner Monster Kids––– or maybe, for some of you Jammers, discovering them––– with one of my personal favorite of our Halloween jam session themes…

“Listen to them… the songs of the night…”

Halloween Movies: “Dracula”

First of all, this is my sixtieth blog entry! Hooray!

Anyway…

When I wrote about The Monster Squad, I made it very clear just how much I love the Universal Monster franchise. It’s amazing to me that one studio was responsible for bringing so many iconic monsters to the big screen.

So, of course, no series of entries on Halloween movies that I write would be complete without one of the original Universal Monster movies rearing its head.

Grab your crosses and stakes and put on your turtlenecks, because we’re about to face…

Dracula (1931)!

I do not own any of the following images or videos!

Here’s the trailer…

I first saw Dracula on Svengoolie, and boy, was I excited to see it! (I’m always excited for Svengoolie, but that’s beside the point.)

If you want to see the film, you have a couple of options: Sven recently showed it again (with a new score), and it will rerun Saturday, October 31, on WCIU. Also, Turner Classic Movies is showing it in theaters on Wednesday, October 28, in a double feature with the Spanish-language version of the movie (with English subtitles), which was filmed at night with a different cast and crew using the same sets. I went to the double feature on Sunday, and I loved seeing all the similarities and differences between the two films.

Here’s the basic, spoiler-free rundown…

Dracula (1931)
Plot: Mr. Renfield travels to Transylvania to close a real estate deal with Count Dracula, who plans to move to London, but all is not as it seems…
Villain(s): Really?
Scare Factor: The scares are very different from what you’re used to seeing in horror films, so it’s hard to predict how scary you or any kids you know may find this one.
Gore Factor: You see blood once in the entire film.
Family-Friendly Factor: There’s no swearing, and any minimal suggestive content that adults may infer will go way over kids’ heads.

Quick! Run while he’s stuck in the web!

Quick! Run while he’s stuck in the web!

ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK! Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

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Halloween Movies: “The Monster Squad”

This month, I’m going to watch (and, in some cases, re-watch) some movies that are perfect for the Halloween season. These are not reviews, because I’ll only be writing about films I love and recommend. There’s no plan, method, or scientific algorithm to what movies I’m going to watch or how I’m going to structure these entries. I’m just going to have fun with it, and I hope you will, too!

The one promise I’ll make is that I’ll only include spoilers after the jump.

For this inaugural entry, I’m going to write about a movie I just saw for the first time––– well, all the way through, anyway…

The Monster Squad (1987)!

I do not own any of the following images or videos!

Here’s the trailer…

I’ve known about The Monster Squad for a while, though I don’t know exactly how long. When you love the Universal Monsters as much as I do (and I’m sure many of you do), you read a lot about them and other films that reference or utilize them. I was bound to come across The Monster Squad at some point. And I did. I read about the plot, found out some trivia, and watched some clips. All signs pointed to this being a film I’d love.

So recently, I finally ordered the twentieth anniversary DVD online. I watched it with my family, who had never even heard of it until I told them about it. Luckily for all of us, my gut instinct turned out to be a bullseye: we loved every minute of it––– and if you love monster movies, you will, too!

Here’s the basic, spoiler-free rundown…

The Monster Squad (1987)
Plot: Some young friends obsessed with monsters suddenly find themselves face-to-face with the Universal Monsters and must stop Dracula’s plan before it’s too late.
Monsters: Count Dracula, Frankenstein’s monster, the Wolfman, the Gillman, and the Mummy
Scare Factor: It may be scary to kids about five years old or younger, but it all depends on the kid. If this kid has already seen some monster movies, especially ones with the Universal Monsters, he or she will probably be fine. For everyone else, watch it and have fun!
Gore Factor: The gore’s pretty minimal.
Family-Friendly Factor: There’s some scattered swearing and some suggestive comments. Some people may find a couple of words offensive.

Look out! Behind you!

Look out! Behind you!

ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK! Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

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