Halloween Tales

November 1, 2007 § Leave a comment

A year or so ago, Kenny and I continued our tradition of watching *SCARY* movies together, huddled on the coach with the lights off in the basement at night. Our favorites include “Sixth Sense”, “The Others”, and my personal favorite “Secret Window” based on a novel by Stephen King. This is what warm fuzzies are made of:

Secret Window
 
Okay, maybe not warm fuzzies. When the movie ended I found myself literally shaking I was in such emotional and psychological shock. Last night, when Kenny and I sat down to carry on the tradition and watch “1408” (more Stephen King fare) I had high expectations for another great movie experience:

1408

Unfortunately, I was disappointed, though not so much in the quality of the movie or its story. I was disappointed in the “psychological thriller” part of it…the emotionally twisted sense left by “Secret Window” was not there in “1408”.

After a good bit of though, however, I do have to admit that it was a good movie in and of itself. Kenny best described the movie as a “clever horror-style Christmas Carol” with the main character as Scrooge and Samuel L. Jackson as all three ghosts in one. Enslin, an extremely self-centered man who admittedly “believes in nothing greater than himself”, is first taken through hell in 1408 and then shown what his life ‘could be like’ if he would only live an unselfish life. After these experiences Enslin stubbornly want to hang on to his selfish behavior. In the end, he is presented with a choice by the front-desk clerk who says cheerily (eerily!) over the phone: “You have free-will Mr. Enslin. You can choose to repeat this [experience] over and over again, or you can take advantage of our express checkout system,” as the fellow is presented with the express checkout – a noose, his own grave, and visions of him hanging himself – and the odd prospect of a melting phone (to remind him of how awful the previous hour in 1408 really was). I won’t tell you what he decides.

A note of warning: while there is a religious good vs. evil theme begun in the movie, it is dropped or ruined (I can’t figure out which) during the film. Don’t look for a redemption story.

Also, the ghouls are pretty frightening, though the level of gore isn’t bad (I don’t like gore, personally). As I spent the first half of the movie behind a blanket for the most part, I would rate the movie a 7 out of 10 on the scary scale with 10 being the most scary.

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