Sunday, November 3, 2013

From The Idea Hole: "It's Still Halloween Bitches" Edition

Hey gents and whatever the female equivalent of gents is. No movie review today, so I thought I'd throw out two quick movie pitches to round out another Halloween season gone by, to extend the spooky cheer just a bit longer before we're all faced with the onslaught of the clusterfuck that is the ThankChristNewYear mega-holiday. First up, a zombie movie I came up with on the way home from the official 3 Days of Terror screening, where coincidentally my short film The Red Menace premiered to, lets go ahead and say thunderous applause and accolades, since I'm guessing none of you were there to confirm that.

#1: As Good As Dead

The idea behind the movie would be to present a different sort of group of zombie apocalypse survivors in an effort to flip the script on the typical structure of almost every zombie movie, where the main motivation for all the characters is just to live through the horror and somehow escape to a permanently safe place that probably doesn't exist. In this case, our characters have all come together after starting out in different groups, all of which met horrible ends. Though still wary of the ever present zombie threat and interested in staying alive as long as possible, they've all made a pact to try to live in this new world rather than just survive it, accepting that their horrifying deaths are inevitable.

Instead of just hopping from one temporary safe zone to the next waiting for it to be overrun, this group has a plan. They've each written out their Bucket Lists, the top five things they've always wanted to do, or always would have done had the rules of a zombie-less civilization not stopped them from doing so. Now with the perfect excuse to succumb to hedonism, this group is dedicated to helping each member tick off everything on their list before they die as the opportunity arises, and should anyone get bit, giving them only a few hours to live, the goal instantly shifts to helping them with the "Bonus" on their lists, specifically the most insane and bad ass way they've ever thought about killing themselves and taking as many zombies down with them as they go.

The story would play out as each character works to fill their list, eventually learning to embrace life in different ways even amid so much death and despair. Some would die, others would complete their lists and find an emptiness knowing that now they have nothing to look forward to and still have to fight zombies, and others would revert, realizing that they do want to seek the permanent solution that would seem impossible. Maybe two of them fall in love and one of them gets pregnant, forcing a realignment of priorities. I haven't really fleshed it out yet, but I like it enough to give it a shot despite the over-saturation of the genre suggesting maybe I shouldn't bother.

#2: Beggar's Night

The title of this one is subject to change, as its for now the best option for a Halloween invoking title that hasn't already been taken as far as I know. The premise is the current generation of kids young enough to appreciate Halloween are being done a disservice by the way it has been transformed in recent years into something so much less fun than it once was. Halloween has been taken over by yuppie helicopter parents and turned into an antiseptic daylight affair so the night can be retaken by the adults for slutty partying. Beggar's Night is about the kids fighting back to take back what is theirs.

It would follow an obsessive, somewhat sociopathic kid who is wise beyond his years and charismatic in a Charles Manson/Jim Jones sort of way, who grew up listening to his older brother's epic stories of Halloweens past and watching movies that still paint the holiday as the one day of the year where children take back the night. Seeing what their day has become, he hatches a plan to force his neighborhood to give back classic Halloween through a campaign of kid movie friendly domestic terrorism, ruining their plans for a boring Halloween day and adults only Halloween night.

He's aided by his fellow classmates, all yearning to break away from the modern commercialization and pussification of this once fun holiday, as well as the older kids who want their night of pranks and vandalism back. He forms an army of insurgents calling themselves the Jack o Lanterns, demanding the return of the old traditions and declaring war on the adults when he is initially refused. He is also secretly aided by his father, who in years past was the undisputed king of home made haunted houses before peer pressure made him tone down the gore.

I'm not sure how this one would play out either, as it would mostly have to take place during one day and night, or at the most two or three, but I have a lot of great imagery in my head, with the leader of the child army donning the old school skeleton costume and mask and morphing into a sort of V for Vendetta like figure, as well as a moment where he delivers a challenging monologue to the adults at one of their parties before sabotaging it in a scene reminiscent of Batman bombing the party in Batman: Year One.

Well, that's it for now, see you tomorrow, and have a happy Halloween Hang Over.

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