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*DeLorean not included

I didn’t see The Princess Bride when it came out in theatres.

A rare thing, I know, especially for a kid like me who literally grew up in a theatre. It was my first job at sixteen. I have family in Vermont who own several theatres—every summer when we went to visit, I spent hours theatre hopping (when I wasn’t tearing tickets or scooping popcorn).

But The Princess Bride released in September of 1987, and summer was over. Seventh grade had already started. I still remember looking through the paper at the film ads and seeing the listings for The Princess Bride. “What a stupid title,” I thought, and so I didn’t bother to see it.

(Remember, I thought princesses—and girls who tried to be them—were stupid until I was almost thirty. By that time, I was well aware of the responsibility that came with the title, and was ready to step up and accept the tiara. But that’s a different blog post for another day.)

So my first exposure to The Princess Bride was in 1988 or 1989, when it was out on VHS. I fell in love with it. And then my ninth grade English teacher gave us an assignment where we had to read a book that had a movie based on it (the book had to come first). I chose The Princess Bride. I don’t recall if I read it all in one day—it’s a safe bet that I didn’t sleep much, if there was sleep. I do remember, however, that upon reading the last line I closed the book, took a deep breath, opened the cover and immediately started reading from the beginning again.

I believe The Princess Bride is the only book I’ve ever done that with.

I memorized every line of the film, as well as a good chunk of the book. I wrote to the publisher, as requested, to find out what happened during the reunion scene before the Fire Swamp. I ended up getting into an argument with my English teacher, who thought I should have tried harder to track down the unabridged, unexpurgated Morgenstern classic. Every time I went into a used bookstore, I bought extra copies to keep on my shelves and give to friends at random.

I’ve always had a tough time choosing a favorite film, but after a few years of this, my favorite book was pretty obvious. There was just one thing missing. I had never seen The Princess Bride on the big screen.

Until Saturday.

Awesome Costumed Movie-goers!Cinema World, the theatre down in Melbourne, has a Cult Series where they show classic films late on Friday and Saturday nights (next week’s is Akira). I had been invited months ago by Ashlynn and Sarah, my besties from the B&N down there. I bought my ticket early: a combo that came with a drink and popcorn…a true splurge. I stopped buying concessions when I started paying for tickets. After so many years, movie theatre popcorn really doesn’t hold the same romance for me as it does for you.

But this night, it did. Which was good, because I needed it to. I sat in my comfy seat, eagerly awaiting the moment when the lights went down and I got to live the magic all over again. It was beautiful and perfect and funny and brilliant and over far too soon.

But the magic didn’t fade when the lights went up. There was still a softness around the edges of my mind the whole drive home. Like opening a time capsule, but so much more. I was twelve again, at the beginning of everything. A budding writer, a hardcore bibliophile, a genius outcast collecting misfits on the playground. I could step through time and erase all those annoying mistakes I made, all those horrible relationships I fell for in the search for my own Wesley, only to be disappointed every time and insane enough to pick myself up and fail all over again. There were no regrets for things I hadn’t done. The depression was gone, no one had died, and my heart—though still overly big and emotional—was largely unbroken.

Vizzini said that if anything went wrong on the job, or they had to split up for any reason, they would meet back at the beginning, where he had first hired Inigo and Fezzik. Inigo even made up a rhyme for Fezzik to remember: “Fool, fool, back to the beginning is the rule.” Fezzik, of course, forgot.

I forgot too, it seems.

Life gives us no do-overs, that’s true. And life isn’t fair, as the Goldman Rule taught us. But no one says that we can’t mentally take ourselves back to the beginning and look around a while. Remember why we’re here, and the paths we took. Give ourselves a break from the burdens of guilt and grief we carry, the ones that only get heavier as the years go by.

I may not be a girl on a farm anymore, but I am a princess now (with a Brute Squad, even!). I choose my own adventures. Fair or not, I have no life at all unless I live them.

So, here I go…

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Pop Quiz, Hotshot

Because the internet is not rife enough with silliness, YOU TOO CAN PLAY THE ALETHEA KONTIS QUIZ GAME ON IMDB!

How well do you know Alethea’s career in films and television? Here’s your chance to find out!

It’s really tough because there are ONLY TWO QUESTIONS. (And the TV show I did when I was 8 is not listed.)

Cheating is welcome. GOOD LUCK! *giggle*

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For the Horror Dummies

Chris St. Croix and Blood Oath director David Buchert have teamed with Dread Central to share their creepy short film offerings for the Night Terrors series. The two completed episodes — Chris St. Croix’s “The Keeper” and David Buchert’s “Dummy” — will be released on DVD and Blu-Ray in the next few months. For now, you can watch by clicking right over to Dread Central.

As with most of the horror films I’m involved with, THE CONTENT IS NOT SAFE FOR WORK AND NOT MEANT FOR VIEWERS UNDER THE AGE OF 17. You will have to click through a gate verifying your age in order to watch the short film.

“Dummy” Synopsis: Anne just woke up half naked in an abandoned hospital. She and her two brothers have become players in a game of hide and seek with a masked psycho carrying a grudge.

For those of you old enough to do so…please enjoy!

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I’ve Been Saying This For Years

…and someone finally made a funny out of it. Yay!
(Thanks to Tracy)

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Mirror, Mirror

Official Release Date: March 16, 2012

The release date for Snow White and the Huntsman is June 1, 2012.

Long live 2012, THE YEAR OF THE FAIRY TALE!!

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Night Terrors

(This one’s for the horror fans.)

From my good friend Dave Buchert, director of Blood Oath comes this trailer for a series of projects called Night Terrors.

Caution: It is very much Rated R and NSFW.

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Blood Oath Reviews

Reviews of a different sort — from the movie that became my second credit on IMDB. (Not only is my name in the opening credits of Blood Oath…it’s even SPELLED CORRECTLY!)

Before you read any–or all–of these, just keep one thing in mind: we didn’t set out to produce Shakespeare. We were a bunch of kids in the woods having a really good time with supersoakers full of fake blood. It was almost everyone’s first time, and it was an incredible (and expensive)  learning experience for us all.

If you want to see the awesome horribleness that is our beloved and infamous Blood Oath, I will have some copies (signed by the director!) for sale at my table at Capclave. See you there!

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Summary: Mr. and Mrs. Krupp wanted nothing more than a healthy child. After several failed attempts, they contacted a mysterious woman who promised them a child but everything has a price. Now the offspring roams the woods as an urban legend, twisted and evil, living off the bodies of those who enter its sanctuary. Today, a group of friends on a weekend camping trip decide to investigate the story. Bad decision! They will have to fight to stay alive, but they will soon pray for death!

Here’s a great review from Matthew Scott Baker: “Let me summarize this film before I review it: FUN.(Read the full review here.)

From DVDVerdict: “Blood Oath is one of the better independent horror films to come around in a long time. It doesn’t take itself wholly seriously, but does remember that shocks and suspense are more important than laughs and lame genre references.” (Read more)

The review in which Cinema Head Cheese says, “I can’t recommend Blood Oath in any way.” (Read more)

And possibly my favorite from BD Horror News, who hated the film so much that “there were so many moments that I would have liked for the killer to break through and put me out of my misery, that I am almost embarrassed.” (Read the rest here)

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Heehee…I can see how this would get addictive. The horrible reviews are EVEN BETTER than the great ones!  I could do this all night!

 

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Blood Oath is NOW AVAILABLE

You probably think I’m kidding, but I’m not. Yes, Blood Oath is actually available.

The movie that I wrote about in Beauty and Dynamite has finally — after almost ten years — been released from Troma Films.

You can order it via Amazon (from which I get a very small kickback) if you click on the DVD cover here. I will also be working with the director and purchasing a bunch of them so that I can sell them at Dragon*Con (and possibly Capclave…and whatever other convention I can get roped into this year).

If you’re a fan of low budget independent slasher films, you’re going to love this. Lots of blood, nude girls, and even a quotable line or three.

We had so much fun making this movie. (Well, I did, anyway.) One of my favorite moments in Tennessee last month was when the Fairy Goddaughters dropped a photo album and it fell open to a spread of photos displaying a massively bloody Tina Krause.What a thing to find in the Princess’s collection, right? Heeheehee…

Needless to say, their expressions were priceless.

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All Jacked Up & Nowhere to Go

Yes, Virginia, Rubber is a real movie.

The Fairy GodBoyfriend and I saw the trailer on FIOS’s “On Demand” screen and wondered what the heck it was about, so we ordered it (for far more than it was worth). Apparently we were in a minority–according to the comments left on my Facebook status, a lot of people saw the trailer and thought it was a joke.

It’s real, folks — the film really is about a tire with psychic abilities that goes around blowing things up. Like a true serial killer, the violence escalates: from bottles, to small animals, to people. A young kid (because it’s always the kids who think outside the box) convinces the policeman that the tire did it, at which point the police attempt to track down and apprehend the tire. But how do you catch a tire that doesn’t want to be caught?

The tire does not talk. It does nothing but roll around and tremble with psychic power. And yet, it gives a stellar and believable performance. The whole time, FGB and I kept saying, “This must have been a bitch to shoot.” I haven’t changed my mind about that. I’d be interested in seeing a Makog Of this film…instead of ever seeing the movie again.

There is an element (and why wouldn’t there be?) of surrealism and Theatre of the Absurd in the film, which will only confuse you if I try to explain it, so I won’t. But I’ve seen my share of artists perform at Spoleto. This film had the very same feel. And for the first half(ish), I really enjoyed it. We laughed and hollered and pointed and it was great.

But the ending (forgive the pun) fell flat for me. It made a sort of sense, in the grand scheme of things…and perhaps that’s what was wrong with it. If the theme of the film, presented at the beginning during the policeman’s monologue (a little like the character monologue before Run Lola Run) was really “sometimes things happen for no reason,” then perhaps there should have been a better embracing of that near the end.

Unlike Inception, I can’t tell you how Rubber *should* have ended…I just know I wasn’t satisfied with the one it had. If any of you have some better ideas, I’d love to hear them. This could have been a seriously great movie. Instead, it was a seriously great idea with disappointing follow-through.

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‘Tis the Season to be Watching

Every year when I put up my Christmas tree, I watch Irving Berlin’s White Christmas. Over the years, I’ve come to realize that it’s my favorite Christmas movie. There are a few others I watch fairly religiously–pun intended–and sometimes even in this order, so I guess you could say those are my favorites too. Here’s a handy list for your convenience:

1.) Irving Berlin’s White Christmas
2.) Love Actually
3.) Die Hard
4.) The Holiday
5.) Miracle on 34th Street (1947)
6.) A Christmas Carol (George C. Scott, Patrick Stewart, and/or the Muppets)
7.) Emmett Otter’s Jugband Christmas
8.) Scrooged

I’m sure there are more, but it’s still early. I will confess this, however: I have never seen It’s a Wonderful Life. I actually own it, since I found the DVD on sale one year and bought it so that I might finally watch it…and then never got around to it. Perhaps this year, the very first year I’ll have a Christmas with a family of my very own making, I’ll watch it and share it with them.

What are your favorite Christmas movies? What have I missed?

Edited to add: THE REF. Joe reminded me of this one, and I own it…on laserdisc. Guess who’s adding to her Christmas list RIGHT NOW?? Dennis Leary needs to be on my list.

Edited again to add: any of the Rankin-Bass films, tho my favorite is The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus. I only own the VHS. Why is this not on DVD??

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