Dec 31, 2014

NEW YEAR'S EVE


Dec 27, 2014

CHRISTMAS CAROL

“It is required of every man," the ghost returned, "that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide; and, if that spirit goes not forth in life, it is condemned to do so after death.”

Dec 25, 2014

A VERY ED GEIN CHRISTMAS

In the wake of Ed Gein's murders, "Gein humor" began circulating around Plainfield, Wisconsin. Among them was this, dubbed "Ed Gein's Christmas." 

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all though the shed,
All creatures were stirring, even old Ed.

The bodies were hung from the rafters above,
While Eddie was searching for another new love.

He went to Wautoma for a Plainfield deal,
Looking for love and also a meal.

When what to his hungry eyes should appear,
But old Mary Hogan in her new red brassiere.

Her cheeks were like roses when kissed by the sun
And she let out a scream at the sight of Ed's gun.
 

Old Ed pulled the trigger and Mary fell dead,
He took his old axe and cut off her head.

He then took his hacksaw and cut her in two,
One half for hamburger, the other for stew.

And laying a hand aside of her heel,
Up to the rafter went his next meal.

He sprang to his truck, to the graveyard he flew,
The hours were short and much work he must do.

He looked for the grave where the fattest one laid,
And started digging with a shovel and spade.

He shoveled and shoveled and shoveled some more,
Till finally he reached the old coffin door.

He took out a crowbar and pried open the box,
He was not only clever but sly as a fox.

As he picked up the body and cut off her head,
He could tell by the smell that the old girl was dead.

He filled in the grave by the moonlight above,
And once more old Ed had found a new love. 




Dec 24, 2014

A VERY TWO GUYS, ONE QUIP CHRISTMAS: ELVES

A joint effort between The End of Summer and Exploitation Movie Review, “Two Guys, One Quip” is a new venture to honor the cheesiest, oddest, and most unheralded crop of films we can stand. Some films can be tackled solo and some cannot. Some films are so excruciatingly unusual that multiple parties are needed to catch every single solitary weirdity. "Two Guys, One Quip" is a free-for-all, back-and-forth, "I'm just gonna say whatever" approach to double-teaming an easy target in the unsexiest way possible. Below you will find nothing close to actual, legitimate film discussion, but instead sarcastic commentary and douche-bag superiority flying fast and furious. Profanity will be immense, constant, and unyielding. No on-screen target is safe. No incompetence will pass by unmocked. And no punches will be at all pulled. Some films deserve it. This is one of them.



Exploitation Movie Review (EMR): Merry Christmas, Quippers! (I’m gonna call you all Quippers from now on, you fucking disgusting label whores.) This month’s offering is a dreadful little piece of shit which hilariously brief research tells me was filmed, scored, and released. The only thing you need to know is that this fucking turd clocks in at just over an hour and a half while Corman’s The Fall of the House of Usher clocks in only at an hour and a quarter. But hey, if there were any justice in the world, O.J. wouldn’t be sitting in jail right now.

This film starts as it means to go on: by looking and sounding like an episode of “Are You Afraid of the Dark?” - with added witchcraft, woman-beating and Nazi paraphernalia, but heavily reduced levels of Gary.

The End of Summer (TEOS): Try as hard as you want to be ominous and foreboding, you stupid movie, but everything you establish in your pretty lame opening credit sequence is completely overcome by the word ELVES popping up on screen, and in a font that I’m pretty sure is Times New Roman.

Speaking of laughing at incompetence:


TEOS: C’mon...NO ONE caught that?

Elves opens with a gaggle of teen girls hauling ass out to the middle of the woods where they’re about to spread a blanket, bitch about Christmas, and perhaps do some light kissing. Man, have these girls been reading my dream journal?

EMR: Haha, these crazy bitches. I was going to mention that this hanging-out-in-the-woods-and-hating-on-Christmas deal doesn’t seem like a healthy or regular activity for teenage girls, but then I got a look at the lead girl, Kirsten (pronounced Keehr-stin), and she looks like Bibi Besch and the mom from Harry & The Hendersons used a semen applicator shaped like Bret Michaels’ fist to smash dumpster jizz into each other out of spite. Man, she looks fucking old. I’m glad I didn’t start getting laid until the early 2000s when 15-year-old girls at least LOOKED like 13-year-old-girls.

TEOS: Speaking of sexy things, I admit: the minute these three teenage girls knelt down and spread out a blanket, I thought sex was about to happen. Has pornography poisoned my mind, or has my lack of a sex life turned me into a pervert?

You decide.
 

Read the rest.

Dec 23, 2014

FROST


"For tho' from out our bourne of Time and Place 
The flood may bear me far, 
I hope to see my Pilot face to face 
When I have crost the bar."

Dec 20, 2014

WATCHING

I was talking to a gal once and she related a 'creepy' story that happened to her. When she was a young teen, she was very ill. She had been to the doctor and was prescribed bed-rest until her fever came down and her flu-like symptoms passed.

While laying on the family couch, her mom and dad would sit in the nearby easy chair and watch TV. At times they would leave the room and get her water, meds, soup, etc.

She kept noticing a painting on the wall, near the couch, of a woman holding a basket of fruit.

It seemed to be 'watching' the people coming in/leaving the room. Now, she was running a fever, and she knew this must be her imagination, and kept it to herself.

As her dad left the room, she could swear the painting followed him with its eyes. Fever or not, she was getting scared. So, she looked to see if she could see her mom or dad returning to the room. She couldn't see anyone nearby.

Until she turned her head back to the picture.

The woman turned her head directly toward her, made eye contact, and tossed down the basket of fruit. From behind the woman's back, she produced a knife and began climbing OUT of the picture frame with a look of blood-hate in her eyes.

At this point, her screams of panic caused her dad to come rushing back. The painting turned toward the sound of the dad's rushing feet, made eye contact with the girl, and climbed back up in to the frame, with one last look that said, "I'll finish this next time..."

She would never let her parents leave her in that room alone again.

I was told, "In the right light, paintings will talk to each other." I thought this was BS until, as a teen, I began trying to crack an eye open in the early morning to see if I could verify the myth. I kept doing this until I began to notice a small movement. And then one would seem to be whispering, barely moving its lips. I was transfixed.

Until I lip-read the words: "I think he is watching us."
Story source.

Dec 17, 2014

FOOTSTEPS

When I was in college, I used to ride the bus to my grandmother's house once in awhile and stay the weekend. It was nice for me to get a chance to sit and talk to her, and it also gave me an opportunity to help her out with odd jobs around the house like changing light bulbs, putting screens in the windows, etc.

She lived (and still does) alone with no pets in a two story bungalow-style house. I always slept in the same place-upstairs and in the bedroom all the way at the end of the hallway. Not sure why that was always my spot, since she has two other empty bedrooms, but that's the one I always used. The bedroom is T-shaped, with the head of the bed at the top center of the "T" facing the "leg". The door to the room is positioned in the right side of the top of the "T" if you're laying in bed on your back.

Anyway, I had been up late watching TV, long after my grandma was asleep in her room. I was getting sleepy at around 2AM and decided to call it a night. I climbed the stairs, walked down the hallway, and covered up in bed. I lay awake for longer than I expected to, but was finally just starting to doze when I heard it.

Something starting tapping on the carpeted floor at the opposite end of the room. It literally sounded like someone had crouched down and was rapidly and rhythmically drumming their hand on the floor. I immediately froze, my body tensing up, listening to what my logical mind kept trying to insist was either my imagination, or was coming from somewhere outside the room. It wasn't. The house was quiet, with the exception of that continual tapping coming from several feet past the foot of my bed.

The room was far too dark to see anything, but I was too afraid to try and get out of bed and make it to the light switch. Finally the tapping stopped, and I lay there still not moving, trying to keep my rapid breathing quiet, my heart pounding in my throat. Then it really got bad.

A few seconds after the tapping stopped, I heard the distinct sound of light footsteps approaching the bed. The steps came straight to the foot of the bed, and then diverted and came around the side of the bed and stopped RIGHT BY MY HEAD! At this point, I was terrified at a level I've not experienced before or since. Whatever was standing there by the side of my bed was between me and the door and lightswitch. I remained frozen, unsure of what to do, and unsure if I'd be able to move if I wanted to. There was silence for about 30 seconds, during which I got the impression that something was studying me intently. Then the footsteps started up again, slowly and unhurriedly walking back toward the foot of the bed, around the foot, and up the other side. Again, once they reached the head of the bed, they stopped. Silence again for around 30 seconds, and then the light, methodical footsteps moved back to the far side of the room, and stopped.

I lay there still terrified for a long, long time. Looking back, I wonder why I never got up and turned the light on. Eventually, I somehow managed to drift off into an uneasy sleep, and didn't have any further incidents for the rest of the night.

Still to this day have no clue what that was all about, but I've stayed in that room many times since, and never had any problems.

Story source.

Dec 15, 2014

CRYPT KEEPER

While visiting the Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, NY today, I was peeking into a crypt and trying to see in. It was too dark to see anything.

The only opening was this cross in the door so I tried using the camera flash to light up the inside. The flash went off but it didn’t seem to do anything but bounce off the stone. Then when I got home I uploaded the photo and saw this smoke-like image inside the tomb.

I don’t know whose tomb it is, I didn’t even think to look when I was there. I will have to go back and see if I can find it. This cemetery is massive. That is How I saw the image as well but others see it this was, also a female but more of a 3/4 view of a face, if you take the left eye of the skeletal face, that would be the only (right) eye and to the left of that is the shape of a nose. Below this the mouth, I don’t know if that makes sense but I am not sure how else to explain it.

Story and image source.

Dec 14, 2014

FINAL PLUNGE

Buffalo Courier Press photographer I. Russell Sorgi did a little impromptu ambulance chasing on his way back from another job. He wound up snapping photos of a woman standing on a ledge at the Geneese Hotel, as she waved goodbye and started her fall, he reloaded the camera in haste and caught the last second of her life, frozen in time 15 feet above the cold sidewalk below. Her name was Mary Miller.

The photo was used in a psychological study and it was found that 96% of the people given the photo didn’t even notice her on first examination of the shot.

Dec 6, 2014

CHAR MAN

A well-known urban legend in California comes from the Ojai Valley in Camp Comfort County Park. They say the spirit of a man burnt in a fire will emerge from the forest and attack cars and hikers. He is called Char-Man because the majority of his face and body could be described as “extra-crispy.”

There are several versions of Char-Man’s origin, but they all begin with a wildfire that occurred in the park in 1948. The main story goes that a father and son were caught in the blaze and the older man was killed. But the son survived, and when a rescue team arrived they found that he had strung up his father and pulled off his skin. He then disappeared into the woods. Another story makes the victims a husband and wife, claiming that the man went mad as he lay trapped and injured in the fire, unable to aid his wife, who was screaming for his help.

Either way, it is said that if you drive onto a bridge located in the park and get out of your car, Char-Man will come. The horribly burned man will run at you and attack, trying to tear off your skin—perhaps to take as his own.

Story source.

Dec 4, 2014

THE SEA SERPENT

Phosphorescent Monster Ate Bananas

“March 13. At 8 p.m., Thursday, 22° 06′ north, longitude 74° 21′ west. One half mile off starboard bow sighted strange marine monster. It approached and followed ship all night. Friday at 9 a.m. monster crossed our bows. Passengers in a panic. Reduced speed to five knots”

– Extract from the log of the
Admiral Farragut
Sitting in the doorway of his cabin, collarless and in his shirt sleeves, Captain Mader of the fruit steamer Admiral Farragut, which arrived this week from Port Antonio [Jamaica], told the story:
“We picked the sea serpent up — or rather the monster picked us up — late Thursday night,” said he. “I was on the bridge when one of the passengers, an elderly man, rushed up and excitedly called my attention to a phosphorescent light several miles astern. At first I thought it was a new submarine boat. As it came nearer we played the searchlight on it and could see that it was some strange sea monster.“It seemed about 120 feet long and threshed its way through the rough sea at a fearful speed. All night long it followed the vessel and during that time most of the passengers and crew remained on deck. The phosphorescent glow of the monster lighted up the sea within a radius of fifty feet.

“On Friday morning about breakfast time the serpent swam within thirty feet of the starboard side. The creature resembled a huge boa constrictor, with the exception that its body was green. From its sides streamed seaweed and other marine growth.

“The monster raised its head several feet above the water. It had huge eyes projecting from the top of its head and two green horns that projected upward nearly five feet. The horns resembled large antennae and moved about continuously.

“Three times the serpent crossed our bows and fearing to run it down, I signalled the engineer to reduce speed to five knots an hour.

“Some of the persons on board thought the monster was hungry and we threw over several sacks of peanuts and a few bunches of bananas. When we arrived off Cape Hatteras late Friday the monster circled around and swam south….”
 - Trenton Evening Times, Trenton New Jersey
18 March 1908

Source.

Dec 1, 2014

DANGERFIELD NEWBY

During the John Brown raid, the first raider killed was an African-American  man by the name of Dangerfield Newby. Dangerfield had been freed by his white father, but he had a wife and seven children held in slavery in Warrenton, Virginia. His wife’s master had told him that for the sum of $1,500 he could buy his wife and his youngest baby, who had just started to crawl. Dangerfield earned that amount of money and went back to Warrenton to purchase his wife and baby, only to have his wife’s master raise the price. The free black man then joined John Brown in the hope of freeing not only his wife and youngest baby, but his entire family.

There were a lot of guns in Harper's Ferry, since they were made in the town and stored in the 22 building armory complex near the train tracks. There was little ammunition for the guns, however, and townspeople would fire anything they could find for their guns. One man was shooting 6 inch spikes from his powder-loaded gun.

When John Brown raided the town in October of 1859, it was one of those spikes that hit the throat of Dangerfield Newby. He was killed instantly.

The people of Harper's Ferry, frustrated and angered by John Brown and his raiders, took the body of Dangerfield Newby and stabbed it repeatedly with their rusty knives. They left the mutilated body in the alley to be eaten by the hungry hogs.

Some night, if you are walking down Hog Alley and see a man dressed in baggy trousers and an old slouched hat with a terrible scar across his throat, you will know you have met Dangerfield Newby. He is still roaming our streets, trying to free his family.


Source.

Nov 29, 2014

DENVER SPIDERMAN

On a September evening in 1941, Philip Peters was walking home when he bumped into an old acquaintance. The 59-year-old Theodore Coneys excused himself, although it was no accident that they had run into each other. Coneys, down on his luck and without a penny to his name, had every intention of meeting Peters on that evening to ask him for money.

Unfortunately, while Peters was independently wealthy, his money had been running out as he cared for his ailing wife who, most recently, had been hospitalized two weeks prior due to a broken hip. Peters respectfully declined to Theodore and went on his way; Coneys, however, was not done - not ready to starve on the streets.

So he kept an eye on Peters’ house and watched him come and go. As Theodore noted Mr. Peters' schedule, he found a time where Philip had forgotten to lock the door and at this point he went inside and out of the increasingly cold elements. In the house he found food and shelter and even had time to explore the house to find a hidden entrance inside a closet that led into the attic. Realizing that he could remain quite hidden from Philip Peters, Theodore Coneys took up residence in the small attic space, sneaking down at night for food and water.

One night, Coneys had come out of the attic thinking Peters to be at the hospital visiting with his wife, although unbeknown to Theodore, Peters had only taken a nap. Coneys snuck out of the attic and slid down to the kitchen, taking only minimal care as not to be heard. The noises awoke Philip, who went downstairs to investigate, although this would prove to be fatal. Startled and caught, Theodore Coneys grabbed the nearest object, a cast iron, and bludgeoned Mr. Peters to death.

Curious neighbors, noting Peters’ unusual absence, came to the house to check in and found the doors locked. After a call to the police, the body of Mr. Peters was found bloodied and quite deceased. Investigating and finding no signs of forced entry, the police labeled it a closed case.

Meanwhile Mrs. Peters had ended her stay at the hospital and had returned home in the wake of her husband's death. At night, Mrs. Peters and her housekeeper would hear noises and see shadows, and made frequent phone calls to the authorities. When the police would come to examine the house, they searched inside and out, noting the small hole in the closet, but determining that no normal sized adult could possibly fit there and did no further probing.

Months went by and more phone calls were made; the police stopped responding, believing Mrs. Peters to be crazy. So bad, she thought it was, that she simply left with her housekeeper. The rumors that the house was haunted began to arise; kids would dare each other to go in, but none ever would, because from the streets they could see the shadows moving and hear the noises coming from inside.

It wasn’t until July 30, 1942, that the police on a routine patrol happened to catch movement from inside the house. Upon entering, they heard footsteps running away; as they followed, they heard a “click” as the latch to the attic entrance was unlocked. The police followed upstairs and saw Coneys’ legs just outside of the hole; grabbing onto him, the officer pulled back and an emaciated and crazed Coneys fell on the floor. Small and frail, he was unable to fight.

Coneys admitted to the crime and explained in gruesome detail how it had happened. He was tried and convicted and sentenced to a life-term in the Colorado State Penitentiary in Canon City, Colorado, where he died on May 16, 1967. Local newspapers had dubbed him the “Denver Spider Man of Moncrieff Place.”
Source.

Nov 28, 2014

WATCH: THE MACHINE

 
It’s inevitable that the idea of what defines humanity appears in every film about robots. The most famous robot movie of all time, The Terminator, would not even explore this idea until its superior sequel. And Blade Runner, perhaps one of the most divisive films of all time, had already beaten it to the punch.

The Machine is more like Blade Runner than any other film that also explores this idea of organic versus synthetic life, while bringing with it a hypo-technical style recently modernized by director Joseph Kosinksi in his films TRON: Legacy and Oblivion, but only after the look had already been established in Kubrick’s 2001.


Vincent (Toby Stephens, "Black Sails"), a scientist experimenting in synthetic life, is in a tough spot. Though he’s willingly working for and accepting money from the defense department of a very future government to work toward recycling fallen human soldiers and turning them into warfare robots, he’s actually doing so to try to find a way to help his young daughter, trapped inside herself by a severe cerebral palsy-like condition. Ava (The Pact’s Caity Lotz) is Vincent’s new hire and someone whose own previous experimentation in synthetic life has made Vincent sure she’s going to be the one who helps to realize his theories and brings them to fruition. Well, that she does – after she’s killed and resurrected as a sentient robot.

It’s here we ask that question again. What is humanity? Is it flesh and blood, the brain, the heart, or the soul? All of that? None of it?

Wait a minute! Robots?? Run!


The Machine is a great little film, aided by beautiful cinematography, great performances, genuine emotions, an awesome retro synth score by composer Tom Raybould, and a refreshingly serious non-Will Smith take on the sub-genre. If you’re looking for balls-to-the-wall action, then you’re going to be waiting until the last ten minutes. If you’re looking for some kind of horror/thriller hybrid, then you’re not going to get that really whatsoever. But if you’re looking for a philosophical discussion on what humanity is, wrapped around a familiar but not overdone story, you haven’t been able to do better than The Machine since Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

Nov 27, 2014

CANNIBALLESSE

In 2011, Indonesian police arrested a 29-year-old cannibalistic woman who admitted to killing and eating up to 30 girls and then her husband. She kept the human meat in her refrigerator to eat when she pleased. The woman also confessed to cooking human meat for her friends and relatives at dinner parties held at her house. She blamed her inner desires for killing and eating the people and said she would do it again if she had the chance.



Story and image source. 

(In case you missed the joke...Happy Thanksgiving.)

Nov 23, 2014

DEATH STAIN

A stain, shaped like a human body, can be found on the concrete floor of the Athens Mental Health and Retardation Center in Athens, Ohio. According to legend, this stain marks the location where the body of a patient, Margaret Schilling, lay undiscovered for several weeks back in 1979.

A team of forensic scientists recently tested the stain to determine whether it’s a genuine human decomposition stain, or if it was created artificially. They published the results of their investigation in the Nov 2008 issue of the
Journal of Forensic Sciences (vol 53, no. 6), “Analysis of Suspected Trace Human Remains from an Indoor Concrete Surface.”

Their conclusion: Yes, it’s a human decomposition stain, although the stain has been made more prominent over the years by attempts to remove it:

Margaret’s body was probably in contact with the area of the stain for a period of 4–5 weeks. During this time, significant decomposition is known to have occurred, indicating that the room was apparently warm enough to facilitate bacterial degradation. During this time, anaerobic bacterial decomposition could have taken place in the contact areas between the concrete and the heavier, fatty areas of Margaret’s body, such as the buttocks, back and shoulders. Bacterial action is supported by the odd-numbered fatty acids found in the residues. Such decomposition, facilitated by the moisture naturally present in Margaret’s body, formed free fatty acids from the lipids in her subcutaneous tissue. This process may have been accompanied, in part or in whole, by the basic conditions provided through contact with the concrete. During the 4- to 5-week period in which the free fatty acids were being formed, and in any subsequent washing over the years, at least half of the sodium ions were displaced by calcium ions from the concrete. The result is a waxy residue of mostly calcium palmitate which is up to 2 mm thick in certain areas of the stain. In most areas of the stain, the waxy residue also resides in surface pores in the concrete, consistent with the suggestion that removal of the stain was attempted on at least one occasion.

At some point since the removal of Margaret’s remains in January of 1979, the floor has likely been treated with an acidic chemical— probably Blu-Lite (20.5% phosphoric acid)—to lighten the color of the waxy residue and of the concrete. The chemical etching was not uniform across the entire floor surface, however, but was selectively restricted to a shape that resembled the apparent outline of a human body.

Original source unknown.