ATTENTION! This is a Rotting Dead safety alert! *Warning* - The following shelters have been closed due to overwhelming zombie activity in the area: Midtown Civic Center/Tucson,AZ - Dearborne Athletic Center/Boulder,CO - Carlin Research Institute/Dover,DE - Maestro Convention Center/Miami,FL - Brady's Memorial Hospital/Lansing,MI - Kindgom Hospital/Castle Rock,ME - Greens Elementary/St. Louis,MO - Allied Mutual West/Minneapolis,MN - Sunrise Medical Ceter/Hendricks,NV - Glasgow Shiners Convention Center/Ennis,MT - Las Alemedas Civic Hall/San Antonio,TX - Harris County Hospital District/Houston,TX - Pallisades Community Center/Salt Lake City,UT - - - Bloggers are urged to remain in their homes and stay away from highly populated areas of the city. This message will repeat....

Friday, October 29, 2004

The Witching Hour

Well October 31st is upon us. Happy Halloween to all you bloggers out there. So what's on the agenda for Sunday? (Leave comments) I will be taking my son trick or treating and enjoying some of my favorite horror films.

What I like about this day is that people all over the world embrace the dark side of life. Isn't it interesting that horror as a general category doesn't get as much attention as it does during October? I love horror, (as you no doubt realize by now) and I love Halloween because you see it everywhere! Zombie movie marathons, horror costumes, and haunted houses all over the city.

Of course there are heaps of candy, and yes we have candy all year 'round, but during Halloween it seems that everyone has a little treat to share. And this all happens way before the 31st.Am I going to dress up? Sure, why not? It can be a lot of fun. SO this year I am going to don the white make up, spritz up the hair, and go as Robert Smith of The Cure! Who would have thunk it?

Make sure you have plenty of horror movies on hand this weekend and enjoy some classics like "Halloween", "Dawn of the Dead","The Exorcist", or "A Nightmare on Elm Street" for a good scare.

Have a great Halloween!!

"My body is cut and broken
It's shattered and sore
My body is cut wide open
I can't stand anymore"


Wednesday, October 20, 2004

The Beyond

Another gore masterpiece from Italian horror director Lucio Fulci! In 1983, Fulci returned to the silver screen with a familiar formula of horror. Released in a slightly tamer version in U.S. under the title “Seven Doors of Death”, “The Beyond ” is the unedited version complete with everything a horror fan could want. With a largely incoherent plot, true fans of horror and of Fulci specifically, will bare the terrible acting to see this splatter-fest! According to Fulci himself, “This is a plot less film, with no logic to it, just a succession of images".

The story begins in 1927 with a warlock trying to stop a curse on a small Louisiana town. The locals don’t buy it and assault him. During his lynching, he warns he's the only person keeping the town from falling under the curse. He is brutally crucified and buried in the cellar of an old hotel. Here is a great way to introduce Fulci's style, you just gotta have a crucifiction to start things off right!

Forward to 1981, where a young woman inherits the hotel along with some strange happenings. Somewhere along the way one of the lead characters discovers an ancient Book of Eibon and a hint of the truth is revealed “Woe be unto him who opens one of the seven gateways to hell, because through the gateway, evil will invade the world.” Add in a blind visionary, a creepy hotel handyman, some befuddled cops, and a plucky pair of heroes desperately fleeing the horde of hungry undead and Voila!!! The madness ensues. Again, this is not a movie to be nominated for academy awards in acting, but Fulci does not disappoint with oozing blood and pus, in this 90-minute tale of zombies from hell invading Earth.

Fulci does a masterful job of extending some of the most basic scenes to get some chilling suspense, shocking cut scenes and eruptions of grotesque violence. You will see eyes gouged out, fantastic zombies by the hospital full, bodies slowly eaten away by acid, and even vicious flesh eating spiders ! There is even a great head explosion that is surely a badge of honor for Fulci fans everywhere. Fabio Frizzi is part of the Fulci formula that works so well in this cult classic. He continues his awesome musical techniques as he did in the score for “Zombie” this time adding in some painfully eerie piano chords. This music is so bad, I had to get the soundtrack!! Giannetto De Rossi (who also worked on “Zombie”) returns to make the special effects of Fulci’s dreams come to vivid reality on screen once more.

This is not a movie for the average peruser of horror. Although there is actually a plot, it is not well developed and not engaging enough to truly fill the space between gore scenes. As a horror fan, the biggest complaint that I can make about what Fulci presents in “The Beyond” is it does not have a sequel!!

  • Today's Cure song is Jumping Someone Else's Train from the Boys Don't Cry CD -(1979) This is the first song from their first CD released in the U.S. A rhythmic tune that clacks along sounding like just like a train. It is about people who join fads and have to be in the latest style even if they have no originality for themselves.

"If you pick up on it quick
You can say you were there
Again and again and again
You're jumping someone else's train"


Friday, October 15, 2004

Escape 2

I am sure that some of my visitors wonder if I write anything other than material from the dark genre. Well let me briefly explain that I do. I have had the desire to write since I was in elementary school. Unfortuantely, there were way too many rules on 'proper' writing and grammer and I feel that stiffled my desire to write for quite a few years. Once I figured out that what I write is good enough for me (even if not for a grade) I started writing poetry. Most everything I wrote about was romantic. This makes sense when you understand that I was a bit geeky in school and not a big social icon. We all want to be loved, my expressions of that need came out in my poetry.

I have some of that other poetry showcased on another website through geocities. If you do visit ever visit there, please keep in mind that I have not been back to update it since September 2003. I do keep it active because one of these days I may take the opportunity to re-vamp it. Until then, it kind of hangs there in Cyber space, but it does have a lot of information to help you understand more about the lighter side of your Rotting Dead host, my interests, and my family.

Now, as this blog is NOT about happy feelings and feel good music. I present here only the dark writings I have created and take some pride in. Nothing wrong with the happy side of life, I just take the time to embrace the darker side in an effort to better understand it.

Having said all that, I present another poem...


Escape 2

Don't count on me
my soul is stuck
and I feel the ceiling drop,
the floor rising in the dark

it won't stop
as I begin to cry

A curse stalks me
I see it hiding in the shadows
it's grip is so strong
it bruises me

it don't stop
and I dream of floating

everynight the light goes out
the night falls
everyday the sun comes up
for a break from the darkness

it will never stop
so I fly away

  • Today's Cure song is Other Voices from the FaithCD - (1981) Here is a tribal drum beat, a bass line that rumbles through in perfect rhythm, and Robert singing in dreamy tones about voices. Are they voices of reason? Perhaps.

"Commit the sin
Commit yourself
And all the other voices said
Change your mind
You're always wrong"


Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Shining

This is my review of the 1980 Stanley Kubrick version of the Stephen King novel "The Shining." I think Kubrick is a genius when it comes to filmmaking. In this venture I feel he captured a lot of what the story is about. There have been complaints about his vision not staying true to King’s novel but it was a remarkable endeavor that has become a classic for many horror fans.

As you may know, this is a story of spirits that haunt The Overlook Hotel. Isolated in the Rocky Mountains, the resort closes for five months during the winter (when snow is too heavy and cuts off all conventional routes of travel.) To keep everything in order during this hibernation an off-season caretaker is required.

Enter Jack Torrance (played by Jack Nicholson) who seems like an ideal candidate, a married man who looks forward to the long stay to accomplish an extended writing project. Jack’s wife Wendy (Shelley Duvall) and their young son Danny accompany him to spend the winter as one happy family. Danny has an imaginary chum (Tony) who just happens to manifest itself in Danny’s finger. As Jack is being interviewed, he is told the tale of a previous caretaker who suffered a complete mental breakdown. Told how he ran amuck, killed his family with an axe, and then blew his brains out with a shotgun. Danny has a vision filled with torrents of blood and gore. Already a psychic link has been established with the hotel's past, although Danny tells no one.

An explanation of the “shining” is given courteous of the head cook, Richard ‘Dick’ Halloran (Scatman Crothers), who tells Danny that some people "shine" which is a sort of paranormal power which allows you to see things that no one else can. Danny has this ability, channeled through Tony, which explains his brief vision of horrific images. Halloran recognizes this talent in Danny and kindly warns him away from Room 237; this hotel has an evil past and it's best to let it lie.

I think that Kubrick created lush images within the ornate interior of the main set, added a disturbing synthesized soundtrack, used a Steadicam in groundbreaking fashion, filmed most of the gothic horror in broad daylight or brightly-lit scenes, and built an unforgettable, mounting sensation of terror, ghosts, and the paranormal. Nicholson does a spectacular job of portraying Jack’s suffering. We see him struggle with acute writers block and also have hints of his fight with alcoholism. Danny’s experiences in the hotel with more visions comes across as frightening. As the snow begins to falls heavier so does Jack continue to spiral downward into an unhealthy state of mind. The suspense builds as the relationship between Jack and his wife deteriorates and Jack slips further into mania. Through Danny’s ability to shine, Halloran knows something is horribly wrong and sets out to help. Will he make it in time? Will Jack suffer the ultimate fate of the previous caretaker? And what the hell happened in room 237? These are questions that may all be answered as you watch the spine tingling film “The Shining

I do want to note that Stephen King was reported to not particularly like this version and in 1997 released his own version in a television mini series. I like King’s version as well, it does a lot to elaborate on the alcoholism problem as Jack (This time played by Steven Weber) has more instances of his struggle. Also in this version Rebecca De Mornay plays the part of Wendy. King corrects the infamous room number back to one in his book where the old woman committed suicide as room 217. I also like that King included a great scene from the book about the moving topiary animals, Oooo spooky.
“Some Guests Never Leave!”

  • Today's Cure song is Treasure from the Wild Mood Swings CD-(1996) A slow song heavy with rhythmic violin chords about a woman who has passed on from this life and wishes to be remembered without shedding tears.

"Remember I was always true
Remember that I always tried
Remember I loved only you
Remember me and smile...
For it’s better to forget
Than to remember me
And cry"


Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Still watching?

Again I want to let my visitors know that I am alive and kicking. I am working on a movie review which I hope to have posted tomorrow. Don't you hate when real life interrupts your blogging time?..*L*

Did ya' hear? The Astros won! That means we are off to St. Louis to face the Cardinals for a chance to represent the National League in the world series. Wow! First time in 43 years!!

Well I better get back to work. Check back tomorrow to see what I have been up.
Until then-So long and thanks for all the fish!

Monday, October 11, 2004

Sad Monday

Christopher Reeve has passed away. Our "Superman" experienced heart failure Saturday and slipped into a coma, then died yesterday at the age of 52. Reeve turned personal tragedy into a public crusade, becoming the nation's most recognizable spokesman for spinal cord research. After his riding accident 9 years ago he was paralyzed and told he would never walk again. In the past several years he had made outstanding strides to get movement into some areas of his lower body and learn to breath on his own. We will surely mourne his passing and pray that others continue to make progress on the front of spinal injury options and stem cell research.

In other news, it is also a sad day for Houston sports fans as the Astros failed to send the Braves packing last night. Although there is still hope for tonight's game to win the chance to move on to St. Louis and face the Cardinals for the National League Championship, it is going to be a nail-biter to say the very least. In football, the Texans also failed to come through in the clutch against Minnesota. After a miserable first half, the Texans made an effort to catch up and tie the game sending it into overtime. However, they couldn't keep the Viking's offense grounded.

Did anyone watch the presidential debate on Friday night? It is no wonder that the majority of voters have not changed their stance after the last two debates. Both candidates keep making the same mistakes. Bush keeps acting like a Goober and not only evading some questions, but downright changing the subject to avoid admitting mistakes. While Kerry keeps missing opportunities to shine with his own plans, spending too much time knocking the president and his decisions.

So, is there any good news?

Certainly! It is much cooler this week as the temperature stays in the low to mid 80s making Houstonians feel like Fall might actually make it.

Our Houston Rockets did beat the Miami Heat in the pre-season opener, pitting Yao Ming against new Heat center Shaquille O'Neal.

And even though those was some sad news, we do look forward to life. Bloggers keep blogging and sharing a bit of ourselves with the world!!

  • Today's Cure song is The Hanging Garden from the Pornography CD-(1982) A song about primal lust. With heavy drum rhythms, this fast song flys along!

"Fall fall fall fall
Into the walls
Jump jump out of time
Fall fall fall fall
Out of the sky
Cover my face as the animals cry"


Thursday, October 07, 2004


The night creatures transformed from human into savage beasts by the full moon! There is so much to be said for the topic of werewolves, I merely hope to scratch the surface and give my readers something to think about. The mythology of the werewolves can be found in many historical texts, including some of the best-known accounts of the 16th century. Here we find the stories of men cursed to walk the earth as hybrid creatures of the night. One story originating from Germany (circa 1591) tells of a time where the dark shadow of ignorance and superstitions prevailed.

Towns were underdeveloped and people lived near woods and the fear of wolf attacks was based on real events. But in one case, a wolf was cornered by dogs and villagers and made a startling transformation. It was discovered that this man had made a pact with the devil to become a primal creature. This account took place during a time where fear of the supernatural ran rampant all over Europe and werewolf hunts between 1520 and 1630, were as common as the witch hunts in America during the mid to late 17th century.

Here is an opportunity to discuss Greek mythology that also testifies to the existence of shape-shifting werewolves. Legend has it that Zeus once disguised himself as a traveler and sought for hospitality in the court of a vicious Arcadian King named Lycaon. The King recognized the god and tried to kill him serving him human flesh. Zeus caught the terrible trick and did not eat. Outraged, He destroyed the palace and condemned Lycaon to spend rest of his life as a wolf. This mythology originated the word Lycanthrope which is used to describe the werewolf phenomenon.

Most of us don’t really concern ourselves with the historical aspect as we have been subjected to the onslaught of Hollywood tales that make up the majority of our werewolf lore. As you my know, a man who is attacked by a werewolf becomes a werewolf himself and he and anyone he attacks is doomed to walk the Earth as a beast or a cursed spirit of the dead until the head werewolf is killed. Since werewolves are not immortal, we have found ways to ward them off and kill them. Doubtless you have heard of the classic silver bullet. This arises from the many movies that have been made to tell the stories of the werewolves and their curse.

There is probably not enough web space in this blog to discuss all of the werewolf movies but I shall attempt to mention the most notable in my opinion:

  • 1935 – “Werewolf Of London” (The first movie about a werewolf to get on the big screen)
  • 1941 – “The Wolf Man” (which starred Lon Chaney, who became the first icon of classic werewolf films. He battled Dracula and Frankenstein and was a critical element of the early monster movie push. Starring in several other titles about The Wolfman including his final performance in this guise titled “Face Of The Screaming Werewolf” circa 1960)
  • 1957 – “I Was A Teenage Werewolf” (Look! It’s Michael Landon before his rise to stardom in the critically acclaimed television show Bonanza)
What followed is a string of movies throughout the 60’s and 70’s including films that attempted to further cash in on the movie monster craze by revisiting the Vs. theme. The persona of the werewolf was pitted against the likes of Dr. Jeckyll, Frankenstein (again), and other vampires. During this time the mantle of The Wolfman changed hands from Lon Cheney to Paul Naschy who went on to star in more than a dozen films about the iconic werewolf.

Entering the next era (the Silver age if you will) of werewolf movies, one of my favorites starts things off in 1980. “The Howling” that spawned 6 sequels throughout the 80’s and into the early 90’s, garnered a new generation of werewolf movie fans. I would certainly like to review this film in more detail some other time, but for now I would like to acknowledge the spectacular special effects of Rob Bottin. The next year (1981), “An American Werewolf In London” (Starring David Naughton) was released. This is, hands-down, my all time favorite werewolf movie that I will without a doubt review in a future post and discuss Rick Baker’s outstanding special effects contributions to the genre.

Honorable mention during this time period include:
  • 1981 – “Wolfen”
  • 1984 – “The Company of Wolves”
  • 1985 – “Silver Bullet” (Which brings Stephen King’s novella Cycle of the Werewolf to the big screen)
  • 1994 – “Wolf” (starring Jack Nicholson)
Now we are in what I call the modern era of werewolf movies and there are some titles that still make a trip to the megaplex worthwhile. “Underworld” (2003) brought back the classic vampire versus werewolf fight but in a whole new way. And most recently, “Van Helsing” featured a werewolf to supplement this archetypal tale of Dracula.

Aside from movies that I could go on about forever, I also wanted to mention another aspect of the werewolf phenomenon. There are many people who believe that the stories of history are not myths but real accounts that have been modified. Some even steer clear of the lycanthropy designation that is used to describe werewolves. Whereas this term refers to someone who suffers from a mental disease of fantasizing being a wolf, there are those that feel the true nature of the beast is a result of a curse, whether evil or self inflicted, that cannot be lifted through science.

  • Today's Cure song is "At Night" from the Seventeen Seconds CD - (1979) An interesting song that tells of the lonely viligence of a protector, but protection from what? Something in the night!

"At night
I hear the darkness breathe
I sense the quiet despair
Listen to the silence
At night
Someone has to be there"


Tuesday, October 05, 2004

In The Dark

Here is another poem I wrote awhile back. I think it captures the essence of how many feel when they are sick, depressed, or dealing with a personal demon:

In The Dark©

There are a lot of people passing me by,
the world is moving on.
Do they see me? Do they care?
It seems a hopeless battle.
As they fade into the fog,
the tears begin to flow.
No one knows my troubled heart,
nor my deepest fears.
Alone in the dark, I cry.
Can anyone hear me?

As ever I am open to comments and I look forward to bringing you another post tomorrow.

"Don't say anymore...
to me at all...
to me at ah-ah-ah-all! "


Watch This Space

Just to let my visitors know that I am still alive. I usually try to post two or three times a week and have some interesting ideas but time is my issue today. We will see if I can post my current musings later this afternoon.

I am here and willing to post, check back for a pulse later today!


Friday, October 01, 2004

The Thing

One of my favorite Sci-Fi/Horror movies is the 1982 John Carpenter version of “The Thing” Before I discuss it in detail, I do want to share some background. Some people may already know that this is a re-make of the 1951 movie titled “The Thing From Another World”. This 50’s B-movie classic was based on the novella "Who Goes There?" by John W. Campbell, which was written in 1938.

“The Thing From Another World” starred James Arness who had been making movies since 1947 but needed this movie and several others including another B-movie classic “Them” before he would find his western legacy in the role of Marshall Matt Dillon in the television series “Gunsmoke” circa 1955

Now, the 80s were a great era for horror movies and along comes John Carpenter who had already had success with “Halloween”, and “The Fog.” He dedicates an enormous amount of time and energy in re-making this classic B-movie into a cult classic movie of the 80’s!

The Story: An American scientific expedition to the frozen wastes of the Antarctic is interrupted by a group of seemingly mad Norwegians pursuing and shooting a dog. The helicopter pursuing the dog crashes leaving no explanation for the chase. During the night, the dog mutates and attacks other dogs in the cage and members of the team that investigate. The team soon realizes that an alien life form with the ability to take over other bodies is on the loose and they don't know who may already have been taken over.

As they piece together evidence and try to understand the mystery, they figure out that centuries ago, an alien spaceship had crash-landed in the Antarctic. The pilot was thrown clear and frozen in the ice until discovered by the Norwegian scientists. The scientist on the American team comes to comprehend that the alien is extremely hostile and because of its ability to alter its own cell structure to that of a consumed organism, it would be devastating to the entire world.

Persons of interest: The lead character is MacReady, a helicopter pilot, played by Kurt Russell, who incidentally also starred in one of Carpenter’s successful non-horror films called “Escape from New York.” The other very notable character is the senior mechanic called Childs played by Keith David. Keith is one of my favorite actors who went on to star in “Platoon”, “They Live”, and “RoadHouse” as well as the voice of Goliath in the hit cartoon series “Gargoyles.”

The special effects team did an outstanding job on this film. Rob Bottin (of “The Howling” fame) was mainly responsible for bring the creature to life. He was assisted by Stan Winston (who also worked on “Aliens” and “Jurrasic Park”), and a considerable contribution was made by Albert Whitlock who worked on many films including “The Andromeda Strain” There is a lot of blood and gooey, slimy effects that make this movie a gore-tastic time!

In the original movie screenplay, Charles Lederer proposes that the visitor from another planet may not be far different from examples of plants on Earth that think like the Venus Flytrap. It is a scene that takes place in a hydroponics lab (green house) while they are trying to determine the origin of the thing. There was a tribute to the original film that was cut out of this 1982 version of “The Thing”. This deleted scene was where a character named Palmer and Childs have teamed up to search for one of their missing team. They check in one of the storage rooms where plants are being grown using hydroponic methods. Palmer decides that the Thing may be capable of imitating plants and lets loose with the flamethrower, much to the disgust of Childs. What a great way that would have been to pay homage, on screen, to the movie’s predecessor.

I do not agree with other critics that this movie suffers from a low budget, poor production, ridiculous & unrealistic scripts, and pathetic acting. Carpenter did an amazing job at not only re-making a worthy classic, but also finding a way to gel all the elements into a damn good movie!

  • Today's Cure song is "The Walk" from the Japanese Whispers CD - (1985) A strange tune that may be about dreams. It is laden heavy with electronic sounds and bouncing keyboards.

"Visiting time is over And so we walk away And both play dead then cry out loud Why we always cry this way? "