I’ve been enjoying moving forward with Movie Valhalla since we pretty much finished up the AFI 100, and look forward to taking the site in some new, fun directions going forward. Therefore, we’ll be trying in some small way to try and get you through the dark, cold months of the coming months with several more of our themed film festivals, and you can watch along with us. You know, if you just happen to be stuck inside for whatever reason.
- We’ll be starting October 22, with ten straight days of HorrorFest 2021, featuring some classics like Dracula and A Nightmare on Elm Street, along with perhaps more esoteric, but must-see, entries from a few different continents. We’re planning a vote for our Halloween night feature from among several 1990s horror entries.
- In December we’re planning Our 2nd Annual Holiday Virtual Film Festival, including more favorites like A Christmas Story and How the Grinch Stole Christmas, along with maybe the first Christmas movie ever made.
- Starting January 1, 2022, we’ll be moving into the future with “2001: A Movie Odyssey,” featuring all movies from 2001. Today I think of 2001 as the year that started the modern franchise movie, with the first Lord of The Rings, Harry Potter and, with much less fanfare, The Fast and the Furious movies coming out. I’m sure Moulin Rouge! and Mulholland Drive will also be among the movies we’ll feature.
- I’m particularly looking forward to next February, for the full length of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, we’ll be featuring our own World Movie Games, with one movie each from the 16 highest medal winners in the Winter Olympics all time, along with 1 Wild Card entry each from South America, Africa, and Oceania, to ensure the whole world is represented. It should be really fun.
- Finally, in the lead-up to the March 2022 Oscars, we’re planning another Oscar-themed Virtual Film Festival. As we covered lesser-known Best Pictures this past year, we’re planning a week of the greatest Oscar-winning performances in the Best Actress category, featuring some of the best female performers of all time, including Janet Gaynor, Katherine Hepburn, and Sophia Loren, among others.
So, if you’re looking for what to watch on streaming this winter, why not try watching along with us for some of these fun Virtual Film Festivals. In the meantime, here’s our plan for Horrorfest 2021, starting October 22, so you can start your important planning. Voting will be opening soon for our Halloween feature!
10/22 – The Haunting (1963) – dir: Robert Wise – Between West Side Story and The Sound of Music, Wise directed this prototype haunted house story based on a Shirley Jackson novel.
10/23 – A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) – dir: Wes Craven – The movie that introduced us to Freddy Krueger has a reputation as (sort of) the thinking person’s slasher movie, and also features a very young Johnny Depp in a supporting role.
10/24 – Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari (The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari) (1920) – dir: Robert Wiene – Perhaps the definitive film of the German Expressionism movement, Wikipedia describes the plot as being about “an insane hypnotist who uses a somnambulist to commit murders.”
10/25 – Hausu (House) (1977) – dir: Nobuhiko Obayashi – Over the decades since its release this movie has gained a reputation as among the most insane of all time, it features several Japanese schoolgirls being “eaten by a house.”
10/26 – Cat People (1942) – dir: Jacques Tourneur – One of the all-timer “better than it sounds” movies, here is part of the Wikipedia description: “Newly-married Serbian fashion illustrator obsessed with the idea that she is descended from an ancient tribe of Cat People who metamorphose into panthers when aroused.”
10/27- Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) – dir: Don Siegel – This apotheosis of sci-fi paranoia, in which the heroes gradually realize their friends and loved ones are being replaced by alien “Pod People,” has been directly remade twice and influenced many other movies.
10/28 – La Maschera del Demonio (Black Sunday) (1960) – dir: Mario Bava – “The defining achievement of Italian Gothic Horror,” its grand guignol story about an executed witch from two centuries earlier wreaking havoc on her descendants had to be drastically edited in America and was banned for years in the UK.
10/29 – Evil Dead (1981) – dir: Sam Raimi – A very homemade, very fun, very bloody piece of low-budget horror nonsense that launched the careers of its director Sam Raimi and star Bruce Campbell, about a cabin beset by evil spirits after the ill-advised reading of the Necronomicon.
10/30 – Dracula (1932) – dir: Tod Browning – Yes, that Dracula, not the first vampire movie but probably the definitive one, with Bela Lugosi in the title role.
10/31 – Reader Vote Winner!
See you there!