Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Tingler

Welcome back Sporefans. This evening I’ll be reviewing The Tingler, a movie directed by William Castle and starring LOOK OUT BEHIND YOU! OH MY GOD!

Did you see it? Did you? I’m sorry, but... THERE IT IS AGAIN! LOOK OUT!

What? Nothing? Well... just be careful. It might come back at any time. What is it? Uh... nothing. Really. Just... Hey, let’s talk about the movie! Ha! Haha!

What? No, I’m not avoiding anything. Let’s just... no, it’s cool. There’s nothing there.


The Tingler stars Vincent Price as Dr. Warren Chapin, a man who discovers that when people die from fright the mechanism of their death is a creature that spawns at the base of the spine. Apparently this creature exists within each and every person and grows to cover the whole spine when someone is overcome with intense fear, eventually snapping their spine in half. However, the creature’s growth can be halted when the subject SCREAMS REAL LOUD! So if you’re Paul Reubens or an animatronic talking chair, you’ll probably be fine.

Yes, I know the premise of the movie sounds pretty hokey, but hear me out because William Castle is a mad genius.

It's NOT a tumor!

I was listening to the radio... yes, the radio. We work on a tight budget here Sporefans, there’s no cash for iPods. The morning DJ mentioned that it would be a really great idea to have a movie where something jumps out of the seats and scares the audience. Little did they know that a movie like that already existed: The Tingler. William Castle had buzzers installed in some of the seats in selected theaters. The buzzers were made from surplussed wing defrosters from World War 2 airplanes, so you can imagine the jolt they must have delivered to the posteriors of the audience members. These buzzers went off when the following scene was played at the climax of the movie.

I really dig the movie within’ a movie in The Tingler Sporefans, and I think it’s a really great idea... but none of us are going to be in any movie theaters with buzzers in the seats watching The Tingler because... they're not going to play it. If this was the only great scene in The Tingler, I would understand why you might pass on watching it. However, The Tingler has much more to offer than joy buzzers for your butt!

First off there’s a sce... HOLY CRAP TURN AROUND! NOW! HURRY!


You know Sporefans, I don’t often endorse products or services, but there’s this really great item you can buy on that I think you all might want to invest in. It’s a rear-view mirror for your monitor. You put one on either side of the monitor, thusly, and then you can see what’s sneaking up behind you. Who. I meant who.

Anyway, on to the...

No, it’s just... you have such pretty drapes. That’s all. I was just... admiring your drapery.

The Tingler also offers some great, non-butt related content. For example, it’s the first time you see someone take LSD in a movie. Which you can watch right now!

Sure, it’s not an accurate representation of and LSD trip, but it’s what the populace of the 1950’s thought might happen to you if you took LSD. Apparently they thought LSD just gave you waking nightmares and induced uncontrollable fear. Then again, they also believed that marijuana made you into a laughing psychotic killer with suicidal tendencies. Of course, they also thought that cigarettes were good for you and that they improved lung function. Most unbelievably of all, they thought Frank Capra movies were good.

You know Sporefans, I’d have my brains sucked out by a giant worm than watch a Frank Capra movie. I hope you feel that way too.

However, I think my favorite scene from The Tingler was the one shot with color. Not in color, Sporefans, but with color. In the scene, Martha Higgens (played by Judith Evelyn) is injected with LSD. Her character is a deaf mute woman who owns the movie theater that the Tingler attacks in the climax of the movie and who also happens to have Hemophobia. You know, a fear of blood. The LSD makes her see blood coming out of the faucets, and because she can’t scream the Tingler snaps her spine. Have a look at this awesome scene!

The effect was accomplished by filming parts of the scene in color and applying special make up to the actress and painting the room in monotone grays. This really allowed the color of the blood to “pop” on the screen and was TURN AROUND! TURN AROUND RIGHT NOW!

Did you see it?

All right Sporefans, I have to come clean. I wanted to do something special for this review. Something akin to what William Castle did with his movies. The buzzers in The Tingler were not the only theater theatrics created by William Castle. In The House on Haunted Hill Castle had a skeleton descend on the audience during the last scene. He also gave the audience special glasses in the movie 13 Ghosts that allowed them to view or not view the ghosts in every scene. So I thought to myself... “Spored, how can you reintroduce this sort of theatrical interaction to your readers... on a budget of $17.32?”

The Tingler just wants to be friends with you. Inappropriately. While you sleep.

I just wanted to figure out a way to get you Sporefans in the spirit of The Tingler. Instead, I may have inadvertently destroyed the human race.

And I’m really, very, very sorry about that.

See, I did a little research and I discovered that the monster in The Tingler is actually based on a real creature; the velvet worm. The velvet worm is native to the southern half of the globe and I knew a guy who knew a guy who sent me a box of fifty or so velvet worms. Now, they’re not really big, so they’re not really scary. They could be scary if they weren’t so tiny. And then I thought, “Hey, you know what makes things grow really, really big? Radioactive waste!”

Now you would think it would be hard to find a radioactive waste dump. Actually, it was harder obtaining the worms. Really, they’re all over the place these days. So I just drove past one, cut a hole in the box and chucked over the fence near the glowing green pool. I figured that they’d get to be about a foot long and then they’d be kinda scary.

Instead they grew to about fourteen feet in length.

Have you ever seen a velvet worm eat a security guard? They start by covering their prey in a sticky slime that immobilizes them. Then the worms bite their prey, who are all the while screaming things like “What is that thing?” and “My god, it’s a giant worm!” These screams don’t seem to immobilize the worms at all. Actually, they seem to be attracted to them.

Actually, the end result of being eaten by the giant worms looks a lot like this. But with less hands. They usually eat your hands first.

After the worms bite, they inject their prey with digestive fluids; which kills them pretty quickly. Then they munch down on poor... let’s see here... Calvin Hobbs of East Hanover, leaving his wife and two kids fatherless and destitute. Also, I got a nice wallet out of the... but I digress.

The most frightening thing of all is that these horrible velvet worms hunt in packs. And thanks to their sleek forms they can sneak up silently on their prey. So, again; really sorry about releasing giant killer radioactive stealth worms on the world. My bad. And while most of you are probably safe, taking a good look behind you every now and again might not be such a bad idea.

You know what might be a bad idea? Watching this trailer for The Tingler while there are giant worms on the loose. But you’re probably going to OH MY GOD LOOK OUT BEHIND YOU!!!


mycroft3x said...

Hey, she's from Red Bank! Oooooh, I see what the Rain Man of directors did there.

min said...

he can read his watch with amazing accuracy considering he's on an acid trip.