Category Archives: video

Hop-py Chinese New Fear!

In the spirit of last year’s in-depth look at the surprisingly monster-related origin of Chinese New Year, I had wanted to discuss the Jiang Shi, more commonly known as the “Chinese Hopping Vampire.” But as the lousy winter weather has robbed me of the time to research and write such an article, I’ll have to go with my back-up plan and show a movie clip. Thanks to Gerezous, here’s a little something from Robo VampireM:

Naturally, you’re going to want to know more. In 1985, the Hong Kong comedy Mr. Vampire popularized the use of jiang shi in films and spawned yearly sequels until 1992 while in 1987, RoboCop was a worldwide box office success. In 1988, Filmark International decided to cash in on both with one of its trademark patchwork films. By combining footage from a Thai action movie with newly-shot scenes of a cyborg battling hopping vampires, all connected loosely by a drug smuggling ring, Filmark created weirdest mockbuster of all time. Get this: Although the “Robo Warrior” footage was only loosely inspired by RoboCop, several of the vampire scenes were directly based on scenes from the original Mr. Vampire!

Sun Nien Fai Lok!
Xin Nian Kuai Le!
Happy Chinese New Year!

Advertisements

High-Tech Haunted Houses

For the past two Halloween Countdowns, I’ve always had at least one haunted attraction review. Sadly, it’s looking more and more like that won’t be the case this year. Ironically, my busy schedule for the countdown leaves me with zero free time to check out any of the few haunted attractions that are within reasonable driving distance. As for my usual method of reviewing a haunt I’ve been to in years past, my well (of four) attractions that haven’t definitely ceased operation seems to have dried up.

One attraction is definitely still open, but their web site is lacking in certain information I require and I have been unable to contact them. Similarly, there’s another haunted house that I’m not sure is still in operation, and I’m never able to reach a person whenever I try calling the company that runs it. I was able to contact one last week, but they were still undecided as to whether or not they would be doing it again this year! Finally, the last haunt on my list has been replaced with a differently themed haunt run by the same organization that ran the original (and is set up at the same location), but is allegedly so different (and so awful) that reviewing the one I went to would be pointless. What’s a guy to do?

Well, besides hope that Strange Jason gets to go to the haunted trail that invited him to attend, I live vicariously through videos of haunted attractions. Along with Living Dead Live!, the following video from the official CBS Youtube channel was enough to make me feel better about the whole matter:

If the haunted attraction review sites I have linked to in the past aren’t enough of a consolation for you, check out:

Haunted Illinois
Is It October Yet?
Haunted House Chicago

Alternately, you can look at these classic articles about various haunted attractions:

Dracula’s Castle
Harvest of Horrors
The “Ultimate Haunt”
Witch Dungeon Museum
Barrett’s Haunted Mansion