Posts Tagged ‘Ghosts’

The Annual Fark Scary Story Thread: 2012 Edition

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

The annual Fark Scary Story Thread is up. The perfect thing to read while waiting for trick or treaters to come…in the dark…

And here are the previous Scary Story Threads:

  • 2011
  • 2010
  • 2009
  • 2008
  • 2007
  • 2006
  • 2005
  • 2004
  • A Nice, Spooky Haunted Building Story

    Saturday, October 22nd, 2011

    Humper Monkey’s Ghost Story has just about everything you could ask for in a haunted building story. Inexplicable occurrences, dead bodies, a Nazi past, and lots of general creepiness. Oh, and it’s theoretically true. It seems to have originally been posted on Something Awful.

    Be forewarned that it’s really long; plan to set aside an hour or two if you want to read the whole thing, as it’s easily novella length.

    And, if that weren’t enough, there seems to be more to the story here. It gets a bit less subtle.

    I also hope Humper-Monkey gets a cut of this, and it’s not just somebody ripping him off.

    When I Think NASCAR, “Terry Gilliam” is the First Name That Comes to Mind

    Monday, October 18th, 2010

    If you haven’t heard, Terry Gilliam is making a NASCAR-themed short film that will premiere on Halloween and then be available free online. Sounds like a ghost story/Sleepy Hollow sort of thing.

    A few random observations:

    • I’ll watch it.

    • While I’m firmly in the “I’m not watching a bunch of guys turn left for two hours” camp, I have no particular antipathy to the sport.
    • I’m still amused by this Fark headline: “New Dale Earnhardt documentary to be in theaters next year. Don’t mean to spoil it for you, but it goes left turn, left turn, left turn, right turn, death”
    • This Tom Wolfe piece on the origins of NASCAR in the bootlegging industry of Appalachia is a great piece of writing.
    • Maybe Gilliam is a big NASCAR fan, though I dare say you would be hard-pressed to glean it from his films.
    • I’m glad he’s getting work.
    • I have a sinking suspicion that we’re going to see a lot more movies made this way: As promotional loss-leaders for products. (“The Googleing: An M. Night Shyamalan Film”)

    Movie Review: Silk

    Saturday, August 7th, 2010

    Movie: Silk
    Director: Chao-Bin Su
    Writer: Chao-Bin Su
    Cast: Chen Chang, Yosuke Eguchi, Kuan-Po Chen, Kar Yan Lam, Barbie Hsu, Bo-lin Chen, Chun-Ning Chang, Fang Wan,

    I can honestly say that this is the first horror movie I’ve seen using fractals as the main plot device.

    A modestly-budgeted Taiwanese film, Silk follows a team of researchers using a Menger Sponge in an attempt to trap a ghost, ostensibly as part of government-funded anti-gravity research. More specifically, they plan to capture the ghost of a child trapped in a single room in a Taipei tenement, repeating the same actions over and over again. Hashimoto (Yosuke Eguchi) is the crippled leader of the team with an ulterior motive, while Tung (Chen Chang, the desert bandit love interest from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) is the “man of action” brought in because of his skills at keen observation and lip-reading. Naturally, as the research progresses, complications ensue. For one thing, the ghost really doesn’t like people looking at him, and he can reach into their chests and stop their hearts…

    This harks back to a number of early SF works on scientific methods for capturing ghosts or the soul. The Menger Sponge functions as a sort of universal plot device: because of its ability to store different wavelengths of energy, not only does Hashimoto intend to use it as a ghost storage jar, but they also use special Menger Sponge film to photograph the ghost, Menger Sponge eye-spray to see the ghost, coat the walls of the room to prevent the ghost from escaping, etc. It has just enough of a veneer of plausibility to engage your sense of disbelief, and is certainly more plausible than the magic icky fluid in District 9.

    This is a very solid, well-paced ghost story with some intellectual novelty, albeit one that owes a number of stylistic elements to recent Japanese horror movies like Ringu and Ju-On. While modestly budgeted, it doesn’t come across as cheap, and the special effects are simple but effective. (The only place where they fail is in the CGI for an SUV crash, which looks like it could have been rendered in the latest Grand Theft Auto. Even so, it’s still miles above the digital bloodshed in Ugandan action films.) Best of all, they’ve eschewed all the boo-shock scares that infest modern horror films in favor of a certain amount of depth and subtlety.

    The DVD contains deleted scenes and outtakes that were properly excised. However, do watch the director’s original ending, which is considerably darker, more effective, and more appropriate than the one in the film.

    Here’s a trailer:

    Like all fractals, Menger Sponges engender a certain geeky fascination, so I’ve found a couple of videos that show various Menger Sponge animations and recursions.

    Here’s a Menger Sponge recursion (which is far less disturbing than The Hasselhoff Recursion):

    A level 6 Menger Sponge:

    It is not, to my mind, as interesting as a Mandelbox: