Halloween is upon us and with it comes scary movies. We watch them from the comfort of our own homes, enjoying the discomfort, pain, and even death inflicted upon the unlucky characters. We scream, we laugh, but at the end of the day we forget about it and move on. I mean, it’s only a movie right? Wrong. What if next time it’s you in the horror movie situation? What essential items would you need to survive the inevitable slaughter? Well the kind folks over at Man Crates have given me the chance to answer that question. They’re a cool company that takes the stress out of buying gifts for men by offering a themed crate that needs to be opened in the manliest way; with a crowbar. They’ve asked me to come up with a crate full of essential items for anyone hoping to survive horror movie massacre.
First things first, the ultimate horror movie survival crate must have a lighter in it. Think of a movie monster that isn’t susceptible to fire? OK, there’s probably a few but for the most part all living (and living-dead) things have one common weakness; fire. Sometimes fire might not be the answer, I think we can all agree a flaming zombie could be worse than a normal one, but used well fire usually is the cure-all to most horror movie problems. The thing in The Thing has pretty much no weakness except fire, the xenomorphs in the Alien series are near invincible right up until they come in contact with fire, and The Walking Dead proved fire can be good against zombies in the right circumstances when Carl burns down a barn full of walkers. Plus fire illuminates so you’ve got a light source covered too, no more silly walking through the woods in the complete darkness waiting to be unceremoniously picked off. I suppose a lighter suddenly becomes useless when the fuel runs out but until then you’ll be golden.
4. A Cool Gun
A gun is a pretty obvious inclusion into this theoretical survival crate but just ‘a gun’ simply won’t do. It’s gotta be a cool gun, the sort of gun where it doesn’t matter how much damage you do but how cool you look doing it. It doesn’t have to be as fancy as the Aliens plasma rifle, it could be a something simply as awesome as Rick Grimes’ signature revolver. The limited amount of bullets and slow fire rate might make you think it’s not all that great for the shuffling hordes of the undead but as Rick has shown it can be pretty versatile. A hand cannon one minute, a club to bash brains in with the next, all the time looking f*cking awesome. Rick hasn’t survived the apocalypse this long with some weak ass pea shooter, no he’s had the most badass gun in the increasingly shitty world. But that isn’t the most important thing you’ll need in the upcoming horror-pocolypse…
It’s all well and good having the weapons and tools to survive an prolonged encounter with the undead or masked killer or angry werewolves but what do you do in the down time? Wouldn’t the world of Rick Grimes and the gang be a little more enjoyable if they had a portable DVD player (and some batteries)? Wouldn’t the men in Dog Soldiers have found it a little more bearable if they had a game of Monopoly to play? These things need thinking about. What about if it was you, holed up in some creepy cabin somewhere in the middle of the woods, tying to avoid being the next victim of a some masked fiend. Wouldn’t you appreciate having a good book to read to pass the time? Or having some portable device loaded with all the episodes of Breaking Bad on it? If you’re probably going to be skinned alive by some crazed killer anyway you may as well have some Bryan Cranston in your life before you go. Plus one of the biggest causes of deaths in horror films is the irreversible psychological damage caused. Think the cast of Event Horizon, of Pandorum, Sam Neill in In The Mouth of Madness, Amelia in The Babadook, the list goes on. A little mental distraction would go a long way to stave off the craziness.
2. Ethan Hawke’s Sweet Cardigan
If you’ve seen the actually pretty great Sinister then you’ll know it wasn’t the cool and original 8mm snuff film aesthetic that stood out. No, the most eye catching thing in the film was main character Ellison Oswalt’s (Ethan Hawke) cool ass sweater cardigan thing. It would be useful in a couple of ways for the upcoming horror-pocolypse. Firstly it would be essential for the cold weather conditions of the woods at night when you’re being chased by a chainsaw wielding inbred. I mean a lot of horror film situations take place at night so naturally it’d be cold. And not only will it keep you warm while being murdered by Mr Boogie but perhaps more importanty; you’d look pretty cool. Maybe you couldn’t pull it off on the level Ethan Hawke can but you’d still look cool. And you’d be comfortable, and when you’re being chased through a cold forest by werewolves/zombies/inbred hillbillies, or being murdered by the ridiculous Mr Boogie, comfort is always a bonus.
1. A Book of Witty One-Liners
The most important thing to posess in a horror movie situation, in this writers honest opinion, is a back catalogue of witty one-liners to say upon the death of the monster. Think Brody’s “smile you son of a bitch!” from Jaws. Even if you don’t make it, there’s no reason you can’t say something cool before you go. Spoon in Dog Soldiers saying “I hope I give you shits!’ before being devoured by a werewolf comes to mind. Other exmples more useful to your theoretical situation include MaCready’s “Yeah, fuck you too!” from The Thing and Ripley’s classic “Get away from her you bitch!” from Aliens, both snappy one-liners that could be applied to whatever monster you’re faced with. Plus both of these characters lived so spouting off a couple of cool lines couldn’t hurt your chances of survival either. But, at the end of day, with a trusty book of possible one-liners by your side it won’t matter what happens to you. Whether your the final girl who lives until the end or the stoner/promiscuous jock/black guy who dies first, it won’t matter as long as you look awesome doing it.
So there you go, not only have I helped you prepare for the ineviatable slaughter but I’ve hopefully informed you how to be the coolest one there. And if all else fails, just arm yourself with the crowbar you’ll need to get into your Man Crate.