THE LAST KNOCK presents: Ominous Openings

The Last Knock

Regardless of genre, for any film to work, there must be an inciting incident that captures the imagination of the audience. As for horror, we take a look at many films that go for our throats right from the beginning. We’ll crash into THE HUNGER, ALTERED, FEAST, DAY OF THE DEAD, SHIVERS, DUST DEVIL, THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, and more ominous openings that lead us into intense realm of horror.

This episode’s SCREAM OUTS from Twitter: 

@AnnThraxx @RealJillyG @THENAMNATION @dvdinfatuation @palkodesigns @sg_lee_horror @NylaVox @SugaryLove09 @annaborchert @IrishKelly63 @d_m_elms @Tammysdragonfly @JohnSchaech @FriscoKidTX @LoudGreenBird @dixiefairy @CrypticPictures @AmandaBergloff @chitownjimmyxox @machinemeannow @AFiendOnFilm @VicsMovieDen @WilliamFriedkin @Sanchezonthemic

8 Replies to “THE LAST KNOCK presents: Ominous Openings”

  1. Deja and vu all over again. No yoking, Jonny, when you mentioned SALEM’S LOT, Amber and I were watching it on the tube. It was the scene where the main character, the writer, had made a crucifix out of two tongue depressors at the doc’s or morgue just before the deceased older lady, aka, vamp, rose from the table and attacked him. His newly constructed cross to it’s forehead saved him that time.
    Excellent fast start films all around from this show.
    I know you were discussing horror, but a few outside the genre popped in and out a bit.
    Amber suggested SCREAM and THE DEVIL’S REJECTS as great examples of this type film.
    In the non-horror area I’d say THE REVENANT started freezing hot, stayed frost-burning hot, and ended cold scorching. This one reminded me of THE THING, in that, both were filled with higher and higher peaks, saying screw the valleys folks. The tension in both was ever-growing and palpable. Tom Hardy’s chacter was easily ‘The Thing’ to Leonardo’s and the weather conditions were close to being silmilarly hostile.

    1. Hi, Ron! As always, thank you so much for listening, and for your excellent commentary. As for your lovely daughter, how the hell could we have forgotten SCREAM?! Man, what a miss on our part. Sigh. Then again, with almost 2,300 horror films to recall, it isn’t an easy task for me!

      Your description of THE REVENANT sold me on that film more than any other critique I have read to date. Thanks to you, I plan on watching the film in short order.

      Be well, my friend, and my very best to you and yours.

    2. Ron, tell AMBO she’s right on the money with her choices – the opening to SCREAM is a fantastic mini-movie all on its own, and while I hated THE DEVIL’S REJECTS when I saw it theatrically, it’s grown on me in a big way since – that shootout opening is fantastic, and the freeze-frame credits crawl is great. Good call, as well, on THE REVENANT – that is a such a clean, absorbing bit of filmmaking that pulls you in from the get-go.

  2. John Carpenter’s The Thing had a really telling opening as well. Maybe not action oriented, but certainly with an air of misery and dread and isolation.

    1. One of the things I love about Carpenter’s THE THING is how much mystery is crammed into the first 10 or so minutes – it’s a very atypical setup, especially considering the film’s big-budget Hollywood pedigree (I’m surprised Universal didn’t mandate reshoots to “clarify” the events). We can only speculate (like our characters) as to what is going on after the Norwegian’s been shot, and even then the film is just an evolving puzzle from that point forward, up until the end. So much wonderful ambiguity in that film.

    2. Absolutely! The atmosphere from the start totally set up what was to come in tone and story – an impossible uphill battle the men could not survive.

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