The Toast | HAPPY HALLOWEEN with the GREATEST HORROR MOVIE MUSIC!

Music is an essential part of a movie. It can create tension during crucial scenes or set the tone for the whole movie, and some people even identify the movie by it’s score.  In honor of Halloween, I’ve complied a list of some famous (and so

me of my favorite) movie scores of horror movies.


Halloween – John Carpenter

 A simple song written by the director himself, this theme song still sends chills down moviegoer’s spines to this day.  The song was written in 5/4 meter, an usual time measurement for music, which I think is very appropriate. The song builds up a lot of tension, but it never seems to break and projects a very ominous tone. When I hear this song, I start to think I should check behind me and make sure Michael Myers isn’t sneaking up behind me… then maybe go lock the doors. If music is suppose to set the tone of the movie, then Halloween‘s main theme did its job.

 

Psycho – Bernard Herrmann

Anyone who has seen Alfred Hitchcock’s iconic film Psycho has undoubtedly heard Herrmann’s Psycho Suite, but it’s not the entire suite that really sticks with me when I think of this movie. The music in this movie that sticks out to me most is during the infamous shower scene. The set up is perfect; naked, vulnerable and defenseless in a shower when all of a sudden… someone is slowly sneaking up on you *cue the violins* and you’re suddenly being stabbed and fighting for your life. I loved how the shrill of the violins almost matched up perfectly to the stabbing motions. Just makes the movie (and the music) so much creepier.

 

Jaws – John Williams

Yet another simple theme song. The song only has eight notes, but maybe that’s all Williams had time to write before Jaws made his move on an unsuspecting victim. I’d be lying to you if I said I didn’t hum this to myself every time I went swimming; pool, lake, ocean, doesn’t matter. I’d also be lying to you if I told you I didn’t freak myself out enough to get out of the water after humming this tune.

 

 

Friday the 13th – Harry Manfredini

Ok, so this isn’t really music, but I think that’s what makes the iconic whispers of composer Harry Manfredini so scary. It’s totally quiet then you hear those whispers. What the whispers translate to is “ki, ki, ki, ma, ma, ma”. While that sounds like gibberish to you, what Pamela Voorhees is hearing in her head is her son, Jason, saying “kill, kill, kill, mom, mom, mom.” So how did Manfredini get that cool whispering echo effect? After watching the documentary His Name was Jason: 30 years of Friday the 13th I found out that Manfredini is only using the syllables “ki” and “ma” and running them through a microphone with a delay effect.

Next time you watch a scary movie, make sure to pay special attention to the music you’re hearing. It’s not just there as a filler, it’s there to create a mood, and not just for that specific scene you’re watching, but for the entire movie. Listen if you dare… and Happy Halloween.

 

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Written by:Katie Sperduti

 

 

 

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The Toast | Another Paranormal Activity…4

It is with a heavy heart that I write this review for you. I finally get some time to go out for a nice night at the movies this past weekend and I leave upset. There were two reasons for this: 1) The obnoxious teenagers talking loudly in front of

us (Nick Newert totally understands how I feel about this) and 2) The movie was a complete waste of $10.50.

The first mistake was going out on opening night of this movie; I should have known it was going to be packed and intolerable. I take partial blame for this. My second mistake was going to the movie itself. We went and saw Paranormal Activity 4, even against my better judgment. Now, this movie wasn’t the worst thing I’ve ever seen, but it’s definitely something I should have waited until it was available for renting.
The movie is the fourth in the series that began as a small budget film. Part of the problem is that the writers/directors of this film have taken this story and driven it completely in the ground, which is the case for most popular franchises.
The film begins where the second one left off (yes, a little confusing) and it mentions that the whereabouts of Hunter and Katie are unknown. If you’re a little behind on the films, Katie is the woman who experiences the haunting in the first movie and Hunter is her nephew.

The Paranormal Activity series did not go in a set order. The first was about Katie and Micah and their experience, the next about Katie’s sister, Kristi and her family’s experience. The third took place when Kristi and Katie were just children, and the fourth… well… the fourth is a completely new family… or so we think it is.

After we learn that Katie (Katie Featherson) and her nephew were never found, the movie then starts following a small suburban family. Alex (Kathryn Newton) is recording her brother Wyatt’s (Aiden Lovekamp) soccer game when she notices a little boy staring blanking into the field. She doesn’t think much of it until later when they’re driving home and she points the young boy out to her mother Holly (Alexondra Lee). The boy turns out to be the neighbor’s child. Later that evening, there are ambulances and cop cars at the neighbor’s place. Holly announces that the neighbor boy, Robbie, will be staying with them a few days while his mother is in the hospital.

Strange things start happening when Robbie comes to stay, like for instance, Wyatt’s toys turn on by themselves or chandeliers fall for no reason. Alex decides to have her friend Ben (Matt Shively) help her set up cameras all around the house. The footage they find is really not all that terrifying and the kid talks to the Xbox (a little nod to Poltergeist). Pretty dull.

The movie picks up when it’s about 75% done, but even then, it didn’t really save it. It moved very slow and tried to use cheap scares to keep the movie interesting (a couple startled me, but the rest were too predictable). My suggestion is to wait until this comes out on DVD, to save yourself the money and if you’re not enjoying it, you can just turn it off. Here’s hoping there’s not a Paranormal Activity 5.

 

 

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Written by: Katie Sperduti

 

 

The Toast | Ellie Goulding’s Halcyon

It’s no surprise that Ellie Goulding has become a very popular artist. With the success of her last album and her hit “Lights” getting a lot of airplay on popular radio stations, everyone has anticipating the release of Ellie Goulding’s secon

d album. Well, the wait is over!

You may already be familiar with the first single from the record Halcyon. “Anything Could Happen” (and Goulding herself) is featured in a commercial for “Beats by Dre,” a headphone line created by Dr.Dre. In typical Goulding fashion, the song has an up-tempo electronic beat. What I enjoyed the most about this song is towards the end when it reaches a giant crescendo as she’s singing, “I know it’s gonna be.” Yes, this is the part that is featured in the commercial, but it is also (in my opinion) the strongest part of the song.

A favorite track of mine is called “My Blood.” It sounds like it was built around a heavy drum track, which is not necessarily a bad thing. The contrasting elements of her voice, the drums, the piano and even the chanting that occurs later in the song all make for a really interesting and enjoyable experience. It still had some of the electronic element that most of her music has, but I liked that this song was so different from the others.

“Only You” is another favorite off the album. With a title like this, you’d think this was passionate love song, but it’s actually not. With lyrics like “Only you can be the aching in my heart
My enemy, the only animal I couldn’t fight You hold me in the dark when storms arrive,” it’s kind of like saying “I love you, but I hate you.” I like that the song has a bit of conflict in it.

The title track “Halcyon” sounds like another troubled love song. “You show me what it feels like to be lonely You show me what it feels like to be lost I take your hand for you to let it go.” Though it appears she may be beaten down, she chants over and over “it’s gonna be better” as if she is trying to convince herself in order to get through the day.

This album had a very intimate feel to it. In my opinion, hardcore fans will really like this album, but it may not have the same mainstream appeal to it. I can’t think of any songs, besides the first single, that will really resonate with a pop radio crowd, with the exception of a bonus track that features Calvin Harris. “I need your Love” is a fun, infectious dance track that enhances the album, but if you don’t buy the deluxe version, you may be missing out.

I can’t get enough of this album. I’ve listened to it over and over since it’s October ninth release and it hasn’t gotten old yet. I love that she wasn’t afraid of the sophomore slump and took a chance with this album. It is that fearlessness that will carry this album to the same popularity as her debut. Check out this album!

The Toast | Stake Land

Twilight fans have ruined it for every vampire fan. After Edward Cullen was introduced to the world, everyone now immediately assumes that vampires have to be brooding teenagers who sparkle. How does that work?! Vampires don’t sparkle; t

hey can’t even go into the light!

Remember real vampires? Ones that can’t go into the light and didn’t look like a boy band member? I was pretty sure I’d never see one of those again. I turned on the SyFy channel the other day and came across a vampire movie. I was hesitant at first, but ended up being pleasantly surprised. Stake Land (2012) is a story about a young boy named Martin who witnesses the gruesome slaughter of his family by a vampire. He survived after a vampire hunter, who is only referred to as “Mister” throughout the movie, intervenes and saves him.

Mister (Nick Damici) teaches Martin (Conor Paolo) how to fight and protect himself, but this isn’t a loving relationship. It’s a relationship solely based on survival since the majority of the human race has been wiped out (think The Walking Dead with vampires instead of zombies.) The goal is to make it to Canada or “New Eden,” where there is military protection and more survivors. During the travels, they come across a woman who calls herself Sister (Kelly McGillis) and she joins them. But, everyone these travelers meet along the way is not as sweet as Sister.

This makeshift “family” gets ambushed by a fundamentalist group called “The Brotherhood,” which is led by Jebedia Loven (Michael Cerveris) who sees the vampire plague as God’s work. The Brotherhood takes the family as prisoners, and one of them (the leader’s son) even tries to take advantage of Sister. When Mister kills Jebedia’s son for what he almost did, Loven punishes Mister by leaving him abandoned and defenseless in a group of vampires.

Sister and Martin escape, and to their surprise, Mister has survived his punishment and is ready to continue their journey towards safety. On the way, the trio meets a marine named Willie (Sean Nelson), and a pregnant woman named Belle (Danielle Harris) who are both looking to make it to New Eden. Willie mentions that he has also had a run in with The Brotherhood. The group decides to go after Jebedia. They successfully capture him and tie him to a tree, but this is not the last they will see of him.

What I really liked about this movie was the twist on the apocalypse scenario. Usually in these situations, the group is running from zombies and searching for a cure of the virus that most likely turned everyone into a zombie. In this movie, there is no search for a cure and the only goal is survival.

Stake Land was a gritty, fresh twist on a story (and monsters) that everyone is very familiar with and in my opinion, redeemed vampires from the sissy and sparkly reputation the currently have. If you’re looking for a vampire movie with a little more grit and less sparkle, Stake Land is the perfect choice.

The Toast | The Loved Ones

In the month of October, it is quite rare for me to watch anything but horror movies, and I’m sure you’ve noticed that with my slew of horror reviews. As I’ve said before, as much as I love the genre, it’s hard for me to get excited about scary movi

es cause the majority of them are disappointing or only “so-so” to me. I’m happy to report that a movie that I’ve been looking at for a while did not disappoint!

I have been looking at The Loved Ones for about a month now. Every time I go to the Redbox, I see the cover, which is an actress in a pink dress and pink crown holding a drill, and I try to convince myself to watch it. It’s an older movie that debuted at the Toronto Film Festival in 2009. From there, it only played in film festivals until the following year. In my opinion, it was well worth the wait.

While watching a preview for this movie, I saw someone (didn’t catch the critics name) describe this movie as “Texas Chainsaw Massacre meets Pretty in Pink.” While an awesome description, I think “Misery meets Pretty in Pink” is a more accurate. The movie begins with Brent (Xavier Samuel) and his father driving down the road when suddenly Brent notices a pale figure in the road and swerves to avoid hitting it. POSSIBLE SPOILER he ends up wrapping the car around a tree and killing his father.

Fast-forward 6 months later and it’s the end of the school year. The school is putting on a dance and Lola (Robin McLeavy) asks Brent to the dance. He politely turns her down because he is already going with his girlfriend, Holly (Victoria Thaine). Big mistake.

Brent is fairly troubled after the trauma of the accident, and so is his mother, Carla (Suzi Dougherty). She is so traumatized by the loss of her husband that she does not like the idea of her son riding in a car with another teenaged driver to go to the dance. Brent goes to blow off some steam when someone sneaks up on him and drugs him.

SUPRISE! It’s Lola and her deranged father (John Brumpton). If Brent won’t go to the dance with Lola, she’s going to bring the dance to him… while he’s tied up in her basement.

Lola is a dead ringer for Annie Wilkes, Kathy Bates’ character in Misery. She’s obsessed, delusional, and violent and won’t take no for an answer, but Lola has what Annie Wilkes lacked: a partner in crime. Daddy is just as messed up and violent. In fact, when Brent does not play by Lola’s rules, she cries for Daddy who happily obliges with a hammer (most of the time).

What I really enjoyed about the film was that though it was violent, it wasn’t necessarily gory. There were definitely parts that even made me cringe, but it was much in the same way that Misery did. Lola is definitely not a girl I would want to make angry. The movie, as a whole, was tense, suspenseful and entertaining. If you liked Misery, you’ll enjoy The Loved Ones.

The Toast | Foxglove Hearts Reviewed

This is not a normal review that I usually do about the EYS authors and their stories. Why is this one different? This story is not fully finished yet. I have been getting wrapped up in this story and look forward to every new chapter, and th

is week’s “review” gives my reasons of why you should also be looking forward to every chapter of “Foxglove Hearts” by Suzette Kramer.

Most girls went through a horse phase while growing up. I know a lot of the girls I grew up with rode horses and were pretty much obsessed. That bug never seemed to bite me, but there was something about “Foxglove Hearts,” which has a heavy equine theme, that really interested me.

The story begins with a young woman named Mallari Jones, who has just finished up her master’s degree, receiving a phone call in the middle of the night. In most cases, a phone call that wakes you up in the middle of the night is never good news and this call is no different.

The caller lets Mallari know that her parents have been in a horrible car accident. When Mallari arrives to the hospital, the nurse is only mentioning the condition her mother is in, but nothing about her father. I don’t want to spoil the story too much, but the fate of Mallari’s parents is not so good.

After a long struggle to keep her family’s farm afloat and to keep her family together, Mallari had to make the tough decision to sell her beloved White Cove Farms. With her sister, Staci, leaving for college in Mid-August, and the farm barely making it by, she knew she couldn’t handle running the place on her own any longer. After selling, Mallari found a new job and a new home at the prestigious Foxglove Acres.

The Monarque’s, the owners of Foxglove, were very generous to allow Staci to stay with Mallari until she left for school. What they didn’t expect when they arrived was Bryce Monarque.  When the Jones girls arrive at his home, he is immediately attracted to Mallari. Unfortunately for him, Mallari has a boyfriend and he’s the boss’s son. Not to mention, he’s also a bit of a player.

Speaking of Mallari’s boyfriend, Chad, they have a bit of an odd relationship. They’ve never had any sort of physical contact besides cuddling and holding hands. They started as best friends and it turned into more. When Mallari started moving to her new home, Chad seemed to be working more out of town. After helping her sister move into her dorm, Mallari decides to stop by and pick up the sunglasses she left at Chad’s apartment.  It was also an excuse to see him. She was getting sick of the long distance relationship and the fact he wasn’t returning her phone calls didn’t help either. What she discovers that night at his apartment changes the relationship between the two.

After that night, Mallari begins to regain focus on her job, there was a lot going on at the farm that needed her attention. Now that Chad is out of the picture, is that going to change her relationship with Bryce?

I’m excited to see where the story is going to go from here. The only downside of this story is the equine jargon. If you’ve never had any experience with it, it can throw you off a little, but not so much to where the story is no longer enjoyable. If you haven’t started reading Foxglove Hearts, there’s no better time than now.

Disney Cartoon Themes In Other Languages

We all loved the Disney Afternoon as kids. Shoot, we all would love it now if such a thing existed. Say what you will about the Disney Corporation but their late 80s and 90s cartoons were the stuff. Additionally, as Disney is wont to have, the theme

music for these cartoons was amazing. Well written, tight, catchy, and tells you everything you need to know…almost each one is a classic. But you know what’s great about the internet? We can look these songs up to hear how they sounded in other countries. Why would we do that? I dunno. Why do we watch videos about cats?

Ducktales in Hindi

 

 

Darkwing Duck in Dutch

The Adventures of the Gummi Bears in Spanish

Chip & Dale Rescue Rangers in Japanese