September 19th: The Baroness and I watched Crooked House, my obligatory Agatha Christie story for this season (I wasn’t able to find the 1974 Ten Little Indians and somehow this ended up on my list instead). I’d need spoiler space to get into which 1950s horror sub-genre foundational work this prefigures*, but in any case, Crooked House boasts a great cast and seems to have been inexplicably panned. If you like high production value adaptations of Christie’s work with actors like Terence Stamp, Glenn Close, Gillian Anderson, and Christina Hendricks, this is a lot of fun. (Yeah, technically this should’ve been part of the last post…somehow it got left out! In my house we blame Phoebe, the ghost from BVH’s childhood home-Editor)
Cast and Crew: Jason Patric, Corey Haim, Corey Feldman, Kiefer Sutherland, Dianne Wiest, Jami Gertz, Jamison Newlander, Edward Herrman, Barnard Hughes, Alex Winter, Joel Schumacher (director)
What It’s About: Recently divorced Lucy Emerson (Dianne Wiest) moves with her two sons from Arizona to Santa Carla, California to live with her eccentric father (Barnard Hughes). The two boys begin to realize there’s something not quite about the town, particular at night, when eerie undertones abound during the carnival like atmosphere on the boardwalk. The older, teenage Michael Emerson (Jason Patric) is drawn to a young woman named Star (Jami Gertz), and through her, to her perhaps boyfriend David (Kiefer Sutherland). Meanwhile, the younger Sam Emerson (Corey Haim) encounters the Frog brothers, Edgar (Corey Feldman) and Allan (Jamison Newlander) while shopping for comic books. The Frog brothers proclaim themselves to be vampire hunters, telling Sam that the town is infested with them.
David takes Michael out of town and introduces him to his gang of teenagers. Michael gives in to peer pressure and drinks from a bottle of wine offered by David, despite Star’s advice not to. On the following day, Michael begins showing the telltale signs of vampirism; a thirst for blood and no reflection among others. Now the race is on as Sam and the Frog brothers try to eradicate the vampires and cure those who haven’t fully succumbed, along with Michael struggling to save himself and Star. Will they fall?
Why Watch It Today?: Celebrate Kiefer Sutherland’s birthday with one of his most iconic roles. Remember whenever Jack Bauer saves America that it’s just a front for vampires.