The House That Screamed
That night, Marty climbs into a bath. Just as he's starting to relax, Death knocks on his door.Marty gets out of the bathtub, grabs a towel, and goes downstairs to answer the door, but Death ran off. That Death, he is a prankster, boy howdy! As soon as Marty goes upstairs, Death comes back and knocks again. For some inexplicable reason, the door knocking sound effect switches in mid-knock. Marty repeats the process, but this time we get to see his ass as he climbs out of the bathtub. How nice for us. This time, when Marty answers the door, he makes the mistake of stepping out onto the porch. The door closes behind him, locking him outside in a towel. Truly, this is the work of the Damned. Not the door thing, I mean this movie. Marty discovers that he's locked outside, so he goes around back and lets himself in through that door. Damn, he showed those ghosts what for. He should be a Ghostbuster.
Once he gets inside, Marty notices that the front door is now open. He looks around for any rapscallions sneaking in his house, and completely misses a ghost behind him. Thus far, the haunting has consisted of knocking on the door and running away and making faces behind Marty's back. "Poltergeist" this is not. The phone rings. Marty picks it up, but there's no one there. It rings again, and this time it's Kilpatrick, just checking in. They have a pointless conversation, and the moment Marty hangs up, the lights go out. He goes down to the basement to check the fuse box. And by "check," I mean "tap repeatedly with a flashlight." While he's down there, a doll on a string falls from the ceiling. The electric seagull sound plays, indicating that the doll is actually quite scary. Marty goes up to bed without fixing the fuse box. As he sleeps, he is woken by a child's laughter. He gets out of bed and finds a young girl in the hall. She tells him she's looking for his son. Being the tactful guy that he is, Marty yells at her that his son was in a fire and that he's dead. She insists that he's fine, but when Marty inquires what she means, she just looks at him. Little girls looking at him must be one of his buttons, because he screams and wakes up - it was just a dream. A laughable clipart skull flashes on the screen, and we cut to...
Day 2 - Marty types about getting locked out of the house, and congratulates himself for writing so well. Nothing makes for a better horror novel than getting locked out of your house in a towel, that's for sure. Great book, there, fuckface. We cut to an exterior shot of the whole house, then cut in closer as Marty comes out onto the porch. Oddly enough, the house is gray with white trim in that first shot and white with red trim in the second. Once again, the Polonia brothers try to pull a fast one on me. No dice, Polonias.
As Marty enjoys a tobacco cigarette on the porch, a fat, ugly woman comes up behind him. She's what we call in the movies "a free spirit" and what we call in real life "a stupid bitch." You can tell she's a free spirit because she doesn't give concrete answers to Marty's questions and she seems to have no concept on how to initiate social interaction with a stranger. This kind of character is annoyingly popular in Hollywood. They are usually played by Angelina Jolie, Kate Hudson, Milla Jovovovovich, or someone in that vein. There is a reason for that. In order to make their nonconformist-for-the-sake-of-being-nonconformist bullshit tolerable, free spirits must be incredibly attractive. They are always in excellent shape, due to days spent frolicking in fields and prancing in non-prancing areas because they are so free. From the looks of it, the only frolicking the free spirit in "The House That Screamed" ever did was through a family-size bucket of fried chicken. Because she horribly violates the "fewer chins than breasts" rule, her character doesn't work at all. Everything she says is needlessly contrary and annoying, and I hate her. There, I said it. She blathers on about how much she loves the house, including a passing mention of how if the house were a person, she would make love to it. She could make love to it while it's a house, she'd still crush it. She asks Marty if he's seen any ghosts. Suddenly, Marty doesn't know what she's talking about. The woman has to explain to him that the house is haunted, and Marty takes it all in like it's all new to him. Marty looks away for a moment, and when he looks back, the woman is gone. Throughout the entire scene, we hear rain and thunder sounds, but we can clearly see that it is a bright, sunny day. I think this movie has given me a tumor.
A few random shots of Marty typing and some shitty lightning graphics later, Marty makes a phone call to his publisher's office. Sal, a needlessly vulgar and disturbingly ugly man who works for the publisher, answers the phone. Sal literally fails to complete a single sentence without an unnecessary swear. He does whatever needs to be done to work them into the conversation, leading to such lines as, "Don't shit a kitten." That is all I will say to my firstborn child until he or she is six years old, just to make sure that his/her/its first memory of Daddy Dearest is "Don't shit a kitten." That'll cause some scars. Marty tells Sal that he may have to stay at the house longer than he thought. Apparently, books typically take two days or less to write. Not this one, though. This could easily stretch to three whole days. You can't rush quality writing like "Then I got locked out of my house wearing nothing but a towel." Sal is pissed, but he says he'll do what he can. We cut to later that night as Marty sits out on the porch. The free spirit woman walks up to him and immediately tries to rape him. Marty tries to pull away, so she accuses him of being afraid of her. She then tells him that she wants to have wild sex with him, which was never really in doubt, considering that she just tried to rape him. But now that the offer's out there, Marty goes for it. what follows is a scene that is permanently etched into my memory. Marty, who's not in peak physical condition himself, and Jabba the free-spirited Hutt have sex alright, and she's on top. Her arm fat jiggles with every bounce. When she bends down to kiss him, it looks like she's trying to swallow his head like a giant Milk Dud. Suddenly, her face turns black and red. Maybe it's supposed to look like she's a burn victim, or maybe it's supposed to look like her face came off. I don't know. Whatever it is, it's an improvement. Marty sits bolt upright in bed - he was dreaming - and lets out a blood-curdling scream. Well, it would be blood-curdling, but that sex scene curdled every last drop I had left in me.
He goes downstairs to try to type. As soon as he sits down, he gets the crap beaten out of him by an invisible force. At least, that's what I think happens. Marty jerks around in time with sound effects that could either be someone getting punched or a door opening. His invisible assailant also pulls his paper out of the typewriter and throws it around. Honestly, I think it was just a ghost trying to stop Marty from writing about his sexual encounter with Shamu the killer free spirit, and for that I am grateful. The shot jumps to the woman in red underwear, who does what she does best, namely stripping and writhing about in front of a black background. Marty sits bolt upright in bed - he'd been dreaming again. He screams, because if there's one thing that terrifies Marty Beck, it's attractive women (for a Polonia brothers movie) who strip and touch themselves.
Day 3 - This day starts off with a bang by plunging in medias rex into a conversation between Marty and Kilpatrick, which takes place on a park bench. Marty tells Kilpatrick about what has been happening to him in the house. When Kilpatrick asks him why he didn't just leave, Marty replies, that he wanted to leave, but really he didn't want to leave. His line makes no sense whatsoever, but Kilpatrick lets it slide for some reason, deciding to tell Marty about Jack Somethingunintelligible who once spent a night at the house and might have some answers. That night, Marty drives out to see Jack, who apparently spends his nights sitting in empty factories and wearing sunglasses. That's the life. The dialogue that follows is so terrible that I can't even mock it properly. Instead, I'm going to present it here and let you think what you will.
(Cue annoying whirring sounds.)
Jack: (As Marty approaches) "Enter... Marty Beck!"
Marty: "I came here to ta-"
Jack: "-To talk about the house, yes?"
Jack: "The house.... is alive. It knows what you think, it knows what you feel, it knows things you don't even know yet."
Marty: "Look. I'm writing a book, and I need to know what happened the night you stayed there."
Jack: "Stayed there? Stayed there? I didn't stay there. I was kept there."
Marty: "By ghosts?"
Jack: "If you would quit interrupting me, maybe I could finish the story, okay, ASSHOLE!"
(Marty gives an apologetic gesture that Jack can't see, because he's obviously blind. Cue annoying bubbling sounds.)
Jack: "I was driving down the road when my car broke down. I decided to hike it to town. I walked for a while, and I came upon the house. I should have known not to go in. I should have seen the devils in the window." (Cue shitty graphics of a black shape in a window, add more bubble sounds.) "Something made me go in. The things I saw in there would make a dead man scream. And the more I tried to push these... horrible sights out of my mind, the stronger they became."
Marty: "What did you do?"
Jack: " I pulled my eyes out." (Removes sunglasses, revealing swatches of strawberry Fruit Roll-Up over his eyes. Cue electric seagull sound for some reason.) "But I could still see them. Now get the hell outta here! Hoo hoo wa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!"
(Marty runs away like an idiot.)
Now, that would be first rate entertainment on its own, but this is also the triumphant return of Jhon! He breaks into Marty's house, mumbling something about looking for money. As luck would have it, there is a trail of crisp one hundred dollar bills on the floor. Now that, my friends, is a coincidence. Gohn follows the trail down into the basement, where it ends at the foot of a table. Sitting on top of the table is... the doll on a string! Oh man, totally cue the electric seagull sound. Then bore a hole in my skull with a chisel and let some of the stupid demons out. A girl and a boy appear out of nowhere, wielding sharp objects. Jonn tries to win them over by telling them that he's going to hurt them. The kids kill him by suffocating him in a plastic bag, sticking a knife through the top of his head, and chopping him up with an axe. Kickass. I'd like to point out to the cast and crew of "Night Screams" that even the goddamn Polonia brothers know that sound can travel through flimsy plastic. You can clearly hear Johan's poorly-acted gurgles as he is suffocated. Take that.