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The Historic State Theater is providing two weekends full of Halloween films.
Friday and Saturday is a tribute to women who star in creepy films in a Ladies of Horror weekend. The weekend begins with Bette Davis and Joan Crawford in “What Ever Happened to Baby Jane” (1962).
This story of sisterly torment will make viewers think their sibling rivalries are nothing but child’s play. The psychological thriller was nominated for five academy awards with one win for best costume design.
The Hudson sisters are followed by the Stephen King classic “Carrie” (1976). The remake hits theaters Friday and the original film is considered a horror classic.
The story of an awkward teen, her overbearing mother and a struggle for belonging is complicated by Carrie’s power of telekinesis, causing her emotions to unleash on her classmates at the prom. The film stars Piper Laurie along with Sissy Spacek, Amy Irving and John Travolta in the beginning of their careers. The film was nominated for two Oscars.
“Carrie” was directed by “Scarface” director Brian DePalma.
The weekend concludes with “Rosemary’s Baby” (1968).
Mia Farrow and Ruth Gordon star in the Roman Polanski film nominated for two academy awards, winning a best supporting actress award for Gordon.
A young couple move into an apartment building filled with peculiar neighbors when a pregnancy starts a strange series of events for Rosemary.
The following weekend is the theater’s Halloween film series. The series features horror classics, comedy and a kid-friendly option.
The series begins with the Mel Brooks classic “Young Frankenstein” (1974) starring Gene Wilder, Peter Boyle, Marty Feldman, Terri Garr and Madeline Kahn. Even this comedic farce was nominated for two academy awards.
It follows the story of Dr. Frankenstein’s grandson who follows in the family business. The movie recently was made into a Broadway musical.
The series also includes classics “Psycho” (1960), “The Wolf Man” (1941) and “The Omen” (1976).
“Psycho,” an Alfred Hitchcock film, starring Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles and Janet Leigh, mother of “Halloween” star Jamie Lee Curtis. This film made taking a shower terrifying and made travelers leery of any motel called Bates. It was nominated for four Oscars.
“The Wolf Man” features early horror staples Lon Chaney and Bela Lugosi, who both starred in their fair share of monster movies.
In “The Omen,” Gregory Peck and Lee Remick have their hands full when they find their son is the antichrist in this Richard Donner film. It won an Oscar for best original score and was nominated for best original song.
If these films are a bit too scary, the theater also is providing a family friendly option, Walt Disney’s “Hocus Pocus” (1993). The film is directed by Kenny Ortega, who was Michael Jackson’s choreographer, and stars Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy as three sisters who are witches.
Over the years, most horror movies have moved from chilling, suspenseful stories with strong acting to slasher movies with high body counts.
This reveiwer is the first to confess to being a horror movie chicken but I have seen a few of these classics and as far as filmmaking goes, modern horror films rarely stack up to the classics.
If you go:
“What Ever Happened to Baby Jane” (Unrated) - 7 p.m. Friday, $3
“Carrie” (R) - 6:45 p.m. Saturday, $3
“Rosemary’s Baby” (PG-13) – 9 p.m. Saturday, $3
“Young Frankenstein” (PG) - 7 p.m. Oct. 24, free
“Psycho” (PG) - 7 p.m. Oct. 25, $3
“Hocus Pocus” (PG) - 2 p.m. Oct. 26, $3
“The Wolf Man” (Unrated) – 7p.m .Oct. 26, $3
“The Omen” (R) – 9 p.m. Oct. 26, $3
For more information, call 270-234-8258.