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Halloween Obsessed - Haunted Attractions

episode 1.2

USA 2022
produced by
Linda Palmer, Mark Cardone, Krisd Mauga, Barbara Dolny-Bombar (executive) for Runaway Productions, Refined Rebel
directed by Linda Palmer
starring Teresa Griffin, Lisa Morton, Matthew Murphey, Meghan Murphey, Payton Murphey, Gene Schopf, Jim Schopf, Elena Sherrill, Morgan Scherrill, Nadia Sherrill, Ryan Glasgow, Shane Glasgow, narration by Andonio D. Charity
research and story editing by Linda, Rae Davis, music by Chris Wirsig, main title song by Peter Keys, Donna Britton Bukevicz

TV-series, documentary
Halloween Obsessed

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Haunted attractions, or why would anyone go anywhere to just be horrified - for fun? Well, this episode of Halloween Obsessed takes all the way back to post revolutionary France, when people, very much accustomed to real life horrors like public executions and Paris burning, discovered their sense for the macabre, and as a consequence morgues would exhibit their deads, the more gruesome the better, for money, and people would stand in line for it. Madame Tussaud's, then still a travelling wax exhibition all over Europe before being forced to settle in London, would soon add a chamber of horrors to their repertoire to outdo the morgues, and in light of that, it's hardly surprising that the grand guignol originated in France as well. This all played into the creation of haunted attractions in the US, along with Halloween traditions, which started in the early 1900s as simple macabre pranks, but the desperation of the Depression of the 1930s caused these "pranks" to spin dangerously out of control, so it was gouvernmnetally advised to counter pranks with haunts - and the idea of creating private haunted houses and yards was birthed, which eventually was picked up by a business idea by both cunning entrepreneurs and community leaders - and eventually even by the Christian church, who tried to incorporate the religious themes underlying many horrors to incorporate some Christian propaganda. And eventually, even Disneyland and the Universal Theme Parks caught wind of it, with the latter having an advantage due to their rich horror staple. And with all this set-up this documentary has interviews with some showrunners of diverse horror shows, from self-made backyard attractions to actual hayrides gone massive, as well as behind-the-scenes footage from these shows - and it shows not only the shocks and the effects and the spectacle but also portrays the people behind it all, a closely-knit community that might share a love for the macabre, but that are otherwise just lovely and loving people intent on supporting each other (also among different attractions), and for whom horror hasn't only become a genre but a way of living and a code of conduct - code of conduct though in the least harmful of ways.

 

... and it's really what makes this documentary so special, beyond its detailed historical discourse of course, that it portrays the horror community (which I fancy myself a member of) in such a positive light, as people who can bond over being scared and shocked and scaring and shocking people, over the macabre and the grotesque - and be better people for that who don't only provide for other people's entertainment but also for the community, for the local job sector, and essentially for the good of humankind as such. And heck, if that's what haunted attractions are for, we definitely need more of them!!!

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD