Theme of the Month: Spirits of the Dead
Star of the Month: Barbara Steele
October’s theme is Spirits of the Dead, which is an homage to the omnibus horror movie of the
same name which I didn’t like but nonetheless enjoyed the title of. The star of the month is Barbara Steele, the toothy, sphinx-eyed scream queen who starred in some of the finest low-budget horror films of the 1960s. Because why not bring images of spirits, the dead, and beautiful women getting terrorized to no end to the minds of my readers at this particular time? It’s October, the month in which a certain sort of spookiness hovers in the air like cigarette smoke at the front of a bus stop.
This same month last year, the theme was The Terror, the spotlighted star Vincent Price. And the entirety of October was dedicated to watching and reviewing horror movies. Since the latter genre is my favorite in film — even bad exercises are still plenty enjoyable — I figure now’s the best time to really indulge myself again. Gargoyle-protected castles, knife-wielding maniacs, and supernatural threats are not usually on the mind mid-February, after all.
Driving down the highway today just as the sun was setting, I was reminded just what a great time of the year this is: the air’s brisk but romantically so, the atmosphere unusually orange, the vibe as unsettled as it is promising (consider that we’re anxious about the year coming to a close but thrilled to see where the next will take us).
Horror, then, is the best genre to complement autumn’s vividness. While the season dependably messes with the pep in our step following months of sun and sweat, horror is similarly capable of taking us out of our boring routines and throwing us into a blender of fear and excitement. Just like the start of a college student’s fall quarter can.
I’m looking forward to the next 31 days; while it’ll certainly be one of the more niche-oriented months on Peterson Reviews, it will certainly be one marked by education for me. How revitalizing it will be to dig deeper into my horror movie knowledge. I hope you have fun discovering new gems along with me. Happy watching, and happy reading!