It’s almost impossible to pick the ten–hell, I’d have to really apply myself to get it down to twenty– scariest scenes or moments from the Ju-On (AKA The Grudge) series, let alone the scariest. OK, that’d be the stair-crawl, but you get the idea. However, I’m pretty sure that this scene would probably make the top ten. Full of creepy moments (seeing Toshio pass by the elevator on EVERY goddamn floor, seeing your husband through the peephole and opening the door to the sight of an empty hall), Shimizu saves the best scare in the scene for last.
We doubt it’s necessary to sell you on Asian horror knowing exactly how to scare you and stand out from 90% of US horror films, but the idea of not even being safe in your own (formerly) cozy warm bed, with the covers pulled up to your chin? If that isn’t the stuff of nightmares, we don’t know what is.
Damn, not only is my ‘hit count’ improving drastically, but as of this writing, I’m at exactly 666 hits, which is a first! That’s pretty awesome, and– wait, did you guys hear that noise? Why did it get so hot in this room all of a sudden?
Yes, sadly Halloween has come and gone, but the scary goodies will be continuing, hopefully at the same pace they have been. Right now lots of horror fans are pretty excited about American Horror Story Asylum, so I’m adding more news and spoilers as I hear them (with spoiler warnings, of course). Hopefully I’ll get a news round-up with links to any new interviews at least once a week. I’ve noticed lately that the specific search terms that show up the most for the show* are variations on “American Horror Story who is the Pinhead.” I’m surprised a fan page for Naomi Grossman as Pepper hasn’t sprung up–wait, actually, I bet if I searched, there’d be a couple at this point.
I upgraded and added the option for adding sound and video files to my posts. I’ll keep slapping up the You Tube videos, of course, but now there’s other forms of media. I’m trying to use the “Press This” option (AKA re-blogging), too, so that you get some variety; I’m the only one writing this site, hearing fresh voices is probably nice. There’s room for every horror writer/blogger on here! Everyone has been super-cool and supportive lately, and I appreciate it. It was just a few months ago when I was averaging about 30 hits on a good day, which really was a drag.
If you want to check out Horror Boom on You Tube, I don’t have anything really spectacular right now, but I’m putting together playlists, especially of hard-to-find movies that are worth a watch.
Oh yeah- here’s a poll (below) that’s be cool if you could give your opinion on. Basically, what would you like to see more of here? If you have a favorite feature and just want it to keep going, that’s worth a vote. You can vote for up to five things you think would be groovy to see on Horror Boom, plus write in something if it’s not listed. Plus, I promise to actually pay attention and respond to what you’d be amped up to see on here. Thanks in advance for voting …and hopefully it’ll take your mind off the “Election 2012″ 24/7 media jamboree that you’re really, really fucking sick of hearing about (and thinking about) by now. ENOUGH. We already sent in our ballots and are mostly watching horror DVDs when the TV is on, until Election Night. At this point I think many of us just want it to be OVER. Anyway, the feedback from y’all fellow horror fans would be great.
Image-wise, I just added ten more photos of Kayako to the recent Ju-On Gallery. They’re all PR photos (or very close– if they weren’t ones taken in a closed session with Takako Fuji posing and making her scariest facial expressions, they used shots on set as official PR photos) and I’m pretty sure, unless you have a weird Ju-On obsession like I do that includes buying the novel, tie-in Manga, and a copy of the Ju-On “Haunted House Simulator” game for Nintendo Wii even though I knew I’d probably be too much of a pussy to sit down and play, there’s several you haven’t seen yet. At least half of them were staged photo shoots, because if they were in a Ju-On movie scene, you would definitely remember the image/shot. Check out the latest growing Kayako gallery here. The first series of Grudge/Ju-On images I posted, let me think, right over here, and here’s the “Chills to Beat the Summer Heat” gallery I did second. More Ju-On goodies–OK, I don’t know if that sounds appropriate when referring to one of the Top Five most frightening females in horror history, let alone J-horror history. Uhhh, try that again. I mean more Ju-on/Grudge (relatively) rare footage, trivia, and of course, plenty of new photos are coming soon. Also I would again to state I am well aware I do not own the copyrights to any of the images, they’re here to entertain you; if anyone who DOES own the copyright wants me to take it down, I will. Just contact me …I’m not looking for any copyright trouble!
Meanwhile, genius that I am when I’m not getting enough sleep, I go rifling through Kayako content on the night we set our clocks back, after I spent several hours (before and after sundown) watching a bunch of J-Horror shorts back-to-back Friday and Saturday to build up a decent backlog of “Scariest Short Horror Film of The Week” entries like a moron. Hell, I’m watching a featurette right now onThe Grudge 2 (American sequel) boxed collector’s tin/set AFTER I sat through the last half of the movie; I think back and find no real justification whatsoever for this. Something tells me an Onyro might be making a surprise cameo in one of my dreams soon. Ooooh goodie!
While I’m on the subject, I’m still puzzled and sort of concerned over the amount of males who make comments on You Tube, and/or have websites, where they rhapsodize about how hot and sexy Kayako is. Not Takako Fuji, the actress who plays her, mind you, or even Fuji-San as Kayako before she was murdered, but Kayako in full-out terrifying, crawling or limping un-naturally right at you, dead white, eyes wide as saucers, bloody running down her face, croaking out the classic Grudge/Ju-On Death Rattle mode. Attraction is subjective, and I know she’s a beautiful actress, but I just don’t get it. One said the “kind of lustful, hungry look” she has on her face is “soooo HOT!” Fine, to each their own, but I do hope it’s not because the think only women who look very dead, have broken necks, with blood-smeared faces and a white dress so soaked with her own blood it actually could be mistaken for a red dress are sexually attractive. I’m not even close to a judgemental person, yet I am not altogether comfortable with that piece of information…
Anyway, thanks for reading, and Happy November. Don’t forget to set your clocks back this weekend, and even if you hate less daylight (I do), look on the bright side– hey, that’s time for an extra episode of American Horror Story, time for watching/re-watching a Masters of Horror episode (may I recommend Dance of the Dead, Imprint , or The Damned Thing ?) or two back-to-back Tales From The Crypt episodes you can enjoy.
Hey, it beats more election coverage…
Stay Scared, Mrs. Horror Boom
*after variations on “Evan Peters naked”, “Evan Peters getting spanked”, and “Evan Peters butt,” that is.
Ok! So here’s the second Halloween 2012 treat (three more to come). I promised another Ju-On gallery, and this time– y’know, Halloween Treats and all– I’m going to focus on Kayako. It also seems fitting, since on Halloween 2004, I was first introduced to the series and to Kayako (and her family) when my mom and I went to see the movie The Grudge in the theater (in a packed house, closer to the screen than was optimal when seeing a really scary movie). By thirty minutes in, we were holding hands!
Looks like lots of people have been doing searches and landing here because they want to dress like her for Halloween. Maybe this will help you out with the make-up. There’s a couple of make-up tutorials on You Tube but it seems as though most of them don’t understand Samara from The Ring and Kayako from The Grudge/Ju-on are two different characters. Here’s the closest I got, just taking photos to use on T-shirts I’d be selling. I wanted a recognizable image yet needed to do my own to avoid copyright infringement. Well, I gave it a shot, anyway!
Oh, and please note I’m going to be adding to it over the next 48 hours until it is juuuuuust right. I have over 100 images but need to start sleeping before dawn breaks. It can’t be healthy for my system to keep the sleep-cycle of an undead crack whore, so I’m making an effort to get in bed and at least TRY to fall asleep before I hear birds chirping outside. Keep checking back, as you’ll keep finding plenty of new, scary, Ju-On photos and content all the way up to Halloween night!
Overall, I really made this as a tribute to her character. I even added a little behind-the-scenes stuff on the multi-talented Takako Fuji, who has played Kayako six times in full-length features, in addition to the two short films. As far as I’m considered, The Grudge 3 doesn’t even count as part of the series, since she didn’t play Kayako in it; in fact she wisely turned it down. I’ve read a few recent interviews with Fuji-San (they needed a translator) which I purposely sought out to remind myself that the Ju-on series were only movies, and Kayako doesn’t really exist. Fuji-San said that even though she has a strong background in modern dance, her back would always hurt for a day or so after each time she filmed a staircase-crawl (that makes my back hurt just thinking about it), that she’s a smoker who would take cigarette breaks in costume as Kayako which would make anyone walking by seeing her start to laugh, that she sometimes gets asked to “do” Kayako at parties (she always does), but most of all, kept apologizing “for all the nightmares!” That helped… sort of… a bit… a little, tiny bit, anyway.
So here’s that gallery, in some different formats to mix it up. She remains one of the most frightening female horror icons of all time, even probably up in the top five for me.
The above and below are shots where the lighting is dim, but what you CAN see is clearly Kayako, just enough to know who you’re looking at and to scare the shit out of you.
mirror mirror, on the wall, who’s the scariest one of all?
You’re not even safe under your own bed sheets…
This is from the very first Ju-On TV movie, and the first time I’ve ever let out a shriek watching something on my TV in my own home. During daylight, no less. Almost had a goddamn heart attack when Kayako quietly said, “Kobayashi?” held still for a long moment, then suddenly SWOOPED down close to his face. And that was the last time we (or anyone) ever saw Kobayashi Dear…
Here’s some really frightening PR shots taken…
When someone dies in the grip of a powerful rage…
…a curse is born.
…The curse gathers in that place of death.
Those who encounter it…
…will be consumed by its fury.
More quotes from this interview later on.
More coming soon; I’ve now looked at the maximum amount of depictions of Kayako (after dark) that I can without risking nightmares. If you have requests for photos/pics, please put them in the comments below and I will do my best to accommodate them!
Ten more days till Halloween, Halloween, Halloween (Silver Shamrock)! I actually saw Halloween 3 – Season of the Witch in the theater with my mom. I was young enough that my memory is kind of fuzzy, but I remember the evil mask scene and the ending pretty well. That jingle got stuck in my head for life! Anyway…
Okay, first of all, none of these are from Ju-On/The Grudge (I’ll have a new gallery forJu-on coming up soon, though – check out my last one if you’re in a Kayako-kinda mood). These are all J-Horror, but they’re not all from the same horror movie – just the same franchise. There’s three installments. All three of them have pretty goddamned scary scenes, but the first is still my favorite. Anyway, if you’re a fan of any of the installments, I think you’ll be able to figure it out –comment away! Those DVDs (all in great condition) are still waiting on a winner…
First up, here’s a scary-ass thing to see talking on the phone… especially if the other person blows you off!
You’ll REALLY recognize the franchise fast if you recognize this one. Also, if you saw it and don’t remember it …you must have missed this scene!
You know, the picture quality is not one is kind of rinky-dink, so here’s a bonus photo (same franchise):
So! Put your guesses in the comments section – and by the way, a shitty US remake was made of the first installment of the series. They managed to somehow take a great set-up and just destroy it. Oh well, if they can fuck up a remake of Shutter, I guess it’s no big shocker.
Ju-on: White Ghost / Black Ghost(Ju-on: Shiroi Rôjo / Ju-on: Kuroi Shôjo)are actually two movies that were made/released together in 2009 to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the first Ju-On release, Since the first full-length, DTV Ju-On feature was released in Japan in 2000, I assume Takashi Shimizu started counting when his first Ju-On-themed shorts, Katasumi and 4444444444 (shown during a TV movie and containing the first-ever appearance of Kayako and Toshio) aired.
For Ju-On fans, it’s a must. Kayako doesn’t show up, but the movie still offers plenty of chills, several memorable jolts, and images that could likely pop up in your nightmares long after the viewing.
This creepy entry contains plenty of familiar Ju-On themes: a non-linear storyline that doesn’t really form a complete picture in your mind until near the ending, a male family member who loses his shit pretty suddenly (fast enough that his family don’t have time to realize he’s going to hurt or kill them, and get the fuck out of the house and/or call the police), creeping black hair that grows… and grows… and grows, blurry figures that aren’t supposed to be there appearing or passing by in the background, unseen by characters, a minimal score (it’s no easy task for a film-maker to create an ominous, increasing sense of dread with total silence), and of course …the Ju-On Death Rattle.®
As soon as the delivery kid walks in, we know something’s off (he doesn’t look too confidant, either). His discoveries are at first only confusing, but quickly become unsettling. The sense of wrong-ness is so pervasive I (and most horror/Ju-on fans, probably) would have left the cake and gotten out within two minutes tops, and if the bakery had to take the cost of the cake out of my pay, then fuck it, fine with me. But of course, he’s concerned, and has to explore…
So here’s the first ten minutes of Ju-On: White Ghost.
If you like the style, I definitely recommend seeing the whole movie. For Ju-On fans, it’s a must. Kayako doesn’t show up, but the movie still offers plenty of chills, several memorable jolts, and images that could likely pop up in your nightmares long after the viewing. One ghost was so frightening looking I screamed (surprising the hell out of myself) when the camera first revealed her, and usually it takes a blast of music or a noise along with a scary image to make me scream, and that’s in the theater. This was at home. The second movie, Black Ghost, isn’t bad either, but I found White Ghost to have more of a Takashi Shimizu vibe and closest to the Ju-on spirit (har). If you have Netflix streaming, it’s there for you to watch in HD (better quality, and subtitles than this clip). You might want to get your chills in before it’s dark out, though…
Here’s the longest trailer I could find for Ju-on: White Ghost / Black Ghost(Ju-on: Shiroi Rôjo / Ju-on: Kuroi Shôjo).
Well, my cough is almost gone, but I have a strange, unpleasant style of hangover from being on over-the-counter cold/cough medicine for over a week. I felt more or less normal when I took it the first week (probably because I made sure it didn’t have any of the crystal meth ingredients ending in “phrine” in it before I put it in my body the first time). I took two of the tablets (supposed to take one of these doses every 4 hours) on our way to go see Magic Joe ManganielloMagic Mike *, and during the closing credits of the movie I suddenly began to feel very weird and nervous.* Then I discovered (in the tiniest print ever) on the instructions the words do NOT use for more than seven days continuously. Since I was on day 8 or 9, that explained that. Well, shit. I immediately ‘discontinued’ the cold/flu remedy (also per the instructions). Since I stopped about 36 hours ago, I’ve felt better flu-wise (other than a nagging, dull rebound headache from all the Tylenol), but all cloudy and fuzzy, and not the good kind of dreamy-cloudy that seeing the routines in Magic Mike (which was definitely not caused by any kind of chemical unless you count hormones) and mentally clumsy, clunky, and foggy. I was barely able to follow the plot of the regular Thursday new installment of the free web comic Crossed:Wish You Were Here; the weekly series is very twisted, but not overly-complicated.
…it’s been pretty warm out lately, and just looking at many of these may give someone the illusion of the temperature dropping. I didn’t know it was possible to get goosebumps in 80 degree heat, but apparently, that’s where Takashi Shimizu and of course, Ms. Takako Fuji come in to lend a hand!
I’m surprised I even pulled this intro together. My IQ took a significant drop. I just realized I kept meaning to watch the two sneak preview clips on HBO.com for this Sunday’s True Blood, but never quite screwed two brain cells together long enough to do it. Hooked as I am, that never happened before (that I can recall, my memory is worse than usual, too). When I tried to write something more complicated than a retweet. I could barely finish my sentences in my own head. I have a couple reviews of movies that turned out to be terrible almost ready to “press”***, but I don’t want to post two negative reviews in a row. So until my slow-witted head clears up, I have another Ju-On gallery I put together.
Now would be a good time to GTFO, Kobayashi…
I don’t own the rights to any of the stills from the Japanese movies themselves, I just think they’re amazing …and creepy as shit. Also, it’s been pretty warm out lately, and just looking at many of these may give someone the illusion of the temperature dropping. I didn’t know it was possible to get goosebumps in 80 degree heat, but apparently, that’s where Takashi Shimizu and of course, Ms. Takako Fuji come in to lend a hand!
From the original TV movie, aired in Japan in 2000.
This time, I also included some very unsettling images from the two Ju-On movies: Ju-on: Shiroi rôjo (The Grude: Old Lady in White) and Ju-on: Kuroi shôjo (The Grudge: Black Ghost). These were filmed in 2009, and weren’t released in the US until 2011 as a package deal: Ju-On: White Ghost/Black Ghost. They aren’t direct sequels, and only one member of the Saeki family makes an appearance, but they definitely take place in the same universe as the rest of the Ju-On series. Kayako may not show up (unless you count a very distinctive croak/death rattle, but I still found both movies (especially the first) badly frightening. Oh, and at some unknown point, I learned how to mimic the Kayako ‘death rattle’ perfectly. Not in time to scare anyone else with it, just enough to give myself a nightmare that I was imitating the noise while surfing the net, stopped, then heard it coming from behind me. Then I bolted awake! I fell back to sleep in less than a minute …but I think it says a lot about the staying power and effectiveness of a true horror movie when you get a nightmare based on it after you haven’t even watched it in months. That’s during cheerful daylight, with my husband reading the paper in the next room. And I jumped …then decided I was sitting much too close to the TV.
From the “Black Ghost” second half of the recent Ju-on: White Ghost/Black Ghost (2009)
One of Toshio’s two “cameos” from Ju-On: WGBG (2009)
The first of several genuine jump scares from Ju-On: Old Lady in White (2009)