On Saturday April 4th, we arrived back in Chicago (after doing TWO zoos; Louisville and Indianapolis) and ate lasagna at my place before relaxing on this final night of our vacation. We hunkered down for the night and watched two movies together; the old sci-fi classic, It Came from Outer Space, and a new movie David had gotten on Blu-ray called Digging up the Marrow. Though we’d watched several movies during our trip on DVD, including Wolfcop (which was okay), Love in the Time of Monsters (which was also okay), What we do in the Shadows (which was really funny), Animal (which we liked), Dark Haul (which was bad) and Muck (which was even WORSE) we inadvertently saved the best for last!
Digging up the Marrow is set up in the tradition of a reality film and stars Director Adam Green as himself. In the film, Green is approached by a man who calls himself William Dekker (Ray Wise) who claims that not only are monsters real but he knows where to find them. Figuring at the very least he’ll end up with a comedic movie, Green decides to humor the man and film his story.
According to Dekker, an entire nation of monsters lives just beneath our world; what he refers to as the “Marrow” and consists of deformed outcasts of society. After interviewing the eccentric old man (while doing his best not to crack up), Green sets up cameras in an area specified by Dekker as being one of several entryways into the Marrow. After a failed attempt and Green convinced he’s been doing nothing more than fan Dekker’s delusions, he soon discovers that there is more to this world than meets the eye and that some secrets are best left hidden.
Having met Green a few times at past horror conventions; I can attest that he has a unique relationship with his fans unlike that of most directors in the genre. He was the only one at those events who wouldn’t charge a cent for autographs and photos and genuinely enjoyed interacting with you. His understanding of his fan base shows why his films (like the first Hatchet) end up becoming cult favorites despite what the average critic says. Digging up the Marrow is no exception. He shares his love of monsters with us, WANTS them to be real just like we do, and approaches the subject with adoration as opposed to the usual fear. I have heard critics say that this is a problem and that the average film goer won’t enjoy it. All I can say is that I would later share this with four of my kids (ages ten to seventeen) and it ranks as the ONLY film I’ve ever presented to them that they’d request to see again the following weekend. I say, give the movie a chance and YOU be the judge!
Although I thoroughly enjoyed the film, I did feel that one of its strengths also served as a weakness. Ray Wise is a great actor and absolutely brilliant in his role here, however, he’s known to us horror fans and I feel the movie might have been more effective in terms of believability had Green cast an unknown.
David: I have been a fan of Adam Green since discovering his annual Halloween shorts on his ArieScope website. I have always appreciated his humor in his film making, where it is most evident in films like HATCHET. In my opinion, the best Adam Green films are those that he writes and directs (as opposed to those that he writes and produces as other directors seem to have problems conveying his humor in the final product). I really didn’t know what to expect with this film and was so happy that it was as good as it was. It was suspenseful and laugh-out-loud funny at times, the ingredients of a great horror film. Like Dave mentioned earlier, despite me being a fan of Ray Wise, he appearance here actually made the film slightly less believable. Overall though I totally enjoyed this film and it is one of those, much like the original HATCHET, that I will be able to watch over and over!
Dave: Thus ended or Spring 2015 Terror Daves Road Trip! I brought David back to the airport the next day (Easter Sunday). This trip had packed a wallop in terms of activity (both planned and unplanned) and I know we’ll both never forget it. And, in case you’re wondering, we’ve already laid the ground work for next year’s Spring trip which will have us venturing out West and seeing sights that are “out of this world” (that was a hint not hyperbole)!
David: This trip was interesting to me, as not only did we visit so many amazing zoos but we were also able to mix it up with so many other fun adventures. Every aspect of this journey was fun and Dave did a fantastic job planning it, making sure we were never too exhausted to do the next thing on the schedule. Things just could not have worked out any better, even with the one day of horrible weather that we had. The question on both of our lips at the end was how could we possibly top it! As Dave hinted above, we do have some ideas and it looks like our 2016 journey is shaping up to be one for the ages! Stay tuned!!!
Until Next Year…
The Terror Daves~