Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Horror Movie Classics: I Drink and Live-Blog "Children of the Corn"

Now it is time for 1984's Children of the Corn. It is based on a Stephen King short story. I can tell.

It's the 1980s. The story is narrated by some kid. He was the only kid at church one Sunday because the other kids hung out with "Isaac" in the cornfields. This kid's dad won't let him do stuff with Isaac. The kid sees Malachi and some other kids acting "real creepy" in a restaurant downtown. One kid locks the doors. Our hero's little sister is home sick, coloring a picture somehow while having some kind of fever dream. Oh, the patrons of the restaurant have been poisoned by the coffee. The other kids, including the young waitress, start stabbing everybody. One guy's hand gets shoved into a meat slicer. Our hero watches his dad's neck get hacked. We hear his mom getting killed over the phone.

Totes norms kid mass murder pic.
The sister, Sarah, had envisioned the carnage and drawn it with crayons. PSYCHIC CRAYONS.* The kids all over town killed all the adults that day.

This is a stupid present, Stephen King.
A young white couple kiss each other. The lady gives him a harmonica for his birthday and sings some "School's Out" song. It is embarrassing. No wonder he's hiding under the covers. They're going on a road trip! Apparently they're in a hotel. This guy is worried about some internship. They drive over the Nebraska border. There's a lot of corn. At an abandoned-looking farm, some kid named Joseph is running away, saying he'll be back for Sarah and her brother. Isaac won't let them have record players or draw pictures. Joseph runs off into the corn. We're led to believe this is a Bad Idea. For some reason the couple has taken the back roads. They try to listen to the radio and find some creepy revival minister. They joke about it but the lady teases him about not committing or something. Awkward. Joseph runs through the corn. The corn starts to move and there's a weird giggling noise. Somebody with a big knife gets Joseph.

Back in the car, Whatshername finds a map. The town of Gatlin is not on the map. They hit something with their car. It's a bloody little boy! Whatshername got, like, whiplash or something. This guy is apparently a doctor or something. The kid is dead. The lady starts to freak out because ladies have feelings. He sends her back to the car with no explanation. He covers dead Joseph with a blanket in the road and goes into the corn to investigate. He sees an abandoned suitcase and blood on some leaves.The killer, a young man with red hair, approaches the lady in the car, who has dozed off. She wakes up and looks around, the redheaded guy is gone. Her khaki shorts are pretty awful. She keeps calling for Burt and goes to look at the body. She apologizes to the body, it sits up to choke her, but suddenly Burt's waking her up. She's still back in the car, dreaming(?). Burt puts Joseph's body in the trunk of the car.

Sarah and the narrator are playing in their old house, even though it's forbidden. They listen to records and play Monopoly while in costume. He is a cheater. Is his name Toby? Joby? Doby? They joke about putting Isaac in jail. DO NOT COLLECT $200. Then Malachi walks in, all redheaded and be-suspendered and be-knifed, interrupting their game. He takes them to Isaac, who wears a little black suit. He's your basic creepy kid. He's interested in the vision of the couple driving up Sarah's drawn. He decides not to scold them and sends them back home. The couple took the bloody suitcase and decide to open it. Among the kid's clothes, they find a cross made of corn cobs. An old man works on some old car at the gas station. The kids have left him alive for some reason. This couple is the third car in a month on this road! Traffic jam. He says there's no gas or phone. He directs them to anywhere but Gatlin, where folks have "got religion" and "don't cotton to no outsiders" and probably have no phone. Burt and Whatshername drive off. While distracted by his dog barking at the cornfields, somebody grabs a tire iron from the old man's truck.

Somebody's been fucking with the road signs, trying to direct them to(?) Gatlin. Back at the gas station, the wind blows and the old man yells that he didn't tell the outsiders anything. The old man finds his dog's bloody handkerchief under the hood of his truck. He gets mad and goes to confront the bad guys. He calls them "stinky little skunks." Malachi is really pretty sinister. He and some pals are definitely killing him now. Burt is trying to drive away from Gatlin, but clearly is going to end up there.

They're driving on some sketchy dirt road through the middle of a cornfield. They finally find their way out of the corn, back at the gas station, where the old man lays dead. In the field, Isaac lifts a corn cross. He says he's had a dream. The town kids say things in unison, creepily. Isaac says the Lord is sending them a test. He tells everyone Joseph's dead and that they threw his body on the road to entrap them some Outlanders. The Blue Man is some kind of dead body/scarecrow up on a cross. Ah, he was a cop. There's lots of chanting about praising God while holding weapons in the air. Sarah and Joby were listening in, but run away.

Burt and that lady drive into the abandoned town of Gatlin. I'm not sure if I care about this movie yet. They pull up to the massacre cafe from earlier to see if there's a phone, presumably to report a dead body in the trunk of their car. There are no cars or people around. A kid hides in the cafe, which has corn strewn all about. The payphone is dead. Whatshername is startled by a giant rat. Some kids are poking around in their car. Burt scares them away but then chases them in his car. Vicky wants to go to Hemingford, another nearby town that is less corn-y and abandoned, I'm guessing. Burt's, like, "Fine." As they drive out of town, Burt sees a door shut on Sarah and the narrator's house. He insists they go in to check it out. It looks abandoned. The phone cord has been cut. Vicky finds a magazine that is three years old on the table. They hear something upstairs and because this is a horror movie, Burt goes to investigate. He finds Sarah's prophetic drawings with reference to "He Who Walks Behind the Rows." They come upon Sarah, who tells them all the grownups are in the cornfields, where Isaac put them. She says Isaac's the leader, but she doesn't want to take them to him because he's scary. Burt leaves the car with Vicky at the house and goes to to check out town hall for reasons passing my understanding. GOOD IDEA, SPLIT UP.

Sarah tells Vicky she's not supposed to draw, according to Malachi. Vicky tells her it's okay to draw. Burt investigates Gatlin School, which is all messy and full of corn inside. A girl peeks at him out the church door. Malachi approaches Sarah's house with a posse holding these harvesting hook things. Sickles? Pretty sinister. Real Isaac calls Burt's outfit "Seinfeldian." Our narrator watches Burt walk into the old town hall or whatever, where he once again attempts to use the phone. Nobody here has paid a phone bill in some time, friend. He sees a Jesus painting that has been kind of awesomely defaced. There's corn in the building. Back at the house, Sarah shows Vicky her picture, which depicts Vicky's death, I assume. Somebody, not Burt, comes into the house downstairs. Burt finds a scarecrow cop and graffiti that says "No false gods." Malachi and the others have shown up to "give [Vicky] peace." They corner her as Sarah watches, covering her ears and crying. What a useless small child. Burt looks at some dragon painting and decides to run back to Vicky. Their car has been corned. Burt kicks the house's front door down and finds Sarah, alone.

Isaac is creepy in a different way than Malachi is creepy. Malachi thinks they should've killed Sarah and Job, but Isaac is like, "I have a creepily adult voice and go get the husband." Burt sees Sarah's picture of the sacrifice in the fields and immediately runs into the fields like an idjit. A path opens up for him. Weird chanting and giggling. The church bell rings. Vicky's being lifted up on a corn crucifix, facing the Blue Man, now a desiccated corpse. The kids chant "Kill." Someone with hair on his chest cuts into his own chest and harvests the blood. The kids in the church are about to drink the blood. It's Amos's birthday! I guess that means you get to cut a pentagram in your chest and have your friends drink your blood. Burt is not into their new church. A sassy little girl stabs him. Apparently they all go to "He Who Walks Behind the Rows" when they turn 18. Huzzah! Burt runs off, bleeding. Of course he trips and falls as they gain on him. The children surround him downtown. Malachi needs braces.

Burt runs into some abandoned factory thing. He hits Malachi with a wrench, I stopped paying attention for a minute, but now our narrator Job has found Burt and led him into a cellar to hide. Sarah is there, too. It's their family bomb shelter! Isaac and Malachi get in an argument, and Malachi tells the kids to replace Vicky with Isaac on the cross. Malachi brings Vicky back to attract Burt. Job says he'll take Burt to find Vicky. They can watch what's going on in the clearing from some barn. It's now night. Isaac is sad all tied up on the corn cross. Amos yells to the "Lord" to sacrifice himself. Something approaches them underground. Tremors? Some shitty glowing special effects overtake Isaac and blow his corn crucifix into the sky. Burt attacks Malachi and releases Vicky. He tells her to run away. Burt insults their religion, even as they surround him with weapons. Kind of rude and iill-advised. He tells them religion without love is false. Malachi attacks him. Burt's been stabbed, but he's still a grown man and slaps the fuck out of Malachi's face. Burt refuses to kill Malachi, but the kids won't go after him in vengeance, either. They seem to be coming to their senses.

Oh, Isaac's back, all white-haired and beat up. He speaks in a creepy devil voice. "He wants you, too, Malachi." Burt and the others run away back to the barn, where Vicky's found Job and Sarah. Burt finds them, too. Sarah says it's He Who Walks Behind the Rows attacking them, though it seems like a tornado to me. Job found a bible verse that the Blue Man had tried to read to the monster. They decide the only way to get the monster is to burn the fields. Oh, this barn is an old still. It's full of vats of booze. Burt makes a Molotov cocktail and pulls out a booze hose or something. The corn tries to grab Burt. Job comes and helps him cut it away. Job won't leave him and helps him hook up the hose to some sort of sprinkler system thing, I believe. A sinister-looking glowing cloud approaches over the corn. The engine starts and the alcohol is sprinkled out onto the cornfields. Job helps Burt with the Molotov as the thing in the ground comes towards them. Fire success! The ladies back at the still yell for their men. They arrive back safely. There are some explosions out in the cornfield. A pillar of fire goes up into the sky and there's lots of shitty animation and the red flames recede into the ground.

Oh, okay. Sure.
Vicky, Burt, Sarah, and Job walk back to their house and be-corned car. The kids laugh as the grownups kiss. They plan to walk to Hemingford. The church girl from before was hiding in the backseat, waiting to attack Burt, but he gets her with the car door. They leave her there, passed out. THE END.

This movie was... okay.

*Band name: called.


  1. I spent the majority of this review asking in my head, 'Where's Mark Hamill?'
    Then I remembered that's Children of the Damned. That's a way better movie about creepy children. I suggest you review that soon!

  2. Ha! It's in my disc queue. When I get to it, I'll inevitably refer to him as Luke Skywalker the entire time.