Thursday, July 28, 2011

Surviving The San Diego Comic-Con

Every year it descends upon America's Finest City.
The air grows thick with an expectancy that fills every inch of the laid back metropolis.
The police come out in force, ready to do what is asked of them. The shopkeepers shore up there staff and mentally prepare for yet another onslaught of unknown proportions. Children who've never experienced it wonder whether it will be as bad as the stories they heard about it.

Then it happens.

The roads begin to swell with traffic, public transit starts to look like Japanese commuter trains and sidewalks become bloated with masses of bodies... bodies all moving with a singular purpose, toward a singular goal... bodies ravenous for...

This year approximately 140,000 people flooded downtown San Diego to partake of the sweetest pop culture sampling on planet Earth: The San Diego Comic-Con International (SDCC). Whether you're into television or novels, movies or scriptwriting, celebrities or industry rock stars, horror or anime, collectible toys or steam-punk apparel... or, heaven forbid, actual comics, the SDCC has it all. Since 1970 this convention has brought together like-minded people who share a love of all things pop culture, mainly focusing on comics, science fiction, fantasy and a pinch of horror.

Being the sci-fi nerds that we are (and I the comic geek), my wife and I have been attending the SDCC for the past 5 years. With the recent boom of comic-based movies and television the con has virtually exploded in attendance the past two years and oh how the stars have followed. From Angelina Jolie to Johnny Depp, Hollywood has discovered the SDCC and each year produces even more big names to attend the event - this year Steven Spielberg himself showed up! Believe it or not, a few years ago you could walk up to the convention center where the con is held and purchase a ticket for the day you wanted to attend - not so any more! Last year the four day passes with Preview night sold out before the con was even over and subsequent online purchases crashed the website as soon as tickets went on sale. Needless to say that with all of this craziness to survive the SDCC one needs a bit more than lady luck (or a flux capacitor) on their side.

Nick's Tips for Surviving San Diego Comic-Con International

Have a pregnant wife
Having one of these allows you to cut to the front of the various lines (which have, at times, thousands of people in them and can take hours to get through) you will have to wait in to see your favorite producers, actors and creators of your favorite movies, TV shows and comics.

Wear an easily removable costume
If you have the itch to embrace your inner geek and dress up, start slow by wearing a costume that is easily removable. The last thing you want to do is be trapped in something that is making you uncomfortable... It's hard to escape makeup that is painted on head to toe or a giant sword that is larger than your first car.

Make new friends
After all... you'll probably never see them again!
Well... at least not until next year.

Have a plan
Comic-Con's schedule is posted on the internet at least a week in advance of the doors opening. Take the time to comb through each day's events and discover what is offered that will make your con a truly memorable experience.

Embrace the weirdness
Attending Comic-Con is like stepping through the wardrobe into a magical land that only exists in your imagination... you're going to see some and experience some weird stuff that may make you feel a bit uncomfortable - just go with it (yes, even free hugs from strangers).

Keep your eyes peeled
You never know what obscure actor or actress will pop up at Comic-Con... so keep your eyeballs primed or you could miss out on seeing some quirky sights!

Have a friend on the inside
With tickets being more difficult to obtain than an item on a Herculean quest, it's best to have a true-blue friend who will sleep in line overnight to secure a pass for next year's con for you.

Be prepared for anything
You never know what you'll encounter, be it a starship captain from 30 year old TV show or the forces of Cobra waiting to be seated at the newest Italian bistro downtown.
Expect the unexpected.

Appreciate the fanboys
Even if you think it's strange that a middle-aged man would dress up like a character he idolized as a kid (and doesn't have the physique to portray) enjoy the blood, sweat and tears he poured into his costumial (yeah, I just made up that word) offering.

Nick's Top 11 Moments at San Diego Comic-Con 2011

As you can see there are some crazy things that happen at Comic-Con and this year was no different! Without further adieu I'd like to share with you my top 11 moment's from this year's event (because 10 just wasn't enough).

Seeing the star of Eureka just chilling out among the crowd (without security) on his birthday. Comic-Con is special in that you genuinely feel at ease with the people who create/star in the shows/movies/literature you love. Most celebrities handle the open environment pretty well, but Colin Ferguson truly seemed to be enjoying his time at SDCC.

Watching zombie Santa Clause put the moves on zombie Mrs. Claus by the trolley while enjoying fish tacos with the wife.

Getting into Preview Night and grabbing a sneak peak at all of the exhibits even though I didn't have a Preview Night pass (thanks again pregnant wife!).

Attending The Walking Dead Panel.
Not only did I get to hear the cast speak about the show, but the group I was in was also the first to see footage of the new season (which gave my goosebumps goosebumps!) and hear when it premieres! (10/16/11 if anyone is wondering - mark your calendars!)

Having the crap scared out of me by Christopher Reeves... or at least a wax facsimile of him. Imagine seeing this head peeking out at you among the numerous faces in the crowd! Creeeepy... also, his hands were so life-like it was frightening!

Spotting "Alvin" at the Star Wars Fan Film Awards and shouting "Alivn.... Alvin.... AL-VIN!!!!" at him. He seemed to enjoy it as much as I did.

People watching in the main exhibit hall while eating nachos with my wife and calling out answers to the trivia game being held at G4's booth.

Beating some random teenager at arcade version of Capcom vs. Marvel. The kid was totally psyched about the game and I hadn't played an arcade fighting game in like... ten years.
Yeah, I felt a little bad, but it was still awesome.

Trying to escape from handcuffs with Merle while zombies pounded down the roof-access door!
Must... reach.... hack... saw... !!!!

Attending the academic zombie discussion panel (complete with neuroscientists and Harvard medical professors) and getting the San Diego Public Library's copy of The Zombie Autopsies signed by the author! Joking around with Max Brooks about whether or not I'd get a fine wasn't half bad either.

These kids.
They embody all which is awesome about Comic-Con to me.

So, for those of you who have yet to experience Comic-Con... what are you waiting for? Give it a try! If you can get tickets that is...


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Life's Road Leads to Final Destination

By Chris Dimick 
You are going to die. That is not a threat, but a promise.
Everyone dies eventually, and that true horror has been the basis of scary movies for decades.
Death is the ultimate terror for the simple fact that most people want to live.
Some don’t – they hope the sweet release of death will come save them from another day of alarm clocks, asshole acquaintances, and pointless routine.
But the majority of people would prefer to just keep on trucking down the center of life’s highway, not end up a puddle of mush in its gutter.

The inevitability and relentlessness of death has not been personified in a more entertaining fashion than in the Final Destination horror movie series, which will officially become a franchise next month when its fifth installment – Final Destination 5 – opens Aug. 12.

The final destination franchise – unlike its characters – has continued to cheat death time and time again. The fourth installment was even titled “The Final Destination,” but after it became the highest grossing film in the series, pulling in $66.5 million, distributor New Line Cinema couldn’t bring itself to nail the coffin shut.

While the Final Destination movies might not be Kubrick-level art, they are a fascinating nod to the inevitability of death and our inherent, primal fear of it.
 The series boldly rubs the audience’s face in the Reaper’s armpit, all while screaming “no matter who you are, how much money you have, or how unfair it may be, Death’s gonna take you when he damn well pleases!”

Free Will Versus Fate
Like any good slasher horror series, the Final Destination movies follow a specific formula. A group of good looking young people avoid sudden, accidental death after one in their group has a premonition warning them of the impending deadly catastrophe. Death doesn’t like such meddling with fate, and dispatches with each survivor in complex, seemingly accidental ways.
But it’s not that simple. Each film asks the question, can you outsmart death? Does fate always trump free will?

Of course the answer is eventually death always wins. But can your death come on your own terms? Not all of us will die peacefully sleeping in our beds at 99-years-old. No one plans to fall over a railing at a baseball game; get smoked by a drunk driver crossing the median, or contract a deadly cancer. No one plans to die at 9-years-old, or 30-years-old, or even 90-years-old.

Death isn’t fair, and doesn’t discriminate or show mercy based on one’s moral behavior, beliefs, societal status or habits. Healthy eating is supposed to delay death… but will broccoli every night with dinner keep that drunk off the road?
That is what makes Death so scary; we have no control over when it will visit. Hence lies the horror in this film series – our deepest fear – an early demise.

Death You Can Root For
Philosophy aside, the Final Destination formula also happens to be addicting entertainment. While technically a slasher movie, our victims aren’t running from a masked maniac or working to stop demons from the Netherlands. Their demise comes from seemingly ordinary and safe situations in everyday life. These movies’ slasher, Death, likes to work unheard and unseen.
(For example, in Final Destination 3, Death slays a girl through a complex series of accidents that eventually lead to her being trapped in an overactive tanning bed – which turns her into KFC within minutes. See the clip here.)

All slasher films cull their entertainment from the dramatic and interesting ways each victim is dispatched. In Nightmare on Elm Street, Freddy cooks up an elaborate dream sequence to kill his pretties. In Friday the 13th, Jason employs a variety of knifes and other weapons to take out camp counselors in athletic and at times humorous ways.

Final Destination features the most creative and complex murder set pieces in any film series to date. Each death is the result of Rube Goldberg like complexity. This action leads to this action, that action leads to that action, which all add up to a butcher knife falling into a victim’s chest. Each set piece is like Murder Mousetrap (see below).

It is all just a bizarre accident to those not in the know. There is no freak running around slicing people; no dream man menacing. Just an accident to the naked eye – but the trusty viewer knows that is just how Death likes to work. Death merely nudges one deadly domino, setting in motion a series of events that lead to a freshly removed soul.

Those who cheated death never know when or how he will eventually take them. It could be anything – don’t use that hair dryer, walk across the street, eat that piece of meat – death could use it to kill you. Not only is this plot device effective in building suspense and creating immensely entertaining death scenes, it is also realistic. You never know how or when you will meet your demise. True horror.

Slasher for all Sensibilities
What makes the Final Destination series so likeable though goes deeper than just the interesting set pieces. One doesn’t really have to feel guilty enjoying the demise of others. I’m not saying most people cheer on Jason or Freddy as they hack up teens.
But fans of the slasher genre do enjoy the various horrific and scary ways these villains dispatch their victims. And that comes with guilt; especially when one is rooting for unjustified evil doing their bloody business to innocents.

But since Death is the slasher in these films, people can freely enjoy its work. These people were meant to die in the big accident. They didn’t, and escaped Death’s plan, and now Death must work to finish his job.
Sure, you sympathize with most of the characters and hope they can make it through alive, but you can also see Death’s point of view – a trait completely lacking in nearly every other slasher.

Just Killer Fun
Like most formulaic slasher series, the sequels don’t get points for originality or stellar acting. Each film has the same plot and premise as the first, vastly superior original film.
But that’s okay in this instance, since all the audience is coming for anyway is to see the unique and complex ways Death is going to off this fresh batch of fate-haters.

The first film was excellent not only for its reinvention of the slasher film, but also for its use of suspense. The rest of the franchise films only focused on the death sequences, letting acting and tension rot on the vine.

This latest installment could be a pile of garbage. But then again, the fifth movie may turn a corner and restore the series to its former glory.

James Cameron protégé Steve Quale is making his solo directorial debut with Final Destination 5. He told the Los Angeles Times he has studied the previous four films to see what does and doesn’t work, and seems passionate about creating an audience pleasing scare-pix.

From his LA Times interview:
When I came in to pitch my take on it, I basically said, ‘Look, I really liked what the original did as far as the suspense and the believability and the strength of the characters, and it’s paramount to me that we cast really good actors.’ Second, I also liked some of the comedy in second one, it was sort of organic, it wasn’t way over the top like the fourth one.
"I wanted a couple of funny actors in some of the supporting roles so we could amp up the humor in a believable and entertaining way that the fans would really appreciate. And third, I wanted the opening set piece to be really dynamic and visceral, a real spectacle.
“After all my years of working with Jim Cameron I knew the value of that. None of the other [Final Destination films] had anything like that. They had some cool stunt sequences but not something that is epic and spectacular like a suspension bridge collapse. I knew that could lend itself to really interesting visual dynamics."

That is a promising statement. The horror community will see if Quale can deliver on it come Aug. 12. While it will be hard to compare to the first two films, here’s to hoping FD5 can recapture the magic.

Enjoy It While It Lasts
The prospect of death is scary. Self-preservation is hard wired into our bones, and most of us would like to keep-on-keeping-on as long as possible. Regardless of one’s views on what happens after death, most can agree we only get one turn on the Earthly merry-go-round that is human life.

While fear of death is great for horror movies, in reality death should be respected but not feared. Whether this life is all there is or something else lies beyond, the fact that we all die should be a rallying point to make the most of our time while we are here.

The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne sang it best:
“Do you realize, that everyone you know someday will die
But instead of saying all of your goodbyes - let them know
You realize that life goes fast
It's hard to make the good things last
You realize the sun doesn't go down
It's just an illusion caused by the world spinning round.”

Eventually the Final Destination films will end. And we are all gonna die. Might as well enjoy it while it lasts.

Catastrophes featured in the Final Destination films:

Final Destination (2000)
Airplane explodes mid-air

Final Destination 2 (2003)
Multi-car high speed crash on highway

Final Destination 3 (2006)
Rollercoaster derailment

The Final Destination (2009)
Race cars at a Speedway crash, fly into audience

Final Destination 5 (2011)
Suspension bridge collapses

SPOILER ALERT! Click HERE for a video that shows the opening disaster scenes from the first three Final Destination movies!

Final Destination Series By the Numbers:
Total estimated budget for first four films: $123 million
Total estimated box office for first four films: $612 million

Random Facts about Final Destination
The best in the series, the first Final Destination film has many connections to eerie occurrences, accidents, and well loved horror movies. Below, a few random facts:

X-Files Link
The original movie was based on an unproduced X-Files script.

Paying Homage:
Many of the characters in the original Final Destination are named after directors or stars of beloved black and white horror movies:
-Chaney (Two generations of horror actors, Lon Chaney and Lon Chaney Jr.)
- Browning (Famous "Dracula" director Tod Browning)
-Larry Murnau, (After F.W. Murnau, director of the "first" Dracula film "Nosferatu")
-Schreck (Max Schreck, star of "Nosferatu”)
-Valerie Lewton (Famous horror producer Val Lewton)
-Blake Dreyer (Carl Theodor Dreyer, director of "Vampyr")
-Billy Hitchcock (Homage to Alfred Hitchcock)

Musical Meaning
The music played throughout the movie is by John Denver, a musician who died in a plane crash.

Look Busy, Death is Coming
The film’s title was changed for the Chinese release, and translated to "The Death God Comes".

Chris Salutes:
Rube Goldberg Machines
Death kills his victims with Rube Goldberg-like sequences. Below, a salute to the genius who loves pointless machines.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Film #72: Seizure! (1974)

If you dream you are being chased by a killer, it means you are anxious and trying to avoid troubling life issues.
If you dream of tornadoes, it means you are not in control of your environment.

But what if you dream of a disfigured African executioner, a bloodthirsty sadist midget, and a beautiful, but wickedly evil queen? Probably means you are nuttier than elephant shit.

OR, it means you just watched “Seizure!” this weeks horror morsel working its way through the Rich-Dimick Horror Project’s bowels.
That aforementioned motley crew of evil stars in this week’s picture, acclaimed director Oliver Stone’s first cinematic effort.

Horror author Edmund Blackstone, “this century’s Edgar Allan Poe,” decides to throw a weekend long party at his sprawling country estate. He invites a vast crew of friends, from greedy entrepreneur Charles Hughes and his gold-digging wife Mikki, to old man mystic Serge. He should be jacked for the shin-dig, man! But, Edmund's dreams have been a real bummer lately.

He has the same nightmare every night featuring characters from a book he’s writing. These characters are the Jackal, a disfigured African slave forced to become a savage executioner; Spider, a knife wielding dwarf prince who takes out his disfigurement on society; and the Queen of Evil, a sultry raven haired witch who shows no mercy to the peasants under her.

The same shenanigans happen every night in Edmund's dream: his friends come over to his house for the weekend, the three evil characters appear, and they slowly murder the whole brood of party animals. Then he wakes up screaming like woman.

Well, thank goodness it is only a dream, right? Yeah, not so much.

As his guest arrive in reality, Edmund starts to write out his dream – thinking the tale would make a great horror story. Only he forgets to tell his characters to stay in the page.
They appear in real life, and the murdering begins! Yay!

The three seemingly unstoppable demons issue an ultimatum to the house quests: escape is impossible, but if you play our games and fight for your life, one of you will survive. The guests are pitted against each other in deadly games of terror, while Edmund struggles to muster the courage to confront his dark creations before it is too late.

Will the party guests kill for the right to stay alive?
Just where did these tormentors come from?
What’s happening to all the honey bees?
Find out, in the 1974 dreamy drama, “Seizure!”

RDHP Ratings and Reviews

C-Rating: 2.99
Chris Dimick dreams:
“My uncle Tim was lounging on the couch that morning, sipping from a mug and watching the morning news. Tim loved coffee, and every day the first thing he’d do is put on a pot of extra strong brew.
As a kid, I stayed over at my grandmother’s house frequently, sometimes due to both of my parents working the next morning (easier just to sleep there the night before than get dragged out of bed at 4 am and dropped off).
Seeing it often, Tim’s morning ritual intrigued my 7-year-old self. “Man, if he drinks that every day, first thing in the morning, it must be delicious!” I thought.

As the oldest in my immediate family, I always looked up to Tim, then in his late teens/early 20s, and his younger brother Kip, as pseudo big brothers – both kings of cool. So if Tim drank coffee, hell, I wanted to drink coffee too!

My first request to take a sip of the black, likely magical beverage was turned down by Tim. “Nope, sorry, only for adults,” he said. But I wined and I cried and I begged. “Please Tim. Please, let me have some! Come on, I’m grown up!” I pleaded, dancing about.

“You won’t like it Christopher. I’m telling you, you won’t like it at all.”
Whatever. I’ll like it. I’m cool enough, I thought.
The screaming and crying started on Tim’s first cup. But by cup number three, I still hadn’t let up.
“Tim, I just want to see. Come on, I just want to see! I’ll like it, seriously!” I repeated over and over, drowning out the news and destroying any hope Tim had for an easy morning.

Whether he did it to shut me up, teach me a lesson, or just for pure amusement, I’ll never know. But Tim looked around to make sure my grandmother wasn’t near, turned to me, and said, “Okay, just one sip.”

Well I wasn’t about to just take one sip. I’m a grown up, after all, and grownups love coffee. Grabbing the hot mug of black, double brewed canned coffee, I took not just one sip, but chugged three large gulps into my mouth. Coffee streamed down my chin, but for an instant I felt pretty damn awesome. Look at that Tim, I’m drinking coffee.
Then I tasted it… actually tasted the beverage. With the help of my fresh taste buds, I realized coffee was actually burnt tar, horse hoofs, and rotten teeth stink infused into gritty liquid.

It was fouler than anything I ever imagined existing on the face of the earth. What the hell!
Disgusted, I realized I needed to get this bile of my mouth, and fast. Instinct took over, and despite the fact that my grandmother had just installed new carpet, I chose the easy way out and sprayed the rest of the coffee from my mouth like a city fountain.

At first, Tim was shocked and horrified. He was probably going to get it from his mom. But the comedy of the situation was too much to ignore, and through fits of laughter Tim reasserted an “I told you so! I told you so” as I gagged and coughed and screamed.

THAT drink is what he and other adults love so much? What is wrong with adults! That is sick! I thought. Regaining my composure, I grilled Tim for several minutes on why he would routinely drink such a horrific beverage. “No one likes it at first. It takes time. But once you get used to it, you love it!” he tried to explain. It didn’t make sense. Why torture yourself with something gross?

As I sit here drinking a venti Starbucks coffee, this week’s film reminds me of that first experience with the java joe. Seizure is like coffee. At first taste, you are sickened and horrified. How is this good? What were the makers thinking? Cool kid Oliver Stone likes this?! But over the last two days, for some reason this film has played over and over in my mind. With each mental sip of the characters, the plot, the ending, I’ve enjoyed the taste of Seizure more and more. It is so sleazy, so trashy, and so classic 1970s pyscho-babble.

I hated coffee as a 7-year-old. But I tried it again later in high school for the same reasons I did when I was 7 – to look cool. Despite the awful taste, I needed the buzz from the caffeine, as I sat in local hangout Denny’s until 3 a.m. But drinking it required putting in five sugar packets and two creamers in just to get it down. Yet repeated experiences with the drink made me graduate to purer and purer coffee. I soon learned to love the taste, and now support a three cup a day habit.

Seizure is an acquired taste. As the bizarre plot with dream characters, random knife fights, killer midgets, and Mary Woronov's creepy face washes over your mind, each wave peels off some of the hate and replaces it with warm appreciation and amusement.

Note that I rated this 2.99. I can’t bring myself to rate it a 3.0… the editing was too sloppy and the directing too freshman. But that is today. Give me another drink of this crazy slop, and tomorrow I might just give her a 4.

Thanks, Tim, for going out on a limb and letting me try coffee. Next time you offer me a cup, I promise not to spit it on you. In fact at this point, I’d probably drink it off the floor.”

N-Rating: 2.7
Nick Rich dreams:
"Dreams can be messed up.
Whether you're returning from Oz, shaking the fog off in Dallas or having the pear dream again in Toronto... they can be messed up:

As a matter of fact, I was awoken abruptly at 1:49am this morning by one. I had gone to sleep hours before, wondering what in the Helen of Troy I was going to write about Seizure! before drifting gently off to dream land.
As I shook off the haze of images and checked the time, the memory of being trapped in a dream that kept getting progressively worse began to solidify in my mind. In most dreams you have a single villain or issue to deal with (or you hop from dream to dream, each with its own story), but in this instance the evil men and monsters in my dream just kept adding up... and coming after me. I didn't have the refuge of jumping to another dream, just the knowledge that I should be and that since I wasn't there would be more and more fiends appearing in the one I was trapped in. One by one they kept coming until I couldn't take it any more... the last image I had in my mind before I woke up was this:

Where this image came from I have no idea.
I haven't watched Thriller since MJ passed a few years ago... I imagine this image is probably living quietly in the forgotten parts of my psyche (where it was dramatically etched during my childhood) waiting for opportune moments to strike fear into my heart once more. While I wasn't overcome with fear like the main character in Seizure!, I was definitely a bit creeped out to awake with this picture in my mind.

Pretty random eh? I hope that's the impression you were left with after reading about my dream because, much like a real dream, that's what you're left feeling after watching Seizure! Chris is correct in his assertion that the directing from young Ollie left a bit to be desired. I get that he was trying to mimic the feel of being in a nightmare and how abruptly once can jump from scene to scene in one, but as I've said in the past during the project: intentions don't always equate to good film making. Sometimes taking a risk cinematically works, but as film history is teaching me, most times it doesn't. In this case the editing left the viewer feeling frustrated (not immersed) and thinking a student had directed the film.

Don't start the pity party yet though! There were some good things going on in Seizure!, namely Herve Villechaize (he was by far the best part of this film for me). Never have I seen such a little man genuinely seem like a menace! Even when wielding a gun, pint sized actors tend to feel less than threatening on screen and normally are made to look imposing via camera tricks or plotline - not so in Seizure! In this film Herve displayed a physicality I've never seen in such a small actor (and probably never will again). His physical prowess combined with his chilling accent and deadpan delivery equaled a character that left an indelible impression on me.

Seizure! also had some fun moments where in reveled in being a 70s film and employed some cheesy effects (most were decent, but the majority of the makeup was a bit Krafty). I'll leave you to discover these moments on your own should you feel tempted to check this flick out.

If nothing else, Seizure! left a distinct impression on us here at the RDHP, growing like a cancer in Chris's mind while actually invading mine in dream form (to my recollection a first in RDHP history - which is surprising given the number of horror films we've watched). It made us feel kinda funny and no doubt etched a memory into one of those quietly forgotten places in our psyche, where it will quietly wait to scare us again some day...

Like I said: dreams can be messed up."

The Skinny: Check this film out if you want to see how to not edit a film or if you dare test whether watching a horror movie about dreams can invade your dreams.

Things We Learned From Seizure!:
-Darkness, damnation and meaningless death await many.
-Don’t ever accept face cream from a dwarf prince.
-Foggy lenses make anyone look younger.
-There is a woman named Christine Pickles.
-Always stay in shape. It might just save your life.
-Coolest way to exit a car – through its sunroof.
-Remember the name, Charles Hughes.
-Nick loved to scare his mom.
-It’s socially acceptable for male guests to walk around in bikini briefs in the morning.
-Waking up screaming is the best way to wake up.

RDHP Salutes:
Profane Gestures
Sometimes words just aren’t enough to express one’s displeasure. In times like those, gestures can really get the point across to your foe. An offended gas station attendant busted out a good old “up-yours-ahole” forearm grab in “Seizure!” This got us thinking… what are some other profane gestures that really say more than 1,000 words? (Note, some gestures have been left off this list in the interest of keeping the RDHP a PG-13 rating. Look at those on your own time, pervert.)

Flying the Bird
The old standby. Used by children and grandmothers alike.

Side Arm “Shove It”
Modification of the “stick your opinions and attitude in your cornhole.” Nearly extinct since the 1970s. This is so rare, even the internet doesn't have a photo. Therefore, we present this angry old man.

Cross Arm “Shove It”
Modern version of the side arm shove. Used only in extreme situations.

Suck It Arm Cross
Popularized by wrestling in the early 2000s, and the bane of 8th grade teachers around the world since.

Kiss My Ass Pat
A little tap tap on the butt says a lot. Simple, but it gets the point across.

Chin Flick
Popular with Italians, this is a silent way to go Soft Cee-lo and say “Forget You.”

Double Barrel Bird
For those times when one middle finger just doesn’t do it.

Heart hand gesture
Invented by the “Queen of Crass” Taylor Swift, this gesture means she will rip your heart out and eat it with your soul. And we all thought she was a softie.

Mary Woronov: Hot or Not?
A supporting actress with a long history in horror/sci-fi, Mary Woronov is the definition of an unconventional beauty.
Men are usually more confused than attracted by her looks. With films like “Death Race 2000,” “Silent Night, Deadly Night,” “Rock N’ Roll High School” and “Night of the Comet” on her resume, it is not hard to say Ms. Woronov is a cult movie icon.
Chris met Mary at a movie event in Chicago, were she appeared to be appreciative of her fans and thankful for her long career. A true class act. But character aside, let’s talk about what really matters – her looks! Is she the ultimate butterface, or does her beauty go beyond skin and lie in her mysterious eyes? Judge for yourself with this collection of Woronov pics: