February 8, 2012

When the Man Comes to Town

I spent a few summer weekends at my uncle's house watching early 90's action flicks. It's where I was introduced to some of the classics: Terminator, Aliens... Soft light through slatted blinds, the air thick with cigarette smoke and bacon grease, and I fell in love with the man on the screen, Michael Biehn. 

He's been the archetype I compare all of my prospects to - brave, emotional, from the future... and he's now entered the category of Men Over 50 Who I Still Would. So imagine my excitement when DedFest announced they're flying Michael out to Edmonton to screen his latest film, The Victim. Yeah. Excited.

This will be a big ticket event as our home town welcomes one of the biggest Hollywood actors in the biz. And since it's also Women in Horror Month, I want to give a shout out to my top fave lucky ladies he's starred with.

Linda Hamilton - Terminator (1984)

Although Terminator isn't classically sided in with the horror genre, no one can deny the chills of an Austrian robot trying to kill you. Linda Hamilton continues to be one of the strongest female characters in the history of cinema. I mean, she has to birth the man that will save the world and lest we forget her pipes in Terminator 2. I still want to be her when I grow up.

Sigourney Weaver - Aliens (1986)

RIPLEY!!! What I adored about Michael Biehn's character in this sequel was the implied romantic connection. Who wouldn't want to give it to Cpl. Dwain Hicks? He was cool, calm, collected, and had enough respect to know Ripley was too much  woman for him to handle. 

Ripley is another great addition to the feminist archetype. She was the leading man in this film, but also displays a soft nurturing nature and strong desire to protect the innocent. Sigourney showed us the fierce power of a mother bear. I still enjoy yelling, "get away from her, you bitch!" Mainly at the dog.

Brittany Murphy - Cherry Falls (2000) 

Must admit, I have not seen Cherry Falls. Though the premise of a psycho targeting virgins and forcing them into a wild orgy for survival... it's tempting. In this comedy horror, Michael Biehn plays Brittany's Dad. This is one of Biehn's many Sheriff roles (because he inspires that kind of confidence in humanity, doesn't he?) and is certainly on my list of things to watch, now that I know he's in it. 

I selected Brittany Murphy as an important woman in horror due to her collection of thrillers and chillers that didn't do too well in the box office. Sadly, it's part of the life of a scream queen, to be placed on the back shelf and forgotten. Remember this when you're hustling for the rent.

Rose McGowan - Planet Terror (2007)

Cherry Darling is influential in the horror genre mainly because this film sent every pale gothy zombie-loving girl to the pole to get sexified and groove with her bad self. Shit, I even thought about it. 

No matter how many women's studies classes in university or how many bell hooks books a girl has in her personal library, we all want to be Cherry; the sex vixen who can protect herself with a machine gun leg. Challenge me on this, I dare you.

Jennifer Blanc - The Victim (2011)

The real Mrs. Michael Biehn and the star/producer of this Grindhouse film with a tag line of "even bad girls need protection."  Jennifer is on the list - not because of her new last name - but because I love me a woman that owns the means of production. As the horror industry is notoriously dominated by the Big Huncho, we need to see more women in the driver's seat. It's great to see women killing it on screen and cashing in at the end of the night. Yes please!

The Victim premieres this Friday with Michael Biehn and his wife Jennifer in attendance. There will be a Q & A session following the film. Check out Metro Cinema for more details!


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