Julia Kaminski June 30, 2021 - 8:21am
Here we are, Summer 2021. Temperatures are on the rise and the world is slowly shifting back to some semblance of normalcy. Bikinis are being dusted off and blow-up beer pong tables are coming out of hibernation. School’s out and the Fourth of July is just around the corner. It’s officially Beach Party Season. Luckily, with every beloved and pleasant societal convention, there is a slew of horror films on deck to crash the party.
Let’s set the scene: Coolers are stocked with awful beer and fruity sugar bombs. Blankets litter the sand. Carefree Co-eds launch beach balls back and forth. LFO’s Summer Girls thunders from a bluetooth speaker. The film nerds crowd around a nearby rock face being set up as a projector screen.
It’s a hypothetical all night Beach Party Horror-thon and I’m your V-J.
Suns out, guns out. Time for the first film on our list. Pull up a beach chair and grab a sandy hotdog.
Disclaimer: You’ll notice there are no shark films on this list, this was entirely intentional. The staggering umbrella of sharksploitation is too vast a cavern to pick out one specific pearl for this list. They also get enough love on their own. This particular playlist is intended to give some love to the B-sides and sub-genre outliers.
The Sand (2015)
One down. Time to go get a refill and settle in for more beach creatures.
Humanoids from the Deep (1980)
The sun is down. A cool breeze has begun. Time to bust out the tiki torches and Mai Tai’s for our next surf rock installment.
The Horror of Party Beach (1964)
At this point in the night I’ve probably lost a few of you. As a treat to those of you who have stuck around, we’re turning up the volume a bit and diving back into some contemporary cheese.
Piranha 3D (2010)
11:55, almost midnight. Enough time for one more story. One more story before 12:00, just to keep us warm.
The Fog (1980)
Alright folks, the swan song is over and it’s time to go home.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my fantasy Beach Party Horror-thon! Thanks for reading and it’s good to be back!
Julia Kaminski July 16, 2021 - 1:25pm
Despite it’s less than favorable reputation, the horror and exploitation genres have long since been an unexpected vehicle for female empowerment. Much of this can be credited to early female creators themselves, who saw the potential in counterculture. Women who found a voice and freedom in art that the general public would turn their noses up at. One of the earliest and most enduring icons of horror and exploitation cinema was burlesque star, Tura Satana who would have celebrated her 83rd birthday this month. Not only has Tura’s image become notorious in punk music, horror merchandise and tiki bars everywhere, but she also led a fascinating, albeit tragic, life with a level of impressive resiliency and strength.
Born Tura Luna Pascual Yamaguchi on July 10, 1938 in Hokkaido Japan. Her father was a Filipino Silent film actor and her mother a Native American and Scots-Irish circus performer. After relocating to the states for her father’s career in 1942, Tura and her father spent 3 years in Manzanar, the Japanese Internment camp.
However, the training was not enough to protect her from a brutal gang rape by five of the neighborhood boys when she was only nine years old. None of the boys were ever charged and Satana believed the judge had been paid off for the boys’ freedom. In later interviews, Tura claims that over the course of the next 15 years, she tracked down each of her attackers and enacted a mysterious I Spit on Your Grave-esque revenge.