Here's the November 10 edition of the Certified Forgotten newsletter.
Writing, like relationships, comes with a variety of important dates. There’s the first time you published an article at a site that wasn’t yours. Then there’s the first time you were actually paid for an article you wrote. But no matter how when my writing career became “official,” 2023 marks the 15th year of film criticism for me.
And in all those years, I’ve only made one enemy in Hollywood.
His name is Tyler MacIntyre.
Our feud dates back to March 2020, when Amelia Emberwing picked Tyler’s Patchwork for an episode of the Certified Forgotten podcast. Anyone who follows me on social media knows that I am a very hard sell on horror comedies, and I bounced off a movie that both Donato and Amelia loved. Even before I met him, we were off to a bad start.
Then, in October of that same year, Tyler joined us for another episode of the podcast and just really gave me the business for not vibing with his first movie. And while that episode may seem friendly on the surface — that I have a ton of respect for Tyler’s knowledge of film, and that I’m a big fan of Tragedy Girls, his 2017 slasher-comedy — I assure you that it was all podcast magic.
The worst part is, last week, Donato and I sat down and recorded another episode with Tyler. This time, we dove in-depth about It’s a Wonderful Knife, the new Christmas horror film he made with screenwriter Michael Kennedy.
When this episode publishes, you’ll hear me talk about things like Tyler’s uncanny ability to find sincerity in satire, and how talented he is at working with young actors. I may even talk about how much I enjoyed the slasher scenes in It’s a Wonderful Knife and how the performances of Jane Widdop and Jessica McLeod imbue the whole affair with a great deal of empathy.
But I assure you, this, too, is just podcast magic.
What I’m trying to say is, don’t go see It’s a Wonderful Knife this weekend if it opens in a theater near you. Don’t stream it on Shudder when it drops in early December. And definitely don’t listen to Tyler’s upcoming episode of Certified Forgotten to learn how a good director works with their performers to find the best version of their characters onscreen.
Published This Week
One of the guidelines we give our contributors is, if they really want to pitch us on an established horror icon, they need to dig deep. That means exhuming (ha) the early work of filmmakers like John Carpenter or Wes Craven and avoiding the movies that everyone already knows. If you want to write about Vincent Price, you can’t pitch us House of Wax or House on Haunted Hill. But Vincent Price’s guest appearances on a ‘70s children’s show that ran for one season in Canada? Oh yeah, Ryan Uytdewilligen, we’ll greenlight the shit out of your Hilarious House of Frightenstein pitch.
You ever think about horror movies as part of cultural cycles? I’m fascinated by the way zombies and other movie monsters resurface every few decades and find new meaning in societal stressors. And I’ll tell you this: very few people have thought as much about the “why” of witches in movies as Victoria Jaye. Her piece on the TV movie version of Satan’s School for Girls is exactly the kind of article we like to publish at Certified Forgotten. Is the movie great? Proooooobably not, but there’s no denying it taps into something significant, and that makes it something worth remembering.