Over the last decade or so, I’ve done the majority of movie shopping online. There’s a certain thrill that I get waiting for a package to arrive. I can trace this back to being a teenager and waiting for the new issue of Fangoria to come in the mail. I would sit up in my bedroom and watch for the mailman to come up the street. The magazine came wrapped in what I could only describe as a tiny garbage bag, almost like a smut book. If he had it, I would be able to see it in his hands as he made his way to the mailbox. If he did, I would wait another 60 – 90 seconds (so I didn’t look weird) and beat it down to the mailbox.
Now, I’m not saying that the magazine was in anyway a disappointment, but the process of waiting and anticipating is not something that I appreciated enough at the time. I still get that feeling today. I love the giddy feeling of having an order pending. It can make a boring work day a little easier to get through.
Even more exciting than waiting for a package (or at least more immediately gratifying) is the movie hunt. Hunting for a particular movie is an experience that is just about completely gone from my life now.
The hunt happens when a strange urge hits that goes beyond wanting a movie to just about needing a movie. I’ve been on many great hunts and I always remember the people that I was with. There’s a sort of bond that lasts longer than the enjoyment of the actual movie. Maybe I’m just overly sentimental, but if I’ve ever been on a hunt with you, you have a place in my heart that’s permanent.
What’s particularly exciting is that there is no guarantee of success. I’ve gone home disappointed more often than not. That makes the successes all the sweeter. Some of my greatest triumphs ended long after I had given up. I found my VHS copy of Re-Animator on the bottom shelf of a dirty old drug store that only had about two dozen movies. I finally got ahold of Bad Taste when I told the manager of one of favorite video stores that I couldn’t find it. He sold it to me for $10 because I was the only one to rent it in years. The internet has changed the way I go about things so much.
That brings me to the latest addition to my collection: The vagina impaling scene from Patrick Still Lives. The internet was a reliable place to score movies at this point, but not my preferred outlet. I still went for the immediate gratification of picking something up off of a shelf.
That’s only part of it though. I used to go movie shopping all the time but I wasn’t always on a hunt. This one started when I was watching one of Shriek Show’s uneven releases. I don’t even remember which one. What I do remember was the trailer for Patrick Still Lives (or Patrick Vive Ancora if you prefer the onscreen title). This thing was so bloody and sleazy that my jaw immediately dropped. It wasn’t a movie I wanted, it was a movie I needed.
Even though the entire trailer is fantastic, the standout is easily the vagina impaling that takes place at about 1:10 in on this trailer:
A scene like that raises questions that need to be answered. I’m not a woman, but would you really fend off a levitating poker with your vagina? It seems like she has ample opportunity of escape. Just go left or right – that thing is not moving that fast! Instead she hops on a table, scootches back, and opens her legs.
The vagina impalement would not have been possible without all of these movements. It’s almost like she’s involved in an intricate dance with the comatose Patrick as he telepathically advances the poker toward her. Sometimes, if something is amazing enough, it doesn’t need to be 100% logical.
To cut to the chase, I needed to get this movie. This particular hunt is special to me, because the woman who would eventually become my wife went with me. It was our first together. I’m not sure if she fully understood the absurdity of it all, but she accepted it. If you’re cool with this aspect of my personality, we can work out almost anything else. Our journey went through at least half a dozen stores in Worcester County before finally ending in a Suncoast Video in Marlborough, MA.
The routine usually involved rifling through the horror/sci-fi section then checking any promotional end caps just in case. Finally, I would resort to asking a confused clerk who usually looked at me like I was making it up.
It was my wife who found it first. A quick check to make sure it was the unrated version (why did Shriek Show sell anything else?) and we were on our way.
Now for the part of the routine that my wife still doesn’t understand. I have to unwrap my find in the car. Maybe this is akin to a hunter skinning his/her kill. I don’t know. Maybe I’m just a little kid that can’t wait to play with his/her new toy. Whatever it is, it still makes my wife roll her eyes more than ten years later.
There’s always the risk of something this wild not living up to expectations. I hope I can put your mind at ease. Patrick Still Lives, and the vagina kabob scene in particular, surpass expectations. Check it out here at about the 1 hour mark:
The scene is nearly two minutes long and incredible. Not only is the build up more drawn out, but the payoff is even better than I had any right to expect. And by better, I mean two graphic close ups of the stabbing. If that wasn’t enough, the wider shots bring it to a new level. The blood stained inner thighs and the uncontrollable convulsions are truly unforgettable. Even if you don’t like this kind of stuff, you have to admit, that actress is a trooper. I love searching out crazy, gory, and sleazy stuff and I’ve never seen something like the before or since.
Tastes may vary, but to me, while this is explicit, it’s not mean spirited or even all that nasty. It’s pure spectacle. When I think of my favorite moments in movies, this one always lands near the top of my list.