Popcorn (1991)

31 days of horror, day 6: an old favorite of mine from my youth, Popcorn. A perfect follow-up to Bava’s DemonsPopcorn is another meta fest that takes place in a movie theater. This time, it’s a college film club who decide to throw an all-night horror-movie marathon to raise money for themselves. 

One of the girls in the club, Maggie, is plagued with nightmares which she’s turning into her first film script. She and the other film nerds go balls out setting up the all-night show, complete with 3D-glasses, giant flying robotic mosquitoes, stench gags and electrified theater seats, all of which they’re able to set up with the help of a cameo by Ray Walston (a.k.a. Ridgemont High’s Mr. Hand) as Dr. Mnesyne. He seems to leave his chest of tricks behind and disappear for the rest of the movie, but the group finds a strange film canister at the bottom of his goodie bag and they decide to play it.

They find a film called The Possessor, which to most everyone looks to be simply a really bad art film from the 70’s, but it is much more disturbing to Maggie, as elements of the film seem like they are directly taken from her dreams. Maggie goes home and tells her Mom (Dee Wallace, of course) about the coincidence. This turns out to be no coincidence at all, but I’ll let you figure out the details for yourself.

Coincidence or no, the show must go on. As the films play, a mysterious killer offs members of the film club, usually using the props they’d set up for the audience’s enjoyment. Who is the killer, and why must he kill? Honestly, the answer is kind of dull, but the ride to get there is quite enjoyable.


2 Responses to “Popcorn (1991)”

  1. November 5, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    I remember seeing this and enjoying the parts with the all-night-horror marathon with props better than the main story in Popcorn. I haven’t seen it in years, though. I’d like to check it out again, but it’s hard to find for some reason… but I don’t remember it being good enough to go through the effort of tracking it down, but if it’s ever on a cable movie channel or Netflix Instant, I will definitely see it again.

    • November 6, 2014 at 12:05 pm

      Yes, its elements separately are ultimately better than the final product, and still make the film worth a watch – but probably not worth a ton of effort to get your hands on. I suspect it will end up on one streaming service eventually!

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