After years of doing this podcast, we've been really scraping the bottom of the barrel to find New Years-themed horror films. The old abandoned-lodge-in-the-Canadian-mountains theme is on full display in the odd 1982 film, Ghostkeeper. An unfortunate production history led to an interesting discussion that even WE can't believe lasted about an hour.
Help us ring in 2021 right by firing up this film - or any other film, really, would probably be better - to forget the year that was 2020. Cheers!
Expand to read episode transcript
Episode 241, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw
Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.
Craig: And I’m Craig
Todd: well, after coming out of a rather fun month, I think we, we had, I just want to take a moment to just say, I think we had some great holiday movies.
Craig: Me too. It
Todd: was a bar fight. Yeah. And we finally got to do Scrooged, you know, which is like, I mean, I feel like we could end this podcast now and you’d be a happy man.
Craig: I would, but I don’t want to, I don’t want it.
Todd: No, no, we’re starting a new year, a new fresh year. And the end is not insight. As far as we’re concerned here we are new year’s time looking for a film that has a new year’s theme. And I think eventually we’ll run out of these much, much quicker than the other holidays.
We try to theme this movie that we’re doing this week has actually been on my list for a while. Now it comes up. Every time we’re looking for a new year’s movie and, uh, we always seem to pass over it this time. Craig gave me the option of choosing the film since he has chosen the last two or three. And, uh, I for better for worse picked 1980 twos, ghost keeper, a Canadian film.
And, uh, it was actually shot as a tax shelter, which a lot of movies were apparently. Um, back in those days, there were a lot of rich people in the oil industry up there, and they were looking for ways to basically, you know, save on taxes and, and, um, creatively spend their money. Right. And it was very common at that time for them to use movies as a tax shelter.
If the movie didn’t make money, they could just write it off. This was, um, a pretty big boom for the Canadian film department. And a lot of these horror movies around this time actually were filmed in Canada, but most of them were made to look like. You know, summer camps and American settings, um, you know, Toronto is supposed to double for New York, that kind of thing.
This is one of the first movies we’ve reviewed. I think that’s a Canadian film that actually unabashedly seems to take place in Canada. It’s basically almost like the shining, but up in the mountains of Canada in a much smaller lodge and a much. Crappy or film.
Yeah, you texted me. You said, uh, I don’t even know why I let you pick movies anymore,
Craig: so I know what kind of conversations
Todd: and we’re going to get into here now this, before we even begin. But, um, anyway, this, this movie, like I said, has been on my radar for awhile, just because I’ve run across it in lists of films that take place in new year’s time.
Mostly because I think there’s so few of them that it ends up on all these lists and the reviews are pretty mixed about it. It’s one of those things that has been fairly obscure for awhile. Cause it had a very, very short run in theaters. It was not successful, but has. Over the years apparently gained a bit of a cult following.
So that’s what they claim anyway. And there is a blue Ray release that has been out. And I think that’s the transfer that we watched. So anyway, it was my first time seeing it. Of course. Craig, how about you as you even heard of this one before, except for me talking about it every year. I
Craig: don’t even remember that.
Todd: Yeah, you completely dismissive it. Every single time. I don’t expect you to remember you asshole.
Craig: Yeah, no, I don’t. I don’t remember. I’d never heard of it. I don’t know what to say. Uh, it’s a movie that you recommend.
Todd: All right.
Craig: Okay. So here’s how Todd sold this movie to me. Oh, okay. I’m gonna, I’m gonna do it like text
Craig: Here’s the movie I wanted. You. Me. Okay. That’s cool. You know, I’ve picked the last couple of whatever. Todd cool Todd, to be fair. There is a new year’s movie about a bunch of hot gay guys, but let’s do this instead. Me. Okay.
Then me watching this movie. We go to watch a movie about a bunch of hot gay guys who watch this seriously.
Todd: I’m sure you’d. There are no shortage of films of hot gay guys that you have.
Todd: just have this feeling.
Todd: we don’t have to get too deep into true confessions.
Craig: No. Yeah. It takes place in Canada. Have you ever been to Canada? Taught,
Todd: let me tell you about my trips to Canada. Back in 1983, we went to Toronto. Uh, it was. Fun. I was a kid. We didn’t go to the mountains. It wasn’t snowing at the time. Um, back when we lived in Michigan, we went to Canada while back, uh, what was that?
Oh, saw Sharon Lois and Bram in concert by accident in an amusement park. Do you remember that? The elephant show? That was a great Canadian production. Do you remember?
Craig: Gosh, no, I don’t remember. I mean, the name sounds really familiar.
Todd: Maybe that was just a Michigan thing or kind of a regional deal because we got a lot of Cate Canadian TV, but it was, I
Craig: don’t know.
The name sounds familiar. Yeah. I, uh, when I was a little tiny kid, um, my parents took me to Niagara falls. Oh yeah. I’ve been there and that’s the only time I’ve ever been in Canada. Cause I think that sits right there on the border. Um, and uh, My mom tells this story that like I was teeny, she was pregnant with my sister.
So I was like two, three years old. And, uh, she tells the story that by the end of the trip, my wrist was bruised because. She was holding onto it so tight because I have no idea what Niagara falls is like. Now I can’t tell you about this. It says something about the movie. Um, but she said that, uh, at the time at Niagara falls, like there were just like li like little tiny rails that separated you from the fall.
And she was just mortified that I was. Getting to go over some. So my ruses, my, my wrist was bruised from her holding it. And the only reason that I ask is because I can’t imagine what we’re going to have to save, dude. It was so bad. Okay. No, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait,
Todd: let me worried. Go on, go on. You got another Niagara falls story.
Go on. Let’s hear it.
Craig: No, like, you know, one of my favorite things about doing this is, you know, reading. Like behind the scenes stuff. And, and there’s nothing about this in the IMDP trivia, there are only like two items and one of them is that halfway through the movie, they ran out of money. So they were just like, they just threw out this grant and just like winged it.
And you can totally tell, like, it’s I, I feel okay. So the very first thing you see in the movie, Is this text on the screen that says in the Indian legends of North America, there exists a creature called Windigo a ghost to live human flesh, very
Todd: promising, very promising. He became great. Yeah.
Craig: And so you think that’s what the movie’s going to be about and it’s not at all.
Like, there’s like a, there’s like this gross creepy guy locked up in a room somewhere that I guess is supposed to be the wind to go. He’s just locked up in that room the whole time, like nothing ever happened.
Todd: Right. It’s maybe, you know, I managed to do a little bit more digging and I found an interview with the director, the writer, writer, director of this actually, uh, his name is, uh,
Craig: Jim Mecca.
Todd: Yeah. Yeah. He started out in LA I think then moved to Canada to take advantage of all these productions that were going on with, for these tax shelters and had written a bunch of stuff and ended up, you know, getting, uh, he said like about a hundred thousand dollars from six different people, um, to go out and shoot this movie.
And then the producer somehow at one point came up and said, you know, I don’t know if people backed out or what happened, but. Uh, they suddenly just didn’t have any money anymore and they could just scrap the whole thing and probably still write it off. I mean, it probably would have been just fine with all these people, but he said, no, we made the decision to go, just to plow through it.
So he literally threw out the script and he said, we just kept shooting and I was just making up scenes. As we went along, I guess, just to run out the film and get these actors paid and, you know, uh, finish out their contracts and whatnot. And you’re right. It does show, however, I would argue that if you didn’t know that, and I didn’t know it going in, I only knew that after the fact, I was like, Oh yeah, that makes a hell of a lot of sense.
Then you, you, I feel you could have cut out. Some of those scenes with that creature and still made a movie that probably still wouldn’t have been scary or wouldn’t have really worked, but still would have been interesting. I found the movie as it is, and this is how we have to review it right as it is.
All right. The plot and everything was bad, but. The cinematography was compelling. The editing was interesting. The acting, except for like a couple people was actually pretty good for what it was, which was a lot of people kind of staring off into space and staring at each other, wandering around the rooms, pensively, you know, there’s a lot of shots of just.
Long shots of nothing happening, right. Just people wandering around or driving through the snow and stuff like that. It’s clearly like stretching for time, almost more than anything, but trying to build atmosphere and part of what keeps it going. I think, man, if there hadn’t been a score underneath it, the whole thing, I don’t think there’s a second guy goes by in this movie without.
The score underneath it and it’s not bad. It’s creepy and atmospheric. I could say a theorial that worked for me. That part worked for
Craig: me. I didn’t mind it. I mean, it was very typical of the time and it almost felt like made for TV. I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know how to just be you’re right. It was all the time and it was.
Yeah, actually, I read that it was reused, uh, for like prom night or something. We got something like that
Todd: as Paul’s the guy who wrote the score, he’s composed like 95, you know, he has 95 credits on there. He was a, he composed a lot of stuff for Bob Clark. A lot of his movies, including black Christmas murder by decree.
I was, I was constantly getting little shades of black Christmas in this movie I have to say. And it turns out that the editor on this movie also edited almost all of Bob Clark’s. Earlier films, black Christmas, a murder by decree, which kind of makes sense. I feel like they’re just some, call-outs straight away to black Christmas in some of this.
Craig: It’s definitely got that vibe, like mid to late seventies vibe and that’s fine. And like you said, the cinematography is compelling. Like, I mean, it was all right. I think a lot of that just had to do with the fact that the outdoor. Shots were just pretty like, you know, it’s a snowy landscape, it’s mountainous and foresty and you know, that’s, that’s nice.
Um, as far as the interiors, it’s lots of shots down long hallways and, you know, shots in like hotel lobbies. I thought of. The shining too, just because, you know, it’s a resort in the mountains at winter time. So yeah, it reminded me of that. We watched another new year’s movie. I have no idea. I think it was new.
Year’s where a bunch of people went to a lodge and it ended up being haunted. And do you remember that? I have no idea what it was, but it reminded me of that. It does kind of have the feel of like those seventies kind of slashers. And I feel like they were going for something you need. And it just didn’t pan out.
Like, like you said, the whole idea of the Windigo that guy, they could have cut all those scenes and it would have made absolutely no difference because that really barely plays into the plot at all. I mean, I guess in the finished product, It serves as the motivation for why people are getting killed.
Like they have two people, like one person gets killed in the whole movie or two, maybe. I don’t know, like, like they’re feeding this thing in the cellar. Like it’s like in like an ice sell or
Craig: like that, but that’s why people
Todd: are made of ice.
Craig: Yeah. Made of ice. Like ice Briggs. That’s why people have to get killed.
So this thing can eat or whatever. I don’t know. I feel like it was a good, uh, it was a decent idea. And you said the acting isn’t bad and you’re right, it’s fine. And there are only what, like seven people in the whole movie and it’s okay. And it reminds you very much of. Seventies films. There’s a blonde in the movie named Chrissy who I wish had been played by Linnea Quigley, because it’s the NOLA Neha quickly roll.
There’s a lead couple Marty and Jenny, and they’re not bad actors, but they’re both assholes. And so like, I didn’t Marty more so than Jenny, I guess Marty’s a total Dick. I let’s just, let’s just do this. Let’s go. Well, there’s not much to tell. I know nothing happened. I think we can
Todd: please. Breeze through it, right?
Like the, just spend a whole hell of a lot of time. Probably a good first 15 minutes of the movie, just on their ski dues or their, yeah. Their ski dues skiing. Yeah. Through the snow, in these beautiful surroundings. But it’s like, man, that camera led lingers on that scene till they have moved from one side of the screen.
All the way to the other in every single circumstance. And it’s pretty, I mean, it’s pretty look at that. Those exterior shots will look great on the big screen.
Craig: There are things about the movie that just, yes, I agree with all of that. Uh, it bothered me that Chrissy rode her snowmobile sitting on her knees, like who does that?
Like, I don’t understand
Todd: many people do that. Maybe it’s like a thing, like if you’re extra sporty, it’s part of the challenges.
Craig: I I’ve never written a snowmobile. So what the,
Todd: yeah. What do you know? Come on. Hey, you
Craig: barely been to Canada.
Todd: Come on. I’m clearly the expert in this area.
Craig: It starts out with Marty and Jenny at this mountain store.
And like, I. Cut. It’s, it’s the same thing. You see it, uh, in all of these horror movies, they’re in this mountain store with this, you know, shopkeeper who seemed kind of familiar to me, but I looked at his stuff and I didn’t recognize anything that he was in. He’s just the typical grandfatherly, old man, whatever.
And Chrissy ends up joining them and she’s like, it’s so boring. Back at the lodge. Some people are getting ready for the party. You better stay with the roads is these
Todd: moms can be tricky.
Craig: We can
Todd: handle ourselves. Yeah,
Craig: they’re dangerous. How can mountains be dangerous? They’re so beautiful, but Gramps, uh,
Todd: we’re not going to get lost around worse things
Craig: out there than getting lost.
Todd: it’s the typical
Craig: warning from the gas station guy. Like, Oh, whatever you do, don’t go over there. Of course, that’s exactly what they do. And they find the other on their snow mobiles and they find an, an old road that’s like private properties stay out and they’re like, Oh, let’s go
Todd: check this out.
Except for Jenny. Who’s like, I’m not sure if we should go. W w well, what’s wrong with that? Marty’s like, cause just like, well, it’s just the sign that says private property do not enter.
Craig: Oh, nobody’s been up here for years. I was sure it’s fine. And so they, they do go up there and then they find. Uh, pristine mountain lodge.
Craig: the deer lodge. And they’re like, what is this? And. Chrissy’s snow, Christy crashes, her snowmobile, and then it’s broken. And like it’s snowing really heavily. I did appreciate, like they had to climb a snowbank to get in.
Like there, I assume they filmed it on location. It looked like real snow, and they really like had to struggle to get up there. Um, but then they get up there and like it’s an abandoned. Ski lodge, but you would have thought that it had been abandoned yesterday, like everything’s up and running and clean and warm
Well, it is, like you said a little bit, and this is probably what you were talking about. Little bit of shades of bloody new year, right? That was the one you were thinking of where it comes across that lodge. And part of the mystery is like, why is this is everything so crisp and clean, even though it hasn’t been here, but here it’s only been like five years.
Right. They look at the register and Marty’s like, Oh, the last person here checked in five years ago and they’re like, well, why is it still warm? Who turns on the furnace? So that’s somebody must
Craig: be here.
Craig: But that’s the thing. They know that somebody has to be there, but they’re not particularly concerned about it.
Like they just make themselves comfortable
Todd: and they want,
Craig: everybody goes looking around. Right.
Todd: And then there’s a creepy scene. And I thought this was. You know, again, something that had promised, but didn’t end up panning out. Jenny goes up and she sees a room that has a coat hanger hooked over the door so that the door remains open.
Like it can’t be shut because the coat hangers in the way and the door is like, you know, kind of banging. It’s like clear that there’s like the windows open or something on the other side and it’s pretty creepy. And she goes in and when she goes into that room, Sure enough, the window is open and she goes to close it.
And then there’s a quick insert cut of like these, this crazy. I was a scraggly hair over it, like looking at her from somewhere
Craig: and whispering her name.
Todd: Yeah, that was weird. I thought, Oh God, this is freaky. And it exactly like black Christmas, right? It’s it was the same. I shot. Yeah, that you get at the end of that, you know, even with the gut, with the person, kind of always
Craig: praying over it and
Todd: things like that, but then she leaves the room and then they go downstairs and they have a fire.
And my God, this fireside scene
Craig: it’s painful. And like Marty sings a song like a, like, uh, it’s not like he sings the whole thing, but it goes on for too long. And plus. It’s a familiar too. And like, I, uh, you know, like
Craig: was familiar, it
Todd: was a take on the Frito Bandido song is what it was supposed to be
That’s the only version of it that I know. And I didn’t know if that was a spoof or if
Todd: this was this,
Craig: the way that he sings it. I steal them and, or I’ll visit them and rape them and screw them. And then, uh, if you saw the go,
Todd: the girls are just like, , it’s gross. Well, and he also sick. He sings it super slow, right?
Like it’s like, it’s like the director, like, all right, we’ve got to burn a lot of film here. Normally the song is at one 20 beats per minute. Can you, can you knock it down to maybe, I don’t know, 80 and it’s so painful.
Craig: And then. Out of nowhere,
Todd: really out of nowhere,
Craig: Chrissy decides to tell them a long story about how she, she prostituted herself out to a teacher.
16 for $40. Like, I swear this, there’s no context for this at all. Like, she’s just like, Hey, did you ever want to tell somebody something that you never thought you dealt? And they’re like, no, she’s like, okay, well I will.
Todd: And then when she found
Craig: about when I was 16, I really got the urge to sell my body.
Todd: And then once she’s done with this story, she says, I don’t know what made me tell you that I’m thinking. Yeah, me neither. I have no idea.
Craig: That was not a good story, but I wouldn’t tell it again. If I
Todd: were to
Craig: keep that to yourself. But what did I think she was trying to be sexy? Like, I think like throughout this whole, like throughout the whole thing, it’s so dumb.
Like it’s the, you know, these, this first half hour, like Jenny and Marty are a couple apparently, but obviously Chrissy is kind of flirting with Marty and he’s totally into it. And then there’s a scene at some point. Okay. This scene comes later because another character pops up, but this scene comes later where Jenny is like, do you want to sleep with her?
And he’s like, uh, I don’t know, I can do whatever I want. Right. I got to live my life. You got to live your life. Like, that’s the deal, right? Why are you such a bitch?
Todd: Almost exactly.
Craig: Word for word what he said.
Todd: I’m like, all right. Clearly he wants an open relationship and they have not talked about this yet.
Craig: God. It’s so weird.
Todd: Girls are staring, like you said, they’re staring at each other. She’s Jenny staring at Marty and staring at this girl. There’s a lot of staring and these looks being thrown back and forth. And again, Up to this point, I’m thinking something interesting is building it’s a little slow about it.
And some of it’s kind of stupid, but there is some tension here. There’s a bit of an atmosphere and a bit of a mystery. And we’ve seen somebody with a crazy eye whispering one of the characters names. And the director said that they did shoot this in sequence just out of coincidence. So when the money ran out, it’s the stuff in the later part of the movie that you know, was just thrown in all of this stuff.
Was pretty much as written, you know, the first half of the movie. So for,
Craig: for better. Well, the thing that, like, I feel like they had a story in mind, like they were building something, but then they just abandoned it, like for, you know, whether it was financial reasons that I just wanted to wrap it up. I don’t know, like, it felt like they were building something like after their little fireside chat, Marty goes to look for more wine and he gets attacked by somebody and screams.
And so the girls run in and it ends up being this old lady. And I have to say that if there’s, if I’m going to say anything positive about this movie, which is hard for me to do, I found this actress compelling. Like she was interesting. And I kind of wished that, I mean, she has. A lot to do, I suppose. I just feel like in a better movie, she could have been really compelling.
She was interesting looking or acting was interesting.
Todd: She was apparently a very well-known stage actress in Alberta at the time, maybe one of the most. Accomplished of the actors in this whole movie with the rest of them, pretty much. Didn’t go on to do much of anything else, except for the Jenny character.
She went on to do a few more movies and some TV, but that was about it. She had a look, I thought the Jenny character had a look that was super familiar, but I just think it’s because most of the brunettes from the seventies and these movies all had the same hairstyle and the same makeup. She,
Craig: well, yeah, she looked very eighties, nighttime.
Craig: Dallas or knots landing.
Todd: Like that’s what she looked like at that point. From the soap guy. Yeah. You can pinpoint that better than ,
Craig: but she was pretty and like, I wanted to like her, but she was just, I don’t know. She was weird and annoying too. And Marty was such a Dick to her and she’s always like, yeah, you’re right.
I am a bitch. Sorry, go ahead and go. That other girl, not a problem.
Todd: It’d be the scene. It might be later, but she keeps bringing up or he keeps needling her about her being crazy. And she’s like, don’t say that, you know, that hurts me. And, and he’s like, why are you worried that you’re going to turn into your mother?
There’s this implication throughout that her mother is crazy. And so she’s worried that she’s going to be crazy, like her mother. And we’ve seen that before in other films too. Right.
Craig: Rude. But it’s so frustrating because it really amounts to nothing. Like it could have been something interesting and it feels in the movie.
Like they’re exploring that. Like, is she really hearing voices whispering her name? Is she somehow connected to this place? Because it seems like the old lady who really is, she doesn’t explain anything. She’s just totally evasive. Like they ask her questions and she just kind of skirts around it and they were just like, okay, well, I guess you’re here.
So whatever it seems like immediately, she feels some connection to Jenny or she knows. Something about Jenny. And it seems like in concept, there was something that made Jenny special and like maybe she was drawn to this place or they knew she was coming or something, but it never really plays out. Like, if you want to try to kind of piece things together in your mind, you can maybe think
Todd: of a better movie, right?
Craig: she’s. There’s something about her. She’s a special kind of person and this lady. Recognizes it,
Todd: well, she flat out says it this point, but it doesn’t play it. Well, Chrissy gets up and goes to the bathroom, something happens. And then later Jenny goes looking for Chrissy and she runs into the old lady.
Uh, you know, there’s a lot of this people wander around pretty much all night long. Yeah. With their candles in the hallway. I know
Craig: you’re on. Okay. One,
what do you mean. Yeah, that’d be tough to handle this job. You gotta be ready every minute and I’m getting too old for it. For
Todd: what? And the implication is maybe she takes care of the hotel, but it’s set in such a sinister way that, you know, there’s more to it than that. Or that’s not even what she actually does.
So instantly there’s this, you know, I mean, this is total foreshadowing, right. That something’s going to happen. Like whatever she does, she’s looking for a replacement.
Craig: Right, right. But that part of the movie seems to have been excised. So, and not entirely like it’s there, but it’s so. I mean, just hanging on by a thread like it’s inconsequential.
So it kind of makes it, it’s also very much like burnt offerings, right?
Craig: we need a new person to take care of this place or to feed. In, in that case to feed the house. But in this case to feed the ice
Todd: monster, the dude in a coat,
Craig: a little bit of makeup on that kind of makes him look a little bit gross, but there’s no indication like if he’s supposed to be a wind to go, first of all, that also bothered me because we’ve done movies.
That dealt with windows before, and I’ve never heard them described as a ghost that lives on human flesh. I don’t know. I didn’t do any research, so I don’t know what the Windigo is supposed to be, but it’s a native American myth, or I guess in this case, native Canadian.
Todd: It’s supposed to be a ghost that wakes up when somebody consumes human flesh.
Todd: yeah, when cannibalism happens, it awakens this ghost and it’s basically, I guess, like, you know, everybody’s punishment for the fact that this, that this happened. So I’m playing a game called until Dawn on the PS four right now that deals with this directly. And it’s actually a pretty fun way, way more fun than this movie
Craig: was it was it.
Bone Tomahawk was that the
Todd: bone Tomahawk was one of them because it dealt with a whole tribe. But then the one that was really good, I love was ravenous.
Craig: Oh yeah. That’s what I’m thinking of. That’s what I’m thinking of. Yeah. And there’s talk of when to go in a pet cemetery too. I don’t even remember if it was in the movie.
I just remember it from the book, but whatever the old lady says that she’s lived there all her life and they’re like, well, it must be. Tough being all alone and she’s like, no one’s ever alone in the mountains. And they ask her what she means. And she’s like, well, my boys here in the mountains and he keeps me company.
Okay. Meanwhile, the whole time that she’s telling this story, she’s eating a sandwich. Where did she get lettuce? I know that was bothering
Todd: me so much, but also the sandwich looks so good. I turned to my wife who was not watching this with me. And I was like, I could really go for a BLT right now.
Craig: Is there any way
Todd: we could scratch up enough lettuce for a BLT?
Craig: These were the things I was thinking about during this movie that tells you how entertaining it was. Like, wait a minute there, this abandoned. Resort in the middle of the Canadian wilderness, but she has fresh crispy lettuce sandwich.
Todd: No, she could have made them a sandwich too. I mean, come on. They’re standing right there, staring at her, watching a REIT, the sandwich. Ah, what a shame. So anyway, uh, so she’s been creeping around and, um, Chrissy, Chrissy goes off to take a bath and I thought, for sure, okay, well, here’s we get our topless moments and things like that.
And this is where they creatively shot around actual nudity, which was surprising for a movie like this.
Craig: It’s also surprising that this movie is rated R there’s no nudity. There’s very little graphic violence. I mean, there’s definitely suggested violence, but very, it’s not graphic at all. I mean, I have no idea why I traded our it’s weird.
Todd: It was a different time, Craig. It was a different time. And so she goes into her top and I thought this sequence was quite good. You know, we’ve heard about her son. And so now there’s this other character, the legs and whatnot, walking through the hallway, creeping towards her as she’s getting into her bath.
And. Sitting in her bath. And of course, because it’s a horror movie. When you take a bath, you have to light like five candles and have them sitting somewhere in the bathroom. So, you know, he blows his candle out and he opens the door behind her and that blows the candle flames back and forth a little bit, a little breeze comes into the room, but she barely notices it.
And then he kind of closes the door and she turns around and doesn’t see him there. And then suddenly he’s standing over her and he grabs her and takes her out. And I thought that was a bit of a shocking. Thing. I mean projected from a mile away, but, uh, nonetheless, you know, okay. We got our first w I thought kill because he pushes her down under the wire and then Jenny gets up and wanders in there and doesn’t see Chrissy and runs into the old woman.
And then Marty gets up looking for Chrissy and she’s not there. And then they seem fairly unconcerned. For most of the rest of the film that Chrissy is just,
Craig: they kind of act like they care for a second. Like they get up the next morning. Um, Was the old lady smoking weed through the whole movie. Like it, it probably was just supposed to be hand-rolled cigarettes, but it definitely, I don’t know.
It looked like a dude to me. And while her son, presumably I guess is killing. Chrissy or so we think like, just like you, I thought that he drowned her, but we see just minutes later, him carrying her down to the ice. Base
Todd: layer the ice house
Craig: and any slits her throat. That’s probably the most graphic part is when he slit her throat and she bleeds and he throws her into this, um, whatever it is, I mean, it just looks like a guy that they,
I mean, that’s the problem.
Craig: When the disfigurement that he has could just be frostbite, like it doesn’t look like much of anything. And that’s what I thought when you said this scene. Was kind of compelling, I guess, because it’s one of the only action scenes that we get, but I’m like, if you have a castle freak, just like use the castle freak, you don’t need some random guy who we don’t know and who looks totally normal.
I’m just like, you know, good luck mountain man kind of guy.
Todd: Yeah. Just
Craig: show up. Kind of drown this girl and then throw her in her room. And then he shows up later to chase Jenny around for a while, but that’s it like, there’s no characterization. Yeah,
Todd: their lackeys for this thing, I guess, or they’re supposed to be protectors.
And I think that’s the, where the title goes to keep keeper comes from. If this guy in a coat in the basement is the ghost, then you know, this mother is the ghost keeper and there’s some mythology behind it. We don’t really get it. But, uh, the, actually the director in the interview said that that was when they ran out of the bunny.
Like they ran out of the money and the producer said you have one day. With your monster, you have a monster movie. And you’ve got one day to shoot with the monster. And so the, all they did was just put him in that room and shoot a whole bunch of different angles on them is all they had all they could do.
And then that point, you know, like I said, he had to redo the entire ending, which there was intended to be a long chase scene, you know, face to face with the monster. All of this stuff was part of the ending. The monster was supposed to be, isn’t supposed to be a monster movie and now there’s not. Hardly any monster in it at all.
And what monster there is, like you said, it’s super baffling.
Craig: I almost feel like it could have been interesting because the monster could have been sympathetic. Like I wanted to know more about him. I wanted to, because he doesn’t even look monstrous. Like he looks. Scared and sad. So I wanted to know, you know, what, what is his story?
And if, if, as the movie projects from the very beginning that Jenny is going to be his new caretaker. It’s almost like a beauty and the beast kind of situation. Like I thought it was going to be kind of a sympathetic deal, but it’s, it’s just thrown away, just thrown away,
Todd: just abandoned really? And that’s a shame.
Yeah. I would have also liked to have known if the monster, when he was 16, felt the need to sell his body or something. What is it nice to chat with the monster
Craig: a little bit more than need? She just
Todd: felt like, like it
Craig: once when I was 16. Yeah. I had this uncontrollable urge to want to do it for money, you know?
Like being a hooker.
Craig: And then, uh, so Jenny and Marty ended up together and she apologizes to him for the fight that they had, where he was such a Dick. God, what did he say? I wrote it down. He said to her, you live your life the way you want. Just remember who pays the bills, dude. Yeah. You are such a
She just. Laps it up. She’s like, yeah. Okay.
Craig: And then she apologizes to him later and he’s like, Oh, sorry, I get that way. And then she’s like, maybe I’m going through some kind of stage or something. You know, I’m afraid of being crazy. I don’t want to be like my mother, which again is a moot point because we get nothing about the backstory.
And it’s like, she’s super concerned about this, but we know nothing about
Todd: they, they tell us outright way too many times. Like she should not be the one saying this out loud. It should be delivered to us in another way. And, uh, and like you said, it, it means nothing ultimately, but. Once again, as we’ve said about a lot of things in this movie, they’re setting up something kind of compelling.
I mean their relationship, uh, of this guy who’s kind of overbearing and she just kind of takes it and, you know, she’s weak and whatever. However, this mother said that she’s actually strong. She can tell that she’s strong inside. You know, there’s an interesting bit of tension or whatever going on here, but it’s really not skillfully done.
And I think that the Marty’s acting has a lot to do with that too. He does come across as a Dick. He’s written as a Dick, but. Some of it’s just a little over the top. Just something about his performance doesn’t ring true to me. And so every time he was smirking and smiling and smuggling and all over the place, I’m like this isn’t a real guy.
This is a guy acting like a Dick.
Craig: Yeah, I don’t know. I mean, he’s super, cocksure like, he’s just, I don’t know. It didn’t bother me as far as the acting goes. He just, and, and to be fair, I, you know, cause I say this about hot girls all the time. He’s a good looking guy and charming in some ways, I guess, but just.
A jerk. But if you were to watch this movie, which I do not recommend, but if you were, you would see him and you would say, I’ve known guys like that. Like maybe fun to be around sometimes. But if you actually get to know him, really just a Dick, like you don’t want to be his friend kind of like you. Yeah.
The more time you spend with them.
I ain’t just kidding. I really like
Todd: everything, but my laugh, right?
Craig: you’re one of my best friends.
Todd: Tell me more about me, Craig. Let’s wrap this up.
Craig: No, we may as well. Oh God, I don’t know. So Jenny walks around and she hears the old woman talking to somebody it’s her son, but Jenny doesn’t know that. The old lady’s like, you’re doing good. It’ll be fine. He needed us. I’m not mad at you or whatever.
Okay. And so then it’s morning and Marty goes out and I thought, Oh, this snowmobile that was already broken. Still won’t start surprise, surprise. But apparently it’s been one of the snowmobiles. Gone and Chrissy is gone and the remaining snowmobile has been sabotage. Like one court has been pulled out of it.
And that was so funny to me, like. He opens up like the hood or whatever of this snowmobile. And he sees that one cord has been disconnected and I wanted to be like, dude, just plug it back in.
Todd: Can you at least try that?
Craig: No, he just rips it out and throws it out into the snow. Like seriously, one side of this court has been pulled out from somewhere, look around, right.
See where it goes, plug it back in. Oh God. So he goes in and he confronts to a woman. He’s like, what the hell is going on here, crystal, your mobile are gone and somebody’s food my machine. And she plays dumb. And he
Todd: goes, and she’s cutting meat too, which I thought, Oh, that’s interesting. You know, it looks like a huge rack of ribs and whatnot.
There’s this part of Mexico. It was like, it wasn’t her. It was it Chrissy, you know? Um,
Craig: it could have been, I suppose. Um, cause we did see just in shadow silhouette. Presumably the sun chopping up something within ax, which Marty later finds the bloody ax, but then he also blood drips on his hand and he looks up and it’s a deer that’s been slaughtered, which, you know, that’s reasonable, whatever.
I don’t know. My impression was that they fed the girl to the castle freak. So yeah. Whatever. I don’t know. It’s it’s all just so hodgepodge, but the old lady though, she’s a little bit short with Marty. Sometimes she’s always super nice to Jenny and like, anytime she’s around Jenny, she smiles. Um, and she gives Jenny some tea.
You know what I think you don’t even work for this place. You’ve made it. You are somehow, but you don’t work here. What’s done is done. You can’t change it last night. I heard he talking to somebody else. We never see anybody else around where’d Chrissy.
And then she just walks out and goes and sits in the lobby, which looks very much like the shining. Like it’s just these huge windows. At not, excuse me, I should clarify that it’s not as big and luxurious, but in style it kind of looks like it. Cause there’s just like a line of chairs sitting in front of these windows, overlooking the winter landscape and she sits in front of it in her vision starts going wobbly.
I assume the old lady drugged her with the tea. Yeah. And then the old lady in the sun enter behind her and she briefly sees them. But then she. Passes out. And that was a good party and action. Great shots that
Todd: wasn’t bad. Marty’s in the shed, he’s looking for things and that’s when he encounters the deer.
And then Jenny wakes up in a random room. Uh, and there’s a book in front of her conveniently placed
Craig: in legends of Canada
Todd: as though this were a video game. Oh, there is a book that she just opens up and, you know, to the bookmark page and, uh, says something about it. Flood legends, tell of a flesh eating giant.
That’s usually kept by a female and she’s like kept by a female, puts it all together in her head.
Craig: And there are newspaper clippings of like missing Explorer parties in the mountains or whatever. Yeah. In, in 30 seconds, she kind of, sort of puts it together as best you can from this non-story.
Todd: Okay. Now she’s got to break out of this room or whatever, but no, the next shot just shows her wandering around the hallways and presumably the basement where they just left her and she.
I guess breaks the lock with her hands or it’s
Craig: get that, like, there was a lock on it, but she just fiddles with it for a second. It opens like maybe the key is in the lock. I don’t know because it takes her all of two seconds. It’s it’s a padlock on a door and she literally just. Fingers it for a
Craig: it’s open
Todd: just a sec.
Like this is this wind to go or whatever. Some, you know, beast of legend or, and they’ve got like a cheap ass padlock on Dawn, right in the basement. She opens the door, looks in, we see the same shot of him staring back at her and she’s like, Oh shit. She just closes the door again. And then a sound of a chainsaw comes from behind and she starts getting chased by the sun.
With the chainsaw, uh, down the hallway, I’m like cool chainsaw chasing scene. This is interesting. And he chases her into the house and up the stairs and suddenly somewhere in the midst of this chase, he doesn’t have the chainsaw.
Craig: He, it dies when he’s on the stairway. It dies.
Todd: What a shame
Craig: I know. Well, and so.
He chases her around for awhile, whatever. And then she goes out like onto a fire escape. And when he comes out, she pushes him. And she’s only on the second story. So I was thinking, Oh, you know, big deal. She pushes him down and he’s going to land in the snow big deal. But lucky for her, there’s a iron.
Fence with spikes and he lands on that. Uh, this is the part that drives me crazy. Okay. So Marty sees this happen and reunites with her and she’s like trying to explain to him. What’s going on, but apparently he just thinks she’s crazy. And then he loses his God damn like out of nowhere, all of a sudden he is just bat shit crazy and like painting his face with engine grease.
And he does this whole monologue that I can only imagine was improvised because it doesn’t make any sense.
Craig: And it’s long and it’s just to establish that he has a Ostet and he’s got a hold of her, like they’re face-to-face, but he has a hold of her by the back of her hair. And another reason that I think that this was improvised is she has no idea how to react to him.
Todd: She has nothing to do.
Craig: No. So she just kind of stands there in shocked horror for a good two minutes. And he’s violent. Like he’s. Thrashing her head up and down and around. And this poor actress, I’m like, good Lord.
Todd: Give her something like to do. Yeah, this was so painful. This was so painful to watch the scene.
Craig: And it just ends up with him saying I got to go get help. And she’s like, yeah. No don’t and then he just trots off into the wilderness. She chases out his gloves without his hat. She chases after him for a little while, but then he just pushes her down like three times
Todd: in the snow
Craig: and just keeps walking off.
That’s it. And the monologue is about how like his dad is so perfect and he want to do impresses. It doesn’t make any sense and it’s so stupid and it doesn’t make any sense that he just snaps out of nowhere.
Todd: It’s crazy. And then. Out of nowhere. Suddenly the old man from the store is walking through the snow and he looks at the sign and he looks at the tracks and he just, Oh boy,
Craig: shakes his head.
Todd: those crazy kids
Craig: goes up to the lodge.
Todd: And, uh, as he’s approaching the lodge, we see the woman who’s totally mugging, you know, opens the door, looks at him, gets a big evil grin on her face and closes it. And I’m thinking, Oh, is this the. This is their scat man Carruthers scene, right. He’s going to go in and that’s exactly what it was.
He goes into the lodge, you know, it’s a good five or eight minutes of this. And, uh, as soon as he gets in there, he goes into one room and she’s around the corner with a knife and just stabbed him in the chest. And then that’s it. That’s it for this?
Craig: Yeah. Well, it’s, it’s that scene from the shining too, with Dick Halleran, like Dick Halleran knows something is going on and, um, he’s going to go up and be the hero.
And then as soon as he steps in the door, Jack Nicholson axes him in the chest and then that’s it like
Todd: stab me in Caruthers, I guess. I’ve maybe I have the wrong name. I don’t know,
Craig: that sounded familiar to me too. Sorry, who’s just going with
God. It’s so silly. But Jenny goes back. Jenny goes back to the lodge because you remember she had seen earlier, she had like stumbled into a. Cleaning closet or something. And there was a shotgun in there and she, she remembers that Sarah. So she goes in, she gets the gun, she ends up meeting the old lady in the hall and the old lady does this whole again, it’s very much like the shining wind Jack is trying to like, he’s got the, whatever it is, the ax or whatever it is behind his back.
This woman has the. Nice behind her back. This foot-long knife that she’s carrying around. And, um, she’s like, you wouldn’t kill me. That’s something a crazy person would do. You don’t want to be crazy like your mom. And Jenny’s like, how do you know that? And she’s like, I know a lot of things, you know who I am.
I’m your mother come to mother and. It could have been compelling if there was anything to back it up. But why does this crazy old lady know that Jenny has a crazy mom? Why does she know that she would be moved by any of this? It doesn’t make any sense. Well,
Todd: actually, to be fair, she does overhear her talking about this in the hallway.
She’s she’s on the other side of the door, like smiling and listening. Sitting wall. Um, Jenny is explaining to, uh, Marty about how she doesn’t want to be a mom. So, yeah, but you’re right. You’re right. I mean, it’s just, this all kind of comes on quick and fast and hard at the end. And, uh, Jenny shoots her, uh, and then Jenny spends a really, really long time going back into that main room in the lodge, getting a.
I guess picking up the same tea she had before. So I don’t know if she’s going to be out again. Um, Oh, she does go downstairs to the wind to go opens the door, to hop in on our friend. Basically assure him. Don’t worry. I’ll look after you.
Craig: Yeah. It’s all right, Jenny. We’ll look after you now. What’s meanwhile, like.
Oh, okay. Well, and then she goes out and finds Marty frozen to death against a tree looking like he’s doing a Jack Torrance, impersonation, frozen against the tree. And however, the actor is clearly. Breathing, hold your breath for one second.
And, and she talks to it cause seriously, like the camera is on him for like a second and he is clearly breathing. Anyway. Um, and she says, Jim, you should have listened to Jenny. You should have been nicer to Jenny. I have to go now, but don’t worry, Marty, I’ll be back for you. And then she walks back into the lodge and she sits.
And frankly, I’m thinking, you know, this sucked, but she gets to live in this huge heated well-stocked apparently lodge in the mountains. Cool, whatever. And then she hears whispering, and it sounds like the old woman, and it’s saying it’s over, isn’t it. You done fine. You’ll see, Jenny. It’ll be like, it always was.
You’ll see. Fades of black, the end.
I have no idea what’s happening.
Todd: I wish I could. I wish I could tell you. I mean, it is what it is, right. We, we got to get, we’ve got to review it as it is, but the fact of the matter is even the director was just making shit up after a while and, uh, doing his best saying, look, if the movie. You can’t be what we intended to be, which was this monster movie.
At least we can make it something super creepy and atmospheric and hope that that, you know, works. And so, like you said, there’s a little bit of everything in here. There’s a little bit of burn offerings with the ending. You know, there’s a lot of the shining in here. Uh, I, you know, shades of black Christmas and stuff and, uh, and yeah, that is what it is.
The movie was written around this lodge. It’s kind of a shame because. It seems like, uh, the director, his friend apparently is his parents or whatever owned this lodge. And it also was closed for the winter. So they were able to shoot there. And he said also when we were outside all, every time snow fell, that was real, all the snow outdoor scenes.
We were super lucky. That everything looked great. When we went outside to film,
Craig: I would totally go to that lodge.
Todd: I wouldn’t do it. And I kind of wish I’d seen more of it, you know, I’m, you know, it would have been kinda nice. It’s most of it’s just rooms and hallways and that one, you know, lobby area and.
And the dead
Craig: kitchen. It was very, I say, it’s gorgeous. It’s not luxurious. It’s very rustic, but it looks very isolated in the Canadian mountains. Like, ah, it’s beautiful. I would totally go there.
Todd: So yeah. So, you know, that’s what it is. And, um, I think. You know, all things said and done. I think it was atmospheric until it, you know, your other brain kicks in and is like, yeah, but where’s this going?
And why doesn’t any of this make sense? I think it was well edited and God more power to them to be able to pull something together. That is semi coherent. And at least doesn’t feel like a completely different movie halfway through, you know, that they did it. The, the direct, uh, the, the, um, the, I don’t, I’m trying hard.
Craig: it’s so funny when, when what you have the good things you have to say about it was, I mean, they made a movie.
Todd: I guess what I’m trying to get to is that, you know, they still, I just wanted to remind everyone there were talented people, the helm behind this doing, trying to salvage this, and this is sometimes what just has to happen in the industry. You know, like I said, the editor of this movie, you know, was, was, did porkies too, uh, after this did Porky’s before it, and then went on to do a Christmas story.
The same year that this movie came out. Oh, Yeah, then he edited rhinestone, but you know, at least we know what that means.
Craig: I liked rhinestone.
Todd: I know you did.
Craig: We’ve done popcorn. I
Todd: liked it. Did that. Uh, you know, he’s been successful working guy. And then again, Oh, the, uh, composer that we were talking about earlier that right after this went to do curtains.
Craig: See, and that’s what I would say. Technically it is not bad. Technically. It’s not bad. It’s fine. It’s serviceable. We’ve definitely seen worse. Even story-wise we’ve seen worse. It’s just not, it fell apart. Like it just fell apart and it’s too bad. It may be, it could have been something, I don’t know. I don’t think it was ever going to be a masterpiece, but, um, There were some interesting ideas there.
It just didn’t work. And I didn’t like it and I wouldn’t recommend it. And I much rather would have. Watched a bunch of hot shirtless gay guys running around, getting killed. That would have been way more up my alley, but whatever, that’s what I get. What I let you pick the movies. There weren’t even any boobs,
Craig: jeez, I’m super disappointed.
Todd: I was, I was, I saw the blonde as like, all right. At least we’re seeing the blonde girls boobs. Nope, Nope, Nope. Linnaeus. Where are you when we need you?
Craig: She would have been perfect in this role. And she would have been much more compelling that whole hooker story. Would’ve been much more compelling if Lynette Quiggly had been telling it.
And. They only mentioned new year’s like one time,
Todd: twice I counted. They were
Craig: so good pick or new year’s movie, Todd. Yeah. But look at here, here we are.
Todd: Uh, we’ve we’ve put almost an hour into this and, uh, we, we had to fill it out a little bit with some summer vacation stories, but, uh, did you think we would get to this point?
Craig: No, but as always, I did, you know, when we watch these types of movies, like, especially when you pick them, which is usually like, when I’m watching them, I’m like you asshole, I hate you. But then. When we talk about it, it’s I enjoy talking to you and a bit about
Todd: shirtless guys.
Craig: It was fun to talk about. We had some good laughs.
So, uh, I hope that, uh, our listeners enjoy that. And don’t watch this.
Todd: God, at least it wasn’t another movie about some pandemic going on or,
Craig: Oh, thank God.
Todd: Well, thank you all for listening to this episode. If you enjoyed it, please share it with a friend happy new year to everybody. We’re looking forward to bringing you more and more episodes as we go through this year, 2021.
We wish you and everybody else a much better. 2021 than your 2020 was
Craig: gotta be better than 2020. And I am optimum.
Todd: Me too. Use your favorite podcast software or platform to subscribe to our episodes. Also get to our YouTube channel. We’re closely approaching a hundred subscribers there until next time.
Craig: and I’m Craig
Todd: with two guys and a chainsaw.
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