I had a very passionate discussion with someone the other day and during the deep discussion, while we shifted into films, that person basically called me a "sad man" for my obsessive love for horror films. Now, the debate was done mostly in jest (the kind of jest when you and your friends are doing your best to break each other's balls the hardest) and, while I tried my hardest to not let the remark get to me, it did. It sank its fangs into me and mixed with my own blood deep within. It got me thinking. And you know what happens when I start thinking.

I love horror films. Actually...let me start over.

I FUCKING LOVE HORROR FILMS! Like a lot! My earliest memory involved watching Jaws  with my parents and wondering why everyone in the theater was so scared. I mean...sharks can't really get you in the theater. I thought fear to be a silly expression at the time. Just the way that people gasped and cringed in the theater because they were scared of an animal that normally resides in the deep waters of the ocean. It wasn't until later on that I figured out for myself that fear was always there. Waiting in the dark. I eventually found that fear when I watched The Exorcist  for the first time. And there it was...fear. Waiting for me in the shadows like a Witch King. I fell in love with the entire concept. I remember going to the drive-in with my parents to watch a triple feature of Cujo/The Legacy/Creepshow. My father and brother passed out...but, my mother and I were wide awake laughing and cheering and cringing at the screen. It was a primal emotion. Something that I cannot write into words to explain. However, if you love horror as much as I do...then, you may understand that emotion of delight once you turn on the television and revisit a beloved classic from the days of your youth.

Anyway, I was talking with this particular person about a film that I thought they might like. I listed the director's name and even gave examples of past films that the particular director (David Fincher) did...just to enlighten the person and, perhaps, sway his decision one way or the other. Well, the person, in a decidedly joking and condescending manner, dismissed me as a "sad man" for knowing way too much about films and directors and what-not. I sort of laughed off the remark...but, it did remain inside of me. I guess it sort of crawled inside and made a home in the deep recesses of my psyche. I felt like a zombie from Night of the Creeps. "Sad man."

Maybe I'm a "sad man" for knowing way too much about these films that I love. I mean, I'm able to maintain a casual conversation about pretty much anything. But, whenever someone even remotely mentions a horror film...even in the most casual of casual conversations, there I am listing off all the significant actors from the film and what the director has gone on to do, as well as the many sequels it has spawned and even some recommendations of other similar horror films that he or she might enjoy. I turn into a human IMDB. Never mind when anyone enters into the John Waters vs. Ed Wood debate...then, good luck stopping me. However, this was more innocent. I just wanted to help someone along the path of film with the advanced knowledge that I have amassed throughout the years. Only to be shunted aside and met with sarcastic denial.  But, perhaps I shouldn't know this much about films. Perhaps I'm just an elitist cinema prick wasting all of my time viewing the world through an Argento/Fulci-tinted blood-red lens and I can't relate to the real world around me. Am I "sad"?

I started wondering if I was just that annoying horror fan that sits there on the couch during parties who casually displays my vast knowledge of horror films to anybody who remotely cares. Have I become that guy? Somewhere along the way...did I turn into Randy from Scream?? And if so...does it really matter in the grand scheme of things? I questioned everything in a flash of moments and asked myself if I should take a deep hard look at myself in the mirror and conform to whatever society wants me to be. Then, I started laughing. Laughing hysterically like Ash in the cabin. And I responded to those questions with a resounding FUCK NO!

I will not stop loving the horror films that have given me pure unrelenting enjoyment throughout the years. I will not stop seeking out all those new horror films that show promise of a bold new direction for the genre. I will not stop obsessing over the films that I love. Why? Because I am a fucking FILM DEVIANT! That's why. I do this for me. I do this for all those cult actors throughout the years that have gone nameless. I do this for all the Jess Franco's out there waiting to be discovered. I do this for Herschell Gordon Lewis. But, most of all...I do this for all for you.

Never be afraid to love whatever film you choose to love. That is your unbridled passion and no one can take that away from you. Watch Slaughtered Vomit Dolls  a thousand times if that makes you happy. Hell...I'll never put down a Twilight  fan...if that's the kind of film you're into (sicko). You are free to love whatever film that makes you happy. And, while you're at it, memorize all the details from your favorite films; the hilarious lines, the cinematographer's second cousin's maiden name, how many "Fake Shemps" there are in Army of Darkness. Why? Because in the end...as long as you buy a ticket and share the experience with a loved one and escape into a world of pure fantasy in a dark theater for a couple of hours...then, that's all that matters. You are an obsessed film fan...be proud. Am I a "sad man"? Yes...I am sad for the individual that is unable to let himself go in a movie like I do.

Thanks for reading,