Fright night

In the pantheon of terrifying movie monsters, a horde of Styrofoam cups might not spike the heart rate quite like a masked brute armed with a machete and an obsessive disdain for camp counselors. That is exactly why Oklahoma film buff Art Sunday wants to introduce audiences to the short film “Killer Cups,” along with other obscure gems at a free, monthly horror movie night at Bad Granny’s Bazaar in the Plaza District.

“There are two horror films for every thousand films at a festival, so I thought there should be a place for horror since that is where the vast majority of directors start out,” Sunday said. “Horror films are the best medium for someone with no money. You can just go to the woods, buy a mask and a knife, and cast a girl running, screaming and flinging blood.”

Sunday will screen a handful of indie shorts, including “Descente” and “Percy vs. The Destroyer,” as well as a yet-to-be determined feature film. Trailers will be littered throughout to promote some of his favorite slasher flicks he’s collected over the years as the organizer of Tulsa’s annual Underground Horror Fest and related events.

“These filmmakers are working at McDonald’s and, at night, working toward their dream of making movies, so I want to do what I can to support them,” Sunday said.

Although he considers himself a movie lover in general, horror has a special place in his heart, since artistic progression is often driven by the independent moviemakers who are breaking new ground, sometimes using little more than a rickety camera and a credit card.

“You can make horror with bad actors, bad scenes, bad props, but people will still love them,” Sunday said. “People have went in with budgets of $10,000 and made horror movies that others are still wearing T-shirts of today. Compare that to movies that won Academy Awards in the ’80s; you’ll never see a ‘Terms of Endearment’ convention.”

He believes what makes a good fright flick isn’t the script, acting or special effects, but its concept. Sunday said that a tragically flawed movie can be great if the director had a kernel of a good idea.

“For my movie nights, I try to pick things that are more memorable — not based on the look, the packaging or whether it is established or not, but on the storyline,” he said. “What I really want is for people to see this movie that had bad lighting, and maybe the actors weren’t very good, but it was so funny that they’d love to see the same film with a budget.”

Charles Martin

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