10/25/18 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE PICK #25 – The Gate.

The water’s too nice in here. I don’t want to leave the comfy confines of my 80’s hot tub of happiness just yet. Yesterday I waded into the water with Night of the Comet, today I’m relaxing against the powerful jets of 1987’s epic The Gate. This is a wicked little tale featuring a child actor by the name of Stephen Dorff in his first movie ever. There were a slew of movies during this time period featuring kids in the main roles, and marketed toward kids as well. You like Stranger Things? Why do you think that’s set in the 80’s? It was a damn good time when disturbing horror flicks could still be for kids too. The Gate is one of those movies that everyone sort of remembers, whether you’re aware of it or not. You may not recall every bit of plot and story, but I bet I know what you do remember – the miniature minion demons. Holy lord, the little minion demons are epic. Sometimes they’re stop motion animation; other times they’re little people in costume using forced perspective; but they’re always rad. The Gate is about a boy who discovers a hole in his backyard that just might be a gateway to Hell. Sure they try to cover it up, but after a crazy chain of events that include a dead dog, back masking metal music, and a teenage party that includes levitation, well, shit goes wrong. All those adorable and yet unnerving little minion demons escape the hole and start wreaking havoc. The two boys, and now the older sister, have to fix things, or else Hell will be unleashed on Earth. Bwahaha! Look, for 1987, this baby ruled the Earth. It had everything young Jeff loved: Hell, demons, Ray Harryhausen-esque stop motion effects, and metal music! Oh man, remember the ridiculous furor over metal music and back masking? They always said if you play a metal album backward you’ll summon demons. Well, in The Gate that’s true! And just wait until the 3rd act when the movie isn’t happy with little demons and goes full massive demon on us! Oh, and that eyeball in Dorff’s hand scared the bejeezus out of me when I was a kid. The Gate is an awesome 80’s throwback, and something kids, or the kid in all of us, can watch with nostalgic happiness.

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