Every fear you?ve ever felt. Every evil you?ve witnessed. Every nightmare you?ve ever known? have come together for the first time in one film. Going to Pieces is the ultimate anthology that takes you on a horrifying jo... more »urney through your favorite slasher films including Halloween, Psycho, Friday the 13th, Prom Night, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream and When a Stranger Calls. Interviews with horror icons John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Rob Zombie, Tom Savini and many more guide you through a series of gruesome scenes from classic films and recent hits. Watch as the history of the slasher film comes alive?if you dare!« less
Way cool documentary that explores the slasher film boom-and-bust cycle of the 80s, featuring lots of clips from dozens of vintage films and extensive interviews with splatter film royalty like John Carpenter, Tom Savini, Wes Craven, Sean ("Friday the 13th") Cunningham, Betsy "Mrs. Voorhees" Palmer, and more. Tons of retro fun for horror geeks.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Ashley A. (faith4jesus) from ATHENS, GA Reviewed on 12/14/2007...
I don't have the DVD but I'd love to have this on DVD. I am a HUGE horror movie freak! I love behind the scenes info on movies too. So this was a HUGE bonus for me to find on TV during the Halloween season.
This docomentry style show goes through the history of horror movies, how thigns changed and how horror movie favorites like Wes Craven got their start.
One of my favorite things was the many clips from horror movies and also hearing from actors, directors, writers, special effects artist and so much more!
Another favorite was I got a whole new list of horror movie must sees!
I have this saved to TIVO till I can get it on DVD. Also this is a book I can't wait to get my hands on too.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Good fun for gore and horror fans
Brendan M. Howard | Kansas, USA | 03/18/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Adapted from a book about the evolution of movies based on more and better ways to kill, this cable doc has grisly highlights, behind-the-scenes stories, and some fairly thoughtful explanations for why murders are so fascinating to watch from writers, directors and fans. The history starts with two seminal 1960 films: the underrated British film Peeping Tom from director Michael Powell and the far-more-successful Psycho from American visual genius Alfred Hitchcock. Then it leapfrogs into and out of three general eras of slasher films. The first era begins with 1978's Halloween, with a masked killer pig-sticking teenagers in a quiet suburban neighborhood. It peters out in the early 1980s, as gratuitous masked-murderer films piggyback on Halloween's cliches.
A new burst of creativity arises with 1984's A Nightmare on Elm Street, dumped by its first studio because people didn't want to see movies about dreams, according to writer-director Wes Craven. Writer-directors had to pull out the punches in gore as movie fans had seen it all in the first wave. This era died about the time Reagan left office.
We are in the third era, according to documentarians. Horror films and slasher films in particular have been going strong since films such as Scream laughed at the genre and films such as Saw showed some of the most awful, realistic gore imaginable.
Going to Pieces never gets into academic or psychological discussions for why gore appeals. It lets the makers of gore and its fans expound their theories: Gore succeeds at times of great societal fear (Vietnam, nuclear war, serial killers). Gore shows us a part of humanity--the ephemeral nature of the human body, and our very human need to see violence (the horrors of the Roman Colosseum are brought up briefly). Everyone poo-poohs film critics' theory that slasher films denigrate women; after all, aren't women usually the victorious heroines these days? And what's wrong with sex in horror films?, asks a feminist-director.
Ultimately, the film is an homage to the fans. It shares stories and opinions that might not have been gleaned in director's cut commentaries, and it ends with shout-outs to the fans who made it happen. Those who can't stomach gore should avoid this--it's sometimes a greatest-hits of hacking."
Nostalgic For Teenage Blood Letting?--The Documentary "Piece
K. Harris | Las Vegas, NV | 01/09/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Being a child of the "slasher" era of horror filmmaking, I was eager to check out this nifty documentary. Yes, it was not so long ago when movie theaters were stuffed by routine and formulaic pictures of teenage death--each trying to outdo the last entry in terms of creative killing. And whenever there was a new and creative burst of energy in the genre, that newness and ingenuity were quickly copied and reproduced under a different title. So, let's face it--I love the slashers and I hate the slashers. It's not like these films were art! But they more than satisfied my young lust for blood. But more than a like or dislike anyone might have about a particular film, these low budget affairs were generally independently financed and released. They, in fact, are an extremely vital part of the history of independent filmmaking. For the first time, significantly, multiple pictures made outside the mainstream studio system generated great financial success.
"Going to Pieces" promises a bit more than it can deliver, ultimately. Outlining the rise and fall of the slasher film, one might expect a more comprehensive history than is presented within the film. But, that said, this movie is a fascinating and nostalgic look back. Clocking in at just 90 minutes, the film can cover only so much--and, of course, most of the time is spent with films and filmmakers who agreed to participate in the documentary. So while many of the clips presented are from well known classics, an equal amount of time is spent on films with lesser profiles. It is an intriguing, if sometimes arbitrary, compilation--and I relished the chance to see many of these films again. The documentary is never less than entertaining and the clips chosen represent the genre well. Many big and small names from the era offer interviews and insight, and those are nicely done. Wes Craven is, arguably, the biggest name to contribute to the film--but my favorite recollection comes from the star of "Sleepaway Camp" and how that film's stunning (and absurd) ending affected her young life. (Look it up if you haven't seen it!)
Anyone who enjoys the slasher genre, horror, or even film history might want to check this film out. It's fast and fun. I can't say I walked away knowing more than I did going in (which I had expected), but as a diversion and a bit of nostalgia--it worked exceedingly well. KGHarris, 01/07."
Could have been much, much better than it is.
Robert P. Beveridge | Cleveland, OH | 09/17/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film (Director unknown, 2006)
IMDB, thou hast failed me! I neglected to note the name of the director of this doco when I watched it, and it's not listed at IMDb. Mea culpa. Sorry. On with the show.
Going to Pieces is great, great, great, if you're a slasher film neophyte who wants to get interested in the genre. Now, this is not necessarily a nonexistent niche market, especially with so many youngsters who have been attracted to the genre with newer variations on it (Final Destination being the obvious example), all of whom were not yet born, or in diapers, when most of the films noted here were made. (I was only six, myself, when Black Christmas, the first true North American slasher flick, hit theaters in 1974.) The problem is, the rest of us who would normally be attracted to it have seen all the movies, and know all the backstories. If you're an established fan, most of the stuff you get from Tom Savini, John Carpenter, etc. you'll probably have gotten from other documentaries from the subject, if not from your obsessive Fangoria reading when you were a teenager. That said, it does provide an interesting trip down memory lane to some flicks you might have forgotten about (Pieces and Prom Night are definitely in that category for me, I'll have to watch them again soon). A lot of great clips, a lot of fun (and, a warning, a lot of spoilers). Could have had more original substance, though. ** ½ "
A Genre Slashed and Dissected.
Andrew Estes | Maine | 11/19/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film" chronicles just that: the prestigious and respectable beginnings that quickly gave way to the cheap and lazy knock-offs that saturated and diluted the genre. Whether the films were attempting to create luminary icons such as Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger or cashing in on even the most trivial of holidays, they enjoyed their fair bit of success, made on a shoe-string budget and backed by major studios who treated them like red-headed step-children. The films were gory, gratuitous, often over the top and almost always a pleasure for genre fans, which of course means they were chastised by critics and the MPAA did all they could to neuter them.
Featuring interviews with legendary directors such as John Carpenter and Wes Craven, as well as special effects heroes like Tom Savini and the late Stan Winston, "Going to Pieces" does a fair job of assessing the sub-genre as a whole while shedding some light on some more obscure fare that got overshadowed by the blockbusters that defined the era. It recalls a time when special effects were practical and suspense was key. You didn't need a star or a pretty face, just a relatable character and an unrelenting madman. Even the lesser films like Slumber Party Massacre or Sleepaway Camp were enjoyable despite their lack of originality, and the documentary acknowledges that. Sometimes it digs deeper, questioning the mindset of the parents who rallied against the biggest offenders, as well as big time critics like Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert, who strip away much of their credibility in failing to realize the purpose of these films, and that is to viscerally entertain its audience, thus providing the ultimate escapism.
"Going to Pieces" is nothing if not thorough. It leaves virtually no slasher film untouched and treats its subject with the utmost integrity. It manages to capture all of the nostalgia fans associate with these films, but at the same time, recognizes the downfalls of the genre and doesn't view everything at hand with rose-tinted glasses. Even still, if you remember the golden age of the slasher film and remember what it was like to be truly disgusted and yet entertained at the same time, "Going To Pieces" will go a long way in unearthing those old feelings as well as providing a substantial education in the genre. It's rare that these films are treated with respect and discussed in-depth, therefore, this is one documentary you won't want to overlook. "
Brillant documentary on the slaher genre!
John Lindsey | Socorro, New Mexico USA. | 09/08/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
Here is an inside look at the history of the much malgined genre with such directors and stars like Rob Zombie, John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Tom Savini, Sean S. Cunningham, Paul Lynch ("Prom Night" director), Betsy Palmer ("Friday The 13th 1980" fame), Felissa Rose ("Sleepaway Camp" fame) and more all discuss the history of the slasher genre that started well with Alfred Hitchcock's famed "Psycho" to the glorious 70's/80's slasher pics like "Halloween", "Friday The 13th", "Prom Night", "Sleepaway Camp", "The Burning", "Maniac", "Pieces", "Texas Chainsaw Massacre", "Black Christmas", "A Nightmare on Elm Street" etc. to the postmodern classics like "Scream", "Saw", "Hostel" and "House of 1000 Corpses/Devil's Rejects". This one shows backgrounds on these films, their successes, some of their controversies including a clip of Siskle and Ebert debating on the violence in these movies and of course how they created iconic characters such as Freddy, Jason, Michael, Jigsaw, Leatherface and others even on the rise of obscure actors to big stars.
This DVD has some fine extras as it has trailer, audio commentary, a message from author Adam Rockoff before you watch the movie, bonus interviews, and Trivia game to test your slasher movie knowledge. "