Monday, April 29, 2013

Rated V for Violence

Vomit Bag Art
I remember the first movie I got to go see by myself.  Mom dropped me off at the Pitman Theatre downtown Gadsden to see Mark of the Devil in 1972.  The newspaper ad was very enticing for my young eyes.  The movie guaranteed to scare the living daylights out of me as well as gross me out completely.

The movie was supposed to be so sickening that they promised that each movie patron would be issued a vomit bag.  They made good their promise alright.  I got my very own vomit bag.  The movie turned out to be very lame.  The most memorable scene was when this guy pulled out this witch's tongue.  There was lots of hacking and chopping of limbs in the movie.  I was hoping throughout the movie that I would not have to actually use my vomit bag because I thought the bag was the coolest thing about the movie.  I kept it for years after that.

The movie was gross, but not vomit gross.  Being a foreign film with English dubbed over the German made for a surreal experience. The setting was Australia/Germany in the 17th Century. The movie was loosely based on history, but it was just too bloody for my young eyes.  I had seen gross before, but nothing this gory.  There's a lot of gory in horror today...more realistic gore.  It just doesn't appeal to me.  Down through the years I have gotten used to it, and it's all silly to me.

The movie also had partial nudity, exposed breasts of witches being tortured.  For some reason those righteous witch hunters seemed to want to get an eyeful of the victims they tortured and killed.  Breasts and blood was very wicked and hardly entertaining.  I got the feeling that the people that produced the movie were just as demented as the witch hunters depicted in the film.  For someone to find this film entertaining, makes the demented too.  Hammer and American International Films were tame compared to Mark of the Devil.
Looking back, I don't know why on earth mom would let me go to a movie called Mark of the Devil.  I guess maybe she thought it was a Billy Graham film...maybe a Christian movie about the end times.  There were a good many Christian films released in the theaters around that time. She just dropped me off and inside I went.

My dad once told me when I was a boy that I should guard what goes into my mind.  He said there are things we allow ourselves to see and never be able to erase from our minds.   In time I learned that he was right.  I have since relayed my father's message to my daughters.  I can't always be there to keep them from putting bad things in their mind.

Gina and I do our best to guard the gates.  We continually pray over our little ones ~ knowing God will take care of them.
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