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Film / Popcorn

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Popcorn is a 1991 comedic Slasher Movie.

Maggie is a film student in college, looked after by her aunt Suzanne since Maggie's parents died years ago under suspicious circumstances. She's currently writing a film about a girl named Sara - based on the dreams/nightmares that she's been having. Her film professor, Mr. Davis, is working on getting the funds to help her make her movie, along with the movies of the other students in her film class. To that end, Davis suggests putting on a fundraiser movie marathon of three shlocky sci-fi movies: "Mosquito!" about a giant mutant blood-sucking insect, "The Amazing Electrified Man," about a felon wreaking havoc with new-found control of electricity, and "The Stench," a Japanese horror movie about a smell powerful enough to kill people. One of Davis' friends, Dr. Mnesyne, has the original gimmick props for all three films, so they can be shown as they were originally intended, gimmicks and all.


While preparing for the showing, the students come across a short film: "Possessor," a truly bizarre piece of celluloid. Davis explains that "Possessor" was made by a maniac named Lanyard Gates, who filmed everything except the final scene, which was to be performed on-stage: a ritual sacrifice. When the film was shown, Gates attempted to perform the sacrifice for real - there was a fight when this was realized, and the struggle ended up setting the theater on fire, killing several people. The students agree that Possessor can stay sealed up in the case where it was found, but seeing the film starts to trigger new nightmares for Maggie, as the film seems somehow to her strangely familiar.

The night of the marathon comes, and everybody is ready to go - but as the movies start rolling, Maggie discovers to her horror that her friends are dying, one at a time, killed by various means related to the movies being watched - and that it all seems related to her connection to "Possessor," and that perhaps someone she knows, someone close to her, might be the killer...


This film contains examples of:

  • Audience Participation: In-universe - the marathon allows people to shout their own Mystery Science Theater 3000 / Rocky Horror Picture Show style lines at the screen. For example:
    Woman on Screen: Kiss me, Dick!
    Man in Audience: Kiss your what?!?
  • Big Bad: Toby D'Amato is the killer.
  • Dancing Bear: Each of the three creature features shown has its own William Castle-style gimmick. The killer ends up incorporating all three gimmicks in attempts to kill.
    • "Mosquito" has a large animatronic mosquito come out of the screen and fly over the audience, similar to the skeleton used for House on Haunted Hill.
    • "The Amazing Electrified Man" has apparatus attached to chairs in the theater that give shocks to seated patrons, similar to the gimmick for The Tingler.
    • "The Stench" has a special chemical mixture that produces a noxious smelling fog.
  • Genuine Human Hide: The killer likes to wear the skin of his victims in order to lure others in.
  • One-Word Title
  • Shout-Out: Among all the fake movies, the festival is also showing The Incredible Melting Man.
  • Show Within a Show: The festival consists of various gimmicky '50's B-movies they made up for the project. There's also Possessor, the film Gates screened before his initial massacre.
  • Snuff Film: Toby attempts to finish Possessor this way to complete his revenge.

Alternative Title(s): Phantom Of The Cinema


Example of: