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Oh The Horror Movie Review – A Look at Filmmaker Adam Green

Column written by Andrew Durand

One of the amazing things about being a horror fan is finding new and exciting talent behind the camera.  One of them, oddly not so new since he hit it “big” just about a fifteen years ago, is Adam Green.  I’m a native New Englander living in the great state of Rhode Island, and it is pretty amazing to know that Adam Green grew up and still has his roots right here just over the border in Massachusetts. 

His story is a bit interesting.  As a younger lad, I’ve heard rumors he actually met another fellow horror-fanatic who would go on to make some pretty frightening flicks.  Both Eli Roth and Adam Green attended various Maine or New Hampshire summer camps such as Camp Tevya in Brookline, NH and Camp Young Judaea in Amherst, NH.  And Eli Roth, being a bit older, was supposedly a camp counselor to Adam.  If this “legend” is true, I would have loved to be one of the attendees around the campfire listening to any discussions they had about the films that would go on to influence their careers.

But a story told from-the-horses-mouth himself happens to be one where Adam Green was a bit older.  During the Halloween season there is a huge horror attraction entitled Spooky World up in Litchfield, New Hampshire.  It originally started out in Berlin, Massachusetts and was one of the first well known attractions of its kind; drawing thousands.  Spooky World prior to the COVID pandemic brought in many celebrity favorites from the horror scene.  One such year, Adam Green happened to be a young fan that stood in line for two hours to meet one of his personal horror movie heroes, Kane Hodder, famous for playing Jason Voorhees in the FRIDAY THE 13TH franchise.  Unfortunately the lines were so long that the attraction shutdown when closing time occurred leaving some fans, including Adam Green, heartbroken that he missed the opportunity to shake hands with the horror legend.

But disappointments sometimes turn into chance, and fifteen years later Adam Green would find himself discussing one of his screenplays with Kane Hodder.  The filmmaker had an idea for a murderous villain that lived in the swamps of Louisiana named Victor Crowley.  Drawing from such iconic “monsters” as Leatherface or Jason Voorhees, he hoped his brainchild would turn into another modern antagonist that genre fans would adore.  Certainly a perfect role for the actor, Kane Hodder did take it on.   And Victor Crowley, along with Kane Hodder, went on to appear in four films starring the villain:  HATCHET (2006), HATCHET II (2010), HATCHET III (2013), and the self-titled VICTOR CROWLEY (2017).

His love for horror franchises was apparent simply for the fact he was a lead singer in the small side project “Haddonfield”; a garage band named after the town where Michael Myers stalked Laurie Strode in the HALLOWEEN franchise.

Adam Green’s career started much earlier than HATCHET however.  A less known fact about Adam Green is that he founded prior to making it big a production company in 1998 entitled ArieScope Pictures with cinematographer Will Barratt and film producer Cory Neal.  The production company allowed Adam Green to get his film career off the ground and since has produced numerous short films.  Many of these shorts can be found on YouTube or at the ArieScope website.  A lot of them have been used as marketing tools to help filmmakers get jobs and projects off the ground for those involved.

If you are a fan, you most certainly know Adam Green has a sly sense of humor.  If you are reading this article, it would not surprise me if you have seen his HATCHET series or his made-for-TV horror sitcom HOLLISTON (named after the town in Massachusetts that he grew up in).  But much of his stories bathe themselves in the midnight movie eccentricities that horror fans absolutely revere.  Over-the-top murders that would feasibly be impossible happen.  The self aware meta of his cult film DIGGING UP THE MARROW (2014) does a wink and a nod to the audience.  The canned laughs that follow the shenanigans of the cast in HOLLISTON pay tribute to sitcoms many of us have grown up on. 

But his most curious film FROZEN (2010) feels like an anomaly from his career.  Besides the fact wolves are not known to be in New England, the movie is situated directly in reality.  And the movie may be his most frightening film of all.  When Parker (Emma Bell), her boyfriend Dan (Kevin Zegers), and their friend Joe (Shawn Ashmore) get forgotten while on a chairlift in a ski resort in New Hampshire, the three must survive the night from below freezing temperatures while remaining stuck hundreds of feet in the air with no way down.  As they try to figure out a way to lower themselves and to outlast the night’s harshness, a new threat appears as hungry wolves circle below.  Terrifying in all the most primal ways, FROZEN feels like a movie that could happen to anyone of us.  And when its protagonists begin to insinuate fault upon each other, it stings.  The film is as much a horror film as it is a cathartic tragedy.

I’ve met Adam Green twice.  This has allowed me to make an assessment of his character.   My conclusion is that he is very much a humble human being.  He is one of the most grateful and appreciative horror celebrities for the fans that have come to love his work.   And while many celebrities will charge fifty or one hundred dollars for an autograph or a photograph taken with them, my experience was that he didn’t charge me anything. 

At a now defunct Worcester, Massachusetts horror and music convention entitled Rock & Shock, I had the pleasure to walk over to his booth.  What occurred is we chatted for quite some time.  Neither of us knew it would be the very last convention for the show prior to it being discontinued.  But no matter, it was very cool talking to him.  For me, to converse with Adam Green was like talking to that old friend you hadn’t seen in years.  Just like riding a bike for the first time in years, our discussion of genre films fell right into place as if I had known him for a very long time.  

A close friend of mine is also a huge Adam Green fan.  With everything that I do for my love of cult and genre cinema, I get a kick out of it when my friend nicknames me the Rhode Island Adam.  I’ve been a fan of all things genre since I was a little boy.  Now I write reviews for genre websites, have appeared as a co-host on many horror podcasts, and I write my own magazine entitled OH THE HORROR.  

Danielle Harris & Adam Green

Getting to meet Adam has partly inspired me to do the things I do.  I’ve even worked on my first film in some ways because of my discussions I had when I met him.  So yes, you can say I am indeed a big Adam Green fan.  Not only do I admire him for all his hard work, but also for the fact he indirectly motivates me to do all these things.  That’s what makes him unique to me.  And whenever he is at a guest at a local convention or Halloween attraction I always make it a priority to go so I can get to meet him once more.   If he ever happens to appear near you, make sure to go and see him.  You will not be disappointed.

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