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These exotic fairy tales, beautiful, poetic, made you less scared than simply mesmerized with such striking imagery. Like looking through a breathtaking old photography book you discovered in the attic, these films were old and contained scratches making them imperfectly perfect.
“Boy, you are on your own with this crazy Goddamn movie.” This would become Papaw’s standard proclamation every Friday night throughout my childhood. Needless to say, his tastes ran more towards John Wayne. But he would make sure I was all set up for my movie night, even if he wouldn’t stick around to watch it with me. So there I would be on a dark night. Settling in with “The Body Snatcher” a bag of pork rinds, ice cold Mountain Dew and knowing soon a foggy, black-and-white apparition would appear on the screen, and make me smile.
Like my very own ‘Island of Misfit Toys’ those characters found a home within my childhood and heart. They began to take on this authentic life all their own. And when it feels authentic you truly love those characters forever.