Hey kids, remember when vampires were scary? Believe it or not, they used to be. They weren't romanticized or sexualized. They weren't mopey, goth, or sympathetic. They were monsters. And if there's one flick that freaked out a young Jason, it was Salem's Lot. This was the movie that had me pulling the covers up over my head. I was thinking of vampires. I was specifically thinking of the vampires from this small Maine town. In later years, the novel would become one of my favorites. It still is. As far as vampire movies go, I maintain that this is one of the best. Granted, it does deviate from the novel quite a bit, but it becomes its own spooky animal. They were a fool to remake it with that godawful miniseries with Rob Lowe.

This post Texas Chainsaw effort by Tobe Hooper is one of his few great films. What most people don't remember is that this was a network television miniseries, one that was shackled by the limitations of broadcast tv. Still, Hooper exercises a stunning amount of restraint. While the full miniseries is excellent, I prefer the version that's trimmed into a feature length. It's packed with memorable scenes, notably of Danny Glick scratching at Mark's window. If you're 30 years or older, the image of a floating Danny, shrouded in smoke, probably still flits around in your mind.

The scene below, however, is probably my favorite. It encapsulates all of the tension of facing down a bloodsucker. There are the serpentine eyes, the tremulous power of faith, and the guy from Every Which Way But Loose. "Loooooook at meeeee, teacherrrrrr. . . "

Check it out past the jump!