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Cigarette Burns
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MOVIE REVIEW
JOHN CARPENTER
Masters of Horror: CIGARETTE BURNS - 2005
USA Release: Dec. 16, 2005
IDT Entertainment, Industry Entertainment, Nice Guy Productions, Reunion Pictures
Rating: N/A

Season 1, Episode 8

This episode of the short-lived television show, MASTERS OF HORROR, created by Mick Garris (SLEEPWALKERS, THE SHINING [TV], Masters of Horror: VALERIE ON THE STAIRS [TV]), is BY FAR the best of the series and one of John Carpenter's best films as well. I have watched it many, many times and it never gets old. Not much in the way of originality in any genre these days, but this is a movie that is an exception to the rule.

Early on in this flick, Udo Kier's (MARK OF THE DEVIL, FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN, BLOOD FOR DRACULA, TRAUMA [1976], SPERMULA, SUSPIRIA [1977], JOHNNY MNEMONIC, BLADE, END OF DAYS, FEAR DOTCOM, SHADOW OF THE VAMPIRE, MEGIDDO, GRINDHOUSE, FALL DOWN DEAD, NIGHT OF THE TEMPLAR, Rob Zombie's HALLOWEEN, MOTHER OF TEARS, METROPIA, THE THEATER BIZARRE, THE LORDS OF SALEM, PUPPET MASTER: THE LITTLEST REICH, SKINWALKER) character of Bellinger, asks Kirby (Norman Reedus: MIMIC, 8MM, BLADE II, PANDORUM, ANTIKORPER, NIGHT OF THE TEMPLAR, THE WALKING DEAD) to find a film for him that is the rarest of rare. The movie LA FIN ABSOLUE DU MONDE - THE ABSOLUTE END OF THE WORLD - that much like the works of Sutter Kane (another character from a film by John Carpenter, IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS [1995], but Kane is a writer.) drive any viewers who see the movie mad with murderous bloodlust.

Cigarette Burns
European poster

Bellinger gives Kirby an exorbitant amount, plus all expenses paid, to find the movie for him. Kirby needs the money. If he doesn't have it, his dead girlfriend, Annie's (Zara Taylor), father, Walter (Gary Hethertington: THE STEPFATHER [1987], A STRANGER WAITS, ALIEN ABDUCTION, THE BARBER), will think he has reneged on his loan that he gave Kirby for his theater, and will have the place demolished. Kirby doesn't want that, so he's off to Paris, France, and all points beyond.

TRIVIA

Music for this episode by John Carpenter's son, Cody Carpenter (HALLOWEEN [2018]).

The closer Kirby gets to the film, the more he sees what is known in the industry as "Cigarette Burns" little circles that signify the changing of a movie to another reel in a projectionist's booth. This, in turn, is Kirby's "changing" with each grim situation he finds himself in.

This review will be a short one, I'm afraid. This is not because of the film's runtime, but because everything contained in this fine piece of celluloid, needs to be experienced on an individual basis. I am not easily spooked, but I would be lying if I didn't say this film made the hair on my body stand up. I miss that sensation and I am ecstatic that I am not so jaded that I can't feel that every so often.

Five Shriek Girls

Shriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek GirlsShriek Girls
This review copyright 2020 E.C.McMullen Jr.

John Carpenter's Cigarette Burns (16 Dec 2005) on IMDb
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