Starz Inside – Fantastic Flesh: The Art of Make-Up EFX (2008) – By Brian Morton

 When it comes to special effects make-up, I think that every horror fan knows the ins and outs of cutting a throat or pulping a cranium. But, it’s the small details that are always the most interesting, and that’s sort of the point of the new Starz Inside documentary, Fantastic Flesh: The Art of Make-Up EFX. Now, if you’re not a Starz subscriber, then you probably don’t know that anytime Starz does one of these docs, it’s always great, they’re becoming (if they’re not already) the best in the genre business with comprehensive documentaries on the Slasher and Vampire genres, the history of Black cinema and many more, but this one will hold a special place in the hearts of every fan-boy out there.

Featuring interviews with everyone from Greg Nicotero to Dick Smith, this is a look at not just the gore effects (although those are covered too) but the basic effects that you might not even know about. For instance, did you know that Max Von Sydow was in effects makeup in The Exorcist? That’s right, Max was made to look 20 years older than he really was, and it hurt his career, the makeup was so good that people really thought he was in his 70s! And, I have to admit, I thought he was really that old too! So, if you go into this doc thinking that you’re just going to see more blood flowing than anything, think again. Fantastic Flesh: The Art of Make-Up EFX is about the subtleties, the little things like making a nose look right, or how to make your living character look like the character in a comic book. Oh, and for you fan-boys, there is some stuff about the Romero zombie movies and interviews with genre favs, Tom Savini and Rob Bottin, so don’t despair!

I’m giving Fantastic Flesh: The Art of Make-Up EFX three and a half out of four cigars, it’s not perfect and there’s a lot that wasn’t covered that I thought deserved more attention…but maybe next time? You can check it out yourself by watching it on Starz on Tuesday October 7th at 10pm, or after that at Starz On Demand! So, until next time, when I’ll be here trying to get my latex to dry, remember that the best movies are bad movies.