It’s Enchantment Under the Sea Month here at Nightmare on Film Street, and we all know that you can’t have a good dance without good music and, hopefully, an extremely sick shred guitar solo! To celebrate the headbanging riffs and bloody fingers that spawned them, let’s take a look at some of the coolest guitars in cinema history.
Back To The Future
Now, you might be thinking, “Back to the Future isn’t a horror movie.” But here’s the thing Marty McFly is basically the coolest dude from any movie, and he plays a bunch of cool guitars in the 80s classic. Also, this month’s theme comes from this movie, so there was no way we could just skip over it. First things first: in the beginning of the movie, when Marty plugs into the world’s biggest amp and gets blown away by the sheer force of volume, he’s playing a tiny yellow guitar. This li’l banana is an Erlewine Chiquita, a travel guitar partially designed by ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons.
When Marty auditions to play at the battle of the bands with his group The Pinheads, he rips out a heavier rendition of “The Power of Love” on an Ibanez Roadstar II which is, of course, the sequel to the Ibanez Roadstar I. His rock star dreams are deflated when Huey Lewis himself tells them they’re just “too darn loud.”
Finally, the headliner. When Marty kickstarts rock’n’roll with the band at his parents’ prom, he’s wailing on a red Gibson ES-345. Sticklers for details like to point out that this specific model wasn’t available until 1959, while the Enchantment Under the Sea dance takes place in 1955. I think it’s safe to say that this is proof that there are way more people time-travelling in this movie than we think. Moving on!
Friday the 13th Part 8: Jason Takes Manhattan
While it might not boast the highest kill count, best dance moves, or most Corey Feldman in the series, Friday the 13th Part 8: Jason Takes Manhattan holds the distinction of having the raddest guitar in the series. J.J., who is cool as hell, is rocking the boat with a purple Gibson Flying V. She’s really getting into it, but gets rock-blocked by a lumbering undead maniac in a hockey mask. It’s not long before mama’s boy Jason is doing a little headbanging of his own!
For the uninitiated, Wild Zero is a cult Japanese zombie comedy featuring the untoppable, unstoppable Guitar Wolf. Guitar Wolf is the garage-punkiest garage punk band of all time. Picture the Ramones, but with more screaming and a whole lot of feedback. Guitar Wolf, the frontman of the band Guitar Wolf, carries a red Gibson SG throughout the entire movie, either in his hands or strapped across his back. And if that wasn’t killer enough, how do weaponized guitar picks strike you?
Slumber Party Massacre 2
Slumber Party Massacre 2 largely follows a pop/rock band spending a little time away, washing down corn dogs with champagne because these girls know how to freakin’ party. One of the guitarists has a pretty sweet aquamarine 80s Fat Strat of some sort, but the real standout here is the Driller Killer‘s presumably custom-made guitar/power tool/murder weapon. While not nearly enough of the movie is dedicated to ol’ D.K. stomping around with this monstrosity (90 minutes would be a good starting point), it easily steals the show. If you only remember one thing about Slumber Party Massacre 2, it’s the musical number with this guitar. Also, that would be a shame, because this movie is awesome, and you’d wanna remember all of it.
Does reading this list make you wanna run out to the guitar store and accost the guy with a ponytail behind the counter, screaming “I NEED TO EITHER BUST OUT A SWEET SOLO OR COMMIT A MURDER WITH A GUITAR” or something to that effect? Go ahead, they’ll definitely say “sure dude, the used B.C. Rich section is in the back” and they’ll lead you to a room of pointy 80s designs. And if your favorite horror movie guitar didn’t show up on this list… fret not.
Have you been practicing for your first big gig post-quarantine? Let us know over on Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, and the Horror Fiends of Nightmare on Film Street Facebook page. And for more reviews, recommendations, and guitar tabs that forget to mention you have to tune your guitar to some weird exotic tuning, stay tuned to Nightmare on Film Street.