3 News Stories This Week Straight Out Of 'Kill Bill,' 'The Blair Witch Project,' And 'Amélie'
Reading this week's headlines can feel a lot like...reading Netflix descriptions for Kill Bill, The Blair Witch Project, and Amélie. What? Well, these real-life events actually involved a samurai sword, a horrifying discovery in a creepy abandoned house, and a man who took hundreds of photobooth self-portraits over the course of his life. Could this be a serious case of life imitating art, or just the world being its crazy self?
Sure, it's common to make movies based on real events and true stories — without these, Tom Hanks would have no career — but it's less common to see real events resemble some twisted movie plot borne from the imagination of Quentin Tarantino. But this week in Salt Lake City; Dayton, Ohio; and Minden, Nev., three people seemingly stepped off the screen and brought three very different movies to life.
We're not sure what's scarier — watching The Blair Witch Project, or knowing that the witch might be alive and well in Ohio. Maybe next week a man and a woman who meet in college will fall in love after years of being best friends — nah, that'd never happen in real life...
This Salt Lake City Woman
Salt Lake City police arrested 25-year-old Tasha Davis on attempted homicide charges for attacking her neighbor with a samurai sword. According to the police, Davis was arguing with her neighbor when the fight escalated and she felt compelled to go inside her house to retrieve her 27-inch katana. She repeatedly swung at the man, who blocked the sword and almost lost an arm.
In Kill Bill, Uma Thurman's character, the Bride, seeks revenge against a squad of assassins who massacred her husband, friends, and put her in a coma while she was pregnant, resulting in the loss of her baby. Her weapon of choice is the samurai sword, which she uses to cut through at an army of yakuza known as the Crazy 88.
Does the Blair Witch Live in Dayton, Ohio?
In what feels like a classic horror movie scene, a boy stumbled across a dilapidated house swallowed by overgrown weeds and decides to check it out. But, of course, he's not going to find a house full of dusty Ikea furniture; instead, he found a mummified corpse hanging from a noose in the closet. According to CNN, the coroner estimated the body had been hanging there for about five years.
In the cult horror film The Blair Witch Project, which was made on a shoestring budget of $60,000 (estimated), a group of film students meet a grisly fate in the woods of Maryland. At the end of the movie, two of the protagonists find a derelict house just like the one in Dayton and go inside to find their missing friend. What they find is also — spoiler alert! — not a house full of Ikea furniture.
We Wish Life Was Always Like Amélie
In March, Rutgers University's Zimmerli Art Museum exhibited a collection of photobooth self-portraits taken by a mystery man. But after "445 Portraits of a Man" caught the attention of a guy in Minden, Nev., the mystery was solved. Tom Trelenberg was browsing the Web when he came across the exhibition and instantly recognized his uncle Franklyn.
Trelenberg recounts that his uncle, Franklyn Swantek, had a thriving photobooth service, Swantek Photo Service. Trelenberg told Rutgers Today that his uncle was "a lot of fun, just a cheerful guy," which would explain his whimsical decision to take 445 self-portraits over three decades.
In Jean-Pierre Jeunet's romance Amélie, which could be the definition of whimsical, the title protagonist picks up a photo album dropped by a strange man she has fallen in love with from a distance. The album is comprised entirely of photobooth pictures, a large portion of which are of one mystery man.
Though he appears over and over again in dozens of pictures, each one is ripped. Amélie burns with curiosity as she tries to solve the mystery. In the end it's revealed — spoiler alert! — that he's the photobooth technician who must test out machines around Paris after fixing them. He then discards the photos of himself, which are then salvaged by Amélie's crush who pieces them back together in his album.
Images: UGC/20th Century Fox/Miramax Films, A Band Apart Productions/Miramax Films, Haxan Films/Artisan Entertainment