The stabbing slowed down and eventually stopped. The poor girl looked like a hunk of raw hamburger meat. I remembered hearing about how many times the Manson family had stabbed the occupants at Sharon Tate's house and realized it must've looked something like this.
When the stabbing stopped the man dropped the knife onto what was left of the girl. He was sobbing like a child. The camera crashed to the floor, revealing a view from under his bed, which was just a dust-covered floor.
I heard him utter a single word as he cried, just one word.
Blood began spurting from every wound the camera operator inflicted. The girl let out a half-hearted scream, but then went silent. I'm no stranger to gore on film, it's my business, but this was clearly real, a snuff film. I wanted to retch but I couldn't even do that. I just sat there, dumbfounded.
Judging by the grunts of the camera operator as they stabbed, I was pretty sure it was a man, although only their stabbing arm ever appeared on screen.
I sat there looking at the tin out of which the film had come.
A snuff tin.
It's funny how times change, as personal grooming didn't seem to be a priority in 1967. This chick looked like she had a hedgehog resting on her crotch. She began moaning and stroking herself, running her fingers through the thick fur.
The next sight scared the shit out of me. The camera angle shifted to the operator's belt. They pulled a long shiny knife out of a sheath. The camera went back to the girl, who was lying there groaning with her eyes closed.
The camera operator repeatedly plunged the knife into the girl, snuffing her out like a candle.
The camera operator never said a word as she went through the house oohhing and ahhing at the decor, which looked typically 60's. She made it to the bedroom and turned to the camera. She had long blonde hair, quite attractive, and had a sunflower painted on her right cheek. Her eyes were rockets that had blasted off into the stratosphere.
She started undressing provocatively, and you could hear whoever was filming start to breathe heavily. She danced around removing articles of clothing until she was completely naked.
Then she dropped on her back onto the bed, spreading her legs.
The film was grainy and sputtered, the sound was scratchy. It reminded me of being in high school and trying to stay awake while watching a film about hygiene.
It opened with the classic example of a hippie chick, which would be normal if this was indeed 1967. She was coming through the door of this very house. The camera operator was following behind her, trying in vain to keep the camera focused on the girl, who was bouncing around like a fairy. She was obviously high.
"Nice place you've got here," she said as she went inside the house.
I figured I should start at the beginning, so I checked the projector to see if it was in working order. It was, so I grabbed the first reel, marked November 7th, 1967, and threaded it onto the machine. I grabbed the screen and pulled it up, setting it up in front of the bookcase. I positioned the projector so it would cast the film onto the screen. I pulled out my smartphone and headed up the stairs. I doused the light and flipped the phone's flashlight on and went back down.
All that was missing was the red carpet.
I slowly walked to the first shelf that was full of reels of film. They were all labeled. The first one said November 7, 1967. The next reel said November 7, 1968. They moved chronologically on the 7th of November through 1982. Then it changed to VHS tapes. If I was remembering history right, that was the year the first camcorder came on the market. Beginning with November 7, 2003, the medium shifted to DVD, the last box saying November 7, 2018. That was last year.
My curiosity about the importance of November 7th was getting the better of me.
I opened the door to the basement and flipped the light switch. Thankfully the naked bulb that was hanging down from the ceiling was still in working order. The stairs creaked as I descended them. Most folks might have been scared, but I make horror movies for a living, so this was like a day at the office for me.
The walls of the basement were lined with shelves, all containing reels of film, VHS tapes, and what looked like generic DVD cases. In one corner was a TV, a VCR/DVD player, and a vintage movie projector and collapsed screen.
I bought a new house recently. It was abandoned by the previous owner and I snapped it up at a forclosure sale. It would be the perfect retreat for my script writing. I could go there on weekends and get away from all the distractions.
Even though I saved a ton on the price of the house I had no intention of sinking a lot of money into renovations. All I needed was a place for my computer desk and a bed. Maybe replace the appliances in the kitchen.
The last thing I had to do was inspect the basement...