12 Hours of Terror at the Capitol Theatre in Cleveland

This weekend was all sorts of crazy, but fun. I attended my second 12 Hours of Terror, a movie marathon put on at the Capitol Theatre in Cleveland.


In a nutshell you watch horror movies from 8 pm – 8 am at a cost of $25-$30. Seven films are shown, 6 of which are advertised, plus a special “mystery” movie. One of the films is also shown in 3D! They have various concessions, including breakfast the next morning in the form of OJ and muffins. Between movies there are door prizes and clips of retro movie ads. Upstairs from the main theater is the “Cowards Corner” where you can go if one of the movies is too scary or if you need a nap because the films/cartoons upstairs are for a “gentle” audience. Blankets and pillows are welcome and pretty much the standard uniform along with PJ pants. Think of it like a HUGE adult Halloween slumber party.

In 2012 I went with Ian, albeit very reluctantly. I honestly couldn’t figure out why anyone would sit through 12 hours of movies. Not even GOOD movies, but B-movie cult classics at best. Still, I went like the good little girlfriend I was trying to be, and although I still to this day feel terrible about the way I acted toward him, I ended up loving the event. After the weekend, I spent the last year waiting for the event again and  attempting to find people to attend with me.

At long last, my sister agreed to go! It seemed like she was hesitant though, so I decided I’d go by myself if needed. Thankfully that did not happen and at 800 PM on Saturday night we arrived.



Luckily I was ready and had prepped myself with a weird sleep schedule and lots of caffeine. Blankets, pillows and PJ pants equipped, we settled into our seats which were prime center locations. We lucked out. We even made friends with the nice guy sitting next to us. We also tried to snap fun pictures between the movies.

First on the agenda was Evil Dead (1981).

I know everyone seems to get horror hard-ons for Bruce Campbell, but I guess I’ve never been a big B-movie cult follower. It was fun to make jokes and listen to other people cheer. Also, I must admit, there’s a certain level of suspense often only found in these “older” films. Without all the crazy special effects there were different tactics to get the point across. I was clutching my blanket and chewing the edges every time someone went into that basement or into the woods. Yes, you’re reading that correctly, because this was the first time I had ever seen Evil Dead.

Becky getting into the groove.


Second was From Beyond (1986).

I had never heard of this movie before! Surprise surprise, right? Well this is the one my sister and I liked the best. Basically these two scientists create a machine that allows you to open up a third sense. Think science meets bath salts. When one of the people dies a psychiatrist and the law get involved to recreate “the experiment” and lots of bad things happen as you can imagine. Gotta love anything where people grow penis snakes from their foreheads.

I decided it was time for food.


Third was “the mystery movie” which turned out to be Maniac Cop (1988).

More Bruce Campbell fun. Within moments of the director and some other random detail on the screen the whole theater went crazy. We have NO idea how these people knew which film it was, but it was a very cool experience to see this psychic energy take off. Side note, in 2012 when they started the “mystery film” they began playing The Sound of Music which was confusing and hilarious to me. They didn’t pull any pranks this time. Maniac Cop was probably the most “normal” of the films and the one I would rent and share with friends on my own time. A few jumpy moments, but more plot and dialogue based.

During the break after this movie, Becky won a door prize! How fun!


Fourth was Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954). In 3D!

We weren’t thrilled to see this movie, but we didn’t walk away either. It’s very old and it is black & white and to be shown 4th in the line up seemed maybe not so good. Although it could have also been great because some people were sleeping, which probably boosted them for the rest of the event. The 3D wasn’t done very well, and at points in the movie I was like O-M-G hurry up with the plot already. Still it’s “a classic” so it’s probably good I saw it.

We were so proud of ourselves, but were getting a little worn down. We have 5 hours to go out this point.


Fifth was Christine (1983).

The movie we were both MOST excited to see. Another film people talk about all the time, but I have never seen it. Fail. It wasn’t as amazing as I expected it to be, and some of the spoofs or jokes I’ve seen may even be better than the actual movie. Still I’m glad I saw it and it kept my attention. In fact it may have been the only movie where I jumped at one of the scenes. Although I forget now which one. Too bad my own car can’t fix itself. Yep, stay tuned for the exciting story of how I may have totaled my car Friday night.

We didn’t take a picture after this film, and debated if we should go home as breakfast was being served. Becky tried to sleep and I worried she’d be mad if we stayed too long. I finally came around and said we made a good effort and she even said she didn’t realize what it took to do the full event and next year she’d be ready. I couldn’t fault her because that’s how I was last year too. Luckily, we took too long making up our minds and the sixth movie started playing before we could wiggle out of the aisle.

The sixth was Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988).

What a cheese-ball movie. It was so fun to watch this in general, let alone at like 4 in the morning with a group of equally sleep deprived and some slight buzzed people. So many plot holes and questions, but hey it’s evil popcorn and pies and cotton candy cocoons so what do you care?

We did leave at that point. With an hour drive home and zero desire to maintain the final 90 minutes, we took off. The only film we didn’t see was Street Trash (1987).

Both of us agreed it was a fantastic time and we are so ready for 2014. In fact we want to make is a yearly tradition. That’s right the girls who have been using every possible weekend for Haunted House fun for 15+ years are willing to give up on those precious weekends for this event, we like it THAT MUCH! She will be properly equip with experience to sleep/eat/whatever to get us both through the night. We’re hoping to gather additional friends for the adventure too. Personally I liked the 2012 line-up better, but it’s not only about seeing “good” movies, it’s about the atmosphere and everything else about the night. Sure you could rent 6-7 films on your own and do this in your personal space, but you wouldn’t get the retro ads, the prizes, the PEOPLE WATCHING!

If think you’re too old to go trick or treating, if you’re too old or uninterested in haunted attractions and you either don’t have kids or can pawn them off on others, this is a must-do event in the Cleveland area.

Consider following Capitol Theatre on Facebook or Twitter to keep up with their other fun events/showings and to be in the loop for 2014. Whoever runs their Twitter is really good about interacting too.

Please note, I am NOT affiliated with the theatre in any way shape or form. I’m simply promoting them and this event because I had a great time. They don’t know I wrote this and are not rewarding me.

3 thoughts on “12 Hours of Terror at the Capitol Theatre in Cleveland

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