Arts & Entertainment

Grindhouse Theater: Tacoma’s Creeping Horror that Lives Under the Bed

The Grand Cinema works hard to keep blood, funk, and horror alive with Grindhouse Theater, presenting cult films in their original 35mm format.

Lovecraftian horror artist Nick Gucker and handmade printer with an Etsy shop Creepycult make posters for fun and profit to support the monthly movie night.

The most recent film shown was “Blacula,” in honor of Black History Month. The poster created for “Blacula” features the titular character awakening from his coffin.

Watching “Blacula” on 35mm was an eye-opening experience. I had only seen it on syndicated television before, but the film version was as clear as any other brand-new release.

“The people that love the movies make it fun,” said Gucker. He gets a kick out of the way show runner Justin Giallo works with local businesses like Puget Sound Pizza. They offered a special Necronomicon-style pizza in honor of the showing of “Evil Dead.”

Gucker has been a working artist for years. He attended fine arts camps while in junior high and beyond and went to summer camps at the Art Institute in Seattle.

The works of horror writer H.P. Lovecraft particularly inspire him. His favorite stories include “The Statement of Randolph Carter,” “The Outsider,” and “At the Mountains of Madness.”

Gucker loves black and white; ink is his medium of choice, and he also likes using brush pens in his drawings. Occasionally he’ll venture into painting with acrylics and watercolors and dabbles in digital coloring. He has a fondness for the dirty tones that come with using charcoal, “it has an old feel to it.”

When asked about his favorite stuff to draw, Gucker immediately replies, “tentacles.” He also lists such lovely topics as distorted human anatomy, insects, freaks, public executions, and death in general.

Gucker currently tours Lovecraft conventions. He has been asked to do art for several film festivals including one in Poland.

Next on the agenda for Grindhouse Theater is “Maniac,” a 1980 film featuring a serial killer who scalps his victims. The film promises plenty of gore, including a particularly infamous scene where horror artist Tom Savini’s head explodes via shotgun blast.


Artwork courtesy of Nick Gucker