Hey, all you tattoo lovers out there who also love movies. I'm here with a kickass artist showcase filled with portraiture of cult classics from one of my personal favorite tattooists — Nikko Hurtado — who by the way, is one of the best at this realist style in the entire world. So, without further ado, sit back, relax, and enjoy these glorious portraits from films and television shows with some of the largest fan followings in all of cinematic history.
"I'm not gonna hurt ya. I'm just going to bash your brains in!"
"Maggots, Michael. You're eating maggots."
Any devotee of horror can't help but revel in Hurtado's work, and being one myself, I am no different. The portraits above are all from horror flicks on my top-ten list. His depiction of Jack Nicholson from (my favorite director of all time) Stanley Kubrick's intense thriller, The Shining, makes me feel like Shelly Duvall, screaming as he bursts through the door with an axe. Also, his illustration of Michael from The Lost Boys is straight out of the vampire haven of Santa Carla, California, and the tattoo of David from An American Werewolf in London mid-transformation captures the special effects makeup picture perfectly.
"Olly olly oxen free."
Speaking of terror, I can barley sit through Child's Play and the serialized adaptation of Stephan King's It. There is just something so disturbing about clowns and dolls that characters like Pennywise and Chucky legitimately scare the living hell out of me. I had nightmares about that stab-happy pint-sized ginger for years after seeing the film as a child —thanks, responsible parenting. Aside from how much they unsettle me personally, Hurtado has done an amazing job of bringing these red-haired horrors to life through his realistic portraiture in color.
"They're all dead. They just don't know it yet."
"Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid."
Not all cult classics are horror movies, and the preceding tattoos by Hurtado illustrate that fact in exciting proportions. One can see just how big of an imprint iconic action films like The Crow, the original Star Wars trilogy, and Batman a la Michael Keaton left on their viewers. Hurtado's work exemplifies just how many individuals were so impressed by these cinematic works as starstruck children that they later sought out a master tattooer to celebrate their fandom outwardly on their body.
"You are so beautiful to me."
When one thinks of cult classics, older films and television shows often get left out, but some of Hurtado's realistic portraits refuse to let time forget about these hugely popular pieces of cinema. The portrait of Frankenstein's monster, for instance, comes directly from Boris Karloff's portrayal of the character in Bride of Frankenstein, which cemented the abomination's popular appearance for decades to come. In addition, this portrait of Alfalfa is truly old-school, harkening back to when The Little Rascals was better know as Our Gang.
"You talking to me?"
To conclude this screening of cult classics through Hurtado's superb portraits, here are a pair out of the genres of drama and comedy. Often the films that pull on our heartstrings, stop us dead in our tracks, or tickle our senses of humor, more so than shocking us with horrific images or wowing us with action-packed scenes, are those that leave a more permanent impression. The portrait of Robert De Niro from Taxi Driver captures the character's complete mental-break at the end of the film, and Hurtado's take on Edward Scissorhands communicates the darkness of the parody behind what is arguably Tim Burton's most suggestive film.
I hope you liked this film festival of celluloid-like tattoos by Hurtado. I know I did. More of his astounding work can be found on his Instagram. If you didn't recognize any of these characters from cult classics, I tried not to spoil anything as well as give you enough information to track them down to watch tonight. You won't regret it. And for all of you aficionados who caught every homage and allusion, it's high time you re-watched some of these movies for the umpteenth time, because they truly do never get old.