Why are horror houses such a mainstay of the scary movie genre? It’s a concept that has been used time and time again, whether it be for the gory antics of The Last House on the Left or for the more subversive, spectral encounters of The Babadook, there is something about a fright-filled homestead that really hits a nerve with people.
Perhaps it’s the ultimate subversion of what makes us feel most safe that audiences get a kick out of. Where horror is concerned, taking something innocuous and perverting it into a symbol of fear is not only a commonly used dramatic device, it’s present in almost all scary films. Continue reading
Ah, October. For department stores it means it’s time to put up Christmas decorations, for kids it means it’s the one time they can ask people for candy without repercussions, and for cinephiles, it means it’s time to start watching horror films. Every year, we get horror films that get put on pedestals.
Some of those films deserve them like Get Out or Hereditary, while others do not such as It: Chapter 2 or mother! However, what about the films that should be on a pedestal, but aren’t. I’m not talking about the films that are loved by a wide majority of people have seen and enjoyed like Cabin in the Woods or Overlord. I’m talking about the movies that even most film majors I know haven’t seen and always say “Oh, I really want to see that!” These are the films that I really want to talk about today, so without any more delay, here are the horror films I believe to be the most underrated of the decade. Continue reading
“Euhuheh” – A quote from me in four separate scenes in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. After either the first or second trailer, I can’t remember which, I was really worried about this movie. It appeared to be the standard scares that you’ll find in any PG-13 horror film like Escape Room or Happy Death Day 2U, as well as the pretty bad CG Ghost of Sarah Bellows, and that scared me going into it.
Then the reviews were positive and I became optimistic, so when I saw this film on opening weekend, I had a sense of cautious optimism. As the credits rolled, I found myself relieved, as this is the second best horror film of 2019. So, let’s get into Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. Continue reading
Watch the walls. Director Ari Aster’s advice to cinema-goers heading out to see his second directorial feature may seem strange, but it makes sense once you see it. Aster’s Hereditary (2018) follow-up is sunny, funny and so pretty you barely notice the horror.
Our protagonist Dani is reaching the end of a four-year relationship with Christian (Jack Reynor), an uninterested, inattentive boyfriend who wanted to end it months ago but stayed with Dani when tragedy befalls her and her family. Dani joins Christian and his pals Josh (William Jackson Harper), Mark (Will Poulter) and Swedish native Pelle (Vilhelm Blomgren) for a nine day once-in-a-lifetime festival celebrating midsommar in Pelle’s hometown of Halsingland. Continue reading
Peele’s sudden and swift success with Get Out (2017) left many wondering if the sketch comedian turned director really could be the horror pantheon’s saviour. After a lean half century brimming with blood, gore and gratuitous torture porn, the genre emerged into something of a renaissance. Following the release of Get Out came a swath of imaginative and intelligent thrillers like Raw (2016), The Babadook (2014) and It Follows (2014) and the horror genre began to establish itself as the go-to vehicle for social commentary.
By far the most commercially successful iteration was Get Out, which grossed just over $250 million worldwide. But after such overwhelming success, could Peele really do it again with Us? Well, the answer is yes. Just as Get Out was a chilling survival horror that had oh-so-relevant things to say about the African-American experience, Us is a chilling survival horror that equally has a significant amount to say about duality, privilege and the swelling vein of apathy running through the heart of America. Continue reading