“The Black Dude Dies First” Origins & More Musings

African American characters outlive other characters way more often than you’re lead to believe through genre jokes.” -Blair Hoyle, cinemaslasher.com

I seen this movie, the Black dude dies first.” -Orlando Jones as Harry in Evolution (2001)

I’m a bit sour to the notion that Black characters (always) die first as the issue skitters the line of accuracy. I’ve always watched horror movies a bit removed from this concept, consistently watching films that more or less taint this formula. If Black people don’t die first, they perish later. My biggest gripe is the fact that Black characters are more times than not woefully underdeveloped, simplified tropes that, if and when they do die, are plants often for the white, central character we are to invest emotionally in. With the television series Fear The Walking Dead being the latest demonstration of Black and first fallen, I began thinking more about why this idea continues to prevail. Within film history in particular, does it have an origin?

Continue reading ““The Black Dude Dies First” Origins & More Musings”

Jason Blum Looking at Rebooting Scream, So Please Get a Female Director

Following a smash success in rebooting (sort of) the Halloween franchise, it makes sense that Blumhouse would look to some other popular horror properties for possible remakes and reboots. One of the most iconic slasher sagas is the Scream franchise, which ended with Scream 4 in 2011. The franchise features one of horror’s best final girls, Sydney Prescott (Neve Campbell), and some decently sharp commentary on both the commodification of female trauma and, in an unfairly maligned third film, the Hollywood machine.

Continue reading “Jason Blum Looking at Rebooting Scream, So Please Get a Female Director”

By turning fantasy into reality, The Witch exposes society’s fear of female sexuality

After years of vampire and zombie supremacy, witches have clawed their way out of those beguiling Blair Witch woods and back into the horror mainstream. Which is a huge relief for anyone who, like me, can no longer look at a zombie for more than three minutes without becoming, well, zombified. And Twilight has done such a number on vampires that the poor bastards may never be scary again.

Witches, however, make fascinating and versatile horror adversaries.

Director Robert Eggers’s debut feature, The Witch, is a deeply unsettling collage of New England folklore with – horror of horrors – some surprisingly feminist themes.

Continue reading “By turning fantasy into reality, The Witch exposes society’s fear of female sexuality”

‘American Mary’ Redefines Body Horror Through a Feminist Lens

To me, Jen and Sylvia Soska are a huge pioneering force for women in horror, particularly when it comes to body horror. I first discovered this brilliant Canadian duo when I stumbled across American Mary, and they completely blew me away.

American Mary tells the story of Mary Mason, a medical student working hard to become a surgeon. She is struggling to make ends meet, trying to make sure that her family doesn’t worry, and dealing with a huge prick of an instructor in her classes. Desperate for cash, she takes a job at a strip club to make ends meet. What follows is a story that delivers something for absolutely every type of horror fan, as Mary is drawn into the underground world of body modification that needs her particular set of skills.

Continue reading “‘American Mary’ Redefines Body Horror Through a Feminist Lens”

How Mumblecore Prepared Mark Duplass for Horror

Indie jack-of-all-trades Mark Duplass’ roots in the mumblecore film movement have given him a strong base for understanding how to capture the ups and downs of human relationships. His writing on films such as The Puffy Chair (2005), Jeff, Who Lives at Home (2011), and Blue Jay (2016) all focus on deconstructing what keeps people together and what threatens to tear them apart. The monsters in these stories are the frantic yearning for partnership, the unexpected ways people change, and past mistakes that linger like ghosts. Take these themes a few steps further, as Duplass has done in Baghead (2008), Creep (2014), and Creep 2 (2017), and you have yourself a strikingly magnetic horror film.

Continue reading “How Mumblecore Prepared Mark Duplass for Horror”

‘They Wished I Was Dead’: How ‘The Blair Witch Project’ Still Haunts Its Cast

Lionsgate reboots the Blair Witch franchise on Friday with the third film in the series. The movie comes 17 years after America became obsessed with The Blair Witch Project in the summer of 1999. Shot on a microscopic budget over the course of eight days, the movie grossed $248 million against a $60,000 budget, making it the fifth highest-earning independent film ever made.

Continue reading “‘They Wished I Was Dead’: How ‘The Blair Witch Project’ Still Haunts Its Cast”

Why Some Anxious People Find Comfort in Horror Movies

Like around 5 percent of the UK population, I suffer from generalized anxiety disorder. When I was a kid I would worry about certain things—usually catastrophic in scale but blown entirely out of proportion—When I was ten, I learned about comets at a museum. For weeks, I’d lie awake at night worrying that a comet might be heading on a collision course with Earth. As a teenager I believed I suffered from every incredibly rare and fatal disease I saw on TV. These days my anxiety manifests in a way that’s much harder to explain to people who haven’t experienced it: Imagine a sort of mild feeling of dread, a bit like the fear you get when you’re hungover and know you did something but don’t know what. That, but basically all the time.

Continue reading “Why Some Anxious People Find Comfort in Horror Movies”

[Trailer] The Original ‘Ring’ Returns 20 Years Later With Brand New Restoration

As they announced last monthArrow Video is bringing Hideo Nakata’s Ring to Blu-ray in the UK with both a standalone release and a Ring Collection set this coming March, and the Japanese horror classic has been restored from a 4K scan of the original negative in glorious high definition. This week brings the trailer for that 20th anniversary restoration.

Ring returns to UK cinemas March 1 and hits Blu-ray, DVD & Digital HD on March 18.

In the film, remade for American audiences in 2002, “A reporter and her ex-husband investigate a cursed video tape that is rumored to kill the viewer seven days after watching it.”

Continue reading “[Trailer] The Original ‘Ring’ Returns 20 Years Later With Brand New Restoration”

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑