Most horror fans remember the announcement and lead up to last years "The Purge". The majority of horror films that have received a theatrical release in the last few years fell into the torture, possession or remake sub genres. "The Purge" seemed to be a breath of fresh air harkening back to the home invasion genre with a twist of political satire. The film received mixed reviews from critics and even the big guys here at Bloody Good Horror. Overall it was entertaining and contained interesting choices mixed with cliches.
The slasher sub genre is one that will just not seem to die. It’s not surprising however, since the slasher could be argued to be the foundation to modern horror. “Halloween”, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, “Peeping Tom”, “Psycho”, and “Black Christmas” to name a few of the beginning cuts. The genre has evolved and changed over the years, but just like the killers that lead the films, the genre keeps picking itself up. Series have had to be rebooted and remade to stay modern. Even the “Scream” franchise was created to save the genre from an early grave.
As sub genres reach the end of their ropes and the tropes become tired, new films have two choices to make to be successful. One, they can approach the concept with an indulgent tone and create an over the top massacre of the senses. Two, acknowledge the audiences exhaustion with the tropes and create a meta commentary concept. Last years “Evil Dead” remake opted for the first choice by making a balls out gore fest that gave a loving nudge to the cabin in the woods sub genre from where it was conceived.
10. Warm Bodies
2013 has been full of zombie movies, games, and books, so it was nice to have some comedy in the midst of all of the “serious” zombie business. Nick Holt managed to be an engaging and fun zombie just looking for some love.
Originality is a rare commodity found in films. When it comes to horror, it can take decades before a film emerges that has a fresh approach on how to terrify. Most of the time new releases follow the successes of the past like the slasher, found footage, and possession crazes. However, creating a movie that incorporates existing themes and ideas can still be effective if done in a creative and stylistic way. Take one part John Carpenter’s “Halloween”, the anthology theme of “VHS”, the heart of the slasher genre, and out comes the indie “All Hallows’ Eve”.
It’s that wonderful time of year again! Horror movies playing 24/7 on cable, the masses planning their Halloween party costumes, and the theme parks turning their family friendly parks into blood and gore infested lands of horror!
As with any horror sub-genre type, the more films that we consume the more we become aware of the rules and possibilities. The slasher genre had its deep cuts during the early to late 1980’s but eventually their impact became that of a paper cut due to their paper thin plots and supposed ending twists. Even the thriller genre isn’t free from fizzling down to a pile of ash. The number of mystery films released with a solid misdirecting plot has become so dismal that any sign of a new iteration is exhausting.
J.A. Kerswell is the author and creator of "The Slasher Movie Book"; a glorified history anthology focused on the slasher sub-genre. The book includes a detailed and comprehensive timeline for the slasher genre and its global releases. Not only are there descriptions for each movie and time period, Kerswell includes theatrical posters and B-movie images. I have to say personally that I love my copy and hold it as a totem to horror! Fans of the slasher genre will get a kick out of what it teaches.
I recently had the opportunity to attend a press re-screening of two of Roman Polanski’s most influential films. “Repulsion” and “Rosemary’s Baby” were the picks for the night to honor the work that Polanski has done in his career. I decided against writing a full blog post about the event and thought doing a review of “Rosemary’s Baby” would be more fitting. This cult classic has become a seminal horror icon and still holds up as a masterpiece of film. The pacing of events combined with the competency of each character is as subtle as the hellish baby bump growing on Rosemary’s tummy.