Yesterday I watched The Shining for maybe the 20th time in my life. The first time I saw it, I was in middle school, and I was completely mortified when Jack investigated room 237. Twenty years later, I’m still tempted to close my eyes during that scene. (Okay, fine, sometimes I’m not just “tempted.” Sometimes I do close my eyes during that scene). I watched with a pen and notepad in my hand. I was determined to figure out what it was I liked so much about this movie. Four and a half notebook pages later, I have a conglomeration of messily scribbled answers. Suffice it to say, not all of those answers are below. Here are 10 reasons why The Shining is a phenomenal film. Stay tuned for another installment of this project: Continue reading “10 Great Things About The Shining:”
The local theater was showing a Thursday night preview of Crimson Peak two nights ago, before the actual release date on Friday. With no hesitation, I was there. Without question, my favorite subgenre of horror is the ghost story, and Crimson Peak primed us to expect some phenomenally creepy ghosts through its ghoulish previews – previous that show portions of skeletal apparitions grasping arms or swaying across the floor. Vampires are fun, witches are cool, and stories about the devil can be pretty scary, but nothing, absolutely nothing, compares to a good old-fashioned ghost story. And Crimson Peak taps into a horror film phenomenon that never fails to dispense fear in generous, indulgent doses: the phenomenon of the female ghost.
Alert: This article contains spoilers. It would be best to read this when you’re done with the movie.
Who doesn’t like a good M. Night twist? In that respect, The Visit surely delivers. Now here’s my dilemma: You see, on the one hand, I like the movie. The film sits comfortably in the realm of what I call “horror with heart”: genuinely scary movies that also have warm moments and likable characters. My boyfriend, who tracks the nightmares he gets after watching horror movies with me, didn’t lose any sleep – or experience any tumultuous sleep – over this one. Continue reading “Unsavory Stigmas in The Visit”
Watching American Horror Story isn’t like watching a typical horror movie – say, one produced by the growing Blumehouse franchise. Many Blumehouse movies provoke terror with every unexpected light flicker or distant thump; some magic happens in the production of these movies, a magic that can leave even the most jaded horror fans titillated. But then, that’s probably not the point of American Horror Story, a show that seeks to shock more than scare, to entice more than terrify. While in most horror stories, the characters are vehicles for a terrifying plot, American Horror Story: Season Five: Haunted Hotel, is a complex character study, rife with flashbacks and interspersed with random acts of violence committed on sometimes transient characters. If the goal of Season Five is to make viewers grit their teeth and cover their eyes, goal not met, American Horror Story. But I don’t think that is the goal of American Horror Story – or any contemporary T.V. Horror, including Showtime’s new hit, Penny Dreadful, which is equally exciting and worth discussing. American Horror Story – and especially Season Five, Haunted Hotel – seeks to take the taboo, the abhorrent, the grotesque, and dangle it in front of your eyes playfully, forcing you to admit that while, yes, the show could be scarier, it’s taking classic horror to a new, temptingly obscene plane. Continue reading “Gore Galore: The Delights and Downfalls of American Horror Story: Season Five: Haunted Hotel”