Evil Dead: A Blockbuster Ballbuster

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This film was the most enjoyable to watch with the entire class because of all the jump scares and the chase between the monster and the final girl.

Putting it side by side with Cabin in the Woods, it’s essentially the same movie only Cabin was sort of a parody on Evil Dead. I really enjoyed both films because although they both have the cliche plots, it’s still the kind of film that would be entertaining no matter how predictable the story may be. Honestly, these are the kinds of films to watch on a cozy night in with your barkada if you are looking to find some excitement while staying indoors.

Of course, everyone would agree that the guy with the glasses was at fault for even trying to pry open that demonic “bible” of sorts but I think the only wrong move he had done was to actually say it out loud. I don’t think a sound-minded guy would want to recite those things, and instead would be researching about them online before doing anything with them. Probably an archeologist would not be bashed for uncovering a dangerous book but the mere action of saying the words out loud just puts the poor guy in a compromising place. Throughout the movie, Mia was the annoying focus of the whole film, one would think that her brother would be the “final girl” since it would be an emotional tug at the audience if the sister herself would kill the brother and the brother would be powerless if tasked to kill his own sister. I have not seen the original film but assuming that it followed the same plot, I enjoyed the twist at the end wherein there was a sudden switch of power with regards to the characters. I liked how Mia, although very annoying as a lead, was able to take charge and I specifically liked her lines in the last few scenes. The part where she has to dislodge her own arm had me digging my nails into my palms but at the same time I felt so ecstatic as I was rooting for her in the end.

Although the film was just another one of those blockbuster horror movies, I think still think that it was pulled off quite well. I’m not too familiar with its reviews online because I didn’t really feel the need to check what the critics had to say because that’s just how much I loved the film. Cliche backstory, setting, plot, and characters but the execution and stylistics are just beyond I have ever hoped for.

I was never into slasher films before but Evil Dead may just be the exception I needed. Kirby mentioned the same idea I had thought of  when she said that the psychopathic killer usually comes from a dysfunctional family, shown with how Mia is an addict who seems desperate with her going clean and yet failing in each attempt she makes. There is also the mention of how her deranged mother had passed without the presence of her brother, making a problematic relationship with her kin all the more a motivation for the demon in her to annihilate her brother with her own hands.

 

Although I am not a huge fan of gore, I think this was portrayed well in the film. Instead of leaving me disgusted and cringing like in the films Dead Girl and May, Evil Dead’s depiction of body dismemberment was artful. It was like the Mad Max of slasher films for me, with the rock music playing in the background and everything.

Side note: I find it kinda funny that the actress in the film reminded me so much of Emma Stone with her expressive eyes and similar features. True enough, her namesake in the film was found in this year’s La La Land lead.

Paranoia: An Analysis of It Follows

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It Follows was such an exciting film to watch simply because of the feeling of not knowing. this may frustrate some viewers but I find it all the more exciting when I see myself rooting for a certain character that is in pursuit.

The film somehow reminded me of Dead Silence, in a way that it makes you feel so uncertain in such a normal occurrence. Not knowing if the silence is shared is similar to not realizing whether the person next to you is the monster in It Follows.

It annoyed people how slow the film is at the beginning but I think this was necessary in pacing the film especially in terms of the very theme of it, which is constant, yet slow pursuit. The mere fact that the monster portrayed can take any form is terrifying already. The monster may be slow, but the idea that a being may be following you at any time, anywhere, and in whoever’s form can really drive a person insane.

The reading that applies most to this film is Linda William’s When a Woman Looks, seeing as though the film plays so much on the female gaze. At the beginning, Jay is portrayed as the typical popular girl who is sought after by multiple suitors. Even during the sex scene, there was one clear message: She only existed to be “looked at.” Hugh only used her as a way to escape the treacherous monster who is constantly following him. And even when she was the one who had the “power” to transmit the disease, we see that her gaze was punished. She could not seem to escape the monster because those who she transmitted it to had all fallen victim to the monster, and the whole cycle goes back to her.

Once she takes charge in wanting to transmit the curse to another, like the boys in the yacht, she shows us her power to mutilate and transform the vulnerable male. It is here a recognition that she poses a similar if not equal power to the patriarchy. She uses the two teenagers on the boat instead of the other way around, as a either a recognition of her power or the acknowledgement of her desperation.

Having been assigned to this movie for the presentation, our group was able to deliberate on what the monster or “it” may be a metaphor for. First, it is important to note that the mode of transmission of the “curse” is through sex. This makes the film a sort of metaphor for the stigma of AIDS in societal standards. We see individuals with AIDS as being outcasted despite it not being an airborne contagion. This is show with how Hugh had isolated himself in abandoned house, only having to take care of himself by arming the windows with cans and the doors with bolts. Second, the monster may be a psychological concept as only those who have been intimate with one another can be afflicted by it. It is similar to being exposed to an idea. For example, if one is presented with an idea one cannot grasp completely, it stays with the person. You mull over it until you try to make sense out of it from your own terms. It follows you even when you only think about it in the subconscious. Lastly, it can refer to the unknown, which is a very familiar concept in horror. We as the audience are repulsed or are terrified by the unknown yet we are piqued by our curiosity to want to experience or at least look at it.

I did not know exactly what the last scene had meant but I might just watch the film again to be able to make sense of it. My groupmates and I agreed that there is a collective frustration amongst us with regards to the hesitation repeatedly shown by the characters in the film. We also think that the prostitution idea was very powerful since it showed the kind of desperation the character had in the film, leading them to selfishness.  The film overall was a joy to watch, and it is a bit overwhelming considering that it was a low budget film. There were a lot of beautiful cinematography in the film, especially at the first few scenes but overall, I think it’s a very innovative film, making use of both the male and female gaze and utilizing well the appeal of the unknown to an audience who thrive from the feeling of uncertainty.

Relentlessly Disturbing

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Dead girl set new heights for what is disturbing in my honest evaluation.

Probably the closest narrative I’ve been exposed to regarding Necrophilia would be the poem of Edgar Allan Poe entitled Annabel Lee, up until I’ve seen this film at least. I don’t think I would willingly search for films depicting necrophilia even if I wanted to understand it simply because the thought of it was extremely repulsing. Carroll gives an answer as to why anyone would want to watch horror films depicting the very themes that disturbed them. Carroll suggests that our general affinity for horror, especially for those who willingly chose this course, is because of our curiosity. We enjoy uncovering these obscure themes that we might never encounter in let’s say, an academic book or even young adult fiction. We are hooked on discovering just how such a supernatural idea can come to be, without really going out of our way to research or try to experience the impossible ourselves. It’s sort of like a cheat code in a videogame. You don’t have to do the dirty work because you can just watch it unfold in front of you.

The film started out slow, introducing the two seemingly contrasting personalities of Rickie and JT up until they discovered the shackled body of a zombie woman. From there we see the divergent choices of the two regarding the zombie girl. JT, exuding a more powerful male presence in the film, obviously sees the woman as an object of pleasure, and later on, a means to fulfill his other desires: money and power. He utilized the dead girl for his own sexual desire. He then moved to making profit out of the zombie girl by inviting Wheeler to do the same deed, in exchange for money. Later on, he uses the dead girl on order to seek authority from the bullies / jocks in their school by tricking Johnny into having his penis bitten off by zombie, which creepily seemed to please her, as shown in the photo above.

Even moving past the desire for power and wealth, JT makes use of the dead girl in order to produce more “slaves” for him to make money out of. I think he might be planning to make a prostitution den out of the abandoned psychiatric hospital when he tried beat up  that curvy woman from the gasoline station. And when they failed, they found Joann.

I think that Rickie’s character doesn’t stray too far away from JT’s in the sense that he also has these pleasures he desperately wants to fulfill. Even when Joann was just his schoolmate, the way he stared at her would probably warrant a restraining order if she were not his childhood friend. At this point, I would assume that Rickie’s feelings for Joann would be that of infatuation bordering on obsession rather than the fondness one would associate with love interests. I think that JT had triggered the inner desires from Rickie despite his trying to veer away from it. It was not incited, but amplified. When Rickie was seen to be touching himself, he fantasized about Joann yet he saw the dead girl in his dreams. I think this is hinting on the fact that he sees both women as objects rather than people in  themselves. Yes, he is the typical good guy for not wanting to partake in JT’s business but the fact of the matter is that he did not seek help for the woman immediately after he witnessed what JT had done to her. He was concerned, but he put his own interests above the common good.

Rickie showed us this male gaze during the last few scenes of the film. Rickie is seen to be living a normal life, with a very dark secret. He made Joann into the very thing he “wanted” to save. He used her as an object, despite having “feelings” for her at the very start. One would expect that the end would show us Rickie living a normal life after having Joann brought to experts for possibly finding a cure. Jancovich suggested in his discussion about the Silence of the Lambs that there would come a point wherein “contradictions are resolved” and “incompatible elements are tied together”  but this does not hold true for this specific film. We are presented a problematic resolve, in the form a criticism of the male gaze, with respect to the portrayal of the “good guys” in the films of today.

Spring Season

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If Spring were a dessert, it would be a cake for Halloween. It would be describing something that usually induces fear, but in a way that makes it beautiful. Spring is a romance movie if anything else, but laced with some elements that could make it look like a horror. It is actually the horror part of the movie, which emphasizes the romance in it, which is unusually brilliant.

The movie follows Evan, a young man whose actions lead to an escape to a fisherman’s village in Italy to start fresh. At the beginning, he had the time of his life with a few guys, drinking and having fun. After a while, he notices a beautiful woman who seems to show interest in him too. Evan is skeptical at first, wondering if she is just a prostitute or a thief. He regrets his doubts immediately as she says she doesn’t want to go on a date with him. However, the two meet again and hit it off from there. This is the beginning of their literally out of this world relationship.

One thing that I like so much about the movie is how the actors played their parts so well. The chemistry they have is undeniable, and you could really pass their dialogue off as natural and authentic. The acting draws the audience in and the dialogue makes everyone want to listen. The way they talk to each other could really be the way that two people in their situations would talk. This gives the movie a certain charm.

Another thing about the movie that I appreciate is the cinematography. The shots of the small Italian village were so easy on the eyes and made me want to travel. The different techniques that were used to shoot the film really helped establish the setting, which helped emphasize the romance between the main characters. One of these techniques was the long-take, which would often showcase the dialogue between Evan and Louise. The lightning was also used very well because it made everything seem like it was real and happening at the right time.

The thing I liked most about Spring, however, is the fact that the horror aspect to the film is a testament to what love and romance are really all about. Louise starts off as a girl who is reserved and has a lot to hide, given that she really is a monster. The movie shows that as a monster, she kills people, eats rabbits, and transforms into something unimaginable, all so that she could be immortal. Evan, however, discovers that she went out with him in the first place just to keep this costly immortality. In the process, however, they grow fond of each other. So much so to the point that Evan doesn’t care what Louise is. He sees past the literal monster that she really is because he truly wants to be with her. Louise, in turn, gives up her immortality so that she stops turning into the monster. This kind of love is something that not a lot of romance movies can display. However, the movie made it the truest and most beautiful kind.

There were some things to the movie, however, that I think could have been improved. First of all, I think that it took a while for the movie to get to the part with the most substance. A lot of the initial parts that seemed relevant turned out not to play a big role in the movie. Sure, you could say that the setting and story were being established, but it took quite a while for me to really want to pay attention. Also, the use of some CGI effects seemed out of place. Since the movie wasn’t so heavy on special effects anyway, some simpler but more effective techniques could have been used instead.

These are only some minor things that don’t affect the overall impact the movie had on me. I highly recommend it for those who are fans of romance movies, because Spring gives you what you like, with just some tentacles on the side.

May(be)

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I’ve been an enthusiast of the film line up for this COM class and May did not baffle. I was anticipating that it should be gorier on account of the movie poster yet I truly preferred entire storyline. It helped me to remember the book I read and the film I viewed, Coraline. Additionally the films I watched like Perfume and Frankenstein.

May an ungainly young lady in her late twenties land caught in a position she is not as so passionate about. She discovers herself being mistaken for what she feels for Paul the person she is pulverizing on and having blended contemplations about her sexuality with Polly her co-worker. At first, I thought May did not have any chance with Paul since she gave off an impression of being such a stalker and he found her holding his hand. It gave me a lighter vibe when they began dating and gradually unfurling their normal oddness together. Something was going on for May and she was really demonstrating more emotions contrasted with the start of the film. When she began getting more unusual Paul says a final farewell to her and this set off her character. I figure as it were she understood she couldn’t have what she loves until the end. Her instability became much more. She resorts conversing with her doll Suzie whom she supposes is her best friend. The way May converses with Suzie is as though she was alive. May appeared as though she esteemed the “conclusions” of Suzie a great deal – as though the doll was in charge. The monster was forming in May through the control of Suzie.

The scenes revolved around May finding her and getting caught with the thought of losing herself. I like how the film takes you to May’s world, the way she slowly interacted with the characters, and the way she showed her feelings towards situations made the viewers curious of what was going inside her head.

Towards the middle of the film May demonstrates the forceful side of her, which developed and developed towards the end. I figure May is the sort to not acknowledge things when they are not going her direction. She believed was what going ahead with her and Polly is her shot on something however it didn’t end so well. I likewise saw her fixation in certain body parts of the general population she connected with that additional the “odd element” in her character. May is exceptionally attentive despite the fact that she is conceived with a sluggish eye – she gets a kick out of the chance to look or even gaze. This side of her for me demonstrates that gazing goes past simply looking. It is possible that she needed her body to appear to be identical or the body part to appear to be identical. Maybe weakness? Interest?

As the film unfolds, May’s fetish grew. I also noticed how the director adjusted the framing of the movie. It was more on eye-level and was more focused on the features of the characters and the background is secondary. The colors remained dimmed but the soundtrack remained – gave a hipster and country vibe.

Overall, I would recommend this movie. It is far from the films I watched. It is weird yet intriguing, slow yet startling. I like how all characters are highlighted from the lead to the supporting actors. Everyone played a roll that affected the viewers’ view of the main character. I like how the movie unfolded slowly to further highlight how the main character, May is. The overall theme matched the storyline. Not a MAY(be) but a must watch!

Follow the hallows

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I think about all films we watched this must be the most sudden one. An underrated motion picture, I should say. The film started with a moderate approach making the viewers consider profoundly what the story line will be. The hues reminded me of some Wes Anderson films actually leaving me wondering what kind of “horror” the film is trying to show or will show. The colors gave the film a general quiet vibe and it didn’t specifically give a vibe of it being a horror or a thriller film.

The film It Follows (2014) is a fascinating interpretation of the blood and guts movie sort and its thought on advanced woman’s rights. All through the start of the film, everybody around her constantly underscored Jay’s magnificence and I think this set up the whole feel of the movie when it really revolved around her character.

The “horror” is through a sexual intercourse that could be passed on. The actress Jay showed tranquility throughout the movie as if she was not affected by anything that has happened to her. After realizing that she was in a depraved situation she still tied to continue to live her life. This gave me a hint that she was okay if the curse ended with her, if she died in the end. Her character did not show feelings leaving the viewers floating. The scene wherein she was tied up and brought to the parking lot confused me a bit because there was no explanation or whatsoever. The scene which a gander at the beast is more than essentially a discipline for looking, or a narcissistic interest with the contortion of her own picture in the mirror that patriarchy holds up to her; it is likewise an acknowledgment of their comparable status as strong dangers to a helpless male power. It Follows reminds me of the shadow horror we experience everyday – subtle challenges and obstacles that we run away from. The scene wherein the beach and the “monsters” trapped them started appearing started showing the “horror” the movie did not show in the beginning.

The film reminded me of issues occurring in my generation today, premarital sex and such. Overall, this movie appeals to me because it could happen in real life. The “curse” could be HIV/AIDS that is very prevalent in the country. I like the movie because it has a touch of reality. It is not as predictable as the other films I have watched. The “curse” passes on not like other movies that are breaks from a virus and whatsoever. Although Paul did not die right away and was in denial of the curse, I knew something bad was going to happen. It was the director’s way of holding the anticipation of the viewers.

“When somebody gives you a thought, it turns into a piece of you. It follows.”

Jane who?

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Initially I got surprised that this film was on the line up because it is relatively new and it just showed last 2015. I was very intrigued and honestly, I expected a lot from this film.

I felt the character’s tranquility in the initial couple of scenes. “Only a common day” cutting somebody’s body at the cellar of my home sort of feels. I could not advise or expect what would happen. Despite the fact that I have seen the trailer, I attempted to stay away from the prospect of realizing what will occur next since the film appeared to be truly whimsical. The vibe of the film changed when the officer went to his home with a body inside the bag. A sudden change of cinematography and sounds happened. I could practically tell that there will be something odd about the body inside that bag. After staying, Austin the son of Tommy crossed out his night out on the town with his girlfriend to help his father get the job done.

At the point when Austin opened the bag their underlying response was she is pretty and they couldn’t stick point that there was a treachery included in light of the fact that her skin was fine and in addition her bones (first look/assessment at least). This gave an indication of a riddle holding up to be explained. What is so unique about Jane Doe? Why is the film’s title her name?

While the film was unfurling, the characters later on understand a considerable measure of strange things about Jane. Her eyes, the fabric they found inside her, and most particularly the compositions on a specific layer of her skin. The character later on understood that Jane Doe is reviled and her soul is not settled. They attempted to consume and burn her yet nothing happened. Each time they attempted to dispose of her, she discovers exact retribution by killing somebody either through tormenting or torturing. The characters set off the creature in her. Makes me doubt what could have happened on the off chance that they didn’t touch her body? By what other method would she be able to plot her retribution? She is a living witch caught in a dead body. An open ender because of the fact that Jane Doe is still “alive” and is still searching for revenge. It will leave the gathering of people thinking about whether there is a part two.

I loved the film. I think I expected more as far as setting since I felt somewhat claustrophobic because the scenes actually just occurred in their basement. I felt that it was so tight to be in a circumstance like that – the sentiment no escape. I like the nature of the film and the straightforwardness of the scenes. I would recommend the film to individuals searching for a light blood movie to watch – no drama just nerve-wrecking scenes, exorcism, and mystery.