'Spoorloos' opens with a young Dutch couple driving to Paris for a holiday. While passing through the tunnel, the car stops and Saskia (Johanna ter Steege) voices a dream she has. She describes how she envisioned two golden eggs colliding in a bizarre twist of fate. The whole scene containing Saskia's monologue is dripping with tension and a goosebump-inducing air of foreshadowing. The couple drive on.
Daniel Stamm's 'The Last Exorcism' is one of those films that makes me want to tear my hair out, scream at the sky and pelt Reese's Pieces butter cup wrappers at my TV screen. And not in the nail-biting suspense sense one gets when watching a film by David Fincher or Christopher Nolan. Watching 'The Last Exorcism' filled me with sheer unbridled anguish and exasperation with the way an initially promising movie had sabotaged itself.
Written following the excommunication of its director Alfred Sole from his local diocese for making and releasing an adult film, 'Alice, Sweet Alice' has been lampooned by critics for being strongly anti-Catholic in sentiment. Its alternative titles are 'Holy Terror' and 'Communion', and there is no denying the stark suggestions of hypocrisy existing among Catholic doctrine. However, to diminish the film for its take on a single religion would be wholly unfair, since it is a fictional depiction of the extreme forms religious dogma can take. More importantly, the film purports a campy, theatrical vibe in which the suggestion of the toll religiosity can have on the psyche is intermingled, as well as suggestions of its ability to twist, justify and manipulate one's actions.
In a vein similar to French cinema's haunting horror masterpiece 'Eyes Without a Face', Hiroshi Teshigahara's seedy psychological study taken from the novel by Kōbō Abe, unflinchingly explores the loss of identity in the most extreme ways possible. Sadly, the film has not received as much recognition as its French counterpart, but it is renowned instead as something of a hidden gem in Japanese cinema. In the age when Kurosawa was delivering hit after hit with Mifune at the helm, it was easy for a film like 'The Face of Another' to become lost in the misty haze of the samurai epics. This film is in dire need of wider recognition. With exquisite cinematography, phenomenal acting and insidiously arresting moral conundrums, this article takes a deep dive into the film in the hopes of bringing wider recognition to Teshigahara's forgotten masterpiece.
Goth culture has been, since its birth in the late 1970's, a form of rebellion. This can only be expected from the offshoot lovechild of the punk scene. To be 'goth' is considered bizarre, unusual, alternative. Goths, since the dawn of their creation, have garnered strange looks from people on the street due to their wild hair, dark clothes and often extravagant accessories.
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is one of those movies that is outwardly deceiving. At first glance, one would assume that this is little more than a low-budget '80s B-Movie slasher, with little substance or purpose other than to shock. However, as you move deeper into the film this misconception melts away into one of absorbed horror; almost like watching a train crash. It's a brutal, uneasy watch but one with truly frightening implications. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, despite its mediocre production value, does the very best with what it has at hand.