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Showing posts from October, 2016

The Babadook

Spoilers and typos! Enjoy.

We often look back nostalgically on childhood, envious of the joy we felt and the boundless imaginations we possessed. How conveniently we forget the other side of that coin: as children, we experience a depth of terror our adult selves continually try to recreate for cathartic entertainment.

When we try to bring those childhood fears to life on the screen, we often end up with movies about "things that go bump in the night," which is a somewhat superficial approach. While it does provide an opportunity for a supernatural experience, it ignores the root of our fear: the unknown. As children, we lack life experience. We lack nuance. We lack understanding. Not knowing creates in us fear. Yes, we fear what lurks in the darkness but we also fear the adult world because we do not understand how it works. The Babadook works to exploit both those fears.

The short story: a widowed mother of a young boy experiences a mental breakdown and tries to murder he…

The Ones Below (2015)

Standard disclosure: there's ALWAYS spoilers. Don't want the movie ruined for you? Come back after you've seen it. And - I'm still without an editor - typos and bad grammar await you! Enjoy!

When I was like 12 years old, my young (impressionable) friends and I watched The Hand That Rocks the CradleRebecca De Mornay is so gloriously evil in that movie that we ended up watching it all the damn time — much to the chagrin of my mother, I assume, who got real tired (real fast) of having to see this movie about a million damn times. What can I say? She was kind of a saint that way.

Looking back, unsurprisingly, it's pretty easy to see that The Hand That Rocks the Cradle isn't really a terrific movie — although it's still pretty solid for a 90's thriller. Certainly it boasted some fairly well-known cast (Ernie Hudson and Julianne Moore — whom my regular readers know that I absolutely hate, in particular.) but, the plot is actually pretty convoluted, which i…

The Invitation (2015)

You know the drill - there's ALWAYS spoilers. Don't want the movie ruined for you? Come back after you've seen it.

And - I'm still without an editor - typos and bad grammar await you! Enjoy!

The Invitation is about an LA dinner party gone terribly wrong. Six couples pile into an extravagant house tucked away in the LA hills – as the night progresses suspicion, fake smiles, and traumatic memories turn their conversation from friendly to incredibly tense. Through flashbacks and terse snippets of character interaction we discover the ties binding each character to the others; one couple (Will and Eden) lost a child and some of the group have joined a self-help group that sounds like a cult. Hidden sexual desires are exposed and everyone is made to feel uncomfortable. In the end, folks become murderous and we realize that no amount of red velvet cake can make up for the loss of a child or combat years of brainwashing. 
The Invitation falls within the sub-genre of... killer…