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Posts Tagged ‘The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari’

My 13 Favorite Horror Films: Unabridged

April 22, 2012 9 comments

Thank you for all of the kind feedback on the first half of my 13 Favorite Horror Films list. Now, here’s the complete countdown:

I think I’ve been asked, “Do you like horror movies?” more than any other film-centric question. People LOVE horror films of all kinds, but I’ve always felt somewhat out of the loop because I’ve never responded much to them. So when people would ask if I like horror, I generally responded by saying I just like good movies, some of which end up being horrific by genre; meanwhile, all I could think is how much I hate things like Final DestinationI Know What You Did Last Summer, or the Leprechaun films. Torture porn like the Saw or Hostel franchises don’t do much for me either. This overall judgmental attitude was wrong, however, because the term “horror” evoked the wrong feeling in me. I shouldn’t have thought of bad acting, hokey music, and goofy violence when thinking of horror. Just like anything else, there’s good and there’s bad, so I started to focus on what makes a great scary movie rather than what makes a bad one.

Maybe it’s years of systematic desensitization or maybe I’m a born sociopath, but I don’t frighten too easily anymore. Even if a loud burst of music cues while a mirror breaks onscreen, that brief moment of surprise doesn’t leave me feeling scared. I need Read more…

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My 13 Favorite Horror Films: A Preview

April 18, 2012 1 comment

If I had been on the ball I would have thrown up this post last Friday the 13th. Oh well–this will be quite topical on July 13, 2012!

I think I’ve been asked, “Do you like horror movies?” more than any other film-centric question. People LOVE horror films of all kinds, but I’ve always felt somewhat out of the loop because I’ve never responded much to them. So when people would ask if I like horror, I generally responded by saying I just like good movies, some of which end up being horrific by genre; meanwhile, all I could think is how much I hate things like Final DestinationI Know What You Did Last Summer, or the Leprechaun films. Torture porn like the Saw or Hostel franchises don’t do much for me either. This overall judgmental attitude was wrong, however, because the term “horror” evoked the wrong feeling in me. I shouldn’t have thought of bad acting, hokey music, and goofy violence when thinking of horror. Just like anything else, there’s good and there’s bad, so I started to focus on what makes a great scary movie rather than what makes a bad one.

Maybe it’s years of Read more…

Surrealism in Film

January 29, 2012 3 comments

Kahlo and Kahlo at the LACMA

I attended an exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art today called In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and the United States. Works from the likes of Frida Kahlo, Louise Bourgeois, María Izquierdo, and many others are on display and I suggest that any of you in the LA area drop in if you have an interest in the surreal.

The last exhibit I saw at LACMA consisted of the various sculptures and drawings of Tim Burton. Naturally, Burton’s aesthetics fit right in with the art currently on display, so that got me thinking of my favorite surrealist films. There was a time when I went on a real David Lynch-bender and I damn near burned myself out on the crazy, outlandish, and unexplained.

However, when properly spaced out between viewings, surrealist films can be extraordinarily thought-provoking and satisfying. Surrealist artists, including filmmakers, make use of terrifying and fetishistic imagery, frequently blending reality with the hyper-real, leaving the viewer disturbed, intrigued, or just plain Read more…