As a lifelong horror fan, I can confidently say that there are two kinds of horror movies that do well at the box office.
The first kind of horror movie delivers on thrills and jump scares. Friends have fun clinging to each other, spilling popcorn and jumping in their seats. Afterward, the group quote lines at each other or mimic trademark gestures or sounds, and Halloween Horror Nights has a new haunted house theme. These movies are certainly effective, but it’s not that hard to leave them at the theater.
Hereditary is the other kind of horror movie.
I don’t mean I’m going to check under my bed for anything scary tonight. I mean something else entirely, and quite honestly I don’t even want to talk about it too much because I want people to experience the film for themselves. But I’m going to talk about it and so of course, spoilers will go below the cut.
Hereditary begins with an obituary. A matriarch has died, and right away Annie (played by Toni Collette) gives a halting but brutally honest eulogy about the complicated relationship she had with her mother. Grandma’s death sets off a chain of events that at first seem normal to a family dealing with grief, but soon even the cracks start to show cracks.
Hereditary is getting mixed reviews, and for good reason: not everyone is going to get it. I don’t say that to sound cool or jaded, I say that because I could hear other moviegoers laughing at certain parts that I found incredibly effective–parts that were almost too effective. This movie upset me quite a bit at times, even though the projector broke two-thirds in and we had to wait half an hour for the staff to fix it.
But when the action started back up, nobody moved or laughed for the rest of the movie.
I can absolutely recommend Hereditary to fans of real, provocative horror. Casual filmgoers might want to wait for home release.
I want you to know three things about The Shape of Water.
They are, in no particular order, that it is:
Beautiful, lyrical, and absolutely deserving of the buzz surrounding it; the fact that there is so much buzz around it and that people are appreciative of such a daring story is wonderful.
Marvelous, in that it literally contains marvels of all sorts. Acting, effects, imagery, characters, sets, dialogue, music, production, you name it, there is something in this movie to dig into.
Inspiring a much, much longer review from my co-blogger Achariya and I that we will hash out tomorrow and post in the next day or so. I will keep general comments above a cut, but deeper discussion will need to contain spoilers so those will go below the cut.
Man. That was something. I cannot WAIT to write more, but it’s late and this sort of thing requires a proper marination of the brainmeats before anything can be said.
My friend and co-blogger Tanya and I went to see Lady Bird, a movie directed by Greta Gerwig, this past weekend at the Enzian. Afterwards, we had thoughts. Some of them (including spoilers) follow.
But what is Lady Bird? In short, it’s the story of a young woman’s relationship with her mother during a year of transition between high school and college. The story is set in Sacramento and deeply embedded within the politics of the city, especially economic and racial ones. It was also great, awkward, fun.
Orlando and the rest of the Southeast was recently lambasted by Hurricane Irma, and we were very, VERY fortunate that it had calmed down to a Category 3 and lost strength as it crept up the country’s phallus. Millions are still without power, including civic infrastructure (you never miss streetlights until you don’t have them and realize not everyone knows what to do when they go out) and businesses. The islands were trashed, as the news footage has shown. Apparently Jose’s still out doodling around in the Atlantic, so until that goes away we won’t really be able to unclench and get on with things.
Happily my power only flickered, although I was without internet until Tuesday night and my yard was full of branches.
So fitting that one of my favorite stories involving a giant storm hits theaters just as a giant storm hits my state. ART IMITATING LIFE.
As far as IT goes, I enjoyed what was onscreen, but I can’t help but miss everything that didn’t make it, and lament some of the bigger changes. I’ll put these behind a cut to to avoid posting spoilers, but if you’ve seen the movie and want to discuss please jump in!
I loved this new installment of Captain America, but I’m not in love with it, if that makes sense. It had some big shoes to fill after the masterpiece that was Winter Soldier, but it was still a solid, great entry to the MCU.
Out of five stars, I’d say 4.
Head behind the cut for more detailed thoughts, but be warned!