Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Recently viewed:

In the past couple of weeks I've been treated to some shivery movies (just now getting their long overdue post-Halloween roundup) one 1934 musical that the other Big October Event put me in a mind to watch (that's the 79th anniversary of the crash, y'all), and a Jimmy Cagney gem at the MoMA.

Interestingly enough, two of the shivery films -- Dead Ringers and Let The Right One In -- made me surprisingly sentimental.

I know Dead Ringers is supposed to be creepy as hell, and admittedly the wonderful credit sequence gave me a frisson, but ultimately I found it to be essentially a tragic tale of two men with one soul. Witty, yes, macabre, yes -- and hell, yes, Jeremy's indeed iron* -- but more than anything just profoundly sad. Maybe gynecological stuff doesn't really creep me out cause I've got all the bits, but whatever the case, I wasn't bothered by it. The imagery was amazing and those freaky instruments were great, and yes it was quite mad. Oh, Chang and Eng, Chang and Eng! And the final shot, a sort of fraternal pieta -- so sad! Well, anyway, I was genuinely touched.

So obviously I'm crazy because Dead Ringers made me sentimental, but Let The Right One In is actually meant to make you weepish, so cue appropriate emotional reaction right there. (Phew!) And while the film had some sweet-ish moments (oh god, I've just made a terrible pun) I don't think it will stay with me, honestly. Visually I didn't find it gave good snow, or anything else for that matter, and the story was just meh. A standard coming of age tale doesn't becomg magic simply by adding a few vampires, though I did like certain little touches, like the Morse code, the Rubick's cube, and when the little vampiress scampers up the wall, Dracula style. Not a masterpiece, and certainly don't go out of your way to see it unless you're a Twilight fan, but it's a sweet film nonetheless. Plus it manages to fit genuine horror-movie moments into its diegesis quite neatly without ever breaking the fragility of the young boy's story. Oh, and I did have one crazy moment -- when you see a shot of the vampette's pudenda, I swear I thought her girly bits were sewn shut. That's hoenstly what I saw -- no one else saw it so I can only conclude it was a hallucination. Interesting.

The last film in my personal fright-fest was José Mojica Marins's At Midnight I'll Take Your Soul. I was prepared to hate it after Mister Spinster referred to it as a "hipster horror movie" but I actually thought it was a pretty good straight-ahead ghost story. No more, no less.

* Here's a Simpsons reference!

No comments: