Danielle Wheeler

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Some Horror Recommendations pt. 2: Bad Dreams

(Part One: Good For Parties) 

The Vanishing (1988, George Sluizer)

"[...] the first version accomplished something that almost no other examples of that subgenre have been able to pull off: it left audiences demolished by their implied identification with what had taken place on-screen. Of course, all killer next door movies by definition aspire to that: there’s a little killer in all of us. Oooo: and we all give a little shiver. But until The Vanishing, no movie had so smoothly and implacably led its audience to a glimpse of the size and casualness of its capacity for sociopathy."

-The Believer, March/April 2008 (worth getting a hold of the entire essay, if you can). This is one of my favorite films of all time.

"Mount Fugi in Red" and "The Weeping Demon" segments in Dreams, Kurosawa, 1990
I've had many dreams about dreams.

It Follows, David Robert Mitchell, 2015
this may have suffered from over-hype, but if you can see it with open expectations its affecting and spooky. I'm glad they left in improbable, surreal details that qualify it as something dealing with the uncanny.

American Werewolf in London, John Landis, 1981
A very atmospheric favorite.

Jacob's Ladder, Adrian Lyne, 1990

The Strangers, Bryan Bertino, 2008
The creepy-kid-mask thing has been copied since but is really the only twee bit: overall, it's a simple and effectively scary movie that always felt almost like a Flannery O'Connor short story.

Mungo Lake, Joel Anderson, 2008
An Australian faux-umentary about a drowned girl and grief that's legitimately clever, spooky, and pretty solid. 

Hour of the Wolf, 1968, Bergman
"But if we allow the images to slip past the gates of logic and enter the deeper levels of our mind, and if we accept Bergman's horror story instead of questioning it, "Hour of the Wolf" works magnificently. So delicate is the wire it walks, however, that the least hostility from the audience can push it across into melodrama." Ebert


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