Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Woman (Lucky Mckee, 2011)

In 2002, Lucky Mckee unleashed May. A concentrated blast of modern social discomfort and disquieted rage at the traditional female roles and portrayals, it's one of the most under rated and under appreciated films of it's generation. We've seen the awkward outcast story done with male protagonists thousands of times, but May takes a unique look at it from a female perspective and has some incredibly interesting things to say, while being a deeply compelling, startlingly intelligent film. Angela Bettis embodies the title character with all of her quirks and ticks in a way that is less about being showy and trying to gain acclaim for her talent than it is about making May human. It's not available for streaming on Netflix currently, but it is available as a streaming rental on Amazon. Click here and go watch it now if you haven't seen it, you won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Horror on Netflix Watch Instantly

Netflix has become the most popular streaming service. With that in mind, I put together a list of the horror films they currently have available through their Watch Instantly streaming service. This is just a list of the films that are worth watching for one reason or another. It may be that the film is particularly creepy or funny, disturbing or thought provoking, had a particular cultural impact or is just plainly well made. It just means that for one reason or another I'd suggest seeing the film. They're only listed in the order I found them, with the exception of sequels or franchise entries, they'll be listed together. I've also included links directly to the films through Netflix. If I've reviewed the film previously, I've also included a link for my original review.

Carrie (Kimberly Pierce, 2013)

"They're all gonna laugh at you."

For most American teenagers, few things are possibly as frightening to consider. Take into account the number of people who routinely suffer nightmares of suddenly being stuck in their high school or college class naked, and the fact of this truth comes home in a new way. For some reason, it seems to be almost hard wired into adolescents and young adults that embarrassment and being laughed at are quite possibly the worst things a human being could experience. Carrie, the 1976 film brought the novel to the screen and turned the phrase into a maxim of terror.

Stephen King
Cover of Stephen King
Stephen King's Carrie was a novel taking that fear to its furthest logical conclusion, but was also a morality tale about the kind of bullying that's become such a hot political topic so many years after King more or less gave readers a pretty good explanation for the kinds of horrendous acts of violence we've come to know as "school shootings." Strangely, even as King's character is portrayed as the sympathetic protagonist, whom we're meant to understand and empathize with as she slaughters an entire senior class as an act of vengeance, no one has ever attempted to link Carrie, the film or novel as some kind of responsible party for a kind of violence that could very easily be characterized as being modeled after it.