Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday the Thirteenth Horror Movie

I'm going to say that I'm not a huge fan of horror movies (or for antipodean readers- never heard of these guys before today), and I am really not a fan of slasher films at all, finding them reactionary and misogynistic... although I do like the original The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which kinda plays (in my estimation) like a slasher film made by PETA.

That being said, I finally got around to purchasing the 2005 Call of Cthulhu film by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society (I am a big fan of their loving parodies), and it is a charming piece of work. Beautifully done by brilliantly creative amateurs, the movie (filmed in "Mythoscope") pays homage to not only the old gent from Providence, but to great silent horror films such as The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (I'll have to do another post on CoDc). Here's the trailer, for those who are interested in HPL or silent movies:





The film is really a nice piece of work- although filmed with digital cameras, small splotches and other flaws have been added to it, to lend it the air of an old film. The sets are well done (the horrid city of R'lyeh is very much like the nightmare village in "Caligari", and one particular scene nicely captures a bizarre moment in the story, in which a hapless sailor meets his doom due to some unearthly geometry:

Parker slipped as the other three were plunging frenziedly over endless vistas of green-crusted rock to the boat, and Johansen swears he was swallowed up by an angle of masonry which shouldn't have been there; an angle which was acute, but behaved as if it were obtuse.

And you thought you had a hard time with math!

The cast of unknowns does a yeoman's job, and the gaudy Fleur de Lys building of Providence makes a notable cameo. The props are really well done, and our boy, the monster god who launched a million memes is nicely rendered in glorious Willis O'Brien-esque stop-motion animation.

If there's one slight beef I have with the film, it's a minor plot change- **SPOILER ALERT** in the film, the crew of the Emma find the Alert deserted, rather than being attacked by the crew of the latter. It's a shame, because I would have liked to see a portrayal of the "particularly abhorrent and desperate though rather clumsy mode of fighting" employed by the cultists.

If you like the old silent horror movies, or the writings of Lovecraft, by all means check this gem of a film out. For those of you who haven't been acquainted with the daddy of all sanity-crushing horrors, the original tale can be found here.

13 comments:

Smut Clyde said...

the daddy of all sanity-crushing horrors

[Glances at the Doktorling]
Would that be me?

W/v = "outtaker", a similar occupation to undertaker, but in a different direction.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

swallowed up by an angle of masonry which shouldn't have been there; an angle which was acute, but behaved as if it were obtuse.


Just a computer-drafting induced error; glitch in the software. That's my story, and my liability insurer insists I stick to it.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I prefer the cabinet of Dr. Calimari.
~

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I meant the cabernet of Dr. Calimari.
~

Laura said...

Now I'm humming "It's beginning to look a lot like Fishman". That was hilarious.

To be honest, I don't know a lot about Lovecraft so I appreciate the links because I figure you're giving me some good ones.

I really don't like slasher flicks, at all. The older I get, the less I enjoy them. I had a boyfriend that loved Nightmare on Elm Street. He dragged me to see all of them. I wouldn't be able to sleep for manys a night afterwards.

((Hugs))
Laura

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I think of this one as the granddad, Laura.

Laura said...

I hope that it didn't hurt your arm to type that out if. I mean.. after that terrible accident and all. *smiles sweetly*

((Hugs))
Laura

vacuumslayer said...

I love horror (films,especially) but it's a funny genre to be a fan of, because so little of it is any good.

I've never read any Lovecraft, I'm ashamed to say. Now I'm feeling like it's another one of those things that "zomg, everybody has done but me!"

Laura said...

P.S. I was talking to thunder about the arm.. in case you were wondering what the heck I was going on about. :)

P.P.S. Last night I was watching Fringe and one of the locations was Tarrytown New York-isn't that where you work or something?

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Damn, I had a huge comment replying to everybody, but it got eated! EATED!!!

P.P.S. Last night I was watching Fringe and one of the locations was Tarrytown New York-isn't that where you work or something?

One of my work locations is in Tarrytown- it's a really pretty village by the Hudson River. The Main St commercial drag is really pretty.

Substance McGravitas said...

Well, I thought I'd read Call of Cthulhu again and I started to get sleepy, so I thought I should just keep going until I drop and maybe I'd get a good dream out of it. Sure enough, Cthulhu called.

Laura said...

That does look like a pretty main st. :)

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Damn, I had a huge comment replying to everybody, but it got eated! EATED!!!

Perhaps Moses was hongry.