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Greg Wolfe

Top 25 2011: Horror Films: Nomination (Closed) and Discussion

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Night/Curse of the Demon is up on Youtube, in its entirety. The formatting is kind of off, but oh well.

Rotate your monitor about 45 degrees, then close one eye. Perfect.

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I've already watched the remake of Pulse. It was better than I thought it would be, but I wasn't expecting much. I should probably watch the original, too.

Sorry, I'm with Russell Brand and Jason Segel on this one.

Pete: "Here's my favorite scene - 'brrrring, brrrring'" (answers phone, slumps over dead)

Sarah: "It's ... a metaphor ... for addiction? ... to technology ..."

Rachel: "For society ... for how we're relying on tech- I get it. I'm with you."

Aldous: "It's a metaphor for a crap movie."

They're talking about the crappy remake. Aldous Snow doesn't read anything, let alone subtitles.

The original rocks.

Eeh, to each his own, but I saw it a few years ago and honestly can't remember the difference between Pulse, Retribution, One Missed Call, Ringu, or Ju-On, The Grudge, which I saw in the theater. Of those, I do remember walking out of The Grudge in downtown Chicago in a dark alley late at night, being severely creeped out, and perhaps for the first time in the city wondering if something was going to jump out and get me. It's the only one that really stands out.

Then again, I forgot where I am. I guess it depends on what you're looking for in a horror film. I personally think Audition is the best horror film from last decade, but I wouldn't nominate it for the purposes of our board.

This list has made me realize that I still compartmentalize things, and I honestly thought I was done with much of that.

Edited by Persona

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Then again, I forgot where I am. I guess it depends on what you're looking for in a horror film. I personally think Audition is the best horror film from last decade, but I wouldn't nominate it for the purposes of our board.

I was surprised that my nomination of Audition didn't get seconded, so I'm glad to see you respect it like I do. I don't really consider it part of the J-horror movement, but I agree that it's better than any of the other films you mentioned, including Pulse. For me, that film and Henry: Portrait of A Serial Killer are the two greatest horror films that I always have a hard time recommending because they are both just so brutal. But I nominated both, because if horror can be that graphic and that artful at the same time, I think they are exactly the kind of films A&F should honor. But then again, I don't want to be the guy taking the blame for inflicting either film on people who would have been much better off not seeing them.

Edited by Scott Derrickson

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For what it's worth, I really appreciate the folks that wrote up recommendations for their 'pet' films. In the past week, I've watched From Beyond, A Tale of Two Sisters, Thirst, and I'm about halfway through Let the Right One In. Also on the watch-instantly queue: Picnic at Hanging Rock, Black Sabbath, Carnival of Souls, Pulse (the original), Don't Look Now, Peeping Tom and a few others. So, thanks everyone! I feel like I'm getting caught up on some movies that normally would take me a while to get around to.

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For me, that film and Henry: Portrait of A Serial Killer are the two greatest horror films that I always have a hard time recommending because they are both just so brutal. But I nominated both, because if horror can be that graphic and that artful at the same time, I think they are exactly the kind of films A&F should honor.

Does the artfulness of these films somehow excuse their brutality? Honest question.

Regarding AUDITION, I fail to see why we anyone should honor that film. Horrifying? Absolutely. Worthwhile? I've yet to be convinced of that.

Edited by Ryan H.

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Horrifying? Absolutely. Worthwhile? I've yet to be convinced of that.

I can understand that response.

The only defense I'll make is that it is true, brutal, hands down horror, and nothing else. My #2 on that list, Inside, is pretty much the same exact thing. I don't think that list had much to do with arts and/or faith.

And again, the way I find myself compartmentalizing this stuff just irritates me to no end. But it's horror, I think if it is made well it's going to lend itself to some form of boxing off.

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For me, that film and Henry: Portrait of A Serial Killer are the two greatest horror films that I always have a hard time recommending because they are both just so brutal. But I nominated both, because if horror can be that graphic and that artful at the same time, I think they are exactly the kind of films A&F should honor.

Does the artfulness of these films somehow excuse their brutality? Honest question.

Regarding AUDITION, I fail to see why we anyone should honor that film. Horrifying? Absolutely. Worthwhile? I've yet to be convinced of that.

I don't think the brutality of these films is something that necessarily needs excusing, but I will say that the artfulness signals that both films are much more than mere exploitation -- there is purpose to them; they each have something significant to say.

But again, I have a hard time recommending a film like Audition, and so I'm hesitant to defend it. Typically, if I argue that a film is good, I don't qualify that by stating that it's only my opinion, but that's certainly not the case with Audition -- I think it's very good, but that's just my opinion; I think your disdain for it has merit and can be easily defended. In my opinion, the film is not to be taken too literally (unlike Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer), but rather metaphorically -- and the essential metaphoric meaning seems clear to me: extreme forms of violence are the end result of objectifying women, even when they are objectified with veneration. But again, anyone who hates films like Audition and Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer will not get strong push back from me. Even though I think both are important works of art, I genuinely understand why some people just can't get past the violence to see much worth in them.

Edited by Scott Derrickson

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