On a rare occasion, the passage of time helps a film age like a fine wine. Such a rare example of this phenomenon is best observed in the case of Georges Franju’s French horror film, Eyes Without a Face (1960). Released the same year that Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) was criticized for its “vulgar” shot of a flushing toilet, Eyes Without a Face is a movie that phenomenally blends emotional turmoil with the grotesque into a simple story whose unnerving aura transcends time and language. With four screenings of the film scheduled for this week thanks to the Secret Celluloid Society, now is an opportune time to sit back and re-examine a classic that deserves more mainstream attention than it currently has.
To believers of the supernatural, the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California is the remnant of an unfortunately haunted widow, while skeptics see the mansion as a monument to the power of inherited guilt. After consulting with a medium who foretold that the spirits killed by Winchester branded rifles would haunt her until her death, Sarah Winchester’s mansion became legendary for having been under construction every day of her life. The end result was a beautifully ornate mansion that once stood seven stories tall, and was filled with over a hundred and fifty rooms, stairwells and doors that lead to nowhere, and had the chaotic floor-plan of a labyrinth. Knowing this, when I heard there were plans to make a film about Sarah Winchester and her interactions with a psychiatrist, I was genuinely excited by the prospect of a horror film that blurred the line between a genuine haunting and tragic psychological turmoil.
How foolish of me to anticipate a horror film released in February.
One of the greatest tragedies that can fall on a film is being forgotten in the shadow of a remake or a reinterpretation with a greater relevance in popular culture. Such a phenomenon happens equally with both great films and terrible films, such as John Carpenter’s The Thing (1982) or Rupert Wainwright’s The Fog (2005) – both of which are remakes which have overshadowed their predecessors in mainstream consciousness. Such a fate may soon fall on Dario Argento’s unnerving and influential horror film, Suspiria (1977). With a remake slated for release this year, and a screening of the recently discovered uncut version of the film coming to the Coral Gables Art Cinema, now’s a better time than ever to examine why this film from the creator of 1978’s Dawn of the Dead has developed its persistent cult following.
January 10th marked the Monsters in the Shape of Water: An Exploration of Genre discussion panel, hosted in collaboration between the Coral Gables Art Cinema and Books & Books. Moderated by Javier Chavez, the Associate Director of the Coral Gables Art Cinema, Miami Herald writer Rene Rodriguez as well as directors Andres and Diego Meza-Valdes assembled at Books & Books to discuss Guillermo Del Toro’s film, The Shape of Water (2017), as well as the nuances of genre with the attending audience. Despite additional seating being brought out twice, the packed panel discussion saw additional members of the audience standing to the sides of the room to listen and engage in the conversation.
It’s Halloween, Panthers! You’ve probably spent the entire month watching some classic horror flicks and now, we challenge you to test your horror movie knowledge!
Horror films have been drawing audiences to the movie theaters for well over a hundred years. While there have been several classic stand-alone films that have garnered critical acclaim, we all know any moderately successful film is likely to be forcefully branched out into a full-fledged franchise in hopes of raking in money for the rest of eternity. With Halloween finally upon us and the month of October drawing to a close, let’s take a look at the top horror film franchises, according to you, our creepy little readers:
Many would agree that on a fundamental level, any film worth watching should be one of the following: a well-made film, or fun to watch – though preferably it should be both. Jigsaw (2017) is the sequel to Saw VII, aka Saw 3D, aka Saw: The Final Chapter (2010), and despite it being a continuation of a series even fans wanted to stay dead and buried, the film is both a significant improvement over the later entries of the series, and it’s such a laughably dumb movie that I honestly didn’t want the film to end.