Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Tobe Hooper Hated Us: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

Tobe Hooper made 'The Texas Chain Saw Massacre' (1974) with one specific intension in mind - to hate us and ruthlessly attack us, both psychologically and emotionally. The film’s sole intention is to drive us mad with its insane sights of the macabre - a ferocious, gruelling, waking nightmare that authentically captures the syntax of one; Hooper’s superior artistry with pitch-perfect execution pushes our boundaries beyond limits. Everything depicted here causes an impact so deep in our psyches that we will not soon forget what we just experienced - sheer horror, as we suffer from anxiety, despair, and fear from the psychological mindfuck that it relentlessly hits us with, and our emotional response is to squirm with immense discomfort. 'The Texas Chain Saw Massacre' is an uncompromising exercise in cruelty and savagery entailing torture, mutilation, and murders. It features five prolonged sequences of maddening terror, and all its horrid events are encapsulated in a constant thick atmosphere of dread.

Hammer Horror at its Finest: The Revenge of Frankenstein (1958)

'The Curse of Frankenstein' was Hammer film productions’ first foray into Gothic horror in 1957. With its huge success came a revival of this brand of horror that was first made commercially successful from the 1930s to the 1950s, by Hollywood studio Universal. British production company Hammer based much of their output on the iconic screen monsters made famous by the American studio, but they would make gorier affairs for shock value. They resurrected Dracula a year later in 1958’s 'The Horror of Dracula', continued with 1959’s 'The Mummy', and 1962’s 'The Phantom of the Opera'. The Frankenstein, Dracula, and The Mummy franchises would spawn many sequels.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Beginning My Love Affair with Italian Genre Cinema: 40 Years of Dario Argento’s Suspiria (1977)

Dario Argento’s first and best entry into his 'Three Mothers Trilogy', his 1977 masterpiece 'Suspiria', is the quintessential example of his supernatural horror work, which began my love affair with Italian genre cinema. It is a mesmerizing, virtuoso, psychological journey into maddening terror - a high art hypnotic exploration of a living waking nightmare.