Creepy Cinema: Grab Bag | Week Three

1. Crimson Peak - 2015
Of all the films on this year’s list, this was the one I anticipated the most. If you don’t know, I’m a HUGE Tom Hiddleston fan. Not only is he dreamy, but he’s a brilliant actor and fantastic in anything he does. I couldn’t wait to see Crimson Peak for Hiddles, but also because it features so many things I enjoy. I’m a sucker for anything with a gothic romance, an old crumbling mansion, and  a Byronic hero with deep, dark secrets. This was by far my favorite Guillermo del Toro film. I do think that he is an excellent director and creates incredibly intricate and beautiful films, but for some reason they just don’t strike my fancy. I think it’s because the story or acting in those movies never really resonated with me. However in this case, from the minute the film began until it ended, I was completely and utterly captivated. I felt as though del Toro reached into my soul and created this movie from what he found. All the actors were incredible in this film, Hiddles goes without saying, but Mia Wasikowska and Jessica Chastain were just as good. Although, I do feel that the real hero of this film was the set design. I haven’t seen such a visually stunning film since Atonement, which for me, is the end all be all of beautiful movies. If you had to choose one film to watch from this year’s list, this would be the one that I recommend. You won’t regret it!  

2. The Collector - 2009
This film was my living nightmare. I know what kind of scary movies I don’t like, and it’s movies like The Collector. I can handle scary movies when there is some of kind of supernatural element. This was not the case for The Collector. It was basically a demented version of Home Alone, but instead of a lovable elementary school kid, it’s a sociopathic killer that has booby trapped the home of a family to torture and kill them. The main protagonist of this film is an ex-con/cat burglar who happened to case out the same house The Collector booby trapped. Now trapped inside, this thief must make a moral decision to either escape from the house and save his own skin, or save the innocent family trapped inside. I can’t watch movies that involve torture or suspense of this caliber, so this was hard for me to get through. I know Markus meant well when we decided to put this on the list, however the film was so intense that I had to pause it three times to take a break from the intense fear. Finally, I gave up and stopped the movie all together. I do feel a bit bad about not finishing it, but it was just too much. In the future, I’ll be sure to steer clear of any movies like The Collector

3. Nightbreed - 1990
This was a really strange film. It’s almost as if the director didn’t know what he wanted the film to be, so he just threw together a bunch of things hoping it would work. One of the things that was hard for me to wrap my head around was the soundtrack. As soon as the movie opened, I immediately recognized the style of music from Danny Elfman. It’s both good and bad that his music is so recognizable. Unfortunately, the soundtrack did not go well with Nightbreed. The score is whimsical and you half expect Edward Scissorhands or Jack Skellington to make an appearance. Sadly they do not and you’re stuck with the most depressing bunch of monsters in film history. The movie begins with a troubled young man and his search for a place he continuously dreams about called Midian, the land of monsters. When he finally makes it there, nothing is explained, but he somehow becomes the savior of Midian, and the whole affair culminates in the killing of an entire police force...also there’s a psychopathic killer antagonist that looks just like The Collector...the film basically goes off the deep end. I wish that the director just decided on a tone and stuck with it. If they had done that, it’s quite possible that Nightbreed could’ve been a great cult classic.

4. The Host - 2006
Can you believe that The Host is the first Asian horror movie in Creepy Cinema history? You would think that I would’ve had heaps of them on the list, but I think it’s because most Asian horror films involve ghosts or some form of torture, and as you can tell from the above review, I am not a fan. Thankfully The Host was a classic monster chase film that follows a family trying to save their youngest member, Hyun-seo, a young girl that was kidnapped by a crazy mutated monster. Even though the family faces countless obstacles, the love they feel for Hyun-seo drives them to find her against all odds.  I really enjoyed this movie and loved that it was set in Korea. It was like catching a glimpse of my second home, even though there is a crazy monster running around killing people. Like most Korean films, this one runs a bit too long at 2 hours. Although I didn’t feel the length as much as I normally do. Overall The Host had a lot of heart and I really connected with the theme of family-bond that strung the whole film together.