And not in the “I love bad horror movies” kind of way.
Alright, I am that, I’ll admit.
As I’ve mentioned before, I have a secret that as a horror fan I need to keep. But I’m breaking my silence! I will not be afraid anymore.
I hate slasher films. Fuckin’ loathe them.
Not because they scare me, but because I think they’re lazy. I’m fine with excessive violence on screen so long as it helps tell the story. The opening to “Saving Private Ryan” is a masterpiece. Each burst of blood or death showed a glimpse of how horrible Utah Beach must have been. Having a serial killer play games with people’s lives just for the sake of torture porn? Meh, not so much.
I know that this exercise can be applied to most horror movies, but hear me out,
“________ (insert quiet town/city) is turned upside down when ____________(insert serial killer’s pseudonym) begins killing __________(insert teen or other type of group). A few survivors fight back as their ___________(friends/coworkers/group of random strangers) are picked off one by one with nearly supernatural precision. The police _______(are/aren’t) notified, but won’t believe them anyways.
The killer is nearly omniscient when it comes to the locations of major characters, having knowledge they couldn’t possibly have. In the end, the _________(brunette girl/brunette girl and quirky sidekick/brunette girl and love interest) manage to find the _____(truth/weakness) behind the villain and _________(seemingly kill/lock away) the bad guy. Cut to credits showing that the bad guy actually survived.”
What movie series am I referencing.
Exactly. Who knows.
Now, there are exceptions. As I’ve mentioned in a past post, “Alien” and “Halloween” can fit this premise, but they set the standards for the genre.
In order for a gory movie to resonate with me, it needs something special. “Alien” had the strange sexual theme of male rape and body horror in the background, combined with horror movie completely lacking romance.
“The Thing” uses excessive violence to demonstrate the complete foreignness of the alien creature.
“The Cabin in the Woods,” and “Dale and Tucker Vs. Evil” poke fun at the stereotypical conventions from the mainstream slasher movies.
“Evil Dead” and “Evil Dead 2” are fun Indie projects that remain influential to freelance filmmakers to this day.
Case in point. “The Strangers.” I absolutely adored the build up of the first half of the movie, but soon enough the killers were able to instantly track people down in pitch black barns and forests, were super strong, and basically inescapable. That gets so boring to me. I like narrow misses and the occasional success for the protagonists. Tragedies are understandable, but a completely different genre. I still get mad (gettin’ mad on da internet) that “The Strangers” squandered a set-up that played off of my strongest fears.
I’m not scared of monsters, I’m scared of people threatening me and my own in what should be our safest place.
I get that some people just like fun movie gore, and I accept that, but for once I want to move beyond the serious slasher film, or the slasher film series that gets ‘ironic.’
Now you kids, get off my goddamn lawn.