31 Days in October, 31 Horror Films – 2015
Day 3: Final Girl, Hellraiser, Hellbound: Hellraiser II
Final Girl (2014)
The problem with Final Girl isn’t the acting, the hyper-real cinematography, or the indulgent directing… it was the script. The terrible, no good, very bad script. Such a shame, because the premise was interesting: what if the final girl in a slasher film had been trained her entire life to turn the tables on her perpetrators… or something like that.
The actors didn’t have much to go on, the scares were non-existent, the scenes of murder were inexplicably restrained, and in the end I felt bad for Wes Bentley and Abigail Breslin. For such a high concept plot, this story had very little plot. It was boring.
After two stinkers in a row I needed a tried and true shot of horror in the mix. I had only seen the first Hellraiser once, a long time ago but I remembered liking it. IT’S AMAZING.
Clive Barker has such an interesting vision and the script for the first film is just fantastic…. and the score! It feels like film scores like that are such a rarity these days.
Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1989)
The first one was so good I just had to double down. I regret nothing. The sequel does that thing I love where it picks up immediately after the end of the first film. We already know about the cenobites and the basic rules of the Hellraiser Universe so this film is able to just revel in the world of torture and depravity inside that cursed little puzzle box.
Certainly this film shows a little more age than the first one but it fulfills its sequel duties admirably: higher body count, more intense gore, antagonist backstories…
Oh, and I noticed that I lot of Pinhead quotes also work pretty well to describe life before and after having an infant. Coincidence?
“Down the dark decades of your pain, this will seem like a memory of Heaven.“
Know what I’m going to do? I’m going to watch every single one of these films this week.
“El Horror Continua”
Day 4: Cthulhu, The Whisperer in Darkness
Anyone who knows me can attest to how bonkers I am for all things Lovecraft. The rich mythos and sublime worlds created in his short stories are endlessly fascinating for me. Unfortunately, Cthulhu stirs none of those fascinations.
Really, there’s nothing worth your time here. It’s just one boring, drawn out student film-y scene after the next. The horror was in the enduring. I died twice and when I came back to life the film was still playing… both times.
The Whisperer in The Darkness (2011)
I would not be deterred. I had a lusting for Lovecraft and it needed satisfaction. The H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society does this really cool thing where they make films that appear as though they were made in the 40s. They call it “Mythoscope,” which is fun.
The best part about the HPLHS is that they totally pull off what they are going for. Sure, there are a few cheeseball lines and maybe they could use some more money in their budgets but the total project congeals and while I only need a single hand to count the number of successful Lovecraft adaptations, this film is certainly among them.
Other solid adaptations include: Dagon, From Beyond, In The Mouth of Madness, and The Reanimator.