Tag Archives: horror movies

The VVitch is my new horror fave

Cover image for The Witch: the silhouette of a person with long hair standing in a moonlit forestA little late to the party, I know, but I finally got around to watching Robert Eggers’ directorial debut, The VVitch (which I’m just going to be calling The Witch from here on out)! And it is very very good, slow-build horror.

The Witch takes place in 1630s New England, where a family is being banished from their Puritan community for theological differences. William, Katherine, and their four children set out alone to try to eke out a living in the wilderness. Katherine has a fifth child, but the baby is stolen, and ultimately the family descends ever deeper into a spiral of fear and suspicion (of the woods surrounding them, and eventually of each other as well).

The movie explores many complicated themes, including the effects of long-term isolation on the human psyche, the power of faith, and ultimately with the kinds of fear and paranoia that can result when people seek desperately to explain the hardships life throws at them. It’s a story that could have played out the same way regardless of whether there really is a witch out there in the woods, and for me that’s where the real horror lies (though I also loved the unabashedly uncivilized and otherwordly glimpses we get into the witching world!)

A History of Horror: my to-watch list just got a whole lot longer

If you’re looking for your next horror movie fix, this fabulously well-edited video is a great way to start. Diego Carrera took short, recognizable clips from one horror movie for each from 1895 to 2016, demonstrating the evolution of the genre throughout the history of film. It is well worth the roughly 10-minute watch (click the image to go to Vimeo).

Untitled A History of Horror from Diego Carrera.

Although Carrera’s editing ad soundtrack has definitely contributed the overall creep factor of these clips, I was genuinely surprised at how intriguingly terrifying some of the earlier clips were – and I came away from the video with a bunch of new titles for my “to-watch” list. Lucky for me, some of them are even available at VPL! Here’s a few of the ones at the top of my list:

caligariThe Cabinet of Dr. Caligari

A classic of the genre, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari includes well-trod themes oh sleepwalking, hypnotism, and a good old mad scientist/evil eccentric rich man-type villain. The movie is best known for its striking visual style, however, and its very much the kind of movie that can be watched purely for the aesthetic experience.

thingThe Thing From Another World

This 1951 film is based on the same novella that inspired John Carpenter’s masterpiece The Thing (which also got a prequel in 2011, though I’ve never seen it and can’t say whether it was any good).

 

carnivalCarnival of Souls

I honestly know nothing about this movie, but the clip Carrera pulled for this one (you can find it around the 5:50 mark) was irresistible to me.

 

abbottAbbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein

As a huge lover of horror comedy, it seems a bit of an oversight that I’ve never seen and of Abbott and Costello’s classic horror parodies, which are certainly among the earliest examples of the sub-genre.

 

Of course there are many, many more fabulous movies featured in this video – I’ve seen a lot of them (most of my all-time favourites are here, actually!), which is why they didn’t make my list here. What do you think of Carrera’s selections? Are there any movies you’ve been inspired to seek out from this video?