Skip to main content

It's that time again



I've only attempted the October Horror Movie Challenge once and didn't quite complete it. I believe I came in at 29 films, with most of them being new to me and all of them were feature films. I'm already off to a late start, since Friday, I had planned to see Buried after work which just didn't work out, due to long work day and nasty headaches.

But on day 2, I finally went to my first horror movie of October. There were some questions as to whether Buried is horror. According to IMDB.com, it is not, but I couldn't imagine that any movie that is set in a coffin already buried in the earth wouldn't qualify for the October challenge. So, I drug Nate out to Buried today, when he actually was in the mood for a romantic comedy.

And I'm pleased I did. I was very curious about how this movie could even be made, but it worked and was quite an intense study of fear and claustrophobia. Buried was a very dark movie as the camera never strays from the interior of the buried coffin with the frightened Paul Conroy (Ryan Reynolds) inside. There is absolutely no relief from the darkness or the confines of the pine box for the duration of the film and the experience was surprisingly unnerving.

Paul Conroy (Reynolds) discovers he is entombed after regaining consciousness after his convoy was attacked by insurgents in Iraq. It is not until his captor calls a cell phone, that was left in the coffin, that Paul discovers that he has a tool that might allow for his rescue. I cannot help but to be impressed at what the filmmakers did with such a simple premise and the limitations of the setting. Somehow, Buried manages to be engaging, have a definite narrative, maintain tension and even manages critique of the Iraq occupation.

Not a bad start to the Horror Movie Challenge and I now have no hesitation at calling Buried and horror movie. We will both be avoiding confined spaces for a while and I'm already not looking forward to returning to my basement dungeon of the laboratory on Monday.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Horror?

From Blogger I apparently have no clue what a horror movie is. Or at least, when the challenge rolls around and I take the leap and attempt to watch 31 horror movies, I suddenly feel as if I have no idea what that means. There are times when it is obvious that a movie is horror; Friday the 13th, Halloween, Texas Chainsaw Massacre . Once I dive into the challenge, I begin to question whether the movies I'm seeing really count. This year, I've seen Buried, Carrie, Clean, Shaven, Nosferatu (1922), Scanners, Sisters , and I sell the Dead . Nate protested Sisters, saying DePalma's movie about a pair of disturbed Siamese twins isn't a horror movie. And he has a point, but how is one supposed to choose movies without having seen them before to really know whether they are horror? Especially since I'm only using the challenge to catch up on movies that I should see because they are classics and to re-watch a few others that need to be revisited. But picking the

My attempt at Filmspotting's Top 5 List

I just finished listening to Filmspotting podcast, episode #296, and I've been inspired to begin a small project. My concept of great cinema has changed now that I live in a place with so many choices. When I lived in Anchorage, I primarily saw movies at the local Art House, Capri Cinema. Rand, being an out gay man, tended to show a lot of GLBT cinema as well as the better known independent/art house films. The years I lived in Columbia, I watched more mainstream film and really, just about everything that came to town that sounded at all interesting. But in Seattle, the choices are overwhelming by comparison. Sometimes I'll see a classic film, or a film with a lot of buzz, and there are a lot of foreign language films, because of the wide variety of cinema I have access to, I am now a very devoted fan of Asian cinema. The filmmakers in Hong Kong, Korea, China, Japan, Thailand are incredible. And this isn't at all limited to the genre films that have made Asian film

Dennis Nyback's Super Secret Pre-Code Musical Lallapalooza Big Magilla Thrilla Festival, Friday

Currently, at T he Grand Illusion Cinema , Dennis Nyback is presenting a different program each night as Dennis Nyback's Super Secret Pre-Code Musical Lallapalooza Big Magilla Thrilla Festival and I was able to attend the first night. The films were not announced in advance, but on Friday, they were all from 1930 and presented as they would have been at that time, beginning with a newsreel, trailer, animated short, a short film and finally the feature. I will just admit now that I am not knowledgeable of film history. Essentially, my film school has occurred in the cinemas at movies that are current, with the exception of an occasional archival screening, but thanks, in part, to The Celluloid Closet, I am a bit familiar with the Hollywood's history of self-censorship via the Hays Code and today, with the MPAA rating system. And it has been interesting to read about what had to be taken out of scripts, if a movie were to be produced post 1934. I was aware that homosexuality wa