Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Oh, the Horror: July

I won't lie. The greatest luxury of being 100% self-employed is having the ability to work in my pajamas all day while watching copious amounts of horror films. And believe me, I watch a lot of them. Over the course of the past four years I've been freelancing, I've easily seen pretty much everything Netflix has to offer on instant streaming, torn through every single horror film on the shelves at Blockbuster and have kept up with most of the new releases offered by Redbox. What can I say? Nothing seems to motivate me to write more than the blood curdling screams of doomed scream queens.

Since I literally watch at least 2-3 horror movies per day while I work, it seems natural that I should, I don't know, actually start recommending some of the films I've seen. The problem is, pretty much no one I know shares my undying love of the genre. My boyfriend and friends hate them (but will occasionally tolerate watching one only to appease me). My parents shake their heads in shame, always wanting to know why I can't settle for a nice RomCom for a change (and likely regretting that they allowed me to watch Halloween when I was six, sparking my life-long love of being scared senseless). Alas, the logical solution to my horror-loving woes is to recommend movies to total strangers on the Internet who share my fascination with the macabre.

So here you go, fellow creeps: my favorite films I watched during the month of July.

American Mary (2012)

American Mary follows an aspiring surgeon who gets sucked into the world of back alley plastic surgery and body modification after going broke and attempting to land a job at a strip club. It's basically my new favorite horror film of all time, and I'm really hoping the Soska Sisters (who wrote and directed it) have plans to make many, many more movies in the future. I will warn that it does contain a rape/revenge plot line, which I was not expecting and I usually try to stay away from. However, it really is a very small part of the story and I feel that the Soska Sisters handled it very differently from the rape/revenge plots we're used to seeing in similar films written by men (Last House on the Left, I Spit on Your Grave etc). Don't get me wrong, this film is still jam packed with blood, guts and gore, but it leaves out the obnoxious and borderline offensive tropes typically associated with the female victims in these sort of movies.

Excision (2012)

Excision is easily one of the weirdest movies I've ever seen, so it's a good thing I like weird. But really, weird is not a strong enough word to explain the fuckery that goes on in this film, so I recommend an open mind (and perhaps a strong stomach) if you're going to give it a shot. It's about a high school girl who's got a fetish for blood, dreams of becoming a surgeon and a domineering mother she'll do anything to impress in the end. It's definitely not a film for everyone, but I'll put it this way: If you loved Teeth, you'll probably like this, but if Teeth made you uncomfortable, this probably will too.

Evil Dead (2013)

I'll be honest. I put off watching the remake of the Evil Dead for as long as possible because I was absolutely convinced I would hate it. I finally caved yesterday and gave it a chance, and I was very pleasantly surprised. Does it put the original to shame? Hell no. But is it a decent reimagining of a classic horror story? Yes. I loved that the film included a lot of nods to the original while really playing up the scare factor instead of the cheese. If you've been holding out for the same reasons I was, I say go ahead and try it. Let me know what you think!

May (2002)

May is an old favorite of mine I recently watched for the first time in years. I've harbored a serious lady crush on Angela Bettis since I first saw this movie back in 2002 at a seventh grade sleepover, and I think this is easily her best film. It tells the story of a lonely woman who's desperate for friends, and will go to any lengths necessary to ensure she ends up with a friend who will never leave her. I don't want to give away more, but if you haven't seen it yet, you absolutely must make an effort to watch it as soon as possible. It's fantastic.

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