Category Archives: Horror Movies

Horror Movie review- The fly (1958)

The 1986 remake of “The fly” was the first horror movie I ever watched, and ever since horror has been one of favourite film genres. The most memorable part of the 1986 remake was Jeff Goldblum naked, so the original had a lot to live up to!

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The film starts with a flash forward, the wealthy Helene is found in a factory  late at night, standing beside the machine press she has used to murder her husband by crushing him to death. Helene admits to the  murder and is held under watch in her home in a dazed state. She refuses to reveal even to her brother in law Francois, played by horror movie legend Vincent Price, why she murdered her husband. Helen’s husband Andre was a scientist on the verge on finishing his matter teleportation device, and together they have a young son. The movie is then told via flashback, detailing  the events that lead up to this horrible murder. Andre has has finished his teleportation device and decides the time has arrived to test it. The first indication that this may not have been such a great idea was when the cat he trials it on disappears into ether, with only it’s piteous, mournful meowing left to be heard. Not to be put off by, Andre plunges literally head first into trialling it on himself with devastating consequences.

the fly poster 2

This movie is a real slow burner, you are confrontingly presented with the murder at the outset and then left with so many questions. Scene by scene the movie builds up to it’s shocking reveal,which is actually quite sad rather than being frightening. I don’t want to reveal more of the plot then I should, but watching both Helene discover what her husband has become, and  Andre slowly loose control of his mind to the fly were both tragic moments in the film.

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So would I recommend the movie? For anyone who loves old Horror movies, it’s a must see. as it combines the best of both horror and sci-fi. But did I enjoy it? Not so much. I love horror, and I love blood and guts and being scared out of my pants, and this didn’t do that for me. I think I prefer the remake, but that could be because of the nudity factor!

Miss Lucy x

Movie Review: Freaks 1932

“We didn’t lie to you folks, we told you we had living breathing monstrosities,” and with that line the 1932 Horror classic Freaks begins. Considered so shocking in it’s time, the original version of the film no longer exists, and  it was banned in Great Britain for 30 years.

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I first saw this movie as part of a Tod Browning double feature in the New Zealand International Film festival. Tod Browing made the movie while his career was riding high after the success of Dracula starring Bela Lugosi. This was the studio’s first major horror movie, and he was given a lot of leeway, or perhaps plenty of rope to hang himself. The movie was a commercial failure and basically destroyed Tod Brownings career.

The plot revolves around Hans a circus midget who falls in love with the most beautiful woman he has ever seen, Cleopatra, a trapeze artist. Cleopatra discovers Hans is incredibly wealthy and sets out to seduce him into marrying her, plotting to kill him off after the wedding so she will inherit his wealth. At this stage of the review you may be thinking, what’s the big deal, why is this movie so shocking? Cleopatra and Hans are part of a Circus of Human “freaks”. Roll up, Roll up, come and see the human torso, a half man – cut off at the waist. Come and see the sexy Siamese twins, the half man/half woman, the bearded lady, and  the shrunken headed pin heads.

tod-browning-freaks-publicity-still-cast         freaks

 

tod-browning-freaks-twins  Jenny Lee Snow, Elvira Snow, and Wallace Ford inÊTod Browning'sÊ

This movie  has such a sinister and disturbing feel to it. It feels exploitive to just  be watching it, and realising there was an era where it was totally acceptable to view these physically deformed people as entertainment in a circus. Some of the scenes i found cringe-worthy, particularly the wedding feast. It wasn’t so much the actual cast of Freaks chanting to Cleopatra “Gooble, Gobble, one of us, we accept her, one of us”, it was the cruelty of Cleopatra shrieking at them “You dirty slimy freaks,freaks, freaks!” She then had her strong man lover assist in placing her new husband Hans on her shoulders while she trotted around pretending to give him a horsey ride. She  humiliates him completely, and her cruelty is simply painful to watch.  To some degree i think there is an element of sympathy with how the director Tod Browning portrays the “Freaks” he injects them with an element of humanity. Then there are scenes where he plays on the darkness of their difference and deformity , displaying the monstrous behaviour of which they are capable in response to a threat to one of their own.

The original ending of the movie has been replaced with a happier ending. The movie was originally 90 minutes long, but was cut down to 64 after disastrous pre-screenings. People didn’t just walk out of the movie they ran,  one woman threatened to sue MGM after she claimed watching the movie caused her to suffer a miscarriage.

There will never be another movie like freaks, it is quiet simply unique, bizarre and a fascinating  piece of film.