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Horror Whore

May 19, 2009
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By Shannon

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that several of the contributors have a proclivity for the horror genre.  Therefore, every once in a while I am going to have the Horror Whore  feature to talk about some horror movies I’ve recently seen.  If you don’t like horror movies, then skip these posts.

Horror movies get a really bad rap in mainstream press, and are frequently overlooked entirely.  Here are some that are worth mentioning.

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Splinter A couple is car jacked by an escaped convict and his girlfriend.  When they stumble upon a gas station they find the attendant has met a grisly fate, infected by some sort of parasitic virus.  The foursome become unlikely allies as they try to survive until help arrives.  This low budget movie is a pretty nifty ride, and has some seriously disgusting special effects and makeup. It is out on DVD.

Watchmen:  Tales of the Black Freighter If you liked Watchmen, this is an additional story from the graphic novel that did not make it into the film.  This is only about 20 minutes long, and it is animated, but it is unsettling.  There is also a faux documentary Under the Hood on the DVD about the origins of the Watchmen.

The Girl Next Door/ An American Crime These are both based on the true story of the murder of Sylvia Likens by Gertrude Baniszewski in 1965.  Sylvia’s parents paid Gertrude to board their two daughters for the summer.  Gertrude tied up the eldest (Sylvia) in the basement of her Indiana home and encouraged neighborhood children to torture and ultimately kill Sylvia.  It was called ”the single worst crime perpetrated against an individual in Indiana’s history”.  Seriously disturbing, and difficult to comprehend how someone could do that to a child.  Especially creepy was the mob mentality that the neighborhood children adopted as they escalated their daily torture acts on the defenseless girl.  This story will haunt you.  I watched both these films, and I would say that An American Crime is a notch above The Girl Next Door. It also stars Catherine Keener as the ice-cold Gertrude.

Rogue was a criminally overlooked movie about a killer alligator in the Australian outback.  In his follow up to to the horrifying Wolf Creek, Greg McClean ratchets up the suspense as a group touring an Australian National Park in a boat find themselves stalked by an alligator.  It sounds ridiculous, but it really surprised me with its originality.  McClean builds the suspense with very little gore.  The end kind of dumbs down the movie,  but overall a fun film.  It stars Radha Mitchell and Michael Vartan as a bonus.

Until next time, little goblins.

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