Friends often ask me to recommend indie horror films on Netflix Instant. (American Netflix, sorry!) Now I can just send…
Going mad is just the beginning of the terror...
The residents of a suburban high-rise apartment building are being infected by a strain of parasites that turn them into mindless, sex-crazed fiends out to infect others by the slightest sexual contact.
I tend to give horror movies a pass when it comes to certain issues including the portrayal of women. I don't know why I do this. It probably has to do with the fact that I am quite unfamiliar with the genre, and I expect women to be portrayed as stupid yellers who can't walk or run without falling, dial a telephone number because they are so shaken, or get the hell out of a house because they are too busy running up the stairs where they will be trapped. So yeah, I don't expect much from the genre.
But this... this one, oh boy. This one made me question Cronenberg as a human being. This one made me dislike…
Reading a description of David Cronernberg's "Shivers," one might think the horror film is a parody. The story of apartment dwellers infected by a parasite that turns them into sex fiends could easily and humorously be labeled "Orgy of the Living Dead" or "Night of the Canadian Sex Zombies" if the film were not played so straight and earnestly. "Shivers" is no parody, and, though it may have a sly sense of humor, the film is a stark, haunting debut from a renowned director.
Revolving around a Montreal high-rise where a parasite infects its inhabitants, "Shivers" is a gory, gets-under-your-skin piece of horror that exhibits early versions of the signatures marking Cronenberg's career. Flesh literally crawls and the residents of…
Part of Lise and Jonnie’s Horror-o-thon 2014
Let me make it clear right off the top that while not generally a horror fan, I am a David Cronenberg fan. He’s a director who always has something interesting to say, and an interesting way of saying it. Ok, that out of the way, I have to say that Shivers, his debut feature film, was dreadful.
I hadn’t seen it since way way back, and I kind of lumped it in with Rabid, which I love. What a difference a year can make. While Rabid had the meagre-budget Canadian look and similar ligneous performances, it was crisply paced and narratively sound. Shivers, on the other hand, flops around like a beached halibut…
Oh yeah! Now that's what I'm talking about! Oh yeah! I mean sure, it's trashy, disgusting, weird, the characters are unrealistic and stupid and the quality of the acting and overall film making is quite rough around the edges, with some unnecessarily gratuitous material. But! It's a lot of fun in a twisted, no holds barred, fucked up way. So there's a doctor who thinks humans have removed themselves too much from their basic, instinctual-driven behaviors. He doesn't like that and decides to create a parasite that acts as part aphrodisiac, part venereal disease, that he implants inside a resident of a modern apartment building. From there, chaos ensues, as the parasite can be easily transmitted to multiple…
Not Quite Hoop-Tober: Day 30
One thing I can say for certain about David Cronenberg is that he's definitely the king of the high concept horror film. Whatever reservations I might have about Shivers, it's certainly never afraid to be exactly as creative, crazy, and controversial as it wants to be.
The story is about a luxury apartment complex which finds itself slowly overrun by parasitic grafting organs. Yes, you read that right. A doctor makes organs for transplantation which are parasitic in nature, and these demonic biological creations escape and go on a killing spree. For reasons that aren't entirely clear, they roam the building taking over its inhabitants and making them incredibly horny. Just another day in the…
A sickening, raw early film from Cronenberg that really managed to get under my skin and make me feel a bit sick. It's quite brilliant though, featuring what would become his usual themes in his body of work. The energy and ambition is palpable, even if the budget couldn't match. Still truly enjoyable and completely fucked up.
Just another terrible film from the '70s that doesn't hold up at all.
At least it was made in a pretty terrific year.
THEY'RE JUST GIRLS, BREAKING HEARTS.
A fairly successful pro-abstinence PSA.
Crudely made but, as always, built on a fantastic core idea.
So I finally watched Cronenberg's SHIVERS (THEY CAME FROM WITHIN).
It's basically his version of a zombie film - except instead of craving brains, they crave sex.
Lots and lots of early 70s unprotected sex.
And I commend Cronenberg for being able to make a climatic swimming pool orgy one of the most terrifying things in the entire film.
Cronenberg hadn't completely perfected his craft yet - it was basically his 1st feature (save for a couple of experimental student-esque films). But the signature body horror and smarter-than-most-of-us scientific & medical explanations for the on-screen living Hell were already powerful and extremely accomplished.
It's essential viewing for any Cronenberg fan. The editing is a bit rough and some of the performances match the low budget Canadian feel - but it's the first and very important step down the path to greatness and genius.
A short but thrilling, Kubrick's "The Shining"-like set up with some good gross out effects...and a lot of pickle eating.
The power of suggestion never felt so icky!
A potent bit of cinema filled to the brim with shocking images and disturbing ideas.
Early Cronenberg body horror is solid. Rough and amateurish at times, but it does nothing but add to the charm of this ahead of its time venereal shocker.
David Cronenberg made his commercial debut with this aggressively unpleasant 1975 horror film on the theme of sexual disgust. A swinging-singles apartment building is overrun by slimy little creatures who carry an exotic form of VD. Hard, if not impossible, to take, the film nevertheless represents a major turning point in the genre—the discovery of the body itself as a source of terror. Cronenberg's later films are superior in technique, though not necessarily in intensity. Also known as Shivers. R, 87 min.
No idea if there is a list for this yet, but I think I will keep this as kind of…
This list is the Letterboxd version of The Oxford History of World Cinema.
The book celebrates and chronicles over one…