Horror movies can range from psychological (a la Alfred Hitchcock) to outright gory (a la Eli Roth).
Today is Halloween. In honor of the festivities that is Halloween, I will be looking at two different horror movies in this post.
In the 1990’s Halloween and scary movies were represented in one single title: Scream (1996).
Directed by the late Wes Craven, Scream stays both within the boundaries of the horror genre and also steps out of it. Sydney (Neve Campbell) has just lost her mother. While she is coping with the loss, she is also dealing with a violent stalker/killer, who calls his victims to ask what their favorite horror movie is before killing them.
This movie is more than the typical blood and guts horror movie. Intertwining elements of comedy and psychological horror, the film keep the audience on their toes and their eyes glued to the screen. Wisely opening the film with an homage to one of the greatest horror movies of all time, Psycho, Craven and future Dawson’s Creek show runner Kevin Williams opens the movie with the character of Casey (Drew Barrymore), who will become the first of the killer’s victims.
While I am not a huge horror film buff, this movie is just enough to prevent me from sleeping soundly.
The other movie I will be discussing is Carrie (1976). Based on the book by legendary horror author Stephen King, Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) does not have a happy life. An outcast at school, she is the target of jokes and insults from her classmates. At home, her mother Margaret (Piper Laurie) abuses Carrie because of the difficulties that she has faced. Carrie is surprised when she is not only invited the senior prom, but she is also named homecoming queen. But some of her classmates have an ulterior motive. What none of them know is that Carrie has developed telekinetic powers which she will use to take her revenge on those who tormented her.
Yes, this movie falls into the horror category. But to me, the horror is not the traditional horror. It is the treatment that Carrie receives that is the true horror. But what makes this movie so satisfying is Carrie’s revenge, especially if the audience member/reader feels disenfranchised either at school or at home.
Do I recommend them? Yes. Happy Halloween