Cat’s Cradle: The Horror Review
Drink is Scott Cooper’s new film starring producer Guillermo Del Toro. Although the film is yet to be released, early reviews are mixed. Gore blossoms as the characters shrink into one-dimensional roles. Critics have said there is a possibility that it will become cult.
When it comes to horror, the titans of the genre are buried in low review ratings. In the history of cinema, great horror is often overlooked. Critics focus on what a movie lacks and forget about what the movie offers.
To take Event horizon, one of the most disturbing horror films. Set in an abandoned spaceship, the crew of the Lewis & Clark ship board the titular ship to see where the crew has gone. What ensues is a haunted house movie involving black hole drives and violent footage.
Currently, the film sits at 28% on Rotten Tomatoes, although Event horizon has been adopted by the horror community, flaws and all, as an on-screen example of cosmic horror.
Other blasted films included The thing, which was deemed too violent, as well as Friday 13 and The brilliant, which were seen as lacking in direction. So how can an audience sift through these reviews without having to submit to the horrors of horrible movies? Avoid aggregators and find scared reviews like you.
Roger Ebert has already written about the film Anaconda as “an example of one of the most difficult types of films to make well: superior mass entertainment.” Giving the film three and a half out of four stars, Ebert praised the film for its creature effects, setting, adherence to genre tropes, and the fun it had. Sitting at 37% and an even lower audience score, Ebert is an outlier, but that doesn’t make him wrong.
Movies are a subjective experience. Their value is compared to how they make you feel, what they bring to the table, and what you get out of it. While Voight’s performance was worthy of Razzie, it added an element to the film that bordered on the B-movie. In the end, it provides some good shock.
Meanwhile, elements of another horror film are being targeted and criticized. For example, John Carpenter The thing has been maligned for a nihilistic and violent portrayal of first contact. Critics overlooked creature effects, cinematography, and sound design.
So the question becomes how do we form a standardized measure of horror? The simple answer is you can’t. It is not possible for review aggregators to subjectively describe the nuances of certain reviews. Horror is often personal. Killer Klowns From Space is considered a List B schlock, but not for someone who is afraid of clowns. Horror is a subjective experience, and in this way we have to experience movies.
A film is a sum of its parts. A field in England is hardly a horror movie, but it’s well done. Cinematography captures color across the black and white spectrum. The guest is nothing without its soundtrack. What is Extraterrestrial without his creature?
How we should look at horror movies is a personal taste. Horror is a subjective genre, and each person has their own fears. As viewers and critics, we should recognize a specter of horror and respond accordingly. You don’t think it’s scary, so think about its sound, sets, costumes, or cinematography. Often what scares us does not exist on the surface but in the underlying layers.
Benjamin Ervin is a senior student of English Literature and Writing at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Want to talk more about it? Let Benjamin know by sending him an email [email protected].