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Ex Horror Fan Speaks Out

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Showing 26-50 of 64 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 11:10:44 GMT
Georgedc says:
Nope, i absolutely did not laugh at A Serbian Film, Funny Games nor Hostel. You gotta be a complete sicko to find those films humorous! SICK!

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 11:38:09 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Feb 2012 11:41:00 GMT
West25 says:
Calling him sick is a bit much, the opening 30 minutes of Hostel has plenty of INTENTIONAL humour in it. Do you think the moment in Funny Games where one get's killed, just for them to rewind it so it happens differently isn't a form of humour. In A Serbian Film when you have the main character killing a man by pushing his erect penis through his eye socket, isn't so over the top to become funny. I much prefer straight horror to horror/comedy, but when it's done well it definitely works, Shaun Of The Dead and Return Of The Living Dead are two examples. I definitely found humour in A Serbian Film, Hostel and Funny Games despite them not being horror/comedies, you didn't, perhaps I find it strange that you didn't see the humour in them, but I won't call you names and accuse you of not having a sense of humour. Each to their own, people get different feelings from the same thing. Some people find comedian Lee Evans funny, I find him painfully unfunny, doesn't mean he's not funny and people that like him are sick, it's just not my type of humour, obviously the above films weren't your type of humour.

Posted on 5 Feb 2012 12:08:26 GMT
mister joe says:
Alright west,i knew some people would say i was "sick" for laughing at certain films.Georgdc obviously reads the films differently.
Hand on heart i find the current strain of jock humour that pervades american comedy far more "sick" with its casual cruelty and rampant sexism,xenophobia.It all depends on ones perception.A lot of the slasher movies use a LOT of humour Freddy Krueger,Jason....what about Scream?I am just opposing the argument that horror and comedy don't work.
Clearly anyone with a basic knowledge of horror will know examples where it has worked.

Posted on 5 Feb 2012 12:10:00 GMT
mister joe says:
Martyrs was a pretty serious horror,no chuckles there!

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 13:15:04 GMT
West25 says:
Most horror films have at least a touch of comedy, even if it's a straight horror film. I've heard commentaries from well known horror directors saying how they try to infuse a little humour, just to break the tension before building it up again. Martyrs was a wonderful film, totally devoid of humour. I think that's the sort of film where humour would feel totally out of place, there's nowhere that comedy could be put in. I've heard complaints about Martyrs that it was sick, disturbing, horrific, surely if it makes you feel that way it's done it's job. Horror should be horrific, it should make you feel sick when you see people getting brutally murdered, it's a sickening, horrific act. That doesn't mean there can't be any humour inbetween those scenes.

Posted on 5 Feb 2012 15:33:26 GMT
I've been tracking this conversation since I posted yesterday, and have found the subsequent contributions to be interesting, and quite thought provoking. When I referred to humour being present in horror, I was referring more to the underlying satire in a lot of horror. Nobody would refer to Dawn of the Dead, for example, as a comedy, but Romero definitely seems so be using the story to make a point about consumerism.I haven't seen A Serbian Film, but I read somewhere that the director was trying to make a satirical comment about the political state of his country, which explains the title. It's not present in all horror though-I saw Kill List recently, and although there was some blackly funny dialogue, it seemed to be deadly serious in all other respects . Coming back to the original poster, I think it's a pity that Chris describes himself now as an ''ex-horror fan'' because recent developments in the genre don't appeal to him-it's a very broad field and its fans always have interesting things to say about what they like and why. I'm not keen on the more extreme horror films, but they have their place, and I try to keep an open mind. I don't fancy the sound of ''Martyrs'', though.

Posted on 5 Feb 2012 19:10:06 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Feb 2012 23:00:15 GMT
mister joe says:
Alright Robert,the director of A Serbian Film definetly has been pushing the political angle,i personally discarded that notion.I viewed it as an exercise in wanton provocation that got so over the top i found myself laughing by the end.
Some viewers will really buy into the conceits of the movie,there always seems to be a ready made critic to over analyse.Which is fair enough.Kill List was a great film,it really reminded me of a 70s Nic Roeg picture.But i don't want to mention what happens in this movie as it would ruin it for people.Kill List is an absolute cult classic in the making.
Martyrs is an unfriendly hard picture,i liked the force but it is not for everyone.
The gentleman who made the original post as you point out just seems fed up with the genre.I just thought it was silly in many ways.Mainstream culture as a whole is FAR MORE disturbing in its pyschopathology,its virtually a pornographic society we live in free of empathy,X Factor judgement......I think Hollyoakes featuring a serial killer storyline at half six is more offensive.
Or the channel 5 docs called Born With Two Heads.Most "horror" fans i have met,conversed with are the most well balanced,informed,intelligent people i meet.Its The Hangover crowds you got to watch out for.
The original poster could never have been a true horror fan,its not a genre you like for a bit then discard.
Just a bloke having a whine.

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 21:24:57 GMT
Completely agree with you about the state of our culture at the moment-so many appalling things just seem to be ''normalised''. At its best, the horror genre uses horrific ideas and imagery creatively, and sometimes to make a point-and Kill List is an absolute cracker,but as you say people should come to it knowing as little as possible about in advance, to get the most out of it.

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 21:52:08 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 11 Jun 2012 18:47:03 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Feb 2012 21:55:40 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 5 Feb 2012 21:55:57 GMT]

Posted on 6 Feb 2012 09:08:38 GMT
Last edited by the author on 6 Feb 2012 09:09:33 GMT
JONESY says:
Out of all those films, i hated American Werewolf, Lost Boys,and Bad Taste.
Haven't seen the Stuff
Similarly i was left cold by Shaun of the Dead etc.
Liked Evil Dead though...but then again i don't think its got much humour in it, although i suppose someone attacked by a tree is pretty daft.

In reply to an earlier post on 6 Feb 2012 09:40:27 GMT
Post Soviet says:
Possibly were meant Evil Dead 2 and 3...
Personally don't mind doses of fun in movies like(you mentioned Jonesy), plus
Dead End
Cemetary Man
THey Live
Cabin Fever
Tales From The Crypt
Dead Alive
Dead Snow
Lynch Mob

Not forgettiing more sinister morbid humour(well, not to everyone), in movies like

Katie Bird
Nekromantik 2
The Devil's Rejects
Human Centipede
I'll Bury You Tomorrow
Loved Ones
Singapore Slings

My collection would be much poorer without them.

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Feb 2012 00:12:27 GMT
gille liath says:
As is your wont, Mr Joe, you're missing the point.
a) Horror is not something separate from 'mainstream culture' - it's just one manifestation of it.
b) 2 wrongs don't make a right.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Feb 2012 17:59:03 GMT
Last edited by the author on 26 Feb 2012 18:13:35 GMT
" I've come to the conclusion that horror movies and novels based around human torture and misery are utterly contemptible, immoral trash. "

Contemptible and trash I can accept; 'Immoral', however, belongs to a world of discourse that inevitably leads to the conclusion that books, films etc. are 'corrupting', which is no less supportable now than it was in Shakespeare's day, when putting a woman on the stage was deemed an act of public lewdness. It's one thing to say to a film is crap because it's badly made, badly acted or badly filmed etc. It's quite another to actually tell people it leads them into immorality.

In case you're thinking of warning us about films that supposedly inspired criminal acts, remember that it's no accident that the kind of person who commits a crime after seeing a film always turns out to have been seriously disturbed long before they saw it.

"It started with Hannibal, picked up pace with American Psycho, and good old Kingy hammered in the final nail with the opening chapter from I think, Duma Key."

American Psycho came out almost a decade before Hannibal. But I assume you're referring to the mere film adaptations.

"yet as an audience, we're on the side of the monsters"

I think it was Hitchock who said that audiences don't, ultimately, engage with characters that are good or evil - they engage with characters that are alive. He liked to illustrate the point with this scenario.

Picture a bank robber about to commit a heist. Audience is already booing and hissing. Then she almost gets caught twice, but stays her course, and shows considerable skill in thwarting every contraption the bank has put in her way. By the time she's pulled it off, the audience has stopped booing and started cheering. Then, just as she's on the brink of getting off scot-free, she drops a glove. The audience, as one, takes a sharp, sudden breath. She was so close!

Morality rarely has much to do with the duty of any media - namely, to grab the audience's attention and keep it.

"As for Brett Ellis' American Psycho. It's like reader and writer alike are mutually revelling in the lowest and sickest acts imaginable."


"And again, we're kind of on the side of the monsters"

Only we're not. We're not intended to like Bateman. The fact that Ellis pulls this off without a high-minded character give a long speech about dignity, justice etc. shortly after thwarting Bateman's evil plans at the last possible second is fresh, praise-worthy. (Probably the only praise-worthy thing in the entire novel, but I digress.) Give Bateman all the attention, and he'll inevitably push the audience towards the upper end of the moral spectrum. Moral values can be illustrated - even reinforced - by their calculated absence.

"Surely to think like this is so wrong, and by buying into it, we're really slumming."

By that definition, all fiction, whether it's Tender is the Night or The Tommyknockers, is slumming.

"To me, it had started to feel as if by reading and watching this stuff I were bathing in blood and gutse [sic], and enjoying the feel of it against my naked body."

This is one of those rare sentences that makes all commentary superfluous.

"Just by using their imaginations in this way, I think creators are really living in the gutter, and inviting us to join them. "

Only they're not, on both counts. They may be bad or formula-bound writers, but they're not inviting anyone to do anything other than put an extra 7.99 in their bank account.

"I've had enough"

A problem with a simple solution.

Posted on 21 Mar 2012 22:10:21 GMT
Last edited by the author on 21 Mar 2012 22:11:05 GMT
@ Chris, I totally agree, and would also add in the relentless wave of morbidly, soul destroying Japanese Horror like Ring, The Grudge, Dark Water etc. it is pointless other than to leave the viewer totally depressed. I AM a horror fan, and think that when done well the genre has produced some incredible films like 28 Days Later, Alien, and dare I say Night of the Demon (a bit of low tech 50's horror). But please no more gore and torture. I had the misfortune of watching Wolf Creek and the images have never really left me. Enough is enough...

Posted on 25 Mar 2012 20:42:12 BDT
mister joe says:
b m hodges you sound like an old lady.Get the horlicks,place a blanket on your withered knees and watch itv's new Titanic series.

Posted on 26 Apr 2012 10:55:59 BDT
Nurrie says:
I worry about people whose mind get lost in horror movies that it effects them so much, that it makes them feel like they're bing dragged down. Maybe it's a good thing you stopped watching them. I see blood in horror movies as fake blood, cut up flesh as fake, which makes it harder for a gore horror to have any impact on me because I'm always thinking "The special effects peeps really did a good/bad job on that". I think the more gory it is, the more unrealistic it is, though the first couple of Saw manage to do well since it had a fantastic twisty story to it. Slasher movies don't scare me, because I feel like I can fight back.

Supernatural and pyschological stories such as Ring, where the characters seem real and you feel for them, is the kind of horror for me. It's nice to have a tear-jerker sometimes. I prefer interesting characters/villians/stories over boring fake gore. I think there are plenty of horrors with rewarding stories.

I don't think horror is damaging at all, I think it helps you appericate how sane and normal your life is. And there's nothing wrong with allowing your survival instincts to have a chance to air out in the safety of your own home.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Apr 2012 01:46:05 BDT
Georgedc says:
For everyone who likes A Serbian Film, it will be released UNCUT on may 22 in the US.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Apr 2012 19:05:23 BDT
I think you're right Nurrie, as far as I'm concerned horror can't go too far, it can however go too far for some viewers, I think its all about knowing your limits and not crossing them or if you've seen it all and have yet to feel any were too much just keep going further and see what happens, horror is a very diverse genre and there's more than enough room for gore, atmosphere, plot and style (although not always in the same film), its all about getting into the kind of horror that best suits you, some would laugh at fans of black and white gothic horror as being boring or old fashioned, others despise gorehounds and see them as warped individuals, both are completely missing the point.... its all relevant to someone even if not to you and there's nothing wrong with enjoying alternate or even violent entertainment, live and let live!

Georgedc how did that come about, I thought the US were afraid of releasing the film uncut, must be that now that everyone knows the film isn't all that bad they feel more confident in putting it out without unwarranted panic coming their way, that just drives me nuts when distributors chicken out just because a few prudish bores are going to fly off the handle, mind you the cut version might've just been to have people buy the film twice and to build some hype.

Posted on 30 Apr 2012 17:58:28 BDT
C. A. Holmes says:
Is the subject of this thread missing a few words such as "..of his rear" ?

Posted on 30 Apr 2012 20:00:17 BDT
West25 says:
I don't understand what he/she means by calling themselves an ex horror fan, does that mean that they don't like the horror films that they used to like? I believe what he/she meant to say is that they don't like the current trend of horror movies, to which there is a very simple solution, don't watch them and stick to the older films they enjoy. There's also plenty of decent horror films out there that aren't all blood and guts, you just have to look for them. I agree in a way that a lot of horror films use gratuitous gore, but it's not something that I have a problem with. If more films had the gore and added in some genuine scares and a good atmosphere then i'd be very happy, what is worrying is that they say that they feel like they're living in the gutter and bathing in blood, just keep repeating It's only a movie, it's only a movie, it's only a movie.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 May 2012 02:25:33 BDT
Last edited by the author on 1 May 2012 02:29:14 BDT
Georgedc says:

Apparently, the US distributor, Invincible Pictures, was afraid of a lawsuit due to the pending lawsuit in Spain for showing the uncut at a film festival. Now that the Spain lawsuit is dropped, Invincible went ahead with the Uncut for the US market. Here is the whole story..

Uncut up at for pre-order now!

In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2012 15:44:32 BDT
Mr. C. Otter says:
Horror is fiction. It doesn't bother me because a horror film is not real. If it scares you or upsets you, then you clearly have a problem differentiating between fact and fantasy, something only psychotiocs do. therefore I conclude that the naysayers are the mentally unbalanced people, not the people who can enjoy a piece of FICTION without getting confused about what's real and what's not. What concerns me is that Chris seems to imply that a film can be morally corrupting. Are you really saying that horror films can alter a person's moral compass? Seriously? So after a spell in the company of Michael Myers you think stabbing people with a knife is acceptable? Or after watching Hostel you're happy with the notion of torture for profit? Really? A film is so powerful it can make someone immoral? Please give examples.

Okay, so I'm possibly being a bit extreme. Not everyone likes horror and that's perfectly okay. I personally hate current rom-com's with their slant towards misandry. Just look at the men in those films, it's invariably a comedy about a wild, untamed man who needs to be cultured and altered by the superior woman. Please...

But I digress. Horror films are fiction. Is the message sinking in yet? I've never committed a single violent act in my life, but I love horror of all shapes and sizes. Fred West, on the other hand, loved Disney films. I guess Disney films corrupted him, huh? Bad Disney. And Jeffrey Dahmer had a Star Wars fixation. Gee, never knew such films could corrupt a person so completely...

To measure your own psyche using horror films as a guide is what's truly disturbing here, folks. Differentiate between fact and fiction, that's the key. Horror films are pure escapism and I don't believe they are so supremely powerful that they can make a person depraved or immoral.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2012 17:20:06 BDT
Sticky paw says:
Very well put, sir. I have loved the horror genre since I was ooh around 5 years old, watching the old b/w 'wolfman' (which I would always cry when those horrible men try to kill him!), then on to 'Texas chainsaw', 'Evil Dead' etc. I am now 41 and completely sane and rational I can assure you, I have not once had the urge to become an axe-wielding homicidal maniac (until I got married...but that's for another time!).
But, my fascination with horror had always been with the special effects and make-up. It amazed me how they created such life-like imagery. The Thing (1982) wipes the floor with todays CGI generation. Then came the complete gorefest that are 'Return of the living dead' 'Braindead' and 'Badtaste'. Not the best horror, I admit, but the funniest tongue in cheek movies ever. The effects were totally over the top that you just had to laugh. They were brilliant.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2012 23:05:43 BDT
Georgedc says:
sticky paw,

i am the same age as you and i enjoyed all those 80's horror comedies as a kid. I enjoyed all the horror movies of the 80's especially the classics like the shining, exorcist, and all the jason/freddy slasher movies. I still respect them today.

However, i no longer like horror movies that involve wolfman, vampires, monsters, or supernatural worlds/people/powers. I don't find these to be "horror" more like sci-fi or fantasy. I like the new genre of horror that involves just people or "reality-horror" as seen in saw, hostel, martyrs, high tension, i saw the devil, a serbian film, etc. Twilight, wolfman, and let the right one in just don't do it for me at 41. They may still be entertaining but definitely not horror for me.
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Initial post:  31 Dec 2011
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