Tuesday, 17 November 2009

The Broken...

Although I am a fan of horror films it's quite rare that I see a horror film that I actually like. What I like is fairly specific: I like grown-up horror films in which bad things happen to adults rather than teenagers (this is honestly something I've always preferred and isn't just a sign of getting older). I like horror films that take the genre seriously - there's nothing scary about post-modern irony and over-the-top gore. And though it's not essential I prefer supernatural horror films to those based in reality. I know people say the idea that the person who lives nextdoor could be a psycho is scarier than something as unrealistic as people coming back from the dead, but I've never felt like that. I enjoy the fact that supernatural horror films make me terrified of something I know doesn't exist, and I find the unknown way scarier than the fact that the human mind goes a bit loopy sometimes. As much as I like Rob Zombie as an artist, I don't care who Michael Myers is behind the mask - as soon as any of those horror movie icons take the mask off they're just normal crazy people and there's nothing scary about that. Not for me anyway.

So last night I watched The Broken and while it's not a perfect film it does tick all of the boxes on my list of requirements. It is a film about grown-ups, it takes itself very seriously, we are told very little about the antagonist and it does not have a twist ending where we discover the main character is a bit loony. It doesn't always work - occasionally the suspense crosses the line and becomes tedious, it's quite derivative and there are a couple of unnecessary moments of gore (which I suspect were inserted on the insistence of some executive or investor somewhere who wanted some blood for the trailer). But for the most part it's 90 minutes of creepiness that for me came to a much better conclusion than I expected. Lena Heady and Richard Jenkins are both excellent and something about their relationship reminded me of Ashley Laurence and Andrew Robinson in Hellraiser. If you like atmospheric horror films like Repulsion or Prince of Darkness then this is definitely a film for you. If you liked any of the recent slasher remakes then don't bother.

1 comment:

Love Writing Again! said...

Thank you for the advice you left me. I am a bit scared of starting to plan a new project because part of me thinks that it might fail, so short stories are the best method so far. Hope your writing is going well. I'll drop by again!