18 September 2005

Two OK creepy movies

First was a few days back on TiVo. I had gotten hooked on part of Below a couple of weeks ago but didn't have time to finish it, so I had TiVo get a repeat broadcast. Co-written by Darren Aronofsky, who directed Pi and Requiem for a Dream, Below is about an American submarine in World War II whose crew picks up a handful of survivors of a downed British ship. Both the crew and the survivors seem to be hiding something as they suffer ill-fated and supernatural accidents throughout the film. It has more mood than scares, but the mood was engaging with the surviving characters struggling to understand what's happening to them. Two effective scenes. First, when one of the crew presents a very plausible theory that they're all already dead and the noises outside the submarine are divers attempting to retrieve their bodies. Second, when one member glances at a mirror and his reflected image is almost imperceptibly delayed in its response.

I'm not sure though that submarines were ever that large inside. Sure, everyone has to duck through doorways and such, but there seemed to be an abundance of rooms and levels.

Second films was John Carpenter's Prince of Darkness last night (keeping me up until 3). I only caught the last half, but it completely hooked me. A giant container of evil!! is found in a church and physics students and a priest attempt to discover its origins and contents. Moments of science v. religion matched with creepy possession. Some good Carpenter gross-out scenes, and very nice dream transmissions from the future (I know, cool!), but I'm not sure that it delivers as much as it could have. Lost opportunities include gangs of possessed people gathered outside the church that could have been more menacing, and the hacky use of the person wandering into a darkened room.

"Wow" trivia for the movie: the transmissions from the future are sampled on DJ Shadow's Endtroducing... album:

This is not a dream, not a dream
We are using your brain's electrical system as a receiver
We are unable to transmit through your conscious neural interference
You are receiving this broadcast as a dream
We are transmitting from the year 1-9-...

Almost the only source I could find was here.

[ posted by sstrader on 18 September 2005 at 12:57:22 PM in Cinema ]