Hysteria and Curses in Nigel Kneale’s Baby (Beasts, 1976).

When watching Nigel Kneale's infinitely weird TV series, Beasts (1976), there's a great sense of underlying currents behind what appear to be strange amalgamations of the everyday with something of the Other.  Though the links between the episodes are often animalistic, ranging the ghost of a dolphin in Buddyboy to the hoards of rats in … Continue reading Hysteria and Curses in Nigel Kneale’s Baby (Beasts, 1976).

The Uncanny in Häxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages (1922)- Benjamin Christensen.

In one of the first attempts I made at canonising the sub-genre of Folk Horror, I likened the majority of its films to be brilliant but mere fugues on the ideas presented in Benjamin Christensen's Häxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages (1922).  Outside of Victor Sjöström's The Phantom Carriage (1921), it was the earliest and most … Continue reading The Uncanny in Häxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages (1922)- Benjamin Christensen.

The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 2

Part 1. The Seventh Continent. Unlike Freud's vision of how the Death Drive manifests, Haneke uses the idea as an attack on a number of his usual tropes.  Aspects of modern life such as the dreary drag of the 9 to 5 to the middle class obsession with materialism and ownership/possession all come under fire … Continue reading The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 2

The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 1.

Introduction Michael Haneke's debut feature set the tone for the majority of his interests that would be explored over the next few decades.  The Seventh Continent (1989), though part of the Glaciation Trilogy, stands on its own for questioning a very specific and brutal form of philosophy; that of Freud's Death Drive principles.  Though Haneke would … Continue reading The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 1.

The Masque of the Red Death (1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 2).

Part 1. The Levels of the Aesthetic Stage Through Castle Rooms and Colour. Corman's beautiful excess of colour in the film has already been mentioned but colour plays a vital role within the film's narrative too.  Its narrative focus however does not chime well with the Kierkegaard reading when considering the unevenness and ambiguity as … Continue reading The Masque of the Red Death (1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 2).

The Masque of the Red Death (Roger Corman, 1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 1).

Roger Corman may be better known for pulpy B-movies but his work adapting Edgar Allen Poe for the big screen is uncharacteristically layered and has a depth that far outstrips films of a far more serious ilk.  Almost all his Poe adaptations (excluding the fun but overall light The Raven) take Poe's original structure for … Continue reading The Masque of the Red Death (Roger Corman, 1964) – Kierkegaard’s Aesthetic Phase and Inverted Freudian Pleasure Principle (Part 1).