Cutting Edge Horror: On its own terms

Of Apples & Oranges …

Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Last Tango in Paris” and Wes Craven’s “Last House on the Left,” both released in 1972, are benchmark films, for very different reasons.

Comparing them through one rating system would be an exercise in futility. “Last Tango” works because it’s brilliantly acted by Brando and says something fundamental about the human condition; the original “Last House” remains a cult sensation because it’s terrifying and subversive … and, yes, finally cathartic.

Comparing one to the other makes no sense. Cutting-edge exploitation demands to be judged by its own criteria: Did it make me cower in my seat? Did it exploit primal/Brothers Grimm fears — of abandonment, death, outsiders or “the other”? Was it a roller-coaster rush I’d recommend to friends?

Obviously separate categories and rating systems are called for.

Midnight Spookers — affectionately named for the Saturday-night fright extravaganzas of the ’60s —  is dedicated to the best in independent horror and science fiction.

These films, judged on their own (often grisly) merits, will carry a special dagger rating:  

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: