3 items from 2011
In Kaneto Shindô’s 1968 Kuroneko (“Black Cat”), a beguiling supernatural horror-romance that doesn’t seem to belong to either genre, the spirit world not only co-exists with the material world, but is literally carved into it, like a secret portal or booby trap. Set in a feudal Japan where samurai are more scourge than savior to the peasant class, the film opens with a harrowing scene of weary warriors invading a country home, raping and murdering the two women inside, and burning it to the ground. When the victims return as vengeful spirits, they reside in a fog-shrouded netherworld »
Choosing my favourite horror films of all time is like choosing between my children – not that I have children, but if I did, I am sure I would categorize them quite like my DVD collection. As with all lists, this is personal and nobody will agree with every choice – and if you do, that would be incredibly disturbing. Also, it was almost impossible for me to rank them in order, but I tried. I based my list taking into consideration three points:
1- Technical accomplishments / artistry and their influence on the genre.
2- How many times I’ve revisited the films and how easily it makes for a repeated viewings.
3- Its story, atmosphere and how much it affected me when I first watched them.
Chicago – Halloween just isn’t the same without an Onryō. Thanks to America’s tireless remakes of Japanese horror films, the materialization of Onryōs in pop culture has become as much of a seasonal tradition as witches and goblins. They’re often characterized by long black hair, white robes, bodily contortions, tragic backstories and an unquenchable thirst for vengeance beyond the grave.
In short, Onryōs unnervingly embody the old adage that “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned…even a dead one.” It’s easy to see how spine-tingling modern classics like “Ringu” and “Ju-on: The Grudge” followed in the ghostly footsteps of Kaneto Shindô’s overlooked 1968 masterwork, “Kuroneko” (“Black Cat”). Though the film is more hypnotic than scary, it still manages to creep under the skin as it spins a tale of real emotional and erotic power.
Blu-Ray Rating: 5.0/5.0
As in Shindô’s better-known 1964 classic, “Onibaba,” this film »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
3 items from 2011
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