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I find myself sort of wondering why IMDb has this listed as horror.
Sure, there's the titular zombie-like chick in the film, but she's
hardly the focal point. Honestly, this seems to me a lot like what
George Romero would've done if he was making his first movies today.
Not that this will likely ever heralded like the original Night Of The
Living Dead, but a lot of the points are still there. I know a lot of
people who bow at the feet of the master will cry foul at that last
statement, but let's face it...Romero's early stuff is rather slow
paced, low on gore, and dripping with social commentary. And so is
Basically what you've got here is the story of two disaffected teenage boys who come across a (sort of) dead girl in an abandoned hospital. Being teenagers, one disregards much of his humanity in favor of darker intentions while the other objects but does nothing to back up his protests. Slowly the story gathers more complexity as one teen begins essentially raping this (sort of) dead girl and eventually invites some friends in on the action. As troubling as this sounds (and it is), you've seen worse things in your life which is a bit surprising considering that in their minds this is basically a moving corpse. So eventually it's up to one guy to be the voice of reason and make everything right.
There's a lot of commentary here. Everything from peer pressure, the effects of apathetic and absent parents, and the apathy and angst of teenagers gets touched on and done quite well. All said and done I'd certainly recommend this to anyone who's looking for a horror movie with a bit more substance and a bit less gore. Sure...we all like our horror movies nice and violent, but sometimes it's nice to see one that takes a slightly different path.
I saw this at the TIFF and was expecting it to be some kind of Saw film or something of its ilk. However, it is much better than a simple horror film and really defies categorization. Deadgirl is a look into how we humanize, empathize and sympathize. It is a very provocative film and I squirmed many times. It is, however, not a film made for shock value. This is an essay on what it is to be human and where we draw the line on what we consider human. It is an exploration into where we draw the line on compassion and the hows and whys of our brutality and inhumanity. There are many scenes that affected me so deeply that I had trouble sleeping and talked about them for many weeks afterward. This is a great disturbing film.
I have a longer review of this, but unfortunately it breaches the 1k
word limit of IMDb, so I will be rather succinct.
I had the pleasure of watching this at the Leeds Film Festival as part of Night of the Dead. At first I was apprehensive, expecting perhaps another 'torture-porn' indie film.
Instead, I got a powerful probe into the human psyche and the limits of human capability and barbarity.
The two main characters are enthralling and thoroughly explored, it is this subtle psychological study juxtaposed with the stark brutality of the films heavier moments that make this so powerful. Gritty, grainy, and teetering between realism, fantasy, and science-fiction, deadgirl is a horror that raises the bar on context, delivery, and emotional impact. It is probably the best US horror I have seen in recent memory, and its rating here on IMDb seems to reflect people taking it on at a superficial value only.
However, the film also knows is limits, it does not plunge into the sea of self indulgent artistic pretence. Instead, it stays afloat and allows you to glimpse down and take what you want from it, to empathise with who you deem worthy, and cast the sinister question of just what would YOU do in a room where society's laws are locked away in the background, your own state of nature in the metallic underbelly of an abandoned mental asylum. Would you return to the banality of suburban school life? Would you act on feral urge or try and do what you perceive to be the right thing.
Like "River's Edge" 23 years ago, youth's normal curiosity about death
and sex becomes unhinged and grows unspeakably perverse within a social
climate which favors unconscious, desire-based consumption over fixed
principles. These observations employ a darker and more relevant
Whether intended or not, the ideas at work in "Deadgirl" are so complex that calling this a "horror film" is perhaps not really accurate given the limitations by which the genre is judged. The film employs standard horror grammar, but through economy and purpose, the directors avoid pitfalls and cleverly make the genre's limits work in their favor.
For example, the girl in question, an "object" in strictly horror terms, is carefully crafted to be something other than a person - she seems less an external creature than something within the characters themselves. A cipher onto which alternative meanings can be projected. Unlike typical "horror girls," she evolves into the most profoundly disturbing idea that contemporary horror has given us: a fever dream of narcissistic-sexual pathology, trauma-based-attachment-porn made flesh.
Also, the context of the story, an abandoned asylum is rendered abstractly enough that one may read it equally as a metaphor than as simply a place in the real world; an image of the rotting mind where deviance waits - normally it's just a spooky old building when used in horror.
The characters enter such a bottomless pit in terms of real human behavior that whether intentional or not, a sense of allegory provides grounding for the audience. Grounding is desperately missing in the world these characters occupy, which is perhaps the point.
The film's male protagonists are are certainly of their time; they seem quite real to me. As with many kids today their sensitivities seem bleached away by what we all encounter: a relentless, post-narrative media blast from earliest childhood and an education without adequate social breadth. Their personal, familial inadequacies seem to be the seedbed for a hunger focused on effortless, narcissistic attachment. These are familiar kids. Placing them into this particular tale and intelligently imagining an outcome is what the directors have done. It is startling how effective it is.
While "Deadgirl"could easily have come across as a simply ghastly spectacle, the film transcends genre, as well as outflanking the need to simply entertain, shock or titillate. By its solid execution, its restraint and primarily through the indigestible, dark brilliance of its idea, the film rises to the level of art.
I would have rated this film a full 10 out of 10, but I have to admit,
it was so disturbing to me that I couldn't give it the full score.
Imagine, one zombie-girl being held captive by teenage boys. The zombie isn't the monster here, it's the boys.
This is most definitely NOT a date movie. This is more a flick that a person sees on their own and discusses later on internet message boards.
Not much blood and guts, no dystopian future... so why is it so disturbing? A quick perusal of the plot/synopsis should tell you why, I'm not going to give away any spoilers in this review.
I will say that this movie does a great job explaining the motivations of its male characters. I think it captures the angst, drives, and suffering of teenage males. Granted, the movie throws all of it to extreme contrast... but that only helps underline and illuminate those things.
The movie does a great job with cinematics and pacing. I expect to see great things from the directors.
I'd also like to comment on the movie poster (showing a woman's lips at a 90 degree angle). Brilliant movie poster on several levels.
Two teenagers JT and Rickie skip school and decide to go to an abandoned mental asylum.They horse around for a while destroying property before exploring the basement.In the cellar our heroes find a girl chained to a table with a plastic bag over her head.They touch her and it is revealed that she is alive.JT decides that they should keep her and use her as a sex slave.The problem is that the woman can't be killed and she is the living dead.First of all I really enjoyed "Deadgirl".The film is quite controversial when it comes to its dark necrophiliac subject matter.There are some moments of gore and violence and seriously twisted climax.The moral ambivalence of the film is actually the most disturbing thing about it.The main performances of Shiloh Fernandez and Noah Segan are very strong and my highest respect goes to Jenny Spain,who spends nearly every scene she is in naked and tormented.Fans of extreme cinema will no doubt enjoy "Deadgirl".7 out of 10.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I bought this movie from my cable TV company, it didn't give too much
info about the story line other than it was a zombie found in a
building by two teenage boys.
I like horrors but I see them as fantasy so they doesn't disturb me. In fact horror and Sci fi are my preferred choice generally.
What was disturbing about this was the zombie wasn't the monster it was the boy/s - it examines teenage boys boundaries if offered the "gift" of sex without consent and the fact the victim is dead or a zombie is not important. Not only to they rape her but they beat, sodomise and sexually "poke" her in the infected bullet wound one of the boys gave her a week previous because " it's wet and warm" I am only thankful they didn't treat us to a viewing of that particular scene. I am by nature creative and as such have a vivid and abstract imagination.I an able to enjoy a book over the film in most cases because my imagination is better than what the movie producers often create. The down side to having a creative mind when exposed to unexpected emotional and psychological horror of what humans can be capable of under the right circumstances is it leaves me upset and emotionally disturbed for days or weeks later.
I would not of watched this movie had I known it was as dark and as sick as it was. I just wanted a bit of good old zombie horror and what I got was the possibilities of horrific human nature.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Two high school friends ditch school to go drinking in this abandoned
asylum. They get lost after an encounter with a dog and end up finding
a body. The body is of a dead girl, naked and chained to a table. The
twist is she is not dead, but the undead. What would the normal thing
to do in this situation be? Well, one of the guys thinks it's to have
sex with her and keep her as their sex slave. Things obviously get out
Dead Girl was a little film that I heard about after reading a list of the Top Ten Most Disturbing Movies You'll Ever See. With that in mind, I went into Dead Girl expecting sick and twisted things. I got those, but not to the degree I was thinking of. Sure the scenario is sick and disturbing, but I find that if I went in not knowing anything about it, it would have had a more profound effect on me. Sexuality plays a big part in this film, the homosexual subtext between the two friends early on sets up some kind of weird relationship that isn't really explored till the end. These guys objectify women. They are virgins and want to loose their v-card, so seeing a naked girl chained up to a table unleashes these weird sexual urges in one of them. She tries to bite him and he beats her, breaks her neck as well.
Uh-Oh, she is not dead. They discover she can't die, the guy even shoots her to prove it. Yes, one character has a gun, and the scene is so poorly written that you can tell they needed a simply way of telling the audience this girl is dead. So we give a character a random gun that is used in this random scene and it is never seen again. The two friends immediately take opposing sides. One is in love with the idea and even invites others to join, while the other finds it sick and disturbing. The one in love with the idea becomes twisted and obsessed with his unorthodox relationship with this dead girl.
The analogy to boys growing up and exploring their sexuality is lost in this film, they resort to rape. I felt bad for the actress who had to lay there naked being used in such a horrific way. By the end of the film, it felt as if there was no real protagonist and everyone was evil. The comedy fell flat in some areas and seemed really random in others.
The subject matter is indeed interesting though and the filmmakers handled it in a mature way. It is not your average zombie film. You know that the climax of the film will involve her getting loose somehow. So there are no real surprises in the film. The twists and turns are really seen a mile away. Some people might find it hard to enjoy a film that is about necrophilia. I for one thought it started off well and then gradually had it's ups and downs. The inclusion of the other guys (Wheeler and two bullies) seemed to show the writers were a bit inept, the dialogue didn't help it either.
The subject matter is controversial and so is the film, to a degree. It's not the most horrifying film I've ever seen, nor does it really tip the ice berg. But then again, you are probably not like me. Constant images of a naked woman chained up, beaten to a pulp, bloody, raped and degraded might bother some people. The horror aspect is left until the end when it becomes more of a conventional horror film. It's the unsettling mood and themes this film has that make people uneasy with it. I can only recommend this to people who are actually interesting in this type of stuff. This is not for your every day movie goer.
You might think this is all smarmy and about necrophilia when two
teens, Rickie (Shiloh Fernandez) and J.T. (Noah Segan), playing hooky
find a dead girl (Jenny Spain) in the basement of a mental hospital.
Well, she is dead, but she isn't. She's undead.
Soon, she becomes a sex tool for J.T and his high school friends.
The conflict between the two life-long friends simmers the entire movie until it boils over in the end as we reflect on just what it means to be human.
Lots and lots of blood and zombie action, not so much sex. But, if you are looking for a horror film, you will be disappointed, as it is more philosophical and can't be easily fit into a category.
This movie will grab you, if you let yourself into it. It's disturbing
and might haunt you, if you are willing to take the "ride". Fun it's
most definitely not. But in a weird way it's grossly compelling. An
exercise in human behavior (of course not meant to be understood as a
blueprint for everyone), this movie is definitely an unsettling watch
and weird experience.
While the main actors here can be seen in smaller roles in bigger pictures (one of them plays a blink and you'll miss him role in Cadillac Records for example), they do convince and play their roles as straight as they can. It's not a perfect movie, but it's a small little picture, that might be a stepping stone for it's director, if he can take this experience from this movie and continue with bigger things. I think he the ability to do so ... This one definitely is not for those who can't bear watching "torture" (be it of physical or psychological nature).
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