“If The Way of Water is a crucial work of tech Romanticism, then another of its richest central dissonances is that between past and future: it imagines a world that stands a chance against modernity’s most brutal and oppressive machinations, thus situating itself in the past, but it also uses its genre modality to speculate a future that exceeds postmodernity’s politically flattening failures.”
“David Folster’s posthumously published Discovering the Movies in New Brunswick offers a journalistic and intentionally wandering study of its title province’s cinematic history. Spanning the late nineteenth to early twenty-first centuries, the book comprises a dense collection of esoterica, six-degrees-of-separation links, margin notes, and coincidences, all centered in a locale not customarily associated with film history (the province of New Brunswick).”
“Bound up in taboo fetishism and constantly oscillating commitments between the base and the transcendent, and between comedy and horror (much like Lynch’s Twin Peaks: The Return), Too Old to Die Young uses its genre-codified landscape of moral corruption as an allegorical mirror for America’s crumbling civilization, and as a space for a far-reaching aesthetic study of eroticism and violence in art. Putting itself in conversation with the cinematic genre signifiers most loudly established by Alfred Hitchcock’s oneiric, perverse California masterpiece Vertigo (1958), Too Old to Die Young constantly scrutinizes the wavering spaces where the tawdry mingles with the sublime, where sexual (re)productivity entangles with morbidity and destruction.”
Preceded by Ripe, Parlour Palm, and A Woman’s Block, Eve’s Parade is filmmaker Rebeccah Love’s final entry in a quartet of films depicting women who struggle against societal expectations, fall into madness, and recover with the help of neighbours. The first three films in this quartet have played through TIFF, VIFF, FNC, and CBC; been featured in the Montreal Gazette, the Psychiatric Eye (the Royal College of Psychiatry’s quarterly publication, UK); and premiered alongside talks by CAMH’s Chief Psychiatrists. In May, Love has been invited to deliver talks in London and Cambridge, UK through the NHS and residents’ associations about her creative depictions of psychosis and her vision for community crisis care.
Eve Parade will premiere on April 16 at the Paradise Theatre in Toronto. Author and film critic Mike Thorn sat down with Love to discuss her political and artistic visions, aesthetics, and form in Eve’s Parade, and her quartet’s various thematic concerns.
“This juxtaposition between some admittedly cheesy films and their serious thematic undercurrents can be jarring, and nowhere is this effect more evident than in Mike Thorn’s ‘Lizard Brain Ouroboros: Human Antiexceptionalism in Tobe Hooper’s Eaten Alive and Crocodile.’ These films are not the director’s best by a longshot (although the former, his 1976 follow-up to Texas Chain Saw, has enjoyed a cult following), but Thorn skillfully dissects how they illustrate ‘the [triune brain] theory…that human cognition’s roots can be traced to the nonhuman animal world’ (106). The boundary separating these worlds dissolves, and viewers may find themselves rooting more for the so-called ‘monsters’ than the oblivious humans exploiting them.”
“As a whole, Peel Back and See is probably my bleakest book to date, with only a few diversions into more playful genre territory (e.g. ‘Mr. Mucata’s Final Requests’, ‘The Furnace Room Mutant’, and ‘Virus’). For the most part, these stories are awash in the personal affective experiences of chronic depression, anxiety, psychological ruptures, post-postmodern despair, addiction, loss, grief, nihilism, pessimism, and suicidal ideation.”
“Mike Thorn breaks down Dead Silence as we discuss The Uncanny, controlling others, the art of horror films, and look deep at the career of James Wan.”
“Horror expert and author Mike Thorn joins me this year for the annual F5 Halloween Special! I’ve got reviews for David Gordon Green’s Halloween (2018) and the new spectacle, Halloween Kills (2021). I also announce the Force Five’s first Blu-ray giveaway! For the Halloween Special, we each chose movies you need to watch from five scary categories: Exorcism, Witch, Ghost/Supernatural, Zombie, Monster/Creature Feature.