When I saw the poster and trailer for Roger Eggers’ The Witch, something felt right. It clicked. To me, the existence of such a film filled a certain void. That void? The lack of quality (Gothic) horror films set in early America.
I would have liked to see Crimson Peak in theaters the night it opened, but for a variety of reasons I didn’t get a chance to watch it until Halloween, which is a pretty good day to watch a Gothic film anyway!
I avoided reading any reviews of the film before watching it so I could be as unbiased as possible when forming my opinions on it, but I did have a few small preconceptions floating in the back of my mind: quotes from Del Toro I had read before the film opened about how Crimson Peak would be “feminist” and would turn some gender conventions on its head. Continue reading
Seven of the “Universal Monsters” (Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, Bride of Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, Creature from the Black Lagoon) are celebrated in these exquisitely soulful and gothic posters by artist Nicolas Delort. You can buy the collection here.
Dracula (1931) Continue reading
The Halloween window displays at Bergdorf Goodman in NYC, while always fantastic, climb to new heights this month by partnering with Guillermo Del Toro’s Crimson Peak (in theaters today!). Each window scene is inspired by a moment of horror in the film, Continue reading
Though many contemporary horror films have Gothic tropes, Guillermo Del Toro’s upcoming Crimson Peak is the only mainstream film in my recent memory which not only appears to be wholly Gothic, but actually bills itself as such (the unofficial tagline is “A Gothic Romance”).
So just how Gothic is it? Continue reading
As the temperatures continue to rise and the hours of sunlight stretch further into the evening, I’ve found myself thinking about the “seasonality” of the Gothic. Gothicism, in all its forms, has a pretty established association with cold, dreary weather. Extremely bad weather is a hallmark of Gothic novels (see #7 on this list); similarly, Gothic movies usually make use of desolate autumn/winter landscapes and storms to heighten the foreboding tone. Even goth fashion is so ill-suited for hot weather that it has inspired a whole blog on the topic (where each photo submission gets a ranking of “gothiness” and “sweatiness”). Continue reading
“Can women have Byronic personalities?”
As seemingly random and specific as it sounds, I’ve actually wondered this on a few occasions. When I went through a big Byron phase a while ago, I was arguably more fascinated with his life and influence on (Gothic) pop-culture than I was by his writings. I found it amazing that an individual could change the landscape of Western culture and media– for centuries to come– almost entirely because of his unique personality. Romantic individualism personified.
Last week we looked at Gothic Films in the Criterion Collection made before 1950. Let’s now explore what the collection has to offer from the second half of the century!
The Night of the Hunter, 1955. Dir. Charles Laughton (USA).
The Night of the Hunter—incredibly, the only film the great actor Charles Laughton ever directed—is truly a stand-alone masterwork. A horror movie with qualities of a Grimm fairy tale, Continue reading
The Criterion Collection was founded to distribute “important classic and contemporary films.” So which Gothic films has the prestigious distributer deemed “important”? Let’s take a look at some of the Gothically-leaning films in the Collection (and also admire the awesome DVD cover art that’s created for each film). You’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn that there are actually quite a few of these films– so many that I only have room to feature films from the first halve of the 20th Century (next half will come later). Enjoy!
The last person to die on New Year’s Eve before the clock strikes twelve is doomed to take the reins of Death’s chariot and work tirelessly collecting fresh souls for the next year. Continue reading
Every year there are more genre film festivals starting up and, it seems, even more shutting down. There is no permanent list of horror and gothic-themed film festivals due to this turnover rate, so I’ve compiled this list of festivals with definite event dates for 2015. Whether you’re planning to submit a film or attend the festival as a spectator, I hope this helps you navigate some of the gothic and horror film festivals this year!