Some might see the fact that a book relies somewhat on the readers ability to imagine the scenarios that are being written about as a flaw. Film is often seen as having an advantage in that it is able to portray visually what is happening without the limitations of certain peoples imagination. “The Blair Witch Project” relies on the human imagination much as a book does, and the fact that a lot of the movie involves what you can’t actually see — and often can’t hear — makes it an unbelievably effective horror film. It preys on our fear of the unknown, and does so throughout until the final gut wrenching moments of the film. The found footage horror genre truly began here, where the method was used to the greatest effect.
(To be updated soon)
Horror as a genre is fortunate in that it is able to succeed in simply being a roller-coaster of emotions. The audience is played like a piano, and when we begin a horror film, we expect to be unsettled and terrified by what we are about to witness. Unfortunately, making a genuinely scary film is a lot tougher than one might anticipate, in a surprisingly similar way to how difficult it is to make a good comedy. “[Rec]” is a Spanish horror film that is able to get into the action fast and from then on, fully succeed in creating varying degrees of terror and false sanctuary. Even if “[Rec]” doesn’t scare you, it is nigh on impossible to be truly bored by the brief affair.
To think I had nearly forgotten why teen comedies are as stigmatised as they are, thank God “Bad Neighbours” came along to refresh my sub standard memory. Another “adventure” filled with disgusting comedy that often falls completely flat on its face, in the shadow of genuine comic timing. “22 Jump Street” is the obvious comparison, a film that is actually really funny if a little juvenile. Now there is “Bad Neighbours” (simply called “Neighbours” in the States) that is actually really dumb if a lot juvenile. I’ve seen zygotes more mature than this.
You hear it said almost every time a poorly received blockbuster comes out. “You need more than just action to make a movie” — but — do you? “Speed” is really special in that regard, it is able to make a film that is exciting to the extreme all the way through, and have the minimum of side plot and, in what is apparently a necessary part of today’s blockbuster strategy, side boob. Credit where credit’s due, this is the sort of film I can imagine a traditional critic being surprised to find himself actually enjoying a movie based off pure suspense and action. I can’t currently — bearing in mind it is fairly early in my film career — think of another film that does what “Speed” does as well as “Speed” does it, but I can think of a hundred that try.