Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What I've Been Watching #8


OCULUS (2013) » Supernatural pandemonium and inanimate objects: a combo I rarely take seriously. In this film, however, I found myself engaged and entertained, which is not too bad. This is a horror story about murders executed by... a mirror. I know, it sounds ridiculous. The mental history of one of the main characters and the childhood flashbacks that tell the viewer the story behind the demonic mirror kept me interested. I wasn't satisfied with the ending but it could've been worse. There was a scene involving an apple and a lightbulb that really disturbed me - nightmare material is always in the details.

THE TAKING OF DEBORAH LOGAN (2014) » What was supposed to be a medical documentary about Deborah Logan's Alzheimer's disease, turns out to be a disturbing thriller where dementia blends with demonic activity. Secrets and revelations ensue and we witness frightening footage at every level. I liked the concept of this unsettling film, and solid performances made it worth watching, not to mention the suspense factor and some subtle scares... All in all a creepy poignant experience. What terrified me the most was what I know it's a real menace to the human health and sanity: Alzheimer itself.

THE BABADOOK (2014) » I watched this film last night and frankly, I was expecting something else, maybe a different kind of horror. Not that I was disappointed; on the contrary, it was a refreshing surprise approaching the realms of psychological horror seen through an ambiguous yet keen eye. Some scenes reminded me a bit of these three: We Need to Talk About Kevin, Repulsion and The Shining. This film plays with the audience and with anyone's mind. Count on outstanding acting, freaky distress, Aussie accent and beautiful cinematography with nightmarish atmosphere. Babadook itself is Tim Burton-esque spooky, sinister and all things eerie. This horror flick scared the shit out of Sundance and it's certainly a good pick if you compare it to the recent wave of splatter movies and want something, as stated before, different.

MAPS TO THE STARS (2014) » I reaaaaaally liked this one, which surprised me since I wasn't too impressed with Cosmopolis. It's official: Cronenberg hasn't lost his mojo! In fact, this film is good enough to be considered a cult classic. There was a distinctive Bret Easton Ellis-esque vibe about the storyline: it's vicious, it's cruel, it's a fucked up satire, it's weird, it's Hollywood. Both Julianne Moore and Mia Wasikowska steal the show, the latter acting like the twisted mind of all. Seriously, Wasikowska always gives an accomplished performance whenever she plays a psycho. Everyone is bitching about how Cronenberg isn't the same genious anymore and how the CGI effects look ridiculously botched... Screw you, haters. I loved it, in all its glory of violence and tragedy.

WHITE BIRD IN A BLIZZARD (2014) » My expectations were high when I started watching this film, because I adore Araki's work, I'm a huge fan of Eva Green and I already knew the soundtrack would be perfection. I wasn't wrong, this one lived up to my expectations and beyond. Set in the late 1980s/early 1990s, this is a story about a girl and her mother's sudden and intriguing disappearance, exploring the structural complexity behind such mystery and depicting how dysfunctional this family portrait was and why. It's also a coming of age narrative, with a few dream sequences to match the dream pop/shoegaze soundtrack. I won't spoil it but let me just add that the final plot twist caught me and my curiosity off guard! Well done.

YVES SAINT LAURENT (2014) » If you're into iconic fashion references, French stylish flicks and biopics as I am, you better watch this asap. Impressive how this film offers a glimpse at YSL's career, love life, early years, erratic lifestyle, scandal and controversial creations. The industry contrasting with inspiration itself, combining glamour with decadence, offers the perfect backdrop in this visually sumptuous, dramatic intoxication made of haute couture and timeless style. Kudos to Pierre Niney, for the incredible impersonation - the mannerisms, the voice... it was like watching Saint Laurent himself. Bravo!


  1. I always love round ups like these from you because I really respect your taste. The first three films sound particularly interesting but the problem is that as much as I want to love horror/thrillers, I do not have the nerves to actually watch them. Some of the greatest films I have seen are horror/thrillers, but they always about damned near give me a hard attack while watching them - the little bit that I do watch, that is, since I spend most of the film hiding behind my fingers bugging whoever is watching the film with me as I ask for a play by play.

    rae of love from berlin

  2. Não vi nenhum dos filmes mas tenho que arranjar tempo para os ver!

  3. Os três primeiros não os vejo para não me assustar mas os outros três pode ser que veja...:-)
    Falas dos filmes de forma muito atractiva ! Assim até dá vontade de vê-los!

  4. Tenho o Deborah Logan para ver mas ainda não me pus nisso, nem tenho tido tempo para ver Downton Abbey, quanto mais filmes... what happened to my life, arghhhhh!!!

  5. oooh these look like good films! The cast lists for Maps to the Stars, and White Bird in a Blizzard are amazing! I've always been meaning to watch Yves Saint Laurent. Pierre Niney is so beautiful as well hehe


  6. I was quite disappointed with Oculus, to be honest. I expected so much from it but the ending was just blah. I mean, certain parts in the movie were really good, but the rest just left me weirded out.

  7. quero tanto ver o maps to the stars e ysl!
    o maps e o oculus, tem cenas com olhos? lol

  8. Thank you dearest! I trust your taste in cinema after I fell in love with Penny Dreadful and other miscellaneous tv shows & films. I'm looking forward to spending my weeknights with a glass of red and some scary movies.
    Paige XO

  9. Quando começa a temporada das séries mal toco em filmes (so sad, such shame) mas tou mesmo curiosa pra ver o do Yves Saint Laurent.