Sunday, September 17, 2006

Safe Horror

Imagine it, you're breaking into some place, you find the wall safe behind a painting, you crack the safe using your great skills (none of that blowing-it-up crap for you, you're a pro) and you swing the heavy door open, then something nasty jumps out and eats your face off. Or you've set the explosives on the bank vault (cos you know, only pansies get all touchy feely with a safe) and the countdown hits zero, and instead of the safe exploding, you explode. Oh, oh, or you're nobody, minding your own business, and wham, a safe falls on you and kills you.

Okay, I'm joking. That's not the kind of safe horror I'm going to talk about. I'm going to talk about the kind of horror where you set the book down, or the movie ends, and the horror is gone, it doesn't stick with you the same as with unsafe horror.

Safe horror tends to be safe due much of the horror being tied to certain specifics. Most of us are never going to have to worry about ghosts on submarines or demons in Antarctica, because we're never going to be either of those places in most likelihood. Sometimes this leads to just hauntings in generally being a horror that doesn't really stick with us because we don't intend to move any time soon, for example, so the chances of our being party to such a thing are exceedingly low. Likewise our own house is unlikely to suddenly become haunted.

What inspired to me to talk about this as a topic was actually a movie that is safe, but the DVD itself is anything but safe. I'm talking about "Stir of Echoes" starring Kevin Bacon and Kathryn Erbe (rowr). This movie, beside being full of Bacon-ey goodness (don't ask me why, but I really like saying that), is a pretty safe horror. They're new to the house, and freak-o boy aside, none of it would have happened if not for the sister-in-law. So all in all a really safe movie. There's a couple of jumps, and a general sense of unease and otherworldliness, but once the film is over it's over... except for of course the part where the DVD makes it unsafe. That is one freaky set of menus. The main menu, I thought at first, was the creepiest menu I'd ever seen. Then I hit the special features menu and wow, that takes the cake for creepiest. That's maybe one of the creepiest things I've ever seen, and when you're as jaded as I am about this kind of thing, that's saying a lot. Well... maybe more next time, on unsafe horror.

Mood: withdrawn.
Music: Darkside of Aquarius by Bruce Dickinson and Cool the Engines by Boston.

Bruce Dickinson: Accident of Birth
Buy these at Amazon.ca
Click Images to Buy
Boston: Third Stage


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