Kids

We Need to Talk About Kevin

With adults, you have to put in a lot of effort to make them creepy – layering on makeup and blood and involving them in increasingly horrific acts to impact increasingly apathetic audiences. With children, however, you often need little more than a cherubic face juxtaposed with an evil act to make an impact. Mixing evil into childhood innocence is often the perfect horror concoction for movies, whether it’s a horror movie teasing at the fear of the unknown or a drama exploring the world of a truly terrible child. Of course, sometimes it’s nothing more than the result of really bad parenting. In the premiere of The Affair, Dominic West’s son fakes a suicide to get a rise out of his dad. But when West’s Noah quickly gets over his anger and shrugs off the stunt, it’s perfectly obvious why his kid is acting out – dad is an ineffectual parent. But sometimes it’s about much more than slightly atypical adolescent rebellion. Nothing compares to the chills that a child can evoke, whether they’re the perpetrators of evil or the seemingly innocent guardians of it with their redrum warnings. Many of our most chilling cinematic moments come at the hands of children, whether it’s little Gage bringing Mommy knives in Pet Semetary, twins wanting to play in The Shining, or some of the most truly terrifying images, like Linda Blair’s young Regan in The Exorcist – a film whose frights transcend the tarnish of age. Here are some of […]

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Gummo1

Larry Clark’s 1995 film Kids wasn’t a big hit in its day, but it’s managed to stick around and get passed down from one generation of teen punk to the next over the course of the last two decades. Teenagers don’t tend to acknowledge anything that came out more than a few years before they got into high school, but they can still quote Kids, and that has to largely be thanks to Harmony Korine’s screenplay. The content of Kids sticks with people, because not only is it a shocking reminder to parents about how trashy teenage party culture gets, but it also blows kids’ hair back by reflecting the people they know in an honest way that few things in the media do, and it takes those glimmers of recognition and amps them up to maximum degradation in order to give the more impressionable members of the audience something to aspire to. Youth culture moves fast, but almost twenty years after its release, kids can still watch Kids and be shocked at how sick it is—and that’s why you can still periodically hear them quoting that they want to buy ladies corn dogs, when most of them probably aren’t even aware that Hollywood actor Justin Timberlake used to be in a band called ‘N Sync. Less people remember Korine’s debut as a director, Gummo, and that’s kind of a shame, because not only is it quite a bit more shocking than Kids, it’s also far more interesting and experimental […]

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Harmony Korine

That fuzzy guy on the end there came up in filmmaking with Kids when he was just a kid. With that, and with his following projects, Harmony Korine has awed a rotating audience while confounding all the people that his audience convinces to  please, please, please just watch for fifteen minutes. He’s the fresh voice most people claim they want in filmmaking, but he doesn’t fit in with any grand tradition. It’s not like others have made Korine-style movies while orbiting around a shared stylistic vision. At least, if they have, they haven’t reached his stature. Since there won’t be a Weird Wave that grows out of what he’s doing, he remains a vibrant loner and a wonderful army of one. So here’s a bit of free film school (for fans and filmmakers alike) from Mister Lonely.

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Although certain politicians and even scientists will suggest otherwise, most agree our basic human desire for sex remains pretty unchanged. Over the centuries we’ve acknowledged that ladies like it just as much as the men folk, both sexes can be completely uninterested, and there’s also the possibility that same sex lovers getting down and dirty isn’t, in fact, dirty. Every new generation accepts something as tame that the previous generation thinks taboo. My mother finds the practice of bondage troubling, but the idea is ordinary to me. Whereas I don’t quite understand her fascination with the word “slutpuppy” because that’s just ooky. I’m not saying one generation is better than the other, I’m more curious about how we got to the place we are. I am pretty in tune with the going-ons of Gwen, so I have no problem pinpointing a lot of my sexual identity development happening simultaneously with the films and TV that I watched in the 90s. Thinking back, the 90s stand out to me as a hodgepodge decade when it came to sex in film. We had the renewal of romantic melodramas as a reaction to the social commentary-filled erotic thrillers of the 80s, the depiction of realistic sex in comedies, and the rise in popularity of rape culture. Of course all these themes wouldn’t have been possible without the decades before them, but something happened in the 90s that made sex seem pleasurable through love, humor, and invasion.

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Thanks to Netflix, it has become easier to watch controversial movies at home, but it’s also harder to find the quality. Often times a movie’s description is more misleading than helpful and may lead a person to feel duped once the credits have rolled. Following the website-generated suggestions only takes you so far—or right into the awaiting arms of something too line-crossing for a newbie – and a quick Google search turns up pages and pages of porn. I think it’s time someone makes this search a little less difficult. Yes, there are tons of lists out there compiled by reputable sites detailing which sex-centric movies are the quintessential, the most titillating, and even the most disgusting, but what if you just want to put your toe into the sex movie pool? You can have a movie that’s all about sex but doesn’t have one hot sex scene or a drop of chemistry in it…hello Last Tango in Paris!

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Harmony Korine

Like his films, Harmony Korine himself possesses a spontaneous, incomparable personality. I sat down for a phone interview with the filmmaker last week to talk Trash Humpers, ‘mistakist’ filmmaking, Ricky Martin, Jonas guts film distribution, and the nice rack on the state of Tennessee.

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We don’t come to mourn Miramax, but to bury you in great films to add to your rental queue.

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31daysofhorror-reckoning

The Coroner chimes in with a detailed review of Jack Ketchum’s Offspring, a surprisingly violent film that hit the child-violence spot, but may not entertain all.

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bp-killachild

Wow that’s a strong statement. Let’s see how offensive this gets.

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culturewarrior-pixar

Now that everyone and their talking dog has seen Up, it’s time to look at its context within film history and in the legacy of Pixar.

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bp-kidsruineverything1

Robert Fure says kids suck. He also says “Sarah, the baby’s not mine so stop calling I’m not paying for anything.”

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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