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Neither Death Nor Dismemberment
Do we need a month devoted to horror?
For movie fans, all 31 days in October have been consigned to the hounds of Hell.
Dedicated horror-movie fans relish this time of year, allowing them to feast upon their own favorite type of cinematic offering. Not all of us love horror movies, though, and so this time of year can be challenging. To quote myself:
Even before I suffered a stroke in November 2020, I was drawing away from horror films in general.
What initially drew me to horror films was not the 'horror,' per se, but the suspenseful thrills that accompanied the various horrors that were depicted. I always shied away from anything depicting supernatural events and excessive blood and gore, and made a conscious decision to avoid reviewing any such titles to the extent possible, though I still admire the craftsmanship, skills, and talents involved by everyone, both in front of and behind the camera.
Most horror filmmakers that I've met have been kind and gentle people with an appealing sense of humor. Still, especially after my stroke and the extremely personal effects upon my body and soul that I have been experiencing, I have no compelling desire to watch modern horror movies.
Since I first wrote those words in March 2021, I have seen a few horror movies in connection with my work as a writer and editor (ScreenAnarchy, DallasFilmNow), and I am now watching some as part of my work as a 2024 SXSW Programming Associate, Features. I am not completely allergic to the appeal of horror movies, and when done well, they are just as effective, engaging, and compelling to watch as any other type of narrative experience.
What remains true is that I choose not to devote myself exclusively or primarily to the watching, evaluating, and reviewing of horror movies and television shows. As part of a balanced cinematic diet, I'm perfectly fine with them, especially with cleverly staged and executed suspense-thrillers, though I still shy away from "anything depicting supernatural events and excessive blood and gore." Beyond that, I'm fair game.
For those who share my taste, I'll be sharing some of my favorites this month that are suspenseful and thrillling. This week, I'll also be writing about the Ahsoka finale and the Season 2 debut of Loki, with plans to write about more family-friendly entertainment as time permits.
Stay safe! Keep streaming! Watch out for blades in apples (?!!!).