Tuesday, March 17, 2009

"You guys did a pretty bang-up job on my brother...he is pretty fucking dead down there"

Finally we receive a breath of fresh air as far as re-makes are concerned. To be completely honest, as much as I love the original Last House on the Left, it's a film that I see like Cannibal Holocaust. It's simply that both films are ones that I find crucial for any horror fan to watch, but not one that I will put on a top ten list for best horror films of all time. I also don't really feel as though I would ever need to watch either of those films more than twice in a lifetime. Now many horror fanatics out there are going to bash on this film because, well, it's a re-make. I also am completely aware with the connections to violence in the homes and the violence in war and all that mambo jambo that was way before my time. However, don't people realize that the original is actually a remake of The Virgin Spring? Most don't. Hell, most of the people in the audience I saw tonight didn't even realize that this film was a re-make. I enjoyed watching this version more than I did the original, but both of the films are great in very different ways. There may be spoilers so reader be warned.

First, kudos to Sarah Paxton. How on earth she managed to pull off this role with the Aquamarine the mermaid and Rachel Witchburn of Sydney White as your two BIG roles. I've worked a lot with community groups dedicated to the support of child/teen rape victims, and she really pulled at my heartstrings. Some people portray rape in an almost mocking manner but she was incredibly believable. She screamed in terror and pain, and not for attention, which I've come to find...is usually the case. It also doesn't hurt that she has those piercing eyes that look into your soul. You can see the pain when she's lying on the coffee table into one of her assailants.

Second, I actually enjoyed the fact that the film was tamed down a bit. The original was borderline snuff. While I loved the guts and glory of the original, that would NEVER fly by today's standards. I was never fearing for anyone's life in the original, I was just so off-put by the sadistic nature of not only the criminals, but of the parents. My mother raised me on Craven and the liking, and she even admitted to me "I love you honey, but I will not bite off a dick for you". Which I personally agree with. Will a mother stab a man for her daughter? Probably. Will a mother bite off a dick? I don't think so.

Unless a horror film has a ghost, monster, demon, possession, curse, witch, slasher, or anything of the sorts; I like my films to be believable.
There wasn't any character's with superhuman anything and I LIKED that each death was completely believable.

That being said, I wasn't bothered too much with the liberties taken in the film. This film definitely had a heart, and I felt for the family, and probably more so for Justin, the son of the leader of the murder pack. In the original film, I felt the "necklace" being completely out of place. I have never had my mother randomly give me a necklace that has absolutely no significance to me before this moment in time to deliver me some sort of luck. This time around however, I loved the necklace. It became such a vital part of the film and my heart skipped a beat when it fell off of her neck mid-rape. The necklace itself had a back story, which made it so much more heart wrenching when the mother found it in the kitchen. I also loved that Justin purposely set out the necklace. If he had just had it dangling around his neck, the mother probably would have blown his head off. It helped add to the character development in my opinion. The acting was a million times better in this film. I also particularly enjoyed the fact that Mari doesn't die. It gives the parents even more ammo because they are watching the child suffer rather than staring at a corpse. It also sort of set up a time frame for the killings to take place, for Mari needed to get to a hospital.

I felt that this film was done very well. There was a pretty good level as far as the graphic-ness of kills, and the film actually drew me in. [which is a rare thing in horror]. It gave me an extreme sense of empowerment out of the parents. I plan on being a mother myself someday and I know myself well enough to know that I would do the same thing if anyone hurt my daughter, and I knew who the people were. It's just a matter of thinking, how far would you go to protect your children. Watching a MOTHER do some justified killing [sorry Mama Vorhees...you were a few years late of justification]. Mothers are normally the ones that console the poor child while the father goes out killing, but watching the mother blow someone away, stab, drown, and knock out...was pretty awesome to see. I'll admit, I threw up my femme fist for her on a few ocassions.

However, like most reviews you'll read...the last minute is compltely uncalled for. I don't want to spoil it for you though. Just let me tell you this, when you think the movie is over...just leave. Unless you want to see a scanner-esque kill :)

1 comment(s):

B-Sol said...

Nice review. I had a good feeling about this one--I see I was right. Can't wait to see it!

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