Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Monsters; Despite current trends, they can still not suck.

Between Stephanie Meyers, and before her, Anne Rice, have turned vampires into Emo wimps. Thanks to Twilight, we can add werewolves to the mix as well. God help us if one of these new writers gives us a sexy Frankenstein monster, or a maudlin version of Godzilla...

I will also go a little further and suggest that things like Blade and Underworld are undermining the very monsters they are trying to make awesome for pretty much the same reason. Sure, Edward Cullen is a whiny twit, but even in the Underworld movies, we sympathize and identify with the monsters. They aren't monsters any more; they aren't the uncontrollable forces of evil/nature that they used to be.

Or so it would seem.

I can think of several movies that have come out in the past 5 years or so that are unapologetically standard monster movies; The Wolfman, Cloverfield, The Crazies, 28 Weeks Later, Slither... All of them had a very clear "Us Against Them/It" motif, even if Cloverfield was filled with angsty unlikeable 20-somethings. At least they were eaten/exploded. Wolfman had blood, all kinds of blood. The Crazies and 28 Weeks Later were both great non-zombie zombie movies, and Slither... That was about as pure an homage to 80s horror that has ever been made.

I guess what I am getting at is this; sure this trend of whiny, emasculated monsters sucks. It's geared towards young girls, just like boy bands. And just like boy bands, they are ridiculous, shallow and make shitloads of money, so they won't be going anywhere any time soon.

On the plus side, their very existence pisses off the purists, and many of those purists are very talented film makers and writers, which is good for all o f us. The Emo crap will cause a backlash of traditional horror monsters, we just need to be a little patient.

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