Posted in Other Media

Horror Films A–Z, Oct. 2020: G, H & I

A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

Year: 2014
Runtime: 1h 41m
Rated: N/A

Director: Ana Lily Amirpour

Writer: Ana Lily Amirpour

Stars: Sheila Vand, Arash Marandi, Marshall Manesh

“I should die and leave you in peace.”

“Here, drink some water first.”

Initial: Billed as the first Iranian vampire Western ever made.

Production Notes: Filmed in…California.

What Did I Think: (possible spoilers ahead)
I really dug the look of this movie. It reminded me more of 1940s Hays Code-era noir/horror movies than the spaghetti Westerns that are said to have inspired it. It’s such a contrast to the sort of showy black and white of The Lighthouse. Sheila Vand, as the Girl, is honestly very intimidating when she’s not looking like an ordinary girl. Arash Marandi is such a good boy that I felt a little disappointed in him when he engaged in any of his crimes. A Girl… is a bit slow. There’s a line between holding a shot and holding it too long, and I think Amirour is occasionally on the wrong side of that line.

He Never Died

Year: 2015
Runtime: 1h 39m
Rated: R

Director: Jason Krawczyk

Writer: Jason Krawczyk

Stars: Henry Rollins, Booboo Stewart, Kate Greenhouse

“Why are you calling me, Gillian? I remember hating you.”

Initial: I have a weird affection for Henry Rollins probably because he’s an angry punk, but also smart and funny. I like subverted expectations. I’ve had this movie on by TBW pile for quite a while.

Production Notes: There’s a sequel She Never Died. There was also a series talk, which I’d totally be in for.

What Did I Think: (possible spoilers ahead)
The first thing I did at The End was message my sister with this movie rec. It’s so funny; just inky black humor for days. Henry Rollins plays the perfect world-weary, put-upon immortal. This movie could have been 10x gorier, but it doesn’t need to be. I also really liked the use of sound to convey the weight of Jack’s memories.

Hey, this is a Red Band trailer, so viewer discretion advised.

I Saw the Devil

Year: 2010
Runtime: 2h 24m
Rated: N/R

Director: Jee-woon Kim

Writers: Jee-woon Kim, Hoon-jung Park

Stars: Byung-hun Lee, Min-sik Choi, Joon-hyuk Lee

“I was wondering about you. You don’t look like a monster.”

Initial: I had heard that this was one of the most brutal, affecting revenge movies ever…

Production Notes: This was Kim Jee-woon’s follow up to The Good, the Bad, and the Weird (2008).

What Did I Think: (possible spoilers ahead)
Historically, I have trouble managing my expectations and they got the best of me here. Working again with cinematographer Mo-gae Lee, I Saw the Devil is a well-shot, well-made movie. Yes, it’s violence is brutal, to the point that I question how any of these characters stay alive from one scene to the next. The structure felt a little messy to me; that the story might have been better served by being trimmed down. It’s all a lot, but instead of feeling worn down by the continued brutality, I got a little bored. I also like more ambiguity in character morality. I was frustrated by Soo-hyeon’s actions rather than appalled by them.