Thursday, 19 October 2017

Thursday Movie Picks: Body Horror

I know I’ve been away for a few weeks, but I have returned to take part in my choice of Thursday Movie Picks about Body Horror movies.

Make sure to check out -

It’s almost impossible to go through this list without picking a David Cronenberg film even more so going through this list without picking a film inspired by the works of David Cronenberg. The first “pick” will be Cronenberg himself and the selected films are:

  •  Shivers
  •  Scanners
  •  The Brood
  • Videodrome
  • The Fly

Any of which are perfect for this week’s theme.

Twenty years ago, Helen's hooker mother is raped and resulting this attack she becomes pregnant. She tries to get rid of the baby, but dies in the process whilst the baby survived. Fast-forward 23 years bike courier Helen (Alanna LeVierge) is involved in a nasty accident. This seems to awaken something inside her that desperately wants to get out.

This Canadian psychological, supernatural, body horror film takes inspiration from one Canada's greatest horror cinema icons David Cronenberg, especially in the scenes where Helen cuts or chokes out all sorts of strange foreign objects. Director Cody Calahan does an excellent job at heightening the tension surrounding Helen's deteriorating mental state, he does such a good job of it that sometimes even the audience can be left disorientated almost as much as they were in films like Starry Eyes, another film highly influenced by Cronenberg

The film's opening two acts makes a good attempt to stray away from the mainstream (there's a crappy horror film called The Unborn that has some similarities to Let Her Out) but there there are moments where the film does fall more in the mainstream category, especially in the film's final act. Alanna LeVierge's performance in the lead role is superb as she captures Helen's two different personalties brilliantly. 

One of the main filmmakers that Julia Ducournau has acknowledged as a main influence on her work is David Cronenberg, the king of body horror. Raw is not a traditional horror film, but has its roots strongly planted in body horror with Cronenberg’s Shivers, a film which the infected victim is subject to extreme sexual desire, is a main influence. The repulsive rashes on the Justine’s stomach, extreme injury detail, and fear of what is happening inside your body is very much part and parcel of the body horror genre, but Julia Ducournau uses the themes of the story (coming of age, social acceptance, sexual awakening) to tell the story uniquely.

Unknown actress Garance Marillier does a superb job in the lead role making Justine a very empathetic person. Almost isolated and, at first, totally out of her comfort zone (as shown by the incredible one shot takes of Justine making her way through the rowdy parties) but once she consumes meat, her animalistic (the way she craves her gay roommate can be seen as animalistic) and carnivorous desires overwhelm her


  1. Welcome back! I love that you went with Cronenberg as a pick.

  2. I like both versions of THE FLY, but I don't like any of the sequels. Have you seen all 5 installments?

  3. We matched with Raw and I also chose Videodrome so sort of that too. I haven't heard of Let Her Out.

  4. I'm so bad with this sort of film though I have seen and liked The Fly. I have seen and definitely DIDN'T like The Brood! I've seen small segments of Videodrome and Scanners neither of which made me want to see more.

    Of your other picks I'd never heard of any of them until today but a few have been picked elsewhere.

    Okay so this was a rough week for me I came up with two including the original Fly but was stuck for a third until I remember a film I absolutely hated but fits this theme like a glove. I included it but it should in no way be seen as a recommendation.

    Altered States (1980)-Ken Russell directed head trip about a college professor (William Hurt) who uses ancient tribal halogenics and an isolation tank to achieve another level of consciousness eventually devolving to a primordial ooze of energy as his colleagues and estranged wife (Blair Brown) fight to restrain him from destroying himself. Screen bow for both Hurt and Drew Barrymore as one of his daughters.

    Society (1989)-Bottom of the barrel sludge about a teenage boy (Billy Warlock) who senses that he’s different from the rest of his family who mix with a certain level of society while he is more of an everyday kind of guy. After several disturbing incidents he discovers the truth which is revealed in revolting fashion. Terrible junk.

    The Fly (1958)-Inventor Andre Delambre (David Hedison) is experimenting with his teleportation device, first with inanimate objects which he’s successful with and eventually animals where he runs into problems. Working on the glitches he decides to try the machine out on himself….but unbeknownst to him a fly gets in before he hits the switch and a melding occurs and he becomes THE FLY!! A big drive-in hit on release this isn’t as technically savvy as the 80’s remake but fun on its own merits and hey it’s got Vincent Price in the cast, always a plus.

  5. I just rented Raw which I'm going to see in a few days. That is awesome and of course, you can't have a body horrors list without a film from David Cronenberg.

  6. Ok....I have not seen any of your film picks but Cronenberg is scary enough...reminds me of Raymond Massey in Arsenic And Old Lace.

  7. Raw has been on my list to see ever since it came out - I've heard so many good things! LOVE all the references to Cronenberg, and Shivers especially!