Tuesday, October 30, 2012

25 Horror Films: #13 and #12 (a double feature)


Come and See (Elem Klimov, 1985)

One of cinema's visceral masterpieces, and one of its most haunting. Come and See is a great anti-war film because it's not an action oriented, thrilling film about war; it's a war film shot like a horror film. A young boy must navigate his way through a world full of killers... (Which is all war boils down to once you rob it of its heroics.)

Clean, Shaven (Lodge Kerrigan, 1994)

It's worth noting that Kerrigan's Keane (2004) and Claire Dolan (1998) are also very good. (Worth noting because Clean, Shaven is the only one of the aforementioned films inducted into the Criterion Collection, which I assume also means it's the one that's been most widely seen.)

In Clean, Shaven, the main character, Peter Winter, is constantly at war with himself.

At one point he even "snuffs out" his image on a car mirror in an act of symbolic suicide (or murder, depending on who exactly it is that he's seeing):

So why a double feature? For one thing, Come and See and Clean, Shaven both meticulously (and brilliantly) use sound to create a sense of heightened subjectivity. But more than that, the two films work as the flip side of the same coin.

The war within, and the war without.

And also because both films feature protagonists who are haunted by images.

1 comment:

Tyler said...

Somewhat off-topic: When I watched Girlfriend Experience, it struck me as Soderbergh's attempt at making his own (less successful) version of Claire Dolan (Soderbergh admires Kerrigan immensely). Unfortunately I no longer remember why I thought that beyond the obvious connection in subject matter, but I remember thinking it...