Friday, October 22, 2010

31 Days of Halloween: Videodrome

So, we at Love & Squalor have an odd affinity for Videodrome.  We love it.  So much so, in fact, that it was very nearly a battle when deciding who would claim post authoring rights for the entry you're reading right now.  Because M. included the 1983 oddball classic in her brief Halloween list last year, I won.  Of course, this was after we battled about whether or not anything should overlap between last year and this year.  This, my friends, was the one allowance.   Videodrome is only partially horror, and is the sort of brain-eating film that will only get picked up this season by those with a great love of weird and a high tolerance for both cerebral postmodern babble and good old fashioned shock value.  The monster, you see, is society.  Everything, however, is sinister.  David Cronenberg's film follows sleazy television programmer Max Renn (James Woods) as he begins to experience intense, reality blurring hallucinations brought on by a frequency scrambled torture television show called Videodrome.  There's an underground revolution going on, one that scathingly comments on the depraved nature of North America  even as it serves up murder, torture, S&M, silly soft core, and weird, weird, weird.  For Max, television is his reality, his hallucination, and his demise.  For the viewer, it's a crazy trip.  Breathing VHS tapes, odd cavities in unexpected places, rice crispy guts...glorious.  It might be an acquired taste, but it's an 80's cult gem.  Re-watching it last night caused an all too real dream in which Blake Lively from Gossip Girl went rogue and shot 17 people.  Gossip Girl wasn't even on this week so I have no idea why it was Blake Lively.  That didn't happen, right?  That was just a dream?

Long live the new flesh.

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