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Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Midnight Meat Train

Last night I had the opportune chance to view a screening of Midnight Meat Train in an actual theater. It was playing in a double feature bill with Candyman at The New Beverly Theater in West Hollywood, Ca. Clive Barker was there to participate with a Q&A from the audience and introduce the film.

The film was originally planned for release in May but due to politics over at Lionsgate Films, the movie was pretty much shoved aside and eventually came out in August. This happened when a new big wig took over Peter Block's job. Mr. Block was in charge of getting Midnight Meat Train out there to the many movie theaters it would play at. Well this didn't happen and it was subsequently released in about 100 movie theaters across the country without any advertisements or trailers played anywhere. You can read more about this HERE

Anyway, I have to say it was a refreshing night for me to actually see a true horror film on the big screen. With all the watered down teen scream flicks out these days, obviously just to make money, it was really nice experiencing a Clive Barker movie in a theater. I haven't had that experience since Lord Of Illusions....even though the movie really let me down. That, too, was a movie adaptation of a Clive Barker short story. With short stories, you only have so much material to work with, so I was happy with the length of the movie and vague explanation of the turn of events in the movie towards the end. To me, this movie was all about the experience. The director, Ryuhei Kitamura, seemed to be quite fond of putting the audience in the perspective of the victims on screen. There were a few moments where it was very successful. I haven't really seen this type of camera work done before. Don't take my word for it, if you watch the movie, you'll understand what I mean with the eyeball scene in the subway.

I'm hopeful we'll get the horror genre back on track. This movie gave me hope even though it was literally thrown under the bus by it's own movie studio. There can only be so many Saws and Hostels before people feel oversaturated with violence and gore without there being any real story or reason in the plot to justify its use.

Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of gore and violence in this movie but to me it didn't seem like it was gore for gore's sake. That's Eli Roth territory. Between that and the endless supply of remakes, things have gotten quite grim for original ideas to get their time of day and audience appreciation.

Anyway, I've gone on a bit of tangent of my issue with the state of horror movies today.

I give the movie 4 out of 5, if I had em. Stars, that is.

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