Friday, July 30, 2010

Nightmares in Red, White and Blue and Insights: A Movie Review

Director: Andrew Monument.

Writer: Joseph Maddrey.

Narrrator: Lance Henriksen.

Nightmares in Red, White and Blue will be released on DVD September 28th of this year and recently Gravitas Ventures has made this film available on VOD (formats below). This documentary on horror filmmaking highlights the icons in the genre like Darren Lynn Bousman (Saw 2), John Carpenter (Halloween), Larry Cohen (Maniac Cop), George A. Romero (Land of the Dead) and many more. As well, horror films in American media are covered over the span of a hundred years, with insight from each decade's political influences. The film is enjoyable for director Andrew Monument's introduction of psychological concepts like in-group/out-groups, the universality of fear, and the influence of imagination in the success of horror filmmaking.

The film is set up in an interview fashion with directors offering their personal takes on specific films e.g. Psycho, The Exorcist. Each decade in the 1900s are looked at plus the filmmakers tackle the influence of European horror in the genre during this decade. Roger Corman, Joe Dante, and Mick Garris talk about the love and peace generation of the '60s and the political corruption of the '70s and '80s. Each of these topics are related to specific films like Cat People or They Live starring Roddy Piper. The film, due to time limits, covers these films as a general overview.

There is a lot of information in Nightmares in Red, White and Blue, so viewers, or horror cinephiles may need to watch the film twice to soak everything in. However, the film does focus well on horror's ability to reduce the fear of death through catharsis, or seeing and creating what makes one afraid. As well, the film shows how man is still living in a tribe mentality, which makes one fear or see others who are different as threats. This is knowledge that is used to turn the viewer's fears in up on itself to horrify the viewer through his or her own imagination. Not showing a threat, but making one see one's own fear is a device that is discussed by the many personalities in the film.

This Monument production is available now through Comcast, Time Warner, Cox, Charter, Cablevision, Verizon, AT&T, iTunes and Amazon VOD and this reviewer recommends that you check out this film if you are a devoted horror film lover. For adult audiences, Nightmares can be enjoyed because the film focuses on the best in the business, while giving insight in to the devices that have made horror so long lasting and appealing.

Overall: 7 out of 10 (-1 for shortness, -1 for no Eli Roth, -1 for not focusing more deeply on one or two films).

More details on the film at the Nightmares in Red, White and Blue here:

The Film's Homepage

A review of the film at Quiet Earth:

Nightmares Reviewed at Quiet Earth


Available on VOD:

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