Horror Movie Film Notes


When viewing a film, especially one of interest for the readers of horror-movies.ca, I often like to take down notes.  These include themes, ideas, or insightful analysis as per my reaction to the events on the screen of whichever horror film I'm watching that day.  Sometimes I’ll write down fully formed ideas, but more often than not, they will just be little notes to help me reference a moment from the film in my mind at a later time in order to come up with a fully detailed analysis. 

This is a technique that a lot of people use, but no two people use in exactly the same way.  I thought it would be a good idea to show you guys some of the examples of notes I took for a few movies that I screened for my top ten list all the way back in 2009.  Now I realize that some of these notes may be a little hard to follow, but don’t worry I will guide you through them!

Dead Snow (Dir: Tommy Wirkola - 2009)

While you’re getting used to reading and interpreting my notes, I’ll highlight a few things that may be hard to grasp.  I beganby writing that the film was starting off very formulaic.  I’ll admit also that for the first 20 minutes or so of the film, I was pretty bored thinking that this movie was going to be extremely by the numbers and succinctly follow every horror movie cliché I could possibly think of at the moment.  But I figured; hey why not give it a shot until the zombies actually arrive.  Boy howdy am I glad I did.  The film tricked me into a false front of boredom when all of a sudden the horror clichés are shredded and the movie evolves into a full out enjoyable exploitation flick. 

Pontypool (Dir: Bruce McDonald – 2008)

When I first saw Pontypool, I went into it blind knowing pretty much nothing about it.  In fact in these notes, it appears that I had mistaken the film for another one of Bruce McDonald’s films called Hard Core Logo.  I could only imagine that was what was going through my head at the time considering I asked where Billy Talent and Pipefitter were.  It also appears that I thought that the main character was Nite Owl from the Watchmen movie considering that the same actor played both parts.  Doesn’t look like I really understood what was going on for most of the film so I just recalled everything I knew about Canada, which apparently is mostly hockey and explosion related.  I Regardless of my banter, it was a great flick that should be checked out by everyone.

Drag Me to Hell


Ok so this one at least looks cleaner that the others which is a reflection of my clear state of mind throughout the viewing of the film.  In the notes, I mention the line that “Spanish is terrifying” which is my shorthand for saying that the opening sequence in the film being in another language adds to the mystification of the demonic figure.  It’s a language that is familiar to almost everyone, but not nearly as widely understood.  The lines dealing with Justin Long, i.e. “Justin long="girl”," “Don’t like Clay”, and “Clay=awesome” is my way of reminding myself that the character of Clay in the film starts out as a very effeminate role and slowly evolves into the most developed character over the course of the entire film.  In the beginning I didn’t like his character, but I came to appreciate the performance. 

See how easy that all was?  It’s just that different people write differently for themselves.  It’s kind of like a secret code I have with information that no one else would ever think about stealing or in any way caring about.  I hope this will give you a little bit of insight into my mind as I watch horror films with an extremely serious analytic eye.

P.S. Oh yeah, the cat (Gato) drawing?  I was on so much PCP I had no idea where I was.  Seriously kids, mixing PCP, compressed air, and Seagrams may sound like its an awesome idea, but it isn’t.  You will probably get arrested or be compelled to speak in other languages and draw cats.

Stay safe out there kiddies and for the love of god don’t be like me!

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