Posts Tagged ‘horror’


January 19, 2013

Martyr: noun – a person who is killed because of their religious beliefs.

But not if you’re in this film. ‘Martyr’ means ‘pretty woman wearing pants and vest who gets punched in the kidneys repeatedly’. Or does it? Sickened by the (alleged – I haven’t seen it) misogyny of this film, I turned to the wisdom of internet reviews for an insight into the true artistic meaning of slapping a woman about in a darkened room.

User JSh0k writes on IMDB that “…Martyr’s [sic] is definitely a dish best served cold” by which I assume he means that watching the kidney-punching is like eating a big bowl of ice-cream.

He (I’m assuming he’s a ‘he’, although ‘he’ may well be a ‘she’) also says that Martyrs “…will hopefully astound you with it’s gutsy originality” but that it is similar to “movies like Nacho Cerda’s Aftermath”. Hmm, I’m confused.

He does clarify things by arguing that Martyrs “….is guaranteed to divide audiences everywhere.” Divide them into sadists and non-sadists, presumably.

At least IMDB user Onderhond can add some meaning to the dismemberment: “…limbs are flying enjoyment to be found.” Right. “Don’t watch Martyrs to get a little horror kick, or to indulge in silly gorefests.” I won’t, then.

Still, I don’t quite know what all the slapping, punching, knifing, pissing and impalement means. I get that it’s ‘tough to watch’, ‘uncomfortable’ and ‘not for the faint-hearted’, but what’s underneath all of that?

In a last bid to unearth some sense I turn to the late William Burroughs. Using the Lazarus Corporation‘s fine Text Mixing Desk, I throw together some of the key points from the most avid internet reviews, and I paste the results below. I think you’ll find they render the film obsolete.

Not that I’ve seen it.

Lazarus Corporation Text Mixing Desk says: “Torture scenes watch this film is harsh. you wear an honour watched that! like the easily badge to say movie women have physical stabbed in the street to answer her warped kidnapping get a little horror gorefests. young girl girl captured wants laugier digs deeper into the forgotten. don’t watch martyrs story of horror and torture, I honour badge film there’s no genre ‘popcorn’ flying the capacity laugh harrowing extremely violent desires the enjoyment to be found. violence unfeeling squirm and accept the monster wrangled, the tension simply serve a human mind. the physically sick schizophrenic horribly monickered martyrs to and torture of a ‘torture-porn’ are emotionally exorcism bleak, depressive to be slasher gory, but you won’t people literally get kick, or joy, limbs are rather that idea behind martyrs truly is a ordeal to end must-see is not futile nor characters to indulge in silly and wear an understanding cold and inevitable extremely graphic presentation is cold, the her.”

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why some people like the film Martyrs.


The Human Centipede

August 22, 2010

Recently I saw the trailer for ‘The Human Centipede’, a Dutch horror film that makes a very convincing case for submerging the entire nation of the Netherlands and all of its population beneath a sea of holy water. My soul almost prolapsed in a tiny tsunami of moral horror. I started to imagine what this film might look like if it were made in a parallel universe, where people weren’t prurient and cruel and where entertainment was entertaining, rather than dreadful and traumatic. So here is the redeemed version of ‘The Human Centipede’, baptised in the waters of niceness and born again:

The film opens upon a wide-angle view of the outside of a prison. Inside, a six-foot creepy-crawly dressed in prison suit is led into an office, where he is presented with a box of his pre-incarceration belongings. Prison regulations require that he stands behind a line, a foot from the desk, when signing for the box. He leans over comically and marks his ‘x’. The prison official lists the contents of the box contemptuously. Ten dollars. A breath mint. And a harmonica. Sweet. The tall centipede picks up the harmonica and blows out a tremulous solo. The prison official frowns. The tall centipede puts on a trilby hat and sunglasses and exits the building.

Outside the prison, the tall centipede’s brother, played by Dan Ackroyd, is waiting outside a beat-up police car. They embrace rigidly, nay, robotically, then get into the car. Sam and Dave’s ‘Soothe Me’ floats from the radio, and off they drive, with a cigarette casually pincered in each of the centipede’s many legs. The adventure has just begun!

The plot of this film centres around the attempts of the tall centipede and his brother to re-unite their old band and, in so doing, rescue their old orphanage from closure. In spite of the attempts of piggy-eyed Nazis, Winnebago-driving hicks, and spurned ex-squeezes, the brothers triumph and rock the gussets off a baying crowd of music enthusiasts. First they throw down “Shake” by Sam Cooke, although their version owes more to the Otis Redding interpretation than the original. When the tall centipede sings “A ring-a-ling-a-ling, honey shaking is the greatest thing” you know he is singing from experience, as each of his many legs (each shod in its own exquisitely polished loafer) wobble to the idiosyncratic Stax-inspired rhythms.

Eventually, our heroes wind up in stir again, but not before they have saved the orphanage and struck a blow for Blues Power. There may be prisons and Nazis out there, but it is comforting to know that the spirits of the heroes – Gaye, Cooke, Redding, Wolf and Waters – are looking out for us from a heaven that is equal parts Detroit, Chicago, Clarksdale and Mount Olympus.

Henry Fool poem competition – The Grate American Poem

June 10, 2010

Unlike the former entrants to this competition, I have not seen the film Henry Fool. Thus I am ideally placed to surmise the contents of the unspoken poem that is not seen nor heard within. It is regretfully long, for which I make no apology. This is it:

The Grate American Poem


Henry fool

Standing proud

So hip and cool

I wanna be him but I can’t


Henry Fool

Henry Fool my friend the tool

Did raise and rear my intellect

But beat it cruel

Abused my school

And left my anus bloodspecked


During the sluicing hour

I shiver to the kitchen

Linoleum floor cold on my bare feet

The draft planting icy kisses on my bare balls

Something wet runs down my leg


I rummage in a drawer

For something I might use


Listen to the rustle of the cutlery

This job needs not pen nor pencil

Poem time is over for this smug bastard

I need a cold and sharp kitchen utensil


I have it in my hand

And crawl upon the floor

My testes dragging on the shag

As I head t’ward his door


In his room I quiver with fear

Or maybe it’s the thrill;

I set to work

‘Pon the bumfuck’s face


I don’t know how long I worked

But Fool began to stir

“What are you doing there,

Kneeling on the floor?”

I brandished my tool,

My Excalibur

My pen

It is a cheese-grater.


“My face”, cried Fool through grated lips,

“All in strips and bits ‘pon my floor

With you, Simon, grating more

Grating and gyrating

Rubbing and grubby

Kneeling amidst

The shreds of my face

What for?”


I hate you, I spat

Though I rate your work

And I am going to grate you all to bits

Like a carrot or some cheese.

“Your poems suck balls”

He drooled through bloodied face

As slivers of flesh and fat

Flicked about the place


I grated on and on and on

My hands soaked crimson red

His former face was quite a mess

A mush of fleshy threads

They spelt out words, to my tired eyes

‘Write a poem’ is what it said

I wrote these lines upon the wall

My clothes now long since shed,

Dedicated to Henry Fool

I’m glad the bastard’s dead.