Although I don’t watch a lot of movies these days, for some reason I ended up watching two in the past week, both of which I think qualify as ‘Peril on the Screen’ choices in keeping with my R.I.P. season reading and watching. I enjoyed both films, but they were very different in spirit–the first is a gothic romance (not too scary, but lovely and atmospheric) while the second is a psychological thriller that freaked me out in a hands-over-my-eyes kind of way.
1. Jane Eyre (2011) – I know several other bloggers who are participating in a readalong of Jane Eyre at the moment. While I love the novel and would have loved to join in, I’ve just got too much on my plate at the moment. Lucky for me, my husband borrowed the latest film version for me, so I was able to return to the story in an (albeit limited) way. I’d never seen this version before, and I thought it was well done. It cuts down the story quite a bit in order to fit the constraints of the genre, but I didn’t find that too distracting. The mood of the original text is maintained in the atmospheric setting and cinematic effects, and the actress who plays Jane is really good, especially. I wasn’t as convinced by Mr. Rochester, who wasn’t dark and moody enough for my tastes, but overall I liked the film and would recommend it.
2. Black Swan (2010) – And now for something significantly creepier…I heard a lot of talk about this movie when it came out several years ago, but I’d never had the chance to see it myself. It was on tv in English the other night, though, so I decided to see what all the fuss was about. It’s the story of a young ballerina who wants to play the Swan Queen in Swan Lake, a role that requires her to play dual parts–that of the ‘good’ White Swan and the ‘bad’ Black Swan. As she plunges into the role, desperately trying to please her ballet teacher, her fragile psyche suffers. I don’t want to give anything away, but suffice it to say there is lots of freaky going on. I loved the way the film draws you in with the music, dancing, and world of ballet as seen from the perspective of Nina, the heroine.
Hopefully I’ll get a chance to watch a few more films during R.I.P. season, as I’ve got a taste for them now. I definitely prefer atmosphere and psychological terror over gore, so I’ll be looking for other movies that fit this description.
Do you enjoy watching scary movies? Have any good ones to recommend?