The Cutprice Guignol

The Ninth Year: The Haunting of Swill House

Category: Movie Review

Problematic Media, Villainous Villains, and that Surprisingly Anti-Queer Pennywise

In the wake of IT Chapter Two, amongst the maelstrom of Reddie fanfiction that I was certainly not churning out at the rate of six per hour and Bill Hader actually becoming a sex symbol, released an article that swiftly shot to the top of the Discourse surrounding the movie: Pennywise is Surprisingly Anti-Queer in IT Chapter 2.

Read the rest of this entry »


Fifty Shades Freed is Garbage Abuse Apology, Also Just Plain Garbage

As you guys likely know by now, I’ve been writing about the Fifty Shades of Grey series for several years now. And yeah, if I’m being honest, it’s hard to think of much more in the pop cultural world that pisses me off more than the continued success of the flaming garbage pile: plagiarized from another author’s work, packed full of emotional and sexual abuse masquerading as a dreamy romance, and all-round just a shockingly badly-constructed, badly-written story packed with characters less believable as humans than my cat wearing a small hat, Fifty Shades of Grey is a giant quivering heap of shit that for some reason seems to skate by on the fact that it’s an “erotic” novel aimed at women, and thus most of the criticism towards both the book series and the film one seems to come in the form of tittering about “bored housewives” instead of addressing the myriad actual problems the stories present.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Future of Found Footage

The found footage genre is always one that has appealed to me so much as a horror fan. There’s an immediacy to it, a purported direct access to this moment and this person and this fear, that appeals to me: The Blair Witch Project is still up there with my favorite movies of all time, but the finest examples of the genre span everything from Ghostwatch to Grave Encounters to to Cloverfield to Baghead to Paranormal Activity to The Visit with dozens upon dozens of movies in between. It’s a genre that attempts to capture something that’s closer to reality than most horror films, and something about that, about the slow picking apart of the real world into some nightmare vision determined to keep me up at night in cold sweats, works.

Read the rest of this entry »

Fifty Shades Freed: A Trailer Analysis

So, yeah, I can’t turn down a chance to snark on my literary nemesis, Fifty Shades, and with a new trailer out, I have a prime opportunity. First and foremost, before any of those delightful Fifty Shades fans come down on me for “not focusing on my own work”, here’s where you can buy my romance and erotica. Fair warning, though: most of the women in my work consent to and enjoy the sex they have, which may put off some fans of EL James’ “work”. On with the trailer reaction!

Read the rest of this entry »

Movie Review: Blade Runner 2049

Okay, I have something to admit: I don’t love Blade Runner.

Read the rest of this entry »

Movie Review: It

When was the last time you were really scared?

Read the rest of this entry »

Where Did Death Note Go Wrong?

Earlier today, Adam Wingard, the director of Netflix’s cinematic Death Note adaptation, tweeted this:

Read the rest of this entry »

Hounds of Love, Extreme Violence, and Exploitation

I went to see Hounds of Love today, writer/director Ben Young’s debut feature revolving around the story of an suburban Australian couple (played by Emma Booth and Stephen Curry) carrying out a series of violent abductions, rapes and murders to assuage his twisted sexual appetites. We pick up as they abduct Vicky (Ashleigh Cummings) and carry out a series of physical and sexual assaults on the teenager, and a battle of wills begins between the younger woman and the older.


Read the rest of this entry »

Movie Review: Dunkirk

All genres morph and change in tone and attitude based on the era they happen to be made in. With almost every nation having it’s own complex and constantly evolving relationship to militarism, war, and how those things fit with the construction of their respective national identities, the war movie genre is one of the best ways to translate the attitude of the era they’re made in.


Read the rest of this entry »

Movie Review: Baby Driver

I’ve never been precious about Edgar Wright. I know a lot of people are, and with reason – for many, he was their introduction to the meta-deconstruction, putting together movies (Sean of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) and TV shows (Spaced) that lovingly and mercilessly picked apart pop culture at the seams. I didn’t grow up on him – my meta-analysis came from anime parodies and Charlie Brooker – and came to Edgar Wright and his movies late enough that I’ve never built up a particular soft spot for his work. I like it very much, but he’s not one of my movie makers. But for a lot of people, he is, and given how much I hated his new movie Baby Driver, I can’t even imagine how conned they felt.


Read the rest of this entry »