Thursday, April 7, 2011

30 Day Horror Challenge: Day 15

Demons and monsters can be scary, but if you really want to scare people, you need to base the horrors on the screen in reality. That's where the serial killer comes in. A person among the living killing other people really hit close to most peoples fears. When the lights come on after the movie, all the ghosts and zombies and such all disappear. Serial killers are human beings. They could be your neighbor. They could be your co-worker. The scary part is not knowing who or where a serial killer may be. As seen too many times on the local news, it can end up being the person you would least expect and it could be the person that everyone suspects. You just never know.

Your favorite horror film involving serial killers.
At Midnight I'll Take Your Soul (1963)

The first Brazilian horror film is a landmark achievement for it's star, writer and director, José Mojica Marins. Filmed on the cheap, the first Coffin Joe movie is quite effective at capturing mood. Everyone in a small town fears the local undertaker named Joe (also known as Zé do Caixão), but is it because he deals with death or is it because he brings death?

In an extremely religious town, Joe is an atheist who rarely shows emotion. He killed his first wife because of her infertility. Joe's life long quest is to find the "perfect woman" and have her bear him a superior child. He kills any woman who is deemed inferior and anyone who gets in the way of his goal.

The bodies start piling up and Joe is starting to gain more suspicion for the increasing number of violent deaths. He remains unpunished for his crimes due to lack of evidence linking Joe to the murders. A gypsy tells Joe that the ghosts of his murdered victims will come back to claim his soul. Will the gypsy's prediction come true? Or will Joe succumb to his own demons? Or will Joe be free to pursue his quest for the perfect woman?

This is a film that will slowly grab you until you are fully invested in the story. The pacing can be a little slow at times, but it creates a chilling tension that propels the film to more than the sum of its parts.

"What is life? It is the beginning of death. What is death? It is the end of life! What is existence? It is the continuity of blood. What is blood? It is the reason to exist!"

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