Blogathons

Announcing The Horrorathon: 26th and 27th Of October, 2017

The Horrorathon 3

In a couple of months time it will be Halloween; cue the scary music, flickering candles, screams, and people banging at your door thinking it’s fine to demand sweets. A perfect opportunity then for us to discuss those films that scare us.

You can discuss anything related to horror films. For example you could discuss your favourite scary film. The Universal Monster Movies (Dracula, The Invisible Man etc.) The Hammer Horror films. The films of Val Lewton. The Horror directors. The Horror stars, such as Vincent Price, Lon Chaney Sr, Peter Cushing etc. It’s entirely up to you.

As usual, I will only be accepting two duplicate posts about the same film, actor etc. There are so many films and stars out there for this genre, that we shouldn’t all need to write about the same ones. Check the participant list below to see who is writing about what. You are welcome to write more than one post.

I’ll put up a new post on each of the days for you to leave me your live links. It’s up to you on which of the days you make your entry live. All I ask is that nobody posts late, you can post early if you like, let me know and I will add your link in on one of the days.

Grab one of the banners below to help spread the word, and put it up on your site somewhere. Have fun writing, and please don’t scare yourselves too much!

 

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Horrorathon 1

Participation List

Maddylovesherclassicfilms – Dead Of Night

Cinematic ScribblingsSpirits of the Dead

LifesdailylessonsblogThe Haunting      13 Ghosts

Thoughts All SortsMy Reaction To Horror Films.

                                   VinniehCat People

Sparksfromacombustiblemind –  Post on Jamie Lee Curtis       Halloween (1978)

Bonnywood ManorDon’t Look Now      The Haunting of Julia

RealweegiemidgetHalloween (1978)

 

British Cinema, Horror

The Innocents (1961)

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For me, this is the greatest British horror film. When I think of haunted houses this film is the first to spring to my mind. The film is based on the Henry James novel, The Turn of the Screw. It is a very creepy, and atmospheric film. It makes for perfect viewing on a dark night or on a rainy afternoon.

The film is directed by Jack Clayton, it has photography by Freddie Francis, a screenplay by William Archibald and Truman Capote, and has music by Georges Auric.

From the very beginning this film is highly unsettling. The opening film logos and credits are accompanied by an eerie song that sounds like its straight out of the Victorian era, birds can be heard chirping. We also here the whimpers of Miss Giddens. We then see Miss Giddens hands clasped together in prayer, we see she is deeply distressed but we have no idea what is going on. It is a good way to open the film as it creates atmosphere and makes you wonder about what you are seeing.

The young and repressed Miss Giddens (Deborah Kerr)becomes the new governess to adorable siblings Flora and Miles (Pamela Franklin and Martin Stephens). As time goes on, she begins to suspect that they are possessed by the souls of two dead former servants Quint and Miss Jessel(Peter Wyngarde and Clytie Jessop.)

Miles acts like an adult, and there is just something not right about him at all; for one so young Stephens very adeptly conveys a wisdom and worldliness way beyond his years, and does so in a very unsettling way indeed. Miles and Flora seem almost telepathically linked, which adds even more creepiness to the proceedings. Miss Giddens begins to see ghosts, or does she?

It is this ambiguity regarding the ghosts that makes this film so effective I believe. You can view the occurrences in the film in two ways; either Miss Giddens really does see the ghosts, and the children are possessed; or Miss Giddens is suffering a mental breakdown and is imaging the whole thing. Either scenario is terrifying and whichever you believe(I actually believe that it is a combination of both)is scary and makes the ending shocking and sad.

I think the children were corrupted by the things they saw Quint and Miss Jessel do together, so it has affected their behaviour, they were also the only companions the children had ever known, so they try and imitate them even after their death, isn’t this another form of possession?

Miss Giddens hears about the servants and begins to fear them and see them. I think she really does see them, but whether they are actually real ghosts or just her fears manifesting I wouldn’t like to say, to her they are real apparitions.

This is the type of horror film I like best; one where you’re not sure if you glimpsed something in the corner of your eye, or if something just brushed past a character causing a candle to flicker. I much prefer psychological horror to gore, and this film certainly makes you think and really creeps me out.

Deborah gives one of her best performances here, and I think it is a real shame she never got another role like this again. She does such a terrific job of conveying Miss Giddens growing fear and obsessions.

Beautiful costumes, a stunning garden location (Sheffield Park Gardens)and a gothic atmosphere all combine to make The Innocents a must see.

My favourite scenes the following. The ghost sighting in the lake. Miss Giddens first walk around the beautiful gardens. The conversation between Miss Giddens and Miles, where she becomes convinced that he is possessed. The scene where Miss Giddens walks around the corridors with a candle hearing laughter. Quint’s appearance in the windows.

Are you a fan of this film? Please leave your thoughts below.