In the Mouth of Madness (1994)
Directed by: John Carpenter. Written by: Michael De Luca.
Plot: Dude (Sam Neill) goes on a search for reclusive writer (Jurgen Prochnow) and winds up in an isolated village which appears to be under the spell of an extremely evil force. Extremely fucked up shit ensues.
Review: I know that, strictly speaking, this movie doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but it‘s probably my favourite John Carpenter movie, after The Thing. I know a lot of you will want to break VHS copies of Halloween off in my ass for saying that, but… hey, I can’t tell a lie, man.
And I mean favourite is a very strong word. I love all of his films. Except for Someone’s Watching Me!. That was a piece of shit. And Village of the Damned because it was boring. And Ghosts of Mars because it was Prince of Darkness set on Mars. And Cigarette Burns because it was In the Mouth of Madness but about a movie. Believe it or not, They Live is fine by me.
Moving on, this movie is totally whacked out and actually really scared me. It’s pretty much the ultimate John Carpenter movie, containing elements of possession, apocalypse, small-group dynamics, hive-mind, and really cool FX (I always think that he did The Tommy knockers (another piece of shit), but I guess that was somebody else. It sure as hell felt like a JC movie). Plus elements of Stephen King and Lovecraft.
It also has a typically depressing ending. John Carpenter movies always end horribly. Nobody makes it, not really. The problem is not solved, whatever the fuck it is is still out there. It’s brilliant but it always makes me feel like shit.
This movie is also one of those paranoia inducing ones - it’s a hell of a creepy movie and makes you think about stuff you would rather not think about. I mean, a book that has the power to drive the reader insane (wasn’t that the gist of House of Leaves? The book itself, I mean, not the book within the book. I didn’t get all the way through so I don’t know. I need to remind myself to finish that. I had it on hold at the library forever and it finally came in just when we moved. Suck). That’s the kind of thing that keeps me awake at night, coz you wouldn’t know, right?
Anyway, yeah, this movie is majorly cool and majorly freaky, and you know what, Sam Neill is totally the man. He’s, like, one of the scariest guys alive but he’s really good. He did a bunch of movies there with that weird Satanic thing going on. He plays the incarnation of some kind of satanic force in Event Horizon and the antichrist in Final Conflict and there's this whole religious undertone to this movie...
He’s kind of captain nineties though. He hasn’t done a whole lot lately. That’s sad. He is my hero.
Favourite Part: I liked the monster stuff.
Other versions: None.
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