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The-Mist-2007

In many ways, 2007 was a good year for horror. And it many ways it was the same old shit. Amongst the good we had:

  • 28 Weeks Later – a respectable sequel to the movie that gave us angry monkey disease, fast zombies and Cillian Murphy half nude and smeared with blood.
  • 1408 – Hooray for original horror with two awesome actors (although I really wish you’d pick an ending and stick to it, you’re not Ridley Scott)
  • 30 Days of Night – hooray for non-sparkly vampires and yet more original horror
  • Paranormal Activity – It may have unleashed a spate of truly dreadful lost footage movies but I like the original (and the third one, thank you)
  • The Orphanage – Guillermo del Torro at his not-shit best. If it weren’t for Hellboy I would give up on his English language films.
  • And of course REC – a tidy little Spanish horror that would later be unnecessarily remade by Hollywood.

And amongst the crap were: the Rob Zombie Halloween remake. Kate Beckinsale in truly forgettable slasher movie Vacancy. Grindhouse…enough said. Hostel Part II. Saw IV. Plus a few other notables I haven’t got around to watching yet.

And then of course, there was The Mist.

Mist_Spider

If you’ve watched The Mist, kudos – please feel free to stop reading, this is not directed at you. For all those saying “the what?” – please read on.

Based upon the short story by Stephen King (yet daring to have an ending far more disturbing than the book) The Mist is the most underrated horror film, and indeed the most underrated science-fiction movie of the last decade. So you watched Rob Zombie’s Halloween? Munched popcorn through Saw IV? Thought Vacancy was an acceptable date movie? Yes? But you haven’t watched The Mist. You haven’t heard of it at all. 

This, this, is why we can’t have nice things. This is why 92.7% of horror movies are utter shit. Because when something truly fantastic comes along, you – yes you – don’t notice. This is why the market is saturated with crappy remakes, brain dead gore-fests and unending sequels. It’s all your fault. 

misty_l

The Mist has everything. Great acting – Toby Jones is in it for god’s sake. Toby bloody Jones! Thomas Jane, an underrated actor for an underrated film. Marcia Gay Harden *snicker* is sensational – I’ve never hated a character so much in my life. Oh yea. And Laurie Holden…still…

Then there are the visuals. Beautiful, terrifying, incredible visuals. Lovecraftian nightmares slithering, swaying and scuttling out of the void. Behemoths staggering with breath-taking beauty through the mist shrouded landscape. Vicious, vindictive arachnids spinning webs in the dark. If this holds no appeal for you, perhaps you’re on the wrong blog.

The script is well written and the story is well crafted and manages to strike a good balance between characterisation, Americana and horror. It even has themes! Pride, betrayal, religious-fanaticism, fear, loss, regret, I could go on. There’s real pathos – and real hatred. This is emotionally engaging stuff, think Walking Dead story-telling, only with inter-dimensional nasties instead of zombies. And it has one of the bravest, unexpected and most unsettling conclusions to a mainstream film.

Watch this movie. You owe it to yourself.

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