Friday Five Films: All Them Witches

It has been a while since I have contributed. I have been ill. But! During that time I watched a plethora of both fantastic and not so fantastic horror films to babble on about for your entertainment. A majority of these films were thanks to purchasing a Shudder account, so in this article, I will discuss five films from their “Hexes and Ohs” collection, because who doesn’t love witches? They’re all the rage these days. Just check Instagram. THEY’RE EVERYWHERE.
Lord Of Salem:
Oh, Rob. What happened to you? House Of 1000 Corpses was so fucking good. But…it’s all gone downhill for me since then. This movie in particular was pretty atrocious. I do appreciate a good artsy fartsy horror film, but this was just over the top tomfoolery. It just didn’t make any sense, and I get maybe it wasn’t supposed to. As a David Lynch fan, I am aware that just because I don’t get something, doesn’t necessarily mean the director cared if I got it or not. But I consider myself a fairly seasoned horror junkie, and this…this just felt like I was watching an antichrist film on acid. And not in the good way. I did appreciate the location, because I used to live in Salem back in my college days. It was nostalgic to see my old stomping grounds. But, that’s where my enjoyment ended. I just couldn’t stay invested, and by the end, I was downright mad I had wasted my time watching this film. Especially because I do love me some Rob. But loving him doesn’t mean I have to love everything he does. This film gets a big ole NOPE from me. 2/5
Cherry Tree:
Another antichrist film. I guess there’s just not enough of them already. So did this film bring anything new to the table? Kind of. The two lead actresses were hot, and that’s a plus for me. I am shallow like that. Centipedes give me the willies, so that was a plus. I also like the idea of a Faustian bargain, so that was a nice bonus. Other than that, it was pretty run of the mill. Not terrible, not really good either. The acting was alright. Location was nice. Story was mildly entertaining. I can’t find anything else worthwhile to say about this film. It’s basically Argento lite. Watch Suspiria instead. Again. 3/5
There’s a lot of hate for this film, and I can see why. First off, it stars Linda Blair. That should, in itself, should make it an awesome movie. But, it also “stars” David Hasselhoff. Bring on the low brow! However, I kinda liked this film. Yeah, the story is ridiculous. Most of the characters are forgettable or annoying. The gore is low budget and borderline hysterical. BUT! Hildegard Knef is in the film, and her over the top character gave me LIFE. If the movie had focused more on her and her zany coven’s shenanigans, rather than the Hoff and his stupid girlfriend (who at least had nice titties) the movie would’ve been better. And more crazy Linda. But no, instead we got way too little gore and far too much drawn out nonsensical yawn fest filler. 3/5
The Alchemist Cookbook:
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Okay, so there’s no witches in this film. A demon, yes. An occult book, yes. But witches, nope. Just some good ole backwoods Appalachian shenanigans. What makes this film different is that it’s main character is black. YES, I SAID IT FOLKS. THIS MOVIE IS ABOUT BLACK FOLKS. Not only black folks, but mentally ill black folks. When was the last time you saw a a serious horror film involving POC, other than Get Out, that is. But even still, that movie had white folks in it too. This movie has only two main characters, both of which are black. And it’s not the Wayans. I was pleasantly surprised, because I am of the opinion that people of color primarily get the shaft in horror movies. They’re either racially typecast tokens or they die first. Usually both. In this film, there is no focus on the race of the character, he’s just your average mentally ill hermit in the woods cooking up some swamp magic voodoo shit that gets him in a whole lot of trouble. Honestly, that could be any of us. Let’s be real. The film is not perfect, it’s a slow burn, which is not for everyone. There’s no gore. There’s a lot of plot holes and some scenes that seem to go on forever. But, I really appreciated the change of pace and that is why I enjoyed this film. It’s not amazing, no. But it’s creepy and original – worth a watch. 4/5
It’s a Lars Von Trier film. People either love him or hate him. I hate to love him. His movies make me fucking depressed. But, I’m a goth and therefore a sucker for punishment, so…hello sorrow, my old friend. This film is insane. Even for him, it’s insane. The entire film is psycho sexual shock horror, which I love. I studied abnormal psychology and social deviancy in college, so this film was right up my ally. I was engaged from start to finish. I got attached to the characters in a way that crushed me. The gore made me literally cringe and feel sick to my stomach. Some of the scenes haunted me for weeks. The loss the characters experience hit me hard as a parent. All of it made my soul despair, and I loved every second of it. It’s not a popular opinion of this film, but I don’t care. CHAOS REIGNS. 5/5
I’ll revisit this collection next week with more reviews, as well as delve into other Shudder collections. I recently went on an 80’s horror binge as well, so I will definitely do an article on some of my favorite horror flicks from the 80’s. Until then, don’t piss off witches or dabble in the occult. It’s never a good idea, folks
You can find Angelicque on instagram as @autumnalghosts and @autumn.umbra

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