Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Horrors of October - Society

Society (1989)

Beverly Hills teen Billy begins to believe that something horribly wrong is going on in his community, what with the cold and semi-incestuous behavior of his family, the mysterious deaths that have recently sprung up, and how everybody keeps talking about the virtues of being a part of society. Is he suffering from a destructive mental breakdown or has he only scratched the surface of something darker? SOCIETY has been one of horror's top buried treasures for quite some time now and it does live up to the hype. Producer-turned-director Brian Yuzna does a satisfactory job helming this twisted picture, paying a bit more attention on the deliberately stilted performances and maintaining a Twilight Zone vibe. He also likes to hammer down hard on the "the rich lead and prey on the weak" theme/literal metaphor rather than scoping artful shots and sequences that would better serve the message while unleashing some frights. That is until we get to the finale; oh man, the conclusion of this film will likely rock you to the core. SOCIETY has longed been hailed for its disturbing climax and it does deliver on all fronts: the hellish and decadent mise en scene, the hard gear shifts in tone, the makeup and prosthetic effects (done by Screaming Mad George), and the sheer grossness that will have you bellowing "yuck!" and "no!" I won't ruin the surprise but I will say that if you do check it out simply for this curiosity, you'll have to zoom past the spoiler-filled opening credits.


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