Saturday, April 14, 2012

A to Z Challenge. Letter M.

And with letter M we have...


Martyrs (2008)
Directed by Pascal Laugier

Plot: Fifteen years after a horrifying experience of abduction and prolonged torture, Lucie embarks on a bloody quest for revenge against her oppressors. Along with her childhood friend, Anna, who also suffered abuse, she quickly descends into madness and her own delusions. Anna, left on her own, begins to re-experience what Lucie did when she was only twelve years old.

Review: A warning for all interested in this canadian jewel; the movie is part of the extreme violent and bloody slasher movement. I wouldn't categorize it with the rest of the Torture Porn movies (Hostel anyone?) simply because there is a deep, profound story and a reason for the violence. The movie attempts, and succeeds in my opinion, to show the deep emotional pain and scars that torture/abuse leaves. It is a harrowing story that somehow manages to have a somewhat uplifting ending. This is not for the faint hearted but definitively interesting and thought-provoking.


Midnight by Dean Koontz.
Published by Berkley in 1989.

Blurb: Four people are the last hope of Moonlight Cove because one by one the rest of the citizens are changing into boogymen, werewolves, mythical creatures, or something entirely new. They are the New People; the willing victims of a seductive experiment in chemically induced evolution. They can transform their bodies at will and eliminate unproductive emotions, like grief and compassion. In fact, the only instinct left to the New People is self-preservation, and their only emotion is fear. And they want the rest of humanity to join them.

Review: After a very gory, crude recommendation, I have something lighter and entertaining for you. "Midnight" is set in a small town in Northern California, where an experiment is transforming humans and a small group of survivors, along with an FBI agent, band together to respond to the horror. There is a pervasive sense of eerieness throughout the story and although the book is not without violence, it is not stomach-churning. True to his style, Koontz generates suspense and terror more through implication than explicit description, so fret not my squeamish friends. Also, as usual with Koontz, the book reads more like a mystery with a supernatural twist. "Midnight" was a Bram Stoker nominee in 1990.

Now a little extra.
For those who asked me to include Lovecraft in the list I give you At the Mountains of Madness.
Published in Outstanding Stories Magazine in 1936.

Blurb: A novella, At the Mountains of Madness is a tale of terror unilke any other. The Barren, windswept interior of the Antarctic plateau was lifeless--or so the expedition from Miskatonic University thought. Then they found the strange fossils of unheard-of creatures and the carved stones tens of millions of years old--and, finally, the mind-blasting terror of the City of the Old Ones. 

Review: This is one of my favorite Lovecraft stories, mostly because I read it in my youth and got me so stoked I read everything with his name on the cover that came my way. I couldn't stop thinking about the Necronomicon for months. I actually believed it to be a real satanic book and searched sea and earth to find a copy. Back then there was no internet to tell me my search was futile because the book existed only in the brilliant mind of the author. My heart broke when I found out. =(


SherryE said...

Sounds like a lot of good books for those who like horror stories!

Gina said...

Hi SherryE, I truly hope others will enjoy my suggestions as much as I did. Thanks for commenting!

Leslie Rose said...

Hey, Gina. New follower waving to you. Interesting diverse recs. I'm especially curious about the vintage story.

Emily Moir said...

Lovecraft is always good. The movie looks interesting.

Gina said...

Hi Leslie, thanks for following! It makes me really happy to know my ramblings are interesting for other people, too. =)

Emily, I'm happy you like the movie. Indeed Lovecraft is a popular one. Thanks for commenting!

Lilia Tombs said...

I still haven't seen Martyrs yet, though I've heard a lot of good things about it. 'Midnight' sounds like an interesting book too.

Sorry your hopes of finding the Necronomicon were dashed. I was actually given a copy of the Necronomicon...but it's only a Giger art book, haha.

jabblog said...

Powerful stuff but not for the faint-hearted;-)

jabblog said...

Powerful stuff but not for the faint-hearted;-)

Cathy Olliffe-Webster said...

Loves me some Dean Koontz. The best kind of summertime reading, for me.

Gina said...

I'm so jealous, Lilia! I don't care if your Necronomicon is a pop-up book, I want one! >/ Thanks for commenting.

Jabblog, Martyrs is a tough one indeed but sometimes tough brings good stuff with it. Thanks for stopping by.

I'm glad you like Koontz, Cathy. He is a great author and a good read yea-round. =) Thanks for commenting.