Friday, January 1, 2016

Horsehead [2014]

Horsehead [2014]

Romain Basset's feature length debut is an atmospheric and visually stunning film to watch, but to sit through, that's a completely different endeavour.

While away at school Jessica studies within the field of psychophysiology with an emphasis on lucid dreams (dreaming while being aware that you're dreaming), an interest prompted by her lifelong troubles of inescapable nightmares.  At the request of her mother, Jessica returns home for the first time in 3 years to attend the wake of her late grandmother.  

Possibly provoked by longstanding questions surrounding the mystery of her biological father and a strained relationship with her mother Jessica becomes feverishly ill and her nightmares worsen. 

When her lucid dreams begin the to suggest answers to her deeply embedded family mysteries she's lead toward a downward spiral where dreams and reality intertwine and things buried become uprooted.

If Argento-ish color, visual artistry, gallons of blood, and a pulsing score were the only ingredients needed for an epic horror The Strange Color Of Your Body's Tears (2013) wouldn't have been a complete failure.  

But Horsehead is drunk with symbolism, proposes more questions than answers, and the score's more disruptive than menacing.  No matter how many creepy stepdads, incestual imaginings, It's a classic case of style over substance.  


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