Support Us!
$2
$3
$5
Powered by
Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!

SEE THE NEWEST CONTENT BELOW!

SEE THE NEWEST CONTENT BELOW!

Friday, December 18, 2020

Christmas Extremism: The Unlikely Parallels Between Holiday Horrors ‘Red Christmas’ & ‘Inside’

This article contains spoilers.

Christmas horror feels dangerous because it’s an abomination of all that is holy on the holiest of days— a perversion of purity and sacredness (which is exactly what makes it so great.) Unsurprisingly, the subgenre has been at the crux of criticism by the uptight over the years, with movies like Silent Night, Deadly Night quite literally getting axed from theaters for complaints of corrupting dear Santa Claus. There’s something about messing with the sanctity of Christmas that can really get people’s stockings in a twist— throw in two movies about either abortion and babies in peril, and you really have controversy. But, what if these movies also share some of the same religious fanaticism as the holiday they take place in? What if their seemingly perversions of religion and the Christian holiday could actually be interpreted as warped endorsements for them, as well?

Enter the weird, unlikely pairing of 2016’s much-questioned Red Christmas and 2007’s gruesome Inside (À l’intérieur).

Admittedly, this writer avoided both for years, as I was warned that Red Christmas skewed towards puzzling political agendas, while Inside was just an unrelenting viewing experience. So when it was finally time to sit through both, in their entirety, back-to-back, for a Christmas horror marathon, I was taken aback at their commonalities. While the Australian home invasion/slasher and the New French Extremity contender of the same subgenre are wildly different, both— in which tons of people are mercilessly killed for vengeance’s sake— possess an end goal to keep a newborn baby alive on Christmas Day, as probable metaphors for baby Jesus. And that’s only the beginning.

Let’s begin with Red: In the Craig Anderson film, a dysfunctional family gathers on Christmas Day, as the compromising Diane (Dee Wallace) attempts to maintain peace within her home, filled with hostility. Her kids, kids-in-law, and brother are all over the place in terms of differing personalities, morals, and/or character arcs: one daughter and her husband are super religious and judgmental of the others, another daughter is a provocative artist, one Shakespeare-quoting son has Down Syndrome, the brother is shot-gun happy…and another daughter is very pregnant. Our introduction to this family is, of course, preceded by a very strange opening taking place 20 years prior, of a religious extremist entering an abortion clinic, surrounded by protestors of each side of the spectrum, before leaving a rosary-covered bomb in the clinic and taking an “aborted” baby (that is far too ridiculously large and overgrown to even be remotely believable.)

As Diane and her family continue to gather for the holiday, a mysterious, a cloaked man resembling a twisted cross between the Grim Reaper and one of the Three Wise Men named Cletus (Sam Campbell) arrives at their door, looking for his “mother.” Cletus reads a letter aloud that claims the man who destroyed the abortion clinic two decades prior is his father, and that he wishes for acknowledgment from his mother, who neglected him. Diane demands he leaves, and they literally kick him out of the home. But Cletus will return with murderous intent, as it’s revealed that Diane is indeed Cletus’ mother who chose not to keep him, because she didn’t want another child with Down Syndrome. As he begins to pick off the family members one-by-one, Diane’s pregnant daughter goes into stress labor, eventually giving birth. Among the carnage, Cletus preserves the newborn baby, carrying it, placing it on the bed— the lone survivor.

Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo’s Inside is even more cutting than the former but with comparable consequences. When grieving and very pregnant widow Sarah (Alysson Paradis) chooses to stay home alone for Christmas, a woman, or “La femme” (Béatrice Dalle) knocks on her door, breaks in, and terrorizes her in her home. Just how Red’s Diane failed to identify Cletus initially, Sarah doesn’t recognize the woman and calls for help, which renders useless. Like Cletus, nothing can stop La femme— Sarah’s family members, colleagues, and police will all be victims for La femme’s revenge.

And what a reason for revenge: After hours of torture and bloodshed that would make the walls of the Overlook hotel blush, La femme reveals herself to be the other woman involved in the car accident that Sarah survived, but explains how she lost her own pregnancy that day and wants Sarah’s unborn child. “You already killed me,” La femme says, as she compares her grief of losing her baby that day to her own personal death. She succeeds: Despite Sarah burning half her face off and fighting back profusely, Sarah allows La femme to perform a gory C-section on her (which kills her) as she takes the baby for herself, born into the early morning hours of Christmas Day.

An air of sanctity surrounds Sarah’s baby well before its Yuletide birth. While allegedly not the intention of the directors, the film’s emotionally manipulative moments of the CGI baby struggling in the womb, as Sarah endures physical trauma, make the viewer hyper-aware of the baby’s holy sacredness. Sarah is portrayed as somewhat disinterested in the baby, either because she’s consumed with grief over losing her husband or perhaps because she may not have even wanted the child in the first place. She’s purely an incubator for a life that, according to the film, is more significant than her own. It all feels very The Virgin Mary-esque.

The Christmas births of the babies in both films present a very on-the-nose commentary for the “true meaning” of the holiday— something that feels straight out of an unsolicited “war on Christmas” or “keep the Christ in Christmas” argument on a Facebook post. For Red’s Diane, in spite of her peaceful composure and desire to keep her family from imploding, is eventually punished for her “sinful” past. And her arguing, non-festive family goes down in flames with her. Although nobody was deserving of punishment by death on Christmas Day, the only semblance of purity, the film argues, lies within the newborn baby, so it gets to survive. Same thing for Inside’s Sarah: her reluctance of, not only motherhood, but gathering and being around her family for the holiday, directly leads to her demise, but her baby’s survival. Both women take part in sacrificing themselves for the greater good. This holiday isn’t for you, the films argue; this holiday is for welcoming new life into the world.

Both films aim to rectify a perceived wrong: Cletus wants retribution for abandonment; La femme has lost her child and replaces it from a woman that didn’t want hers. “When justice is done,” Cletus’ note reads, “It brings joy to the righteous, but terror to the evildoer.” Circling back to those opening moments of Red, a religious extremist takes down an abortion clinic because he thinks he’s doing the godly thing. It’s this brand of extremism that gets explored in many Christmas horror films, including Christmas Evil and the aforementioned Silent Night, Deadly Night: traumatized killers with God complexes who’ve convinced themselves that their slayings are pious and/or justified. All beg the question of how far is too far when it comes to the Christian Crusade.

And all beg the other question of whether or not any of us ever have the right to be judging, persecuting, punishing, or merely placing ourselves as holier than others, no matter how naughty we think they are— on Christmas or any other day of the year.



source https://bloody-disgusting.com/editorials/3645165/christmas-extremism-unlikely-parallels-red-christmas-inside/

No comments:

Post a Comment


Support Us!
$2
$3
$5
Powered by
Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!



The Top 10 Streaming Scary Movies of Today (According to Netflix)

Given that Netflix really is the master of their own data, how many times a viewer streams The Ridiculous 6, or what films don't get watched all the way straight through, or how many times someone watches an episode of Bill Nye Saves the World, it was easy for them to come up with the list based on just one percentage: 70 percent.

Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!


Top 5 Original Horror Movies of 2020 (Even During a Pandemic)


3 Frightening Clowns Not from the Underworld or Magical Hell


3 Viral Videos Proving Spiders Are Still Scary as Hell


Stephen King Adores These 22 Horror Films


3 Super Stories on 'Halloween' and Horror That'll Make You Want to Wear the Mask

xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#'