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Beware the Creeper!

Iain's life as a psychotic crimefighter

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The Host

"Snuck" out of work early (that is - left before 4 with boss' permission) to see The Host, showing (much to my surprise) at the Market City Reading - the closest cinema to work.

The Host has been doing the rounds of the film festivals and has yet to open in the UK, the US and Japan, so I was surprised to find it showing (unfortunately the last sessions were on yesterday) not five blocks from where I work (in fact, if you count the UTS Library - one block away.)

Enough geography.

This is the monster film for people jaded with monster films. The director, Joon-ho Bong, does all the things you shouldn't do in a monster film -

  • you shouldn't have the monster show up in the first ten minutes of the film
  • you definitely shouldn't have its first appearance in broad daylight
  • your hero shouldn't be the intellectually impaired father of a child snatched by the creature
  • don't blame the Americans - it's been done
  • don't show your main characters acting unsympathetically, irresponsibly or cruelly (i.e. don't portray them as real people)
  • don't show the authorities being a worse threat to your protagonists than the monster
The Host is a hearty Fuck That! to all those tropes. The monster itself is a work of art, a cross between a carp, a slug and a sea serpent the size of an oil tanker with a mouth full of Lovecraftian appendages. Weta (to my surprise) had a hand in its design. The film refuses to go where you think it will go, until the ending which is quite harrowing (and the point where the usually excellent CGI seems to give out) and, as if it hadn't done enough to stimulate my cinematic pleasure centre, it has Scott Wilson, one of my favourite actors, in a small role as a thoughtless US coroner.

Double plus good. Best monster film I've seen in years (along with The Descent)

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(Deleted comment)
He wants me to see it. I think this one is heading for our DVD shelf.

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