Take A Look At What I’m Watching: She-Devil (1989) and V/H/S (2012)

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I realized I haven’t written anything about movies. If you know me personally, you know that I LOOOOVE movies. I keep a list of all the movies I’ve seen and after seeing a movie once, I pretty much remember everything even years later. I hoard movie trivia. Chris is the same way, even more so. He has a list of all the movies he’s seen AND also ranks them by how much he likes them and writes down the plot summary. He has seen 1,040 and counting.

So we really love movies.

Last night we watched “She-Devil” and “V/H/S,” which are pretty much the opposite of each other (excluding the possibility of watching a Tinkerbell movie and then a documentary on the Holocaust). “She-Devil” stars Meryl Streep and Rosanne Barr. Bet you never thought you’d hear those two names together. Rosanne plays a housewife who describes her physical appearance as “needing all the help it can get” and who reads cheesy romance novels by Meryl Streep’s character, Mary Fisher. Think Danielle Steel or Jackie Collins. Mary Fisher is everything Ruth (Rosanne Barr) is not. She lives in a pearly pink mansion, wears flowing silk clothes, and always seems to be moving as if she was in a perfume commercial. After a chance meeting at a party, Ruth’s husband Bob begins having an affair with Mary and after humiliating her in front of his parents, leaves her with their two children and dog. Thus begins Ruth’s new mission to destroy her husband’s new life. Meryl Streep is hilarious. Her body language, her facial expressions, the tone of her voice…perfect. Roseanne is also great. I love Roseanne. She fought and continues to fight back against the stereotype of beauty and fame that Hollywood shoves into our faces.

“V/H/S” was next. It’s an anthology of horror stories framed by a narrative about some punks who film themselves harassing women and destroying stuff. They then sell the footage to some weirdo. He asks the guys to break into a house and steal a mysterious videotape. They start watching the V/H/S tapes and these tapes are what make up the stories. The first one was really the best and the only one worth remembering. A bunch of frat boys get themselves a glasses cam and decide to go pick up chicks and film the resulting action. They bring back one girl who pretty much passes out right away and a weird chick with huge eyes who is fixated on the “filmer,” the guy who is wearing the glasses cam. Drunk laughter and gibberish ensues. The leader of the group attempts to have sex with the weird girl and she suddenly sprouts fangs and kills him. The other two guys freak out and try to run, but she kills one of them and Glasses Cam flees. She finds Glasses Cam and tries to seduce him, but he is understandably not in the mood. By now, it’s even more obvious she is not human. Glasses Cam tries to escape for good, but distraught and weeping, the girl whisks him away, now possessing large wings. Glasses Cam loses his glasses and they crash to the ground before the screen goes black. I liked this one because it raises some interesting thoughts about topics I’m interested in. The passed out girl remains unharmed and unconscious the whole time, but only because Lead Frat shifts his attention to Succubus Bat Cannibal Girl. It’s like she’s acting as the stand-in for this girl who otherwise might have been a victim of date rape, and the men who would have abused her are violently punished. Voyeurism and the idea of observing as participation also came up for me. Glasses Cam is not much of an actor in the story in terms of his initiation of sex. He watches and therefore films his friends dance, drink, and make passes at women. He also watches as his friends are killed. He then runs and although he is not technically guilty of any rapey actions, he is targeted and taken by Succubus Bat Cannibal Girl. He can’t get away from what he walked into. He knew what his friends were planning and was prepared to record it. His lack of participation makes things even worse; because of his passiveness, the girl is drawn to him, declaring over and over again in a creepy whisper, “I like you.” While his friends were killed, Glasses Cam has perhaps a worse fate before him.

And that concludes my thesis! Ha ha. I also love analyzing movies, did I not mention that?

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