To kick off my first Fiendish Flicks Friday, I bring you 2 movies for the culinary inclined, because who doesn’t love dinner and a movie?
First on the cutting board is Compulsion, Starring Heather Graham and Carrie Anne Moss:
There’s no doubt that in the mind of Amy (played by Heather Graham), that food equals love, and Zod help you if the love you take isn’t equal to the love she makes. With dreams of having her own cooking show, she slaves over a hot stove morning, noon, and night, with fantasies of being a savory seductress swimming in her head. For a girl like me, she’d be the dream neighbor, but for Saffron (Moss), the anorexic, fading actress next door, she’s an absolute nightmare.
Kevin Dillon, playing Amy’s boyfriend Fred, is first to meet ‘fowl’ play. He learns that hell hath no fury like a food fanatic scorned, after being caught canoodling over bargain basement burgers, with Filet Mignon on the stove at home.
After Fred’s fast exit, Amy needs a new palate to please, and that’s when she notices the girl next door. Child star Saffy, all grown up, now struggling to land roles in an industry where what’s on the inside doesn’t matter, unless it stays inside. Carrie Anne Moss plays misery all too well, but struggles with the sexy side of this role. Luckily the implied moment doesn’t last long. Amy, convinced that the right meal is all Saffron really needs, fights to find the perfect recipe to bend Saffy to her will. Graham is very convincing as the obsessed culinary cuckoo, and truly makes this black comedy worth a watch, getting her just desserts, when she finally gets Saffy to come for dinner. (I have a soft spot for a girl with a heart of gold wrapped chocolate.)
Compulsion, directed by Egidio Coccimiglio, is currently available to stream on Netflix (U.S).
Up next is We Are What We Are, or if the proverb holds true, it shouldv’e been called We Are What You Are
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this dark, moody horror film going in. The Director Jim Mickle has more credits as grip and gaffer, than directing or writing, but I was hopeful after Stake Land, which I don’t think got the credit it deserved. I wasn’t disappointed, Mickle has an an eye for the genre, that no doubt comes from being a long time fan of good horror flicks.
The movie was well acted, with the lead roles played by Julia Garner (Perks of being a Wallflower), and Ambyr Childers, who has spent most of her career thus far in the background, except for a role on Day time T.V.’s All My Children. Hopefully Childers’ work in the role of Iris Parker in We Are What We Are will get her a little deserved recognition and a few more leading roles on her resume. Both actresses performed convincingly as hesitant, but dutiful daughters to their religious, tradition driven Father, Frank Parker (played by Bill Sage).
Set against the back drop of a serious storm, the story is tightly compelling, with a few twists and turns along the way, including family recipes that will turn the strongest tummy. So many movies of this type revel in the blood and gore and leave out the consequences. In We Are What We Are, those consequences are explored from the first few frames, definitely adding to the intrigue, and leading me down a fascinating Wikipedia rabbit hole, link after scientific link.
We Are What We Are left a gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach, and anticipation for Mickle’s next movie, Cold in July, which will be released in 2014, starring Dexter’s Michael C. Hall. I look forward to seeing how his work grows, and where his macabre mind will take us.
So that’s it for this week’s Fiendish Friday Fright Flicks, tune in next week to see what else I can scare up. -Ruby