As someone who has suffered from night terrors and nightmares her whole life, I can tell you this film was scarier than any horror movie I have ever seen. Serious Trigger Warning for anyone who is prone to such things.
A research team from an electronics company move into an old Victorian house to start work on finding a new recording medium. When team member Jill Greeley witnesses a ghost, team director Peter Brock decides not only to analyse the apparition, which he believes is a psychic impression trapped in a stone wall (dubbed a “stone tape”), but to exorcise it too – with terrifying results…
Matthew Sweet explores the dawning of the age of Black Aquarius – the weirdly great wave of occultism that swept through British popular culture in the 1960s-70s. From journals like the Aquarian Arrow to the diabolical novels of Dennis Wheatley, lurid accounts of satanic cults in the Sunday papers and the glut of illustrated books, part-magazines, documentary film and TV drama, it was a wildly exuberant seam of British pop culture.
I love horror films and fiction but lately I’ve begun wondering about their portrayal of knowledge. I can’t think of any horror works which do not cause horror by increasing knowledge–in Psycho and Silence of the Lambs the climactic reveal is what’s in the basement; in The Changeling it’s in the attic; in The Shining one of the most horrifying/memorable scenes shows what’s in room 227; I thought Misery might be an exception, but the reveal there is Annie’s past as documented in her scrapbook. In Texas Chainsaw Massacre there are a couple of reveals, including the nature of the BBQ the teens have eaten and Pam’s realization that she’s taken refuge with Leatherface’s brother. In The Ring, the nature of the ring and its importance to Sadako are initially a mystery, and seeing the tape is fatal unless you spread that knowledge by endangering someone else.
Have any works managed to increase horror without revealing new information? And has anyone written compellingly about the politics/philosophy of horror in regards to knowledge (in any format–mass-market nonfiction, blogs, dissertation, whatever)?
No collection of terror is complete without the completely baffling and eerie “I Feel Fantastic”.
Not paranormal, but bizarre nonetheless. A nice reminder of our own mortality, and also that your grandma might have been a freaky chick once upon a time.