Tuesday, May 16, 2017

3 Summer Horror Movie Releases Featuring Women Of Color

It is not a breaking revelation that women of color have a ways to go in definitive starring or major supporting roles in horror films. Most specifically the ones with wide releases that have the biggest opportunity to impact massive audiences. We're still living in/measuring The Get Out Effect, and fighting to see art reflect the lion's share of our realities is an evergreen push. One day when I do lists like these, I would like to be overwhelmed by the visibility in front and behind the camera. And I'm hopeful that we'll get there one day but for now, I'm woefully underwhelmed and reminded why lists are a rarity in these parts.

In regards to some of the upcoming summer fare, three horror films have women of color in the forefront. Three in the opinion owned by me that may be worth your time and money. At the very least, these have my focus on one of the ways we're gonna talk about horror this summer.

It Comes At Night
Release: June 9, 2017

My most anticipated screening comes from writer/director Trey Edward Shults (2015's Krisha). His objective is to unsettle us with a story about a former teacher named Paul (Joel Edgerton) who lives in the remote woods with his wife Sarah (Carmen Ejogo) and son Travis (Kelvin Harrison Jr.). They've survived some unnatural hazard that has the world in shambles. The tension of the circumstances boil when a family arrives that their doorstep seeking refuge. The synopsis, trailer, and photos seem to hint at what's to come, but something tells me that we're gonna get twists we didn't quite expect. The draw remains a bit mysterious. So much so that it's hard to see how much of an impact Ejogo's Sarah will have on the story but overall, It Comes At Night looks to be hell of an emotional ride.

Review | Trailer

Wish Upon
Release: July 14, 2017

Wish Upon looks content in the realm of teen-horror-morality tale. That's just fine and will certainly get butts in seats. A bullied girl named Claire (The Conjuring's young, standout Joey King) is given a rad looking music box that clearly is from an Asian country that I hope is specified in the plot that grants her wishes... with a price. The most intriguing piece of public intel Wish Upon has is what happens to Claire after all of her wishes come true. You remember high school feeling like the alpha and omega of existence? When Claire's life turns for the better after all of her tragedy, it'll be ripe commentary on how she deals with the consequences of her requests.

Sydney Park (The Walking Dead's  all-lady camp heroine Cyndie and most likely star of an if-ever Amerie biopic) plays a not yet named character but is in the trailer as someone a part of significant action in the story. Her treatment and the origins of the box that will hopefully not be muddled with inaccurate folklore or some coded xenophobic message (like Hollywood loves to do with "voodoo" and the like) has me a little weary, but we'll just have to wait and be the judges when it arrives in theaters.

Trailer Reaction | Trailer

Annabelle: Creation
Release: August 11, 2017

I promised myself after an earnest interest in The Conjuring's Annabelle cold opening that led to a spin-off theater watch that I wasn't going to give anything about the film any more of my time. Because Annabelle was awful. The true story is fascinating and more vast than what's delivered on screen. And I have serious problems with the mythos surrounding it, which if you're debating human vs. inhuman spirits, can be a circular and frustrating conversation. Trust me, I've argued about it with myself as someone who loves a good supernatural story. And let's keep the eye-roll inducing use of Alfre Woodard as what you unfortunately expect to see in genre as the sacrificial, magical type to this one sentence (but definitely up for future discourse). Alas, Annabelle made the kind of 0's many of us will never see in our checking accounts, so a follow up was only natural. I'm assuming from what I've read they're at least taking care of putting together a more thoughtful narrative. It's got Hellraiser: Bloodline vibrations with its own, possible flavor.

A grieving married couple invite a nun and some girls into their home for boarding and that's when the doll strikes. With where my mind is going in speculation, I'm already tired. But expect to see Mexican actress Stephanie Sigman as Sister Charlotte do something that's hopefully much more interesting and active than the last installment in this universe. After all the yapping I did declaring, 'never again!' I'm probably going to see Creation. Don't @ me. I suppose this is the cinephiles version of gambling.

Trailer | Stephanie's Instagram where you can find this adorable picture:

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