Here’s the next installment of my top 31 horror films since 2000.
#11 Under the Skin (2013)
Jonathan Glazer is a filmmaker of insane talent. I first knew of his work from his oddly poetic and stark, but unquestionably beautiful music videos for Massive Attack and Radiohead. He has an undeniable style that evokes the stoic emptiness of Edward Hopper and the fury and romantic tonality of JMW Turner.
In Under the Skin, Scarlett Johansson (in easily her best performance) plays a wandering alien who drives the dank streets of Glasgow to prey on hapless fools enchanted by her charm and corporeal allure. I would have been stripped of my skin and floating in a sea of jelly before she could have even said a word – just sayin’. With every new victim, and every growing moment in the skin of her human shell, she is awakened to unexpected feelings and impressions of the world she has come to purge.
It’s really hard to put into words the experience of watching, feeling, Under the Skin. You really do feel it. Micachu’s music. The sensuality. The revulsion. The shame. The sincerity, emptiness and fear. It’s art. Plain and simple. It made no money. Didn’t need to. Clearly didn’t want to. Hidden cameras caught the exchanges between ‘ScaJo’ and her non-actor prey, making everything seem voyeuristic and participatory – and real – but not. Aggghhh! I’m sure there’s an actual scene of a woman drowning – you just can’t act that. And the kid on the beach. And the guy with ‘the face’. It just reinforces the transcendence of film to experience – again, to art. Listen, just do me and yourself a favor, find it and experience it. I bet you too will be skinless and drowning in no time.
Check out the trailer below and be sure to tune in tomorrow for #10. Nearly there!