I've already grown tired of the pack-as-much-of-the-latest-horror-talent-into-one-film gimmick, and I've only watched two of these films. So instead of dissecting each film individually, I've decided to put as much effort into my analysis as Magnet puts into these gimmicks...by creating a gimmick of my own.
The 27(!) directors: Kaare Andrews, Angela Bettis, Adrián García Bogliano, Bruno Forzani, Hélène Cattet, Ernesto Díaz Espinoza, Jason Eisener, Xavier Gens, Jorge Michel Grau, Lee Hardcastle, Noboru Iguchi, Thomas Cappelen Malling, Anders Morgenthaler, Yoshihiro Nishimura, Banjong Pisanthanakun, Simon Rumley, Marcel Sarmiento, Jon Schnepp, Srdjan Spasojevic, Timo Tjahjanto, Andrew Traucki, Nacho Vigalondo, Jake West, Ti West, Ben Wheatley, Adam Wingard, Yudai Yamaguchi
People who are tortured/overdose on heroin/eaten by toilets/die by farts: Christ, just check out IMDB
What It's Good For:
-a fun movie night movie
-a somewhat neat package for today's best horror talent
-26 different ways to die
-giving hope to some that horror hasn't died yet
-the gimmick overshadows what makes horror so great
-unfocused themes, unlike V/H/S
-a somewhat neat package for today's most mediocre horror talent
-maybe you don't want to watch 26 exciting ways people can die
-you don't like animated toilets killing people
All because of horror's decrepit state
And because it receives such irrational hate
Here we go again
A horror compilation
Dissecting a genre Magnet wishes to collate
Because horror is synonymous with gimmickry
And most directors' vision involves mimicry
They pull the gimmick lever
Forcing ideas that aren't clever
Recycling tired tropes like a dizzying Grand Prix
Cue the mobs, the pitchforks, the masses
The cries, the moans, unleash the tear gases
We all call it lame
They expect acclaim
A back-and-forth as interesting as dripping molasses
Drudging through each letter of the alphabet
Because a genre director's palate must be kept whet
It's easy to dismiss
Jerking off such as this
As interesting as the history of tagamet
Even though the hate in this case is justified
And some films make me wish long ago the genre died
These gatherings of death
Own a more humane breadth
Than we allow ourselves to believe is supplied
For while V/H/S sort of performed the same trick
Disguising its intentions with an eye-rolling schtick
Each film warrants more thought
Than the vitriol they've got
From "reviews" that own the charisma of a limp dick
Glenn McQuaid's portion was a glorious example
Of the theme V/H/S attempted to sample
Found footage is dismissed
"As useful as a cyst"
Despite the hip genre's insightful thoughts being ample
Hence Tuesday the 17th was part of an anthology
That captured our shared addiction to technology
Allows the film to express
The heart of the found footage genre's psychology
If the camera is a vessel through which we depict
The psychological pain we often self-inflict
Found footage's potential
Soon becomes essential
In displaying the unsophisticated life of a YouTube addict
Just because a film's subjects and themes are superficial
Doesn't suddenly make its intentions artificial
So what do we make
Of Magnet's latest take
On a genre that rarely lives up to its full potential?
Knowing very well that its elements are clichéd
Embracing those tropes allows innate fear to be displayed
Terror always hides
And familiarly resides
Whether through phones, toilets, or gluttony—true horror is homemade
Let's say there's indeed a familiar connection
Much like V/H/S's technological confection
Fear's roots must be persistant
In remaining consistent
In order to create an even, well-rounded complexion
Miscarriage's intentions aren't exactly grandeur
But once again Ti West finds fear in the obscure
A woman on the verge
An itching need to purge
The unidentifiable creature within
Noboru Iguchi displays horror's comedic heart
Even if it means coming in the form of a Fart
Trivial traits we grasp
Never releasing the clasp
On empty infatuation doomed from the start
Or Libido's apt attention to what's truly gory
Which stems from what is truly masturbatory
Our thirst for bloody death
Like addiction to meth
We mutely desire these people to become quarry
Perhaps from these three glimpses into the genre's state
Criticizing horror may be the best way to collate
For 27 directors
There are few vectors
That can connect this idea and lend the commentary some weight
Quack's attempt to be meta is admirable
But at best the execution is fallible
Less fun than WTF
Despite owning a duck
Jon Schneep diffuses horror with an ending that's affable
Remember when Robert Rodriguez made hellish highways fun?
And how Speed milked his clichés until the clever wheels spun?
Black leather is hot
Poignant this is not
Pronouncing drug addiction with a cut that's only meant to stun
Simon Rumley's Pressure puts both of these films to shame
Where affecting horror isn't lost in an effort to maim
We are not smitten
By the squish of a kitten
It will assuredly be met with vitriol meant to defame
Taken out of context this act may seem disgraceful
But to the horror genre this segment is most faithful
The kitten a symbol
Serving as tragic kindel
The lengths a mother goes for her children are often painful
Unearthed was a clever use of first-person view
But it also displays what V/H/S was able to do
An inherit bind
All of which confined
To a single form that allowed it themes to break through
Viewing Pressure and Unearthed together—what can we say?
Where do they connect? What themes do their separate forms relay?
Both Toilet and Klutz
Show animated guts
But toilet terror can't simply be connected as child's play
Where does that leave Fart and Libido's collective intention?
To criticize and call horror's gimmickry into question?
Like Ingrown's fake empathy?
Or Bigfoot's misogyny?
These genre comments become ironic in their deception
XXL's vision is both arresting and beautiful
But the heart is lost in such gimmickry and mutable
Drowned out by crap
That goes *fap fap fap*
26 shorts attract attention—business as usual
*Yawwwwwn* I go as Magnet announces V/H/S2
All the while searching for old ideas to burn through
Perhaps Death to Shakespeare?
Or Paris doit mourir?
Do you think these guys will ever attempt something new?
Zippity-do-da! Just look at this time-wasting thread!
Do you realize what I did? Do know what you just read?
A giant limerick
For a giant gimmick
And not once did I need to transition with the color red
Nah. I thought V/H/S was severely misinterpreted by the many who saw it. Sure, it went horribly awry with most of its feminist intentions, but I thought Ti West did a fantastic job (as usual). I've found that many disagree with me on that, so if you really want to start that debate (I've had it about a half dozen times now), hit me up in the comments section.
Anyway, V/H/S handled the found footage concept really well, to the point where the camera itself became an existential form of expressing fear (seriously: especially in Ti West's segment). The ABCs of Death doesn't have much of a focus, other than the everyday surroundings bringing about our inner-most fears. But even that's a stretch in attempting to reward Magnet's latest gimmick—after all, you could say that about most (or all) horror movies.
I've also found that people really really really hated the Pressure segment. I understand animal cruelty is a big NO-NO for many moviegoers, and I don't feel the need to argue about it whether or not it's OK to even hint at animal abuse. Just like any human death, an animal death can be earned, and I thought it was incredibly poignant in the Pressure segment. So if you want to actually debate on whether or not it was necessary (please don't preach at me--nobody condones animal torture), find me down below.
I don't think these movies need to keep being made. I understand why they exist—many consider horror to be a dead genre (for good reasons), thus horror filmmakers and fans alike feel a sense of camaraderie with these projects. Sort of like, "Yeah, we're still here, and we're still making shit you won't like." Which is awesome, because there's some great talent on display here. And if these movies help somebody land a big movie deal, that's pretty awesome. But if we really want horror movies to improve as opposed to merely being noticed, I think gimmicks aren't exactly the best path to choose.