Greetings, and welcome back to Horror Business. We have one awesome episode in store for you guys. On this episode we’re discussing two films about haunted houses and the unfortunate people trapped there: 1976’s Burnt Offerings and 1980’s The Changeling.
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We start by talking about what we’ve seen or done lately in the field of horror. Liam talks about seeing the new films Ghost Stories, but Justin is a lame who hasn’t done anything cool recently.
Up first is Burnt Offerings. We begin by giving a basic plot outline of the film, and then talk about Oliver Reed’s portrayal of a good man slowly falling apart at the hands of an external force imposing it’s will upon him, comparing it to Jack Nicholson’s performance in The Shining.
Oliver Reed’s performance in general is dissected. The parasitic nature of the house in the film is discussed, as are some of the minor details of this plot point that might be missed. The similarities to the work of Stephen King are discussed. The infamous limo driver is discussed at length. The idea of the expression of fear being one of the scarier things to show in a movie is examined. The ominous nature of the film as a whole is discussed.
The idea of the film as an allegory for wealth thriving on the consumption of others is discussed at length. The reversal of gender roles in the film i.e. the irrational masculine vs. the rational feminine is briefly touched upon.
The lack of motivation from the antagonists is examined. We conclude with an examination of the idea of the past never really going away and always coming to collect so to speak.
Up next is The Changeling. We give a brief outline of the film, and then discuss the film’s emphasis on the importance of legacy, for better or worse.
The slow burn aspect of the film, and how it’s almost all age appropriate sans the opening scene is discussed. Liam’s anxiety over the 1970s is briefly touched upon.
The opening and how it colors the rest of the film is examined. The infamous “ball scene” is discussed at length.
The classist element of the film is discussed at length, and the idea of the “living past” is again talked about. The Lovecraftian theme of “the sins of the father” being paid by their descendants is touched upon.
This idea as something hopeful for oppressed people is touched upon. Classic ghost stories revolving around ill-gotten wealth is discussed. George C. Scott’s peculiar decision in portraying a haunted man who is angrier than he is scared is discussed. Some of the aesthetic choices of the film are examined.
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