body horror

For a director I don’t particularly like, I’ve seen most of David Cronenberg’s films. Despite their subject matter and shock value, these movies rarely promote much of a response from me. I either low key REALLY like them, or low key hate them.

So I don’t know why I started watching Shivers on Tubi. Probably because it’s one of Cronenberg’s first films. What sucks is that Tubi crapped out on me an hour into the film so I missed most of the good shit (Tubi, btw, has every movie known to God but the app itself sucks penis).

But Shivers is interesting. Perhaps it made me realize something about Cronenberg’s filmography: everyone looks like shit. Mind you, Shivers was made in the 70s and likely had a small budget. Still though, I think the decision to make everyone look terrible was a deliberate one. Even the “attractive” people made me want to barf. Cronenberg’s forte is body horror, after all.

This made me question my prior appraisal of the director. David Cronenberg approaches the human subject as if the viewer is an alien. When we watch the behavior of animals, we are simultaneously fascinated and disgusted. An extraterrestrial would probably feel the same way if they ever observed people.

Human beings are disgusting creatures. And most of the time, we fail to appreciate that…

…except when we watch David Cronenberg films.

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