The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies closes out the Spring 2019 season with a deep dive into the works of horror visionary Clive Barker, focusing on his books, films, and reoccurring themes of sex, death, religion, and selling one’s soul. Join us May 9th at the Horse Hospital for ‘Hellbound Hearts: The Dark Art of Clive Barker’.
Learn more at https://www.miskatonicinstitute.com and BUY TICKETS HERE
The instructor for the course will be Sorcha Ni Fhlainn a Senior Lecturer in Film Studies and American Studies, and a founding member of the Manchester centre for Gothic Studies at Manchester Metropolitan University. She has published widely on gothic and horror studies, including Clive Barker:Dark Imaginer (Manchester, 2017) and Postmodern Vampires: Film, Fiction, and Popular Culture (Palgrave, 2019). She is currently working on the long 1980s onscreen
Below Sorcha Ni Fhlainn takes us through her Horror Favourites:
“I suppose my choices are very indicative of my coming of age in Horror cinema as a kid of the 1980s but they are classics for a reason! I found myself watching and rewatching these titles over and over again as a teen, so they have all earned a special place in my dark heart!
The Silence of the Lambs:
Truly a classic – and a I remember that fascination and terror that Dr Lecter evoked in my imagination. I had a really interesting experience of watching the heavily cut ITV version as a kid, and then, upon buying it on DVD, discovering all the cut gore scenes to re-experience it in all of its brilliance all over again. It’s a masterpiece of a film, complete with fantastic instances of doubling and self-reference. Ted Tally’s script is a sublime interpretation of Thomas Harris’s novel, the direction by Jonathan Demme is brilliantly handled, and Tak Fujimoto’s cinematography is intense and frighteningly intimate.
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre:
Possibly one of the most beautifully-lit horror films ever made. I had a conversation with Tobe Hooper about that majestic ending with Leatherface’s chain saw dance as the sun burned in the distance in the final frames. It is a study of terror, brutality, and the sublime art of the horror film.
Barker’s best work that has been adapted to the screen, Hellraiser is an exercise in suspense– it fascinates and excites as it tingles the nerve endings. The design of the film and the performance of the cenobites is simply superb; Doug Bradley’s ‘Pinhead’ is a masterclass of understatement and terror.
Interview with the Vampire
A deeply formative film for me, Interview was my first Neil Jordan film and one which stays with me still. I love the delicate balance it walks between vampiric subjectivity and art, and its occasionally humorous moments. I found it inspirational and count it as one of the very best vampire films of the last 50 years.
I couldn’t leave out Wes Craven! While A Nightmare on Elm Street scared the wits out of me as a kid, Scream was released when i was exactly the right age to appreciate its humour and its moments of horror film citation. It is a Craven masterpiece and a savage commentary on the media’s desire to blame violence on horror, rather than the horrors of the home and the failure of society. Plus, it vindicated the wisdom of video store clerks; as a former video store worker, I certainly appreciated that!”