Your Best Bets for Feminist Halloween Entertainment

Happy Halloween, everyone! All month long I’ve been talking about some of my favorite spooky entertainment and today I’m going to put together my ultimate entertainment recommendations for getting the feminist most out of your Halloween.

These are simply my opinions and based solely on things I’ve seen, so if something you love doesn’t make the list, let me know! Maybe I just haven’t seen it and can fall in love with something new.

Continue reading

“Final Girl” vs. “Horror Heroine”

Laurie Strode Jamie Lee CurtisAs I’ve shown before, I take my horror movies pretty seriously, and I am especially concerned with the portrayal of the characters therein. One of the most important characters in a horror movie is the protagonist who will end up in the final confrontation with the killer. Because this character is almost always female, we call this character the Final Girl.

But what does the term “Final Girl” imply? She is the last one left alive. This doesn’t really imply any level of strength or skill on her part, merely that she has kept breathing longer than the rest of the victims. We also have our protagonist referred to as “girl”, despite the fact that she is most likely a legal adult, which puts her in a position of immaturity and weakness. The title doesn’t even really state that she will triumph over her adversary and still be alive at the end of the movie; it simply says that she is the last in a line of victims.

A less-used term, however, is that of the Horror Heroine. There’s not even a TVTropes page for such a character; she’s that rare. This term implies much more agency in the character. This is not someone who simply does not die; this is someone who is victorious over her adversaries. The reason this term is less common is probably because this character is less common. It’s very easy to make a Final Girl: she simply has to be female and survive between 85-100% of the movie. A Horror Heroine, however, has to be an actual character with strength and determination.

Below the cut I’ve compiled a list of some of the characteristics of each archetype and a few noteworthy examples of each.

Continue reading

Fan Film: Scream Fan

Happy October everyone! Once again it’s that wonderful month when all of my posts focus on spooky topics in preparation for Halloween. Today, I’d like to share a short fan film I came across recently, Scream Fan, by YouTube user ryanhorror.

The short film is based on the Scream series by Wes Craven, but exists in the “real world” as opposed to the Scream universe, meaning that the Scream movies are just movies in this film, not actual events. If you’re not familiar with Scream, get your butt over to Netflix and find it it’s a 90’s horror movie in which the characters are Genre Savvy and the movie itself is very clever, funny, and scary. To many horror fans, it also signified the end of the “slasher” films by influencing following films to be similarly witty and satirical. The movie was followed by two sequels, the last of which was released in 2000, making it the trilogy which essentially began and ended the 90’s horror revival.

That is, until 2011, when a fourth installment was released. Many fans, myself included, didn’t greet the news of another film with thunderous applause. We were led to believe that the Scream story was complete and that it was that rare horror series which knew when to stop. The whole theme of the third movie (since, again, the characters know the tropes of their genre) was that it was the concluding chapter of a trilogy and everyone knew it. How could there possibly be another installment after such an excellent conclusion? I honestly don’t know, because I skipped seeing number four in theaters and still haven’t gotten around to renting or buying the DVD.

…and that’s exactly what this fan film is about.

In this quick movie, the killer is targeting Scream fans who “turned [their] back on Scream” and skipped seeing the fourth movie. The killer is a super fan who cannot and will not accept that the latest movie didn’t reach the success of its predecessors and is ready to punish everyone responsible for this fact.

I’m honestly amazed by how well this film is done. In such a short amount of time, true suspense was created and everyone involved should be very proud of their work. It stays very true to the spirit of the Scream films with a genre savvy lead and a killer who toys with the target over the phone long enough to build tension and develop a connection with the audience before finally getting to the action between the two. Both performers in the film do a great job with their roles and keep the viewer engaged throughout.

Give the film a watch, it only takes eleven minutes out of your day and it’s a great way to get yourself ready for the spookiest month of the year! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I need to go rent Scream 4 before I get a phone call from you know who…

Scream Ghostface