It takes effort to maintain a positive attitude these days between the pandemic and the election cycle. The runup to elections used to be called the political silly season when people made ridiculous remarks about candidates. I long for those days of innocuous banter.
Nowadays, well, we have an incumbent defending an active shooter and repeating a false rumor about a band of thugs on a plane hellbent on antifa destruction or some such. I’m old enough to remember when U.S. intelligence findings had more weight with a U.S. president than debunked nonsense on the internet.
It’s hard to tell what’s real these days. Elon Musk says he’s implanted a chip in a pig’s brain and plans to bring this augmented intelligence to humans in the coming years. Also, a man in a jet pack was reported by an American Airlines pilot as flying at the same altitude as the passenger plane approached LAX. A pilot for Southwest saw the jet-pack man too, and you can listen to their discussion with the airport tower here. I’m old enough to remember when military jets would be scrambled to address threats to commercial airliners and restricted airspace.
To counteract the effects of feeding my news addiction, I have developed a co-addiction: horror movies at night. This can incur the risk of giving me nightmares. For example, I dreamt that someone was trying to break into the house and my boyfriend went outside to tousle with the bad guy. A melee ensued and when I rushed to my man’s aid, he was instead a character from Train to Busan. Still, I highly recommend this Korean zombie movie. Indeed, it’s the best zombie flick I have ever seen and I am looking forward to its sequel, Peninsula. (In second place for greatest zombie movies on Netflix right now is Girl with All the Gifts.)
What I love about Train to Busan is the character of initiation, a fund manager dad who is taking his young daughter from Seoul to Busan when the zombie outbreak occurs. At the outset, he is more like the other selfish executive character who views non-infected humans as dangerous as infected zombies, much to his detriment. The little girl befriends a nice pregnant lady and her heroic husband, and then her father adapts to work with the hero and becomes a better person. Does he make it? No spoiler here. Watch Train to Busan.
Then there’s last night’s fare: 1BR, about a young woman who strikes out on her own in Los Angeles and gets an apartment in a complex with neighbors who are way too friendly. Turns out, it’s a cult and she ends up as a tortured captive. I really loathed the violence in this one, but my man convinced me to stick it out to see whether she survives. This was an incredibly creepy movie and, if you can handle the violence, an interesting character study. She has to figure out if she can trust anyone, including herself.
What Keeps You Alive was a brilliant surprise. A lesbian couple goes to a family cabin on a lake to celebrate their one-year anniversary and one wife is taken aback – and off a cliff – when her wife tries to kill her. The premise of not really knowing someone was great and horrifying. Could you not miss that your spouse is a homicidal sociopath? What a terrifying possibility and the victim keeps getting close to escaping. Will she? I really liked this one.
The weird marital woes horror movie on Netflix is Elizabeth Harvest. A mad scientist loses his beautiful young wife and spends decades developing the science to keep clones of her alive and he keeps marrying them. He even recruits another scientist to work with him on this revolting project and clones himself as his son. Eventually, the clones wise up.
There are plenty of alien abduction and kids at a cabin in the woods flicks available on Netflix right now, but I preferred the above offerings because they’re unique. What I don’t understand is how anyone comes up with some of these plotlines. Clone wives? Serial killer wife? A cult apartment building?
I’d love to write a novel, but not sure I could be so wacky in coming up with a plot. In the meantime, I’m enjoying these nightly departures from reality.