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Sheitan

I hated this movie.  I'll just be honest right off the bat.

I watched it on the Independent Film Channel.  Strike two.  (A joke I continue with my sister is this small dialogue: "You know why indie movies/songs are not popular music/mainstream movies?  Because no one watches/listens to them.  You know why no one watches/listens to them?  Because they suck."  A small joke, I admit.)

I'll be honest, what caught my eye (or ear?) with this film was that it was in French, and I'm a total Francophone whore sometimes.  Or I can be.  And when I saw it on TV, I immediately thought: French+Horror=Awesome.  How I thought that, I don't know, because I've seen a lot of terrible French horror.  (And American, Canadian, German, Japanese, etc…)

So the story is a rehash of the whole "horny kids drive into the woods to be killed by a madman who happens to be attempting to spawn a demon-child."  That old chestnut.  Seen it a thousand times, say no more.  The odd thing was that I'm fairly certain that the brother and sister/husband and wife were all played by the same heavily-mustached Frenchman.  Sometimes I question casting choices, but I really don't know what to say in this situation.  Of course, everyone dies, as can be plainly guessed by the fact that all the major characters are unlikable, promiscuous teenagers.  And we all know what happens to those types of characters in horror films.  It's like some weird moral judgment on sexual intercourse, but when you think about it, horror is all about sex.  Sex and horror go together, just as horror and comedy go together (although not entirely on purpose).  As I commented in my paper on women in horror, the whole penetration of the knife into a young woman may serve as some sick sexual fantasy.  Or it might just be a representation of the acceptance of violence against woman.  Or it could just be I'm reading too much into things.  And where do horror directors get off (no pun intended?) judging sexualized characters, specifically women, when they are presenting violent images that are just as unhealthy to view as massive amounts of sex?  And the swearing that abounds in horror these days, how is that okay and sex is not?  This is why horror is so fascinating to me, I think it really shows the cultural values that are relevant and important to society right now.  Or I could just be bullshitting, I don't really know.

I'm off track.  I also dislike the characterization of anyone who lives in a rural area as some kind of hick or country bumpkin.  You see it time and time again: Haute Tension, The Cottage, Jeepers Creepers, The Hills Have Eyes, Wrong Turn, The Happening, War of the Worlds, the list goes on and on.  And not just in horror.  Coming from a very rural state, I find this offensive.  I understand that cinema sort of runs on cliches and stereotypes, but I do find it annoying.  Are there hillbillies?  Sure.  But just because someone lives on a farm or in a small town doesn't he or she is a murderous, raving cannibal.  They can come from cities and be well educated and cultured too, you know.  (Hannibal Lector?)

So in conclusion, do not watch this movie.  Unless you find it necessary to witness a French woman stimulating a dog, a man's eyes getting gouged out in some kind of sick copy of Jeepers Creepers, or an entire dialogue about getting a goat off the road, please stay away.  It's movies like this that create this malevolence toward horror in general.  Go watch a good horror movie.  Or just read a book.