“She Dies Tomorrow” is a slightly dull yet compelling study of anxiety and the way it spreads
Written and directed by Amy Seimetz, who used her salary from Pet Sematary to produce the film, She Dies Tomorrow was apparently inspired by anxiety attacks and anyone who has ever had one will know this from the very moment the film begins.
This is definitely a surreal arthouse critical darling. We all know these films. They’re usually without much dialogue or plot and seem to represent a single emotion, fear or trauma that’s been expanded into a feature film. Some of these work for the message they’re hoping to convey (Neon Demon, Under the Skin, Raw), and some just feel like they’re trying too hard. She Dies Tomorrow is a bit of both.
As a whole, the film is compelling, watchable, meaningful and memorable. Although it’s not something you would probably ever think much about once it’s over. You’ll remember it, but it probably won’t cross your mind ever again. There’s not much about She Dies Tomorrow that stimulates the mind or soul because I feel that only those who already understand it, will be the ones to appreciate it. It’s like reading a poem that you go into already knowing you’ll identify with it, or even one that you yourself wrote.
The film is just anxiety personified, and because of that, it’s automatically unique. It takes “anxiety” and spreads it across the screen, giving it faces and voices. That being said, it doesn’t try to say anything new. Doesn’t explain the fear or pain of anxiety, instead choosing to just show it in the raw form.
I wanted to share this tiny review I saw on Letterbox:
“A feature film adaptation of that thing where you mention that you don’t know where your tongue is supposed to rest in your mouth.” This person gets it. I really couldn’t have said it better myself. Another good description is that annoying itch in the back of your head that comes when you can’t remember a word that’s on the tip of your tongue. When you can feel it tickling back there but you can’t get it out. The whole movie is just that.
The film opens with a young woman named Amy. She’s just bought a house but is reeling from the sudden death of her boyfriend who seemed to have been in a strange panic before he died. Drinking glass after glass of wine and standing numbly outside in the moonlight, Amy is definitely not okay. However when her friend Jane comes over to try and comfort her, Amy reveals what’s really bothering her – she’s going to die tomorrow.
How does she know she’s going to die? She just knows. She can’t explain it, but something inside her believes that tomorrow will be her last day on Earth.
Jane doesn’t believe her, of course, but then this strange thought seems to “infect” her and she starts believing the same thing. In a concept very similar to It Follows, Amy’s anxiety somehow spreads to Jane, unveiling itself in a bright display of red and blue colors, locking her in a wide-eyed trance.
Things then follow as such. Jane spreads it to someone else and they spread it to someone else, who then spreads it to someone else. Eventually, you have a whole group of people thinking they’re just hours away from their final moments. The fear causes them to act irrationally and their obsession with thinking something bad will happen has all but guaranteed that it will as they bring it upon themselves.
There really isn’t much to say about this film. It’s a single emotion stretched out into 84 minutes and you’ll either like it or hate it. There is no real narrative, maybe just a fraction of one. The majority is just the characters going through this spreading anxiety.
For the most part, it’s a bit intriguing but it’s more subtext than it is story and after a while, that intrigue wore off and I was starting to feel the time drag on. The true highlight is the final 25 or so minutes. That’s when things get really interesting as the fragmented story backtracks to Amy’s dead boyfriend, their relationship, and how he got “infected.” She Dies Tomorrow is a promising film but I wish it went in a different direction. Maybe focused on how the “infection” slowly overcame one person in particular and then end it with spreading the fear to someone else.(3 / 5)
All photos are property of Rustic Films
The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob’s Vicious Vegas Valentine Special Live Watch Party February 10th!
The sweet putrid stench of love lingers through the air which can only mean one thing…Valentine’s Day and its annoying little winged cherub mascot, Cupid, is fast approaching. Soon, partners will be spoiling one another with extravagant bouquets of roses, heartfelt Hallmark cards, obnoxiously large teddy bears, glistening diamond jewelry, and heart-shaped candies or boxes filled with assorted mediocre chocolates. You know? Normal things couples do. I tend to prefer my chocolate boxes filled with bleeding hearts, à la ‘My Bloody Valentine’ but, beggars can’t be choosers, right? All jokes aside, Valentine’s Day is special for many couples, however, there are also many others who find themselves celebrating this day without a significant other. Luckily, Shudder, along with drive-in king Joe Bob Briggs and co-host Darcy the Mail Girl (Diana Prince) will graciously be keeping us lonely mutants’, and yes, all you horror fanatic couples’ company on Friday, February 10th as they return with The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob’s Vicious Vegas Valentine, premiering live at 9pm EST.
Love Spells Abound…
Back in 2021, Joe Bob and Darcy invited us to a gruesomely passionate night of spell-binding love witches and animatronic dinosaurs infused with teenage human brains during The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob Put a Spell on You. Many, including myself, were introduced to the tantalizing 70’s inspired retro throwback ‘The Love Witch’ and the graphically goofy cult classic ‘Tammy and the T-Rex’, providing the perfect viewing pleasure to mend any broken heart. While the two films for this year’s morbid love-induced special have yet to be announced, as a special treat, Briggs has announced for the first time on The Last Drive-In, he will be marrying one lucky couple during the live showing. We here at HauntedMTL are eagerly awaiting the return of the ghoulish duo so, as is tradition, we will be proudly hosting a watch party on Twitter during the broadcasting of The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob’s Vicious Vegas Valentine. Be sure to follow us on Twitter and tag us @hauntedMTL as well as @shudder, @therealjoebob, and @kinky_horror to partake in this night of unholy love.
What started off as a one-time special premiering on Shudder July 13, 2018, ‘The Last Drive- In’ was originally meant to be Brigg’s swan song; one last special before hanging up the bolo tie in retirement. However, due to so many mutants, excuse me…viewers tuning in and breaking the Shudder servers, it was only natural to announce an official full season of ‘The Last Drive-In‘, which would make its explosive debut March 19, 2019. Since then, Darcy and Briggs have spawned many exclusive holiday specials, have graciously donated to many charities within the community, and have accumulated 4 seasons of ‘The Last Drive-In’, with a fifth currently in production premiering on Shudder’s 2023 schedule sometime this year, let’s hope sooner rather than later.
Horror Noire, a Film Review
Horror Noire is a horror collection that includes “Daddy,” “The Lake,” “Brand of Evil,” “Bride Before You,” “Fugue State,” and “Sundown.”
Horror Noire is a horror collection brought by the combined efforts of AMC+ and Shudder. The collection includes “Daddy,” “The Lake,” “Brand of Evil,” “Bride Before You,” “Fugue State,” and “Sundown.” Horror Noire boasts Black directors and screenwriters, providing six unique stories.
As this collection explores six stories, I will skip the usual synopsis to assess the genres and ideas explored, albeit limited as needed. Expect to find supernatural horror, creature features, and psychological thrillers. Many short films deal with these genres while exploring Black issues, but this isn’t universal for the collection.
The directors and writers include Zandashé Brown, Robin Givens, Rob Greenlea, Kimani Ray Smith, Steven Barnes, Ezra Clayton Daniels, Tananarive Due, Shernold Edwards, Victor LaValle, and Al Letson.
What I Like
Each story remains unique, holding different strengths and weaknesses that highlight drastically different perspectives. Collections like VHS hold a similar premise to create their collection, but Horror Noire gives more creative freedom to its talent to be independent.
My personal favorite short film is Zandashé Brown’s “Bride Before You.” This period piece unravels a fable set in the Reconstruction Era. The entry feels Fabulistic in approach, which happens to be my preferred niche.
However, the best example of horror goes to Robin Givens’ “Daddy,” providing an existential horror tied directly to the characters involved.
What I Dislike
As mentioned, all have a particular style and idea. The downside of this approach always remains to keep the viewer interested long enough to find their favorite. If you find several underwhelming choices, this becomes a chore. But I imagine that is rare as the variety makes the options refreshing.
Personally, “Brand of Evil” had an interesting premise, but the execution fell short. On paper, it might have sounded like my favorite, which makes the lackluster execution a bigger letdown.
Horror Noire gives power and control to Black creators, providing a formula for a unique collection against others in the space. While the various subjects and approaches mean you aren’t likely to love them all, there should be a short film for everyone.
(3.5 / 5)
Episode six of Netflix’s Dahmer was not, honestly about our title character. Instead, it was about one of his victims, a man named Tony. We’ve actually seen Tony a few times during this series. We just didn’t know it was him.
And, well, he wasn’t exactly alive the first time we saw him.
Tony was born into a supportive, loving family. This is good because soon after he was born a viral infection took his hearing. He is black, deaf, and gay in the early 90’s.
Tony has a dream of becoming a model. And he certainly has the looks for it. He is beautiful, body and soul. He has lots of opportunities for romance, but it’s not what he’s looking for. He wants a real relationship.
Eventually Tony moves to Madison, trying to pursue his dream. He gets a job and starts getting modeling work.
Then, he meets Jeff Dahmer at a bar.
At first, we can almost believe that it’s going to be alright. Jeff seems happy. He’s taking care of himself. He’s not drinking as much. He even has his dad and stepmom over for dinner. It seems like his life is getting on track. Even better, he’s treating Tony right.
Then, of course, things go bad.
One thing that has always bothered me as a true crime fan is that we know so much about the killers, but not as much about the victims. Not so much if we don’t know who the killer is, of course. But the names that are part of our pop culture are those of the killers. Dahmer, Manson, Jones, Bundy, Holms. The names we don’t know are Roberta Parks, Beth LaBiancas, Leno LaBiancas, and Tony Hughes. And clearly, we should know them.
If Tony Hughes was half the shining, positive person that the show Dahmer made him out to be, I’m so sad that he isn’t with us anymore. We need so many more people like him. And many of Dahmer’s victims were likely just like him. After all, he was attracted to them for a reason.
This was a significant episode, and I understand why it’s the highest-rated episode of the series. I finished it with a heavy heart, saddened by the loss of a man who should still be with us today.(5 / 5)