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When Was the Last Time a Horror Film Gave You Nightmares?

We had a family outing at the weekend. We all went to see The Last Exorcism, on the recommendation of my gran. We were pretty much all disappointed, but to different degrees. Anyway, as we sat around the kitchen table at midnight, discussing the film, my gran and my aunt conceded that whenever they typically saw a film about demons, they had trouble sleeping – even the camp horror of The Devil Rides Through or the courtroom-focused drama of The Exorcism of Emily Rose. However, neither would have any real trouble sleeping that night (and, the following morning, both seemed perfectly rested). So it got me thinking, perhaps the perfect measure of a horror movie’s effectiveness is how afraid it makes you as you lay yourself down to rest. So, when was the last time you had trouble sleeping?

A stab in the dark...

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Non-Review Review: The Last Exorcism

The fundamental problem with The Last Exorcism is that it tries to be too many things, while being unwilling to completely invest in any of them. Is it an exploration of the culture of “showy exorcisms” (where the preacher himself refers to it as “a sham”)? Is it a jerky, handheld homage to The Exorcism, filtered through Paranormal Activity? Is it an indictment of small insular communities and the sinister ideas which may underpin them, as in The Wicker Man? It seems to be all three at once, which is a problem, as the three don’t gel together too well in a two-hour film.

The movie certainly isn't a blessing...

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