September 22, 2016 at 12:01PM
David Cronenberg: Inside the Mind of the Filmmaking Master
Why did David Cronenberg direct so many films in the horror genre? Simultaneously cold and emotional, visceral and removed, horror is a genre constantly undergoing rebirth. Horror can be psychological, playing on unseen fears, or physical, assaulting us with gore. Horror films by classic directors like Alfred Hitchcock dance elegantly between onscreen violence and suspense.
Contemporary filmmakers like Joss Whedon mash genres together, creating horror-comedy hybrids like The Cabin in the Woods. Directors like Wes Craven are admired for their perfection of the slasher flick, while films like The Exorcist and The Omen tend to top “most frightening” lists for their depiction of the satanic and the supernatural.
A film is a particular product, manufactured within a given system of economic relations, and involving labour to produce-a condition to which even ‘independent’ filmmakers are subject-assembling a certain number of workers…transforming into a commodity, possessing exchange value, which are realized by the sale of tickets and contracts, and governed by the laws of the market.
Yet no director combines psychological and physical horrors in such original ways as David Cronenberg. In each of his films, David Cronenberg plays with themes of boundary-crossing and abjection. In 1979’s The Brood, the figures of mother and child become monstrous, while in 1986’s The Fly, the healthy human body becomes a site of grotesque metamorphosis.
Read the rest and watch the video essays here: https://www.indiefilmhustle.com/david-cronenberg/