Thoughts on the subversion of expectations

I’ve been reading much more than watching movies for the last few weeks, so I’m not pulling 2 movies out of a stack of dozens to make a random argument. I watched Flight of the Navigator about a week ago. It was on my mind in relation to a story I’m writing. This weekend we caught a late night showing of Drag Me to Hell at the $3 theater.

In Flight of the Navigator there’s a lot of playful misdirection. There are numerous scenes where you think you’re going to see the flying saucer and it’s first entrance into the story is actually off screen. The base mechanics of when to introduce this important element in the story stuck in my head. I found myself thinking about how often this type of cheap “gotcha” is used in horror movies.

Watching Drag Me to Hell I was thinking about this. There were many places where this COULD have been done. The director set up those moments where either something twisted and scary could happen or some dramatic tension could be released with a bit of humorous misdirection. Each of these moments, I assumed would be the one that let me take a moment to breathe. I let myself relax in anticipation of the fake scare. Instead the terror just kept coming. Spectacular movie.

I guess I really did just want to write a post about 2 movies that I’d bet money (If I did that kind of thing) no one else has ever compared. That said, anyone out there have a pair of movies that are linked in your mind for reasons no one else understands?

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~ by mentatjack on July 13, 2009.

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