It’s time to look back at the past year and see what horrors left an impression. M. Night Shyamalan made a return to form, Jordan Peele made an impressive feature debut and Chucky proved he is still a horror icon to reckon with! Without further ado, here are my favorite/best horrors of 2017.
(NOTE: There are a few titles here initially released in 2016 at festivals or limited theatrical release, but I did not catch up to them till VOD or home media in 2017 and felt it unfair not to include them! Blackcoat’s Daughter, for instance, was made in 2015 and did not see release until this year! -MZNJ)
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French horror has vegetarian Justine (Garance Marillier) following her big sister Alexia (Ella Rumpf) to veterinary school. Once there, “rookie” Justine is forced to eat raw rabbit kidney by Alexia during part of a bloody initiation. After having what appears to be an allergic reaction, Justine starts to have an intense craving for meat…raw meat…and not just from animals.
Julia Ducournau directs this very disturbing and stylish thriller from her own script. The film appears to be a metaphor for growing up and the loss of innocence as virginal Justine craves “the flesh”, especially of her handsome gay roommate Adrien (Rabah Naït Oufella). Once she gets it and is exposed to the party lifestyle of grad school, her hunger grows in more ways than one. There are some very unsettling scenes during the course of the film and some gruesome ones that will make you cringe as Ducournau takes us on Justine’s journey from virginal vegetarian to potential cannibal, under the guidance of her older sister. And be warned, some of these scenes will stick with you for a while. It is all portrayed very well by lead Garance Marillier and the rest of the cast and we do get a chilling explanation before the credits role. A very unnerving and well made French horror from Julia Ducournau. Highly recommended for those who like stuff offbeat and very disturbing.