Genre film lost one of its most influential forces last week when author and screenwriter Richard Matheson passed away. Whether writing originally for the screen, as with the STAR TREK episode, “The Enemy Within,” adapting his own work, which he did for such classic TWILIGHT ZONE episodes as “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet” and the archetypal 50’s horror film THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN, or adapting others, including bringing Fritz Leiber’s Conjure Wife to the screen as BURN WITCH BURN (a.k.a. NIGHT OF THE EAGLE), Matheson was able to embue his scripts with a contemporary outlook and an incisive inquest into the human condition that helped define genre film for the latter half of the twentieth century, and on into the twenty-first.
Cinefantastique Online’s Steve Biodrowski, Lawrence French, and Dan Persons sit down to discuss Matheson’s contribution to the world of science fiction, fantasy, and horror, weigh his overall influence on popular cinema, and discuss favorite examples of his work. Also in this show: Steve and Dan discuss the recent limited releases BYZANTIUM and 100 BLOODY ACRES. Plus: What’s coming to theaters next week.
Australian brothers Cameron Cairnes and Colin Cairnes are making their feature film debut with 100 BLOODY ACRES. A black comedy in which a group of young concert-goers run afoul of a couple of brothers (Angus Sampson and Damon Herriman) whose blood and bone fertilizer business has seen a significant uptick in fortunes with the addition of human corpses to the mix, the film manages to subvert the typical TEXAS CHAINSAW set-up through an uncanny ability to zig when the audience is expecting a zag, and the Cairnes’ willingness to push relationship moments to the fore in the midst of all the gore.
I got an opportunity to talk with the Cairnes about their approach to horror and how they came up with Angus Sampson’s beard. Click on the player to hear the show.