Tall, Dark, and Dead – 34 – Deadgirl
Directors: Marcel Sarmiento, Gadi Harel
Leads: Shiloh Fernandez, Noah Segan
Favorite quote: “She’s pretty active for a dead girl, don’t you think?”
Thoughts: It sounds sick to say that I really enjoyed Deadgirl, but I did. It managed to tap into several fonts of true horror, right from the very first scene – the horror of a life ill used or unexplored, the horror of aging and/or bodily decay, the horror of being bent to another’s will. It took a few chances, and came across as genuinely nasty, heartless, and horrible.
The eponymous Deadgirl manages to focus and distill the longings, urges, and cruelties of the main characters simply by existing – and you end up truly pitying her for it. She doesn’t appear to be a dead zombie – her wounds fester rather than rot – but her imprisonment, obvious zombie-esque illness, and abuse have certainly killed her. As Rickie and JT act upon her body, her condition begins to reflect an infection not of the flesh, but of the soul.
Rickie and JT are two misfits engaging in what might be termed “performative living” – attempting to make sense of their own lives through the use of “their monster.” They apply makeup to her, attempting to cling onto that which must decay. Their arguments over how she should be treated reflect not only their different personalities, but their respective philosophies about the world. In the end, I got the sense that people whom we idolize or fetishize endure a kind of permanent enslavement within our minds. Whether this is due to the very human inability to let things go, or due to the denial of autonomy to those we wish to dominate (however secretly) – feminists would have a field day with this movie.