"I think of horror films as art, as films of confrontation."

- David Cronenberg

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March 3, 2013

Flicks: Mimesis (2011)


Sid Haig and director Doug Schulze enthusiastically explore the modern horror movie genre.

Manlings. They live and die - and have no control between these two absolute certainties. Mimesis (2011) explores the certainty found in horror movies that provides the illusion of control over life and death. Horror movie fans know their classic films, such as George Romero's cultural epiphany, Night Of The Living Dead (1968), better than they know themselves, their own government institutions or ancient religious texts! It's true.

Why? Because it seems more relevant. Simple. And what could be more relevant than a movie that is an homage to, not a re-make of, Night Of The Living Dead?

Today, it is very usual to see a film using the exact structural framework of a classic like Night Of The Living Dead especially at a time when re-makes like Evil Dead and the latter Night Of The Living Dead sequels both sputter due to lack of interest in a Hollywood version of a cult classic devoid of imagination.

Mimesis starts out like Wes Craven's Scream movies, at a horror movie con (!), and quickly becomes a self-aware, full-color version of Night Of The Living Dead. Director Doug Schulze, who also co-wrote and funded the film, filmed Mimesis in and around Detroit, Michigan, which any resident of the US will tell you is a true land of the dead. Mimesis is very much a product of Michigan. Insane Clown Posse, based in Michigan, is featured on the soundtrack and the movie was released by the recently resurrected Anchor Bay (Evil Dead, Prom Night) who were originally based in Michigan before being bought out by Starz.

In an interview with Shock Till You Drop, Schulze remained clear about the influences that he had including The Last Man on Earth by Richard Matheson, which is actually a vampire film, and the tradition of people isolated in cabins or houses (Cabin Fever, Evil Dead).

Schulze's actors reprise the roles of Duane Jones (Allen Maldonado) and Barbara (Jana Thompson) along with horror movie vet Mr. Sid Haig (Spider Baby, House Of 1,000 Corpses) playing a horror film director making some extremely significant statements about the genre and entertainment in genral. The actors are forced into a game as doomed pawns re-creating a classic horror film where everyone is meant to die. Mimesis 2 in currently in post-production with a third movie planned.

References:
IMDb, Mimesis (2011)
Shock Til You Drop, Director Talks Mimesis: Night of the Living Dead
Fangoria, "Mimesis" Night Of The Living Dead



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