Thursday, May 5, 2011

Society (1989, Brian Yuzna)

Brian Yuzna kicked off his subsequently unsubstantial directing career with a surprisingly effective bit of 'body horror' with a sarcastic social message. As most horror fans know, Yuzna served as a producer on the original "Re-animator", which "Society" corresponded well with in terms of ultra-black comedy, though "Society" blows "Re-animater" away, as far as I'm concerned...

The film follows a 17 year-old kid who belongs to a rich, Beverly Hills family whom he feels strongly disconnected from. He tells his psychiatrist that he has an aberrant fear of his family and their high-class community. With the help of an even more paranoid school mate, he learns that his family is involved in an incestuous, malignant plot to take down the lower-class population...

Unlike the "Re-animator" films - which are undeniably entertaining though highly over-rated, in my opinion - "Society" has a more elaborate and less customary meaning than what many would commonly expect when sitting down to straightforward horror film formalities. When the final 'shunting' scene hits, you've got rich folks sucking the flesh from some poor schmo and cruelly fist-jamming him through the anus. If that don't say it all... The effects are very cool and highly imaginative. The ass-face character is such a memorable image, as is the woman with the arm-legs. I'm not sure what these effects are representative of, if anything, but I'm sure it applies in one way or another... The shit's just classic!

"Society" is certainly Brian Yuzna's most ambitious film and a definite treat for 80s horror-comedy lovers who feel the need for something with a bit more of an essence of relevance as far as communal ranking and paranoia. Highly recommended, to say the least! 7/10.

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