Do you consider...

Discussion in 'Slashers' started by thing, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Messages:
    5,638
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Australia
    Yea that makes sense. I'm happy calling it a slasher though. It may not fit in the category properly but I feel the film is similar to Maniac at times which I also consider a slasher.
     
  2. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    Messages:
    9,393
    Likes Received:
    130
    Trophy Points:
    63
    It's all a matter of opinion.A film I DO consider to be a slasher (albeit a more plot driven one) is EYES OF A STRANGER.That film,like WHEN A STRANGER CALLS,has a bad guy who makes phone threats.Like STRANGER,the killer isn't a Jason style murder machine but a fairly average looking guy.Also,like STRANGER,the film develops his character (and the protaganists) a lot more than usual for a slasher and truly trots out some Hitchcockian suspense moments as well as violence.It has echos of vintage horrors like THE SPIRAL STAIRCASE and SEE NO EVIL.Saying that,it also has some effective stalk and slash sequences and impressive Tom Savini gore effects.That is what makes it fit in the slasher canon,it has the hallmarks of the classic American slasher,stalking,boobs and blood,it's just better written and directed than many of it's contemporaries.
     
  3. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Messages:
    5,638
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Australia
    I agree with this.

    Just watched the sequel and it's not a slasher that's for sure. The beginning is pretty much a rehash of the first film and then it goes off on its own story which doesn't follow the killer this time but does bring back some characters from the original. This is much more a thriller/detective type movie. I prefer the original.

    I might check out the remake at some point too.
     
  4. rhett

    rhett Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2000
    Messages:
    9,395
    Likes Received:
    45
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Canada
    I've always thought WHEN A STRANGER CALLS to be a slasher, and that's probably in a large part due to the time it was made and its influences within. It came out in '79 and marketed itself and even thought itself to clearly be a part of that Halloween "suspense" renaissance.

    It is about a psychopath who stalks and murders while a teenager is babysitting in a nice suburban house. Sound familiar?

    While it may lack the bodycount, gore, etc. of many of the classic slashers, it also has a lot of the tropes you'll find in the genre, like the
    calls coming from inside the house reveal a la Black Christmas,
    the heavy breathing phone calls you see in Halloween, Prom Night, etc., the Final Girl revenge finale, the Loomis-like detective, etc. If there's one film When A Stranger Calls owes its debt, it's Halloween, and since WASC is such an early entry in the sub-genre (a year after Halloween), many of the conventions we have come to pin upon the slasher were not even invented yet (how much gore is in Halloween? Where's the Final Girl in The Town That Dreaded Sundown?). You'll also notice that the director, Fred Walton, later made April Fool's Day, a film purely in the slasher template since the sub-genre was more defined at the time (although it too features
    a small body count
    ).

    Many cite the procedural middle portion as something that excludes the film from being a slasher, but again, it's cribbing from Halloween, which has a sizable portion with Loomis at the sanitarium (and even more in the TV cut) for exposition. It was only later in the genre where these films streamlined out the exposition in favor of more carnage.

    When A Stranger Calls is recognized as a seminal film in the development of the sub-genre. While it didn't particularly bring anything new to the formula, it effectively juggled a lot of the tentpole themes present in Halloween, Black Christmas and even The Town That Dreaded Sundown to crystallize something that would later become boilerplate. It's one of the principal films parodied in the slasher-riffing Student Bodies (1981). It doesn't fit entirely into the neat little template we've made today, but what films pre-Friday the 13th do?
     
  5. walkingdude

    walkingdude Megatron

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2004
    Messages:
    3,463
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Do I consider Franco a pervert Yes...yes I do.
     
  6. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Messages:
    5,638
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Australia
    Very well said. Reading that just made me want to see more reviews from you Rhett! :)
     
  7. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    Messages:
    9,393
    Likes Received:
    130
    Trophy Points:
    63
    While I could point out a number of "Proto Slashers",films that predate HALLOWEEN but hew a lot closer to the contemporary idea of what a slasher is (Twitch Of The Death Nerve,Horror House,Alice Sweet Alice,Dementia 13,not to mention much of the Italian Giallo cycle and the German Krimi films) I will still stick by my earlier statement,it's all a matter of personal opinion,in the eye of the beholder.Whether it is or is not a slasher film,I still like When A Stranger Calls.If people see it as a slasher I'm certainly okay with that.
     

Share This Page