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Monday, May 07, 2007

Bug: The Movie

So the title of this upcoming movie may not scare everybody. But it scares the crap out of me. I hate bugs. But despite its rather unassuming name, this film is not a cheap horror flick in the vein of "Saw" or "Species."

But this bug movie is scary in its own way, directed, as it is, by "The Exorcist's," William Friedkin. The bug movie is actually an adaptation of a play by Tracy Letts, an off-Broadway play called "The Barrow Street Bug" that was a hit. The play had crappy production values, but the exploration of trailer trash paranoia caught the eye of the New York Times. The grey lady called it "the season's wildest ride," and the New Yorker said it was the best play in town.

So maybe newspaper reviews aren't your thing. But despite her penchant for choosing some really awful early Julia Roberts-type fare - "Double Jeopardy," "Eye of the Beholder," "Someone Like You" - Ashley Judd is a strong actress, as proven by "De-Lovely," "Frida," and her earlist film, "Ruby in Paradise."

Click here to watch the bug movie's trailer.

Claustrophobia is one of its most essential elements. But the bug movie is all about the taking over of Agnes' (Judd) frail mental world. It looks powerful and frightening.

And so do the posters:

See how the posters could fool someone into thinking that this is a straight horror film? That would be like saying "Naked Lunch" is about a typewriter. Bug movie is about process, and the process is Peter's taking over of Agnes' fragile mental and physical world. Friedkin's method of filming always gives his subject matter a hallucinatory edge. I'm dying to see how the difference between stage and screen play out.

Incidentally, I also like the design of both posters. The top one is spidery and dark, almost Edwardian in its feel. It suggests the horror within, as opposed to an external horror. The bottom one is watery and suggests a certain fluidity of personality. I like both. The top tells the story of a dark internal path, and the bottom tells the story of the malleability of the human mind once it is weakened. That's more disturbing to me than any real bug can ever be.


  1. See...I think the top one is marketing for boys (dark n' scary! ooh...looks like a cooch! I like cooch! is that a chick in the cooch? maybe there'll be girl-on-girl action!), and the bottom one is marketing for girls ("they send in their drone...then they find their queen"--might as well subtitle it "boys drool and girls rule!").

    You can speculate all you want about inward horror and fluidity, but it all boils down to penis and vagina.