Nasty JT

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Deadgirl is a story about two friends who discover a woman’s corpse in an abandoned facility. Surprisingly, the body that appears to be dead was not entirely dead at all ad it was able to move. One of them, JT, decided to use the girl for sexual pleasure, while the other, Ricky, contemplated and decided to abstain from doing so. Tension builds up between their friendship as JT grows to be attached to the girl’s body.

This movie might just be the most disturbing movie in the sense that it tackles a moral dilemma regarding necrophilia. I know that necrophilia is illegal in most countries, but this movie makes you ask yourself if a corpse has more purpose than objectification. As JT always insists, the dead girl’s body didn’t have no capability to restrict nor does it have any capability to be useful in a dignified way. Of course, as a woman myself, I felt very much offended by the movie as it also depicts the powerlessness of women when it comes to sexuality. Men, on the other hand, are depicted as dominant and instinctive when it comes to sexuality. But this does not mean that they are more of a human being than women. It actually denotes that men are just like animals, attacking whatever is in front of them. Sometimes I think that women are more powerful in the sense that they get to lure men into unthinkable things, men are weak for giving into temptation.

Another point that this movie might be trying to tackle is that it is not necessarily based on gender, but that anyone is susceptible of getting sexually abused. The act is fully dependent on the agent alone, since men get raped in real life too. Ricky also had the idea of using the body for his own pleasure as he wanted to do to his crush Joanne, but he thought hard against the idea that he ended up doing nothing at all. JT, on the other hand, was not able to fight his urges and solely submitted to his instincts.

Despite the disturbing imagery, I really thought the movie was okay. It’s another spin to the zombie horror genre, where the man is able to take control of the monster. The acting would have been better, though JT’s performance was remarkable. It was quite uncanny though that a human body is left in the institution. Knowing how strict building policy is in America, I would presume that the body would have been found when the building was abandoned. Also, I didn’t find the film scary, but rather gross. The grossest part would be when the dead girl bit Joanne’s boyfriend’s private part. I thought the ending was the only part where the scary part entered.

All in all, I didn’t really like the plot. It came off to me as just another writer’s shallow fantasy brought to life. Few films are able to transform a nasty concept into magnificent cinema, Deadgirl wasn’t able to do justice to the Frankenstein-like idea.

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Deadgirl

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I first heard of this movie during my zombie movie phase around 2 years ago. Critics and reviewers seemed divided on it, some said it was utterly disgusting, others said it was rich, a good movie, essentially. I find that it is both.
 
Deadgirl is a disturbing film; I doubt anyone will argue against that. But I don’t think it was the blood, gore, violence, or the sex (itself) that bothered people the most, but how Deadgirl is treated. While Deadgirl is but an empty shell of who she was before, she was still, one way or another a human. Yet, JT even in his initial fascination upon her discovery, never really thinks of her that way. He soon makes her his sex toy, unleashing all his repressed sexual energy on her. She shows her off to Wheeler and seeks to replace once she gets too disgusting. The movie is blatant about Deadgirl’s absolute objectification. 
 
The objectification was not limited to Deadgirl (who never even gets a proper human name) or the objectifying to JT. Joann is also objectified when JT and Wheeler try to replace her, and when Johnny and Rickie fight over her and want her for her sexual services. Rickie might never act upon it, but in his head he also wants to use Deadgirl for sex. I find that he might act self-righteous about not playing with her like the other guys, I don’t think he is really that much better than any of the other guys. This became apparent in the last part of the film when he takes advantage of Joann being bitten and making her his replacement Deadgirl, instead of doing the honorable thing anyone would do for a fellow human, and giving her back to society, telling her family that she is dead, letting her have a funeral, putting her to rest. 
 
Finally, one of the most disturbing parts of Deadgirl is that Rickie, JT, and Wheeler are all average guys. Rapists, kidnappers, and others who are reported to have performed heinous things against women are depicted as mentally ill, sick, or having some sort of traumatic past, but, in fact, most of the men who these things are normal guys. It might be disturbing to think about for guys, and downright scary for girls, that every man could do the things the characters in the movie did. And they do.
 
The things like what happen to Deadgirl happen everyday. Female objectification is no joke. It is like a springboard for violence against women because when you can view someone as an object, you can do anything to them. Women are raped, forced into sexual slavery, and mutilated all over the world. I find that the things done to Deadgirl are probably even mild compared to reality, at least Deadgirl is at least on some level, dead, and doesn’t have to deal with the psychological and emotional trauma involved. And while most people don’t go and act out to the same extremes, we all objectify the women around us, and watching Deadgirl made me feel every bit worse about it. It would be nice if we could just set women free like Deadgirl at the end, but as this is the real world (and ingrained into our culture and thinking), so it’s not so easy.

Deadgirl

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I feel that I have a lot to say about Deadgirl, not just within the context of what has been discussed in class, but also from a production perspective. I have to admit that I did not find the film good technically. First of all, there were a lot of grey areas in the plot, a lot of situations were left unresolved at the end, and most of the characters did not represent real people at all. If Deadgirl’s aim was to show us that in the end it’s us who are the monsters and it’s humans who do the most horrific acts, then perhaps I can accept that the film was made in such a way to give us the most exaggeratedly horrible people it could.

For example, JT was the high school burnout-turned-psycho. He was probably the kind of kid who would lead a school shooting simply out of boredom. His character is so terrible that I cant ever imagine coming across someone like him in my own school. Then we have Rickie the wallflower. Only, he’s not just like your Logan Lerman type of wallflower (the nice, quite kind), he’s the creepy kid who slinks around in the library stalking your girlfriend, telling her weird things randomly. Lastly, we have Joann, who is probably the character I dislike the most. If Joann is supposed to represent most high school girls these days then I feel terrible for the future generation. Beyond being the most clichéd character in the film, she was nothing but a superficial girl who only cared about her social status. She could barely even stand being caught talking to Rickie, simply because he was that ‘weird kid’. I didn’t like the film mostly because I found no characters to root for. It became a little tiring for me to watch a bunch of kids I didn’t like make their lives more and more complicated by being terrible people. But if the point of the film was to highlight just how terrible people can get when they’re put in certain situations, then I guess it did a pretty good job there.

Going back to the technical aspects of the film, the one thing that bothered me the most was the tone. I felt like the tone that the director was trying to set wasn’t really matching up to the theme of the film. The story was turning into such a sick combination of sex, obsession, deception, misogyny and all of these things, but the music was always this kind of slow piano music and the transitions were always fade-to-blacks and cross fades  and I really felt that a slow and dramatic setting was not a good backdrop for what was going on in the film.

Anyway, moving on from the technicals, I guess I can say that the film is interesting. There are a lot of horror films these days that play around with sexual horror. One film I like to compare this to is Teeth. In Teeth, the main character had some sort of monstrous vagina that she ended up being able to control. She used it at one point to get back at certain men who treated her badly in the past. In this movie, it was the woman who was the monster. At first she used it only as a means of defending herself, but after a while she started using it for more evil purposes A lot of people said that Teeth was the one horror movie that was bound to scare all kinds of men, precisely because the men were the victims here, and the men in the movie were being stripped of their “manhood”. Deadgirl plays around these ideas as well, showing us how horrible humans can become. However in Deadgirl, the men are driven by their repression and their thinking that “it doesn’t get any better than this” for them. It’s a little sad when you think about it.

All in all, Deadgirl is an interesting film in the way it depicts men, women, and gender and sexuality in general.

Deadgirl: Equilibrium and Disequilibrium

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“Deadgirl” is a horror film where two high school teenagers, Rickie and J.T., decide to skip school only to discover a naked undead woman chained to a table in the basement of an abandoned psychiatric hospital. In my opinion, I think that this is the type of movie that one will either enjoy watching or not. In my case, if I have to be really honest, I did not enjoy anything about the film. It’s definitely not the type of film I am going to watch all over again. Our professor even warned us beforehand that we were not going to have a pleasant lunch after watching the movie since it was going to be very icky and I am afraid he was right. I thought it was one of those gory and bloody zombie slasher films but I was completely misguided. It was undoubtedly one of the most, if not, disturbing, twisted and vulgar films I have ever watched. There are just too many unfavourable words to describe the film and for this reason, the movie was actually not widely released in theatres worldwide and most of the students in class were expected to be unfamiliar with it.

As what was discussed in class, most horror films ought to involve an equilibrium-disequilibrium-equilibrium cycle. Obviously, “Deadgirl” initially started in equilibrium by way of an empty classroom just to give the viewers a feeling of horror. It was also important to consider that Rickie was madly in love with his object of desire, JoAnn, who already has a boyfriend. Everything turns upside down and the said equilibrium is disturbed once Rickie and J.T. stumble upon a dead naked girl covered in plastic in an abandoned hospital. To their surprise, the girl wasn’t actually dead and worse, she can’t really be killed no matter what. Knowing this, I assumed that she was a zombie of some sort. Although horror is considered a peculiar pleasure, I was admittedly unexcited about the uncertainty of events, not knowing what happens next in the movie. I was undeniably waiting for something exhilarating and horrifying to happen.

Throughout the film, rather than feeling both terrified and fascinated, I was completely grossed out by the fact that J.T and his friend Wheeler instead had sex with the undead woman. Up until now, I could not comprehend why they preferred to have sex with the woman instead of alerting the local authorities. Being a case of necrophilia, I can say that such an inhuman act was the result of their desperation to have sex. In the situation of Rickie, he kept going back to the abandoned hospital and he even pictured himself having sex with JoAnn since it was already impossible for him to go out with her. The instances when the dead girl was raped showed one factor of machismo, the explicit objectification of women. The film evidently portrayed women having a secondary role as compared to men in the society. As a result of the intense sexual imagery, I had a hard time trying to appreciate or enjoy the horror experience. In the end, the film still left me with several unanswered questions such as where the woman came from and how she came about. I also believe that there is a valuable lesson we could all learn from the film: to be happy, contented and thankful for what you have in life.

Dead Girl

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Moments before showing the film Deadgirl in class, we were warned that Deadgirl is not really likeable film. To me, it meant that the film might have terrible actors, a boring plot, or perhaps an ineffective scare technique; in short, I thought that it might be a poorly made film. With this in mind, we began to watch the film. The film began with two friends in school, whom eventually ended up going to an abandoned hospital. They stumble upon a naked girl chained to a table who still seems to be alive. At this point, JT and Rickie started to argue on what to do with the girl. Rickie wanted to call the cops while JT wanted to keep the girl there for them to rape. Rickie, disagreeing with JT, leaves JT with the girl. The next day, he is confronted by JT leading him to discover that the girl is somehow undead and cannot be killed. It was at this scene that I began to realize what the description not likeable really meant. It was not a likeable film not because it was a poorly produced film, but because it was very disturbing. Upon learning that the girl is undead, a zombie, JT still continued having sexual intercourse with the girl. I do not understand why JT still continues with that even if he has already “killed” the girl three times. After some time, Wheeler joins in and also has sex with the girl. Johnny also finds out about the girl and for some reason, he was convinced by JT and Rickie to perform oral sex with the girl. It seems if the characters in the film are easily convinced by JT to tolerate the undead girl. Rickie, whom continuously goes against JT, keeps on tolerating JT after having a few words with JT. Wheeler, without hesitation, joins after JT tells him about the girl. Johnny has oral sex with the girl after being provoked by both JT and Rickie, which would eventually lead to having Johnny bitten and infected by the girl. JT and Wheeler learn that it is infectious, and instead of being more cautious, they decided to find a nice girl to infect for them to have a new “dead girl”. This, in my opinion, is the most deranged part of the film. They chose to infect, and in the process kill another person just to satisfy their sexual cravings. Towards the end, when the dead girl escapes, Joann gets infected and becomes the new dead girl. Rickie ends up similar to JT, being beside Joann, the new dead girl, all of the time. There were many scenes from the start until the end wherein, in my head, I was screaming “What the hell are they thinking? Are they crazy?” because of the ignorance and stupidity of JT, Rickie and Wheeler. Rather than focusing on the film, I was annoyed, irritated and disturbed majority of the time, and for these reasons, I dislike the film Deadgirl.

The Extreme Public Service Announcement that is Deadgirl

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This is the second time I have watched Deadgirl, a film directed by Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel. The first time I watched it, I thought it was an okay kind of film. Not the type that I would hype over and obsess about (read: Cabin in the Woods), but definitely not something laughably, disturbingly bad that it makes you feel sorry for it (read: The Human Centipede, A Serbian Film). The second time around wasn’t any different. Can you be indifferent to a film? This movie, I think, offers a somewhat fresh (no pun intended) take on the zombie genre.  

 
Enter two high school outcasts, JT and Rickie, who, as any normal angst-driven male teenager would know, are in dire situations already of ostracization by their so-called peers. They do what teenaged delinquents in their small town apparently do: go into abandoned hospitals and thrash everything to their liking, until they stumble upon a seemingly dead girl in the basement. No explanation is actually given as to the origins of the girl. Who left her there? Is she really even human? How come she seems to be aroused every time she’s touched? These questions, I’m afraid, will never be fully answered in the film. 
 
When the two best friends initially find the girl, we, the audience, are presented with one main question: what are they going to do with the girl, being the horny male teenagers that they are? This is the part where the film tries to branch out and offer us the two possible answers to the question. I think it was very interesting to somehow get inside the mind of Rickie, who, I think, is the more conflicted of the two. JT started boning away at the girl, never thinking of its consequences, and repeatedly trying to coax Rickie into doing the same, even going so far as saying that this is all that they’re ever going to be, and this is as good as they’re ever going to get. Truly, if you can do something and get away with it with no repercussions whatsoever, would you still do it, even though you know that it’s morally wrong? All goes well until, in the words of Veronica Sawyer, their teen angst bullshit starts to have a body count.
 
Rickie’s perspective I think is a very good representation of the inner workings of an adolescent male his age, albeit in a very extreme and hyperbolic way. When faced with temptation, what would you do? Should you fight it, or should you give in to it? The film tries to go on and on about Rickie’s choices in these matters, and actor Shiloh Fernandez portrays the character rather well. Noah Segan equally plays the role of JT very well, a teenager who seems to have lost all hope for himself and society, and instead does all these things for his own interest. Although the film focuses more on Rickie, it was very interesting to see JT’s point of view as well.   
 
I think what truly scares someone while watching this film isn’t the amount of gore, and not even the fact that these males may have been boning a corpse, but the idea of a person who repeatedly takes advantage of someone who he knows has little to no ability to resist. The film also seems to present the notion of the objectification of women, an issue that is and forever will be talked about anywhere and everywhere. You see, one of the scarier things is that this movie actually mirrors real-life events. Rape and necrophilia are pretty much widespread nowadays. Some of them are just repressed or are ignored. I have read even more disturbing news on the internet which would make Deadgirl seem like child’s play. Seriously. Luka Magnotta. Look it up and weep.
 
Is the film then a sort of public warning about these kinds of realities? It can be argued that it may be so. Certainly, a scene in the film wherein even the popular guys try to get a taste of the girl and then–in true horror movie fashion–get castrated and possibly infected, can be seen as a warning about the dangers of unprotected sex and STDs. Or maybe I’m just dissecting the film a bit too much. 

Deadgirl

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The best horror films are extremely unlikeable, and if that’s the case, then Deadgirl must be among the best, even if it didn’t feel like it.

I honestly didn’t find anything to like in Deadgirl. When it was over, I thought it was so appallingly bad that I thought it must’ve been all a joke, that it was probably satirical or something. I was looking for something that would redeem the movie, maybe some sort of explanation or something, but there was nothing. Before watching the movie, the class was warned about how this would be a disturbing movie. I had seen A Serbian Film before, and I thought it would be something like that…a creepy, disturbing movie that leaves you with a horror you can’t seem to rub off your skin. Maybe I had set my expectations too “high” (or low?) for this movie, and so I was a bit disappointed.

This is another movie that had left a lot of questions unanswered, such as the origin of the original Deadgirl, and what happened to her once she ran off in the end. The supposed deaths of the other characters were also just left hanging, and no one ever seemed to come forward to even wonder what on earth happened to those kids. It may have been all intentional, but to me, it kinda just felt like gaping open plot holes from the first draft of the script. I guess it did have a promising, but shaky, start, but meh, the ending was just…uhm, okay, that’s it? It’s one of those horror movies with an “oh no, it’s not over!” ending, but it wasn’t that unsettling.

The two leads, JT and Rickie, are so unbelievably childish, or just hyperaware of the fact that they won’t get anywhere so they just settled for what they had, for what was already there. JT just made the most of the fact that there was a girl he can fuck any time he pleased, and that he never had to pay for dinners and whatnot before doing so. Rickie, on the other hand, seemed to have a much better working moral compass, refusing to stoop to that level, but in the end, he also ends up fucking a deadgirl…but hey, at least it was his dream girl. Deadgirl is quite creepy and disturbing, I honestly do not understand how JT could’ve possibly seen her as hot and, for lack of a better term, fuckable. I mean, who sees a zombie-like creature, and thinks, “hey, it’s tied up, maybe we could have sex with it!”? Deadgirl really does look like the stuff of horror movies, and I thought that she would have a much better role, and I was excited when she managed to break free but we never get to see her again. She was just an object…an almost literal objectification of women. The guys in the movie all take advantage of the deadgirl, be it the original one or the new one as in Rickie’s case. It can be funny and ridiculous at times, but laughing feels so wrong due to the disturbing things that they were all doing to her. I still don’t think that Deadgirl is a good movie (and perhaps it succeeds in that way) but it is certainly good at unsettling you when it starts tugging at all the wrong strings, making you think of things you don’t want to think of.