Tuesday, May 28, 2013

John Carpenter's The Ward

I linked my TV to the Love Film service this afternoon and settled down to watch a horror film: it was raining outside and my wife was working in the office upstairs, my daughter was playing Minecraft on the Xbox and my son is over at his friend's house for a sleepover so I thought 'why not'?
The Ward is also the title of a book I'm reading at the moment, the author is S.L. Grey and it is very good, but the story is completely different to the film in case you made that connection.
Knowing that John Carpenter directed the Halloween films, amongst many others in the horror genre, it was probably what decided me to give it a go. The story focuses on a young woman called Kristen who inexplicably hides in the woods and makes her way to a farmhouse that she sets fire to. The police arrive and drag her away to a mental hospital. I should point out that the film is set in the 1960s and there are some scenes that involve ECT shock therapy but they are few and far between. The film is about this young woman and her relationship to the other members of the ward, who are all pretty young women also. They mysteriously start to disappear one by one and Kristen becomes more and more determined to escape. I won't spoil the film for you but the story does have a good twist. There is a malevolent entity in the ward that appears to be knocking off the other young women, someone called Alice who was once a patient herself. The hospital staff aren't pleasant but they are not the bad guys in this movie. If you find yourself wanting a gentler horror film, with some but not an overwhelming amount of violence and with a twist in the tale, then I'd say this would be a good comfort film. Does it seem weird that I describe a horror movie as a comforting? Maybe it does but if you like horror, I think you'll know what I mean.


Tara said...

I haven't heard of this movie, but I have heard of Mr. Carpenter. I loved his movie, "The Fog" (I'd consider that a comfort horror movie to me, although there is a bit of violence with hooks and stuff - not a lot of gore, though), and the first "Halloween".
I'll rent this one!

FW said...

Tara: The Fog is a classic isn't it? I loved that movie. John Carpenter has the ability to always make me jump during his films. Even the ones I've seen before!