Tag Archives: Horror

American Horror Story


2/2/13 – The Latest Television Series featuring a Haunted House, a Dysfunctional Family and one Unexpected Twist. 

Last week, I watched an amazing television series also known as, American Horror Story; I decided to watch season one at a friend’s house, I wasn’t to sure what to expect at first, although I was hooked after the third episode. I must warn you in advance, American Horror Story is seriously addictive, each episode does uncover another key element to the plot that begins to unravel towards the end of the series.

American Horror Story is produced by Ryan Murphay and Brad Falchuck and the series begins with a young family who move into a haunted house in Los Angeles. Ben, Vivian and their daughter, Violet soon discover that the house does contain spirits from those who have died within the house. Each episode introduces a completely different story that intertwines towards the very end of the season; while I was watching American Horror Story I began to wonder how the spirits were connected the house, the level of suspicion and anticipation does make a brilliant ending to the series!


American Horror Story does feature quite a dark and gruesome effect, although the sexual references also adds spontaneity and humour to the series, especially the bondage mask and the promiscuous maid. The introduction to American Horror Story also features a range of skeletal figures and skulls that also compliments the uneasy music and the old fashioned portraits. The skull often reappears throughout the series that often highlights the border between life and death.

At the very start I was unable to determine who was alive and who was dead, as a continued to watch the program, I had realised that the spirits live with the inhabitants inside the mansion. This is a very interesting concept as it is hard to determine if there is someone or something lurking behind us in the dark. It’s hard to determine what happens after death if you never experienced it before.

Towards the end, you begin to discover that each character does has a personal connection to the house; the spirits remain inside the mansion until the night of Halloween. It’s interesting to see how the different characters have their own story and how these stories connect to the other spirits within the house. There was one character in particular who had captured my attention; Tate is a socio path who begins to visit Ben for counselling sessions. The scene immediately cuts to Tate wearing skeletal face paint, as he begins to walk down the school hallway.


The scene doesn’t specifically explain an reference to the skull face paint, although the visual effects and the cinematography was impressive. Tate begins to discuss his urges; his desire to kill innocent people that is then composed with the skull makeup. I assume the makeup becomes a symbol of death, perhaps the skull is used as a warning sign, a sign that allows the viewer to suspect that there is a lot more to this character than what meets the eye. It’s so hard for me to write about Tate without giving away too much information; his character is entertaining to watch on-screen and his connection to the house is a very important part of the storyline.


I do not own a copy of American Horror Story, so when it was time to leave my friend’s house, I rushed over to the video rental store and borrowed a copy. As soon as I got home, I continued to watch the episodes until 1am in the morning, I had literally watched 12 whole hours in one day, that is how addictive it is! If you are looking for something interesting to watch, I would recommend American Horror Story, Season One.


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The Decent (Continued)


28/4/12 – The Decent: Horror Film

The decent was quite an unsettling film, which used narrow spaces and angles to create a sense of isolation. Throughout the film, the skull did make a frequent appearance through different compositions, forms and shapes, which assisted with he construction of the storyline. The skull was disguised in the shape of a rock, a mountain and other natural objects, which also distorted the viewer’s perception of the image or the film.

The film features a group of friends who decide to go exploring through the wilderness. As they begin to travel deeper within the caves, they encounter ‘monsters’ who begin to attack each person one by one until the main protagonist, Sarah is accompanied with her own insanity.

Skulls have become a significant part of the film, which correspond with the narrative. Perhaps the skulls becomes a warning sign or an image, which signifies danger to the spectator. In regards to the top image, the skull becomes recognisable when viewing the image sideways and the undistinguishable form is juxtaposed next to an actual representation of a skull.

Marshall, Neil. “The Decent “, 99 Minutes. United States: Lions Gate Films, 2005.

Image, http://www.entertainmentwallpaper.com/download/10006917/

Living Dead Dolls

26/3/12 – Minotaur

While wondering through Minotaur, I also recognised Living Dead Dolls, which were placed right next to the Tim Burton merchandise. The packaging also features skulls on the side in black and white, which are juxtaposed next to a range of grotesque dolls.The figurines also appear similar to characters from horror films especially Saw or Chucky.

Living Dead Dolls, http://www.livingdeaddolls.com/lddsite.html