handful_ofdust: (0)
handful_ofdust ([personal profile] handful_ofdust) wrote in [personal profile] sovay 2017-09-04 05:35 pm (UTC)

Okay, so: re Trouble Every Day, I don't think it should ever have been programmed as a "vampire" film per se--it's a werewolf film at best, or maybe a zombie variant, a maenad/cannibal film primarily. The linking of the systems of arousal and hunger is key, but you're right, it brings some weird gender essentialist shit to the fore. I also admit to the lure of its "film maudit" status, its utter inaccessibility. At one point, I could only find it as a decayed videotape through the Suspect Video mothership store; I finally had to order it on expensive DVD from Japan. At the time it came out, if was also heralded as something you couldn't unsee, something you shouldn't see, or want to see. That's my jam, as we all know, so I was predisposed to cut it a lot of slack.

That said, what we're talking about is absolutely Claire Denis, Famous French Filmmaker, saying "But you know, of course this is not a horror film, so no closure for you!" Which is not an attitude that suits any narrative well, IMHO. Part of the problem is that she begins her narrative at a point where all the really important decisions have already been made--Leo knows his research isn't doing shit and isn't likely to do shit for Core, so what he's really doing is waiting to become guilty enough that he either lets Core out and lets her eat him, or he mercy-kills them both. Shane, ever the American, wants to think that Core's degeneration isn't a foretelling of his own future--he's used to making decisions for other people, and to some degree to thinking of other people as disposable, aside from those he considers "his."

Shane never seems to be afraid for himself, afraid he's going to lose his own soul/personality. The idea of celibacy never occurs. He wants to move forward with all his hungers intact, which is why he comes off as a bigger monster than Core, but Core is well past her moral event horizon. She's already decided that self-restraint is something she can literally trust to Leo, making him her enabler, her doctor, her partner by default, her hospice care-worker. It's like she's daring him to figure out when her terminal disease should stop having a body-count.

Anyhow. It's been a while since I've seen it--I know Core's imprisonment ends in fire, like Jane Eyre, but I can't remember much else about it. I was interested by the honeymoon to Europe as an organizing pattern, the way it hearkens back to every other Universal monster movie (especially The Black Cat, two young idiots blithely intruding on the end of another long, gothic story). But it was definitely made to be unsatisfying, so I'm not surprised that you found it so.;)

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